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The Emily Dilemma

I was a freshman, new and immature. I had many good friends from middle school, friends who would keep your secrets, put up with a lot of your crap when your having a bad day, and love you no matter what you look like or what you might say. They were real friends. I unfortunately wanted to have more than just a few best friends. I wanted to be friends with everybody.
Emily was new to my district. So she didn’t know anybody. She made friends quickly, and one of them was me. Emily and I spent a lot of time together, joining the many clubs that our high school had to offer and just hanging out whenever we felt like it. I didn’t realize then what a bad influence Emily was on me. She talked bad about my friends when it was just the two of us. At first I didn’t like it, but I did nothing to stop her, and as time went by sometimes I would say something bad about them too. It was not the type of things she would say, such as “Katie is sooo fat! What does she weigh like 180?” No I never said stuff that mean, but I wasn’t very nice, either. Usually I would say things like; “Sarah is really annoying me lately.” or “Katie is always talking about how all these guys like her, but I’ve never noticed it.” This would please Emily to such a great extent that she tell other people who hated my friend(s) what I had said too. They all thought I was one of the most awesome people in the world for that. I loved the attention. I felt special. Popular. It was the wrong sort of popular though. It was the sort of popular that you got by being mean to other people, and pretending that there are some people who aren’t as good as yourself.
I don’t want it to sound like everyone hated my friends and that all my friends were hated. It was actually only one or two of my friends that a group of snobby people thought were weirdoes, but the strange thing was no matter how bad Emily talked about them behind their backs, she acted incredibly sweet and innocent in front of them, as if nothing had happened. I don’t know how I didn’t know that she was or would eventually talk bad about me.
Emily’s and my friendship started breaking over Christmas vacation. A friend of Emily’s and mine (though I really didn’t like her and always thought she was fake) had texted Emily and told her that I had been talking bad about Emily behind her back. Emily of course texted me right away and told me what “our friend” had said. I couldn’t believe it. I had never said anything bad about Emily to my other friends. I had always thought of Emily and I as being really good friends, possibly even best friends, but obviously I was wrong. Emily didn’t text me after that and I didn’t see her till after Christmas vacation.
It was lunchtime and I was extremely happy to see Emily, hoping that I could straighten out this problem and assure her that I had never talked bad about her to anyone.
“Emily!” I said, as she was walking towards me.
“I’m not aloud to talk to you.” She informed me nastily and walked quickly by.
I was shocked. I had to explain to Emily that I had never talked about her, but how could I if she didn’t listen? I took my lunch to my table full of whispering friends and sat down next to a girl named Chloe. She was in my English class last period, we had never talked much, but I was glad of her company then. We talked about Emily. I asked her if she knew what was going on, but she confessed that she didn’t. In fact no one else seemed to know either. Emily had been sitting at a different table most of the lunch period, but eventually made her way back to my table, talking to a few people. I tried once again to ask her what was wrong or to explain…. well I didn’t even know what I had to explain. She just got really mad, cussed at me, and then left. I felt the tears fill my eyes, but I pushed them back, just as I tried hard to swallow the lump in my throat.
Chloe and I became really good friends that year. I never made up with Emily and I know I never will. People say she moved that year. I can’t help being glad of that.
I never found out what exactly was going on with Emily. Some of my friends talked to her and told me that she said she was tired of me talking bad about her friends. That’s a laugh if it’s true because she talked so bad about nearly everybody. Emily said some really mean things about me after we stopped being friends. I can’t deny that a lot of what she said did hurt me.
I suppose that being immature is easy, but growing up… can sometimes be painful. I grew a lot that year, mentally. I know what I want out of life and am less deluded by what people think of me or say. I know that my family, my real friends, and God all helped me get through that year, as they have always done, and I know always will. I guess now that it’s done and I can see the real affects of “the Emily dilemma”, I am glad that I went through it.




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