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Thread: Connecting back with Friends?

  1. #11
    Josh itsa number of things. None of them your fault, andsome of them not necessarily theirs. First, you are a fallen comrade and they don't know how to react. They're scared to death of saying the wrong thing ordoing the wrong thing. As time goes by they will see that you haven't changed that much. But you will need to initiate.

    Second, they are young. Your injury signifies their vulnerability. If it can happen to you . . . it can happen to them. And that reality may be too much for them right now. You see thisa lot on pro teamswhen someone gets hurt. They become almost astrocized from the team. As guys, we're just mental midgets when it comes to this stuff.

    Third, you said it. You've changed. Your maturity leaped passed them by about ten years. They want to go out, drink, chase and forget. They can't do that with you any longer. Because you're not in that place.

    Josh . . . you need to reach out to them and be patient. And in the end . . . as the saying goes . . . it is times of adversity that you find out who your real friends are.

    Funny thing . . . the buddies who I hung out with in high school . . . pretty much have grown apart anddon't even talk. But most of them will stay in contact with me from time to time.

    My best friends today are those from college and church. Probably bcause of our common bonds. And I find that men - AB or not - pretty much haven't maintained their high school friendships.
    Most friendships are from college or business affiliations.

    Ask your dad and his friends how many high school buddies they still hang out with today.

    What we do in life echoes in eternity. Maximus - Gladiator

  2. #12
    Member beelady's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Winthrop, MN USA
    Josh, Your situation is almost identical to my sons except he doesnt mind going with friends to bars but how the friends behave at the bar is what throws Jesse. Some of them are still at the drinking and driving, so much so that one passed out in his car and sat in his driveway for hours while his parents beat on the window. If you really dont want the bar scene anymore, I would suggest you do the calling. Dont make the mistake of waiting until they call you. Maybe they are thinking the same thing you are. Is it possible that they are thinking that you have changed so much that you dont want them as friends? Jess was a little into the wait and see game and then finally he started calling. Some friends came back, some didnt. It is the ones that didnt that are the ones that couldnt give the booze up. Good luck with this, because I know it is one thing that Jess worried about from day one. But you are right. He has made more friends and good friends since his accident.

  3. #13
    It's all great advise, thanks everyone. ya, girls seem to not care about what is wrong with you, they see the person inside and i thank all the women that do. i kinda feel more like a ladies man, cause when i go outa the house, im always with one or another. lol ive had talks with my two best friends, and they have been friends since outa highschool, im 25 and they are my age, so i just thought that they would be mature about this whole thing also, but i guess not. theres been a couple times ive asked them to do somethin and they blow me off, and come to find out, they go out or to each others house to drink and play xbox which i have also, but they cant drink at my house, so they dont come over. i really dont have anything in commen with them anymore and like my new friends im making but they two keep callin me with day to day stuff they are doin but thats all, they live 5 minutes from me, and cant even come by to say wassup! still lost i guess!!!!

    Josh Stevens
    T6 para as of 7/17/03

    "Nobody's perfect...til you fall in love with Them!"

  4. #14
    Hey man! The one thing i found and your gonna find is that it doesnt matter how many friends you had before or who you called best friends.Now bro, your truly gonna find out who your best friends are and you just might surprised at who they are..PARTY HARD...

    ''Shoot the protester ya cant stop the protest.Murder the rebel ya cant stop the rebellion''..

  5. #15
    Josh you'll find out who your real friends are. I know how it is when friends just can't give up the party scene.

    A lot of my "friends" I never heard from again after the wreck unless I called them. I contributed that to the fact I was airlifted three hours away, knowing though that those same "friends" drove further than that constantly for things as simple as playing basketball.

    A lot of people can't grasp the realities of the consequences of drinking and driving. You could sit them down with you and have them go through a day in your life, showing them just a taste of life with a sci...transfers, cathing, bowel programs, etc but when the day is over it is forgotten.

    My boyfriend was drinking and driving when we wrecked. While I was still in the hospital he was going to the bars for a drink with one of my CNA's just to get a break from the hospital scene. He would take trips home three hours away for a few days that would turn into a week, all to party with friends while I lie on my back in rehab. Just recently I was told he put a friends car in the ditch...I didn't even have to ask why. Drinking. I'm not sure the wreck that put me in a wheelchair even fazed him.

    Sorry to go on but somethings are just better to just get out. People are strange Josh

    Aerodynamically, the bumble bee shouldn't be able to fly, but the bumble bee doesn't know that, so it goes on flying anyways--unknown

  6. #16
    Josh, disability or not people simply move on.

