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Friend posts on FB about mother's passing


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I have what I thought was a close friend for 5 years.  Her mom was quite ill and recently died. 

My friend and I are FB friends.   She posted the news on FB.  However she didn't call or text her best friend to tell me.  I found it rather odd. 

I followed up with her after I read it on FB, offered my condolences and said I'm here if she needs to talk. No response.   Later I asked if she's going home to Nebraska for the funeral.  Rely was a rather curt "yes".  I asked when.  No reply.  

A week later she texts to asks me to pick her up from the airport after arriving back home from the funeral + drive her home.  This involves 4 hours of my time, plus gas.  

I declined to help her due to her previous cold responses. BTW in the past I drove her all over the place as a friend.  In retrospect I think now it was a mistake.

Would people agree there is no real friendship here anymore?  We never had a fight or even a disagreement that would cause her to be so cold.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Wow!  I don’t even know what to say.  Your lack of compassion  and understanding is unbelievable.  All I hear is me, me, me.  Damn, she just lost her mother. 

Edited by Hollyj
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It is HER mom who died. She can announce it how she pleases. I put my father’s recent death on FB. Whoever’s feelings were “ disgruntled “ didn’t compare to my heartbreak and anguish. 

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How would you feel if a friend talked to you in this manner after you reached out to offer your condolences? A death in the family or other tragedy does not give someone a license to dismiss someone coldly.  A simple thank you on her part would have sufficed.

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What's done is done.. I would have gone to try and see if there was something else she needed help with. She might have been wanting to confide in you during the drive. If you are feeling uneasy and regretful do call her and apologize. Don't pester her or bring up anything about her cold answers. She might not have realized she sounded curt so let it go. 

Is this something you might want to do? 

 

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Having lost a father at a young age, I can somewhat relate.  Whenever a family member dies, survivors don't always have brain space for social graces.  Being cold, curt, terse, blunt, very stressed and often times rude comes with the territory.  Not that it's an excuse, however, if I were you, I'd cut her some slack. 

If I were you, I would've forgiven her for her abrupt behavior through FB, picked her up from the airport and drove her home since this would've proven that you are there for her during times of turbulent trouble as a person's life is turned upside down in a bereft state. 

At this point, the friendship is over.  In the future look at the mournful through a different, more compassionate lens if you wish to have an enduring friendship during life's ups and downs. 

You can try to rekindle friendship with her even though you were treated rudely.  You can even go so far as to apologize humbly since someone has to do it and it won't be her.  Swallow your pride, check your ego at the door, say you're sorry for declining to drive her from the airport to her home, send her a sincere postal sympathy card and leave it at that.  If she ignores you and gives you the silent treatment, then take a hint, get her message and leave her alone.  Don't bother her and go your separate ways. 

Edited by Cherylyn
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I think there are two separate things there. I agree that I don't think it's a good idea to always drive a friend around, especially if you don't ask them for petrol money. We call it petrol in Australia lol If you do that then your friend might just expect that you'll always do that for them, but that's a precedent you've set yourself. If the four hour drive would really put you out (very understandably) and you won't be getting any petrol/gas money then that's OK if you want to decline. 

However, your best friend's mother just died and that's extremely devastating and painful. She may have announced it on Facebook just to let people know, but she might have had no emotional energy to discuss it with every single person who reaches out. When you're hurting and grieving it's so hard to keep saying the same thing over and over to every single person. Even when my engagement broke up and wedding cancelled, I hated the attention I was getting and it was draining to reply to all the "I'm so sorry's". I imagine if your parent died it's even worse. Maybe your friend wasn't trying to be cold deliberately but she was just in shock and hurting immensely. She didn't actually ignore you completely and she did reply. Maybe she was going to come to you later but right now she didn't have the capacity to. Either way, you shouldn't be making it all about you because it's not. 

Also, if it's your best friend and you want to be kind and supportive, you could pick her up from the airport just this time. But maybe you could ask for money and just say money is a bit tight at the moment. For example, to drive to the airport in my city sometimes could take like 1.5-2 hours one way with bad traffic and if you want to get there faster, you have to pay tolls on a toll free way. So it would be acceptable for me to ask my friend to cover at least the tolls or at least the petrol.

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During my upbringing, I was told to follow a simple logic for sad occasions (funerals) and happy occasions (weddings) :

In the event of death of anyone we know, it doesn't matter how we get the news. As soon as we get the news, take necessary steps to pass on the condolences either by visiting their family or calling their near and dear in case you can't make it to the funeral. 

In the event of someone getting married but we didn't come to know about it directly, then it means we are not in their list of near and dear, still take no offence but don't push for an answer and lose self respect. 

 

- So I don't see why posting on FB about this is any less personal because they'd not be in a good state of mind especially after losing one of their family members. So one message to all logic doesn't seem inappropriate.

