To be upset my friend is excluding me?

(146 Posts)
LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:14:25

I have a friend who I've known for 5 years, we met through taking our DC to the local play group. Last year she switched schools and her DC now attend the school my DC attend (I recommended it as she wasn't happy with her school).

She still chats to me in the playground at drop off and pick up, but only when there is no one else about. We occasionally meet for coffee too.

Recently I've begun noticing she has created a big social life around other school parents, lots of dinners and lunches with other sets of parents. What I am finding odd, is that she has never invited me and DH to anything. I find it strange because some of the other parents she has only known for a few months. It's also odd that we chat about our plans for the week end, she always says "we're having dinner with 'friends' ", rather than saying the names of the people that we mutually know. Why be secretive?

I do have other friends at the school and obviously hear about these nights out and lunches. As a long standing friend, and our DH's are friendly too, I wonder sometimes why she excludes us. It makes me feel a bit low if I'm honest.

EducatingNora Wed 29-Jan-14 17:16:59

I wonder if she feels she needs to make friends for herself and not through you and she's just taken it a bit to extremes.

BackforGood Wed 29-Jan-14 17:18:26

I guess she's not 'excluding you' so much as making an effort to get to know some new people - perhaps she feels it' important if her dc have moved to the school later than other people started.

I don't get why people fret so much about what another person is doing. confused. If you want to meet her for lunch, then ask her if she wants to meet for lunch. Simple.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:19:09

Yes, she probably does want to make friends for herself and I complex understand that. She doesn't have many friends in the local area as She lived on the other side of the country previously.

But why are we not included, when there are large groups being invited, 3 or 4 sets of other parents?

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:20:31

She's not actually obliged to invite you along I'm afraid. Are you even friendly with these people? If not, there's no reason for her to include you in plans with them.

I am friendly with two or three groups of mums at the school, and when I see one lot, I don't invite the others too. Similarly, I don't get asked along to everything my school mum friends do with each other either. And that's fine.

She has made these friends in her own right and by her own efforts, and no one is stopping you from doing the same.

Ragwort Wed 29-Jan-14 17:22:40

Sometimes people just 'move on' with their friendships - it can be hard if you feel you are being 'dumped' but, to be honest, that's life. I have had friends at various times in my life, then my interests or hobbies (or their's) have changed and we just don't seem to have so much in common. I would hope I was never unkind, but it happens - perhaps your initial friendship was because of the local playschool but as your children move on to a larger school you meet a wider circle of people.

I know it's tough, I have been 'dumped' a few times, one person I really, really liked & thought we got on very well but clearly she didn't feel the same.

Try not to brood about it, you might appear 'needy'.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:23:55

Yes, all true. I wish it didn't make me feel so low though! It's almost like being at school myself and feeling left out!

MrsKent Wed 29-Jan-14 17:24:55

She has dinner parties and invites other couples but not you... Sounds like she has found ppl she has more in common with... Was yours a strong friendship?

Ragwort Wed 29-Jan-14 17:25:01

Love - just read your second post, that could be me blush. I moved to a new area and met lots of different people; initially I was friendly to everyone but over time you work out who you have more in common with and some people who were initially very nice to me I probably don't see that often, not because I don't like them anymore, but I have made my own contacts etc in the area.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:26:01

I don't feel as though she has moved on as she still wants to meet me on my own, but never includes me in a coffee that she has arranged with a group of other mums.

I am 'separated' from the other social things she has going on!

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:28:43

Ragwort - very true.

I too made some friends at tots group when I moved to the area, but when my ds2 started at the school nursery, I met people I really clicked with, and started to see them more regularly.
The ladies I had met a tots were really nice...and still are, but you know....I didn't sign a contract with them or anything....

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:29:06

MrsKent, she doesn't seem that discerning about the other parents she socialises with. So I really don't think it's from meeting people she has more in common with. For example, last term she got quite friendly and close with 2 sets of parents, and this term doesn't see them at all, but is having dinner parties with another set of parents. She seems to spend a few weeks hanging out with one group, then moves on to the next.

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jan-14 17:29:46

I would put distance between you. She doesn't have to invite you, but as you find it upsetting, you don't have to meet her anywhere, either. Just keep it brief when she addresses you and move on.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:32:03

And another thing, is that she often makes uncomplimentary comments about these people or their children! For example, she'll spend a few weeks getting to know a certain set of parents over lunches, dinners etc, then say something derogatory about their child to me. I sometimes wonder if she says similar things about me?

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:32:11

OP - as you are not friendly with these other people, it probably doesn't occur to her to ask you along.

My good pal A has friends from school I don't really know, and when she sees them, she doesn't invite me. I have no issue with this.
And vice versa.

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:33:46

For example, last term she got quite friendly and close with 2 sets of parents, and this term doesn't see them at all, but is having dinner parties with another set of parents. She seems to spend a few weeks hanging out with one group, then moves on to the next.

That's called 'getting to know people'.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:34:23

I am friendly with these other people ....

DontmindifIdo Wed 29-Jan-14 17:34:40

Do you ever arrange anything? It could be she thinks you don't like doing big group stuff if you never arrange anything yourself and only seem to want to see her 1-2-1...

How about you invite a few other mums for coffee, including her.

If she still leaves you out of group things, then perhaps just accept she only wants to do stuff with you when there's no better offers, so stop being available for going to stuff with just her.

