An Open Letter To The Friend Who Left Without Saying Goodbye

An Open Letter To The One Who Left Without Saying Goodbye

I'm glad that you're moving on with your life, but did you even think of me when you left for good? After all, we used to be best friends.

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I get it. You just graduated and you're ready to move on with your life. I'm seriously so proud of you that you get to go live your dreams and be where you have always wanted to end up.

I'm so sorry that our friendship didn't work out. But that doesn't stop me from wondering why you didn't reach out to me one last time before you left for good, knowing that we most likely won't ever see each other again.

I remember the first day I met you. For someone with anxiety, talking to you, a complete stranger, was a huge thing for me. But you were so easy to talk to. We bonded over our anxieties and our love for TV shows and movies. We bonded over not knowing anyone else and feeling super awkward.

But the thing that I remember most about the day that we met was a comment someone made to us. When she saw how we talked and acted with each other, she asked if we had known each other for a long time.

When we told her we had literally met that same morning, she was shocked, saying that she knew we were going to be great friends.

And she wasn't wrong, for the most part. You were the first person who seemed to truly accept me.

You supported me through whatever, and you supported my need to escape into fictional worlds and to be lazy when the world became too much to handle.

But somewhere along the line, things went wrong. I don't know what I did wrong. Maybe I let you in a little too much. I exposed all of my flaws and insecurities. And you used them against me.

You made me feel the way about myself that you had spent months telling me wasn't true. You told me everything about myself that I needed to change, and then called it "constructive criticism". All because you didn't get what you wanted.

From that moment on, though we were still friends for another year after that, I never felt the same.

I no longer felt the comfort of your support. I could only think of how you criticized me, on stuff that you knew I was trying to work on but was struggling with. How was I supposed to change if in that one day I lost all the support that I so desperately believed that I needed?

And then came me moving away. You promised me that we wouldn't fall apart. I told you I was being realistic and that we would probably grow apart, not by choice, but just because of the distance and how different our lives would be.

And I was right. We grew further and further away from each other. During that time, I grew as a person. Maybe you did, too, I wouldn't know. I just know that you had a falling out with our other best friends, the ones that made us a group of four.

And I couldn't see how I could be your friend with you not speaking to them. I wouldn't be able to handle it, knowing that bond that we all once had was gone forever. The puzzle was broken.

So when I saw the pictures of your graduation last weekend, I didn't know how to feel. I was happy for you, you get to go live your dream. The other part of me wonders why, on your end, we stopped talking.

I know mine, but you just faded away on your end. You never answered the last Snapchat. You never texted back. Did you have a reason?

Part of me wants to know that reason. Was I easily replaced? Did I ever mean anything to you, or was I just an easy target for a friend because I was desperate and alone? Are you as conflicted about us drifting apart as I am?

These are questions I will most likely never get the answers to. And the logical part of me knows that that's okay, it's better not to reach out, to leave things as they are. After all, this was probably inevitable.

From the bottom of my heart, I do wish the best for you. I hope you can live out your dreams and find the happiness that Missouri and your friends here couldn't give you. I just ask that you remember my letter. This, like that one, is full of things that I can never say. Instead, I remain silent, pretending that I'm okay.

And I will be. One day, I'll be able to look back on our friendship and the memories that we made with only nostalgia, remembering a good moment in time, instead of feeling guilty or like I should have done something to fix what was irrevocably broken.

So this is for you. And on one last note: I'm sorry. I'm not sorry for doing what I believe was best for me and my mental health by distancing myself from you. I'm sorry if I did something to make you never want to speak to me again. I'm sorry that it couldn't work out, that it just wasn't meant to last. I'm mostly sorry that I didn't tell you any of this, but when I last tried to, it didn't make a difference.

I'm grateful for the friendship that we had in the beginning, and the fond memories that we made during that time. I wish you the best and I hope you do have a happy life.

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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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Summer = Rest?

Sometimes it feels as if we need a vacation... from our vacation.

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Ah summer: Popsicles and sun burns, mixed with fresh-squeezed lemonade that local kids are pandering to make enough money for Roman candles and Black Cats. The crack of the bat can be heard among the simmering charcoal grills and Troy-bilts humming through the ever-lasting sun. School is out and children are wild. It's a paradise.

Or is it?

But after countless sports camps and tournaments, other camps, vacations, school (?) events, traveling teams, VBS, summer seems to have been sucked fun-free.

Maybe it's Hollywood and Harper Lee's fault for giving us this utopian view of what summer should look and feel like (I'm looking at you Sandlot). But how can we really rest this summer? Because everyone needs some actual rest, even adults.

First thing is do NOT pack your summer full. Say no to some things. Coaches and Families can expect too much and it's okay to say no to them. You have to. There is no time for kids to be kids anymore.

Work can take a backseat. Vacations need to be taken. Families need to reconnect.

And for all my super-scheduled people out there, please PLEASE don't schedule out your vacation. Just enjoy it.

Another bit of advice would be to put away the technology and spend some time outside. When was the last time you tried to catch lightning bugs? Or went for a swim? Or listened to birds on your front porch?

I may sound like I have an old soul, but I really feel like we have lost this connection to the outside world. Summer is all about getting a farmer's tan and getting stung once or twice. I can guarantee you that's some of the best therapy in the world.

Maybe this sounds all over the place. Maybe this sounds like me ranting. And it probably is.

But I'm telling you that this stuff matters. Don't let summer whiz by and you arrive in August more drained that you were in May. Enjoy this time with family and friends.

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