Author Topic: Loooong time ago friends . . .  (Read 2063 times)

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jpcher

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Loooong time ago friends . . .
« on: January 07, 2013, 08:32:54 PM »
Do you have any desire to get back in touch with them?*

I'm talking about friends that you haven't seen or contacted within the past 20-30 years.

I received an e-mail today from one said friend.

She moved into the house next door to me back when we were in HS. We were pretty darn good friends at the time. We stood up at each others weddings.

We fell away from friendship because she was "upper side" and I was "lower side" (if that makes sense) . . . my ex-husband was unemployed, at the time I was making minimum wage, and we couldn't afford the parties/socializing that her and her well-off DH could afford so our friendship went by the wayside.

Long story short, I just don't know if I want to re-kindle a friendship with her.




I'm in a quandary as to how to respond. I know this is something that I need to work out for myself, but I was wondering:


*General question: Have you ever been contacted by a loooong time ago friend? How did you respond? Have you ever been the initiator of such a reconnection? How did your looooong time ago friends respond?

siamesecat2965

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2013, 10:57:18 PM »
I have, a  couple of times. And it worked out well. But I warn you, they're long :)

first time - BG: I was friends with a small group of girls in HS. we kept in touch during college, but somehow i managed to offend them, or do something while home on Christmas break freshman year. Still not quite sure what.  Let's call the one Lisa. I had another friend, actually a former BF who transferred to Lisa's school, second semester. Let's call him Sam.  Sam told me it was because at the NYE party Lisa and a couple other friend's hosted, I spent too much time talking to a guy from her school, who she had a crush on, and had invited. I just talked to him as I felt badly since we were all HS friends, and he didn't know anyone! So Lisa apparently was mad at me for that. Sam told me I should call her over the summer, so I did. All i remember is she answered the phone, all happy, but when she heard my voice, her tone completely changed and went cold. After that, we lost touch.  end BG

FF about 25 years and it turns out both her parents and mine had moved from NJ to the same town in VA.  Now her mom and mine were not friends, but as we had been friends since jr high, they had spoken on the phone, etc. When my dad passed away, her mom saw the obit, and called my mom, which I thought was very nice.  Also, my mom told me Lisa's mom asked for my address, as Lisa wanted to send me a card. Which she did, but apparently it came back to her 3 times!

We then reconnected on FB, and met for lunch, which we now do every time I'm down, several times a year.  we kind of wondered how we fell out of touch, and she thinks its because she didn't come come for summers in college, and we lost touch. I let her continue thinking that way, as it didn't make sense to dredge up the past.  I think that may have been part of it, but essentially she and the others in the group kind of shut me out.

The second one wasn't someone getting back in touch CRIVINS! me, but involves my HS reunion. I was shy, quiet, and had very little self confidence in HS. I also was on a competitive sports team, not associated CRIVINS! school, so I went to school, practice, etc. but didn't have much of a life aside from that. while I had friends IN school, I didn't do much outside.

My 25th reunion was coming up, and I was on the fence about going. I had a fear when in school, even though I was friendly with people there, if I asked them to do something after school, on the weekend, they'd look at me and say "why would I want to hang out with YOU?" So I still had those old insecurities.

In the end, I told the one person i had kept in touch with, you go, and I will. I almsot backed out last minute, but ended up going. I am sooo glad I did. At this point, no one cared who you were, what you did, what you looked like, etc. everyone was happy to see everyone, and was friendly and welcoming. I had a blast, and have reconnecgted with a small group. And have gotten together periodically with them.

OP, is she close enough you can get together? Or would it just be an online thing? If you can get together, maybe just do coffee, or lunch. That way you aren't obligated to spend huge amounts of time with her, but you can see how she's turned out. You may be surprised.  I know if it were me, I'd be curious enough to want to know how life had turned out for her, I'd do it.

