Ok, I give up. You are out of my life forever. (Long)

At my last job I became very close with my partner. I considered him one of my best friends in fact and he said the same thing to me. Let’s call him Barry…because that’s his real name. :wink:

He came into the company to replace a very well liked guy (my old partner) and I knew everybody would constantly be comparing him to the old guy so I decided to really try and make his transition easier. I did everything I possibly could do to make his job easier and we hit it off from the very beginning.

He was a great friend to me when I was pregnant with my last child. In fact, he was the only person from our office who came to visit me in the hospital after my labor. He had been out of town all day long and when he drove back in and got the message that I had had the baby he came straight to the hospital. It really meant a lot to me.

He and I had to travel together a lot and we got to know a lot about each other during those long car trips. I know a lot about his life growing up (which was awful). I know about his kids and his family (which are great). He doesn’t trust very many people because of things in his past and I felt honored that he trusted me enough to share some of those things with me.

I defended him against criticism in the office. I stood by him when I discovered he was cheating on his wife and tried to counsel him as best as I could even though I hated the situation. I was put in the middle of their marriage when she called me to ask me if I knew what was going on. I lied for him on numerous occassions with our boss when he left the office to see his fling or meet his buddies for a drink or round of golf. I carried his weight around the office because I thought he just needed some time to blow off steam every now and then.

We had some tremendous fights but we seemed to emerge from them with what I thought was a stronger friendship. People in the office used to remark that we were like an old married couple and we fought like one too.

I truly and honestly cared about and loved this person.

When I got a better offer at another company I was torn. I knew my leaving would be a hardship on him as we were the best team in the office. I told him about it before I ever discussed accepting the offer with anybody else (outside of my husband). I even considered NOT taking the new job that had a substantial salary increase because I cared about our working relationship and our friendship so much more. (Crazy, I know).

He assured me he wanted what was best for me and my career and that me being at another job wouldn’t affect our friendship. In fact, the exact quote I kept hearing over and over was," You’re leaving a job…not me. We are always going to be close and nothing will change that."

I took the new job and almost immediately we stopped communicating as much, which I knew would happen and I was fine with that. I expected it since we were no longer partners working with each other every day.

We met for lunch a couple times. We exchanged emails back and forth and talked on the phone every now and then. But we have defintely lost that closeness I thought we had.

Fast forward to 6 months later. Yesterday was his birthday. I called to tell him Happy Birthday and we talked for a few minutes. He said he missed talking to me and we should get together and have lunch sometime soon. I then said, “Why don’t you let me take you out for a birthday lunch on Friday?” I also said something about some other old co-workers going if they wanted to. He said it was a great idea and he would call me this morning to see how the day looked. He sounded excited about getting together and we talked like we did in the past for about half an hour. I was really happy to be having lunch and catching up.

He calls this morning around 10:30 and we decide to meet at 12:30 for lunch. I decided around 12:00 that I would run out and grab a birthday card for him so I called him and said that I had an errand to do and I would just head over to their office when I was done and would see them at 12:30. He said that was fine and would see me later.

I get to the office building at 12:25 and call him. I get his voicemail but he lives on the phone so that didn’t surprise me. I decide to walk on up to their floor and say hello to my old co-workers and see if he was ready to go to lunch rather than sit out in the parking lot.

I walk in and start talking to the receptionist and after a few minutes she says, “Well, what brings you over here today?”

I tell her that I’m there to take Barry out for a birthday lunch with whoever else wants to go and she looks at me very confused.

She then says, “Aries, Barry left around 12:15 going to lunch with John Doe.” (another former co-worker of mine). WTF?

I felt like such an idiot. He has my office number and my cellphone number. It would have taken him 5 seconds to call and tell me he couldn’t make it. I mumbled something to her about getting our wires crossed, left the card with her to give to him and left the office.

Sauron has tried to tell me time and time and time again that this friendship was one sided and that I was the one putting myself out there and doing all the work and Barry just used me. I never really wanted to think that but it’s true. I am such an idiot. Nobody can take advantage of you unless you let them.

I could have called him and asked what happened and listened to yet another excuse but I didn’t. I’m tired of trying. You can’t force a friendship and although I truly thought we were close he obviously doesn’t care about it so why bother?

In the midst of typing this rant I get an email from him that says:

“Hey…sorry I mised you. Had to meet with someone on an account. Thanks for the card. We’ll talk later.”

It is just common courtesy to pick up the phone and call someone if you can’t make your plans.

