Would *you* be my friend?

I know.. that sounds like a pretty lame, corny title for a post. Something a la’ Mister Rogers from way back except he said “Would you be my neighbor?” Cue the cardigan sweater and the shoes, please.

My 20 year high school reunion is coming up this fall. And with any upcoming milestone event, the mind always takes a trip down memory lane. I was lucky in that the high school that I attended in the south (before I moved back north BEFORE MY SENIOR YEAR) felt like home to me. I had a core group of wonderful friends whom I loved, teachers who were like second parents to me, and an overall school experience that was pretty good. No big clique-y type fighting… I was pretty much friends with everyone, kind of like a social chameleon.

So it was with my mind trippin’ down memory lane that I started searching for some of my long-lost friends. One in particular popped out as someone with whom I wanted to reconnect. She and I were friends from kindergarten all the way to college, my first best friend. Unfortunately, the crap hit the fan 16 years ago in a horrible chain of events and she and I ceased to be friends. The fault was completely mine. I was a young, self-centered person who didn’t see beyond my own desires. (Insert echoes of “You were the cause of all the family problems” from my estranged mother.)

We connected again via email recently. I apologized for my behavior; it seemed that she accepted my apology. Then, as friends try to do when they have been out of touch for a while, they try to update each other on their lives. I updated her on what had happened to me and my former college roommate (part of the crap hitting the fan that happened 16 years ago). My former college roommate and I had a falling out because I did not attend her bridal shower, and I was asked to be a bridesmaid. So, I was kicked out of the wedding. I made a comment of “oh the tangled web I weave.”

I mentioned this in an email to my newly-rediscovered friend. She responded to me with an email that has sent me spiraling deeper into my depression. She asked me point-blank if I was weaving webs still, or was I done, meaning was I done playing games. She stated that she needs to protect herself and her future. I responded with if I had come off as a “player” like that, someone who was still self-centered and stupid,  I was truly sorry. The web comment was in reference to my life and how tangled it is.

I am now mired deep into my pit, mulling over if I am even fit to be a friend. I still have all these tender battle wounds from growing up that I thought had healed. I’m self-conscious of being in groups because when I see someone sharing a knowing glance with someone, I think that they’re thinking about me, and commenting about how odd I am.

So am I living a double life of being such a stellar friend to my online friends when I hardly have any “in real life friends”? I honestly meant what I wrote in my 6 word memoir- “She loved others more than herself.”

Now with these current turn of events, I really question why anyone would want me around.

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14 responses

  1. I think she totally mis-took the “tangled web” comment and just needs to chill out a bit. Perhaps there IS a reason that you two had a falling out/misunderstanding so long ago? Personally, I might consider just moving on …

  2. Arf, I hate being a woman and being friends with women and maybe just women. Well, maybe I’m exaggerating but what is it that turns the supportive friendship of grown women into playground bitching and bullying?

    I agree with BookMama btw.

    Maybe she took it as “what a tangled web we weave … when we practice to deceive” and wondered what you were deceiving her about?

    Anyway, I’m still your friend 😉

  3. Honestly, don’t give too much stock to someone who has not spoken to you in 16 years. You made a mistake, that doesn’t mean you have to give her your first born. We all make mistakes. We are all human and I can guarantee this lady has burned some bridges of her own. We all are guilty of it.

    Focus on your husband and kids; everything else is secondary. Everything, and everyone.

    Have an awesome weekend ~m!

  4. She probably was trying to make a joke, nothing personal, I hope. Greybeard and I have been touching on the same topic of friends as of late also. On-line, it’s easier. In the real world, for me anyway, it’s always a “OK, lets do this” then I cancel because I stress out about doing things with people. I wonder about my selfishness sometimes.

    I think it’s just part of our psycho psyche; we funnel in so much of other peoples problems, that we just can’t handle being around all those open wells of issues. I don’t know. But what I do know is I’m past the point of going out of my way of not being myself with people, so I won’t force myself into making others happy if it makes me unhappy.

    And I do know that if we were neighbors, we’d be sharing a cup of coffee everyday, and talking about our kids….and our blogging buds. Your a good person, don’t forget it!

  5. Wow! I’m with misterbooks…I too know if we were neighbors we’d hang out a lot. Stuff happens when we are young and dumb. That stuff is what molds us into who we are today. And today you are an amazing, thoughtful woman. Maybe it is just time to move on from those days and look to the future with those who are going to be positive in your life.

