A relationship that's more complicated than simply friends or enemies is the frenemy, especially when you know on the most fundamental level that you are friends, but they do things that strike a nerve. Constantly.
It's frustrating, because you value the friendship enough to not want to do anything that can possibly sever it (though you wonder if they also care in the same way, or if the thought of it even crossed their mind), but you also constantly want to punch them, or something, anything in the face. It's times like this that I find a good workout with lots punching helps. And kicking, too.
Once the adrenaline subsides, I am left with almost zero anger and lots of thoughts about past friendships.
My thoughts drift to a friend from high school who I consider one of my best friends.
Best, not because she is the closest to me; in fact, we haven't talked in more than half a year, a fact I deeply regret. But rather, best as in her quality as a friend. Mostly because of an incident that happened when we were in our first year of high school.
As is characteristic of an all-girls high school, complicated issues were involved. My then best friend, whom I shall call M, used to be friends with two other girls, who resented the fact that M and I were now pretty much joined by the hip. I knew about this, but never thought much about it until one afternoon after class, when M and I were seated on a bench, basking in the dimming glow of a setting sun.
"I heard N and G (the two other girls previously mentioned) telling our other classmates you smelled awful," she told me matter-of-factly. "But, I defended you from them."
At that time, I resented it. I knew instinctively (or perhaps, part of it was also anxious paranoia) that they didn't like me, but here was the confirmation. It changes the way you see people, and colors all your future interactions. What else could they be thinking about me?
But looking back, it's rare to find someone who'll tell you straight up when someone else is maligning your character behind your back. Out of friendship, and an unspoken loyalty to you. Even if it's something as shallow as your apparent body odor.
It makes me achingly miss her all of a sudden. Maybe I'll message her tonight.