Tue 15 Sep, 2020 04:52 am
I'm having a fight with my friend and I desperately need help! It's a long post but I hope someone can read on, thanks!
I am a female, and I have a female friend whom I've known for 20 years. In the recent 5 to 6 years, I started to feel that she often says things to me that have an insulting or belittling subtext, while on the surface they are like jokes or casual remarks.
6 years ago I failed to attend her wedding because I was backpacking in another country. I was supposed to make it if I stuck with my original plan to return home after 6 months, but I decided to extend the trip to fully utilize that one-year visa and also because I wouldn't have another chance to travel that long again once I was home due to family and relationship concerns. I told and apologized to her immediately when I had made up my mind, which was at least 4 to 5 months before her wedding. I also sent her card and gifts on her wedding date and gave her my blessings. I think I had done all that I could to let her know that I cared, just that I couldn't give up my dream to fulfill hers.
But during all these years, she keeps bringing up this long-passed event. Since at that time I went on that trip with a mutual friend of ours, who stuck to the original 6 months plan and came back to her wedding just in time, every time she brought this up, she would go by praising our mutual friend for "coming all the way back just for her wedding" (which wasn't exactly like that because that friend was only sticking with the original plan and also missing her boyfriend so much that she eagerly wanted to come back), while poking fun at me for eating my words. I think I deserved to be poked fun at or even blamed on for a little while, since it really was my fault that I didn't come back as promised, and I understand that she must have felt disappointed. But I think repeating that on and off for 6 years is really too much, that I started to feel very uncomfortable, inferior (since she always compared me with the other friend), and wonder if she was holding grudge towards me and will never be able to accept my apology, understand my reasons, and let this go.
Finally, I straightly asked her if she was still upset and hasn't forgiven me for not attending her wedding, because otherwise I couldn't think of a reason why she still brought this up after 6 years, and I also honestly told her that this has made me feel uncomfortable. She denied and said she was only poking fun at me, and she didn't care who came and who didn't because she didn't care that much about her wedding, and there were many other friends besides me who didn't attend as they were also out of town. But the fact actually shows otherwise because from what I (and also our other friends) saw during the time she was meticulously planning her wedding, she super cared about it. I didn't believe that she didn't care, and told her that it's ok to be honest with me with her feelings, so that we could have a talk and try to understand each other and move on from this.
But then, she got increasingly defensive and said it's 100% true that she didn't give a damn about her wedding. Then the elaboration went more and more wild. She said she didn't even want to get married at that time, it was just her husband wanted to marry her so badly and she wasn't ready to get married that early (actually she was already 29 at that time, and if she didn't want to, she didn't have to, right? She could have delayed it until she's ready. I'm sure her husband could wait if he wanted her that much as she said). And then she started to say she actually has no memories of her wedding whatsoever. She didn't remember what happened, who came and who did not. She didn't even remember that our mutual friend was so nice to come all the way back to attend - that's why during all these years (somehow time by time) when she suddenly recalled that, she would praise her for being such a good friend, and then poke fun at me (for being a really bad friend?).
But actually, just the day before she said these, when we were having a conversation about wedding arrangements since our friend is getting married soon, she had once again said to me, "SINCE YOU DIDN'T COME TO MY WEDDING, you have no idea how many things went wrong on that day... (detailing the things that went wrong)". So firstly she emphasized that I didn't attend AGAIN, and secondly, it makes me doubt if she really has no memories of her own wedding if she just mentioned the details a day before. I think she was just making it up in order to explain to me why she wasn't feeling upset at me at all, and that repeatedly poking fun at me for 6 years has nothing to do with holding grudge against me, but simply a joke.
Then she started to say she has been suffering from long-term stress and so she has very bad memory, and that's why she has been repeating the same joke for 6 years, because she forgot she has said that before. She said she would try to remember not to repeat, but she couldn't guarantee. So if she happens to say it again next time, there is nothing she could do about it. And if I couldn't accept it, then that's my problem. She said that I have to accept that she is an overly straightforward person (she can't control what comes out of her mouth), and asked me to stop over-interpreting her meaning and intention.
I just feel that she has always been creating a false image of, and an alternative reality for herself, in order to deny things that she doesn't want to accept or admit. Like saying that she didn't even want to get married was a complete opposite of what people around her saw, since she cared so much about the wedding and has for all these years been bragging or humble bragging about life being a wife, like describing little details of married life to us and then said, "Oh, you girls won't understand since you're not married yet!". And she has always been saying it's her husband who desperately wanted to marry her, while she didn't. And the wedding was her husband's idea, not hers. But my husband is her husband's 20+ years friends, my husband laughed at it and said he's pretty sure it's not her husband who would wanted to have such a meticulously planned wedding because like many other men, he would rather just signed the paper and no ceremony, no invitations whatsoever.
