This week I observed something strange as I saw friends become non-friends. A little honesty on Facebook taken the wrong way and the next thing you know people are ‘un-friending’ and quitting Meetup groups. Deep down it is much more than a spat and maybe ‘friend’ was too strong a word to begin with (maybe acquaintances would have been better). Normally I wouldn’t think much of this sort of thing (quibbles amongst friends) but it bothered me because from the surface one person told the truth and the other attacked instead of listening. They were given a mirror, but they didn’t want to look at it. It made me wonder why people have to be on the defensive because of the truth?
The truth can set you free, but only if you listen to it. In this case, someone was willing to go out on a limb and say what needed to be said. I mean if your friends can’t tell you the truth, who will? If you can’t listen to your friends, who can you listen to? Sure, your friends can get on your nerves or irritate you sometimes, but are you going to end a friendship over the truth? Is it so difficult to accept?
Oddly, tonight my 7-year-old was reading a story about a robot. The book talked about all the things that the robot could do, but the boy who owned the robot said the robot’s best talent was being a friend (the boy said this as he was hugging the robot?!?!). Is this the direction our world is going in? Your laptop computer becomes your best friend? Will robots replace our friends because they don’t tell us the truth and they don’t ask questions? I will say that robots are good at unconditional ‘love’ and maybe humans have lost the ability to do this in a sense. If robots can replace humans for ‘friendship’ what do we need more humans for? Supposedly humans have this higher brain function, but it doesn’t look like it sometimes (just watch any reality TV show and you know what I mean).
So I wonder, can you be a better friend today? Or should you just buy your friend a robot to replace you?