Dear Diary

February 8, 2012

Breakups, breakthroughs, and breakdowns. And: babies having babies!

Dylan

My best friend from high school lives 20 minutes away from me, right across the Bay. I don’t really know what she’s up to over there, and I don’t care to speculate. We don’t hang out anymore. But she was on my mind a lot this week.

We met at a Lashes show when I was in eighth grade and she was in ninth, and we bonded over loving plastic fake-Chanel jewelry and record stores. Then we ended up going to the same all-girls high school and got really close really fast. We liked to stake out the art room and bring in our friend’s band’s CD to play over lunch to make all of our other friends jealous of our juvenile adventures in rock & roll land. We often wore matching outfits without meaning to. I loved having a buddy to share my crazy teenage exploits; I felt like I grew up with her by my side. In hindsight, though, it was more that I was always by hers. As the younger, less experienced one I often felt like more of a sidekick than an equal partner.

This is how it ended, the short story. It’s from my side, but she’s never offered me hers: I moved to Oakland this time last year, and for months leading up to the move we talked excitedly about our imminent reunion. My first weekend in town, we hung out, getting drunk at a show and going shopping in the afternoon, just like we used to do in high school. That weekend, she made a passing remark about not wanting me to encroach on her social circle—she said she wanted me to be able to make my own friends. Valid concern, I guess, but that’s usually not how it works when your best friend moves to your city.

Then she kind of disappeared, neglecting promises about visiting me at my new place, in my new life. I was so excited to show her. Yet she stopped returning my calls and never responded to any of my invitations. After two months of disregard I ran into her at a mutual friend’s concert. She was so high that we couldn’t even hold a conversation. I called her a week later and she didn’t pick up, so I left a pitifully tearful message asking her what I’d done wrong—what horrible thing had warranted a completely unexplained cold-turkey dumping a month after I moved 20 minutes away from her?? She texted me back, stating that she didn’t know why I was so angry, and that maybe if I could calm down we could work it out. She didn’t respond to anything from me after that, so I had to let things go. That was hard.

I knew that my expectations of best-friendship weren’t unusual or unfair, and I knew that I hadn’t done anything wrong except try to continue my relationship with my best friend. So for all of the days that have passed since then, I’ve had to accept the awful truth: my best friend didn’t want me anymore.

Breaking up with your best friend is something you never really expect, because it never really has to happen. When it happens the very month you move to her city, when you thought she’d be happy to have you there and you’d hang out all the time and share your lives and puppies and rainbows etc…that’s difficult shit to get over.

Now, since we’ve ceased to be friends, there’s a gap by my side where I’m used to having someone. I may be an independent thinker, doer, go-getter, in other parts of life (like school or work or feeling good about myself), but I really need a sidekick for my social life. Sure, I have a handful of friends here who go to parties and shows and galleries with me—in fact, they’re the most genuinely life-filled and sweet people I’ve ever, ever met—but they still don’t fill that gap. I need someone who wants to seek out the same sort of rock & roll adventure-land times that the ex-best-friend and I used to share. Without her, I feel like I’m floating in this new city without an anchor.

When we were going through high school together, we were eager teenagers navigating the nuances of a world older and more exciting than ours, as a joint effort. As a team. I miss that. ♦

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44 Comments

  • insteadofanelephant February 8th, 2012 7:07 PM

    at least katherine and i seem to be on a similar page today!

    XX
    instead of an elephant

  • Naomi February 8th, 2012 7:14 PM

    disclaimer disclaimer: anaheed’d contribution this week was significant because stuff like this is REALLY hard to write about so yey anaheed <3

    • Anaheed February 8th, 2012 7:17 PM

      <3 <3 <3

      • Dylan February 8th, 2012 8:20 PM

        disclaimer disclaimer: Anaheed is basically my therapist and maybe I should start paying her $125 an hour?

      • Anaheed February 8th, 2012 8:29 PM

        This is a GREAT idea.

      • Anaheed February 8th, 2012 8:30 PM

        I will also accept payment in pizza.

      • Dylan February 9th, 2012 12:42 PM

        Yesterday I was, not lying, about to follow up my original comment with “how about 125 pizzas/hour?” Gooood, you’re so predictable.

  • BridgetC February 8th, 2012 7:25 PM

    Hey Dylan, if you ever want to go to a concert or something in SF and don’t want to go alone, hit me up!

    https://twitter.com/#!/indigofiction

  • MissKnowItAll February 8th, 2012 7:26 PM

    Katherine, I laughed when I read the part about the mafia coming to speak at your school. My school is predominantly Chinese and so is the principal. Our graduation commencement speaker gave this whole speech on the virtues of going to school in China. At one point we were afraid that she was going to sell the school to china.

