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What Would You Do?


Stamps1962
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I waited a bit to post this as the feelings are so strong. Has anyone else faced the issue of what to do when old friends you made while in the Xian world become too much to cope with?

 

I will make this very brief; this is my old college roommate and he has been a friend for over 40 years. We both married and the four of us had been getting together and socializing off and on for years. They attended a somewhat more tolerant evangelical church and we did not have any issues for years as there seemed to be an unspoken agreement that we didn’t discuss religion, or for that matter, politics. They are both very conservative, active in ‘pro-life’ activities, etc. About five years ago they switched churches, and things have slid downhill since. It is as if there is an elephant in the room whenever we get together. More recently my friend has been belittling my beliefs.

 

What seems odd is that we still do not discuss religion, it’s the political stuff, which has become far worse, especially since Obama became president. Currently I have had exactly one phone contact with my friend in the past 12 months. I was deathly ill all last winter and had to undergo tests for Cancer. He darn well knew all this, also that our lack of health insurance meant I couldn’t afford the level of care I needed. Last April I called him just to chat, this was just after the Health Care reform passed. He literally tore into me. Asked when I planned to sign up for ‘Obamacare’ so I can get my ‘free ride.’ After being called a dirty, stinking liberal I hung up on him. He did call the next day and apologized, sort of. He just said he ‘feels deeply’ about these issues. I did not call him back at all, and finally just after Christmas he called and we had a good visit, but it was awkward.

 

I know, I need to just accept that he is who he is and some things are not meant to be personal, but this sure sounded like it was. I should add, he is in his mid 60’s, listens to AM talk radio all day and drinks two pots of coffee daily. Neither factor leads to sanity IMO.

 

Our issues seem political/cultural but are I think being fed by the evangelical world they live in. What would you do in my place? Call him up as if nothing happened? When I try, I just can’t do it. I keep thinking how he kicked me when I was down. Anyone else been there?

 

 

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I had friends that I met in high school that are Christians, we had been friends for about 20 years. I changed and they didn't. Sometimes you have to move on even if they're your only friends. You can always make new ones. Get involved in something you love to do, like a hobby or art, and make some normal friends there. Nobody's perfect, but hanging around the same old delusional, angry, intolerant people will just keep you down.

 

It's best to sever all contact with them so you can move on with your life IMO.

 

.

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What would I do? Move on. I don't have room for toxic friendships and needless aggravation. I have no problem cutting losses, but I realize I'm the exception, so good luck.

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I'd move on...Obviously, he is causing more problems for you than need in your life, nor does he seem to contribute in any positive way to the relationship. If someone can go for that long enough of a time and not evolve in their beliefs or thoughts it kind of makes you wonder about their maturity and intellectual curiosity. Also, if you were being tested for cancer and the only thing he could talk about was bashing Obamacare kind of makes you wonder what type of friend he is...

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I'd move on...Obviously, he is causing more problems for you than need in your life, nor does he seem to contribute in any positive way to the relationship. If someone can go for that long enough of a time and not evolve in their beliefs or thoughts it kind of makes you wonder about their maturity and intellectual curiosity. Also, if you were being tested for cancer and the only thing he could talk about was bashing Obamacare kind of makes you wonder what type of friend he is...

 

 

Agreed, this is what I thought I'd hear, just needed to hear it from someone outside my long suffering family. One thing I didn't mention was that he did send me an email back in September wanted to meet for breakfast. I thought it was a nice gesture so we exchanged a couple messages, then he sent me attachments about Muslims taking over the world and about how 'real Christian Americans' need to take a stand. I jumped him on that and our breakfast date was forgotten. Haven't heard from him since the call in December.

My wife feels he is passive-aggressive; he gets a charge out of making people mad. She has commented for years about how he does that to his wife. Their old church was a 'Berean' (Mennonite) and thier new one is some independant Bible church. Once I knew that I suspected we were in for problems. Once they changed churches the change was apparent. From what he has said I believe they are active Teabaggers now.

I am not calling him again. If he wants to call me, ok. We can share a few laughs about old times, but realisticaly I know eventually we will drop out of touch. My wife says this happens frequently with people at our age and I think she's right.. Life goes on, but it's sometimes a bitch.

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it's sad that it does.

 

But people choose to live the life they want. And at those points the most loving option is to let them go their way.

 

 

 

 

EDIT: stupid grammar and slelpnig

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A few years ago I parted company with a good friend who was also the best man at my wedding. At the time I attended church and was very much a fundy. We got along well. After I left the cult of the cross, our relationship became strained and his speech towards me and my family became more hostile--we spoke too harshly and cussed, my wife did not obey her husband like she should, etc., etc.. There was always something wrong with us or some character flaw not cured by the Holy Ghost, according to him.

