There have been times in my life when I have been disappointed by a friend. Times when I thought they should have been there for me, and they weren’t. Those were the times when I was self-absorbed and it never crossed my mind that they may be going through their own challenge, fighting their own battles, and just didn’t have enough energy left over for me and my needs. Many times it changed the course of our friendship.
More disturbing, though, are the times when I was the one who disappointed my friends. When I was the one who said something I shouldn’t have said, or didn’t do something I should have done.
I never meant for this to happen. I don’t think any one of us get up in the morning, saying: “Let’s see who I can disappoint today”.
But in this day of emails and texts, words can often be misunderstood. With no facial expressions or friendly smiles to share, we sometimes “hear” words that were not meant the way they appear to be.
I once heard a saying:
There are three things that you can’t take back. I never remember what the first two are, but the third one has sunk into my soul and I will never forget it:
You can never take back the spoken word.
And in today’s world – you can never take back that email or text after you hit that send button.
So the next time you feel disappointed by a friend, before you say something or send something you may regret, take a moment and think it through. Otherwise, be ready to live with the consequences those words may bring.
Do you have a story of a friendship that was misunderstood? Maybe a friend you miss but the disappointment is so great that the friendship is gone forever? I’d love to hear how you resolved it.