Biblical scripture teaches to ‘love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,’ but what about your frenemies? Isn’t that a little more difficult? Where does any sacred text mention the word? How do you even pronounce it?
Pronounced frin-uh-me, a frenemy is a portmanteau of friend and enemy, like smog is a combination of smoke and fog. Fremenies portray friendship, but their motive is something much more sinister and akin to a rival. They comfortably enjoy the occupation of ally all the while exploiting the very trust that positioned them as close.
With rivals, you know where you stand. It’s clear that they don’t like you. They don’t like your face, they don’t like your voice and they don’t like the 2nd-grade teacher that spoke fondly of you. They may have a charred effigy of you, punctured with straight pins, sitting on a bookshelf out of sight somewhere. You expect them to betray you. That’s what motivates them out of their spiteful bed every morning.
But when someone whom you love and trust betrays you, you don’t expect it or see it coming. You torture yourself over the why’s and what’s that led this person to the opposing side of you. But when you come down from that ledge of self-doubt, the pain of betrayal begins to soak in. At that point, isn’t it near impossible to love and forgive that person? It can be, but I tell you… love them anyway. It’s not about giving that person a pass. They did you wrong and you’re not excusing that. What it is about is not being controlled by any hateful thing.
When someone hurts you, distance yourself from that person and remove his/her ability to continue to wreak damage in your heart and life. Try to continue to live your life and love yourself in the space that this person chose not to. Put yourself first. Don’t be so occupied with anger that it leads you to become an enemy as well. Determining to be an enemy can be a self-destructive path that will inevitably dim your own shine.
While it may feel unnatural in these circumstances, practice love. It will mature you and you will discover a strength that, perhaps, you weren’t aware that you have. I mean you are pretty awesome. It’s not your fault if those who aren’t as amazing as you are unable to recognize it. It’s a blessing and a curse being you.
And sometimes, we can attract the wrong ones to our energy. They both want to consume it and become it and in becoming it, they oftentimes will have to destroy you. Thus is born your frenemy. See? Blessing and curse. Use these betrayals as life lessons and resist the urge to be petty or return wrong for wrong. Love is a verb so practice what you deserve to receive.
Be the friend that you want to see, and keep thine frenemies far from thee.