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Ending It Like a Firing Squad

I was talking to a friend/teacher of mine recently about some guilty feelings I have been having lately about a friendship I ended. It was kind of a toxic relationship, and I was very unhappy, so I ended it to save myself a lot of pain and save her the difficulty of having to deal with my issues. We were actually compatible in many ways; I really cared about her, and still do, but there were also many problems that came up and we didn't get along well. To make a long story short, it was complicated and mostly my fault. 

Ending the friendship was certainly the right thing to do, and I don't regret it; just the way I did it. I was very angry at her, and it was one of those brutally honest moments where I said some things without any consideration for her feelings. Naturally, she is far from perfect. She did and said some things to me that really hurt. But the truth is, regardless of what happened, she was always honest and tried to be my friend in a very difficult time for me. That's all I should require of a friend, and it was my issues that made it a problem. She didn't deserve my anger or the summary execution of our relationship via txt messages. Kinda ****** of me to say the least. I let my anger put her on the wrong end of the gun.

So, weeks later, I've felt pretty bad about it. The interesting thing my teacher-friend told me is that guilt is often the manifestation of an unexpressed resentment. I've been thinking and journaling about this a lot lately, and I discovered that he was 100% correct. I do resent her. I still feel hurt about what happened. I miss her, and I feel mad at myself and her that we can't have a friendship. I don't completely blame her for it, I just don't want to let go for some reason. I honestly see it as pretty selfish of me.

Last night I wrote her and apologized for the things I said and did. It went pretty well, she responded and apologized for her part, and also said some very nice things to me. I didn't share my resentments with her, I was more than clear about what I was angry about when I ended it. I thought the most caring thing I could do in that respect was to keep that stuff in my journal where it belongs. And it did feel good to get a little of the guilt off my chest, as selfish as it is.

Hmm. Looking forward to moving on...

deleted deleted 26-30 2 Responses Jan 8, 2009

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i know where you're coming from. ending a friendship is never an easy thing. even if your friend was toxic and constantly dragging you down. up to this day, i still feel a twinge of guilt for ending my friendship. sure she was a liar, betrayed my trust and those of my other family and friends...but there's still a part of me that wishes i could have ended our friendship in a kinder note i guess.<br />
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i applaud you though, you were courageous enough to write your friend back and apologize. i don't think you were being selfish at all, its just hard to let go i guess. but i hope now that you've gotten some things off your chest, you can finally move on :)

Well said ... and done ...