How to Tell If You Have True Friends
True friends are a valuable asset for anybody to have these days. When I was a teenager, I remember watching shows like Beverly Hills 90210, Saved by the Bell, Boy Meets World, and even classic oldies that were played as re-runs on Nick at Nite, like Happy Days. One thing these TV shows all have in common is that they circle around a group of friends, real friends. But when I was a teen, and particularly in my early twenties, I can't say that I had a group of friends like that. I had many people that I considered to be close friends, and even a couple best friends (which kids today would now refer to as BFF, or Best Friends Forever), but I had very few true friends. By true friends, I mean people that genuinely care what happens to you and would try to keep you out of trouble and out of danger. The types of friends that won't stab you in the back or forget about you after you go to jail or prison for a long time. But how can you tell who your real friends are and who's simply tagging along until the fun times are over? In my experience, there's a number of different ways you can tell, so I'm going to cover a few of the most easiest and obvious ways that you can test a friendship to see if it's genuine
One of the best ways I've found to determine who your real friends are and who aren't is to loan them some money. It doesn't have to be a lot, and it is very risky because you may never get your loaned money back, but it's still a great way to test a friendship. A true friend will always make some type of effort to eventually pay you back. Even if they can't afford to, they will at least let you know of their intentions to repay the loan. Sometimes people forget things, and this is especially easy to do if it was a small amount you loaned them. But if you politely remind them and they make excuses or avoid the topic all together, this could definitely be a big red warning flag. Now let's say you loaned them a very large amount and it's unrealistic to expect them to pay it back quickly. In this particular situation, the friend should at least pay back a little at a time once they get a job. If you loaned a friend $500 and they've been working a full-time job for over a year and still haven't paid you even $50, then you should probably start to question your friendship with this person.
A real buddy would never let their friend sleep on the street or in a shelter if they were in a position to prevent it without bringing themselves down into the same situation. So for this reason, you should try telling your friends that you're homeless, and then see which ones offer to let you stay with them for at least a few weeks. If they live with their parents or have some other legit reason why you can't stay, then that's acceptable. But if they have their own place or lots of room on their floor and are in a position to bring someone in, then they are definitely not your friends. There's a difference between friends and acquaintances, and while some friends may be friendly or help you out with smaller things, they are more likely to be acquaintances than friends if they can't help you get off the street.
Another great method I've found for establishing who your true friends are, is to move away from your local area. Of course, this wouldn't be a practical thing to do if you only do it to test your friendship. But keep this in mind if you ever decide to move out of town or state for whatever reason. Once you leave, make sure to give all your so-called friends your new phone number or email so they can contact you. Then, if you haven't heard from them in a month, give them a call. Then wait about 3 or 4 months to see if they contact you. If not, this may be another warning sign that you have some fake friends. But just keep in mind, there are a few legit reasons as to why a person may not be able to call. Some people may have developed social disorders since the last time you saw them. This happened to me personally, to where I had a really hard time picking up the phone or talking to people because I'd get nervous for no reason and sometimes start stuttering. One friend of mine hadn't called in a really long time or returned my calls, so naturally, I took offense to this. But about 6 months later, he said that he developed OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder) and this made it difficult for him to see or talk to anyone. So the moving away technique can be helpful when putting a friendship to the test, but it's not always 100% proof of a bad friend. It's more like a piece of evidence, but you should gather more evidence to come to a reasonable conclusion.
Talk About Your Romantic Interest
A very common scenario between friends is when one likes a guy or girl and has a crush, and then tells their pal about it. Then, the pal they told ends up flirting with that girl or guy, or even dating them or sleeping with them. There's been so many bonds broken and friendships ruined throughout history because of this scenario. A true friend would at least ask you how you feel about them getting together with your romantic interest. If they show no remorse or say something like "hey, it's not my fault your crush likes me better", than they probably wouldn't be compassionate to you in other circumstances as well. Sure, they may seem caring at other times when there's nothing in it for them. But once the situation arrives to where there's something beneficial to them that's sitting between you and them, they won't think twice to step on your heart and disregard your feelings.
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