I'll admit it, when I first met you, I wasn't sure how well things were going to work out. Although I didn't know you that well at the time, we seemed to be opposites in almost every way. You were cool, edgy, and laid-back, and I was more awkward, goofy, and anxious.
But, after being assigned to a semester-long group project together, I soon came to realize that none of that seemed to matter.
Our friendship ended up being so much better than I ever thought it would be.
We had the exact same sense of humor. Sometimes, we couldn't so much as look at each other without making the other person laugh. We grew to be able to communicate entirely in facial expressions. We would always attend on-campus events together, and often times, we wouldn't go at all if the other person wasn't going.
We'd take an endless string of candids in which we were laughing, arguing with each other, or just generally looking confused. We'd text each other constantly whether it was to complain about someone/something, for advice or just because we were bored.
Our personalities seemed to blend together perfectly, and you quickly became one of my favorite people to talk to. Everything was instantly more fun just by being around you.
And I had assumed you felt the same.
About a week before graduation, we had made plans with some of our other friends to meet up and take pictures. But, on the day of, you didn't show up. I texted you a little later, but by the time you responded, you had already left. I didn't think much of it at the time, assuming that you had probably just gotten busy.
After that day, though, I didn't hear from you again.
I had tried texting you a few times throughout the summer, and every time it seemed as though the conversation would just end abruptly. I tried to make plans with you one time, and you read my message and ignored it. I was hurt, but again, I brushed it off, knowing that you had a lot going on and it probably wasn't intentional.
It wasn't until six months later at an alumni event for a club that we had both been apart of that I finally realized something was wrong. We were both there, and despite having hardly talked in all that time, you seemed to have no interest in seeing me, giving me some weird excuse why you couldn't.
I worked up the courage to finally confront you when I got home that night with a long text message (that was, admittedly, a little harsh). I was hurt, and I figured this was the last chance to save our friendship, as it seemed to be well on its way to ending anyway.
Your response was, "I'm sorry you're upset," as if you were discounting my feelings entirely. You didn't seem to be sorry for what you did, but for how I reacted to it. For the rest of the night, we had one of the strangest arguments I have ever had, where neither one of us fully understood the other's point of view, but we never outwardly stated our true feelings either, for fear of being too harsh to each other.
I didn't want to flat-out attack you, and you didn't want to either. But, by the time the conversation had ended, it felt like we had just talked in circles but never really got anywhere. I figured time will tell whether things would work themselves out or whether we would just end up drifting apart.
More than anything, I just needed to know that you genuinely did still care about me and weren't just saying so out of guilt or obligation.
A few months later, I invited you somewhere, but you weren't able to go. A few weeks after that, you initiated the plans, and I was grateful. We were finally going to be seeing each other for the first time in nearly 10 months. I had pictured how it would go 100 different ways, but I had never considered that this was going to be just as awkward for you as it was for me.
When we saw each other, I really wasn't sure how to react. We laughed it off together (albeit, uncomfortably). We talked for a while, and the conversation flowed relatively naturally. But, the connection that we used to have was noticeably gone. We no longer felt like two close friends catching up, but two acquaintances who never really knew each other all too well to begin with.
The majority of what we seemed to talk about was the past: old memories and old experiences that we had had before. What was becoming painfully obvious was that there was nothing in the present propelling our friendship forward. We had nothing left to bond over other than the two people that we used to be.
But, to my surprise, before we left, you wanted to make plans again. You told me you were free a few weeks from then and said you would let me know the exact date once you found out. I left having hope that maybe things would actually get better. Maybe, over time, we'd talk more regularly again.
Maybe things really would be OK.
The date you had said you would be free came and went with no word from you. To this day, I have heard from you maybe twice since then. Both of those times, I have questioned whether it was genuine or whether you just had no better option at the time.
I want you to know that I wish I didn't feel this way. Deep down I know that you are a very good and kind person, but you hurt me... that's not an easy thing to let go of. When we were in college, you made me feel like I was really important to you, and immediately after we graduated you made me feel like I didn't mean anything at all.
Because of this, I can't help but feel uncomfortable around you with every interaction we have, and to be honest, I don't know if that will ever change. I no longer know how to act around you because I don't know what I am to you anymore. And, considering where we are now, I'm not sure if I really know what I ever truly meant to you.
It's really hard to feel like you're someone's last choice when you once knew what it was like to be their first.
I knew that things weren't going to be exactly the same as they were in college: I expected that. But, to go from talking to someone all the time to not at all just feels so... intentional. I hope you realize that I didn't think I'd be talking to you every day or even every month, but to go as long as we did without talking really makes me question the validity of our friendship.
All I had needed was the occasional, "Hey, how are you?" or even just a random Snapchat to know you still cared and wanted to stay in touch. If we were as close as I had thought we were, you would've wanted to talk to me. It's as simple as that.
Talking to me isn't a chore or something you have to be reminded to do. A friend shouldn't cause you more stress, she should be the one to help you through it. As I see you post on social media (often with your friends), multiple times a day and respond in our group chat pretty often, I want you to know that at this point I'd rather just not hear from you at all.
Sometimes, the hope that our friendship will get better hurts more than the acceptance that it's already over.
After a while, I decided to stop reaching out too. Once I realized that you seemed to be doing just fine without me, I learned how to be OK without you too. I don't only want to be your friend when it's convenient for you. It was hard to come to the realization that I was losing a good friend for seemingly no reason, and maybe I'll never get an answer, but I've finally made peace with it.
So, whenever you decide to randomly tag me in something on Instagram or acknowledge me in our group chat, I want you to know that it just brings up all those painful memories of what we've gone through and what we've lost that I've worked so hard to let go of.
I appreciate the small attempts at connecting, but I'd rather you didn't. I'd rather you just be honest with me and tell me you no longer care instead of lead me on to spare my feelings. As much as I hate to say this, this friendship is just starting to feel fake at this point.
I think it's time that we both just let this go.
I do wish the best for you. I miss the friendship we used to have, although I wonder if it was ever actually real to you in the first place. But, if there's one thing you've taught me, it's that there's a big difference between a nice person and a genuine person. Anyone can tell you that they care, but it means something else entirely when they take the time to show you.
I hope you make it through grad school. I hope you get a job you really love. I hope you find an amazing guy so you're not stuck going on crappy Tinder dates anymore.
Most of all, I hope you're spending time with the people you truly care about, even if I'm no longer one of them.