Are you tired of bad friends? Are you tired of feeling like you are competing against a cell phone for someone’s attention?
I’ve had a few conversations over the last week or so with family and a close friend about intentionality.
In this 21st century culture, social media and electronics are stealing away our ability to participate in healthy, raw conversations. My husband and I often find ourselves having a difficult time making friends with people our own ages, because so many people in their 20s (and let’s not even talk about teenagers these days) do not know how to be good friends! We more often find ourselves striking conversations with couples twice our age because they actually know how to speak!
You might think that I am being a little dramatic, but hear me out….
Have you ever had a conversation with a millennial and found yourself looking up words or phrases they used just to understand their conversations? In an attempt to seem relevant, these young people throw around silly, made up words and as a result, isolate others and leave a distasteful layer of unprofessionalism.
Have you ever spent time next to a millennial but never made eye contact because his or her face was glued to a phone?
Why have we formed a society that is uncomfortable with spontaneous conversation? Although I was not alive back then, I can tell from looking at older generations that people weren’t always like this. People would talk to strangers. People would reach out and help someone in need. People valued friendships more than followers on instagram.
I do not like the way that society is heading. I am technically part of the millennial generation, but I do not identify with it.
Can we also talk about friendships?
I have found that a lot of people these days do. not. know. how. to. be. good. friends.
I’m not saying that I am perfect, because I definitely AM NOT. At times, I find myself guilty of falling into these categories below. I try to keep up with friends. I try to invite them over and spend intentional time with them.
But we live in a ME culture. We want to talk about ourselves. We want our best interests to prevail. We don’t think about others as often as we should.
My husband and I are so frustrated with our generation because when we finally do strike up a conversation with someone in their 20s, the conversation is totally, 100% about them. Nobody asks us how we are doing. Nobody asks for prayer on someone else’s behalf….It is just very sad.
People also seem to give up on friendships a lot easier these days. Oh, did you move away? (Guess we can’t be friends anymore). Cool, you got married! (Well, there goes that friendship). Oh congrats! You’re having a baby! (I’m never talking to them again). Wait, you hate *insert political idea here*? (Unfriend). We had an argument 2 years ago? (well crap, I could never get over that…)
Am I the only one who feels this way sometimes?
I feel like our generation is so lazy about relationships. We find dates on our phones and get asked out over a text message (yuck). Social media has made it so easy to skip difficult conversations and not make any effort to reach out to old friends. Heck, we’re keeping up with each other on facebook, so everything must be okay!
Granted, there are still a few people out there that do seem to know how to be decent human beings when it comes to friendships (I’m not pointing at the homeschoolers, I’m not pointing at the homeschoolers….who am I kidding…yes I am…we rock, y’all!).
This post is kind of all over the place, but I’ve just been feeling very frustrated with our culture. I’ve seen a few friends slowly disappear during different stages of my life and it is sad. The only thing that makes me feel a little better is that I know that I did my best to keep those friendships alive as long as I could. But we can only give so much of ourselves while the other party gives nothing, amen?
So my challenge for millennials is to STEP IT UP. Be different. Be intentional. Make time for your friends. Try to stay in touch with old friends. Try to branch out and make new friends! Have a conversation with someone else, and try not to talk about yourself. Listen. Love. Learn.
At this point, I don’t know if we can turn this train wreck around. My hope is that the real MVPs out there raise up their children to act with respect. Stay away from the internet. Play outside. Fight it out and make up. We might not be able to fix this problem, but we can make a difference in our little circles of the world.
Can y’all relate to this? Can any
older wiser people pitch in and offer their view on this downfall? And if you are one of those people that keeps reaching out to others without a return on your investment, keep it up! Pat yourself on your back, because you’re a rockstar.
I leave you with a relevant song from Ben Rector. My husband and I saw him in concert recently and it was awesome.