To Clique or Not to Clique


The dictionary defines a clique as ” narrow circle of friends; an exclusive set.” I think I heard the word clique in elementary school but saw the meaning of it in high school. The “IN” group… there are usually many kinds. There are the pretty girls and cute boys then the sporty ones and then there are the ones that have it all going on. They may be the kids that are pretty, have nice clothes, a cool car and money to spend. This kids have the pretense of self esteem and are just plain cool. You can usually spot them the first 5 minutes in whatever school you walk into.

When I think about it, it probably starts when you are just starting school except you call it clubs. Do you want to be in my club? Or the “No Girls Allowed” club… How do you learn this? How do you learn to leave people out? With 6 boys I see it all the time. Someone is easily left out, whether it has to do to lack of interest in the activity or personalities clashing… it is easy to leave some out.

This drives me crazy. Then when it occurs in adulthood, I just feel sad. I never fit into a clique. At least not by choice. Oh I could fit in with the misfits quite easily. I lived my life as if I was looking in through a glass. I could see it all, wanted so badly to be in it all yet there was a barrier. You do get used to it. You learn to accept it and perhaps learn to ignore it. I would feel like I was there but they didn’t know it.

When I went to university, I discovered people liked me. I wasn’t hanging on the edges anymore. I was invited to be a part of everything… I was really not sure I knew the rules. I remember hanging around a couple of girls that had similar backgrounds as me and included me. I loved it. I thrived on it. I was not being judged on things I had no control over.

What is neat about a university setting is that it is a large population and there are so many cultures and differences in people that when you find similarities you click or clique. Yet I did not find it as cliquish or exclusive. Now this may be because I was not one that was excluded.

As an adult I hate seeing cliques and being part of them. I know the destructiveness that comes out of it. I was in our vehicle at the pick up circle waiting for the boys to finish school. People come chat and catch up especially if the weather is nice. Some of my friend were at my window chatting. As another friend approach, my friend said, “Come join us… we are the cool group.” It was said in play. My other friend replies, “Great, I have never been part of a cool group before!”

Whether that was said in jest or not, there is so much truth to that statement. How many times have we not felt “part of” something? How many times have you watched behind that window only to not be seen?

Do you ever see a group of people and think, “Wow, I would like to be friends with that person!” I do that all the time. Sometimes I never follow through. Other times it turns out wonderful and other times it just becomes an attempt and that’s ok too.

There are times when “cliques” happen quite naturally when people have a commonness that joins them. It is one of those rarities in life… friendships that are effortless. This is true of my Good Neighbour friends. The committee brought us together and our friendship grew from there. But I think the key is not to have an exclusive attitude. That is when hurt occurs and when you limit the possibilities. You never know if that lady with the wart on her chin could become your best friend. Why close yourself off to the wonderful people that can cross your path?

There was a email forwarded … you know the ones if you send it to 10 people your lucky will improve… but it talked about how some people come in your life and are meant to stay. Others come in for a time and then leave but leave a lasting imprint on your heart. I like to think of friendships that way. If you are my friend, have been my friend, it is a lifelong friendship. It does not matter if we talk or email… you are in my heart. You are a part of me and the person I am today because you have left a lasting imprint.

It is great to have your core friends that friendship that is tried, tested and true. Those friendships are life’s precious gifts. I am blessed in that area. I have friends that were so patient with me, loved me and cheered me on as I made a world of discoveries. They are my glue. There is no fluff sticking there!

I am grateful as I have had to grow and move on that life has brought an endless stream of friendships that continue to help nurture me and feed my soul. The dictionary says: 1. a person known well to another and regarded with liking, affection, and loyalty 2. an ally in a fight or cause 3. a patron or supporter

Where would we be without friends? I am so glad I do not have to find out. In my loneliest days, I still had at least one friend. I did not know how lucky I was. Now I am just blessed.

Cliques… groups of friend… why bother sticking to the definition… rather than a narrow circle of friend… why not a wide group of various people with no limits. Circles are closed…who knows how many special people I would miss out on if I kept a narrow circle of friends.

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