Stranger friends who tease, but never commit

I have a friend who lives in New York City who I haven’t seen in almost two years, come next month. She got fired from her job early in 2022 unexpectedly, and since it happened, I have only seen her twice. In April 2022, I took her out for lunch to celebrated her belated birthday. That was the last time I’ve seen her. In June 2022, we were scheduled to catch up over tea at a local cafe, and she declined just three hours before, saying she couldn’t make it — no reason, even after I asked a few times after if she was okay. I checked in with her over text and phone several times that year, but she would always give cryptic responses and never commit to seeing me. Last year, I just let it go; if she wanted to see me, she could reach out whenever she wanted. I eventually found out she got a new phone number, deleted her Facebook account, and was “starting over.” She messaged me on her new number to save her new number and said “let’s catch up soon,” but never committed to a date. She said she started a new job, and in November of last year, she asked to see the opera together. When I suggested a date/time, she said she couldn’t go anymore because she lost her job. Then, she kept saying we would catch up soon, but no dates suggested.

I was so confused. What was going on?

I made multiple efforts over the last month to see her, yet again, she still wouldn’t commit. So I messaged her to let her know that I care about her and have worried about her, but if she kept refusing to commit to see me, it would drive me away, and I would actually stay away and not contact her again. I’m 38 years old. I’ve experienced a decent amount of trauma in my life and unjust experiences. I do not need excess baggage in my life, and I definitely do not need anyone in my life who doesn’t want to be in it. She said she appreciated my directness, but it wasn’t about me.

That’s fine. If it has nothing to do with me, then let it be. Or I’ll just stop responding. There’s only so much bullshit that one can take to continue to be a sane, productive, relatively happy person.

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