  6. You seem like a very caring and loving person, the kind that anyone would be lucky to have as a friend. But I know what you mean about finding it easier to be friends online that IRL – I’m in the same boat. I wish I had some magical words of advice for you, but all I can offer is a virtual HUG. 🙂

  7. You gotta get out of rehash mode…NOW! That’s a pit I have yet to climb out of, but you WERE out (mostly). Please don’t go back in.
    You are not the person you were before. You have proven to be a good friend over and over again. I see the comments you get and give, and I know your family needs who you’ve become too.

  8. Thanks everyone. I really do appreciate the support and love here. It is still emotional for me because, as Arkay said, I’m in “rehash” mode (good term.. I’ll have to save that one.)

    And as for the email back-and-forthing… she said that I didn’t explain the whole story- how she did mention some positive things. But, honestly, when you are in the pit, you don’t want to hear someone lecturing to you about what you need to do first, second, third, etc.

    The blog traffic went up today. I’m guessing it’s because of this post.

  9. Hey BTM-

    There is a reason you haven’t spoken to this woman in years. And there is no need to go back to her now! You have nothing to prove to the people who hurt you in the past, and that may be the piece you have to let go of.
    You apologized for your part of the “break-up,” and that is the only thing you are responsible for. Just because you apologize and forgive does NOT mean you need to have a relationship with the forgiven one! In fact, you can apologize, forgive and accept without even LIKING them! I agree with the others. It is time for you to let go of these past hurts. Take stock of what you have in front of you, and move forward secure in the knowledge that TODAY you are doing the best that you can! Because you ARE!!

    As for getting advice, especially from someone who doesn’t know you or your situation at all…Go AWAY! I hate it when people try to tell me what to do and how to heal myself! That is the problem with depression–it is a common term for a common feeling, therefore people think they know what it is like! As I always say, “Depressed is a feeling. Depression is an illness!” Anyone who has had depressION knows how useless and dismissive it is to tell someone else what they SHOULD do! Give me a break! You are doing great! Keep doing what you are doing and focus on the people you care about who are currently in your life–online or otherwise!

    I can’t wait to have a cup of coffee with you!
    xo-
    etta

  10. Okay, I’m not an expert (at anything *laughing*) but…well, I’ve got to say something here. And I’m certainly not an “expert” in this particular arena as I seem to have “The Kiss of Death” or some such with friendships. Still.

    So (in my opinion) a very long term friend (no…that’s years!) gives you the heave-ho for some blow up over something. Well, come on now. If you’re friends for that long can it not be resolved. Fair enough–maybe not. Again, I have The Kiss of Death so perhaps I should know better than to ask such a “silly” question.

    What I find interesting is that after all of these years, someone still seems to get their knickers in a knot about it. I mean, it was 16 years ago, correct? So…erm…was their some kind of arrested development? Or maybe that’s just me and my stance on forgiveness.

    So, sure. Who the hell am I to judge? I don’t know any of the players but I always like to have an opinion. Why not? It makes life more interesting, right?

    Okay…you flaked on the shower. It may have meant a great deal (apparently–you got the boot from the wedding entirely–WTF?!?!) but again…16 years ago!!!

    I’m sorry. Maybe this is just a sore spot with me as I’ve gotten shafted by so many friends before for so many weird reasons. In all relationships, two to tango and all of that but let’s be reasonable here! I always take the blame for anything and everything that goes wrong–I know I do–but with this…to hang on to some “root cause” that to me seems…well, completely forgivable?

    Don’t get it.

    And you made me laugh about your stats going up. BWAH-HA-HA! Trickle down effect…now people will come and check out who this whacko is as I spouted off here *PA laughs again*

    Yeah, who’s that mouthy broad?!

    Actually, I just looked at your sidebar and you have that “Rating” widget. OMG. I’d be scared to put that up. Everyone might say I totally suck! I’d have a two or something. *PA laughs*

  11. MG, sounds like she isn’t ready to let it go… so just let her go. I personally can’t understand people wanting to go to high school reunions, but then again, that’s just me — I had no use for those people then, and I sure don’t now LOL! I agree with some of the other comments — if you haven’t interacted with them for 16 years, why start now? Personal opinion? IRL friends aren’t always what they are cracked up to be…

  12. Those people don’t exist anymore. The illusions presented by childhood friendships are especially difficult to come to terms with. Nevertheless, those people are long gone. There is no picking up where you left off. Sounds good. Doesn’t work like that though.

  13. But in all seriousness, God gave you a middle finger for a reason.

    Use it. Thats not advice, thats a fucking order.

    Screw everyone else, sweetie, you’re gonna figure shit out on your own, keep focused on whats important, the rest will follow suit. Easier said than done, but you know what I mean.

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