Nanny0gg Wed 29-Jan-14 17:35:05

She's searching for the ones that fit her social 'ideal' and she'll keep moving along till she finds the ones of the right social status.

As long as she isn't moving in on your friends and cutting you out, you're better off keeping her at a distance.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:35:39

Pictish, once I get to know someone I tend to maintain the friendship, not move onto another group and stop seeing the previous group.

DrNick Wed 29-Jan-14 17:37:08

arrange your own social life!

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jan-14 17:38:11

She sounds flighty. Don't waste time on her anymore. Keep it to civilities and move on.

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:38:25

I agree with don'tmindifIdo.

If you're friendly with them, then organise your own meet up. There's nothing stopping you.

WilsonFrickett Wed 29-Jan-14 17:39:26

She's auditioning for new friends and she doesn't feel the need to involve you in this process because you have already made the cut, is how I'd view this.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:40:39

Don'tmindifido, I have invited her along to things with other people in the past, and she has said "no don't invite the other person because their child is badly behaved", for example. So she doesn't think I only want to meet one to one. And the other child is not badly behaved!

I usually arrange group things, and include her. And she arranges group things and doesn't include me!

diddl Wed 29-Jan-14 17:40:48

"I am friendly with these other people" so??

mollygibson Wed 29-Jan-14 17:41:42

I would feel hurt by this too, to be honest… it is odd.

Sadly though I don’t think there’s anything you can do about it – as others have said, confronting her would look needy. It sounds harsh but I think you need to be less invested in this friendship. Somebody who only talks to you when there’s nobody else around isn’t much of a friend IMO.

I would distance myself and focus on other friendships... be polite when you meet her but don’t show her that her behaviour bothers you. I had a friend who was a bit like this and this was my approach... we are still friends, and meet up from time to time, which is perfectly nice but I don't expect too much from the friendship any more - just take it for what it is and don't invest too much in it.

DrNick Wed 29-Jan-14 17:41:48

agree with wilson

plus you need to step away from the school gate - arrive late or something'

or get a job - and hey presto loads of mates!

DrNick Wed 29-Jan-14 17:42:16

maybe you were just a " baby mate" ie all you had in common was your kids?

DontmindifIdo Wed 29-Jan-14 17:43:28

Wilson is right - "auditioning for new friends" is exactly what she's doing! she also probably doesn't want to involve you in it because if you become part of a group she later decides she doesn't like, it'll be hard to keep seeing you alone.

Make your own plans, do group things if you like. If you sometimes invite her too, she see you as part of a group, and also reinforce that you are friends with these people too so she better not be slagging them off to you.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:43:57

I'm not sure we have made the cut because we are not included in their social life! For example there was a Christmas drinks they held, and a fair number of parents from school were invited but not us.

gandalfcat Wed 29-Jan-14 17:46:24

If she is happy to socialise with you, perhaps her DH has an issue with your DH that means your not welcome as a couple?

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:47:24

No, DH's really do get on. So do our DC.

DaffodilShoots Wed 29-Jan-14 17:47:25

NannyOgg has it in a nutshell.

Distance yourself and get other friends or accept the situation. I'd back away myself but I'm fussy about friends so don't have huge numbers of them!

MrsKent Wed 29-Jan-14 17:48:37

Next time she mentions she's having dinner with friends I'd say "yes, so and so mentioned"... She may then talk about it.

rollonthesummer Wed 29-Jan-14 17:49:21

Sounds like she's not into your friendship as much as you. Bloody cheek to tell you not to invite someone to yours though when she doesn't bother to invite you to her dos!

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:50:10

So it would seem we don't fit into her social ideals then? Maybe that's the issue here. But we have similar careers, about the same amount of money, similar houses, etc. I can't see how she would see us as a lower social circle than herself.

IshouldhavemarriedEwanMcGregor Wed 29-Jan-14 17:50:26

Why doesn't anyone ever state the obvious on these threads!

If people are making arrangements with lots of mutual friends and not you then it means they don't like you as much and don't want to spend 'out of hours' time with you.

I'm sorry if you are hurt by this woman but honestly, it's not the end of the world. Don't you like some people more than others? Don't we (shouldn't we) all get to an age where we allow ourselves to be friends with who we want to be and don't waste valuable time making arrangements with people who are perfectly nice but we don't click with...?

DrNick Wed 29-Jan-14 17:50:53

She is just not that much into you OP

Junebugjr Wed 29-Jan-14 17:52:16

Her behaviour sounds weird, but its not something you can bring up without appearing needy. Distance yourself from her, she doesn't sound very nice, and what really are you getting out of the relationship. Concentrate on your other friendships.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:53:12

I don't want to make her talk about it if she wants to keep it to herself, just wonder why she does keep it secret from me in the first place!

The feeling I get is that she doesn't want me in on anything, but I am not sure why.

Pancakeflipping Wed 29-Jan-14 17:54:22

I am going through similar LoveGarfield. Friend of 7 yrs still texts me and chats, acts like we are great buddies but we don't meet up anymore. She has a new friend and they are together a lot and has no time for me or other friends.

It really hurts doesn't it? And I don't like feeling like I am 12yrs old again. Trying to act with dignity. But I keep wanting to stamp my feet.

I have decided that I will widen my social circle, and tonight going out with some people I hardly know but I will know them better by the end of the night.

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 17:55:20

Hmm...the more you write, the more I'm inclined to think of her as a selfish social climber who thinks you are surplus to requirements atm, but who wants to keep you on as an option.

