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Would You Worry? Friend MIA


shinyhappypeople

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First off, I'll say that I watch way too many crime shows, so my brain jumps to conclusions.  BUT... yikes.  I'm worried.

 

10 yo DD planned to go to a friend's house for a sleepover last night.  They live about 20 minutes away from us, so friend's mom was going to pick up DD at 4:00 yesterday.  Mom and I discussed all this on the phone a week ago.  I gave her my email and our street address.  We confirmed date/time.  We were good to go!  The girls saw each at class on Tuesday and everything was fine.  Mom and I waved at each other at pick-up time, but didn't really talk.

 

Fast forward to Friday: 4:00 rolls around... nothing.  I call mom's cell.  No answer, voice mailbox full.  I text her.  No reply.  I text her daughter's phone.  No reply.  Call daughter's phone, and it goes straight to voice mail.  I leave a message and we wait.

 

And wait.

 

And wait.

 

DD texts friend a couple more times.  No reply.

 

I text mom again, asking her to please reply, I hope everything's okay, and let us know if we're still on for tonight.  No reply.

 

Meanwhile, I make a ton of excuses for them.  "Maybe she lost her phone and got a flat tire, so there's no way for her to come and no way for her to let us know...."  (DD didn't point out the obvious:  how likely is it that they BOTH lost their phones at the same time?)

 

At almost 7:00, amidst DD crying that she is NEVER speaking to Friend again because she's been stood up, we take the kids to see Home (cute movie!) and try to have a fun night anyway.   By the way, watching DD go through the loss of a friendship (even if it's temporary until Friend can explain what happened and apologize) is *excruciating.*

 

So, now I don't know what to do.  Mom and I aren't FB friends and I don't have her email address.  I have no other way of contacting her except phone and I'm genuinely worried.  It's WEIRD that she would stand up my kid, totally ignore texts, and just DO this in the first place!  Either she's been in a car accident or something serious.... or she's just a jerk.  I think that's why my mind is going to the extreme of "Oh my god, they've been the victims of a mass murderer.  CLEARLY that's what happened!"  :001_rolleyes:  I don't want to think of her OR her daughter as thoughtless or uncaring or flaky.  Her daughter is actually really sweet.  Whatever happened last night, it is ALL on the mom for not - at the very least - calling to cancel or explain and just leaving us hanging.

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The fact her voice mail box was full would give me pause. I would go through the same thoughts. Hopefully this morning they will call with a reason. For your dd, I would remind her that you don't know what happened, that it's equally likely something came up that they couldn't call and it's not a reflection on their friendship. Until you find out, I would probably try to distract dd with other positive things. 

 

Aside from checking the local news (cause my mind would go there too), I would not try to track this person down.

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I would wonder if it was some type of family emergency- like a hospitalization or death. Mom wouldn't be thinking about calling to cancel a play date if, say, one of her parents had died. Hopefully you will hear from them today. You would normally see them at class next week though, right?

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Maybe they're in Witness Protection and one of the Crime Boss' lackeys discovered their locations and they had to be immediately moved to another location.  OF COURSE they'd have to leave their cell phones behind.  And OF COURSE there wasn't time to call and cancel the sleepover, because they were literally running for their lives!  We will miss them terribly, but I'm just glad they were able to stay safe.

 

  :D

 

Give some more over-the-top scenarios (don't have to be crime-related).  I'm genuinely starting to worry, and would rather not stress until I know actual FACTS.

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I would wonder if it was some type of family emergency- like a hospitalization or death. Mom wouldn't be thinking about calling to cancel a play date if, say, one of her parents had died. Hopefully you will hear from them today. You would normally see them at class next week though, right?

 

Yeah they have class every Tuesday.  If Friend is there, that's going to be awkward for DD.  I'll talk with her and suggest that she give Friend the benefit of the doubt.

 

If Friend isn't at class and I still haven't heard anything by then, I'm really going to start to worry.

