Awkward Conversations and Loving-Kindness

I’ve been thinking a lot about my reaction to D’s pregnancy news and how I might respond to her if/when she ever called me as she promised she would.  One weekend passed.  Then another.  And another.

Today, one month after our last conversation, she called.  I answered before I even realized who was calling.  And immediately regretted it.

She asked me what I was up to.  I told her about planning our trip to Hubby’s home country.  She assumed we were going just for fun and that we’d have a good time.  I didn’t tell her that Hubby’s dad has cancer and that part of the reason we’re going is as a last-ditch effort to find Hubby a job.

She talked about her son’s school.  Tried to convince me that Hubby should look for a job at the university near her.  I’m pretty sure I responded rather bluntly, “If there was a job there in his field, he applied for it already and didn’t get it.”

She doesn’t get how hard any of this is for us.  She complained about her husband’s job being rough on their family because of transportation issues, not realizing that I would give anything for my husband to have a job, no matter how far I had to walk to get somewhere because he needed the car for work.

What bothers me the most is that she doesn’t just listen and empathize.  She offers unhelpful advice, which is not what I need right now.  I tried to tell her that the last time we talked, but, like I said, she doesn’t listen.

After our fairly brief conversation this evening, I read Justine’s post about vulnerability, about how we have to choose carefully who to share our vulnerabilities with.  D makes the list of people to avoid at #5.

Per Belle‘s recommendation (see comments), I’ve been reading Buddha’s Brain.  I’m trying to show compassion and loving-kindness toward D, but I’m not there yet.  I’m trying to remember that when she blurted out that she was two months pregnant after not even trying, it wasn’t to hurt me.  It was because she couldn’t help sharing her news with me.  But as the years of our friendship have slid past, I’ve been wanting to share less and less with her.

She didn’t mention it tonight, and I’m thankful for that.  I can’t bring myself to ask her about her pregnancy.  I don’t want to hear the details.  And by avoiding that subject, I’m showing loving-kindness toward myself.

7 thoughts on “Awkward Conversations and Loving-Kindness

  1. Ugh, I’m so sorry you have to deal with a friend like that while going through what you are. But it’s good that you’re putting yourself first right now. You deserve some self-TLC!

    • Thanks, friend. Although, I’d much rather get a massage than have to force my way through a conversation with D. That’s what I call TLC!

  2. Man, you’re better than me. I’d be ever-so-casually cutting her out of my life, as you definitely don’t need the added stress of a one-sided friendship. Good for you for sticking with it.

    • Ha! If I were hearing about this very thing happening to someone else, I would say drop her. Somehow, I can’t do that for myself.

  3. This is so tough. You are such a better woman than I. I wouldn’t have the patience or courage to deal with things the way you are. It’s really commendable, my dear. Thinking of you.

  4. I agree that showing compassion to others- even those who are selfish and thoughtless- is an important part of the path to finding peace, but showing compassion to yourself in a situation like this is equally important. Good for you for recognizing that you need to put yourself first right now.

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