When a friend no longer loves you…

brokenfriendshipAbout nine years ago, a person who I thought was my best friend, a lifelong friend of 21 years at the time, came over to my house with a notebook and a list. She proceeded to tell me all the things wrong with me, all the bad or wrong things I had ever done in the past 21 years: I teased her too much, I was too honest about my feelings, I was too opinionated, I was a hypocrite, I was selfish, I was materialistic. She gave me examples and instances in which I did or said things she didn’t approve of. Apparently, all those years, instead of telling me what bothered or offended her at that moment, she let it fester. She kept a running inventory and then wrote it all down and blasted me with it. I didn’t argue. I probably did do or say all the things she charged me with. I apologized and said I never meant to hurt her or anyone else with any of my behaviors or words. I sobbed, as she sat stoic. I was eight months pregnant at the time, so I was a vulnerable, hormonal, emotional mess anyway. She finished by saying it was now up to me. I told her, “What is up to me? You don’t even like me.” She said if I changed, we could still be friends. I asked her again, “Why? You don’t even like me!” All our mutual friends sided with her. I was now left with none of the friends I thought I’d have forever.
So, where does my faith come in to all of this? Where is God? I allowed someone else to make me feel so unlovable, so unworthy and so very flawed, that it was difficult to feel like there was anyone else who could possibly feel differently about me. It felt like everyone must hate me like she did. After all, she was my best friend, and if my best friend couldn’t love me, why would my husband, my kids, my sister, my other friends, or even God, love me? Was I really that unlovable?
I don’t think she has ever thought it was wrong to do what she did to me. I deserved it after all for being such a horrible person. I deserved to lose my friends, according to her. That list of bad things negated everything good or positive I had done the past 21 years. I was shocked, stunned, angry, and overall, devastated. The memory is still so surreal. I don’t believe we really understand how much one individual can hurt another so profoundly– until it happens to us. There had to be something good to come from this; my faith told me so.
worthyThe lesson I learned is two-fold. One: The only thing that brought me peace was introspective prayer. I had to search inside myself for God. I had to remind myself that God was within me and always a part of me. How could that part be hateful? I learned to re-love myself through the love I had for God, because I believe He resides in me. I am made in His image and likeness. He was the one who would be strong for me, and He was the one to be the goodness within me. Two: God loves me. It is the first thing I learned during my childhood; God loves me. It doesn’t matter what I have done, what I have said, or what other people think of me. God’s love is unconditional. I apologized to my former friend, but I asked for forgiveness from God. I know I am imperfect, but God doesn’t hold it against me. Realizing God’s love for me helped me to allow other people to love me again: my husband, my kids, and my other friends. I was in such a depressed state, due to this episode, I pulled away from people. I didn’t see myself worthy of their love and affection, because that one person did not find me worthy. God changed that in me. If God, who is perfect, loves me and will always love me, whether I allow Him to or not, then I have to allow others to love me. My trust was so broken, but God mended my heart. I began to see God more in those other people, especially my husband and kids.
I suppose the there is a third thing that occurred to me and that is the idea of forgiveness. Forgiveness is a funny thing. I know the wise advice that forgiving someone is more for me than it is for the person who hurt me and holding a grudge is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die. I get it. I agree with it. It’s so much easier said than done. I want to forgive her, and there are days that I have, and then there are days, even nine years later, that I revert to the hurt and yes, anger. Do I need to forgive her? Do I need to forgive myself? She caused me hurt, or had I actually caused it myself? I very well could have compiled my own list for her, but I wouldn’t. I could not inflict the same pain even on her.
It’s taken me a very long time to get over the hurt of that day nine years ago. I’m even nice to her when I see her. There are times I think I’m over it, then the hurt comes bubbling up to the surface days when I think too much, or when I’m feeling extra insecure or vulnerable in some way. It is those moments in which I remind myself of God’s love for me, my love for God, and my love for myself.
godlove

30 comments
  • JanineJuly 15, 2014 - 6:04 am

    Charla, thanks for sharing this. I had a similar situation happen to me, and I completely understand what you are saying about how it causes you to question your value as a person, not just your ability to be a good friend. It’s been 20 years and I still sometimes have the same visceral reaction when I think about it. I think the worst pain came from my other friends siding with the offended “friend”. It leaves you feeling so alone, and unloveable. I wish my faith had been stronger at that time, as I know I would have recovered rather more quickly, and with less bitterness, had I been in a better place spiritually. As it was, it took me a while to really turn to God with this, and respond in charity rather than anger. Anyway, thank you, again.ReplyCancel