Do not let her affect your friendships with others. Operate completely seperately from her, while remaining cheerful and pleasant.

Do NOT give this person any fuel which she may use against you (just a hunch) - don't complain about all this, and don't seek her approval or permission to forge your own way with these friends.

Fact is...she's not arsed about fuck her.

fedupandfifty Wed 29-Jan-14 17:55:25

love I had a friend like this too. Very sociable, and our kids got on great from nursery til the age of about 8. She would go out of her way for me, and seemed genuine in her liking of me. Then suddenly she dropped me, and discouraged her ds from playing with my dd. She had loads of "friends" , but, like your friend, moved around people, taking them up and dropping them. I genuinely don't think she meant to hurt anyone, but I, for one, was very upset.

I think she was just flighty, like the person mentioned upthread. Perhaps your friend is like this?

In your shoes, I'd move on, otherwise you'll look needy and desperate. Be civil, but keep it at that.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 17:55:47

Maybe that's it.

KatnipEvergreen Wed 29-Jan-14 17:56:23

It's not always a good idea to get loads of friends together - they don't always blend as a group and often you don't get to chat to people you really want to chat to. Perhaps she just wants to see you separately as she likes to have a good chat with you. I know I have separate groups of friends.

IshouldhavemarriedEwanMcGregor Wed 29-Jan-14 17:56:47

Oh dear God no don't bring it up with her whatever you do!

Just accept, nurture and enjoy other friendships, have superficial chit and chats with her and tell yourself FIRMLY that this is no big deal, not everyone in life will want to be your friend, nor will you understand what makes some people tick, and put it out of your mind.

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 17:57:20

The fact that she is going from group to group suggests she's a bit of a social climber and will try to befriend anyone and everyone, as long as they suit her needs at the time or can provide something she wants!

I had someone that I classed as a very good friend. We hadn't known each other that long but we got on so well. All of a sudden she stopped bothering with me and didn't want to meet up, and had moved on to another group of friends. I was really upset. Until she ditched them too. And the next lot. And the next.

Basically she just sails through life with stages of 'temporary' friends and then moves on.

Not the way I would want to be, but some people seem to be like that.

Madmammy83 Wed 29-Jan-14 17:58:52

She might have just gone off your company, it happens, friends part ways. I'd drop her to be honest, be civil and friendly but she's obviously not interested in having a close relationship anymore so I wouldn't push it.

Notawordfromtheladybird Wed 29-Jan-14 18:00:31

Some people like to keep friends in compartments. She's known you for quite a while. If you introduced her to your friends, she would feel obligated to continuously invite you every time she wanted to see one of the people you introduced her to. Which, of course, is a different dynamic.

Her comment about don't invite so and so says to me she is meeting new people and dropping them when she can see they won't gell.

Also, I think she doesn't want to do couple things. I have a friend who would say our husbands get along. No, my husband tolerates him and I get irritated by him. I see less of her because she's always suggesting couple stuff.

inadreamworld Wed 29-Jan-14 18:01:12

I would actually ask her why you are not included and see what she says. It does sound odd.

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:01:25

I think Pictish has got it spot on! Your friend is just keeping you as an option.

Don't let her! Be busy when she suggests coffee. If she decides that you're good enough to speak to at the school that day, be polite and smiley but be in a hurry or go to speak to someone else.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:01:49

Pictish it's funny you mentioning fuel she may use against me - my DH said the same thing recently. He thinks they are a competitive couple.

As for seeking her permission to make arrangements with other friends. That's what I feel odd about now. I feel as though any efforts I now make to socialise with my friends, will look as though I am need or desperate because I wasn't included in the previous nights out. It's a pain!

eddielizzard Wed 29-Jan-14 18:02:20

totally agree with pictish. i have a 'friend' like this. bloody annoying.

KatnipEvergreen Wed 29-Jan-14 18:03:32

I don't really have any good friends among mums at school and I do talk to lots of different people who are in different groups themselves. I think you would do this even more if you are new and weren't quite sure who to be friends with. I'm not a social climber, I just like talking to different people and am not really bothered about making lots of effort with people outside school, as I already have good friends from elsewhere. Also if I stood with the same person morning and evening I wouldn't know what to say!

MrsKent Wed 29-Jan-14 18:05:23

Whatever the reason don't let it affect you that much. You have mentioned money/ social status / etc so sounds as

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:05:43

Katnip; I think the issue is that the OP's friend is inviting other people on nights out or for lunch, but leaving the OP out, even though some of these people were originally the OP's friends.

matildamatilda Wed 29-Jan-14 18:05:52

So this person invites people over to her house and then gossips about them and their kids?

What a loser. Be glad she's not a closer friend.

IshouldhavemarriedEwanMcGregor Wed 29-Jan-14 18:06:03

It bugs me that on Mumsnet if someone doesn't want to be friends with you (for whatever reason - maybe the OP has pissed her off! Maybe her husband secretly can't bear OP's husband! Maybe she thinks OP is absolutely lovely but they simply have nothing in common or no friendship chemistry!) they are seen as a 'social climber' or a bitch.

Adults are allowed to choose their friends.

Not all adults will like you or like you enough to want to spend time with you.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:07:45

Am thinking about this more, and perhaps we just don't fit in so much. The majority of parents at school like to get very, very drunk when they go out. This particular friend once got a bit flirty with DH (which didn't really bother me as I know DH doesn't find her attractive, and friend was very drunk). My DH and I don't really get drunk with school parents, it just doesn't feel quite right to us!

