Help! I’m Surrounded By Haters

Question:

I recently lost a lot of weight. I have lots more to lose and am losing it, but some people I thought were friends are not supportive. They were happier when I was unhealthy and unhappy. It’s hurting me. How do you suggest I handle the let down and pain?

Congratulations on your weight lost. It represents your ability to be disciplined and your desire to take ownership of your life. I celebrate with you. To your question, many people, including me, have had moments when we discover that the people that we choose to be our friends aren’t friends at all. Of course, it is hurtful, disappointing, and agonizing to think that we didn’t see or respond to the red flags before. Although it is difficult to understand, I encourage you to embrace it and thank God for it. This isn’t about them, this is about you. It is your gift. It is your lesson. If you point the finger at them, you will miss the opportunity to grow and discover new and exciting things about yourself. And, I assure you that, if you shift, you will be in position to attract to you friends that will embrace you for who you are.

Here is an excerpt from my book There Is More Inside that shares what I did when my “friends” turned their back on me.

DON’T LET REJECTION STOP YOU

Every person has to face and accept rejection throughout his or her
life. The important thing is to not take rejection personally. Sometimes
your friends don’t like you. Your boyfriend doesn’t like you or your boss
doesn’t like you. Some people in the church don’t like you. You’re not
light enough. You’re not dark enough. You’re not tall enough. You’re not
short enough. Your hair is too short. Your hair is too long. You’re too fat.
You’re too skinny. None of this is true, because your look is right for your
path. You are divinely made for your calling. You’re just right for your
purpose. So, with the power you have within you, rise above the haters.

My first major head-on collision with rejection came when I was
fifteen. I’m not saying this was my first encounter with rejection; just my
first major blow. When I was twelve I began developing what I thought
would be lifelong friendships with three other girls. We went to house
parties together, we shared secrets, we worked at McDonald’s together,
and we tried to teach each other everything we were learning along the
way. Nevertheless, after spending numerous hours talking about boys, sex,
tampons, and how to be beautiful, in a single day our friendship ended.
The story is short and simple. These girls came to me and said that
they could no longer be my friend because I was black. They said their
parents were putting pressure on them to dismiss our friendship. What’s
amazing is that I was able to deal with losing my best friends. I didn’t
even spend energy talking about it. I didn’t miss a beat. I decided they’re
entitled to pick their friends and if they want it to be based on color, so be
it. It was their loss. I knew that I was a true, loyal friend.
When you overcome rejection, as I did, you lose something and you
gain something. In every case, what I gained was so much greater than
what I lost. It didn’t always feel like it at the time, but when you look for
the good you’ll find it. This fact gives me comfort in each challenge that I
face.

There will be times when it seems that life is demanding more from
you than you think you’re able to give, but I believe it is God’s way of
showing us the strength He has placed in us. Most of us can’t even
conceive of what is in us.

Be well, There Is More Inside, S. Renee

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