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Coach Shari: Living By the Girlfriend Code

Coach Shari: Living By the Girlfriend Code
Our Coach Shari columnist shares the virtues of her venerated girlfriend code. Read on to make sure you're honoring your friendships with these cardinal rules.

 

I've worked with many women in the past that struggle with having solid friendships in their lives; it's difficult for them to maintain good relationships over a long period of time. This is often because they don't understand what it really takes to be a good friend. Sometimes they don't realize that there are unwritten rules to be followed.

 

I remember making plans with my good friends to go bridesmaid dress shopping for my wedding. We searched and found a date that all three of us had free. As the day approached, I became more and more excited to share this time with people that were so important to me. Two hours before we were supposed to meet, my close friend called to say she couldn't go. She told me her boyfriend had secured tickets to a high school basketball game that was about to start. When I expressed my hurt and disappointment, she became angry with me and said that I was making a big deal out of the situation.

 

Our friendship never recovered from this one experience. As time went on, she made it clear that she didn't feel she had done anything wrong. On top of that, she was angry that I had any expectations of her in our friendship. I struggled with whether I should have continued to nurture a friendship with someone who wouldn't even validate my feelings. We both knew that her boyfriend had encouraged her to break the plans. But here's the real truth: She had broken the girlfriend code!

 

What do I mean by this? Well, there are certain rules by which true girlfriends live their lives. I call it the girlfriend code.

 

You never break plans with a good girlfriend to be with a guy.
Do you hear that, girlfriends? Guys come and go, but we need to cherish our good girlfriends. Whether you are going to a movie, just hanging out together or going to try on bridesmaid dresses, breaking plans is a big no! Not only is it hurtful and expresses how little you value your friendship, but it sends a clear message to a guy that you will drop everything for him. That is not a healthy way to live your life!

 

You never pursue a guy that is already taken by a girlfriend. I don't care if the two of you are just perfect for each other, this guy is off limits. As long as a guy is involved with a woman, he is not available, end of story! Even if the guy is involved with a girl you are not friends with, you are still breaking the girlfriend code. This is where integrity and self-worth come into the picture!

 

You never compete with a girlfriend.
Contrary to what you see on The Real Housewives, true girlfriends don't compete; they support each other. When you feel the need to compete with other women, you are sending a clear message that you are threatened and feel insecure. Strong, accomplished women with high self-esteem feel no need to overtly compete with other women. This goes for girlfriends that feel the desire to compete through their children's many accomplishments, too. Next time you feel the urge to brag, take a good look inside instead.

 

You don't engage in gossip about your girlfriend with other girlfriends.
When the talk turns to your good friend that is absent, do the right thing and defend her. It is easy to talk negatively about someone that is not present. Take into account that next time it could be you who they are talking about.

 

I have said this before, and I will say it again: We need our girlfriends in our lives! Cherish your relationships, and live by the girlfriend code.



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