peculiar friend

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Nomad, Sep 6, 2016.

  1. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I've posted here before about my friend of thirty years and the change in relationship and some real far out oddities!!!!
    I'm finding it painful.
    She is under profound financial stress. This is largely because her husband lost his job perhaps eight years ago and hasn't truly found another one. Hasn't truly looked. Simply working a very small business that brings in at best a PT income. They still have a big house that they very likely can no longer afford...just crazy, difficult problems.
    In recent times, I've caught her in a few crazy little lies to me.
    So far, I haven't called her on them.
    Maybe I should?
    Sadly, she seems proud of herself when she thinks she has successfully pulled one over on me.
    I feel sorry for her because she is in such a bind.
    And of course at this point I'm beginning to wonder if her husband is an adult Difficult Child??????
    HOw did I miss this?
    Have you ever thought you've known someone and THIRTY years later realized maybe you did NOT?
    Have you ever lost a close friendship over almost nothing?
    Surely long term adversity is likely to change a person. (don't I know it having a Difficult Child)
    Is this drifting apart? No doubt I'lll recuperate, but I'm a bit forlorn.
    Previous to this mess, she has been nothing but kind, HONEST, fun and like a sister to me.
    Things couldn't be weirder these days. Sigh.


    PS....Always a chance I'll ask to delete this if I feel too much personal info. has been revealed.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2016
  2. mof

    mof Momdidntsignupforthis

    She could be lying because of shame or denial....it doesn't seem she is living in reality.

    I'm sure at first you were very supportive of her situation and could feel for their hardships....but 8 yrs...you don't mention he can't work... it you elude he may just lazy..so she enables?

    Two years ago iost a friend due to her financial situation. It's a story...but I watched her for 6 years dig herself deeper....accept handouts..then try to justify it. I watched her home crumple around her...long story she had many resources availed to her.. it chose not to use them.

    Not the same...but the situAtion I could no longer watch.

    It was painful...but realized I was part of her problem...I would help, and the circle continued.

    I hope you can keep your friendship....it's a hard road....you will know whAt to do!
     
  3. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Mof yes to all you said. And I see you've been through something similar. The pain is palatable. She helped me so much with my Difficult Child etc. just listening years ago. But , the last few years in particular have been over the moon peculiar. I think much of it stemming from her husband. But he has an extremely strong influence on her and it seems as if he has a big adult Difficult Child streak himself. I'm hurting. Thank you for your response....it has helped ease the pain.
     
  4. mof

    mof Momdidntsignupforthis

    Nomad,
    I do understand. It was painful....but guess what...We come through it and another friend emerged. Same...no, but I know that some people are in our lives for a specific season, then they aren't. I miss her children....but sadly they will always somehow be taking care of her.

    I can only know that I was honest with both of us.

    Take care...who knows who you may meet! ;)
     
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  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I have lost friends in similarly odd ways. I had a good friend that I did a lot with. She was friends with my mother too, as she was the wife of someone my mom worked with. She got really strange about the time that Wiz did the final meltdown. She was a good friend until then, even through his hospital stay. I think her bad marriage was adding to her mental health issues and she started to see everyone but her parents and one other person as enemies. She became very paranoid and I got really scared about her lack of firearm safety. I grew up with guns and like them as a hobby. But I know myself and I won't have one in my house. When the migraines are really bad I would be very tempted to use one on myself. I also had a violent child who was firearm obsessed.

    Seeing her raising two boys (one who is a Difficult Child) with firearms that have no trigger locks and are not kept locked up scared me. I had to limit her exposure to my kids and that upset her. But with a loaded gun in her purse and another with a clip next to it in her car, I felt she was unsafe. She constantly thought that random men on the street or in stores were 'out to get her' or were 'going to rape her'. It was too much for me, esp when combined with her hoarder tendencies. She told strange lies, and her perceptions of reality were very far from reality.

