Irreconcilable Differences?

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Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby highlandcow » Mon May 27, 2013 11:12 am

Hello all

This is a bit of an odd one. Me and my friend have been drifting apart over the last few months. I've moved in with my boyfriend and we now live in different parts of the city. She's got a 2 year old son so is busy with him, understandably, and in her spare time she likes to go rally driving and has even been abroad to follow this passion. All very well to have this sort of interest, but when I tried to join in it bored me to tears.

Since I moved 2 months ago, we've seen each other once. We took her son to the swimming pool near me but it didn't give us much of a chance to catch up and to be honest, I didn't know what to say anymore.

Anyway, after the tragic events on Wednesday in London (stick with me here) I was seeing a great deal of racist stuff on Facebook in connection with this, which I won't go into but I'm sure you all know the sort of stuff I'm referring to. One such comment which moved me to write a post of my own was that anyone who "wasn't English, shouldn't be in Britain" It's making me angry just thinking about this, given that I was born and bred in Scotland. In a nutshell I wrote that I couldn't believe that people would actually be that small minded as to think that only people of a certain creed or skin colour could commit such an act. Of course, I'm against this act itself, as it was truly a vile thing to do but I disagreed with people saying that it was PURELY because the person who did it was black.

Checking back on FB later in the day, I saw that my friend had commented and disagreed. Now that's OK (I may not agree with what you say but I defend to the death your right to say it...yadda yadda) it's OK to disagree with an idea but I just can't get my head around the fact that someone I'm close to was agreeing with such racist drivel. I've always known she was a bit racist, I've seen her behavior in certain situations which I won't go into, but I've always turned a bit of a blind eye to as I just can't agree with it. She knows how I feel about it, she knows full well I don't agree with her on this. I was raised to believe it's wrong to hate people and to judge them on their skin colour and religion. Glasgow is a very multi-cultural place, that's how it was built up and I think that's beautiful. I still think that the way I was brought up is correct.

I didn't say anything back to her FB as it's not exactly the place for it, but I was shocked and saddened by it. I waited until I'd calmed down a bit and then I sent her a text basically saying that it was OK for us to disagree on these things but that I stand by what I had said. This was on Thursday and I haven't heard a peep from her since.
I really don't think that what I did was wrong and I'm not going to back down. But it's made me sad that clearly she doesn't want to reply or be in contact with me.
It's also made me think that maybe this is for the best. Maybe the friendship has run it's course and better it end over an irreconcilable issue than something trivial. I just don't feel like I can be friends with someone who knowingly thinks this way. I let so many things slide before, things that I've heard her say, and I think I've just got to a point where I can't be associated with it anymore. It makes me so disgusted.

Am I wrong? Should I just back down to save the friendship?
Go to Glasgow at least once in your life and have a roll and square sliced sausage and a cup of tea. When you feel the tea coursing over your spice-singed tongue, you'll know what I mean when I say:
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Re: Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby ILoveChristmas » Mon May 27, 2013 7:34 pm

I've always felt that true friendships were built on fundamental similarities between people. When those fundamental similarities don't exist or change those people cease to be close friends and start to slip down the rungs to a lower level until eventually they're people that, frankly, you'd rather not meet in the supermarket because then you'd have to think of something to say.

I don't think you're wrong and I certainly don't think you should back away from your view to save a friendship with someone that harbours racist views. I think in this case you've got the perfect opportunity to let things fade away.
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Re: Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby retrochav » Mon May 27, 2013 10:14 pm

Friendships can run there course and that's natural. What binds friends at the time, can show up difference when time passes. Certainly friends I had in youth would not be my choice of friends now especially, because I have developed and so have they. I believe life's journey has many paths, and friends join us on shared trails and then follow a different path.

