The last few years I’ve been struggling to hold on to a friendship that brings me more grief than joy.
We invest in people – our time, our emotions, our loyalty. When it’s all thrown back in our faces, it’s hard to deal with that. To find grace in that kind of hurtful situation.
Last week, I ran into my friend and that meeting made me realize it is far past time to let go. This person, one I used to be very close to, has admittedly gone through any number of life-changing events in the last handful of years.
Unfortunately, my friend has weathered each situation by growing more bitter while delving deeper and deeper into a self-serving attitude. The combination of those two things, along with a recent bent to “be a better parent” (my friend’s words) by dumping the kids anywhere someone will take them so weekends are free for partying and running around, have created a person I can’t relate to and find hard to like.
I’d love to help my friend. To offer the support needed to help get things headed in the right direction. Each time I’ve tried, a door is firmly closed (sometimes slammed) in my face.
And it’s hard to stand on the other side of that door knowing my friend is a train wreck about to happen.
But after trying to help for so long, I’ve finally concluded I can’t help someone who doesn’t want to help themselves, no matter how much I want to. If the day should ever arrive when my friend is ready to open that door, I’ll be there.
For now, though, it’s time to let go and move on. To extend grace to my friend and grace to myself. Even though it is really, really hard.