MrsKent Wed 29-Jan-14 18:07:49

Ups posted too soon...
... As if you had this idea as a reason.
Why does it make you feel low? ( not angry?)... If she doesn't want you around it's her loss!!!

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:08:06

I think though EwanMcGregor, that the type of person that moves from group to group of people, trying to be friends with everyone, is a bit of a social climber.

Not necessarily a bitch, but a social climber

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:09:13

But meant to add, a lot of them do get a bit drunk and flirty with each other. Which is not really our style.

PollyPutTheKettle Wed 29-Jan-14 18:10:38

YANBU in being upset. Only she knows why she is doing this but she's certainly not behaving like a friend. I would step back from her and let it be. She is not the friend you thought she was. As for spending her weekend with other parents - good luck to her. I personally think school is not the place to meet friend unless you are a child. Its too messy (bitter experience talking).

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:11:46

You will find, OP, that she will work her way through everyone at the school over time.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:12:44

Low because I feel a bit left out! And would like to be included. Even if I didn't want to go to everything it would be nice to be invited. I should add, I also work and almost all of these mums do not.

diddl Wed 29-Jan-14 18:14:12

So did you & your husband used to be invited & now you're not?

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:14:43

No, we were never invited.

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:17:05

I would honestly just hold your head up high and think 'fuck her'.

She's clearly not bothered about you, or about hurting your feelings. Just treat her as an acquaintance, and as if she's just a random mum at the school gate.

Personally I'd make an extra effort to spend time with the other mums that you knew before she pushed her way in. They may well start asking her why you're excluded from things she arranges!

diddl Wed 29-Jan-14 18:19:08

So she's always seen just you as her friend?

Well, that's either acceptable to you or not tbh.

I have friends, & even though my husband has met their husbands, we don't do couple stuff with them.

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 18:20:01

Ewan - I totally agree with you about people being allowed to make and conduct their own friendships, and if you read my earlier posts you will that I stipulate just that.

However, the OP has also alluded to a few things that do whiff a bit, in my experience.

Could be wrong...but doubt it.

Ragwort Wed 29-Jan-14 18:20:12

Seriously, she doesn't sound a very nice person so I wonder why you are investing so much time and thought into the 'friendship'?

feathermucker Wed 29-Jan-14 18:21:16

People are pretty quick to condemn! Maybe it's just that you and her have a different sort of friendship and also that she's making new friends (which, obviously, she is 'allowed' to do) I have different sets of friends that I do different things with and wouldn't necessarily mix the different groups.

Are the people that she's having dinner with good friends of yours or are they more acquaintances?

I think you'd feel better if you were to make some new friends. Perhaps feeling sad about his friendship, whilst understandable, is holding you back a little.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:21:25

No we've done lots of socialising with DH's too - that both of us arranged, but all BEFORE she joined the same school as us. Since joining the school she is socialising with other parents that I am friendly with and excluding us, it worse she is being secretive about it.

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 18:22:52

And OP - given that they like a drink and whatnot, while you and your dh don't, it's possible that she sees you as nice but a bit 'straight'.
Much bonding takes place over shared drinking experiences.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:24:35

We do like a drink! We just don't get drunk to the pint of flirting with other people's husbands and wives at school! Which I think is inappropriate!!!

olympicsrock Wed 29-Jan-14 18:24:58

YANBU. This would upset me too. Not v inclusive or generous spirited. Take a step back

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:25:57

I wonder if she's a 'Wendy'?

pictish Wed 29-Jan-14 18:27:57

My DH and I don't really get drunk with school parents, it just doesn't feel quite right to us!

I'm only going on what you said there. Maybe they all enjoy getting sloshed together?

expatinscotland Wed 29-Jan-14 18:29:57

She sounds flakey. Why bother? Just cut and move on.

Quinteszilla Wed 29-Jan-14 18:34:01

Leave her be, she sounds like she has realized that you and her are very different, and that she likes your company just the two of you, and frankly seeing less of her is no loss.

DameFanny Wed 29-Jan-14 18:34:17

I was thinking Wendy too Mee - although this sounds more like she's used the OP for some introductions and now doesn't want her in the way

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:35:24

What exactly is a Wendy?

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:36:14

Yes, I think they do enjoy getting sloshed and generally misbehaving together! DH and I would rather do that with very old friends!

ravenAK Wed 29-Jan-14 18:39:34

Ah, the booze will be it.

They are having dinner parties that involve everyone getting massively plastered; they know you'd hate it.

& they have to find fresh friends regularly because every three dinner parties something so toe-curlingly embarrassing, probably involving an inappropriate lunge AND vomit, happens, that no-one present can ever speak to each other again.

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 18:41:06

When I have groups of friends round, I invite people I think will get on well together. This is not always my favourite people.

CarolineKnappShappey Wed 29-Jan-14 18:48:49

I think you might be being a bit sensitive. If she's trying to make friends sometimes it's easier to do it without old friends there as well.

LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 18:50:55

Agree, and I can be sensitive too.

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 18:53:38

You have already said you don't like the kind of dinner parties she is having. So she probably knows that, and hasn't invited you. But she still likes you and arranges to meet up with you alone.

Given that context, I really don't see the issue.

Back2Two Wed 29-Jan-14 19:08:42

Sadly, the booze could be part of it.
Maybe she thinks that you would really disapprove.
Either which way don't sound very well matched.

