To think if you won't travel to see someone you can't complain you don't see them enough?

(35 Posts)
NobodyInParticular Mon 25-Jul-16 22:04:25

AIBU to think if you won't travel to see someone you can't complain you don't see them enough?

A friend and I live about 25 miles away, which on public transport takes about 2.5hrs and costs about £15-£20. For either of us it would involve bus - train - bus. She lives in a city and I live rurally. Her income is about double mine, but neither of us are especially hard up. There are no other extenuating circumstances such as travel phobias etc - she semi regularly goes to towns which are 40 miles from her home.

Once upon a time I used to travel to her house and see her about once a fortnight because it was a convenient journey for me at the time and I was happy to do it and enjoyed seeing her. In the 3 years I have known her she has never visited me at my house or in my nearest town (which would be a bus then a train) where I have always said I would be happy to meet instead. The closet to my home that she has ever agreed to meet me is 20 miles away from me! I'm pretty sure this is because she views visiting my house / town as being not especially interesting (average house, average town, much like hers in fact) and therefore not worthwhile when she could save herself the effort and expense by getting me to come to her house instead.

She frequently nags me about arranging a time to go and see her. More or less every time we chat she will mention booking a diary date for me to come over and often she will mention it several times within the same conversation. She uses what I feel are standard emotional blackmail lines such as "but it's so sad I don't get to see you much any more", "I really miss having a good chat", "it would be so nice to have you over for XYZ again", plus sometimes "I've got XYZ amazing thing I really want to show you / give you, but it's at my house so you'll have to come over". Sometimes I just respond by saying I'm too busy / making an excuse, but a few times I've "called her" on it and have responded with "Yes, I really miss seeing you too. It would be lovely to see you, how about you come over to [my nearest town] / my house and we can have a good chat". Strangely, whenever I have done that she falls very silent about how much she misses seeing me and changes the topic or doesn't reply to my message!

AIBU to think that in the absence of extenuating circumstances it should be the person willing to do the travelling who chooses how often to meet up, and that it's bloody unreasonable to complain to the other person that you don't get to see them often enough if you're unwilling to ever travel?

Also, AIBU to "call her" on this whenever she uses the emotional blackmail tactics by offering an invite to my town / house instead?

Trills Mon 25-Jul-16 22:15:34

YANBU.

How much do you actually like her?

Trills Mon 25-Jul-16 22:16:49

I would be rapidly going off someone who
a - used emotional blackmail
b - was so self-absorbed that they didn't realise that they were doing one of the travelling

Trills Mon 25-Jul-16 22:17:02

*none of the travelling

NobodyInParticular Mon 25-Jul-16 22:20:22

I do really like her, this is the only issue I have.

A) I'm glad you agree PP that it is emotional blackmail, I was worried I was being too paranoid.

B) I'm not sure she is that self absorbed, I think she may be very aware and it could be a conscious decision. Which is probably worse, right!?

OvariesBeforeBrovaries Mon 25-Jul-16 22:20:58

YANBU YANBU YANBU.

I can't stand people like this. I've got ILs on mine and DP's back at the moment because "we don't visit enough". We visit every few weeks (they live two hours away and I work full time), and SIL keeps having a go at us for not seeing her, seeing my family more etc - barbed comments like "you do have another side of the family you know".

SIL and BIL are childless and work part time, both drive and can go gallivanting around the country to pubs and cricket matches etc on a whim, but have been up to visit us all of once in the two years we've lived here. And they expect us to drag DD across the country and back again pretty much every weekend to go and see them.

YANBU at all. Your "friend" is selfish, manipulative and blackmailing you.

CerseiHeartsJaime4ever Mon 25-Jul-16 22:32:16

I have a friend who I only ever visited too. One day I decided to sod it, I wasn't going to travel 20 miles every time and guess what? I've seen her twice in 2 years. I care not. Although most of my other friends would not baulk if I outright asked them why the hell they hadn't visited me!

"but it's so sad I don't get to see you much any more"
"I really miss having a good chat"
"it would be so nice to have you over for XYZ again"
"I've got XYZ amazing thing I really want to show you / give you, but it's at my house so you'll have to come over".

The response to all of these is : I know. When are you coming here?

ParanoidGynodroid Mon 25-Jul-16 22:37:32

Golly, your friend is selfish. You have called her out on it, yes, but you'll have to be even n more direct.
Next time say "it's your turn to come to mine" - make sure she knows you expyect reciprocity.
Or ask her outright why she won't do her fair share if the travelling.

