Friday, February 8, 2013

Friendship & Gossip - a two-fold topic

A strange combination? Well, these days I’m not so sure – 
the latter really can tear down the first, can’t it?
And I’ve been in a few conversations these last few months where I’ve seen gossip rear its ugly head in a way I haven’t had to deal with in ages… I really do try and insulate myself from it – to the point of not knowing important information at times – more on that later…
But, here’s the deal – I can be friends with someone and not necessarily like everything about them. And I sure hope other people feel the same way, because God knows, 
I Am. Not. Perfect. 
– and I’m sure I do, say, and act, in ways that irritate others at some point or another. 
Heck, I irritate myself sometimes.
I have lots of friends – some who are good friends, others are close friends, and others are my bestest friends. And then there are acquaintances – people I know through church, work, crafting, the boys’ activities, or yes, even facebook [although it labels them all as friends, doesn’t it?] And some of these fb friends might fall into the above categories – lol.
So. should I also talk about cliques as well?
I'm friends with people in lots of different groups and while friends from one group may not be entirely comfortable hanging out for an evening with  another group - I'm not sure I could categorize them as cliques... the people I am truly friends with would be loving and kind to others, even if they may not be good friends with them.  
 I think cliques have an 'us against the world' mentality where they don't want others to be a part - and I think some people in this type group 
has problems with their friends [from the group] being friends with others --
Not sure I'm making sense, 
That said, again, I hang with lots of different groups of friends - many depending on the things we share in common - but I have my closet friends, those I share my heart with and I'll admit, I hold those friendships close in a way that I don't my more casual friends. 
And I share more deeply with those friends than I do with others - and we have a history of shared experiences - so there's the possibility that some of my other friends might feel left out in that setting - but I don't consider it a clique sense there's not intention to exclude others.
The bottom line [for me] is this - I cannot be bestest friends with everyone
but I can be friends with many, and nice to even the acquaintances in my life -  
As Craig and I were discussing the other day – who wants to burn bridges with any of those, because even our acquaintances may be in a position to be our friends later in life. 
[Friendships ebb and flow, don't you think? 
But those bestest ones hang in there through the years -]
Being a gossip can really negate one’s character, don’t you think?
So, here’s the other thing –– I don’t have the need to talk bad about someone just because I’m not close friends with them or don’t particularly like something about them.
I can 'not' be friends with someone and still hope for the best for them!

Gossip is one of the most irritating things to me. 
And I hate when I get caught up in it.

But, I’m not immune – I have been a part of it: those conversations that turn into ugly, prayer request time gone bad, or even down-right meanness spewing out of my mouth with the intention to hurt someone else. But I try so hard to guard to my tongue. And most gossipy stuff makes no sense at all, because, if we’re honest, we’re all hurting people, and again, 
none of us are perfect. 

Sadly, some people don't know how to have a conversation without talking bad about others...
 so we must be careful who we count as friends.
Gossip is soooooo judgmental -  and usually takes something that might be fact and 
skews it into something questionable or ugly.
I was going to give examples - but that might make some feel like I'm calling them out on their words - when, again,  I have been a part of gossip as well. 
But deep down inside I really do believe everyone should be able to tell their own story in their own time. I hope my friends know that what they tell me stays with me - 
it's their story to tell, not mine. 
And I hope they give me the same courtesy.
It’s the attitude of gossip that I just don’t get. 

So judgmental.  - But if you do any reading [studying on it] you’ll find, like I believe – 
that people who have a need to put others down, have very little self-esteem.  
They put others down in order to feel better about themselves. 
 And you know what? 
The only way I can feel good about myself is knowing that I am a forgiven sinner and my belief that everyone can have this same forgiveness.
I really am a rotten nobody without Christ, so who am I to judge or put someone else down because of how they deal with something in their life?

I am a fact-finder – it’s what I do in my job – it’s how I live my life. I want to know facts – without the judgment. We STRIVE to NOT gossip in our house [but we do talk facts] and have taught our boys to live this way also – to the point of not always being given the facts – case in point – running into an acquaintance [Mom to one of the youngest’s friends] and asking how she and her husband were doing, only to be told they’d been divorced for six months.  
At least give me THE FACTS 
so I don’t put my foot in my mouth…lol.

And, I am a rescuer [a social worker, remember] and will most always stick up for the under-dog – trying my best to say something good about someone in even the most difficult of situations. 
So I know others get as frustrated with me, as I do with them, when they are trying desperately to gossip and judge another in my presence, because I will [usually] try just as hard to find something good to say about that person – even if they’re not a close friend, or a friend at all… 
 I just don’t see a need to look for faults in someone else 
when I have enough of my own to deal with… 
So I'll continue to look to The Lord for my help and guidance...
[all images from pinterest] 


Melissa said...

Thank you for this today.


Gloria L. said...

My goodness! I'm so sorry for whatever happened! Hope it gets better.

Shirley Ross said...

Very well said Judy!