I had a dream last night that my husband and I ran into an old college friend of mine and his wife. It was a good dream. Lots of hugs. Lots of catching up. Me trying to convince them, yet again, to move to our town. Reality is starkly different, however.
The reality is over a year ago I realized that this college friend and his wife both “un-friended” me on Facebook. I suddenly realized that I wasn’t seeing them in my feed and then got that sick feeling in my stomach, wondering if I did something to offend them.
For the sake of the story, let’s call them “Zack and Zilpha.”
When you’re the only girl in your degree of choice, your only study partners are males. I welcomed, you have no idea how much I welcomed, when the girlfriends were around. Yes, I had a lot in common with the boys but only as it related to schoolwork. I had no hobbies in common and didn’t speak their language. I didn’t have sport stats in my head. I didn’t know which fish were bitin’ which times of year. I didn’t know what horsepower motor was in what car. …and I didn’t CARE to know those things. Still, I found myself surrounded by groups of males in my study time and sometimes in my free time as they were almost the only friends I had.
After college, Zack and Zilpha married and moved away. Zack and I would email once every couple of years or so just to catch up and see where the other was working and what projects they were working on and when Facebook bursted, I connected with both Zack and Zilpha.
Zack and Zilpha are an adorable couple. The pictures they share on Facebook exude love. Their children are adorable too. About five years ago when we took our children on their first extended road trip, we met Zack, Zilpha and their children for lunch. It was a good visit.
Zilpha and I exchanged messages once in a while, usually about religion or marriage. Deep stuff but not personal stuff… The meat and taters that I love to talk about but nothing too revealing and personal about our lives specifically.
And then one day, poof. On the day I realized this happened, I had called Zack at work first because I needed some information regarding a client. I left him a voicemail then I got on Facebook to see if his mobile phone number was listed. That’s when I realized I was unfriended… And by Zilpha too.
I sent Zack a message, via Facebook, asking if I did something to offend them. The message was read but never responded to.
My heart broke a little. To be honest, it bothers me when I know I’m not liked. It bothers me even more when I don’t know why I’m not liked. If there was something to fix, I would fix it but when people cut off communication, there’s nothing to fix. Additionally, if communication is cut off it must mean that the friendship didn’t mean as much to the other party as it did to me.
This wasn’t the first time I was un-friended, although it’s a lot easier when it happens on Facebook. The first time I was unfriended was in high school. There was a misunderstanding between me and another girl. Try as I might to make things right, I was cut off. I tried on a few occasions to repair the crack but just like with Zack, no response.
As I’ve gotten older I seem to deal with this much better. I’m confident in who I am as a person and know that the people in my life who REALLY know and love me would call me out on some wrong doing, if I didn’t beat them to the punch in apologizing in the first place. Thankfully that happens very rarely.
Also, I don’t have a huge periphery of friends. I have a couple very dear friends, a few more on the very small outside circle and the rest are all acquaintances. This doesn’t mean that I do not display my love to some acquaintances, it just means that friendships take a lot of effort to maintain and I only have time for a select few.
Anyway, if you’ve been un-friended and have no idea why know that you aren’t alone. A true friend would confront you if some wrong doing happened so you could hash it out. Don’t concern yourself with the “why’s” and don’t waste your time throwing balls that will never be thrown back. Your Father in heaven knows your heart. Let no un-friending issues keep you from sharing your love.