An open letter to a friend (you know who you are)

December 1, 2007 in It is what it is - opinion column | Comments (0)


This letter has been several weeks in the writing – mostly because the earlier versions were laced a bit heavily with vitriol. So as with things of this nature I opted to cool off.
Now with a few weeks behind me I felt that I would do the mature thing … write you via this site because based on your blowing me off the last time I tried to talk with you, I figure that a direct attempt to talk would probably fail anyway.
And I need to get this off my chest.

November 17, 2007. It was a lovely evening that got a little strange.
Perhaps it was the Pinot.
Perhaps it was the barely perceptible undulation of the ship on the Bay.
More likely it was the Pinot.
But whatever the case, you made it pretty clear that kissing me was a mistake.
You penned a multi-paragraph mea culpa laden with guilt saying (I’ll paraphrase here) you were horrified by your intoxication because there’s no way you’d have kissed me otherwise. You expressed concern that your behavior had jeopardized our friendship.
Reading your email made me sad. Not so much because you were so obviously horrified at your actions, but because you felt so guilty. I mean, it’s not as though you were the only one involved.
Last I checked, I was there too. And while you’re a good looking so-and-so, and I may have had a bit to drink myself, it’s not as though I was rendered incapable of fending you off.
No, actually the thing that caught me off guard was less about your pushing me up against the bar and kissing me, and more about the fact that it somehow felt rather normal. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to noticing that beyond the wit, brains and dryly sarcastic humor is a sexy, beautiful woman; but we’re friends and so the whole physical thing wasn’t something on my mind with relation to you.
That might have been a different story about a year ago, because when we first met I wondered whether there might be something there. But you were clearly still taken – if not physically then emotionally and spiritually – by your last relationship. Whether it was that or that you just weren’t interested, it became quite clear quite quickly that friendship was to be our path. And a good path it was.
But that’s neither here nor there, because whether this was nothing more than a mortifying drunken indiscretion or an indication of something else becomes irrelevant in the shadow of your actions afterwards. You said you were sorry. You said you were hoping that you hadn’t ruined our friendship. You asked if I wanted to talk over dinner.
And then you blew me off.
You may not have seen it that way, but looking at the progression of events, the message you sent me to me was that in spite of your seemingly heartfelt concern, whether or not our friendship was damaged didn’t really matter to you.
Now I realize that in any situation there are three realities. There’s what I see. There’s what you see. And then there’s the actual thing that happened.
So from my perch, here’s how things went:
You sent your apology email.
I called but got your voice mail and tried leaving you a message. It wouldn’t let me record so I sent you a quick text.
About an hour later you replied, said you’d call me later and asked if I wanted to talk over dinner or tea.
I replied, said yes and that I’d be around. That was around 2:00pm on Sunday.
Then radio silence from you – until noon on Monday at which point I received a rather casual message.
You’d gone hot-tubbing.
You fell asleep early.
Things were crazy with work and we should get together after the holidays.
I’m not sure what part stung most – your failure to acknowledge that you’d left me hanging, the fact that your sense of concern was so transitory … or that you chose to reach out using the public wall of my Facebook profile.
Not a phone call. Not a text. Not an email. Heck not even a private message in the social network, but a public wall post.
I’m not sure what’s up with that, or whether I should take that as an insult. But it sure felt like one.
Then, on Thanksgiving, a brief text message offering happy Thanksgiving blessings and your hope that I was having a lovely day.
And since then, radio silence again.
Frankly I was going to forget about the whole thing, figuring that I should probably just write things off. But on Friday night I ran into my friend Megan. She was there the night of the party, and she asked me what was up with you.
A terrible sadness washed over me, and mini-tempest whirled in my chest. Megan’s expression shifted to concern and she asked what happened.
That’s when a tear rose in my eye – because I couldn’t answer her.
I don’t deal well with uncertainty, but I deal even less well with rejection, and so it is for that reason I cannot bring myself to reach out again to try and talk to you.
So I post my thoughts here, along with the hope that we’ll reconnect at some point and rather than sweeping this under the rug we’ll be able to sort things through.
In your apology email you said you hoped I could forgive you and that we could move on.
I did, and we can, but whether that happens or not is now up to you.


Comments are closed.