Are you a friend? Or a Pretend? If you have to think about those questions it’s likely you’re a Pretend. Maybe you don’t know the difference? Before you proclaim to be someone’s greatest champion, take a look at what that entails.
A Pretend likes hanging out with you and talking about life. They’ll drink a toast to you and tell you they love you. But a Pretend will become scarce when the going gets tough. If you become ill, they will fear catching your germs. If you get into a fight with someone they will look the other way and pretend they don’t know what happened. If they hear someone talking about your misfortune, they’ll listen and politely tell the person “I don’t get involved in that.”And they don’t. Getting dirty to defend your honor is not on their agenda, but they’re not above telling you what people are saying about you.
A Friend will bring you soup when you’re ill and they’ll sit next to you on the sofa and read magazines while you heal. If you get into a fight, a Friend will be the first person to step in between you and your opponent. A group of people is often harder to defeat than just one person, after all. And when a Friend hears disparaging remarks about you, they jump to your defense. They know who you are and if someone is misrepresenting your character they will set the record straight. A Friend knows you would do the same for them. But how can you tell the difference? It’s easy. You can tell the difference by being a Friend. Being a Friend doesn’t take a lot of work. Being a Pretend does. When you pretend to be a friend you start balancing a lot of spinning plates on poles. Pretty soon your hands are full and your Pretendship has the potential to come crashing down around your feet.
We all have Pretends in our lives. It’s not a crime to be either one so long as you know which one you are. Don’t be surprised when you find out someone you thought was your Friend was only a Pretend all along.
Be the kind of person you would want to include in your life. If you occasionally get a little dirty or catch a cold, in the long run it’s worth it to know you might only be a human, but you’re a hero to the rest of the human race.