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Friendship's End -- Writer's Poke #107

For Writers:

Jeff and I were friends for our year together in graduate school. I always thought he had a need to be loved, and as we were both aspiring writers, it made sense that we would be friends. I have a tendency to be sarcastic and mean-spirited, so I always liked to rub salt into his overly-sensitive wounds.

For the most part, though, I think we were pretty good friends for that year. When he moved back to his home state a few hundred miles away, I found a way to attend his wedding even though I was without a driver's licence, muddling through one of the lowest points of my life.

It would be another decade before I saw him again. In that time, he had started teaching, published a few books, and had his own life. Similarly, over that decade, I got married, started teaching, and had my own life; yet, we were friends once, so why not still? My closest friends go back to high school, and while we don't interact with each other much, there's always the sense that we're still connected.

This wasn't the case with Jeff, for whatever reason. There was a conference at his school, and I thought it would be a good opportunity to meet up. While he carved out a couple of hours so that we could reminisce about old times, once two hours was up, he kicked me out before I could overstay my welcome. Of course I understood. He had plans for the morning, and he couldn't be staying up all night with someone who had decided to check back into his life after a decade. Nevertheless, this hurt me. Over the next two years, I attempted to keep in semi-regular touch with Jeff, but he never reciprocated the effort.

So finally I had to admit it to myself. Whatever friendship we once had with each other had died in graduate school.

Think about a time you lost a friendship. What happened? How did it affect you? Have you ever purposely killed a friendship? If so, why?

"The only danger in Friendship is that it will end." -- Henry David Thoreau


  1. "someone THAT had decided..."? Surely you know, Doc, that WHO is the correct relative pronoun to be used with actual living beings. Leave THAT for everything else!! Best, Goober.

  2. Goober,

    Thanks for the catch. Maybe I used "that" because Jeff had made me feel dead inside?? :)

    Glad to have you as a member of the Writer's Poke editing squad!


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