I have a friend who I've been close with for over 25 years. We were friends, and our spouses became friends too; we did things together... movies, dinner, etc.
Since my friend's husband died, she's become someone I don't know. At first, she was lost in denial, but she was calling me 4-5 times a day. After a few weeks of this, I suggested a therapist might be helpful and I felt I was filling that role, but wasn't competent at it (I don't deal well with loss). I didn't realize at the time that she was angry about what I said, but she did back off the calls.
Flash forward two years now, and her angry has taken over. It's not just me. She has become a horrible gossip. She's jealous of others. She's always angry at somebody. She's "gone off" on me three times now. I can't call it a fight because it was just name calling on her part, pointing out all my flaws, some real, some imagined.
This last time she called angry (tone of voice) when I was deathly ill (I told her up front) and started a "fight." She told me I was exaggerating how sick I was and how much pain I was in. I did fight back on that telling her I really was as sick as I said, and it didn't make sense for her to compare her prior illness with mine since she's never had this condition.
I emailed her after that explaining that I really was as sick with this condition as I said I was. I wasn't sleeping, I couldn't eat, and I was in 24/7 agony. In response, she sent a hateful, hurtful email filled with name calling. She also mentioned that I was a bully for telling her to see a therapist and it was "right after (her husband) died." (Shouldn't a bell have gone off when she wrote that?)
I haven't heard from her since. We were supposed to go on a mini-vacation that very weekend and I was SO looking forward to that for months and was trying hard to get well enough to go, but of course, she went with her other friends and left me behind.
I couldn't allow myself to be angry when this went down because of how sick I was, so I went straight to being hurt and disappointed. It's been a couple of weeks now and I've thought a lot about it. We never had these type of interaction until after her husband died. It's like every negative dark-side thing about her has taken over. I think she's stuck in the anger part of grief. I think it's being directed at me because of our intimacy. I have been there for her through all this when other fled.
So, what can I do other than remove myself from the situation? I don't know if she'll every try to contact me again. I don't want her in my life the way she is now, but I do feel badly for her when I realize she's not okay. With me gone, she'll have to find other targets for her anger, and will likely get herself in trouble at work or with family.
I'm interested in hearing what other think. BTW, she can't hear anything helpful coming from me. And I am afraid of letting all that negativity back in my life because it WILL have an effect on my health.