Inspired by xojane’s It Happened To Me series.
I used to know this girl in class. Her name was Mindy*.
She was smart, beautiful, an incredibly good public speaker and debater and very much popular. She was passionate about world issues and was always the first person to raise up her hand to answer questions or to question topics/issues presented to us. She aspires to be in the UN one day, fighting for the rights of humanity. So do I.
You’d think I’d find Mindy a threat, that I should form a string of jealousy onto her. But the opposite happened. I have a girl crush on her instead. She was an inspiration to me. She was the epitome of perfection, I thought to myself, for her wit and charm as well as a her pretty hair and make-up which she occasionally don on certain occasion.
I was rather quiet during the first few weeks of school but over time however, I started to open up and joined some student activities, one of which was a volunteer project to teach in a refugee school. I wanted to learn more about the UN and decided to take part in UN-linked activities in my school. Wherever there’s any UN involvement, there was Mindy, so it was no surprise to find her working on the same project too.
Mindy became the student leader of the refugee project and she was to work with a group of passionate young people, including myself. Working on the same project together and constantly having weekly meeting meant that I was to meet and work with Mindy a lot. Naturally, our passion for the UN and human rights made us fast friends.
Knowing Mindy personally was great as everyone started to notice me and that she was actually a pretty cool person to hang out with. We exchanged stories and experiences with one another. However, knowing Mindy personally also meant that I get to see the side of her that no one, other than her friends, were able to see.
Despite being a good friend and having high leadership potential, Mindy was far from being great a leader and friend. Always chasing for popularity and being everyone’s favourite
pet person (especially to the teachers), her role as student leader and friend was often neglected by her thirst for popularity. In short, she ditched us a lot and only came to us when she needed us.
There would be times where we would see her having lunch with teachers when she was supposed to be in a very important project meeting with us. Or that one time when she purposely skipped a meeting with an important sponsor and decided to hit the mall instead and failing to tell us (her fellow teammates) that the meeting was cancelled thank you to my friend who told me that next day.
Can you believe that she called us at the last-minute to tell us that the meeting was cancelled and that she knew all along but forgot to tell us when even before going to the meeting, we did invite her to join us but she declined telling us that she was sick. What a liar, and what a waste of time and train money just to go to a cancelled meeting!
Mindy’s incompetence gave our supervisors (a.k.a. our teacher) bad impression of us. He directly assumed that we were as horrible as Mindy when in fact, we were the ones hard at work. He treated us very harshly and wouldn’t even give us any respect after completely ‘fucking up’ the project.
The fucking up part started when Mindy failed to attend a very important meeting with a sponsor who had been waiting for her for hours. The sponsor later complained to my teacher who in turned lash out at me (as he has my phone number and couldn’t contact Mindy). To make things worse, Mindy, who called me two hours after the meeting pleading to me to call the sponsor up and apologize all the while pretending to be her. She refused to call back the sponsor and apologize because she was “ashamed of her actions” and “didn’t know what to say”. She then told me she had another meeting with a friend and completely forgot about this meeting. I found out later however that she was pissed drunk the night before and skipped school due to a hangover.
When news got out that our teacher was pissed at Mindy for almost losing our biggest sponsor, Mindy called me and repeatedly ask, “What should we do, Jasmine? We fucked up.” At that point, I was so angry at her for not realizing that WE did not fuck up, SHE did. Seeing that she was incompetent to be a team leader and that the event was approaching and none of us prepared anything, I decided to take it upon myself to take charge.
I told her straight up, “Mindy, chill, I will make this right.” Although I secretly wanted to shout at her on the phone, blaming her for being selfish and irresponsible, for fucking up and having me to clean her mess up, for lying to me just to save her ass. I hated her.
When I took over (and mind you, I was the third person to take over the project when she wasn’t around), the project and team was in a bad shape. We had no leader (although we had teachers to help us, the project was mostly student-run), no aim, no nothing. We were not motivated enough to organize this big scale event. Worse still, although we have sponsors excited for the event and willing to sponsor, we were losing our biggest sponsor yet due to Mindy’s absent during their first meeting. I knew I had to make this right. I called up the sponsor, apologize non-stop, met up with them and made things right again.
