An Open Letter To My "Old" Friends
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An Open Letter To My "Old" Friends

We were inseparable. How did we end so badly?

An Open Letter To My "Old" Friends
Janine Velardi

After graduation, we had no idea where our lives would take us the following fall. We were all going to different schools, and after living in that secluded town our whole lives, we didn't realize there is more to the world than just our little bubble. Obviously we were scared; scared to lose everything we knew, and scared to let go of the people we'd spent time with since kindergarten. Perhaps that fear was the reason everything crumbled into nothingness.

All throughout high school, I was never a part of much drama. I was too oblivious to everything to be able to keep up with it all. I also had better things to worry about, such as sports and grades. It wasn't until the summer before college that avoiding the drama all those years caught up with me. I'm not blaming you, my old friends, for the drama. It wasn't your fault that we grew apart and never realized it until then. I'm sorry we didn't realize it sooner.

I'm not sure of when it became apparent to me that we were only friends because we saw each other 5 days a week. However, it was too late to be handled correctly. After all the fights and tears, I wished I'd seen it sooner. Then all the hurt caused by you and me both could've been avoided. I won't take the low road and say I was the innocent victim in all of this because I wasn't, but I expect you to do the same and own up to your wrongdoings.

I don't expect an apology from any of you, that's not why I'm writing this. I'm here to say I forgive you for being the way you were even without your empty apology that we both know you wouldn't really mean. I'm done being mad at you. The grudge is too heavy for me to hold onto. I'd like to say a few things before we really leave each others' lives, though.

First of all, I genuinely hope you're happy. Happy with the people you've become and happy with all your new friends in college. I know I'm not proud of what occurred between us, but it's made me a better person. Without you guys, I don't know what I would've done senior year. I hope you feel the same about me.

I see your lives from afar through social media and it doesn't hurt as much as it used to, knowing you probably only did it to hurt me. The fact that you seem happy makes me feel happy for you. Wherever you are in life, whether it be in college or pursuing a job, just know I'm silently cheering you on. I don't want hard feelings between us anymore. I want us to be able to get along enough that we can see each other in five or ten years and reminisce about our high school days.

I knew that people grew apart after high school, I just didn't realize we would so soon. I guess we just weren't meant to stay friends. I went through all the stages after everything that happened: sadness, because I missed my friends; hatred, because you're idiots; and understanding, because we're all idiots sometimes. I hope you've reached the understanding stage as well.

Second, I hope you're not still upset with me. I want you to let go of the past and everything that happened because you shouldn't live with such a heavy burden. I didn't mean to hurt any of you, but because I was too nice to end it when I first thought about it in order not to hurt you, I ended up doing the complete opposite. I am genuinely sorry. I don't really care if you believe me or not, I just felt it needed to be said.

Even if you still are upset, find it in your heart not to be. It's not fair to you to be holding onto something that can't be changed. It happened and there's nothing you can do about that, no matter how much you wish you could. Take Elsa's advice and "let it go."

Third, I appreciate you trying to be nice and be friends with us again. Though I was extremely salty when you first contacted us, I did appreciate it. I just wish you had gone at it a different way. Don't just assume we're going to take you back just because you decided to talk to us again. There was never once an apology from any of you, whether it was because you believe you can do no wrong or because you felt it was assumed. Either way, you did do a lot of things wrong and no apology is ever to be assumed.

I made a decision not to be friends with you anymore even after you tried to make nice with us because I know history repeats itself and that's not something I want to go through again. It's not because I hate you or don't want anything to do with you like I originally thought; it's because I know we're toxic when all together. We don't compliment each other, we just tear each other down. That's called an emotionally abusive relationship and it isn't reserved to boyfriend-girlfriend relationships. So, being friends is not a good idea for us at this point in time.

Fourth, if you become friends with my friends again, I will be fine with it as long as you apologize accordingly and never make them feel like they're nothing. They have all been through a lot and don't deserve people hurting them anymore. I will be the mama bear and protect them through anything, so don't think you can just slink into their lives without having some consequences. They deserve good friends that they can talk to and have fun with, not friends that continuously bring up events that they're insecure about.

You may think it's funny to "joke" about the others' insecurities, but it's not. It's not a joke anymore when you've reduced your "friend" to crying. That is when you know you crossed a line.You all need to understand that words can hurt. I don't give half a crap about your stupid excuse of "it was just a joke." Pleading that case is invalid because we can't read your voice through text. You sound extremely serious when saying something bad about someone. And if you think that's okay to do with your "friends," I don't want to be included as one of them.

Lastly, I miss the old days back in middle school when all we didn't have a care in the world. I miss the people we used to be. I miss our group and how happy we all were. We never had enough chairs for everyone to sit in at the lunch table and we never put each other down (that much). I'll miss you, but leaving is for the best. Through everything, we almost always made it. This time was the last straw for our friendship and I can't say I'm surprised. We aren't the people we used to be, so we aren't as complementary to each other as we once were.

Growing up isn't what we had idolized when we were younger. We all became new versions of ourselves: better in looks, but too different in personality. We grew apart without ever realizing it. That's the real tragedy: not that we grew apart, but that we were too scared of new things to ever think about leaving the group. I had begun to think that it was normal to hurt your friends just for laughs. Then I came to college and realized that real friends have your back and will lift you up when you're feeling down. I hope you all come to that realization and understand that you don't have to hurt people to be funny.

I hope this clears everything up, that you can come to terms with your past and start living for the future. Our friendship was only meant to last through high school so we can all move onto bigger and better things. I don't think any less of you, but I do want to part ways for good. I realized a long time ago that loving someone doesn't mean you are entitled to having them in your life and sometimes not having them in your life is better for you in the long run. So for now, I say goodbye for real. We had our temporary goodbyes back in August when we left for college, but this one is in no means temporary. Good luck in your lives and may happiness come your way. I hope one day we look back on this event, laugh, and remember all the good things that happened in spite of the broken ending.

Just remember, everyone who's in your life are meant to be apart of the journey, but not all are meant to stay until the end. Thank you for your part in my journey. I hope you find the people that are meant to stay until the end.


An old friend

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

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