- You notice them changing. Negatively. You don't know how to bring it up.
- You get worried about their reaction if you tell them about this.
- You do it anyway because you care, because you want them to change.
- So you tell them.
- They will get defensive. They will go into denial about whatever it is you just said.
- They will try to brush it off and pretend like they took it well.
- They will pretend, for a long time, that nothing changed between you guys.
- Then they will drift.
- The drift, mind you, will be very subtle and they will try to act like it was an unconscious thing. They'll ignore your texts as though they overlooked their phone notifications. They'll say "yeah yeah sure!" and "absolutely, I'd love to" or "definitely wouldn't miss it" to your proposed plans, and flake on you at the last minute as though the thought never occurred to them that they double-booked. They'll tell others that you guys stopped talking as though this is whole fallout was a mess of unfortunate misunderstandings and untimely miscommunication. And the best part? They'll tell an elaborate tale to everyone else, as though it wouldn't reach you.
- And that's how you lose them.
But here is also how you lose a best friend: You don't tell them. You keep it away because you don't want to be the bad cop.
Dear my ex-best friend.
You were the latter. You are the latter.
In many eyes, I lost you. But you need to know that you also lost me. Not immediately though. You lost me slowly. You lost me the night you decided to lie to me about holding my confidentiality--about one of the most sensitive aspects of my life. You lost me over lunch, during that camp when you left me to fend for myself in order to save yourself against the whispers. You lost me when you feigned nonchalance when I shared with you my concern about our relationship.
But still, I must thank you. Because of that betrayal, I was able to be a better friend, a better person. I know now what kind of a best friend I don't want to be. I know now that appreciation will never be overrated. I know now the amount of communication needed to grow a healthy relationship.
I'm sorry for whatever role it was I played in causing you to feel the way you did towards me--guarded, wary, annoyed. I'm sorry that the past years didn't go as well as it could, as it should. But more than that, I'm sorry that you lost us. I'm sorry, I am.
Every now and then I think about what I could have done differently. I think about those late night binge-watching sessions, weekends filled with the geekiest activities, rants littered with codenames of lovers lost and unrequited and enemies conquered or hurt. And I think of the promises and plans that will never be, and all I think about all the times that has slipped away.
And I just think: wow, it was that easy to lose a best friend.