I have to write about this. I need a place to put all these conflicted feelings. This will be the last time I write about this topic, so please bear with me. I welcome any insight or shared experiences in the comments.
My best friend has ended our friendship completely. It feels like one of those things where you have an argument with someone that escalates so quickly and turns into a huge blow up, where everyone is left at the end totally hurt and you have no idea how you even got to this point or what even started the fight to begin with. Only in this situation, there was no argument and no big blow up. Someone just decided to walk away. And it wasn't me.
I wrote earlier today a small blurb about how my friend completely lashed out at me when she asked the night before about doing something and I stated I already had plans. I did not want to say the wrong thing and make things worse, although I kept having this nagging feeling that no matter what I said it was going to be the wrong thing or it wouldn't even matter. And I was right. I actually consulted with an older (in age) friend of mine who tends to have much better perspective on these types of situations. She has a way of looking at things from both sides and generally gives pretty good advice on how to handle things and not make a situation worse.
Without rehashing every single thing that was said, there were a few key things that sort of came up/ came to light:
My friend is going through some issues of her own in regards to her situation in life right now. Single with no kids, and over the past few months her last 2 other single friends have settled down and gotten married. The last girl in our "group" from high school is having her first baby. She mentioned being the only one who has none of those things. This is all her issue though because neither I nor none of our other friends would ever make her feel less or not include her or anything like that simply because she isn't a parent. No one has ever even made an issue out of this, so I don't know where this is coming from.
She is unhappy about her own life and instead of trying to make changes to make herself happy, she is choosing to make it everyone else's fault and responsibility to make her happy and give her life fulfillment. Which no one can do for you.
She thinks that I talk to and see everyone else I know but her. This couldn't be further from the truth. The last time I went out in the evening anywhere it was with her and another high school friend of ours. I simply don't have the time or the bank account to be a social butterfly.
Every single thing that she is upset about is completely my fault. She has not done anything at all to contribute to the state of things. I did not play the tit for tat game and took the high road and never said any of the things I could have about her behaviors or anything else. I did not want to make things worse. It wouldn't have mattered if I had.
That I am a terrible friend for not responding to texts in a timely enough manner, especially when I am at work. Well. Besides the fact that I am, ya know, at WORK, I don't actually have a desk job where my phone sits right next to me. I don't carry my phone with me, and I run all over the hospital. In my main area, we have spotty to no cell reception and texts lag behind or get lost a lot of the time. My own husband has to email me because I have a better shot at seeing that at some point than a text. The exception is iPhone to iPhone since they can use the wifi. Which is also super spotty in my main area.
That I hurt her by mentioning texting any of our other friends because I don't talk to her enough, so naturally I shouldn't talk to anyone else, either. I don't even know what to say about that. Other than I barely text with anyone else to begin with, and in the specific situation she was referring to, it was in regards to a shower evite where hers and my email addresses used were our old ones, I figured all this out, corrected the sender, and let her know what happened to keep her in the loop so she didn't get left out.
I tried being sympathetic and empathize with her and acknowledge that I knew our relationship was different now, but by nature it had to be. I tried to let her in to where I was coming from, that my "time" isn't really my time and that it takes a lot to balance the family I have. I apologized for the way she felt and said that I was doing the best I could. I tried explaining that of course at some point the paths we chose for our lives were not always going to be able to match up. I tried being reasonable and respond to each thing she told me that I "did" that hurt her and give the side that she missed or didn't see. I apologized over again and said it was never my intention to make her feel less than when she said she felt that I didn't want to be bothered with her because she doesn't have kids. I tried being rational when she said it hurt her I had plans with another friend today...plans in the middle of a weekday when she would normally be working, when I didn't even know she would be off of work on a random Thursday.
She told me to "not break her heart anymore" and keep my teen, her god daughter away from her. I gently reminded her that I was not the one who promised a birthday dinner and cancelled at the last minute, and never tried to reschedule with her. She claims to be in an understanding with my teen, but my teen still feels slighted and confused about things. And I would not ever put my child in the middle, to insinuate that is just beyond hurtful and ridiculous, but again I didn't say anything.
I did not fight with her. I did not say anything mean or nasty or hurtful. I left any old or extraneous things out of it. And she ended the friendship anyway, saying "good luck with the new baby" and that she was honest and doesn't feel bad for anything, and that I spoke my piece too and we could just move on.
I never truly thought ending the friendship was an option or possibility. I only ever said I knew right now I couldn't be the same kind of friend. I guess what I can offer right now isn't good enough and she would rather just end the friendship than settle for less. It is interesting to me that she has taken this stance with me but yet lets guys walk all over her and use her and still keeps them around, but yet I am expendable.
I have never ended a friendship or had one ended intentionally. What I have experienced is a natural progression of friendships that evolve and change over time. There are people who I used to know well at some point in my life, but as we move through life they fall away or we lose touch and it's no one's fault really it is just life. I have never gotten so upset about my place in someone's life where I was so inclined to just say screw it and actually end a friendship. I generally understand that this is how life goes, and I am busy enough in my own life to not have any one friendship define me or be the be all end all. I have never felt the need to be so extreme. I guess I just don't see the point or the sense in just cutting off a friendship completely because it can't be exactly the same as it once was, or it can't be exactly what you want it to be. There is a difference between accepting that that's life and that these things happen and it's not anyone's fault. I guess for me the people in my life I would rather have in my life the way they can give me versus an ultimatum that it has to be a certain way or else. I would rather have my friends knowing I can send a quick text and get some support anytime I need it versus not having them in my life at all because they can't be available every Wednesday and Saturday night to hang out with me, you know?
I didn't make the choice to end this friendship. It isn't a choice I would have ever made. I feel very sad that this was the choice she felt she had to make, that if I couldn't offer her a full committed best friend relationship then she didn't want any relationship at all. I feel upset that I wasn't good enough, or enough. I don't really understand why she felt she needed to end our friendship. I also am confused as to why it is okay for our other friends to get a pass because they have crazy lives, but I don't. That I am held to some other unattainable standard but no one else is, and it's okay for everyone else but I just cause her hurt and heartbreak so I can't be her friend. I truly think at the end of the day it has more to do with her than it has to do with me or anything I may have done or not done. I just wish it didn't play out this way.
- I am an insane human being. I have been a wife for 15 plus years, and a mom for almost as long. I had 3 children early on...then struggled with life and IF and loss for 8 years. Thought our family was complete, so I compensated by adopting all the shelter pets. Then we were surprised that our luck changed. Our running total is Parents: 2, Kids: 5, Pets:4. My life is far from perfect, and much of our happiness was hard fought and won, from the death of a parent, job loss and marriage troubles, miscarriage and IF, we have been through it all, and dare I say we made it, with a lot of love and laughter, and not taking ourselves too seriously.