A friendship going awry

Discussion in 'Women's Issues' started by B_Mademoiselle Rouge, Apr 29, 2010.

  1. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    I have a feeling a bunch of guys are going to answer this and give me a "just tell her to fuck off" type of an answer. If i could do that i would have done it already.

    I have a friend that i met through a hobby, she recently moved a few hours away and i see her less than i used to at these events. She is my age and has a boyfriend that is old enough to be our Dad, almost grandpa really...she has no kids and has never been married.

    Given that i don't get the whole Daddy aged boyfriend thing, she never asks about my husband or what he thinks about things when we talk about situations. I will ask "Hey what does Henry think about that?" but she has no interest in my life or relationship with my husband.

    Since she has no kids, she really doesn't want to talk about anything regarding that either. She wants a kid but the guy she is with understandably has older children and has been married 6 times and has no interest in marrying her or having kids with her. He has also mentioned to me (since i know both of them through our hobby interest) that he has problems even dating her and feels more like her Dad than her boyfriend and thus doesn't even want to have sex with her anymore because it feels "wrong" He was hoping when she moved away she would show interest in someone else, maybe someone more her age.

    Anyway, in addition to the above being odd and awkward because when i see her she invites me to stay the night at her place. We end up staying up all night talking about everything possible, except any of her goals, dreams, etc. of the future. We might go a year and not talk about whether she still wants kids or plans to date Henry forever and miss out on her opportunity to have kids with someone who wants them.

    She is an only child with elderly parents that don't live anywhere near her, she has an extremely childish selfish side that comes out when you aren't doing things her way. For example, I was recently down for my gallbladder surgery and I was supposed to be with her that weekend. She texts me almost everyday wanting to know when i can come and see her (since she is on call for her job and can't drive here) i keep telling her i am still recovering and not feeling up to the drive and the activities.

    Last weekend was 2nd weekend after my surgery and I had a setback that prevented me from even feeling like seeing her. Not to mention it was my birthday over the weekend. She would rather me spend it alone with her than to be with my husband and kid. Now we are on 3rd weekend since the surgery and she's already getting hold of me again seeing if i will come to see her. I'm really not wanting to see her at all and I'm tired of how selfish she is.

    She doesn't care if i can't wear a seatbelt comfortably on my surgery incisions, she doesn't care that i've been away from my husband all week and want to see him, she insists that i bring my daughter to "hang" with us when i can't find a sitter. She sounds all sad that i was down for a major surgery but really she is just upset that she had to be bored all weekend while i was in the hospital.

    There are so many other things i could bring up, but i probably made my point already. I am still going to see her at events and she and i are one of the few females that are involved, which is how we became friends in the first place. I can't be held hostage in this selfish world of hers when i am busy and have other obligations. It's easy for her when she is by herself for a week or two at a time to waste an entire weekend with a friend. I really don't want to.

    What the hell do i do? I am not good at breaking up friendships. I hate the idea of the drama i will deal with from that point when i see them. I really refrain from starting relationships because I am a home body and actually enjoy time with my immediate family. I have all these missed calls and messages from her and i am getting pissed off.
     
  2. Gecko4lif

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    Tell her to fuck off really does seem to be a good option in this particular scenario.

    Have you considered stonewalling her?
     
  3. SilverTrain

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    My strategy is to disappear in plain sight. Avoid answering her calls. Don't respond to voicemails, texts, etc.

    It's not mature. But I've done it. And it avoids the face-to-face drama of which you indicate you, too, want to avoid.

    I'm sure you'll get much better (healthier) responses from others.

    But I shared, because I feel your pain.
     
  4. the_reverend

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    just let her know you need to reel things back a bit and tend to you and yours first and foremost. either she'll understand (begrudgingly or otherwise) and loosen her grip a bit or she'll get all petty, selfish and dramatic and storm off in a huff exclaiming how no one cares about or really "gets" her. ;) either way, problem solved!
     
  5. dolfette

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    let it wither.
    be busy for most of her invitations.
    have something you need to do when she calls.
    if you must, just have lunch in a cafe so that you've a limit on the time you have to spend with her.

    and if she asks, tell her the truth. and suggest therapy.
     
