Social Question

Esedess's avatar

What should I do moving forward with a friend who split my head open with a rock?

Asked by Esedess (1825 points ) February 22nd, 2012

Here’s the story… (and I apologize for the length)

It was the morning of New Years Eve 2012. My roommate/“best friend” and a neighbor-girl were out on our patio just chillin, still in our PJ’s. We were smoking some cigs and I was throwing playing cards out off the patio (as I’m one to do). When my roommate walked inside I threw one at his back, but missed and nicked his ear. I didn’t cut him or anything, but he proceeded to freak out about it. I teased him a little saying, “calm down man. It’s just a piece of paper!” (we always give each other sh*t) He told me he felt like throwing something at me, and that some hefty bar magnets sitting next to him were looking pretty good. I shrugged it off as an angry but empty threat just before he grabbed them in a fit of rage. I turned my back thinking he was going to throw the chunk at me, but instead he ran up behind me and smashed the magnets into my head shattering all of them. I turned around in disbelief and said, “are you serious!?”. I wiped my head with my hand leaving it literally covered in blood. I turned my palm to him and repeated my question. His response was, “YEA! I said I was gunna do it!”. At this point blood was dripping down my neck and pretty much everything in my being was telling me to lay him out. I almost punched him in the face, but then suddenly stopped myself. He proceeded to say stuff like, “I don’t know why you’re surprised… I said I was going to do it!” & “yea… well I didn’t mean to do it that hard. Now I feel like an a**hole.” I never did hit him back, but for the next 3 days I was about 1 second away from driving home, kicking the door in, and beating the living sh*t out of him. I abstained with much difficulty, but the incident got me thinking, a lot.

This guy, who considers himself my brother, is the same person who never paid me for a car I sold him years ago. He’s the IT specialist who let my computer remain unusable for 6 months when he alone could have fixed it at any time. He’s the guy who, after totaling his car, I loaned mine to everyday for 6 months straight so that he could keep his job (which he never gave me gas money for). He’s the guy who didn’t get me a condom the one time I asked him to, when he was just playing video games alone in his room. And now he is the guy who disregarded friendship and split my head open out of anger, and who I, even still, held back anger out of friendship for.

Now, after this most recent event, from which I didn’t stop bleeding for an entire day, and have permanent scars from, I looked back at our friendship as a whole, and I realized that I’m always the one taking a beating in one way or another. This one time physically, and metaphorically all the others. Sometimes it’s little things here and there, and sometimes it’s big things. But whenever sh*t hits the fan, I’m always the one who bites the bullet, eats the costs, or comes through as a friend in the end. For him, I could be counted on for anything, and I always came through where I could, even when it drastically inconvenienced me. He’s never reciprocated the favors.
Up until this point, whenever situations arose where he had consciously wronged me, I was left with 1 of 3 decisions.
1) Forgive him
2) Stoop to his level and fight back
3) Stop being friends

Finally, for the first time, I saw our friendship as a pointless waist of time, money, and effort on my part. 3 days later when I came home, I told him all this and kicked him out, leaving him living at his mother’s with no car, and I haven’t spoken to him since.

Recently, he’s been hitting me up saying stuff like, “dude… you mean a lot to me. Look at it objectively. We’ve been best friends for 12 years. We got into it one day, and I hit you. Now you hate me and won’t return any calls/texts? You’re actions make no sense to me. Brother’s isn’t when it’s convenient.”

I see all his words as pure bullsh*t. He’s straight out told me before, and I wouldn’t believe him if I hadn’t seen it for my own eyes, that he will say and do ANYTHING to get his way. To me, that makes any words he can send my way, utterly meaningless.

I realize I’m never going to be friends with him like I was, and I’m fine with that, and I’m doing fine. But is not talking to him ever again taking things too far? I’m not religious, but I try to imagine things from a higher consciousness. I often ask myself, what would The Doctor do? lol But I haven’t come up with anything other than what I’m doing right now.

In short, what would you do here?

