I’m more upset this evening because, for the second time in a month, my so-called friend P hasn’t invited me to a special occasion that he is celebrating. Tomorrow he will be five years sober, and it seems like I’m the only person in AA who isn’t going to his meal. A few weeks ago he celebrated his belly button birthday, and once again, I wasn’t invited. I’m confused as to why I’m not welcome at these things. I invited him to my birthday meal in July. What have I done to offend him? Clearly it’s something, because everyone I know is going to the meal tomorrow and I was sure I was closer to him than some of those people.
I’m getting resentful when I shouldn’t be. I’m getting hysterical when I shouldn’t be. It’s only a meal, I have no right to automatically expect an invite. I’m being incredibly selfish. He can invite whoever he wants to anything – maybe there’s only space for fifteen people in the restaurant tomorrow, and I’m his 16th closest friend. Maybe he doesn’t feel as close to me as I thought he did. There’s nothing wrong with that, is there? It would be petty of me to dwell on this.
But I am dwelling on it, because I’m a fricking alcoholic. I’m fricking angry, and I want to take it out on people. I have taken it out on people. At coffee after tonight’s meeting I was unexpectedly rude to one of P’s sponsees, J, who is part of P’s little ‘clique’ and who I am fast going off because he seems to get invited to everything. I disguised a bitchy remark with humour, but it wouldn’t have come out if I wasn’t angry at him. I was instantly worried that I had offended him and that he would hate me forever, but now I don’t really care how he feels. I actually hope he does hate me now. I’ve spent my life trying to be nice and polite to everyone I come across. If I can put someone down and make the rest of the table laugh once in a while, why shouldn’t I enjoy it?
I’m mostly pissed off because not getting invited to people’s birthdays is a running theme in my life. When I was a kid no one ever helped me to celebrate my birthday, and I never got invited to anything. Then when I turned eighteen and left home, I started getting invited to things, but not nearly enough, and every time I found out that something exciting had taken place without my knowing, I was deeply hurt. Just as I am hurt tonight. I thought I had got over that abandonment thing, but really I haven’t. I feel exactly the way I felt six years ago when my flatmates at University had a big party at the beach and left me behind, on my own. It’s like being forgotten about. How can this be happening to me again?
I really don’t get why P doesn’t consider me a close a friend. I want to speak to my sponsor about this, but he’s going to the bloody meal tomorrow, and I don’t want to make him feel guilty. I wish I could stop feeling so bloody hurt but it’s a deep, old wound. I feel eighteen again: lonely, confused and abandoned. I want to punish everyone by leaving AA and never speaking to them again. I won’t do that, but I’m tempted to change my meetings around so that I don’t have to see that clique any more. I resented P and his friends when I came into AA last year because they all seemed so happy and popular, just like those cool kids at school who never had any trouble getting invited to anything. For quite some time I’ve considered P a great friend, and the resentment hasn’t touched me for months, because I thought I’d actually got to know him. But now I just want him gone from my life. Six years ago when I was in a similar situation at University I sent everyone nasty text messages telling them how much they’d upset me. I behaved rather like A has behaved recently towards me. I’m not going to send anyone a nasty text message tonight, I know it wouldn’t do any good. I know it would probably only hurt me in the long run to punish P quietly by avoiding him and all the others. What can I do? I really don’t feel like getting over this so I can wish him a happy birthday tomorrow and treat him as normal. Why should I do that? I don’t have to do anything for him, just as he didn’t invite me to both his birthdays. I think our friendship is over.