  6. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    Stonewalling seems to work for a while. I recently had to change my number because of someone i let get way out of hand when it came to having me be everything to them. I think im just too stable that i attract this bizarre individuals and i write off the first few offenses as no big deal....the first few offenses are always several extremely different things so i dont put it all together until it seems like i've got them totally dependent on me for everything.

    It's so exhausting, i've tried putting her off before but she leaves me mopey messages that go from "Hey i sent you a text....havent heard from you" to "Hey, i still havent heard from you i hope everything is ok" to "I am not sure if you are avoiding me" to "Ok im getting really worried about you..."

    The girl i changed my number in order to get out of my life has gone as far as to get a hold of my husband on Facebook (me on facebook multiple times) and even MY MOM, on her home phone and on Facebook.
     
  7. billdong9999

    billdong9999 New Member

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    Selfish people, of course, rarely know they act that way. And it definitely creates very one sided relationships, which depending upon your own personality can be excruciating.

    I'm very direct with people, so the advise I'll give works if you like being direct and would like quick closure on the situation.

    No matter if you want to continue any kind of relationship with her or not (acquaintance kinda-friends, etc), you should call her up and tell her how you feel and where you want to go from here. You really have to guide the conversation, because being selfish, she'll likely try to take the lead, if you give her any openings, because you went into it without a clear plan of what you want.

    If you want to still be friends, maybe make her aware that you're tired of how she's acting and that it's really overbearing, etc, etc...

    If not, the same course of action would apply. If nothing else, you don't have to feel guilt or pressure from avoiding contact and at least be able to resolve the immediate irritation swiftly and move on. She "might" even respect you finally for putting her in line.

    More often than not, you'll be surprised how people react when someone actually calls them out on the carpet. I've seen very interesting changes in behavior when this has been done.

    Good luck...
     
  8. dolfette

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    hose beasts.

    i don't get them, because i'm mean.
    nobody in there right mind, indeed nobody in their wrong mind either, thinks i'm a good choice for a whining wall.

    she's an adult.
    her welfare isn't your responsibility.
    just be cold.
     
  9. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    Yeah im going to have to tell her something, it's going to have to be short and sweet because if you say things in person to her she either gets totally quiet and will say "Well, let's not talk about this right now, let's enjoy the time we have together and find something fun to do..."

    Im probably going to sum it up to something like "Susan, things are pretty hectic right now for me and I am not able to break away from those obligations. So i will have to get back to you when I can devote the time to seeing you" that way she will stop inviting me several times per week before the weekend arrives and she will just have to wait until i hit the ball back in her court.

    It takes the control out of her hands and puts it in mine. Like Billdong said, she will probably actually like having someone put a knot in her tail.
     
  10. Wish-4-8

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    Relationships are all about compatability. You too arent. And the novelty that has bonded you together in the first place, the hobby, has gone thin. She needs you, you dont need her.

    Age wise, she is an adult. Mentally, she is not an adult and married a "dad" so she doesnt have to grow up. But now she wants to act like a grown up.

    Your problem is you dont like things to get messy. This girl is a lost cause and is damaged goods. Sorry to sound so callous, but she is not your problem. Relationships are supposed to enhance your life, not bring them down. She is a cancer to you. And cancer spreads. Look how much stress it has caused you.

    Like Dolfette said, let it wither away. "Im busy" or,"Im cool" should be as long as your responses need to be. People like her are like emotional barnacles and eventual find a new ship to latch on to.

    My guess is that it will be some nice guy trying to play the hero. We are here for you Ms. Rouge.
     
  11. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    I love it....emotional barnicles...one of the best things i've ever heard. Brilliant and correct on so many points. It's not going to be pretty but i have a feeling based on how she has treated me recently about not responding to her quickly enough before the weekend (because she's been getting her hopes up all week) that she probably will read it and weep and not get back with me for a week or two and then ask me how i am feeling and totally try to not make it obvious that she's been pouting for 2 weeks.

    Novelty brought us together and her childlike behavior is tearing us apart. It's the reality....I've gotta be tough here and say what i need to for sure.
     
