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  • toxic friendship

    It's the middle of the night and i have to wake up at like 6:00 AM; but i cant sleep and i need to tell someone my story about how i had to leave an abusive friendship. (FYI, I'm going to ask my mom to take me to the therapist tomorrow, but shes sleeping right now so hey watcha gonna do)

    So it started in 2014. The only reason that i even remember that is because I met her around the time when the second FNaF game was coming out. I'm a homeschooled kid with Aspergers Syndrome, and I didn't have any friends that weren't on the internet at the time. My mom looked around for parents of kids who were also homeschoolers on the spectrum, and found the parent of the girl who we will call Sage because i don't know why dont ask me questions im telling my life story

    So I met sage at a red robin, and she was really nice. We talked about stuff we liked to do, had a bunch of laughs, ate some fro-yo, had a pretty decent time.
    We became fast friends, mostly because we had so much in common, but also partially because i was incredibly lonely and had lost all touch with my friends from public school.
    Everything was fine and dandy until the RPG Undertale was released. I don't know what happened, but something about this game just threw her off the edge. I feel like now is a good time to mention that Sage is asexual. So pretty much everyone on the internet during Late 2015 to 2016 knows about Undertale. If not, you probably know about a character named Sans. For some reason, the game developed a large fanbase of people who wanted to do... *ahem* less than decent things to the characters. And they expressed those desires through art.
    And boy, was that art all over the god-damn place.
    Like, "you couldn't step 5 feet onto the internet without seeing a skeleton with a big blue glowin' dongle attached to it's pelvis" all over the god-damn place.
    Now this part of Sage's past hadnt even been brought up that this point in the friendship. But apparently she went through this "trauma" when she was in public school. I'm guessing it was something like rape, because anything extremely sexual gives her panic attacks. I can only guess because she told me that she's never told anyone. Not even her parents. And obviously some random jack-off like me ain't gettin any info.
    As this skeleton-porn-frenzy grew worse and worse, so did her mental state.
    I had been a bit concerned about her mental state before, but I started to become terrified.
    Her mood would swing back and forth rapidly. She would post pictures on her Instagram that went from "ugh im so bad at everything and im so ugly" to "why am i good at so many things!!!"
    She became incredibly passive aggressive, and it's this that most likely caused my social anxiety to become what it is today.
    If people use the :/ emoji while talking to me, i become incredibly panicked and start asking what i did wrong. Just tonight I was talking to someone on tumblr about how there isnt enough art for a ship i like, and they said they would draw some. Instead of the normal response of "omg thank you!!", i responded with, "oh my god you dont have to i wasnt saying that you need to or anyone needs to i was just saying that-" yeah you get the point.
    And it's all her fault.
    She wrote a fanfiction based off of a LARP we had. As the story went on, it became clear that the characters were just real people (me being one of them) with their names switched. There were even chapters where she broke character and just vented about her family's money problems, and how, "everyones ignoring me ((" (fyi, it was at this point i came to the conclusion i wasn't being an a$$hole, she really was unstable.)
    It was becoming a chore to be friends with her. It wasn't good for my mental health. But I felt pressured to stay friends with her. I kept telling myself, "she has mental disorders _____, if you leave her, not only will you take away one of her only friends, but you're ableist for not comforting her every waking second and putting on a fake smile for her sake."
    "For her sake."
    "For her sake."
    "For her."
    That was all I could think off during Late 2015 and Early 2016. I was so caught up with her issues that I wasn't noticing the pain she was causing me.
    My reaction when someone used :/, my skyrocketing social anxiety, the mild depression i already had was getting worse and worse.
    "Remember _____, if you leave her, you're a bad person."
    She never told me that I had to stay, it was just what I took away from her implications.
    I'm also friends with a girl we're going to call Eli, and she was there during all of this. She was going through the same thing I was, but not as badly. After all, she only knew Sage through acquaintance.
    One day, it was just too much for me. I was supposed to go over to her house, but when my mom told me, I told her that I didn't want to go.
    I told her everything.
    She understood.
    And she had noticed.
    She told her mom that I was sick, and that I couldn't come.
    I stopped answering her texts, I unfollowed her on instagram.
    One night, in the group-chat between her, Eli, and I; I straight up told her I didn't want to be friends with her anymore.
    Most of my brain told me I was terrible for doing this. That she was probably going to kill herself.
    But the rest of my brain felt relieved.

    Fast foward to Late 2016.
    I joined a writers workshop made up of homeschoolers. It had been so long since I had talked to a large amount of people. I couldn't remember the last time i had had that much fun.
    I had to skip a few weeks though. Mainly due to travel and getting sick.
    And when I came back...
    Sage was there.
    I almost had a panic attack right there in the car.
    There didn't seem to be that many hard feelings. Sage had realized how unstable she was and decided to go get help.
    She still hasn't told anyone about the possible-rape situation though.
    I told her why I stopped talking to her, and she understood.
    Or at least, i thought so.
    She was writing a new story now. Something about a girl working for an empress and traveling dimensions.
    A part of the main character's story was that she had had a mental breakdown in the past, and everyone avoided her.
    Sage is not very tactful when writing what she knows.
    I swear to god, every time she tells me about this story, and brings up MC's past, it feels like shes being coldly passive agressive.
    Its like, "remember when you ditched me because I was ruining your mental health? You hurt me sooooo bad!! I cried myself to sleep for weeks! And it's all your fault!!!! "
    It feels like every worry that I decided was stupid was being proven right.
    I'm a bad person for leaving her.
    I hurt her so badly.
    I should have stayed.

    We're friends again, but it feels so bittersweet.
    I want to be her friend, we have so much in common, but it's wearing down on me emotionally. I want to leave, but I can't. I would hurt her even worse, and I would have no one.

    Please help me. This started off as me just getting this story off of my chest, but oh god im so lost.

    I'd be a bad person if I left. I don't know if she can take it. Her mental health is a bunch of popsicles held together with snot.
    My mom worries that she'll commit suicide, but I'm scared she's going to hurt somebody. Burn her house down. Something crazy like that.
    Whenever i have these thoughts, my brain tells me i'm ableist. Abusive. And basically, the scum of the earth.


    Please help me. I'm so lost.

  • #2
    In life sometimes difficult decisions need to be made for your own mental health. It would be a great thing if everyone had the ability to be friends and didn't get driven crazy by other people's issues, but that just isn't always possible. You have to make choices in your life that are going to make you happy and healthy. It doesn't make you abusive or scum and not being friends with her doesn't mean she's going to have an angry reaction to it. The pain and difficulty she brings to your life are mental and emotional. Let's pretend for a second that it was physical. That she hit you or bit you or caused you pain in some type of physical way. I think the decision to end the friendship would be a little easier for you. Avoiding mental and emotional pain is just as important as avoiding physical pain...some may even say more so because physical pain heals, but mental and emotional pain may stay around longer. Bottom line is this, you have to make choices that are good for you in life. Sometimes they may hurt other people (imagine if someone had feelings for you and you didn't feel the same way about them. If they asked you out, you would probably say no and it would hurt them, but it doesn't mean you did something wrong) unintentionally, but that doesn't mean you should be friends with someone just to avoid hurting them. Make the choices and do what you need to do for your own mental and emotional well being. Your friend may feel hurt by it, but she will also move on and develop new friendships with people that are more suitable for her.

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