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olychick2

Changes in friendships and advice. Long! Update...

Olychick
last month
last modified: 12 days ago

I have a good friend; we’ve been friends for 30 years - we met at a support group for an event in both our lives that has caused life long trauma. She is a wonderful person; kind, generous, interesting, smart, etc. She has had other trauma in her life, which seems to affect her ability to accept what is and move forward. Although I think I have provided more emotional support to her than she has to me, we have always been there for each other. She went through a divorce not too long ago and she relied on me for advice and perspective, which I was happy to provide. She did complete the divorce but was filled with ’should haves’ and regrets about the settlement. I couldn’t really empathize with her because I wanted to say “I told you so.” She chose different things than I had suggested to her- which is fine, of course, but...

I don’t really need much “support” from my friends, but sometimes it’s nice to be able to talk things out with my friends about things that might be hard in my life- since I am single and an only child. My friends are my family. For some time now, I’ve felt like I am just being a repository for things she needs to talk about. She will call when something has happened that triggers her old trauma and kind of just vomits out everything that is going on. Sometimes it feels very one way; I know she loves me and cares about me and my life, but she’s so caught up in her own stuff that it doesn’t feel like there is room for me to share what’s going on in my life. She is not someone I would call for advice if I needed it, but we’ve shared lots about our lives with each other and she knows my life well.

I feel like our relationship has become very one-way, with me acting more like her therapist than a friend on equal footing. We take turns calling each other and recently she called me while I was driving home from a weekend away from home (a long drive). I thought it was perfect timing; gave me something to do while driving and get caught up with her. Well, she started in and really did just vomit up a whole bunch of stuff that was causing her pain. Okay. But when she was done, instead of asking about me and how things are for me (it was a hard time for me -the weekend of what would have been my 50th wedding anniversary, had my husband not died, and the reason I left town and visited our best friends during our marriage), she said, “Oh, I’m meeting a friend to go for a walk and I see her coming.” She was done. I hung up on her with just a cursory good bye. She obviously had no interest in what might have been going on in my life and I felt very used.

She is oblivious to what happened and how I feel and is now texting and emailing about talking or getting together (she lives a couple of hours away - so pre covid we would stay overnight with each other). I have not responded. My question to the wise women here is: should I just step away and not respond to her, or make excuses to avoid her, or should I tell her what I’m feeling. I feel like if I laid it all out for her it would be like scolding her, which I am not interested in doing. I think it will make her feel bad to know how I feel. Losing our friendship will be a big loss for her; for me, too, but a smaller one - I have better, more supportive friends. I am close to her daughter and grandchildren and we’ve often done family events/gatherings. But the way I am feeling now is that the friendship has run its course. Do I owe her an explanation? How can I tell her how I feel without it seeming like a scolding for her bad behavior, lol? This isn’t the only incident where I’ve come away feeling this way, so it’s not a one-off, but this post is long enough without going into more details.

What say you? And how would you say it?

Comments (69)

  • Sueb20
    last month

    Agree with all who have said a conversation is needed after 30 years. The only relatable experience I have is a friendship that went south for a stupid reason (IMO) but clearly she had other issues with me and the ”reason” was just an excuse to let me know that she just wasn’t into me any more. But after she had avoided me for months, she mailed me a birthday gift. Um, we lived two blocks from each other but she mailed it? But that led to a face to face lunch conversation where we talked about a lot of issues and in the end, we became aquaintances and not friends. If we hadn’t had that conversation, I’d probably still be wondering what she was thinking.

    Olychick thanked Sueb20
  • mtnrdredux_gw
    last month

    I haven't read other replies.


    Would you feel a sense of loss if you ended the friendship? If so, I would sit down and tell her how you feel. I know you know how to couch it without being accusatory.


    If not, I wouldn't expend the emotional energy on tackling this, especially because this is not an isolated incident. It sounds more like the straw that broke the camel's back. For that reason I am not optimistic that she can change. And so I would drift off. If she confronts you about it, then I'd spill.


    I am so sorry your friend was not there for you at such a trying time. {hugs}

    Olychick thanked mtnrdredux_gw
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  • Tina Marie
    last month

    I think you owe it to yourself to talk it over with her. If the friendship ends, i think you will feel better knowing you tried.

    Olychick thanked Tina Marie
  • Ally De
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I have one friend - my best friend of over 30 years! - who if she ever hurt me, or let me down, we do have the kind of relationship where an honest, respectful conversation could be had.


