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What do you do when your friend trivializes your problems?

This topic contains 4 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by  Suzanna 4 years, 5 months ago.

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  • #72564


    What do you do when your friend trivializes your problems? My BFF and I have been friends for 4 yrs, this relationship has been great. I was really suprised to find a friend like his one. Becasue I hadn’t had a close friendship since I got married 15 yrs ago.
    In Middle School-High School I had two bestfriends, our three some was the best. We complimented each other very well. If fact we are still friends when we get together once or twice a year but I live in another state and marriage really changed our relationships.
    So I was suprised to find such an amazing woman to be friends with,other gals never made it to this level, I seem to always compare them to my two school friendships. So anyway, the other night we had a girls night out-dinner and a movie. But I’ve been having marriage problems the last little while, the D word keeps popping up and we (my husband and I) are struggling. But I’ve chosen to keep these problems to myself.   But the other night when we went out it had been a particuarily hard day. The kids were acting up, my husband and I had a big fight, and I was just broken.
    When she came to pick me up, I’m sure she could tell I’d been crying, I reapplied my mascara in her car. But she didn’t say anything and I was trying to maintain and leave the problems at home so I didn’t say anything. I made it through dinner, we had met up with a large group of friends and I had to sit at a seperate table than my perferred friends. So dinner was a trial, but I tried to grin and bare it. Then we went to the movie, I cried through most of it, but it was dark so I was ok.  After the movie, my friend and I were driving to go get some desert and Hot Cocoa, and meet up with two other ladies from the group, and I just broke down. I told her all my worries about my marriage, my life, I cried,  I put it all out there.
    I haven’t ever gotten that gritty with this friend before, I thought our friendship was great, solid. Like I said I hadn’t had a friendship like this in 15yrs. Her reaction was not one I was prepared for. She said I should think about people who have real problems, like what if I had no legs, or no husband at all. I had nothing to complain about, other people had real problems.  I felt terrible, I know there are people who have really terrible lives, sicknesses, death, abuse.
    But I turned to her for a listening ear, some validation, some support, all I got was ridicule. I’m not sure what to do now. We are in the same car pool, we goto the same church, she’s letting me hitch a 6 hr ride with her family, up to my parents for a weekend away in a week (this was planned before the discussion) she thinks I’m going up there to get my hair done by my sister and I am but I really need to get away and be by myself, I mean without the hubby and kids. (My family has no idea I am having marriage trouble either, they think I am coming for fun, which it will be but….and I’m definately not saying anything to them either.) Part of me wishes I could back out of this trip, but my sister is counting on me and I really really really need to have 4 days away.
     We’ve seen each other since the girls night out, I don’t think she realises she really hurt me. I know that I can NEVER share this kind of info with her again. I haven’t said anything about it, but I am angry and hurting inside. I feel really alone.
    I guess if I do get divorced I’ll have to do it on my own, this is scary and painful. I was hoping, if it comes to that to have a friend by my side. Hopefully we’ll work it out and things will be great with my hubby and I, we are trying.
    But what do I do with this friend, my closest friend?
     I guess I shared too much information.

  • #72721


    I’m sorry–this was really mean of her to say. She did trivialize your feelings. I would be tempted to talk to her about it. I know that would be hard, and hard for me to do.  Another thing I take exception to is saying that it would be worse to have no husband. I have never been married, and I don’t consider that to be a bad thing at all.

  • #72776



    In my opinion,  your friend does not understand what you are going through, as she has never experienced it herself.  So that is why she “pooh-poohed” your situation.  She is not intentionally being mean; she just doesn’t have a clue.   Unfortunately, not everyone is as sympathetic or understanding as we would like them to be.

    I think you should seek professional help because it will do you good to talk to someone about your marital problems and even your best friend.  You will not feel so alone, and it will take all this weight off your shoulders.


  • #72858


    Wow. Did you get any sort of validation from this “friend”?  Any ounce of sympathy?

    I totally understand why you feel hurt.  I’ve never been married but I lived with a man and I know how hard it is when things are going south.  A friend is (supposedly) someone you can talk to without fear of judgment or ridicule.  Someone you can trust and open up to.  If you are facing divorce, that is a BIG deal.  Many women go to their female friends to talk relationship stuff over.  In my life, I have benefitted tremendously from having female friends there for support during relationships problems.  Regarding a marriage in trouble,  there is a reason for that saying “divorce is worse than death”.  Especially when there are children involved.

    If you want to salvage the friendship, I would either tell her you have to talk to her or write her a note and explain why you were really hurt by her reaction.  Actually, talking in person is probably the best.  Be sure to say how much you care about her and value the friendship and use “I feel” statements rather than “you really hurt my feelings when you….”   If she is still not willing to see your side, then she is not a friend – or at least, she is not someone that I would want to be “friends” with.

    I agree it is best to also find a professional to talk to while you are going through this hard time in your marriage.  Good luck!



  • #72916


    I totally understand where you are coming from…I shared with a close friend some family issues, her reaction ended our 3 year friendship..I know myself well enough, that I would not be able to confide/trust this friend again, so I slowly distanced myself. To be honest, I never even contemplated should I or shouldn’t I…I didn’t talk to her about it, because there was nothing she could have said that would have explained her statements well enough that I could move forward in the same fashion.  If someone confides in me a painful situation or experience, I do not respond with indifference, even if the person regularly has a ‘crisis’, I just slowly spend less time…I do not send a message your problem is silly… Just my opinion, but most women have the maturity to recognize the pain marriage struggles cause,  and the fact that she basically tried to just minimize your situation just seems very insenstive..did her reaction sursprise you? had you seen this insensitivty before?


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