Unless you live under a rock you have heard the story of Kenneka Jenkins, the young lady who was found in a freezer in the Crowne Plaza hotel in Chicago. This story has had twitter and social media in a frenzy. She left with a group of friends to attend a party and never came home. Follow any of the hashtags to follow the story. Regardless of the distorted facts one fact remained is that she had some extremely horrible “friends” and that she was being brought there to be raped.
Now I have seen the memes floating about how her death and rape has sparked the whole be careful of your friends movement but it makes it seem as if the rapist and murdered of Kenneka deserves a pass? My thoughts are on what planet? Just because people are using this story to remind others about their choice of friends that doesn’t mean that the rapists and murder whomever they may be are fine. The way the information is spilling, the rapists and murders can be her friends. Everyone in that hotel room should be charged. Hands down. I will not dispute that. It’s not a matter of being in the wrong place at the wrong time. Everyone who live streamed it, turned the music to muffle Kenneka’s cries, participated, set it up, and carried it out should be charged. AND you should STILL watch your friends.
I placed myself in the place of a mother. I am a mother in real life. I have two daughters. My oldest child is very lovable and already possesses the thoughts that her friends are great. However as her mother teaching her right from wrong I am the voice until she has a voice on whom is not for her. Yes, even at 8 I have had to call out a few of the mean girls. My daughter goes to private school which means for the most part her classes are small and most of the kids in her class have already been together since Kindergarten. They hang together in and out of the classroom. If you think that I as a mother am not in her ear telling her, pointing out, and calling out her fake friends you are sadly mistaken. We ALL have had to deal with those who we thought was real and found it wasn’t remotely true.
I was asked this week have I ever had to deal with fake friends and the answer is HELL YES. My eyes were opened AFTER something went down. Whether that was hearing of stories being said tabout me, being left at a party, etc, it has happened. Or the times I have had a circle of friends who were really friends because we had one mutual friend involved and heard some crap about me that I didn’t tell the group. These are the very recipes for fake friends. I do not think Kenneka realized that until her unfortunate death. I said on my SnapChat and I will say it again, its not just the teenagers we need to worry about it’s the young girls that are my oldest daughters age that already show mean girl attributes. It’s the grown women who keep stuff going well into their 40s and up. This mean girl mentality can begin at any age. It doesn’t discriminate so while others are pointing their fingers at Kenneka, remember to re-evaluate your own circle.
Listen cutting off friends is hard. It hurts. It makes your circle smaller. Here are a few things to watch for:
- The “leader” that likes to control off the cards aka the information that is given to the group. My rule of thumb is that just because we share a mutual friend don’t bring me no news about someone I don’t pick up the phone and call myself. Do you know how many people talk that let’s pray for her crap and ain’t been in church a month of Sundays. Stop believing the that’s my sis crap. That same sis is the same one when you get on hard times will give your information to people who don’t even know you. Rule of thumb even in a group setting, let others tell their own business. Stop giving in the name of friendship other’s information unless you have permission.
- When one or more lie about inviting another but talk about how that one don’t come. I had that happen recently. I found out that after all this talking about one “friend” went down the girl wasn’t even invited but the “leader” told everyone they were and then talked bad about them for not coming. IF they will do it to one they will do it to all
- Be still sometimes. We go to things without asking the right questions. If you feel something isn’t right, trust what you say and have your own mind.
These are the lessons that even at 8 I have had to share with my daughter. These will NOT solve fake friends problems but it will open eyes. We believe anything. Just because you know someone for a long time don’t always mean they have your best interest in heart. Also to my men you play a HUGE part in some of this. For the men who use women as bait, stop. Start having conversations with your son and other young men about respect. Too many women trying to protect each other but not having men stand and rally behind them to do the same. Sorry your fragile egos can’t take a no but remember at some point, this could have been your daughter, mother, cousin, etc. Keneeka is all of us and I have the deepest sympathy for that mother and family. I pray that the ones who did this, will come forward and take responsibility soon. R.I.P Kenneka Jenkins!!