Piratelvr1121

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2013, 11:15:24 PM »
I made a friend when I was 2, shortly after we moved to the court where she lived with her mom, brother and sister.  Her mom was a nurse and worked in the ER where I ended up one night after a febrile seizure.  From what I understand it was one of those "I have a daughter her age" and went from there.

K and I became "best friends" but as the years went on it became more and more apparent just how different we were. Her mother always commented that we were like night and day. I was a naive little dreamer with my head in the clouds, she was levelheaded and street smart.   As we moved into our preteen years she was popular with the in-crowd, I was constantly teased.  We never, ever attended the same schools so it wasn't a matter of her choosing not to associate with me or defend me.  She started having boyfriends at 11, whereas I...well my social life was pathetic until college is the fastest way to put it.

My first boyfriend was DH, when I was 19.  First and only. 

K and I grew apart in high school when our different personalities and interests became a little too different and we fought more and more when my parents would take her on vacations with us. I think there came a point where the only thing keeping us from cutting each other out was nostalgia honestly. 

I told her about my estrangement from my parents last time I talked to her and she didn't really accept it and kept telling me to make up with my parents, yadda yadda.  And she only ever contacted me when it was convenient for her, and anytime I tried to call her back the line was disconnected. 

She sent me a fbook friend request and I declined. 
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

m2kbug

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2013, 12:05:12 AM »
I have been in contact with several long ago friends and classmates, even grade school.  Our contact has largely been through email, Facebook, but I have gotten together once or twice in person with a couple of people.  I haven't really run into a situation where I don't want to meet the person again or talk to them again, but in other rel@tionships I have declined Fbook friend invitations and have gone so far as to block those people. 

I do have one friend from high school/college who just kind of dumped me years ago, and I'm not sure why.  I still harbor a kinship, so when she contacted me, I wrote back.  We talked about fun memories and what's going on in our lives these days, and that's about it.  She lives on the other side of the country, so I don't have to worry about invitations to meet in person, but I think I probably would.  There would be a lack of trust, but again, I still harbor a kinship and probably would like to see where it goes.  People change.  After 20 or 30 years, there's growth and change, mistakes made, changes made, but I would keep an arm's length on this rekindling of a friendship.  I hope what I'm saying makes sense. 


Slartibartfast

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2013, 02:45:09 AM »
This is pretty much what Facebook is for  ;D  I lost contact with most of my high school friends all at once - they all went to a local church which discouraged them from socializing with us heathens ( = anyone who didn't go to their church).  Even when I was in high school, we were never able to get together all as a group unless it was at one particular girl's house, whose parents didn't mind mixing her church friends and her school friends.  (Even though we were all good friends from show choir at school, so it's not like we didn't talk then . . .)  Anyway, when I lost touch with that girl, I lost the rest of the group  :(  I have rediscovered some of them on Facebook since then, but since I pretty much only check Facebook once a year (when my email says 500 people have wished me happy birthday) I mostly just peek at random profiles and see what people have been up to.

cicero

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2013, 04:01:41 AM »
i have - sometimes it's fine, sometimes it just fades away (which is fine because then you're no worse off than when you started).

1- my BFF from ages 5ish till 10, till i moved away. we remained in close contact (letters) until around age 20-21. then i was with my then-boyfriend (who became my husband and then my ex husband) and my whole life was just "him" so when she had come on a visit, we made up to meet and i really messed up (i was very late, like hours late, and she gave up and left. at the time of course i blamed my then-bf, but i realized years later that i should have just left earlier and met my friend). we kept in sporadic touch after that, and then i met her (by chance, she lived near my sister), and we rekindled a bit. we are now in sporadic, once in a while, touch.

2- a friend from the army. we lived in close quarters and were VERY close for two years, and remained in contact afterwards. then we drifted apart and i hadn't seen her for years until i saw her by chance on facebook (she "liked" the same store that i did). i reconnected with her, we had a few phone conversations and are FB friends. funnily enough, i didn't remember at all *why* we drifted apart but she said that she saved *all* our letters and notes from back then (YIKES) and i had apparently sent her a nasty letter at some point.

