I’ve read many of your posts regarding the breakup of female
friendships and I am going thru one myself as we speak. Anna and I met two
years ago at graduate school. A little over a year ago, I helped get her a job
at my company and we become inseparable. We did everything together from
going to dinner, the movies, and jogging at the park. Also, we spent a lot of
time texting and instant messaging everyday at work.
About three months ago, Anna had met a new friend, "Lisa," and I felt
replaced. Little by little, I felt pushed aside and believe that Lisa had
put a rift in the friendship between Anna and me. All of the sudden, Anna
and I spent less and less time together as she made for time for Lisa. The
two of them would go bar hopping, swimming, and yoga together...all of the
activities that I do not enjoy but Anna likes.
So, one day after I dropped Anna off home from lunch, I texted her saying that
maybe we should give our friendship a break because she and I have gotten
into many small arguments within the last couple of months. I said that
friendship is a two-way street and I was tired of working doing all of the
work. So, she texted me back saying, "Fine and take care."
The next day, I felt badly about what I said and texted Anna
saying that I was very sorry and hope that she could forgive for the angry
outburst. Anna texted back saying, "There is no need for you to be sorry.”
She was and had always been a b$$ch to me. She said that I needed a friend
that could be there for me constantly, someone to listen to me, and someone to
keep me company." Anna said that she feels badly but she cannot be that
kind of friend to me and for me to take care. However, she still would like to be
a work acquaintance. Nevertheless, this took place over 6 weeks ago and
Anna and I have not spoken since. We often avoid each other at the office
because things feel so awkward.
I’ve texted Anna several times since then, asking for a face-to-face meeting. I
told her that I have and will always continue to value her friendship and would
like to work things out with her. Last week, she answered back saying that our
friendship just doesn’t work anymore and for me to move on with my
life. She said that she has nothing to say to me.
However, despite her response, I still feel the need to have
one last face-to-face meeting. The break-up of our friendship clearly had
more to do than just that one text and I want real closure. So, should I try to
reach out to Anna one last time or should I just let her go? Seeing her
every day at work and not speaking to one another makes it very painful for
me. I still want to reconnect with her and be friends once more.
What a painful and difficult situation! In addition to
losing a close friend with whom you once spent a lot of time, you still have to
face her (and her new best friend) at work. That really has to hurt!
You are correct---the friendship didn’t break up solely
because of the text message (although texting generally isn’t a good way to
handle sensitive discussions, as I’m sure you are now aware). But you were
already seeing red flags that something was wrong: You were arguing with each
other more and she was choosing to spend her time with Lisa rather than you. If
Anna had wanted to, she could have brought you into their circle. She chose not
to without any explanation or apology, even when pressed for one.
It’s infuriating when a decision to end a friendship is
unilateral---and you aren’t the one who makes the decision. It is natural to
feel hurt and angry, and to want some closure. Unfortunately, it looks like
Anna isn’t ready to talk or discuss what happened. Anna may be more
close-mouthed than you, in general, and have less of an interest in intimate
relationships than you do. Whatever the reasons, she has made it clear that she
doesn’t want to talk about your split and while you may have been close at one
time, given what has happened, it doesn’t appear like you will be able to get
over this rift.
You definitely need to back off at this point and involve
yourself with other friends at work and outside work. There may be some truth
to Anna’s accusation that you are too needy or perhaps you are only too needy
for her. You need to dig deep into yourself and think about what you asked of
Anna in the past to determine whether you need to set boundaries for your
You will be able to achieve closure when you assume control
of your circumstances. When you accept that the relationship is over, you’ll
feel better about the situation and about yourself. As brutal as it sounds,
this isn’t the first time a good friend has been dumped and won’t be the last.
You deserve someone who will appreciate your kindness and sincerity, and whose
personality and interests are in better balance with yours.
Focus on your work and maintaining a professional demeanor
in the office. And try to forget about Anna’s relationship with Lisa: that will
probably become history, too. It’s going to take some time but I promise, you
will get over this trauma.
Let us know how it goes.
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