Although I've never had full-blown acne before, I am the one who gets a period pimple, that is obnoxious as all get out, in the sense that it pops up right when I don't want it to, right where I don't want it to be. Plus, my hair tends to lend towards the drier side, no matter what I do. Well, at least it used to be that way. Something that has gotten my skin under control is essential oils (specifically tea tree oil and lavender oil for zits). What's gotten my hair right is a sweet almond oil blend, along with Jamaican Black castor oil with rosemary in it.
Why am I sharing this? It's because it wasn't until I stopped being a product junkie and I started doing some research on different essential oils and what they can do, that I discovered that they are must-haves when it comes to my beauty routine. They're natural. They're therapeutic. And they serve multiple purposes, which is definitely a huge plus.
But enough about me. Do you want to try something that will help your insides as well as maintain your beauty on the outside? If so, I've got 10 different essential oils that can get you on the road to looking and feeling, just as amazing as you wanna be.
*Some links are affiliate links. If you make a purchase, xoNecole may earn a small commission.
1. Anti-Aging: Carrot Seed Oil
Off top, carrot seed oil is loaded with antioxidants that help to strengthen your immune system. Since it also contains antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties, it's the kind of oil that is also great when it comes to cell renewal, detoxing your blood and stimulating blood circulation. Something else that's awesome about carrot seed oil is it has antiseptic and antiviral properties that make it a great ingredient for homemade deodorant.
Since it's an oil that helps to protect your skin from UV damage, that's one of the reasons why it tops the list if you're looking for an anti-aging essential oil. Being that it's also high in vitamins A, C and E, it mends skin, boosts collagen and is a wonderful moisturizer too. No doubt about it, carrot seed oil is definitely an essential oil that can help to keep your "black from cracking".
Try This: Combine two tablespoons of pure Aloe vera gel with five drops of carrot seed oil and three drops of a carrier oil (like coconut oil or safflower oil). Apply the formula to freshly cleaned skin before turning in at night. Then wash it off in the morning. (Make sure to keep this stored in the fridge.)
2. Hair Growth: Cedarwood Oil
Cedarwood is an antiseptic, anti-inflammatory and antifungal type of essential oil that is great at treating anxiety and insomnia as well as softening the appearance of acne-related scarring. Another pleasant surprise about the oil is some people have even said that it helps to alleviate discomfort that's directly related to arthritis. But what makes it a top hair beauty treatment oil is the fact that it's pretty powerful at treating alopecia areata (a disease that directly attacks hair follicles). Plus, since cedarwood oil also has the ability to balance the sebum that your scalp produces (so that your follicles don't get clogged up), hindering hair growth as a direct result.
Try This: Mix two tablespoons with jojoba oil with one teaspoon of cedarwood oil. Apply the mixture to your scalp, massage for 10 minutes and then rinse out (right after shampooing and conditioning your hair).
Nature's Truth Aromatherapy Essential Oil, Cedarwood
3. Skin Exfoliant: Sweet Almond Oil
Sweet almond oil is definitely one of my favorite essential oils on the planet! It's high in vitamins A, E and zinc which makes it great at reducing eye puffiness, moisturizing your skin and even reducing the effects of sun damage. And, since sweet almond oil contains powerful emollient properties, it can gently remove dead skin cells so that you're able to end up with even skin tone. It's also an oil that reduces the appearance of acne scars. It can even cause your stretch marks to fade over time.
Try This: Combine a half cup of colloidal oatmeal with three tablespoons of sweet almond oil and a tablespoon of manuka honey. Apply the mask onto clean and damp skin. Let it sit for 15-20 minutes then rinse off with cool water.