    Some people respond well to those conversations, other people don't. In the example I shared above, that person wouldn't have taken it well. And like I said, I didn't want to hurt her.


    Oly - how do you think your friend would respond if you did try to have an honest conversation? Or don't you care at this point?


    Do you want to try to save this friendship, or do you just want it over...?

    Olychick thanked Ally De
  • heather483
    last month

    I've been in a somewhat similar situation. I do think that "ghosting" is unfair, especially after 30 years of friendship. Explaining how you feel is the best thing to do, even if it does mean an end to the friendship. In my case, after 30 years of friendship, my friend was just not willing to listen to my side at all. Basically, she was the one who ended the friendship but I had thought that being honest would help, and it didn't. I think jane_ny has the best take and the best recommendations. It's a sad situation though.

    Olychick thanked heather483
  • 2katz4me
    last month

    That's the question - do you want to continue to have a relationship with this person or would you be okay if it ended. I have a lifelong friend who would call and "vomit" all the problems in her life on long phone calls. She was so negative she always had a reason why no idea of any kind would make things better. I didn't come right out and tell her I couldn't take it anymore because I felt that would be harder for her to take than just drifting apart. I started cutting her calls short, not taking all her calls and not calling her. For years we still kept in contact with an occasional text, email, birthday card, etc. I knew she was alone, had only her mother in a different state and very few friends where she lives and just a couple distant friends. During early Covid I thought about her and started checking in by text and eventually we started talking by phone again. It's better this time around - she is not so overwhelmingly negative. She had a technology problem she'd been trying to get resolved for six months and I was able to help her with that over the phone. I was trying to figure out some accounting problems and she helped me with that. We are surprisingly in a good place now. I never thought it would happen.

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  • Bunny
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Oly, there's a lot of good advice here. Only you know how much this friend has meant to you over the years and the value of letting her know why your relationship either needs to change or possibly end.

    Given your long history, I'd want to let her know why and then let the chips fall where they may. I like resolution in my life, even if it results in loss and makes me sad. I think she has earned the right to know why, and you certainly should exercise your right to wrap things up.

    Once a good friend told me something about myself that hurt me deeply. It was the awful way they said it that was so painful...however, I took a grain of it as truth and that awareness has stayed with me, in a good way, and hopefully made me a better person. So sometimes you hear things you'd rather not, but they can result in growth, understanding, and forgiveness. BTW, the friend and I worked through the issue and are close, loving friends to this day. Even better friends than before.

    I understand what those anniversaries without a loved one can be like. I don't expect the world to experience them as I do, but I find on those days I have zero patience for obtuseness. Take care of yourself.

    Olychick thanked Bunny
  • Fun2BHere
    last month
    last modified: last month

    What lovely posters we have here with sage advice. I like @jane__ny's idea of meeting in person to see if a face-to-face conversation is more balanced. If it is not, then you can take the next step of choosing to share your frustrations with your friend and/or starting to put some new boundaries in place.

    I remember seeing a meme about marriage that said some arguments could be avoided by asking the other person, "Are you telling me this because you want comfort or because you want solutions?" I think that advice also could apply to friendships and asking the question might make the friend aware that they are dumping without reciprocity.

    Olychick thanked Fun2BHere
  • olychick
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I agree Fun2BHere. I just knew there would be some wise words. I didn't expect all the commiseration - that so many have gone through something similar. Thank you to all who took the time to read and respond.
    This is not a boundary issue for me...I am the queen of having good boundaries. I don't have other needy friends...my neediness radar is super sensitive and there is nothing attractive or appealing to me about someone who is needy. I realized, after reading everyone's responses, that this has become like the old adage about boiling a frog...put a frog in a pot of boiling water and it will try to get out to save itself. But if you put it in a pot of cool water and slowly turn up the heat, it will get boiled to death. I'm the frog. Our friendship didn't start out with this dynamic but has slowly evolved to a place that I don't know if our history (when the friendship was more egalitarian) is enough for me to want to simmer in the hot water. To those of you who pointed out that maybe it's not that big of a deal to just have a conversation once in a while and accept that I won't get anything in return, I think I've been doing that for quite a while now and, yes, this may have been the straw that broke the camel's back - her abrupt ending of our conversation without even a "how are you?" really was it. I've been able to avoid overnight get togethers because of covid - she is now pressing for getting together again. (we live too far to just meet for lunch...there is literally NO place that's half-way, even). Because I'm pretty much a direct person, it causes me anxiety to not just tell her how I feel, but knowing how much pain it will cause her is what is stopping me. However, I suspect that's what I'll end up doing. I wish I had faith that it would change things, but I feel like it will just make things awkward; she being afraid to overstep/overshare and me being on guard for it. Sigh.... Thank you all, again.
    eta: I don't really need anything from her other than the normal give and take of a friendship; I just don't want to be NEEDED by her.

