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How, if at all, to respond.(33 Posts)
Bear with me on this. I'm trying to keep a very long story short and include the important stuff without being identifiable.
I had a lifelong best friend. She suffers from mental health problems. She can't say no to anyone, ever, which allowed a horrible person to take advantage and bully her to a sickening extent.
The Bully very publicly humiliated my friend and I'd had enough, I stood up to the bully because my friend was in no fit state to, I told them to pack it in.
The Bully then turned on me and started a hate campaign to wreck my life. And they managed it fairly well.
Bully also convinced my friend to drop me, which she did quite quickly. It was a terrible shock.
This campaign to finish me seeped into many areas of my life, not just socially. It has affected family members and even my children. It has pushed me to the point of suicidal thoughts.
As much as I like to think Friend was somehow coerced, she seemingly did some nasty things of her own volition. Like she believed that I was the horrible person that Bully was suggesting. It made me face up to the fact that my former best friend was no longer anything of the sort and the stress of it all was just crushing. I was absolutely devastated, and still am. I feel like my whole personality has altered.
Anyway, this year I've really managed to pull myself up, mostly thanks to COVID meaning I didn't have to see any of the people involved (we live in a very compact area, part of the stress was being unable to hide)
I was doing ok.
Now I've received a message from my former best friend.
It's a very light, breezy hi how are you? type of message that you'd send to someone you'd simply lost touch with for a short while. She says that she misses seeing me around. No suggestion of any apology or admission of wrongdoing. No mention of any of it.
I know that Bully is not out of the picture, we move in close enough circles to be certain of that.
I feel sick at the thought of being drawn back into it all. My heart palpitations are back.
I've no idea what to do for the best. Should I respond or ignore.
I know that's probably what I should do but I'm also really bloody angry. I have daydreamed about having my moment to rage and scream at her. How bloody dare she try to wander back into my life like nothing has happened. I wonder if she has any idea how much damage she has done.
The mum my kids have missed out on having cos I've been living on the brink for two whole fucking years. God I want to do more than rage and scream.
If you open up this again, you'll be back to square one. There is no point in letting this non friend know how you feel about her. She probably already does; you can bet the bully does.
I was just reading another thread where a poster said that indifference is powerful.
Please block and ignore, and carry on getting your peace back.
Definitely ignore. Block and don't go back. Some people are just toxic. You sound like a kind/nice person, it is hard to see that sometimes you have to be tough. You will be able to make new friends soon. Your palpitations are telling you everything you need to know.
But you need to block and ignore for now. She's got in touch for a reason, don't fall for it, whatever it is.
You will have your chance to tell her everything, just not yet. It took me a couple of years of staying quiet and staying away from someone before the opportunity arose to tell her exactly what I thought.
It’s likely they are still bullying you - this could be a trap / manipulation at worst to provoke you to anger - at best to gaslight / sweep under the carpet.
Feel your rage - process it - but don’t give it to either of them.
Learn techniques to de escalate these feelings otherwise you are at risk of being triggered and handing over your power - which is your indifference, silence and dignity.
Block. Delete. Distract yourself.
You have been punished and betrayed for your good deed.
Put them in the rear view mirror. You won’t find resolution with these people.
You know you absolutely must ignore this. It won't do you any good.
Ignore, block and remember that you've managed to get yourself to where you are now and that you're not going to allow a little message to set you back.
It all sounds absolutely appalling. Sorry you've been through such a hideous time. Have you talked to anyone about it? It can often be quite helpful to have the opportunity to really talk about a traumatic time to help you process it and accept where you are an genuinely move on.
Tell her she caused you to live a nightmare for 2 years, hope she’s happy she did this to you then block. Don’t be tempted to unblock to check for a response. She’s been led astray and hasn’t enough about her to have resisted the twat bully. Move on with your life. You deserve better.
I assume it was her partner and she was in an abusive relationship with The Bully?
Either way, do not let her back into your life
Ignore and block. It never ceases to amaze me how much leeway people are given because they have mental health problems. It is not an excuse for shitty behaviour. Just carry on with your life OP and all the best.
Agree with the indifference.
Blocking may get relayed back to the bully and that gives them power.
Your former friend didn’t act like a friend when you needed them. More galling when you took the bullet for them.
Head high and ignore. Your tune to say your truth will come.
If you make the foolish mistake of engaging with her, you will be allowing these horrible people to come back into your life. Do Not do this.
Block her permanently.
I do think she has been led astray. I am very aware of how much of a people pleaser she was and her maddening inability to stand up for herself. That's why, at first, I was sympathetic and determined not to push her. Me trying to get her to dump them made me no better so I put a bit of distance between us to try to get the bully to stand down. Bully saw the gap and muscled their way in.
Bully is another woman, not her Dh.
Thank you, I am not going to respond. You're all right, it just reopens the wounds.
She hasn’t got the capacity to respond in any rational way. You deserve to unleash your rage but not at her, it will fuel her emotional disregulation, it will feed the bullying again.
You are disgusted with her, as you should be and have every right to be, so draw away from her with disgust.
Fight with a pig you have to roll around in shit but the pig enjoys it - I think that’s how the saying goes?
The text is tempting you into the shit of her gross and toxic mess of a life. You got pulled in before, it fouled your life. Don’t do that again.
Use your rage as an energy that creates new stuff in your life and new relationships.
This trial by fire you’ve been through may take you further towards an even better version of yourself.
She had nothing to give you, not even the satisfaction of screaming in her face would give you what you need - it would connect you to her and the bully again and you’d immediately regret it with a deeply nauseated feeling.
You’ve been through hell, I’m sorry. Leave those fuckers where they belong - on the past.
Just ignore and block. I don’t see what any other type of action would achieve.
FYI - I am curious to know what they did that he such an impact on you and your family’s lives. It’s sounds awful.
Personally I’d not engage with them in anyway either directly or indirectly (such as speaking to mural friends about them).
Sounds like you deserve to move on. They’ve taken too much of your time already.
Don’t even go there, block and ignore then get on with your life.
The sensible answer is to ignore and block but I’m not sure I could. I’d want an explanation.
I’d text back: “why are you texting me after so long”. Or if I was feeling bold: “have you forgotten that you behaved like a total bitch/did [insert whatever awful thing she did]” but only if I was 100% sure I’d keep my cool.
Ignore. Whatever you say might and probably will trickle down to the bully and potentially trigger another smear campaign. Who needs this shit.
You can’t fix your doormat friend but you can protect yourself.
Ignore is obviously the gold star solution.
BUT. You are stewing on it, and it has been 2 years and it still hurts.
I think I'd go with something like:
Hi - surprised to hear from you after all that's gone on. I was really hurt when X did Y, but much more hurt when you did X then Y. I'm doing OK though, thank you for asking. Hope you are too. Just to let you know, I'm blocking your number now because I can't afford to feel as terrible as I did last year.
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