DEAR KELLY: I had a birthday dinner at a pizza restaurant recently and invited 10 friends. I texted one of my friends during the dinner and asked if she wanted to come over after. She said sure.
Her next text to me said, “I know – this is lame. Boring. Wish we were somewhere else.” She accidentally sent it to me instead of someone else. The moment she saw it came to me, she immediately texted, “J/K lol.” I didn’t say anything back and at the end she left and didn’t ask to come over because I think she knew she was busted.
Later that night, she texted me. “We good?” I waited like an hour and wrote, “Nope.” She then asked why. When I said, “I think you know why,” she texted me and said sorry and she felt bad. I never replied and we haven’t texted since.
Things have been really awkward since. I don’t want to talk to her, but I also want to know who she was texting because I feel like someone else was saying my dinner was lame and I want to know who said it. But if I asked her I would have to talk to her, and I really done want to. I feel like people were talking about me behind my back and it really hurt my feelings and now I really don’t feel like I can trust anyone at my party.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to The Sacramento Bee
I thought everyone at the dinner was my friend. Obviously that’s not the case. What should I do?
DEAR BROOKE: What a bummer to have your birthday ruined by someone being inconsiderate and ungrateful. I hope you were able to enjoy your party after you saw that text and didn’t let it ruin the whole celebration. One person definitely doesn’t deserve that much power in your life.
The recovery process after sending the wrong text message to someone is hard. Like you experienced, getting your feelings hurt makes it hard to move on because you feel betrayed and angry. You did something nice (invite her to your party) and she didn’t appreciate being included. I’m sure she felt terrible (justifiably so) the moment she realized what she did and knew things were going to be uncomfortable with you.
Her attempt to cover it up didn’t work and she later apologized. It doesn’t feel like you felt the apology was sincere, though. Or this is a reoccurring theme with her? Whatever the reason, you need to decide how you want to move forward from here and how long you want to hold on to this and allow it to upset you.
By no means am I making an excuse for her mistake, but it was just that – a mistake. She said mean things about your party and you have a right to be hurt and angry. But if her apology is genuine and she’s been a good friend in the past, then you have to ask if this is worth letting go of a friend for?
Sometimes people say things just to agree with other people, even if its not the truth. Or they try to appear cool and pretend like they aren’t having fun. She was wrong for what she said, but if she’s been a good friend in the past, forgiveness should come before termination.
We all wish there was an unsend button on our phones. Lord knows we’ve all texted something and then thought, “Oh darn, why did I do that. I want to take it back.” But there are no take-backs after sending a text and there lies the problem. People do something in a moment and it has the ability to undue many months or years of being a good friend. Our cellphones are supposed to help us communicate with people, yet how often has it ended relationships or done the opposite? Social media has definitely created social problems.
Asking her who she was texting will not help the situation – it would do the opposite. Let that part go, it’s not worth the stress. Finding out who she was texting will only double the hurt and make it sting all over again.
Drop the mystery chase and just accept that someone there wasn’t being nice. It doesn’t serve you to answer the question who was on the other side of the text and it would only reopen the wound. Your goal is to heal, not re-hurt.
You can’t forget what happened but you can forgive if you decide to move on. Talk with her about what happened and allow her to truly apologize for how hurt you were. If she doesn’t take accountability or places the blame, accept that she wasn’t a good friend to begin and move on without her in your inner circle.
If she is genuinely sorry, be cautious with the friendship in the beginning but treat her the way you would want to be treated if you made a mistake. The reality is that people mess up, but that doesn’t mean the friendship is messed up forever.