As you get to know other people and open up to them, they take more significant seats in your circle of influence. You’re being more transparent and you’re trusting them more and more as the bond between you grows. Invariably, the time will come when someone lets you down. You thought you knew them better, thought you could depend on them, felt reasonably assured they would keep their word, but they failed you. It’s no wonder you’re disappointed when friends let you down.
When you allow people to enter your inner circle, you tend to size them up as to what significance they will have in your life, and how much you’re able to trust them. When they react (or don’t react) in a way that you expected, it’s easy to jump to conclusions and judge them, like, “If you’re not for me, then you are against me.”
Granted, your feelings are hurt. You feel disappointed, left out, hurt, betrayed, disrespected and discarded because someone you trusted, your friends let you down.
Immediately, you don a self-righteous attitude because you would not have done this to them, you’re of the persuasion that you live by the golden rule, you do unto others as you would like them to do unto you. You just wouldn’t betray them like that. You know they can trust you, why can’t he or she give you the same respect of being trustworthy?
You’re likely to take this incident to heart and make a sudden judgment about the person who let you down and let it gnaw away at you for a while dominating your inner dialogue, reducing your vibration, and making yourself even more upset.
As soon as you’re able to find a place of cognisense, you need try to figure out if their action (or inaction) was malicious in nature. Most people are not out to get you, nor do they have the intention of hurting you. Everyone has their own things going on in the lives and in their minds, and it’s impossible to know what anyone is thinking at any given time.
Just as you’re doing the best you can with what you have available to you to get through this life, so are other people doing likewise. Someone who possess a high degree or maral integrity, whose word is gold, may even waver from time to time depending on what’s going on in his or her life. For others, it might just come down to their particular personality traits.
There are certain types of individuals who are so concerned with their own lives, that they may never be able to set aside their own wants, needs, or desires, to accommodate your expectations of them. It’s just the way they’re wired. You can’t change them. The best you can do is to love them and realize that’s just the way they are.
So, what can you do when your friends let you down?
When someone lets you down, you could take it personally, play the part of the victim, judge him or her, get upset, talk behind their back, shun them, or push them out of your life altogether.
If someone has been there for you in the past, and you know you could have depended on them because of their track history, then forgiveness should probably be extended to this person, even if it feels like you’ve been stabbed in the back.
To do so, it’s likely that you’ll have to make some space in your life to think about this, contemplate the details about what has happened and to review how much this person means to you. What kind of person are they? Are they just telling you how they really are and what to expect in the future, or are they genuinely dependable and this was an isolated incident?
Before arriving at a conclusion, I always like to pose the scenario to a disinterested third-party in the hopes of gaining a better perspective regarding the incident, because it’s easy to get locked into my point of view.
This is your life. You need to do what you need to do to get by the best you can with what you have. Sometimes, it means cleaning the slate and starting over again with someone who brings value to your life, other times it includes recognizing a potentially toxic person in your life and making space for someone more deserving of your trust.
The decision is your, whichever way you decide, think about which way is the high road leading to your highest and best.