The Underlying

Before we continue, there are a few things you should know about Jane and I. First, we’ve been friends since the dawn of time. Well not actually, but you get the point. Second, we never fight. Well, yes we do. But not big fights. Like stupid fights, sibling fights. Normally they’re my fault, I tend to mess up a lot. But they always get resolved, and it always goes back to normal. Except for this time. This time it's different. It’s lasting longer.

The fight happened a couple days ago and we haven’t really talked since. I don’t know what to think and I can’t help but feel like it's my fault even though I know it's not. It was a Saturday, I was home alone. She texted me upset, I don’t even remember what it was about quite honestly.

[phone buzzes]

[Reading from phone] Hey how you doing?

[Typing on phone] I don’t know. It's so weird not talking to her.

[Reading from phone] I think it would be good for you take time away. You guys need a break from each other sometimes.

[Typing on phone] I guess…I just want all of this to be over though. I’m so tired of not knowing where I stand and feeling like I don’t get to have an opinion on it.

[Reading from phone] And that's one of the problems. You deserve to know that type of stuff. I just don’t think she treats you as well as you deserve.

I think Leah’s making sense and I can’t help but feel like she's right. But I’m too afraid to ruin the friendship we have. We’ve been friends for so long it seems wrong to mess something like that up over another stupid fight.

[Typing on phone] I mean this is only one small fight I don’t want to make it a big deal or be over dramatic.

[Reading from phone] You know putting yourself and your emotions before someone else isn’t being dramatic right?

[Typing on phone] Yea I know, but that's not what this is. It was a stupid fight and certainly not worth ruining a 12-year friendship for.

[Reading from phone] From my perspective, and I’m not just talking about this time, I feel like the stuff she says and does sometimes really effects you and you just keep it inside. I’m just really tired of watching you getting hurt over and over. And I know the friendship means a lot to you and it’s hard coming to terms with all of this but I really think enough is enough and you two need to figure your shit out. I’m here for you when you decide you’re ready.

I read Leah’s text once, then twice, then a third time. Letting the truth pour over me.

Is this really how she saw this? I don’t want to agree with her but no one can say that what Leah said isn’t true. I mean yeah I guess I do always make myself forget about all the time she’s hurt me. Wait...why? Why am I constantly making up excuses for her? Why am I always the one to apologize? I know this isn’t how friendships should be. This isn’t how they’re supposed to be. So why did I think this was any different. Maybe deep down I thought, I hoped, that she would change. But I shouldn’t. I can’t. I can’t keep doing this to myself. I’m tired of feeling like I don’t matter.

[Narrator picks up their phone]

[Typing on phone] I’m ready.

Comments (9)

Randy Le (Student 2021)
Randy Le

As your peer editor, I liked the direction you went for. You had made a very effective monologue and it is relatable to many people. To add to that, everything seemed real and not scripted in any sort of way. Great job Ida!

Ari Burstein (Student 2021)
Ari Burstein

This monologue was really good. You had an interesting topic, an abusive friendship that one of the friends is unable to see as abusive. By using text conversations to emphasize what the character is thinking, you portray the emotions of the character to the audience really well. I also like how you implement the buzzes on your phone. It makes the whole monologue seem much more realistic.

Julia Dunn (Student 2021)
Julia Dunn

This is a really realistic situation and monologue, and I think a lot of people can relate with this problem. I like how you conveyed a lot of background information and details through the text messages with Leah.

Alicia-Noor Kreidie (Student 2021)
Alicia-Noor Kreidie

This piece was really moving because it seems so real. I feel like everyone can connect to this because this has happened to so many. I think you did a great job of incorporating the buzzes with your voice over it made it really interesting.

Michal Czapla (Student 2021)
Michal Czapla

I like how you incorporated the phone buzzes to make the reader feel like they're in the moment that the monologue is happening in. I like how her reading the texts out loud allows her to have time to think. When you said "I read the text once, twice, then a third time", that really conveyed that the character was actually reflecting over the text and realizing that she needed to figure out her friendship instead of holding her pain in.

Tayah Brunson (Student 2021)
Tayah Brunson

I liked because the character goes through a fight with her friend and explains why it wasn't that serious at first because of how frequently fights occur between and she compares them to sibling fights. Then when she gets an outsider's perspective it opens her eyes to how she is making excuses for the way she is being treated by her friend. It's moving because many people put the truth to the side or don't consider it and let things that shouldn't occur become a normality. And it was refreshing to see your character come to the realization. I also liked the tone you used while speaking because it shows the mild manor your character has and gives a background insight on why this might have happened to her.

Nile Shareef-Trudeau (Student 2021)
Nile Shareef-Trudeau

This piece moved me emotionally by expressing how people think when confronted with a problem. Holding their true feelings back to make someone else feel better. I know I do this a lot. You did a good job at expressing this by having this inner conflict presented through the narrator speaking about how she feels about the situation and why it is hard for her to stand up for herself and the friendship she has with Jane.