I recently experienced a falling out with some good friends, and the most disappointing part of all is that it happened because of a false accusation against someone close to me. I won’t go into details, but the frustration that comes from this type of situation is almost unbearable at times. It has, however, taught me four key lessons about the real world that may help others cope with a similar situation.
1. Once someone commits to an accusation, he or she will always feel that way despite any evidence to the contrary. Simply put: people do not like to be wrong because it leads to embarrassment, and nothing is more embarrassing than backtracking on a harsh accusation.
2. In the business world, the act of stabbing “friends” in the back is frighteningly commonplace. You can read countless stories about people being betrayed by their co-workers/friends, and it saddens me how often this occurs in nearly every industry. As I’ve seen first-hand on several occasions, this can easily happen to anyone without any notice. Though it sounds trite, try to keep your business and personal lives as separate as possible (though I admit this can get very tricky).
3. You cannot change what people want to believe. In this particular case, someone clearly wanted my friend out of their lives (speculating why is a completely different story) and this accusation was the perfect means to do so. In the end, life is too short to associate with a person who would do something of this nature, so you must be able to see the positive side of a seemingly dark situation.
4. Once a liar, always a liar. Integrity is a priceless virtue in today’s world, and those who don’t have it (or care to have it) will, quite simply, never have it. Someone who throws out untrue accusations is the type of person who will do so time and time again. I learned this lesson a long time ago, but feel like it’s worth reiterating here.
Either way, losing a friend is difficult. However, being able to look into the mirror and know you didn’t do anything is all that matters. As hard as it may be, it’s enlightening to come to terms with the fact that you can only control yourself and no one else. A friend may become an enemy overnight (quite literally), but in the end you will find ways to be grateful for what you have, who you love and where you’re headed.