People are lovely. Friendships are what makes life sweeter. Bur what do you do when s friend is sometimes hurtful, unsupportive or doesn’t value you? The end result is that you part ways because often time, people choose to not give energy to a relationship that does worse for you than better. But in-between those two steps, if the person is really worth it and you can see your friendship developing, create some boundaries and rules. Clarify with them upfront what you will and won’t allow.
Here is my personal friendship manifesto. Please feel free to use it, edit or add to it.
IF YOU WANT TO BE MY FRIEND:
- Accept me as I am, even with my flaws because heaven knows I’m not perfect! And I will accept you, just as beautifully complex as you are. We won’t judge one another.
- Support me, uplift me and encourage me, and I will do the same for you.
- Devote time and energy unto me, and I will reciprocate. This will not be a one sided relationship.
- Let’s use this relationship to better ourselves. Please tell me if I’m doing something that makes you feel bad so that i can work on that in a constructive manner.
- We won’t bottle these up, and we will have these conversations regardless of how uncomfortable or scared it makes us feel.
- If something we do is upsetting, we will not invalidate the hurt person’s feelings.
- However we will not critique one another on things we cannot change or control, such as my hearing or the size of my nose!
- If we feel triggered by a situation, let’s agree to not be reactive. We will take a deep breath, walk away if necessary, or whatever it takes to not interact with one another from a place of anger! In short – we can agree to disagree.
Written by Ishana Durante-Bose