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Fake friends. Do they exist?

Respect to different people who have always temporarily helped us overcome our life’s emotional problems, inspirational and motivational speakers. They have often raised our adrenaline during times when it’s been low. They have always told us to let go of “Fake friends” – a term that is too difficult to comprehend – temporary.

The World Health Organisation has shown that the prevalence of depression is about 5% globally. Among the causes of depression is loneliness/social isolation – loneliness due to failure to maintain or make friends. A friend some days back told me that they had started feeling less social, like the way they were during school. It was because her friends no longer called or texted to check on her.
But who said that it’s always them to initiate the calls or texts? What do we lose from being the first to call or text? What would you lose from a random message of, “Hi, hope you are doing good, just wanted to check on you”? How much of your energy or time does it take you to send such a message? If you think that your friends are fake for not calling you or texting you, know that you are the same to them too: they are waiting for the same from you.

The main reason for clinging to the statement “let go of fake friends…….” is because we are afraid of admitting that we are not good at maintaining friends. Let’s review our “friendship contracts”, did someone become your friend because you wanted them to call or text you every day? If so, was the financial or emotional or physical assistance part of the contract? Or was any other assistance that we fail to get from people we claim to be a fake part of the contract?

Fake friends are not fake at all.
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Reviewing our friendship contracts implies we need to understand why we became friends with people. If you became friends with someone because of work-related issues, your contract is work-based unless it grows from work to something else. But if they fail to help you with financial or emotional aspects, they are not fake friends. They haven’t just bailed you out. We must learn to understand like you sign a contract with a bank to keep your money: by the time you need it, the bank doesn’t inform you that they had lent it to someone. They find ways of giving you back your money.

Related: Mental Health. Mental status examination

Let’s learn to maintain friends for who they are to us or what they represent in our lives. People are never fake because they have failed to offer what you asked. Just like “best friends” wouldn’t share a husband or wife simply because that wasn’t in the “best friend contract” but can share cars, clothes, emotions, et cetera.

Life is about understanding and living harmoniously with people and not hating or chucking everyone who falls short at helping you. It always happens because we are looking for someone to blame for our failure. Let’s learn to accept that not everything in our lives is a result of others. Living in the same circle with someone you hate for any reason gives you mental training of learning to adjust and associate with others.

It’s noteworthy that a contract here doesn’t have to be in writing: it’s about humanity


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Abbas Ahmad Kafumbe

Clinical Psychologist TPO & Pearl mental Wellness centre

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