themighty logo

To the Friends Who Left When My Illnesses Became Too Much


On one hand, I get it. Who would want to deal with this? Who would want a friend that gives fatigued half-replies when you need them, is never able to meet up with you spontaneously and is too anxious or tired to have FaceTime or phone calls? Who would want a friendship as tiring and unfruitful as ours, especially when you have your own fights and battles occurring? If you don’t want to talk to me for a while to focus on your own issues, or just to unwind and be alone for a while, you are entirely valid and you don’t have to justify that to me.

On the other hand, some of you hurt me. You hurt me by leaving me when I needed you most. You hurt me by making me feel like my conditions are worse for you to witness than they are for me to live with every day of my life. You hurt me by making me feel alone, different and excluded when all I wanted was to feel included and just the same as everybody else.

Maybe I should specify; if you went about it in a negative way, you hurt me. To the friend who told me after six years that we were going in different directions in life because I couldn’t get a job, and that you never wanted to speak to me again because of that, you hurt me. Our friendship was never based on my employment and that should have never come into the equation. To the friend who told me I’m never around anymore and I’m no fun when I am, you hurt me. The day you told me I would never be loved if I “carried on like this,” I realized who you really were.

Ultimately however, I thank you.

I thank those of you who went about leaving with human decency, for being honest with yourself and with me, and for admitting that your own issues are the priority for you, as they should be. I thank you for taking time away from me to focus on yourself and work on your own health. I thank those of you who went about it in a negative way for revealing your true colors to me. Thank you for not wasting my time any longer. Thank you for not pretending anymore.

Finally, I thank those of you who never left. Those of you who are still here, watching the chaos of my life unfold and offering a helping hand, even if it’s just a quick “Hey, how are you doing?” I will be eternally grateful for those of you who try, as well as those who tried and couldn’t handle it. You all help me to feel a little more human while I go through things that make me feel so alone.

This story originally appeared on TokiTalk.

Getty image by Splendens.