  • AmandaJuly 15, 2014 - 6:13 am

    I am so sorry this happened to you. I haven’t had any really close friends in a long time probably since high school when my best friend threw me under the bus.ReplyCancel

  • Bill SJuly 15, 2014 - 6:21 am

    My son has done something similar. As soon as he gained financial independence he disowned my wife, me and the entire family. He sent me an email to give to my wife that was very hurtful. I didn’t give it to her. Then he sent a hurtful text to me. I congratulated him for inflicting the most hurt on both of us with the least amount of words. He was holding it all in and hit us as hard as he could with his words. It seems that is what your friend was trying to do. She was trying to hurt you so as make the split permanent. Something you did repeatedly made her resentful of you and it just built up until she just had to put every little annoying thing about you into her own little Declaration of Independence. I know that is what my son has done to us.ReplyCancel

  • KristenJuly 15, 2014 - 6:28 am

    I went through something similar a couple of years ago. I am still healing, but everything you mention here so resonates. I was only friends with this person for a very short time but I had foolishly called her my BFF (and she called me the same). When everything went down and I clung to God, I began to realize that the whole “BFF” idea was a form of idolatry. I had elevated this person (who turned out to be someone who not only hurt me and many others, but someone who was fraudulent in how she presented herself–almost 90% of what she told me turned out to be false)to a point that some of my worth was based upon our friendship. In that way, I worshiped our friendship. It was like a veil was pulled off my eyes when I began to see the poison of the relationship for what it was. So where was God while I was in this wretched state? He was right there waiting for me catch up. He caught me when I fell and He held me close as I clung to Him. In the end, He used this experience to teach me the danger of basing my worth on another human being. At times when I feel hurt or angry about what happened, I forgive her again. I believe God has allowed us a grace in that forgiveness does not have to be “one and done.” Blessings to you this day and thank you for this.ReplyCancel

  • MarisolJuly 15, 2014 - 7:19 am

    Thank you for posting this! I had a very similar experience many years ago. I can completely identify with what you said. God brought me closer to Him and showed me that the energy I was putting into that friendship was taking away from the relationship He wanted with me. I became so much closer to Jesus when that friendship ended.ReplyCancel

  • MargaretJuly 15, 2014 - 7:26 am

    Reading this objectively I would guess that she was jealous of your life. Who would keep track and list another’s faults? Not a friend but a rather mean, hurtful person. Count your blessings, forgive and be grateful to have her out of your life so that you can spend time with more positive people.ReplyCancel

  • Angie ElserJuly 15, 2014 - 8:39 am

    Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Heidi SaxtonJuly 15, 2014 - 9:25 am

    I’m sorry that happened to you. Strong women can be intimidating … it’s possible that she felt she had to build a “case.” When this kind of thing has happened to me, I tried to look at things from their point of view — how is it that I missed being a cause of offense not only for this friend, but to those who sided with her? Ultimately it helped me to examine my life to see where there were opportunities for growth.

    I’m not saying she was right to do what she did, or to hurt you the way she did. Especially not when you were pregnant! On the other hand, even these painful experiences can present us with opportunities to soften and grow, if we allow it. In situations like this, it can lessen the hurt if we take it to God and show us if there is any truth in the hurtful words, and if HE wants us to make any changes. Then let the rest go.

    Good for you, being able to work through this so that you could speak kindly to the woman again. That shows just how strong you are!ReplyCancel

  • Abi WaldenJuly 15, 2014 - 10:34 am

    Thank you for sharing. Your words are inspiring and healing to me as well.ReplyCancel

  • Mary Ann KreitzerJuly 15, 2014 - 10:39 am

    We are most like Jesus when we are betrayed and abandoned by those closest to us. I hope whenever the pain resurfaces you can pray the Hail Mary for those who hurt you. Such an act as you were subjected to was filled with malice and pride. But in some ways her awful behavior was a gift. We only become humble (as Fr. John Hardon often said) by being humiliated. And only humble, little people are small enough to pass through that “narrow gate.” May God give you comfort and peace and remember, “All things work together for good to those who love the Lord and serve according to His purpose.”ReplyCancel

