Saturday, June 15, 2013

Why I have so few Friends!

Right now I am sitting at home, doing nothing. Well almost nothing, apart from reading some books, watching Smallville and One Piece, and occasionally sports and Emotional Atyachaar (yes, you got that right) on tv. I have been doing the same for almost two months now. From next month onwards, I shall be a Management Trainee at BASF India, Mumbai.

I have been growing through some mood swings recently. Often, I end up feeling depressed and frustrated, when negative feelings take over. Maybe its cause I don’t have any proper work to do. Or maybe because there is no friend here in my home town. Which again sets me to introspect and retrospect. Hence this post.

What is the definition of a friend to me? Okay, I will skip that. Why do I have so few friends? That’s a more interesting question. Well, first of all I would like to mention that I categorize my friends according to hierarchy. I know quite a few people will claim that they treat all their friends equally, etc, but that’s plain crap. Nobody can treat everyone similarly. There is bound to be bias. Hence, I clearly claim that I make a hierarchy of friendship. Unlike my previous posts, I shall not be taking any names in this one.

At the top layer, there is the Category 1. This is an exclusive category for my closest and true friends. Only 3 or 4 people fall in this category. These are the ones whom I can trust blindly, and have known since childhood.

The second layer, category 2 comprises of those friends whom I may not have known for very long, but nevertheless I do trust them to a large extent, and I also feel comfortable and happy in their presence. It brings about a positive aura, when I am surrounded by them. Nevertheless, I shall not be sharing everything with them.

The third layer, is category 3. These are those people with whom I have had multiple conversations, and I appreciate their work. However, I do not share any close bonds with them, and it wont make much of a difference to me if I am not in touch with someone for long. Sometimes I even have had fights, and arguments with these people(Of course, we can all generalize and say that friends keep having fights, but I meant differently).

The last layer is category 4. These people are not strictly friends, but more like acquaintances and present in my facebook friend list. I may have talked to them a few times, smiled to them out of courtesy, but beyond that, there is scarcely anything. They are just one degree above strangers, in my view. Highly likely to be forgotten as time goes by.

Yes, I know many of you will find this categorization strange or even bizarre. But that is exactly how it is. In fact, our minds are tuned to categorize people in different ways, based upon our perception of them. This is one reason why we can never totally avoid being judgmental.

So back to the original issue at hand. I admit, I have very few ‘true’ friends, ie those who belong to category one. And not many in category 2 either. What is the reason for that? Being an introvert? Being unsocial? Maybe, both of the reasons are true. I also usually do not initiate a conversation. I do not like talking about myself. In fact, I do not like talking without any purpose[ie random chit chat]. I prefer to listen. And I very rarely open up to anyone. I never share my feelings with others either. So I guess those are the logical reasons which my mind shares. But the truth may be different. Who knows.

Now, to come to a specific area: Female friends. Zero in Category 1. And just a couple or so in Category 2. That’s it. Surprised? Well that’s the truth. I have very few female friends. I could count them on the fingers of one hand. I guess the problem is that I rarely talk to females about matters besides education/work. And even that talk is limited. I studied in a all boys school, and had very limited interaction with girls, even in college. Of course, if you do Engineering and then MBA(from a premier institute) your interaction with the fairer sex is bound to be limited. Forget dating or asking a girl out, even talking to a girl was like a difficult chore for me. Though of course, I did talk to a few of them, and have chatted online with many, but could hardly make friends with anyone. I can even say that I did not have a single female friend before MBA. My closest friends are all male. And I do not see any change coming in the future.

Sometimes, I do feel sad about it of course. Most of my batchmates (both engg and MBA) have a healthy mix of friends from both genders. I would have desired the same. Maybe not many friends, but equal numbers of both genders. However, that was not to be. I guess it is because of my nature.

I do not believe that facebook chat and gtalk is an alternative for actual face to face interactions. In fact, virtual friendship has made life tougher for us. I resent the fact that I spend more time chatting and whatsapping than talking to people in real. This is something which I must seriously change in myself. I hate socializing, but I could try that too, in Mumbai. Maybe participate in some blogger discussions or debates, etc. But of course, I will avoid parties, as I consider them to be a simple waste of time. Travelling is something which I want to do as well.

You know that you will feel miserable when you badly want to go someplace (such as the movies) but don’t have even a single friend to accompany you[I watched both Iron Man 3, and Man of Steel alone]. But the fault is in me, attribution theory has taught me that.

See you around folks.


Amitabha Saha said...

The post is as original as it comes...right from the heart.its true though.everyone categorises their friends even if they don't admit it. I do the same too, however though my categorisation becomes a bit bleary after category 2.

Sreeprasad Naik said...

I understand that you like japanese anime.We share 90% of the same interests.i read quite a few of your posts.Even that story of a middle aged man named raj.
Personally let me tell that i am an engineering dropout.I did it for three years during which once i was detained due to attendance shortage and second time i left because studying electronics wasn't exciting enough and all this struggle for a IT job,working 12 hour shifts and which pays even less than a ROI was not what i wanted.I dropped this year july so i am currently not into any other course.
1.What would your advice be for guys like me since as i read,u just had your first taste of corporate.
2.You mention a lot that we are meant to follow our passions.Not working like a zombie for money.U also have posts about engineering getting MBA.Leaving technical fields for corporate/managerial jobs
I want to know why you followed everyone else and got a Engg+MBA degree's rather than follow your passion.. I don't mean to offend.I am just very very curious.Maybe it will help me make better choices.
Hoping for answers to this :)

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