When I received a Facebook message from my good friend with pictures of her in a gorgeous wedding dress, happily announcing that she and her boyfriend were married, I was simultaneously shocked and horrified. In my mind, there was no way she wouldn’t invite me to such an important life event as her wedding, let alone announce it to me after it had gone down. WTF?
Let’s just say the pictures were totally unnecessary.
I just didn’t get why she had to break the news by sending me pictures. We live in the same city and we see each other on a regular basis. In fact, we’ve never been out of touch for more than a week or so. It felt kinda tactless, deceitful, and awkward to spill the beans like that and just expect me to smile and congratulate her. The surprise pictures definitely seemed like mean girl behavior. If she wanted to share her joy with more friends, why didn’t she just invite us to her wedding?
When I asked her about it, she said it wasn’t a big deal, but it was.
When I asked her about the details, she insisted it was a very last minute thing, which it clearly wasn’t judging by the pictures of the elaborate dress and the celebration that followed. It wasn’t like she ran off to Vegas to elope. There were other guests there, which she described as “only a bunch of close friends.” No problem with that—I just thought I would be one in her bunch.
The whole thing kinda sparked a mini life crisis in me.
I live away from home, family, and everything familiar to me, so when this happened, I couldn’t help but feel suddenly completely alone and vulnerable. It felt like even though I had many acquaintances and always someone to hang out with, very few of those people counted as real friends. For a while, I was in a dark place, asking myself what’s the point in trying to meet new people when in the end they don’t consider me important enough to be there to share their life events.
I realized my friend’s behavior followed a particular pattern.
My friend was super sweet and always reached out to me when she was feeling sad, insecure, and lonely, but when life was good to her, she suddenly became a different person. Realizing this was a major wake-up call for me to protect my sanity from a clearly toxic friendship.
I value my friends a lot and that made things much harder.
I respect and look up to the people I call friends. I’m not perfect by any standards but I know that I’m kind, generous, and supportive. I was there for my friend on her toughest days, hearing out her problems and offering emotional support. That made it even harder for me to understand why she hid her upcoming wedding from me.
It made me confront my own issues and realize my own mistakes in friendships.
At the end of the day, my friend had the right to invite whoever she wanted to her wedding. That was one of her life’s biggest moments and it was her decision who to share it with. I respect this 100 percent, but it was a wake-up call that I was putting all my eggs in one friendship basket by sticking to a couple of people and not actively trying to make new friends. In that moment, it dawned on me that I just had to let new people in my life.
Despite everything, I decided not to burn bridges.
In the past I cut ties with friends over similar incidents and looking back, it wasn’t worth it. It wasn’t because I regretted it later but rather because cutting out people from my life wore me out emotionally. By doing so, I somehow gave them and their actions too much value and it only brought more drama, which I hate.
I still like my friend as a person and wish her all the best.
My friend is still the same person in my eyes. She isn’t perfect and she’s made mistakes, and so have I. But knowing exactly how much I have supported her throughout our friendship, I still feel really hurt that she could deliberately exclude a friend who really cared for her on her big day.
I forgave her, but to be perfectly honest, this isn’t something you can forget.
Even though life went on as normal after that, not inviting me to her wedding was a powerful message from her side. It wasn’t something that could be undone. It was a reminder for me to be less gullible and trusting with people in general and it became an important life lesson.
In case you’re wondering, I didn’t buy her a wedding present.
Even though we kept on friendly terms, I didn’t go as far as to buy her a wedding present. It’s a shame, too, because I like to splash out on my friends. I have excellent taste and she would have gotten something awesome… if I’d actually been invited.
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