The Unbreakable Friendship That Broke

To My Best Friend/Bully Of Eight Years

I'll never understand why you treated me the way you did.

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I will never forget you, though I wish I could.

We met when we were five. We were in the same kindergarten class, and you lived five houses down from me.

We made so many fun memories together. I still have all of the pictures. Playdates, sleepovers in abundance, pool parties, mall adventures, and two major concerts.

You were my go-to friend when I wanted someone to hang out with.

We had our differences, arguments and fights, just as any friends would. We always made up just as quickly. When we were good, we were good.

But the good times we had for 8 years don't excuse the hell you put me through for 8 years.

One on one, we had the best friendship a girl could ask for. We were there for each other in difficult times, and I could tell you things I couldn't tell anyone else.

The bad was mixed in with the good. I now realize that I miss the memories we had, but I don't miss the person I shared those memories with.

You used me as a last resort. When there was anyone else around, I was automatically ignored. If I said anything about it, I was deemed "overly sensitive."

You never failed to actively let me know how you thought of me as less-than. When you told me that I was too "fat" to be your friend, my self-esteem was already so low that I almost agreed with you.

When I attempted to drop you as a friend because of that comment, our friend group automatically sided with you because you were the "favorite," and I was nothing but a placeholder until someone better came along.

The hurt you caused me was never acknowledged. I was told by you and the rest of our group to just forgive and get over it.

To this day, I haven't gotten over it.

Thirteen years later, body image is still a huge struggle. I look at myself in the mirror every day, and every day I dislike my image.

As we got older, the bullying grew with the friendship. Playdates turned into hangouts, gossip turned into deep conversations and teasing turned into bullying and abuse.

When we were 13, you handed me a list titled "Things Sarah Needs to Do to Be Prettier." This list included what type of haircut you thought I needed, the clothes you thought I should wear, the way you thought I should do my makeup, etc.

I thought we got rid of our Barbie styling heads when we were nine, but I guess you missed yours so much that you wanted a new one; a human one.

You always stressed the importance of physical appearance to me, and for a while I thought you were right.

I'm glad I now know how wrong you were.

You taught me what a true bully is.

The first time I ever made a true friend was when I was 13, and I followed your example of friendship. Despite how horrible I was, she stuck by me. That's a real friend.

After eight years of friendship and bullying, I'm about to enter my eighth year of distance from you. Here's what I've learned in that time:

Just because you treat someone well doesn't mean they'll do the same for you.

Not everything is forgivable.

When someone hurts you, it's because they themselves are hurting.

The hell you put me through made me truly appreciate the friends I now have. They have been supportive, kind and loving in ways you made me believe I didn't even deserve.

I hope you've learned how to be a kinder person for the sake of your current and future relationships.

Finally, I hope you find peace within yourself as I have.

Remember to love yourself and treat yourself with respect. Everyone deserves happiness.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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It Is OK To Have Guy Friends That Are Literally Just Guy Friends

Some of my best friends are guys and sometimes they are better friends than girls are.

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Lately, I have come to the realization that some of my guy friends are better then some girls I call my "friends". Ever since middle school, I have always had many guy friends that have always been just guy friends, and nothing more. Some girls had a problem with it back then and they still do now, maybe because they are jealous, or maybe because they feel left out. However, I decided a long time ago to keep those guy friends for reasons like...

1. They Don't Take Things So Seriously

You can always joke around with them, and they will joke around with you right back. You can be as nice as you want or as mean as you want to them, and they will always take it as joke. I think that sometimes girls have a difficult time deciphering between when you are being serious or when you are joking. Most of my guys friends tend to not things too seriously at least 75% of the time.

2. They Are Always Honest

When I need a blatantly honest opinion I always ask my guy friends (and my mom). I do this because guys do not really care about whether or not their response will make you mad. Also, guys do not think about if their answer will benefit them personally or not before they answer.

3. They Genuinely Listen To You

Not all the time. But when I am upset, they are always the ones most concerned. Some of my guy friends take over the "big brother" role when it comes to some situations. My guy friends always listen to my problems or just the same old rants I give all the time because if something is wrong, or something has hurt me, they want to know, in order for them to try and fix it.

I am not trying to say that my girl friends are not my best friends either, and I really do have the best best friend. But sometimes, it just feels good to hangout with my guy friends. Guy friends, that I have never had a romantic relationship or feelings for and they have not had for me. These guys have always been there, and for that I am grateful.

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