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The silent treatment

(133 Posts)
SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 06:43:46

I hope someone can give me some advice or find some way to help me stop feeling so wretched about all of this.

I have a male friend who I've known for over ten years.

When we have a disagreement over something, he will convey his displeasure by ignoring me and not interacting with me at all for weeks, yet will carry on as normal with all our other friends.

This latest time, he has not spoken to me for over two weeks. I tried acting blase about it and still made attempts to communicate all of which were ignored.

Last night he finally contacted me to tell me he was annoyed about something I said and didn't feel ready to converse with me yet.

After two weeks of being made to feel completely worthless and invisible, I responded to him by telling him that many times he has also upset me by the things he's said, but that I will always make a point of discussing it with him and have never just shut him out.

He seemed to see sense as he has now text me to say "This is ridiculous, let's meet up for coffee and sort this out"

However, I'm now left feeling unsure as to whether I want to sort this out.

I got no sleep last night and have been feeling very upset and anxious about it all for 2 weeks.

It's not the first time he's done this and I'm not sure that I want to be friends with someone who will go to such great lengths to cause upset to me by actively ostracising me for such lengths of time.

What would you do in my position?

KatieKaboom Mon 25-Apr-16 06:56:58

I'd leave him to stew in his own juices permanently.

You aren't a tap that can be turned on and off. What a creep.

All people, men or women, who sulk for two weeks are arseholes.

KittyKrap Mon 25-Apr-16 07:01:17

He isn't a friend. He's sulking because he can't get his own way. Let him stew.

daisydalrymple Mon 25-Apr-16 07:05:48

Personally I would go along for a cuppa, if only to see if he truly has realised that the 'ridiculous' in this is him. If he isn't sorry for how he's treated you both now and in the past though, then it's time to walk away. It's not a friendship if it causes you hurt and confusion.

DoreenLethal Mon 25-Apr-16 07:10:25

Sit him down and tell him that ignoring people like that is abusive, and you do not want to be riends with abusers so fuckity bye. And walk out. Dont contact him again.

VinceNoirLovesHowardMoon Mon 25-Apr-16 07:12:01

He's not a good friend is he

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:17:52

Thanks all of you for your responses. It seems clear that you all think the same of me in that this is not the way friends should treat each other?

We have mutual friends, both women, who are telling me I should talk to him and sort it out as we've been friends for too long to throw it all way.

They both saw that he was actively ignoring me and agree that he does it often and also that it is incredibly childish, yet they say I should just accept his offer of coffee and move on from this.

It made me wonder if perhaps now, I'm being childish. Personally I feel that I've just got to the point where I can't take it anymore.

I'm sick of being left to feel hurt by him. He's studied psychology a lot in the past and so probably knows full well that the silent treatment isn't exactly an effective form of conflict resolution, yet still resorts to this to punish me whenever he feels I've done something wrong.

Reddot Mon 25-Apr-16 07:20:46

Why would you let someone treat you this way?
I echo what Doreen said.
Let him stew in his own venomous sulking and walk away from him before he makes you crazy. He's no friend of yours. Friends don't do this to each other. Just give a taste of his own behaviour and you stop talking to him forever and let him worry about it all.

KittyKrap Mon 25-Apr-16 07:22:21

Have you ever told him to stop acting like a spoilt child or do you (and your other friends) pussy foot around him?

LineyReborn Mon 25-Apr-16 07:25:36

Out of interest, what was your 'crime' - the thing you said - and did he pull you up on it at the time?

I would probably meet him to tell him you're not going to put up with the silent treatment any more and if he does it again you're out of the friendship. Tell your other friends that too.

Walkacrossthesand Mon 25-Apr-16 07:27:45

No, you're not being childish. This doesn't have to be the last time he does it to you - you can meet him for coffee, see if he's going to apologise, explain that -10 years friendship or not - the next time he does it you will not be waiting for him to stop sulking as you've had enough. If he tries to put another spin on it, then yes - you've already had the last time!
I'm puzzled though - has this been there throughout the whole friendship? And why does he single you, of all the friends, out for this treatment? How did it start?

gamerchick Mon 25-Apr-16 07:28:33

Are you all his harem?