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59 Answers

nikipedia's avatar

Sounds like it’s time for a new best friend.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I would not only not be his friend any longer, I would remove myself from him permanently.

All signs point to him lacking empathy and emotional maturity.

picante's avatar

Friends don’t split your head open. And fluther friends don’t let friends split your head open. You’ve expended more energy in writing your story than the relationship deserves. I say move forward and don’t look back.

ragingloli's avatar

Send the cops on his arse. Maybe then he will get the message.
You have given him too many chances as it is.
I knew someone like that once, too. Took me one fuck up to see that he could not be trusted, ever.

rebbel's avatar

Sounds like an arsehole to me.
Drop him.
Another guy who is hit by major object….

ucme's avatar

Tenderise his balls with a bell hammer, tit-for-tat.

sinscriven's avatar

Forgiveness does not have to mean reconciliation.

You can forgive him so you can let yourself go of the anger, pain, and resentment for him being foolish, but you do not (and should not) allow him to be in your life anymore because he is of little benefit to you.

“Sorry man, I forgive you for doing something so stupid, but I’ve lost all trust in you.”

Judi's avatar

Just tell him that it has become clear that your lives and your values have drifted in different directions. You aren’t going to be an ass hole to him or anything but your relationship will never be the same.

marinelife's avatar

I would make sure the locks are changed on my house. I might even move away and not let him know where I moved.

He has no impulse control. He does not have good judgment, Who knows what he could do?

He murderously attacked you.

(Did you see a doctor to make sure there was no damage to your brain?)

I would stay as far away from him as possible, especially right now. He is manipulative and he wants you back He had it easy with you.

Give yourself some time to evaluate the “friendship,” which seems very one-sided before deciding if you want him in your life on any level.

deni's avatar

He does not sound worthwhile at all. Splitting your head open….yeah, who does that? Especially for that reason. D-bag. I wouldn’t bother whim him anymore!

Also, you said it yourself. You see what he’s saying as bullshit. That should be the final straw. If you actually believed the nice things he’s been texting you, maybe it’d be worth forgiving him. But if you know it’s bull, whats the point.

HungryGuy's avatar

I’d put him in a big slingshot and hurl him into the sun.

downtide's avatar

Stay well clear of him. He sounds like a psycho. Drop him like a hot potato and don;t have anything more to do with him. DEFIINITELY don’t give him any more money, do him any favours or loan anything to him.

SuperMouse's avatar

Another vote for walking away from this fellow. Maybe someday he’ll grow up and realize that he is nothing close to a friend to you. In the meantime, I like your idea of staying far away from him.

jazmina88's avatar

Find a friend who doesnt make you bleed. You have done alot for this idiot. and you dont even get gas money??

Move on and get a less abusive life.

Esedess's avatar

@marinelife No, I didn’t see a doctor. He definitely took some chunks out of my head, but nothing punctured the skull. The bleeding stopped the next day, and I have some small scars where hair doesn’t grow now, but other than that I’m fine. I think a doctor just would have put some of those butterfly ties on it. I wouldn’t go as far to say he “murderously” attacked me, although I see the outcome could have been worse given slightly different circumstances.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Man…can you imagine him being married? He’s a loser and an abuser. Most likely he’ll be beating up his wife and threatening to kill her if she leaves…and he just may do it.

Get him out of your life, ASAP, period.

Russell_D_SpacePoet's avatar

Kick him to the curb. He is not your friend. Sounds like he has used you to me.

bkcunningham's avatar

If you allow someone to take advantage of you, it is your own fault, @Esedess. It sounds like you are funny, nice and easy going. Someone who is fun to be around. Don’t let him take advantage of you…get that bumper pool table I was telling you about in another thread and forget the head hitter. Be honest with him and just tell him you wish him the best and are going to cool it with him for awhile because it really feels like a one-sided friendship.

tranquilsea's avatar

There are such things as one punch deaths. You cannot discount that phenomenon. What your friend did crossed so many lines it is not even funny. You could have had him arrested.

