To the woman who has no friends

It seems like the older you get, the less friends you have.
In elementary school, the whole point of school was to make friends and have as many friends as possible.
In high school, you're awkward, but the desire to fit in and form meaningful relationships didn't dissipate.

As you get even older, the song changes. It's no longer about having as many friends as possible, now people brag about having 'small circles' and few friendships.
The older you get the harder it seems to maintain significant relationships with people.

As a woman I feel the struggle is especially hard for us. Women are more apt to express our feelings and we often read into situations on levels men never breech. I know it's not a popular thing to say, but I feel that women get jealous easier, upset quicker and vindictive sooner.
So we struggle in our relationships with one another.

Growing up, I was an only child. Only child syndrome denotes a fierce independence coupled by a desire for significant relationships. The problem was, I could never keep friendships for long periods of time, except for one. That one being my best friend Doyin, and I would love to say our lasting friendship is due to my hard work, but she kept us alive more often times than I have.

I have no trouble making friends, but forming lasting and significant relationships often eluded me, because to have good friends, you need to be a good friend.
And for a long time, I didn't know how to be a good friend.

My problems

1. I was selfish
2. I didn't communicate
3. I lacked authenticity

I state my three flaws unapologetically, because God has truly been pruning these characteristics out of me.
I possessed a sense of entitlement about everything, and my pride accompanied it. I wanted to be center of attention in all my relationships, ignoring the fact that friendship are a two way street.
If a friend and I had a disagreement, I always looked at it only from my perspective. I couldn't understand why the other woman didn't see it my way, or why she wouldn't apologize for hurting me.

I didn't communicate. I'm not talking about texting or calling (although I'm not too good at that). I'm talking about saying what I mean and meaning what I said. I would tell friends what they wanted to hear to avoid disagreement (even if it was untrue).
And if you do this, understand it is unbiblical, we can speak boldly to our true friends because proverbs 27:5 Better is open rebuke than hidden love.
6 Wounds from a friend can be trusted, but an enemy multiplies kisses.
Worse, I would keep my mouth shut on specific issues that affected our friendships, again, to avoid fights. AND I would never tell 'my friends' my problems. I wouldn't tell them my pains, or hurts, or issues. I would never allow input into my life and I would guard my inner pains with a ferociousness that rivaled any lion.

I would say the worst of my problems was my lack of authenticity. It seems like all my life I've been trying to figure out who is Obioma. And when you don't know who you are, it's very hard, if not impossible to be the real you around anyone. I would camouflage myself depending on who I was around. So one set of friends would get loud, funny, and impulsive Obioma. The other set of friends would receive quiet, charming and flirty Obioma. I switched it up all the time.
Can I be honest and say: It's very hard to form relationships with fake people. I was that fake person.

Being transparent on this blog is something I aim to be, because I believe transparency is the key to any ministry and any move of God.

If you struggle with friendships, being a good friend or having good friends...I challenge you to examine yourself. Take your eyes off others and truly call yourself out.
Be honest about your short comings and go to God for the solution.

I didn't overcome my problems on my own, I didn't become unselfish over night. I didn't start telling all my troubles immediately, and I definitely didn't become authentic in an instant. Getting in my Bible, learning about what it meant to be a true Christian, a true Christ follower was the first step. And as I grew closer to God, as I realized who I was in him I could walk in the image of Christ and form the lasting relationships I have now.

I think the lightbulb hit when I finally realized that through my salvation with Christ I was a friend of Christ. Now I could be a true friend to someone else.

I love how John 15:12-15 models biblical friendships.

12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
13 Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.
14 You are my friends if you do what I command.
15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.

My bestie Doyin (middle) and Victoria in New York
After church outings with my sissy Kesi

All my love,