The word ‘friends’ is one of the many words that we have bastardized. We live in a society where people throw out the word even when they don’t know what it means or are not even qualified to be called friends.
Friendship for me is deep. Friendship doesn’t just happen because you bumped into someone and then realize you both speak the same languages…No! Friendship is very personal, friendship is holding hands and walking together, friendship is understanding, friendship is not condescending, friendship is not selfish, friendship understands the play of weakness and strength. Friendship is a whole lot more than that word we just throw around.
Because this post is not about telling you what friendship means or teaching you how to be a good friend but about people who are not your friends in any way, I will get straight to the point.
I have had people send me mails, trying to find out what it would cost to advertise their business on my blog or for me to render one form of service or the other. once the negotiation begins, you hear them using the phrase, ‘Elsie, we have been friends for a while o’ and in my head, I am wondering – I don’t know this person, I have never seen this person, I can’t even remember having a chat with this person…what the fuck is wrong with people?
We as humans find it difficult to use the word ‘acquaintances’. Of the entire social networking platform I have used, I give it to Google+ for taking that part into consideration. Google+ runs in circles whereby you have friends, acquaintances, family, following, as their default circles and then you can always create more circles yourself. Then facebook kills it by giving people this fake sense of belonging with the use of ‘friends’…’friends request’…blab la bla.
However, the following sets of people are not your friends in anyway. Take note!
- Neighbors – Dear Christians, though the bible clearly says we should love our neighbors as ourselves, this doesn’t mean your neighbor is now your friend. The fact that we share the same neighborhood or even the same compound does not mean we are friends. Its not an automatic ticket. Friendship works with connection, it is built, it involves people letting you into their inner space. Your neighbor is not your friend. As much as you look out for them and ‘love them as you do yourself’, they are not your friends by default.
- Business partners – oh well, I know your business partner can double as your friend in the long run or you were even friends before thinking partnership; that is different. You should understand that your business partner doesn’t necessarily have to be your friend. All you both need to do is to adhere to your business or company policy and make sure profit is being made. That’s what business relationships are meant for. I might like you to be my business partner because I see potentials and see how dedicated and hardworking you are, but that doesn’t mean you should be my friend. We mix emotions with business most times and this is the very reason why most partnerships don’t work asides one partner turning out selfish, greedy or frivolous.
- Celebrities/Bloggers – Yes you are allowed to famz! You are allowed to let them know you love what they do! You are allowed to have personal chats with them when the opportunity shows up! But no, he or she does not have to treat you as a friend because you are not one. Understanding this will help you know your place and also help you understand that they don’t owe you shit! They simply provide a service you love because they are darn good at what they do.
- Friend’s friend – I wish I can jump out of your device to shout this one. No! No! No! your friend’s friend is not your friend. You don’t have to be friend’s with your friend’s friend. If it gets to happen, good. But when they show you the red light, back off! You do not know what rocks their boat and how their friendship work.
- Church members – Your church member is not you friend. This also takes me back to that verse – ‘Love your neighbor as yourself’, still we don’t have to be friends because we worship the most high under the same roof.
- Colleagues – This one irks me. Some see it as some form of belonging. Once we work in or for same organization, you frigging bring your asoebi and what not to my table. What is that? I didn’t even know you had a boyfriend. We are that apart…can we just take a chill pill.
- Social Media Goons – Dear Facebook friends especially, do not let the use of that word by Zucker get into your head. Do not allow the fact that you get some thousands of like on your personal posts give you impressions…wrong ones at that. Your friends are not on Instagram, they are not on twitter, they are not on snapchat. These people are just your social media connection. Of course something good and beautiful can come out of these connections but it is not a must neither is it necessary.
PS: Acquaintance means a person one knows slightly, but who is not a close friend. It’s not a bad word.