4. Toner Ingredient: Thieves Oil
What I like a lot about thieves oil is it's a combination of some of the best essential oils around. It's got cinnamon, cloves, lemon, rosemary and eucalyptus oil, all rolled up into one. This makes it the kind of super oil that is able to boost your immune system, fight sinus congestion, improve your mood, relieve body aches and pains and, if you add it to your DIY toothpaste recipe, it will fight tooth decay and make your toothpaste taste so much better too. Thanks to all of the antimicrobial properties thieves oil contains that are able to kill bacteria and fungi, it's also an ideal ingredient if you like to make your own skin toner.
Try This: Steep some chamomile tea and let it cool. Then add a teaspoon of witch hazel, a half teaspoon of apple cider vinegar (the kind that has the mother in it), along with five drops of thieves oil. Put the combination in a spray bottle, shake and then mist your skin with the toner solution.
5. Damaged Hair Cuticles: Rosemary Oil
Rosemary oil is the ultimate. It helps to improve your concentration. It provides pain relief. It decreases stress levels. It increases blood circulation. It reduces joint inflammation. It improves liver and digestive health as well. I use it directly as it relates to the health of my hair, though. Since it stimulates blood circulation, your hair follicles are able to get the nutrients that they need in a quicker amount of time. Rosemary oil is also an oil that can help to stop premature greying, hinder dandruff and yes, it can repair damaged hair cuticles too. That's because the antioxidants in the oil are able to seal your cuticles so that, if they're weak, they can get strong again.
6. Collagen Booster: Orange Oil
I like orange oil because it smells so refreshing. As far as health benefits go, it is able to reduce depression-related symptoms, increase your exercise performance, fight certain bacterial strains, heal acne and even treat constipation. Orange oil is also considered to be a great anti-aging essential oil because it has the ability to trigger collagen production in your skin, which can smooth out fine lines and cause your skin to appear more youthful-looking as a direct result.
Try This: If you want to make your own orange oil to apply to your skin, click here for a recipe.
ULTA Orange Essential Oil
7. Skin Soother: Copaiba Oil
Copaiba oil is an oil that comes from copaiba trees. Some of its cool benefits include the fact that it is able to help treat infections like bladder infections, strep throat and even gonorrhea. The irony to this oil is that while it is able to treat gonorrhea (and syphilis), it's also an aphrodisiac too (some Native Americans even used it as a form of contraception). This oil is awesome for your skin because it contains beta-caryophyllene which is an anti-inflammatory agent that helps to soothe any irritation and heal it over time.
Try This: Mix three teaspoons of avocado oil (which is a great healing oil) with three drops of copaiba. Apply directly to wherever your skin is irritated.
8. Dry Scalp: Ylang-Ylang Oil
If you want an oil that will lower your blood pressure, alleviate anxiety, reduce depression-related symptoms, slow down your heart rate, soothe the pressure that comes with headaches, treat sinus infections and make it easier for you to go to sleep at night, ylang-ylang oil is just what you're looking for.
On the beauty tip, because it's also an oil that stimulates sebaceous glands, it can help to heal your dry scalp while deep conditioning your hair at the same time.
Try This: Add three drops of ylang-ylang oil to three tablespoons of coconut oil. Massage the oil onto your clean damp scalp. Then let it sit for 20 minutes, rinse with cool water and style.
9. Scar Treatment: Helichrysum Oil
While this isn't exactly the kind of oil that comes up in regular conversation, once you know all of the ways that it can benefit you, you'll want to get a couple of bottles of it as soon as possible. Helichrysum essential oil comes from a Mediterranean plant. It is able to do everything from reduce inflammation during a cold and relieve intestinal spasms to stop staph infections and treat candida. As far as your beauty needs go, helichrysum oil is great because it speeds up the healing process of wounds (including popped pimples) so that your scars are smoother and less apparent to the eye.
Try This: Mix a teaspoon of Vitamin E oil with two drops of helichrysum oil. Then directly apply the combo onto any healed scars you may have.
