The other day a woman I know well told me a story about a lady she recently hired, who hadn’t officially started working but had previously done months of training with to prepare her for the role. Let’s call her Anna (not real name).
The lady, Anna hired lets call her Sam. After months of investing time and energy into Sam, and a week before she was due to work Anna received an out of the blue email to tell her she has decided not to continue, without any explanation except “due to personal circumstances”. This decision couldn’t have come at a worse time for Anna. Anna considered Sam a friend by now and trusted her fully. But Sam left her in the dark and didn’t respond to her messages. Anna is a smart and well-established businesswoman who stayed up late at night trying to figure out wtf was going on.
Now, if they barely knew each other and it had only been a couple of weeks then I’d think it was okay. But I knew both and based on the situation it was totally unprofessional and confusing to be perfectly honest. Anna wanted to at least talk it out in person and was very nice about giving her the opportunity to do so.
But Sam knew she’d disappoint her and so it was easier for her not to say anything and opt out in the easiest way possible. As I write this, it triggers so many memories. How many people have had this happen to them?
Anna was obviously hurt and confused by this especially given the personal relationship they’d built.
She told me she doesn’t have time for ‘weak people’ and she’s right.
How many people in your life for whom you’ve invested energy in have just ghosted on you, without any explanation?
How many people have you trusted that just threw you under the bus without care but then play the victim
How many so-called ‘friends’ do you have who say “I’m here for you” but don’t stick up for you and just stay silent when It’s time to say something.
How many colleagues have you thought had your back but when the boss bullies you to leave, you never hear from again?
I told Anna about my experience and how each of the situations above has happened. It fucking hurt. It’s great how many strong role models I have in my life, from family to people in the community and other connections I’ve made that have become friends.
But a lot of the Company I’ve kept, it turned out are weak. It’s really difficult to talk about it but It’s true. And it depresses you, and what’s worse you can feel like it is your fault. People you think who have your back, disappear off the face of the earth when you need them. And you’re left wondering wtf happened. And who is really there for me. It’s been a big lesson for me.
I’ve always said to the people closest to me, I’d rather you be honest and bruise my ego temporarily than say nothing at all and potentially have the relationship ruined because one of us was too weak to have a difficult but necessary conversation.
But no matter how much you try, It’s impossible to understand human behaviour fully.
You will be disappointed and hurt.
Most of the time it has nothing to do with you.
And people will come up with all kinds of excuses.
Its true people are on their own journey and could be going through whatever, but only the weak ghost.
And only the weak are afraid, to be honest, and confront the truth.
And it ruins relationships, suffering a slow silent death.
I’ve been working through a lot of things with a therapist since last year, as a result of others who have no idea how much they have affected me.
And I am only now coming to accept that shit like this happens and you have no control over it.
But I have learnt skills from her to deal with it and look out for signs so that I can better protect myself for next time.
But some things in life you have no choice over,
but you can make choices that honour you.
And this year I choose strong company.