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A few days ago, Rachel and I got a message from a friend asking if she could come over and get some baby snuggles to help decompress from a60 hour work week. We had a busy weekend planned already, but we managed to find a time that would work for all of us. We were quite looking forward to it, and were pleased to have been able to find a time to visit. It was supposed to be this morning, before we headed in to church. 

Last night I texted to nail down a specific time, and got a response saying “oh I forgot to tell you, a friend is in town and invited me to breakfast. Can we do the afternoon or later this week instead?” 

Friends, I’m really pissed. I feel like this person doesn’t recognize or respect the difficulty of making social time when it involves the schedules of two mamas, a toddler and an infant. I feel like we were blown off for someone who is clearly a higher priority. And I’m just glad that we hadn’t told Darwin about the visit, because she is now at an age where she will remember that we were supposed to see this person and be disappointed when it falls through. 

To be fair, I have cancelled on this friend my share of the time, too. But I would never cancel on one friend just because another invited me to something else. That just feels so blatantly disrespectful and rude to me. It’s not the cancellation so much as the cancellation at the last minute for the purpose of seeing someone else that bothers me most. It doesn’t help that it was on the heels of someone else having canceled plans the day before, but that was because she wasn’t feeling well (and was not entirely unexpected, as she has chronic health problems that can make it hard for her to keep plans). It just sucks, especially because we have other friends who had asked for time together and we had to tell them no based on our busy schedule- but we would have had plenty of time to play if we had only known how many of our other plans were going to fall through anyway. 

So now I’m finding myself wanting to say something to my friend, to let her know that I see that behavior as unacceptable in a friendship. But I have no idea how to have that conversation. This is a close friend who is a big part of my children’s lives. I don’t want to shame or alienate her, but this feels like a fundamental issue of respect and I’m not interested in continuing to be treated this way, and I suspect I’ll just continue to be resentful if it doesn’t get addressed one way or another. I just don’t really know where to go from here. 

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5 Comments Add yours

  1. Molly says:

    I think you should wait until you’re a tad less feely about this and say something about how you felt cast aside by her when she did that. It was a lousy thing to do. I’m sure she just didn’t realize exactly what she was doing, but hopefully she’ll think more clearly the next time she’s in a similar situation. I’m sorry you’re bummed. And being bummed postpartum just intensifies everything!

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  2. Lemon Drop says:

    How frustrating. I agree with Molly that you should wait to raise any larger issues. In terms of the immediate response, I think it’s perfectly fair to say, “no, I’m sorry, that was our only open window for a while; let’s reconnect in a few weeks/when things settle down/when I’m able to think more than a day in advance” (basically, “you missed your window this week; we’ll try again another time”). I have other thoughts too, but they are of a “talking you off the ledge” nature so will only post them if you want to hear them. I am sorry you were treated with such disrespect and insensitivity. What she did sucks a lot; how she did it sucks more. I hope it gets resolved posthaste.

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  3. I’d be mad, too. I agree with the above posters about waiting a bit and love Lemon Drop’s comment. I think you could also work in a story about how it is hard to schedule things and how you want to have a life with friends as well as as a mom so when things don’t work out it is hard to not be hurt or sad about it. I’m guessing that is somewhat true and maybe it will send the message along.

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  4. sofhearts says:

    I’m sorry that happened. When J was younger I got a similar blow-off from a friend and it hurt. I think people just don’t realize how difficult it is to organize stuff with a baby (or two kids!) and how crappy it feels to have someone pull out on you when your schedule is so circumscribed. Hope that you make peace with what happened, either by letting it go or talking with your friend about how it made you feel.

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  5. I’d be pretty upset about that too. My family and I are no consolation prize! i agree with Molly though about waiting for a time when it wont be a heated discussion but more of a ” hey, you really hurt my feelings last time and this is why.” No one can get mad at how you feel, but they can get mad about how you communicate that. I feel the same way as you though. my time is valuable and very scarce. 4 kids (3 under 2), a wife, house obligations, life obligations, full time jobs…there isn’t much time to futz around with!

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