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Toxic friendship

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Sally050608 Thu 25-Jun-20 21:47:12

Hello,

I lived in a block of flats about 6 years ago and become friends with a couple who lived above in the same block. They were lovely but the friendship became very intense quite quickly, constantly inviting me down for cups of tea quite full on etc. I was afraid to say no and kept trying to please them even though I didn't want to be there all the time. I then met my other half (now my husband) and things settled down a little bit but then my husband became good friends with them too. We did have some good times, nights out and takeaways, but I remember feeling quite anxious but I just pushed it aside and again just pleased them. We then got engaged in January and my friend was getting married in the April, when I got back from holiday there was a bridesmaid dress hanging up in my flat. I was very shocked and wondered why she had asked me so late on but I obviously went with it we then got married the same year and I felt like I had to ask her in return to be my bridesmaid. Everything went well and our weddings were amazing. I felt very poorly not long after we had got married, suffered with very bad stress and anxiety from work and not being happy where I was living and also feeling very trapped. I had about 6 months off of work and Unfortunately my friend made me feel very on edge and she started to become very controlling of me which didn't help my recovery. She would text me everyday asking where I was going and watch me out of the window. Even if my car hadn't moved she would try and catch me out and say why are you indoors come down? I just found it very overpowering and made me feel as if she was in control of me. Anyway fast forward, I managed to get her to Back away and I asked for some space. I have now moved and very happy now. But she is still texting me after all this time?? It's awful because she was my bridesmaid but i just feel the whole friendship was forced. I have moved on now and learnt a massive lesson from it and learnt that I would never be in a situation like that again. I don't want to cause any upset or have a row. So I'm just ignoring the message and I just hope
friendship drifts away. I have said endless times that I need some space and wish to be left alone, I thought by now she would realise. Has anyone else been in a similar situation with toxic friends??

OP’s posts: |
CareBear50 Thu 25-Jun-20 22:33:53

Personally I would just block her number.

Sounds like she doesn't take how you feel Into account.

Good luck OP

PassTheSherry Thu 25-Jun-20 23:27:30

Yes I have and it was horrible for a while. In my case it was a parent of another child in my daughter's class. She was nice enough, although I would never say we were close, and we had some playdates with the kids and met up for the occasional coffee. After a while I started to find her company quite draining - ok in small doses but nothing more. Just different ways of looking at the world, different parenting styles, and not a huge amount in common. Our children were on friendly terms so it was fine at first, but pretty soon she became incredibly intense and full-on, wanting to meet up far more often than I was comfortable with - virtually every day; way too much. It was complicated by the fact that I couldn't easily avoid her as we both did the school runs. She would constantly suggest a meet up or playdate and if I said I/we were busy, she would persist and suggest the day after, or the day after that etc. On top of that she would ask my child if she wanted to go to the park after school at pick up time and it would be difficult to say no when the kids wanted to play. Then she enrolled her child on the same extracurricular activities my child was doing - to the point we would see each other at the activities 2-3 times a week anyway, and in between she would be texting me for meet-ups. There was just no space and I felt quite anxious over having to politely say no all the time. For a while I got quite stressed by it - it actually put me off going out and about in case I bumped into her! I felt very suffocated. I don't think she was trying to control me in the way your 'friend' was...but it was just all every intense and clingy. As our children were in the same class I didn't want to have any drama or a big falling out so had to be careful. It took about a year for it to fade, with me just constantly making excuses. I still get the odd message and invite for coffee etc now but it is more like once a term. Because of what she was like before, I am still wary of spending much time in her company. Some people just don't understand boundaries. It's horrible and very draining when expectations from a friendship don't match.

I think you're right to ignore her message. Hopefully the texts will eventually fade away.

Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 14:23:53

Thank you, yes I think you're right. It's very draining when you just want to move on.

OP’s posts: |
Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 14:26:53

I'm sorry to hear you've been in a similar situation. I can completely understand, Thank you it can be very draining. I feel awful about it but I need to think about myself. Let's hope things will fizzle out.

