Getting pushed aside

QUESTION: Masters, my best friend of 25 years has been undermining my relationships with all my friends because of a manuscript I recently completed based on some historical research which she had done. It was supposed to be a joint effort but she never had time. I finished it after four years without her help. She said she wanted to edit and change it to her liking. I didn’t think her suggestions were appropriate. She then took my 20 songs and had people record them, telling them I couldn’t write music so they would have to work to make them better. She seemed resentful when I told her I didn’t approve. I don’t know what to do, I don’t want to lose all my friends. My husband says to let it go. I don’t know how to do that. Loyalty has always been very important to me. This kind of trust and eventual betrayal has been a repeating pattern in my life. It is always so very painful to wake up and realize that it has happened once again. I don’t know how I keep creating this. ~Jamie, USA

ANSWER: This so-called friend of yours is a bully and control freak. She wants to be acknowledged as an expert and fantastic person. She frequently rides on the successes of others and takes all the credit. Her way of doing things is to discredit and intimidate those whose work she claims.

This is just another chapter of your life lessons about loving yourself and accepting your magnificence. You are always ready to believe what others say and what they want you to do, thinking they have your interests at heart. Because you want others to accept you as an honest and caring person, you blindly take all people as you want them to be without questioning their motives. This leaves you open to being played and manipulated as they desire.

You have come a long way, but you are still not confident in your own abilities and look to others for a sense of self. You can be betrayed only when you set yourself up for the betrayal. After all this time you should be aware of the symptoms when the action begins. You deny what you are feeling when the manipulation starts and then are “shocked” when the action is completed.

You need to begin to live in the moment and question the motives of others. One of your lessons is called discernment. It is to feel exactly what is behind the actions of others. It is sensing what your part is in a situation and making decisions based on what you desire, not what others want.

Letting go is acknowledging what has happened and making the decision not to allow it again. Assign no blame; just be grateful you recognized the pattern so it can’t happen again.