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About friend...

(28 Posts)
cutthegraa Wed 15-Nov-17 13:03:53

Yes I probably am being unreasonable but guess I want to get it off my chest.

A friend, who lives overseas, got cancer last year. Needed chemo and surgery. Her health care didn't cover it. She had no savings. She is late thirties, professional job. No particular reason for no savings other than she enjoyed good hols and spending her money. Fair enough.

But she couldn't afford to pay for cancer treatment. So her sister (UK) based got in touch with her friends explaining about cancer and the cost of treatment. Friends contributed large sums and her treatment was covered and thankfully she has been given the all clear, which is fantastic.

I contributed a significant amount. I don't have huge sums but I budget and save. We have kids.

So over the past year, since treatment, I've barely heard from my friend but every month I see posts on Facebook from lovely looking holidays. We haven't been abroad in years!

I guess it just rubs me the wrong way slightly that friends contributed thousands upon thousands for her treatment and she had NO savings and here she is still spending as before (she is working again).

I don't expect any payment back at all, that's not the issue. And I want her to enjoy life. But it just doesn't sit comfortably with me.

Maybe I'm just a crap friend...

MammaTJ Wed 15-Nov-17 13:10:14

It would grate with me too I think. I would like to think I could just appreciate seeing her enjoying a life she might otherwise not be living if it were not for the donations, but realistically, I would be jealous she was having holidays I could not afford.

PurpleDaisies Wed 15-Nov-17 13:14:23

If she’s been given the all clear, why does it matter how she’s spending her money? I don’t think donating money to someone’s treatment fund gives you the right to judge how she lives her life.

Pseudousername Wed 15-Nov-17 13:16:47

So rather than celebrate and enjoy her second chance at life and new found health, you are expecting her to do what exactly?

Xocaraic Wed 15-Nov-17 13:26:18

Giving was your choice and whilst it was kind of you, she does not need to live her life in a way that is acceptable to you.

In fact, this brush with death might push her to have even more holidays and enjoy every single minute.

If it were me I would be celebrating her recovery and reaching out to her to celebrate with her and applauding her recovery. Celebrate her treatment success, don’t resent her living life.

Mamagin Wed 15-Nov-17 13:29:22

I would like to think that if I had treatment paid for by friends I would do my best to repay them. She should have offered to pay at least some of the money back out of sheer gratitude!

SonicBoomBoom Wed 15-Nov-17 13:31:21

You shouldn't have given her money.

Because it was inevitable that, if/when she was better, she'd be enjoying life and you'd be begrudging her spending the money.

So YABU. I understand why you feel that way, but it's your mistake for giving her the money as you knew what she was like with spending and why she had no savings, and so it was inevitable that would grate on you.

MatildaTheCat Wed 15-Nov-17 13:32:18

Lets hope she remains well then. Maybe she’s having a ‘sod it all, carpe diem’ type of phase?

I get you, though. We have good friends who have 2 disabled young relations. DH of friend did a load of fundraising sporting events which he enjoyed doing anyway and asked for sponsorship to raise money for equipment for these relations. Which is ok but the friends are actually very well off and could easily have offered the money without guilting their own friends into contributing. It did irritate me.

But then I’m not always that nice. smile

Theresamayscough Wed 15-Nov-17 13:33:08

Yes op that would disturb me too.

The least she could do is pay back some of the cash however small.

Of course she isn’t obliged to and the op wasn’t obliged to contribute but still it’s a bit grasping and dismissive.

StarUtopia Wed 15-Nov-17 13:35:17

Wouldn't sit nicely with me either.

I'd be making massive efforts to pay people back - not booking lavish holidays and bragging about them

(and yes, she had a bad illness etc but doesn't give people the right to behave so thoughtlessly)

PeiPeiPing Wed 15-Nov-17 13:35:51

YANBU to be pissed off. I would be.

Have to say though, I absolutely would NOT have given her any money to begin with. Sounds like she is one of life's piss-takers.

Doesn't help you sorry. But once bitten eh? At least you will know not to give willy-nilly to so-called friends again.

Reminds me of someone my niece knew, 5 years back, who was Female to male trans (he was 19-20 y.o.) My niece organised events to raise money for him, and put a crowdfunding page up for him, and begged famous people on twitter for handouts, and eventually raised £5K! (Towards his surgery ...) When the amount hit £5K, (in the account that had been opened for his fundraising,) she transferred it all to him.

He hardly contacted her after he got the money, and moved away to a town 40 miles away, and then started posting pics of himself in Australia, America, China, and Peru, and posing next to his shiny new car. Don't know if he ever got the surgery, but it seemed obvious when the £5K went, because he was always broke!

As I said, some people are just piss-takers.

As I said, once bitten.......... Don't give anyone any of your money again.

