How do I gracefully exit a long-time friendship that has ran its course?
November 26, 2021 6:49 AM   Subscribe

As the title says. This might be heavy.

I've been friends with Amber and Diana, who I've asked about in the past a few (spanning from different points in my life) times. I met Amber through college a good 17 years ago, and Diana (who is Amber's partner) entered the picture about 11 years ago. During those years, I've had my share of on-and-offs with them, as evidenced in previous Asks. I've repeatedly given them the benefit of the doubt and our friendship itself many chances, only to be continually hurt and rebuffed in different ways. The core of this friendship lies with Amber, where the foundation of the friendship began; Diana and I never really got to become close, but they've became a "pair" and are coupled together as my friends.

To sum it up sufficiently as possible, there are two recent components that drove home the fact that this friendship has ran its course. Two final straws, on top of many older final straws, if you may. I have other friends who would sufficiently fill in the missing gaps that would happen after the discontinuation of the friendship, and I honestly don't benefit anything anymore from the friendship, and haven't done so in a few years. We're still "close" to this day, but it feels like an illusion.

Component One: Amber and Diana are close friends with Dorothy (yes, the same Dorothy who I've asked about before). Seems Dorothy told them her version of the situation, and when Amber and I were FaceTiming one time, she admitted she was "shocked" by what happened. I don't know what defines "shocking" to her, but it came across as a bit judgmental, and a red flag (to me) was that she did not ask for my version of the story. (I did not share my side of the story at the time, as I wasn't ready.) Another slice of this component is that I feel the "toxicity" coming from Dorothy is a bit too close with them. Dorothy is a part of their wedding party. Also, I talked with Amber about getting together this fall to go to a pumpkin patch, and Amber said her knee was hurting, and the doctor recommended a home stay. However, a trusted friend of mine said he saw Dorothy's FB story, and apparently, they three went to the pumpkin patch together, and Amber wasn't "home-stayed" like she said she was. I acknowledge I might be drawing some unfair assumptions based on what others saw, not what I saw, but the general vibe I'm getting is that Dorothy is 'more important' to them than I am. I could be wrong, but that's what I'm feeling.

Component Two: Yesterday, I sent them a "Happy Day of Gratitude" text, stating I was thankful for their friendship. I don't use the term "Thanksgiving" because of the roots behind it, and instead chose to look at yesterday as a "gratitude" centered day. Diana sent a hurtful response, was curt and rude, saying she did not celebrate Thanksgiving anymore and that "we white people have murdered Indigenous people". While I am not disputing that at all, it came across as very hurtful and harsh. Diana and I haven't talked in months, and she did not even acknowledge or seem happy to hear from me. It felt like a slap in my face. Diana has always been quick to anger, and always been trending towards harsh, but this was just unexpected, especially on a positive day. Diana has been verbally abusive towards me in the past, but I always put up with it out of respect to Amber. No more of that, I know my worth and I deserve better, period.

This friendship has always been very complicated, with mixed hot and cold signals from Amber (mostly cold from Diana). Amber was very supportive when I was laid off from my job a few years ago, but she then hurt me deeply when she suggested I was laid off because of my physical appearance. I know she didn't mean to, and could be a valid suggestion, but it still hurt, especially as she was insinuating that I was physically unattractive. She wasn't supportive in some other situations. She can be a mix of sweet, helpful, positive, yet can be vindictive and manipulative at times (although that might not be her fault, she had a tough/messy childhood and was in a domestic violence relationship in early college). She always was quick to ask me for help with computer/grammar stuff, but most of the time, slow to respond when it was me who needed her. Not always, but most of the time. She also has a tendency to blame others for conflicts, without really looking inwards and be willing to see both sides, and this is still something she does to this day, from what I've observed.

As you can probably see, this friendship has been so messy and complicated over the years. It's been a source of numerous spots of hurt, angst, toxicity, and wondering what was wrong with me (mostly the 2011-2017 era, not so much recently), and good times, too, to be completely fair.

I guess my recent culling of unhealthy friendships (ie, Dorothy) and developing more confidence in eliminating toxicity has helped me to realize, especially after those two final straws, that, yes, it's time to retire this friendship peacefully. However, I am still feeling a bit uncertain, and wondering if I am giving up a beautiful friendship (because Amber can be beautifully warm and supportive). It'd definitely be the end of an era, but who's not to say the era had already ended, and our friendship is just barely hanging on by a frayed string?

