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SECRETS’ CORNER: A winning loss

Sherie Holder-Olutayo

SECRETS’ CORNER: A winning loss

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Nothing can account for a person’s attitude.
One day they’re your biggest advocate and the next, your greatest enemy.
This can be particularly hurtful if these same two people have been friends for a while, and have weathered the ups and downs of life together. Very often it’s our friends that we turn to when we’re facing challenges in life and naturally we expect them to always be there in our corner.
So when something happens to upset a tried and true friendship, it can be surprising and devastating at the same. Somewhere in the back of our minds we always expect our friends to be our friends till the end of time.
That’s why when this week’s Secrets’ Corner broached the subject of friendships we thought that it would have sparked a great deal of interest.
This week’s question is: A good friend purchased some items from a store and tossed the receipt away. You find it and make her aware of an ongoing promotion in which she shows no interest. You say you will use it to enter, especially since you are in dire financial straits. It just so happens that you win the grand cash prize and it is just enough to put you back on track. Your friend, on hearing the news, demands half the money since it was her receipt. Are you obligated to share on principle? Can she dictate how much you should give? And if you don’t pay up will this ruin a good friendship?
In all fairness, you are not obligated to share the cash prize because you told your friend about keeping the receipt and she showed no interest in the ongoing promotion. Nor did you hide the fact that you were going to enter the promotion because you were in dire financial straits. So when fate smiled on you, perhaps your friend’s reaction should have been the opposite of what it was.
It seems that many of our online readers felt that way as well. Here’s what some of them had to say:
• “And if you don’t pay up will this ruin a good friendship? What kind of friend would place such a demand, especially given the circumstances?. And you dare to ask if you don’t pay up if this will ruin a good friendship? Well, I treasured your friendship, but since the feeling doesn’t appear mutual, it was nice knowing you!
• A good friend would know that you are broke, and if she would demand your money then she is not a friend. She is not entitled to any of the money, and you do not have to give her. If she would lose you friendship over that, then it is no point trying to keep her.
• Look, if it was me, and I had won I would have given her some of the money just because she’s my friend, even though she was being a bit silly about sending in the application (receipt). However, her demanding me to give her money would not sit well with me at all. And if that would destroy our friendship, then that means we couldn’t really be friends in the first place.
• Wait . . . she wasn’t interested and now she wants half. I would ignore her and keep all.
But while most of the comments fell along this line, there was one that questioned submitting the receipt in the first place:
• Wouldn’t it have been illegal for me to submit the receipt in the first place since I did not actually make a purchase?