MatildaTheCat Mon 25-Jul-16 22:38:38

YANBU. Just say you need to alternate visits does she have a problem with this? She will have some brass neck if she still comes up with an excuse.

Usernamegone Mon 25-Jul-16 22:39:19

YANBU! My brother is the same and complains I am a bad sister as I don't visit him often enough. I normally visit once a month. He has visited me once in eight years (and that is only because I paid for the ticket!)

These people never change as they always expect other people to put themselves out.

Whenever she suggests a visit I would just reply - that's would be great if you could visit! I really want to show you my kitchen/garden/budgies etc!

Arfarfanarf Mon 25-Jul-16 22:43:05

Be very direct.
Are you aware that you have never come to my house and expect me to always be the one to travel to you? What's up with that?

NobodyInParticular Mon 25-Jul-16 22:44:12

Yes, it's so frustrating! I feel as if she (and your families and friend PP's) are just complete pisstakers.

I'm quite tempted to use exactly the same lines she uses on me to try to get her to come over here, just so she knows how it feels. But that would be childish. Very tempting though!!

She has actually made me feel like I would be talking the piss to invite her over here, because we both know she has absolutely no intention of ever coming, plus I fear there would be lots of rude comments from her about how if we were at hers we could have done X wonderful thing instead. sigh is this even a friendship worth having!? She claims I'm one of her closest friends and we do confide in each other a lot, but really??

NobodyInParticular Mon 25-Jul-16 22:46:13

Xposted with quite a few of you.

Hm, yes, the direct approach! Am I brave enough!? I did once try something similar and it was met with silence for a few days. Maybe I'll agree to visit her this one time soon but be very direct and confront it after that?

NobodyInParticular Mon 25-Jul-16 22:47:24

Once in 8 years username wow, that really does take the piss!

WhereYouLeftIt Mon 25-Jul-16 22:48:58

"She uses what I feel are standard emotional blackmail lines such as "but it's so sad I don't get to see you much any more", "I really miss having a good chat", "it would be so nice to have you over for XYZ again", plus sometimes "I've got XYZ amazing thing I really want to show you / give you, but it's at my house so you'll have to come over". Sometimes I just respond by saying I'm too busy / making an excuse, but a few times I've "called her" on it and have responded with "Yes, I really miss seeing you too. It would be lovely to see you, how about you come over to [my nearest town] / my house and we can have a good chat". Strangely, whenever I have done that she falls very silent about how much she misses seeing me and changes the topic or doesn't reply to my message!"
I think you need to have some stronger responses at the ready for her. Making excuses is pointless, and 'how about you you come over' she is brushing aside far too easily.

- Well I think it's your turn to visit, don't you?
- Why do you always expect me to visit you, why won't you visit me?
- I find it upsetting that you expect me to always visit you.

And don't let her change the topic! If she tries, just respond with 'You haven't answered my question.'

Can you tell I can't be arsed with this type? grin

cozietoesie Mon 25-Jul-16 22:51:51

You're an 'easy' friendship - a sort of 'I don't have to try that hard' relationship.

Why give her that one extra try? It will probably stretch and stretch if you do.

Enidblyton1 Mon 25-Jul-16 22:53:14

I have a similar situation with one of my 'best' friends. We both used to live in London and meet up loads. Now she lives in a large town about half an hours drive from my small rural town. I drive and she doesn't. (Well she can drive but has lost confidence and doesn't want to drive again). She loves entertaining and is always happy for everyone to visit her and is v generous with food, drink etc. But she will never put herself out to visit anyone else unless she can reach them easily by train or get a lift in someone's car.
I think the advice above is good. If she wants to remain your friend she'll have to make an effort at some point. Otherwise focus on less selfish friends!

jmh740 Mon 25-Jul-16 23:40:41

I would maybe visit her again and tell her directly it's your turn to come to me next time. When she says she has something to show you 'I'd love to see xxx when it's my turn to come to yours'

NobodyInParticular Tue 26-Jul-16 00:27:28

Cozie "You're an 'easy' friendship - a sort of 'I don't have to try that hard' relationship."

I think you've hit the nail on the head there!

I find it especially insulting given I know she goes to stay with another friend who would be twice as far as me (40 miles) on the same train line as me!! And she visits that friend a fair bit.

