Lately I’ve come to realise that some people were only friends with me because my boyfriend was dying.
Now that might sound harsh, but if you’re reading this and you were mutual friends with both Jonny and I yet you’ve not been in contact with me since… Maybe step back for a second and put yourself in my shoes.
The way I see it there are a whole load of people who were shocked, upset and heartbroken at Jonny’s death but I break it down a bit. There’s the inner circle – the people who’s hearts will never fully heal: family, I include myself in that group.
Next there’s the friends, radiating outwards like ripples; the best friends since childhood, the best friends from adulthood, the mutual friendship circles, the college buddies, old school friends, etc.
There’s the ‘hanger on’s.
These are the people that don’t quite fit into the ‘acquaintance, old friend, mutual friend of a friend’ group. These are people that like to think they’re in the inner circle. These are also people who use Jonny’s death to their advantage.
I’m talking about people who get a little kudos from being part of charity things inspired by Jonny’s memory because it makes them look good. People who know if they post something about Jonny on social media it’s going to get a lot of attention.
People who think they know how I feel because Jonny once got drunk and let slip a little emotion about his illness.
Worst of all, these people (and they are few and far between, obviously, the majority of people are understandably and legitimately grieving) like to think they know how I feel.
But lets get this straight, yes?
This is aimed not only at ‘hanger on’s but also all Jonny’s friends who were sad for a week or two but now don’t even acknowledge me in the street:
Do you wake up every morning and feel your chest tighten when you remember that someone you love is gone? Do you reach over in bed only to realise the one person you want isn’t there? And will never be there?
This isn’t a break up. My boyfriend is NEVER coming back.
Do you spend each and every day biting your tongue when someone mentions something vaguely related to Jonny?
Because if for even a second you let your guard down you will cry.
Do you wake up in the middle of the night because you’ve had such vivid nightmares, stemming from the post traumatic stress of having watched someone you love die, that you can’t even cope anymore?
Do you still send Jonny texts or call his answerphone in the middle of the night?
Do you say goodnight to his picture before bed and cry?
Do you think what I’ve written above sounds crazy?
Or like I’m not coping?
If the answer to that is ‘yes’ then I have news for you, my friend: you don’t actually know how I feel…
And you’re not actually grieving on the same level because you’ve already got through that bit.
So maybe I’m glad no one talks to me anymore, because maybe it saves me from having to keep explaining myself…
But take it from me – if this was the other way round I would make sure you ALWAYS knew you were loved and supported and looked after.
Because it feels like shit when you realise no one wants you around without your other half…
That’s how I’ve been made to feel.
Because some people were only really my friend because my boyfriend was dying…