Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
I went NC with friend but she has been in touch. What to do?(146 Posts)
Sorry this is long but I don't want to drip feed.
I had one local friend we had been friends for more than 20 years.
We started out in similar circumstances but our lives have taken different directions, we met at work. Our choice of career was very down to Earth. She married a man who works abroad while she has stayed at home and doesn't work, she has luxurious life but the lack of interaction and challenge in her life has meant she has lost touch with 'real' people and 'real' life. She has become anxious about some every day things, verging on phobic for example; she won't fly anymore, despite having lived abroad for much of her youth so she doesn't visit her DH while he works away even though he would love her to. Flying is a common fear but she has many others too.
5 years ago she had a breakdown, I spent a lot of time with her, going with her to appointments, taking her shopping when she could manage it, taking time off work to help her to make the small steps towards recovery.
She did recover and she is ok now, albeit she still has a raft of fears.
My ExH and I split 3 years ago, at the time I realised I had been living my life as one of those people who gives and give of themselves to the point of exhaustion.
When I stopped running around for everyone else I lost some friends but at the time, post marriage breakdown, I had to concentrate on me and my DCs. I knew not to ask for support from others as my relationships had been built on me doing the giving.
My friend and I remained friends throughout.
2 months ago I was driving along a main road when a car pulled out in front of me from a side road. I was taken to hospital by ambulance with bruising and a broken bone not serious but unpleasant.
The next day I needed a lift home from hospital, so I asked this friend and she said 'no' because it was a beautiful day so she was going to sit in the garden and read.
Of course, she can do what she likes with her time but I have asked very little of her over the years.
I did not give my support to her on a quid pro quo basis but I was in hospital, in pain and didn't have anyone else to ask, I would have given a stranger a lift in those circumstances, let alone a friend.
Afterwards I was upset and decided that should be the end of the friendship, I haven't contacted her since.
Last week her husband sent me a text message, I'm guess he is back in the country on leave saying they 'miss me'.
Should I stick to my guns and stay NC if I can't rely on her when I'm desperate?
Or stay friends with her?
Goodness, this friend couldn't bring you home from hospital because she wanted to sit in the garden and now either gets her husband to text you or he does so himself because probably he knows you are one of the few people who would tolerate this self-absorbed behaviour.
I realise your ex-friend has a lot of anxiety issues but you have really done your best and she has given nothing back.
You sound like a wonderful, strong, loving person. Lavish a bit of that love on yourself and ignore these people. Take care.
I was anticipating a raft of posts telling me how selfish I am being
although they might happen when people wake up tomorrow
Thank you for replying medium
I thought that too, why is her husband texting me if she misses me?
Oh I'm sure no one will say that, you have been such a dear friend to her and then when you needed one small favour - one that any even halfway decent friend would jump at as a chance to repay you in just a tiny way - she sat in her garden to read.
My guess, and of course I don't know, is that she has moaned to her husband and because she is a 'delicate flower' with her nerves and anxieties, he has taken upon himself to try to sort out her friendship issues.
It probably doesn't matter really what the reason is though, but please don't waste more thought or upset yourself about it, you have nothing to reproach yourself for, you know that you have behaved as a strong, capable woman, don't let her leach off you again. Really look after and cherish yourself now, you obviously have an amazing giving nature, but don't lavish it on such undeserving ground! I hope you have better friends around you to support you in real life because you really deserve it.
Absolutely stay NC. I am appalled for you OP. She really let you down. Did she really say no because it was a sunny day
You are definitely better off without herbin your life.
Hope you're recovering from your accident
Please don't think I'm being nasty, but I think you need to have a look at your own level of self worth. I can't believe you'd think you would be called selfish - you're a giver and people take advantage.
Your "friend" is not a friend. She is a user. You sound absolutely lovely and anyone would be damned lucky to have you in their life.
Completely ignore, stick to your guns and stay NC. How DARE she treat you like that?
She misses you so much she can't text you herself?
Can't believe she wouldn't pick you up from hospital for such a shockingly selfish reason. I'd ignore his text. You don't need 'friends ' like that
She wouldn't help you because she wanted to sit in the garden? Seriously?
Tell her husband to piss off
Life is better leaving a few friends like her behind.
Fuck no, ignore the text - or if you really want to reply say that you have moved on and only have friends who would pick you up from the hospital now. But preferably ignore.
If they ring, pretend to be Battersea Dogs' Home (assuming it still exists!)
Or you could always try replying "I'm sorry, who IS this?"
But obviously the classy thing to do is ignore it.
I think I agree with the others who've guessed the husband's decided to try and sort you two out.
I absolutely agree that you have nothing to reproach yourself for and should not feel in any way obligated to resume contact. Did you tell her what you thought at the time, or just stop contact? I only ask because I'm sure the recommended action would just be to walk away with dignity. However I have a fairly childish love of the last word, so I think I would have told her exactly what I thought!
I think I'd just ignore him completely, but a part of me would be tempted to reply and tell him why. Either way, don't hesitate to move on and stay NC.
There is a reason he works abroad, and a reason why he wants her to be your problem....so she isnt HIS problem.
Ooh Bogey makes a good point. He is trying to use you too.
Your ex-friend's h is a flying monkey.