    As we go through life with education/career/job changes, relationships, geographical moves, families, circumstances etc. people come and go. And they will, probably for a while until you decide where, when and with whom you'll put down roots.

    This is all positive. Trust me, throwing the physical challenges aside, you don't want to nor need to be hanging around people who aren't growing with you. We all have them the guys from high school or wherever who are living in the same old routine. Boring, stagnate, going nowhere.

    There's a lot of world out there. You're appreciation for it and engagement in it should not be held back by those living in the past.

    And if they are truly your friends they'll be there come hell or high water. But realistically if we have one or two of those we're very fortunate.

    Good luck.

  7. #17
    Chris Chapppell said it all. It does kind of hurt though...

    C5/6 incomplete, injured Aug. 2000

  8. #18
    Some of my friends showed their asses as well and never came back around after I got back from rehab. HOWEVER, many of my "good friends" from before the accident have stuck around.
    I think that it is crazy for any of us to sit around and blame our pre-injury friends for not hanging out as much post-injury. Basically what it comes down to is...they were our friends before because we shared the same interests, did the same things, hung out at the same places. Why should we as the member of the group whose life has changed [whether it be through no fault of our own, or directly your fault [in my case (drunk diving...not driving, diving)] expect the group as a whole to change? If those friends are important to you, do the best you can to do some of the same things as you did before...go to the same movies, go to the same restaraunts, church groups, hell...even bars when possible if that's your cup of tea (or jack and coke).
    If we make the effort, our friends are more likely to make the effort back. Friendship is a two way street. If you don't think it is..try making a friend like this the next time you see someone..."Hey, I'm (insert name here), you seem pretty cool...let's be friends. There's a catch though, I need you to change everything about your own life in order to hang out with me. No, screw what you do..let's do it my way." I think we all know that we wouldnt make many friends acting like that.
    The truth of the matter is that there are just some things that we won't be able to do with our friends as much anymore. It's just a fact...but there are still SO MANY THINGS that we can do, regardless of injury level. Look for your common threads again and continue to nurture the friendship just as you did before...That is, if they mean that much to you...which I would assume that they did, otherwise they wouldn't have been friends before.
    So, basically..if we want to, and with a little bit of effort on our parts, often, we can keep the same friends as we had before. If not...screw didn't need them anyways. SCI truly is a life filter. The bad ones go and the good ones stay. However, it's up to us...just as it was take responsibility for our own attitudes and frienships. It's up to us who we want to be now. We should all try to be someone that our "friends", or anyone else for that matter, would want to be around.

    PS...this was not directed toward any individual on this message board or site...just a general thought. Thanks for reading what i have to say.

    "It's the living part of life that matters....and that's all that matters anyways"

  9. #19
    Well said, dude.

    To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all. - O.W.
    The mind is its own place, and in itself, can make heaven of Hell, and a hell of Heaven. - J.M.

  10. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Chapel Hill, NC
    I agree with globechaser's quote...most just exist but to live, SCI or not, is the real challenge. I know the challenges between the two are different but just think...we all have to decide what to wear, what to eat, how to excercise, and how to be happy. The last the most important. My recent friend is SCI and I have found great hope in SCI cure and within my own life i have found great optimism in understanding the lives of an SCI patient and being there any way i can. My friend calls his accident a "life filter" and in a way I agree. But those that are truely there for you in every way as a friend dont need a filter. Its hard I know to be there with the accident and to adapt to your loved ones new way of life...but its also just as important to be a friend and help them in any way possible to adapt to their new way of life. I am a college student who used to party and drink like the rest of them....not that I am proud. But since the start of my new friendship I have found priorities that are more important to me. Just because you have changed from the standards of the social norms doesn tmean that your friends should be filtered to decipher the true from the untrue. In my case my loved one is the same as any other one of my friends...except he doesnt have to walk the long walks of campus or Franklin StreetInstead i can catch a ride with him Your friends, to me, are one of the most important priorities in life and should be greatly analyzed and processed. They decide you mood for the day a lot of times and even how you look at life. If their influence is negative, as many turn out to be, it henders not only our life but our personality, outlook and motives for living the way we choose. But to have those that are supportive and care for the experiences that have to be taken care of...those are the most important. I wasnt with my friend at the time of his injury but I do know that when isee pictures or here stories i tear up and want nothing but to take way the pain of both him and his friend and family. But since i met him post injury and only know what I know...I accept who he is with everything I have and encourage him to do what makes him happy by any means!! Just know that the ones who care will always be there..the rest arent worth worrying over. Take care of your friends...and they will take care of you. I know i would do anything in the world for my best friend...!!!!!!

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