Letting go of friendship - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 08:36 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Letting go of friendship

I'm feeling sad because I need to let go of a friendship. Because we've moved a lot, I don't have a wide friend circle, and few old friends. This is a friend who lives where we do but we've known for years. After his marriage fell apart, he moved here to be close to my husband and I. He used to be my husband's best friend, and I used to think of him like a brother.

He is now engaged to a woman who is truly horrible. She is snobby, spoiled, unpleasant to be around, and very immature. I also think she has an eating disorder. I believe the reason he is marrying her is because she is an only child of rich parents. I believe the reason she is marrying him is because she wants to have a big wedding, and he'll look good in a tux. We had dinner last week, and I'm not even sure she understands that after the wedding they'll be married.

My husband agrees with me that the woman is awful and that marriage will most likely end in another divorce, but feels that:

1. He's a grown man, and if he wants to mess up his life, its his call.

2. Because they now work together (my husband is now his boss) and he has had to talk to him about work performance (because new woman doesn't understand that he actually has to work) that it would complicate the work thing to talk to him honestly about the impending wedding.

It's really a mess, and I need to extract myself from the situation. She says rude things to me, and he is changing the more time he spends with her. He's always been a bit on the egotistical side, but it was in balance with a lot of good traits. Now, he is becoming the worst version of himself, and someone I don't want to be around.

I told my husband that I don't want to spend more time with them, and he doesn't want to either.

But I keep thinking about it and obsessing about it. It's like a scab that I keep picking off. That's why I posted it on this board. I need to grow. I need to let it go and get it with my own life.

I think that part of my problem is that I have so few old friends and I really hate to loose one. His exwife and I were friends, and they were our favorite couple to hang out with (we all used to live in the same city). Because my DH's career has moved us around, I've lost so many people, and I don't want to loose another one.

None the less, he's picked his current path, and our values aren't the same.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#2 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 11:57 AM
 
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Linda- I wanted to reply first by giving you a hug. You always give such great advice on here & I for one appreciate it.
It is so hard to let go, especially when someone is really like a family member. It sounds like your biggest issue is related to your inability to let go. I have received excellent advice in the past to just allow myself 10 minutes of rumination per day when I have a topic that is really bothering me. Then anytime I think of the issue outside of this 10 minute period I have to STOP. This also allows me to develop some perspective and problem solving. I also find journaling to be very helpful. The other thing is that I think you should do is allow yourself some time to heal, especially since this guy has been such an important part of your life. Sometimes time is the only thing that will help when you are mourning the loss of a friendship.
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#3 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 12:34 PM
 
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I'm going thou something very similar. It hurts.
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#4 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 12:48 PM
 
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^ Me too, it's been 25+ years and I finally feel that it's coming to an end. It has hurt terribly and there have been sporadic restarts in the relationship, but I see now that at the bottom, this woman and I are not on the same page. I wish her well.

Ultimately she has prioritized me out of her life and I have to draw the line: I can't be in a relationship with someone who doesn't care to know or respect me.

I hope I don't ever hear from her again because it would be hard not to reinstate what has been a very tumultuous relationship that has been waaaaay more give than take. I think I love my love for her more than I love her, at this point. Slow subtle disappointment has kept this stringing along. It comes to loving me or loving her and the way it's played there isn't room for both.

So sorry to all who suffer these losses. There is a beauty in the capacity for people to love. But there is a great exhileration is the ability to turn a new leaf and live differently, for everyone involved.

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#5 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 01:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the kind words. I am going to do some journaling about it. It really helped just writing about it here, and reading about other people's experiences.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#6 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:06 PM
 
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Hugs to you!!!
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#7 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:20 PM
 
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I am right in the middle of it. In a way I want to tell him what I think. Not just leave it unsaid. Not sure if that will help?
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#8 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:28 PM
 
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I have tried, Nazsmun. But it comes down to my philosophy on broken relationships: "If it could be communicated and understood, the relationship would not be over."

When you realize that you can't tell this person what you really think, it's over, isn't it?

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#9 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:32 PM
 
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Yes, it is over that is the part that hurts the most. For me.
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#10 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:48 PM
 
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Sending you hugs and comfort, as well as hope for a new phase in life!

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#11 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 02:59 PM
 
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puma- thanks. really thanks

linda- Hugs and healing for you as well
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#12 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 08:37 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Nazsmum View Post
I am right in the middle of it. In a way I want to tell him what I think. Not just leave it unsaid. Not sure if that will help?
In my situation I really can't. Respecting how my DH feels about what we should do with his friend and colleague is more important to me than how I feel about the friend. KWIM?

Do you think there is any chance he could hear you? Do you think the information could help him in anyway?

I wish that I could spare my friend the pain that I know is in store for him if he continues down this path. We were the people he confided in while he was going through his divorce -- I really want him to be happy and to not have to suffer any more. But.....

realistically, even if I were free to talk to him, I doubt it would make a difference. Something about this woman is fulfilling a need of his -- most likely a need to feel successful and important. I doubt that the life lesson in store for him is something that a friend could just explain to him.

