We all have friends. All our friends have hopes and dreams. Some may be pipe dreams (toasters, movie producing) and some may be legit (cabaret, alcohol), but a dream is a wonderful thing to have and when your friends are shooting for the stars, you have to show up and support them. Yes, even if you secretly (or publicly) don't believe their hopes and dreams will work out.
The Real Housewives of New York City Season 10 reunion kicked off Wednesday night and Ramona Singer dove right in on Bethenny Frankel, who failed to show up to support Ramona at a party for the launch of her new skincare line.
What skincare line? Bethenny wonders.
Here's how it played out on the reunion: Ramona accuses Bethenny of making fun of Sonja Morgan's many failed attempts at launching a business. Bethenny denies it. Everyone piles on Bethenny, because she did poke fun, and it is on camera.
Whatever, that's old news, Bethenny gets to the point. "I speak around the country to women about business and I think it is not ethical to pretend to women at home that it’s just so easy to get these hair extensions and restaurants...She [Ramona] says she’s a maven of everything but she’s not a maven."
(Ma·ven; ˈmāvən/ an expert or connoisseur.) Is Ramona a maven? Dunno, but the question will haunt me until the end of time. Maven. Ma-ven. Mavenmavenmaven. I just turned into butterfly and fluttered away.
Ramona shoots back that she's "finalizing the formulations" for whatever concoction she's claiming will makes her face look decades younger — and she does look good.
Bethenny makes sure to add that Ramona's still "looking for someone to create them," because Bethenny is a self-admitted know-it-all who has to tell Ramona exactly how it is.
But to Ramona, it's so much more. "I mean really Bethenny, why can’t you support me?" she asks, getting to the heart of the matter. Through the screeches and shouts of the six women on two couches, she tells Bethenny loud and clear, "You don’t know how to have friends." Then Ramona ends the shouting match by telling the Skinnygirl founder her "t**s are fake." Uh, yeah, we know. Everyone knows. And, like how did we get here? How did we jump from "Say hi to Mario" to Bethenny's boobs? It was like watching a plane trying to land with one engine on fire. You pray everyone will land safely, but you're also kind of fascinated. Oh, also Andy Cohen is the pilot telling the whole plane from the cockpit that he "wants to hear her f--king answer!"
These two have failed to show up for each other, but in reality, it is possible to disagree with a friend and still support them.
The question of how to support a friend even when you disagree with something they did (in this case it would be Bethenny accusing Ramona of trying to dupe the public into believing she has a skincare line) is even raised on Quora. One reader asks how to be supportive of a friend even if you don't agree.
"You can support him without actually changing your stance, tell them that you'll be there for them as your disagreement doesn't change your friendship. It's perfectly normal not to agree with certain points without a friendship falling apart," says one commenter.
Another gets the point, but the example is a little bananas. "Support your friend but don't support the behavior in which you have an issue. For instance, if your friend wants to rob a bank, don't support the behavior by driving him there. Support your friend by visiting him in jail after he's caught."
Irene S. Levine, PhD., psychologist and friendship expert, tells Personal Space that it’s hard to dash someone else’s dreams, whether it’s a friend or family member.
"Your friend may feel that you don’t have confidence in him/her or that you’re jealous, etc." Irene says. "The most important thing you can do is to listen to a friend so they are able to express their dreams without feeling threatened. By talking about plans and dreams (and thinking out loud), many people
can pinpoint problems and inconsistencies they hadn’t considered before. You can also ask questions to help them to clarify their thinking and to recognize potential pitfalls themselves. You might also direct
your friend to information or suggest other options that seem more grounded.
"In the end, you have to recognize that everyone deserves to follow his/her own passions. Consider the possibility, too, that your friend’s dream may be more realistic than you think it is. If your friend does wind up disappointed because a dream turns out to be a pipedream, you can acknowledge that it took some courage and effort to give it a try - and that they likely learned something in the process."
Business Woman Media has tackled the topic in an advice piece titled, "How To Support a Woman Even If You Don't Agree With Her," and what they say is helpful.
"As women, we need to learn how to work with or communicate with women we don’t agree with — without abusing them, telling them their opinions are rubbish or bitching about them behind their backs," they advise. "We need to support a woman’s right to choose a path, a belief, a role — whether we agree with that choice or not...Women need to support the freedom of choice and accept that supporting a woman’s right to have a voice doesn’t always mean you accept what the views being voiced."
Hear that ladies? In other words, just show up for your friend. Even if her formulations are still being finalized.
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