If she said she's not holding grudge against me, that's fine. I'd try to take her remarks as a joke next time she brings it up, even though it would still make me feel uncomfortable but since she refused to stop making the same remarks again, like she said I could only accept it. But the fact that she's lying to herself and people around her really makes me feel frustrated. There are actually some more examples of the other belittling things that she keeps saying to me. It starts to frustrate me more and more, and I feel like sitting on pins and needles every time I talk with her because I don't know when she would again out of nowhere attack me by saying belittling things that she would only excuses herself by explaining those are just jokes or throwaway remarks when I told her I feel offended.
Please can anyone share your thoughts on these? Am I over-reacting and over-interpreting her? Or is that she secretly hates me but doesn't want to admit? And is she being a little mental since she keeps making up alternative facts?
Wow, she sounds like a passive aggressive jerk.
Your 'friend' hates the lack of control. It's not personal.
That doesn't mean she is Dr Evil, it most likely means she is anxiety driven and when she loses control over situations or people; she cannot abide it. She lost control of you at a fundamental point in her own life, as in, you chose your trip over her.
It is who she is and what she does .... look back at other issues with other people/activities and I strongly suspect you will see the exact same reaction from her.
In truth it is either accept her or walk away ... There really is no other options ... People will say I am sure "Oh talk to her, explain to her" etc etc ... It'll ultimately make no difference, she cannot change who she is, any more than you or anyone else truly can.
a change, they never effect
We are all an amalgam of our childhood experiences along with our own personality traits. Which is why most people are a ball of fears, anxiety and self doubt.
No, she doesn’t hate you in fact she needs you!!
She has issues in her life and so she’s turning over her hurt and anger and it’s coming out sideways. And guess who’s getting slapped? You are.
She desperately needs you to dump on.
Remove yourself from this “victim” role. If that means distancing yourself from her then so be it. Who needs to have that in their lives?
She’s got problems and she needs help. Stop letting her make you the “whipping boy.“
I have tried to talk to her, and yes it makes no difference. She was more self-defensive that I expected when I said to her that I thought deep down she cared about her wedding, who came and who didn't. I don't know what's behind that self-defensiveness. Maybe it was my fault that I kind of forced her to admit, but then when she's getting more defensive I stopped digging on that and admitted that I misunderstood and over-interpreted her, and that I will take it as joke if she brings in up unconsciously again next time.
But that fact that she blamed it all on me and calling me an over-interpreter, asking me to seek professional help if I overthink that much, asked me to accept who she is, even if she is OVERLY straightforward and have no filter, but requested me to stop over-interpret her, just made me feel so not respected. I mean communication is a two-way street. Just because I admitted my fault, as a gesture of goodwill, doesn't mean that she didn't even need to have the slightest reflection on herself, not to say I was kind enough to not exposing her lies.
But she was on her guard and didn't want to listen to me anymore. When I told her examples of her making some literally rude comments, such as saying directly to me that my wedding favor was ugly, my cat's hair made her clothes dirty and disgusting when she visited my home, laughing at my husband's crow's feet etc. These are very literal and have no room for my over-interpretation. I mildly told her that these remarks were actually quite rude and reminded her to pay attention to her words and social cues, saying that I have laughed it off every time and didn't told her that she was rude at that exact moment doesn't mean that these are not hurtful, and that not everyone would tolerate her rudeness like I do. But before I even finished, she became very rude and said that I was telling her all these just to make myself feel good, and that she didn't feel the need to discuss with me anymore, because she won't make herself unhappy just to please other.
I mean, is it too much to ask for when being considerate and think before you speak are only basic social expectations and skills?
You know she’s a bully and an abuser don’t you?
How much time are you going to spend on this “friend.“?
Conversely the next time she brings it up, ask her why didn't postpone her wedding six months for you to get back home.
Its time for you to cut this irritation off. The next time she brings it up say, "It's over, past and done by years, can't you find some new issue of disappointment?" or "If this is the defining moment of our friendship maybe you need to move onto other friends."
I would never feed the topic, I might in a friendly way say, "We both have nothing to say new about this, I feel uncomfortable that the defining moment of your wedding is my not being there. It makes me sad for you and your husband and makes me uncomfortable, if you were a friend you'd recognize that and not bring it up. So, hasn't the weather been so nice lately?"
Actually I've been having the feeling that she is jealous of me for quite a long time. From the time we were at school when she asked the boys which of us were more beautiful, when she said that she didn't understand why I always got boy's attentions; to now when I'm married to a man who owns a flat and a car while her husband doesn't... I've always have the feeling that she likes to compare with me.
