This won’t be one of my long winded blogs.
There seems to be a lot of relationship changes going on withing my circle of friends these days. About 2 weeks ago, a couple I knew very well split up. They’d been married for 6 years, and have a 4 year old daughter. The wife decided to split from her husband, citing irreconcilable differences. Since the wife made the decision, she seemed to be as okay as one can be when they’re forced into a decision like that.
The husband on the other hand, is taking it not so well.
So, as part of my de rigueur, I contacted both of them, just to make sure they were both okay, and I’m meeting with the husband this week for dinner and to chat, as I have a bit of experience in the break up arena over the past few years. So, in talking with the wife (and trying to be as Switzerland as possible), I told her of our plans to meet, and she said “Oh good, the women haters club is meeting again!”
I was hurt by her statement. I would have done the same for her, if she was in the same emotional state that he’s in at the moment.
It reminded me of a similar incident that took place a few years ago, when a female friend of mine came out of an abusive relationship. While I didn’t do the dinner thing like I am with my male friend, I was there on the phone with her every few days, allowing her to work through her pain, much like I did in the past. Basically, I was her therapist, I’d ask questions that I already knew the answer to, but allowed her to answer and reach her own conclusions, so she would adopt them as fact. In mentioning this to some other female friends, I was accused of being a “white knight”, as if I was planning to save her from herself so I could reap the rewards of the new and improved woman.
Well, no thank you, I was already in a relationship, and wasn’t interested in anyone else.
It got me to wondering why people have to accuse others of “woman hating” or being a “white knight” as if helping people work through things have some selfish underlying motive. I’ve been through some tough times in my life, having survived cancer, a bilateral pulmonary embolism, and 2 marriages ending. In many cases I’ve had good friends help clear my path, and their only motive was to help a friend. I feel blessed in that regard, so I’ve always made it a point to help clear the way for others, but some feel that we’re looking for something more, like there’s a pot of gold once the rainbow turns up after the storm.
It’s truly a shame that our world has become that cynical.
You’re gonna have to try a lot harder though, if you expect me to just roll over and stop helping friends. Male or female, there’s no motive other than to be a friend, plain and simple.
So when I see you and ask “How you doing?”, I’m really listening for your answer.