I have very few people I honestly consider friends. I have a lot of acquaintances but very few people I would classify as a friend. I’m a loyal, loving, good friend and I deserve better.

I don’t want his friendship anymore.

Sauron, back when we were just friends, would have never done this to me. My best friends, Sherry, Michelle and Jonathan wouldn’t do this to me. THOSE are friends.


His loss, because you’re great.

What Gobear said. I’d be honored to have you for a friend.

But I’ve been there. I’ve put my neck on the line for people I considered friends before - I’ve stuck by people who couldn’t give a damn about me. And it hurts like hell when it’s just over and they don’t have a good reason except they’ve changed. As a result, I’m much pickier about my friends and I’m much more cautious around people - and I shouldn’t have to be.

Nicely said, people suck. A LOT of people suck. If there weren’t a few good ones out there, I’d have to say life is a bust.


I think you are a great friend to your friends, Aries28. Unfortunately, sometimes those we call friends disappoint us. It’s one of those life lessons or something.

However, don’t let one person let you stop being so nice, okay? It’s his own fault he didn’t appreciate you. You rock.

Thank you to all. You’ve made my day much better.

I just do not understand why a simple phone call would have been too much to ask. I wasted my lunch hour for nothing. If he had simply called and said something came up or he couldn’t make it then I would have had time to grab a salad or sandwich or something.

Plus, just looking like such an idiot in front of the receptionist. Several females I used to work with did not like me and there were a few rumors circling when I left that Barry and I had more than a good working relationship. So I am sure when I walked out that the receptionist called them and said I was a stalker or something. :slight_smile:

Sauron told me I should just scrape him off the bottom of my shoe and move on. I know he is right.

Still, for someone who takes friendships seriously, it bothers me that this happened.

I responded back to the “sorry I missed you email” and said…

“Not to worry…I won’t try to set up lunch again…I get the message loud and clear. A simple phone call would have been the courteous thing to do and what anyone who claimed to be someone’s friend would have done. Guess I was mistaken about who my friends are.”

I know exactly how you feel, Aries. I had a friend in college, and for about two years, her and I were almost inseperable. She helped me work on the show I produced in my last semester, and I helped her work on a similar show about a year later. She came to work at the same bookstore where I worked. We had a great working relationship that quickly evolved into a strong personal friendship, and we hung out together often. Even to the point that, at one time, I had taken to calling her my “sister,” despite the fact that I have no biological sisters.

My wife never thought much of my friend (though she did try to get along with her), or my relationship with her. She also thought it was a one-sided relationship, and pointed out the times when I was giving more to it than she was. I insisted, at the time, that my wife wasn’t seeing the whole picture. Turns out she was probably seeing more than I was.

After my wife graduated with her Bachelor’s degree, my family and I moved to another state, and of course I expected communication with my friend to take a hit… and I tried to keep up my end. I sent e-mails and even snail-mail letters to all of my old friends, including her (I never was much of a phone person, and they knew this). I got rare responses, but we still corresponded now and again. It seemed that much of the warmth of the old days had gone, though, her (rare) letters or e-mails were somewhat distant.

When she moved to a different state, it got even worse. I went there for another friend’s wedding, and my old friend and I barely were able to talk… she had turned into a California Girl, and apparently all old ties were considered null and void.

She has since moved (again) to New York, and while she seems happier there, she still only contacts me occasionally. I used to at least e-mail her often to see how she was doing, but now I just let it lie. The effort I used to put into it isn’t worth what I know get out of it… which is almost nothing.

It took me some distance and time to see it, but my wife was absolutely right… my old friend gave little to our relationship, and received much. I’m not saying I didn’t benefit from it in ways too… I did. But the conclusion I’ve come to now is that the rewards I reaped from the relationship with my old friend were based on illusions I established and maintained for some time about the depth and strength of the relationship that weren’t really there.

What’s really weird is that sometimes, even though I now recognize those feelings as made in my own little head, I still miss them. I miss the friend I thought I had, even though I never really had it.

And I feel more the fool for it.

But at least I can say that, thanks to my old friend, I met many other close friends who I am still close with, despite the fact that most of us are now scattered across the globe. So that’s a good thing.

And I agree with others that it’s your friend’s loss of a great friend, to treat you so shabbily.

I got a LOT of this, too, with my old friend. Apparently it’s impossible for a man and a woman to work well together and even be good friends without there being “something more to it.” :rolleyes:

You’re not from Flagstaff, are you? laughs


I was going to ask if you were in your late rwenties or early 30’s…then saw your name.