    She eventually came to the delusion that I was trying to set her up to be raped and killed, and nothing anyone could say could impact her delusion. I have no idea what gave her that idea as at the time I was helping her tile the home she was building. The friendship ended abruptly and I never did find out why, though another friend of hers did say that it was more about her delusions than about anything I had done or not done. She had mentioned that she thought my mother's depression issues might be somehow contagious. My mother was more like a grandmother to her children and it hurt my mother enormously to be cut out of their lives with no warning or reason. I do know she had a huge custody battle because she tried to do the same thing to her husband. She was convinced that he was going to run to India with her boys (he is from India and his family is still there) and regardless of the assurances that both he and the court gave her, she tried to hide the kids from him on several occasions.

    People can be strange and sometimes they do things that make absolutely no sense to me. I hope that in time your friend finds some peace and she can be more honest with you and likely with herself. I am sorry you have been hurt this way.
     
  6. Tanya M

    Tanya M Living with an attitude of gratitude Staff Member

    Nomad,

    I have a had a relationship of many years turn sour.
    Thirty years is a long time and people change, sometimes for the better and sometimes for the worse.
    It sounds like your friend has gone through some very difficult life changing events with her husband and their finances.
    Only you can decide how much you are willing to put up with. If it were me, I would gently call her out on the lies. It's my guess that she is doing this to try and make her situation not seam as bad as it may be.

    It is hard when we have had someone in our life for so many years only to drift apart but sometimes that is just the natural course.

    I like the saying below.
    [​IMG]
     
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  7. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    Nomad

    I also have lost some very close friends over the years and do not know why. I have always thought of my girlfriends as my family since I lost both of my parents by the age of 17 and was very alone in the world.

    Thinking back though, there was nothing that I could have done differently. I agree with Tanya - that some people are in our life for a reason and then move on.

    I think it is very painful when a friendship ends unexpectedly. I do think your friend had some major issues with paranoia it seems.
     
  8. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I have brief moments of pain, but generally speaking, am doing better. It's been extraordinarily difficult, but I don't "do" lies. I have called her out on the lying and inappropriate behavior before. She did not apologize. I'm tired. I will always hold a special place for her in my heart. This is someone who normally is a fabulous, caring and honest person. And, I think if things improve in her life, she will be back to her old self. But, this has been a shock. I,have been through some crazy crxp over the years. Loss of income, death in the family, my own health problems, serious heavy duty major depressing crxp with our Difficult Child. To the best of my knowledge, although I may have been depressed, I didn't act like this. Yes, everyone is different. But, this sure is shocking, disturbing and perhaps revealing. Lies, layers and layers of problems, bizarre behaviors, false pride. I don't know. I'm pulling back from the friendship. It's crazy painful. I sure am appreciative of all the good years. I am not expecting anything. Maybe things will be different inthe future. I don't know. It is what it is. Geez, I appreciate these posts. I was very lucky to have a wonderful close friend for all these years. No clue if it will return. No clue if I will have something like this again. Geez, it freaking hurts. I will do my best to concentrate on gratefulness. It may not sound like it, but I'm doing better today.

    PS I too lost my mom young. A close female friend was a wonderful support for me. I hope I was a good support system for her all those years too.
     
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  9. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I'm sorry you're struggling with this Nomad. It's sad when a friendship falters and possibly ends.

    I agree with Tanya and mof, your friend may be saving face......in the final analysis, it actually may have nothing at all to do with you, however, you are impacted.

    A very good friend of mine went through a tumultuous financial upheaval for a couple of years where she almost lost everything. During that time she became depressed and angry and we had a falling out. We didn't speak for a long time, maybe 2 years. We ran into each other at a social event and she shared that she had been depressed and didn't know it and had acted badly. She was sincere and apologetic. We reconciled and everything worked out. She herself had not recognized how the situation was impacting her and did not acknowledge at the time that she was depressed. She had denied her feelings and was unaware of how it impacted others.

    I think when people are going through that level of fear and anxiety, it sure can impact their personality in profound ways. Your friend may not be willing to own her feelings or be open to you calling her on her lies, at least right now when it sounds like she's in the thick of it. Pulling back may be your best option for the moment.
     