There are two big reasons that is giving me pause to discontinue the friendship:

Reason One: A couple of years ago (pre-COVID), I was invited to, and accepted, as a guest at their wedding. Their wedding was postponed several times, to Autumn 2022 (a long way away). If/once I withdraw the acceptance to the wedding invitation, that's it, no going back. I could go to the wedding, then just eventually fade away, but I'm not interested in that, because Autumn 2022 is a long way away, and I don't want to play the slow fade game for that long of a time; plus, I hate ambiguity, and am just ready for this to be over, if that makes sense.

Reason Two: I helped Amber start with a photos organization way back in 2014 (about 90k photos on her end), and the project was never finished, due to her own life stresses and whatnot. My concern is that she might somehow hold that against me. It did feel like a burden at the time. We haven't worked on the project at all since 2014. She also had other computer problems that she depended on me to help, including asking me at our 2019 Thanksgiving gathering to help with a more complicated-than-imagined computer problem, which caught me off guard.

I guess, at this juncture, I'm not sure what to do (or more specifically, how to gracefully break things off without any ugly words being exchanged on their end, or drama. I've toyed a few times internally in the past with discontinuing the friendship, out of anger when something wasn't going right, but never went with it. I'm ready, I think now, but I'm still pausing and just not sure of the right way to actually break it off (ie, disentangling from social media). I'm definitely ready to move forward with my life, sans Amber/Diana and all the heaviness that comes with them. It'll be odd and somewhat empty, but at the same time, the friendship has been dwindling over the last few years, subtly but surely.

A small part of me (probably the vestigial "people pleaser" self) is saying I'm overreacting, that Amber is a fine friend, but in general, I am confident deep inside this friendship has ran its course, but I really need some help and insight on how to end it gracefully, with the least hurt feelings/drama as possible. Thanks.
posted by dubious_dude to Human Relations (30 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
am confident deep inside this friendship has ran its course, but I really need some help and insight on how to end it gracefully, with the least hurt feelings/drama as possible.

Stop following them, stop texting them and reaching out, etc. Don't worry about the project. If they reach out to you, just be busy. If/when an invitation to the wedding arrives, just RSVP no and send a small gift. That's really all it takes.
posted by warriorqueen at 6:58 AM on November 26, 2021 [60 favorites]

This may feel really complicated because you've got a long history with them but you've already managed to go for several months without talking before the messages yesterday. That may have been unintentional but all you have to do is make it intentional. Stop reaching out, following or actively connecting in any way. If they try to connect with you, you're busy.
posted by koahiatamadl at 7:09 AM on November 26, 2021 [18 favorites]

Response by poster: Pardon the quick threadsit, but one matter of clarification: I already accepted their wedding invitation (RSVP'd yes when originally sent a couple of years ago, which carried over to the postponements). My main concern is how to back out from that.
posted by dubious_dude at 7:13 AM on November 26, 2021

These people all sound really self-centered to me. I guess that as a conflict avoidant person I would ghost for a few months and then once I had totally fallen out of contact I'd send one email saying that I could not attend the wedding and then block. By the time you've established the "we're not talking anymore" pattern, they will be at least semi-consciously expecting that you won't be at the wedding and you won't be tempted to follow up.

I hope you find better friends in the next couple of years.
posted by Frowner at 7:13 AM on November 26, 2021 [11 favorites]

You're definitely not obligated to honor a "yes" rsvp from two years ago. You can say that you're no longer able to attend, and send a small gift.
posted by CheeseLouise at 7:18 AM on November 26, 2021 [50 favorites]

Pardon the quick threadsit, but one matter of clarification: I already accepted their wedding invitation (RSVP'd yes when originally sent a couple of years ago, which carried over to the postponements). My main concern is how to back out from that.

Invitations and RSVPs are for an event on a specific day. Did you RSVP yes again when the date changed? Or are they just assuming anyone who said yes for one day is automatically available for another day? Or is a new invitation likely forthcoming.

Be busy on the new day. Go on vacation if you have to and it makes you feel better. Or just lie about going on vacation, because they seem to think lying is a fine way to get out of social engagements.