  • Moxie
    last month

    I think in your case, I'd go with the most recent, specific issue. I'd say that I wasn't feeling like getting together because I was hurt that she didn't even ask how I was doing or give me an opening to discuss how hard a time I was having on the weekend on my 50th wedding anniversary.


    How she reacts will tell you a lot. If she blows it off or makes excuses because of whatever was going on with her, then you're done. If she tries to make amends and connect with what's going on with you, there may still be something worth trying to save.


    Olychick thanked Moxie
  • blfenton
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I am sorry you're going through this. It's hard when a friend isn't interested in how you're doing and feeling.

    I had two friends - friend A and friend B and the three of us got together quite often. The son of Friend A and my son were also good friends. When the sons were together or if my DH had taken them skiing she would call and tear a strip off me because she couldn't reach her son, etc, etc, always blaming my son or DH. Her son had usually left his cell phone at home (gee I wonder why?) and my DH would have turned his off and my son didn't have one. I slowly just stopped getting together with both friends but I really liked Friend B but didn't know how to separate the two. Anyway a year or so later Friend B called me out for my treatment of her and deservedly so. She wanted to save the friendship and it took a lot of guts for her to call me out. We had a very honest discussion and we re-established our friendship and a couple of years later she started to have problems with Friend A.

    It's sort of opposite of your situation but if you think the friendship still has value for you and if you think it's worth saving then talk to her. If it's a friendship that you don't need or is becoming a little toxic then you could let it die a natural death. And when thinking about this be very honest with yourself as well. Think about yourself and your own feelings - not hers.

    Olychick thanked blfenton
  • Annie Deighnaugh
    last month

    I'm so sorry you're going through this Olychick.


    After such a long friendship, I think it may be worthwhile testing it to see if it's a permanent change or just a phase. I wouldn't start out with a big deal, but maybe just mention that you haven't had a chance to tell her about what's going on with you and maybe next time, she could be your shoulder to lean on and see where that goes. If that doesn't happen, then you know. It's up to you to decide how much time and effort you want to invest in this relationship. If after hinting, suggesting, and then outright saying that you don't seem to get a chance to be heard, the street is still one-way, then it's clear it's not for you. One of my favorite Maria Sirois lines: Peace be with you. Get off my land.


    But the other part of me has a fear of being too needy. There are times when we are in need of support. If we reach out and it's not there, simply because we do have this phase where we are in need that may be harder or longer than our friends deem appropriate or tolerable, then, rather than get that support we need, our very need is what drives others away. That is a frightening prospect, especially for someone like me without family who has to rely on friends. One friend who wants to do for me, gets upset that I don't let her, and I tell her it's because some day I will be needy and don't want to burn her out now when my needs are few. She keeps trying to tell me that that's not what friendship is about...that true friends don't burn out. I told her to save her efforts in the favor bank and I'll collect with interest in the future. But I'd rather not test the strength of those bonds unless I have to, IYKWIM. And I am so thankful knowing that she will be there for me should I need it. That alone is priceless.

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  • Feathers11
    last month

    I don't believe you should provide her with an explanation or rationale for how you feel. She doesn't seem in a position to understand it. You have to meet people where they are. Many relationships fluctuate and some expire. Some go from close to acquaintance, while others deepen. Give what you can. I recently listened to a podcast that described life as a sandcastle we build, propping it up and decorating it with shells and sticks and other lovely things. But the tide eventually comes to wash it away. Enjoy it while you build it, but know it will eventually will not be.

    I'm sorry for the anniversary of your loss.

