When Everyone Abandons You

A realization came to me in mid-December. Someone I was close to, had spoken to almost every day for a year and a half, began ignoring me. It was easy to notice. I stepped away from all social media not wanting to be reminded that I’m being ignored. Maybe I said something that bothered this person. I apologized the next day, but they never responded. The realization I had, no one outside of work contacted me for almost a week. No one. Apparently, this person was my only friend. I told a coworker my situation and they helped me put things in perspective.

I moved from depressed to angry. I didn’t know the situation, but I felt used. I’ve had enough people ditch me because I didn’t give them what they wanted anymore. This felt like the same thing. So, I sent a message three days after my apology message. I said, “Whenever you decide to speak to me again, we need to talk. Preferably in person.” They never responded. I went nearly a week, and no one contacted me outside of work. People asking for shifts covered or if I knew where something was, where did I last see it. No one asked how I was doing or if I wanted to make plans.

No one in the world wanted to spend time with me. At least that’s how it felt. I know there are people out there I can call or meet somewhere and have a good time. Why does it feel so hard to keep in touch? How does one person encompass so much of your life? If you’re thinking this was a relationship, it wasn’t. It almost moved in that direction a couple times, but nothing ever happened between us. I’m not sure if they liked the attention and that’s it, or if they themselves were confused about what roll they wanted me to play in their life; friend or romantic partner.

Regardless of what happened with this person, where is everyone else? What happened to all the people who said they cared about me? I claim part of the blame for not doing more to keep those people in my life. Everyone gets so busy, you have to schedule a month in advance just to go have breakfast with someone. Or they live in another city or state. When did the world become so disconnected? Why did I put so much time and effort into social media? Why can’t I make a connection with another human being?

What do I have after all this? I have work that pays the bills, I have my cats, and I have my writing. Everything else is just noise. I don’t want to meet strangers at a bar. I don’t want to use dating sites or apps. I want to feel important to someone. I see other people who bump into someone and hit it off. I see other people talk about hanging with the same person every week for several years. I see other people with less ambition but more fulfilled lives. Why doesn’t anyone stay? No one sticks around. 

My friend and I finally talked and cleared up a few things. Despite how I felt, they also were going through some personal things and feeling depressed. Though they said they weren’t ignoring me, I think this person was but it was nothing to end our friendship over. Regardless, it’s noticeable when they don’t speak to me.

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20 Replies to “When Everyone Abandons You”

  1. Hi James, thank you for your honest words. I think we live in difficult times. Social media can do a lot of damage. Many of us have taken the easy way instead of investing in real relationships; instead of talking straight and investing ourselves in authentic connection. It takes work and courage to be honest with people. You may have more than average, which I’ve found can also ‘scare’ people off. In my case I figure that’s for the best as it’s really authentic relationship I want and I don’t have the time or energy for anything less these days.

    It’s also true that many people are preoccupied with just trying to get by and maybe retreat because they don’t have the energy. Or because, again, it’s easier for some to veg out in front of a laptop than pick up the phone and talk, or meet up and go for a walk.

    Either way, it sounds like you have your head screwed on the right way my friend

    1. Sound advice! Also, I think as we’ve moved into social media encompassing our every interaction, many people lose their depth in the process. Many are no longer able to connect further than surface level, which leaves no room for empathy, self-sacrifice, and authenticity… that we all crave, and need.

  2. Social crap is hard stuff. Knowing she was depressed, however, helps me (an outsider). Living with a negative voice in one’s head, constantly telling one all sorts of lies, distorts any possible ‘reality.’ :/

  3. It is hard being in relationships, whether romantic or “just friends”. I have to say that, sadly, I am probably the friend that doesn’t reach out enough. I am naturally an introvert and my schizoaffective disorder only amplifies that tendency to isolate. Reading your post really made me think about that. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Reblogged this on Funny Health and commented:
    abandonment, anger, C-PTSD, CPTSD, depression, disconnected, Loneliness, mental health, mental illness, PTSD

  5. I hate it when that happens. Weirdly there are times in your life when everyone just seems to vanish from your life! No calls or texts or emails. Often it can happen when you need people most. It just leaves you feeling like a bit of a Ghost.