There are a few people I would like to reconnect with from HS, if only just to see how they are doing, but i lost all contact with them.

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Bethalize

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2013, 05:51:14 AM »
I had one friend from the age of ten. We lost touch at 19 and reconnected through Friends Reunited seven or eight years later. We are great friends now, although not every day friends because we live too far away. It was a jolly good thing we missed out on the difficult early twenties and can enjoy each other as an adult.

Another woman could be a little sharp, probably a way of coping of a difficult childhood situation. I let contact go after 16. We reconnected through Facebook last year. This year we will meet up. I initiated this because I read her blog and she is the kind of person I would like to be friends with now.


Snooks

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2013, 07:36:31 AM »
When a friendship just fades away I think there's no harm in rekindling it because you may find that the things that caused you to drift are no longer an issue (work schedules, family commitments etc.).  Personally speaking if I feel dropped/betrayed by a person I don't think I could rekindle that relationship because I wouldn't be able to move past the hurt without an explanation and most of those people probably wouldn't even know the hurt they'd caused me.

siamesecat2965

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2013, 10:00:16 AM »
When a friendship just fades away I think there's no harm in rekindling it because you may find that the things that caused you to drift are no longer an issue (work schedules, family commitments etc.).  Personally speaking if I feel dropped/betrayed by a person I don't think I could rekindle that relationship because I wouldn't be able to move past the hurt without an explanation and most of those people probably wouldn't even know the hurt they'd caused me.


I agree with this. In the case of my first story, yes, at the time I was quite hurt thay my group basically decided they wanted nothing to do with me anymore, but you know what? I've kind of enjoyed reconnecting with Lisa, and as we only meet a few times a year, I can handle that.  She had a very different idea of why we drifted apart, and that's fine.

I do know, that even at my HS reunion, there were a couple of people I had absolutely no desire to even say hello to, as they had been quite catty and nasty to me. One was a girl I was on the competitive sports team with, and she was nothing but nasty and stuck-up from the time we met in 7th grade, and started competing, until we graduated. Lo and behold, I came to find out after the fact, I wasn't the only one she acted this way towards.  I have a small, private group of HS friends on FB, and i don't know how the discussion began, but someone mentioned her name, and the floodgates opened!

I also found it interesting that 90% of my classmates at the reunion coudn't care less who you were back then, but there was still a small, cliquey group of the former "popular" kids who really didn't want much to do with anyone but themselves.  And it was quite noticeable! oh well, their loss.


Snooks

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2013, 10:41:34 AM »
I suppose my issue is I care who they were back then.  Back then they were mean, nasty people who make me wish that five years of my life didn't exist.

m2kbug

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2013, 10:58:10 AM »
I suppose my issue is I care who they were back then.  Back then they were mean, nasty people who make me wish that five years of my life didn't exist.

Don't respond to the email.  If you have any interest at all at seeing how their lives are going or talking about the old, good memories, write back.  But I think just ignoring the email and shuttling further emails into the junk box or delete folder is fine.  Are you wishing to respond as to why you do not want to rekindle this old friendship?  That's a little more difficult.  Honestly, I would just ignore the email and move on if I didn't want to have any contact with this person anymore.

Snooks

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2013, 11:12:15 AM »
I suppose my issue is I care who they were back then.  Back then they were mean, nasty people who make me wish that five years of my life didn't exist.

Don't respond to the email.  If you have any interest at all at seeing how their lives are going or talking about the old, good memories, write back.  But I think just ignoring the email and shuttling further emails into the junk box or delete folder is fine.  Are you wishing to respond as to why you do not want to rekindle this old friendship?  That's a little more difficult.  Honestly, I would just ignore the email and move on if I didn't want to have any contact with this person anymore.

