1. The one with no other friends
This guy would be OK, but he’s a little boring or smells a little bad or is otherwise mildly socially awkward. You’re kind of getting sick of hanging out with him, to be honest. But you know that you’re the only person he knows.
You’re stuck with him because if you leave, he has nobody. You aren’t heartless.
2. The one who lives too close to you
Being friends with your neighbors can be a godsend. Maybe you want to do something but you’re too tired to be up for anything huge. Walk ten feet, knock on the door, and see if they want to watch a movie. Short notice is no problem. Maybe you need a ride somewhere and you don’t mind asking since it’s such a short drive.
But that works two ways, and sometimes you feel a little suffocated by this one friend who always knows where you are and always wants to do something. Sometimes you get sick of being trapped by ten minutes of small talk every time you go to the mailbox.
You’re stuck with him because he lives right next to you. You can’t avoid him, and even if you could you’d be living in a constant fear that you might run into him because he lives right next to you.
3. The one who showed you around when you were new
When you were the new kid on campus or the latest hire at the office, this is the girl who took the time to introduce herself, be nice to you, and show you all the tips and tricks to getting along. You don’t even know how you would’ve survived those first couple of months without her.
But now that you’ve started to come out of your shell a bit, you realize that you have absolutely nothing in common but proximity. You eat lunch together and have nothing to talk about. You don’t watch the same TV shows. You hate the stores she shops at, and she hates the music you listen to.
You’re stuck with her because what are you going to do—ditch the first person who bothered to get to know you?
4. The one who has changed as a person
Maybe it’s your drinking buddy who one day decided to go sober.
Maybe this was the friend who had the uber-cool apartment where everybody loved to hang out, and then he moved to a new building and you realized it was the apartment that made him seem fun. Maybe this is the guy who you used to listen to classical music with while you sipped wine and puffed cigars, but lately he’s been getting into heavy metal and you just aren’t a fan.
Whatever the details are, the point is that you’ve eliminated the one activity that your friendship was based on. No matter what you do when you’re hanging out with this person, it just isn’t the same. And it definitely isn’t anywhere near as fun.
You’re stuck with them because you don’t want to admit that you’re shallow enough to have only liked them for one superficial reason. You’ll force your way through every awkward afternoon that they want to spend together so that you can pretend you liked them for their personality.
5. The one you never see in person
There’s nothing actually wrong with him. He’s a cool dude. He posts the most hilarious videos to your Facebook wall. He’ll stay up half the night chitchatting with you on instant messenger and when you say “lol” you actually mean it. He even remembers to give you a call on your birthday.
But you don’t hang out in person. Ever. In fact, when was the last time you were face-to-face with him? Wait, have you even met him more than one time out in the real world?
This is different than Internet friends. This is the guy who you think is a real-world friend because you met him at a house party. But when it comes right down to it, you have never spent any length of time with this person and you are never going to. There’s no reason not to, but it just isn’t going to happen.
You’re stuck with him because he’s an awesome person and one of your closest friends…you guess. I mean, you do talk to him all the time. What are you going to do, start ignoring his chat messages?
6. The one you’re in love with
This is a friend that you actually like. More than like. This is the friend who you’re up all night thinking about. The friend who can call you at two in the morning like it’s nothing. The friend who can always cry on your shoulder about that guy they’re dating, even though it kills you to listen.
Actually, the whole friendship is killing you and you’d be better off to just move on.
But you’re stuck with her because you know that if you just hold out long enough, she’s going to break up with that douchebag and you’ll finally have a chance.
*Previously published by Thought Catalog at www.thoughtcatalog.com.