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don't want to forgive & forget

Friendship Having issues with a friend? Get it off your chest!

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Old 1st December 2017, 4:19 PM   #1
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don't want to forgive & forget

Short version: my former BFF of 40 years was rude; she defamed me; she tried to sabotage my career and she made actual death threats. Had I chosen to press charges, the threats rose to an actionable criminal level.

After 40 years of friendship, I had enough. I was tired of how badly she treated me. I have simply gotten on with my life.

If you want the back story -- here it is:

I just found out she's back in town again. Sadly for her brother's funeral. I didn't even know. I sent her sister & sister in law my condolences upon finding out.

A mutual friend, more her friend then mine, is pushing me to make up with my former friend. I don't want to. Unfortunately, we are going to be thrown together at an event tomorrow. Now I don't even want to go but I'm the organizer. It's open to the public so I can't tell my EX friend to stay away nor would I ask our other childhood friends to chose between us. I'd prefer to simply bow out.

The first time I saw the EX friend several months after the last straw / death threats, she told my husband that she forgives me. That's rich; I did nothing wrong. She came back two more years to ruin my birthday. On that last visit she cornered another mutual friend -- who is more my friend then hers but who didn't want to get stuck in the middle. I just found out today that my EX friend told this other mutual friend that she (the EX friend) didn't know why I suddenly stopped talking to her. Even that woman was like -- wtf? How could you not know you told all these people that I was bad at my public & highly visible profession (defamation is actually real) or that the EX friend forgot she made death threats? I still have the threats. One was electronic through text; the other via snail mail.

My plan is to simply pivot on my heals & go to another part of the festival when I see her tomorrow.

Does anybody have any better suggestions?
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Old 1st December 2017, 7:27 PM   #2
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I think your idea of avoiding and walking away from her is perfectly fine.

If mutual friends try to mediate, smile and politely decline, change the subject, or ignore it.

If anyone feels uncomfortable, that's on them. You're too busy doing your own thing to notice.
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Old 1st December 2017, 7:43 PM   #3
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Don't make a tense situation for others. Coexist
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Old 2nd December 2017, 8:31 PM   #4
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You are under no obligation to entertain this person. I would make myself preoccupied with other people (is there anyone who can accompany you and draw your attention elsewhere if she approaches?) or other organizational details. You can always tell her directly that you're not comfortable talking/can't talk right now and walk away if she needles you. Depends on how much of a scene you think she will cause.

Alternatively, since this is a public event, you can always "grey rock" her. This is when you're cordial enough on the surface but give really boring, vague answers and are about as interesting as a grey rock. Some people play it in a distracted manner, with short answers and looking elsewhere. Others elaborate extensively on go-nowhere topics like the weather. It doesn't give those who like to manipulate any real information and drives them to seek the company of other people.

Good luck with this!
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Old 2nd December 2017, 9:42 PM   #5
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I am so in the book of not having people who intentionally hurt us in our lives.
I would say ignore, but be polite if approached. Let go of anger for your own well being.

good luck dear.
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Old 2nd December 2017, 9:55 PM   #6
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How did it go today, Donnivain?

I'm a big proponent of forgiving, but forgetting is so misunderstood. You can never forget the incident, but you can choose to "forget" (forgive) the hold it has on your life, and in that, there is freedom for you to be perfectly fine with walking the other direction from the person who has hurt you.
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Old 2nd December 2017, 10:10 PM   #7
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Yep, cut her out you owe her nothing.

You don't need that in your life for any reason.
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Old 8th December 2017, 6:51 PM   #8
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It went . . . kind of sideways. The group kind of split. Some were with me. Others were with her but she hadn't gotten there yet when I arrived. Shortly after I arrived, I learned that another friend of mine -- someone most of the people I was with did not know -- died. His passing consumed my thoughts to the point where I didn't want to be at an overcrowded event so for everyone's sake I just went home.
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Old 8th December 2017, 8:13 PM   #9
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Sorry to read about your friend passing. Sheesh this time of year

Sounds like things worked out for the best. Sometimes it's just back to the billions. I'm sure you've got some great memories of that long friendship even it did go sour in the end. Good stuff to carry forward.
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Old 9th December 2017, 4:51 PM   #10
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I'm sorry about the loss of your friend.
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Old 14th December 2017, 3:02 PM   #11
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It's over and that's good. So sorry about your friend passing.

No way should you make up with this cow. She continues to lie and manipulate about you to get people on her side and try to make you the villain! She's evil. No worse enemy than someone who used to be very close and knows everything about you and your vulnerabilities and then uses them against you. I don't know your relationship with her family, but ideally, you would just get them out of your life as well to minimize contact with her. You could even tell them you regretted it but need to get her out of your circle as much as you can. They'd probably side with her anyway since they're family. They'll certainly talk to her about anything you share with them.

I know what it's like to have an old friend grow toxic. I haven't regretted cutting her out of my life. I talked to her civilly before I did it. She only called my parents once trying to reconnect and I didn't call back. She was fun but she was toxic and it wasn't to everyone but to me, partly because of history and partly because she at that time wanted to step into my shoes instead of finding her own way.

And now I've pretty much had to shun another old friend just recently because of her desperation and mental illness is getting worse in her old age and she was about to interfere with an ex of mine who is happily married (though who knows if he'd cheat anyway). She's married with a chronically ill husband, a good husband, but it's gone on a long time and left her the breadwinner and she's good at earning but better at spending. My ex is the only one of our old crowd who has some money and I think that was motivating her, but she was also cheating on her poor husband (she's diagnosed narcissist and bipolar). I didn't want her interfering with him because she can be very destructive. She'll promise she'll be discreet, but she won't because she's narcissistic. So it's been a couple of years since I talked to her. It hurts, and I wish her the best and if she got herself safely situated after her husband's death where she's not desperate and ready to try anything or anyone, I might reconnect, but there will never be trust between us again.
"I care not much for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not better for it." -- Abraham Lincoln
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Old 14th December 2017, 5:14 PM   #12
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I was feeling particularly low & vulnerable when I wrote this. As I typed it & talked it over with my husband & one confidant, I realize that the people putting pressure on me to forgive her & rebuild her friendship don't know the whole story. I'm not going to throw her under the bus & tell them; she's here so infrequently. More importantly what she did is unforgivable, especially since she has not asked for my forgiveness or said she was sorry.

Our friendship wasn't a priority for her for years before this last big blow up. It's best that it just stays broken.

I'm sure I'll have another crisis of faith when she's back in town again but the reality is my life is best without her poison in it.
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