I've done something terrible and I didn't even realise it...
Something really horrible happened to me on the weekend.
I rang up a girl who was my best friend in high school. We were friends until I was around 27. I am 35 now. We always said we would remember each other's birthdays and we always did. Until one year she didn't call me. I just presumed that was the end of the friendship. I knew we were growing in different directions. She was more conservative and into business and money. I was more into acting, spirituality and was meeting lots of new people who were on a similar path. During one of our last meetings she said something to me about how she had described me to one of her work colleagues. This person had said about me 'What? No assets?'. The fact that she had brought this up made me think our values were very different. I definitely would have continued the friendship, I just assumed that because she didn't call me on my birthday, she didn't want to pursue the friendship anymore. (It's not that the birthday thing is a big deal to me, it was just because we said we would always do it, I took this as a signal from her that she didn't want to stay in contact.) So I didn't chase her. And once I changed mobile phones, I lost her number.
So I called her mother, whose number I remembered from my teenage years. I chatted a bit to her and then she gave me the number of my high school friend. She told me she had left the guy she was with and was now with someone else and that she had a little girl.
So I called my friend the next day. She was out and about and seemed very happy and what I perceived to be friendly. She said that she'd call me next week, but I got a call a couple of hours later. She said 'Queen Bean (!), sorry I appeared distant when I spoke to you on the phone before'. I said 'I didn't think you appeared distant at all. I mean you didn't seem rude or anything.' She said 'I am quite surprised that you called me after what happened at our last meeting?' I said 'What do you mean?' totally oblivious to any friction that had occurred. She said 'We were in a restaurant and I walked out'. I said 'Are you sure you were with me? I have no memory of you walking out of a restaurant.' She said 'Well, I didn't walk out, but I wanted to'. Then she said, 'In that restaurant, I told you that my father had cancer, and that you said he brought it about because he was an evil man'. I was totally blown away. If she had said 'I can't believe you took all your clothes off in the restaurant and ran down the street naked jumping on car bonnets and embarrassed me so much' I wouldn't have been more shocked. Dumbfounded is not a word I usually use, but that sums it up. I said 'I never called your father evil'. She said 'Yes, you did. You sat there in the restaurant and said that my father was an evil man. I couldn't believe it.' I said, 'I don't even believe in the concept of evil. I don't use the word evil. I didn't believe your father was evil. I would never say something like that'. She said, 'Well, maybe you didn't say he was evil, but you said that something about cancer being a disease that manifests from evil within'. I said once again 'I wouldn't use the word evil. That is not me. I didn't say that.'
So to cut a long story short, her interpretation of events is that she told me her father had cancer and that I said that her father was an evil man and brought the disease on himself. I was reading books like 'You Can Heal Your Life' and 'Your Body is a Barometer of Your Soul' at the time. I definitely didn't say her father was evil, or had evil within him. I must have talked about how disease states can be caused by an imbalance within. I probably talked to her about raw food too. The thing is, there was no malice intended. In retrospect, I should have hugged her, and not said anything. I suppose this was my way of trying to look at what things he could work on or implement to possibly heal him. He has since died. I feel so terrible. I apologised many times to her, definitely not saying that I had said what she perceived me to have said, but just for the fact that things had become so distorted. She has told me that she has gone and told other people about what a heartless b%&*$ I am, probably people I went to high school with.
I have tried to always treat people with respect and kindness and am so hurt that this happened. I have told friends who understand where I was coming from. They say that she just didn't understand what I was saying. It's obviously become bigger and bigger in her mind, as there were three things she told me that I questioned her on, and then she changed her story. I also called her mother to apologise, saying that my friend's interpretation of what I said was so far from my intention.
I told my friend (well ex-best friend I should say) that I was studying naturopathy now. I said that as a naturopath I would be dealing with people with cancer. I would never be so heartless to say what you tell me I have said. She said that was good, as I'd always wanted to study that, but that I should be more aware of people's feelings and emotions. I said that my uncle had died of cancer, that my Nanna has recently died. This is a real lesson for me to censor myself more than I already do. It is only people who are on a similar spiritual path that I will talk about this stuff to.
