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How do I tactfully get my friend to stop playing the race card?

(5 Posts)
Umpa Thu 06-Oct-11 17:56:13

Name changed because I'm sure somewhere down the line I'll be accused of racism.

Anyway, my friend and I have been friends for many years. Ever since I've known her she's been highly disorganised, full of excuses and a little chaotic. But that's her and we all have flaws! No problem.

The problem is she often uses her race/religion to try and get ahead and I've recently heard people complaining about it and I'm concerned that she's making herself unpopular despite the fact that she's a lovely person who will do anything for anyone.

An example of this was when we both applied to uni almost 3 years ago. We heard it was extremely difficult to get in and I was worried. She wasn't. I mentioned to her that she seemed very calm about it all and she said "oh yeah, well to be honest I stand quite a high chance of getting in because they have to take so many ethnic minorities in so I'm not going to stress over it." This caused many umms and arrs from others in earshot of us. Anyway as it happened we both got in. Great. Then she decided to run for union rep. Great - of course I said I'd vote for her. She took one look at who she was up against and casually said "Well, there are no other ethnic minorities going for it so I'm sure I'll be fine, they'll need at least one to represent the minorities."

She comes out with comments like this all the time and more recently she's started saying she's going to ask for extra holiday time in September because of Ramadan (even though we've been told our holidays are set and there will be no discussion on it). The real reason she wants extra holidays off however is because she wants to go on holiday to America and it's cheaper earlier in the year (as she could stay with family at this time) so again she's just using her religion as an excuse to get what everyone else can't get. Someone snapped at her today "so what about all the other muslims on campus then? are they ALL going have September off? or just you?" and she looked really shocked and upset sad she genuinely doesn't seem to realise how she's coming across.

Should I tell her to stop playing the race card or will that just damage our friendship? She uses it as an excuse for work not been handed in, for being late and all sorts. This is NOT a Muslim bashing thread (it would be the same whether she was Christian, Buddhist of Hindu etc) and it's not a "slag of friend time" post either. As a FRIEND I want to tell her how her actions/comments etc are coming across but I don't want to upset her in the process.

worraliberty Thu 06-Oct-11 17:59:55

So tell her then if she's your friend

I have to say you don't sound particularly close friends if you can't simply give her a nudge and tell her to pack it in.

Rhinestone Thu 06-Oct-11 18:10:03

I have had this in the past but wasn't brave enough to say anything. I wished I'd said something along the lines of...

"Hey chum, you know if someone else made sweeping statements / stereotypical generalisations about you because you're black, I'd want to punch them on the nose. The trouble is, you're the one doing it. When you use your race as an excuse, you're doing the BNP's job for them. It makes me really uncomfortable and some people are going to just see you as 'angry black woman' because of it."

catgirl1976 Thu 06-Oct-11 18:23:11

The thing I like about my friends is I rarely need to be tactful with them. In this situation I could say "xx stop playing the bloody race card - its annoying, boring and you are doing my head in"

Give it a try smile

KeepInMind Thu 06-Oct-11 18:34:10

Just tell her to pack it in, she needs to grow up

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