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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Dear Annie: Friendship lost is also opportunity

By Annie Lane Creators Syndicate

Dear Annie: While I have thought of writing to you many times, I have never done so until now. “Old Soul’s” story touched me very much – the one about being completely cut off from a friend. A few years ago, I had a very dear friend who shared everything. Then, out of the blue, she stopped having anything to do with me. I felt abandoned and alone. The worst part was that we attend the same church, so I saw her every week, but she would snub me and look the other way. It took me a while, but I finally got over it and moved on.

In the meantime, I made a bunch of new friends right there in the church who share many things with me, and we check up with each other and so forth. I found a bunch of REAL friends, instead of just one who held me back from making more. My suggestion to “Old Soul” is that she look at this as a blessing in disguise and a chance to move forward while making more and better friends. You will always have a spot in your heart for the old one, but let it be HER loss and not your grief.

I hope this makes sense and is a little helpful. – Gramma in SC

Dear Gramma in SC: Thank you for your letter. I hope it inspires others who are going through a tough time to know that you came out on the other end. Many readers wrote in to offer help to “Old Soul,” including the writer of the next letter.

Dear Annie: This is regarding “Old Soul’s” dilemma where the supposed “good friend” ended the friendship unexpectedly. I had the same thing happen to me. I had a friend who was much better off financially than I was, and she would call and ask me out to eat on almost a daily basis, or have my husband and I come to her house to have dinner with her and her husband. Her husband would share expensive cigars and drinks with my husband, and every time she invited me out to eat, I’d say I can’t afford it.

Her reply was the same, “I invited you; I didn’t ask you to pay.” I NEVER thought this was going to bite me one day, but that’s exactly what happened. I called her one day just to say hi and ask how things were going with her daughter. Her daughter is a drama queen who completely flies off the handle if something doesn’t go her way, and she had had a blowup a couple of days earlier. So when I called to check in, she completely exploded on me and told me I’m a user and that she’d gotten to the point that she dreaded seeing my number when her phone rang.

She said things I’d have never dreamed this person would say to me. I thought we were closer than even some sisters are. I was absolutely devastated and swore I’d NEVER trust another person. Just typing that now brings all the pain back. This was nine years ago, and it still feels like yesterday.

Eventually, I came to the realization that I was the one being used; this woman is a drama queen just like her daughter.

And about two years after that phone conversation, I met a woman at work who is so much like me; we hit it off immediately, and we’ve been very close friends ever since. We go on cruises together and have incredibly good times together. In fact, our next cruise is in just 12 days.

So, to “Old Soul,” consider this a learning experience. The person you thought was a good friend was not. She was just acting like a friend. Real friends don’t hurt someone who thinks they are good friends.

I know it’s hard – believe me, I know – but consider yourself lucky to be rid of a fake friend. Move on, and you will meet a real friend one day. I did, and I never thought I would. – Hard Lesson Learned

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