A wise friend said to me, "...treating friends like friends and not enemies is a good boundary to respect."
I really started thinking about this line, then thought, "What the hell am I doing?"
I think a really good red flag in these words is ENEMY. I mean, who would treat their friend like an enemy? Dictionary.com defines ENEMY (the first definition, by the way):
a person who feels hatred for, fosters harmful designs against, or engages in antagonistic activities against another; an adversary or opponent.
Holy crap. Them's some strong words. But you think about this, anyone you argue with, or rage against, that kind of fits the definition of it, doesn't it?
Why the hell would anyone treat a friend like an enemy?
"The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function." - F. Scott Fitzgerald (1896 - 1940)
Heh. Does that mean that smart people can disagree and still remain friends? (Yup, I've been kind of a fortune cookie lately, posting a LOT of quotes...)
Sounds like I'm kinda dumb, then. But to try and cheer myself up (please pay no attention to that background noise, it's the fading sound of a pity party being thrown in someone's closet), I'm hoping I'm not a total moron. Now it's just trying to figure out what kind of boundaries I need, what kind of boundaries they need, and where to meet in the middle. How to give and take. And that's what any relationship is, really. Meeting in the middle. Because being friends is more than just a jovial wave and a shared drink. It's more than just a intellectual conversation.
To what lengths would you go for a friend? Would you drive in the middle of the night to rescue someone? Would you bail them out of jail? If they screwed up things in their lives, would you wait around for them to straighten out or would you walk away?
If they had to walk through Hell, would you stand beside them, shoulder their burden, or carry them through it?
What is a true friend worth?