Should Friendship Come with a Confidentially Agreement?
The question this episode seems to be, “where do the parameters of friendship begin and end?” The volume on the arguing is now being “heard” by the family, friends, and even the Dallas community. Each “housewife” has made the intentional decision to either get further involved and plunge right in or to stay hands-off and only comment when it enhances the overall outcome of the conversation. Some of you may be asking, “who is arguing?” If you didn’t see this week’s episode, D’Andra and LeeAnne are continuing their next battle of “friendship wars” and Kameron has decided to engage in her own strategy.
At a cooking lesson led by D’Andra’s mother, Dee, LeeAnne and D’Andra were already prepared to be cordial with each other to move through the evening. Kameron and her mother-in-law, Jimmy, had been invited, too. Little did we know Kam had been planning to approach D’Andra about her society obligations in regards to how to exhibit more appropriate behavior and to be aware of the appearance of excessive drinking. Jimmy emphasized the need for women in the community to be held to a higher level of expectation in the active social scene. D’Andra is appalled! Did Kameron bring Jimmy to this relaxing evening to be another individual who targets her behavior as lacking in some way?
Since the last episode where LeeAnne confronted D’Andra about her drinking and the concern over socializing so closely with Brandi, the conversation has obviously reached the society women of Dallas. With her mom’s support, D’Andra realizes she can march to a different drummer and be a business woman who enjoys her life in whatever we she chooses. But can she really? The reality is she may need to be ready for the result of her own choices in behavior to beat her own drum in life. Is she ready for that? I’m not sure that has been revealed yet.
How did this hurtful discussion even begin? As D’Andra was pushing LeeAnne to choose a wedding date and just get married, her own fear for LeeAnne’s decisions got in the way. Close friends do bring their own pain as well as triumphs into the relationship. We perceive someone else’s stories of day to day life through our own reality. When we are not aware of our actions and feelings, we project them on to someone else. In her own frustration, LeeAnne is starting to push back on D’Andra with concern for her drinking which she knew would push D’Andra’s buttons.
Does this mean we must only choose our actions because of how others feel? Is this a consideration in relationships, including friendships? How we decide is driven by our own experiences in life. This season, Cary has been open about how she wishes she and her father had a closer relationship and how happy she is Zuri and Mark do. Cary shares such a positive example as she chooses to connect with relatives in Denmark to build a legacy of life and memory with them. It isn’t based on pleasing her dad or wanting him to approve her actions. She is so excited that he IS excited and touched by her choices. She feels the joy of relating to her dad in a deep way.
How can we move forward in D’Andra’s and LeeAnne’s situation? Is the question, “Why am I choosing my behavior due to what others think?” Yes, ladies...our behavior does positively and negatively affect others. It is our choice how we want that effect to be. Are we creating support, compassion, joy, and connection, or resentment, pain, and anger?
Maybe the better question is, “who do you want to be?” If you can answer that, the behavior will follow. Others may feel it doesn’t fit them, but then you will know your own truth and will be walking in it.
As LeeAnne and D’Andra sort out their deep challenges and reactions, we are aware of the hot buttons they are pushing for each other. Regardless if you have know a friend for forever or only a short time, it is the trust you build during the time of your relationship that matters most. Yes, friends do know how to push just the right buttons and target the source of pain from our past. So I ask you, should friendship come with a confidentiality agreement? I have daily discussions with clients around this very concept, especially where trust is involved. Those in your lives who know us best also know how to go deep to hit the pain points in our life and when our closest friends are in their own pain they know best how to lash out toward us.
How can we still trust and be open with others, yet remain slightly protected?
Share what you feel will be safe as you build a relationship. Just because someone else shares their intimate life story with you, doesn’t mean you need to open up and bear yours, too. Develop fabulous listening skills, observe their interactions with others and hear how past relationships evolved. Are they close? Not close with others? Trust or don’t trust others? Is it an “I will get you before you get me” mentality or a quiet support with even minor details? If you didn’t sign a confidentiality agreement with them you may want to step slowly. Is there risk? Always...in every relationship, family, significant others, children, and especially with colleagues in a work relationship. Don’t put anything out there unless you want everyone to know.
Sharing life doesn’t have to be always divulging everything. Create safe boundaries. That is something our culture has learned to ignore and I believe it is due to the rise of social media and how many feel their life could be its own reality show. We are all human and struggle with belonging and being heard in our daily life. The more that we spend time hearing others, the more WE will feel we are heard.
Where will they go from here? What will the next episode of “friendship wars RHOD style” unleash? As I say, stay tuned!
If you need someone to really listen and bare your soul with, hire a coach or better yet a visionary one. Feel free to contact me and set up an appointment.
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