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Wisdom of MN tribal queens required... hell, I have to dump my best friend

(55 Posts)
Fatbrowncat Mon 18-Feb-13 21:00:09

So we've been friends for 20 years. During that time we've lived together as flatmates, then when she married and had kids I was on hand - I mean always on hand - to help out with her kids, take them on outings, babysit and look after them. Birthday presents, Christmas presents, outings, the lot, for all 3 of them.

I've helped her set up her business, too. I'm single with no kids. She herself admits I have been 'supremely generous'.

I've lost my job, and with no partner, no family and no financial support, 10 months in I am struggling. Properly battling to pay for heat, light and food. Benefits if you are single are very minimal. I am also ill - sick with depression and agoraphobia.

I had hoped my friend, who now runs a successful business as a landlord, to at least offer to help me a bit. She hasn't - well, she's lent me 25 pounds after 9 months.

Today I told her how bad things were - power about to go off, etc etc. She responded by offering me one meal (no doubt hoping I would stay to do bathtime with the chidren).

Thing is, she's always been tight (notoriously so) but this is the final straw. I can't respect her any more. I feel quite sick when I think of the kindness I've shown - and what I've had back.

And I need to tell her she's dumped. Not out of revenge, but because I'm the guardian to her children, named in various of her legal docs, wills, etc., and I'm no longer feeling that is appropriate.

How would you do it? I do want to tell her why I'm slipping away because I do want her to go and stay away.

Fatbrowncat Tue 19-Feb-13 11:53:59

Springy - cheers - in my gut I know that the way forward is to bin the takers.

I'm also keen to ease out unhelpful family. When I hinted strongly to my parents that things were desperate, Dad suggested I sell something. I had to ask them not to stay for a meal - twice - after handing over birthday presents. Not a penny help from nearest and dearest.

Mimi - I gave her free advice worth several hundred. And yes I do still owe her 25 quid. Which I will repay on Friday.

I day left on the pc - buyers have delayed!!!!

springyhops Tue 19-Feb-13 12:01:42

I am in a very similar situation re stupidly low finances. It's an 'experiment' I am getting tired of now ...

oh yes, do ditch 'unhelpful' people. YOu know what they say about you find out who your friends are in a crisis? well, it's true. it smarts like hell but it's good to find out. Gives you a glint in your eye ime.

Off with their heads OP.

So glad you've been given a reprieve re PC smile

Higgledyhouse Tue 19-Feb-13 12:20:27

Far brown cat; did you say she runs a successful lettings business? If so my first port of call would be to ask her if you can live in one of her properties free of charge for a period of time. I wouldn't dump her yet I'd give her further opportunities to help you but I think you need to be very clear on the help you need and ask for it. I really hope she comes through for you!

Downunderdolly Tue 19-Feb-13 12:52:19

Hi FBCat

Echoing to a degree Higgeldy <and in a different way been through/am going through fire when might have expected help from those I had previously been emotionally if not financially generous to - waves at Springy from those issues> it may be worth sending family/friend a tailored email to both along the lines of:-

Hi X

As you my have gathered I am having a really hard time with XY and Z at the moment. I've been spending time working through these problems/issues and I'm trying to find a way to resolve. Specifically I'm trying to find a way to get ABC. If this is something that you or anyone you know may be able to help with in the shorterm I have a plan in place as to how to compenate/pay back if is was a possibility.

No drama if not but when the going gets tough, the tough have to be resourceful and I am looking at all options.

Regards Y

You can then take the response as is to take a view as to what your next steps in terms of how you feel about the friendship might be. I hope this doesn't sound Pollyannaish. I write as I was in a recent cirumstance where I felt for SURE my parents SHOULD have realised how hard things were, how much I needed their help. They did not offer (I thought a clear issue) I did not ask and was very resentful. Later, they (I think genuinely) didn't realise that I was in so much need and wished I had been explicit. I don't know your circumstances and if this is appropriate but perhaps worth a shot before throwing the baby out with the bathwater etc etc...Good luck xx

abbierhodes Wed 20-Feb-13 01:19:02

OP- you say your parents didn't pick up on a 'strong hint' and that they didn't invite you for a meal after you handed over birthday presents.

I think you're too good at appearing capable. If I was short of money for food I wouldn't be buying presents, and I sure as hell wouldn't be 'hinting' to my parents, I'd more likely be sobbing in their living room.

Now I know this is just a difference in personality, but it sounds to me like no-one knows how hard up you are. Tell them, please. If I were your friend/family member I'd want to help- if I knew.

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