I live close to Woolwich and know the area well. I was surprised there wasn't more racist and islamaphobic drivel being spouted to be honest. Thankfully it seems that a lot of people recognise that the killers only represent evil, not a race or a religion. I would certainly doubt the merits of being friends with anyone being so disrespectful. As far as I am concerned, to use this behaviour as an excuse for hatred is to further the cause of those twisted individuals, and that is surely the last thing we want to do.

So in conclusion, it seems your friend has followed the path with you, and then wandered off on a different path. Let the friendship drift for now. She may recognise her comments as unhelpful and ill thought out, but if she doesn't, you have no need to apologise for standing up against ignorance.
whatever your problem someone else has been there and bears the scars.
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Re: Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby rufio89 » Tue May 28, 2013 9:37 am

It's a really tricky one HLC. I've deleted a few people I considered to be friends from my facebook in the wake of the Woolwich attack. I had a couple of "all muslims need to be shot" type of posts on my facebook and I just thought "If that's how these people think and see the world, they are not my friend".

Frankly the world has too many racist people and for me personally, I dont need them in my life. It pushed me close to tears to remove one person from my friends list but I was so disgusted by their outburst, I couldnt see how I could speak to them again. I find all this anti-islam hatred not only enraging and disgusting, but also terrifying.

However at the end of the day only you can decide how much it bothers you. If you're drifting apart anyway then I might be tempted to use it as an 'easy out'.

I hope you resolve this as best you can HLC, It's a sucky situation :(
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Re: Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby Tarantula » Sat Jun 08, 2013 5:33 pm

Hi HLC

I, too, was shocked and appalled by the reactions of some people to Woolwich. It's an absolute disgrace. I was ready to delete ANYONE who posted racist remarks on my newsfeed. Luckily, nobody did. As far as I saw, anyway.

For me it would be an irreconcilable difference indeed. It's not that I expect everyone to be the same as me. But having racist views is about as far away from me as you can get. I wouldn't care if it was an old friend, a new friend, my fella's best friend or mother; hell, my fella himself! Anyone who thinks like that, and I find out about it - gone. Ain't nobody got time for that.

One time I was dating a guy and stopped because he was conversationally telling me about how he and his friends play a 'game' on nights out where they target the fattest girl in the club, pretend to dance with her and be really into her, lean in and say 'you're the fattest chick in this club', then put their arms round her and hold on for as long as they can. I think he referred to it as 'fat girl rodeo'. It makes me chuckle until I realise that this was an ACTUAL conversation I was having, and not some spoof on TV designed to expose the ridiculousness of people who play that 'game'. So much of comedy is instantly not funny anymore if it becomes REAL.

Anyway I kicked off and told him where to shove it. It's not that I expect everyone to be the same as me (I can only hope... :P). It's just that I find certain beliefs/values/practices absolutely intolerable.

Basically, in my opinion, a person can't be worth my time if..... [insert intolerable thing here].

Racism certainly falls under that category. As does homophobia and all sorts of other things. I mean obviously it's all about context, but I can't see how any level of 'blacks are violent' or 'gay people aren't natural' would wash with he, no, no, nope, just don't see me NOT judging the F out of anyone with those views.

So basically, in your position, I would've gotten very angry indeed with that friend, and not really cared much about her status as my friend. That buys her nothing. I can't have one rule for 'friends', and one for everyone else. It's not okay to be racist no matter who you are in relation to me. So I would've hit the roof. I see it as a matter of principle, and wouldn't hesitate in cutting that person out of my life even if I really liked them before that.
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Re: Irreconcilable Differences?

Postby Valletta » Mon Jun 24, 2013 11:15 pm

Hi there, I feel slightly differently about this and although I don't really think it wise to broadcast comments that could be construed as racist on Facebook, this friend is entitled to her opinion and what right do you have to judge her for that. My best friend is very opinionated and I am often told "what for" if. Say something a bit sexist. I don't get in a row about it but I don't have to like it. However, in your opinion, the friendship had run its course and as it sounds like you may now clash over issues that are important to, I would just let her go.
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