  • CharlaJuly 15, 2014 - 11:18 am

    It is astounding how my words and experience resonated with so many. Mary Ann, a lot of my solace was found in how Christ dealt with the betrayal he experienced. Being humiliated did indeed humble me and allowed me to examine myself.
    She is an attorney, so was in fact “building a case” against me! I also hope I blessed her by no longer being in her life. I obviously brought out a cruelty in her that I never thought was possible in her. We had been friends since we were 14; we knew each other inside and out, or so I thought.
    I’m sorry to hear that so many have experienced this, especially you, Bill S, to whom the hurt comes from a child of your heart. You are in prayers that you also find peace and reconciliation.
    Kristen, you make a good point about placing too much faith in a relationship that it becomes idolatrous. The BFF mentality leads us to think relationships are impermeable, but only our relationship with God has that kind of unconditionality.
    Thank you all for sharing with me as well.ReplyCancel

  • CharlaJuly 15, 2014 - 11:33 am

    Heidi, the “evidence” she came up with involved teasing and misconstrued tone. I continually check myself now before I speak, knowing that what I deem harmless ribbing can be interpreted as disrespect or criticism. For instance, I saw her husband at our kids’ school and I asked where his wife was. He said she was at work and I replied facetiously “Shocking. She’s never at work!” Knowing well that she is one of the hardest working people I know. She said the people within earshot now thought she was lazy. Another criticism was I told a mutual friend who was thinking of going back to work after her third child that she shouldn’t unless she had no other option and it was hard leaving one’s baby with a
    stranger. I had done that with my first and it was extremely hard. She said I was a hypocrite because I was going back to work after my maternity leave with my third. What she failed to understand was that I had two school tuitions to pay and my mother was taking care of my baby. Those were the types of examples she cited. I learned to not speak in jest, nor offer my opinion on important matters of others’ lives.ReplyCancel

  • ErinJuly 15, 2014 - 12:41 pm

    Wow! Thank you all for sharing. I had to read it twice because it didn’t seem possible the first time. All I can say is “With friends like these, who needs enemies!” May God bless you all as you try to forgive as HE does. (Not easy, I know)ReplyCancel

  • KatherineJuly 15, 2014 - 1:09 pm

    It felt like everyone must hate me like she did. After all, she was my best friend, and if my best friend couldn’t love me, why would my husband, my kids, my sister, my other friends, or even God, love me? Was I really that unlovable?”

    I have been hearing this in my head for years, except it wasn’t a friend. It was my mother. And it was only this past May that I figured it all out but I am still only just beginning to deal with the reprecussions. Some days are better than others. It isn’t that I don’t forgive her – I’m not mad at her. But understanding that she has a narcissistic personality disorder in addition to being an alcoholic doesn’t just erase 34 years of believing myself to be worthless nor does it just replace that broken foundation with whatever should be there. I’m not re-learning to love myself or that God loves me because I never learned it. I’m trying, a little each day, to clean out the rotten foundation and build a new one but it can be hard to build. Thx for writing this and I’ll pray for you.ReplyCancel

  • DebbieJuly 15, 2014 - 1:38 pm

    Boy does this come at a timely place in my life right now. A friendship that has been nurtured over the last 15 years, is crumbling before my very eyes. This friendship grew online through Catholic chatroom and then Facebook. We got to meet face to face for the first time last Fall and it was glorious and wonderful to be able to hug her neck and talk with our voices instead of our fingers. This summer it has gone off the rails, and I am mourning what appears to be inevitable.

    I am leaning on God more and I know He needs to be first and maybe that’s the lesson I need from this as well. Thank you for sharing your very personal story and giving me some much needed perspective and validation on the path I am taking.ReplyCancel

  • Juli SmitHJuly 15, 2014 - 1:39 pm

    Thank you for sharing this! I am sure God is using this to help many other people find healing and strength!

    The part that really hit a chord with me was on the forgiveness part. Thinking I’ve forgiven something hurtful, then out of nowhere, all the feelings/emotions can spring up, unbidden. Several years ago, I brought this to Confession, thinking maybe I hadn’t truly forgiven. My priest answered along the lines of, it does not necessarily mean you haven’t forgiven. We are human, and God gave us feelings for a reason. Part of our humanity usually includes re-living feelings, both positive and negative, at various times of our lives. Keep offering them all back to God in praise and thanksgiving.