I told her that she is looking through the filter of her own belief system, that I definitely didn't intend to come across the way she thinks I did.
I feel so bad. I cannot stop thinking about it. I didn't even know if I could get out of bed this morning. I just wanted to go back to sleep and escape into the dream world.
I think I may have to get some kind of spiritual counselling to help deal with this.
I suppose the only positives about this are the fact that at least I called her to apologise. The fact that I called and chatted to her mother, the fact that I was oblivious to what had happened must show her at least that what I said wasn't done out of a conscious desire to hurt her or be nasty.
My life was going fantastically up until this point. At some level I wish I hadn't called her, I could go on living in ignorance of the hurt I caused. But, I've had this niggling feeling that I needed to call her all year. It was obviously to apologise. I am hoping at some level that she understands that my intention was not the way she perceived it to be. At least a little bit.
We won't contact each other again.
I hope this will be resolved at some spiritual level, that her Higher Self and my Higher Self will sort this out.
I also apologised to her father, who is no longer on this plane.
Last edited by Queen Bean; 09-04-2007 at 07:17 PM.
WOW! I can see that this really did bother you, but you know what? You've apologized, and now she must go on and deal with life. It sounds like she is the one who needs some spiritual counseling, not you. You can't undo what is done, so move on. You don't sound malicious, but she perceived it that way. Maybe she wasn't always there for him or had issues with him before he passed. We don't know this. Maybe this is just her way of grieving - lashing out to others. You handled it the right way. Be at peace with YOURself. You did good.
Thanks Veganforlife. Your words have helped me so much.
I agree 100%. As I was reading I don't see why you would feel bad when it was HER response, not yours. You can not be responsible for her feelings, her filter, her perception that was apparently wrong. You have appologized and there seems to be nothing more you can do. As VFL stated...move on. I deeply feel there is something on HER end not yours. She went around to others calling you vicious names that were uncalled for. She probably didn't applogize for that did she? Sorry, what I"m trying to say isn't coming out how I wanted it to...
Originally Posted by Veganforlife
~Dream For Life~
Incurable means curable within.
thank you dreamrawalwz. i could hardly eat yesterday. there was so much pain in me that it was physically palpable. that has gone down by about 50% just hearing your two replies. i have to keep reminding myself that whatever her interpretation, my intention has been distorted. and almost like a game of chinese whispers, has become so very different from what was originally said. i don't really appreciate my name being slandered though. but truth is truth. resolution to this probably won't happen in either of our lifetimes.
Many times when we dwell on a hurt, thats exactly what happens. We nurture it and it grows bigger. It is so much better to release it and forgive, because just as you stated, you weren't even aware of the hurt...yet she was obviously letting it play over and over in her head. I am convinced that you did not say that, and it sounds like you did what you could to correct the misunderstanding. Your concience should be clear. (((hugs))) I hope you can move on.
Beppa66. Thank you. I seriously felt your hug through space and time... I am hoping I can let go of this sooner rather than later. My mind is constantly thinking about it...but it's getting better. Yesterday was Father's Day, which didn't help. You are right. My conscience is clear. But I still caused her a lot of pain. She said this was the worse thing anybody has ever said to her. That is what I don't get. How misconstrued everything became.
You have no control over anothers perceptions of reality. I have a friend who has recently been diagnosed with mental disorders. Her reality is so off-base and she believes it to be reality, but it isn't. So I listen to her cry and try to sympathize. It IS real to her and so many things cause her pain, but my conscience is clear. Yours should be too. This may be her way of dealing with the death of a loved one ...and a friendship.
Don't let it get you down!
Hey, I totally feel you on this one. I've been in a similar situation. (Let me bore you with my story to help take your mind off of yours. Maybe you'll see how people under extreme stress react in harsh ways that aren't your fault).
