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Tragedy: An Excuse for Couplemania? August 13, 2011

Posted by Onely in Food for Thought, God-Idiot or Asshole?.
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My sister called me the other day with a question I couldn’t answer, so I told her I would reach out to Onely’s Copious Readership for insights.

First, the background:   My sister’s good friend, whom I’ll call Mark, has had an awful year.  First he lost his job due to the recession and couldn’t find another one. Then his girlfriend cheated on him and they broke up. Then his older brother, whom Mark idolized, developed a drug problem related to some painkillers he’d been on for an old, ongoing back ailment. Bad times for Mark.

Understandably, he withdrew from my sister and the rest of their circle of friends as he tried to sort out his internal chaos.  Knowing that they might well have done the same thing in his circumstances, but still wanting to show support, my sister and their mutual friends left him email, text, and phone messages just to say hi and let him know they cared.

The messages went unreturned, and no one blamed Mark.  Then my sister found out that he had reconnected with his cheating girlfriend and they were a couple again. According to the grapevine and Facebook, Mark had enough emotional fortitude to hang out with his formerly-cheating girlfriend, but not to interact with his long-time friends. “I think he just really needs someone right now,” said my sister, aware of the irony of her words yet trying to be sensitive to Mark’s situation. “But. . . her?”

Recently, while under the influence of assorted illegal substances, Mark’s brother crashed his motorcycle into a tree and died.  During the aftermath of this terrible tragedy, Mark continues to date his girlfriend and continues to remain withdrawn from his friends.

Copious Readers, in normal circumstances we chastize people who neglect their friends for a significant other (especially a cheating one). But obviously a brother’s addiction and death are not normal circumstances. (more…)

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