    I would also add, that Satan will use EVERY thing he possibly can, to tear us away from God. I often find that, in times of weakness or poor feelings, Satan will bring up old hurts in an attempt to pull me down even further.

    I am learning much about my humanity, especially my feelings, right now, by God’s grace. God Bless!ReplyCancel

  • bbJuly 15, 2014 - 2:45 pm

    This is such a wonderful post, thank you for sharing. Like many others, I had a similar experience. I broke off an engagement with someone, and my best friend sided with him. Despite the fact that she and I had known each other for years, that I was the maid of honor at her wedding, that she was my best friend, she chose to believe his side of the story over mine. Even though he’d publicly said that he’d say whatever he had to in order to hurt our friendship as ‘punishment’ for breaking our engagement. It broke my heart, to say the least. It took me a long time to forgive her. Longer, really, than to forgive my ex-fiance. But much prayer and reflection do heal, in time.ReplyCancel

  • Been there tooJuly 15, 2014 - 3:26 pm

    I’ve had similar incidents twice now. My highschool best friend decided that I was no longer worth speaking to after my wedding. And several years later my husband and I met a couple, introduced them to all of our friends and after helping the wife find employment she began making my husband’s life difficult, culminating with finally firing him. Through the whole thing we tried our best not to voice what was going on to our mutual friends because we didn’t want them to feel that they needed to choose sides. In the end a number of accusations were made and all or our friends, some of whom had known my husband since high school sided with the other couple and froze us out. Through the whole thing I kept blaming myself, my lack of ability to converse with and make friends with the women in the group kept coming up as a factor and eventually I was told point blank that the whole thing was my fault and that I was blamed for it. Still trying to work through it, some days it is okay, other days it hurts so much I can’t catch my breath.ReplyCancel

  • Jo FlemingsJuly 15, 2014 - 10:37 pm

    I have been dressed down, or put in my proverbial place like this more times than I can count, the most traumatic of which was when as a fourth grader the teacher pulled me out into the hallway to blast me and my character in place. As I stood there shocked, not knowing what I had done wrong, I remember that horrible feeling when tears are streaming down your face and you feel like you are choking to death on something lodged in your throat- and I looked down the hall and every classroom door was open…

    I think in these traumatic events, God gives the gift of humility- although it seems like an injustice in the moment. I know to this day while I have no intention of doing it, I regularly offend people with my prideful behavior, my flippant and arrogant tone, and my nasty judgmental and critical one-liners, or even my sincere you-need-to-be-aware-of-this-error-in-your-ways-kind of exhortations. And I do not have many friends- (go figure, right?). I am very likely, one of ‘those’ types of people-

    But the truth is, everyone offends at some time or another, and any time spent in the company of others will reveal it. The Bible tells us to love one another fervently from the heart and to let love cover a multitude of sins- to eviscerate someone in place is not charity, neither is it charitable to ignore glaring faults in a beloved companion. There is a way to bring the light of Christ to challenging habits, most often it is the request for a gentle clarification- “Hey, you just said, ‘ such and such’… is that what you meant? It came across to me as if you were thinking or meaning this (whatever ‘this’ is).”

    If we think the best of one another and then question our friends with gentleness and detachment when we are hurt by their behavior, I think we are so much more likely to build up love and to help one another become more like Jesus and Mary.

    And if this kind of nightmare correction happens, eventually God wants us to be able to receive the part of it that was offered in justice- the part that is true and to own where we do need to change, and then to forgive the one we must have hurt so much that they would take it out on us in such a disordered manner; or to have a profound compassion for the hurt they experienced that must have been so grievous that they would take it out in such a disordered manner, whether we are as guilty of all they claim or not.

    None of us wants to do damage to another person, and sometimes we are insensitive; and sometimes people take offense without just cause because of other hurts or when no offense is intended- it is complicated. Love is the only cure, not just the healing love and forgiveness of God for us, and us for ourselves, but love for our friends and neighbors, sincere regard for them- and a willingness to police our behavior without becoming tyrannized by the expectations of others.

