Monday, January 2, 2012

A Vent

I've been very hesitant to post this entry. It's been on my mind for a long time. I've waited because I didn't want to post it in the wrong frame of mind or out of frustration or in the midst of the colicky craziness my son had. I didn't want to appear as a bitch or a whiny person.

I've waited until the dust has settled (or at least until I could see a bit of clearing!).

This post is about some friends who have severely let me down. I had tons of friends at one point; now, I have a hard time scraping up plans when we have babysitting. My housewarming party was ridiculously over capacity. Same for the big birthday parties. My bridal shower and baby showers were also a bit overrun. Bring a colicky baby into the picture and voila, people RUN FOR THE HILLS!!! God forbid the new mother has a bit of post-partum depression. Change your phone numbers.

Really.

Okay, I know people get busy with their lives but it just seems very funny timing that an insane baby arrives and poof, I'm sitting alone. Fair weather?

There is one person in particular that really irks me. She lives two doors away and was a pretty close friend until this past year. My DH and I hung out with her and her DH & kids and whoever (i.e. their visiting family members) for years. We were literally in & out of their house like it was ours. When I was pregnant, they were the FIRST TO KNOW. YES, they knew before family or anyone else. That's how close we were. Throughout the pregnancy, they were so supportive. They were going to be there for us and we could count on them.

Wrong.

Right after our son arrived, things changed. There was no major incident and nothing in our friendship changed. They just literally disappeared.

We used to go out every weekend for dinner or order in dinner. No more of that.

They knew our son was super colicky and I was in rough shape both physicallly and emotionally. This was their big signal to HELP!!!

Since then, things have not changed. Over the past 18 months (where does time go?!), they have been distant.

I finally talked to her and said that we missed hanging out with them, weren't sure why things had changed, asked if we did anything to offend them (hey, I know in the midst of colic, you can be grumpy!) and asked if we could hang out sometime. She gave a canned answer (I swear she had it recorded on a chip in her brain) that "for many reasons, it's difficult to hang out/have dinner on weekends". I tried to gently ask what that meant/if they were going through something and got nowhere. I said very diplomatically/in a polite fashion that it had been a rough year and a bit and we really needed them and they weren't there for us.

I even mentioned that when my DH's father died this past spring, they ditched that. They didn't show up to any viewings or the funeral and they sent an EMAIL to express their condolences. Really?! They live TWO DOORS AWAY!!! When I mentioned this (in a very polite, inquisitive manner of course), she rolled her eyes and said the viewings/funeral were an hour away, where my DH grew up. OMG, an HOUR. YOU POOR WOMAN. An hour makes respect go out the window. My DH was so incredibly hurt that our supposed friends couldn't take the time to show respect and support for him when his father (also his best friend) passed away. He looked around the funeral home and the church for them and I could see the hurt in his eyes. I can't tell you how furious I still am inside with them for this. Both of their parents live a plane ride away and my husband and I always said we would be there for them when the time came, no question. Yeah. Maybe now there is a huge question there.

It's funny, people who haven't lost parents don't get how important it is to attend viewings or funerals. It is really important. As the grieving person, you remember who took time out of their precious lives to show respect and support. I actually cut off contact with an old friend (who I've known since we were 14) after she pulled a stunt re: my mother's funeral. It was the last straw and that was it for her. Trust me, it wasn't an easy decision but she had finally pushed my last button.

So back to my original topic of this post: friends letting you down when you need them the most. The person I described above was the star of this show. She lived two doors away from me, knew I was having a hard time and didn't lift a finger to help or support. Christ, I would have died somedays to have her come over while her kids were at school (she stays home) to give me 30 minutes for a shower or a nap.

I had many others who ran for their lives. It was a similar show with my mother. Do you know how much I would have appreciated if a friend would have visited my mother with me at her nursing home instead of me always going there alone (yes, this includes my DH who avoided the place like the plague). I know nursing homes aren't the greatest places so that's why friends need you to join them, even now and then!

As for my colicky son, there were others who offered to help but really, it just wasn't the best logistically. I didn't want to put people out of their way.

But for those who were handy and ran for the hills....YES I HAD A HARD TIME WITH MY MOM AND A HARD YEAR WITH THE COLICKY BABY and that's when I needed you the most.

Two people that I have to give thanks to are my siblings. Yes, I can't believe I'm typing that myself. The two of them (separately, let's not get crazy) have been very supportive over the past 18 months. Any stupidity has been put aside as they have fallen in love with my wild son and have given support whenever they could.

I feel better now that I've posted this, even though the people I'm really talking about won't even read this because I don't publicize this blog with many people. It's my place to vent and just say what I want to without excuses or arguments. Yes, I've tried openly and gently telling these friends that I needed them but they were always too busy or whatever. It's been bugging the crap out of me and I'm sure it is a similar situation for many people out there.

If you have friends in need, BE THERE FOR THEM because they need you and one day, you might WILL need them.