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The bane of ‘girl friendships’…

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This discourse was inspired by the message that I received from a lady, recently.
Read her first:
“We met at the market about two years ago and became friends.As the friendship progressed, we found out that we have a lot in common and naturally…we became closer.We really opened up to each other about our story-as we are both single mothers.We kind of became each other’s cheer-leader, taking interest in each other’s children’s progress.When I am down, I go spend a weekend with her…where I cry my eyes out. She also comes over to my place to chill.

“Recently, she launched an NGO. She made it clear that she wanted me at the event, even though it was taking place in Abuja.
She promised that it would be an all expense paid (flight fare and hotel accommodation) trip for me. She became engrossed in the preparations that, most times, we would not see ourselves for weeks. She travelled to put finishing touches to the preparations.

“A week to the event, she told me that she would travel earlier –as she needed to see to the preparations. She gave me 10K and said that she had arranged with one of her Pastor friends to accommodate me for the duration of my stay. She explained that she was running out of funds.

“I really wanted to attend but a lot of issues were choking me at that time and I remember saying to her ‘’what if I can’t make it’’. Her response was, “Please don’t say that. I need you around me.’’ She left for Abuja after our phone conversation and then, tried calling me. I didn’t pick up but I sent her an SMS…explaining that I was in a meeting.

“Then she replied: “I was calling to know how you are preparing. I am done calling, if you keep ignoring my calls.’’I didn’t reply. But on Whatsapp, she sent me pictures of the clothes she kept for me to go pick from her house. I told her that I am not sure I had the dress code she asked her friends to wear on that day and we didn’t communicate again until about three days after the event.“I sent her a Whatsapp …thanking God for the success of the event, while also apologising for my inability to attend. Do you know that till this day, this lady read the messages and kept ignoring me? Please tell me where I have gone wrong in all these. I’m in my early 40s.’’

FROM OBY:
The bane of girl friendships has always been pettiness. Otherwise, I am compelled to remind you that this right here, “We became each other’s cheer leader” is priceless!
Two things stood out in your accounts of issues…
. It seems you knew all along that you wouldn’t attend because it was no longer an all expense paid trip.
. You limited your efforts on reaching out to WhatsApp.
If you meant peace, you should have found your way to her house to TALK to her or even placed a call to her. Must EGO win…even at the expense of our emotional well-being?

This reminds me of what Oprah Winfrey once said … “the friend we all NEED is that person who will enter a bus with us when the Limo breaks down.” Your spirit grew weary about attending the event when the “all expense paid” part of the trip was NOT feasible anymore.It didn’t occur to you that the most important thing is that your friend NEEDED you around her.The efforts she made towards your comfort didn’t even touch you…the clothes she got you, the accommodation plans, the consistent calls that you never returned and the money she gave you.

Well, I had react exactly like your friend did. I reward disloyalty/disappointment with DISTANCE.It’s just so sad how everything (especially relationships) has been reduced to a matter of CONVENIENCE in this age.This is one of the reasons a lot of people are very lonely, even when surrounded by people…because the efforts to connect and stay connected are rather superficial.

If the weather is not fair, most friends don’t stick around anymore. The irony of it all is that, that which we can’t offer others is exactly what we expect of them and with unbelievable sense of entitlement! I think you should let her be or give her time to come around.

If you guys run into each other somewhere, you can still let go of “ego” and reach out. You didn’t have to limit your efforts on reaching out to Whatsapp…even if you have a cogent reason for missing the event. Communication is everything in relationship; remember this always!And the true meaning of FRIENDSHIP is SUPPORT AND SACRIFICE.


In this article:
Chukwuneta Oby
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