Enough is Enough, when is it?

I want to write about forgiveness, understanding and stubbornness. I had a friend who did something which in my opinion, crossed the line into the territory of grossly negligent to our friendship and was insulting and nasty at best. It was a very low blow indeed. I haven’t spoken to him since. Am I still angry and upset? No, not anymore but on principal, I just can’t bring myself to speak to him. He knows he was wrong and still refuses to apologize. He’s stubborn indeed.

On that, he is also a wonderful human being in all other regards. He is honest, loyal, fun and just truly a decent human being. I’d not have been friends with him and respected him if he wasn’t. If stubbornness is his one big fault any friend of his should be so lucky. Especially in a world where so many people are just so messed up in so many ways. That’s typically how I’ve felt about that. I always thought we would be friends for life. This is tragic for me because I truly do not wish to throw in the towel on a friendship that meant so much to me. He has contacted me so I assume he is interested in still being friends but absolutely refuses to apologize. I’ve ignored his attempts at contact. So its a stalemate with a friendship at stake.

At what point do I say “Enough is enough” and just give in or “Enough is Enough” and it’s time to move on? Is it really worth throwing away a friendship over? How do I determine if it is? We’ve gone through this before and once I’m no longer angry I ask myself “Will it really matter in a few weeks, year..so on? Does it really change anything?” If the answer to that is “no”, then I’ll give in because the friendship is worth more and I understand how stubborn he is. This time however, the answer to those questions is “yes, it does matter and it will matter”. This changed everything, the entire premise of our friendship will be changed forever, not necessarily because of his actions but because of his refusal to say 2 small words. “I’m sorry”. The premise of our friendship, going forward if I give in may not be something worth having and might be something I don’t want to be a part of.

Then I ask myself, “Why did this happen?”. The answer to that is, in part, because of my own behaviors and things I did, said and didn’t do or say. I have some part in “the why” as well. That certainly doesn’t mean I deserved it, but it means that I contributed to the cause of it, at least partially. Basically, I hadn’t behaved in a respectable manner and therefore, didn’t get the respect I thought I should have. What I perceived was just me being a good friend was NOT perceived by others in that same light. I cared about his happiness and went to great lengths to try to ensure he felt some happiness and joy in his life. This was actually perceived as essentially, me just being a non self respecting patsy. That was painful to learn.

The premise of our friendship was certainly due for an update but I’m not convinced that whatever new premise will be in place if I give in, is something that I can live with in the absence of a simple “I’m sorry”. I suppose I could give it a try and see before just making an assumption like that. True friendship, I’ve always believed should be for better / for worse. That you don’t give up on a friend. That when they’re down and out and at their worst, which he is and is his part in why it happened, is the time they need a friend the most, not the time to walk out on them altogether. There is also an obligation on the part of a friend to tell them when they’re really messing up and put it in check when lines are crossed. I never did that with him before. That’s also another aspect of my part in why it happened.

I’m personally extremely torn between wanting to be a good friend, making sure I put it in check when lines are crossed and clear the air. And my feeling that he burned me to badly and therefore he must go. I did get “paybacks” right after it happened, so to speak and that’s no good either. I said some extremely hurtful things to him. I told him that I was sorry for having said things in such a mean way. 2 wrongs don’t make a right. Perhaps that’s why he refuses to apologize. Maybe I should accept tit for tat and be done with it and just learn to recognize when the premise of a friendship isn’t what I think it is. Maybe I should learn to be a better friend to myself as well as a better friend to him by virtue of making sure he understands when he’s gone awry. Perhaps my not speaking to him for a month has done that. Since I haven’t spoken to him, I don’t know and don’t know how I would. That’s one of the problems of stalemates and stubbornness.

Feel free to leave comments. 🙂 Other people’s perspective would certainly be appreciated.

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~ by Deena Kay on 01/15/2010.

4 Responses to “Enough is Enough, when is it?”

  1. Wow, Deena! I am of the forgive and explain the new premise club. Not sure how others will feel but I would suggest giving him another chance.

  2. Thanks Nicki! I’m kind of leaning that way too. Part of the problem was me. There is a mutual friend and that friend and I talked a LOT about me and my behavior and what that tells people about me. It wasn’t something I wanted to convey to others, especially those I care about. I’m glad our mutual friend talked with me honestly about it. I can’t really expect to be treated one way when my actions indicate something else. Not that that excuses his bad behavior but.. well you know. He is a really wonderful person and like many others he’s just in a bad time in his life and has been for awhile. 🙂 I appreciate your comment!

  3. Just remember Deena, you decide how people will treat you – not them. If they know they can treat you poorly and get away with it, they will. You deserve respect. You deserve truth. You deserve compassion. Demand it.

    • I agree 100% and that would have to be part of any premise. I’m just not sure. The jury is still out. I guess in time things work themselves out for the best. If that means I never speak to him again or give it a shot and he isn’t capable of being a true friend and meeting me half way then I have to walk away from that. There is no other choice that can be made. I just want the stalemate to be over with, one way or another. I just wont compromise on my standards of good, decent, human conduct. He’s capable of being a decent and wondeful friend but in his worst state of depression, he really was awful, as was I even though I wasn’t depressed, just very angry. I keep thinking… one of us has to be the bigger person. I think that is me and time and trial and error will show me the right way to handle it. As with Nicki, I appreciate your feedback too! 🙂 People do indeed treat you the way you let them treat you. 🙂

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