Originally published Thursday, 31 July 2014.
I wasn’t taught how to guard my heart against girls growing up. Instead, I was taught all kinds of tricks and tips how to shield myself from heartbreak regarding the opposite sex.
When it came to girls, there were no rules.
I could stay up late talking on the phone or at a sleepover if I wanted too. When I was upset. I’d call her. When I needed encouragement. I’d call her. When I just needed to talk.
I never understood those girls who had all guy friends.
Since I wore my heart on my sleeve, I knew I would eventually like the guy I was friends with—and have a hard time being “just friends.” I liked that I could share everything with my girlfriends. I loved that my BFF or bestie was always there for me—no matter what! I could trust her with my life.
Until one of us got a boyfriend.
But, who am I kidding? She was always the other girl who got the guy. I was always the girl who was always single. Thankfully, I became best friends with many girls throughout my teens and twenties because I didn’t get married until I was almost thirty.
Those weren’t the kind of friendships I was worried about.
It was the other female “friends” who I thought were my best friends. Friends who supposedly made me feel better about myself before they took it all back by their words and/or actions. I never thought I’d say this, but being friends with girls is a lot harder than I thought it would be. Like I said, I was taught growing up that you could trust your female friendships.
Maybe I’m a bit naive. Maybe I’m not.
Now that I’m married to my best friend (who is obviously not a girl), I’m finally seeing the error of my ways. I love this verse from Proverbs 12:26 that says, “A righteous man is cautious in friendship.” Oops. Notice the word cautious. I’m not very good at being cautious. Remember the “I wear my heart on my sleeve part?”
What I appreciate about the proverb is that it says to be cautious in all friendships. Not just the opposite sex.
Just because we both have the same body parts doesn’t mean I can–or should dump everything on her and think it’s okay (she’s not my therapist and I’m not hers either). Or run in the opposite direction and assume all girls are catty (because they’re not and neither should I be).
Boundaries should be important with female friendships too.
All this time I was too busy guarding my heart with my male friends, while being reckless with my female friends. I never expected I’d be losing my bestie because I got married.
After my now husband proposed, we sat down to discuss our finances and how small our wedding would be—I knew I shouldn’t of made such a rash promise to my bestie that I couldn’t keep. Unfortunately, that broken promise pretty much broke our already fragile friendship.
I feel like it took me getting married to a cautious man to open my eyes to the recklessness of my female friendships. I used my singleness as code word for busyness. I didn’t bother to see how my female friends and I were using each other.
The important thing is that I am learning. I am learning how to forgive. How to move on. How to give myself grace—even when the relationship is over. After grieving that relationship, I finally gave myself permission to celebrate my female friendships again without fear of heartbreak.
To read more about healing from heartbreak, Loves Me Not, my eBook is on sale on Amazon for only $2.99. Get your copy here: http://www.lovesmenotbook.com.
Question: How do you think God wants you to be cautious with your female (or male)friendships?