I let a friendship go today. Not just any friendship, a best-friendship. Something I’ve been mulling over for a while now, and while I was sitting in church this morning; likely listening to a very similar sermon to what he’d be listening to, I knew I just needed to rip the bandage off and get it over with.
He told me several months ago to give up on him; that he wasn’t a good enough friend for me anymore. I should have known his advice was sound even in the midst of his own struggles. I didn’t want to give up though. We’d been through too much, he and I. Too many years invested – more than a decade. I’m not the kind to give up on my friends, especially when it’s clear they need a friend/some support.
But somewhere along the line things started to crumble. Was it when I left the church? …I came back though. Was it something I said or did along the way? I don’t recall anything that seemed amiss before. He wouldn’t have hesitated to tell me if something I said or did bothered him, I don’t think.
I had thought it would all become easier, not only coming back to the same timezone… but having moved to the mid-west, we are a lot closer to each other than we had been in years. Yet, with only a six hour drive… three if we met half-way… I’ve been here nearly a year and we haven’t seen each other. He deflected talk about that when I brought it up in the spring.
Like I said, though, he’s been dealing with his own struggles… his own issues… and slowly pushing me away.
I feel like a douche on one hand, because I’m giving up when earlier this year I told him I refused to. On the other, I have my own mental health to consider. I have to deal with the hurt I feel when he seems to be ignoring me and the resignation I feel to the knowledge he may not even respond. Then, if he does respond, there’s a consistent reservation in his words. He holds back, leaving an emptiness in the conversation. If I know him at all, he’s probably trying to attempt pushing me away for my own good. Then again, it feels like maybe I don’t really know him anymore.
I texted him as church ended, telling him I can’t do this anymore. I told him I couldn’t let myself hang out to dry waiting for him – no matter how much I wished to be there for him when I know deep down he needs it. I can no longer be the one person making an effort anymore. I can’t continue feeling like this in what was supposed to be a relationship with a best friend.
I wished him well and made sure to tell him if he decides one day in the future he wants to rebuild/restart the friendship, I won’t reject him. I hope one day he’ll decide he doesn’t want to push me away anymore.
I got a one-word response.
At least he responded this time I guess. Yet, it’s clear he has no will to fix things between us. That makes me sad… Eleven years wasted it seems. It’s a damn shame.
My hopes are not high, but we’ve bounced back from worse before… so who knows. Maybe some time down the line it’ll all fall back into place again.