  10. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    thank you again
    I'm just going to pull back a bit. It's been too straining.
    Not going to get into an argument, make any announcements or declarations
    I'm hoping things improve for her and I'll see what happens.
    I totally agree that her fear, anxiety, stress...it's got to be through the roof.
    I am deeply concerned for her.
    I feel better and I''m so appreciative of all the very helpful input here!!! :)
     
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  11. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I agree with this with one exception.
    If it were me I think I would try to respond to each little lie as it arises by commenting something simple and non-threatening. Like, "that doesn't sound right to me. I thought you said x was y."

    In that way you are not left holding the lie or the contradiction. It is not you who has to make sense of the discrepancy or the confusion. The issue you are having now is that you are left holding the bag--over and over again. You are not being true to yourself--or to her--by keeping silent. In the moment.

    What I would not do is say something like: I am troubled by the way you keep telling me little lies. I would challenge them one by one, innocently, not to challenge her, but to assert your understanding of what is happening. It is a question of your integrity towards yourself, not a question of her integrity. Her integrity is none of your business. Your integrity is your business.

    You asked me, Nomad, to comment upon your situation, and I will even though in the time it took me to get back to you, you have already handled it. Here goes.

    I believe the course of action, pulling back a little, is mature and well-thought. At least, I would hope I would do the same. You seem to have considered many variables. Her situation and conflicts and her difficulty in dealing with the pressure. Your own vulnerability--the extent you might have been seeking in this friendship how to deal in part with what you have lacked, and support to deal with the pressures of your own life.

    Is that not what friendship is?
    Now, with this I find myself thinking of my own sister who is positively gleeful when she can put somebody at a disadvantage or use their vulnerability to score a deadly hit.

    At the same time I have to admit to revenge fantasies when somebody has hurt me although I try hard to not act on them and hope I have been successful.

    If your friend's situation is difficult and precarious, and she struggles to hold it together I can see how she would find it difficult if your own seems altogether too comfortable. I have often been in both the poorer category but as many times in the richer one, too. I find that there are people that take pot shots, who cannot bear somebody else having anything at all.. Rich people who cannot bear that a poorer one have even one thing that makes them advantaged--when they have it all.

    When I was leaving that last (stupid) job, there was envy of me, that I could leave. Some people feel they must work--when the reality is that they choose to see themselves as requiring x quantity of dollars, which is an arbitrary number, not always based upon necessity per se, but something altogether different.

    A very nice lady asked me "can I ask you how much retirement money you make?" I answered her. She responded: "Is that all?"

    The thing is, she feels trapped and cannot understand how I could assert my freedom when she would be afraid to. I do not think she wanted to hurt me. But it did sting. I felt put down or foolish or poor--when the reality was I was the object of envy. People are peculiar.
    Yes I have. Many. I am actually quite jaded now of friendships.
    I do not think it is financial difficulty per se that is giving your friend trouble. It sounds as if she is having trouble responding to the straits she is finding herself in. Not the straits themselves. She may have an ineffective, weak or lazy husband. She may not want to confront this reality. Maybe she does not want to be alone. And fears if she confronts it, she will risk her marriage. She may want to persist on believing herself (or presenting herself contrary to reality) to be privileged or well to do, when the reality is otherwise.

    Another woman could respond by saying to her husband and to herself: Our circumstances have changed. We will downsize and call it a win. We have chosen simplicity. We are happier.

    For some reason, she cannot do this.

    I believe our responses to life shape us. Not the events alone, but how we understand and learn from them. What we choose. I see your friend as if caught in a storm at sea and she responds to one wave, and then another, and seems unable to arrive at an understanding of herself and her life or decide upon a course of action that she can hold to, that makes sense to her as honest and true.

