Is The Idea of Workplace Friendship a Joke? - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 08:56 PM Thread Starter
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Is The Idea of Workplace Friendship a Joke?


For an introvert , most of our social interaction is predicated upon the venture to work. We may not like the idea of talking or socializing to any extent but we do it because our job may require communication or we are just trying to be friendly in the coy way that we know how.

I've been at my current place of employment for 5 years and when ever I recollect on years prior, I realize how much socializing at work has never well.... worked out for me.

When I was first hired, I didn't talk to anyone at all unless it pertained to the job. I was oddly happier that way. Even though I still don't like to socialize, I have naturally grown somewhat more comfortable in the environment and have therefore talked casually to some folk and even given out my number to a few people.

The thing is though, I hate small talk so most of those "casual" conversations I've had with co-workers feel like a tremendous chore and are never fulfilling. I realize that I only partake in them because I subconsciously want to avoid being alone in the moment.

Giving my number to a few people over the years has also proven to be a worthless act as well. I would give them my number and no one would call me or text me back. If they ever did contact me, which was extremely rare, it was because they wanted or needed something from me, never to ask how I was doing. I get that if I were to have friends, I would have to give effort as well but these people I've given my number to are people whom pestered me for it. I never asked them for friendship. They promised interactions only to never deliver.

Trying to make friends with anyone at work seems to be a fruitless endeavor and I am personally fine with that. I like my alone time far too much than to abandon it for a "friendship" that wouldn't even feel real to me anyways.

What say you though? Is the idea of workplace friendship a joke?

"We live in a kingdom of bull****. A kingdom you've lived in for far too long.." -Mr. Robot
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 09:09 PM
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no, but it depends a lot on the workplace, and also what your concept of friendship is.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-10-2019, 09:21 PM
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Define 'workplace friendship'

Define 'joke'

I can definitely empathize with a lot of your text. Especially:

"" I hate small talk so most of those "casual" conversations I've had with co-workers feel like a tremendous chore and are never fulfilling. I realize that I only partake in them because I subconsciously want to avoid being alone in the moment.""

In my current job I have been forced to socialize more than before, and I have grown more comfy with it, however I have noticed that it is draining me quite a bit. Even when I'm wearing headphones people are trying to talk to me.

I prefer not to develop personal relationships with coworkers because I want to separate work and personal life,to the fullest extent of that concept.
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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 01:32 PM
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I'd think it could be possibly harder to develop a genuine friendship at work that would lead to something lasting outside of work. But I'm not sure I'd call expecting friendships from work a joke where I think it's more to do with SA in general and other "normies" at work sensing it. I had similar experiences where I would sometimes get other peoples' numbers and never get called unless they wanted free tech help or something else. And sometimes people I thought were friendly to me on the surface turned out to be real jerks and cliquish people to me a year later or so, and it's better I found out what they really thought of me than later. In my lifetime I just had two or three people who were willing to hang out with me for a while outside of work, where it's probably more due to luck of encountering someone at work or anywhere else you happen to hit off well with outside of the pretend politeness and work cooperation.
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-15-2019, 06:27 PM
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I rarely hang out with people from work but I've gotten along reasonably well with certain people and can laugh a little or discuss things on the job. I think it's more common for women to meet up outside of work as well and besides there are other avenues to meet people. I've found that there are a lot of politics which impede friendships at work anyway.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 02-19-2019, 03:06 AM
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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-19-2019, 11:07 PM
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The worst part about it was that people I once saw as friends turned out to be my enemies, so I don't bother anymore. Most of my co-workers behave too suspiciously for me to consider them anything close to a friend.

That's where the pain comes in
Like a second skeleton
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 12:21 AM
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Workplace friendship most of the time is work-politically driven. Or career driven. Kind of like "survival of the fittest involves being in a social pack" to increase it. That said, friendships like these aren't real. Without career aspirations and security, I will assume most employees will not care much to want to be friends with other coworkers.


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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 01:23 AM
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@Blue Dino

Actually the team I'm in now is pretty friendly and I have 2 people who I can confide in regarding mental issues (because they are fxked up too). Best coworker friends I ever had. Irritating as all humans are, but pretty lovely otherwise.
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 01:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mlt18 View Post
The worst part about it was that people I once saw as friends turned out to be my enemies, so I don't bother anymore. Most of my co-workers behave too suspiciously for me to consider them anything close to a friend.
Unfortunately many people are "circumstancial friends". When it suits them, or if they "need to", they will abandon/ghost you or backstab you.
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 01:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by versikk View Post

Actually the team I'm in now is pretty friendly and I have 2 people who I can confide in regarding mental issues (because they are fxked up too). Best coworker friends I ever had. Irritating as all humans are, but pretty lovely otherwise.

, that's actually pretty good in your case and theirs. Nice to have relatable people you can confide in, especially in a workplace.


