I’ve never been the type of person to surround myself with a large group of friends. I have one or two friends and consider the rest acquaintances (some closer than others, but acquaintances nonetheless). Back in first grade, my friend was a horse enthusiast like myself, but the difference between her and me was that she had horses. Our play dates and sleepovers consisted of running out to the paddock, finding an unassuming horse, tie a lead to it’s halter and jump on. She was better riding bareback than I was, so I took many a tumble, but it was fun and I didn’t get hurt too badly. We stayed friends for a few years, then we were separated into different classes, which ended our friendship run.
Then I joined Brownies (the precursor to Girl Scouts). I met a girl from another school and found out that she lived right down the road from me. We hit it off instantly. She was outgoing, loud, bratty- the total opposite of me, but I admired her for her outspokenness and disregard for other’s opinions about her. She was a rebel and I followed her lead. She was the one to get me started in skateboarding. We would spend hours rolling around on our little banana boards in her parents’ garage listening to Good Charlotte and Avril Lavigne thinking we were punk princess that ruled the world. Then we started middle school. Even though we started sharing a school, she had her set of school friends and I had mine, and we just grew apart. It happens.
Once in middle school, I started band and made a new friend. She was a clarinet player that was the top of her section and I was a flutist at the top of mine, so we ended up sitting next to each other, and eventually became inseparable. She too, had horses, and liked to skateboard; perfect friend material. We were more similarly matched in personality types: a little shy, witty, dirty minded. We grew up going to the same elementary school and even had a few primary school classes together, so we knew each other prior. But once we ‘found’ each other, others be damned. We started high school as besties, but then she quit band and started hanging around with a questionable group, and we went our separate ways.
Then I found her: my match; my sister-from-another-mister; my confidant; my true BFF. She was also in band, but she played trumpet. The brass section and woodwind section were often times separated, so we never were able to ‘hang out’ until high school. We had band together, PE together, we ate lunch together, we shared the same interest in volleyball (I played, she managed the team), she even rode horses (see a common denominator…?). We were the best of friends, but even the bestest of friends get into fights every now and then…
We went to Disney World with our band and played at EPCOT (an amazing life experience!), and while we were there, we got in our first real fight. In her mind, I was spending too much time with some guy in our group instead of her and she didn’t like it, so instead of talking to me about it, she decided to threaten me with telling Boyfriend that I was spending time with a guy, essentially getting me in trouble, insinuating that I was cheating. I blatantly laughed in her face because the other guy was gay and I found her threats childish. We made up on the bus ride back home, when I asked her for a tampon.
When it was time for college, she went away to a university that was in the next town over, so we were able to spend weekends together and take trips together during breaks. I eventually followed her lead once I finished with community college and started attending the same university as her, sharing the same major even.
I decided that it was time that I moved out of my parents and get a place closer to school and work, but my bestie had already signed up to live on campus the following year, so I reached out to a friend who accepted my offer. Once I introduced the two of them, that was it; we quickly became close and called ourselves the Three Amigas (the knockoff Charlie’s Angels if you will). We would talk about boys, go on adventures, get into [minor] trouble; typical things girls do together (sans the pillow fights). We would even whisk off to the roommate’s parents’ beach house that was about an hour away on the weekends where we would get drunk, eat junk food, stay up late, crash parties …we were cool.
Then, things started getting rocky between me and the roommate. We had an arrangement that I would pay her my half of rent each month and she would make one rent payment (required). It worked for the first few months, but then I started getting calls from the leasing office addressing the fact that rent was late. I was always prompt with my half of rent, making sure she had plenty of time to deposit, cash out, exchange, do whatever she had to do with it and get it submitted by the time it was due. It became very evident how irresponsible she was when it came to finances when she admitted that she spent my half on other ‘necessities’ and couldn’t make the full payment ‘just yet’. On several occasions, I had to cover both our asses and make the full payment and have her pay me back when possible.
