I had heard that this sometimes happens, but that knowledge doesn't help a bit when it actually happens. Close friends for 30+ years. Shared lots of up and downs, but when the BIG DOWN came of my husband passing away, she pretty much disappeared. She attended the viewing and the funeral. Declined the invite to the funeral luncheon as her daughter and family were arriving from out of state same day or next. Ok...I get preparations have to be made but visit had been planned months a head. For next 8-10 days, not a word from her. She posted on Facebook about all the activities they were enjoying, parks, zoo, movies, ice cream parlor, swimming, eating out lots, etc. Many posts with lots of pictures. Ok...I understand these visits are important and I was glad they had a great visit. A couple of days after the daughter and family left, my friend and her husband went to the daughter's out of state home to stay with grandchildren for a couple of days and then they all visited together for more than another week. A few days after returning home, she left a phone message asking if I was ready to resume our weekly night out. I didn't respond. A day or so later she came by, asked if I was mad at her and I said no, not angry just very hurt. She replied that she "really wanted to come over" the week her daughter was here, "but it just didn't work out". I couldn't believe she would say that, knowing full well I had seen the posts and pics of how she had spent most of the past month. I told her I had nothing else to say to her and she left. "Didn't work out"... I am beyond saddened by the loss of the friendship, but I am also embarrassed that our friendship has obviously meant a lot more to me than it did to her all these years.
Sorry for venting, but I really needed to get that off my chest.
Thanks for the response Steve. I am sorry for the loss of your partner and the disappointment you have experienced in those whom you thought were good friends. DH and I never had much of a circle of friends. In the early years there was not a lot of money for socializing. Dave only had one sibling and he and his wife lived a different life style than we did...we just never had much in common. We spent a lot of time with my sister and her husband, playing cards, etc., but they began having marital problems and later divorced. With Dave's illness, often when we did make plans, they had to be cancelled and people just generally shy away from "illness". If you can get "fixed" in quick order, they will generally be supportive, but if it goes on and on and on they pretty much head for the hills! I did hear from my friend again saying she was sorry she let her life get in the way. I wanted to say, "you know it's not like he broke his leg or had his gall bladder out, he died! Sorry the timing wasn't better for you!" Instead I didn't respond and don't intend to. Every excuse she makes only makes me feel worse and what is done is done. Just like we can't take back spoken words, we can't redo actions, or the lack of inaction. We will both have to live with the choices that were made.
It is sad after you and your partner did so much for so many others that they wouldn't be more supportive of you, but sadly it is true that "no good deed goes unpunished". I wish you peace.