You should have sought medical attention as no cut should bleed for a day. Crap my son dropped a knife on his foot and, with proper medical attention, the bleeding stopped in 2 hours.

I understand why you didn’t call the cops as you still considered him your friend. But his extreme lack of empathy when he saw what he had done speaks volumes about his character outside of all the other things you outline in your post.

I’d distance myself permanently. With friends like that who the fuck needs enemies?

Kardamom's avatar

If you consider this guy to be a friend, I would hate to see the kind of person that you consider to be an enemy.

This guy is no friend, you’re a convenience to him. How come you don’t see that?

tranquilsea's avatar

@Kardamom I think he is coming to see it.

thank god

linguaphile's avatar

RUN. And don’t look back.

I have 3 guarantees:
1. He will not change. He has gotten away with this behavior long enough that he will just find someone else who responds like you used to.
2. He will get worse. The next time he hits you, you might not get up.
3. He will not take no for an answer for a while—he will try every possible strategy, ploy, technique, game, whatever to get you to become compliant again. Don’t give in and he will eventually move on.

By taking him back as a friend, you let him know that behavior is in some way acceptable and forgivable, and it is not. You will teach him much more by sticking to your guns and keeping him gone.

Being nice doesn’t mean giving up your safety. RUN. If you haven’t yet, RUN. Seriously… GET AWAY.

jca's avatar

With friends like that, who needs enemies?

Kraigmo's avatar

The card hitting his head may have really hurt him badly. He probably wasn’t doing the best job expressing that.

chyna's avatar

This is someone you call a friend? Why? Walk away, this is not a friend by any stretch of the word.

Bellatrix's avatar

I don’t think you need this person in your life. He sounds unbalanced and well, dangerous. He could have caused you very serious damage.

Ditch him.

bob_'s avatar

I agree with @nikipedia.

Dude, seriously, are you Ned Flanders or what? Get that mofo out of your life.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Kraigmo A playing card hitting a person’s head can hurt “badly?” Give me a break. Today I had a 1000 pound door close on my thumb, right at the cuticle—THAT hurt “badly.” My thumb and nail are swollen and black and blue, but I didn’t freak out.

Kardamom's avatar

@Dutchess_III And thankfully for any bystanders, you didn’t have any access to rocks or bricks or hammers or fridge magnets (is that what he said???)

Dutchess_III's avatar

Oh, I actually had access to two actual ROCKS that have magnets stuck on the back and they were stuck to my filing cabinet / fridge magnets! Nice rocks, that would just fit in the palm of my hand, perfect for throwing. Oh, I really wanted to scream but…I was in a classroom. The students were working and I didn’t want to freak them out. I DID fire off an email chalk full of cuss words to one of my co-workers though! It was all I had. My students didn’t know it had happened until I showed them my thumb when they were leaving class. They couldn’t believe they were in the room when it happened.

Esedess's avatar

@Dutchess_III @Kraigmo @bob_ @Bellatrix @linguaphile @Kardamom @SpatzieLover @deni @bkcunningham @sinscriven

I agree with everything everyone here has said. I know I’m never going to be good friends with this guy again. He’s never going to be allowed back into a position from which I can be affected by his actions. I already told him I’m done with him, and that my last act as his “brother” was to not beat the shit out of him when he gave me every reason to… But I still have a hard time with the conclusion of not talking to someone for the rest of my life, period. Cause here’s the thing. Yes he did all this. Yes, he’s screwed me over multiple times. I see that’s not a friend. But he’s not some monster with complete disregard for others either. I know he feels bad about things. Not entirely, and not how I would if I were in his shoes; but if I base my actions off his, than aren’t I no better than him?
Despite that I don’t want to, or feel like I should, forgive him, I also can’t help but think that forgiveness is always the higher road. And then still, I also see how forgiveness here is somewhat besides the point. IDK… Anyone have anything on that?

SuperMouse's avatar

@Esedess I don’t think you necessarily have to close the door on this guy permanently. I think you do need to distance yourself and plan to remain a good distance away at least for a while. The fact is that as people mature sometimes they change and realize that some of the choices they made were in fact not very good choices. Who knows, Dude might really grow up, understand what a jerk he has been and come to you sincerely seeking forgiveness. Personally I would say that until that day comes – if it ever comes – keep your distance.

