AIBU to drop the friendship
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 09:50
A friend of mine was really there for me when I really needed someone few years back. I confided in her and she went out of her way to make things better for me. Really helped me get through tough things in life for a phase in my life.
forward few years , and now life has changed her. We did sort of lose contact for few years due to circumstances but when resumed, she is a changed girl. I decided to drop the friendship but I feel so bad. I wish I can understand why she has changed.
She says I’m her best friend but I believe she relishes on my suffering. When she sees me happy she feels insecure and when something tragic hits me she feels better about herself and tries to rub in how she has it better..
It doesn’t bug me if she has it better because I genuinely wish her happiness. But what bugs me is how she feels the need to see me suffer so she feels better about herself.
Oddly, we have such similar life circumstances and confided in each other so much, that I wish the friendship would continue... I wish I can find a way to say that I’m misunderstood everything.. I valued our friendship.. but I really ran out of excuses...
I feel like I want to be there for her as she must be suffering to have turned out like this but her toxic competitive towards me makes me feel like I’m not the right person for that..
I just don’t understand.. I genuinely feel sad when she is sad and feel happy when she is happy.... but I have concluded - to my confusion- that the complete opppsoye for her is true.. she genuinely regains confidence when I’m struggling, and genuinely becomes insecure when I’m happy with my life..
Does anyone understand this kind of behaviour ? So I decided to drop the friendship but I’m feeling bad about it
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 09:54
I also don’t understand why she believes I’m her best friend and that she likes me , if that’s the kind of attitude she has towards me...
Why is she holding on to the friendship and goes out of her way to buy me gifts but when it comes to simple acts of caring she is incapable.
I feel bad turning my back on her because she was the only one there for me once... but seems like our friendship for her was valuable only when I was struggling in life and now that life turned out alright for me she can’t handle it
PecanPastry · 30/09/2018 09:59
I totally understand this behaviour OP, it is called deflection - your plight at whatever which time, takes the attention of off any crap going on in her own life.
She sounds insecure, so in order to make herself feel better, she feeds off the drama you're going through at any which time.
Or at least that's how you have painted her - do you think you are representing her fairly or in a true way? If so, then I'd say - different life stages, great she was there for you when you needed it but that doesn't mean that you're indebted to her, nor does it mean you'll be friends forever.
Friendships wax and wane, I have to be honest I feel so disillusioned with so many different aspects of my own friendships, and I have had to accept that some just aren't what they were once upon a time, but regardless I'm thankful to have had them.
Sometimes you have to let friendships go, it's a sad reality but it can be cathartic.
Jamhandprints · 30/09/2018 09:59
Sounds like she is insecure and helping you makes her feel better about herself. It's understandable but not a genuine friendship for you. Have you tried talking to her about It, if you want your friendship to continue?
Zippetydoodahzippetyay · 30/09/2018 09:59
I dont really have much advice, but having been through a similar thing, i dont think you are wrong to cool the friendship. I have been so much happier since I made the decision to only put energy into relationships that were genuinely caring and somewhat equal (obviously there is always give and take). People who tske pleasure in our discomfort are very draining and i know my friend sho was like that brought out the worst in me. Personally i just stopped putting energy into the friendship amd let it drift naturally. It seemed easier snd more pleasant and means we are still on amicable terms, just no longer close.
PecanPastry · 30/09/2018 10:00
Just read your second post, perhaps you are misreading the situation? Perhaps it was very emotionally draining and she is wary to get too overinvolved but still values your friendship - have you, or are you too needy?
UpstartCrow · 30/09/2018 10:03
I really doubt she has changed, she is just not so good at hiding it.
As time goes on behaviours become more fixed, more habitual, and people use more shortcuts to getting their 'fix' so underlying motives become more apparent.
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 10:18
Thanks everyone :
Pecan, it is possible that she sees me as emotionally needy. She is the type that sees a lot of people as emotionally needy and perhaps I’m one of those.
She goes into times in life where she wants to “offload” which becomes endless and I listen attentively.. but that’s not her nature and if I offload she makes it clear that she doesn’t like “drama”.
I’m ok with understanding that there is a mismatch in our personalities from that angle and I can still continue such friendship.. I can try to work around changing things and growing myself as perhaps there does come a time where you need to just control ur own negativity and I can’t claim I was always good at it.
But my real problem is, at times she is going through hardships... I tell her things to make her feel better and make her realise she isn’t alone in it all...which works.. after she recovers emotionally she throws it back in my face as if to spite me .. she has a need to feel like she is the best and that’s her default state and when she has an opportunity she tries to use what I confided in her against me to make me insecure.. I’m just not the sort of person that gets insecure though and that seems to bug her.
I understand this is all my interpretation of the situation and I was scared to confront it for long. But I confided in a mutual friend and she has told me she has experienced the same. She seems to be taking it less personal though as they weren’t as close.
I’m trying to find ways to take this less personal.. to perhaps adapt and let this help me grow into a bettter person instead of turn my back.. but first I neeed to understand...
girlywhirly · 30/09/2018 10:21
It doesn’t sound as though you are getting anything positive from this relationship, and clearly it doesn’t make you feel as if the friend cares. You can either phase out slowly, by not making any arrangements to meet and letting her contact you first, so that she is the one making all the running; or you can say when she next contacts that it seems now you are both different people and so much has changed, that you don’t feel that you get along any more and that you don’t want her to feel obligated to continue.