 

This guy lived in a bus out in the desert and my wife and I fed him regularly and let him sleep over in our guest room when he came to town. He was always quoting scripture about one thing or another that he hated to see going on in life and how everyone was out of step with the Lord except for him. One evening, after eating our food and drinking our coffee, he informed us that he hated Catholics because they did not number 'his ten commandments' the same way he found them in his protestant bible. When I told him it did not matter how they were numbered or in what order someone quoted them, he became as furious as a Westboro fundy at a funeral! He told us to 'eat shit,' if we were siding with Catholics because he loved his ten commandments and stomped out and slammed my front door. My wife, who was recovering from back surgery at the time, had gotten out of bed to make him something to eat and that was how he responded to our generosity and she got very emotionally upset over it. He got in his car and drove off in a huff! Two weeks later he called and said he had calmed down and was coming over and I simply told him not to bother. We were done. I had outgrown him as a friend after putting up with his religious rantings about me and my family for 23 years. I had had enough! He died last August in his bus and alone.

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I waited a bit to post this as the feelings are so strong. Has anyone else faced the issue of what to do when old friends you made while in the Xian world become too much to cope with?

 

I will make this very brief; this is my old college roommate and he has been a friend for over 40 years. We both married and the four of us had been getting together and socializing off and on for years. They attended a somewhat more tolerant evangelical church and we did not have any issues for years as there seemed to be an unspoken agreement that we didn’t discuss religion, or for that matter, politics. They are both very conservative, active in ‘pro-life’ activities, etc. About five years ago they switched churches, and things have slid downhill since. It is as if there is an elephant in the room whenever we get together. More recently my friend has been belittling my beliefs.

 

What seems odd is that we still do not discuss religion, it’s the political stuff, which has become far worse, especially since Obama became president. Currently I have had exactly one phone contact with my friend in the past 12 months. I was deathly ill all last winter and had to undergo tests for Cancer. He darn well knew all this, also that our lack of health insurance meant I couldn’t afford the level of care I needed. Last April I called him just to chat, this was just after the Health Care reform passed. He literally tore into me. Asked when I planned to sign up for ‘Obamacare’ so I can get my ‘free ride.’ After being called a dirty, stinking liberal I hung up on him. He did call the next day and apologized, sort of. He just said he ‘feels deeply’ about these issues. I did not call him back at all, and finally just after Christmas he called and we had a good visit, but it was awkward.

 

I know, I need to just accept that he is who he is and some things are not meant to be personal, but this sure sounded like it was. I should add, he is in his mid 60’s, listens to AM talk radio all day and drinks two pots of coffee daily. Neither factor leads to sanity IMO.

 

Our issues seem political/cultural but are I think being fed by the evangelical world they live in. What would you do in my place? Call him up as if nothing happened? When I try, I just can’t do it. I keep thinking how he kicked me when I was down. Anyone else been there?

 

 

 

I take a LOT of offense to this post. In fact, it just outright pisses me off. Are you REALLY questioning the sanity of people who drink a lot of coffee!!!! How dare you. :vtffani: I bet you are one of those pansies who drinks green tea all day. :mad: (jk of course).

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It's strange, but I have a friend that back in high school was almost not religious at all and is now, from what I can tell, a big time fundie. Back then, I was a big time fundie, and now I'm a fsm dammed atheist. He "friended" me on facebook, but we really do not communicate much.

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Very few things hurt more than finding out just how conditional the friendships of some people are. I really believe if they cannot love you outside political and religious preferences, then they don't know what love is. These stupid side issues mean nothing in the long run. I'm sad for you and for so many others here that there are so many douchebag family members and "friends" in this world. Sad as it is, it seems the only friends worth having are the ones to know how to live and let live.

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I'm with the other on this one. If I were in your shoes, I'd simply start backing away until the contact between us was nil. I wouldn't make an event out of it, I'd just let it happen (not really just "let" it happen, but "cause" it to happen by design but without explaining anything to him as that would do no good and only cause problems in the parting shots).

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I'm with the other on this one. If I were in your shoes, I'd simply start backing away until the contact between us was nil. I wouldn't make an event out of it, I'd just let it happen (not really just "let" it happen, but "cause" it to happen by design but without explaining anything to him as that would do no good and only cause problems in the parting shots).

 

 

That's exactly my plan. If he calls I will be cordial so long as he respects me. If he doesn't, he will get an earfull. Otherwise I plan to go on not seeing him amd not making the next move to call. Eventually it'll fade out.