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5 hours ago, LoreliFinn said:

How would you feel if a friend talked to you in this manner after you reached out to offer your condolences? A death in the family or other tragedy does not give someone a license to dismiss someone coldly.  A simple thank you on her part would have sufficed.

I think that you only think about yourself.  How old are you? 

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5 hours ago, LoreliFinn said:

How would you feel if a friend talked to you in this manner after you reached out to offer your condolences? A death in the family or other tragedy does not give someone a license to dismiss someone coldly.  A simple thank you on her part would have sufficed.

I would understand that having someone very close to you die leaves very little space in the mind for anything other than grief and grieving people act in unexpected ways and it is normal. 

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It's best to realize that just because you would behave differently in the same situation, doesn't mean another person views things the same way you do. Basically you were hurt because you were treated no differently than the rest of her friends when you expected you'd be her shoulder to cry on first. And then you lashed out in anger with the supposed dissing by failing to do her a favor.

Sometimes a person's mood and how they are reacting to you has nothing to do with something you did or didn't do. You often don't know what's going on in their mind, and circumstances involving others in their lives. Maybe her behavior did have to do with how she assumed you might react, insisting on coming over to console her, wanting to talk at length, when she was scrambling to make flight arrangements and didn't feel like talking to anyone, etc. I'm not saying that's the case. I'm just giving an example of one possibility.

I don't think one incident like this should end a friendship if you each value it. After you snubbed her with the ride, though, who knows if she'll be willing to remain friends. I guess you'll have to reach out to her and ask her to lunch or something, but don't bring up how she didn't tell you first about her mom. Like I said, that's how she decided to handle things whether or not you thought it was wrong, and expect the same for similar situations in the future. If you can't handle that, let her go so she doesn't have to deal with your backlash.

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She was not "being rude". She was heartbroken, grieving and emotionally fragile.

I'm guessing you've never lost someone you love. Lucky you. If you had maybe you'd be a lot more compassionate. 

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Her mother died!  You need to cut her some slack.  People respond to death in many ways and it sounds like she had a really tough time with losing her mother.

Maybe your friendship has run it's course, hard to say, given what she has just been thru.  If you cant find a way to give her a break right now then maybe you need to move on.

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The relationship ran it's course, she was mean and critical prior to the death of her mother.  I get people have issues but don't take it out on your friends.  I get she was upset about the loss and I can let this go.  By this time however, I had no compassion left for her.  

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So that's good that you're being honest that you had no compassion for a friend who lost her mom.  This reminds me of an experience I had about 20 years ago (pre-FB).  My friend's father died unexpectedly.  I asked her if I could help by calling people she knew to inform them of funeral arrangements.  She said yes.  So I called our friend M who I hadn't spoken to in years -sorry I mean my old friend M from college -this was years later.  I found M's number and reached her -she said "well G didn't tell me her father died and so I'm not going to the funeral if she couldn't be bothered to tell me herself".  I tried to talk to her about this, explaining that this happened suddenly (to the best of my memory - maybe he there was a brief illness prior) - explaining that G was overwhelmed with making funeral arrangements and I'd reached out to help her with these logistics. Nope, she wouldn't budge because of this formality of how she was notified.

I can relate to why she asked for a ride -I bet her head is spinning, she is overwhelmed, probably can't remember who she told and who she didn't.  I have a fairly good friend for years whose mom recently died.  I didn't know she was that ill actually.  I saw it on FB.  Here is how I reacted - I posted "may her memory be for a blessing" then I checked to see where to donate in her memory and did so, then I emailed my friend to let her know I did so and was so sorry.  My friend emailed back about how much she missed her.  Honestly it never occurred to me that she should have to tell me personally or even email me personally.  It's such an overwhelming time.  

For sure if you had to work at that very time or had a crisis and didn't have the 4 hours to support your friend I totally get it - but then offer an alternative.  Do the right thing, especially when it's hard.  Support a person who is grieving cause it's not about you.  Would you have less food to eat if you spent money on gas? You did the "right" thing meaning you wanted to show her you wouldn't be treated coldly and then do a favor.  Please make an exception for being technically "right" when someone lost their mommy.  When that happens it's especially important to elevate being close over being "right".  And you know, karma.

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23 minutes ago, LoreliFinn said:

The relationship ran it's course, she was mean and critical prior to the death of her mother.  I get people have issues but don't take it out on your friends.  I get she was upset about the loss and I can let this go.  By this time however, I had no compassion left for her.  

I'm curious what happened between the both of you. If you weren't getting along already, why overcomplicate this? Just let things be for now and spend more time with people who love and support you. You don't have to keep putting yourself out there or feeling bad for someone who is mean and critical towards you in the past.