    I do not believe that the problem is yours or really has anything to do with you, except that you have not figured out what your response should be to her flailing about. I do not think you have a role in this, except to tell the truth to yourself *and to her every time what she does or says hurts you or confuses you. Not in a mean or blaming or dramatic way. But simply. In the moment. I would not hold onto anything or suppress it because this is when resentment and other noxious feelings build up.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016
  12. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    As usual Copa, Thank you, and I will have to read your response more than once! :)
    Awhile back, although it was extraordinarily difficult, I chose to confront her on something she did that involved what the great majority of people would call very poor taste. Believe me, this was a humongous shock to me as she formally has always been very appropriate and kind.
    Additionally, there were sort of half truths involved in that situation. It was very tough for me to do this. But, I felt that thirty years of friendship could endure a tough conversation. I told her that I thought her behavior was hurtful, that she was inappropriate and less than truthful with me. In my heart of hearts, I knew the majority of this oddball behavior was influenced by her husband. I was greatly surprised by her reaction. A curious one. She did NOT apologize. BUT, she seemed calm and appreciative of my honesty. She tried to make up for the situation (I'm sorry I'm being so cryptic) and a family member told me that she almost fainted when she realized I was responding in a positive way. (As a side note, I think she had tremendous guilt...but in my humble opinion her husband was saying what you/we did was perfectly acceptable...very long yucky story...most would NOT think so)
    For awhile, things were a little better.
    But, she's done a few very curious things since then. They involve social situations. And involve untruths. Since, that previous confrontation didn't result in much in terms of an apology or change, I haven't been motivated to do it again. AND, I seem to feel tremendously sorry for her.
    Like a child who steals bread because they are hungry and if you were to ask them "did you steal this bread?" and if they were to lie...what to do? what to do? I know her well. She knows somewhere deep in her heart...deep down somewhere...that she is NOT getting away with any lies. And I confronted her in the past with something, with little to NO result. No, it doesn't have anything to do with me. She loves her husband. What a situation. I'm beginning to wonder about the mental stability of the man. Also, a nice person...but this is getting too strange for me to accept under any circumstances. Surely, these thoughts have crossed her mind. Surely, family members could be wondering as well. Loss of reputation on top of money problems...good grief! Someday, I might re-address some of these newer untruths with her. Might. AND, I will certainly consider immediately addressing any future ones. She WILL notice I have pulled back and that alone might cause her to avoid such behaviors. I don't know. She has been blessed with very little adversity in life. Sadly, a lot is coming in for her at once. It might be very very tough to process it all at once. So, there are issues she is undoubtedly facing personally as well. I will DEFINITELY seriously consider your idea of gently confronting her, esp if this comes up again.
    PS I misspoke in my first post in this thread. I forgot that I did call her out on something. This was mostly about treating me inappropriately and somewhat about being less than honest.These recent little crazy lies...I have not addressed at all with her.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016
  13. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    You know, Nomad, I am thinking about a couple of things here in my own life. One, what M said to me about that job: You either change yourself or you leave it. You cannot change anybody else.

    This seemed an entirely unsatisfactory thing for him to have told me, until from this, I found a response. I spoke up for myself. Not to change anybody or anything, but to declare my own truth. That is when I told the bosses, who I had gathered together: This is a train wreck. (By this I meant a set up. They provided no promised training or forms. I was undercut in every way as to not even begin.) I told them: I will train myself. My condition is that you stop giving me new patients until I get my bearings.With this I declared the truth of things. For me. I flatly declared them to be responsible for the mess, and accepted that they would do nothing to change it. I would. I wanted to work a few months. I had no expectation of them.

    A couple of months later one of the bosses acted very, very unacceptably. He knew it. I knew it. He was wrong. He was forced to admit it to me some days later, but he had already acted horribly, in a way that I would never, ever accept. It was over for me.

