Last year I went to visit one of my best friends in Chicago. Before I had arrived, she mentioned that she cut her hair really short. A few years ago when I did the same thing, she would tease me about it, so the night I arrived, in joking, I said something about her new "boy" do. I reassured her later that night that I was just teasing, but during my visit I couldn't help but feel that she was distant towards me.
After I left, she stopped returning my phone calls and when I would see her online, she would not respond to my IMs. After about a month, she finally called me to let me know that I had really hurt her feelings. I apologized and I reiterated that I was only joking with her, but I'm not sure I made things better because I pointed out that she had teased me when I had my hair cut that short, too. She reminded me that she's a lot more sensitive than I am and told me I should have known better. I apologized and thought we had worked everything out, but I haven't talked to her in over a year. I left her messages on her birthday, on Christmas, and on New Year's last year, but I haven't heard a peep in response so I decided to give her some space.
I miss her terribly and want nothing more than to have my friend back so should I call her and make another attempt to mend our relationship, or should I just respect her obvious decision not to talk to me and just leave it at that? — Cut Out Constance
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Dear Cut Out Constance,
It sounds like your friend was incredibly sensitive about her new hair cut and, in my opinion, overreacted. Are you sure there was nothing else bothering her? The fact that she's gone radio silent for over a year makes me think there is something deeper behind her anger towards you. It's pretty clear that she isn't going to make the first move to rekindle this friendship, so if you miss her, I say reach out again — you have nothing to lose.
Since she doesn't seem to answer her phone when you make attempts to call, I'd write her an email or send a card. She's explained that she's more sensitive than you so I advise you to take a tender tone — I might not even talk about the incident at all. What happened is in the past now, so try to focus on the future. Let her know how much you miss her friendship and ask what you can do to make things right in the new year, for a new friendship. Unfortunately, friends grow apart, so once you say your piece, it'll be up to her if she wants to mend things — I hope she does. Good luck!