I also want to add that when I lost those dear to me (for context here) the last thing I worried about was who was going to be there for me. I went through the motions and leaned on the support that I did have and there was plenty. In all likelihood you are the furthest thing from her mind right now and she hasn't thought twice about your feelings because of all the details that come after someone dies. It's unlikely she cares whether you have compassion for her or not so all this is a bit of wasted energy for you. Good that you're letting it go, spend time with good friends you can trust.

Edited by Rose Mosse
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2 hours ago, LoreliFinn said:

The relationship ran it's course, she was mean and critical prior to the death of her mother

So this really has nothing to do with her mother passing. 

Don't conflate things here. Just walk away from this friendship. 

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2 hours ago, LoreliFinn said:

The relationship ran it's course, she was mean and critical prior to the death of her mother.  I get people have issues but don't take it out on your friends. 

Then the subject of your post should have been that you had a mean, critical friend who took advantage of you.

You should have left the part out about the way in she personally chooses to grieve the loss of her mother and somehow made it about you.   

Carry on. . . 

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3 hours ago, LoreliFinn said:

The relationship ran it's course, she was mean and critical prior to the death of her mother.  I get people have issues but don't take it out on your friends.  I get she was upset about the loss and I can let this go.  By this time however, I had no compassion left for her.  

You can look at it both ways.  Since she was mean and critical to you prior to her mother's death, then yes, you can keep moving forward in your life without her in it. 

Or, you can perceive that she was mean and critical prior to her mother's death because her rude, frustrating behavior was caused by perhaps, her mother's prolonged terminal illness.  I do not know. 

Nonetheless, if your friendship is worth keeping, then many times you have to look at the circumstances of where a person is in life.

People are wonderfully kind and super sweet if they're on vacation, on holiday or when life is rosy with brimming good health and absolutely no frets nor worries regarding money.  Of course, whenever troubles are light to nonexistent, human nature dictates an endless generous heart. ❤️

Then as life sours, people become frustrated, angry and mean because they can't control how life spirals unfavorably.  This is when the mean streak comes out claws and all.  This is universal human nature.  It doesn't make it right.  I'm just telling you how people behave whenever their lives are miserable. 

If you can ride out the storm and let blips roll off your back without ruffling your feathers each and every time, then a "best friend" is worth keeping. 

If what she did to you was unforgivable and completely unacceptable, then I see your point regarding releasing this friendship from your life.  I've done the same.  I've encountered a few various random past friends and even relatives and in-laws in particular who've tested me sorely.  I too was done with them.  Sure, I can be civil, peace inducing and superficially nice on my terms albeit aloof, frosty and PERMANENTLY distant.  (Strong, enforced boundaries.)

Do what makes you comfortable and gives you the most peace of mind.  You have every right.  Let your friend live her life while internally wishing her well or pray for her and her family from afar.  There is nothing wrong with taking that route whatsoever.  

 

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Batya33.  I appreciated your post wholeheartedly.  Letting go of the ego and supporting someone experiencing a loss.  I offered and she declined which she has a right to do.  I was expecting a better response and was hurt.

You are right. It is best to move on from this friendship.  The big picture is  - we were not at all compatible as true friends.  No similar interests, values or hobbies. It is a waste beating a dead horse.  I'm working on letting go of the past, which has always been difficult but I will keep trying!

 

 

 

 

 

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7 minutes ago, LoreliFinn said:

Batya33.  I appreciated your post wholeheartedly.  Letting go of the ego and supporting someone experiencing a loss.  I offered and she declined which she has a right to do.  I was expecting a better response and was hurt.

You are right. It is best to move on from this friendship.  The big picture is  - we were not at all compatible as true friends.  No similar interests, values or hobbies. It is a waste beating a dead horse.  I'm working on letting go of the past, which has always been difficult but I will keep trying!

 

 

 

 

 

You wrote that you declined to give her a ride- what did she decline? Expectations when someone has just lost a loved one -that's a set up for disappointment right there.  Yes move on -and I don't know that it's worth the "work' to do the cliche "let go of the past' -simply live your life, create present memories, big and small and the past will take its rightful place in your brain IMO.

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I probably would have had this emotional reaction to the lack of one on one contact too.  (And then also been reluctant to go that far out of my way to pick someone up. You need to have a well established friendship built on give and take to weather a crisis I think and it sounds like this one was already skewed to her taking). Not saying this reaction is the right one, but plenty sympathetic to it. A cue for both of us to be bigger next time we encounter a friend in crisis I think. (I add, you could be free of the bruised ego component and still decline to give her a lift if that’s time you can’t spare on short notice. Maybe you would offer to chip in for a taxi instead if you had cash spare, maybe you wouldn’t if you didn’t. 4 hours of driving is a big ask.)

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