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I (in a point where I an nearing adulthood and growing in wisdom....at 45) always try to assume the worst. Something bad has happened and we need to be as concerned for them and their safety as possible. I'd drive by with cookies and just make sure they're ok. I'd they are, you can genuinely express concern for their well being. (And dd can process the emotion before class and a public appearance). If they aren't, then your concern was well placed. If they're just flakes, dd will learn about compassion and selflessness, and not make plans with them in the future.

 

I really hope they're ok. It sounds very odd. I'd definitely make sure they're ok.

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I'd be concerned that they had an emergency. I hope you find out soon what happened, even if it turns out the mom is just flaky. I would put a stop to the "she can't be my friend any more!" and melodramatic death-of-a-friendship nonsense. I understand that your DD is sad and hurt that the sleepover didn't happen, but you don't know yet what the reason is. Real friends give each other the benefit of the doubt. I've had similar conversations with my DD.

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We did this to friends once.  Two of my children and I were struck by a horrible stomach virus during the night and I totally forgot about the next day's plans.  Of course, this was back in the day when *I* was the only one with a cell phone.......and it was downstairs on the kitchen table, ignored for about 48 hours. Because I had totally blanked on spending the day at the beach with friends, I never had dh call them and they were pretty steamed.  In fact, I only remembered the plans AFTER I checked my cell and found 8 messages from her.

 

Hopefully it's something like that.

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Well, this just goes to show, don't ride the fly-by-night carnival rides. I heard there was a crazy ferris wheel accident near <your town>. Just after the ride was set up, a woman and her daughter, who had stopped for milk at a nearby grocery, were offered free first rides. Unfortunately an important bolt came loose and the ferris wheel rolled away down the street. It rolled at such a high rate of speed that all their possessions were thrown free. The wheel slowed down when it hit the water, and it settled to float on its side. Authorities hoped to stop it at the bridge, but they were slowed down by a tragic jam of spectators, and the wheel squeezed by. The trapped passengers made a dinner from the carnival hot dog stand that had been rolled over and gotten trapped in the wheel. Passengers reported seeing a giant peach flying overhead the next day. Eventually the wheel came to rest trapped between a sand bar and a floating casino, a benefit which the floating casino proponents are sure to point out in the next election cycle. Everyone is fine but being kept for observation. The milk is fine also. Authorities determined that the temperature in the car stayed cool enough that it can be consumed safely.

 

Or else they are flaky losers.

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Maybe they're in Witness Protection and one of the Crime Boss' lackeys discovered their locations and they had to be immediately moved to another location.  OF COURSE they'd have to leave their cell phones behind.  And OF COURSE there wasn't time to call and cancel the sleepover, because they were literally running for their lives!  We will miss them terribly, but I'm just glad they were able to stay safe.

 

  :D

 

Give some more over-the-top scenarios (don't have to be crime-related).  I'm genuinely starting to worry, and would rather not stress until I know actual FACTS.

 

Dude.  Witness protection and the Mafia are always my first thoughts.

But I DID grow up in NJ and DID have friends who mysteriously moved in the night.  So there's that.

 

Hope you hear something soon, OP!

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First, I'd stop my daughter doing the "never speaking again" nonsense.  This is not the loss of a friendship.  This is strange.

 

Second, I'd assume there was some sort of tragic emergency and I'd be very worried.  The full mailbox would worry me and the fact that it's not normal for her would worry me.  I'd continue to try to contact her.

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Agree with Butter.

1. Don't do the loss of friendship never speaking again thing.  That can just make you both crazy and upset. You have no clue what happened.  Give them the benefit of the doubt and encourage your child to do so.  I realize this is hurtful.  I totally get that.  But turning hurt into anger is not helpful since there is not yet any answer as to what happened.  It may make you both a lot more stressed and unhappy.

 

2.  Do you have their address?  Can you get their address?  Maybe drive by and drop a note in the mail box or knock on the door to check on them?

