Oh, Honey. No.

October 25th, 2016

Article Roundup, NEW!

I’m reading the comments of this post like:

http://www.xojane.com/relationships/my-friend-left-me-alone-at-the-restaurant-on-my-birthday

 

I can relate to the author in the how dissappointed she was that the friend bailed on her before her birthday cake. Like the author, little gestures that are innocuous to other people tend to mean a lot to me. That’s my baggage. I’ve written before of how hurt I get when people do the whole “let’s get drinks next week” thing and then blow me off. I get invested in that kind of attention because I don’t get it very often. I’m working on it, okay?

Anyhoo, there’s a lot going on here if you read between the lines, which many of the commenters defending the author aren’t doing.  It sounds to me like the friend only went to dinner with the author because she felt bad for her. That she would bolt without waiting for the friend to get her stupid birthday cake and wouldn’t invite her to tag along on her plans to go to a karaoke bar tells me this author and the friend aren’t really that close.

Second, the fact that the author invited the friend to dinner (at a steakhouse, no less) and seems perturbed that the friend asked for separate checks is completely out of whack with appropriate expectations. I don’t care if it’s your fucking birthday. You ask, you pay.

Then there’s the whole bit about how the author chose a dessert that she didn’t even like in favor of something she thought her friend would like reeks of martyrdom.

 

When I was choosing the dessert, Sandy was texting on her phone, and when I suggested the dessert to her, she just said “Whatever.” I chose a dessert that was not so much in my palate, but I knew it was something Sandy would enjoy.

About five minutes later, she flagged down the waitress and asked to pay her portion of the bill since she was in a hurry to leave. We each paid our bills and waited for the dessert, but as soon as the dessert came, she told me that her friend was outside — and she darted straight out of the restaurant.
Imagine how I must have felt during that moment. Looking at a cake with a candle that says “happy birthday” — alone. Imagine me blowing out the candle and eating alone, being abandoned by my friend for a new friend, on my birthday. Imagine the stares from the patrons around me.

The waitress asked me what had happened to my friend, and another waiter came by to try to comfort me.

I felt so embarrassed, abandoned, and humiliated.

Was getting the cake to go not an option or…? Could it be more obvious that the friend had no interest in sitting through this agonizing pity party of a dinner?

The people at the table next to me said “I can’t believe your friend would leave you on your birthday.”

Huh. That’s weird. How’d they know that? Oh right. BECAUSE YOU SAT THERE LIKE A SAD SACK BLOWING OUT YOUR LONE CANDLE ON YOUR BIRTHDAY CAKE.

I’m going straight to hell, I know.

The rest of the story just supports the theory that the author is possibly a little delusional as well as alarmingly needy.

I eventually decided to message her on Facebook to explain my thoughts about the situation. It took three messages for her to even look at what I wrote, which made me look desperate considering she should have messaged me first, even if it’s just to check up. A true friend would show effort, ask me how I’m doing, and apologize again with me having to pester multiple times.

I could see she “read” the messages but didn’t bother to respond immediately. When I saw that, I sent another message asking why she didn’t respond and telling her how I felt used and taken for granted since I drove her around, invited her to stay at my house, helped her with her homework, gave her advice, tolerated being the third wheel when she was with her boyfriend.

I finally got a response with yet another mediocre apology, and she said she would understand if I chose to end the friendship. That made me really skeptical because it implied she didn’t want to be friends anymore.

The friend is DYING to shake this woman and she’s just not getting it.  But like I said, I sympathize. I’ve totally done this and seeing it play out in front of me is making me cringe because I’ve been that girl. I’ve been the girl who gets too invested in attention. I’ve been the girl who has believed something that wasn’t real because it was comforting. Unfortunately for the author, she’s published on a site that will probably refuse to remove it when the author realizes she comes off horribly in this essay. The upside of that will be that she’s developed the self-awareness to necessary to realizes she comes off horribly.

Thoughts?

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11 Responses to “Oh, Honey. No.”

  1. Ava Says:

    The friend totally agreed to the birthday dinner out of pity. She probably tried to get out of it by telling the girl she had plans that night and the girl wouldn’t take no for an answer and offered to meet the friend somewhere convenient for her.

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  2. Parenting Says:

    Couldnt agree more!

    1. This is her “best friend” but they havent spoken all year.
    2. She says she always has to initiate friendships and is typically rejected.
    3. She is jealous that her friend made a new friend. Uhh really?
    4. She’s had “such a great year” but then bemoans she’s been up to “basically nothing”.
    5. She demanded the friend apologize again and again for leaving early when she told her up front she has plans “to meet a friend later”.

    There is something wrong with this woman that is driving people away. At best she is just an insufferable person.