Oh… but it gets worse… just wait…
I obviously became irritated at the lack of smarts I had to put up with from my roommate, so I would confide in my BFF, and blow off some steam. Her responses were always the same: ‘She’s doing her best. Cut her some slack.’ WHEN IT COMES TO MY CREDIT SCORE AND MY MONEY, I WILL NOT CUT A SINGLE FUCKING PERSON ANY SLACK! PERIOD! We kind of butted heads on the subject, but it didn’t affect our friendship in the slightest. Then the roommate got pregnant by some guy (who was not her boyfriend of 4 years) with whom she had a drunken one-night-stand with during a weekend getaway (see what I mean…?). Luckily, we only had 3 months left of our lease and she was only a few weeks along, but when the time came to move out and clean the apartment, she decided that she was too pregnant and left me to do it all; even move her things out.
Safe to say that I cut her out of my life completely, but that put my bestie in an awkward position since she was friends with both of us still. The roommate eventually jumped states to be closer to her baby daddy, and didn’t keep any kind of contact with BFF, so things worked themselves out.
Then came college graduation. Since Boyfriend had started university 200 miles away, I had arranged a couple jobs in his new town along with a temporary place to stay until I was on my feet; all of which meant leaving my bestie. It was one of the hardest things I’ve had to do, but I kept telling myself that it was time to grow up; I couldn’t continue to live my life based on my proximity to her. I needed to spread my wings, so this little birdy took flight.
We called and texted, she came to visit a couple times, and when I went home, I made sure to arrange a rendezvous with her before heading back. We missed each other terribly, but we made it work (sound familiar…?). Then came the horrific break-up. She became close with Boyfriend through the years of me and him dating, and when I wouldn’t take him back, he decided to reach out to her first. He knew that if he could get to my BFF, I wouldn’t have half my support system (my mom being the other half).
I contacted her a couple days after the initial explosion and she admitted that Boyfriend had been in touch and told her what had happened, but she seemed distant; like she didn’t have time to discuss the ending of my 8 year relationship. I found it odd to say the least. I wasn’t able to pick up and head back home like the Ex did, so he was able to in a way, brainwash her with his take on our break-up, including the fabricated part of me having an affair with a married man.
Once I was able to sit down with her in person and tell her what happened, she had already made her mind up about the situation: I cheated on Boyfriend with a married man whose wife found out and left. There was no swaying her. We had been friends for going on 10 years and she was going to end our friendship based on lies that a vindictive ex had told her…? No. I wasn’t going to lose her like that.
A few months later, right around her birthday, I invited her and her new boyfriend down for an all-expense paid getaway for the weekend, which included a free place to stay (i.e. a guest room and private bathroom) and free tickets to a college football game and catered tailgate (well… free to them). Can’t get much better than that, right? They accepted. They showed up at the house; I met her new guy and they met my Fella. We all sat outside, drinking, smoking, having a great time exchanging stories, then they announced they were getting a hotel. Okay…
We reunited on game day and throughout the entire day: tailgate, game, dinner, they kept to them selves; having private conversations, whispering to one another. It was all a bit rude, but I figured, they were in a new relationship, they’re just being young and in love… Then the time came for them to head back home, and instead of grabbing lunch with me and my Fella, BFF told me they were meeting up with my Ex. After everything we did for them, that was how they were going to end it!? Not a ‘Thanks for the tickets and a great experience.’ Not a ‘I’m going to miss you.’ Not a ‘Looks like you’re doing well.’ No gratitude. No endearing sendoff message. I was livid. Who the hell does something like that!? Not a so-called best friend. That’s when I gave up. I haven’t seen or spoken to her in over a year (nor has she even made any effort to reach out), and it has taken all of that time to come to terms with it; I broke up with my boyfriend and lost my best friend.
So to end this slightly depressing post… if you’re in the market for a best friend… just kidding… at least, just a little bit. A girl really only needs her man and her momma, right??
*I didn’t forget about you, Katie. You have been the one constant companion I’ve had for many years, and I’m lucky to call you my friend. 🙂