I can't say I have any close friends now and that's okay. It's okay because I came to realise that all my adult friendships had been built on a shared contempt of a third party - either an individual or group. I had been part of a lot of back biting, fault finding, and general bitchiness. Yes, there was support and there were people to share joys and sorrows with, but truth be told most of the conversations I participated in with my friends were about the shortcomings of other people.
I'm quite ashamed of that.
I was never part of that sort of thing at school. Usually, I hadn't been at any school long enough to really know who the cool kids, and the rejects, and the rebels were. I didn't get bullied and I wasn't a part of any bullying culture. So, I guess as an adult I enjoyed being part of something, part of a group with drawn lines of battle.
The thing with battles is that there are always turncoats, double agents, dictators, and power corrupts. It corrupted me. I would find my place by the side of the top dog - or bitch - and from that seat, I'd look down on the unclean and judge them. I was never actually the top dog myself, I was always part of the support crew. I was an enabler.
It poisoned me and wasn't good for my soul. When, inevitably, I found myself on the wrong side of the battle, I felt hurt, and I got angry (I'm definitely a fight, not flight sort of person). What I didn't acknowledge was that I'd happily pushed other people onto the wrong side of the field, myself, because I felt it was my right to put people in their place. I was proud of not pulling punches, I told me it meant they always knew where they stood with me and they did, but it wasn't something I should've been proud of.
As Red said...
I don't really think I know how to make friends, or even really how to be a friend. Maybe I'm antisocial?
Whatever the case, I'm quite content, for now, to let that world be. At least until I figure out what friendship really is and how it really works.