7 Situations Where You Really Get To Know A Person

· July 5, 2016

Many of us have friends whom we’ve known all of our lives; some of them keep surprising us in good ways, and at other times, they disappoint us. We also meet new people who turn out to be really great, and whom we continue getting to know.

But deeply knowing a person, with all of its positive and negative sides, is something that implies more intimacy, more time, and sharing something more than a dinner or a night out partying.

There are certain situations where you really get to know a person. Some are more serious and others more banal, but all of them allow us to see inner aspects of another person that we did not know before.

1. Situations of stress

When a person finds himself in a stressful situation, even if it is not serious, we can learn many, many things about them by the way that they deal with that situation.

They can become nervous, aggressive, unable to think clearly, stop looking for solutions and instead just complain, or even blame others for what has happened to them.

 “I’ve learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way they handle these three things: a rainy day, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.”

-Maya Angelou-

Hand Grabbing Girl

We can also see an attitude of avoidance, delegating responsibilities to others because they do not see themselves fit to do it or they do not have any reason to.

These situations are minor, but the way in which a person behaves when faced with minor stressors is going to give us an idea of how they can handle situations that mean greater stress on their lives, more serious matters.

2. When their needs change

Some people just engage with others when they need a favor, and once that favor is done, they cease communication. It doesn’t even have to be that extreme. Many people lose interest for various reasons, and they stop taking you into consideration.

“Only feelings can bring us together. Self-interest has never formed stable friendships”

-Cicero-

For example, a friend from high school that you do all your work with and share all your free time, and once you finish school, she starts being cold or distant. With that friend that you always went out with and as soon as they have a relationship, you hear little or nothing from her. With that person that you helped move to another country, giving them a hand, and suddenly they ignore you once they are all settled in…

Knowing when your friend needs you and when they do not will give you a clue about what that person is really like. Despite what they may say, observing their actions is the most important thing.

3. Living together

Living together is the definitive test if you want to know how a person really acts. The way that they respect your space, respect your things, do not argue about absurd ideas… You notice if you are capable of sharing or simply leading your life in their house, which often seems much less something shared.

Girl Dying before Others

You notice if you are capable of taking out time to talk for a while about each of the things that is worrying you, if they help you when you are sick, if they do not make compromises on things like bills, meetings, or a small damage in your shared home.

You realize whether or not there is a healthy independence or if there is a very clear and evident selfishness in everything that they do, and you notice how nice they act in the streets and how hostilely they manage your living together.

4. When talking about other people

It is normal to make comments about others, even more so when two people share the same friend group or have a common domain (work, sports, social…). Talking about others does not necessarily imply a lack of respect.

However, continuously judging what others do, analyzing if their life is better or worse, or telling intimate things about others can give you a clue about the person that is by your side.

“Some people are so fake that they are no longer aware that they think exactly the opposite of what they say.”

-Marcel Aymé-

5. Situations involving money 

It is difficult to know when a friend is really selfish. You have to realize when a person is doing you a favor just because you have done some for them and knows that maybe you will pay them back again. But that generosity is false; it does not stop being self-interest.

When we go through money troubles and that person does not keep our situation in mind, or even takes it as an opportunity to demand something unjustly from the past, this is when we realize what kind of person we have had as a friend.

Sad Girl

Even if they make us a loan, if they do it unwillingly, or constantly ask us when we are going to pay them back ,or talk to others about the number of things they have done for us, it leaves us in a rather unpleasant situation.

“Short debts make long friends.”

-Proverb-

6. When you’re successful or happy

A friend has to be there for your happiness and your sorrow. It is often said that people who are not true friends leave you alone when you are going through a hard time and only remember you when it is something fun.

But the opposite can happen: the friend who seems to listen to you and stay by your side when everything is going wrong, and yet they burst your bubble and boycott you emotionally when something has gone really well. If your life starts looking up and they feel envy or false happiness, they are not right for you.

7. Complicated situations where you need their help

Girl Surrounded by Snakes

We live through distressing situations in our lives and it is of vital importance to count on social support.

“When you’re in difficult times, you’ll know who your real friends are”

Surprisingly, in those moments when we need someone’s attention and affection the most, we may find indifference, harsh words, or a lack of support. We may even notice a cold attitude in which the problems of other people keep being more important than ours, even if we have been going through a really dramatic situation.

For this reason, surround yourself with the best people and be one of them yourself as well. And never forget to treat others like you want them to treat you. A strong network of friends is a very valuable treasure that you have to know how to build, maintain, and appreciate.

Images from Nicoletta Ceccoli and Kukula