    It is brave of those commenting here to share these experiences and very helpful to know that one is not alone in this kind of heartbreak.ReplyCancel

  • so sorryJuly 16, 2014 - 6:17 am

    I am so sorry that this happened to you, and it doesn’t surprise me that you are still working through this after so many years. I had a friend invite me out to lunch (during the week that we found out our baby didn’t have a heartbeat at 14 weeks and were waiting to miscarry) and give me a list of reports from her own far from perfect children about my kids and things that they had done wrong. (a punch to the head was the most serious, although there were 4 adults in the house and no one heard or saw anything). At first I was horrified, and thought that she was just trying to let me know so that I could address the issues. But later in the conversation, I realized that they never wanted to see us again. She said that it was sad that we didn’t have the same values, that our kids needed psychological evals, and that we needed to evaluate our parenting. Our kids seemed kind of baffled about most of the incidents when I asked them about them. Other things were so obviously explained away that I almost had to laugh at the absurdity of it all. However, 5 years later, I am still plagued with doubt whenever my kids mess up.

    The comments on this article are amazing, thanks to all. The main result of all of this is certainly humility, but unfortunately, I also will never trust a friend again. You know how some people feel the need to pretend that their kids are perfect angels and are constantly trying to maintain the image of a perfect family? That is not me, but I get that now. I feel so stressed if someone is in our home and my kids are bickering or snitching another cookie without permission. Maybe I really am raising undisciplined hooligans! Better not let them poison everyone else’s perfect little angels! I just won’t get too close or dependent on “friends” ever again. God is the one with the unconditional love.ReplyCancel

  • KMomJuly 16, 2014 - 9:38 am

    It always floors me how willing people are to “throw stones” at other people to call attention to their mistakes” as if they didn’t live in glass houses of their own.

    As human beings, we are ALL flawed and we all deserve to be loved in spite of those flaws.

    Your ex-friend was incredibly tactless. The people who followed her are sheep. She didn’t need to build a case against you if she didn’t want to be your friend anymore. She could have been much kinder and went the route of making herself less available if she felt that strongly about it.

    I’ve been burned by friends many times before. So, I choose to focus on my family and extended family, which I am lucky enough to have. God loves us unconditionally and that love alone leaves us in a state of grace.

    Thank you for posting this fantastic article! It has made me take a moment of pause in my own life to examine myself as a wife, mother, aunt, daughter, niece, cousin and friend.ReplyCancel

  • Jo FlemingsJuly 16, 2014 - 9:53 am

    Hey so sorry- look, since I am one of ‘those’ people this might not encourage you, because my kids are also some of ‘those people’ at times– but what goes around comes around, and it all evens out by about the time the third one is 25. (I have a very large family and I have been doing this for about 30 years- I have a lot of experience.) So, whatever is mortifying you today about your kids, yeah, get on top of that as best you can- but, don’t think anyone else is so superior that they can judge with impunity.

    The key is to not let ourselves be derailed by what others think is prudent and to try to be respectful of one another. By respectful, I am talking about something that comes out of the virtue and gift of the Holy Spirit of Piety. You have to be charitable to others and to yourself and your kids- and not fall into any kind of imbalance, if possible ( I know this from experience too, because I own real estate in imbalanced land.)

    Other people’s kids are going to do stuff really wrong too, and God help us all when our kids spazz. Some people might be able to get away in the moment with thinking theirs are better and that they can take credit or breathe a sigh of relief. If so, then we can all enjoy the glory and encouragement that God can lift us above our pathetic state to holiness, because it is He who deserves the credit here not us. If not, well then we can revel in the beauty of His boundless mercy for sinners- and give Him profound gratitude in humility and patch one another up in love.

    There should be progress generationally in holiness for good solid families, and there is- and that is encouraging for all of us. Some kids won’t struggle with the same stuff others do- BUT, this is because God is faithful, and to Him be the glory.

    Here is my take on things: If you, the mother, get it right in the moment, glory to God, all praise and all thanksgiving be unto Him, the Author and Perfecter of our faith, and what a beautiful return and example you are to the rest of us- a delight and a joy! But if you begin in any moment to appropriate that unto yourself as your own personal badge of accomplishment- as if you were not every moment sustained by grace in your fidelity, you tread on dangerous ground and pride goes before a fall.

    I have seen the best parents I know lose their kids to the world, for ‘now’; after those wonderful kids were immersed in exploring vocations to the religious life- I have seen amazing wonderful loving spouses cheat or abandon their families and worse; I have seen priests I thought walked on water stumble and fall and fail miserably…. you know, this is a messy world we live in, and we are all weak and needy.

