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Today's column

Posted by Robin Abrahams  September 15, 2013 08:22 AM

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... is online here. The Letter Writer is still reeling, five years later, from a long and complicated betrayal by a friend:

Many people have been hurt like you have, but we don't have a cultural bank of stories about friendship gone wrong. We have stories (and songs and quality cable dramas) about bad parents, bad lovers, bad bosses. Our culture doesn't offer up many templates for "bad friend" stories or songs about breaking up with your best buddy.
This lack of story to reference makes it harder for you to heal, and so does your friend's mental illness and the unexpected nature of her betrayal. You've not only lost a loved one, but the ability to make sense of your social world. You find your own past, and your judgment, difficult to trust. You try to tell the story to a new acquaintance or explain it to an old classmate and you see the look of wary frustration as the lack of sense registers: "But wait, why would someone do that? She did what? Are you sure?" and you see the shade being thrown back on you. So you stop talking about it--or you don?t. Neither feels like a satisfactory option.

This blog is not written or edited by Boston.com or the Boston Globe.
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About Miss Conduct
Welcome to Miss Conduct’s blog, a place where the popular Boston Globe Magazine columnist Robin Abrahams and her readers share etiquette tips, unravel social conundrums, and gossip about social behavior in pop culture and the news. Have a question of your own? Ask Robin using this form or by emailing her at missconduct@globe.com.
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Who is Miss Conduct?

Robin Abrahamswrites the weekly "Miss Conduct" column for The Boston Globe Magazine and is the author of Miss Conduct's Mind over Manners. Robin has a PhD in psychology from Boston University and also works as a research associate at Harvard Business School. Her column is informed by her experience as a theater publicist, organizational-change communications manager, editor, stand-up comedian, and professor of psychology and English. She lives in Cambridge with her husband Marc Abrahams, the founder of the Ig Nobel Prizes, and their socially challenged but charismatic dog, Milo.

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