Life is too short for drama queen stuff. Give him another chance if you want because it sounds as if he pulls all your strings like some puppet master but draw a very clear line in the sand and tell him the next time will be for good.

Personally I think he needs to be told where to get off and to grow the fuck up.

Thistledew Mon 25-Apr-16 07:29:11

I mean this kindly, but you need to find your self-respect.

Why are you so invested emotionally in this man? Why does his shitty behaviour mean so much to you, rather than being something you can recognise as being the ridiculousness it is? Why do you need his approval so much? Is there another relationship in your life where you were controlled so much by disapproval?

Personally, I wouldn't have time for a 'friendship' that was so emotionally draining and would have moved on the first time he decided not to speak to me, but if you do for some reason want to keep up the relationship then do so on your terms and make him prove that he is worthy of your time and friendship.

WellErrr Mon 25-Apr-16 07:31:21

He sounds awful.

I agree with this -

All people, men or women, who sulk for two weeks are arseholes

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:35:11

liney My crime was to point out how hypocritical he was being during a discussion we were having by raising something we'd discussed earlier which totally contradicted what he was saying at the time.

I perhaps shouldn't have done this, but I saw red as he began calling me an idiot etc merely for having a differing opinion to his.

He didn't pull me up on it at the time. He just stopped speaking to me for 2 weeks and ignored any attempts of communication.

KittyKrap It's hard to point out his behaviour to him. He often seems to feel he's more superior to others, both in levels of maturity and intelligence.

He will go to great lengths to let people know how much he's read and how much he's studied in an attempt to prove them wrong.

I think he sincerely believes he's justified in his behaviour.

Our mutual friends just make excuses for him and say that's just the way he is. They've said it when he's called me names and upset me and also when he ignores me.

LineyReborn Mon 25-Apr-16 07:42:42

He's just one massive ego, isn't he?

And not even a charming one.

KittyKrap Mon 25-Apr-16 07:43:04

He calls you names? Why even consider going for a coffee?!

Seriously. Ditch the loser, he obviously hasn't had time between studying and reading to realise how to be a decent human being. I hope he can find a book that helps. He's a bully.

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:43:37

Walkacrossthesand I'm the friend who is closest to him. We see much more of each other. I know one time he wanted more than just friendship and some of our mutual friends wonder if this is why he often plays mind games with me.

One friend said it seems he often actively pushes you away as he seems to enjoy the attention of you noticing it.

Thistledew I'm incredibly needy, I'm afraid. The relationship with my parents is very shaky and I suppose this friendship mirrors that.

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:45:02

Lineyreborn he claims the name calling is just in jest. He also claims that he wasn't giving me the silent treatement, more that he needed the time and space to heal from the pain I'd caused him so that he would not respond angrily.

I'd prefer an angry response.

The silent treatment I find extremely painful and upsetting.

KittyKrap Mon 25-Apr-16 07:47:00

You say you're incredibly needy?
This man is helping to fuel it.

gamerchick Mon 25-Apr-16 07:47:50

He knows that that's why he does it.

Why do you want to be friends with someone who will deliberately hurt you then reel you back in when he's done?

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:49:05

Kitty Yes, I think he is. Deep down I wonder if he does actually enjoy doing all this. Whether he reads my texts and gets some satisfaction from ignoring them and knowing how it makes me feel.

My friends say he knows how upset I get when he's like this. Yet he still continues...

AlleyCatandRastaMouse Mon 25-Apr-16 07:49:35

From my reading you had a difference of opinion, he got nasty, you robustly defended your point of view you wiped the floor with him and he sulked, now that he has taught you a lesson it is time for you to come back to heel.

He sounds very nasty. I would not pursue this friendship any further.

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:51:25

gamerchick I'm not sure I do anymore at all. Situations like this really affect me on a physical level though. I feel anxious and sick.

I also worry that I'll lose our mutual friends. They were his friends before mine and they seem adamant I should forget about it and move on.

SeventyNineBottlesOfWine Mon 25-Apr-16 07:53:35

Alley That's exactly how I feel. He began first by calling me an idiot, which was when I pointed out what a hypocrite he was being in light of earlier discussions we'd had and it was then that he sulked.

I think now he feels I've been punished enough so now he will speak to me.

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