    God is faithful, He loves us all, and He counts on our regularly turning our hearts to Him when we face the serious dilemmas- (in everything really). These things happen – conflicts, misunderstandings, being at cross purposes, colliding values, etc. and we have to just take from it what He wants for us, and not reject ourselves or anyone else in the midst of our sorrow- I find that a constant challenge and I hate to see anyone else fall into the same error I struggle with so much.

    We judge others in our immaturity and pride, and there is a difference between reacting according to what is prudent and charitable, and what is self-comforting or pacifying. If I comfort myself in recognizing or discussing or confronting someone about their own shortcomings, I am not really exercising charity. If I recognize yes, I have faults-some of them very serious, and so do others, and the goal here is not to hurt one another with them so how best to do that is the question, I am a lot closer to the heart of Jesus. Having experienced the hurtful tactic, we are more likely NOT to employ it, right? So that is a good thing! (At least that is my $.02, in A LOT of words taking up ALOT of space here.)

    More than anything I want to speak some comfort to those of us hurting here- we know we need to police our behavior, and sometimes we are so blind to what we are doing wrong we won’t see it if someone does not point it out to us- HOWEVER, the manner in which those revelations come is so much more exemplary when it comes through the loving superlative example of virtue lived out before us, rather than someone hitting us over the head with it by their words and actions. So, in Christ, what I think I want for myself, and what I think most of us want, is to be conformed to His image and to then live out His love for others in the most effective way to help one another live in the fullness of that love.

    So, we want to allow the Holy Spirit use this suffering and mortification we have all experienced as an effective tool to bring this about in our souls. (I know I am preaching here, but I hope it brings some balm to the hurting, if anyone can stand to read this much!)ReplyCancel

  • AmberJuly 16, 2014 - 11:05 am

    Thank you. I needed that.ReplyCancel

  • joanneJuly 16, 2014 - 1:43 pm

    I had something similar happen with family members. In trying to “understand”, I have been struck with the image of jesus alone in the garden, on the cross, and HIS rejection. Rejection by those men and friends who did love HIM, but just not in his current situation. The pain is so real. I really need to join my rejection with His. This is my cross.ReplyCancel

  • LouiseJuly 17, 2014 - 10:06 am

    This is a very good post.

    If you ask me, this woman and all who act in the same kind of way are probably struggling with mental illness. Seriously – normal people do not act like this. Normal conflict does not result in feelings of worthlessness. I speak from sad experience.

    Imagine if the friend were one’s spouse, instead. What far worse pain would that be?

    God bless.ReplyCancel

  • M D WilliamsJuly 21, 2014 - 11:15 am

    Wow. Makes one wonder what our friends are REALLY thinking about us! So sorry, and hope you find solace via prayer. Offering it up does help, in time. God sees our tears, which are also prayers.

    This is pretty personal. I have been happily reunited with my birthson, who was 28 at that time (more than 10 yrs ago). Events which transpired led me that this was indeed God’s will. It had been a private adoption and I thought I might never meet him… He told me he was a Christian; had been baptized Catholic (which I was thrilled to find out bc it was my 1 request of the adoptive parents). He had no longer been observing the faith when we met & was even somewhat hostile to Catholocism, I think. I’d become quite observant over the yrs (getting married & raising a family can do that!). Last time I saw him in person, he was planning on marrying his fiancee summer(whom I’ve met). THEN, a few yrs ago I learned he’d become an atheist (via fb), uber-Liberal, pro-choice, AND most recently — transgender!! . . I was really floored by that one. Nothing I know about him pointed int his direction. I was gobsmacked. Hurt. Shocked. But even more hurtful was the pm sent months prior to that in which he said some v mean things – & I think the harsh response was at least partly my fault, though really inflated & unjustified. It has taken me some months to deal with all that emotionally and truly forgive.