OP’s posts: |
Sunnydayshereatlast Fri 26-Jun-20 14:29:08

Similar many years ago op. Her bf was a ladies man (in his own head) and she joked he fancied me. Kept sending him to do odd jobs - I didn't need doing - both knew my every move. He kept turning up uninvited - didn't make a pass but made it clear he was available.. Urgh.
Turned up at dd's nursery once pretending to be her df come to pick her up..
I was single and her df wasn't around..
I moved and def didn't leave a forwarding address.
Oh when I got a new bf he put his car windscreens +windows out. Saw him clearly running off into their flat..
Obsessive so called friends aren't really friends ime..
<shudders at remembering.. >

imsooverthisdrama Fri 26-Jun-20 14:47:19

Not as extreme but I had a friend years ago who was quite intense .
If I wasn't working I had to see her I couldn't say I was busy doing stuff like housework say as she'd come round.
If I was blunt and say not today she'd take the hump , she just didn't like being on her own where I'm quite happy with my own company.
She was the same if she was in a relationship too she thought it odd if I didn't see my dh one day who then was bf ( before dc ) and we didn't live together .
I had a dc and she'd ring me up on a Friday afternoon say and say are you coming out .
I'd be like no I can't , dh was working and I would need babysitter.
Thankfully that's what phased the friendship out because I wasn't available.
I'll be honest that's why I don't have a best friend as it scares me that someone would want to see me all the time .
I haven't got the energy for it with a family and work now .
I'm afraid if she hasn't got the message you'll just have to be firmer. Don't answer the phone to her and don't reply to messages. Go out and if she queries you just joke and say what are you my stalker.
Honestly she sounds very needy .

WitchesGlove Fri 26-Jun-20 15:17:33

Could you encourage her to join the WI or something so that she makes other friends and isn’t so focused on you?

Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 15:22:24

I think some people just don't know their place.

I'm the sort of person who likes to please people and hate letting people down and I think that's why this has happened they take your good nature for granted but this last year or so I've become alot stronger.
I feel completely the same I'm scared of new friendships incase they become too obsessive and controlling. I've learnt to step back and just got an handful of friends that I see now and again. Thank you 😊

OP’s posts: |
Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 15:28:21

WitchesGlove

Could you encourage her to join the WI or something so that she makes other friends and isn’t so focused on you?

To be honest, she has got a few friends as far as I'm aware. I think it was because I lived near her and she had nothing better to do. Luckily I have moved away now

OP’s posts: |
merryhouse Fri 26-Jun-20 15:31:32

I'm not sure what your "friend" has done wrong other than let herself into your flat to present you with a bridesmaid's dress.

You don't have to go round for a cup of tea every time you're invited. You don't have to go out every time someone suggests it. I'd even go so far as to say you don't have to ask someone to be your bridesmaid.

From her point of view: they befriended a single person who moved in upstairs. Very quickly the friendship reached pop round for a cuppa stage, and they had keys to her flat. When single person found a boyfriend he joined the group seamlessly and they all had great nights out together. They got married in the same year and were each others' bridesmaids (she wasn't quite as overjoyed to get the surprise invitation as one might expect, but it was smoothed over). Friend was ill for a bit, stressed and anxious, and they kept an eye on her to make sure she wasn't feeling lonely. Then out of the blue she started saying she wanted more space.

If you don't want to see a friend every day, don't.

Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 16:16:03

merryhouse

I'm not sure what your "friend" has done wrong other than let herself into your flat to present you with a bridesmaid's dress.

You don't have to go round for a cup of tea every time you're invited. You don't have to go out every time someone suggests it. I'd even go so far as to say you don't have to ask someone to be your bridesmaid.

From her point of view: they befriended a single person who moved in upstairs. Very quickly the friendship reached pop round for a cuppa stage, and they had keys to her flat. When single person found a boyfriend he joined the group seamlessly and they all had great nights out together. They got married in the same year and were each others' bridesmaids (she wasn't quite as overjoyed to get the surprise invitation as one might expect, but it was smoothed over). Friend was ill for a bit, stressed and anxious, and they kept an eye on her to make sure she wasn't feeling lonely. Then out of the blue she started saying she wanted more space.

If you don't want to see a friend every day, don't.

I totally agree and I know I am to blame I shouldnt have got so involved. I know that now and I've learnt a massive lesson from it. But some people can be very overpowering and get funny if I said no (which I did a few times) It was a very difficult situation, especially living right next to eachother. It was very intense it didn't feel like someone keeping an eye on me it was much more than that. Like I say I have learnt from it and I have apologied to her. This hasn't been an easy decision for me, I've hated myself for it I still do but I just can't carry on a friendship she wants so much more from me than I can give.

