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Friends and Family Everyone has disagreements, even best friends and family. If you need advice about a relationship, ask us here.

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missramsey16 Offline
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How to become friends with a "closed off" person? - January 26th 2014, 01:04 PM

This guy, let's call him Martin, came from a prestigious high school and he's popular in his social circle (in other words, the rich kids). He's not exactly open or friendly, though, and he's distant from people he doesn't know very well (case in point: our classmates). He has two close friends in class and doesn't talk much to anyone else. But he's not a robot - he actually likes to make immature jokes and he teases and laughs a lot when he's comfortable around certain people. He's awfully "uninvolved" from all school activities and he skips class (he's been making a habit of it lately, though). He's extremely unmotivated. He gives of this "closed off" aura and being an attractive rich kid doesn't help this image of detachment he projects.

When I started college this year he was one of my first friends. We started hanging out with two other classmates, but then a misunderstanding ensued among the three of them (my friend got mad at Martin because she couldn't take his endless childish teasing/joking so she stopped talking to him) while I was away for a week, so when I came back Martin wasn't speaking to us that much anymore. Why was he distancing himself from me when I wasn't even around when they had a fallout? I deduced that he was probably reluctant to continue the friendship considering that I'm really close with the friend whom he had a misunderstanding with, and I guess it was awkward for him to hang out with us now.

Flash forward to the present. We're all okay now but we're not really close with each other anymore. I want to be friends with him again because I don't think he has any "real" friends in college and I want him to at least be comfortable with our classmates through me considering that we're in the same course and we'll all be with each other for the next four years. I'm also concerned about his poor academic performance and his friends are encouraging this behavior. What to do? I can't be straightforward and ask him to hang out, that would be too weird because although we're cordial now, we're still a little awkward... I want to know how I can build up our friendship slowly. After all, we got along well before.
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stelles Offline
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Re: How to become friends with a "closed off" person? - January 26th 2014, 02:54 PM

I hate it when something like that happens - when it's awkward and you don't know what to say or do that wouldn't make it more awkward. Right now, it sounds like you both are a little unsure how to act around each other. But you never know - maybe he's sitting there trying to think of a way to talk to you that wouldn't be awkward. Anyways, it seems like all you can do for now without possibly making it worse (like you said, asking him to hang out would be taking a risk and be a little weird) is to just keep talking to him. Try bringing up subjects that you talked about before he stopped talking to you as much. If all goes well, since you got along well before, I would think that your friendship will naturally rebuild as long as you keep talking to each other.

Good luck!

Be yourself, because those who matter don't mind and those who mind don't matter.
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