I found this quote in a friend's social networking profile. I haven't updated this in such a long time, I thought at this point, stealing someone else's words would be better than waiting another three months to update this...
"I wish that I could claim that all the people whom I have loved have loved me back, or that my needs and those of the people closest to me have always dovetailed perfectly. But friendship doesn't work that way, and people's needs aren't always the same, so it is only fair to say that I have often wished for more, or wished for something no one had to give and in that I know that I'm not alone.
Some people feel angry when they think of moments when they've had to stand alone, and question the value that they once put upon friends who weren't there when they needed them. But I think the thing to remember is this - you don't get from friends what you give to them, you get what they have to give, and that is the thing you must not forget. People can only give you what they have to give.
It is difficult to remember this when you know just what you need and none of your friends have it to give, and especially difficult when you have given it to them in the past. But you will save yourself a lot of grief if you keep in mind that you don't have you for a friend, however much you might wish you did. You have the person out there instead.
Perhaps you will take chicken soup to a friend who is sick, and they will forget your birthday just the same. Or maybe you will have them to your parties and they will give none to which you might be asked. But maybe they will hand you a piece of truth one day, in a sentence tossed off with a sidelong glance, and if it's something you couldn't have found inside yourself, you will have been repaid in full."
To me, this is perfect. It is something I try to follow and keep in mind.