One of the hardest things I’ve had to accept in my adult life (and was very trying in late 20’s to early 30’s) is that people don’t become your friend anymore… :frowning:

They are ‘situational’ friends or aquaintences. Friends you made when you are younger are friends that usually stay friends for a long time and across distance and different venues.

People you make friends with after a certain age only seem to stay friends if you work together or in certain situations.

I miss making ‘real’ friends. I haven’t made a ‘real’ friend in years. (and when I think I do, they make a pass at my wife but that is another post)

My wife has this problem also.

I always wondered how widespread it was.

This just happened to my girlfriend … a good friend of hers was supposed to meet her for lunch and blew her off without so much as a phone call.

Her friend acted like it was no big deal, just a lunch after all, but like you said, it’s just not that difficult to pick up the phone. Although it might seem like just a minor transgression, it’s really a passive-agressive, assholeish, selfish thing to do.

Yes…I’m 28. However, he is 41. I have very few friends who are my age. Sauron is 9 years older than me. One of my best friends, Jonathan is 40. My 2 female close friends are the same age as me or thereabouts.

Good on ya for cutting him out of your life. It’s pretty obvious from your account that he probably never considered you a friend to the same level that you did, and that a lot of his side of the relationship was based on what you could do for him.

If I may, should something similar come up again, either don’t respond to the email or respond more along the lines of “sorry to have missed you” and let it go. People like that in my experience don’t feel guilt or shame and the likelihood is that he’ll get your email and his reaction to it will be “what a bitch.”

I sorry Aries.

You forgot: “I burning your dog!”

Please let us know what his response is to this. Should be interesting.

And don’t worry about what other people in your old office are saying anyway. Screw them, it doesn’t matter.

This guy dicks around on his wife and expects you to make excuses for him while he does it?

No big loss, honey. Sounds like a jerk to me.

Yep! From this

he sounds like a jerk who does whatever he feels like and is the center of his own universe—somebody it would be unreasonable to expect loyalty from. People who will lie to, cheat on, and take advantage of others will lie to, cheat on, or take advantage of you.

If you don’t wish to be friends with him, you don’t wish to be friends with him. That’s your right. Clearly, from your post, it seems as if this guy hasn’t been too good of a friend to you.
But, in general, while I think that breaking a lunch date certainly requires some sort of explanation your immediate reaction of “you are out of my life forever,” seems a tad extreme. It’s also a bit of an untruth when you consider that you not only further communicated with him, but did so in a way that practically assures you and he will communicate in the future.

He is a jerk but I have to ask: why is cheating on his wife and asking you to lie about it acceptable but breaking a lunch date means the relationship is over? He sounds like a tool generally but I’m not following your logic on this because you seem to be saying that but for him breaking the lunch date, you’d still be friends with him. That’s what I don’t understand.

I could easily envision scenarios where he wouldn’t have been able to call you to cancel/reschedule lunch.

But based on your OP, I agree with your assessment.

My only advice is to try to rise above impulses like the one that made you send that email response. (Same advice I tell myself.)

Being not much older than you, I agree with the other poster’s observations about latter-day friendships. True friendships seem to need younger ground to grow. My theory is that it has something to do with a lack of new, shared experiences. Maybe I should try new things? Hmmm…

Yeah…if the man would betray his wife, it’s not surprising he would turn his back on a friend.
Maybe it’s because he had a bad childhood and never learned how to treat people right, but regardless of the reason, you are probably better off without him.

I feel like I am in a one-sided friendship as well…I keep trying to end it, but we have a VERY long history together and it’s hard to throw that all away.

I assume it’s one of those “last straw” type kind of things. I see what you are saying but I’m not cutting him out of my life because of this one isolated incident.

I never thought the situation with his wife was acceptable and I hated it. We had many a discussion about it and I finally told both of them that I was not getting involved anymore than I already was in their personal life. I told the wife that I liked her and hoped everything worked out for the best but that I could not be a source of information for her. I told him that I loved him and wanted him to be happy but that I wasn’t going to lie to his wife for him.

For those who said I probably shouldn’t have sent an email or anything…you are absolutely right. I should just let it go. There has been no response to the email and I am about 99.9% sure there won’t be. That’s his style. He will let it go for a few weeks then pop up and act like nothing has happened.

I should have broken this friendship off a long time ago but I kept making excuses for him.

I don’t plan on having any contact with him in the future. I don’t need the stress and added problems being in a friendship with him causes.

I’ll just chalk this up to one of those live and learn type deals.

:slight_smile: Thanks for all the feedback!