(The Root) —
“My friend began to seem distracted when I called her, so I started to fall back. When I recently became engaged, I called her to share the good news and she gave a smug response: ‘Wow, I didn’t know it was that serious.’ Now I don’t even want to call her to share details. We used to be so close, but I feel so judged and defensive. Do I give her one more chance or just call this friendship quits?” –A.C.
If only people could respond the way we want them to all the time, right? It sounds as if your friend is going through something or there has been a rift in your friendship, from her perspective, that needs addressing. Her aloof response and catty reaction — everyone knows that the proper and immediate response to “I’m engaged!” should be “Congratulations!” — are probably not what you’re accustomed to hearing from her.
Do understand that not everyone around you is going to be happy about your engagement. It may have nothing to do with whether these folks think you’re making the right choice. Some people will want what you have and be frustrated that you’ve found what they have not just yet. For others, it will be a reminder of what they had that didn’t work. There’s a whole other group that thinks love and definitely marriage are for suckers.
I’m a big fan of Don Miguel Ruiz’s book The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom and suggest you become one, too. The Second Agreement is “Don’t take anything personally.” The idea is that what other people say and do is about them, not you. This means that maybe your friend is jealous or maybe she’s in a bad place and can’t muster up a standard response for you. Whatever the reason, don’t take it personally.
For the sake of your friendship, put aside your hurt and defensive feelings and get to the underlying problem that’s causing her to act this way. You may be surprised at what you find, and it may not have anything to do with you.
Tell her what you told me: She seemed distracted when you reached out, and you were expecting a more supportive reaction when you announced your engagement. Add that you value her friendship and are concerned that something is wrong. Hopefully this will lead to a conversation about what that is and you two can patch things up.
In the event that this rift isn’t mended and you two can’t reach a “Kumbaya” ending, it’s best to end the friendship, not just for your peace of mind but also for the sake of your forthcoming union.