What About Your Friends

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Dear Dharma,

I’m at my wits end! I have a friend who always ditches me at the VERY last minute! I’ll be dressed up, ready to paint the town red and end up painting it mauve because she bails.

I have taken some of your advice that I think might translate to my situation. I’ve tried to have a conversation with her about it, but she tells me that I’m just being “uptight” and “life happens”. What can I say to that?

Uptight and Unrealistic (Apparently)

Dear Uptight,

I love this.  I love how the problem here, by your friend’s definition, is your reaction to the problem, and not the problem itself – which is her crappy behaviour.

Ditching people in general, let alone at the last minute, is disrespectful.  Full stop.

You’ve told your “friend” her behaviour bothers you.  She dismissed you.  Instead, she called you “uptight” and basically told you when something better comes along (oh sorry, when “life happens”), you’re always going to be the one left in the dust.

Now where oh where do you think Dharma is going to go with this.

Change the things you can.

We already know we can’t change the behaviour of other people, only how we react and respond, right? She’s not going to change anything; she has straight up told you that. So the good news is that where this goes from here is entirely in your court.  How great is that!

The first thing Dharma would recommend is that you drop the expectation level.  As in, stop expecting this friend to treat you well.  She’s not going to.  And why should she? After all, it’s you and your lofty notions of how friends should be accountable and reliable, respectful and kind that are the problem here, right?

Next step is to decide where a friendship with these new parameters fits into your life, if at all, and then handle accordingly.

Maybe you don’t make plans with just her anymore, maybe only in groups.  That way, if (when) she ditches, you’ve still got the rest of the team to take on the world with.

Or maybe you just don’t make plans with her anymore.

Look, it’s never easy deciding to cut or limit a friendship, no matter what the circumstances…  But playing victim to her thoughtless ways doesn’t sound like my idea of a good time. In absence of her suddenly deciding to give a crap about how you feel, it’s going to be up to you to determine how this moves forward.

Life is short. Spend it with people who care about how they make you feel.

Dharma

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Do you agree with Dharma, or think she missed the mark on this one? Leave a Comment

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