Taking a quick break from the positive

I was in my friends’, Beth and Chad’s, wedding a couple of years ago. I had a blast. It felt great to be included and I had a wonderful time at the bachelorette party, trying on bridesmaid dresses, getting our hair done, posing for the photos, and definitely at the reception. The night of the reception I just happened to be talking to Beth’s mom and went on and on about what a great time I was having. She became very serious and told me I had to tell Beth.

I hadn’t even realized it, but apparently Beth was really stressed out ’cause she had been dealing with all of the piddly little complaints from everyone about every tiny little thing. Some of the bridesmaids were even complaining because they didn’t realize they had to pay for their own dresses. Granted, they were over $100 for something we probably wouldn’t wear again, but c’mon people, this is her wedding! First of all, it’s a fraction of what she or her family is paying overall for you to have great time and it’s an honor for you to have been selected, this means you are one of her closest friends…act like it!

Of course, I marched up to Beth right away and went on and on about what a great time I was having. She was so grateful and relieved.

I didn’t really get it at the time, but it makes so much sense now. I ignorantly thought that people would do whatever they could to help you out and make sure you were happy this one time in your life that’s supposed to be so special. It’s the one time other people around you completely cast off all selfishness and do their best to be there for you, right? I mean, I’d hope that those close to me would be there for me at other times too, but I always imagined weddings as the mass support from everyone, even those you’re really not that close to.

The punchline? Beth and Chad haven’t been returning my calls. I can only assume they’re not coming at this point as I haven’t even been able to send them an invite ’cause they won’t call back and give me their address.

Three of my first cousins aren’t coming to the wedding. Only one of them has actually told me that herself. The rest had to have an answer wretched from them from a family member through a family member through a family member. These are people I consider close to me. I haven’t even gotten explanations from two of them.

I heard through a friend that one of my closest friends won’t be able to make it. Again, not sure why, but he hasn’t bothered to call or email to let me know. This is a friend I talked to multiple times in the past year to remind him to get the time off and get his flight and he reassured me over and over that he’d do whatever it takes to get there.

I made 7 appointments for attendants, family and friends to get their hair done the morning of. It was supposed to be fun. All the girls going out and getting their hair done at the salon the morning of the wedding. I can’t even fill all the appointment spots I made ’cause no one wants to go. I’ve even told them that if it’s too expensive they can just come and hang out while the rest of us get our hair done. No one’s really straight out said no, but I can tell that they won’t come.

I just got a response email from my cousin whom I asked to hand out programs at the ceremony. The ceremony starts at 1 and I said the earliest she should have to be there is noon. She wants to do it, but is unsure ’cause she was carpooling with her parents and isn’t sure if they’ll want to get there early. They weren’t planning on getting there much before 1. What?! The wedding starts at 1! I had to email her back and politely tell her that they really should get there no later than 12:30 anyway ’cause it will take quite a long time to seat 5-600 people.

I honestly don’t feel like there are many people who would really be there for me when I need them anymore and man does it hurt. I’ve been milling it over and working with my therapist on it and I can’t seem to figure out what happened to all the people who used to care about me. I used to be going out nearly every night of the week ’cause my phone was ringing off the hook. My life is different now, I have a hard time staying out past 10pm, but every time I turn around my “friends” are doing things without me. The worst is people making plans in front of my face and blatantly leaving me out. Maybe there’s something wrong with me ’cause I don’t feel like I can invite myself like I used to. I just don’t feel close enough to anyone to do that anymore.

The day to day stuff I can find a way to deal with. I’ve been doing it for a while. Somehow, I feel as though I’ve been isolating myself and I have to find a way to be healthy again. But what I won’t be able to deal with is the crap I’m afraid is just going to keep bulding up to the wedding day. Will more people cancel on me so I’m stuck getting my hair done alone? Will people have excuses as to why they can’t come to my bachelorette party? or why they’ll have to leave early? Will my family all show up at the last minute ’cause they’re afraid of the scary Hindus and their savage ways (“OMG! They have fire in their wedding ceremony! Are they gonna burn the infidels?!”)? Will all of my “friends” leave the reception right after dinner to go to a bar instead or hang out at someone’s house?

I was planning to limit the informal depressing posts here, but you all honestly need to know about this. It’s hard to understand when you haven’t been through it, but believe me, if anyone you know is getting married they are almost definitely under an enormous amount of pressure and the best way to be a true friend is to try to ease that in any way you can.

