It was when the Covid-19 crisis started that it all went wrong. I have had a group of close friends for years. We are the type to call each other every day, to share our sentimental and professional setbacks, our joys and our doubts. No modesty: we walk naked in front of each other, my friends can go to the toilet in front of me. A family, in short.
“I found myself unemployed and I did anything: outings, drugs, sex, I adopted a very self-destructive behavior”
In this group, I have three longtime friends: Victoria, Anna and Geraldine. I have known Victoria for twenty years. I was his marriage witness. Before the Covid, we talked to each other all the time. We had a fusional relationship, built on the daily story. When the pandemic arrived in France, I was going through a difficult period. A few months earlier, I had quit my job, an important teaching position, for one that had been offered to me abroad. I was happy and proud, but it screwed up at the last moment, I didn’t get the job. I found myself unemployed and I did anything: going out, drugs, sex, I adopted a very self-destructive behavior.
At that point, my friends tried to be there for me, but I refused their help. And, when the first confinement was announced, I felt the need to refocus on myself, to enjoy the solitude in my apartment, which I know how to appreciate. My way of overcoming this period was to do meditation, to disappear from circulation. I did not participate in the Zoom aperitifs of our group of friends, I did not or little news.
A feeling of exclusion
In May 2020, at the time of deconfinement, I go to Geraldine’s birthday party. There, I hear a conversation between Anna and Victoria talking about their future vacation together. I did not know. I discover that my group of friends have organized a vacation in the South. They decided that during confinement. Everyone will be there except me. At the moment, I do not show that I am injured. I’m pretty proud, and I don’t like to fuss. I tell myself it’s stupid to react like that, but I’m upset. When Anna suggests that I come, I say no, out of pride.
This is the trigger for the sequel: I felt excluded. Of course, there is an element of paranoia. I think if I told them about my resentment about the holiday episode today, they would think I was crazy. At that time, I also had the impression of becoming the outcast of the group: the guy who has no job, no money. Yet they never made me feel it, even though I owe them a little money. They are incredibly elegant. But I caught remarks from a friend of a friend at a party, like “You don’t move to find a job”, and it fueled my sense of exclusion.
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