  • Marguerite February 8th, 2012 7:47 PM

    hehe Ruby! that really sucks! thankfully we don’t do that at my school! :P

  • Bean February 8th, 2012 7:59 PM

    I had one of those things. It sucked! It was the worst thing in the world. Except me and my best friend did it at the same time and we got bored and started snapping their heads back just for fun. Haha. But also, I just gotta say that those things are not like real babies at all. The great thing about real babies is that they’re living and you can tell easily what they need. Robots give no indications. Or atleast the ones we had didn’t. If there is a diaper issue, you smell it. Chances usually are that they’re hungry though. And then you change their diaper while they eat. I was a boss like that with my niece. Still am too.

  • nabilaLP February 8th, 2012 7:59 PM

    I feel you, Katherine. Different speakers come to my school every wednesday to ~enlighten~ us and stuff AND we have a devotion every single day and the principal will say stuff like “each and everyone of you ladies of grace will one day light up this world!”

    http://theeighthdwarf.blogspot.com/

  • Nomi February 8th, 2012 8:00 PM

    Dylan: I have had bad experiences with best friends. Every single time I’ve started considering someone my best friend, it ends badly. But the worst one by far was my eighth grade year. She was suffering from anorexia when I met her, and I tried to support her as much as I could. I cared about her so much. I encouraged her to eat. I tried to let her know I was there for her. She started recovering and made many friends–the same friends who were starting to turn against me. I got bullied online and offline. People wrote on her formspring anonymously telling her she should ditch me if she wanted to be popular. Eventually she did. By June, she had a ton of friends and I was struggling to make it through a day. She avoided me and now that I wasnt blindsided by our bestfriendship, I started to see that she was actually very insecure and fake, and even a backstabber at times simply because she was too weak-spined to go against the public opinion. We go to different high schools now but the memory of her hurts like a bad heartbreak. (Someone needs to write a platonic heartbreak song already!) The whole thing gave me a lot of trust issues and I try not to hold a grudge because she had gone through a lot of shit but it still hurt.
    Best friends require a lot of trust, and people have to be careful to put that trust in the right person. Personally, I’ve decided best friends are not for me. I have about five friends now that I consider my closest friends, and I try to spend equal time with all my various groups.

  • Nomi February 8th, 2012 8:06 PM

    Anyway, that last comment was mad long so I’ll address the other diarists in another comment…
    Naomi: Disorders suck. I don’t know what its like to have agoraphobia, but I have OCD and anxiety so I might have a little taste of what it must be like to go outside for you. As you probably know, theres no easy fix, it just requires hard work and willingness to improve. But fuck it, it would be nice to just be normal.
    Ruby: I HAVE ALWAYS WANTED TO DO THAT. I just hope that if I ever do get that assignment its an egg and not a robot! But I agree, people are really judgemental towards teen moms. I think you should check out “The Pregnancy Project”. It’s written by this girl who pretended to be pregnant for a social experiment and opened a lot of people’s eyes to prejudice.

  • Bean February 8th, 2012 8:12 PM

    Also, the best friend thing sucks. That boat is not an uncommon one for me. If I lose my current best friend like that though, it will be worse than anyone else. My other best friends were just friends but my current best friend is my boyfriend. And I don’t mean that in the stupid couple-y, doe-eyed way, I mean it genuinly. He is my best friend. My first best friend moved without telling me she was leaving, my second best friend got lost in a mix of her other best friend that she had replaced me with without telling me and now her boyfriend, my third best friend got too into what everyone thought of her, and my fourth best friend is still out there and I can talk as if a day hasn’t passed since the eighth grade but he lives far from me now and got lost in work for a while. But when we do see each other, nothing is different. So I ended up with my boyfriend as my best friend because he shares me stories, he gets my jokes, he treats me as his girlfriend, obviously, but he also treats me as a best friend. We’ll hang out with his friends and the only couple-y thing we do is hold hands or sit next to each other. Really, I think he’s the greatest ever and I hope he gets on here and ends up seeing this so he knows that I want the whole world to know.

  • stellar February 8th, 2012 8:31 PM

    when bad stuff happens in a relationship, it seems that either the nature of the relationship needs to be changed, or the person to have a relationship with does. it’s awful when u feel u can’t speak up about what isn’t working for u, and if only one person is wanting to work things out, it’s not really a relationship anymore. it takes more than one person to make a relationship; without real relating, there is no relationship.

  • Sugar February 8th, 2012 8:37 PM

    Ruby, if it helps, those fake babies are nothing like the real thing. Real babies are a heck of a lot more fun.

