Originally published Friday, August 10, 2018 at 05:55a.m.
Dear Abby: My “friend” from childhood, “Camille,” has never had my back. I have done the heavy lifting in our friendship our whole lives.
While I was on vacation two years ago, she was diagnosed with cancer. I came home immediately and drove to the hospital at 1 a.m. to be by her side. I’ve always been by Camille’s side for everything, even though she hasn’t been there for me.
I went to every chemo and doctor appointment, and was there every day to rub her feet to make her feel better.
I ended the one-sided friendship last year. My problem is, I feel guilty for doing it. I feel I left her with cancer. But I also feel that because someone is sick doesn’t give them the right to be abusive or inconsiderate. Camille hasn’t tried to contact me, either. In fact, she has told others that she will never speak to me again.
I’m deeply hurt and don’t know how to move on. Help! – Wounded on the East Coast
Dear Wounded: One way to stop feeling guilty and get on with your life would be to acknowledge in your head and your heart that the relationship with Camille was not a healthy one for you. In fact, from the way you have described it, it was more like a bad habit.
Dear Abby: My siblings and I, all born in the 1950s in a small town, have fond memories of our childhood. After our mother died in 1989, our father married “Sylvia,” and lived together in our childhood home until his death in 2016.
We “kids” wanted to honor our parents and our fond childhood memories. We endowed a plaque for the town park dedicated to their memory and noting they had raised a family in that community. Sylvia is now grievously offended and furious that she was not included.
She’s not our parent and played no part in the memories we wanted to honor. Although Sylvia was a good wife to our dad, she did her best to erase all traces of our mother from Dad’s memory and from his home. Were we wrong? She has rebuffed our attempts to explain our benign motivations. – Confused in Pennsylvania
Dear Confused: You weren’t wrong, but it would have been better had you discussed your plans for the plaque with Sylvia before donating it. That way, you would have been able to explain to her the reason why she wouldn’t be on it.