Dutchess_III's avatar

@Esedess That’s exactly the reasoning abused women use to stay with abusive men.

linguaphile's avatar

@Esedess My ex husband is an excellent teacher and librarian. He is a disc golfer and his league buddies love him. His poker buddies and roommates all like him. His parents think he has a heart of gold—they’re not totally wrong, he can be very generous with his time and attention. He comes across as a big, sweet teddy bear and has a wonderful persona in public. All of those things are completely true. He is not all bad at all.

But, it is also true that he beat me so bad I was in pain for 2 weeks. It is also true that he minimized and ridiculed me for 12 years. And, it’s also true that he knew exactly how to behave in public (kind and attentive) and was different at home. It’s true that he beat up my son behind my back and threatened him if he ever told me about it. He also has a sexual fixation so bad he was referred to a sexual offenders clinic even though he hadn’t been arrested.

My point, @Esedess, is that, the Good is true, and the Bad is true. It is not the law of averages here— bad and good do not mix to get to lukewarm, no…. the Good exists, yes, but the Bad also exists. The Bad will hurt you far, far longer and more often than the Good will ever benefit you.

He doesn’t care about your feelings, clearly… he didn’t just crack your head open, he also minimized and discredited you and that’s just as bad.

Take it from someone who has been down this road a few times… RUN!!

Ela's avatar

I would stick to your guns and remain distant. Right now, what I see is he is backpedaling. I think he knows he went too far and has crossed a line. It doesn’t matter what he says, nothing can undo what’s done. I could see his aggressive behavior elevating so I would stay away from him. Next time it may be a dumb-bell or hammer that’s handy. Next time may never happen or it may take another 12 years. That’s not a chance I would be willing to take.
I could never totally ignore or be a total ass to someone I’d called a friend for so long, but I would not do anything for them again. I would write down everything you said above, about the car, computer… everything and anything you can think of. Make a list of all the reason you should not be friends. I’d write it down and keep it with me so I would remember why I couldn’t be his friend. Otherwise I may forget. I like to believe the good in people and have a tendency to forgive/forget too easily. What he has done to your friendship, to you, should never be forgotten, imo.

If you chose to remain friends, you open yourself up to being manipulated, used and possibly physically attacked all over again. Personally, I wouldn’t walk that road again.

Bellatrix's avatar

It is really up to you whether you stay friends with him and to what level. I think I would wear a crash helmet in his presence though. He sounds deranged.

Kardamom's avatar

@Esedess I honestly can’t fathom why you have this need to forgive a guy who treated you so poorly. I agree with @Dutchess_III that you remind me of those poor women who will give every excuse in the book for why they have to forgive their abusers. It’s like they/you are so attached and possibly co-dependent on this guy that you feel like you can’t live a happy life unless you forgive him.

Some people, like this guy, I suspect, are douchey and selfish and really can’t see how their bad behavior effects other people. But they do enjoy being able to use someone like you, because you are making yourself an easy target.

It’s no fun to think that you have to ditch a friend, but learn now, while you are young, that sometimes you have to cut the cancer out of your life, otherwise it will fester and grow.

You’re not doing yourself or this guy any favors by forgiving him or continuing to have him be a part of your life. By continuing to forgive and support him, you are giving him cart blanche to continue treating people like crap. Unfortunately, you are part of the problem.

If you don’t want to completely cut the umbilical cord with him, then just say, like some of the others have suggested, “Dude, I forgive you for what you did, because I can’t understand why you did it, but you’ve treated me pretty poorly in the past, and I’m done. I wish you well, but you need to know that I am going my separate way from you.” Then do it and don’t let him try to talk you out of it, or you’ll end up just where you were before or even worse.

And don’t let him talk you into believing that he needs you. He only needs your stuff and your money and your compliance.

