Some how I'm usually low man on the totem pole (and we know what rolls down hill). It is interesting how the people I can actually consider friends (real ones are few) are the ones that actually take the time to talk to me (not at me) . But if I try to initiate contact, sooner or later I get ignored. Even though I might not be good at it at times, I do like to talk to people, but anymore I only do so with those that will listen (not just hear), and can see where I'm coming from. Those that will listen and interact with me, I consider friends. A good friend is someone that will attempt to make me feel that I am understood, and maybe even offer some little bit of wisdom.
I understand very well the difference between an acquaintance, a friend, and a good friend. Acquaintances are usually those that barely acknowledge my existence, that is, until they need something that I can provide. I see this often when someone needs computer help. Once I have completed my duty, I might not hear from them for months beyond the casual hello in passing.
I have similar problems with trying to start relationship with women, in which my attempts usually end up with me hurt, ignored, or just frustrated. I have had a couple of hard knocks from women I wouldn't have expected it from, most severe was getting called just about anything negitive she could think of, when I and everyone else knew better. Over the years, I saw more of how people act in general. What people don't say in words, they say by how they act, and I have learned pay attention to actions. As they say, talk is cheap.
All this is to say, I am willing to get long with about anyone, help if I can. But expecting me to put my neck on the line for someone that will not do the same for me, it's not going to happen.
I've been used and abused too many years to put up with much of that anymore. Someone wants to know me, they need show me a sign of good faith. Otherwise, I will remain a bystander.
I'll leave you with this food for thought... what do your actions say about you? And who might be watching?