Friendship, the Forgotten Relationship

Friends, how many of us have them?  I hope most of us do.  For those who don’t, I want to encourage you to open yourself up to this type of relationship because I firmly believe that a friend is a gift.   Yet, this doesn’t SEEM to be the sentiment of the majority.  I came to this conclusion after watching the outcry against Molly after she and her best friend, Issa, had a conflict that would possibly end their friendship.  For this to make sense to you, press play on the video below.

So yes, I’m referring to a character in a TV show lol.  To provide more context, I will share more about the show.  It’s titled Insecure and it’s about the friendship of two African American women in a very unique and authentic way.  For the most part, the show highlights the friendship of the two ladies as they deal with their own real-life flaws, insecurities, and coping with an endless series of uncomfortable everyday experiences.  Additionally, the show touches on a variety of social and racial issues that relate to the new age of African American experiences.  Although the foundation of the show is built around the connection between two female friends, Insecure also portrays other major characters that include representation for the male experience as well as characters that would fall on different places on the gender spectrum. Basically, anyone could watch Insecure and still relate.

As it pertains to the topic of friendship, season four of Insecure has caused much debate amongst its viewers.  The last episode showed the world an example of how situations can get explosive between two people who normally are each other’s best support.  After moments of sharp remarks, holding each other accountable, and a canceled reconciliation meeting, Issa and Molly almost came to physical blows.  Despite the aforementioned moments of contention, the most alarming component of their whole debacle is how the viewers responded.  If I were asked how I thought the world would see their breakdown, I would’ve said that everyone would realize that friendships go through times of trial and a requirement to maintain them is for those involved to take responsibility for whatever they contribute: good, bad, or indifferent.  In contrast, the commentary about the show is saying otherwise.  It’s being shared that Molly and Issa’s friendship has run its course.  Then there is also the perspective that weighs out which friend is more responsible.  However, the thought that concerns me the most is the sentiment that seems to devalue the importance of communication and that the lack thereof shouldn’t tax the connection.

In my opinion, friendships are the forgotten relationship, and here’s why.  Despite the fact that friends share intimacy, provide support, and share a connection that depends on time, it’s often othered within the constructs of people relating to one another.  Friendship seems to be celebrated by others when it’s working; but when there is an issue, society seems to have a huge lack of regard.  Hence the title of this blog, the forgotten relationship.  Going with the assumption you, the reader, don’t see friendships less than other relationships; do you feel the same effort to preserve a romantic or family relationship should be applied to maintaining a friendship?  I think so and would go as far as saying that because the average child develops friendships before they start dating, the friendship experience is the foundation for romantic relationships.  With that in mind, I want to encourage you and everyone that reads this blog to watch Insecure and learn to place more value on your friendships.   Instead of forgetting that friendships are relationships that need cultivation, be motivated to invest in them more and view them as an opportunity to learn how to better relate to others.

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