Friendship and the Internet

Being a distant friend on the internet is incredibly difficult sometimes. When those I have come to know are facing problems, my first instinct is to try and help – to reach out – to be there. I wonder how much a quiet message telling somebody that you read their post, and that you’re out here if they want to empty their head is really worth. It’s all I really have to give though – some time, and a sympathetic ear.

If all I have is time, and attention, does that really make me a friend? Or just a well meaning bystander? When a good friend that lives across the way had a medical emergency with her young son a few years ago, I arrived on her doorstep minutes after her call – ready to do whatever she asked. I can’t do that on the internet. And it sometimes feels horrible.

I’ve learned enough during my life to know that not everybody thinks the same way. Not everybody runs towards loss, difficulty, or danger. Sure, I might not know what to do when I get there, but maybe there might be something I can do when I get there. Maybe I won’t get in the way.

I’ve also learned that the internet is a wonderful escape. In the middle of awful situations, we can find friends outside of our circle to connect with – to lessen the load somewhat. The thought that I might be there for others from time to time makes taking the chance to reach out worth it.

9 Replies to “Friendship and the Internet”

  1. It’s uncanny that I’ve come across this post, right now. I’ve just been talking to one of my friends on the other side of the world and, given my tendency to feel absolutely everything that anybody, anywhere is feeling ( Ugh. It’s a Pisces thing)…I’ve come away feeling like I need the hug that I wish that I could give to them. Distant friendships are hard in this way. I hear you. x

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It’s funny .. you posted this such timing . All week sadly my posts have not been up lifting actually pretty bummed sounding , I guess I’ve used my blog to vent my sadness of how much I miss my son away at Basic Training in Missouri … it’s helped though writing about it . Sadly it’s only been 3days but feels like he left weeks ago..

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Admittedly I wrote two messages then backed out and now I’m back because I need you to know that you reaching out does make a difference. I’m a very lonely person with very few people in my life and getting a message online from a friend hoping I’m okay means an awful lot to me. I understand how you might question it’s worth so coming from someone with very little in the way of social contact well: thank you for reaching out to me. Okay, enough of the soppy stuff. Cuppa tea all round! Biscuits, biscuits, biscuits for everyone!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I am also glad you posted this. I believe I have made friends in our blogging world and have exchanged emails and phone numbers with a few and we chat regularly now. I have enjoyed getting to know you as well!

    Liked by 1 person

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