I have had pen-friends since I was 12 years old.
Some have become very good friends and some are well on the way to being in that category. As is the nature of this hobby, some pals don’t last the distance; they lose interest or things happen to them that cause them to stop writing to you. I have had pals that only wrote to me because they wanted me to send them things all the time, which I didn’t appreciate and I stopped writing to them.
At the moment, I have about 25 pals in the UK and around the world that I write to on a regular basis and it is always interesting to learn about the countries/towns they live in and what their lives are like. Some are not that interested in what I get up to, they are more focused on my thoughts about certain subjects, others love to know what I have been up to, places I have visited and certainly about the restaurants I go to when I lunch with my sister and one of our cousins every six weeks or so, and when I talk about the dishes we have, they tell me they are salivating!
However, imagine my surprise yesterday when I received a letter from a pal telling me off about something I did or did not do!
Let me recap…
Last autumn, I went through a low patch and I wrote about it in this post. As is my want when I get like this, I retreat into myself until I have sorted my head out and can then resume my position in the human race. In addition, I most certainly was not in a place to write my usual letters and they soon piled up, especially as I hate to burden people with my problems. I felt better soon afterwards but even with Christmas fast approaching, I had not really contacted anyone and hardly sent any Christmas cards.
I don’t have to work between Christmas and New Year so, for two days, I knuckled down and cleared the backlog. I think that in total I wrote about 20 letters and in each one I apologised and explained why they had not heard from me for such a long time.
On the whole, those that have replied have been understanding and glad that I am feeling better, and certainly appreciative that when not in the mood, the last thing you want to do is to write about how jolly a time you are having when you feel like shit!
Apart from this person yesterday.
She told me that she could not relate to what I was writing, told me that I should have sent her a card to let her know I was OK so that she would not have worried! Said that it was horrible that I let her wait and wonder why I didn’t write to her, that she was busy as well but that she would still have written to me, and how would I have liked it if she had done the same thing to me and I had not heard from her, and that I should treat people like I would like to be treated, and I should have thought about her feelings and that I should not have sent her the letter I did so as to piss her off. And on, and on, and on… *sigh*
Hold on a moment there love! Let’s go back a bit here.
Firstly, if you had not written to me for a long time, I would have assumed that you were busy and had not found the time (this is a hobby remember, not a job), and if the silence was much longer than I would have expected to be normal, then I probably would have sent you a card asking how you were and hoping all was OK. Perhaps you could have done the same for me? Small thought there, if you were so concerned?
Secondly, and probably more importantly, it is not the fact that I did not give a monkey’s left testicle about you and your feelings, and that I could not be arsed to find the time, it was because, I was not in a position where I could write you a letter telling you about what I had been up to as it would have only lasted a couple of paragraphs! I could, however, have bombarded you with how low I was feeling, how shit everything was for me at that time, how I did not want to talk to anyone, how I had to drag myself into work etc, but we have only been writing to each other about a year, and don’t know each other that well yet, and I did not think it fair that I do that to you.
The ball is in my court as to whether I reply or not and I don’t know if I will yet. I don’t really want to write another letter explaining myself and apologising, but aside from that, if someone can be so dismissive to the problems of others when they are having an emotional situation, even after explanations are given, then perhaps they are not the sort of person I want to be writing to.