Ex-friend e-mailed... I need advice

My apologies if this ends up being long. This isn’t a major issue, but I could use some advice on how to be diplomatic.

The other day I received an e-mail from a former friend whom I haven’t spoken to for roughly two and a half years. It was brief, and polite. He basically summed up how he’s been doing, and said he’d love to hear from me again. Now, without getting into ALL the detail, this is someone I stopped speaking to for a very good reason. This is someone who lied not only TO me, but about me to others, ruining two of my closest friendships at the time. This is someone who basically used me as a psychiatrist by claiming to be depressed and suicidal, taking advantage of the fact that I would try to help. Once learning the truth, I decided that enough was enough and cut off contact.

I have long ago gotten over being angry or even thinking about this person. I have a different life now, and I’m very content. I suppose though that he still thinks about it, otherwise why would he have tried to contact me?

Anyway, I feel like I should respond, but I’m not sure what to write. I don’t intend on building another friendship, nor do I want to start any sort of correspondence. Since I’ve already had my closure, I feel it’s only fair that I offer it to him even if that’s not what he’s looking for. I just need something that says, it’s good you’re doing well, so am I, have a nice life… that way he’ll get the idea and not have anything to respond to.

I’m worried about opening a can of worms though, as the e-mail opened with, “We haven’t talked for two and a half years, and I don’t really know why.” If he doesn’t understand why by now, then I can’t be assed trying to explain. Perhaps I should just ignore and delete?

So, if anyone has an opinion I’d appreciate hearing it. Thank you to anyone who actually took the time to read.



Don’t even bother with this person.

You see a jillion typos on the 'net, but some stick with you.
On to the main point - don’t respond. You’re under no obligation to do so, doing so at best opens you up to further contact with someone you’ve already judged to be an inappropriate fixture in your life and you know he’s bad news.

Drop it.

Good luck!

Delete it and move on. Repeat as necessary.


This is the voice of painful experiance.

Walk away. In fact, block his e-mail addy. These things can get really, really ugly. You said you don’t want a correspondence. Don’t give him one.

And my e-mail is in my profile if you need to chat.

What they said. Bag him. You’re not interested, so under what obligation are you to respond? Why do you feel you have to tell him anything? Your silence speaks volumes as it is. He’s just not willing to listen.

Defend yourself.

Oh, it’s not a typo, Ringo. Just some innapropriate(?) slang I picked up from my sister. It means I can’t be bothered.
Back to the OP, I guess I just figure that if someone had simply cut off contact with me, I’d want to have some closure on the matter. Maybe I’m just being too considerate seeing as how the general consensus so far is to delete it.

Damn niceness!

It doesn’t sound like this person was beneficial to have as a friend, so don’t respond.

Nothing good can come from responding.

That is, unless there was more you needed to say to him about your falling out.

If you were to simply ignore it, this won’t make you look bad - he may just assume that you don’t use that e-mail address any more.

On the other hand, actually blocking the address will announce loud and clear that you don’t want anything to do with him, which I guess is not exactly the approach you want to go for here.

Do you like being assed?

saucy potato, you’ve described a very manipulitive person. Manipulitive people take every chance to start the pattern of manipulation over agian.

If you wtite him a nice, business like letter explaining why the two of you can never be friends, he is going to write back something like “Oh my god! I can’t believe it looked that way to you! That’s not what happened! You have to give me a chance to explain!” If you are nice enough to think he deserves closure, you are also going to have trouble not giving him a chance to tell his side of hte story - that’s the kind of impulse manipulators depend on - and once you’ve gotten into explainations, he’s back in your life.

Don’t think he will just read your explaination - no matter how eloquent and diplomatic it is - and say “Oh, I see, she was right, I was wrong, and the best thing I can do is disappear out of her life.” Poeple like this almost never admit that they were wrong, and even when hey do, their impulse is to “make it up to you” or “explain why i behaved so badly because if they just make you understand, you will forgive me!” and they can go back to manipulating you.

Delete, Delete, Delete. Closure is an internal matter one has to find inside oneself and not something you have to provide for another party.

Poeple do change…

Hey, if you don’t reply, he doesn’t know you got it. Which can be a bonus for me sometimes.

Delete. You owe him nothing, not even a response. Block his addy, too, so any further e-mails get returned to him.


A friend from a long time ago emailed me recently, twice. While we didn’t have anything sort of falling out like you did, I just deleted them and kept going with my life. We even parted on amiable terms, he just has no relevence to my life now and he’s firmly part of my past.

If you stopped speaking to this person for a very good reason, then I’d say you’d need an even better reason to start speaking to him again. Delete it, and don’t look back.

I think I’ll delete it. Blocking the address isn’t important, as the address he mailed to isn’t the main one I use. He must have just looked me up on ICQ or something…
Thanks again to everyone who reponded with their input.


Fake a bounced email next time this person emails as if you ignore it then they know you got it and could follow up or chase you up on those things.

geepee, I see your logic, but the fact is that many people have email accounts that still accept mail, but that individual no longer sees.

Indeed. I have a family member who for mental health reasons (ours), my wife and I have cut contact with. She is unable to have a relationship with us without trying to cause us pain. At first we tried to do it politely; “please don’t call us again.” Then we tried to do it rudely. Now we simply avoid her. Six months later of unreturned calls/letters/e-mail she still doesn’t understand (we got at least 3 dozen messages over the past few days, as she has always prefered to harrass over holidays like Thanksgiving). But we no longer have to deal with her. And that has improved our lives.

Just delete the e-mail. You have already moved on, from the sound of it. Don’t look back.

I think I need to be the Devil’s Advocate here and say that this person could be trying to mend his friendship with you after what he did. I would write him, and find out what is going on. If it seems he hasn’t changed then you can block him from emailing you.

But if he has you don’t want to lose the possibility of something coming back that you had before. The worst thing that could happen is you have to take a couple of extra Tums tonight. I don’t think that is to much of a price to pay if you are trying to spread the joy of love and friendship.

About to get flammed…