TheVanguardSix Wed 15-Nov-17 13:37:10


Cancer is looking down the barrel of a gun. Your friend has had the gift of being able to look away from that barrel but it will follow her for the rest of her life, long may it be. You are never rid of cancer. That 'all clear' can turn into 'it's back'.
The universe (and groundbreaking treatment, love, and support) gave your friend a second shot at living. Don't begrudge her that.

I've supported my brother financially during his treatment. I didn't give expecting repayment! I'm just so fucking happy it's not going towards funeral expenses.

You should be too.

Theresamayscough Wed 15-Nov-17 13:37:15

Matilda no I get you there

Ilovelampandchair Wed 15-Nov-17 13:38:03

Probably the treatment was £50k in one go at one point in time. And her holiday was £600 after months of saving £100 here and there.

Can't you see how she might have needed help with a big one off treatment cost but might have normal life amounts of money later?

schoolgaterebel Wed 15-Nov-17 13:38:17

I understand exactly how you feel.

But at the end of the day you've done a wonderful thing, and I'm sure you don't resent a penny spent.

She is callous posting photos of frivolous spending now though, wouldn't it be better to see her volunteering for charities and giving back to society?

I would unfollow her posts on FB and try to get on with life and not give her anymore headspace.

PeiPeiPing Wed 15-Nov-17 13:39:19


Nahhhhhhhhhh wink

TheVanguardSix Wed 15-Nov-17 13:42:47

PS you're an awesome friend OP and I'm sure she holds you closely in her heart. As another poster mentioned, she's probably in the 'Carpe diem' place and just living rather than enduring!

Cancer sucks! Treatment is tough and it's just a huge life check. You just have to not let her behaviour nag at you. She's just realising she's got her life to live! Cut her slack. Be thankful for your good health. I'm sure your friend would support you under similar circumstances.

PurpleDaisies Wed 15-Nov-17 13:44:00

She is callous posting photos of frivolous spending now though, wouldn't it be better to see her volunteering for charities and giving back to society?


Was the money donated with strings attached then?

TheVanguardSix Wed 15-Nov-17 13:45:08

peipeiping have you watched anyone die from cancer?
Have you had cancer?
Do you understand what it's like to possibly lose your life to cancer?

Naaaaaah is probably our answer to that as well. confused

Zaphodsotherhead Wed 15-Nov-17 13:49:56

I can sort of see both sides. You, having given that money, would rather like to see less holidays and more savings in case the same thing should happen again - she should have learned that living for the day is all very well, but sometimes you need a cushion.

She, having had a view of her own mortality, wants to enjoy however much time she has left in this world. She works, why would she not want to spend her earnings, if she has nobody to leave investments to. So she'd rather have memories than savings...

you are sort of both right.

sixbeesandalemur Wed 15-Nov-17 13:52:43

I can see how it looks from the outside, but getting and surviving cancer is terrifying. You did a wonderful thing - you gave her the chance to live, to be here to actually have holidays. She's had to face her own death, to come to terms with (probably) hair loss, surgery, chemo. She's been through hell and your generosity has kept her alive. There's never an 'all clear' forever. Enjoy the photos of her holidays and the fact that you made it possible for her to feel the sun on her face!

QueenUnicorn Wed 15-Nov-17 13:53:29

I can see both sides. Your feeling are not unreasonable and we cant always help the way we feel even if we don't want to feel that way.

I think unless you can part with a chunk of savings without any regrets then you shouldn't do it. It would have been OK to say no to donating.

chronicallylate38 Wed 15-Nov-17 13:53:41

on the whole, you've done a lovely, good, kind thing, and you shouldn't demean that by now concerning yourself with how she's living her life. You can't expect a live for the moment spender type to change after a brush with death - i'd have expected it to exacerbate it.

I can understand why it grates, but you shouldn't let it. Can you try and find any way to get yourself a holiday op?

HeebieJeebies456 Wed 15-Nov-17 14:04:23

If she wasn't so selfish and self absorbed she could start paying people back.............

Whilst you all did a nice thing i think you allowed yourselves to be taken advantage of......her family could have taken a loan to cover the cost.
Why doesn't she have health insurance if they don't have the equivalent of the NHS over there?

Don't be a mug in future.

cutthegraa Fri 17-Nov-17 08:50:13

I do not begrudge her the money. I am very happy she is healthy.

She had health insurance but it didn't cover cancer. She works in healthcare so she isn't in ignorant bliss about these things. There is no national health service.

I guess the concern I have is this. She simply couldn't pay for any of her treatment as she had no savings as she spent all her money on holidays and going out. Fair enough. But her and her sister asked for money to pay for the treatment. Which we gladly did.

I guess I thought she might be a little more prudent and start saving now (whilst obv enjoying life!) given the situation was she in. I don't think she should be living the life of a nun!

Yes it's her life, her money. But without the money of others she might not even be here. She doesn't owe me a thing though.

And yes I've lost 2 loved ones to cancer - whilst she was undergoing treatment ironically enough

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