So Hannah has this “friend”, Sonya*. I knew the Sonya was bad news from the very beginning of this dreaded friendship. I’m 40. I’m an expert troublemaker spotter by now. But it took Hannah time—and many discussions about how this girl was definitely not growing toward the sun—for her to figure this out.
It was confirmed when Sonya educated Hannah waaaaaay too much about the birds and the bees (covered in one of my previous posts). Finally I told Hannah she’s not to hang around with Sonya anymore. She was fine with it.
Fast forward several months and one grade. Sonya has changed, Hannah informed me. “Can I pleeeeease be friends with her again? Really, she apologized and she has really, really changed. For real.” Ohhh, well shoot, if it’s FOR REAL then suuuuuure.
Truth is, Hannah’s school is very small and Sonya will be around most likely through high school graduation. Lucky us. So I told Hannah she was old enough to make her own decisions about the types of friends she wants to have and so it was up to her. I set aside my feelings…my KNOWING….that Sonya was Sonya and she gots issues that would reveal themselves once more. Hannah would have to learn again.
Sonya was on good behavior for a few weeks. Then Hannah started not wanting to go to school. I finally got it out of her that Sonya was up to her old tricks which included, but are not limited to, manipulation, undermining and planting seeds of self doubt and inferiority. Hannah could see it much quicker this time. I listened as she told me story after story about Sonya’s latest betrayals.
It was hard for me to convince Hannah that Sonya acted out of fear and insecurity until I stated a quote I heard on Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday:
“People act on the outside how they feel on the inside.”
Hannah gasped. “Wowww, that is really good.” I watched as it sunk in. I threw in “When someone shows you who they are, believe them!” to close out the lesson.
We agreed that we would not give Sonya any more power over her. Like Glinda the good witch told the Wicked With of the West, ““Oh, rubbish! You have no power here. Be gone, before somebody drops a house on you, too.”
*not her real name