    But now my question is: what IF s/he wants to try to re-start the relationship?? What could/should I say – esp. if s/he does not offer an apology? I pray I’ll be able to respond with love and kindness. And I am mourning the fact that I may never get to see my ‘son’ again. I pray he will realize what a mistake this all is and reclaim his masculinity, which is a gift from God.ReplyCancel

  • DIANA HALLJuly 22, 2014 - 8:36 am

    It is very sorrowful and poignant to read all of these similar stories. We all have them. I am not going to record mine as it seems to have had a happy ending…I am not a person to hold grudges or “rack up points” against anyone I love or care about but do know those who keep score, family and friends. I am very much into forgiveness and moving forward…and it is possible after any devastation, reading all the responses did move me very much back to a place I still don’t have any answers for, but, all is well now, it seems, prayer and unconditional love play a major role in healing but it is very “killing” to be victim and “perpetrator” all in one and not have a clue… God has ALL THE ANSWERS…and it is in Him that we trust…to carry us through even the most hurtful and sorrowful times in our lives and for us to be grateful…come what may…Peace & Blessings to everyone and Love in healing…ReplyCancel

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  • Lucy S.August 4, 2014 - 11:35 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience with all of us. This is a very difficult post to read for me, not because it happened to me, but because I had to do the same thing to a dear friend of 20 years.

    There’s always two sides to a story and, hopefully, by writing this comment, I could give a very different perspective on the situation.

    The reality is that many long-time friendships don’t work out because of personality conflicts among those involved.

    In my case, I had a friend from high school who was a very loving and generous person but had a very strong personality and was very prone to extreme competition and humiliating me in public. My personality is such that I would always give this friend the benefit of the doubt and even look inside of myself and say, “maybe I said or did something wrong for her to humiliate me like that.”

    I would stay up at night thinking to myself that it was probably my fault. In order for me to sleep, I would ask the Lord for forgiveness and offer Him all my pain and suffering. I would tell our Lord that I forgive her wholeheartedly.

    Why didn’t I just be honest and bring it up to her as it happened? It is because her initial reaction was to get defensive, more competitive and even more spiteful. I was simply trying so hard in my heart to heal from the pain that I didn’t want to give her anymore opportunity to cause me pain in the future.

    Now imagine taking all the blame for her behavior for more than twenty years. Imagine seeing a pattern and taking it all in until you just couldn’t bear the pain anymore. Something has to give. Something inside of me emotionally snapped when she humiliated me again at a gathering debasing my husband’s job in front of my friends.

    It was there that I realized that if I continued this friendship, she would continue this behavior and I could not stand the thought that I enabled it this whole time.

    So I wrote her a letter, not to cause her pain and suffering, but out of a deep desire to do what’s best for her soul. I wrote a letter bringing to light (not giving a list of wrongdoings) her behavior that she seemed so oblivious to all these years. Once again, the letter was to bring to light, not just the behavior, but to bring to light how much pain I had been enduring all this time.

    Yes, the truth hurt her but telling her finally set my soul free and the distance this caused allowed me to heal to the point that we are now friends again on FB. We can never be close again because our personalities are simply toxic when put together.

    My advice to people who are in the receiving end of this is: Always give everyone around you the benefit of the doubt. When someone says that you hurt them, be compassionate and humble, look inward and ask our Lord what areas you need to change in your life so your actions would never inadvertently cause pain to someone again.

    My advice to people who are like me who continue to take it in but wont’ tell the person out of fear of being hurt more, end the friendship but please do so with a spirit of love, truth and compassion. If you are to bring this up to a friend, don’t just focus on the bad but focus on the good as well. If I had to do it over again, I would tell my friend:

    1. Please forgive me for (enumerate the times you’ve hurt them)

    2. I forgive you for (enumerate all the times they’ve hurt you)

    3. I love and thank you for (enumerate all the blessings this friendship has brought to you)

    I hope I haven’t offended anyone with this post. I just wanted to let everyone who commented know that it is not always out of meanness or jealousy that people do this. Sometimes the pain we have endured for many years is too much to keep in anymore.

    Sometimes, some personalities are just not meant to mix but the one who was hurt first should always bring it up in the spirit of truth, love, compassion and out of a deep desire for the salvation of the other. May God Bless all of you!ReplyCancel

  • joeSeptember 30, 2014 - 12:45 am

    You’ve felt the sting of betrayal. It never goes away and it bubbles up any time it wants to. Its the worst feeling. The part that really is horrible is the other person usually doesn’t feel a thing. Its totally one sided. That wound will open up anytime you feel wronged or betrayed in the future. It doesn’t go away its irreversible. Betrayal is awful but I’m sure everyone has to deal with it. It sounds like you have the proper tools for dealing with it. All you can do is pray and spend time in the word. Ive found this helpful. wash rinse repeat.ReplyCancel