But in general, you want to slow fade from this relationship. Don't reach out, don't say yes to things in the unlikely event that they reach out, don't seek a sense of closure. Just stop actually being their friend. That's the no drama way to end friendships.
posted by jacquilynne at 7:24 AM on November 26, 2021 [5 favorites]

Just stop being friends. This is way too much drama. Don't reach out to them ever again. Stop following them on social media. If they haven't heard from you in a year, they won't expect you to show up at the wedding. And even if they do, who cares.
posted by shoesietart at 7:35 AM on November 26, 2021 [36 favorites]

Just go full ghost and never think about them again. It's not worth it.
posted by fluttering hellfire at 7:35 AM on November 26, 2021 [13 favorites]

I already accepted their wedding invitation (RSVP'd yes when originally sent a couple of years ago, which carried over to the postponements).

You can always un-RSVP, even if the date doesn't change. But especially when the dates change. For my wedding, a couple of people thought they could make it and then they couldn't. That's okay!!!
posted by warriorqueen at 7:40 AM on November 26, 2021 [4 favorites]

Diana and I haven't talked in months, and she did not even acknowledge or seem happy to hear from me.

The friendship is already effectively over, or at least in the "casual acquaintances" stage.

I agree with the answers you've had already. Autumn 2022 is so far away that I don't think anyone will be surprised if people turn around and say "sorry, things have changed, I can't come". If they do a follow up next year to confirm the date or to check if everyone's still attending, just tell them at that point that you won't be able to make it.

You've already drifted out of their orbit. Just keep drifting away, and focus on the other more fulfilling relationships you have now. This is a totally normal thing to do. You don't need to make it "official" or "discontinue" a friendship that isn't there.
posted by fight or flight at 7:58 AM on November 26, 2021 [15 favorites]

From your posts, you seem like a kind person with a lot of integrity. When you agree to something, even if it was years ago, you internalize a commitment to complete it. This makes you a really good person. There is an expiration date on agreeing to do things - even for people with as much commitment and integrity as you. The photo project has expired, let it go. If it comes up, say it was 6 years ago - which it was. The wedding invitation has also expired. If you really feel like you are obligated to attend a wedding two years later without a new RSVP, then contact them in the spring or early summer and say you'll be away but wish them the best.
posted by Toddles at 8:27 AM on November 26, 2021 [8 favorites]

Tbh it sounds like you’re already not friends with them anymore, and the only thing keeping the remains of the friendship going is your own actions. I bet if you stopped reaching out you wouldn’t hear from them again.
posted by showbiz_liz at 8:45 AM on November 26, 2021 [34 favorites]

I know my worth and I deserve better, period.
First, I want to high-five you for this. You go, OP. Congrats on knowing your worth!

We haven't worked on the project at all since 2014.
I wouldn't be worried about this. It's been *seven years.* Amber's probably long forgotten the project tbh.

I hate ambiguity, and am just ready for this to be over
As for the wedding, send a note to Amber that you won't be able to make it after all. There - you've dealt with the ambiguity and have moved things to "this is over" in one action.

On preview, I agree with showbiz_liz.
posted by foxjacket at 9:16 AM on November 26, 2021 [3 favorites]

Seems significant that your two reasons for not ending the friendship are worries over offending/annoying them, and not, you know, any positive attributes of the friendship. Once a friendship is over, it doesn't matter what the other person thinks of you - if Amber is annoyed you'll never finish a computer project from seven years ago, who cares! You'll never have any reason to know anyway.

You are clearly ready to be done with the friendship, and it sounds like there isn't much of a friendship left. Like others have said, just stop reaching out, block on social media, and then a few months before the wedding send a brief email/text "Sorry, I am no longer able to make it." Done.
posted by coffeecat at 9:23 AM on November 26, 2021 [7 favorites]

Response by poster: What is a recommended script to let her know that I won't be able to make it to the wedding? My concern is that if I do that, she will ask why, get upset or pissed off, or plead to know why. What is a good way to ward off any questions or objections, if they come up, on her end?

Reason I ask is because in the past, when I was unable to meet a former obligation with her, she would ask why, act all put-out, upset, etc., and it ended up in a scuffle and hurt feelings on both ends.
posted by dubious_dude at 9:25 AM on November 26, 2021 [1 favorite]

In regards to your newest questions, just assume it will prompt questions, objections, snubs, hurt feelings, etc. So what? Move on.
posted by argybarg at 9:29 AM on November 26, 2021 [5 favorites]

If they send a new invite (jeez - they should!): just RSVP no.
If they don't, and you get within, say, 4 months of the wedding, just drop them an email that says "I'm so sorry that my schedule has changed and I'm not able to make it to the wedding. Wishing you every happiness on your special day!" and be done with it.

