Thursday, June 26, 2014

Are You Territorial When It Comes To Your Friends?

“Don’t you dare play with her, she’s my friend not yours!”
As a young college student, I was always a little wary about introducing my friends to each other. I would meet and become friendly with different people and when it came time to introduce them to one another, I would get nervous. Although I wanted them to know each other and get along, I was also afraid that they would become more compatible with each other, strengthen their bond, and slowly dilute the bond I had with them down. Now to be fair, I had seen this happen to other people and it did happen to me on one occasion in college.

I had been hanging out a lot with my childhood friend and my new-found college friend and as time went by they started getting closer, which then led to more hangouts without me invited, and then eventually they decided they preferred each other’s company and didn’t want to be friends with me anymore. As you can imagine, I was crushed. My feelings were deeply hurt and I figured it would never have happened if I hadn’t introduced them to each other. The truth is that it was a great blessing/personal lesson.

You see our “friendship” was mainly based on partying, gossiping, and back-biting. I only became more judgmental, intolerant, and unloving from our interactions. And to make matters worse, once we went our separate ways the ladies ended up spreading false rumors and gossip about me to people we mutually knew – it was devastating. Funny enough, I am thankful for the experience because it served as a great learning moment in my life.

First, I realized that we never had a productive/positive friendship and the longer I remained in it, the worse off I was. Second, I realized that I was reckless and easily called anyone “friend”; I had to be clear from the beginning that anyone I called friend had the same intentions for our friendship as I did. Third, I also realized that I wasn’t perfect and there were certain things about my personality and character that irritated/offended them. This realization helped me accept areas in my personality that I had to improve on to be a better-quality friend to others.

We have since talked things out, thankfully forgiven each other, and moved on with our individual lives. The take home here ladies is that you cannot be afraid to lose your friendship with someone because their friend pool consists of more than you in it. In my specific case, I didn’t have a fantastic friendship with either girl to begin with so putting them together simply sped up the inevitable break-up that was to come. In other cases, you might have a wonderfully inspirational friend that loves and supports you wholeheartedly. Great! Be happy to share such a friend with others. Don’t worry about losing the person. If that person is meant to be a constant in your life then they will be regardless of how many friends they have. If that person is meant to be seasonal (because some are) in your life then be thankful for the time you had with them, the lessons you learned (sometimes painful), and wish them well as they continue on in their lives.

Remember, no one actually "belongs" to you. 

What are your thoughts on this, ladies? Have you ever been territorial over a friend? Have you ever had an old friend "dump" you for someone new? Are you comfortable having seasonal friends? Leave a comment below:)

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