Do you have enough friends to not really need this parenty type socialising? If so, I'd focus upon those friendships for a while, step back from the action at school and from this one woman a little too. You may find that as soon as you do this, the friendships may come to you more.

Or they'll all get pissed and someone will go too far on the flirty action and it'll all blow up and be a total nightmare. Quite likely by the sounds of it!

DoJo Wed 29-Jan-14 19:22:11

I have read this situation completely differently to everyone else, so for my two penny's worth I'm not sure I understand why you feel as though what she's doing is in some way intended to specifically exclude you?

When I read your OP, I thought that it sounded as though she was making an effort to make friends with people at her son's new school. If she invited you along, it would change the dynamic from 'new person getting to know other mums' to 'new person and established friend mix with other mums who friend already knows'. I assumed that she probably wanted to spend time with people independently of you because she already knows and likes you and considers you a friend and wanted to have the chance to get to know other people for herself rather than as an established 'pair of friends' with you.
I can see why you might feel left out, but I think even the fact that she will make the occasional negative comment about another mum suggests that she sees your friendship as the permanent one where she feels comfortable sharing her thoughts on the other mums in a kind of 'comparing notes' way, to see if your impressions of the people are the same as hers. What happened when you defended the other mums?

Either way, it does seem like you need to evaluate whether you can continue this friendship on some level or whether you believe she really is a horrible social climber, bitch or any of the other things people have alluded to on this thread. You seem to be leaning that way, and I hope that you're right otherwise you could be writing off a friendship that she actually values more than the others.

maddening Wed 29-Jan-14 19:28:53

if you are in a similar career maybe she keeps you ticking over incase you move in to a position to be able to help her career?

Maybe she's trying to reinvent herself? So you being there knowing the real "her" would spoil that?

Greentriangle82 Wed 29-Jan-14 19:34:10

I've been in a similar situation and it is hurtful. It's because you would invite her and she hasn't bothered to invite you. I now distance myself from said person and feel better for it. She may not mean any harm by it but I find it unfriendly and prefer not to he made to feel like I'm being left out. Yes it does sound playground stuff but its hurtful when on the receiving end if it.
Perhaps she's worried if she invites you they'll like you more?

thegreylady Wed 29-Jan-14 19:41:42

I would make her talk about it smile

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 19:44:57

I am pretty astounded at some of the comments here. The OP has said she doesn't like the kind of boozy dinner parties her friend has, and has actually been pretty disapproving of them. So why would her friend invite her?

I hate watching football. My friends who love it don't invite me when they go to watch a game. They are not excluding me, simply taking note of my likes and dislikes.

DrNick Wed 29-Jan-14 19:45:43

i think the OP has thought about this issue for at least 5 times longer than the friend has


LoveGarfield Wed 29-Jan-14 19:58:27

I haven't expressed any disapproval of their drinking or dinner party antics actually, and I'm not sure why friend doesn't include me at all - if she included me once or twice it would be fine. But the fact it is never, is what grates, also that she keeps other social activities secret because that actually serves to make me feel like I am being purposefully excluded. The secrecy is what is more hurtful. If she were open about what she gets up to I wouldn't feel anything at all.

pancakedays Wed 29-Jan-14 20:08:43

She is a social climber. Is she competitive? She was the outsider as you were already at the school, and is trying to show how well she has fitted in, how many friends she has. She doesn't want to be LoveGarfield's friend, but be mrs popular.
If you still enjoy her company on a one to one my advice would be to continue that, but do not discuss/gossip about any other families with her. I would not trust her 100%.
Why don't you start organising things that don't include her? Nothing too obvious, just coffee with one or two of the other parents.
People always see through people like her, and often turn out to be fair weather friends.

fedupandfifty Wed 29-Jan-14 20:08:46

Perhaps she's playing you? She sounds as if she may not just enjoy excluding you, but enjoys the fact that it bothers you, thus rubbing your nose in it. Perhaps she's one of those who feels powerful through having lots of friends. She may enjoy the feeling that she's popular: a bit like having lots of facebook friends. She seems to like cultivating an aura of popularity, and may even be insecure deep down. Perhaps she sees you as a threat and imagines that if she includes you, you may rob her of her so-called friends.

You need to move on, love. She's not worth the trouble, imo.

Choccybaby Wed 29-Jan-14 20:13:33

Maybe they're all swingers grin

pancakedays Wed 29-Jan-14 20:13:51

Fedupandfifty has explained it better than me! I have known a couple of people like this, always women, and probably the issue stems from their insecurity.

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 20:25:08

I think some people love to give the impression that they're "in" and best buddies with everyone. It was embarrassing watching the behaviour of one mum when our DCs started school last September; she was all over loads of people and kept asking people round to her house, and for nights out. Not because she's a genuinely friendly, warm person, but because she just wanted to be seen to be popular.

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 20:32:00

Garfield - You have expressed disapproval of her drinking on here. Maybe she has picked up your non verbal language.

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 20:35:19

And I feel sorry for this other woman now. She is being accused of all kinds of things on here. I personally don't like friends that are too hard work.

You like someone, meet up with them and they seem to like you, fine. I understand it can hurt, but you can't dictate who else they are friends with, or what social occasions they should or shouldn't invite you to.

If you are not happy with how they treat you, stop being friends.

diddl Wed 29-Jan-14 20:39:16

But we don't have to include all of our friends in everything that we do.
I have couples friends and girlfriends.

meeroolla Wed 29-Jan-14 20:48:38

No, we don't have to include everyone in everything we do, but it seems to me that the OP's friend is inviting lots of others, many of whom are OP's friends, and excluding the OP.

