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People talk about support systems a lot and how everyone needs other people, whether that be celebrating after a success or comforting you after a failure. Sometimes though, finding someone to help build you up after a fall is hard, especially when it seems like all of the people who were around you before just disappeared.

I went through something awful in my time at college. I was also a part of an organization that I did so much for that I had even started to base part of my identity in the things that I had accomplished for it. I gave this group and the people in it everything I had, and I was absolutely devastated when, after years of putting into it, when something happened to me, I was completely dropped and forgotten. This was a group that preached that members were bound together for life, yet something out of my control happened that knocked me down turned me into a conversation topic for them and I was no longer looked at as someone who was part of the group. Sadly, this was not the first time I’ve been gotten by fair-weather friends, or friends that are only around when things are good. And even worse, it probably won’t be the last.

Here are a few things I’ve learned to help identify a fair-weather friend and what to do about them.

Learn how to spot them

Fair-weathered friends are sometimes hard to spot because excuses can be made. One of the easiest ways to tell if your friend might be fair-weathered is if he or she is only around when you’re happy.

Move them to your B-List

It’s important to have a good mix of friends, but expectations need to be placed lightly. You might not be able to count on a fair-weather friend when you’re crying over your breakup, but once you feel better they might be the perfect person to go out with to a school or sporting event.

Maybe you won’t be able to talk to them about a fight with your guardian or significant other, but you can totally binge watch Supernatural on Netflix. The most important thing is that it comes down to you.

Or Don’t

It’s perfectly fine if you don’t want this type of person in your life.

There is no going back to that group for me. I graduated and moved on; I’m pulling my life together myself and I’m happy. Being a part of that group taught me a lot about how to be a leader and do amazing things, and that’s something I’ll always be grateful for.


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