Image by: Sarah Ross
By Anne Cacherell
Building real friendships when people are all focused on “having a friend” rather than “being one” can be really frustrating. For the many, it’s almost impossible to talk about this subject without them thinking about their real motives and what possible benefits they can actually get from it. It is sad how the word “friend” has been devalued and used as a meaningless title.
Some people are confused, disoriented and might need a little help on how to keep things real. They are so into themselves that they have no idea how to behave perfectly in a multi-dimensional world and how to maintain a sustainable friendship.
In line with this, here’s a checklist on how not to be a fake friend. This is a pass or fail test and there are no grey areas. It is imperative that you answer 100% “no” to all of these five items because missing one single trait from this list is a question of your integrity and veracity as a person.
#1) Do You Talk Against Your Friend Behind Her Back?
One of the hardest things to find in this world is someone who doesn’t keep drilling holes on your boat when you’re not looking. Loyalty is not bad talking your friends to cause them harm and telling the whole world their darkest and deepest secrets to use it against them.
Faithfulness is a serious devotion and commitment to protect and defend your friends from people who are trying to destroy them. It is all about keeping your friend’s best interest at heart and keeping them out of danger or any trouble.
#2) Do You Feel Jealous of Your Friend’s Happiness?
This unfortunate aspect of human nature happens when your friend’s happy news fills you with envy. According to Raj Raghunattan, Ph. D. of The University of Texas this behavior is normal, “It is adaptive to feel jealous when someone close does well in a relevant domain. We have a better chance of surviving if we out-perform those close to us, and research has shown that people feel more motivated to out-perform others when we feel jealous and envious.”
However, what is unacceptable and unhealthy is when you always try to compare yourself with your friend’s money, beauty, intelligence and relationships. Also, instead of being genuinely happy when your friends succeed in their endeavors, you take it against them and hate them for it.
#3) Do You Give Her False Praises?
As a friend, you have to be supportive and encouraging, but you should do it for the right reasons. Give compliments only when you mean it. You shouldn’t lie just to make a friend feel better. Tell the truth even if it hurts because that’s what real friends do.
When your friend asks you if they look good in a polka-dot dress and you know in your heart that she looks stupid in it, let her know what’s on your mind in a nice way by saying, “I am not sure about that, but you will surely look good in…” If she asks for your opinion, give it to her nicely and honestly, because if you don’t other people might make fun of her.
#4) Do You Only Contact Her When You Need Something?
“User-friendly” is a term used to best describe a person who uses another person for the purpose of gaining a type of advantage. These individuals only make their presence felt when they need something.
Making time for your friends, getting in touch with them and showing them that you’re interested to know what’s going on with their lives, even if it doesn’t benefit you, are ways to assure them that they are important in your life and that you care about them.
#5) Do You Intentionally Embarrass Your Friends in Public?
Mocking, belittling and insulting your friends in public are signs of disrespect. Another simple example is uploading a humiliating picture of them on social media without their approval. It’s either you’re insensitive of the implications of what you’re doing or you’re really doing it to let them down. For whatever excuse you may have, it’s not good to undermine someone in front of everyone.
If you answered “no” to all of the questions above, congratulations! Any person would be very lucky to have you as a friend. On the other hand, if you answered “yes” in some of the items, then you should take your time to re-evaluate and ask yourself if you will feel happy to have someone like you in your life.
Hopefully, this guide helped you to decipher what type of person you are before you call yourself a friend.
It is sad that sometimes, people who claim that they are your real friends are the fake ones. Do you know your circle well? Share with us your experience with these fake people.