I see this everywhere. You do too. Real friends does this. Fake friends does that. I don’t need fake friends. I only need real friends. Insert more emotional high school mumbo jumbo from the thoughts that lasts as much as an oscillating pendulum—periodical.
I used to be one of those too. Sometimes when life takes a toll on you, you began to see who stays, and who leaves. You’ll begin to appreciate who stays, and you’ll be bitter on those who leaves. There’s never anything in between. And then, you began categorizing your friends. The ones you can count on. The ones you would stab with a piece of metal everytime you see them. And everyone’s personal favourite, the ones who betrayed your trust so much it makes you more hurtful than angry. The list for this, is endless.
But as you grow older—twenty-six like me, if you want to put it that way—you began to realize there’s a flaw in your little lists of friends. Why are the real ones so few, yet the fake ones are gazillions? Does this means, 90% of the human population indulge in make-believe friendships? (Note to scholars: this research on counterfeit human relationships has not been done.) And why does these fake friends of yours has real friendships with other people? Although scholars has yet to research on counterfeit human relationships—not seriously, at least—there is one simple answer that not many would be able to admit, and that is acceptance.
Yes, as you grow older, you begin to accept that people grow up. Life is always a learning process, and different people will learn different things, have different priorities, make different mistakes, run different lives. Growing up into a different person doesn’t give anyone the right to call their friends real or fake. It’s just how life is. The one who stays are the ones who have so much in common with you, while the one who left might have different plans for life that you did not agree on. Just because they bailed on you that one time (I know it’s not okay to bail on someone, but people have choices) doesn’t mean they lie to you 99% of your friendship. In the end, yes, very few can cope with what you want to achieve in life, while the others focuses on what they want in life. They have a choice. Everyone has a choice.
So now, you realized you only have a few of these so-called real friends, as you may call it. And you begin to wonder, while you are content with them, you can never seem to shake off those fake friends and what they did in the past. It’s always there, in your head, bothering you. You’re scared of making new friends, and you’re scared of putting trust in them. As a species with three levels of consciousness, we are able to imagine a future situation as a natural tool of decision-making and self-defense. And what you’re doing is only self-defence. It’s natural. No problem.
But let me tell you a surprise, and easier way to cope with so-called real and fake friends. Don’t bother defining them. After several turns of examining the characters of my friends, understanding their decisions and how they’re put in my history or present, I know that defining friends as real or fake is a very emotionally gruesome effort. In the end, here are the things that put me (and perhaps you) in perspective:
- Friendships are best made unconditional. Be friends with everyone. Don’t be so judgemental about it.
- Friendships should be sincere. If you do a good deed to a friend in hope that he/she would return it with another good deed, sugar you’re gonna get emotional a lot. Be kind, and give without expecting to receive.
- Different people are different. The best thing about making friends with everyone is observing their diverse characters and personalities, and just because they don’t sit well with one, doesn’t mean they don’t sit well with another, too. Accept other people’s differences, and in the end, you’ll realize that you can be okay with absolutely anything.
- It’s okay to get upset once in a while. You’re human. You might disagree on stuff, but if that gives you the reason to walk away, then go home child and come back when you’re an adult. You are allowed to disagree on stuff, and when you do, talk about it, solve it, and move on. And don’t spend the next 12 months lingering on the same conflict, now.
- Be chill. Don’t get affected that much with your friend’s decision. Friend forgot your dinner date? Be chill. Friend too busy with work? Be chill. Friend didn’t buy you stuff from abroad? Be chill. If you get offended with all these little things, then buy a rocket and move to Mars where the love from the rocks will keep your heart warm and oxygenless.
- You can’t please everyone, and everyone can’t please you. Sometimes when talking about friendships, we could be a little selfish. You think too much about how your friends hurt you but you tend to forget the things that you’ve done that might hurt them. Take some time and think, to a certain someone, you’re labelled fake friend. Does this do you any good? No. But look at your friends now. You might offend them, but they’re still chill, and that sort of understanding should be mutual.
Image source: jakfruit.tumblr.com