 

BTW, I meant no offense to coffee drinkers, I wish I could stil be one but had to make the move to tea years ago. Not green tea however, don't know how anyone can drink that stuff. I just think his caffeine consumption isn't helping him control his emotions. I have gone out with him and actually seen him drink two pots all by himself.

 

 

BTW, this guy was best man at my wedding.

 

 

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I'm with the other on this one. If I were in your shoes, I'd simply start backing away until the contact between us was nil. I wouldn't make an event out of it, I'd just let it happen (not really just "let" it happen, but "cause" it to happen by design but without explaining anything to him as that would do no good and only cause problems in the parting shots).

 

 

Guys, guys, guys...there is a certain beauty in confrontation. If some prick is going to devalue me so deeply and elevate his political and religious opinions above me in importance, he will bloody well know EXACTLY why the friendship ended and EXACTLY how his shallowness has made me feel. I may not ever speak to him again, and if he is that clueless a few home truths will probably put him into a flat spin for a week. It won't kill him, and maybe, just maybe next time he goes to treat someone the same way some of my words may echo in his head.

 

Clearly I do not go quietly. Anywhere. :P

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I think it is just common courtesy to treat a friend who is undergoing a cancer threat with the utmost of kindness and compassion.

 

And in that situation, a true friend would be glad for whatever health care could be mustered by whatever means.

 

In fact, a really true friend would offer to pay some of the medical bills in that situation.

 

Adding to your stress at that time by saying nasty things shows that that he lost the plot.

 

One of my circle of friends (a Hindu meditator)once used the phrase "But is it uplifting?" as a question to me re internet forums and email groups. I think the same question can be applied to friendships.

 

In this case, it is pretty clear. This friendship is no longer uplifting for you.

 

Having said that, I think your strategy of not encouraging further interaction is the bast course of action.

 

Not quite sure where his wife stands in all of this. Is she being emotionally battered and bullied? In which case, you and your wife might want to discretely maintain a degree of contact with her.

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I think it is just common courtesy to treat a friend who is undergoing a cancer threat with the utmost of kindness and compassion.

 

And in that situation, a true friend would be glad for whatever health care could be mustered by whatever means.

 

In fact, a really true friend would offer to pay some of the medical bills in that situation.

 

Adding to your stress at that time by saying nasty things shows that that he lost the plot.

 

One of my circle of friends (a Hindu meditator)once used the phrase "But is it uplifting?" as a question to me re internet forums and email groups. I think the same question can be applied to friendships.

 

In this case, it is pretty clear. This friendship is no longer uplifting for you.

 

Having said that, I think your strategy of not encouraging further interaction is the bast course of action.

 

Not quite sure where his wife stands in all of this. Is she being emotionally battered and bullied? In which case, you and your wife might want to discretely maintain a degree of contact with her.

 

 

So far as I know she's not being bullied, quite the contrary- I think she tells him off now and then, that may be the problem, he feels emasculated at home and then tries to beat his chest over political and social issues.

He's always been a 'kissup, smack down' sort of guy so none of this surprises. For all his faults I do love the guy, but sometimes that's not enough.

One interesting point is that in December he was upset that their daughter whom is 20, came home from college and announced she was now a Democrat. Said that social issues such as poverty have made her switch.

He also is worried that she is drifting away from religion. So in addition to everything else he's threatened at home.

Well, I thank all of you for your advice. Im plan to post some of my past history one of these days, it's probably going to be interesting to some.

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I think it is just common courtesy to treat a friend who is undergoing a cancer threat with the utmost of kindness and compassion.

 

And in that situation, a true friend would be glad for whatever health care could be mustered by whatever means.

 

In fact, a really true friend would offer to pay some of the medical bills in that situation.

 

Adding to your stress at that time by saying nasty things shows that that he lost the plot.

 

One of my circle of friends (a Hindu meditator)once used the phrase "But is it uplifting?" as a question to me re internet forums and email groups. I think the same question can be applied to friendships.

 

In this case, it is pretty clear. This friendship is no longer uplifting for you.

 

Having said that, I think your strategy of not encouraging further interaction is the bast course of action.

 

Not quite sure where his wife stands in all of this. Is she being emotionally battered and bullied? In which case, you and your wife might want to discretely maintain a degree of contact with her.

 

 

So far as I know she's not being bullied, quite the contrary- I think she tells him off now and then, that may be the problem, he feels emasculated at home and then tries to beat his chest over political and social issues.

He's always been a 'kissup, smack down' sort of guy so none of this surprises. For all his faults I do love the guy, but sometimes that's not enough.

One interesting point is that in December he was upset that their daughter whom is 20, came home from college and announced she was now a Democrat. Said that social issues such as poverty have made her switch.

