Sunday, November 1, 2009

Requesting a Friend

I've written and said often how much I'm enjoying using social media to reconnect with old friends and classmates. Sadly, one re-connection just isn't going to happen.

On FB this morning, I found someone. As I was growing up he was my neighbor, a friend, and a classmate. I fondly remember hanging out with him with our neighborhood group, playing kick-the-can and putting on shows. Anticipating the opportunity of reminiscing about our younger days, I sent a friend request, and got back this:

"wow. Are u f***ing kiding me. You are a total ****. Do you remeber how you treated me. Think about you white trash w**** NOW"

OMG! I'm shocked.

I've always thought that I was a good person, I give back to the community and to others. I'm a nice person. This is not self-proclaimed - many people have told me so, sometimes so much so that "nice" doesn't always seem like a compliment. I know "kids will be kids" and kids are mean to each other, but for those of you that knew me then, I think you'll agree that I really was a nice kid. Brown-nose, teacher's pet, straight-A student, Girl Scout even through high school, respectful, accepting, straight-laced - heck, I was the kid that got picked on and made fun of! So this scathing response I received from my friend request came as a surprise.

I don't know what I did to him. I don't know why he still has such vehement hatred toward me, and at this point I don't think it matters. It troubles me to think I could have been so mean to someone that they carry such indignation to warrant such a diatribe decades later. And I'll admit it gives me pause to think: could there be others that I offended and I have no recollection?

So first of all, I'd like to thank him for his honesty (I really do try to see the good in everyone, there is something to be learned even from our harshest critics). And second, I'd like to apologize to anyone that I ever offended or hurt in some way. I assure you it was unintentional, I meant no ill-will toward you.

I don't expect to be friends with everyone I've ever met. And I'm sure I'll be more selective before I click on "Add as Friend" on FB in the future. I do hope he will somehow find some peace and let go of his resentment towards me and his childhood.

I still look back on our neighborhood childhood with fondness, and I would still call him my friend. I hope when I leave the world one day that the majority of the people I've ever met will remember that I am a nice person.