Last year I met a woman and her 7 months son through online parenting group. She was a psychologist living with her husband, a businessman, in a “cookie-cutter” development in my city. There was a slight feeling of inferiority, not just because she was professionally and economically established while we were still struggling and scraping by. It turned out later, she was a bit cold and distant with me. Her husband was a very controlling, rigidly set in his ways youthful looking man. They spent plenty of weekends apart not just because the husband’s business traveling, but because he was a very active golfer too. Outwardly they seemed a very well put-together couple. But that was only an illusion. Over the months I made numerous attempts to get closer to her. I called and we had pretty long conversations that seemed to flow freely. Yet, something did not feel right in both her relationship with me and towards her husband. The only person she appeared to be strongly attached to was her son, -a very cranky, whiny toddler. Then couple of months ago I spent few hours for a play date at her house. I am not so sure about American hospitality traditions, they seem to vary from home to home because of abundance of cultures and immigrants. In my family it is made sure the guests are comfortable, offered drinks, food, anything they might like or find interesting. Keeping that in mind, I let it slide she did not offer me more tea when I was done. While having tea we got into a following conversation. She finally revealed to me she was seeing a therapist(about time, I thought to myself.)  She also told me her husband refused to see a family therapist which made her feel even worse about the problems they were having. When she told me that, something bad must have reflected in my face unconsciously because she rushed to change the subject. I called her gain to schedule another play date. She promised to call back. But she never did. Although I keep reminding myself it was probably her own problems that she was dealing with, making her emotionally unavailable for friendship, I feel guilty about the whole thing as if I have done her wrong.

1 Comment
  1. ThePanther 15 years ago

    It's too easy to take on the problems of others. Far too easy.

     Just remember that her life is hers to worry about. It's hard, sometimes, to forget that not everyone is humble about their "flaws".

    If I were you, I'd let her know that if she ever wanted to talk, you'd be there to listen objectively and be of support to her and her son… and then I'd let the issue drop.

    Prying will only make people clam up worse.

    0 kudos

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