Imagine if this situation was happening to another friend that you care about, or your sister or one of your co-workers (instead of you). Wouldn’t you think that they were kind of crazy or obsessed? Wouldn’t you want to take them under your wing and help them remove themselves from this awful situation? Wouldn’t you think they were being taken advantage of, by merely entertaining the idea of forgiveness for someone who doesn’t need to be forgiven?

So you see the dude on the street, 6 months from now. There’s no reason not to acknowlege his existence with a “Hey Brian” and a nod of your head, but there’s absolutely no reason that I can think of, in which you should give him more than that. Because if you do, he’ll just give you some more bullsh*t reasons for why you should give him more of your time and attention and money, because that’s what he does. He’s a life-sucker and if you play into his little game, you’ll be a sucker too.

You should PM @Coloma and ask her about clearing out all of the negative people from her life. She’ll give you the best advice so far.

linguaphile's avatar

When you’re in an abusive marriage- you see a million other precedents. If you’re a woman, you see and know of other women who have experienced the same thing within a marriage. It’s hard enough to get out of a bad marriage even when you’ve heard of it, seen it and know all the signs.

@Esedess, you are in a friendship, not a marriage, but it’s still a relationship. Just because it’s “just a friend” doesn’t make it any less traumatic as a bad marriage—it might actually be harder to identify because people don’t talk about abusive friends, ever. But they exist.

Different wool, same wolf.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Cause here’s the thing. Yes he did all this. Yes, he’s screwed me over multiple times. I see that’s not a friend. But he’s not some monster with complete disregard for others either. I know he feels bad about things. Not entirely, and not how I would if I were in his shoes; but if I base my actions off his, than aren’t I no better than him?...Despite that I don’t want to, or feel like I should, forgive him, I also can’t help but think that forgiveness is always the higher road. And then still, I also see how forgiveness here is somewhat besides the point. IDK… Anyone have anything on that?

@Esedess Forgiveness is for you, not for him. All of the ^above sounds like enabling to me. If this all happened to me, I’d check myself. Why??? Why do I want to remain frineds with someone that has abusive tendencies? Why do I forgive & forget with him so easily?

Did you grow up in an abusive home @Esedess?

Judi's avatar

Forgiveness is not consenting to continuing to be a doormat. It sounds like you’ve already forgiven him. You just don’t want to put yourself in a vulnerable position again. That’s just acting responsibly and healthy.

Esedess's avatar

@SpatzieLover @Dutchess_III
Ehh~ I wouldn’t say it was abusive. But, yea, my dad was borderline abusive, I guess. Nothing horrible mind you. My dad has a relatively short fuse (he grew up in a VERY abusive household), and I did get the occasional “whooping”; but nothing I would go calling CPS about. He freaked out and went too far on a 2 occasions, that I remember; but even then, nothing that left me bleeding or bruised, just a little shaken.
I understand there’s households out there where even spanking is out of the question; my mom comes from that type of environment. But I personally don’t consider spanking “abusive”; maybe just ill-conceived punishment…

Coloma's avatar

Yes, listen to the older and wiser folks here kiddo. This dude is NOT a “friend.” Friends don’t physically attack friends. He’s a very unstable person, he has problems with his impulse control, maybe he is just really immature or maybe he’s on the path to some serious sociopathic behavior. We teach people how to treat us, and while you should forgive him, for your own sake, you should also keep extreme distance.

Are you aware that you could have had him arrested for assault?
If he did what he did to you to a perfect stranger he’d be in jail!
Please listen to us, this guy is bad news, what’s next? Is he going to pull a knife or a gun on you?
The best predictor of future behavior is relevant past behavior.

You’re better than this, let him go, and never look back.
Ask yourself what advice you’d give to another friend who was asking your opinion on this outrageous display of this guys fucked upness?
I can promise you that you have not seen the last of this guys issues. Run Forrest RUN!

SuperMouse's avatar

@Esedess how old are the two of you? I am guessing early 20’s, is that about right?

Esedess's avatar

@SpatzieLover
“you feel like you can’t live a happy life unless you forgive him.”