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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 02:00 AM
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It probably depends on what kind of work it is and what types of people you tend to get along with. Some people have the luxury of choosing their work and they can choose to work with people who are very similar to themselves (which may or may not be a good thing). All the jobs I've had were low end jobs with mostly people I had little to nothing in common with. But I still got along very well with some of them and even had a couple of pretty good friends. But they tend to be friendships of convenience. It's pretty advantageous to hang out with people who work the same hours as you do. If you want to get together and have some drinks or whatever, it's not a pain in the butt to plan. Just "Hey. We're both off at 5. Let's hang out".

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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 04:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Dino View Post
, that's actually pretty good in your case and theirs. Nice to have relatable people you can confide in, especially in a workplace.
it's absolute gold. i never been so happy at a job. and i know i'm making a difference by being supportive myself, which makes me feel good too.

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Originally Posted by WillYouStopDave View Post
It probably depends on what kind of work it is and what types of people you tend to get along with. Some people have the luxury of choosing their work and they can choose to work with people who are very similar to themselves (which may or may not be a good thing). All the jobs I've had were low end jobs with mostly people I had little to nothing in common with. But I still got along very well with some of them and even had a couple of pretty good friends. But they tend to be friendships of convenience. It's pretty advantageous to hang out with people who work the same hours as you do. If you want to get together and have some drinks or whatever, it's not a pain in the butt to plan. Just "Hey. We're both off at 5. Let's hang out".
well sure but all relationships are convenience-based (arent they?). most people won't have the energy to be friends with someone who can almost never interact IRL - those types of friends will grow apart.

and on a different but very related note, you are friends with people because of circumstance. it's always about right place, right time. you happen to be at a certain place during a certain event E where certain people gather. fast forward X whatevers and you have a friendship that sprung from event E. had you and the other party never gone to event E, the friendship would never exist.

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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 05:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by versikk View Post
and on a different but very related note, you are friends with people because of circumstance. it's always about right place, right time. you happen to be at a certain place during a certain event E where certain people gather. fast forward X whatevers and you have a friendship that sprung from event E. had you and the other party never gone to event E, the friendship would never exist.
This is true but I'm pretty picky and I don't get along with too many people all that well. If I am working with someone and I actually choose to spend my off time with them, it has to be someone I actually like.

So yeah. It would be a matter of the fact that we were put together that we were acquainted. But that doesn't really mean we'd get along in anything more than a go along to get along sort of way. I worked with a few people I actually invited into my parents house. Which is a lot of trust because I knew if they caused problems it wasn't just me who would have consequences.

Incidentally, the two best friends I had as an adult were people I met at work and were both also introverts. I probably had 20-30 general acquaintances at that same place where I worked but there were only two I got along really well with.

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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-20-2019, 11:50 PM
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I just would be a little wary of how office politics might affect the friendship. Like for instance at my current job, one woman was pretty good friends with another, her supervisor (#2 in charge of our department). They would chat all the time and the supervisor even babysat her dog a few times. But there was one thing she had to keep secret- that she was looking for another job. So when she came in one Friday and gave her 2 week notice, the supervisor was totally shocked and upset (cause her workload would increase immensely). She had no idea. I thought that was interesting. But I can see why she kept it secret.
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 03:55 AM
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LOL, I used to have much worse social anxiety until I started working. I quickly learned a few things from having my personal life repeatedly broadcast by employers:
A.) Don't waste years trying to be a good person. You WILL get crucified!
B.) Don't work hard. You are only sacrificing your time and health for some other jackass to reap the benefits.
C.) Don't help others...unless they have something you want (like money, connections, or really good health insurance).
D.) Once you learn that there is no limit to how low people can stoop you'll know the answer to your question!

PS-Remember, human ethics is a bottomless pit!

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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 01:24 PM
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Workplace friendship isn't a joke, most people tend to make friends at work. But I sure haven't. The people I like the most at my current job don't take lunch breaks, so going to lunch with them is not a possibility, lol. I've also had this one colleague who would say to me "we should have lunch together sometime!" when we had small talk in the hallway, but when I asked her out to lunch, she's always have an excuse not to go with me. I don't get people like that; why fake niceness and interest when she's clearly not interested.

I'm afraid of opening up to people at work because sooner or later they'll realize that I basically have no friends. Some people probably already know that.
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-21-2019, 10:26 PM
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They only work when the other person isn't an *******

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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-22-2019, 02:16 AM
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why fake niceness and interest when she's clearly not interested.
too insecure to be direct.

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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 06-24-2019, 04:55 PM
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Workplaces always have power games. The idea of friends means something different in a workplace than an actual friend friend in the real outside non-corporate world. People will try to use things against you. Admittedly, I never felt more prying eyes and discrimination for my personal life (which I never f***ing shared with anybody) than when I started in healthcare. Not only that but even if you are a completely good and harmless person and only ever try to better others you will never stop hearing made up **** by people who just look for conflict. Just focus on bettering yourself instead and working well with the people who will help you. You don't even have to like them as long as they're up front with you (although eventually everybody pulls bull**** one way or another).

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