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Dealing with attention seeking from an adult.

(17 Posts)
CherryBlossom321 Fri 27-May-16 12:34:13

I'm part of a group of friends who meet weekly. Recently, one of my friends brought along a new friend.

I'm struggling to know how to deal with this woman's behaviour. I've never actually met anyone like her before. She is (to me anyway) excessively loud. She will constantly interrupt when others are talking with statements like, "I know exactly how you feel, one time I..." She assumes a victim role in life and talks a lot about herself. If our friend is talking to, or trying to help someone else, she will barge in with her own problems, or even start crying randomly. She looks physically uncomfortable and even pissed off if we're listening to someone else in the group. She appears to manipulate our friend who invited her into favours such as her daughter staying the night, for example; "Ooh, look at the time, I meant to leave over an hour ago. It's so late, dd should really be in bed." She knows by this point that her dd will have fallen asleep. "Oh, I would hate to wake her, can we just put her in your dd's room and I'll collect her tomorrow?" To be fair, our friend could say no, however I think sometimes she feels backed into a corner.

My main issue with this situation is that it's been a while since I've caught up properly with other people, and since I've been able to share things myself. Obviously the dynamic in such a group will always shift when new people are introduced and that's fine, we've had lots of people join us since the beginning, but I've never struggled with anyone quite like this. She's obviously insecure and so I want to be sensitive towards her. I'm thinking it might be good to try not to get distracted by her interruptions (not easy)and regularly say "So X, you were telling us about..." so it doesn't derail the conversation.

Does anyone have any tips on how to deal with this?

ScoutandAtticus Fri 27-May-16 12:41:40

Kick her in the fanjo and tell her to shut up.

Not helpful. But admit it, you are tempted grin

CherryBlossom321 Fri 27-May-16 12:51:52

Yes. Yes I am.

Buggers Fri 27-May-16 13:06:38

She sounds very rather annoying. Does anyone else in the group feel the same as you?

CherryBlossom321 Fri 27-May-16 13:42:29

I don't really know how anyone else feels to be honest. I doubt it's gone unnoticed. My DH met her and felt the same as me, without me having mentioned her previously to him. A couple of people in the group are very uncomfortable with anything that could be construed as gossip, so I'm reluctant to ask. I see my friend who invited her during the week on our own, but I guess she's relatively okay with the whole thing as she brought her, and sort of enables her. I wouldn't know how to bring up the subject without seeming mean.

BeautyGoesToBenidorm Fri 27-May-16 13:49:36

I've known a few people like this, and they're the most unbelievably exhausting pain in the arse to be around. They always have to one-up everyone else and make everything about them. I find it seriously offputting in an adult.

I don't have any advice, but I'm watching with interest as my way of dealing with these characters in the past has been rather... abrasive, and I haven't exactly emerged from the situation looking good. I've just got no tolerance for it.

DoreenLethal Fri 27-May-16 14:29:51

Eleven-erifes?

Gosh I avoid them like the plague and have been known to just walk away from one who just went on and on and on and on...about themselves.

BogOak Fri 27-May-16 14:44:36

I take the abrasive approach. I'm sensitive to a toddler's desperate pleas for attention when something's unsettled him - grown ups with full control of their tantrumming abilities and anal sphincter, not so much.

Her possible insecurity is not your problem, OP. You barely know her, and I don't think you 'owe' her more than common social politeness, which she doesn't herself seem capable of.

Your suggestion of calmly re-routing the conversation back to Joanne's account of her carrot fly/nit infestation/promotion to CEO after Ms Insecure has stopped to take a breath in mid-monologue/weep sounds perfectly appropriate.

Is it possible she's trying to make a 'dramatic' impression on a new group and might calm the fuck down in a little while, too?

BeautyGoesToBenidorm Fri 27-May-16 14:49:26

Eleven-erifes?

grin

DH calls 'em 'two sheds'.

Sparkletastic Fri 27-May-16 14:59:17

If she interrupts do the quick glance, polite smile, then 'As you were saying Esmeralda?' to the person who was interrupted. Up to your friend not to be taken advantage of but you could be brisk and dismiss any lame excuses to impose. Eg 'I'm sure your DD would rather be in her own bed best collect her things up now. Need any help?'

I basically go into slightly bossy firm but fair head girl mode.

CherryBlossom321 Fri 27-May-16 16:23:42

Thanks for the replies. Yep, I think I need to get a bit of a grip and just not let her keep doing it. Hopefully, other people will also do the same if they see someone else is initiating a change.

Pisssssedofff Fri 27-May-16 17:43:38

I call a spade a spade and believe me everyone else is thinking it and wishing they had the balls to say shut up and kick her in the Fanjo

Bee182814 Fri 27-May-16 17:57:26

I am currently in the process of 'arms lengthing' a 'friend' of mine who is exactly like this.... I started by saying things like 'oh gosh what are we all like? We've changed subject so many times, X has been trying to tell me about her holiday/new puppy/difficulties at work for 40 mins and STILL hasn't managed to get the full story out!' Then shoot her a sickly sweet smug smile and turn towards X and encourage her to finish what she was saying. It's worked a treat. I haven't seen or heard from her for almost a month grin

Buzzardbird Fri 27-May-16 18:14:33

You need the holding the wooden spoon trick. grin

coco1810 Fri 27-May-16 18:45:40

I have a "friend" like that on the school run. Being deaf I have the best excuses: Sorry x my batteries have gone on my hearing aids, lets do coffee? air kiss Walk off like a boss!

RaeSkywalker Fri 27-May-16 18:55:25

I have a friend like this! She lives a 3 hour drive away so we only see each other maybe 4 times a year- we text and call every few days though.

She never asks me how I am, what's going on in my life. It's all about her- if I try to talk about something to do with me, she'll say "oh I know how you feel, it's like when I..."

I have been hospitalised with HG in the last couple of months. 3 nights in there. I've been off work for nearly 2 months because I'm so ill. She only found out last week because I was chatting to her sister on Facebook messager and told her (because her sister asked how I was).

I feel your pain OP- I've chosen to accept my friend for who she is, but I think in your situation I would do as others have suggested and respectfully move the conversation back to the point where she hijacked it.

Sickofthesickness Fri 27-May-16 19:08:48

I know one of these! She gets away with murder and has stolen money from a number of people in the friendship group but has gotten away with it through shouting people down. She tuts and eyerolls dramatically if others are listening to/paying attention to someone who isn't her. She's also ridiculously crude and regularly gets herself into dubious sexual situations.

God, I'm glad I escaped from that friendship group shock

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