My Friends Don’t Trust Me

Hey Vulnerabites,

So, I went to counseling recently… TEAM VULNERABLE HERE… Yes BLACK WOMEN DO COUNSELING TOO! Rolling my eyes at everyone who just withdrew my “Strong Black Women” card!

But why did I even just do that? I just countered my efforts to live emotionally healthy with a side note that ‘y’all probably think I’m weak out here in these streets.

Watch my lips move in slow motion here with a clap in between each syllable… IN-KNEE-WAY…

I don’t care. I’m totally being defensive on this side of the screen, because I was EMBARRASSED when I started going to counseling (cough-a few years ago-cough). In fact, I felt like, my prayer life must be off and how come I can’t just ‘keep it together?’  Because that’s what black women do right? “We carry the world on our shoulders and then we squat that -ish!”

I would wonder, “God, why can’t you just ‘reveal my issues’ to me and then ‘heal me?’ Right? Wrong. — Ok, not wrong — but it wasn’t the case for ‘this issue.’

I wanted to know why I was this crappy friend.

Like seriously, if you’ve ever met that chick who was ride or die with you and a few months down the line, she was barely responding to your texts, you had met me. #DontJudgeMyVulnerabilityPlease

What was I doing to the good friends in my life? and WHY was I doing it? I needed my counselor to give me an answer and very quickly too. Like hurry up and diagnose me, so I can be on my journey to becoming a better friend, because right now— my friends don’t trust me. They think I will walk away from them any moment, and they’re right. *sigh*

DISCLAIMER: There ARE some exceptions to this friendship rule. For example, Ms.McCullough, we met in college, on a Wednesday and by Friday, we were road tripping it to an Essence conference in Atlanta. Ok, it was only a 5 hour drive… but that was a long time to be in a car with someone I had only met 48  hours ago… my point is, she’s still around almost 10 years later.

Now, moving on…

I got my wake up call when I returned home from a recent trip abroad. I was catching up on my text messages, and noticed that one of my ‘friends’ hadn’t texted me the entire time I was away.

So, I reached out to her with my very ‘caring’ text message… You still breathing? 

Not expecting anything more than a “yeah girl!”, instead she said… “I’ve been in the hospital for the last 10 days, I was having a personal health crisis and it affected my boys, one of the twins heart rate had began to drop, so the doctors had an emergency c-section to remove them early.” —- “Oh and my 30th birthday is today!”

And the worst friend of the year award goes to….

I was stunned. Of course I didn’t text her back, we Face-timed. With her hospital bed propped up and IV’s in her arm, we managed to find a few things to laugh about.

We hung up, and all I could think was… “OHH-EEMMM-GGEEE!” I started to feel guilty! Like, “If I was a better friend to her all these years, maybe I would’ve gotten a call from her husband to let me know what was going on?” OR at least a text from her that said anything! Anyway, they had so much going on…and obviously texting Mac wasn’t at the top of their priority list…I get it!

What am I going to do?  I need to be there for this girl… whatever that means.

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I woke up at 6am the next morning, picked up some flowers and I drove to New Jersey. Whoever lives in the tri-state, you know how very unpleasant that traffic can be, hence my bright and early departure.

We talked, we laughed, we smiled… I helped her pump breast milk (not really though, I just labeled the bottles with her long behind Greek last name),  I made her breakfast and we did what two girlfriends do… we talked until our saliva dried up.

One visit and one bouquet of flowers doesn’t un-do the ‘years of crappy friendship’ I’ve offered her, but it’s the beginning of something … I’m grateful for her forgiveness.

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Honey, I’m sorry that I wasn’t the best friend you had always hoped we would be. You’ve always looked out for me. You picked me out of the crowd 10 years ago and decided you would love me. You haven’t stopped. I can’t undo what I’ve done, but I’m here now… promising to give this friendship (and all others) a much better effort.

…and as for my counseling session, my crappy friend tendencies boiled down to one word… trust.

