General Etiquette > Dating

Apologies ignored and friendship not what I thought?? Update #279

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Samgirl2:
Hi guys, I need some help on how best to deal with a person I though was a good friend suddenyl behaving coldly and out of character and ignoring my attempts to mend things. Sorry it's long...

My best friend (spoke daily by email, met up regularly, confided in me, told me I was really special to her, she didn't know what she would do without me) seems to have completely changed personality since she got pregnant.

She and hubby kept it secret for 5 months by missing social events, not coming to church, missing a friend's birthday, blowing me off when I suggested coffee to catch up etc. We still chatted over email but she would never meet up and I noticed that I was making more of the effort in email too when it used to be 50/50. Friends asked after them and I checked quite a few times that they were ok or had anyone had offended them etc cos usually they are at everything. She said they were just really busy and doing renovations on their new house. I offered to help if they needed it, she said no, they were ok, they had family helping. Then it came out at a church social they finally came to, because she wasn't drinking and someone asked if she was pregnant, she said yes, 5 months along.

Everyone was stunned because they were never baby people and also they'd kept it secret for so long, but we guessed they just wanted to be sure it was ok. A few people, including me, said we couldn't believe they hadn't told us, but in a 'wow' way, not a mean way. Everyone congratulated them, hugged her, asked when it was due, all that kind of thing. We all thought that now the secret was out they would be back associating with us again, although obviously not as much as before now there was a baby on the way. However since then it's like she's pushed me out completely, Remember before this we talked everyday. I emailed the next day to say how pleased I was, it was so exciting, offered to go shopping with her, asked about her scan that morning, asked if they needed anything and also said I had vacation owing if she needed me to be around at all once the baby was born and her hubby went back to work. She said family would be helping, she hoped I was pleased for them and then changed the subject and asked how work was going.

I tried again the next day, suggesting we meet for a catch up, as it had been so long and now the secret was out she wouldn't have to hide it and I wouldn't put my foot in it by asking awkward questions, but she never replied and didn't contact me which is really out of character but I left it alone. The next two times I see her at church related stuff she said a vague 'hi' and ignored me pretty much. Because this is totally unlike her I sent her an email saying it seemed like something was wrong between us and apologising if I had done anything to hurt her, that I would never do that on purpose, was really sorry if I had and that I really valued our friendship, she meant a lot to me and if there was anything I could do to let me know. She replied 'thanks for your email' and then said she had not been replying to emails because she thought it was too much at work and she should have said something but she hoped I would notice, that she was really glad she had pregnant work friends and her sister to talk to and she wasn't talking to me about it because I didn't seem interested and this was a new exciting phase in their lives and to take care and maybe we could go for coffee in a few weeks. I was really hurt.

I didn't try to contact her for the next week or so because I thought she wanted some space for whatever reason but after running into her again and she seemed to blank me but still be talking a bit to other people I asked her husband (who I also count as a friend and was being the same as ever with me) if I had done something and what I should do because it seemed like she wasn't talking to me. He brushed me off and then told her that I had spoken to him.

She then sent me a very cold accusatory email saying they knew I obviously wasn't happy for them and it was time they both confronted me on this, that she had never given me the cold shoulder and doesn't know why I would think that, that they were both incredibly upset at people's reaction to their happy news (everyone congratuated them so I don't understand, although I know a lot of people have not really talked to them about it since because they have been acting like we should back off and they kept it for 5 months already, people think they don't want them involved to much). She said that they are hurt we have labelled them old and boring (no one has) and that in a time when they are busy & needed support they can't believe people are not at least asking if they need any help! (I tried but she ignored me, plus I have since found out that at least two other couple offered renovation help and were turned down!). She also said that I seemed to think she lied to me or denied being pregnant but she never did, and I had no right to know before anyone else (even though they'd said they told families and work colleagues at 3 months).

I very calmly wrote back and the main stuff i said was: that I was glad she was honest with me and that I was truly very happy for them and was really sorry if I hadn't made that clear and had hurt them. I said the reason I had felt she was being distant with me was because she hadn't spoken to me as much as usual and had ignored my offer of help (reminded her of what I had offered) and that's why I had spoken to her husband but if I had misinterpreted her then I was really sorry to have hurt her by doing that and should not have spoken to him behind her back. I reiterated that everyone was really pleased for them. I said that I was so sorry that they were feeling like this at what should be the happiest time and that I could only apologise and hope they would still want to be friends because they were very important to me and I hoped they would let me be there for them when they were ready..

She replied simply "thank you for your email, I think it's time to draw a line under this, I will arrange to meet you for coffee sometime, have a nice weekend'".

I don't understand the way she is behaving and I feel she hasn't really acknowledged my apology, just acted like I am a bad person. She has at no point called me a friend or said she wants to be friends where as I have made sure to say that I value our friendship and want to be a friend to both of them etc. I feel like I don't even know her anymore. She has never been like this, she is usually so warm and friendly.

Today I saw her coming towards me up the street and she actually turned and went the other way. I'm not sure if she knows I saw her or not. It's so bizarre.

I feel like I want to leave her well alone, but I am worried if I stay away completely she will think her accusations were correct. Also, our paths will cross at church stuff so I cannot keep away totally.

I am so confused as to what to do for the best and whether I am in the wrong or not. ???

gramma dishes:
Is there any possibility, even hideously remotely, that someone else has told her you said or did things you never actually said or did?  Given what you've told us, it doesn't make sense that she'd think you think they're "old" , that you're not genuinely happy for them, that you didn't offer any help -- enthusiastically I might add!  Something's way off here and I can't figure out what.

VorFemme:
((((hugs))))

It's not you, it's them.

At least from what you've posted.

Pinky830:
I wonder if something is terribly wrong that she hasn't told anyone.

P-p-p-penguin:
^ That's what I'm wondering because this whole situation sounds really weird.  It kind of sounds like either she or her husband aren't actually happy about this pregnancy and are projecting their feelings onto other people.

In her email to you (the one described as cold and accusatory) it sounds as though she is putting blame on you for the actions of other people.  Talking about how people haven't offered help and have called them "old and boring" - unless she is saying that she believes that you, OP, have done either of these things, then why bother mentioning them as though they are your fault?

I think you're completely right that they have been giving off a "steer clear" vibe.  They are completely within their rights to choose not to announce the pregnancy until 5 months, but they can't then really be surprised that some people interpret that as them wanting some privacy about the whole situation.

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