The unkindest cut

What makes people suddenly cut other people off, precipitously end a friendship or a romantic attachment by ceasing all communication? I have known several people in my life who one day simply vanished, stopped making contact, after having been (apparently) quite friendly and open. Sometimes you can guess at a reason, but of course you can never be sure. I think of it as a sort of “sudden death” syndrome for friendships.

I can’t recall ever doing anything like that myself. I’m not sure that I would be able to. If I were truly that angry at somebody, I would probably need to express my anger to them, hoping against hope that we could find some way to resolve the conflict. To me, silence between people, utter silence, is an abyss. It is a featureless void upon which may be projected our darkest fears.

Perhaps there are two kinds of people in the world: Those who deal with a conflicted relationship by expressing their anger, and those who simply take out the knife and calmly hold the relationship out before them. And then, with a single cut, quietly slit its throat.

I am glad that I am in the first category.

4 Responses to “The unkindest cut”

  1. sally says:

    I understand what you mean. For some, its a numbers game. At some point they just can’t keep up with everyone — so they don’t. With others, people just drift apart. It doesn’t mean that they have hatred or cut off, time just slips by, and slips by, and slips by…and then its 30 years, yanno?

  2. Mu says:

    I’ve lost touch with several friends because of changing life situations, not because of any tension or animosity. While I was at college, in China, in NYC, my high school friends were married, having kids, and buying homes. We’re just in different worlds now. The best of these friends I do try to keep in touch with, but certainly not very successfully.

    Other examples would be college friends who upon maturation and gaining comfort with the person I truly am, I realized I really didn’t have much in common with. We liked sports, videogames, and had a good time in college when drinking or just hanging out, but as I’ve matured I’ve realized I didn’t actually find them that great of friends, nor I to them. They weren’t deep friendships, just fun friendships.

    That’s my experience, anyway. /2cents

  3. Lisa says:

    There’s a third type who slowly, almost imperceptibly, draws away, never resolving, never quite cutting things off. It is, I can tell you from personal experience, like having your blood slowly drained from your body.

  4. Zabador says:

    I guess I cut communication in the past, mostly with ex-bf, but that would be when they would not discuss in the first place. If the discussion is not open to “solve” the problem, then it’s better to cut off, otherwise, you just can’t face it. Recently, I stopped talking to a good friend of mine. She was dragging me down all the time, without even noticing what I was saying. She was having monologues. Then I cut off the chat for a few weeks, came back after that, and now she seems to not want to talk to me anymore, I dunno her reasons because she never told me. Anyways, all of them were weird and (bad) crazy people, not regular ones :-) lol

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