Friendships on the Spectrum: A Reason, A Season or a Lifetime


 by Carole Jean Whittington

Friendships happen in our lives for…

A reason

A Season, or

A Lifetime.


I learned this AFTER the heartbreaking loss of a friendship I valued deeply.  I thought I had done something wrong, but had NO IDEA what it was.  I felt AWFUL! I cried until my eyes swelled.  I questioned and even screamed into my pillow, “WHY??!!!”  I thought I was this person’s best friend because she was mine.  I thought she loved me.  I thought I was important to her.  I thought we would be best friends and be close FOREVER.  I was wrong, but not for the reasons I originally thought.

On your late identified, autism journey you will find that as you grow and change, learn more about who you are, and begin living a more authentically autistic life, not everyone who is in your life today will be a part of your life moving forward and that is OK.  There is a reason or a season for this person’s friendship and it has value in your life even if it isn’t for a lifetime.

Learn what I wish I had known EARLIER about the cycles and seasons of friendships,

how to identify what cycle or season your friendship is in and why even a friendship

that isn’t for a lifetime is important to your life.

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People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

When you figure out which one it is, you will know what to do for each person.


When someone is in your life for a REASON. . . It is usually to meet a need you have expressed. They have come to assist you through a difficulty, to provide you with guidance and support, to aid you physically, emotionally, or spiritually. They may seem like a godsend, and they are!


They are there for the reason you need them to be. Then, without any wrongdoing on your part, or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end.


Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled, their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered. And now it is time to move on.


Then people come into your life for a SEASON….Because your turn has come to share, grow, or learn. They bring you an experience of peace, or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it! It is real! But, only for a season.


LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons – things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person, and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant.

-Unknown Author






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