10. Hair Strengthener: Clary Sage Oil and Lavender Oil
Clary sage has the reputation of being a natural antidepressant and stress reducer. Something else that's wonderful about it is, clary sage also has the ability to reduce menstrual cramps and reduce menopausal symptoms. Hair-wise, this is the kind of oil that can reduce dandruff and strengthen your hair follicles. Lavender oil contains properties that fight allergies, treats insomnia, helps to heal eczema, reduce menstrual cramps and relaxes your nervous system. It's great for your hair because lavender oil can help to make your hair strands thicker while stimulating hair growth in the process.
Try This: Apricot kernel oil is high in vitamins A and E which makes it a great carrier oil for your hair. Mix a half cup of it with 5-7 drops of clary sage oil and 3-4 drops of lavender oil. Zap it in the microwave for 15 seconds and then apply as a hot oil treatment for your hair. Do it twice a month for best results.
Now Essential Oils, 100% Pure, Lavender
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Different puzzle pieces are creating bigger pictures these days. 2024 will mark a milestone on a few different levels, including the release of my third book next June (yay!).
I am also a Professional Certified Coach. My main mission for attaining that particular goal is to use my formal credentials to help people navigate through the sometimes tumultuous waters, both on and offline, when it comes to information about marriage, sex and relationships that is oftentimes misinformation (because "coach" is a word that gets thrown around a lot, oftentimes quite poorly).
I am also still super devoted to helping to bring life into this world as a doula, marriage life coaching will always be my first love (next to writing, of course), a platform that advocates for good Black men is currently in the works and my keystrokes continue to be devoted to HEALTHY over HAPPY in the areas of holistic intimacy, spiritual evolution, purpose manifestation and self-love...because maturity teaches that it's impossible to be happy all of the time when it comes to reaching goals yet healthy is a choice that can be made on a daily basis (amen?).
If you have any PERSONAL QUESTIONS (please do not contact me with any story pitches; that is an *editorial* need), feel free to reach out at email@example.com. A sistah will certainly do what she can. ;)
This article is in partnership with Sensodyne.
Our teeth are connected to so many things - our nutrition, our confidence, and our overall mood. We often take for granted how important healthy teeth are, until issues like tooth sensitivity or gum recession come to remind us. Like most things related to our bodies, prevention is the best medicine. Here are five things you can do immediately to improve your oral hygiene, prevent tooth sensitivity, and avoid dental issues down the road.
1) Go Easy On the Rough Brushing: Brushing your teeth is and always will be priority number one in the oral hygiene department. No surprises there! However, there is such a thing as applying too much pressure when brushing…and that can lead to problems over time. Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and brush in smooth, circular motions. It may seem counterintuitive, but a gentle approach to brushing is the most effective way to clean those pearly whites without wearing away enamel and exposing sensitive areas of the teeth.
2) Use A Desensitizing Toothpaste: As everyone knows, mouth pain can be highly uncomfortable; but tooth sensitivity is a whole different beast. Hot weather favorites like ice cream and popsicles have the ability to trigger tooth sensitivity, which might make you want to stay away from icy foods altogether. But as always, prevention is the best medicine here. Switching to a toothpaste like Sensodyne’s Sensitivity & Gum toothpaste specifically designed for sensitive teeth will help build a protective layer over sensitive areas of the tooth. Over time, those sharp sensations that occur with extremely cold foods will subside, and you’ll be back to treating yourself to your icy faves like this one!
3) Floss, Rinse, Brush. (And In That Order!): Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s not what you do, but how you do it”? Well, the same thing applies to taking care of your teeth. Even if you are flossing and brushing religiously, you could be missing out on some of the benefits simply because you aren’t doing so in the right order. Flossing is best to do before brushing because it removes food particles and plaque from places your toothbrush can’t reach. After a proper flossing sesh, it is important to rinse out your mouth with water after. Finally, you can whip out your toothbrush and get to brushing. Though many of us commonly rinse with water after brushing to remove excess toothpaste, it may not be the best thing for our teeth. That’s because fluoride, the active ingredient in toothpaste that protects your enamel, works best when it gets to sit on the teeth and continue working its magic. Rinsing with water after brushing doesn’t let the toothpaste go to work like it really can. Changing up your order may take some getting used to, but over time, you’ll see the difference.