Some see kindness as weakness and seek to take advantage of it. I see kindness as a force for good that should be repaid in kind and paid forward wherever possible.
Your ex-friend is light years away from you on the courtesy spectrum and you're best advised to ignore this overture and block his/her number(s) if you can.
If you should find youself stuck in a hospital in future, post on the Chat board and I'm sure there'll be a host of mumsnetters willing and able to give you a lift home.
Ohfourfox I don't think you are being nasty, I think taking a look at my self worth is fair advice although I'm not sure where or how to start with that? If you know of a good 'sort your life out' type book, blog or website I'll gratefully take a look.
She really wasn't always like this, getting the text from her DH made me wonder if I'm BU and 20 years is a long time to know someone.
Kuriu I didn't respond to her first text because I was in hospital, battered and feeling sorry for myself, the nurses wanted the bed I was taking up, it hurt to walk and her text made me cry. So I thought I'd just leave it.
I'm not going to tell her DH to shove it because he is nice too, he's usually away for 3 or 4 months then back for a month. My guess is that he would like me to stay friends with her because he knows I will run to her rescue if she's away.
My instinct is to maintain radio silence.
Yes, I am recovering well.
Thank you everyone for your replies, you vipers
goddess I'd have loved a lift home from an MNer, we could have chatted about all sorts.
I know I am dripfeeding now and
probably being bitchy too but some of her fears seem convenient.
She's happy with her life here and I think if she went to visit her DH in the country he works in it would set a precedent and she doesn't want to be bothered with going there often.
She wanted to get fitter so I suggested we could go swimming, they have sessions for women at the local baths but she said she was developing a fear of water. A few months later she invited me to the pool at the local Spa she's just joined
Am I correct in thinking this is the only time she's let you down? There is the chance she didn't quite realise the gravity of your situation. You haven't really given her many opportunities to help you but maybe you should. Friendship can involve one person giving for years, then the other way. However I suspect you are the type of person who generally struggles to ask to ask for help. Maybe instead of striking her off after one thing (which could have been a misunderstanding), give her a couple more opportunities to support you, then call it a day.
I think it might be worth being honest. Can you text something like 'hi x, I was really upset/disappointed when x chose not to help me after my car accident. I was in a lot of pain. If she'd like to talk about things, I'm free to chat on x day'
It doesn't matter that she's taken a different path to you or that she doesn't work or that she's more anxious then you. There are people that are users but you can't be fully sure that she is one just yet.
How rude dragon!
OP by her own admission has only given the lady one chance to help her out.
The narc always attempts to order their world and those in it to suit themselves and it's not bitchy of you to have recognised that many of her alleged fears are convenient in that they enable her to continue doing what she wants with no regard for anyone else.
As a genuinely kind person, caring comes naturally to you and you'll cheerfully sublimate your needs to help others, but her refusal to assist in your hour of need has caused you to review your friendship and you've realised that, for some considerable time, there's been far more in it for her than for you.
Maybe the miraculous waters of the Spa caused her developing 'fear of water' to cure itself, but it's more probable there was a specific reason why she didn't want to go to, or be a seen at, the local baths you suggested the pair of you took a dip in.
Perhaps someone she's fallen out with, or who's got the measure of her, attends the women only sessions? Or maybe she wanted to boast about her 'Spa membership' to those less fortunate than herself. We may never know why she joined, but anyone with a burgeoning fear of water isn't likely to sign up to a pool/spa of their own volition unless they were attending sessions with a personal
I'm sure her dh is a
longsuffering nice man but, as Bogeyface says, it's convenient for him to have you on hand to dance attendance on his dw while he's away and, all things considered, maintaining radio silence is the best policy - if you get suckered in again it will be harder to break free without fisticuffs serious unpleasantness.
for your continued recovery and I trust your insurers will be sending you a fat cheque by way of compensation in the not too distant future.
If you should find yourself stuck in an inner London hospital at any time that I can't come to collect you, I'll send a pre-paid cab for your journey home .
Minimalist - the 'lady' is a user - did you miss all the other red flags - can you not read any subtext in 1950's land??? The fact the op has been there constantly for the 'lady' but does not mention ANYTHING else the woman has supported her with and the fact that such an obviously nice and reasonable op has cut this woman off over one incident screams USER
I seem to have missed the bit where, having refused to collect the OP from hospital because sitting in the garden with a book was a more attractive proposition, the friend hotfooted it round the next day with a get well soon card, a basket of thoughtful goodies, and an offer to cook/clean and generally assist until the OP was fully recovered/able to manage on her own, minimalist.
Come to think of it, I also didn't see the bit about the friend driving to the hospital shortly after the OP had been admitted as an emergency following her auto accident.
Even when a car crash doesn't cause injury, it can be a traumatic event which leaves many feeling shocked and shaky for some time afterwards and tea and
brandy sympathy from friends and loved ones doesn't go amiss - and can also be conspicuous by its absence.
It may have been only once chance to help but her response after hearing you were in hospital and injured was selfish and bizarre. I just couldn't fathom telling someone I couldn't pick them up because I wanted to sit in the garden and read.
It's up to you if you want to contact her again. I certainly wouldn't. Look back over your friendship and see if she has really been a friend and you have actually benefited from the friendship or has she mostly been a user.
Join the discussion
Please login first.