He also is worried that she is drifting away from religion. So in addition to everything else he's threatened at home.

Well, I thank all of you for your advice. Im plan to post some of my past history one of these days, it's probably going to be interesting to some.

 

 

I guess that I would send him once last email or letter and tell him that the three things your mother told you to never discuss in polite company - race, religion, and politics - certainly apply to his conversations with you. I would tell him that it is his decision whether to maintain your 40-year-relationship, and the next contact is up to him. If he does, however, he must abide by the above-stated exclusions, or the relationship is done.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Update: Not one word from him since his Christmas call. That may be where this thing settles in, just a call from him every several months. It would work for me.

 

Frankly I just don't trust him not to go off on me. My then 12 year old son and I went out for breakfast with him and his brother in law, who is also a good friend of mine, a couple years back. Somehow he got onto abortion and was almost shouting. We just paid our tab and left quickly. The BIL called me the next day, he was supportive and I clould tell, embarassed. I'd bet we are not the only friends he has driven away. I tried to connect with the brother in law a few months ago but he never responded, probably doesnt want to be in the middle.

 

Sadly, I keep running into other older, angry white guys in social situations, etc. Guess I need to be happy with my supportive spouse and son, still it gets lonely sometimes.

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Sadly, I keep running into other older, angry white guys in social situations, etc. Guess I need to be happy with my supportive spouse and son, still it gets lonely sometimes.

I'd been in the cycle of being friends with the same kind of people, but that's been starting to change. I guess I had to totally get away from those people for awhile, so I could start to change.

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  • 4 months later...

Well, he called me out of the blue recently and we met for Breakfast. His borther in law came too and we had a nice time. I think he's trying, maybe the thing with his daughter 'falling away' has made him rethink his attitudes.

 

But..he made a strange proposal in our meeting. The fundy Bible college we both graduated from is having a Homecoming next month and he thinks it'd be fun if we both went. Sadly I think the guy is still in denial as to the extent of my estrangement from religion. He also mentioned that he and his wife want us to come over for dinner early next year sometime. Great.. right in the middle of a divisive election campaign. In the past they have without our knowing, invited friends from church over at the same time, it's very uncomfortable.

 

He has always seemed to have the idea that my falling away is just rebellion against my overly strict family and I think harbors the idea that he can bring me back. Not gonna happen. Still not going to be taking the first move and calling him. Not after what happened last year. Could get interesting..

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In the past they have without our knowing, invited friends from church over at the same time, it's very uncomfortable.

 

 

That goes well into jerk-like behavior, even for xians.

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I waited a bit to post this as the feelings are so strong. Has anyone else faced the issue of what to do when old friends you made while in the Xian world become too much to cope with?

 

I will make this very brief; this is my old college roommate and he has been a friend for over 40 years. We both married and the four of us had been getting together and socializing off and on for years. They attended a somewhat more tolerant evangelical church and we did not have any issues for years as there seemed to be an unspoken agreement that we didn’t discuss religion, or for that matter, politics. They are both very conservative, active in ‘pro-life’ activities, etc. About five years ago they switched churches, and things have slid downhill since. It is as if there is an elephant in the room whenever we get together. More recently my friend has been belittling my beliefs.

 

What seems odd is that we still do not discuss religion, it’s the political stuff, which has become far worse, especially since Obama became president. Currently I have had exactly one phone contact with my friend in the past 12 months. I was deathly ill all last winter and had to undergo tests for Cancer. He darn well knew all this, also that our lack of health insurance meant I couldn’t afford the level of care I needed. Last April I called him just to chat, this was just after the Health Care reform passed. He literally tore into me. Asked when I planned to sign up for ‘Obamacare’ so I can get my ‘free ride.’ After being called a dirty, stinking liberal I hung up on him. He did call the next day and apologized, sort of. He just said he ‘feels deeply’ about these issues. I did not call him back at all, and finally just after Christmas he called and we had a good visit, but it was awkward.

 

I know, I need to just accept that he is who he is and some things are not meant to be personal, but this sure sounded like it was. I should add, he is in his mid 60’s, listens to AM talk radio all day and drinks two pots of coffee daily. Neither factor leads to sanity IMO.

 

Our issues seem political/cultural but are I think being fed by the evangelical world they live in. What would you do in my place? Call him up as if nothing happened? When I try, I just can’t do it. I keep thinking how he kicked me when I was down. Anyone else been there?

 

 

 

I'm sorry to say this but I think it would be best to let him go. Let him contact you and then measure what he is saying carefully and know that if you get together with him it might not be pleasant. That may not be the answer you wish for but it is likely for the best.

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