Friday, December 26, 2008

what to say to a recent divorcee

I can let my friends know I'm there for them during times of mundane stresses, minor annoyances, and illnesses; however, I'm not really good at reaching out to people when they're going through major personal crises.

A friend who I've referred to as "Mandy" the workaholic in my old diary got married and separated in a matter of months. She's now in the process of obtaining a legal divorce. There was a time when me and her were pretty close. During my 3 months in chicago she got engaged and had a celebration without letting me know, I found out when I saw the pictures on facebook so I was upset and didn't even bother calling her to congratulate. I eventually got over it and sent her a facebook message letting her know that I was happy for her. While I was away in Jordan she got married and moved to a different state and I never spoke to her.

I was shocked recently when my good friend Suzy (old diary reference) told me Mandy moved back with her family a few weeks ago and is getting a divorce. I felt bad as I thought about what she must be going through. I wanted to do something to show her I'm here if she needs me but I had no clue what or how to go about it; so I just let it be while my conscious gnawed at me for being a lazy friend. Suzy on the other hand had no problem calling her up to confirm that the rumor was true and even asking her details about what happened. I could never ask for such details if the info wasn't volunteered to me, I'd feel like it was non of my business and that I'd come off as a gossiper, which is something Suzy is sometimes accused of. I have in fact gotten all my info from Suzy.

Suzy is having a small BBQ tomorrow in honor of my homecoming and Mandy will be there. It's weird to admit but I'm getting anxious about seeing her. I can't just pretend that we didn't used to be good friends and then stopped talking to each other and that she's not going through a shocking divoce (after like 4 months of marriage)......although that's really what I'd prefer to do.

I wouldn't even know where to start. "Hey nice to see you after so long oh and what are you doing home didn't you just get married?"

I can't play the dumb card, how fake is that!

"Hey are you feeling ok I heard about what happened and I'm soooo sorry"

How do I know that won't bother her? Maybe she doesn't wanto be reminded. Maybe she just wants to enjoy herself with the girls today..something that she probably hasn't done in a while.

"Hey you know I'm always here for you"

considering I haven't spoken to her long before she was married that would be a bullshit statement. I should probably have a talk to with Suzy beforehand.


Goofy Girl said...

I think it's important to acknowledge that you know about it, and to let her know if she ever needs an ear you're there. I wouldn't make it complicated or over excuse yourself, just keep it simple and direct. But I don't know the person, so it's hard to say too - but people get offended sometimes and things they shouldn't. Can't win em all.

Hamza said...

what's most important is that you don't show any signs of sadness on ur face. Act normal with: "hey, what's up?"
talk to her like you used to backin the days share with her some of ur funny stories of uni. ;)

asoom said...

goofy girl, thanks for the input! simple and direct is good advice, but hard to put into practice I always end up over talking in moments like these. Also she's the type of person that's very sensitive, she takes a lot of things personally that weren't meant to be criticisms so it's a slippery slope. Anyway she actually didn't endup coming

Hamza, yea I'll be good at talking about anything but her reality