Am I being friend-dumped? (small wall of text and some itty bitty snowflakes)
posted by sockorama to Human Relations (49 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Help me socially advanced MeFites!
I have a friend who basically stopped speaking to me and my three friends in our friends-group and don't know how to proceed with this situation. We are professional and independent women in our 30s.
Here's the background, I am 1 of 4 of friends that compose our friends-group:
Friend 1 - One of my closest friends ever. We've been friends for six years and know everything about each other and are tight. This friend is hilarious, sarcastic, super laid-back and is one of the most generous and caring people I know. Our friendship is totally laid back, we kind of always just pick up where we left off and sometimes go for stretches without seeing each other due to life/work/travel/whatever, but we get each other and it's awesome.
Friend 2 - Met through friend 1. This friend moved to our city from the opposite coast about a year or so ago. We're new friends, but the two of us have become closer because we're both actively working on the friendship between us. She's also sarcastic, sweet, but can be flakey sometimes with plans but that's mostly due to her crazy work schedule. Friends 1 and 2 are close as well.
Friend 3 - The friend this question is referring to. Friend 3 and I have been friends for about 3-4 years and were about as close as Friend 2, but the difference is that this friend didn't actively work on developing our friendship as I'm doing with Friend 2. This friend however, is such a loving, warm, gentle, nurturing person with a total heart of gold. Friends 1, 2 and 3 are all close.
So. Here's the issue I'm having.
Friend 3 had a pretty horrible and untimely death occur (sister passed from drug overdose). This was very shocking. Naturally, me, Friend 1 and 2 reached out to Friend 3, and offered her unconditional love, help - we kept her house running while she was away, watched her pets, offered to bring her food, offered to run errands for her or drive her to places, whatever she needed, no questions asked. She barely took any of us up on these offers, even when we showed up unnanounced at her house to just give her hugs. However, what we learned from all of this is that her coping mechanism is to completely withdraw, and withdraw she did. In fact, in the past 6 months since this occurred, we've barely heard from her and it's upsetting. Me and Friend 2 have been calling/texting/emailing, pretty much stalking her on a weekly basis, sometimes daily for the past few months, just to check in to make sure she's ok and...nothing. Radio silence.
About a month or so ago, I somehow managed to crack the shell and she was responding to me. Her answers were all one word answers and she claimed she was fine and committed to various plans. But then she systematically blew off any/all plans that she said she would attend. Meanwhile, we found out that she was acting normal as can be on Facebook to other people that have more distant friendships with her than we do, including going out with them on the town, etc. As a friends group, we've talked about it and we're upset. We've tried being supportive and there for her and she's blowing us off completely. If it wasn't for the death, we would seriously think that she had friend-dumped us and would move on otherwise.
Well, this week me and my other two friends received a random group email from her in which she apologized for being distant. It was short and didn't seem too sincere, but basically just said that she is sorry for blowing us off and being distant when we were trying to be good friends. I'm not going to lie, I was actually pretty upset when I saw the email - I don't know how to respond. Obviously, I want to support her and continue with our friendship. However, in thinking back to even when things were good between us before the death, I made all the plans and kept our friendship rolling. I'm feeling really hurt that she totally blew all of my attempts at hanging out together off. She blew off my sympathies. She blew off my offers to help. All of it, and I'm feeling upset and angry that she feels that this one apology email will fix things. Friend 1 is furious and wrote back to the email that she's upset and confused by all of this behavior. Friend 2 has not responded, but we had coffee and she is really upset.
Please help me figure out this friendship. Is she not invested? I don't know how to respond to her. What I would like to happen is for us to be friends and to both actively work on our friendship. However, I feel this might be one-sided, or if we patch things up she's going to continue holding us all at arm's length. Is it worth it? Has this happened to you?
Any advice is greatly appreciated.