This is a difficult letter to write, and I should have written it years ago. I’m as much to blame as you, and I’ve finally decided that we can’t go on like this any longer. You didn’t force yourself on me…I was just as willing to begin our long friendship as you. It was a mutual thing.
You were always there for me in the best and worst of times. You were with me to celebrate when I got my first job and again when I got that big promotion. And who could forget how you stayed by my side when my kids were born and we toasted the night away?
You also helped me through some rough periods in my life too. You were there when my parents died and helped me through the grief. When I threw out my back, you comforted me for weeks and eased the pain.
But as time went on, I felt like you took advantage of me. You’re not a cheap friend to have. On the contrary, you often cost more than all the other items on the menu, and sometimes a single bottle of wine or champagne runs into the hundreds of dollars. Sure those are for special occasions, but come on. A hundred bucks?
You’re very selfish and only concerned with your own well-being. When I tried to work out and get healthier, you were always waiting for me after the gym, prodding me to spend a little time with you. Then you seduced me into spending the night with you, and in the morning, you’d laugh at me while my head and stomach ached from too much of you.
Worst of all, you have a serious jealousy streak in you, bordering on psychotic. How could you come between my family and me? Not only did you make appearances at the kids’ birthday parties, but you always had to be the star attraction, shifting the attention to you and making a mockery of my family and me. You couldn’t handle even a few special days off so others could shine.
You are filled with empty promises that you’ll play nice and only come to visit once in a while. Instead, you camped out in my home, my car, my office and even went so far as to hide in my suitcase on our family trip to Disneyland. You know they don’t serve alcohol in the park.
After all the good times we spent, you ended up ruining my life. Because of you, I’ve spent nights in jail, I lost my license, my job, my marriage, and my kids won’t speak to me.
You know the line, it’s not you, it’s me? All these years I thought it was us. But I’ve come to realize that I can’t have you in my life anymore. I seriously don’t know if it is you or me. You’ve had such a strong grip on me that I don’t even know who I am today.
So it’s time I let you know that I met someone else and she promised to take care of me and nurture me back to health. She is filled with joy and gratitude and takes things one day at a time. She doesn’t judge me, get jealous, or fill my head with empty promises. She has lots of friends that she’s helped before and they’ve turned their lives around. Some took longer than others but they all help each other because they’ve been where I am today. Her name is Recovery and she makes me feel good about myself…as a Person, a Father, a Spouse, and a Friend.
As much as I’d like to blame you for what’s happened to me, our relationship started out with good intentions and just imploded itself. They say it’s not something that consciously happens, and it really was out of my control. But with help from a lot of caring people, I’m taking control of my life again. As much as it hurts to walk away from you, I’ll always try to remember the good times of my life and put the bad times behind me.
Goodbye, my friend.
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