4) Stay Hydrated: Upping your water supply is a no-fail way to level up your health overall, and your teeth are no exception to this rule. Drinking water not only helps maintain a healthy pH balance in your mouth, but it also washes away residue and acids that can cause enamel erosion. It also helps you steer clear of dry mouth, which is a gateway to bad breath. And who needs that?
5) Show Your Gums Some Love: When it comes to improving your smile, you may be laser-focused on getting your teeth whiter, straighter, and overall healthier. Rightfully so, as these are all attributes of a megawatt smile; but you certainly don’t want to leave gum health out of the equation. If you neglect your gums, you’ll start to notice the effects of plaque buildup, which can irritate the gums and cause gingivitis, the earliest stage of gum disease. Seeing blood while brushing and flossing is a tell-tale sign that your gums are suffering. You may also experience gum recession — a condition where the gum tissue surrounding your teeth pulls back, exposing more of your tooth. Brushing at least twice a day with a gum-protecting toothpaste like Sensodyne Sensitivity and Gum, coupled with regular dentist visits, will keep your gums shining as bright as those pearly whites.
Y’all, I don’t know if now just happens to be a heavy season for this or perhaps it’s just me, but whether it’s been on Facebook, TikTok, Instagram, or “X” (which we all know is still Twitter…LOL), have you noticed that a lot of people have been talking about the pain of going through a friendship break-up? I’ll be the first to raise my hand in this class and say that some of the ones that I’ve personally experienced over the course of my lifetime damn near took my breath away; especially when it comes to the unexpected levels of grief that oftentimes typically follow (check out “How To Heal From A Broken Friendship”).
When I write my next book (that’s currently slated for release in June of 2024; just in time for a big milestone), I’m going to share some of the things that personally caused me to go through the ending of some friendships. For now, I’m going to share a big one: friendship infidelity.
Yeah, I know — oftentimes, whenever the word “infidelity” is used, the main (if not only) thing that comes up in people’s minds is someone cheating on their partner. However, if you’ve read my content for a while now, you already know that an “occupational hazard” of mine is the fact that, as a writer, I’m pretty word-literal. Therefore, when it comes to infidelity, I’m aware that it’s got more than one meaning. And when it comes to friendship (or so-called friendships — check out “Ever Wonder If A Friend Is Just...Not That Into You?” and “7 Signs Your Friendship...Actually Isn't One”), yes, there is a definition that totally applies. Let’s discuss.
What Does Infidelity Literally Mean?Giphy
In order for this to “scratch any itch” that you might have about this particular topic, let’s get into the definition of infidelity that I was referring to. While yes, the most popular one is “marital disloyalty; adultery” (one day, we’ll have to talk about how the Bible doesn’t define adultery in the way that folks think it does (check out Matthew 19 sometime), another definition is “unfaithfulness; disloyalty.” While we’re at it, let me share a few synonyms for the word too: betrayal, falseness, inconstancy (bookmark that), deceit, double-dealing, fraud, breach of trust, violation, dishonesty, and false-heartedness.
Okay, so now do you see how it is totally appropriate to use the word “infidelity” in the realm of friendship if someone has been unfaithful or disloyal to you in any of these ways (that inconstancy one is a mutha!)? Do you also get that there is a huge possibility that, even if you don’t want to admit it to yourself, there are times when you’ve committed some form of infidelity when it comes to one or more of the friends in your life?
Because be real — have you never breached their trust? Have you always been consistent? To violate is to treat someone or something with disrespect. Have you never done that before? Only your ego would tell you that you’ve been a perfect friend — and the ego lies.
