Today I Was Snubbed

Today I was snubbed. By someone who not so long ago I regarded as my best friend. I’m not going to disclose the reasons we stopped talking. Suffice to say our paths went in separate directions. We live in the same village, however, and are both runners so it was only a matter of time before we bumped into each other again. Today was that day.

I was around 10 miles into a 20 mile training run. This will be one of my last long runs before the Belfast Marathon on 7th May. I’ll write about that separately but it so happened I was running one way through the village and he was coming in the opposite direction. We were both wearing luminous yellow running tops so it wasn’t as if we could avoid each other. I had been dreading this moment for months but resolved to pass myself and be polite.

We said hello to each other (I’ll give him that) about ten feet away from one another. As we neared I slowed to a halt, expecting him to do likewise. It would be an awkward minute or so of small talk but at least we could walk (or run) away afterwards with our heads held high. At least we could be adults about what had happened. Our daughters play together at school and our wives still talk occasionally so it wasn’t much to ask, was it?

Imagine my shock then when, having seen me slow, he just kept on running. I stood there, my two arms the same length feeling about two inches tall. After a few seconds I gathered myself and continued my run, muttering a few choice expletives under my breath as I did so. I hardly ever swear so, yeah, to say I was annoyed and upset was a massive understatement. Is this what our friendship had come to? That we couldn’t even exchange a few meaningless pleasantries in the street?

I’ve written in the past about how much my social circle has shrunk over the last year or so. There are many reasons for this and much of it has been self-inflicted. I’ve often thought I don’t need anyone except Fionnuala and the kids and that is largely true. Many of the people in my life I had to walk away from. I was in a very unhealthy place and needed space to recover and rebuild my life. In time, I became used to running on my own. I became used to having an empty social calendar.

This solitude has allowed me to focus on my family and my writing. There are benefits. But sometimes I wonder what if? What if I had a church I could regularly attend every week without feeling like a social pariah? What if I didn’t have to endure 20 mile runs on my own and had friends to keep me company? What if my mobile phone rang occasionally and it was a friend just calling up for a chat? Then I shake my head and gather my thoughts up again. Those days are in the past, a place where I cannot return.

It was sad that on Easter Sunday a person who portrays himself as a ‘big Christian’ and pillar of his local megachurch chose to snub an ex friend who left his social circle under a cloud. Yes, I sinned. Yes, I’m not perfect. But does that give you the right to do what you did to me today? I should have expected no less but I naively did and ended up shaken and upset. It’s hard to move on when people don’t allow you to move on. It’s hard to forgive when others refuse to forgive you.

I won’t be at church tomorrow but he no doubt will. Hands in the air and singing aloud. Worshipping God. But I know that God will be with me as well as I sit at home processing the hurt and pain I have inflicted on others and experienced myself. For Jesus died for me just as much as he died for him and all the other Christians who have chosen to turn their backs on us. Jesus won’t turn his back and, for this fact, this Easter I am grateful.

Have you ever been snubbed by someone you used to be close to?

How do you handle hurt and rejection?

66 thoughts on “Today I Was Snubbed

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  1. Wow…. i know that hurts….i have a similar situation with someone who used to be my neighbor. Different circumstances but the same is true. I dont get invited to things anymore but i think its a good thing. She is a control freak and has to be in control of every situation. When she cant control something she does everything in her power to control what others “perceive” to make sure she is on the “smelling like a rose” end and everyone else is on the “fertilizer” end. She is a grown up bully with no filter.

    I just have to remember that evwn if we arent friends anymore, ive done all i can do to forgive and resolve the issue. She is the one who is choosing to not forgiving and move on.

    Jesus lives me, he’s forgiven me and is busy at work in me. I cant worry about what others think feel or do….all i can do is worry about me.

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  2. I have been in get a similar position. A couple of years ago my best friend completely walked out on our friendship of several years. No explanation. No goodbye. Nothing. It hurt very much. My heart was broken and I was left confused and angry. I didn’t understand how, after my friend and I had invested so much of our lives into our friendship, that they could throw it away as if it were nothing. It took quite a while, but I had to learn to forgive my former friend, and accept that I would never get an apology or explanation from them. I had to repeat to myself over and over again that I can’t control what others do with their lives, that I can only control how I respond to their behavior. I could have used to my anger and hurt to tear down my former friend in an attempt to make myself feel better, but I know it would have done no good. So I talked, wrote, cried, and treated it as it felt to me . . . a death that I was mourning. That’s what it really was. I was mourning the sudden and unexpected death of a friendship that I held in high regard. It’s been almost two years, and I have healed greatly, but every once in a while the world finds little ways to remind me, but those instances are getting to be fewer and fewer as more time passes. Your healing will come, too. Remember though that before you can forgive anyone else that you must first be able to forgive yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I would go so far as to call my former friend a psychopath. His path merely went in a different path that he felt required him to leave our friendship in his past.

