Frenemies, you know, those people who claim to be your friend but secretly enjoy seeing you hurt, embarrassed, and/or stagnant. Folks who speak and let the chips fall where they may. Recently, I saw this very thing at play while watching some mindless television programming. TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta” provides a stress-free combination of fantastic dresses and drama. The drama that ensues stems from the brides and the folks she brings along to assist her in selecting her dream gown. During one segment of the show a twenty-something Black bride-to-be arrived at the boutique with her entourage of “keep it real” girlfriends.
Keep it real girlfriends are the ones who are supposed to tell you when something is stuck in your teeth, encourage you to “woman-up” and achieve your goals, and have your back during life’s low points. Other male or female terms for such friends include your “boy”/your “girl,” partner in crime, padre, road dog, play cousin….you get the point. But I digress. Let’s get back to the show. Very quickly, it became clear that these so-called friends were easily earning the title “frenemies.”In the name of “I’m just saying” or “you know me, I keeps it real”, they unleashed unabashed criticism upon their “friend.” The beautiful bride to be was criticized about nearly everything about her from her dress selections to her figure. The raucous laughter made it undeniable that they simply intended to steal her joy. These friends looked jealous and bitter, which brings me to point one of being a good friend:
Point 1: A good friend is happy for you, even when things aren’t going well in their world.
This can be hard to do. What makes it possible is two-fold. First, being a friend requires love and self-sacrifice. Love without sacrifice is shallow and empty. Even on a good day this love is (at best) only like but it is certainly not love. Secondly, a good friend sees your successes communally. This doesn’t mean they are now excited to mooch off your new job but rather they find personal joy in knowing they have helped in encourage and pray for the outcome that’s now happening to you. CONTINUE READING
© 2011 – 2013, Dr. Christina Edmondson. All rights reserved.