Acquaintance Zone

Relationships of all kinds are tricky. Some establish themselves quickly; others take many seasons. There is a subconscious selection process that determines the significance of the connection.

There is a wife of a relative that I recently decided can’t be my friend. There is nothing major wrong with her and she’s a pretty okay lady, but after many years I have not grown in my affection for her. I never think “OMG I need to call so and so!” I never want to do lunch. I don’t not hold her close in my confidences (aka I don’t tell her my personal business). She has been relegated to the perpetual acquaintance zone.

Before you start thinking I’m mean for the sake of meanness, let me try to explain. The connectors are not connecting, because our conversations are quite plain. There were no “aha!” moments. Not once did I walk away feeling refreshed or renewed. I can barely recount what subject matters we skirted around, but I never left feeling good.

We don’t have many similarities other than our birthdays are in July. I think initially we both thought that would be enough to understand each other’s wit or avoid each other’s limits. It just wasn’t so. I didn’t find her very funny; truthfully, I can’t recall a single joke. I don’t like to talk bad about people, yet I participate in gossip and venting to pass the time until our husbands are ready to part ways. When I behave in a manner that I don’t approve of, I get frustrated with myself. I get upset with myself. I get angry with myself. And if my conversations with someone else consistently ends with me not liking that I was a party to it… then it’s better that we don’t conversate at all.

Oh I’ve tried to broach a variety of topics. From politics to parenting to religion and back. But you know how it goes. Patterns. Two or three sentences in, things deteriorate to complaining or indifference. I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but my brain enjoys some stimulation. I long for alternate perspectives. Our talks provide me none. And maybe that’s the other part of the problem.

How does she judge how I interact? She may not be overjoyed to be paired up with me either. I may be the boring one. That is completely possible. I may not be as engaging as I think I am. She may have already acquaintance zoned me. And I’m okay with that. Let the relationship die peacefully.

Two things that I am very aware of: I might be the jerk in this equation and I don’t need to express my tolerance limitations to her. You can’t tell people that they’re conversations are basic and dry. How arrogant would that be? And really what would that profit her or me? Nothing, so I’m telling you instead. These are the things I think in my head while I sit there listening to her talk. And that bothers me enough to insert a wedge.

I promise I won’t be rude. I’ll always be cordial, but I give myself permission to excuse myself from such uncomfortable small talk. I don’t have to be friends with everybody. I’m not trying to save face with you or her. I’m being as honest and gracious as I can. I know you may think I’m wrong. I’m actually willing to be wrong, but if I am than my growth will take a dialogue above what my acquaintance has to offer.

My mind is made up. I’ve reconciled it in my heart until God moves me otherwise.

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Author: Fuzz

I have many titles and many names. They all genuinely represent aspects of my character, public, and private self. My life's work has consisted of legal and accounting services. My heart's passion is teaching college students how to critically think in order to navigate a world with too many options. This platform is for my creative self. I have been writing stories since I could hold a pencil. My personal philosophies and beliefs have evolved into isms that I live by. I was also a photographer for many, many years. I mainly did portraits, but I do not enjoy it anymore. Now I love to color! All the "artwork" are my digital coloring book creations. Be true. Be authentic. Live your philosophies. I am Fuzz.

5 thoughts on “Acquaintance Zone”

  1. Me coming along to 63 in a few weeks, I’m happy to say that I have culled the crowd of both sexes met along my journey through this life. I only count on one hand those who are my friends. It’s been nice meeting “acquaintances” along the way; some I even remember yet today. They in their lane, me in mine, and the beat goes on!

    I believe, and this only if we socialize at all, many people. Some we teach, some teach us. Some we reflect, some reflect us. All belong for a time, and then we move ‘em where they fit or not, and vice versa. No guilt necessary!

    Believe me when I say…fitting a round peg in a square hole just doesn’t work. But then we know that don’t we, especially after trying to bang it in. No apologies necessary!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For me, it’s a lesson in self respect and boundaries. As we go through life, we interact with so many people and it is up to us to gage compatibility. If we are teaching, then we can do so without resentment. If we are learning, we can use accountability to apply what we’ve learned. Each person playing their position so that both people are increased by the acquaintance.

      It’s also important to know when a connection is toxic and protect ourselves from that influence. Giving ourselves permission to do so. Like you said..”No guilt necessary!”

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The way I see it is, every human, man, woman or child looks at a relationship with one question, “What’s in it for me?” It could be anything from a greedy desire to a simple feeling that we may or may not even realize we want. There is not always malice, greed or an overwhelmingly wonderful benefit in a desire, but we want it none the less.
    As we are all just big balls of energy, we want people that charge us and keep our energy at the level we like. There are energy suckers out there that we avoid like the plague or keep around because we have someone else that replenishes our energy. There are people on our level that don’t provide or drain energy. Deep inside we recognize that there is no “Roles” in the relationship, no giving or taking of energy. When this happens we distance ourselves. It is not that we don’t like the person, we just don’t feel that there is anything in it for us. That person probably recognizes it too. There is nothing wrong or bad with not having that “connection”.
    If we were all meant to be friends then my cake theory from before would be outrageous. You would have just too much cake. I could not in good conscious be the person that created an overwhelming cake experience which would inevitable lead to a catastrophic dislike of cake.

    Have a wonderfully energized day!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The good ol’ WIIFM (What’s in it for me). That tends to be our underline motivations. Our perspectives of connections are usually based on what we are subconsciously looking for. I wrote this because I’ve heard the “story” from so many angles that I know it is universal to not be enamoured with everyone. Sometime we don’t even like the people we love. I just say be authentic- don’t lie to yourself or others about but also don’t be pompous (nobody likes pompous). I, for one, look for great conversation filled with new ways to look at information, a good cup of coffee, and a moderate slice of cake.

      Liked by 1 person

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