    When I gave him notice he asked me if something was wrong. I had decided the situation was unfixable FOR ME. I would not take responsibility to fix it. It mattered not at all to me to fix the blame where it belonged. What mattered was that I saw I was the responsible party for me. Not him. I knew I had to leave. Because I was unsafe in this job. I knew that not only did nobody have my back, I was actively in danger. I would be abandoned and scapegoated if something happened. I had to take responsibility for myself. I had to have my own back. With this, I could forgive all of them. I was nobody's victim. I realized I could only be my own victim.
    You know this is interesting because I have always believed that people like this are the most vulnerable. They do not develop defenses against hurt and they have very false expectations about life. I feel for her.
    I would try to see this in another way. What you did here was speak your own truth. You told her your point of view. What you spoke was not against her. The only potential adversary here is YOU. How might you be the adversary? By holding her responsible to protect you. By not taking responsibility for keeping yourself safe and doing what ever you need to do to speak up for yourself and what you believe.
    Why would she apologize? There can be two different points of view of the same thing. To speak up for yourself is not to speak against her (or anybody else). I for one very easily go to dichotomies. Bad Good. Right Wrong. Victim Victimizer. When I do this by feeling wronged or victimized by somebody else I turn myself into a victim. Once I understood this, it made a big difference for me.
    Now this is what I mean. With this outlook there remain two responsible adults in the room. Why does she need to accept guilt or responsibility? There does not have to be a bad guy. You are big enough to not need her to grovel. You are giving important information about who you are. To her, but most of all, to yourself.
    The change will never come from somebody else. The change comes in you. In your sense of power in the world and in yourself. In your world.Which is really to say in yourself in relationship to the world. Never do we change anybody else. M was right.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016
  14. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    You know I am thinking more about my sister here. Who wants nothing to do with me. Nothing. The relationship was distant for almost all of our adult lives. And then she became very angry at me. And she had acted very, very badly.

    The thing is around the time she decided to renounce me completely, I was coming to understand that I had been wrong nearly my whole life. I blamed her because I was very poor at protecting myself, at standing up for myself and because I could not accept her as imperfect.

    I punished her by distancing myself, not because I did not love her, but because I did not like her. This, I now think, was quite unfortunate. Most of all to me. Because the result was that I did not develop in ways I would of or could have had I accepted her (and myself) as imperfect.

    People do wrong and hurtful things all of the time. By not using our G-d given words to speak up is really a sad, sad thing. Nomad your fried gave you a gift *here are your words: BUT, she seemed calm and appreciative of my honesty. In my experience, friendship or any other relationship does not get better than this.

    I could not speak with honesty about my feelings to either my sister or my mother. Both of them would react with the sense of having been grievously harmed and wronged if I even tried to speak up. Therefore in my life I clammed up and retreated. It was the wrong to do for everybody concerned. Especially me.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2016
  15. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Nomad. Forgive me. I hope you do not feel I am being hard on you. None of this is your fault. Nor is it your responsibility. But the thing is this: your caring for your friend is palpable, as is your taking responsibility for wanting to responsibly handle problems that are not yours to bear. I see myself in you.

    If somebody who we loves treats us poorly,
    that is the question.

    If somebody we love suffers, from an affliction, moral or characterological weakness, and we are affected by it, that is the problem with which I have dealt my whole life, the part of it I can remember, and probably all of the rest of it, as well.

    I have no distance from the quandary in which you find yourself. I lived my whole life struggling (poorly) to deal with it. I regret what I did (and did not) do. Which is really the bottom line. In my responses to your posts, I show just how much I am still haunted by, and feel I bear responsibility for the failures in my relationships with the 3 other people in my nuclear family, my sister, mother and father. My life has been defined by how I believe I have failed each one.

    So, read my response(s) to you in this light, please.
     
  16. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Many thanks again, Copa. So much wonderful insight!
    I do think it was good that she didn't react negatively to what I had to say to her when I spoke up about her doing something that I felt was inappropriate and hurtful. For another time and thread...but if you inadvertently hurt a friend, even if you feel they are being "silly" or too sensitive or don't agree one iota with what they are saying .... is it appropriate to apologize? I always think so, because I would never feel ok about hurting someone even under that type of circumstance and would want them to know I feel sorry that I inadvertently hurt them in some way, shape or form.
    But, yes, it was a sort of "gift" that she didn't get upset when I confronted her that one time with inappropriate behavior. It was good to know that I can do that sort of thing (be honest regardless of the difficulty) and very nice to know that it doesn't always mean that a confrontation is about to ensue. I do not hold it against her that she didn't apologize. the fact that she didn't get upset/take it personally means that she is a very special person...I already knew that. These are unique circumstances and a unique period of time.
     
