“Best of luck to you Theresa”
I’ve gotten that phrase a couple of times tonight. Neither were what I’d consider sincere. You see, tonight a friendship officially ended.
It unofficially ended a few weeks ago. That’s when my “friend” said something more condescending than anything I’ve heard in over 10 years.
In my 20’s I was In Relationships. Three, to be exact. One lasted four years, the next five years, and then a stint of a year and eight months. While the men were different, one thing was consistent: condescension. Them to me. Once I finally got out on my own I realized that the only person who can look down on me is me, and then I better have a damn good reason for it and I better know how to fix it. One thing I would never accept again was anybody else telling me I’m worth less than I know I am.
Over the next decade I moved to Chicago, started a hobby website that’s grown into a full-time (and more) business, and grown more confidence than a marathoner running a 5k. I’ve come into my own, you might say.
Part of that self-confidence includes a distinct sense of morality and right and wrong. Unless someone does something specifically to me I reserve judgement, keeping my own hearsay barometer. Instead of worrying about what other people think I treat them well until they treat me poorly.
That’s what happened with my “friend”. I’d heard over and over again that she wasn’t someone I should work with. People expressed surprise that I could still be associated with her and not be damaged. I told them I hadn’t experienced any of that and as far as I could tell she was a good person.
She asked for my help at an event she was hosting. I gave it to her. She asked me again and I gave it to her again. She asked me to get her into numerous events. After awhile it seemed like the only time she contacted me was when she wanted something.
Then I asked her for some contact information for something I’m planning a year from now. I’ve never asked her for anything, mind you. Yet she told me she felt taken advantage of because she’s done so much for me.
I responded with as much composure as I could muster. Mentioned that I actually helped her at her events. She said “this person and that person being there helped me, but I did you a favor.” What? I asked, making sure I heard her correctly. “this person and that person being there helped me, but I did you a favor.”
“I’m done with you.” Click.
Since then we haven’t interacted.
Until tonight, when she posted something inappropriate on my Facebook wall. I deleted it; she posted it again. I deleted it; she sent me a text message asking why I deleted it. Ended by “best of luck to you”. I explained my reason for removing it. She replied, ending again with “best of luck”. She removed me as a “friend” on Facebook.
Up until that point I honestly had wondered if we could reconcile. I’d see her Facebook and Twitter updates and think – “a person who believes that has got to be OK.” But those were just updates and not how she lives behind the curtain. Maybe it’s because my words are me. I choose them carefully, so it offends me greatly when someone uses words they don’t mean.
“Best of luck to you” from a friend or a loved one is a phrase meant to lift and convey goodwill. “Best of luck to you” from someone feeling less is a phrase that means less, and should therefore not be said. To say it under those circumstances cheapens it when it’s said to anyone else. When do you know it’s real?
And that makes me sad. I’ve heard her lambaste people in our social media world and then turn around and play nice. I’ve seen some of them do the same. My initial reaction is to pull away, but then I realize that I have a voice now and I can say