That said and with the meanings of a different kind of infidelity established, let’s now talk about how to approach this type of experience…because it ain’t easy.
When It Comes to Faithfulness in Your Friendships, What Should Your Expectations Be?Giphy
As far as having my own accounts, I don’t do social media (still trying to decide if I will, a little bit, around my book release) — and it has been peace, wonderful peace, to live that way. This means that it’s pretty rare that I’ll read comments via any of the platforms I write for (also peaceful). Oh, but a few years ago, when I penned “Why I Prefer My Friends To NOT Be Friends With Each Other,” I did tiptoe out a bit, and boy, some folks were disgruntled with me, chile. I was called petty, problematic, and a host of other stuff.
Uh-huh first, I don’t get how you can be mad at me about what works for me and my life (being controlling manifests in all sorts of cryptic ways) and secondly, time and experience have taught me that it’s a boundary that has served me extremely well. One of the reasons is that, since friendship infidelity is a very real thing, my lines not crossing helps to keep people from betraying my confidence or double-dealing in a way that may not even be intentional.
An example? Say that I have two friends and I tell one of them something in confidence. Then she tells the other friend, assuming that I already had because she thought that the other friend and I had similar discussions. This would be a non-issue if I hadn’t brought them together in the first place.
Another example is, one of my closest friends has some people who I like a lot who live in Nashville (my friend doesn’t). Sometimes, when she comes into town, we’ll all hang out. I don’t do it outside of that, though, because there are things that she shares with me about them on occasion (from a getting a different perspective to make certain decisions angle; especially since I’m a life coach) that I don’t want to make her or them feel awkward about (even if it’s just due to somewhat of a shift in my energy). Plus, everyone just needs to have their own people. This ain’t high school; everyone doesn’t have to be in the same cliques.
If one of my friends wants to vent about me…I don’t care if/when they are talking to someone who I don’t even know…because I’m not friends with that person… because I don’t expect anything from a complete stranger. So again, this type of boundary has served me extremely well over the years — and my friends agree. It has made “faithfulness” so much easier for all parties involved because again, lines don’t cross and things don’t get messy.
Okay. I’ll give you one more example that has to do with one of my male friends and his personal friendship-related preference. Due to his high-profile profession, he doesn’t like to be discussed at all, not even casually (really). He doesn’t want me to bring his name up and, when someone else does, he prefers that I keep the conversation down to an absolute minimum, no matter what the topic is. For him, it works for his close friendships to be somewhat private, so that people don’t know who they can go to in order to get in touch with him or to receive any intel that he hasn’t directly shared — professionally or personally.
Some people may call that “paranoid.” For him, it’s safe to move that way. And so, as his friend, it’s not my job to try and talk him out of his standard. If I value our friendship, I simply need to honor his request — plain and simple. To do otherwise would be an act of unfaithfulness (especially if I agreed to what he asked me to do and then switched up on him).
So, when it comes to you, what are your expectations? What do you need — actually require — of your own friends? Have you stated those things? Because you should never assume that your definition of what a friend should be is exactly the same as someone else’s. Next, have you made it abundantly clear to them that if those expectations are not honored, you will feel some level of betrayal? If you haven’t, you should because, although most of us can agree that a partner sleeping with someone other than their own spouse is a form of infidelity, friendship infidelity isn’t quite so black and white.
If you want your friend(s) to be faithful — “true to one's word, promises, vows, etc.,” “steady in allegiance or affection; loyal; constant” — you need to be upfront with them about what they are vowing to do…what you want them to be constant in? Because, again, how you might roll as a friend may be something different to/for them.
Come to think of it, love languages in friendships is a good example of this. One of my close friends is a quality time person; I’m not. On the other hand, I am a words of affirmation person; she isn’t. She used to think that it was a given that I should want to hang out at least once a month and I used to get irritated that she wasn’t big on words. When we had a talk about our individual expectations, we found a “middle ground” and that made things so much easier…on both sides. Indeed, in order to be faithful (or unfaithful), you first gotta know what you’ve agreed to be faithful to. It’s not fair to expect someone to honor you and what you bring to a friendship if you’re not communicating your expectations on the front end.