When I don’t trust, I withdraw out of fear and I withhold information. It’s a defense mechanism. Am I the only one? It’s actually become quite scary how easily and quickly I can and will walk away from relationships. That’s not normal. It was a learned behavior I had picked up over the years that I thought was “just Mac.”

So, all this “cut people off and do you” mess needs to be handled in BALANCE. When people are good to you, you don’t cut them off…You deal with YOUR mess, come back and apologize to them, hope they forgive you and try to work towards a more healthy relationship.

My issues of trust, have nothing to do with her, but a reoccurrence of the junk in my past that I had re-assigned to her and so many other people in my life.

I was thrilled to discover this place in counseling. Does that mean all my trust issues disappear? Of course not, but now I’m more self aware when I’m making choices out of that place and I can choose to respond differently… and not by default.

So, give me back my ‘strong black woman’ card… only a sucker won’t go find out what their issues are and learn to live a more emotionally healthy life. However you decide to do it… totally up to you … but just go and do it!

Some of your relationships are waiting for the better you!

You may not struggle in your friendships… but maybe you do in your romantic relationships, family relationships, or even as an employee….whatever it is…

I challenge you to get vulnerable with yourself (or a counselor) and do right by the people in your life.

Let’s Connect on Instagram , Twitter and Facebook

Yours Vulnerably,

The Naked Writer

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Cay says:

    ❤ Beautiful post.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Omg you must have felt so terrible when she said all that was going on with her!! I feel like I don’t trust people either maybe that’s why I don’t have close friends. I always keep people at an arms length. Ever since I was about 20 or so. It’s like I can’t be bothered with any kind of drama or the possibility people might let me down or rely upon me, so to avoid all that I don’t keep ANY very close friends. That’s probably soooo bad because sometimes I really feel like maybe I should have. Those times when you want to talk deep and share or pour your heart out. The closest person I have (that I could call close friend) is a sister in law sometimes i can go deep with her. Apart from that everyone else is the sort of friend that I may meet up with once every two months if we have time, and the occasional texts and niceties. People at work I also don’t ever let them into my life. I don’t know what it’s like to have a really close friend. But maybe I’ve done that to myself. I know I’ve done it to myself., I’ve tried before getting so close to someone and it was exhausting they would drain me. So I basically thought okay, I only allow people so far and then a line is drawn.
    Really interesting post Mac xxx thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey Alicia! Wow! Thank you for sharing and for being so honest! Let me start off by saying how totally awesome it is that you’ve developed such a relationship with your sister in law, I’m used to hearing the horror stories of in laws! So know that you’ve been blessed with that relationship!

      I hear you on the “no drama” thing girl… I totally get it!

      And for the people at work thing? Girl!!!! I have the t-shirt and I have paid my dues for the club! Lol

      Without writing another blog in this comment section, I think those of us in relationships, might suffer from ‘not having the close girlfriend’ because slowly but surely our spouse becomes our ‘best friend’… and that’s ok…. but let me tell you, it doesn’t have the same effect as a “chatty girls night out” to talk about all things “girly” that our significant others probably don’t care much about… lol

      So for that person who drained you emotionally, it’s ok to move on… I think we do damage when that experience now affects everyone who comes into our life after that. And I’m guilty!!! Totally not pointing fingers! Lol

      Big Hugs to you Alicia!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Quis says:

    Great post. I’m actually going through this process of self-awareness now.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow! A comment from the madam herself! So happy for us and this process! Big Hugs 😌

      Like

  4. Joelle says:

    Thanks for sharing. It is important to be aware how we may be seen by others when in a relationship, no matter what relationship it is.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Right! No matter what relationship it is!

      Like

  5. Vanessa says:

    Thanks for this post. It was very insightful and motivates me to take a look at my friendships.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. VP! Girl! I’m happy to hear that 🙂 Keep me posted on the journey! You know I’m queen of follow ups 🙃

      Like

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