How to help a friend whose feelings you’ve hurt

indithelady asks: 

I’m having an argument with my best friend right now, and I’m extremely confused.

Here’s how it all started.  My friend S has a crush on a celebrity on Instagram, and because this celebrity hasn’t actually become super-famous, he answers to DMs and comments from his fans. S showed me his Instagram profile, and because she was my best friend I thought it would be fun to fangirl him together. I followed him and since then I’ve been trying to DM him just for fun. He actually replied to all of them which was exciting. I showed the conversations to S and she pretended to quarrel with me about “stealing her lover,” and had a good laugh – you know like best friends do. It was just supposed to be a joke and she knew that. Now here are some things you should know about S and me. We are two completely different people. I’m more outgoing and I love to socialize, whereas S keeps to herself and is a bit of an introvert. but that was never a problem to me and she never mentioned that she had trouble with socializing. 4 days later the celebrity DM’ed me back a heart, and I sent a screenshot to Sara for a joke, as we’ve been doing for a while. Suddenly she cussed at me, which surprised me, but I thought it was part of the joke so just kept teasing her. The next morning when I woke up, she sent me a long paragraph about how I’m so clueless about everything, and she cussed at me a lot of times. I was upset and shocked but I still apologized because maybe I did do something wrong. She ignored me but I figured I would just give her some space. I couldn’t sleep until the next day so I checked her twitter, and she was tweeting and saying mean stuff about me. I was heartbroken because I don’t even understand why she’s so mad. 4 days ago we were having a good laugh and now she’s calling me names. I spent the whole day crying and trying to talk to her. I called her cell and she answered the first time, but when she realized it was me she hung up. I spam called her, because I felt the need to talk to her. I know I probably seemed rude and I’m sorry but I explained to her that we needed to talk. And I also wanted to know why she was saying all that stuff about me on Twitter, telling people another version of the story that made me seen like a bad person.  She’s bad mouthing me and other people are starting to look down on me, and I have no idea why she is doing this. I understand that she’s upset I kept DM’ing her celebrity crush but she was laughing with me. Why not just talk to me about how she felt instead of spreading nasty rumors about me. I get the feeling that she’s… kind of toxic. This is the biggest argument we’ve ever had because she’s blocked me on every social media and I have no way to reach her. It seems like she’s being irrational and its always me who has to apologize. She once said nasty things about me to my face, but I just ignored and forgave her. But now this small matter? and she’s blaming it all on me? I don’t understand. I want to fix this but I’m tired. I feel like she’s doing this on purpose just to lash out at me. What should I do?

Hi indithelady –

So I’ll admit, I would have been writing you back that I’m completely perplexed and have no idea what to do about this.  Except for one sentence in your letter: “I’m more outgoing and I love to socialize, whereas S keeps to herself and is a bit of an introvert.”  And that makes me think I know what’s going on.

You and S have been friends in real life.  There’s something not-quite-real about being fangirls to some celeb on Instagram, but your relationship is still the same.  And my guess is that S has always been jealous, and felt inferior, to you because of your outgoing nature.  (I talk to people about this all the time, that when humans become adults, it really doesn’t matter anymore whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert.  Lots of the most successful, admired, and desired people in the world are introverts!  But when you’re young, it matters, a lot.) 

I’m going to guess you’re in high school, where social popularity matters more than any other time in life.  So it was fun for her at first, when you joined with her in sending stuff to this guy.  But then, when he responded, and you were writing him when you weren’t with her, she felt betrayed, that you’d gone behind her back and, well, in a sense, stolen her boyfriend!

If I’m correct on this, you’ve done everything right so far, but she’s so hurt and upset that none of your message has gotten through.

But there is one thing you still can do, if you want.  Because this guy is so kind and interactive, while not too popular to hear you, I’m thinking you could write him and ask HIM to write her.  That you could explain just what happened, and how you’ve just been having fun for her sake, but she misinterpreted it all.  And ask if he can explain to her that there’s nothing between you, and that he just loves to play and flirt on Instagram, and, most importantly, that you, indithelady, were only doing this for her! 

Now maybe he wouldn’t be up for it; of course I have no idea.  But I sure know that if something like this happened with me (who also is friendly and interactive and not that big a celebrity!), I’d be honored to write her in a second and let her know what really matters (her real-life best friend) and what doesn’t so much (her virtual relationship with me).

Not to say I don’t matter, or that my relationships with my Pack members don’t matter!  Each one of you means loads to me!  But not as much as your relationships with your friends and family, or mine with mine.

Do you think it’s worth a shot?

Let me know!


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