    Olychick thanked Feathers11
  • olychick
    last month

    Thank you for more perspectives and advice. I realize this is extra tough for me because I am a tenacious friend. I am very selective about friendships and I work to keep them forever (as do the people I am friends with). I don't move in and out of friendships; new people come in (fewer of them as I get older) but I keep the older friends, too. So just washing my hands of her is not an easy proposition for me and is causing me some anxiety about the right thing to do, or not do. We'll see, I guess.
    Annie I do understand about having no family and relying on friends for the role that families usually fill for each other. I've always been glad that I seem to have quite a few friends younger than I am, who I imagine will help me when all us oldsters need younger backs, hands and minds in our lives. I do have a son, but he has two mothers and I have no expectation that he be responsible or helpful to both of us, so I will never rely on him for that.

    Olychick thanked olychick
  • lascatx
    last month

    I haven't read all the replies, but wanted to say that after going through a needy time, her not asking about you may be habit more than not caring. Sometimes you have to make an effort to shift the direction of things. It doesn't sound like you are initiating conversation about you -- you want to be asked. Fair enough -- but if she is a friend, can't you tell her you feel it has been all about her since the divorce and point out that she doesn't ask about you -- that perhaps the support needs to shift beck toward mutual? Both conversation and friendship are two way streets and require some effort on both parts. I wouldn't hold her walking partner showing up against her (is there an element of jealousy or disappointment that you are THE friend or that you didn't get to claim equal time?) It wasn't good timing for you, and she could have told you she just had a few minutes while waiting, but nothing to prevent you from calling and saying you felt the conversation was incomplete and wanted to share what's going on on your end. If that isn't well received, then I would reassess the friendship, but you have to make an effort to get what you need from a relationship and to not let short term patterns become long term habits.

    Olychick thanked lascatx
  • mtnrdredux_gw
    last month

    Lascatx, That is an interesting point. It's a phenomenon you hear about more in marriages, where we expect our romantic partners to be mind readers.


    I recently listened to a podcast that described life as a sandcastle we build, propping it up and decorating it with shells and sticks and other lovely things. But the tide eventually comes to wash it away.


    Umm, what? That is the worst sentiment ever! OMG find a new podcast. LOL

    Olychick thanked mtnrdredux_gw
  • Feathers11
    last month

    Ha! Mtn, it was about acceptance and things we cannot control. Something I needed to hear.

    Lifelong friendships are treasurable, but not every one will fall into this caregory. Forcing something that isn’t eventually reciprocated is exhausting and isn’t sustainable. Every relationship will ebb and flow, but overall it should be equitable, imo.

    Olychick thanked Feathers11
  • olychick
    last month

    lascatx, I see your point from the info I posted here. It was a long enough saga without going into more details and history. I have already shifted my expectations about our friendship quite a bit because she has a need for support and I do not. I was not at all jealous of her date with her friend - she is very active with others - I just fill a special niche about some things she won't talk to others about (it's complicated). So, it really WAS that she called, spent a few minutes regurgitating her feelings about something without letting me know she was waiting for someone, then abruptly ended the conversation without any inquiry about my life or my trip. I didn't need or expect much, but it was so blatant and rude that it kind of infuriated me. Maybe I was mad at myself for not putting a stop to this behavior sooner? I have been of the mind that it doesn't really cost me anything to be her sounding board and in the interest of our history and actually caring about her, I've been coasting along. But the frog has realized she is in a pot of boiling water and doesn't want to be, lol.

  • l pinkmountain
    28 days ago

    Well, you can talk to her about it, which is what I would do. She is what she is. You either accept her, or distance yourself from her. If it were me, I would not be bothered. So what if every once and a while I have a friend who calls to vent. I have the time. If I didn't, I would have to tell my friend that. I have one friend who does call to vent. She's not real big on listening to me vent, but that's not her strength. Boy, if I ever need help with actual tasks, she is totally my gal. She was best woman at my wedding and put in long hours helping me get the whole thing organized and accomplished. She helped me make a checklist, worked through it with me, did about half the tasks at least, called me and e-mailed me constantly to keep me on track, etc. I write this only to say that one has to sometimes look at people and realize that everyone doesn't have the same personality or strengths. Friendships have many flavors, IMHO.

    If you don't feel like hearing your friend vent anymore, just don't pick up the phone as often. She is what she is. Either take her or leave her, you can't do much else.

