The Crutch and the Injured
There is something about the crutch and the injured.
When a man sustains a leg injury, he his treated accordingly and sometimes given a crutch to assist him in walking for the meantime. He needs the crutch for that period because he can’t place full weight on the fractured leg. If he does, he is likely to do more damage to it. The crutch therefore serves as a walking aid for him pending the time he can gain full use of legs. Once, the leg heals up and is declared fit to be used without support by the medical expert, the crutch outlives its usefulness and is discarded by the user. Just like that! No thanks for the service rendered or thought of the value it added.
Such is the thankless service a crutch renders. The analogy of the injured and his crutch is instructive and metaphorical. The crutch and the injured are in a kind of relationship, no matter how short-lived.
One can liken the relationship between the crutch and the injured to a form of friendship that exists between two parties in the real world.
Apart from the crutch-needing friend (who is our focus), we have the friend for all season who is always there come rain come shine. The fair-weather friend is only available when things are smooth sailing with you. Some friends are merely special interest friend – they are your friends because you have a common interest in something. The toxic friend only pretends to be of help to you but is actually out for your downfall. There are those who you can call the good-time friends – they are only there for stress relief. You may equally have the spiteful kind of friend who is always secretly resentful of your progress and considers you a threat.
Having taking a look at a number of shades of friends there is, we shall return to our crutch-and-the-injured kind of friendship and examine its dynamic. At the end of this epistle, you should be able to know if you are into one and discern if you still wish to continue with it. You see, the crutch is who I consider as the victim of a relationship/friendship while the injured is the winner takes all. One who in Nigerian pidgin, is referred to as the chop-clean-mouth individual. He breezes in, feeds on its (his) prey and disappears into thin air.
Let’s separate the wheat from the chaff:
The injured is
a circumstantial appendage – he only attaches himself to the other party in the friendship when the need arises. He is the type of friend that will only call or visit you when there is something he wants from you.
a parasite – always taking from you without giving anything in return
an hypocrite – whenever he available, he will always pretend to be concerned about how you’ve been faring. But don’t let his show of effusion fool you… With/for him, there is always a catch.
an opportunist – he takes advantage of your availability, generosity, and service to advance his own condition
situational – he suddenly becomes overtly friendly when an event that may be of personal benefit to him presents itself
The crutch is however
readily available – always looking for a way to help even at his inconvenience
dispensable – done away with once the reason for its need is accomplished
always at the receiving end – ever seen what the tail end of a wooden crutch looks like after its period of service elapses?
often gullible – easily deceived and used
A friendship relationship is essentially designed to be symbiotic – the parties involved adding value to each other. Also, while the need to seek help from the other party is a giving in friendship, it should not be a basis on which the friendship exists. The crutch-needing friend (the injured) is all for self-aggrandisement. His purpose for establishing a friendship relationship with the other party is solely for what such a one can do for him. He is a shameless individual who has no sense of propriety. Friendship with such a fellow is a race without rewards.
When you have so-called drop-by friends who only check on you when they need a favour, who are ‘Oliver Twists’ – never putting anything on the table but always ‘asking for more’, whose displays of effusion are always for the catch, here is a free advice for you: Weed them out of your life cos they can be up to no good!