So, what should your expectations in your friendships be? That, I can’t answer for you, because even when it comes to across-the-board traits like support, availability, and communication, honestly, even those are gonna manifest differently for different people.
All I’m saying is make sure that you share what your expectations are as you listen to theirs as well. That way, you both can move forward in your friendship knowing what you have mutually agreed to actually be faithful to.
What Should You Do If a Friend “Cheats on You”?Giphy
Okay, so what if, after you have established what you need/expect from your friend, they are unfaithful or disloyal? That’s kind of a loaded question because there are a lot of different ways that this box can get checked. For instance, I once had a friend who kept trying to put me in touch with someone who I knew was unsafe (on a lot of levels). She kept asking and I kept telling her “no.” One day, she called me and then handed that person the phone — she was disloyal because she dishonored my boundary.
Back in the day, I used to write devotionals and I shared the story (sans her name) in it. All of a sudden, she thought that she was the victim (gaslighting friends are something else). So wait — you put me in harm’s way and I need to apologize to you for it? If her identity was obvious (I didn’t even say “she”), I get it — it wasn’t. She just felt guilty and didn’t want to take accountability. As a result, she weaponized our friendship by going ghost for like a year and then tried to come back as if nothing had ever happened. Chile.
For me, there was no coming back. The way she handled that, on a few different levels, was emotionally draining and I honestly didn’t have the stamina for it. So, I ended the relationship officially. Years later, we saw each other and made our peace. I’m fine with it being just that (check out “Why I Don't 'Cut People Off' Anymore, I Release Them Instead”).
That’s kind of an extreme example. Still, the reason why I brought it up is because I wanted you to see how I handled one form of friendship infidelity: I thought about what happened, I pondered what I was getting (and not getting) from the friendship, I thought about how she handles things when she is in the wrong and I focused on what would be the benefits and challenges of keeping her in my life. The conclusion that I came to is I care enough about her that we’re not rolling our eyes in the mall or sucking our teeth whenever one of our names comes up to the other yet I don’t want her to continue walking closely to me in my journey. I’m good.
For you, it might be a bit different. What if one of your friends betrays you in some way? Is it fair to take a “one-and-done” approach? I dunno. Is that how you would want your friends to handle you? Do you want to feel like, no matter what, after you make one mistake (or poor choice; not everything is a mistake…some things are intentional), there’s no coming back? If so, you might not want to have relationships at all because humans are fallible, INCLUDING YOU. You might as well settle in with that fact now or you’re about to be triggered, irritated, or angry for most of your life, chile.
What Should You Do If YOU’RE the One Who Cheats?Giphy
Over the weekend, I watched a movie where a woman cheated during a long-distance relationship and then claimed that her boyfriend was “punishing her” because he wasn’t over it a month later. The first thing that came to my mind? A lack of accountability. Why? Because I’m pretty sure that if the shoe had been on the other foot, she wouldn’t be all rainbows and sunshine four weeks later…either.
Being that I grew up in an environment (pretty much everywhere, including church) where folks absolutely sucked at taking personal responsibility for their actions without trying to make excuses, using justifications, deflecting, or gaslighting, I am almost violent about making sure that I don’t follow suit. And because I’ve had times when I’ve violated someone’s boundaries (I used to be more controlling than I should’ve ever been) and/or betrayed their trust (just because I’m basically an open book, that doesn’t mean that I should assume that everyone is the same way) — I’ve had to learn how to take full ownership for my actions. Then, if the person is open to accepting my apology, I would take things up a notch by making amends (check out “Heads Up: It's NOT An Apology If An Amends Isn't Made”).
