shattered illusions

Hypothetical situation: let’s say you have this friend, who you’ve known for, oh, the last decade. And she’s a good friend – in fact, if someone asked you to name your top five closest friends, she’d be on that list.

While we’re at it, let’s say that this friend lives approximately 2,500 miles away from where you currently reside. She’s planning to visit the town where you live, and she bought her plane ticket about two weeks ago. But she booked it for this coming weekend because “it’s the only weekend [she] has available all summer,” even though she knew before she bought the ticket that you were going to be out of town that weekend.

(Let’s also say that this friend is a bit flaky, and you suspect that it has nothing to do with what weekends she has free during the summer, and everything to do with the fact that she can’t commit to anything more than two weeks in advance.)

And even though you know that this friend is much closer with your Other Friend who recently moved here, and she’s probably primarily coming to visit Other Friend because let’s face it, she’s never come to visit you in the five years that you’ve lived here, wouldn’t that still bother you? Maybe hurt your feelings a little bit? Or piss you off?

Then you find out (via Other Friend, because your friend can’t be bothered to pick up a phone or write an email) that your friend is actually not leaving until Monday morning, and you get back from your own weekend trip on Sunday night, so Other Friend suggests that maybe the three of you should get together for dinner on Sunday night. It feels sort of like a consolation prize, and you know that Other Friend is probably only suggesting it to avoid any future awkward scenarios. But by Sunday night, you will have been on planes for the past 8 hours (not to mention that you’ll be recovering from a crazy family weekend), then you have a 45-minute commute from the airport to your house, plus you have to get up early for work on Monday, and OH YEAH, let’s not forget that your friend has completely pissed you off and hurt your feelings. Would you be totally out of line in just telling your friend (also via Other Friend, since two can play at that game) that she can just go to hell, because if she can’t be bothered to make an effort, then neither can you?

You’re I’m not being totally irrational, am I are you?

7 thoughts on “shattered illusions

  1. I wouldn’t go, but then again, my nickname is Matlock. All the travelling! And the tiredness! And the driving! I would have to go straight to bed.

  2. You’re not being irrational. I’ve had similar situations, since most of my friends from way back live in the Northeast. I wouldn’t go to the pizza deal and would say something to her about how my feelings were hurt. I would suggest leaving out the “go to hell” bit. 🙂 The ever-changing nature of friendships can really suck.

  3. I COMPLETELY understand the feeling of hurt/betrayal from this friend. But- before you decide for sure to write off Flaky Friend forever, consider that it might put OtherFriend in an awkward situation for a long time to come, and you know that this friend is a bit of a flake, and, well, we have family like that and we still love them and make an effort to include them in everything, if you catch my drift. If you decide to bow out of dinner plans, I recommend making it all about why *you* can’t, and not about why you don’t want to make the effort to see her. Then, if the friendship slowly fades away, OtherFriend won’t be in the position of having to feel like she’s in the middle of a spat.

  4. I actually didn’t use the words “go to hell” at all, but I did tell Other Friend that I’m going to be too exhausted from the trip, and that I honestly just don’t feel like going to dinner and making nicey-nice. She understood, but it seemed to hurt her feelings a little bit. (Since she and Flaky Friend are close.) Gah.

  5. You sound like you’ve made up your mind, so…. good. Plus, dealing with a situation that makes you upset is probably not the best idea when you consider that jet lag + emotional tour of damaged New Orleans + likely open-bar reception hangover + seeing a hugely pregnant lady whom you love and adore and are totally thrilled for but who is also hugely pregnant is probably not the best idea.

    On the other hand? Your entry also kind of gave me the sense that when you get right down to it- you really miss her. I know she let you down. Just sayin.’

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