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  3. Throughout the years, I’ve begun to lose people who I once was close to. I’ve lost friendships I thought I had when it was only convenient for them. I have had friends who only existed within the walls of a church I once attended. What I can share is be willing to move past what others have burdened you with. It took me several months to realize bitterness had settled in my heart, and I had to give that to God, which took a while. One day, I pray and hope, you will be able to smile at this person because of the forgiveness God has given you to give to this person. May your heart be lifted and not burdened.

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    1. I feel like I need to talk about this in a post at some point, so thank you for inspiring me, and I wanted to let you know I am including this post in the Community Spotlight for April. 🙂

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        1. When we reveal the truth of our feelings and experiences it truly does connect people in more than one way. That is what God has shown me about pain. As you wrote, Christ’s pain is the best example of that.

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  4. I can feel your pain and know exactly how it feels. Two years ago I was betrayed by my very best friend, we shared 40 years, yes 40 years of friendship. I will not go into details as to why. I still feel the pain daily as he was like my brother since I don’t have any siblings nor does he. There is belief that people come and go in and out of your life for a reason. I still don’t have the answer to why us. It’s painful and I truly understand your pain.

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  5. I empathize with your pain and am sorry you endured that. My husband and I were in ministry many years and deeply hurt by some that we never thought would betray us like they did. It was unfathomable and some of the hardest times we walked through. We eventually started using the line, people are funny as a way to cope externally and internally crying out to the Lord knowing He knew our pain and was there to carry us through. I pray the Lord helps to heal your hurt and your heart and not let this cause you to close yourself off too much. There are still caring people in the world.

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  6. I am sorry for your snub! As we get older we have fewer people that we consider “good friends.” It is hard to turn the other cheek. Remember according to Romans 12:10, Beloved never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

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  7. Quite a lot. Don’t dwell on it, move on. Don’t get attached, get attach to your goals. You can’t please everyone.

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  8. I hope I’m not intruding on something personal, but may I ask a question? Is it possible that he was afraid? You mention that “Many of the people in my life I had to walk away from.” Perhaps he himself was hurt by rejection. So when you crossed paths again, he did not have the strength of will to extend that hand of friendship.

    Long ago, I walked away from my best friend. I did it because I feared his rejection, so to inoculate myself, I rejected him. Every day, I kick myself because there was no rational reason to do so, yet I did it anyway. Now, it’s too late. I can’t find a trace of him online. I will always regret it.

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  9. What a horrible experience but I’m sorry to say the same has happened to me and continues to happen to me on regular occasions. There was a Mum I went to baby group with, We became close, had dinner parties and arranged baby picnics then once the babies were past 1 we drifted but still kept in touch. 2 years ago T started the same school as her son, in fact he is in the same class! We spoke on day 1 and couldn’t believe the coincidence etc. Now when she passes me she blanks me. No rhyme or reason. I’ve tried saying hello but nothing so I don’t any more to stop the embarrassment. She doesn’t even look at me for some reason! The world is so small she is now doing a charity walk with my sister in law in a few weeks and they have spoke of how she knows me but she still looks down and ignores me when she walks past! I don’t think I’ll ever know why she stopped talking to me but that doesn’t stop me being ever so slightly reminiscent of our friendship all those years ago.

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  10. So weird you mention this because I’m living the same with a friend of mine…..it’s annoying and what I hate the most is that feeling like it is you in the wrong place

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  11. I have been snubbed many many times by people i used to be close with. It hurts like hell. you end up overthinking the situation that led you to this point in your life. That creates even more problems in itself.
    I handle hurt and rejection very very badly. My last load of hurt and consequent rejection i too left a social circle of my own free will. Sadly it led me down the path of mental and physical destruction, something which i am paying for dearly at this moment. Stephen i know i have said it before but you are strong and you are heading straight to the light. I follow you blog because of your honesty and ability to put your deepest thoughts on to the screen, immediately people see themselves in your writing and totally get where you are coming from.