If you’re not sure what an "amends" is, basically, when you’ve done something that has offended someone or caused them some type of harm if you’re truly remorseful, it’s not enough to flippantly toss a “my bad” in their direction. No, when you really get the magnitude of what has transpired — and if you want to restore the damage that was caused — you need to be intentional about doing something that will help with the healing process. This can happen with a simple, “What can I do to make things better?” People who apologize and then ask something along those lines show that they really get what they did; not only that but they are displaying that they want to humble themselves enough to help the person they hurt to “recover” in any way that they can.
So, if you are the one who was unfaithful or disloyal — own it, address it, apologize (without any unnecessary extra-ness, make amends, and then give your friend space to heal…however they need to do so. Infidelity hurts in any kind of relationship dynamic yet when two people — BOTH INDIVIDUALS — really want to make things work, they can come back from it. Oftentimes better than they were before.
How to Heal from Friendship InfidelityGiphy
It really can’t be said enough that humans are fallible. In fact, it is my belief, that if more of us said that as a mantra, five times a day, we’d probably be a lot more merciful than we tend to be. Because since none of us are perfect — INCLUDING OURSELVES — it really is pretty ridiculous to expect to be in relationships with folks and have them never disappoint you (where they do that at?!). The reality is sometimes a friend may be disloyal — not in a malicious or redundant kind of way (another message, another time) but just…they didn’t meet your requirements, they hurt your feelings (even if not intentionally) or they simply made a poor decision. Just like you have before — and at some point, will again.
Yes, it can hurt; trust me, I’ve been there. At the same time, you can heal from the pain and your friendship can survive too. The key is to really process the character of your friend, the track record of your friend, and if the benefits far outweigh the challenges with them. If everything is on the upswing, talk to your friend about how you are feeling, pay close attention to how they respond (if there is remorse, compassion, and patience), and then make the decision that you want to move forward. And then move in a way that shows that you’ve learned from it all.
For instance, say that you told one of your friends something in confidence and they repeated it. After getting context, if it was reckless chatter, healing begins with forgiving them, them trying to make things right and then you easing into sharing anything else. No, it’s not about keeping the door shut forever — it’s more like, telling them something that you don’t really mind if it gets out. If it does, although that’s not a big deal, you will now see that yapping is a pattern for them and so, although you like having them in your life, being a “confidant space” is not where they need to be — at least not for quite some time.
And what if, in your opinion, there is no coming back from friendship infidelity? How do you heal from that? Well, you need to grieve it like you would grieve anything else. Go through the five stages: denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. The key is to not stay stuck; especially in anger. Because really, how is that gonna help or change anything?
I’ve gone through some acts of extreme infidelity that took me a while to move to acceptance — really accepting that it happened and fully accepting that I had to let the relationship go. Yet once I got there, healing was waiting for me. Because I wasn’t beating myself up trying to read someone else’s mind or motive or exhausting myself by wishing things were different. No one can change the past. Even accepting that can restore you to some pretty unexpected levels.
This is the kind of topic that I really could write an entire book about. For now, I just hope that this article provides some clarity that, if you wonder if unfaithfulness is a real thing as far as friendship is concerned, it most certainly is. It’s also not automatically unforgivable either.
Last example: I’ve got a friend of decades who prioritized a woman that he barely knew over our friendship. Meaning, she was threatened by me being around and so he did whatever to make her happy even at the expense of what we agreed to do and be to each other, as friends. Friendship infidelity. He has since apologized and I told him what I am a firm believer in: the apology needs to breathe. I need to take some time, he needs to take some time and, in time, either we will still see value in our dynamic or, because an apology was made and then accepted, peace will always remain between us.
Infidelity is something that none of us want to experience — oh, but we probably will. When it comes to your friendships, perhaps you’ve got a (better) grasp on how to handle it.
Whether you’re on the giving or receiving end. Live long enough, chile, for better or for worse, you will know about both. I can almost guarantee it.
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