But on the outsides she has always seem so sweet to me, saying that she loves me, saying that we're best friends and she cherishes our friendship a lot... I don't think these are lies, I think she truly means it. But just maybe she doesn't know or want to admit that deep down she grudges me my "success", perhaps in getting attentions, having the life that she desires, etc. I don't know if my observations are correct. Like ever since I quit my full-time job and started freelancing, she has always been saying that she admires my life as a housewife who doesn't need to do anything because I can reply on my husband financially, while she has to be a career woman, work hard and help her husband with rent and bills. I think she may completely mean well if what she's saying are the facts, but she knows for sure that I've working very hard too (my works are those she can see in cinemas, on TV etc... she knows what I'm doing). Then why does she always describe me as a housewife and free-rider? I think it's just because she knows I have unstable income, and that not being able to make as much money as other people at our age do has been something that frustrates me, and so she uses this to attack me passive aggressively, saying that I have to rely on a man to feed to me.
She has been saying this to me for 5, 6 years now, among all other comments and remarks that I found belittling. This is why I cannot take it anymore and told her she has to stop. And the fact that she was so defensive and aggressive, and denying all my comments, somehow makes me think it proves my point, that she has been verbally attacking in purpose even thought she made it look like jokes or casual remarks.
Well.. she said she was not upset at me for not attending her wedding at all, because (1) she didn't care about her wedding, it wasn't something remotely important to her (but she planned her wedding meticulously, she even spent time on making her own bouquet, designing her own invitation cards etc.); and (2) she didn't even want to get married that early, it's her husband who wanted to marry her very badly (but she got married anyway, one year after the proposal, and so yes, if I ask her why didn't she postpone her wedding, I think she probably couldn't answer, because the version of her not willing to get married and have that wedding is a lie, but if I ask she probably would just pull out another lie); and (3) she has no memories of her wedding whatsoever (but she can always recall little details from time to time).
So it's almost impossible to hold a rational conversation with her. She has always been very contradicting in what she says because she is so busy creating and projecting an image that isn't really her, and an alternative reality that isn't true.
It wouldn't work if I say what you suggested to her, because she has already said that she has very "bad memory" due to "long-term stress", so she cannot guarantee if she would remember not to bring this up again, and there is nothing she can do about it and I can only accept it. And you know what, "bad memory" and "suffering from long-term stress" have always been her excuses, or defense mechanism, whenever she is being criticized, ever since we were at school (some other classmates disliked her personality and the way she talked and so they ostracized her, and her respond was "bad memory", "stress" and "this is me, accept me or fxxk off I don't care"). It's as if having "bad memory" can excuse her from anything things she said or did that people didn't like about her, and since she's "suffering from long-term stress", you shouldn't be harsh on her because she is the victim and needed to be taken care of, understood and forgiven no matter what.
Anyway, I don't think she would talk to me anymore after I confronted her. She's super defensive and aggressive and she even deleted all our photos on instagram, meaning she doesn't want to be friends anymore. I'm totally ok with this because I have had enough of her too and it's not my loss. Just that she accused me of attacking her on purpose in order to make myself feel good and happy really makes me feel so angry. But I'm not the only one who thinks she is full of s**t. So she's losing me and some other friends if she's not going to change, while it's a relief for me to not having her as my friend.
Sometimes you just have to let some relationships go. This is no longer a real friendship. She’s causing you pain and you can’t get her to dtop. Let her go in your heart. Understand why you’re doing it. Call it a day, even though it’s painful. She’s not being honest with you nor loving. Quite manipulating of her.
It sounds to me like you understand the broach cannot be repaired. Do the office version of ghosting.
Yes, before I confronted her I thought I'd just ghost her because she's too toxic to be around. But I chose to have that confrontation with her believing she is mature enough to take criticism. I really don't know her. She's not my friend, she doesn't deserve it.
I should have just ghosted her instead. It was a waste of time for me to tell her my feelings, because she doesn't want to and doesn't feel the need to care about people's feelings, because she's the princess everyone should love and take care of, like how her family has been spoiling and protecting.
Ok, let's try to be open and honest about what's truly going on here.
In the past few posts, defending your position, you've written that she may be jealous that you and your husband own a flat, a car and that you stay home because you can afford to do so while she rents and is a career woman.
Then you complain she may use some opportunity to tease/embarrass you about missing her wedding.
Maybe she is just trying to hold her own while you continually stick it to her about how your success cannot ever compare to hers.
Friendship ebbs and flows. You paint her as the devil incarnate as you are an angel, just floating on air.
Even your heading says she "secretly hates you." No, she doesn't hate you but she certainly is tired of hearing your crap. Hell, at this point so am I and I don't even know you.
A bit mental? Sure. You two deserve the friendship, together.
bobsal u1553115 wrote:
It sounds to me like you understand the broach cannot be repaired. Do the office version of ghosting.
Bob, some nitwit voted you 50 thumbs up. I thought your advice was helpful, but holy moly, 50 thumbs up.
I never brag about my life in front of her, honestly.