I was at work when one of the very few other girls had an accident where she broke her back. I used to be an EMT, so when I came up on the scene and saw no one, I mean NO ONE helping her, I immediately jumped in. (Tons of guys standing around just staring!!!) I happened to be walking by, heard the seemingly non-urgent, lazy call for the medic over the walkie-talkie and was completely surprised by the very urgent situation I found. I also knew that the medic was stuck in a high-rise building with a shut-down elevator. So he was going to take a while. I went to work just taking care of the basics. She ended up breaking her back very severely, but made a full recovery over the year.
I ran into her a few times a long while later and she was a real jerk. I mean, I'd say hello and she'd keep walking or look at me like I had a foot growing out of my head or like she smelled dog crap. Found out through a mutual friend that she hates my guts (maybe because she associates me with the incident?). I mean she really hates me and will describe her feelings in great detail. I was completely shocked to find out she even thought about me, let alone took the time to find a reason to hate me. (BTW, I did not make any mistakes with her care, nor did the other people treating her, so that's not the source of her negative feelings.) I don't even care about this chic, but it really hurt my feelings to find out she hated me so passionately. I can only imagine how much your feelings are hurt concerning your friend.
Forgive the long-winded story, but my point is that people under extreme stress will react in the most unpredictable ways. Your friend heard what she wanted to hear when you explained your thoughts on her father's illness, because she was not in a normal state of mind. She may have felt helpless and victimized by her father's illness and therefore interpreted your statements as an attack instead of how you meant them.
You can only explain your intent and then let it go. With my situation, I was so embarrassed to find out her feelings, it was hard for me to let it go. On any other day I could have given two rips about that girl, but the explanation of her behavior towards me put a sick pit in my stomach. Just assure yourself you didn't do anything wrong and that you tried to correct the error and then you have to let it go. You did nothing wrong.
Last edited by pittypat12345; 09-02-2007 at 10:36 PM.
pittypat12345...wow...that is full on.
i found your story far from boring. her reaction is incredibly bizarre. i wonder how she justifies it to herself...
it is not a good feeling having someone hate or despise you.
i have been getting rawer and rawer (still transitioning)...on the day it happened i hadn't eaten anything cooked for a couple of days. i think i stayed reasonably calm throughout and let her say her piece. the amount of pain that washed through me afterwards was unbelievable. maybe there was a tie of negativity that was cut. maybe i wasn't ready until that point in my raw journey. maybe i am healing and things from the past are being resolved. maybe pain will be released from my cells at certain points in my journey...like a cellular detox.
i know that i had a sense of lightness afterwards...but this was soon to be followed by that throbbing pain. you said you felt sick to your stomach. i feel this pain in my heart. but hearing your story, and others is definitely helping me to let go of some of it. thanks pp12345.
Last edited by Queen Bean; 09-04-2007 at 07:47 PM.
Here's my 3 cents on it.
If someone is my BEST FRIEND... If I ever say anything that offends them, I want them to honor that friendship and tell me ASAP, at a time that is comfortable for them. Best friends is a term I dont take lightly, your supposed to be my partner in crime, and nothing should be off limits. Even if it's a BEST FRIEND from High School, there's a history there, a warm cushion of comfort, where two beings can openly communicate.
If not, I guaruntee you might have said things to her in the past that offended her, ( NOT INTENTIONALLY) and she swept it under the rug, and built up resentment towards you, until BAM the dam broke.
I would understand, if you INTENTIONALLY were saying things to hurt her,(trust me I have experience these energy vampires) but my god dear, your post shows compassion, and warmth for caring, so obviously this is not the case. It was not intentional, you didnt intend to hurt someone. But as stated, if she was your best friend, or you had a history, then the doors should have been opened for her to say, " Hey can I speak with you about something that you said that really bothered me, I respect our friendship, and I dont want it to effect it, and i dont want to build up resenment and eventually lose you for something silly in the future," But alas, Im a communicator, others arent, they bottle it up. If this wouldnt have ended the friendship, she sounds like the type, where something else would have, I say good riddance to these types. Let them fall away like leaves on the trees, as the winds of change cleanse you for the NEW seasons ahead.
