This topic contains 24 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by ele4phant 1 week, 2 days ago.
January 3, 2019 at 4:01 pm #814209
I recently lost a parent. Among the few friends I told was someone I’ve known for over 10 years. (We’ve done things together, had a good relationship. I’ve sought her advice several times, she gave my name as a reference for some loan she wanted to take, wanted some other help which I gave, etc.)
She never responded to my message, I knew she’d seen it. After six weeks, I thought I’d check with her, just in case there was a tech glitch. (I had called her when her mother passed away.) She said she had seen my message, sorry, but she was busy and someone in her extended family was ill. But she has been posting every other day on various social media about her son’s achievement, her various hobbies, her creativity, etc.
I feel rather crushed, and foolish. I didn’t even count for a reply saying I’m sorry, I’ll call you later. What is the mature thing to do? I don’t think I want to be as friendly as earlier.
My brother-in-law and his wife haven’t called me directly either. They sent my husband a form text message saying condolences. I don’t keep in touch with them, they live abroad, but I did take the trouble to call when their children were born and have hosted them in my house whenever they visit, even as recently as three months ago.
I keep thinking I should behave the same way but I feel guilty and disgusted at myself to even think of this sort of revenge. But I don’t want to let them think they are important the next time around – in all probability, it will only end up in a fight with my husband.
Am I right to feel this way about wanting to be acknowledged or is it just a case of big ego, low self-esteem?January 3, 2019 at 4:23 pm #814213
I know exactly what you mean and where you are coming from. You are the good hearted, mindful, and thoughtful person who goes out of your way to show compassion and empathy during other persons time of need. You are not a selfish and careless person but it seems you have reached a point of being fed. For starters, I am so sorry you lost one of your parents. I hope you are getting support somewhere in hekping with your loss. Dont let a few negatives impact the way you show love and compassion towards other but perhaps it is time to step away from those who take you for granted. I think it was rude for BIL and SIL to reach out towards your husband and not directly at you. I’m not sure you need to make it such a big deal to not host them in your home though. Just dont go out of your way too much. In regards to the 10yr friendship, you should truly disclose how hurt you are that you dont feel like she is there for you in your time of need. She may have a good honest reason. It might be too much for her to deal with. Being busy is a lousy excuse so she needs a better one. If this has hurt you to a point of terminating the friendship then do it but first out way the cons and pros. This friendship may have been a one sided friendship or you might be losing a really good friend who has a poor way of handling grief.January 3, 2019 at 4:33 pm #814215
I do think it’s possible that your grief includes some anger, and your brother- and sister-in-law are convenient targets. They are family, and cutting your husband off from family time because they hurt your feelings through inattention may not be the right call.
As for the friend, though: It sucks to feel like a very low priority to a person you thought valued you. I think it’s reasonable to pull back on this friendship. If you hadn’t heard from her in 6 weeks anyway, it doesn’t sound like you’ll be losing too much. I’m very sorry this happened, and I’m sorry for your loss.January 3, 2019 at 5:02 pm #814218
I don’t think it’s that hard to be a decent human being. When an ex-bf’s father passed away a few years ago, I offered my condolences to the whole family and I went to the funeral. We weren’t in regular contact but we’re friendly and I am on great terms with their family. Another friend’s mom passed away too and while I only talk to them a few times a year at most, I was there for them to offer my condolences. Eff that sh*t. Really, if she isn’t capable of offering a simple message to you, I wouldn’t go out of my way and waste any energy on that person. IMO. So sorry for your loss.January 3, 2019 at 5:22 pm #814221
I’m sorry for your loss, and I hope you are getting some support or seeing a grief counselor or support group.
The “friend”- clearly she’s not. Don’t say anything. Just don’t. Its not worth it. Your friendship was one sided. She’s selfish and her excuses are just…bs. I’ve been there, and kind of have lost my oldest friend that way. I always knew it was one sided, but I thought maybe a hugely tragic event would spur her into reaching out to comfort. Alas, no. Some people truly are that selfish. I’m sorry for you. I know it really sucks.
As far as the in laws… the way they reached out feels impersonal to you, but sometimes people don’t know what is the best way to offer condolences. A lot of people are really uncomfortable with death and don’t know how to react. My husband’s brother was tragically murdered a little over a year ago. A lot of people reached out to me because they weren’t sure if he was ready to hear from them, or whatever. They were trying to come in soft and test the waters. I don’t think their behavior was meant to be rude. Try not to take it personally.January 3, 2019 at 5:24 pm #814222
Is it possible her families health issue was a parent on the verge of dying and she mentally found your news really hard? If so you may want to cut her some slack. A lot of people just don’t know what to say with such news. Sure they should say I’m so sorry etc but some people freeze. I don’t think it’s wrong to step back, although sounds like that’s already happened but the BIL thing. I mean unless you are best friends with them it’s not totally odd. I get you are hurting but likely he told your husband “oh sorry to hear that” and that’s that. Not sure what else you wanted but that seems like an appropriate response to me.January 3, 2019 at 5:41 pm #814223
Yeah, if she was taking care of someone, or a close relative was gravely ill, those are definitely extraneous circumstances and you should cut her a bit of slack.January 3, 2019 at 5:42 pm #814224
Nah, JD. You can find someone’s news as hard to take as you want, and yet it is SO DAMN SIMPLE to text back something like, “I’m so sorry for your loss.” Or send a card, if you’re afraid of a conversation.
If you care about someone at all, you don’t just ignore the death of their parent because you’re “busy” and also someone in your extended family (so, not a parent or child or sibling) is ill (not dying). And to top it off by not talking to the grieving friend for 6 weeks plus… no. just, no. I wouldn’t cut any slack. And it’s not “immature” to call it quits on this person.January 3, 2019 at 5:43 pm #814225
No, it’s not about ego or self-esteem. You just want to feel like people care. You would think that someone who lost her own parent would get how you might be feeling and know what to say… or at least say SOMETHING. She dropped the ball here. I’d pull back on the friendship. I don’t really think there’s anything to be gained by telling her you were hurt that she didn’t offer her condolences, but do what you feel. If you want to say it, say it. Maybe it will result in a good conversation, but I suspect not.
I’m sorry 🙁 I feel you.January 3, 2019 at 5:47 pm #814226
It always amazes me how some use times of grief not to mourn the dead —- but rather sieze the moment as a means to determine which friends/and/or family members have somehow failed to measure up. And then use this as some twisted weapon to hold against them…January 3, 2019 at 5:47 pm #814227
Uh I said maybe it was emotionally hard for her. Lots of things are simple in theory but not in practice. I simply said perhaps it just caused her pain of her own. I had a miscarriage the day I found out my best friend was pregnant. Was near impossible to deal with for me. I also said that clearly the friendship is dead but perhaps that is why she screwed up. People screw up. It happens.January 3, 2019 at 5:48 pm #814228
PS — it’s so NOT healthy.