I've told her about how frustrating it is for me to not be as successful in my career as I wished I could be, and that I'm not able to make enough money, or that I'm earning much less money than most people at our age, because of the industry that I work in, and also the unstable nature of being a freelancer. And so I believe she knows I don't sit on my couch all day, waiting for my husband to feed me because she knows I'm struggling, and she's seen me working long hours and late at night (she's been to some of the events that I worked on, she knows what's I doing seriously). So if she misunderstood that I don't have to work, it's ok, because it's not her responsibility to know everything about me. So I explained to her it's not like what she thinks so many times, but she never really listen. She keeps saying I'm a housewife, doing nothing at home (but from what I mentioned above, do you think I'm the kind of woman who wants or is aspired to be a housewife?) This is why I doubt her intentions in repeating this kind of remarks. She's been saying I don't have to work because I don't have to pay rent, while it's not me who bring this up. It was she who asked if the flat I'm living in was bought, not rent. It was she who then asked me if I have to pay the mortgage with my husband. I thought we're good friends enough for me to tell her this kind of private stuff, while I don't just walk around telling other people. But once she got the answers, she never stops making those remarks. She ignores the fact that even if I don't have to pay rent, I pay for groceries, I pay for vacations, and I pay for whatever I buy for myself - so there is no way I can live my life without working. I'm never the one who bring up my "success", because I don't think I'm a successful person, it's always she who keeps asking, "You don't have to work right? You just stay home and doing nothing right? Since your husband pays for everything and provides you with everything." (If you think these are all sincere compliments, than it's my fault then)
This kind of things doesn't start only after we're all grown up and married, it happened long time ago when we were at school. Back then it was she who asked around at school which one of us people thought were more beautiful - if she didn't tell me she did so, I wouldn't know. I knew it because after she "conducted that survey", she came to me and told me so and said the boys didn't think I was pretty. What was her intention do you think? I chose to shrug it off at that time, believing she didn't have bad intention, even though it still was very very weird and that's why I still remember this today.
It's all these things that happen over the years which makes me wonder, why does she do that? Why does she say that?
I really want to know. If you're good at analysing people.
Another post of wine and roses for you, **** and shinola for her. I can't analyze someone who hasn't written anything, I only can go by what YOU post. And my dear, it doesn't bode well in your direction.
Think about it. Why are you harboring a grudge since high school? How many YEARS ago was that? Really, THAT''S the ONLY thing you remember about her, that her survey called you "not pretty"? That's some deep seeded hatred, right there pal.
It is rather surprising you've stayed "friends" for this long if she really is as horrible as you're presenting here. Most people graduate high school, go their separate ways. But you've managed to not only keep contact but even friendly enough to be invited to her wedding plus continue a friendship for six more years after that.
There has got to be something you're getting out of this relationship - it's not just as one sided as you portray,
Surely there are things that I get out of this relationship, and I'm not saying she's all evil, all wrong. I've known all along, from high school, that she doesn't seem to have a filter, and I've been all accepting whenever she said somethings that make me feel bad or uncomfortable for all these years. I've always laughed it off, shrugged it off, believing she doesn't have bad intentions. Other than these, we're having a normal friendship, also one that has lasted for 20 years.
But when her rude/hurtful remarks keeps coming (bringing up I broke my promise in not attending her wedding for 6 years, saying my cat make her clothes dirty when she visited my home, saying my wedding favor is ugly by comparing with her friend's, laughing at my husband's crow's feet and said he's aging much faster than her husband.. etc.), I started to really question why she keeps doing these and is she intentional. When she denied, I apologized for misunderstanding her. But I told her that even though she's not intentional, maybe she can pay attention to some social cues and think about other's feelings before she speaks directly whatever pops in her head, because that really makes people uncomfortable sometimes. But her reaction was telling me to accept that she wouldn't change just to make me feel comfortable. And she got very defensive and aggressive, and that's what reminded me of all those things that happened back from high school, because her reaction now seems to finally give me the answer of why she has been doing/saying all these to me for 20 years - that she seems to hate me from back then.
I see your point. You think this is my one-sided perspective. I can't get her to write here to tell her side of story. I also don't know her side of story. I can only tell you that when she made those remarks to me, sometimes there were other friends who were there and heard what she said, and they also thought it's not appropriate but just no one has ever directly told her that she's rude.
I don't know how you'd feel if your friend endlessly makes rude/weird remarks to you, usually belittling, and when you honestly told her that you felt uncomfortable, all she said was it's her personality and she likes to poke fun at people and she doesn't care if it makes people unhappy.
I don't hold grudge against her, I only want to set boundary, asking her to stop doing that as a friend. Her reaction and accusation against me makes me feel sad, makes me feel like she has hated me all along. That's all.
When I'm good, I'm pretty good good, but don't give me all the credit - at least 98% of those stars come from FreedomEyeLove.