  6. This was an awesome post. Thank you for your honesty. I can completely relate to your words as I feel the same way. Before my mental illness diagnosis I had many friends. Now I have none. I am struggling with this right now as well. I hope your situation gets easier. Again thank you for your great writing.

  7. “i’ve had enough people ditch me, because I didn’t give them what they wanted anymore” this line got me. i’m struggling with something similar right now. I wish people were more honest, that they don’t just ghost out on you but instead tell you honestly what they really want and feel. It’s so upsetting to spend your time questioning what you did wrong.

  8. I struggle with the fact that if I didn’t continuously maintain all my friendships (ie arranging to meet people etc) then no-one else would. I could just stop contacting my friends and no-one would message me to see if I want to meet up sometime. It just wouldn’t happen. I find it depressing. Makes me feel like people just don’t really like me that much. However I still find myself compelled to maintain things because I really do enjoy social interactions (even though I suffer from social anxiety).
    A friend of mine currently seems to be completely ignoring me. Not sure why. It might be my imagination, or it might be not just me he’s avoiding. If I can fix something or if he has problems, I’ll hep.
    I’ve fallen out with a lot of people, usually because they want me to behave a certain way. Loads of different reasons: unexceptance of my panic attacks, wanting me to be friends with people I don’t like, not being happy that I am with a girl that they just want for sex. In the end, those people deserve to be dropped. If people can’t accept me as an individual, then why are they my friends?
    I’m rambling, and I’m not sure what point i’m trying to make. Maybe that it’s common to feel that way.
    For my part, social media is amazing. I can keep in touch with people and make arrangements pretty easily. I like it.

  9. This hits home. I have no friends outside of my home. I do not want to go anywhere. I want to be at home. My own family won’t ask how I’m doing. I used to reach out to them often until I realized it was always me who did the reaching. I finally stopped reaching.

  10. I wish I could give you a hug right now. The reason why people do this is what I can’t seem to understand. I went through similar to this and the truth is I’m still not over it. However, I’ve learned to appreciate myself, love myself and trust God that His plans for me will eventually come to pass☺. I do hope you also find your happiness too❤

  11. I saw this yesterday. I felt drawn to reading it, however, feared that if I did, I may be confronting my own questions that are similar to yours. So, here I am having read this and saying to my self – “Holy shit, this guy gets me”. Seriously, I deal with the same thing. Wondering where people are at. I feel that I am the one who has to reach out and initiate conversations. In fact, I messages a guy from a meeting I had started attending and he asked how come I have not been around. I thought, “How come you never messaged me or called me to ask what was going on?” I ended up responding back what I’ve been dealing with and the response, typical. “Oh sorry man, I’ll pray for you. Hope it works out.” Story of my life here. It’s a real struggle. Thank you for writing this and sharing this. Forced me to confront what I really was ignoring, the truth of how I’ve been feeling lately.

  12. Couldnt relate more. I believe this happens to teach us how to be happy with ourselves but it is the hardest thing for me. Humans need humans after all.

  13. That must have been hard considering you weren’t sure what was going through their head. Things always get better though, one day someone will come into your life who will make you feel like you have everything you need, there are so many people in the world, don’t feel like you’re not good enough because one person lets you down.

  14. Great read. I also feel alone and abandoned often lately. I’ve had friendships end abruptly and people vanish. I’ve been left confused and hurt. I’ve never had someone always stick around.

  15. I can relate to this. I can’t remember the last time someone reached out to me and asked if I was okay — to ask if we could get together. It seems I am always putting out the effort to talk or meet with family and friends. I don’t think people understand how much effort it takes to reach out to people when you are struggling with mental illness. I try my best to continue to reach out, particularly to those I know who are also struggling, but some days I remain isolated. Thanks for sharing. This post really hit home for me.

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