How to get space from my friend
I don't really know where to begin this, but I keep thinking I need to "break up" with one of my best friends.
About a month ago I found out that she had spent six months lying to me, and asked another one of our friends to do the same, however the week after she split with her boyfriend (another one of my good friends) so I felt I had no choice but to forgive her. After the break up I asked her if it was okay to stay friends with both of them, and as she said yes I have made an effort to stay in touch with them both. He hasn't said anything nasty about her, but she keeps trying to upset my friendship with her ex and then saying she wants us (her ex and I) to be friends. I feel like I'm being used as a way to "get back" at him.
She's also started constantly giving me backhanded compliments and saying that it's okay for her to treat people badly because she's just broken up with her boyfriend. Whenever I get back home from being around her I either feel numb or want to cry. I just want my space, even if it's just a couple of weeks, but I have no idea how to ask for it because we've been friends most of our lives.
The situation sounds very complicated and difficult to deal with! It's no wonder you're feeling bad when you come back.
It sounds like you recognise that you need to get away from your friend because she's not treating you like a friend anymore, but you still feel somehow connected and maybe even obligated to treat her well. I think that's really nice and shows that you're a very caring person.
That said, your priority is your own mental well being. Your friend sounds like she's focussed only on herself and trying to satisfy her needs (possibly at your expense). Now you're being hurt by her actions, so I think you need to draw the line and make sure she's aware of how you feel.
It sounds like you want to avoid confrontation, so a lot of it comes down to ensuring she knows you're trying to help but that you don't know how, and that you were confused and hurt by some of the backhand comments which you didn't understand. You just need to be sure you can stand your ground if she does react badly and know when to say, "No, I can't do this anymore. I will talk to you later, but for now I need space."
As you say, your friend is treating you this way probably because she's really hurt inside as well. But that doesn't mean she can treat you like this. It is still wrong of her to do this, and I'm glad you understand this.
Do you still talk often?