August 1, 2011
There have been many things that have perplexed me since losing Toby but one of the most head scratching things has been the number of people who have come to me with THEIR problems and expected me to either be completely understanding or to, God bless them, actually help them. Now, I could almost understand this a few months after the death and I also understand that, as a friend, I should really be there for mine-but that’s not the way it happened. No, I had people doing this before the funeral even occurred. Bizarre.
I have a couple of theories on this. Maybe some people felt like I would be more understanding than most since I was going through something myself (never mind that it wasn’t even remotely similar). Or in some cases I think it might have been guilt. I know that sounds weird, but I recall that the night before the funeral someone wrote me an almost belligerent and forceful e-mail, telling me not to be angry that they couldn’t attend the funeral and then gave me a laundry list of reasons why. (Like I even cared at that point. Sorry, but I didn’t.) I had another friend who wrote me nearly every day after Toby’s death, badgering me about her problems at work, with her boss, with her family, etc. I don’t hear from her anymore. I guess I wasn’t helpful enough.
Now, it’s happening again. There’s a person whom I haven’t heard from in years who has recently started writing me again. They wrote (maybe) once after Toby died. I think. It wasn’t an actual e-mail, but just a post on my Facebook wall. Now, though, they are writing me on a daily basis, telling me all about their problems that they are currently going through. To be fair, it is a sticky situation but it’s very superficial to m e at this point and they’re badgering the hell out of me. And it’s one of those situations where they never ask how I am, how my family is doing, or even if the timing of the conversation is convenient. They just jump right in and start chatting and if I don’t reply within minutes then they start badgering me with other questions like “Is everything okay?” No, it’s not!
I know I haven’t been a great friend this past year. I know this because a) I feel it and b) people have said as much. But I’m not even remotely ready to deal with playing psychologist to someone. Even if I hadn’t been dealing with everything that’s happened this year, I have a newborn in the house and the few minutes that I get to sit down at the computer should be dedicated to work so that I can pay bills. I am actually resenting the time that I am spending trying to “fix” someone else when they certainly weren’t there to hold MY hand through any tough times.
Anyway, I know that’s not a general rant and I’ve probably garnered myself another Facebook block, but really…Really?