Friday, December 11, 2015

{Friendship Friday} Support during hard times

When you're in your early to mid-twenties, your friends are all getting boyfriends, then fiances, and then they all get married.

Then everyone starts having babies.

And as I said to someone at work, this seems to be the time when friends' parents are getting serious illnesses or dying.

Or, worse, when friends are divorcing.

Can I tell you something?

I've been stunned for most of this year and I couldn't even talk about it.

This year I heard from FIVE friends who are now either getting/ have gotten divorced.
  • friend is a casual one
  • work friend from old company
  • one set of really close friends 
  • one set of good friends
  • an online friend
Then I ask myself why I am so surprised because we all know the stats in South Africa - 67% of marriages end up in divorce.

I still cannot believe this of two of the friends. I'm devastated by the one - we know and love them both. He will not take anyone's phone calls. She is being amazing, carrying on and focussing on the necessities of life - getting kids fed and to school.

And I have not been the best friend because I don't know what to say. We have had conversations on the phone and I've said sometimes, "I can't believe we're even having this conversation!" It's completely surreal.

Anyway, I eventually wrote a card and she sent me a message when she received it - we are okay.

The other friend unfriended me, stopped answering SMS and whatsapp (you know my feelings on whatsapp but the great thing is you can see if people are blatantly ignoring your messages) too. I sent her a card too but no response. I didn't expect a response but I'm saddened by this.

Have you had friends go through hard times like this? How do you support them?


  1. After my own divorce many many maaaany years ago, in my circle I kind of became the go to girl if you needed a shoulder about something like this. Back then it was easier as no one had kids and support often came in the form of lots of wine and whine. Now with kids it's harder, because we have responsibilities. You kind of have to get in with it and there's not really a lot of time for wallowing in between.

    1. That is true, Louisa, when you have kids, you have to "get on with things" a lot quicker. Not much time to wallow til the kids are in bed :) The one friend has kids... but the one who unfriended me doesn't. I wonder if this factored into it?

  2. The only thing I can relate this to is my and my friends' journey's with infertility. A lot of the time we were in it together and we drank a lot of wine and cried (well they did) together. Once some started having success and others not it got a bit harder to offer support BUT I think the key is to also let those who are hurting guide you in how they need support. Sometimes they need to just withdraw into themselves (friend 2?) and to know that you are there for them when they are done with their pity party.


  3. I lost my best friend a few yrs ago after making a comment to her during a tough time she was going through and to this day, I regret it! Unfortunately, it was one of those moments where I spoke without thinking (I do that very often :-( ) and it cost me so much!! Even worse now is that yrs on, our kids are the same age...they could have grown up together...

  4. Divorce is like a real life FB clean out. When I went through mine I kept friends I didn't think I would, lost friends I thought were close. It is a tough time, so honestly I wouldn't take anything they do personally, its probably not about you.

    I struggle a little bit to dive into peoples emotions. I will send a message or email but if they are close I will phone. One of the moms at swimming is going through an ugly divorce, I can relate to her so I opened up and so did she. I actually had formed an opinion of her that was completely wrong (but thats not really the point of this post)


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