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Thread: Friends and hurt feelings

  1. #1
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    Friends and hurt feelings

    This is gonna be a long one...just sayin'. I'll start by saying that I've always had trouble making and keeping friends, whether in real life or online. I'm not sure why. Maybe, as someone pointed out on here, it's b/c I'm kind of a pessimist. Anyway. Backstory: I had this friend, Darlene, since about 1987. She had a best friend, Karla, that she met in first grade. Karla always lived away, as her spouse was in the military. The three of us took vacations together from time to time, and Karla and I became close through email. Finally, upon her husband's retirement, K moved back to our hometown.

    Darlene and I used to talk on the phone every day and were very close. She was my best friend at one point. However, about 10 years ago, I got kind of fed up with some of her behavior, and while we never discussed it, or had a falling out, I just sort of cut waaay down on my communication with her. In the meantime, Karla and I became quite close. And when we'd get together, she'd tell me (over the past several years, now) how Karla was ghosting her, mistreating her, being rude on occasions, etc. etc. She would be literally weeping, saying, "What did I do wrong? I don't understand why she doesn't want to hang out with me anymore." Since I couldn't really understand either, I kind of took Karla's side.

    OK, fast forward to this past fall. We all used to hang out with one of Karla's sisters. This sister was diagnosed with a fast-moving cancer and given a month to live. The last time I actually talked to Karla, she was sobbing on the phone and telling me they were putting sister in hospice. I stayed in touch via voice mail and text, letting her know I was thinking of her. She would respond every so often. Sister died in early December. Two days later, I got a phone call from Darlene, crying and telling me that Karla's 13-year-old grandson had died in a gun related incident. I later learned it was suicide. D and I kind of "made up" during that call, and agreed we would get together soon. I could not attend the boy's funeral, but my husband did. Karla and I texted back and forth for a couple of weeks. The last time I heard from her, she wished me a happy new year. I called her about 2 weeks later and both her phone lines went into voice mail, and voice mail was full. I texted her to let her know that they were full, and that I missed her, was thinking of her, etc.

    Now, in the meantime, Darlene had said to me that we should take Karla out for dinner. That Karla wanted to do "fun things." I also noticed that all of a sudden, Darlene was seeing quite a lot of Karla. Now, I get it, I understand--Karla needs support. But, um, what am I to make of all the negative stuff I've heard for YEARS about Darlene? And, this Friday is Darlene's birthday. I suggested last week via text that we all go out to eat. D just happened to be a K's house. She said, "I'll have to let you know." I translate that as "maybe if nothing better comes along." Why do I think that way? Because K has mentioned that D does that. Also, since K and D were sitting right there together, could they not have discussed it and given me some sort of a reply other than "I'll let you know"?

    I've made donations in both the sister's and the grandson's names to charities that the family would appreciate.

    I have bought both of them birthday gifts and cards, and as of today, Wednesday, I've heard nothing.

    I'm not trying to be a witch here. I understand Karla has suffered an unbelievable loss, and everyone in my women's group told me, "She'll need you when the flurry of the funeral is over and everyone has gone home." But I'm getting the distinct impression that, um, I'm not wanted.

    Am I paranoid? Is Darlene being somewhat rude? What am I to make of Karla's about-face regarding Darlene?

    Should I just step back?
    Last edited by frugalone; 1-23-19 at 3:41pm.

  2. #2
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    I would step back and wait to see what happens.

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    I agree with Terry.Take a breath and wait.

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    Good advice. When I am in similar circumstances, I try to release the person or people, send loving thoughts, pray for them, especially if I am angry or hurt. That's all I know how to do, to let it go.

    then see what happens later.

  5. #5
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    I would subtract everything you ever heard about anybody when it was spoken to you without that person present. ThatÂ’s gossip. Not to be paid any mind.

    Then what you have left is truth. Nothing else deserves your attention.

    Going forward, refuse to talk about anyone who is not present.

    You will soon see who is a true friend.

  6. #6
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tammy View Post
    I would subtract everything you ever heard about anybody when it was spoken to you without that person present. ThatÂ’s gossip. Not to be paid any mind.

    Then what you have left is truth. Nothing else deserves your attention.

    Going forward, refuse to talk about anyone who is not present.

    You will soon see who is a true friend.
    +1
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  7. #7
    Senior Member iris lilies's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tammy View Post
    I would subtract everything you ever heard about anybody when it was spoken to you without that person present. ThatÂ’s gossip. Not to be paid any mind.

    Then what you have left is truth. Nothing else deserves your attention.

    Going forward, refuse to talk about anyone who is not present.

    You will soon see who is a true friend.
    This is gold.^^^ (above)

    OP, it doesnt matter what Karla did or said to Darlene, or vice verse. You have a relationship with Karla that is different from the relationship that Karla and Darlene have with each other. That is ok! You dont have to take either “side”. Be your own person.

    But I will say that human triangles are tricky and any friend group composed of 3 will likely be playing one against the other at some point.

    I have a newish friend who has exhibited quite a bit of problematic behavior but within the boundaries I have set, exclusively with me and in roles she takes on in our mutural organizations, she is fairly ok. But I am watching her and will not open up an opportunity to be burned. Friendly at arms length I guess is how I characterize our relationship.
    Last edited by iris lilies; 1-24-19 at 1:29am.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tammy View Post
    I would subtract everything you ever heard about anybody when it was spoken to you without that person present. ThatÂ’s gossip. Not to be paid any mind.

    Then what you have left is truth. Nothing else deserves your attention.

    Going forward, refuse to talk about anyone who is not present.

    You will soon see who is a true friend.
    Your post was eye opening. I did not realize what Karla was doing was gossip. I always thought of it as crying on my shoulder.

    I'm not sure about a true friend being revealed, but I'll take your advice. Thank you.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by iris lilies View Post
    This is gold.^^^ (above)

    OP, it doesnt matter what Karla did or said to Darlene, or vice verse. You have a relationship with Karla that is different from the relationship that Karla and Darlene have with each other. That is ok! You dont have to take either “side”. Be your own person.

    But I will say that human triangles are tricky and any friend group composed of 3 will likely be playing one against the other at some point.

    I have a newish friend who has exhibited quite a bit of problematic behavior but within the boundaries I have set, exclusively with me and in roles she takes on in our mutural organizations, she is fairly ok. But I am watching her and will not open up an opportunity to be burned. Friendly at arms length I guess is how I characterize our relationship.
    It is quite funny that you should say that about human triangles. Years ago, Darlene gave me a pin with three women represented on it, and there was a little card from the artist that went with it, with some saying about how a triad of friends was special. In my personal experience, it's always been very difficult for me to deal with more than one person at a time.

    thank you for your advice. I do need to work at being my own person.

  10. #10
    Senior Member catherine's Avatar
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    I agree that 3 is a very bad number when it comes to friendships. I agree completely with IL and also with Tammy. Yes, talking about someone behind their back is gossip. If you are good friends with a person, and a third party throws shade on that person, how does it make you feel? Listen to your gut.
    "Do any human beings ever realize life while they live it--every, every minute?" Emily Webb, Our Town
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