on dealing with fake friends
Have you ever had that friend you always thought you could count on? Whether it be sickness, financial troubles, or personal problems, you are convinced they would drop everything to be there for you. Because that’s the kind of person you believed them to be.
Loving, caring, and compassionate.
You share great memories, times when you have laughed together, worked together, cried together, shared your deepest worries and concerns. They empathize, you relate, and this beautiful friendship blossoms. They are your friend for life and even more.
Then one day, an almost indescribable thing happens.
They betray you.
They not only try to manipulate and trick you for their greater benefit but take everything you have ever done for them and throw it back in your face. They are suddenly capable of saying rotten things like
“If it bothered you so much to do all those things for me then you should have never done them.”
They have the audacity to twist all of your dedication into this friendship and good, honest intentions into actions that they claim to have harmed them and in fact made them miserable. They then proceed to declare that they have actually been withholding this information from you throughout the entire duration of this friendship in order to do you a “favor”. You have become the source of their accusations and cause of their faults. Even worse, when not only you but those in your family are ill and you call for help, they not only hear your voice and walk away from it but take advantage of your vulnerability for their personal gain.
Suddenly, you are staring into the face of a monster you had never believed to exist.
Or maybe just always refused to acknowledge…
This sudden exhibition of their very ugly and real self is paralyzing. We cannot move, speak, or comprehend because their masquerade of innocence and purity is suddenly and shockingly no longer operative.
This mask they had been wearing is usurped by the face of their lesser and truer self. We try to shield our eyes because it is almost too ugly to look at.
When an enemy tries to destroy you, it is expected. When a coworker tries to steal that job promotion from you, it is no surprise. When the second fastest runner trips you in the race, your fall is planned.
But when a friend betrays you, it is stupefying.
It is heart breaking.
So then you look back and reflect. You ask yourself, have they ever given me any signs or the slightest reasons to believe they are in possession of such cruelty?
As you begin to recollect and replay certain situations of the past, these clues and warning signs begin to manifest themselves. Actions they have done or words they have spoken are no longer just insignificant occurrences but pieces of the puzzle that only now you are capable of putting together.
Looking back, everything seems so much clearer. It is so apparent that you even begin to question your sense of judgement and intuition but then realize that you only overlooked these incidences because you believed this friendship you took time to nurture is too valuable to be destroyed by trifling and overanalyzed matters.
When you finally draw the conclusion that you have not only never wronged them but also always was a positive support system, you begin to question what they have ever done for you. You do this not to keep score on your friendship or weigh who did more for each other, but only to stress the importance that a strong friendship is based on the “give and take” construct.
A relationship cannot flourish if one continues to take but always refuses to give. One described as such is not only unhealthy but defies any definition of “friendship”. This is now one of servitude and clearly builds the division of superior and inferior.
Thus if this is the case, then you should be proud rather than feel guilty for all the good things you have done for them. It is not what you have done or who you are that is responsible for their unwarranted behavior but rather the person they have always been.
The root of the problem, the seed of these devilish actions, is that they have grown too comfortable with this friendship you strove to build. Although to your perspective you were equals with the other and always valued respect, they had begun to perceive you as the inferior. Instead of asking they began demanding and instead of hoping they began expecting. In their mind, they saw you as default and took for granted that you would never leave them.
This is the time to walk away.
What exactly causes them to transform into the person you did not originally meet is always or usually an unknown. It could be jealousy of the achievements you effortlessly continue to make but they cannot dream of touching. It could be that they now identify you as too nice and thus incapable of fighting back. It could be their frivolous insecurity that they could never become who you are or have what you have. Or it could be that they simply underestimated you.
Whatever is the reason, it is unfounded and undeserved.
But the important thing to take away from this disappointing experience, is that these types of people are unnecessary and intoxicating to have in your life. Instead, surround yourself and appreciate those who you have faith in. Of course, it is difficult to distinguish those who are authentic and those who will one day learn to take you for granted, but if they have not yet given you any reason to believe otherwise, then continue to cultivate this relationship.
Forgiveness. Is it overrated?
People say to forgive and forget. I say to forgive but to not forget.
You should not forget what you have learned from this eye opening experience. Instead, you should walk away a more mature and changed person, one that is not any less openhearted but more cautious and wise in choice of those you open your heart to.
As for the person you have walked away from…
You can’t make a blind person see.
You can’t turn a bad person good.
You can only open your eyes wider and make your heart ever so much bigger.