Friendship study rant *Control Issues Trigger* (edited post)

August 8, 2010

This article from MSNBS bothers me. I’ve removed the link to it because I think my day is now shot after reading it and I don’t want to ruin anyone else’s day. Basically the study proves that having friends or a social network helps you to live longer, healthier lives. Duh. It’s recommendations are what triggered me. I’m not sure what to call this kind of trigger, so I’ll try *Trigger Warning – Control Issues*:

The study recommends that friends or other family members have more control (decisions, etc.) over someone’s medical care. The idea of some “friends” or other family members having control over my medical well-being is scary. I know that something like that will probably never be an implemented policy, but just knowing that this study is out there is going to bother me for days now.

I don’t have friends, but it’s a choice now. When we moved here I really tried, but as usual people took advantage of me. I joined local groups, volunteered at school, and worked at craft fairs. At each place I was given much of the work other people were getting paid for, asked to do the “dirty work”, and it was assumed that I would do whatever any other long-time resident didn’t feel like doing. In most situations, when I realized what was happening, I tried to get out very politely, without ruffling any feathers and simply refused any further invitations to be manipulated. On two occasions I had to resort to “Leave me the fuck alone!”, which actually didn’t work the first time I said that, hence the second time I said that. So far they have not returned to bother me again.

I’m done trying to make friends. I honestly don’t see myself having any deep, meaningful connections with anyone where I live now, and I rarely leave the house, so I doubt I will make friends elsewhere.

That doesn’t bother me. The thought of sharing part of my life, problems, or whatever with somebody else really makes me angry. The kids have lots of friends, and they are welcome here, and I’m on good terms with the parents. I’ve never restricted them in that way, and they never ask why their dad and I don’t go out with friends.

I think it might be because in the past when I thought I had a deep, meaningful relationship they left me. They may have left when I revealed a deep, dark secret, or when they found something better.

I used to feel that I wasn’t worth it, or good enough, or too messed up to have a close friend. Now it is my choice because I have no desire to share anything with anyone. I’m sure there is still that fear of abandonment, but I feel better that I’m not wasting my time trying to find someone who will want to be my friend no-strings-attached.

So, as far as around town here, I am very polite, respectful (I was to begin with, anyway. I swear people take advantage of you when you’re kind.), but I’m good at saying “No” regardless of other people’s feelings or expectations. No one except my pharmacist knows what might be going on in my life, and I no longer ask “How are you?” when I see someone I know. I don’t care. I don’t care if people think I’m eccentric or weird (which I’ve heard several times), or think that we should be participating in all the town activities, or that I don’t know certain people or families.

I have enough insecurities without some stupid study like this being around. I think it’s obvious that positive emotional relationships are healthy. What a waste of money.Β  Sorry for the rant, but that just really bothered me.


9 Responses to “Friendship study rant *Control Issues Trigger* (edited post)”

  1. tai0316 Says:

    Wow, your post bothered me enough to warn me that maybe I shouldn’t read the article, yikes! If the article is about other people making medical decisions for me then I don’t want to read it. I would trust my husband because he knows my wishes and I have a medical directive that covers certain situations, but honestly a secret fear for me has been that, if something happened to my husband, and since I’m on Social Security Disabillity for mental illness, would the state ever turn me over to the care of my mother (the abuser). I’ve actually considered taking legal steps to stop that from happening. Maybe they wouldn’t since I’m not mentally challenged and I don’t need to be “taken care of”, I just can’t work, so maybe it’s nothing. But I’m thinking Lisa that maybe it would make you feel better if you had control over your medical care? I wonder if you coud use something, say like…Legal Zoom online to make up a legal document that spells out what you want so that the control stays with YOU even if you’re not in a position at the time to state your wishes? Control can be a BIG deal for people like us, so maybe taking control would make this idea less disturbing for you.

    • roseroars Says:

      It has really triggered me today, but I didn’t know how to warn people about what kind of a trigger it might be. After reading that I’ve had a slew of memories and feelings come up.

      I seriously doubt this would ever make it ANYWHERE, but just knowing that someone even thought about this, and got monetary backing for this study has me shaking.

      I’m having trouble hearing what my family is saying and I’m taking everything the wrong way……hubby is upset that I’m upset, so he went off to do yard work……it’s just a fucking article! And here I am shaking at the computer.

      I think I’ll take down the link.

      Thanks for your comment. If you felt that way, too, then the link should definitely come down.

      • tai0316 Says:

        Doesn’t it just suck when we read something accidentally and it messes with our heads! I don’t know what you like to watch or do for fun but I would strongly suggest taking some time to do it, at least for a distraction. I also agree with Meredith that they must have run out of real stories to report on. A lot of these “studies” are just so people can use up some government funded money or something. There’s always idiots ready to participate in something *eye roll*

      • roseroars Says:

        I tried playing Magic: The Gathering, reading, etc., but it wasn’t until we saw this young woodpecker trying to make a hole in the metal window frame that I felt better. I don’t think he understands the difference yet between finding bugs in and on the trees and the house. He scoots up and down the screens and he hasn’t damaged the window frame yet so it’s still cute.

        Hubby’s got the PS2 (playing FF7 again), one kid’s got “Father Ted” on the tv, and the other has the PSP (Dynasty Warriors). So I’m wandering around thinking about kicking someone off something.

        You’re right. It must be a slow news day.

  2. meredith Says:

    I think these ‘studies’ are just used as filler when the well runs dry on sensational news. Not only that, but if you’re not going to be my friend, I’m gonna hafta pound you…

    yeah, that’s what I said, all right. Well, maybe not today…okay. I probably won’t pound you today. I’ll just come over to your site tomorrow. But not to pound you, probably.


    (It’s perfectly normal and healthy to go through times in life when we just need to be left alone. Unless you have an unusually high need for notoriety, don’t worry about it.)

    • roseroars Says:

      Yes, master……..

      Their study was referring to physically accessible friends, although I’ll bet if I went to the middle of the country and knocked on everyone’s door I’d find you eventually! The study didn’t mention anything about that, though. They also didn’t mention anything about the Internet or relationships formed through it.

      My husband, trying to comfort me earlier today, said “Don’t worry, honey. When it’s time to pull the plug on you I’ll be the one to do it.”. That made me giggle, but it was a few hours (and a Xanax) before I really started to calm down.

      Thanks for writing. I hate it when that happens.

  3. castorgirl Says:

    Huh??? I read the article, and it’s dodgy research and badly reported. They stated the obvious, and then had to tie the research to something – usually the product or needs of the lot that paid for the shoddy research to begin with.

    Meta-analysis has it’s limitations, and doesn’t take into account shoddy practices of the original research they’re analyzing. Basically, it’s a load of bunkum.

    Yup, friendships are a key aspect to healthy living. There’s also heaps of research that indicate online communities are fulfilling a similar role – I knows cos I haz degrees in its πŸ™‚

    I’m really sorry it affected you so badly…

    I get the whole reluctance for real life friendships. I don’t have any.

    Take care,

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