I personally thought that above question was a no-brainer and maybe I misunderstood what was said to me, but I am going to ask and answer the question.
Do friendships need to benefit you all the time?
Today, rather than ignore a “friend” to make him go away, I decided to be assertive, responsible and (despite what he may think) respectful and tell this “friend” that I did not want to be his friend. I messaged him on Facebook saying,
“Hi. I’m going to be honest. I can’t talk to you. I really don’t trust you and it’s not beneficial for me to keep talking with you. I’m sorry.”
He responded with,
“Weird… so a friendship has to directly benefit you all the time or it’s not worth your time? Not the kind of friends I want anyways.”
My final reply was,
“Yes, of course. You look out for yourself first. Bye.”
This particular “friend” and I have known each other since we were kids which is why I held onto the relationship for so long. He repeatedly over the years has disrespected me and my intimate relationships. I have asked repeatedly over the years for my boundaries to be respected and he did not do so. I recognized that he was struggling and I tried to support him but then my boundaries would be compromised. I stopped speaking to him many times and he would promise that he would stop doing what I said was making me uncomfortable, but he would only do so for a short period of time. I found that I was happier when I was not speaking to him. When he messaged me a few weeks ago apologizing and specifically stating what he had done wrong I thought that maybe I should give him a chance. I still couldn’t shake the feeling of suspicion and distrust. I needed to listen to my gut. I needed to officially end the “friendship”. A friendship should not feel that way this one was feeling.
The way I see it, every type of relationship in your life should benefit you. I believe that if the relationship is a good relationship then it is benefiting you ALL THE TIME even when it is rocky. It is the benefits of the relationship that make handling the rocky moments easier and worth it. If you spend most of your time in a relationship that is hurting you then the benefits (if any) do not make it worth it to stay. You are the most important part of that relationship because you have to live with your feelings, thoughts, and behaviours. You set your boundaries and if those in various relationships with you respect them, then you have a beneficial relationship ALL THE TIME, even during the bad.