When someone that you once trusted — and shared your heart with — betrays you, it feels like someone stomped on your soul…Father Richard Rohr
Quote from article, "The Truth About The People You Can't Forgive," Mamie Healey, Huffington Post
I read this quote the other day as I was mourning the passing of another female friendship. It came at the right time. My relationships with females have always been difficult.
I could say it was due to my early relationships as a child. Although looking back at those relationships might help me to understand my difficulties, it would not help me move forward to fix them.
Friendship Footprints on My Soul
I could say that it was my close relationship with my father that affected me the most. He was my parent. He understood me even during my tough teenage years. He and I had the same personality and straightforward attitude about life and relationships.
My dad had a very low threshold for betrayal. If you were not consistently loyal, you earned the title of an acquaintance, not a close friend. I could even say that my thought patterns mimic that of men.
Not surprising since my dominant personality is just like my dad’s personality. However, I have tried to cultivate close female friendships. The problem? I am a poor judge of people. I give people the benefit of the doubt all of the time.
I believe the first face they present. I trust their intentions from the beginning. Have I been burned and screwed? Yes. What bothers me is that the female friends who say that I am too trusting, have caused third-degree burns and footprints on my soul.
This past year those two friends have given me the gift of leaving my life. I can see it as a gift now because the pain and confusion have passed. I served their purpose for the time being and in some way, they must have served my purpose.
This is where Maya Angelou’s quote comes to mind: “When people show you who they are, believe them the first time.” As I look back, I realized they showed me who they were the first, second, and fiftieth time. I chose to hang in there and look past their true nature.
In our society, close female friendships are valued. We are told we should have that support system. You see that message on television, in commercials, and even on Living Social (Girls Getaway Weekend).
That support system has been scarce for me over the years. I now realize that I am okay. I am not abnormal because I do not have that girlfriend support system. However, I am fortunate to have the friendship of a few great women. That is the true blessing.
How do you handle the ups and downs of female friendships in your life?
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