|01-10-2008, 03:24 PM||#1 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jan 2008
Ditch an emotionally leeching friend?
Made myself a friend about 5 months ago.
A new transfer to college.
I naturally took on the initiative to show her around school and etc. And
of course we became fast friends. Initially I believed we connected.
I believed her to be independent, loyal, genuine, very well meaning, practical, grounded and focused. Very caring and Fun too. At times almost surreal about how much time she wanted to spend with me. Going to great lengths to establish this fact - driving 2 hours from where she was or whatever.
Lately though, certain facets of her personality have become more apparent to me that disturbs me.
She's overbearing. Very controlling and possesive of my friendship with others. Is very narcissistic and all conversation largely revolves around herself. Apart from this, she seems to constantly believe that she has to keep up a facade of 'being the prettiest girl on the block, who has all the men crawling' (although she is attractive ) - the only thing is, she interprets anything and everything done by the opposite sex as some evidence of them pining for her. Even if it is a casual glance directed our way. And she feels like she has to continuously impress me with this - I couldnt frankly care even if she was butt ugly - that's not why I like her.
I really wouldnt have such a problem with this, except it has become pretty apparent to me that she orchestrates and manipulates situations and rephrases them in her mind to give off this 'most desirable' title. She gives her number away with almost little solicitation. So of course, there will be guys calling you since you gave it away. She also indirectly condescends me and even if I do get any male attention, is quick to step in and annex the conversation(in fact she annexes my conversations with pretty much everybody - by being louder or making sure that her body language is positioned in such a way that she ends up standing in front of me, one way or the other), and then end it with 'did you notice how he was staring at me??'- It's annoying. I feel like the core of our relationship has shifted to an angle that it should never have - and I'm not even aware of how all of this has initiated itself either. She has alienated my other friends. And makes it clear to them that SHE is my bestfriend.
Apart from that, I've noticed she has more male 'friends' than female, in fact I'm the only actual 'female friend' she has. Also she has this need to repetitively remind me I'm her bestfriend and finds every possible means of interjecting it into our conversation? Why does she do it so repetitvely though?
Her behaviour is also very attention seeking, and exaggerates incidents to gain sympathy or any form of attention - that just rubs me the wrong way...
I was in a foul mood a week ago, and not very communicative (largely because of the idiosyncrasies I've been noticing in her personality) and when she asked me about my foul mood, I made it clear that I just didnt feel like talking about it also, I was on the mobile phone when she thought it appropriate to repetitively ask me 'what's wrong?'. So. She reacts with haughtily walking off and with a "W-h-a-t-e-v-e-r." hanging in the air. As though, I had wronged her. The rest of the day, she went to extremes to avoid me. Hence speaking to her about this, makes me feel apprehensive - I dont think she's ready to hear what I have to say.
At this point, I'm confused as to where my loyalties should lie.
I think I shouldn't just abandon this relationship just because of what has just become apparent to me. I think perhaps I should stick it out. I've never felt comfortable being whimsical about ending any relationship.
However, I feel like she treats me secondary in public,I feel like she wants others to consider me secondary to her too... but when we're alone, she cant do with anything but my sole attention directed at her and she feels like I am obligated to let her into every facet of my Life.I have also since become a lot more withdrawn in public...and also more withdrawn from her...I've tried not to be...but now of course, there's a mental block.
Inspite of everything though, I feel like I should hold her close to me and let her know that she is loved. That she doesnt have to feel like she's competing or constantly vying for attention. Least of all from me, she seems to forget that I AM her friend?
I should add she also wants us to become roomies. (I have to move out of my place in 2 months or so anyway) I'm not sure if that's a good idea...
So. What do you think? Should I just be patient?
|01-11-2008, 02:36 AM||#2 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Winnipeg, Manitoba
Perhaps a Break?
It seems like we both don't like giving up on people very easy. You've stuck with your "friend" for months now and seem to want to believe in her with all of your ability. It's a tough situation and I don't know if my suggestion will work but here it is: Perhaps it would be best to take a break from your friend for a few weeks. You have a right to be direct with her and honest about the situation as you perceive it. You could even be blunt and respectful at the same time. After all, who you associate yourself with and give your energy to is generally your business alone. Since your friend seems to like attention, even if it's fake, she will probably get mad at you for a while too if you do this, so you will need to really think taking a break over and what your reasons are; what you hope to accomplish. Here's what you can accomplish by taking a break from your friend: You will have a greater ability to think the overall relationship through and what your options are to positively impact the situation. If your friend keeps dictating how you should spend your energy (ie on her) of course you won't be able to reuse that same energy on thinking. When all is said and done, it may be time to let that person go. One approach I have used in the past when situations come to this point though is to clearly state what is uncomfortable and why to the other person and say that in order to remain friends, you really really would like it if X changes. This puts the decision to keep the relationship or not in the other person's hands so you don't have to directly end it yourself. You are a valuable person and as such you deserve who you will call your friend and what criteria must absolutely be met. Remember, not all interaction with people is healthy. Some interactions have the ability to make you feel like a small and powerless person. If that happens, what good of a friend will you be to others?
|01-18-2008, 11:38 AM||#4 (permalink)|
Join Date: Jan 2008
I once got into a relationship with a girl who acted just like this.
