our lives with friends intersect

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our lives with friends intersect

by eastwest on Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:25 PM

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After Phil died I wasn't just sad. I look back and see I became angry at the callous (or so it seemed to me) things people said: "He was a good man." "things will get better." "at least you had a good life together." They would talk about the everyday things in their lives. How could they not see that didn't help? How did everyday things continue?

I met a woman back in 1998. We became instant friends. We had so much in common. We were both writers, both of us had lost children to adoption and were fighting for open records for adult adoptees, both had alcoholism in our families and went to Al anon meetings.

She tried to be there for me when Phil was ill and after he died but I pushed her away. She said I wasn't the same. I wasn't being there for her aa a friend when she was going thru some things in her life. I became angrier and more distant. Of course she was right.

We didn't talk to each other again for 2 years. I easily blamed her. But as time went on I realized I was not in my right frame of mind. About 6 months ago I sent her an email explaining how I had felt grieving and that I was also sorry I wasn't able to be there for her. She emailed me back thanking me for explaining and that her life is busy. I can take a hint and I said mine is also and wished her well.

I think we both became cautious with good reason after being hurt. I have always been good at bringing up a  protective wall around me.

Lately I have been thinking about her because I know she was about to go thru basil cell removal on her face when we stopped talking and I have questions but I thought...I am not gonna bother her. Then last week she emailed me suggesting we get together as she is visiting the east coast. I know we are both hesitant but sometimes you just have to open yourself up and be vulnerable.

Grief does change us and yet grief does change eventually.

Irene

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by carrieg55 on Thu Jul 02, 2015 04:03 PM

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Hi Irene,

As I read your post I kept thinking I have been or should I say I am still on the road to recovery loss is never easy, we do change I know when my friend said some things I would cringe and think how can she be so insensitive to my feelings, yes, everything seemed to bother me no one could say the right thing....or so it seemed....unless they lost a loved one to they are the ones that get it.

When we feel friends/family are being insensitive it does put a strain and distance on the relationship, as time goes on and we are trying to pick up the pieces of our life it is then we can reach out to friends and hopefully begin to restore those relationships.

I am hoping you and your friend can reconnect and move forward.

Carrie

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by katbaran on Fri Jul 03, 2015 11:50 PM

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Irene,

I also hope you will be able to reconnect with your friend. Sometimes people say insensitive things because they don't know what else to say. They think they are being sympathetic, when they really aren't. They also did not know your husband the way you knew him.

I have a really good friend who lost her husband 8 years ago to a staph infection. He was an abusive drunk. She was sad but also glad to be free of him. She has mentioned a few times about all the things we can do now that I'm a widow too. Like going to the casino or taking a girl's weekend without having to worry about the guys. My husband was my best friend. He was a really nice guy too. He would never have told me not to do any of those things. I am NOT happy to be "rid" of him and single again.

I think folks just say things from their point of view rather than thinking they are being insensitive. Yes, they should never assume we feel the same as them, but they don't. I just try to shrug it off. Sometimes it gets to me---it makes me feel like my shattered world is of no consequence to anyone. Sure, I'm moving on a bit, but after 10 months, I'm still feeling very much the new widow.

I just wanted you to know you are not alone in feeling this way. Let the past go and keep your friend if you can.

Kathy

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by eastwest on Mon Jul 06, 2015 08:02 PM

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Kathy

I too have a friend whose husband died and she can't figure out why I would ever want to date again. They did not have a good relationship. She has said no one will ever take advantage of her again very firmly. lol

The friend I am meeting tomorrow does not seem close to her husband. But I am not in that fresh grief phase and I can understand and accept better where people are at. So we will see. And if it doesn't work,out we tried and no harm done.

I asked my friend Hank if he has lost friends either before or since his wife died. She was incapacitated for several years with MS. He said yes also. That many people could not understand he could not get together because he had no one to help with her care and couldn't leave her alone.

None of Phil's fishing buddies or wives have called since the first week or so after he died. Only his boss who was also his best friend calls about twice a year to see how I am doing. He called near Christmas and was happy to hear I was dating someone nice saying that Phil would want me to be happy.  I will let you know how tomorrow goes.

Irene

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by eastwest on Thu Jul 09, 2015 12:11 PM

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Well I found out you can renew a friendship that has gone sour! The key is being open to it. All my life...when there was conflict...I ran n hid. Now I work on relationships a lot more. And it is work for me. I either was a people pleaser or ditched them. I know how I closed myself off to everyone after Phil died. Not gonna beat myself up about it. It is what it is but I can move forward now!

My friend actually underwent skin cancer surgery a couple years ago and gave me the number of her dr. She had over 75 stitches on her nose nd you can't see them! So my appt is August 11 with him!    Irene

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by carrieg55 on Thu Jul 09, 2015 01:20 PM

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Good Morning Irene,

I came on the site yesterday to see if you had met with your friend and how it turned out, I am happy to hear that it all went well and the friendship was restored.

I can identify with what you wrote I hope I can follow your lead.

Cyber Hugs to you

Carrie

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by katbaran on Thu Jul 09, 2015 02:47 PM

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Fantastic news! I'm glad to hear it went well and you have your friend back!

Kathy

RE: our lives with friends intersect

by Marie55 on Thu Jul 16, 2015 09:40 PM

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So glad you were able to renew an old friendship. Both your hearts were open for healing.
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