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To stop bothering with this friend?

(31 Posts)
RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 09:30:26

I've been friends with a woman since we were at secondary school. We are now in our mid thirties and still are friends, but I feel more and more like she is taking me for granted, and almost as if she only thinks I'm good enough for favours or if she wants something, and then at other times she doesn't really act like much of a friend if there is nothing in it for her.

It's probably going to sound pathetic, but it is small things,and they all add up to make me feel quite annoyed with her. Things that she does;

Asks me to go on nights out or to meet up, but then at the last minute goes uncontactable when I try to text or call her to make final arrangements, such as what time we're going to meet. Then I see via Facebook that she has gone out or met up with other people.

She only bothers with me if she wants a favour. She doesn't drive so sometimes wants a lift into town and I'm her first port of call. Or she'll want to take her daughter to a playcentre 10 miles away and again I am the first person she asks, under the pretence of wanting to meet up with me and my DC, as she knows I will have to pick her up and give her a lift there, as there are no buses to it and taxis are expensive.

When I've done things for her she has shown no appreciation at all. She is a single mum on benefits and frequently tells me how hard up she is, and how she can't afford things. I've given her lots of clothes for her DD, toys for her DD, clothes for her, as well as paid for drinks and snacks at playcentres when she's had not a penny in her purse. I barely get a thanks for this. Which wouldn't be too bad except that anyone else who does anything for her gets thanked profusely, and very publicly, via her Facebook status. Anyone that gives her a lift gets thanked, anyone who passes on any clothes for her DD gets thanked and she marvels about what lovely clothes they are. Even if she buys off someone via a Facebook local selling page, she thanks the seller for selling her the items.

Lastly, she makes no effort for me. It's all about her problems, all the time, and me having to listen to her about what a hard life she has and how rubbish things are for her as she's a single parent. I have been there as a single parent, so I know it is hard, and I don't have many problems as such, but some asking after how I am would be nice rather than it just being about her, all the time. She never wishes me or my children a happy birthday, whilst I always remember hers and her DD's (she wouldn't be happy if I forgot her DD's birthday) and phone or text her. It's like I'm just there to facilitate her needs and to do favours.

I know it all sounds pathetic, and like I said it is just small things. She is one of those people too that everybody likes and she is very popular, and I think perhaps that is why she doesn't feel she needs to make any effort with me because I am just always there, and she can walk all over me. I feel better for getting this off my chest, but I'm not sure what to do. I would speak to her about how I feel but in all honesty I feel she is so self absorbed she wouldn't really care and wouldn't get the points I was making at all . She would just cry and say what a hard life she has.

VanitasVanitatum Wed 15-May-13 09:33:47

Just be unavailable to her for a while. If you keep giving while she behaves like this she won't change. Next time she wants to go to the play centre say you're busy. Cultivate your other friendships. If she changes her behaviour, let her back in. She is disrespecting you.

TattyBoomBoom Wed 15-May-13 09:36:16

But it's not small things, really. Your first example would be enough for me - how rude when you've set aside the time. She doesn't value your friendship. If you can, just try and drift away rather than confront her or it'll be all over Facebook!

Scruffey Wed 15-May-13 09:37:39

Start distancing yourself. Don't agree to nights out or trips to the play centre. People who use and manipulate others in this way are very clever about it - she has gone just far enough so you have nothing really damning to say against her but she has slowly stripped you of your money, time and upset you. Don't make a big deal of it, just say you have loads on etc.

ivanapoo Wed 15-May-13 09:37:57

She's not a true friend. She's treating you like a fall-back option-cum-chauffeur/banker.

Actually it's a bit like she's a stroppy teenager and you her parent!

Find other, better friends. Play "hard to get".

BLOO3Z Wed 15-May-13 09:38:04

I had a friend like this too, I ended the friendship very publicly, not proud of that one...but it needed to be done, you need to dump this friend for your own sanity..

poppypowers Wed 15-May-13 09:38:06

Yanbu - stop being so nice. She is using you.

Scruffey Wed 15-May-13 09:39:13

Oh and stop giving her stuff!

flanbase Wed 15-May-13 09:39:49

She's not your friend and you don't have to waste your time over her. Just say you're not available to go out and refuse to drive her and her child around. Stand your ground and start off with the words no I can't when she asks for anything

Sugarice Wed 15-May-13 09:40:14

As you have stated; she is all take and no give.

I'd withdraw from the friendship. You're not getting anything out of it and she sees you as a doormat so not really a true friendship is it?

DeskPlanner Wed 15-May-13 09:40:20

It doesn't sound pathetic at all. She is not a friend. Distance yourself, then drop.

RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 09:41:15

Thank you everyone. You have confirmed what I was thinking would be the best thing to do.

She has disrespected me, and actually looking back there were times even at school when she treated me disrespectfully too. What's that saying? Don't make someone your priority when you are only an option to them? I think I have always just been an option for her, whilst I have made the mistake of making her a priority.

She seems to go in phases of having various people that are her best friends, and absolutely worshipping them, then moving on and being friends with someone else. I think a lot of it depends on what they can give her and what she can get from the friendship. Maybe they have pulled away too when she's started treating them badly but I've stayed around as we've known each other for so too long?

flanbase Wed 15-May-13 09:43:34

I've had a friend like this and the thing is they are selfish and not worth the trouble. Say no first and use this words no matter what the sob story is.

loofet Wed 15-May-13 09:44:26

You are enabling her behaviour. She is self absorbed and manipulative. She uses the 'oh boo hoo i'm a single parent, feel sorry for me' card so you feel guilty about not taking her places or whatever. She doesn't value your friendship at all. She just uses you because she knows she can get away with it, thinks she has you wrapped around her little finger and that you'll always be there.

She isn't a friend at all, completely toxic and not someone you need around. As others have said just stop agreeing to ferry her about and buying her stuff. Start becoming unavailable, she'll soon realise how much she's taken you for granted.

RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 09:45:00

The thing I find most hurtful is the taking me for granted and acknowledging what others do for her. I think she does this because she can though?

RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 09:50:10

I think if I pull back then that will be it with the friendship for good. She's not the kind of person to go chasing after anyone or to try to make amends. I think that will suit me fine though.

flanbase Wed 15-May-13 09:54:36

she's not a friend and not worth your effort. Sometimes the person who thought I was at their beck & call and I bump into each other and I just say hello and walk on. If they ask me anything I start with the words no - it keeps me on track and sets them straight

RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 10:11:59

I think I will do that, flanbase

If I see her and she speaks I'll just say hello but be very "busy" and just walk on

Branleuse Wed 15-May-13 10:17:24

they're not small things

flanbase Wed 15-May-13 10:21:23

it works for me and also saying no to anything asked. I start my reply with the words no and remind myself of this when I see her approaching or on the phone/message. I'm not on facebook with her so at least am spared this contact. Think of her and words NO next to her. Anything she says you say this word back - no I can't, not possible, not able to do this. Not even a sorry for it or an excuse. You don't need to excuse yourself.

RedMouse Wed 15-May-13 10:27:41

I think a lot of the time I end up saying yes to her and being her friend out of habit, as we have known each other for so long.

Recently it was her birthday, and she invited me on a birthday night out but said she would confirm with me nearer the time the venue and the time we were all meeting. I didn't hear from her so contacted her the day before to ask if we were still on, and didn't hear anything back. I tried to phone her and there was no reply. And I assumed that the night out was off. She then contacted me the following day to say sorry, she was skint so that's why there had been no night out, but later on that day on FB she was tagged in an album called 'RedMouse's friend's birthday night out', and was out with several mutual friends, plus a group of other girls that are her current "besties". That really upset me.

Nanny0gg Wed 15-May-13 10:33:46

Next time she wants something from you just say that you're sorry, but you can't do it - too busy/previous appointment/arrangement whatever.

Keep that up till she loses interest.

Make sure you can't see her newsfeed on FB (don't defriend just yet)

And smile sweetly and move on quickly when you see her out.

Job done.

flanbase Wed 15-May-13 10:35:51

That's horrid of her as she lied to you and treated you with no respect. No time for someone like that. You are worth more than that treatment. Keep the no word in mind and you'll save you self the time and effort she takes up.

Tryharder Wed 15-May-13 10:42:10

I think the birthday night out thing is more than enough for you to end this friendship.

You don't have to revert to sixth form with any dramatic announcements or ostentatious acts or Facebook defriendings.

Just step back, don't ring her, be polite and friendly but non committal if she rings you. And don't give the cheeky so and so any more of your things.

HeffalumpTheFlump Wed 15-May-13 11:04:07

I just ended a friendship like this. There was so much other crap going on with her that was driving me mad I had distanced myself anyway. She then kept contacting me and it seemed as though it was starting to occur to her that she wasn't the only person in the world, so I started speaking to her again. The very same day she asked for a lift somewhere, asking if I would 'come with her' to some appointment that there was no need for me to be at... After months of my DH and other friends telling me she was not a friend, it finally clicked, she was seriously using me. I am not proud to say I lost it big time, and years worth of crap was brought up, but it needed to be done.

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