This thread has been helpful today -- it's helping me to process and freeing up space in my head for other things.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#13 of 17 Unread 07-28-2014, 09:42 PM
 
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Okay this is a tough situation and only you know what is best for you but I'm going to offer my thoughts. You just take them with a bowl of salt and only keep what you need to out of them okay?

I wouldn't walk away from me. I also wouldn't say anything. Hear me out... from what I understood this is a long time friend. You've been through thick and thin together including his last divorce and he's always been a good friend. He has some unsavory qualities (don't we all) but lots of good ones and even with the bad he was a good friend before the new woman. The problem here is concern that he's going to get hurt and wanting to tell him but not being able to... and also the fact that Miss Lady is bringing out his unsavory qualities more. Right?

I was in this situation a few years ago. It was a friend of mine from school that was also the son of dh's boss and a friend to dh and me as a couple. Buddy had been married before in a nasty marriage - married shortly after we graduated high school, worked hard putting his wife through nursing school, thinking they were trying for a baby only to find out she was on bc the whole time w/o telling him, then she left him the week after graduation for another guy. Nasty, nasty marriage and divorce. He was deeply hurt from it all and later met another woman. He was much happier and was glad to have found someone and be getting married again but something wasn't right. I had a feeling new chick was only marrying him for his large paycheck so she didn't have to work and she could keep her ex from her baby. All our other friends were telling him about it and at the time we hoped he would listen to us since we were so close. We told him our fears and that we were there for him but it didn't work. They married and we were right unfortunately. They didn't make it but about a year before he realized she'd drained all his money, mostly on drugs. He's divorced from her and it was rough on him. I wish he hadn't suffered it but what was worse was him turning away from family and friends. All the pressure to not marry her alienated him from everyone else when it didn't go well because of the "told you so" atmosphere. Of course no one (to my knowledge!) ever said that to him but he felt that way. He has hardly spoken to anyone for years since it and friendships certainly aren't the same.

I think the best thing you can do for your friend is be there. You're probably right and while it'd be nice for him not to have to suffer your dh is right. It's his choice and he's a big boy. He'll get through it but... he's going to need you in his corner. Don't jump out of his corner now. Just be there and when it all goes to manure in the handbasket he'll know that you're there and he'll have the support he needs. He'll be back to your old friend then. I hope the best for you all. (I would limit exposure though until he returns to his old self... being supportive doesn't mean you have to subject yourself to lots of time with him)

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#14 of 17 Unread 07-29-2014, 11:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I think the best thing you can do for your friend is be there. You're probably right and while it'd be nice for him not to have to suffer your dh is right. It's his choice and he's a big boy. He'll get through it but... he's going to need you in his corner. Don't jump out of his corner now. Just be there and when it all goes to manure in the handbasket he'll know that you're there and he'll have the support he needs. He'll be back to your old friend then. I hope the best for you all. (I would limit exposure though until he returns to his old self... being supportive doesn't mean you have to subject yourself to lots of time with him)
I really appreciate your post. I like this way of looking at it. He is choosing his experience and it isn't my job to save him from himself. I don't need to be right about anything, or even judge his actions.

Right now, I really don't enjoy getting together with him and this woman, so I'm going to minimize that. My DH is on board with that.

I'm going to work to keep both my actions and feelings about the situation such that I don't do long term damage to our friendship. Hopefully, things will be different in the future.

(I've done plenty of things in my life that ended up causing me pain, and that I learned from. May be it's just part of being human)

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#15 of 17 Unread 07-29-2014, 12:37 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post
I really appreciate your post. I like this way of looking at it. He is choosing his experience and it isn't my job to save him from himself. I don't need to be right about anything, or even judge his actions.

Right now, I really don't enjoy getting together with him and this woman, so I'm going to minimize that. My DH is on board with that.

I'm going to work to keep both my actions and feelings about the situation such that I don't do long term damage to our friendship. Hopefully, things will be different in the future.

(I've done plenty of things in my life that ended up causing me pain, and that I learned from. May be it's just part of being human)
I think that sounds like a great idea. I'm glad my post could help. When our friend did this we started spending more of our time with him out. We didn't see him as much as we had before and when we did we tried to make it a public event. Fireworks shows, community functions maybe a rodeo or fair, etc. We tried to find things to do to see him so we wouldn't be stuck just the two couples to socialize and talk to each other all night. It helped take the stress out of the situation and we didn't have to deal with Miss Lady so much.

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#16 of 17 Unread 10-18-2014, 04:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Update:

They are married now and off on their honeymoon. I had a few thoughts about the whole situation that were unkind (I found a GREAT dress to wear to the wedding and it went through my head that I will be happy with this dress longer than they will be happy with their marriage) but about a week ago I had a change of heart. Instead of all the snarky thoughts, I decided that I wanted to be able to attend their wedding truly wanting them to be happy.

And I did. I was able to sincerely wish them well. I think they have a rough path a head of them, but I'm sure others said the same thing about DH and I when we made our commitment to each other. We've been able to grow together and work through things and compromise and really discover what it means to love another through our commitment. Hopefully, they will too.

May be part of what is helping me really let it go is that they are now married. It's so clear now that the ONLY thing I can do is root for them.

but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#17 of 17 Unread 10-18-2014, 04:16 PM
 
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Awesome for you that you could attend and be happy for them. And enjoy that dress!
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