I don't think that the OP is coming across as being hard work, I think she just doesn't like being treated unfairly by a friend, which lets face it most of us wouldn't like either.

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 20:50:56

I have one friend I really like and meet up with. I don't include her in group things as she can be pretty tactless e.g. moan about her "low" wage of £40k when most of my friends earn way way less than that. Doesn't mean I don't like her, just means that I know my other friends would not appreciate her tactlessness.

I have another friend who makes lots of innuendo jokes when she has had a drink. I would only invite her along with certain groups of people, as I know some friends would hate that.

I have another friend whose DP is a pain. I don't invite her to group things of couples as by the end of the evening I would simply be in a rage from her DP's comments about immigrants, etc. I don't know why she is with her DP.

Actually, maybe your DP is the issue?

Grennie Wed 29-Jan-14 20:52:28

When your friend meets up with you, is your DP there? If not, it may be your DP she doesn't want to mix with. That is almost impossible to say to a friend.

Greentriangle82 Wed 29-Jan-14 20:54:27

I think fedupandfifty is very wise and has hit the nail on the head.

Jellypoppingcandy Wed 29-Jan-14 21:57:09

Er I'm with choccybaby. You have had a lucky escape OP!

TenThousandSpoons Thu 30-Jan-14 09:07:54

I also came on to say the same as choccybaby. Do they have pampas grass in the front garden?

lainiekazan Thu 30-Jan-14 09:21:32

Two thoughts: one, that she compartmentalises people. So you are daytime coffee lady, and others are boozy dinner party people, and someone else might be gym buddy or, perhaps, naice Boden-type friends and then more, er, down-to-earth ones. And it is decreed none shall mix.

Other thought: she is a friend collector. A 'friend' of dd is like this. Always adopting new people, then five minutes later casting them off. And then I noticed that she was a real chip off the old block. Her mother is exactly the same. Bosom buddies with someone one minute, then the next sailing past with an imperious wave of the hand as she glides over to her latest 'friend of the week'.

Laura0806 Thu 30-Jan-14 09:49:06

I don't think you are being at all unreasonable and I disagree with those who say she can invite who she wants and that you are beng needy. Well i do agree that she can invite who she wants but it seems odd that she is excluding you everytime daytime and nightime things. It seems to me that she is shutting you out deliberately for whatever reason. I would distance myself, be polite and cool and concentrate on other friendships and building up your own networks if you feel you need to. Try not to get upset, you may have had a lucky escape.

HelloBoys Thu 30-Jan-14 10:30:37

The one thing that strikes me about this (and it stands out) is you originally made friends through your DC and the play group.

I know (from having childminded casually as a teenager) and from friends conversations etc that sometimes what binds relationships at this stage is the child or the place you meet (eg playgroup) etc and what you have common then is the child - so it can be hard to carry on the friendship when children are growing up, away from playgroup etc.

I get the feeling she feels you didn't have much in common with her apart from your children in the first place and she has moved on.

there could well be other reasons as stated in the thread but I would ignore and move on.

GrumpyInYorkshire Thu 30-Jan-14 10:33:03

OP, you are massively overthinking this.

Maybe it's because we're not at the school gates stage yet (DS is too young) but I don't know, and don't give a fig, about who my friends see when they're not with me.

For all I know, my friends could be gaily getting together for dinner parties without DH and I. But what with work, and DS, and family stuff, and exercising, i'm too busy to know or care.

This is why I think you're giving this far too much of your time. If you want to see your friend then arrange to meet her, and enjoy her company, but don't dwell upon what else she may be doing in her social life.

She's entitled to see whoever she likes and have whoever she likes round for dinner. Getting hung up about it makes you sound clingy and insecure, IMO. She's probably just wanting to forge her own way at the new school, without the "old" friend who she knows so well she doesn't have to make the same getting-to-know-you niceties with.

Or maybe she only has six chairs around her table and thinks it makes sense to use her limited space to meet new people?

I think you should just get on with your own life and your other friendships Tbh. Whatever's going on here will resolve itself in time!

alwaysworryingmum Thu 30-Jan-14 10:38:29

I've had this before.

It hurts.

Most effective strategy is to organize stuff you'd like to do with other excluded parents. Build up a social network of her rejects.

We weren't cool enough at work, we formed our own nerdy group. Guess which group became the more successful? We were just a mostly nice group of friends whereas the other group was full of snide remarks and competing, boastful, vain socialites. We'd all suffered from being excluded from being asked to coffee or lunch etc so we had no one to sit with; we started all going together at a certain time, rounding each other up and making sure no one was left out.

I eventually was offered the opportunity to join their 'gang' - it really wasn't that wonderful or enjoyable. I'd felt excluded before but it was a very disappointing experience and I quickly escaped to the safety of my fellow nerds - rescuing a few others along the way. We weren't exclusive but happy to welcome others. We did tease each other but it didn't have the sharp edge that the other group had.

The other group faded out and the fallen leader joined our group.

