The feeling of not belonging
Thursday, May 10, 2012

I usually write about thoughts, hopefully interesting ones. Rarely if not never, have I written my heart felt feelings on this blog, for it is how the world will view me as an individual, from now, till eternity. (Since your presence on the web can't really be measured, who knows what happens to all these data when I'm dead?)

So recently, for the first time in my life, I truly felt like I do not belong to a place where I'm... technically part of. 

To be precise, it's my involvement in the skates club. Yes, I'm in the skates club if I did not mention before. I don't go there often, in fact for a rather long period of time I was an invisible man! However, thanks to a change in my timetable, it is now relatively convenient for me to participate again.

Let me first describe the situation, then how it feels, followed by my very logical explanation which I'm sure you will all doubt but accept in the end.

1. The situation
There are 3 types of skating: aggressive, sliding and slalom. I chose slalom because... I'm graceful as a swan. Of course, this would mean that during training, we will be split into 3 groups as there are different requirements.

We'll ignore the aggressive skaters because, they don't train in the same area. So between the 2 S-es. My group is the minority, don't bother asking why, it just is.

When I turn up, I'll just hang with the my homies. It's not that I don't know the sliders(other group), they're more of acquaintances than friends, except for a few. But in general, my "group" have pretty much nothing to do with them.

2. How it feels
It feels like... we're not part of the club, because we're the minority. It's not that they don't give two shits about us, it's just feels like it does not make any difference whether we're there or not. I don't belong.

It's very intriguing to me. 
I'm not depressed or anything, it's like a new feeling that I discovered, so I'm learning, and documenting about it like this.

Obviously, I started to think about it.
Why? What caused this feeling to trigger? Is it environmental factors? Is it the people around me? Or is it simply just my fault for not participating enough, or it's just a feeling that I'll experience in some point of my life?

3. Coming up with an explanation
Disclaimer! I am going to quote studies, and statements from different social researches. I shall hold no liability for it as I have absolutely forgotten where I read them, or who it's written by. As far as I'm concerned, the studies made sense. So, feel free to use your best buddy, Google, to check for credibility. Or, you could just trust me whole heartedly for I have nothing to gain by lying to you.

Here's my topic sentence.
I don't think I can continue to form connections with large groups of people in my current state.

The other group has a lot of people, maybe more than 20? It's definitely more than a class worth of people. Let's say that I start going for my training regularly and form relationships with those people, sure, I will start to feel a sense of belonging, or maybe even look forward to going.

But, and there's always a but.
Relationships needs maintenance. You can't just form a relationship and leave it alone. It'll rot, and die. Literally metaphorically (it makes sense, think about it)

Research/Studies have shown that a normal human can only maintain a relationship with a maximum of 120 people. Anything beyond that and he/she just don't have the time and capacity to keep a healthy relationship with anyone of those.

And that 120 number, is just a theoretical maximum. It could be 100, it could be 50 for all you know. That is why when humans are nomads and live in tribes, the number were never exceedingly huge. (about 100+ people). Because that's how many relationships a person can make, without failing someone.

If you ask me, I probably can't name past 50; heck, maybe even 40 people that I keep an active, healthy relationship with.

What do I consider an active/healthy relationship?
Someone you spend time with, share things, feelings, or go through events together. Sure, you don't have to go through life changing moments, but think about this very carefully.

"Did you think interacting once every week, fortnight or month is enough?"

Maybe it's enough to keep the relationship, but it definitely does nothing to improve it. It's a fact that relationships will deteriorate, maybe die off, dissolving what was once friends, into mere acquaintances.

I don't feel like making new ones, because I don't want to kill off all the old ones yet.

You know all those twitter quotes, or some random "fact" that always say
"You change half your friends every X years."

Well, I refute that statement. If it's possible, or within my power, I will definitely keep all my friends who've grown together with me. To all my great friends out there, if you haven't heard from me in awhile, well, you're not dead, talk to me. I sometimes get obsessed over some things, and forget about others. I just hope the streets won't be filled with strangers I know well.

It's pretty depressing to read the obituary decades down the road and go, "hey! I used to know this guy"

Well, it's not like I've given up on making friends,
"The new won't come unless the old ones go,
after all, the show must go on."

I'm not sure I'm completely satisfied with my own explanation, but well, I did learn a few things and get my thoughts straightened out.

If there's anything important I've remembered, and wish you would too, is that,

It takes effort and time to keep a relationship. Don't go killing your old buddies with the agony of time.

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