It’s perfectly possible for friends to outgrow each other and you have the additional difficulty of her wanting to sabotage your happiness. To be honest, I would avoid her calls and respond briefly to texts that you are busy/already have something on/away etc if she wants to meet or go out. Hopefully she will get the message. You owe it to yourself to not allow her to undermine your mental health.
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 10:24
Zip and crow , that’s is really hard to understand. I am of the belief we are all wanting to be good humans in our nature and isn’t it part of basic human nature to want good for others?? What makes someone develops this kind of mentality ? Perhaps she doesn’t realise but circumstances got the better of her ?
jam I wish I can communicate and resolve it but I’m terrible at communicating theses things as I’m scared to offend and she is terrible at any sort of confrontation. She is now not in a position to prioritise our friendship so I’m just gonna create distance. But I wonder how one would start such convo and how would it go ?
I recognise this to be partly a flaw in me because this is not the first occasion where I feel someone in my life treats me this way without me understanding. The other person is MIL and SIL. Exact same attitude.
If there is something I can do about my behaviour that will bring out the best in them then I would love to. I feel like I shouldn’t escape this challenge and should work through it as perhaps it’s just me.
But my mind boggles at how my friend and these people analyse things and think in a way to make them think it’s ok to make someone they “love” feel like crap.
SuchAToDo · 30/09/2018 10:27
Op do you ever ask her why she delights in your downfalls in life?..what does she say?
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 10:30
Sorry many typos !
Girlywhirly.. that is very good advice , perhaps thats What I need to be doing. It’s hard because I care about her.. I tried backing away few times before, even tried blocking her for a week.
But she seems to want to resume contact and she goes through a rough time and contacts me with a breakdown.. she even contacted me once saying “ I feel I want to change as a person and change my attitude in life “ as if she was clued up about why I’m distanced.
UpstartCrow · 30/09/2018 10:36
isn’t it part of basic human nature to want good for others?
No it isn't, civilised behaviour has to be learned and practiced. If it was instinctive, we wouldn't need religion or government to proscribe against harmful behaviour. Most people are actually pretty selfish and seek to satisfy their desires.
Your friend has repeatedly tried to contact you, even though you have backed off. She isnt thinking about anyone else at this point.
She needs to go through intensive therapy, and you wont be doing her any favours if you slip back into old behaviour patterns. Change is possible but it doesn't just happen; it takes sustained effort.
TatterdemalionAspie · 30/09/2018 10:46
Some people are great friends when they are in the supporting/counselling/mentoring role, but really don't like it when things are going well for you and that role is not necessary. Being supportive when you're struggling allows them to feel needed and higher in status, whereas when things are more evenly balanced, they feel threatened and want to put you down and re-establish what they consider the normal power balance. If that's what's going on here, then maybe she feels vulnerable after admitting weakness/that she's struggling, and wants to feel more powerful by lashing out at you and trying to make you feel small.
spiderplantsalad · 30/09/2018 11:17
I've found that some people look for friendships they can treat as a project or people that they see as fixer-uppers if you see what I mean. They like to swoop in and fix whatever problem they think you have - whether you agree or not sometimes - and they have no interest in you as an individual, just as something to be fixed. It makes them feel better about themselves.
I'm not sure if that's what's going on here but if it is, the only solution I've found is to move on. They'll find a new project soon enough and you will find friends who aren't invested in you being in a bad place.
PecanPastry · 30/09/2018 12:19
You know, I read a very interesting article quite recently, and it said that if you are there for someone and see them through a really tough episode, dependant on what other times you have shared, length of friendship, etc, ya da, ya da, ya that they build up an association with you - it's in their sub conscious so there's not much you can do about it - but it made me think.
I'll help anyone, and have helped many friends through tough times, but I also love a laugh and a good time - the ones I've shared a mixed bag of experiences with remain my closest friends, and coincidentally I have known them the longest. Others seem to flake, funnily enough, they are the ones I have supported through some really god awful times, but I'm pleased I was able to help them.
Similarly, I have a friend whom I'd not known terribly long, who leaned on me very heavily, the friendship became very needy, and all consuming and I just could not commit the time and energy that it needed, we are still friends but the friendship is on a different level now.
I think that perhaps you either let the friendship run its course, or you start balancing out the range of emotions and times that you share.
PecanPastry · 30/09/2018 12:21
The other posters on here have made some excellent points too, hope that if helps you in some way OP.
Didntwanttochangemyname · 30/09/2018 12:35
Try to find a copy of 'I'm OK, your OK', it's a really interesting book and will help you understand your friends behavior.
sonjadog · 30/09/2018 12:41
Can you give some examples of events and situations? Your posts almost completely your own analysis of this situation and therefore it is impossible to say if you are overreacting, underreacting or whatever, as we don't actually know what is going on.
ILoveHumanity · 30/09/2018 16:32
I think I’m going to look for my library card... just did some online reading of the book and my god, it’s sooo intense... and shed an interesting light to a lot of dynamics in my life . Badly need to read it. Thanx
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