• Resolving Problems

Not speaking: Should I wish her a happy birthday?

Published: June 15, 2015 | By | 11 Replies Continue Reading
After two friends have a disagreement, one wonders if she should still send the other birthday greetings.



My former BFF and I have been quite close for 8 years now. We have had disagreements before.

This time, I had a fashion show approaching that she was going to attend. She even had me get her a ticket. The night before my show, while I was rehearsing out of town, she called me out the blue saying that someone had broken in her house.

Mind you, we hadn’t talked to each other weeks prior to this call. She tells me what happened, I tell her I’m rehearsing and she says she’ll call back after the police leave. She never called back. Soon after, she goes on Facebook venting saying that she doesn’t have any real friends..,real friends are always there when times get rough.

I assumed she was talking about me so I called her. She never answered. I sent her a text to see if she had an issue. She replied three days later with nothing much to say.

I have always been there for her. It just hurts that she looks at the one time I couldn’t be there for her and turns her back on me for that. Now she has new friends and I still have the friends I grew up with. We never speak. Never call each other. Her birthday is approaching and I wanted to know should I still wish her a happy birthday even though we’re not speaking.

Signed, Lindsay


Hi Lindsay,

Having your house broken into and having to deal with the police can be pretty unnerving.

This is what I think:

From your friend’s point of view, she felt close enough to reach out to your for support and got the impression you considered your rehearsal more important than consoling her during a real life emergency. She didn’t call back because she was hurt. Thinking back, would it have been possible for you to call her immediately after your rehearsal?

On the other hand, your friend should have told you how she felt directly rather than broadcasting her feelings on social media. When you confronted her directly, she probably felt a combination of anger coupled with embarrassment about what she had done.

You do have a long friendship and most relationships have their ups and downs. I see no reason why you can’t reach out to your former BFF with a birthday card to let her now that you are thinking of her on her special day.

But now that the dust has settled and everyone can think more clearly, if you want to resolve the hurt feelings that ensued from this disagreement, you’ll have to see if your former BFF wants to get together to have a heart-to-heart…perhaps, after her birthday.

Best, Irene

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Comments (11)

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  1. Digi. says:

    I am a guy. I have a female friend who I met 7 8 months ago. We got to know each other and got really close.. She is a very nice person but her one problem is she likes lying..I have caught so many times and when I confront her she gets angry n starts saying I am mean and rude etc. recently out of the blues she said I am an attention seeker and I make her plead me a lot and I judge a lot.. So I asked her when I judged her and when did I make her plead me etc.. She has no answer. So I said to her that u say I am mean, rude, attention seeker, judge a lot, want you to plead me etc then why don’t u stop talking to me.. She said “yeah same goes for you, why don’t you stop talking to me if you think I am a liar?” So I assumed she wants to call it a day and I said ok fine take car of yourself, all the best and was nice knowing you.. She said same to you. No convo after that..
    Her birthday is coming up and I am wondering if I should wish her or not?

    Your assistance will be highly appreciated

    Thank you

  2. secret says:

    way back 2013 the first time we had a misunderstanding we’re both not taling for 3mos with my bff ( now ex bff )But, I tried to greet her on her special day and give her a gift I went to her house and done all this. then,we ended up OK and back to normal… but late last year she started acting like different again and she left the country that we used to work. the last time i chatted on her last January this year until now we never had a chance to chat nor talk, though I tried on my part i sent messages in skype but she deleted me. Now, I AM THINKING DO I HAVE TO SEND HER A BIRTHDAY CARD ONCE AGAIN? BUT THE DIFFERENCE IS SHES AWAY NOW… THE ONLY THING I CAN DO IS TO SEND HER A GREETING CARD! ANY ADVISE DO I HAVE TO DO THIS ,AGAIN.

  3. Shon says:

    It seems to me she turned her back on you and now making you the bad guy. She has other friends and should’ve been understanding of what you had going on in your life. I would call prior to her birthday and see if she wants to make PEACE!

  4. Maddie says:

    I don’t see how the letter writer is at fault. She was out of town working. I’m sure she expressed her dismay at her friend’s news. Did her friend expect her to get on a plane?

    She contacted her and reached out. Not much more to do. Sending a birthday card is ok, but I think the friend is holding a misplaced grudge.

  5. DJ says:

    Yes what Irene said was spot on. I’d send her a card on her birthday. I’d also include a note saying that you felt you probably weren’t there for her when she had the break in and that you are sorry for this. Then offer you take her out for a coffee to get together and if she wishes it gives you both a chance to talk about it and then move on. Sometimes when we call or confront a person we have it prepared what we are going to say but the other person isn’t expecting it and thus may not be ready with the words. This way you are raising the issue but allowing her time to think about what to say. Good luck with hopefully resolving it and getting your friendship back.