  12. D_Tim McGnaw

    D_Tim McGnaw Account Disabled

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    I'm pretty cold so what works for me may not work for others, but I have had experience of having to edit my circle of friends before. Ultimately the best thing to do in my experience is to let a person know one last time how you're fixed and what you're able and prepared to do to be friends with them and if they can't or don't understand what you've told them cut them out of your life completely.

    Block their calls, loose them from any social networking sites you may have added them on, block their emails, and forget they ever existed. That's if circumstances don't force you to be around her of course.

    This woman sounds like a serious drain on your energies and time at a moment in your life when you don't have as much time and energy as usual, and by the sounds of things she actually causing you some stress at a time when you could really really do without it.

    Ultimately what are you getting out of this friendship? If the answer is nothing or considerably less than what you will have to put in to it in order for it to continue then you have little option but to face the prospect of cutting this friend out of your life either completely or at least radically enough to make the whatever effort you may then be putting in to the friendship worth it.

    Ignoring someone is a powerful way of getting the message across, cutting them out completely is even better if it's possible.
     
  13. D_Sparroe Spongecaques

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    I'd personally break away from her as she seems like to be clinging like a limpet onto your friendship,taking with both hands but not giving anything back.That isnt healthy and speaking of health she seems VERY selfish if she expects you to be running around after her when you have recent surgery when you should be taking it easy and recuperating.

    I would do like Dolfette said and be cool with her and if she didnt take the hint then i would tell her to p!ss off.....but then i'm not too patient with selfish buggers like she seems to be.
     
  14. closetfreak

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    if it was my friend, id put a boot in her ass along the lines of, "grow the fuck up, i have a life" or something close. She'll be hurt and either take it to heart or stop talking to you. Win-Win
     
  15. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    Ok an update, I checked the VM she left and she said "Just seeing how you are doing and if you can get together this weekend. I will be driving down so maybe we can do something"

    Even though it means i wouldnt have to drive to see her, i feel it is time to not bend to her whims so i responded with "I have family events going on this weekend, so if you go skating, have a great time" which indicates my family is more important and I'm implying she can do it without me.

    She's got capabilities of being very independent, she shows it in certain aspects, but she's choosing not to get involved in the community she moved to and she is all the more taking advantage of me to get what she needs out of life since she's moved away from her old environment and away from her boyfriend for this job in another city.
     
  16. Keleios

    Keleios New Member

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    You could and can tell her to fuck off, she'd definitely get the point quicker but I can understand why you'd prefer not to.

    Sounds like she's thinking of you as a "best friend", almost in the high school sense, with her wanting sleepovers filled with what you consider to be inconsequential conversation and to spend a lot of time with you.

    You'd obviously like to distance yourself from her without hurting her feelings and you want to be nice about how you do it but that's probably why the situation has got so out of hand. If you're constantly nice to people and you tolerate their behaviour even when it annoys the fuck out of you, you're practically giving them permission to continue doing that until you get so fed up that you snap.
    When you reach that point and you've really had enough, it tends to become a rather more black and white case of wanting the situation ended and gone entirely as the prospect of sorting it out would be too much of a hassle.

    Aside from the hobby, it doesn't sound at all like you have much in common with her other than being the same age and that in itself seems to be creating problems. From how you describe the situation and specifically, the limited conversation choices, it's like you want and expect her to be more like you, you don't understand why she isn't and doesn't want to be and almost like you disapprove of her for it.

    You've listed a lot of negative things about her, does she have any positives?

    Whatever you do, it's probably going to upset her in some way as you either have to tell her how you feel and why, tell her some of the reasons but in a really nice way that probably won't get through to her or don't give any reason at all and cut off contact with her in the hope that she'll eventually just leave you alone.
    The latter would seem the easiest but also the meanest thing to do. If she's moved to a new location and has very few friends or family around then loses someone she considers to be a good friend without knowing why... That'd be pretty shit for her and you'd probably feel guilty about it for a while as well.

    So, solution... Tell her exactly what you said in your first post.
    She'll likely be upset and probably hurt, angry or defensive too but that's perfectly reasonable. If she didn't know she was getting on your nerves this entire time, she had no reason or chance to change and it might be that you can salvage and improve the friendship if you air all the annoying laundry and iron it out together.

