Kind of complicated, more under the fold. Just not sure what to do about a seemingly deprecating friendship.
posted by dubious_dude to Human Relations (25 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
So, this is a situation I'm having with my good friend, Amber. I'm not sure what I'm doing wrong, if anything, or if I'm dialing my expectations way too high, but I'm at a point where I really don't know the best step to navigate.
Amber and I have been friends for almost 10 years now. I met her at university, and we've had a bit of a on-and-off, love-hate friendship, but for the last year or so, we've been extremely stable in our friendship. I've noticed a lot of improvement in the friendship up to now - she has made much more of an effort to get together with me, check on me and see how I'm doing, and we've done normal friend stuff such as birthdays, New Year Eve celebrations, and so forth. She has truly improved a lot compared to what our friendship was like 2 years ago and past that. I actually posted about this same Amber two years ago, if you're interested in the back history of the friendship - but I assure you she has improved TREMENDOUSLY since that time (and her girlfriend has NOT used me since then, and apologized as well).
Lately, things has changed, and not for the better. She has became very unreachable, flaky in communication (text), and just generally incommunicado. She asked me to help her with planning her girlfriend's birthday, and a few plans to get together and plan it fell through. She has been less talkative, too.
I finally talked to her on Friday, asking her what was wrong and if it was me, and sharing my frustration with her lack of responses, while clarifying that I understand she's busy, but that I did notice a change in the tremor of our friendship. She assured me it wasn't me, it was just her, that she was very busy lately and a bit overwhelmed with things going on with her life. Which is understandable, considering she has six pets, a daytime job as a teacher's assistant, etc., but she was reachable and seemed to make me one of her priorities up to about a month ago - and the circumstances didn't change in the past month. I saw her Facebook/IG's with pictures of her going out with other friends, so it wasn't fully just her being too busy. Anyway, on Friday, she assured me that it was definitely not me, and even asked if I wanted to get together this weekend, for a BBQ, perhaps? Of course I did, so I let her know.
What makes this situation a bit more complicated is that her best friend - let's call her Wendy - is moving into town and is living with Amber for a month or so. In February, Wendy visited Amber for two weeks. At that time, Amber didn't see Wendy for two years, so I understood when Amber focused completely on Wendy and kind of ignored me in the process, because... hello - best friend, two years time span... it's normal. When Wendy left, Amber returned back to normal. Now, Wendy is baaaaack in town - she arrived yesterday (Saturday), and despite me sharing my concern with Amber that she would focus on Wendy completely and 'forget' about me, and Amber assuring me that wouldn't happen, it seems to have happened.
The BBQ "plan" for tomorrow fell through, apparently. I texted Amber and asked her about the BBQ, suggesting a BBQ at my house, and offered to pitch in with chips. She didn't respond for 3 hours, and when I followed up, she responded quickly and said she wasn't sure, because she was going to the lake with another friend tomorrow. I asked her what time she would let me know, so I could be prepared, but she didn't respond to that. I feel hurt that she didn't reply until I had to be the bad guy/annoying one and follow up, then seemingly has other plans. How about me? And predictably so, she has been very short with texts, too. I mean, Wendy will be living in town, too - she has all the time in the world for Wendy, too.
I just am not sure what to do. A few other factors that is making this so hard for me to navigate is:
-We're all Deaf. The Deaf community in DC has reduced somewhat for the summer due to people going away, etc.
-I don't have many other friends, so unfortunately, Amber has kind of been my "go-to" source for friendship. I know this is bad on my part, but it's also difficult making friends when you're 28 and Deaf.
-I guess I feel very attached to Amber for some reason. It's very hard to explain, but I guess it's the equivalent to a "friend-crush" - but not at all physical (she's lesbian, I'm gay). I feel very attached and excited when I get a text from her, to the point where I feel guilty and needy. I don't know WHY it's happening, and if possible, advise me on good ideas/strategies on how to 'detach' or 'unattach' myself.
-I've been told I'm needy many times in the past. I'm trying to improve this, but it's hard when you're lonely, love to socialize and talk with people, and want that interaction/simulation. I'm not sure if I come across as needy now.
I know this was long, my apologies if so. This is driving me crazy, and I don't know why I'm so damn attached, and how to disenage/lower my expectations. I'm not even sure if it's something I did wrong, or if it's just her, or if the friendship is fake, or whatever. Cooler heads prevail, hmm? It's nice to have an outside perspective on this.