I’ve been dealing with a strange issue that I can’t even explain myself. Please be very gentle with any criticism of my behavior. I, myself, don’t even like or enjoy the way I’m acting.

Let me provide some context: I have a friend whom I’m going to just refer to as Lilly.

Lilly and I met last summer, and I was invited by her to join a group chat with her other friends as well. Surprisingly, I got along with her friends, and a couple of them have become very close to me as well. However, there’s this one friend of Lilly’s who I’m going to call Nick who’s on the group chat as well.

He and I are like water and oil. We don’t get along at all with each other. We’ve even gotten into a few spats with each other. I’ll go over our argument history. I gave Lilly a silly nickname once I got to know her better, and Nick was, for some reason, entirely against the name I gave her.

He claimed that the nickname I gave her did not match her personality at all and was just downright rude about it. And just to spite me, he came up with a different nickname for her and assigned it to her profile on the group chat. (Our group chat is on the app, Discord.)

Another instance was when he, a few other friends from the group chat, and I were making and printing out a surprise birthday card for Lilly. I was in charge of designing the card, printing it, and shipping it.

Nick was kind of the leader of the project and gave me advice on how I should design the card. When I finished designing the card, I was met with great difficulties printing it out. The card was double-sided, and my printer is very cheap, so it takes about 2 to 3 minutes just to print out a color page. It took me hours to figure out how to do a double-sided print, and when I did, the card came out crooked.

I was wasting through a 30 dollar ink cartridge, and my dad didn’t want me to print anything else anymore. So when I explained the dilemma to Nick and the others, Nick flat out told me the card didn’t look good and that it wasn’t fit to be sent out. He said the card was for Lilly, and Lilly deserved better than a crooked card.

Even after I explained the fact that my dad didn’t want me to use the printer anymore for the card, he still insisted that I try to convince them otherwise. I did try, and they still said no. Nick eventually gave up as well and said the card would just have to do.

After this incident, we kind of just ignored each other on the group chat. He never acknowledged anything I said and vice versa. I constantly switched topics on the group chat, so I wouldn’t have to reply or acknowledge him, and he did the same for me. We occasionally talked at times, but it always ended with one-word replies, and it was incredibly cordial.

After a few months of this ignoring thing we were doing, another incident happened. Lilly, another friend on the group chat, and I were all joking about how I’m slightly spoiled in my household. (Which is sorta true. I’m the youngest of my family. So since I’m the youngest, I do tend to get gifts and other things easier than my other siblings.)

I was okay with the joking. It didn’t bother me until Nick made some hurtful remarks. He claimed that he didn’t like spoiled people. He said that spoiled people have no goals or ambitions in life. He also said that spoiled people rely on others to get things done and never do anything good for themselves.

He concluded by saying he’s glad he isn’t spoiled because that meant he would never be the strong-willed person he is today. These remarks hurt. Just because my parents are slightly easier on me, it doesn’t make me a failure in life. I told Nick I have crosses in life to bear like everyone else, and even though I don’t talk about it much on the group chat, I have goals I’m desperately trying to achieve.

I have struggles, too. Nick remained silent after this and told me he was “just kidding” about all the stuff he said. I ignored him (and I regret to say this), but I didn’t ease up on him either. I attacked his character and ego “jokingly” on the group chat, and he stayed silent. The day after this happened, I checked the group chat again and caught up on what I missed. Nick wrote to Lilly and another person on the group chat, saying, “Please tell Kat I don’t hate her.”

When I saw this message, I decided to message him privately and apologize to him for my off-color behavior. He forgave me and explained that I’m usually okay with the “being spoiled” jokes, but he admits that he might’ve gone a bit too far with the jokes, so he apologized for the misunderstanding.

Now on further reflection, do any of you think he was jealous? I was showing off a gift my dad gave me on the group chat when he said these remarks. I wasn’t bragging about the gift; I was just commenting on how happy I was to get it. The gift was an old family heirloom.

It was during this period I decided that Nick and I just don’t mesh or get along. My thoughts were further confirmed when everyone on the group chat decided to do a voice chat and play this multiplayer doodling game online.

When it was my turn to draw a doodle, Nick commented that all my drawings looked the same (he wasn’t laughing when he said this and was quite serious, so I don’t think he meant this as a joke. He even sighed.) and he said it didn’t make the game any easier for him.

Now the latest event. Unfortunately, one of Nick’s immediate family members died of COVID-19. I did not find this out from him. Lilly was the one who told me. She said that Nick couldn’t tell the others because it was too much for him to bear. I, of course, immediately sent out a message giving him my condolences.

I was very nice, and I told him that if he ever needed to talk, he could find a friend in everyone that’s in the group chat. I got a brief, “Thank you” as a reply—just two words. I talked to Lilly a bit more about how sad and unfortunate Nick’s situation was, and she disclosed that Nick has been confiding in her for days about the health state of his family member. Lilly was also the first person who was told about Nick’s loss on the group chat.

And for some strange reason beyond anything I could *ever* comprehend, this hurt me. Yes, I was crude to Nick on many occasions, yes, I don’t like him, and I’m sure he doesn’t like me, yes, we insult each other regularly, but I don’t hate him.

If anything, I feel ashamed of myself for all the things I told him while, unknowingly to me, he was struggling with a family member who was already ill and was close to death even before COVID-19 happened to him. I feel like I failed as a friend. Heck, I wasn’t much of a friend, to begin with.

He couldn’t trust me enough to tell me about his loss, and he didn’t trust me enough to even confide in me after I offered to lend him an ear. However, every time I open up Discord, I see that Nick and Lilly are both always online. They’re not typing in any other group chat (I know because I’m in all the groups they’re in), and it’s just obvious they’re privately messaging each other. This just makes me feels even worse.

I thought about it long and hard and realized that when Nick and I first met, we more or less got along with each other. We used to play video games together, and I admit I used to have a crush on him during this time. I used to think he was so cool. He was good at everything I wished I was good at.

Whenever I showed off an achievement I made in a hobby of mine, he always showed me up and did ten times better than whatever I did. But at some point in time, that changed. Maybe it was my jealousy in his skills that made me dislike him. Perhaps it was when he insulted me when the card I printed out was crooked. I don’t know when or how, but we just don’t get along anymore.

And I’ve accepted that. I’m not looking for advice on how to get him to like me again. At this point, we just tolerate each other’s existence for the sake of our other friends on the group chat.

What I want to know is: how do I accept that I failed as a friend? How do I stop tormenting myself about my mistakes and move on from them? I no longer have a crush on him, but whenever I talk to him or see his profile on Discord, my mind immediately jumps back to when I got along with him and liked him back in the summer.

How do I move on? Is there any way I can stop looking at him as the guy I once had a crush on?

Thank you for listening and for reading this. Your advice means so much to me. God bless and stay safe.