    Olychick thanked l pinkmountain
  • Kswl
    27 days ago

    I haven't read any of the replies because I don't have advice. I'll just tell you what I did in a similar situation. Pull back, let her calls go to voicemail and answer them when it suits you, or not. Text her to say you've been busy. Don't go on any jaunts with her. You'll know if she misses you because she will call and ask what's wrong. If she's angry, don't answer as she's probably mad she lost her free therapist. If she sounds contrite and asks if she's done anything wrong, call her and tell her you were very hurt when she was dismissive (by not being interested) of your recent loss. If she's defensive and puts the blame on you for not making it clear enough you needed help you also have good reason to dump her. But it's very possible that she will gradually find someone else to emotionally mooch off and drop you and not miss you.


    Short answer to your question of whether the friendship has run its course: yes.

    Olychick thanked Kswl
  • olychick
    27 days ago

    I think you're right, of course. If I wanted to salvage the friendship, I wouldn't be posting here! I was looking for advice about whether to tell her it's over and why, or just withdraw and try not to feel bad for not having a conversation with her about it. I appreciate all the different perspectives. I think we probably all advise and would do what we would want done to us if the situation were reversed.

  • l pinkmountain
    27 days ago

    Well, just stop being available to her, and if she wonders about it, tell her you've been really busy and emotionally drained dealing with your own issues and don't have time or energy right now for others. That's pretty much the truth. I've had to tell that to friends even if they aren't calling me all the time to vent. Just apologize myself for not being available. I wouldn't burn any bridges but I would be clear that I did not have time for socializing with her right now. The reason I say "right now" is that it is not a "burn all bridges" approach. Someone would have to do something pretty terrible or show signs of being pretty "stalkerish" before I told them I never wanted to have anything to do with them ever again. I have also found that in life, you sometimes need to cross that bridge you've burned, so best to avoid if at all possible.

    Olychick thanked l pinkmountain
  • olychick
    27 days ago
    last modified: 27 days ago

    I agree about burning bridges, but I suspect any further withdrawal by me will be very awkward and hurt her so much (because of our long shared history and experiences) that it will be the end. So, I guess I don't have to SAY it's the end - it just will be. Thanks.

  • eld6161
    26 days ago

    I agree. No need for a big announcement. It will be interesting to see how things pan out.

    Keep us posted.

    Olychick thanked eld6161
  • Olychick
    Original Author
    26 days ago

    Thank you, I will. - it might be a while, lol.

    I just got notice of a new post here and while I usually use Firefox, I happened to be using Chrome. In Chrome, there is the option to thank every poster, but that option is missing in firefox! Very strange, but that's why you all got delayed thank yous! I might have to switch to Chrome all the time.

  • jane__ny
    26 days ago

    I have a similar situation. A old friend of many, many years (45) calls constantly, crying and going on about everything in her life. In the past, I let voicemail (answering machines) pick up.


    I'd cut contact for a while but would eventually take her calls. I'm still doing that. Now I realize she has aged and went through numerous life events which affected her terribly. I feel for her, but can't keep taking her calls.


    I won't cut contact completely, just take a break and eventually will take a call. I always say I'm in the middle of something and only have a few minutes, or I'm driving. It seems to work and I still love her dearly and I actually think she has gotten used to my not being available.


    I think its an impulse control issue and she feels she has to call me whenever she's going through something upsetting. When you let the calls go to voicemail, the lapse of time gives the person to pull themself together. Many times I feel she feels very depressed and needs to talk to someone.


    I have my own depressing events in my life and just can't add to it.


    It works, we are still friends.


    Jane

    Olychick thanked jane__ny
  • Allison0704
    26 days ago

    Your friend is an emotional drain, an emotional vampire.. I do not think she will change.


    I have distanced myself from a family member because it was always about him/her and there is always drama or something going wrong in their life. I found myself anxious anytime the phone rang (even before seeing who it was on Caller ID). Being in the same room was even worse. I am now basically stress free and a much happier person.


    Unless these posts have changed your mind, your OP reads that you are ready to move on. I know that will be hard on several levels. Going about it nicely ("now is not convenient for me") seems to be the easiest for both of you. Learn to repeat just that, because you do not ever owe anyone an explanation. If she calls, don't answer if you don't want to. Shoot her a text - "now is not convenient for me." If she texts back, you don't need to respond since you just told her you were busy.

    Olychick thanked Allison0704
  • Oakley
    26 days ago

    As someone who suffers from PTSD, and has been through hell and back which I'm still deeply traumatized from, don't abandon her. Some people handle trauma and bad memories more severely than others. Now is the worst time to unfriend her.