OP’s posts: |
LilyMumsnet (MNHQ) Fri 26-Jun-20 17:51:43

Hi all,

We're just moving this over to 30 days only for the OP. flowers

roxfox Fri 26-Jun-20 19:06:31

This sort of almost happened to me.

Bit of a long short story but my great aunt died and my whole family went off to the states for my uncles wedding - I didn't go and was on a break from my now husband - so I went to the funeral without my side of the family to 'represent'.

Anyway it rained some serious hailstones and we fled from the graveside and I ended up in the wrong car shaking with cold and wet and this lovely woman my age gave me a long hug and and warmed me up. Sounds weird now but I was soaked through and couldn't stop shivering.

Anyway her grandmother was in the car too and if turned out she knew my great aunts younger sister (my great grandmother) from their younger years, I was overjoyed and as I didn't have anyone from my strand of the family to hang out with I stayed with them during the wake and swapped numbers with the woman who had helped warm me up.

We became fast friends, lots of dinners and meeting up, she had a daughter who was like 6 and she kept saying she wished she'd met me before so I could've been her godmother. Then she started inviting me to all her family functions- I was happy to go to a few but I got back with my boyfriend and obviously had other friends and my own family to spend time with too! She would text me and say we are doing x on Saturday and I'd think she meant her partner and child but she meant me and her!!! She would get all irritated if I couldn't make it and want to know why I couldn't come. She never expressed any interest in meeting my bf or coming anywhere with me. She wanted me to come for sleepovers too which I straight up refused to do.
Anyway things were getting quite weird and she had been mad at me for not coming to hers the day before and asked me to come out clubbing. I went against my better judgement and it was a pretty shit night (in hindsight I think I stopped enjoying raves and shit before I was even legal to attend!)
She was quite drunk I suppose, not too sure anyway I was leaving early cos I'd had enough and she asked me for a kiss! I kissed her on the cheek and turned to go and she kept mumbling trying to put her lips to mine saying on the lips on the lips on the lips. Anyway I ran away and she never contacted me again. My boyfriend thought it was hilarious because he'd asked me a few times if she had a thing for me and I'd said definitely not!

Anyway op if you're reading this... block/mute your stalker or take a week to reply to everything but don't let her take up so much headspace. Some people can be a bit too intense xx

Sally050608 Fri 26-Jun-20 20:31:26

roxfox

This sort of almost happened to me.

Bit of a long short story but my great aunt died and my whole family went off to the states for my uncles wedding - I didn't go and was on a break from my now husband - so I went to the funeral without my side of the family to 'represent'.

Anyway it rained some serious hailstones and we fled from the graveside and I ended up in the wrong car shaking with cold and wet and this lovely woman my age gave me a long hug and and warmed me up. Sounds weird now but I was soaked through and couldn't stop shivering.

Anyway her grandmother was in the car too and if turned out she knew my great aunts younger sister (my great grandmother) from their younger years, I was overjoyed and as I didn't have anyone from my strand of the family to hang out with I stayed with them during the wake and swapped numbers with the woman who had helped warm me up.

We became fast friends, lots of dinners and meeting up, she had a daughter who was like 6 and she kept saying she wished she'd met me before so I could've been her godmother. Then she started inviting me to all her family functions- I was happy to go to a few but I got back with my boyfriend and obviously had other friends and my own family to spend time with too! She would text me and say we are doing x on Saturday and I'd think she meant her partner and child but she meant me and her!!! She would get all irritated if I couldn't make it and want to know why I couldn't come. She never expressed any interest in meeting my bf or coming anywhere with me. She wanted me to come for sleepovers too which I straight up refused to do.
Anyway things were getting quite weird and she had been mad at me for not coming to hers the day before and asked me to come out clubbing. I went against my better judgement and it was a pretty shit night (in hindsight I think I stopped enjoying raves and shit before I was even legal to attend!)
She was quite drunk I suppose, not too sure anyway I was leaving early cos I'd had enough and she asked me for a kiss! I kissed her on the cheek and turned to go and she kept mumbling trying to put her lips to mine saying on the lips on the lips on the lips. Anyway I ran away and she never contacted me again. My boyfriend thought it was hilarious because he'd asked me a few times if she had a thing for me and I'd said definitely not!

Anyway op if you're reading this... block/mute your stalker or take a week to reply to everything but don't let her take up so much headspace. Some people can be a bit too intense xx

Wow that is crazy!! You were lucky to get away!! Thank you I will do xx

OP’s posts: |

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