Mindy was pushed aside after that. She didn’t want to get her hands dirty, so we didn’t let her. We pulled together as a team. We scheduled daily meetup to update each other on the status of the event and did some finishing touches on things to be presented to the public. I, together with my friends spent our waking hours sending out emails and making phone calls to the media, schools and NGOs to come celebrate our first major event. It was such a great experience working together. There were only 6 of us left in the team, so we became really close.
When my teacher saw how hard we worked, he knew straight away that we were not the problem in the team, Mindy was. Throughout the time we’ve been preparing for the event, Mindy did not show up once. She knew about the meet ups as we wrote about it on the Facebook group page and she was on Facebook a lot, updating her status and stuff. So that was disappointing.
The day before the event, the team and a group of teachers gathered at the venue to set the whole place up. It was fun being with the teachers and acting wacky with each other. Though, we did wonder whether Mindy would show up to help, it was the day before our big day after all.
Surprise surprise, she didn’t. She did though call me late evening (we were there from 9am to 11pm) and asked if she could come and help. I told her to not come as we were almost finishing, but in reality, we just didn’t need her to be there to spoil the positive vibe.
When the event was about to start the next day, she arrived together with the refugee students. We didn’t really talk to Mindy during the event. As we mingle around with the crowd, she pretended to have fun but I knew she wasn’t having fun at all. In fact, she felt awkward and out-of-place. Our teacher, whom all this while she was trying to ‘kiss ass’ to was giving her the cold shoulders. We didn’t want to make a scene in front of our guests, but Mindy decided that she couldn’t take all of this and pulled me to the side to get the low-down on things.
She asked me why everyone was ignoring her, especially our teacher. I didn’t answer. I asked her why she couldn’t come to the venue the day before to help, and she started to tear up. I knew it was another lie about to hit me.
“I got a phone call in the morning by my sister. My family found a boy in my village and they wanted me to get married with him. I didn’t want to, but I was forced. They told me to visit the boy just now and I did. I wanted to tell you guys about it but I was so ashamed of myself and my family, I couldn’t tell anyone but you. Please don’t tell the others.”
Her friend called me in the morning telling me that Mindy was pissed drunk from drinking last night and couldn’t wake up until late afternoon. Another friend called me up and told me that when Mindy and her had dinner, she told my friend that she skipped helping out because her friends called her to go for an open house (I think it was one for one of the Muslim holidays).
It’s unbelievable you know, to have someone whom you thought was your friend, to look at you straight in the eye, cry even, and telling you lies. In fact, she not only lied to me and my friend, but she also lied to my teacher. Three different stories to three different people who in turn told each other about it and found out together how much of a big fat liar she was. How stupid can you be?
Not only were you drunk at times, but you had the decency to skip meetings to go shopping even though you know those meetings are super important. And because of that, I had to clean YOUR mess. I had to take lashes from the teacher because of what YOU did (or didn’t do). I had to be the one to apologize for YOUR fault. Other people who by the way had nothing to do with the project had to do YOUR job. And yet you have the decency to look at me in the eye and tell me lies? What kind of friend is this?
But on the bright side, the event was great, no thanks to Mindy. I have a feeling that if she was in charge, she’d be ordering people around and kissing ass to the teachers. We had a lot of fun that night, except for Mindy though who spent the night by herself trying to figure out why everyone hated her and what she did wrong. Typical, they would never know their fault and in the end, they’ll go around telling people how much of a victim they are. Heh.
After that night, I decided to delete Mindy off Facebook. I realized finally that she was a toxic friend and it wasn’t worth keeping her as a friend despite how good of a friend she can be sometimes, SOMETIMES. I still do miss her to be honest and wished that she didn’t fuck up our relationship, but none of that matters now. We have moved on. I had moved on.
* Names have been changed.