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Hi Nomad. I agree with you to a large extent. With exceptions. I will speak for myself here. 1. While we can impose who we are, and our expectations of ourselves on others, I have found that the cost to myself and to my relationships, is really high. My mother told me this more than once: If you expect the people around to be without problems or flaws you will be alone. She was right. I lived most of my life more alone than I needed to be. 2. I for one, do not always live up to my expectations of others. I can think of more than one time when filled with shame for something I did or did not do, I could not apologize. It felt too frightening and horrible to expose myself that way. I would guess I am not alone in this. I might guess that your friend could be feeling as did I. After all she is holding the dyke which is her life together with her fingers and toes. How much ego strength does she really have left over to be accountable? We may judge her for this but why would we? Except, I have been quite judgmental of my sister. I am wondering if I was motivated to be so judgmental because of my own feelings of culpability and responsibility--or even failure.

    What I am saying is this? What does it really cost us to both turn a cheek, and take an extra step? We are the winners each time. I am seeing this belatedly. I wish I had been big enough to see it before I and others had to pay such a price.

    I learned this: If I hold others to my own standards, I am the one who is falling short. Because my own view of myself and my motivations is at imperfect.

    I am re-reading your quote and I think I am not understanding. If I think somebody else is too sensitive or silly, where would be the need to apologize? What do I have to say about their own behavior?

    I am thinking of M here who comes across very judgmental and critical. If he thinks I am too silly or emotional or foolish or any other thing--he has no filter. He tells me in detail. In the moment that I am aware of he seldom thinks of my feelings. He has never apologized for hurt feelings in the course of these interactions. If I expected an apology I would wait forever. I have learned to see the positive side of this--that I respect that he is unfiltered and that I always get the unvarnished truth. And that is true. One reason I value him so is because I trust his words.

    When I first read your statement I read it as her responsibility to apologize for behavior that was hurtful. Whether the behavior was intentional or not. *She does not sound like a person who is deliberately hurtful from what you have written so far.

    Either way, we have no control over whether somebody does anything at all or nothing at all with respect to us. None. To make specific standards is to set oneself up, I think. And potentially the other person.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016
  18. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    Yikes. Definitely will have to re-read a few times.
    "My mother told me this more than once: If you expect the people around to be without problems or flaws you will be alone. She was right."
    I totally "get" that /agree with that statement.
    I have learned more than once that is true. And, it would apply here, absolutely. My friend was / is like an angel from heaven. And, when things started going haywire a few years ago and she did something that was hurtful, I was shocked out of my mind. BUT, I also realized that no way is anybody perfect and she certainly had earned (for lack of a better word that would clearly be needed her) rights to mess up. Plus, good grief, the woman is simply human. I suppose I didn't expect things to continue to be weird and I'm a little sensitive to lying.
    Anyway, I'm thinking if I were in this predicament, I would chose to apologize.
    I don't know if it is ego strength or what. I would like to think that I would be able to empathize that something I did, regardless if I agree with their thought process, seem to hurt my friend and although it wasn't intentional, I inadvertently hurt them and I would offer a simple apology for that. This is assuming everything is sincere. I DO think what you said earlier applies here. My friend saw it as a different of opinion and didn't feel the need to apologize. So, we differed in two arenas. On the very thing up for discussion and the need to apologize. So be it. I'm pleased that she heard what I had to say and took it well.
    Now, since we are talking about that statement I made about the need to apologize if someone inadvertently hurts another even if they don't agree about it ....etc.
    WELL, this comes from another difficult friend encounter. Years ago, a friend of mine upset me royally. I can almost laugh about it now. ALMOST. Anyway, she said something very rude and bordering on insane loudly in a public place. It was NOT directed at me. More shouting. I accidentally touched a nerve. I did not realize what I said would upset her. It was a total accident. She flew off the handle and said something bizarre and rude as hell. Another shock. I took it well, even though I got a few stares from others. I was hurt on a variety of levels.It felt abusive. Another super nice, normal person doing something VERY out of the ordinary. In retrospect, this little display reminded me of my abusive father. But, wait...it gets worse.
    Later, I called her and said "Ya know, D. that loud verbal display today in the store was very upsetting for me. People heard what you said. It made me embarrassed and uncomfortable." I was expecting her to say something like "Well, people should mind their own business. But, I'm sorry if I embarrassed you. I was having a bad day."
    BUT NOPE. NOT what happened. I smile about it now. And your mother's comment applies.
    Instead she said "You are being silly. Who cares what people think. You shouldn't care. It's not a big deal."
    Hmmm. She kinda was correct. BUT, it DID BOTHER ME. I'm a human being. I have feelings. And I realized later (not at the time) I have baggage from my abusive father that would fly off the handle, hurt me and never ever ever EVER aplogize.
    I don't expect to experience WWWIII in the store and get stared at for craziness. Ok, maybe I should be tougher. If it happened today, I probably would be tougher. I would probably be better at opening my heart to her and say to myself "Geez Louise, my friend has gone momentarily insane and maybe I should not think about myself and see what is bothering HER."
    Anyway, for me, myself and I, having experienced this, I would likely chose to apologize if someone (particularly a close friend or loved one) said I hurt their feelings, under most circumstances. If I was simply defending myself and they didn't like it, perhaps not. But, if I did something that clearly could be interpreted as inappropriate , I likely would offer my apologies for inadvertently hurting them and hear them out.
    But, (today) I do NOT expect other people to do this. Would hope that they would, but do not expect it. *
    And, I do not expect other people to act like I would act in a given situation (same thing, really).
    And, I've certainly learned that people who appear to be perfect (my friend) absolutely are not perfect and can't be perfect...it's simply impossible.
    And, I've learned it's possible to love someone, even if you are super frustrated with them for the time being.
    And, I've learned sometimes people are temporarily going through a rough patch and to be patient.
    And, I've learned it's almost always a good idea to open your heart up to good friends and their circumstances (empathy) and again, patience, patience, patience.