    Have a sleepover again and discuss it very gently with your friend. You know the saying about the bad times are when "we know who our real friends are?" Be a real friend, it may save a life.


    Definitely talk it over with her. Friends at our age are hard to come by, as the movie Stand By Me says. :)




    Olychick thanked Oakley
  • Kswl
    26 days ago

    Allison, people used to say about people like your relative, ”with friends like her (him or them), who needs enemies?” 😎

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  • SEA SEA
    26 days ago

    Let us know how you work around this unpleasant issue Olychick.

    I have a friend who sounds similar to what you have described in your OP. We've been friends for about 20 years now.

    In the begining I would point out behaviors that I found to be offensive or troublesome, letting her know I had been hurt and this was not going to work out, in the name of being open and true to myself. Not letting things get to a place of how did I get here. To no avail.

    That's who she is and no one on earth has changed her yet.

    I then decided to not be so available to her. Not taking her calls all the time. Delay a call back. Not responding to numerous text messages a day when that became a thing. In my due time I would respond.

    Eventaully, it clicked. She stopped calling me so often and was also a little more respectful of my time. Perhaps she talked it over with someone else and they clued her in? Idk. However, she's still an all about her steamroller when we do talk on the phone and can't resist talking all over me most of the time. It's funny because the very things she complains about her with mom are the traits she demonstrates that I consider to be rude and or bothersome.

    She's a good person, just ill-mannered. I had to put the kabosh on her neediness without regard for an actual human on the other of the phone (me).

    In hindsight, you could say I demoted her in my life. It was the way we could still remain friends.

    My friend means well. Knowing her mom a little bit, I see the apple didn't fall far from the tree. I give her a bit of lee-way in that regard. Not everyone can overcome their upbringing with grace and do an about face...I tell myself. :)

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  • olychick
    25 days ago

    You all are better than a group therapy session and quite affordable!
    Jane, I really thought long and hard about what you wrote about the crisis of NOW passing if I don't engage her. I'm not sure if that would be true with her or not, as the person causing her angst is a part of her life and will continue to be, so things/incidents tend to pile on. But maybe she'll realize she doesn't need to vent about it so much. I know she won't find a new outlet because of the situation, but maybe she'll get to a place of acceptance.
    Since the abrupt phone call a month ago, she's called twice, leaving a message about when can I talk? She's sent one email asking to make a date to have an overnight get together and a text last night asking if I could talk later in the evening. I ignored her other contacts and last night I told her no I couldn't talk, she wrote back, "Okay, when would be a good time?"
    I didn't reply. This isn't going to be easy!
    Oakley, she is not in a ptsd crisis, but just supremely annoyed by a circumstance she cannot change. If she cannot vent to me, it won't be an abandonment. SEA-SEA, YES, a steamroller! One time a few years ago, she called me and vented for about 1/2 hour without taking a breath to even ask me about my life. At that point in our relationship, I was pretty resigned to just listening to her for a while, then ending the convo. I put her on speaker phone and cleaned my house (and made some kind of sound once in a while - tho I'm not sure she'd have noticed if I'd just hung up, lol). It was late in the evening and she finally took a breath to ask how things were in MY life and when I started to tell her. It got very quiet and I realized she'd fallen asleep! My life isn't THAT boring!! That was the beginning of the end for me, realizing she wanted to talk more than listen
    . Allison, yes, I do hope to try to do this kindly, but I know it will be very hard on her as she considers me one of her closest long time friends. Thank you, wise women, many with similar friends. Who knew?

  • SEA SEA
    25 days ago

    Yes Olychick...the ole put her on speaker phone and go about your chores trick. Types like this tend to not even notice, sad to say.


    I *used* to have a very long time friend (different from the one written about above who somewhat resembles your friend). Oh boy, was she a talker. And a Chickenlittle. I gave her a lot of lee-way too as we all have *that* friend who is slightly off kilter. We had a good back and forth in the old days. Was a good frienship with a lot in common. Then she changed and got worse and worse. To the point that no amount of me even trying to butt into our own convo worked. She would go on for two hours at a time. Motormouth about all the made up Chickenlittle worries she had on any given day. Then she progressed to the two hour talkathon on her part and when she talked herself out would say, well, I have to go clean up dog p** now. What? Who says that? Who does that? Dozens of times over?