Agreeing with everyone else: This friendship is already over. Don't go in for any big conversations or project wrap-ups (from 2014!!!). Just drop them from your social circle and, more importantly, your brain.
posted by BlahLaLa at 9:31 AM on November 26, 2021 [12 favorites]

Hey Dubious Dude, it's actually okay to let people have feelings. If she's sad or upset about your presence at the wedding, that's actually appropriate - it's okay to feel sad when friendships end or are ending. But it doesn't require that you get things 100% right to avoid her having feelings.

It's good to be kind, you don't have to aim for perfection.

So, all you can do is let her know. If she's given you a specific date, I'd just say "I'm sorry but I won't be able to make it." When she says why, you just say "I'm just not able to." And then you don't continue to communicate and if she starts drama over it, you block her.

If she hasn't given you a date yet, I would personally actually wait until you have the specific date. This is a social nicety where you're leaving her room to believe you can't make the DATE and it's not about her. (We know it is about her, but it's about leaving her a bit of room to save face, even to herself.) That's the least dramatic way to do it.

With a wedding, although she needs to have a general idea of spaces, the catering etc. won't be finalized until a few months before. So you are free to wait until like, April, and that is just fine.
posted by warriorqueen at 9:33 AM on November 26, 2021 [28 favorites]

YOU are creating the drama! You don't need a script for a wedding that is a year away. She's not your friend anymore. She can only act out if you engage. They should resend invitations and you may not even get one. If you do, decline. If you don't get a new invite, don't go to the wedding.
posted by shoesietart at 10:30 AM on November 26, 2021 [31 favorites]

Given how much you have shared and the level of thought and detail you’ve put into this post, it sounds like part of you wants to make some gesture of closure, even if only to/for yourself. That’s perfectly fine, and more than many would do. I’d do what others have suggested but maybe also add journaling or something for yourself to give yourself permission to walk away and allow yourself to grieve and process things.
posted by iamkimiam at 10:37 AM on November 26, 2021 [1 favorite]

Yeah, it’s absolutely not a thing that your positive RSVP to a wedding scheduled for 2+ years ago equates to a commitment to attend at some nebulous date in fall 2020. There could be any number of reasons you might not be able to attend, and it’s on them to send out a new round of invites and obtain fresh RSVPs once the new date is established. Who knows? Maybe you won’t even be on that list! If you do get a new invite, or even something announcing the new date and asking you to reconfirm (or not as the case may be) just reply “regrets” and leave it at that. When the couple is no longer at the “establishing their first household” stage, even a gift is neither needed nor assumed and I wouldn’t bother.

Other than that, as others have suggested, stop reaching out proactively and my impression is that you’ll stop hearing from them. Should they reach out, never answer calls and wait a minimum of seven days before replying only to those calls, emails or texts that absolutely require a response with a minimally brief casual text along the lines of, e.g., “Sorry to miss.” Other than that just… let it go. You’re not going to get a satisfying response it you “break up” with them and it’s only going to kick off a round of brooding introspection that won’t make you feel better or like you’ve had closure.
posted by slkinsey at 10:55 AM on November 26, 2021 [2 favorites]

The thing about not wanting them to be mad at you or think worse of you if you don't help finish the photo project or go to the wedding is that you don't have any control over what they think and feel even if you do go to the wedding and finish the photo project. The idea of them feeling angry at you or contemptuous or whatever upsets you so you want to be able to affirm to yourself that you did what you committed to do. But what you do has almost no effect on what they will be feeling.

They could have decided six months ago that during Covid the wedding can never occur the way they want it, and gotten married at the courthouse and kept the fb messages private only to the five people they asked to able to attend. They could have postponed the marriage indefinitely, and will eventually get married in a romantic gesture on what is the thirtieth anniversary of the date originally selected. They could announce their wedding for Valentine's Day and you could buy the right duds to wear and the night before you set out end up blocked from departing by a snowstorm that shuts down all traffic. You could attend the wedding, be on best behaviour, wear the right clothes, say the right things, and have the entire wedding end in an embarrassing and hurtful scene where they rage at you for ruining the "previously strong" partner relationship of some other individual who harassed you the whole day trying to flirt with you.

If they are the kind of people who will get angry and you and think the worst of you, then they are going to do that or not do that no matter what you do. Going to the wedding and standing by available to help with the photo project won't change it.