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  12. Your intentions were true, that’s what matter. He is probably thinking he should have stopped, but he didn’t. This is not your fault, keep your heart open to people who matter, and you will have friends for life.
    And keep running!
    Happy Easter!

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  13. Worse than snubbed. My sister in law, who I have recently been taking care of due to an injury, suddenly decided thatvliving with me was terrible, she felt better and abruptly went home. When I asked her why she told me bluntly that she found me intolerable. She thought I was rude and hates the way I speak to people. At which point I pointed out that she’s seems to do this regularly and she said well this is the last time, bye forever. Now, no one else in my life seem to find me so awful that they need to cut me from their lives. I was hurt, yes. Am I perfect? No! But none of us are. So I’ll stay close to the people who love me, and be thankful she removed herself from my life. Oh and next time she decides to come calling? I won’t be answering.

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    1. Sister in law? I beat that :)) the behavior of your sister in law was sweet in comparison with my sister’s behavior :)) but, with time, realizing that similar things attract, and differences repel by nature, i came to terms easily with her. Problems appear, apparently whenever we see more similarities where they aren’t. Then we get the shock of reality, obviously, when it becomes obvious, that similarities weren’t there in the first place. And the agony experienced until the moment of realization that similarities simply weren’t there. Doesn’t matter if it’s family or not. These natural differences and similarities are at a great great depth. Family level is very superficial (by comparison)

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  14. The same thing happened to me last year. I don’t have that many close friends so I was devastated when it happened. The fact they couldn’t even say hello to me if they saw me seemed rather petty to me. It really hurt and I didn’t handle it very well. Even now I’m still trying to get over it.

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    1. Its about beliefs really. They have beliefs and habits miles away from yours. Thats why also they cannot understand you, and you cannot understand them easily. Optics really.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. I have been there in the past year – more through online rejection by a once-upon-a-time best friend. We both are Christians and she decided I’m not the “right” kind of Christian and it runs a little deeper where I couldn’t visit long distance at the times her parents died because I didn’t have the money and I haven’t sent her written notes regularly – I have An inattentive ADHD that doesn’t allow me to remember to mail the dang things (I have a pile I purchased and “meant” to send but kept forgetting). She disguises her pain by telling me I’m wrong in my political and theological beliefs. Despite my phone calls and digital acknowledgements of her difficult and celebratory times it wasn’t enough and I’m thus not worthy enough to be her friend. So painful and I keep thinking maybe now I’ve moved on butt haven’t. God is with you no matter how you feel about this. I pray God’s peace be with you this Easter season.

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  16. I know well how you feel, and it does hurt for a long time. I was shut out then eliminated as a friend by a close friend less than a year ago. It wasn’t the first time I’ve been pushed out of a close friendship, but I think I have grown and changed a lot since that first time. While this more recent loss does still hurt, confuse, and even makes me mad at times, I also have a healthy measure of peace that the problem was never with truly about me. And yet, I dread the possibility of bumping into her or her family. I know that I can maintain civility and pleasantries, but I cannot predict how she would react or respond to me. I’ve had nightmares about it, but so far we haven’t actually seen each other.

    These types of broken relationships can be an emotional landmine. You just never know when you’re going to take a hit. Sometimes it hurts all the more when the people involved share our faith and project a loving, righteous face to everyone else. I find myself continuously forgiving my offenders, at least in conversations with God or in written letters that I will never mail, and I have examined myself at length to ensure that I am not guilty of what has been said. I make mistakes. I sin. I’m not perfect, but I know who I am and who I am not. While I cannot see the motivation behind the lies, I do know that they are indeed lies created to make me feel shame and guilt. From time to time I pray for that family. They are hurting themselves and others.

    I’m loyal and care deeply about those in my inner circles, so the pain I feel over this situation is deep and intensely personal. I don’t throw friendships away, even if some friendships evolve into more casual relationships. This situation adds fuel to the lies I have always struggled with…that I am unlovable and unworthy. Five years ago, this rejection would have crushed me. Although it still hurts, I am stronger, inside and out, than I was back then. I know my worth, and I can recognize the lies more easily. I’m rambling, I know and I’m sorry! This is simply a situation I know all too well. It isn’t easy, but don’t let this person’s snub turn you inside out. You know who you are and what you have or have not done. You also know this person to the extent that he has shown you. You displayed a willingness to be open and civil, and he rejected it. That’s on him. At the end of the day, you are not responsible for his behaviour, actions, or attitude, and you will not be his ultimate judge. Be you. Live the life God has for you.

