Updated: Jul 16
2020 has been a year of complete exposure for me. I have seen the reality of the needed changes in my life, culture, spiritual walk, and so on. One of the biggest areas, was the value or lack of friendships. Trust me, I had my share of dealing with fake and fickle friendships. So much to the point, I prayed that God take out the desire of wanting and needing friends, yes I was that desperate and tired of the failure of friendships. Yes, your homegirl was team #NoNewFriends.
Listen truth be told, we cannot “not” want nor need friends. It’s within our spiritual and human nature to commune and fellowship with others. That’s probably why it hurts us so bad we can’t get the friend part right, because it’s denying something naturally within us. Most times when people claim they don’t want friends is simply because they don’t know how to be one. Or the famous one, “I don’t have girl friends, they’re too catty”. No Sis, you need friends.
Having or desiring friends is a good thing. They’re there to provide good help, love, and support. You need the vulnerability like chilling with people in wig caps and face masks. We need the accountability especially when we’re wrong and need to do better. When we don’t see the value of friendship, we tend to not value our friends. Which in fact can hurt us and others.
That’s why fake and fickle friends do not work, because they don’t see the value of you nor themselves. They don’t value your time nor money invested. They don’t value the growth nor potential of it. There’s a secret jealous competition or hidden agenda involved. Everything is easily taken for granted. Most things are simply all about them. Don’t even start me on that narcissistic behavior. Especially if they’re messing with your money, man, and mental health. I can you some assurance and reassurance, that she or he is simply not your friend. If you watch Insecure you don’t need a self-centered Molly type of friend.
Through my experience here’s a few key points to dealing with fake and fickle friends.
1. Stop calling everyone a friend
Since grade school we have to the tendency to call everyone our friend. So much that in adulthood that when we “click” with someone, now we have a bestie. We have school besties, work besties, church besties, exercise besties, shopping besties, and so on. That’s all fun and dandy, but when the environment or need changes so does the relationship. That’s why your work friends can’t necessarily fit outside of work, or continue once you leave the job. Also when your coffee friend, party friend, church friend, or shopping friends doesn’t serve you in another social setting or activity that’s engaging other behaviors. It can all make sense we people act funny outside of their comfortability/boundary with you So maybe, they’re not being so fake, but we just gave out the friend title too easily and quickly to relationships that was built on circumstances and not built to last.
2. Communication is Key.
Communication is key to every and any relationship. It requires open and honest dialogue. I have had many friendships failed simply because of the lack of communication. It’s not about how many times a day, you are or not talking, it’s mainly about what’s actually being communicated. Yes you can respect and honor people that you don’t talk to on a consistent basis, but it’s what’s been communicated in your or their absence. Especially if you or that person is going through something they’re not ready to talk about. That’s NOT opportunity to sabotage or disrespect the absence by being selfish and demanding their presence or making subliminal posts about not having friends. The absense could not even be personally direct towards you. That’s why a clear communication channel needs to be made on both ends. Friendships are not going to work properly without communcation. Maybe they’re not being fake, maybe you need to check in, and a conversation needs to be made. A conversation that can change the status of a friendship is always worth having.
Accountability. Accountability. Accountability. We need to evaluate ourselves. Because maybe, just maybe we’re the toxic friend that’s not worth having around. What are the standards and expectations that we are setting for others, that we may not even see in ourselves? Especially if we are cycling through friends every season. Or we drop friends because they do or say something we simply don’t like. Do we actually take more than we give or vice versa? Are we cutting more than healing? So before we call someone fake, let’s reevaluate the situation and ourselves.
4. Have peace whether people stay or leave in our lives.
Oh Child, let me tell you I struggled to learn to NOT take people’s presence or absence personally. Yes this was hard. We have to know that some people have a reason for a season in our life. This is nothing negative. Maybe we’re holding on to old friends, that we need to let go. Maybe we can’t embrace new friends, simply being afraid of the new. When people want to leave, let them. If new people want to come, let them in. We have to let people fulfill their purpose in our lives. So just maybe they’re not being fake, maybe the season is over, or a new one has just begun.
5. Time doesn’t measure the strength of friendship, loyalty does.
This is a perfect follow up from the last point. Since childhood I have embedded myself with this idea of having a long lasting friendship. So I had the ideal that long friendships means strength of friendships. When in honesty we don’t need to measure friends in time but by loyalty. Some friendships are only lasting simply because we’ve known them for that long. Yet that are people who can be there in a short period of time to do more than ones we’ve known for the longest. Holding on friendships for the time length can stunt our growth, especially if it’s stagnant or bypassing negative behaviors that needs to be addressed. But you don’t want to say anything because you know “that’s my friend”. So maybe they’re not being fake, maybe we have given people too much time or not enough time to prove themselves.
6. Let it go, and move on Sis.
Let it go and move on Sis. No, for real seriously. Sometimes we are too unforgiving to our own friends. Especially, if you can forgive a toxic partner numerous of times in comparison to holding on to one offense that your friend committed. Platonic relationships take the same components as romantic ones. Real friendships take real time, effort, and strong foundations. You’re friends are human, they’re going to come with shortcomings and make mistakes. Forgive your friends. If you can’t let go and move on from failed ones, you’ll be rebuilding the same friendships and going through the same cycles. Especially if you have boundaries built off of insecurities and past hurts. You’ll never be able to move on until you heal and let go. So maybe again, they’re not being fake, maybe you’re being insecure and need to let it go and move on.
So after we took all this in review and consideration, let’s reflect and redefine calling someone fake and fickle. I myself after taking this ALL into consideration was able to save friendships and let go others. I was able to see in fact, that I have friends and I’m a better friend because of it. Maybe it’s just a conversation that needs to made. Maybe we’re holding our standards and expectations too high for people who meant to serve for a particular reason or season in our lives. Maybe we are blinded by our own agendas that we can not see each other’s growth in order to move on. Maybe we can’t build relationships because we haven’t let go of the old ones. Listen, after this conversation we can move forward positively instead of toxically cutting off everyone that doesn’t serve us. 2020, let‘s try to be a better friend.