An Open Letter to The Former Best Friend

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I’ve heard of the same thing happening to other people several times. Two girls are best friends, and one of them decided she just doesn’t like the other anymore. Sometimes she just stops talking to her. Other times, she gets subtly unkind, uses put downs, becomes less reponsive, gets more and more sarcastic, until the friendship ends, in a fight or a fizzle.

Usually, this happens in middle or high school, but I think it’s easy to let the hurt from that kind of thing hold onto you into adulthood. Growing up doesn’t mean growing callous. We don’t naturally shed the all the things that injured us when we were younger.

It’s okay to feel the hurt. But that doesn’t mean we have to stay hurt forever.

For a while, when it happened to me, I was hurt. I was a little bitter, too. I felt that you decided you didn’t like me, or felt superior to me, or never forgave me for some of our arguments.

And like all best friends, we had our arguments. I think somehow we never truly resolved something between us, and it just bothered you more and more. For a while, I just lived with that tension. When our friendship finally fell apart in an argument over something completely petty, I didn’t understand that there was probably more under the surface. I remember you putting me down, ignoring me sometimes far before the fights started. I didn’t think about the reasons, though.

Yes, I was angry. Yes, I was upset. But over time, as I revisited the memory of our friendship, I saw it in a different light.

I get that the things you were going through and the pressures you were under at that time might have been beyond my knowledge and understanding. You had different pressures, different hurts of your own. Probably some of them were from me–I certainly wasn’t a paragon of sensitivity back in the day. I’m sure there are some things I did that I don’t even remember, some explanation of why things ended the way they did.

But regardless of what happened, I want you to know that I forgive you. I hope you forgive me, too, for the part I played and the wrongs I did you. I’m not hurt or angry anymore; I don’t want to hold onto old injuries. In reality, I’d like to see you again sometime, get coffee, hear about what’s going on in your life.

We’ve both made our mistakes, but we don’t have to be stuck with them. That’s really the point: The past doesn’t matter anymore. Let’s choose to let go and move forward.

I'm a lover of words in all forms, sweatshirts in all conditions, and God in all circumstances. I particularly enjoy working collaboratively on the written word and wearing microfiber robes (preferably at the same time). Most of the time I don't get enough sleep, but I make a valiant effort.

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