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    1. I am in the process of ending 2 “close relationships” with, supposedly, almost best friends. Same boat as your description, but not there yet. Both proved chronic narcissists :D, and i was such a fool to play along their drama. Drama queens. Both. Always discussion going towards them. Always them. Enough is enough. Because, anyway, any intelligent person, will appear boring to these people. So you get dumped again and again, left clueless. They cannot or won’t go deeper than their fragile superficial little / big ego. So one way or another, either you get dumb enough to stay at their level, or you walk away. Or, nature will force separation. I choose to walk away myself 😀

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  17. ‘Christians’, eh? We’re a funny bunch of folk. All holier than thou, and lifting hands and voices, then cutting somebody up in the street; because, you know, I’m holier than you, and I have never sinned, and even if I did, it wouldn’t be as big a sin as yours is/was, er, well, y’know what I mean.

    Some people – all of us (may I suggest?) – need to be reminded that The Lord was denied THREE TIMES by Peter. Yet afterward he was restored to do a work for Him. The Lord did not snub Peter, but made a point of commissioning him

    We may call ourselves Christians, but I do not think that we will actually BE Christians – proper Christians – until The Lord comes again. Meanwhile we do the best we can. We fail, we trip up, we stumble, we upset others, we upset God . . . we are forgiven. All of us. Whether other people like it or not.

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  18. A few tears, a few prayers and finally an acceptance of Jesus’ love for me overriding all other relationships. It may be hard to understand but Jesus really is my best friend. Sometime He is quiet and lets me think on things but He has never snubbed me.

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  19. I bumped into someone who was my best friend over 10 years ago. ended the friendship with little explanation and became uncontactable within weeks. It hurt.
    I was at that time, caught up in all my own stuff. I wonder if I should have perused it or not. I think about her regularly.
    But it’s not good to get caught in knots. They have theirs and you have yours. We are forever weaving in and out of each other’s lives. And only He can see the full tapestry xx

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  20. Oh, do I EVER know this feeling. It happened to me just two years ago. We were apart of a new church start, the pastoral couple falsely accused me, sent me out of their church and even called up the friends from our bible study group to stop meeting with us. I was broken, confused and devastated, but completely committed to forgiving them and moving forward. I emailed them apologizes, I prayed for them and I blessed them. Recently I even thanked the pastor for sending us to the amazing church we now attend…no response from either of them. When they see me they look the other way. And in pride they believe they are doing God’s will. All the while the devil is laughing. Keep pressing in to forgive! We can’t change other people’s hearts, only our own.

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  21. Christ had to endure the cross on his own but that price means we are never alone despite what others say or do to us. First point of contact is Jesus and he accepts us as we are. We are all works in progress and sometimes God removes people and places from us to make stronger in the long run. Continue to run your race because it is yours alone. Blessings.

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  22. There are two concepts that have finally allowed me to get beyond any hurt and rejection I encounter. Both of them have the potential to sound trite because they probably have been overused. But when I meditated on them and really grasped the simple truth of their meanings I was able to use them to let go of hurt and rejection, The first is mainly for the people in my life who are important to me and who I love and respect. The people I allow to be in my life at this stage of life are people who would never deliberately hurt or reject me or anyone for that matter. They are better people than that. So if I feel hurt or rejected by them it is probably my skewed perception. And if I am not convinced, I make myself tell them my feelings and ask if they meant to hurt or reject me. Because they are also people who I trust to be honest with me. As for being hurt and rejected by the rest of humanity, I have come to realize that it is absolutely true that hurt people hurt people. What that means to me is that whatever someone does to hurt me or make me feel rejected is all about them and nothing about me. I finally really believe this and consequently, I hardly ever feel hurt or rejected for more than a few minutes anymore.

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  23. Its no big deal. Him snubbing you definitely isn’t about you. Its about his thought process. Not your fault. He could have had a traumatic experience in the past. Keep running. Don’t try so hard. It’s no big deal.

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