    And I bet there is even more to learn :)

    *Of course a clearly abusive, extreme situation, I probably would need an apology and I might not consider the person a friend anymore. Perhaps a lot depends on the situation.
     
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    Last edited: Sep 12, 2016
  19. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Wow! I loved your post Nomad. What a great friendship. What a great friend she is to you. And what a wonderful friend are you to her.
    I just love this. This friend let you be human and she allowed herself to be human. She minimized a problem when she could have made a big deal. She could of hated and diminished herself (over-reacting with guilt and shame due to her own humanity) or she could have blamed and judged you, as a way of diverting responsibility on to you and away from herself. She did neither. Where do you find these people? These good friends. It gives me hope. The limiting factor has been me, it seems. Not women in general. Me.
    I love this, Nomad. Really. Is it not this in a nutshell?

    The young supervisor at the horrible job said something that I thought was very wise. He said, when somebody does something that is out of line, the first time they do it, I let it go. I make the assumption that it is an anomaly. But the second time I pay attention.

    I tried to see his own misbehavior toward me in the same light. Tried.
     
  20. Nomad

    Nomad Well-Known Member

    I think that is wise advice re:
    the first time someone does something out of line, let it go. My old friend did something "far out," and I absolutely do wish I had let it go. Sadly, I did let that interfere with the friendship.
    Ironically, this was many years ago and very recently we have been connecting again...just saw her recently, but neither of us have brought up the past. It is very good to see her and she is doing well. I can tell that her confidence is much improved. I sense that she was previously going through something I was unaware of. Isn't that likely the case in many of these stories?
    Friendship #2 is a little different, in that there have been more than one incidence of weirdness.
    However, this friend has been like an angel to me for many years.
    And, I understand and empathize with the horrible stressers she is facing.
    I think I learned something from that first experience.
    Different, but a thread of similarity.
    In a certain kind of way, I'm doing the best I can to let it go.
    Since it's happened more than once and the problem has been prolonged,
    I'm pulling back and hoping for the best.
    I think there is a fair chance that in time, things will be ok.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2016
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