    If you genuinely want to discontinue the friendship, tell her exactly what you said in your first post with the addendum "and that's why I feel I can't continue this friendship".
    At least if you tell her, you give her a choice about what to do. She can look at herself and who she is then decide whether she wants to make changes or if she is exactly as you describe her, she'll be so offended and angry that she'll never speak to you again.
    Both will solve the problem but I think it's always nicer to give someone a chance, even if you seem to be a bastard when you do it.

    Hope you get it sorted out to your satisfaction.
     
  17. B_Mademoiselle Rouge

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    Keleios, you definitely hit on some good points there. I'd say she sees me as a good friend and wants me to stay the night with her like it is highschool. I feel as if she missed out on that stuff in her childhood. Based on the lengthy conversations we've had, i don't get the feeling she had many relationships outside of the one with her much older Mom.

    I have a few good things to say about her- those things brought us together. I find her very attractive, confident (in public anyway), she's a fantastic skater (which is a rarity), she has awesome fashion sense (which i don't), she is college educated (which i am not), she is fun to talk to when we are together (as long as we don't go to conversations that might make her fear we will be talking about her life).

    I don't think im going to rule her out of my life entirely, i think im going to take up the reign a little tighter and not get pulled around by her wanting me to stop whatever i am doing to come and see her.

    I think she will get the hint to hang tight until she hears from me (because sometimes i do need breaks from my family and staying the night with her is a refreshing change of pace) and then i can call her wanting to come over and have a girls night sorta thing.

    The things we don't have in common seem to be in the forefront of my mind and how i can say the wrong thing might revert us into her nervousness making us talk about something else.

    Thanks again for some lovely advice!
     
  18. AlteredEgo

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    When I was in junior high, and in too many unhealthy friendships, I was given a book about relationships which advised something to the effect of, "If your time away from this person is more enjoyable than your time with them, it is time to consider never spending any more time with them. Perhaps this is not the best choice for a friend." I'm paraphrasing, but that advice has stuck. Sometimes it is my turn to be the selfish one, and for my own self-centered reasons, leave certain other people alone. It may not be nice, but my life is completely devoid of drama. Every once in a while I don my Drama Proof Boots and kick someone to the curb.
     
  19. Keleios

    Keleios New Member

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    I'm glad you're giving it careful consideration, it's easy to get hung up on the bad points when you're feeling stressed about something and I know it creates certain difficulties to censor parts of your life when you don't share them with someone else.

    I've got a few female friends through work who are my own age but we have extremely little in common other than working in the same place. They talk about work, kids, divorces, mortgages, what their neighbours are doing, who their ex's are seeing instead of them, how their cars don't work but they don't know why and the mechanic totally ripped them off and could I come round and fix a shelf. They also drink a lot then go to terrible clubs that smell like desperation and don't play any music worth dancing to.

    They're all great people who are good at what they do and extremely caring but I'm just not enough like them to enjoy their company for extended periods of time. So we keep things casual, have individual weekend coffee mornings every month or so and I only go clubbing with them for birthdays and staff outings.

    People who fit into the "friends by association" or "colleagues" categories are usually lovely in their own way but there's always some reason why you're not really close friends. If you're lucky, those reasons are mutually understood but in your case, your friend doesn't seem to have any idea that her behaviour is causing a problem and if she considers you to be her only close friend, there might be a risk of her chasing after you to find out why you're running away. Which would exacerbate your current problem.

    I'd lean more towards talking to her or at the least trying to make her understand that you have commitments to spending time with your family. I'd have a concern that if nothing is said now that you might find yourself in the same place sometime in the future.
    If all else fails, get a pointy stick. Nothing says "I don't want to be friends anymore" like being relentlessly pointed at.
     
  20. petite

    petite New Member

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    Keleios, I think your posts in this thread have been very thoughtful, full of consideration, and wise.

    The only thing I would add is that I think Mademoiselle Rouge should use this opportunity to tell her friend that it bothers her that her friend isn't more interested in her family life, and subjects like her friend's boyfriend and talking about the future with one another should also be a part of their friendship, if their friendship is to grow and last for years and years.
     
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