Nancy, I'm sorry you're feeling so bad. I wish I knew the answer to your question, but I don't really have any friends at this stage in my life. There's one or two people I hear from once or twice a year, but that's it. When I was younger and had friends (twenties & thirties), I had some of the same problems you describe( especially in my early years). It seems like somebody was always getting mad at somebody else, or somebody's feelings were getting hurt all the time. I never knew if it was me or them.
When I'm friends with someone, I try very hard not to act like I should be "number 1" in their life, because I know there are always other people they're going to like more than me. I learned not to take offense at this, but just to take what friendship people were willing go give me. That said, occasionally, when I was younger and had friends, once and a while there would be someone who I felt was "smothering" me or requiring too much of my attention. It was hard to disentangle myself from them without hurting them.
There's a real art to friendship and it's very tricky - especially if you're dealing with people who have issues. I have "issues," so I'm not trying to slam anyone. I'm just trying to say that if you have a group of friends who are all secure within themselves, have good self-esteem, are cooperative and out for the greater good of others and aren't selfish or catty or petty or any of those things, then communication and getting along is not that hard.
But if you have a group of friends who aren't secure in themselves, don't have good self-esteem, etc. then problems are bound to pop up from time to time. I am extremely careful not to hurt anyone's feelings, but at times I have, and I didn't even realize I was doing it. I learned over the years, to put my ego and defensiveness aside, and try to see things from the other person's perspective.
I'm really not trying to "toot my own horn" but there are very few people out in the world who are willing to really examine themselves and their own motives and take responsibility and apologize when they are wrong. My husband says the only reason I can do this (when others in my family can't) is because I've had so much psychotherapy in and out of hospitals and I've had to examine myself so closely.
I doubt if anything I've said helps you, but I think it would be nice if you could talk to your friend that you've been estranged from to find out what went wrong. You could just send her a card that says something like, "I miss you and our friendship. I hope I didn't do anything to push you away or offend you, but if I did, I'm truly sorry. I would never intentionally hurt you and I wish we could be close again." I don't know if that would work - it's just a thought.
Good luck and hang in there!
PS - You know, going back and re-reading your post, I realized that you said SHE said hurtful things to you and was non-supportive, so my idea of an apology card is probably way off base
Edited by: MPN5621 at: 11/19/2012 (00:55)
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