GreggsOnLegs Thu 30-Jan-14 10:38:41

OP, I could've written this post! Some of it is quite spookily the same. I actually did write a very similar post not so long back and had the same responses you've had here..
Thinking about my situation now with my 'friend' it was actually more about me than her. I was hoping maybe for gratitude and perhaps loyalty for helping her and her dc settle into a new area and new school (her Dd moved to my ds's school to on my recommendation). She also started to have secretive social engagements with mutual friends and didn't include me. One time a mutual friend was hosting a surprise birthday gathering for 'friend' at her house and had told friend it was just the two of them when actually we were all meeting there. I asked 'friend' if she had any plans that day and she said none and didn't mention mutual friend at all. She looked mortified when she walked into mutual friends house and I was there too.
Now she socialises with school parents, I never get invited, this too is secretive.
Thinking about my own feelings I actually feel jealousy and resentment towards this woman, she's actually not very nice either but I don't know why I'd still jump at the chance to be proper friends again with her and be included in the social circle.
I know I need to distance myself but it's hard and it truly does hurt.

LoveGarfield Thu 30-Jan-14 10:45:58

It is quite mortifying/embarrassing however, when other mums come over to me and this friend at school, and say things like "wasn't last night hilarious!", or "can't wait until Saturday night!". It's embarrassing because friend always looks uncomfortable that her secret is out, and I just feel a bit stupid for being so obviously not a part of this.

Other people at school know we knew each other for years before friend started at the school, so surely they must wonder why friend doesn't invite us?

diddl Thu 30-Jan-14 10:48:29

So what do you & your other friends do without this one?

meeroolla Thu 30-Jan-14 12:14:10

I think you'd feel better OP if you took control of the situation; make a mental note that she is now an acquaintance, not a friend, and just drop her from your radar really. Treat her as if she's just any old random mum at the school gate that you are polite to but know nothing about and who knows nothing about you. Then focus on other friendships.

If she is doing things to spite you (and it does sound to me as though she is), then rising above it and making out you couldn't give a toss is the best way to go. It will wind her up. I think you will also notice she soon drops her 'new' friends and moves onto other new ones if she thinks you're not bothered.

My social climbing friend was all over one of my best friends for a while, inviting her on nights out and for coffee, but I just let them get on with it and didn't even acknowledge that it happened and - surprise surprise - she has now ditched my friend and moved onto other friends. People like that just love to divide and conquer; they get a real kick from it for some bizarre reason.

Mia4 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:20:46

Yanbu to feel sad op you can't help that but you need tolet it go becquse overthinking this is a) making you more upset and questioning and b) not productive at all.

What is productive is deciding what to do. You could say in the situation you've described above 'oh did you do something nice' because unless these other mums are real shits they probably presume that you knew about the plans and either didn't care or were invited and chose not to come.

I would broaden your social circle, go out and invite who you want. See this other mum but let her arrange it the firs couple of times so you know she wants to see you. Oh and don't defer to her, invite who you want. If she says don't invite x then say, I've actually already invited her I've never had an issue with her.

Stop dwelling on this friend, she isn't your only one. Spend time and appreciate the others.'s shit when you are being left out but brooding on if you are and the many reasons you may he I'd just going to make you feel worse not solve the issue.

HelloBoys Thu 30-Jan-14 12:26:47

OP - if this woman is playing games (which it sounds like it) then treat it as you would if you were at school.

Ignore and move on. I mean how old is she? Come on. Maybe if the other mums tell you about how great their night way you COULD butt in and say "sounds fab but I wasn't invited". you then get the pitying looks or the other friends may say to your friend "invite LoveGarfield next time" - either in front of you all or when you aren't there.

You COULD speak to her (people have suggested not to though) and say you find this hurtful and is there a reason why? but you run the risk of her brushing this off and telling you nothing's wrong or her still socialising without you.

HelloBoys Thu 30-Jan-14 12:29:17

Oh and a final thing.

I would invite them ALL out - for a nice evening maybe somewhere you all wanted to go. Make sure plenty of notice etc and include them all.

this way from their responses you SHOULD find out who is keen on your company and who isn't. You never know you may find another mum who is even more friendly and worthy of your company than original friend who quite frankly sounds like a prize bitch and I'd phase out.

gotthemoononastick Thu 30-Jan-14 12:42:31

Maybe she is head over heels with your husband and trying to avoid him and all of your family for her own sake?Dangerous ground and all that!

Laura0806 Thu 30-Jan-14 12:42:45

Totally agree with the last 3 posters. Take control of the situation and ignore her! Its only when you take control rather than being passive that you will move on and stop thinking about it. thats what i had to do. I can't say it doesn't hurt from time to time but its much better now, good luck!

CuntyBunty Thu 30-Jan-14 12:53:16

Just be polite, but really, she isn't that nice. I CBA with that after a bit. Stick with your other mates and you'll be fine.

I know your feeling are hurt, but once you accept that she is just like this and is not going to change, you'll feel alot better. I can see it is a bit hurtful though, we all like to be popular/liked, to an extent.

flowery Thu 30-Jan-14 13:07:21

How does anyone have enough headspace for this type of thing?

This is why I sit in the car until 30 seconds before DS is due out of school, turn up, pick him up, go.

MargotLovedTom Thu 30-Jan-14 13:10:05

I don't think I'd be able to stop myself from saying something, but it would be an off-the-cuff remark after someone has just dropped her in it yet again:

"Blimey, I'm starting to think DH and I have got BO or something, saying as we never get invited to any of your little soirées."

then give her a bloody wide berth.

I have been in situations like this.

I have a lovely friend, and she thinks our DHs get on well, but secretly my DH thinks her DH is a bore.

So, I meet up with her for lunch or coffee, but dinner is tricky as we tend to mix more in the evening with couples we are both friends with, as that's just easier.

