How to be a GREAT friend
I was biking with a friend of mine this spring. He told me about a good friend of his who was about to get married, to the wrong person! It was clearly not a good match. However, being his friend, what was he to do? Tell him his observation that his partner whom he was about to create a sacred contract with was not the right person with whom he should be paired with? Or just be happy for his friend that he found someone with whom he wanted to spend the rest of his life with and keep his mouth shut?
It really is a matter of opinion. Who is to say what is right for someone else?
We have our lessons to learn and these lessons are gifts. They may not always be easy as well. My most difficult time in my life taught me the most about myself. It reconnected me back to my dreams and desires, reiterated my values that I had forgotten about, and has brought me here today writing this blog for you. I’m forever grateful. Even though it royally sucked when I was going through it.
In my situation if someone would have said to me, “Do not marry that guy!” I wouldn’t have listened. In fact, one palm reader did tell me. He told me I thought that my soon to be husband was NOT the one. I was to find him when I was 30. I knew in my heart he was right. But couldn’t really see or feel it even at the time. And couldn’t even fathom rocking that boat.
Fast forward almost 20 years later, 5 years out of my dark divorce, a really good guy was about to move in with me and my two children in a few months. The difference this time is that I AM aware. I have learned how to listen to myself and my heart as well as my gut. (Thank you husband) As well as the signs around me and within me. I was getting those signs that it wasn’t the right thing for me. And I said good bye. It was harder than saying, “Honey, I want a divorce.” But this time I had courage to listen and act.
A few months later I’m in a vulnerable spot within myself. I have been diving deep and exploring many depths of my soul. But I saw my ex boyfriend. We still connect and he has grown in the ways that I needed him to. Also being vulnerable at the moment, his strong arms felt so comforting to have around me as we hugged. I so did not want to let go or have to say goodbye, again. But I am smart. I know when to get help and support when I need it. I know I broke up with him for a reason. Many reasons actually. I asked a friend to remind me of those. She was a good friend and told me to follow what was in my heart. She was holding space for me. Being a good friend. But I needed support on the truth that I knew in my heart.
The following weekend I was on retreat with some other friends who had been on a river trip with the guy after we broke up. They showed us pictures of their trip. It was great to see them. I saw a few pictures with the guy and his new person. I was aware of this connection. And they asked me afterwards how I felt seeing the pics. Surprisingly it didn’t sting as much as I expected it would. Seeing the pics, cleared a bit of fog I was experiencing over the situation. But a little sting was there, I can not lie. And I was still digesting it all.
But not only were they good friends of mine., they were being great friends. They told me what they saw and what their hard, honest opinion was. It was hard for them to tell me that. They love both the guy and me. But had the courage to say, “Honey, get over it!” And I had the courage to listen and act. Act within myself and look toward the future with gratitude from the past.
I’m forever grateful for these friends. I’m so glad they told me that. Told me what I knew to be in my heart, the truth. I was ready to listen.
So should my biking friend tell his friend not to get married? I have now concluded, yes! If we know a truth, speak it. But speak with love. Because some times truth hurts. A lot. And the friend may not be ready for the words. He or she may not even be ready for the actions as well. Let go of being attached to the actions. It’s OK. Friends don’t have to do what you say. But speak your truth and love them unconditionally.