• Resolving Problems

Stroke and friendship

Published: April 28, 2016 | By | 3 Replies Continue Reading
A woman recovering from a stroke is “ghosted” by a friend who once was supportive.

QUESTION

Hi Irene,

I am recovering from a stroke and a good friend from thirty years ago has been a great support. One day we spent the morning together, and that afternoon he called over and over unloading all of his feelings for me and all his regrets.

He wanted to leave his girlfriend and come stay with me. He needed me to realize how he had always loved me. Now he won’t talk to me. I am worried and overwhelmed. I don’t know what to do.

Signed, Tara

ANSWER

HI Tara,

I’m sorry about your stroke and am glad to hear you are recovering. Good friends can be instrumental in helping someone recover after any serious illness.

You were fortunate that this friend was such a great support. He probably felt love and caring for you at the time he expressed it. However, if he was already involved with someone else, he may have been experiencing some ambivalence.

Like you, I‘m perplexed that he wouldn’t speak to you after that and simply ghosted you. I can only imagine how painful and disappointed you must feel.

There is an upside: He was there when you needed him. Now that you are recovering, you deserve someone who is loyal and dependable. If you do hear from him again, unless he has some reasonable explanation for the lapse, exercise some healthy skepticism about his character.

Hope this helps.

Best, Irene

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Category: Disappointing friends

Comments (3)

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  1. Maddie says:

    He regrets being so emotional and is pulling back. It’s very common.

  2. Amy F says:

    I’m glad you’re recovering from your stroke. I feel like we’re missing a lot of pieces in order to understand the situation more fully.
    You don’t say what your reaction to your friend was, and that may be a big piece of the puzzle. It sounds like your friend, needs some space. Give that to him and allow him to return to you on his own terms, then you get to decide whether you want to accept those terms.
    You also don’t mention if this has been going on for days, weeks or months.
    Often times people don’t have the healthy communication skills to say why they need space or if they want to end a relationship, so folks are left wondering WTF is going on. If he does come back, remember that he likely did not develop these skills in his absence. Trusting this won’t happen again seems risky, but a 30 year relationship of support and good experiences also earns someone a bit of understanding and consideration.

  3. Ben says:

    One of the hardest lessons in life is to see things as they are, not as we would wish them to be. The more we see them as they are the more peace we get. People do what people do. The truest friend that will never disappoint you is you. A true friend is just that, true. As painful as this is to go through your being saved further heart break down the road. Irene is right on to encourage you to be weary if he comes back. I had a so called “friend” act hostile toward me recently. I immediately deleted his number from my cell phone. I still cannot figure out why he was hostile but it’s up to me to erect an appropriate boundary. I am responsible for my own happiness and sense of well being. “Nobody can abuse me without my permission.” – Ghandi

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