"Lots of people want to ride with you in the limo, but what you want is someone who will take the bus with you when the limo breaks down." ~ Oprah Winfrey
I'm not sure at what point in my life “friends” became somewhat of a dirty word.
I grew up in the 90's and survived many 3-way call sting operations where two of your
girlfriends turned against you. At the end of each episode there would be a slight
confrontation and then we'd be hanging out again at the park and having slumber parties.
Another confusing aspect to friendship were the labels. I grew up thinking you had one or
two Best Friends and the rest were just Good Friends.
My understanding of Best Friend’s Characteristics:
know everything about you
have your back
encourage you through the good, the bad, and even the ugly.
And Good Friends:
know you a little
go for coffee now and then
talk about day to day things like kids, work, or family.
I never intended to label my friends, it's just the way things were. And my best friends were
Best Friends Forever, no matter what!
But what happens when a life long best friend turns out to be someone who contributes to
anxiety or self doubt? Or you grow apart and don't follow the same values anymore? Then
one day you realize you're the only one still holding on to that half of the Best Friends
Forever pendant you exchanged years ago.
When I was working through the Oola program I experienced a bit of an awakening with this
F word. I decided to remove the labels from my friendships.
When I looked at the people in my life I realized I was holding on to some pretty toxic
friendships. Eventually without my intention a lifelong friend abruptly ended our friendship.
This stung. I had spent the better part of the year being her support and cheerleader as she
navigated through a marriage breakdown. When I was in need of support during a hard time
she dropped me and also betrayed. My season of hardship did not align with her personal
It wasn't easy but it also wasn't as hard as I imagined.
I decided to join groups that aligned with my interests. So in the summer of 2020 I
participated in an Oola for Women's book club. We were a small group of local women who
gathered weekly to read and talk.
I was surprised to find out I wasn’t the only one who struggled with the category of friends.
We all struggled discussing this. I was amazed and felt so connected to the other women.
We named our new found friendship the “Frat Pack”. We laughed, cried and worked through
our friendship horror stories together. This was exactly what I needed as I mourned losing a
life long friendship. With this group of women I gained the confidence to move forward.
Life is such a beautiful journey. It’s okay to make uncomfortable changes. Maybe you need
to take off the labels you attached to friends. Be honest with the evaluation of your
relationships. If you need to walk away from some that have become toxic have faith that
there are others waiting to fill the void.