An Open Letter To The Friendship Assassin

Mean Girls (Widescreen Edition)
Mean Girls (Widescreen Edition)

Friendships are a fragile thing. As with any personal relationship, it would seem as though those which are most-important, are built on the most-fragile of grounds. Think about how many times you have yelled “I hate you!” out of incidental, and unimportant frustration with a particular moment – and then later taken back the statement, and realized that the real sentiment was never that you actually hated the person. Sometimes it’s a sibling, sometimes it’s a distant family member, and sometimes it’s a long-time – or even childhood friend.

However, some friendships simply do fade. There isn’t an explanation that can be given, and it oftentimes is simply the culmination of time taking its toll on something that wasn’t built on the proper building blocks to begin with. That is simply a culmination of time, and natural changes that take place in life.

Today though, in the spirit of the holidays, it is fitting to speak to those who have destroyed another person’s friendship – for personal gain, personal satisfaction, or simple dissatisfaction with self. It’s fitting because the selfish actions of one individual – really can have a widespread impact on those around them, and we see it every day – but it’s most-felt during the holiday season – when friends and family should be gathering.

Dear Friendship Assassin,
You really aren’t a bad person, but I’m writing you today on behalf of those who won’t speak up. Those who feel socially obligated to continue protecting you, or those who feel as though it isn’t their place to speak – even though by remaining silent – they’re allowing you to continue.

You see, most people know who you are. Even if we don’t completely understand why you do it, we know you’ve done it – and will continue doing it. It might be out of habit, or it might be out of personal necessity to maintain your own façade. Maybe you have convinced yourself that there is a noble reason for what you’re doing, like you’ve convinced those around you that there is a significantly larger story to the hatred that you project onto other people. But, at the end of the day, that hatred that you project onto other people – really is only a reflection of the hatred you feel for yourself.

You feel as though you lack control, so you crave control the way most people crave a cup of coffee in the morning. You feel as though you’re not good enough, so you create turmoil where you can. It serves as a good smokescreen, to cover up the personal issues you’re unwilling to admit, or cope with.

You surround yourself with well-assured and confident people to cover up for the fact that you are neither. You use them to protect you when the world gets to be too much, or when you feel as though you’re losing control of the world around you.

Yet, even though you are protected by your environment, you are too a product of that environment. Those who protect you, allow you to continue with the façade that you have created. It’s a unique combination of self-pity, self-loathing, and support from those around you that have created the monster that actually has the power to destroy a friendship, or friendships if given the opportunity.

While it may seem complicated, perhaps though, the answer is significantly less complex than some around you might believe. There’s a certain level of unspoken pity that surrounds you. Very few people will admit it, but the protection you receive, the allowance of continued shortcomings, and the grief that those closest to you allow you to bring upon other people – is mostly done out of genuine pity for you.

Pity though isn’t what you need. A wakeup call is what you need, but rarely what you’ll receive. Many will watch their friendships crumble before actually acknowledging your shortcomings. You have a lot of control over some people, but at the end of the day – you only control what other people allow you to control, because you yourself understand that you have no control – until you hold yourself accountable.

In the spirit of Christmas, and those who have seen you in action – we hope that you one day acknowledge what you are, and those around you stop allowing you to be what you are today.

-Everyone Else Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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