  6. Dionne says:

    I would only send a birthday card if you’re sure you want to resume this friendship, and if you haven’t already contacted her more than a couple of times a row without getting a response.

    If you don’t want the friendship back, it doesn’t make any sense to reach out to her and in essence invite her back.

    And if you’ve already reached out a couple of times, with a time gap in between, then continued contacts can cross over into refusing to accept “no,” which is really harassment.

    Othewise, good luck!

  7. ruthie says:

    Oh how many times has this happened to me. ..? Too many.

    It sounds like a basic misunderstanding. At first neither did anything “wrong” per se.

    Then in her pain, first the trauma of having been broken into, then additionally, her perceived rejection of a close BFF… she did what so many others do… ‘vaguebooking’. I think is the term where no names are mentioned in a general poor-me rant on FB.

    Yes, by all means send her a birthday or any kind of card you think she’d like.

    I know you have already attempted to make amends via text but if you’re comfortable with it you might try once more… or not. I’ve done both.

    In your shoes, based on what’s been shared here, I would apologize for not calling her back later that night, say that I was overwhelmed with work & pressure, and if she’d like to talk about it with the goal of mending the friendship, that I’m all for it. If she does begin to open up just let her talk it out. I wouldn’t say much once she starts. She needs to get it out or she’ll remain wounded.

    Even if your friendship with her doesn’t return to its former depth & closeness, I think you’ll feel better (maybe?) & learn valuable lessons for future friendships.

    Just my 2 cents…worth what you paid 🙂

  8. lottie says:

    Hi Lindsay,
    Always remember that you can do someone a thousand good turns but the minute you are not able to be there for them they hold that one occasion against you.That is just a little saying of mine.Not related to what I write about.
    Regarding your problem I am in exactly the same position as you this coming August.Knowing my old friend from the age of 7 yrs I only found out last Autumn what a selfish person she is.She let me done and then acted like the innocent angel when I told her how upset I was.It was over something she had arranged then at the last minute made other arrangements with other friends excluding me . It still smarts,it was a filthy trick. I think it was fuelled by jealousy on her part.However she did reach out but at the same time was flippant as if my thoughts did not matter,saying how she never gave me a thought when I was excluded. I was gutted.When she then later rang me with some good news relating to her good fortune I asked what had made think of me. She was again flippant,because what she wanted to do was brag. I would never associated her with bragging,and believe me I have known her all my life.Jealousy played a part in her stupidly comparing her youngest daughters career with mine.So silly.I was asked to go back to my old job on my terms and it choked her to death.
    I sent her and her hubby birthday cards(the cheap type that don’t stand up) last year ,and then similar at Christmas.LOL .Now it is coming up to birthdays again.Silly me. The hurt does still smoulder on but not as bad.
    So in answer to your problem and mine (if you do not mind sharing your problem)I think I will send cards again but better quality and wish them well.I hope you do, and lets at a later date if you will post what the outcome was. Take care.Lottie

  9. Amy F says:

    You can never go wrong by being friendly and wishing ANYONE a happy birthday. Even former friends.

    If my friend had called when I was busy, I would have called her back even if she said she’d call me. I would have called her out of concern for her well being.

    When you called your friend about her Facebook post, assuming she meant you, were you kind and concerned that her feelings were hurt, or were you defensive, ready to tell her how and why she was wrong.

    You sound like you feel like a victim in the relationship and that’s not s good way to feel. While your feelings are valid, from your POV, they may be based on faulty or incomplete information.

    You might benefit from thinking about how she would tell the scenario and if you choose this exercise, think about it from her POV as valid, because to her, it’s every bid as real as what you’re thinking.

    Sometimes relationships are more important than who’s right and wrong. You need to decide whether your friendship is worth the imperfections in this particular relationship. Only you can figure that out.

    Good luck.

    • Pat K says:

      @ Amy F: I agree with you and would like to add that it seems to me that you do value your friendship with her otherwise you would not care. You are both hurting and all it takes is one little gesture to make things right.

      She may come around or she may not but you will at least know that you have done a good thing. The relationship may never return to its old glorious days but at least you can cherish the good memories and let go of one bad experience by taking the first step.

      Good luck whichever way you go.

  10. jacqueline says:

    Excellent advice, Irene!

    I would use her birthday as an opportunity to reach out to her. Send her an email or call her on her special day, and then tell her you would like to get together.

    Hope it all works out!

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