There is a not small chance that if they haven't contacted you in that many weeks the friendship has already run its course, or has become shallow enough that they are hoping you will ghost far enough that they can drop you from the wedding guest list without fear of embarrassment. There is a not small chance that the files for the photo project have been mislaid or corrupt. Most people do not ever go back to projects from eight years ago.

There is nothing you can say or do that will guarantee that Amber and Diana are not angry and do not think badly of you. I think you need to say something, but what you say needs to provide closure and reassurance to you that if they come back and pursue you to go to the wedding or help with the pictures they will be behaving very weirdly and inappropriately because you made it plain that it was relationship over and you were not going to be held to any tenuous plans from years ago they might want to hold you to.

I don't think you should mention the wedding or the photo project in your farewell message, because they might have already forgotten about those things - "Did we invite dubious_dude?? I'm sure we didn't! Do you even still have a copy of our guest list?!". But they might still be expecting you to help them find curtains in the right shade of orange for their back bedroom, because for the last year and three quarters every time they go in the bedroom they remember a two minute conversation you had with Amber where she complained about the colour of the curtains and you mentioned that your aunt got curtains in the exact colour she wanted, at a place you know of, which has in fact gone out of business in the interim. You have no way of knowing what commitments they think you owe them. (But you do know they are comfortable with dodging out of their own commitments.)

So your message to them has to be very final and very NON specific.

"Life/work/my chronic illness has gotten busy/hard for me lately so I have pared down my social life to just (list max of three people, sibling, parent, roommate). I cannot make or keep any social commitments. That's why you'd heard so little from me lately. Covid isolation has done a number on everyone I know. But I wish you both well and will remember the good times fondly. With gratitude for your past support, dubious_dude."

Then unfollow them so that you don't know what is up in their lives anymore. They might, of course, respond with a message trying to offer support and restart things, wanting you to make an exception and put them back in your circle, but you don't want to make an exception and you have said good bye in the kindest terms you can, so resistance to you dumping them is a consent boundary. If they try to renew the friendship it's the same as when a dude pushes for sex after getting a no. Not replying at all is neither unkind nor immoral or insensitive or ungrateful. You just don't want to. You get to stick by that and feel incredulous if they try to push you to stay in their lives.

They might push, and it is no biggie if they do. After one message in reply to your final message, put them on your blocked senders on your phone and your apps and don't reply even if their last message is a slew of questions and affection. This really isn't a bigger deal than switching groceries stores because the other one has fresher produce and better coupons. If they send you a last message with affection and bids to continue the relationship, reiterate to yourself that they actually do like you and were, back then, good people to know, and then delete the message so you won't go back and reread it or be tempted to reply to it.

Try to give them the last word. Sometimes people automatically reply and when two people who both do that try to say goodbye they can stand on the doorstep until they both get pneumonia. If they remind you that they still want their brown cardigan with the pumpkin appliqué, pop it in the mail and include a note saying "Thanks for reminding me!" so they know you are not sulking, making sure you don't include any message that will extend things.

But you know mostly likely you have slipped down their list to being an acquaintance they don't think about anymore, and they will think, "Oh, good old dubious_dude. Yeah, everyone is struggling with Covid changes now," and then never give you another thought.
posted by Jane the Brown at 11:08 AM on November 26, 2021 [3 favorites]

I pretty much agree with everyone about tactics. Stop being available for anything.

My only extra advice is: you might think a bit why you’ve been trying so hard to maintain a friendship with people who have been borderline hostile apparently for years. Friendships should not be a continual drain on your emotional energy; get better at identifying that and breaking things off. To do that, you need a better grasp of your underlying emotions, I think.
posted by GenjiandProust at 11:12 AM on November 26, 2021 [18 favorites]

Just send a card/gift and say regretfully you can’t go because something came up. Offer no further details ever. Stop reaching out.

The end. The only drama is what you make of it or allow.

If some part of you likes or feels comforted by the drama and is scared of losing it, I understand. Very human. But I do not think it will hurt you and you will in fact be better for letting it all go.

