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How often, and by what method, do you attempt contact with someone...


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With a new friend who was around a lot but now has drawn back but you have intertwined your lives through business and you have no regrets or no clue as to why the sudden pull-out?

AND

With a quarter-century friend who is obviously blue but (suddenly) is completely withdrawn?  After a time of a lot of contact.

Help me out here.  I care about both of these people, wish neither of them ill will or suspect them of ill will, and have a raft of insecurities of my own...so I don't trust my own read on what to do.  

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You could take the bull by the horns and confront new friend by asking what is going on. However, I am extremely non- confrontational and would probably ignore it until the friendship dissolved. I did have a friend who just stopped being my friend. She was going through stuff, I was going through stuff. I would try to make plans. Suggest different dates. She was always unavailable and after the 3rd or 4th attempt on my part I took the hint. Then it became Happy Birthday text and then finally nothing. I still miss her. I wish I knew if it was anything I did. In reality it was probably her own baggage.

Same advice for quarter of a century friend. Sometimes, you really do have to insist they tell you what is going on.

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As I am that friend who retreats to lick my wounds, I beg of you to not press the quarter-century friend. My most bungled friendship happened during my personal tragedy and I think much of it was this disconnect on “how do I be your friend”. My ex-friend badgered me to try and get all my gut-wrenching details and the more she did his, the less trustworthy she became in my eyes. There was more to it than that, but I felt that I could not share my hurts with her because she was badgering me so hard to get them. I would have rather she had just been there if (IF!) I wanted to talk, and non-judgementally listened. But that was not what happened. 

So for quarter-century friend, maybe just send her a card one week, like a “thinking of you” thing, and then in a week or two, send a text asking how she’s doing, or maybe invite out for a cup of coffee. 

The new friend, I wouldn’t waste much brain power on. If ahe seems to be pulling back, just wait and see, or maybe send her a text on her birthday or something. But it is true; sometimes we start to get to know someone and then realize its maybe not a great friendship match and so we let it die off. 

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The withdrawn friend I would keep reaching out to, as they may well be depressed. Also, be patient and be there when they reach out, whether it's next week or next year or in five years. With the new friend I'd probably confront them and ask what's going on.

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As for the old friend...when I have gone through stressful times I have withdrawn from all my friends.  I did NOT want phone calls but texts, emails, or cards were comforting.  But phone calls gave me anxiety...was the person going to pressure me for details? was I going to cry on the phone? So...maybe no phone calls.  But do stay in touch and let her know you’re there for her.  We went through some things and I asked friends to just not talk about it when we got together. It was so nice to have an evening where we just pretended everything was normal and ok.

New friend? Who knows. I’d ask her to lunch or something a couple of times and then just let it go for a while.  

Sorry you’re going through this. It stinks when friends fade away. 

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4 minutes ago, Annie G said:

As for the old friend...when I have gone through stressful times I have withdrawn from all my friends.  I did NOT want phone calls but texts, emails, or cards were comforting.  But phone calls gave me anxiety...was the person going to pressure me for details? was I going to cry on the phone? So...maybe no phone calls.  But do stay in touch and let her know you’re there for her.  We went through some things and I asked friends to just not talk about it when we got together. It was so nice to have an evening where we just pretended everything was normal and ok.

New friend? Who knows. I’d ask her to lunch or something a couple of times and then just let it go for a while.  

Sorry you’re going through this. It stinks when friends fade away. 

 

Thank you.  

 

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