Be a better friend: 5 simple goals for 2014

Dear Toni,

This new year couldn’t come fast enough! I just found out that my ex-boyfriend has been sleeping with one of my close girlfriends for quite some time, and now all my other friends are upset with me. I feel that this close friend violated my trust, but the rest of the women in our circle think that I just need to get over it. I couldn’t care less about my ex, but what I do care about is common decency. If nobody thought there was anything wrong with this situation, then why was keep it a secret from me for so long? Instead of making New Year’s Resolutions, maybe all I need is a new group of friends?


Dear R.S.,

Friends sleeping with exes? Judgmental besties? Sounds like reality television.

The thing is, I grew up abiding by certain inalienable rules. For example: Don’t go barefoot in the winter and never ever sleep with a friend’s ex. But today, the rules are slightly skewed. In fact, at this point in time, the only rule that seems to apply among women is, All is fair in love and war, and the first female to the altar wins.

I share your disappointment. I, too, experienced something similar several years ago with a friend and frequent roommate when I was modeling in Los Angeles. At one point, my neighbor called and told me that my so-called friend was having sleepovers with my ex-boyfriend when I was out of town. I confronted her with this information, she denied it, and I asked her to leave. Then, somehow, I became the bad guy in the eyes of our group. I wouldn’t have been half as upset, if only they had been honest about the situation in the first place.

Since then, I have witnessed the tremendous strides in business and politics that women have made. Yet, when it comes to men and, so often, our friendships with other women, we act like it’s Armageddon. For 2014, I’m on a mission to help empower women both personally and professionally. After all, how can women find good men when they aren’t always good to each other?

To your point, let’s not make 2014 about resolutions, but rather, goals.  I’ve devised the following five simple ‘don’ts’ for the New Year. Join me on this journey to better friendships, self-reflection, and female empowerment.


5. Don’t Pay A Compliment Wrapped In An Insult

A friend once said to me, “You have nice wrinkles; I only notice them when you smile.” She should’ve kept that back-handed compliment to herself.

4. Don’t Feed Double Standards

Recently, I overheard some girls bashing Miley Cyrus. “She’s a drug using slut,” they said. But, when talking about Justin Bieber’s similar behavior, their tune changed to, “He’s just young and having fun.” We should hold men and women to the same standards.

3. Don’t Be So Quick To Trash His Ex

I once dated a guy who hated all of his exes, and then I became one of them. I should’ve asked him how someone could hate a person that they used to love so much – and recognized that they were probably women a lot like myself.

2. Don’t Make Gossip A Public Sport

Gossip is our demise. Have a question, comment, or concern about a friend? Sit her down and discuss it with her privately.

1. Don’t Go Another Day Without Saying ‘Sorry’

A couple of weeks ago, I received an apology from an old friend via Facebook.  Though our issue seemed like a big deal at the time, we’ve since grown up and moved on. The gesture inspired me to forgive, reevaluate my own past actions, and make some long overdue apologies.

In conclusion, R.S., let’s start a movement in 2014 and empower women, one friendship at a time.

Happy New Year!

Until next time,


Written for DFW Style Daily

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