"If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?" is a common quote. Wikipedia talks about it. I didn't read it.
I wrote a poem once. When I was in high school, melodramatic, and heartbroken. the end of the poem had a few lines to the effect of how if the dude didn't respond to what I said, did I really say it.
And I guess here, I'm back to a question I had in 2007. when I studied abroad. And then again in 2009. when I worked abroad. and now in 2012. when (surprise) i'm away at grad school. the question is, if someone doesn't respond or attempt to know what you're doing or even contact you, or basically, if all the overtures of relationship is ignored, does the friendship even exist?
i think some of the most hurtful things are when you go back home and people say "oh! i missed you! how are you doing? what are you up to?" when really, they could have already had that answer if you know, they once in a while made an attempt to say hi and ask me in person. we don't write letters. they're already online. is it that hard to drop a line? well, I guess it IS hard to drop a line.. to a person that you could care less about.
furthermore, the whole, "don't take it personal" is so crappy. like how do you not take it personally .. relationships are a very personal, person-oriented thing. and if you value something, you would want to know it, and see how it's going and how it's growing. if you really cared about something, it's not about, "when are you coming back?" (so that we can presumable resume our friendship), it's about "how are you doing?" ... and continue the friendship there.
yes, it's about priorities. and if anything, i'm learning that for many people, i don't even come close to being even a slight priority.
here's where the defensive comments come in. about how i need to understand people are busy. how i need to understand that they care. how i need to understand that i'm being unfair. how i need to "confront" people instead of "secretly harboring bitterness." but when it comes down to a conversation that starts with, "hey, i'm feeling ignored.." where do you GO from there? the other person apologize for an action that they've already been doing. the other person attempts to improve their communication... when it's obviously for the benefit of the person who brought up the issue. everything feels fake and awkward. if it comes to this, i don't want the relationship.
and i'm not being unfair. i'm being very fair. and very factual. life is about priorities. it's about weighing what's more important. is McD's more important to me or BK. Do i care more about my happiness or theirs? Would I rather sleep or work out? Do i want to shove my feet into my shoes or retie the laces? it's all about priorities. and whether they're automatic habits or carefully wrought decisions, your actions reflect what your priorities are. and if they don't you have to go back and fix your actions (unless your priority is that you don't care if your actions don't jive with your so-called priorities)....... long story short.
if there is no communication or even attempts at communication. if a conversation is such that one side is silent. does the relationship exist?
The tree philosophers might say YES. the tree exists. YES it's still there.
i'd say no, the relationship doesn't exist. or if it does, it's been revealed to be an extremely shallow one.