I also have a friend who is lovely, but her DH has such a chip on his shoulder about posh people, that whenever he gets together with us he starts making digs about "People with kids in private schools" and "alright for some" and seems so bitter and envious, it is hard to incorporate him in a fun evening.

So maybe something like that is going on (not saying something is wrong with your DH, but maybe her DH and your DH simply don't click)

CuntyBunty Thu 30-Jan-14 13:32:16

Ha, good strategy, Flowery, the school yard is a nightmare.

Grennie Thu 30-Jan-14 13:48:34

Fiscal - I agree it is maybe her DP that is the issue. I am friends with individuals, doesn't mean sometimes I don't think their DP is unbearable.

Tokyocalling Thu 30-Jan-14 14:13:39

Could it be she likes you but her DH does not?

beatricedante Thu 30-Jan-14 15:49:58

As someone up thread said, she sounds flighty. Keep her at a distance. I,ve known similar people. Not sure what her motivation is but sounds like she wants lots of friends for different reasons. Perhaps she prefers superficial friendships but you prefer deeper friendships. Perhaps keep her as a friend for when you want something to do but don't put any further importance on the friendship.

LoveGarfield Thu 13-Feb-14 22:04:40

After this morning, I think I have had a lucky escape Jellypoppingcandy.

I met another friend from school for lunch, and the excluding friend turns up to buy a take away (just coincidence, the place where we met is opposite school). She then sparks up conversation with the friend I was eating lunch with, pretty much excluding me and at the same time finding out why we are meeting and what our plans are.

Is she trying to send me a message! I haven't spoken to her much this week and certainly think she has noticed. Why do some women care so much about being top dog at school - have they no life outside of school.

CuntyBunty Fri 14-Feb-14 08:43:45

That's rude of her Garfield. I bet she soured your lunch too, didn't she? Don't give her space in your head; she sounds horrible and rude. Was your other friend embarrassed of Excluding Friend's behaviour, at being implicated in it in such a way?

Anyway, there's nothing wrong with you.

Laura0806 Fri 14-Feb-14 09:07:06

she sounds like shes not got a lot else in her life but meddling in other peoples but sadly very similar to a 'friend' of mine as I may have said earlier in your thread. Very very difficult to not give her space in your head but please try and if you find the answer please let me know

LoveGarfield Fri 14-Feb-14 09:25:19

She arrived towards the end so it didn't sour lunch, and my friend has some idea of what she is about.

My answer was to keep very far away from this woman, which I have done. But she still wants to interfere in my social life or show the world that she has the most friends. Flighty friendships though, she doesn't have any old friends from life before the school gates.

I know a girl exactly like this. She became friends with me and my group, started bitching to one of my mutual friends (who told me) and I confronted her about it.

She went out of her way to exclude me from the others and ignore me, then would text me and ask to meet up. Then, when I saw her at work she would blank me again. Luckily, my other friends are wise to her shit so it won't be long before she jumps ship to another set of friends.

Just take a step back, ignore it and continue with your other friendships. Concentrate on doing what you enjoy with your friends and fuck whatever she is up to. She may come crawling back eventually, when everyone gets sick and tired of her (as in my situation) and if she doesn't there is no big loss.

LoveGarfield Fri 14-Feb-14 09:33:54

Just cannot fathom why people behave like this. They must put a lot of time and energy into it.

lazyhound444 Fri 14-Feb-14 11:07:25

I didn't realise adults acted like this until I had children and had to put up with all the school gate politics and mafia. I was really niave at first and took everyone at face value but soon learned that some people had a very weird agenda and strange definition of "friendship". Luckily I got a nice bunch in the end and weeded out all the whackos before I questioned my own sanity too much.

eddielizzard Fri 14-Feb-14 11:55:58

i don't know. insecurity?

seems ridiculous and i also would never have thought people behaved like this but i know a couple like this unfortunately.

ercolercol Fri 14-Feb-14 12:38:13

She's a wendy - can someone succinct explain to the OP?

Hullygully Fri 14-Feb-14 12:49:37


She is competitive, wants to be the centre of attention and doesn't want you around in case you get in the way.

LoveGarfield Fri 14-Feb-14 13:00:34

Yes, I think she is insecure. She puts on such a good front though. She does like to be centre of attention but quite covert about it. Her husband is extremely controlling. Maybe she is trying to regain some control in her life at the school gates as she has so little control in her home.

I just to become less irritated by her behaviour. I would like her to stay out of my life/social circle but she's not going to do that.

nova1111 Fri 14-Feb-14 13:18:24

She puts on such a good front though.

Yes. The two in our playground are so good at raking new people in. True social butterflies. Over time though people get their measure.

pancakedays Fri 14-Feb-14 15:08:38

Her true colours will show through LoveGarfield.
I would try and not be drawn into her mind games though, people like this make awful enemies, and portray themselves as victims, imagine her saying 'look everyone, LoveGarfield is excluding me, we've been friends for so long, what have I done?
She is not worth anymore wasted energy, and will not be worth you feeling uncomfortable at school pick-up. Remember you still have to see her at school daily!
Keep the pleasant 'morning', and gradually move away from her. Don't bitch about her to anyone, in a couple of years you can use ' our lives just went in different directions etc', if anyone asks you about it.
She is not your friend, but don't make her your enemy.
Also remember the saying, if you can count your true friends on one hand, you're very lucky!

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