Look, I'm not doing this for you, but for my own dark and twisted reasons. Oh, and because everyone else is doing it.


May 23, 2006


In the Autumn of 1997, I did a very hurtful thing to my sister out of misguided concern. I told her that the family did not feel that her fiance was good enough for her. She was an adult by this point, had finished college and embarked on a promising career in health care. Yet, despite knowing that she was a bright and healthy person I decided that she didn't know what she was doing; that she lacked the necessary self-esteem or confidence to make the right decision about who she should marry.

Like I said, this hurt her terribly. I caused her such pain; that I reckoned her judgement was not as good as mine. How very arrogant.

Fortunately, she didn't listen to me or anyone else who felt she was making a mistake. And I promised her that I would work very hard to make her husband feel welcome. They have a strong marriage and two beautiful children. My brother-in-law has grown considerably since he married my sister - he's gone to school, mellowed, is crazy about his wife and children, invited my folks to build this large house with them so they could all live together, and makes me feel like I am home whenever I visit. The fact is, my sister was right about this guy. She saw his true potential.

I write this because I have a friend in a similar situation as my sister was back in 1997, and I ache for her. Sometimes it isn't easy to like the friends of our friends, or the partners of our friends, or the family of our friends and partners. You just can't like everybody.

In the absence of emotional or physical abuse, I think it is an incredibly bad idea to tell a friend that you feel they are ruining their life by choosing to stay with their current partner. It can only result in hard feelings and, most likely, the end of a friendship. I thank GOD, every day, that my sister and I were able to move beyond those hurtful words. I'm so glad that I was wrong, and so glad to know the father of The Supremes.

Good relationships change people. People grow and flourish, they can become stronger, more adaptable, more flexible, more tolerant - it's kinda a whole Six Million Dollar Man thing. Change can be a great thing; stagnation is the enemy. Furthermore, we must support our friends even if they do make mistakes (well, not the headlong-into-self-destruction-lather-rinse-repeat cycle), or who will we lean on when we commit various and inevitable idiocies?

So if any of you have some sort of idea about warning your friends off various partnerships (again, not talking about abusive situations or typical teen-angst bullshit), don't. Just shut your cakehole and spend a little more time on your own issues.

Thank you.

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home