 

3.  If they really did forget, don't be too hard on them.  I would definitely explain how stressful it was for your DD so that hopefully they are more mindful next time, though.  I got stood up twice as a kid because people forgot.  In one instance they had an emergency.  In the other situation they put the date wrong on their calendar.  In both cases Mom encouraged me to forgive.

 

I hope you find out what happened and that the situation is not dire for the other family.  And that your DD can still have a great play date with the family at some point.

 

:grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

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Agree with Butter.

1. Don't do the loss of friendship never speaking again thing.  That can just make you both crazy and upset. You have no clue what happened.  Give them the benefit of the doubt and encourage your child to do so.  I realize this is hurtful.  I totally get that.  But turning hurt into anger is not helpful since there is not yet any answer as to what happened.  It may make you both a lot more stressed and unhappy.

 

2.  Do you have their address?  Can you get their address?  Maybe drive by and drop a note in the mail box or knock on the door to check on them?

 

3.  If they really did forget, don't be too hard on them.  I would definitely explain how stressful it was for your DD so that hopefully they are more mindful next time, though.  I got stood up twice as a kid because people forgot.  In one instance they had an emergency.  In the other situation they put the date wrong on their calendar.  In both cases Mom encouraged me to forgive.

 

I hope you find out what happened and that the situation is not dire for the other family.  And that your DD can still have a great play date with the family at some point.

 

:grouphug:  :grouphug:  :grouphug:

You may want to mention to your daughter that they really could've just had a horrible week with 500 things going wrong and totally forgot. I've done similar things myself and felt really terrible about it.

 

 

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I'm not going to be too hard on DD for feeling what she felt about "NEVER speaking to friend again!!".  She was angry and hurt and it's okay for her to feel her feelings.  By the end of the night she was feeling a lot better.  But, wow, watching her hurt like that was tough. :(

 

Last night I pointed out that Friend will probably explain everything and apologize on Tuesday.  I made a TON of excuses for Friend & Mom last night.  I have no idea what really happened.  Still no word.  If it was "merely" flakiness, we'll limit play dates and sleepovers to our house and confirm (and re-confirm) the day before.  

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Maybe all your contact info ;phone, email, street address) were in her phone. They went somewhere, daughter put her phone in mom's purse for safekeeping, and her purse got stolen with both phones and all your info.

 

Now she and daughter both feel terrible, but have no way to contact you until class on Tuesday.

 

That's my scenario...

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First, I'd stop my daughter doing the "never speaking again" nonsense. This is not the loss of a friendship. This is strange.

 

Second, I'd assume there was some sort of tragic emergency and I'd be very worried. The full mailbox would worry me and the fact that it's not normal for her would worry me. I'd continue to try to contact her.

I agree! It's likely a family emergency. We don't ditch friends because something happened to them.

 

Also, good that it's before and not during sleepover if your only contact for the parents is a non-accessible cell phone!

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I would assume a combination of the daughter being grounded and mom (preoccupied with daughter's behavior that led to grounding) forgetting, and not being the sort of person who monitors phone 24/7 with full mailbox...doesn't realize you've tried to reach her.

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I'm not going to be too hard on DD for feeling what she felt about "NEVER speaking to friend again!!".  She was angry and hurt and it's okay for her to feel her feelings.  By the end of the night she was feeling a lot better.  But, wow, watching her hurt like that was tough. :(

 

Last night I pointed out that Friend will probably explain everything and apologize on Tuesday.  I made a TON of excuses for Friend & Mom last night.  I have no idea what really happened.  Still no word.  If it was "merely" flakiness, we'll limit play dates and sleepovers to our house and confirm (and re-confirm) the day before.  

Good plan...

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Is this your first planned "date" with these people?  Culturally, I know some people who don't REALLY consider things confirmed unless they talk to me the day before or the day of, even if we've been talking for awhile about the get-together.  Even if we've "confirmed"  three days before.  Must be exactly the day before or the day of to be definitely solidified.  Drives me crazy, but that's just how some people do it.  

 

Otherwise, I would guess unexpected out of town or family illness.

 

Definitely give the benefit of the doubt.

