What’s a real friend? What’s a fake friend? Honestly, these days, I don’t know. Sometimes, I think this person is okay, and that we’re just casual friends, yet somehow, I realize that that person doesn’t even treat me as a friend or maybe, even like me. That makes me think . . . did I do something wrong to enrage that person or was I stupid to think that we were even friends?
Recently, I found out that my elementary school friend removed me from my friend’s list on Facebook. This friend was really close with me when we were young. We were best friends, really, but once I moved to different schools, we started to lose contact with each other. We used to meet every now and then. Gradually, we barely spoke on the phone or even talked to each other on MSN. Still, we added each other on Facebook. Funny thing was that she’d never post anything on my wall. Even when she wanted to wish me Happy Birthday a few years ago, she had to private message me. Was it that embarrassing to post publicly on my wall? 

Now, she has gotten rid of me on her friend’s list. That was tough for me to digest. Eight years and more of friendship . . . was gone like that. I wanted to ask why, why she’d take the time to remove me when she hadn’t even removed another friend of mine, who hadn’t known her until later on. Had I offended her in any way?

To be honest, I never forgot about her and the time we hung out with each other. I felt silly thinking that we could be friends forever or that maybe, one day, we could meet up twenty years later with our children over tea or coffee. Was this friendship all one-sided? Had she never treated me as her best friend or her friend in the first place? 

I think, in this case, she changed. She became obsessed with the fast life full of parties and craziness while I stayed on my academic route. She hung out with people that we used to say we’d never be friends with. Those people, ironically, became her best friends, and now, we are merely strangers. Even if we were to bump into each other, I doubt we’d ever greet one another again. Maybe, slowly, I’d forget what she looked like and how important I thought our friendship was. 

What’s worse is that I’ve discovered more that have defriended me. A classmate and I had known each other ever since the start of high school. Actually, I knew who she was when we were at a swim club together. She was at a higher level than me, and funnily, I recognized who she was from afar. When we happened to be in the same program as each other for high school, I thought that it was such a coincidence. I thought I’d take this chance to be friends with her, and I had become her friend . . . or so I thought until these days.

She too had removed me from her friends’ list, and it seemed like only I had been removed out of her high school friends. Was I not of use anymore so she didn’t want to be my friend? Had she never even liked me and just pretended to befriend me? Had I offended her too in some way? I really don’t know. I keep thinking about what had happened before. Sometimes, I think she’d fake a smile. I’m not sure whether or not my memories are right anymore. Maybe, I’ve known before that she was just pretending to be my friend, but I just didn’t want to admit it. I wanted to believe that she could be my friend.

I wanted to believe too that blood relations could bind people together. Guess not. Even my cousin has removed me from her list of friends. She and I were never close, and this time, I’m pretty sure I know why she removed me. I didn’t enrage her or do anything to her. This deletion is the only one I can understand, and the one that doesn’t hurt as much since I had expected it to happen.

Somehow, the other realizations hurt more than I had ever anticipated. They’re not like stabs, but they’re more like toxic acid dripping on my skin. Slowly, a scar is forming and over time, it’ll fade away, but it’ll never really go away.

I know that I’ll always think back to myself. What did I do wrong? Why so cruel? Why so bored? Why would you even take the time to go delete someone from your list? If you’d accepted someone in the first place as a friend, then keep it that way. If you didn’t like that person, then don’t even accept him or her as a friend. That pain wouldn’t be as severe as the other sort.

In the end, what else can I do but to move on with my own life? It’s nothing really, I’d tell myself. Friendships come and go.