It turned out she had been lying to me a lot, An insane amount. Especially about her "talents", things to cover her ass, and made up tons of stories to make me feel certain ways to manipulate me to do what she wanted.
Through research on the internet I discovered she fit the exact characteristics of a female sociopath. I discussed about her with a psychiatrist and he also agrees that she was a sociopath.
I'm sorry, but I've done a LOT or research because of that weird relationship I can tell you that your friend is a sociopath (aka Psychopath, Anti-social Personality Disorder. (If you don't know, sociopathy is actually quite common and is not really like it is portrayed in movies or pop culture)
Sociopathic qualities you've mentioned:
- Getting into a relationship quickly
- Saying she's your friend all the time
- Always thinking people are admiring her
- Talking about herself all the time
- Trying to get sympathy all the time
- Attention Seeking
- Being Condescending
- Not thinking about other's feelings or what they might want
- Acting nice all the time, but can suddenly turn cold
- Having mostly "friends" of the opposite sex.
(actually just interested in them for sexual purposes)
- Overall very emotionally leeching
"I was on the mobile phone when she thought it appropriate to repetitively ask me 'what's wrong?'. So. She reacts with haughtily walking off and with a "W-h-a-t-e-v-e-r." hanging in the air."
My friend was also inappropriately asking me whats wrong all the time and always inappropriately paranoid about me leaving her.
With sociopaths the part of the brain that allows them to think of other's emotions doesn't work well if at all. (Sociopaths brains have been show to be different with MRI scans). So in this situation she couldn't think "oh she is on the phone" or "maybe she doesn't want to talk about it". Sociopaths always put what they want to know or do above other's because in their mind that's all the exists.
Sociopaths also like to say they are your friend all the time, but as soon as you do something that is against them (even if very small) they become very cold.
Although I feel bad for sociopaths because they are messed up and there is no cure,
my advice is...
GET AWAY NOW!
It will be difficult thought because she will take it in the worst way possible and try to make you feel bad and try to get sympathy (That is if she actually wants to keep the relationship).
I have some questions...
- Does she seem overly obsessed with certain things
(Always saying shes loves this or that all the time)?
- Does she like to talk about her talents/skills or how she likes to get good grades?
- Does she enjoy bashing others, or like to pick out other people's flaws?
- Does she talk a lot about stories of her past that seemed to be used to make you feel certain ways such as to make you feel sympathetic for her, or make you feel bad about something, and make her look good?
- Does she always have an excuse for something she's done wrong (instead of just saying sorry or fessing up)?
- Does she often use manipulative ways to get you to do something instead of just asking you?
(For example my friend constantly said "Oh man, I have to turn out the lights" (before bed) because she knew with would get me to turn out the lights, thought she denied this was her reason for saying it)
Last edited by Zomer Briez; 01-18-2008 at 12:51 PM.
|01-23-2008, 02:09 AM||#5 (permalink)|
Join Date: Feb 2007
Hey there Intrinsicality
I've actually been in a very similar situation to yours.
Your friend sounds a lot like she suffers from a personality disorder, specifically one or more of the cluster B dramatic or emotional disorders. Someone else has suggested antisocial, I would say histrionic but nevertheless, the point is, to put in bluntly, she is not normal.
I don't say this to be cruel but because I suspect you, like me, need to understand how anyone could behave so strangely and are doing mental calisthenics in your head to try and work it out. So my first suggestion to you would be to stop expecting normal behaviour from her and to stop trying to understand her behaviour in light of how a normal person might behave because it is futile exercise. She is not bad nor evil just unfortunate - a lot of personality disorders arise as a result of childhood trauma where the child learns dysfunctional methods of coping. And even more unfortunately, they are very hard to treat.
As for how to deal with it, unfortunately, the best course of action I've discovered so far is to discontinue the friendship with them. If this seems selfish and somehow cruel - I know and it is something I have struggled with too. But quite frankly, the mental toll it took on me to maintain the friendship was not worth it. Also, the longer you remain her friend, the more her behaviour will get to you and you may eventually find yourself despising her - which is not a great outcome either.
If you do want to try and maintain a friendship with her, then it would be best to tone down the intensity. I have another friend who is difficult to put it mildly but as I only see her occasionally, it is actually pretty okay. The other thing you have to do is set and enforce clear boundaries - something which is very hard to do after the fact. A key problem with people like this (as you've discovered) is that they tend to trample across personal boundaries so you have to be very vigilant and quite firm in letting them know when they've done so. You also have to be able to remain relatively detached when they seek attention by getting emotional and dramatic.
Basically, you have to behave very similarly to a mother dealing with a tantrum-throwing five year old, which is probably not a bad analogy considering some say people with personality disorders are those who have not emotionally grown up. Only you can decide if your friendship is worth all the management you will have to do.
Also, please be aware that people with personality disorders generally don't know how to actually genuinely care about other people. Again, I'm saying this so you won't be disappointed when she behave callously towards you at some stage which she probably will.
On a final note, I believe there is a life lesson in everything that happens to us and it might be worth your while to ask yourself why you attracted her into your life in the 1st place. I know I attracted my friend partly because I was scared to 'put myself out there' in terms of trying to make friends and facing the potential rejections - her attention getting ways meant I didn't have to make too much effort. It's something I'm working on now.
Best of luck
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