    Sidenote? When I was 17 ( I looked even younger) I had to go to the doctor for routine ultrasounds (I WAS NOT PREGNANT) and the women IN the office were horrible and I could hear them talking about me when I would wait for the doctor. These women are working in a doctors office and they are trash talking me for that?!? >> I digress…

  • queserasera February 8th, 2012 8:39 PM

    Dylan, I must confess I ditched friends a lot when I was in jr. high and elementary school. It’s part of a personality flaw, I guess, I get sick of people very easily. (maybe its a fear of commitments? lol) I’ve never been ditched but I ditch a lot. One day I would suddenly get bored with everything about them and just go and make new group of friends. I also get very frustrated when someone’s not into the same things as I am exactly when I’m into them. I forced myself to stop doing that when I got into high school because thanks to society’s cues and tv shows, I realized that’s socially unacceptable and I never considered the friend’s feelings. I’ve been such a shitty friend to so many people, I’m not proud of it, but I won’t deny it either. I just wanted to share from a different perspective. I’m sure your friend has her reasons, or maybe that’s her flaw, like mine. I hope you find another best friend.

    http://mercurialmanic.blogspot.com/

  • Juniper February 8th, 2012 8:56 PM

    I hate friend break-ups more than anything.

  • Maddy February 8th, 2012 9:21 PM

    That robot baby sounds really funny. People in my school carry them around if they’re in the childcare class. I like little kids because you can amuse them which is the thing you can’t with a robot. And about sickle-cell disease. That’s pretty weird, it’s way more common in blacks and you’d have to be a carrier too. I know you know that, but I just wanted to point it out. That would be funny if the robot babies were specifically sickle-cell…

  • espressoslut February 8th, 2012 9:45 PM

    Katherine, I go to a Christian high school in the South, too, and I think we have the same school life or something. At my school it is called Spiritual Emphasis Week; these things seem to be planned right around Valentine’s Day and in the depths of winter so it’s like HOW MUCH MORE UNBEARABLE CAN AN ASSEMBLY BE??!
    Anyway, I look forward to your diary every week. It is cool to know there are other Rookie girls dealing with the same bullshit. :)

  • A February 8th, 2012 9:48 PM

    yeah but you have to wonder why a teen wouldn’t terminate and what an illogical decision it is for most of them to become parents. theres a reason people judge teen parents: most of them are bad at it and can’t handle the responsibility.

    • Anaheed February 8th, 2012 9:50 PM

      Most of the teenage moms I’ve known have been good moms.

    • HelloAbby February 8th, 2012 11:19 PM

      I agree that young women and men should not seek to have children, but if it just happens there aren’t always a lot of options for them. Many people have moral and theological convictions against abortions. Abortion can often be very traumatic for the parents, even if they do not want the child.

      That being said, my sister had a child at 19, finished college, married the father, and has a reliable job. My niece is a smart polite girl, too. It all depends on the person and situation.

    • Runaway February 9th, 2012 3:16 PM

      My mom gave birth to my brother when she was 17. It’s true that when she was 20 she suffered from depression for a while…but in her case it was more about being a perfectionist than anything else. She just wanted to be a great mom, a great housekeeper and a great student at college…without any help at all. So no wonder she got depressed. In spite of everything, I’d say my brother has turned out even better than me…And I was born nearly ten years after that, when my mom was no longer depressed and was a grown up. So I wouldn’t say that teen moms are all bad and irresponsible. It really depends on the person. I’d say that my mom was way too responsible, that’s way she got depressed. I mean, I think it would be difficult for a grown up to juggle all the things she had to do…She just needed some SUPPORT, that was the problem, not her being irresponsible. And it was her the one who suffered; she managed to keep my brother away from all that pain.

      On the other hand, the sister of one of my best friends got pregnant at 19. She doesn’t pay too much attention to her studies, goes out every evening…My friend and their mom don’t know what to do anymore.

      So, yeah! Some teens can be awful at parenting, but others can also be really good at it. Just like it happens with older people. What is true is that they need extra support…and they can’t get it if people just automatically judge them and label them as bad parents. I won’t even dare to judge my friend’s sister; I’m not in her shoes. Who knows? Maybe she just needs some time to adjust to her responsibilities.

      • Runaway February 9th, 2012 3:39 PM

        Sorry! *I wouldn’t even dare…

    • Runaway February 9th, 2012 3:48 PM

      Also, it’s not that my mom wanted to be a teen mom, but abortion or adoption weren’t the answer for her. Once she knew she was pregnant, she had to have the baby. It’s not so easy and straightforward. Again, I wouldn’t judge anyone for having or not having an abortion.

