I've been able to hide my youthful indiscretions better than the average university student and my reputation has come out rather unscathed. Admittedly, I have been lucky, not smart.
While I can't say I am fond of this new friend's past (let's call him X), the past should not be the only determining factor in learning about a person and calling them a friend. People can, and do, change and if my friends based their friendship with me on my past...I don't believe I'd have any friends left. I do realize that I could be totally off-base with my assessment of X and decide he's a jerk in the future, but I'm not usually that wrong about people.
I was recently judged based on my past behaviour, which admittedly deserved judgement but this time, I was left crying foul. While I could understand this person's (nickname: E) position, I felt it was unfair and that I have attempted to show that I have changed
I realized, because of my stupid decision, how much I could hurt people and so, I've attempted to change my attitude in many areas. My friendships are much more valuable now but also, my family relationships are the most important thing to me and I try not to take them for granted.
I realized that, while E may not be happy with this decision to hang out with X (confused yet?), she is looking at it from the perspective of what happened last time. I can understand that and so I'm just stepping back from her and giving her time to see there is a difference in my attitude.
I truly do care if she gets hurt and I actively don't want that to happen. I care about my friends and especially more about my family. I also care about the right decision for me...not just the 'right now' decision.
I was forced, albeit it without a comment from X, to eat crow (the veggie version which may very well be a brussel sprout) and admit that I have been judgmental and at times, rather rude. Furthermore, I realized more about myself and had an amazing day in the city.
Being judged is one of the things I have been upset with E about. Talk about a huge helping of humble pie.
So, here's to new friendships and to preserving old one's but mostly, here's to knowing the right decision and sticking with it.