NobodyInParticular Tue 26-Jul-16 00:30:40

I think I will go to visit her the next time, partly because I was due to go before but I had to cancel at short notice. So I feel as though I should probably do that one, but after that I'll try what you've suggested above and go for the really direct approach, when I'm brave enough, probably in a few weeks time after I've visited her and the nagging to visit again begins!

NobodyInParticular Tue 26-Jul-16 00:43:24

In my dreams if I was brave enough / not too worried about wrecking the friendship I'd just say "Well, I'd love to see you but I can't be bothered to travel, but I'm sure you'll understand that given you've never bothered to travel see me the entire time I've known you. Perhaps if you want to maintain the friendship you should spend the next 3yrs travelling to see me, then after that we can take turns? Or maybe in the meantime you can have the decency to not take advantage and not deliberately attempt to make me feel guilty about not wanting to come and see you yet again?"

purpleshortcake Tue 26-Jul-16 04:03:15

A long shot but could there be a practical reason she doesn't come to stay at yours eg

You have pets that she may be allergic to or may make your place a bit hairy / stinky?

You have children who take over the living room when people stay making it hard to relax?

You have no spare room or the spare room is a bit of a junk room not designed for guests?

You have a flat mate she can't stand (or once had a torrid affair with?)

If you're sure it's none of these then I'd opt for going to hers next time as planned and then as you leave say .. It's your turn to come to me next, let's put a date in the diary. If she refuses then a lighthearted "if I didn't know better I'd think you didn't like coming to stay at mine...it must be at least xxxx since you came over". Stand your ground about you getting to choose the next meeting venue ...and see if the friendship lasts. Good luck OP x

snorepatrol Tue 26-Jul-16 04:39:39

YANBU my sister and brother in law are like this. In the past 8 years they have never visited us. They do live at the other end of the country but always expect us to go to them.

They always moan about not seeing us (I think ideally they would want us to go every 8 weeks or so) they never even came when I had dd just asked us to bring her down when she was a few days old. Despite the fact we drove down to meet both their babies when they were born because who really wants to make a big car journey after giving birth.

They both drive and will drive further than they have to drive to see us to see their friends but won't make the effort to us because much like your friend they have decided they don't like where we live (despite never actually visiting the area)

When dd2 was born I decided that enough was enough after 5 years of putting all the effort in and driving to the every 8 weeks (ish) and that I was not going to drive to them until they came to see us just once. Every time they suggested meeting we welcomed them to come and stay with us. They tried all sorts of emotional blackmail to get us to them but I stood my ground.
I literally just wanted them to show us we were worth the same effort as their friends just once but despite them still now saying pretty much weekly that they are desperate to see us we haven't seen them in 3 years now. Because their 'desperate to see us' has to involve minimal effort of their part.
They've never even met our daughter who turned three a couple of weeks ago.

We could drive to them and it's sad we don't see them but I do resent doing it when they drive past us to visit friends (regularly) but won't even stop off for an hour on route to say hello. I think a friendship / relationship based on one person putting in all the effort and one person refusing to give a bit is no relationship all.

YANBU to visit her on your terms not hers if she won't put the effort in or call her in it next time she moans grin

scaryteacher Tue 26-Jul-16 10:49:12

My Mum does this at times, and despite offering to pay for her Eurostar tickets (we live in different countries), now she is mid 70s, her shtick is that 'she likes her family to collect her if they want her to stay with them'. It takes me 4 days to do the round trip to get her, as I can't drive more than 7 hours a day without getting completely wiped, and two nights in a hotel en route. I have done this for a couple of years now, and am now at the no more point with it.

NobodyInParticular Tue 26-Jul-16 12:34:46

purple grin at torrid affair with Flatmate!

No, I really don't think there is a practical reason. No flatmates, just an OH and DC. I have offered to have her over when OH and DC are out, in case that is the reason. She has pets and I don't, plus my house (not that she would know!) is much cleaner / less cluttered than hers. It's true that our spare room is a junk room not designed for guests, however we do have a sofa bed in the living room (I sleep on the sofa when staying at hers) Plus, I've also invited her to my parents v nice 'country house' when they are away, and invited her just during the daytime so no overnight stay required and invited her to two of my nearest towns. So I can't see what reasonable objection she could have to all of those places, beyond it just being not very exciting and too much effort when she could sit on her arse and let me come to her?

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