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  3. mxf Says:

    I’ve been on the other side of this. When I was a bit younger than the author, I had moved back in with my parents to attend university. I met a girl at school who happened to be the daughter of good friends of my parents. She was bright and funny and I fully enjoyed bumping into her from time to time and chatting. She started to push to get together outside of school, and while something about it made me uncomfortable, I figured I was having my own introvert issues. So I accepted one of her invitations to their house (she was also living at home) about a half hour from mine. When I got there, she was in full slumber party mode, and had prepared sundaes and snacks and sleeping bags and the whole lot. She also “kicked out” her parents and banished them upstairs so we could be alone, which they seemed to find cute.

    I had no idea she expected a sleepover – I was 21, and for awhile my only sleepovers had involved my boyfriend or crashing after a night of drinking. She wanted to talk about which celebrities we would kiss and exchange secrets no one else knew. I felt panicked by her need to fast track a BFF relationship, and, if I’m honest, embarrassed to participate in something so youthful. I stayed for the evening because I could tell she was excited and maybe just over-eager, but it had totally caught me off guard that she wanted me to sleep over, and I had no intention of ‘leading her on’ by staying. She was so vocally dismayed that I was going home that it just reinforced my need to escape.

    There wasn’t any social media, but when I bumped into her afterward she would insist I still owed her a full sleepover, and she had all these other things she wanted to do together. And I just opted out and put her off instead of being honest. I didn’t see a path where I could get more distance and she could get more closeness, and I was immature enough myself to just extract at whatever cost. Also, I felt angry that she would lay so much at my feet so quickly. I never agreed to that. I felt… bullied by her apparent neediness, and I’m sure she felt hurt and bewildered by my withdrawal.

    Anyway, sorry for the long comment. This brought up weird things for me. I thought the author seemed like an unreliable narrator. Maybe that friend was careless and a jerk, or maybe the author is unable to read the room when she’s trying to get her needs met by unwilling participants.

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    • ATWYSingle Says:

      Any time the writer of a story like this swears up and down she’s an innocent victim and did nothing to incur such horrid treatment, you can be sure the writer is an unreliable narrator.

      She guilt tripped the friend in going to dinner with her. The friend tried to get out of it but couldn’t, so she made up a story about having plans to get the fuck out of there. The friend even said that the author told her they wouldn’t be having desert, but of course once the friend was there, the author thought she had the friend trapped. The friend did nothing wrong except feel bad for someone and try to do be nice.

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      • mxf Says:

        Yeah, I know we are only getting one side, but I’m bothered by the fact that the more sensitive a person’s feelings are (like the author), the less responsibility they have to take for pushing others out of their comfort zones. It’s not ok for a friend to be rude, dismissive, unkind or selfish. But it’s also not ok for a friend to be manipulative, score-keepy, accusatory or demanding, EVEN IF they are lonely sometimes.

        But she’s 23, I don’t know why this is getting all up in my Feelings. lol

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        • KK Says:

          I don’t see where in the piece, or where in society EVER, more sensitive people are given a pass in pushing past comfort zones. I think more vulnerable or needy people DO tend to ignore other people’s boundaries, but that inevitably drives people away. People definitely intrude on other people, but no one is ever given a pass on that. People are FAR more forgiving when other people act insensitively or flake or act how the “best friend” in the article acted.

          It is becoming more common and more socially acceptable to flake. Acting needy? Loses you friends.

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  4. SE Says:

    A steakhouse could be expensive for many 23-year-olds. Is it possible that the friend already felt like she was spending more than she wanted on the meal, and then panicked at the thought of having the cost of a dessert added on?

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  5. Yvonne Says:

    I’m going to cut this girl some slack since she is only 23 years old.

    I also wondered why she said she had nothing going on her her life when she also says she had a great year.

    I’m confused about the dessert. Why did Tiffany order something she didn’t really like just because she thought Sandy would like it? Was she trying to manipulate her friend into having a dessert she didn’t really want? Was this a dessert they were going to share? Usually restaurants serve individual slices of cake, and only the birthday person gets a gratis dessert. Clearly, her friend didn’t want any and/or didn’t want to pay for her own portion.

    I didn’t see anywhere that Tiffany was upset that her friend split the bill, but I definitely had the sense that her friend had a new best friend that she was more excited about. Yes, not hanging out with Tiffany while she ate her cake was rude. However, Tiffany mentioned it to Sandy the first time, and that should have been it. Either you accept your friend’s apology or you don’t, but for Tiffany to repeatedly email her and lord over her all the things that she had done throughout the friendship was overkill and equally immature.

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  6. AnnieNonymous Says:

    Woahhhhhhhhhh and she left a HUGE comment defending herself.

    I feel bad for her because xo took advantage of a vulnerable girl with social problems to get clicks, but ummmmmm she doesn’t sound like a very pleasant person either.

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  7. UWSGal Says:

    The author was definitely has issues, at best she’s socially awkward. I wasn’t a “popular girl” in HS so I can somewhat relate, but I could still make friends with other “non-popular” girls and guys. This girl, there’s more to this. That said, her friend was in fact rude. She should’ve stayed through the dessert course. But then again they’re 23. Not exactly the age of maturity and good manners.

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