  • Ira February 8th, 2012 11:14 PM

    Naomi that’s an amazing post and an amazing breakthrough and though you’re a complete stranger I’m excited for you and have my fingers crossed for what’s next!

  • A February 9th, 2012 12:06 AM

    we must live in very different places then, anaheed, because most teen parents i know live pretty tragic lives and can’t handle maternity. but of course, there are always exceptions.

    • Anaheed February 9th, 2012 12:15 AM

      I’ve known teenage parents in Detroit, Chicago, and New York. Many of them were girls in the juvenile detention center in Chicago and the “last resort” public high school in NYC. So their lives are not so cheery, in general. But the majority of them were good to their children, and some of them were GREAT.

  • A February 9th, 2012 12:07 AM

    *or paternity. ESPECIALLY paternity.

  • Susann February 9th, 2012 6:24 AM

    I went through a best friend break-up lately, too. Such a hard thing to do though.

    http://fashioninpepperland.blogspot.com

  • mayaautumn February 9th, 2012 7:16 AM

    I always find the Dear Diary posts really interesting! And I LOVE the collages to go with them xox

    http://cottonmixblog.blogspot.com

  • EnidEnvy February 9th, 2012 10:20 AM

    I don’t know… I have to say that if you go to a school that is hands on, cares, and tries to get kids involved, you got to go on a trip to Paris, and the boy you asked to a dance said yes, even though he doesn’t like dances (which means he must at the very least like you) and that all constitutes a sucky week… well, it sounds to me like you are taking a lot for granted and need to take a long hard look around you, because some people really are having a shitty week.

    try being grateful for what you have, because that sounds like a pretty good week.

  • EnidEnvy February 9th, 2012 10:29 AM

    Ruby: I also just hate the way teen moms get treated. I think high schools should employ doulas for pregnant students, so they have an advocate. They have it so rough. First of all, most of them are feeling scared and ashamed of what happened, the boy involved usually gets freaked out, kids at school stare and gossip, and when they tell their parents, they feel like they are in trouble. if they keep the baby, their whole life changes. they are forced into adult hood and miss out on so much. if they give the baby up or opt for an abortion, they live with the memory their whole lives. It is so hard, and instead of being rewarded for doing the best they can in the situation, they are frowned upon.

    my mother got pregnant with me when she was 16 years old. by the time she was 20, she had my brother. she was a young, single mother with a full time job, trying to juggle home and school, and she is AMAZING!!!! i certainly never would have been able to achieve all of the things that she did if i was in that position!

    Support teen moms, you guys. because they could really use it!

  • darksideoftherainbow February 9th, 2012 10:38 AM

    Ruby – “I mean, how dare I maybe have a child in HER city! All these teen mothers, getting pregnant on purpose, just to annoy her! How obnoxious!” KILLED ME. and i’m at work having a bad day so THANK YOU. i re-read it a couple time just for more laughing!

    that baby deal sounds TOUGH. i never had to do that thank goodness. i went to a Catholic high school where we had to plan our weddings hahaha. how insane. my class couldn’t do the project, though because our teacher was out due to a really bad and potentially fatal eye infection so we had an almost completely different curriculum that semester. even though my school had a rule that you had to have a boy as your prom date (it’s an all-girls school), they allowed girls who were against the “wedding project” to just write about wedding customs in a culture of their choice. i thought that was pretty nice especially considering how strict the school was.

    i love rookie diaries!

  • Thepunkrocker February 9th, 2012 7:00 PM

    Ruby, can you post a picture of the baby because I REALLY want to see it!

  • Kathryn February 9th, 2012 7:13 PM

    Katherine, my school had a Sadie Hawkins dance last weekend, and I also went with someone I didn’t really know!! I was lame and asked over Christmas break via text message. It was an awkward time.

  • Kristen February 9th, 2012 11:50 PM

    Katherine, have you ever read “Looking for Alaska”? IT SOUNDS LIKE YOU NEED TO CALL A MALE STRIPPER!

    • Ellie February 11th, 2012 2:19 AM

      OH MY GOSH, I *COMPLETELY* agree.

  • themallionaires February 10th, 2012 2:42 AM

    My school, an all-girl public* school, has an unspoken policy that pregnant students are asked to leave. If they choose not to leave, the principal and several teachers make it hell for them to continue.
    This is completely horrific and while it hasn’t happened in the time I’ve been attending, I was appalled to find that it still happened in this day and age.

    *Although it has been said that we’re a private school without the funding.

  • Dylan February 10th, 2012 3:30 AM

    Minna’s collage makes me hungry

  • Ellie February 11th, 2012 2:21 AM

    Katherine, I relate to you so much it’s WEIRD. In a nice way. You can keep being relate-able. Permission granted.