    Because she claimed to have an anxiety issue that she refused to treat professionally, I gave her more lee-way, but I was not a happy camper. After 18 months of my own life events had come and gone and she had no idea of them even though we had mear weekly phone talks, I said enough. I wrote her an email (because I couldn't get a word in edgewise on the phone) that said something to the effect of 'I don't feel comfortable in this relationship anymore' and left it at that. She wrote back a short email saying she appreciated me. That was the end.

    I wasn't imagining things. I was mearly an ear to blab into. Sometimes things morph into that as people change over time. Like your frog in pot of water. It happens little by little then you are the cooked frog.

    This one, I should have cut off several years earlier, but I was loyal to my long time friend and when her anxiety became grossly unmanagable, I didn't want to ditch her unduly. I was a good friend, like you are, but at some point people have to take responibility for their part in their lives. Some people don't really want a dialog, I have found. They want a free ear to unload on.

    You've received much good advise in this thread. Many minds reaching out. I hope you find a spot you will feel comfortable with. Your concern for your friend shows, but your concern for youself is good to see too.

    Olychick thanked SEA SEA
  • Oakley
    25 days ago

    "...I put her on speaker phone and cleaned my house.." LOL!!! Been there! I get a better picture now. Hard situation. I feel for you. Maybe she needs a therapist to teach her how to cope?

    Olychick thanked Oakley
  • Olychick
    Original Author
    12 days ago

    Oops, I changed the title before I wrote the update. Writing it now!

  • SEA SEA
    12 days ago

    Good news! I'm happy for you, and your friend.

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  • Bestyears
    12 days ago

    What a wonderful outcome. Good for you for taking a risk, being vulnerable, and saving your friendship in the process!

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  • Jinx
    12 days ago

    This made me happy to read! So glad it’s working out. ❤️

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  • eld6161
    12 days ago

    Great. Your direct and honest approach resonated with her.

    This is the best place to vent.

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  • Zalco/bring back Sophie!
    12 days ago

    Wonderful news! I am so glad things are working out.

    Olychick thanked Zalco/bring back Sophie!
  • DLM2000-GW
    12 days ago

    I'm so glad she contacted you and seems to genuinely want to address these issues. How it will play out long term remains to be seen but it sounds as if you are important to her beyond the role of therapist.

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  • lisaam
    11 days ago

    I’m so happy to read this. I hope that your relationship will get to a place that works for both of you.


    I’m reminded of a friend who was also my piano teacher. She had a habit / skill of being very forthright yet unencumbered by emotion or rancor. She would say something like ”you look like he** today today, what’s wrong?” or something else that i could not have managed to say without feeling superuncomfortable and therefore heavily emotionally invested in. I’m sure that she offended some people but the ability to be coolly straightforward I think can headoff misunderstandings. She is russian and i wonder if this is culturally true for them?

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  • lucillle
    11 days ago

    I am so glad that because of your honest communication, the friendship seems to be on the mend.

    Olychick thanked lucillle
  • Arapaho-Rd
    11 days ago
    last modified: 11 days ago

    Being honest always works, especially if a true friendship exists. They are hard to come by so I'm happy to hear you talked.

    Olychick thanked Arapaho-Rd
  • olychick
    11 days ago
    last modified: 11 days ago

    We talked again tonight; it was nice and not at all awkward. I thanked her for being open to hearing what I said, then we said no more about it and just caught each other up on our lives.

  • Feathers11
    11 days ago

    Your friend scores high in emotional intelligence. She's a keeper.

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  • how2girl
    7 days ago

    She sounds just like my mother in law.

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  • Ida
    7 days ago

    Very positive update, and I'm so glad you made your feelings known, and that she reciprocated kindly. I hope this is a new beginning for your friendship, and that it only gets better from here.

    Olychick thanked Ida
  • Ally De
    7 days ago

    Aw, I love this.


    I'm so glad it turned out well. It's a good reminder that when we post here for ideas and everyone surmises what the outcome will be....yeah, it's all just a guess. Speaking only for me, I was concerned she wouldn't be able to hear you and respond well. Shows what I know! :-)


    I just love this outcome. Long term friends are almost priceless to me, and I'm so glad yours is back to being a good one for both of you.

    Olychick thanked Ally De
  • OutsidePlaying
    7 days ago

    Love hearing this, Olychick. Good friendships are hard to come by and an old one would be hard to lose. Glad this worked out so easily.

    Olychick thanked OutsidePlaying