Why You Should Be Friends with Mean People

9 Jun

We all want to be friends with “nice” people, don’t we? They return our calls, they support us when we need them, and they are kind and sweet at least 80% of the time. Who WOULDN’T want to be friends with them?

But, recently, I’ve made it a habit to seek out those who rub people the wrong way. You know who they are – they’re brash, loud, and oftentimes say the wrong thing.

So, why would I do this?

Turns out, I’ve learned a lot about myself by establishing friendships with people who might be considered “mean.” I’ve learned that I have a high tolerance for “mean” people, as long as they’re funny, interesting, and reliable.mean

I’ve also learned to dig a little deeper to find out WHY these “mean” people are they way they are. When you listen carefully, you’ll often hear tales of abuse, neglect, or out-of-control criticism at the hands of their parents.

And, hearing their stories has made me compassionate toward them.

I should probably note that we all should have our personal boundaries when it comes to our friends – it’s not acceptable for others to verbally, emotionally, or physically abuse you. No exceptions. But, that’s not the type of person I’m writing about (I’m sure you knew that already).

It’s easy being friends with those who are outwardly kind and sweet, but let’s not forget to reach-out to those who are labeled as just the opposite. It may be difficult, but the reward is not only gaining an unlikely ally, but also the opportunity to learn about yourself.



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