Every morning I sing the same Sturgill Simpson lyric to myself. “Woke up today and decided to kill my ego, it’s never done me no good no how.” Caring about how they’re thinking about you is your ego talking, the unhelpful part of it anyway, and you cannot control how they feel.
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 4:28 PM on November 26, 2021 [3 favorites]

If you got pushback about the wedding, what would that look like? I’m thinking something like, “Sure I’ve become distant, didn’t respond positively when you reached out, and just generally haven’t been a good or reliable friend, but how dare you back out of attending the wedding you said you’d attend two years ago when it was set for a long-since-past date???” Or, pushback about the project might go, “Sure I no longer act like I want to be your friend, but you helped me start a project years ago that I never finished and don’t you know that obligates you to be available to help me whenever I decide to pick the project back up???” Truly, these people aren’t giving signals they’re invested in maintaining a friendship with you. You don’t have to leave them angry voicemails detailing what jerks you think they are, but try to look at the big picture. They’re not acting like they care about the friendship, so you ending the friendship isn’t weird or shocking. (And ending the friendship also means you don’t need to worry about what they think of you. They might decide you’re a terrible monster who took their friendship and threw it away… let them live in that fantasy land. Go make friends with kind people who want to be your friends.)
posted by theotherdurassister at 7:22 PM on November 26, 2021 [4 favorites]

You are basically a punching bag to these two and they are barely treating you like a friend right now, never mind how things were in the past. There are no perfect words you can say to them to prevent them from being hostile or badmouthing you if you tell them you would like to end your friendship. You’re also not going any closure from them, so you’ll have to find it within yourself. It is best you just let them go by cutting off / limiting contact and not having to explain or justify yourself (e.g. just make a simple, polite and direct statement that you can no longer make it to their wedding without any further embellishments)

My heart goes out to you and the mixed feelings you are having about ending this friendship despite their toxic behaviors. I recently had to let go of a long friendship with someone I’d known since my teens, that was no longer doing me any good. Like you, certain behaviors on her part led me to the realization that she didn’t value or treat me the way I wanted to be valued / treated, and that I was done with her. Still it hurt to let go of someone with whom I have had that much shared history - hardly anyone in my life now knows me from that period of my life and like you I am not someone who makes friends easily. But with some people the best you can do is to just move on without looking back and let time and tide carry you away from them.
posted by pandanpanda at 5:07 AM on November 27, 2021 [2 favorites]

OMG, I saw the name "Dorothy" and immediately recalled your earlier ask. I'm really proud of you for coming so far on your boundaries!

Agree with the advice that you're no longer available for anything. Your mottos for these people going forward are "I'm not available" and "That won't be possible." You won't be available because you'll be busy doing anything else that makes you happy, and it won't be possible for you to interact or assist them with anything because your policy is to not interact with or assist them. They don't need to know those details specifically, just that you're not available, and it won't be possible.

In the meantime, while you're fading out, it sounds like you're looking for some emotional closure. I think your hard work and growth deserves a bit of celebration, so perhaps try setting up something small based on that. Take someone, friend or family, out to lunch and ask them to raise a glass in honor of your growth, and the new chapter in your life.
posted by snerson at 5:11 AM on November 27, 2021 [3 favorites]

I think that if you have a difficult friendship that requires an Ask to resolve, and that doesn’t work, it’s maybe a sign that you should let it go.

If a friendship requires, what, four Asks and it’s still difficult, and you’re still worried about hurting feelings, it’s definitely a sign it’s not working out and it’s unlikely to get fixed. Which I guess you’re realising now, so well done.

At this point you don’t owe them anything. You sound like a lovely guy who wants good friendships, and to make those friends happy. You’ve really tried here. But there must come a point where you do what’s best for you, and that can feel more difficult. Which is nuts! Looking after your own feelings being harder that looking after others?! But here we are.

Whatever script you decide on they may be upset, sad, angry… this is out of your control. You’ve tried so hard in the past and now you’re doing this for you, to free up space in the future for other friendships that actually work.
posted by fabius at 6:05 AM on November 27, 2021 [3 favorites]

I would assume with these people if you never initiate again, you'll never hear from them again. Rescheduled Covid weddings are going to be a re-ask situation anyway. Unless they contact you about the wedding in 2022, you probably won't be re-invited anyway the way things are going.
posted by jenfullmoon at 10:16 AM on November 27, 2021 [3 favorites]

It's already over. You don't have to rescind your RSVP because you haven't been invited to the postponed wedding.

If you do get invited, you can at that point decline politely using any of the scripts suggested above, but please don't assume you're invited to the postponed wedding! As things stand it seems unlikely that you will be invited to it.

Don't ask for an invitation just so you can decline it. Don't contact them to be polite. Don't reach out to say goodbye. Don't seek more closure from this case that's already closed. Your work here is done. All that remains is for you to mourn the friendship that was, and move on.
posted by MiraK at 7:18 AM on November 30, 2021 [2 favorites]

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