Guilt,in my opinion is when someone does something ON PURPOSE TO HURT SOMEONE, and they acknowledge it. My dear, you are NOT GUILTY OF THIS OFFENSE IMO.
In a way your friend, obviously still held anger and boy she laid it on you, and imbedded in you as a PAYBACK and it's working. But your speaking on it, and the work you have done, is beginning the transmutation of the energy from dark to light. So hang in, you did nothing wrong. It was just one of those things. All for the learning I say.
Last edited by Davylp25; 09-03-2007 at 01:47 AM.
I have a mixed take on this. I can imagine her telling you that her father had cancer and you're talking about it coming from within and making her feel like it's her father's fault (whether its his fault or not) that it could've been prevented, and he got it because of something he did or didn't do. That would put anyone's defenses up. That wasn't what she wanted to hear at that time.
On the other hand, considering cancer usually IS something we did or didn't do, usually nutrition-wise (of course there are outside factors as well) a lot of the mainstream doesn't want to believe that. And most of them DONT believe that. Telling someone who doesn't want to take personal responsibility that something IS their fault usually doesn't go over well, whatever the subject matter.
I have a family member that is in a pretty constant state of stress and anxiety all the time. I've had several occassions when going back on a discussion or situation I'm literally floored, like mouth hanging open, with the regurgitation of the past event. It's all totally twisted and blown up...and not real. It took me awhile to realize it's NOT ME. Be at peace with yourself and TRUST that you did nothing wrong. You didn't!
I received this quote yesterday via email and I love it:
"Your burden is yours to carry; carry only yours and no-one else’s."
I'm so sorry this happened to you.
Everyone here has given you some very good advice and counseling.
I think it was a good lesson for you to maybe be SURE what you're saying is not going to put people on the defensive. Often, when people are in shock at the loss or upset in their lives, they really do not want to know WHY or WHAT or anything except, "Gosh, I'm sorry this is happening to you (or him or her) and I'll pray for you." Sounds like that's all she needed at the time. You thought you were being helpful, but she wasn't in the space to hear you.
The one thing that has helped me the most in life is to realize that you can NEVER change someone else... you can only change YOUR reaction to them.
So love her.. and pray for her healing, just like you are.
And don't beat up on yourself.
Your intentions were good.
Davylp25 - a beautiful post. I kick myself (figuratively speaking) for this happening. I destroyed a potentially wonderful, life-long friendship. But, then again, maybe that was the way it was meant to be. We are all learning, and we aren't going to resonate if our core belief system is so very different. I have to remember what you say about letting go of the past and embracing the future. My intention wasn't to hurt her. I can't feel guilt over something I didn't intend to do. Unfortunately things got lost in translation.
Codajess, I don't have a transcript of the conversation, and can't even remember it, but I do know that I wouldn't have said that it was his fault. I was reading a lot of books on spirituality (not religion) in the preceding ten years, plus I was interacting with people who were on a similar path, and maybe it became normal to talk in certain terms. Of course, I would censor myself to mainstream people, but I think I felt I needed to talk in spiritual terms to her at the time. I suppose I was hoping that his illness could be reversed and that I could communicate something to her that she could pass onto her father. I am very sure I talked about raw food as well. I can’t believe I was so insensitive that I didn’t pick up on the way she was feeling at the time. I have definitely learnt from this. I will approach things very differently in the future. I am usually a very tactful person. I can’t believe I wasn’t then.
Thanks Greenday. There’s objective truth and subjective truth. It is amazing how different both of our subjective truths on this issue are. Your family member, who has distorted ideas of what you say, must have beliefs that allow him/her to only perceive things in a certain light...kind of like a limited view of reality.
RowanC, I’m trying to not beat up on myself, but everything is reminding me of it. In time the pain will dull I hope. Yes, I should have just been there for her and listened. I suppose I always believe that someone’s life can be saved if changes are made on the physical, mental and spiritual level, so I thought I could help her. Unless in the instance that a soul chooses to die - if learning is complete on earth. Luckily I didn’t tell her that.
Last edited by Queen Bean; 09-04-2007 at 08:17 PM.