Saturday, September 13, 2008

The B list, Part I

One of the hardest parts about planning our wedding has been evaluating my relationships with my friends and family. When I moved to Northern California I took advantage of my new school, new home and new life and let go of so many people and issues that were affecting me negatively. I took a "life is too short" attitude, and just let go.

Now that I stare at my preliminary guest list, I almost feel ashamed. Where are my friends?! How do I only have one friend from college that I want at our wedding (aka MOH)? How on earth did that happen? I was in a sorority, I lived with the same roommate for three years, I made lasting friendships. Didn't I?
Photo by Gene Higa, courtesy of Project Wedding

The truth is, I didn't. When I moved away from the hustle and bustle of the San Diego scene, I realized that about three quarters of my "sisters" and school mates were glorified drinking buddies. The roommate who I thought was my most cherished friend slowly slipped away. I realized that we had created a mutually dependent relationship, and now that we didn't "need" each other, there was less to talk about from eight hours away. After a few unreturned emails and a horribly painful spring break visit, I decided to end our friendship. I've never ended a friendship in my entire life. The saddest part is that it didn't take much effort. She attempted to apologize for her behavior during our visit via-text messages. And when I didn't respond, that was it.

I try to stay strong when anyone suddenly realizes, "hey, whatever happened to you and B? God you guys were such great friends! Will she be in your wedding?". I have to take a deep breath and respond with, "We haven't spoken in over a year. I've cut ties with her and it's been for the best".

My heart breaks a little everytime I say it. I try to believe that statement, but there are times when I miss her dearly. We spent almost every moment together for four years and it is extremely difficult to admit that somehow after all that time, after all the laughter and all the monumental events that took place, it all adds up to nothing.

I realize that most will think: just call her, if you feel this way-start the communication to rebuild, do something, get her back. So trust me when I say it is much more complicated. Add the typical money, family, trust, health and maturity issues that any relationship encounters and multiply it by 100. If I could ensure that I could get her on the phone, without those outside issues coming into play, I would give anything. But somehow they are always there lurking.

photo: Amelia Lyon
I don't want these feelings to interfere with how genuinely happy I am with the amazing women that I still call my girlfriends. Most of them have been there since 2nd grade, they know me better than anyone, and they also understand exactly what went wrong with me and B. One of the reasons that I cut ties with so many of my superfluous friends was that I always knew who my real, true friends were. The best part: they'll all be there.


  1. I lived with the same girls all through college and I chose all but one of them to be bridesmaids. I know it was really tough for her, and hurt her feelings a little bit, but the truth is we just aren't close. The only reason we were maintaining contact was because we were friends with the same friends. I wanted my wedding party to feel genuine, and when I wrote statements about my girls, or wrote them notes telling them why I loved them, I wanted to have something genuine to say.

    I'm happy to say that I didn't bow to the social pressure and that each and every one of the girls standing around me that day are the ones I plan on keeping in contact with for a long long time.

  2. I know this all too well. I've had to come to terms with my "relationships" with my Sisters...and in the end, I've only invited 2! One part glorified drinking body, one part close proximity...once you remove one or all of those factors, there's little left in the relationship... I'm glad to hear that I'm not the only one!!!

  3. Great post. Weddings bring a lot of these feelings up and it is difficult. I have ended a few friendships over the past few years - it's just part of growing up and moving on, I think.

  4. Wow!!! Thanks for the love! It's true and amazing to see the role that friends play in our lives. They just "get it".

  5. I love your honesty. You can always just say "we've lost touch" and leave it at that; most people probably won't press for details.
    I have not "ended" relationships, but slow realized that some friendships (while being great) were not as great as I thought. My former roommate, for example, and I were great friends, but it was always me pushing her to get together. I just decided it's not worth it to always initiate contact. Now we send the occassional email, but she didn't step up to communicate, and I certainly don't push her anymore. It does hurt, doesn't it? Good for you for putting yourself and your needs first!