Friendships exposed

Alexis Harris

Have you ever bought one of the “BEST FRIENDS” necklaces to share with your closest pal, only to find out that the silver on the necklace was as phony as your friendship?

I used to think that my friend “Lucy” and I would grow to have a relationship like those 60-something-year-old ladies on the new Secret commercial. Now, I agree with the quote, “Sometimes your closest friend is your greatest enemy.”

Lucy and I had been friends since third grade. We worked together, cheered together, and if she was in trouble, so was I. She even saved me from getting hit by a speeding car. But, she also did things such as steal my boyfriend.

Despite that “He’s mine!” episode, we remained best friends. It was as if our fights brought us closer.

It was not until my second year in college when I realized that Lucy was as shady as the men who lied about why we went to war in Iraq.

Lucy had two groups of friends. There was group No. 1, which included her elementary school friends who were more like her sisters. And then there was group No. 2, the friends she would flock to whenever things weren’t going right with the first group.

That Lucy kept jumping from clique to clique began to bother me. I was tired of being the convenient friend.

Fed up with Lucy’s unsteadiness and jealousy, I had to rethink the definition of friendship. A friend wants what is best for the both of you and would not do anything to hurt you. More important, a friendship is built on the foundation of trust that your friend will not betray you. If you can’t trust the people you surround yourself with, you shouldn’t be friends with them.

Lucy couldn’t stand to see someone doing better than her. She became “Mrs. Me Too.” If you had a nice car, she had to get one too, only better. If you had an apartment, she had to get a condo. She could never be happy for the people she called “friends,” and when one was doing well, she pushed herself away and began to rekindle the friendship with the members of the other group by telling them gossip and lies.

It became a problem when people approached me with bogus details about my life. It was then I realized, “Alexia, she has to go!”

According to rapper Jay-Z, “When the grass is cut, the snakes will show.” Lucy was one of those snakes.

Ever since I cut Lucy out of the picture, my life has not only been drama-free, but it has also been comforting to know the truth about the people I considered family.

George Washington once said, “True friendship is a plant of slow growth.” But if you ask me, friendship is a plant of slow pain, almost like a pricker bush.

Now, don’t get me wrong, not all friends are like this. So don’t go cutting friends like there is no tomorrow. However, I do believe that everyone would benefit if they thought about the reasons they have the friends they do.

Is the friendship one where you give, give, give and they take, take, take? Or is it one based on mutual behaviors? Do your friends hurt or embarrass you when you are in front of certain people? I promise you that once you reflect on these friendships, it will make your life better.

A wise man once said, “A true friend stabs you in the front.”

I think a true friend wouldn’t stab you at all.

Alexia Harris is a junior public relations major and columnist for the Summer Kent Stater. Contact her at [email protected].