Haha. No it’s nothing like that. I think my most recent question on the matter stirred up some unintended perspectives. Let me be clear about this. I’m not friends with this guy now, and I really REALLY have no intention of being friends with him ever again, much less talking to him. I’m not even giving him a chance to voice his side on the matter, because it doesn’t change my side and as I’ve mentioned before, he’s just full of manipulative self-serving rationalizations. I’m not dependent on him, and in fact I would even go as far to say he’s dependent on me. When i kicked him out, my apartment stayed the same except for one 12“x12” picture in the hallway. I’m having a great time not going broke helping him out, and still doing the things I always did. Poker and football on alternating weekends. Parties with my neighbors. Bars with friends. Gymnastics in my living room. Really, this is the first time in my life I’m not at odds with myself on what I’ve decided. I don’t feel like I’m missing anything in my life. wish this is how I could be with girls I’ve broken up with Ha! And I know that all sounds like I’m trying to convince myself, not you, but you’re just gonna have to trust me that I’m not.

Anyways, that is where I am with all this, and then some. I see how I let much of what happened, happen, by being too understanding in the past. My use of the word “forgiveness” here, is not entirely accurate. I’m trying to articulate what I actually mean but it’s kinda hard. Mainly I guess my perspective lies in myself.

If you did this, wouldn’t you want a chance to make amends? If our roles were reversed, I would see myself wanting that. But, then again, I would also see that it’s my fault I’m not getting that chance.

In short, I agree. It’s just weird coming to terms with being so single-minded in this, and somehow still open-minded.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, good @Esedess! And welcome to Fluther! Text me @Coloma!

Coloma's avatar

@Esedess

It always sucks when we have to accept the reality of some others, but, sounds like you have a good handle on it. It’s his journey, let it happen, and keep the bigger picture perspective, you’re a teacher on his path.

Coloma's avatar

@Dutchess_III —You silly woman you!
I’m sendng vibratory texts..can you feel them? lol

Bellatrix's avatar

Absolutely welcome to Fluther @Esedess… it is horrible when we do have to finally look at someone we thought of as a friend and say “that person doesn’t belong in my life”. You sound like a caring and considerate person and so that is going to leave you weighing up your decision. That’s all good stuff on your part. We learn from these situations and what we learn is often more about us than the other person.

SpatzieLover's avatar

I didn’t say that line you quoted from somewhere @Esedess. I wish you the best on your journey.

Dutchess_III's avatar

YOUR DAMN VIBS ARE HITTING MY THUMB!!! STOP IT @Coloma!!!!

Esedess's avatar

@SpatzieLover
You’re right… Sorry~! It was from @Kardamom

LET IT BE KNOWN!

deni's avatar

@Esedess Good for you!!!!! I recently had a friend break up as well and man did I feel 4000000x better after it than I ever feel after ending relationships. Its really too bad. No wallowing in self pity, sobbing, just “Hell yeah! My life has improved without this person in it!” If only it were always that way.

bkcunningham's avatar

I understand, @Esedess. I had a friend I’d known since 6th grade. We were friends as young adults and she always managed to somehow, someway do something that involved me “giving in” I guess would be the right way to put it. I allowed her to use me and I kept making excuses. I had my playing card moment with her, so to speak.

I distanced myself from her and when she tried to open the door to come back fully into my life, I didn’t allow it to happen. I was always polite and nice to her and enjoyed catching up throughout the years. That was 30-plus years ago. I still talk to her on occassions and keep in touch with her through my family who live in the same area.

Years later, we’ve laughed at some of the stupid messes we got ourselves into and some of the crazy things that happened between us. Both of us wondered what the heck we were thinking and we’ve apologized to each other for some of the hurtful, mean and inconsiderate things that transpired. It is all good and I think forgiveness is necessary in some instances. Commonsense and accepting an apology is necessary in others.

I wouldn’t want anything bad to happen to her and always hope for the very best in her life. Life has taken us both in very different directions and I consider it all part of growing up and life.

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