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Please can you help me ditch my friend?(18 Posts)
I've wanted to write this so many times but haven't been able to put it into words really. I have an old school friend who I've known for nearly 30 years. We grew up together and she was my bridesmaid too. However, she ghosted me for two years a while back - she couldn't deal with my having a baby while she was trying for a third. That was really hard for her and I get it. She got back in touch after that and now we see each other about once a month. However, she has loads of other friends and I think I just get shoehorned in. She never seems hugely interested in my life or my family; when I'm with her she mostly just talks at me about her life and her indignations about various people and things. I always come away feeling really inadequate and I worry (probably rightly) that she talks about me negatively to other people too. I guess I don't trust her really. And I do like hearing about her life, but I just don't think she cares about mine. The other day, I dropped off a stairgate at her house that she asked if she could borrow- she didn't say thank you and told me she had other people round for lunch so I could just leave it in the porch if she didn't hear the bell from her garden.
So, I just need to let it all fade really. So I can stop feeling so shit about it! I've tried before but always end up feeling guilty and then then I crack and get in touch with her again. How can I be stronger and not doubt myself?
Please be gentle because I feel horrible enough about all this as it is!
Thank you for making it this far.
How do you get in touch? If by phone, for instance, do you know her number by heart or could you delete it/throw it away?
Do you see her monthly on your instigation? If so then I would just stop contacting her. If she contacts you looking for a plan to meet up be vague about committing to dates. Let the meet ups spread out more so once every 2, 3, 6 months etc. Before you know you will only be exchanging cards at Christmas.
@ravenmum I don't know it off by heart actually, I could probably get rid- this terrifies me though and I can't explain why . I guess it's like saying bye bye to so many years of shared experiences and things. But thank you, that is probably a good idea.
You remember what she’s like and how little you feel she cares about you. She sounds incredibly rude. Stop doing her favours and lending her things. Stop suggesting meet ups and, as you say, just let it fade. Ghosting you was shit of her. She could have been honest but decent and let you know she was struggling and needed to step back while you were pregnant or whatever. You’ve been very forgiving but it’s not making you feel good about yourself and there’s a fine line between being a good friend and being a mug. You deserve better than her.
Maybe make a list of all the reasons you don't like her and look at that every time you feel guilty. You're going to have to get the stairgate back first though if you want it
@ApolloandDaphne yes it's usually always me who gets in touch first. Its pretty tragic really- I suggest dates to meet up and she never gets back to me about it and then those dates pass. It's made me really passive aggressive actually because then, when she occasionally does suggest something, I always reply that actually I'm terribly busy that day (I'm usually not really- I just don't want to look as if I'm.sittimg about, desperate for her to get in touch!) before later saying that actually, yes I can make it. I'm such a loser about the whole thing, it's so unhealthy!
The other day, I dropped off a stairgate at her house that she asked if she could borrow- she didn't say thank you and told me she had other people round for lunch so I could just leave it in the porch if she didn't hear the bell from her garden.
^^^How fucking rude is this?
@AnneLovesGilbert wow that actually made me cry! It's been so hard for me to address this because it's messed with my head a lot, it's so helpful and such a relief to see all this rational, impartial advice for the first time. Thank you
I would stop making arrangements, say you busy every time, honestly I don't think she's a nice friend and what's the point of a friendship if you don't feel good in their company. You've known her along time but don't cling on just for that reason, people grow and change and I think your feelings are telling you that you've outgrown this friendship.
It’s that thing about friendships being for a reason, a season or a lifetime. You might have known her for 30 years but if the relationship no longer brings positivity to your life it’s the right thing to do to let it stop away. I hope you’ve got other better people in your life.
Even if she was nice but you'd just drifted into different worlds, you still wouldn't have to feel bad about not getting in touch. People do change and lose touch, even after years.
Perhaps you also need to pep up your social life a little, so there is less of a gap?
I'd text her and tell her you need the stairgate back, you don't need to explain why. Then once you have it, delete and block.
I dont really have a solution but just wanted to emphasize, and say I've been there (kind of still am) so dont feel bad because you are not the only one to get in this situation. With my friend, I've tried to stay in contact and suggest meet ups because I wanted to be nice. However, like you I get nothing nice back, and i've reached the point where I dont care if we are friends or not. But I still can't seem to end the friendship, I'm due to meet with her at the weekend, at her suggestion, I really can't be bothered anymore but I'm too nice to say no. Try for the slow fade, suggested by others, before you end up resenting her.
Sometimes when we are a bit lonely or in need of caring and support, it's easier to turn to familiar and 'safe' old friends, even though we ourselves have changed and evolved over the years.
Could it be that you find the familiarity reassuring - so therefore a part of you is willing to put your own needs aside in order to maintain this friendship? That can be why we keep meeting these people that we have grown away from. Now that you have moved on a bit yourself you are seeing this friend for what she is and you are noticing her behaviour and how it makes you feel.
Even though making new friends takes a bit of effort, there are people out there who appreciate others and will relate to you with kindness and respect.
You have two choices, one, don't make contact again. Or two, use her when you are in need of a bit of familar company but recognise that she is very self-absorbed, she craves approval, she is happy to engage with you when one of her 'idols' isn't available. But will happily ditch safe and familiar friends like you when she needs to lick the arse of one of her important 'chosen' one friends.
I've been there too and know how shit it makes you feel. You just want them to care about you and prioritise you.
I don't accept that it's ok to ghost someone for this reason - she was trying for a THIRD and so couldn't be decent and happy about your first baby?! She's a self-involved dick. That's not hard for her, that's horrible of her.
But don't ghost her back, just gently extricate yourself from her. Don't text first and respond to any texts with a delay (so she knows you're not sitting there at her beck and call) and with something pleasant but that doesn't engage deeply with her drama or look for a reply. If she wants to meet up, you're busy, but in a vague way where she can't pin you down. 'Oh I'd love to but it's just a really busy time for me right now. Hopefully catch up with you before too long'. When she realises you're not doing the running anymore she may try being nicer, but don't be so grateful for these crumbs that you get sucked back in because she will just start doing the same thing again as soon as she has your attention.
With my friend I felt like a puppy that was eagerly round her heels while she ignored me. And that from time to time she'd notice I wasn't as eagerly waiting for her and would throw me a crumb and make me all eager again. Thing of it that way. It fucking hurts but it's better to be honest with yourself as it helps make you strong and disentangle yourself from someone who is not worth of your time and friendship.
I think you should stop contacting her and then if she does contact you, just say you have plans or you'll see and let it slip. The more you stop speaking to her, the more distance will occur and you will then just become hi and bye if you ever walk into her one day. You don't need friends like that and she is not worthy of your friendship and efforts. I've had a few people like that in my life and without arguing with them, I've just stopped contacted them or showing any interest and naturally the "friendship" faded away. I sometimes walk into them in a pub or town and will just wave and walk past or stop for a brief moment to talk but other than that, I no longer put any effort in.
I had a friend like this ghosted me several times in our friendship, gave me anxiety and stress I could do without. The last time she did it, my husband was in hospital. Played her at her own game after that, see her often and just carry on walking and blocked her on everything. Life is too short for one way street negative friendships. Get rid don't be a mug.
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