I lost my best friend & I can't understand why its my fault

So let’s name my best friend J, J and I were quite close, she was the popular one but often felt lonely as she only had a few close friends she can trust (me), while I was the opposite. We will help and support each other in every aspect of our life, I will go to her for every one of my problems. Recently, I was in HUGE, HUGE trouble, and I thought she will be willing to help me like she always did so I thought it was okay to drag her into this, ask her for help for my problems. I warned her that she might get involved and she say she didn’t care and wanted to support me. Which I misunderstood, I thought she meant she was okay with being involved and testify for me for the trouble I was going through. But I didn’t bother to check with her because I was going though one of the worse period of my life, it was so bad I wanted to commit suicide multiple times. and I just didn’t want to care about what she thought. But I shouldn’t have dragged her into this, I guess I felt relieved J was willing to help me and maybe she felt burdened with her problems, I forgot J was her own person. Anyways then my father started harassing her through my phone. Because I got into trouble, they wanted information and stuff. So he will randomly take my phone without my permission and start threatening her (with death threats). Which J lied to protect me, which made him even angrier. So J then told her parents everything, said she wanted nothing to do with me and threatened to report my father for harassment. She said she will not interact with me till this thing (the trouble) was over (but it is not, and prob will not for quite some time). I mean she could have just not talk about that not leave me when I needed her the most. I understand why she had to be “selfish” for her own and she was afraid for herself too.

My perspective: I mean ya, I shouldn’t have dragged her into this but I misunderstood her, I wasn’t the one sending her death threats and they was nothing I could do. I don’t deserve to be hated by her so much and the consequences is unfairly too much. I didn’t do anything with the intention of causing harm to J.

Now it has been 1 and a half month and she did show some signs she wants me to make up and apologize (which i am not ready for yet, ill elaborate later). She would try and talk to me about work and sit beside me but I don’t know whether she really wants to or she is just asking about work. The thing about J is that she doesn’t care about like anything. If I aplogize she might forgive me but doesn’t care about being friends again or see me as too much trouble to be together. But I need to make up with her soon. As soon, my extra-curricular team will be electing & voting for new leadership positions that I am interested in and J has plenty of influence. I’m grateful that J did not tell anyone about the trouble I was going through though.

But I am not ready to make up with her, I have gotten PSTD from that incident and now every time I see her, I will instantly be overwhelmed and I will be triggered of what have happened in the past (because she was involved too) , my heart rate will increase, I will lose focus. and I will start crying. I myself can’t heal from my trauma even though its been more than a month, J expects me to mostly be over soon.
Btw please tell me like what I did wrong or her perspective in this matter cuz I don’t understand. What should I aplogize for? Btw she said she would only interact with me till this thing is over, which isn’t and prob won’t be for quite some time, should I lie to her and tell her it is since she isnlt involved anymore?

Dear Rachelle,

Thank you for sharing in great detail about what had happened between you and J. It sounds like both of you have gone through a terribly rough time recently and had a falling out with each other. Thankfully, the trouble you had sounds like it is somewhat better now for you (although it sounds like it is still ongoing?). Without knowing exactly what happened and also not knowing the people involved at all, whatever I am about to share is based off entirely on what has been shared in this post.

Let’s look at what J did for you as a friend:

  • Responded to your cry for help
  • Offered support
  • Lied to protect you
  • Put up with your father’s harassment for a period of time
  • Did not report your father despite his death threats
  • Kept what you confided in her under wraps
  • Reached out to you after 1.5 months or so (although you are unsure what her overtures mean)

She did this even though you admitted that:

  • You didn’t bother to check with her (about what she was comfortable doing)
  • Didn’t care what she thought
  • Forgot she was her own person

Looking at the above, it would appear that J is a pretty solid friend who probably bit off more than she could manage when your father started issuing her death threats. At that point, one wonders if her fight or flight might have kicked in and she did whatever she did out of self-preservation. Yes, she might not have been thinking about you only but then, you were not thinking of her too? Also, her parents might have advised her regarding her chosen course of action? Without having an open talk with her, it is hard for you to know what was truly happening on her side. If she was indeed your best friend, it may be worth having an open and candid conversation with each other when both of you are ready? Just a suggestion. Of course, only if both parties are willing and it is safe to do so.

To make up or not? Everything seems to hinge on this one question. Factors you listed which are against doing so are as follows:

  • You are not ready to reconcile with her
  • You feel like she abandoned you when you needed her most
  • You feel you have PTSD due to what happened (with her or the trouble?)
  • The matter is still ongoing

However, it seems that J’s popularity has some implications on your CCA leadership elections and if you are certain that J wants to make things up, you might then consider doing it (making up with her)? [I might be way off here so please correct me if I am wrong. Really just basing off what was posted but text is always prone to misinterpretation.] If so, might I suggest reaching out to her to work out what her intentions are, where does she want to go with your friendship, if the both of you still want to be friends and if so, where to go from here. That’s probably the easiest and fastest way to get the information you need to make a decision. Again, only when you are ready.

As to your question re: what to apologize for, perhaps that you forgot that she was her own person, that she also has needs and her own problems, and to check with her comfort level? And also, if you like, consider what it must have felt like for her receiving threats from your father? Could she also have expected you to protect her? Warn her? Perhaps you could extend some empathy to her for her scary experience. And while you feel that there was nothing you could do about what your father did, he is your father and you could consider apologizing for his behaviour which was wrong.

Hope this helps, Rachelle. Just offering my two-cents as requested. Please feel free to disregard it if it is way off the mark. Definitely written only with good intentions and positive thoughts.

Take care,