The OP isn't me, I'm just bitter about my school days!

m2kbug

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2013, 11:17:10 AM »
I suppose my issue is I care who they were back then.  Back then they were mean, nasty people who make me wish that five years of my life didn't exist.

Don't respond to the email.  If you have any interest at all at seeing how their lives are going or talking about the old, good memories, write back.  But I think just ignoring the email and shuttling further emails into the junk box or delete folder is fine.  Are you wishing to respond as to why you do not want to rekindle this old friendship?  That's a little more difficult.  Honestly, I would just ignore the email and move on if I didn't want to have any contact with this person anymore.

The OP isn't me, I'm just bitter about my school days!

Oops!  How observant of me!   ;D 

siamesecat2965

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #13 on: January 08, 2013, 11:42:49 AM »
I suppose my issue is I care who they were back then.  Back then they were mean, nasty people who make me wish that five years of my life didn't exist.

I totally get where you're coming from. my last three years of elementary school, grades 4-6 were pure h*ll. I was picked on and teased on a daily basis. And let me tell you, girls that age are MEAN and NASTY.  Most kids had been together since kindergarten, and as I was the "new kid", and shy, and had no self-confidence, and wore thick, bifocal glasses, and had braces, I was an easy target.  I really had no friends, and can't even recall once during that time being invited to any birthday, or other type of party.

I was talking with my mom and cousin over the holidays, and she asked me about some of the girls back then, as we were discussing reconnecting, etc. I said you know what, it was a tough time, but we all mature, and I've become friendly (online and in RL) with a couple of them, and I have been able to let bygones be bygones.  But I can also understand how others might not be able to.

Lynn2000

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Re: Loooong time ago friends . . .
« Reply #14 on: January 08, 2013, 11:45:22 AM »
For the OP, I think it wouldn't hurt to exchange a few emails with the person, maybe friend her on Facebook. I mean, if you're on the fence about rekindling the friendship, you need some data to go on. If her tone/lifestyle/whatever really put you off, then you can do the slow fade back into obscurity. If they make you want to get to know her again, you can step things up, and eventually meet with her in person. I wouldn't go the in-person route right away though, as that could be awkward and uncomfortable if you realize right away you don't care for her.

I also like Facebook for letting me "catch up with" old friends with very little commitment on my part. I have a lot of my friends from HS on my friends list. I have zero desire to correspond with them in detail or to get together with them, but a few of them I enjoy reading their updates and leaving the occasional comment or like. They seem like nice people but I don't get the sense we would have much in common anymore. Only one did I unfriend/block, after he said something rude on my wall; plenty of others I've never searched for or decline to add when FB suggests it, because although I know who they are, we weren't at all close in HS and they're people I have a negative impression of.

There was a girl I was friends with in HS, Liz, who was a year younger than me. She had a lot of issues but at least she was interesting. I always wondered what happened to her and I kept trawling different reunion websites and asking people if they'd heard anything about her. Finally at some point, I managed to get in contact with her through email. The triumph of tracking her down was definitely the highlight of the experience, let's just say. She was very similar to who she'd been in high school, only with more adult problems--a child with special needs, a deadbeat ex, a chronic health problem, a tremendous crush on a disinterested male friend, a stressful job. I'm not saying those things were her fault, but the overall impression was that her life was still a mess and her only way of dealing with it was long, intensely negative rants in emails to me.

She was coming back to the area to be a bridesmaid in her sister's wedding (hated her sister, couldn't afford the trip, the dress looked terrible on her, but she was doing it anyway of course) and we made plans to have dinner. She was to pick me up at my place at 5pm on Friday or whatever. She was a complete no-show, with no message at all, and I haven't heard from her since. In retrospect I'm glad I got rid of her; we hadn't really corresponded too long before that, maybe a month or so, but if it had gone on longer I would've had to figure out how to back away from the rattlesnake I'd poked.
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