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I have a friend who has had all sorts of problems with her wonky cell phone. It says her voicemail is full when it isn't. It drops calls, etc. She's been really hard to reach and now it's even more of a problem because she's had health problems and is waiting to hear back from doctors. She has no home phone line.

 

Maybe something came up (even if it wasn't an emergency) and she was literally unable to get through to you.

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I'm the type who confirms playdates just before; I know one of my friends thinks it's funny, but i still text her a few hours prior and say, "Is X still able to come @ 130?" or "We will see you in about an hour when I bring Y over!"

 

If it all turns out to be flakiness, that might be a good thing in the future---I like it when people remind me that they are still coming over or that we are still meeting up.

 

I'm very curious to find out the "rest of the story" here, and I hope your daughter isn't too sad over it--- planning social stuff can have its ups and downs!!

 

b

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Maybe it's me, but I'd be more likely to be mad than worried.  Unless it were a major dire emergency, I would probably not be excited about planning things with them anymore.  Especially if you haven't heard anything at this point. 

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I think I'd be really happy that this happened BEFORE my dd went over there. Do you know this family very well, where they live, etc.? I like to do a few day-time visits before sleep-overs so I have time to get to know the family and learn how reliable they are. Then I'd rather have the sleep-over at my house.

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I'm the confirming type, so probably on Thursday or maybe Friday morning, I'd have sent a text:  "Still good to go for tomorrow(this afternoon)?"  (I'd send this same text whether I was the hosting mom or the mom sending a child. 

That said, I do think it is very strange that you haven't been able to get in touch with her.  For that, I think I'd be concerned.

I try to give people the benefit of the doubt either way (easier said than done).  I would try and encourage dd in the same. 

 

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I'd be worried, but I am also a person who expects a catastrophe at any moment.   I also tend to confirm any sort of get-together because I've been stood up before; I have also gotten dates and times wrong.

 

You don't have to be hard on your daughter for experiencing a range of emotions, but it is good to remind her not to jump to conclusions when she really knows nothing at all of what's going on.  Since I am a conclusion-jumper, though, I try to be extra-sensitive to that when dealing with my kids.  

 

It would be really hard for me not to speculate about what's going on, but I'd try not to since there's nothing to be done at this point.

 

:grouphug: :grouphug:  to you and your daughter.  Please update us 'cause I know we all want to know the end of the story.  Hope there is a good explanation and happy ending.

 

 

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Make sure you update when you find out. I hate these type of mysteries!

 

I once had a friend who was traveling. I knew she was due back on a saturday and was planning to attend church the next day. She didn't show, but I thought that she probably got in late and slept in. So, I called her the next day and got no answer. I had a mutual friend check facebook (I don't have an accnt) and there was no recent activity. By late afternoon I actually called her husband's cell phone. Thankfully, her husband had heard from her and she was home, but her phone was lost etc. I was minutes from calling hospitals and state police. :lol:

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I have no other way of contacting her except phone and I'm genuinely worried. 

 

Wow. So, my calendar is on my phone. If my phone broke, this could happen to me. I'd lose all contacts as well. If I couldn't call people from the school, I'd be screwed. Even addresses are saved on it.

 

I'm also forgetful and lose things.

 

I would be neither mad nor worried. I would assume it was a mix-up or lost phone and when seeing them on Tuesday ask if anything had happened, forgive, and move on.

 

My internal dialogue with stuff like this is, "I hope they're okay--it was probably a mix-up. If that's the case they'll feel awful when they remember, but I don't want to lose their company, so I'll let them know it's forgiven and plan a make-up date."

 

But then, I'm forgetful myself so I tend to be forgiving. There is so much awful stuff in this world, I just do not have time to be pissed off about people forgetting stuff or being late or losing their phones and whatnot. How totally exhausting and hard to find friends! I don't know super-organized people so taking offense at stuff like that would really cut down on my list of friends...

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I'd probably go through a process something like:

 

maybe I got the time wrong?

 

Maybe I got the date wrong?

