I think Bob Marley said it best:
“The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for.”
Naturally, we wouldn’t think that our friends would hurt us, but at some point or another, they will. Whether your friendship lasts is solely based on your discretion. However, if the offense isn’t that bad and you are willing to forgive them and keep them in your circle of friends, then you may have to alter you basis of trust with them.
Allow me to explain:
1.) Trust them to be the friend you can’t trust.
Yes, this is a complete oxymoron (or something like that). But what I mean is, for instance, if you have a friend who likes to run their mouth, then you know not to tell your personal business to them. They could be cool to kick it with, and they may always be there when you need a favor, but they just can’t hold water. I would suggest talking to them first, but if you’ve “been there, done that,” chances are that’s just the kind of person they are and they don’t know any better. Therefore, if you still want to be their friend, you have to trust them to be the friend you can’t trust.
2.) Trust them to be the friend that can’t do anything for you.
Most would agree that friendships, or any kind of relationship, is about give and take. However, some of your friends may have nothing to offer you. Either that, or they won’t give you anything, even if they have it. Think of it this way: say you have a friend who always asks for your help, and you give it, but when you need them, they are ghost. It sucks, but at best, they serve as a sounding board for you when you need to vent (even though they don’t offer advice or anything) and they may have the best gossip to keep you entertained when you have nothing better to do. They might be good playmates, but they can’t or won’t do anything significant for you. And sometimes, that’s okay. Just know that those types of friends aren’t the friends you ask for help (after being turned away multiple times in a row), and you may need to reevaluate whether or not you want to continue helping them when they are in distress. Your call.
3.) Trust them to be the friend that’s not perfect.
People aren’t perfect in general. Some friends have habits that they can’t seem to shake, and that’s out of your control. For example, if you have a blunt friend who usually hurts your feelings, though not intentionally, with what they say to you or about you, it can really piss you off after a while. But at least they’re honest, right? And you can count on them to not “tell you what you want to hear.” Yes, they are complete A-holes, but at least they aren’t back-stabbers. Which is worse?
My point is, if you want your friends to be a part of your life, you have to accept them for who they are in spite of everything. I’m not saying you should be abused, but you have to determine who is worth ‘suffering’ for. Most of the time, you can talk to your friends about how they hurt you. Then, they can make amends or you all can compromise, and your friendship can go back to normal. But each friendship is different, so it won’t always work like that.
Also, you are allowed to rank your friends. Figure out how important they are; determine exactly where and how they fit into your life, and if you don’t have a place for them, kick them out of your circle.
I mean, what are they gonna do? Call the friendship police?
Just think about it.