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8 thoughts on “Taking a quick break from the positive

  1. Hey girl – came across your blog through metroblogging. I truly feel for you. I am going through something similar…I can’t bring myself to get married for these exact reasons. I’m afraid no one will be there for me, I’m afraid I will personally have to drag those who are close to me to my wedding and events leading up to it. I’m afraid of many people being unhappy because I’d want to have my wedding MY way, not everyone else’s way. And, in the end, I am afraid I will not be happy on the day that is supposed to be the happiest of all.

    I related so much to your post and I hope everything ends up well for you on and leading up to your wedding day. (Who wouldn’t want to get their hair done anyways???) GOOD LUCK!!

  2. I’m in the same situation right now. Our wedding is in December, and its about an hour from where everyone lives, everyone is acting like they have to walk there or something. I wanted a small wedding, the people I truly care about, and they’re all upset I can’t invite every person I’ve ever met. I can’t seem to remember the last day I haven’t cried, every freakin’ day, I can’t believe my family is so inconsiderate. This is turning out to be the worst day of my life and I haven’t even got there yet. I want to marry my fiance more than anything. We’ve been together for almost 7 years, have a beautiful daughter, and are finally able to get married, and no one wants to come. They think its no big deal since we’ve been together so long. I’m only 24!!! This is my first wedding, it’s not like its my 5th.
    Thanks for letting me vent.

  3. Yeah, i found this on a google search, and im only a 15 yr old boy and i also hate it when my friends blatantly make plans in front of me and leave me out. I dont feel like the people i used to hang out with are my friends anymore and its really depressing.

  4. @ Matt
    I definitely understand how you’re feeling and I know how hard it is the first time you go through it especially because it takes a while to notice a pattern in how your friendships change. There are a couple things I learned over the years that I wish I knew when I was 15 (I’m almost 30 now): I wish I knew that friendships naturally change, that it’s a lot easier to deal with the change if you accept it and let it happen, and that sometimes people are reacting to my behavior.

    Chances are, if you had good friends who are now starting to blatantly leave you out, there has been a change in your friendship and it sounds like you know it already because you mentioned that you don’t feel like they are your friends anymore. BUT, before you decide to write them off think about whether the way you act toward them has changed.

    To give you an example, I’ve noticed that sometimes when I feel left out it’s actually because I don’t make an effort to include myself. A fact of life is that people will not always be entirely considerate, not because they are bad friends, but because it takes a lot of energy to think of everyone around you ALL the time. If you simply ask your friends if there’s something going on Friday night, they might be happy to tell you about it and invite you along.

    At the same time, you also need to make an effort to accept invitations because people will get tired of asking if you reject them too much. You need to make an effort to invite other people to do things as well. It’s very true that what goes around comes around. People like to be included so if you become the person who is always including them, they will start to think of you whenever they go out. Be patient, it takes a while for people to change their perception of you and it’s not going to work every time, but generally people do like to be social with other social people.

    Despite making positive efforts to include yourself, there will be situations in which either it’s clear that people do not want you to hang with them. Maybe you ask if they have plans Friday night and they lie or they act really awkward and are hesitant to tell you about it. Perhaps, that doesn’t happen, but instead when you are included you don’t enjoy yourself with them anymore. They want to do different things, their jokes aren’t funny to you anymore, etc. That’s a sign that you’ve grown apart and it might simply be time to move on.

    Try not to think of it as a bad thing. This is your opportunity to meet new interesting people and find out more about yourself. You don’t necessarily have to burn your bridges with your old friends. There will likely come a time when you will run into them again and the nostalgia of your old friendship will be very important to you. You might even still want to hang out with them every once in a while, but they just won’t be the friends you go out with every weekend.

    I’ve had many different groups of friends over the years and have noticed that the group I spend most of my time with tends to change every 2-3 years. I used to think there was something wrong with me because I couldn’t stick with good friends, but then I realized that I’ve just changed and so have they. I’ve very rarely had fallings out with old friends, mostly we just drift in different directions and I will usually have one or two friends in each group who have become very close friends whom I will get back in touch with here and there over the years. I’ve just very recently realized that I’m happiest when I just let my relationships change and tried to think of the positive aspects rather than dwelling on “losing” a friend.

    I hope that helps. Feel free to get back in touch with me if you want to talk about it more.

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