"Love My Way, It's a New Road"

You’ve Got a Friend

When you’re down and troubled and you need a helping hand
and nothing, whoa, nothing is going right.
Close your eyes and think of me and soon I will be there
to brighten up even your darkest nights.

You just call out my name, and you know where ever I am
I’ll come running to see you again.
Winter, spring, summer, or fall, all you have to do is call and I’ll be there, yeah, yeah,
you’ve got a friend.

Written by Carole King, Sung by James Taylor

I haven’t had a rant in some time, so I guess I am overdue. Last night I went to dinner with a friend. Well, I think she is a friend, but it remains to be seen. We haven’t seen one another in a couple of weeks and had a great time catching up. Her daughter just started law school in a new state, my daughter is rocking her final year of med school, you know, the run-of- the-mill catch up stuff.

Now my girlfriend is an elected official. She sits on the council of a small suburban community where I lived for ten years. She was, in fact, my neighbor and I met her during her first campaign. I provided some strategy and policy development assistance during her second campaign when she won her race. We get together regularly for dinner, etc. I went to her daughter’s going away party, she always joins my birthday celebrations. Get the picture? About three months ago, I came up with a fabulous idea for the community. It is a business idea in my field of expertise. I told her excitedly during a phone call about my idea and suggested that we work on this together. We needed to meet with two key people, so she said she wanted to run point on this.

OK, I hope this background is making sense. At dinner last night, she talks about having a meeting with the first guy, who isn’t interested and an upcoming meeting with the second guy. WTF?! She never called me about these meetings. Not once during the evening does she mention that we had previously spoken about this idea or that it was my idea. WTF?

I didn’t confront her that evening and came home simply fuming. The Hunter was asleep but he woke up and let me vent to him. He had some great advice about how to have a conversation with her, so tomorrow I plan on calling her to chat about all of this. I simply cannot let this fester – one way or the other it will erode our friendship.

As I sat stewing this afternoon, I go on Facebook and there is another somewhat friend forgetting who helped her – ME! I met this friend when our sons played sports together and we sat on a booster club for several years. She had contacted me for career advice, so I took her out to lunch and spent about 1-1/2 hours discussing her options. She asked for a referral to a specific company, which I provided. She announces on Facebook that she got a job with them. I comment, “Great company, congratulations” and put a winky face. She doesn’t thank me, she simply says, “Yes, all the people here have been really nice.” WTF – where is the “thank you, Maggie, for your great advice. I owe you lunch.”

The Hunter says I need to stop being helpful and nice to people. I guess I need to keep my mouth shut and my wallet in my purse when the lunch check comes. Good grief!!

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Comments on: "You’ve Got a Friend" (18)

  1. James Taylor did not write this song or the lyrics. Please get your facts straight. Carole King wrote it and recorded it at around the same time as James Taylor because she gave it go him to record. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You%27ve_Got_a_Friend

    Best to you,

    Sally

    Like

  2. Naw forget the rant. Just file the memory and when (and she will!) this “friend” asks for help in future, just shrug your shoulders. You gave her help because you wanted to … that’s who you are. Next time you won’t want to help her. Pretty simple. But don’t let this incident turn you off advising others. You’re great at it and just consider it another of your many contributions to making a more civil society around you.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I guess you have a few options. One is to keep your mouth and wallet shut. The other is to keep giving the advice out, but you need to accept that you’re doing it for you, not have expectations. I figured, expectations are only hurting you in the long run.
    If people don’t appreciate your help, you can tell them “I feel like my help was unappreciated” and start a discussion, or you can gently step out of their lives… until/unless *you* need them 🙂
    But yes, it sucks. Some days are like that!
    Hugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Never stop being helpful and nice. It will come back around in a wonderful form eventually.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You write with such personal feeling and I really admire that.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’ve been away, so I just got to read this post today. I hope my question doesn’t offend you in any way (because it isn’t meant to), but I’m wondering why getting recognition or thanks from these people seems to matter so much to you? Was that your motive when you helped your friends? Did you expect to be involved in the development and implementation of the idea you gave your friend, the elected official – or was the main goal just to have the idea implemented as it would be a good thing for the community? With the friend who was looking for work, did you want to be helpful, but only if she credited you publicly for the help if your advice panned out? I imagine neither of these is the case, and that you had only the best motives in place when you shared your knowledge and advice. And I know that in a perfect world, we would all be courteous enough to remember to thank our friends for their advice or help – it’s just polite. But it may be something to think about – what is going on inside you that made you react so strongly to the perceived slight instead of just being genuinely happy for your friends, one whose career you may have helped launch and the other who may be able to do something great for your community due to your advice. Again, these questions are not meant as a criticism in any way – I just have found when I react so strongly to something (or when my feelings are hurt) it’s always helpful for me to step back and attempt to figure out what is going on with me that I would react the way I did. I find its usually old baggage that I haven’t fully dealt with (and it’s an ongoing struggle).

    Liked by 1 person

    • On the first example, I was thinking business and money first, community second. In that case, I felt like she was taking advantage of our friendship.

      In the second situation, I think it is common courtesy to thank someone who has gone out of her way to help. Was I doing it just for the public gratitude, no. But one of my Love Languages is a Words of Affirmation, so I am easily miffed in situations like this.

      Great questions – thanks!

      Liked by 1 person

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