 

perhaps I didn't actually confirm?

 

oh no, was it next month?

 

have I offended them?

 

DD, did X say anything about this to you?

 

DD, have you guys had a disagreement lately?

 

I probably got the date wrong.

 

Wait... what if something has happened and I'm the only person who knows?

 

Nah, this isn't TV.

 

But what if?

 

I'll call again.

 

hmm.. maybe I have the date wrong?

 

wow, did I make them really annoyed?  What did I do?

 

I am a bad person.  They must hate me.

 

What if they had an accident.

 

I'll call again.

 

hmm... family emergency?

 

Maybe they're all sick.

 

I want to go and do something fun, but what if they meant a different time and we're not here?  Then we'd be the rude ones.

 

I'll call again.  No, I can't call again, that's stalker-y

 

Have there been any accidents around here?

 

Oh this is silly something's gone wrong, let's move on. 

 

They hate me.

 

They're dead.  Or murdered.  Or lost.  Or hurt and can't reach the phone.  Aliens?  Witness protection?  SPIES!  Arrested!

 

I must have got the date wrong.

 

repeat.  :-)

 

I hope everything's ok and youfind out before I (I mean you) go crazy

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I once fell off the radar for long enough that friends started dropping by my house to see if I was living. In reality I was just very busy with school and a new baby and was being very flakey about my phone. It's been 11 years and my friends still joke about the time they were 1/2 convinced I was going to be America's next MPWM (missing pretty white mom).

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I'd probably go through a process something like:

 

maybe I got the time wrong?

 

Maybe I got the date wrong?

 

perhaps I didn't actually confirm?

 

oh no, was it next month?

 

have I offended them?

 

DD, did X say anything about this to you?

 

DD, have you guys had a disagreement lately?

 

I probably got the date wrong.

 

Wait... what if something has happened and I'm the only person who knows?

 

Nah, this isn't TV.

 

But what if?

 

I'll call again.

 

hmm.. maybe I have the date wrong?

 

wow, did I make them really annoyed?  What did I do?

 

I am a bad person.  They must hate me.

 

What if they had an accident.

 

I'll call again.

 

hmm... family emergency?

 

Maybe they're all sick.

 

I want to go and do something fun, but what if they meant a different time and we're not here?  Then we'd be the rude ones.

 

I'll call again.  No, I can't call again, that's stalker-y

 

Have there been any accidents around here?

 

Oh this is silly something's gone wrong, let's move on. 

 

They hate me.

 

They're dead.  Or murdered.  Or lost.  Or hurt and can't reach the phone.  Aliens?  Witness protection?  SPIES!  Arrested!

 

I must have got the date wrong.

 

repeat.  :-)

 

I hope everything's ok and youfind out before I (I mean you) go crazy

 

:rofl:

 

You pretty much summarized my thought process for the past 22 hours.

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A couple of years ago, I nearly broke off with a friend who I thought was flakey... turns out my phone was ignoring her texts.

We had arranged a playdate, and I texted confirming it. But I never heard back. She texted me- yep, we're on....and I didn't show up!

 

It happened again with another friend once recently too.

 

So, hopefully it's something simple like that!

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A couple of years ago, I nearly broke off with a friend who I thought was flakey... turns out my phone was ignoring her texts.

We had arranged a playdate, and I texted confirming it. But I never heard back. She texted me- yep, we're on....and I didn't show up!

 

It happened again with another friend once recently too.

 

So, hopefully it's something simple like that!

 

This is intriguing.  Is there a way to tell if this is happening?  I checked my phone log online and there's nothing inbound at all yesterday.  

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This is intriguing. Is there a way to tell if this is happening? I checked my phone log online and there's nothing inbound at all yesterday.

No, absolutely nothing. My friend would text me, and I wouldn't receive them. Then one day when we were together, and tested it, they started working! If she wasn't such an honest and caring friend I would have thought- Yeah right!

Then it happened in the opposite way with another friend. I had a different phone then, so can't blame that. Maybe, my mobile provider though?

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