Intimacy and Group Dynamics

I just got home from a night in with some friends. We watched a movie and then listened to some music/watched some videos on YouTube. There was 4 of us in total (there’s typically five but one of them had to bail). But I just couldn’t help but notice how surface some of the conversations were… we were talking about and listening to old music videos – such as Hanson, B44, and Destiny’s Child – which is all great fun but I don’t know much else other than the superficial about these people. And these are five of us who I typically see on a weekly basis and would consider my friends. Yet I know nothing beyond the superficial – I don’t know their latest dream or goal or accomplishment. I know that “things are going well” or “the day was another day” but there’s nothing beyond that.

Is this a problem? I don’t know.

I know that they have those sayings that there are some friends who you see a lot and talk a lot and the others who you can go weeks/months without saying anything and still be the best of friends.

Now I’m not saying that these four people are my best friends but they are definitely people that I enjoy spending time with. And I think that they are all phenomenal people. But while we talk a lot, we don’t really talk about a lot.

I asked one of the girls about the intimacy of the group on the ride home. And she said things like that she doesn’t want to discuss certain things in a group that large and how it’s hard to have those intimate conversations with that many people. And it was sort of the realization moment for me that group friendship dynamics are still a relatively new thing to me. Obviously in high school I had a group… I actually had a really big group in high school. But there were alliances and connections within that group that made it still intimate. But otherwise, I have typically drifted towards the duo relationship throughout my past. I love going out for coffee dates with one other person and getting to catch up with them completely. I haven’t always been as big of a person to do the group outings. It’s not that they make me uncomfortable but I find myself being bored without someone to engage with. Even when getting drunk with a large group of people, I usually find one person to have a very intense life chat with to keep myself entertained and engaged.

And I guess what hit home for me tonight was that the one person that I feel like I have the most connected with was the one who was missing. I got to see what the group was like without that person being there. And that’s when I kind of got bored. Some of the interactions didn’t have the same meaning as they do when he’s around.

Even though I say that I really like the intense, intimate conversations, I’m not always the best at getting them started. And maybe that’s my flaw in the group – that I can’t make it into the something more meaningful that I’m craving it to be. But does it need to become that? Or do I have enough friends like that?

Maybe I need to work on making the group more intense and deep but for now, I’m going to enjoy the connections that I have… even if they are shallow. Who ever said that everything in the world needs to be as deep as what I’m thinking right now? Haha.

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