I (25m) used to have the biggest crush on my childhood friend “Emily” (26f). As a teen I wasn’t very assertive and a little awkward so I never made a move and just hoped that one day Emily would realize that I was the guy for her. The only person who I openly admitted my crush (although it was kind of obvious) to was my brother “Liam” (28m). He was much more assertive and confident than I was and would run through girls like water so I went to him for advice about Emily.
Given the situation at the time you can imagine my surprise when I caught Liam and Emily hooking up.
I know that she technically was never my girlfriend but it still sucked and I did feel betrayed. Turns out they hooked up at a party once and liked the encounter so much that they kept meeting up to do it when no one was around. I felt completely sick and basically just distanced myself from Emily after that, which could be really awkward because we had a lot of classes together and had the same shift at the part-time job we had. A job that Emily frequently depended on me to give her rides to.
I just wanted to remove Emily from my life completely but during the summer of our senior year she and Liam sat me and my parents down and explained that Emily had gotten pregnant and were planning on keeping the baby. My parents weren’t happy while I just got up and locked myself in my room. All I could think was “Well crap, now she’s never going to go away.” I purposefully transferred to an Out-Of-State College so I wouldn’t be home as much and lied about getting stuck in traffic when I missed Emily and Liam’s wedding and I showed no interest in my niece “Daisy” (8f), although I still make the effort to be polite when I’m around them.
Recently, Emily’s father has passed away and she’s really going through it because despite him not being around she always desired a relationship. When we were kids I remember all those times I was a shoulder for Emily to cry on whenever she felt sad about her dad and I guess she was longing for that type of comfort from me and kept reaching out. One day I relented and let her vent but I maintained a silent and formal demeanor on the matter.
After spending about an hour crying I offered Emily some water and then she asked me why I was being so cold, how I know how much she needed a friend right now. I calmly yet firmly told her that we were just kids then and that if she wants that level of emotional intimacy then she needs to go to my brother, her husband, because I stopped being her comfort person a long time ago.
Emily cried even more, left, and has managed to send Liam, my parents, Emily’s mom, and from mutual friends to call me up and tell me I’m heartless and sad for being so spiteful. I can honestly say that I am now over Emily but that doesn’t mean I’m willing to be as close to her as I used to so Am I A Jerk?
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