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Topic : Ending Toxic Friendships

Number of Replies: 486
New Messages This Week: 0
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Created on : Thursday, July 07, 2005, 09:20:14 am
Author : dataimport
It can be hard to extricate yourself from a friendship gone bad. Share your stories and strategies for handling this sticky situation.

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September 21, 2005, 8:29 pm CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

Quote From: farmerchik

I have been reading all the ordeals with toxic friendships and I decided to post my own message regarding mine in hopes of some advice.   

    

I have been seeing this man for over a year and we dated in high school some 30plus years ago.  When we first decided to date, he told me he had a girlfriend but he wasn't happy because she's loud, obnoxious and rude most of the time and was an embarrassment.   

    

He and I have a great relationship.  We have so much in common and really enjoy eachother's company.  The only wrong thing is this "friend" of his.  She won't let go.  As a matter of fact, her exact words were, "I don't care who he's with, I will always be a part of his life.  I'm never going away."  At first, I thought, "oh, ok."  But she wasn't kidding.  It's a classic example of she doesn't want him but she doesn't want him to have anyone else.  

    

She calls him everyday at least once or twice.  She used to call him while we were out together.  (he finally got her to stop doing that.)  My problem is him, I think.  He made it very clear to me that he will not tell her to get lost.  He says he loves me and can't imagine his life without me in it but yet he continues to hold onto this woman.  I know there's nothing romantically happening on his part but I don't know what she's up to.  I don't like her and I don't trust her but believe me, I've tried everything.   

    

He doesn't understand where I'm coming from and I don't understand his reasoning so where do I go from here????   

    

Frustrated in Ohio   

Farmerchik, 

  

The first step here is to acknowledge that you and he do not have a great relationship. If you did, there would be a lot more respect flowing from him to you in terms of dumping the "other woman." Make no mistake, she is the other woman regardless of whether he is doing anything physical with her. If nothing else, there's an unhealthy emotional relationship going on. 

  

You ask "Where do I go from here?" The answer is that you go forward either with him or alone. Those are the only options. If he refuses to get rid of her and it bothers you, then you need to get rid of him. If you don't want to get rid of him, you're going to have to live with his disrespect. 


Remember - you teach people how to treat you. You've taught him that it's ok for him to keep this woman in his life. If that's ok with you, so be it. Quit complaining. If it's not ok with you, you have to be willing to walk away from him. 

  

Best of luck. 

 
September 28, 2005, 7:17 am CDT

WHAT TO DO

I HAVE THIS FRIEND THAT I'VE ONLY KNOWN FOR 6 MONTHS. WE'VE GONE TO MOVIES AND HAD LUNCHES & DINNERS TOGETHER. LATELY SHE HAS BEEN STAND OFFISH. SHE DOESN'T RETURN PHONE CALLS, IF WE TALK IT'S MOSTLY ME THAT CALLS, SHE DOESN'T REPLY TO E-MAILS. I DON'T WANT TO END THE FRIENDSHIP, BECAUSE I KNOW SHE'S GOING THROUGH A REAL STRESSFULL TIME HERSELF. DO I HAVE TOXIC FRIENDSHIP OR AM I MAKING ABIG DEAL OUT OF NOTHING. WHAT DO I DO?
 
September 28, 2005, 9:20 am CDT

Be honest with her

Quote From: theta1

I HAVE THIS FRIEND THAT I'VE ONLY KNOWN FOR 6 MONTHS. WE'VE GONE TO MOVIES AND HAD LUNCHES & DINNERS TOGETHER. LATELY SHE HAS BEEN STAND OFFISH. SHE DOESN'T RETURN PHONE CALLS, IF WE TALK IT'S MOSTLY ME THAT CALLS, SHE DOESN'T REPLY TO E-MAILS. I DON'T WANT TO END THE FRIENDSHIP, BECAUSE I KNOW SHE'S GOING THROUGH A REAL STRESSFULL TIME HERSELF. DO I HAVE TOXIC FRIENDSHIP OR AM I MAKING ABIG DEAL OUT OF NOTHING. WHAT DO I DO?
 Call up your friend and level with her in a kind way. I don't know what kind of stress she's under, but you can start out by saying that you miss the friendship although you understand she's stressed. Is there anything you can do? Listen carefully to her reply. If it sounds like she's grateful for the concern, I would give her the space she needs to get through whatever it is. Or she may take you up on your offer of help or advice. If you feel she's giving you a brush-off, ask her if she doesn't want to be friends anymore. But listen carefully to the replies, sometimes others don't know how to break things off and will drag it out. Or, they don't know how to ask for support in times of stress. For your part, being honest and up front will give them the opportunity to do the same. And you won't sit around wondering and assuming.
 
September 28, 2005, 11:26 am CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

Quote From: ritehere

 Call up your friend and level with her in a kind way. I don't know what kind of stress she's under, but you can start out by saying that you miss the friendship although you understand she's stressed. Is there anything you can do? Listen carefully to her reply. If it sounds like she's grateful for the concern, I would give her the space she needs to get through whatever it is. Or she may take you up on your offer of help or advice. If you feel she's giving you a brush-off, ask her if she doesn't want to be friends anymore. But listen carefully to the replies, sometimes others don't know how to break things off and will drag it out. Or, they don't know how to ask for support in times of stress. For your part, being honest and up front will give them the opportunity to do the same. And you won't sit around wondering and assuming.
I'VE ALREADY TALKED TO HER ABOUT THE SITUATION , AND SHE TELLS ME THAT WE ARE STILL FRIENDS. I'VE ASKED IF I HAVE DONE ANYTHING TO MAKE HER MAD, AND SHE TELLS ME NO AND GETS DEFENSIVIVE TELLING ME  I HAVE AN ISSUE WITH BEING TO NEEDY. SHE SAYS SHE DOESN'T LIKE HAVING TO RE-ASSURE ME AND THAT I SHOULD TRUST THAT SHE IS MY FRIEND.  I DON'T WANT TO BE AGRESSIVE OR PUSHY. SHE'S  A GOOD PERSON AND FUN TO HANG OUT WITH. I KNOW SHE'S HAD BAD RELATIONSHIPS IN THE PAST, AND I THINK BECAUSE I'M A GUY SHE DOESN'T REALLY TRUST ME YET. I'VE TOLD HER THAT I HAVE NO INTIMATE FEELINGS AND ONLY WANT TO BE HER FRIEND, BUT I DON'T THINK SHE REALLY BELIEVES ME. I ALSO KNOW SHE DOESN'T LIKE FOR PEOPLE TO "INVADE HER PERSONAL SPACE", AND I'VE MADE THE MISTAKE OF GIVING HER A FRIENDLY HUG EVERY ONCE IN AWHILE, AND SHE HAS RE-AFFIRMED ME THAT SHE "DOESN'T LIKE TO BE TOUCHED". HAVE I CROSSED A BOUNDRY WITH NO CHANCE OF RETURNING TO A NORMAL FRIENDSHIP? IS THERE HOPE THAT SHE'LL FULLY TRUST ME?
 
September 28, 2005, 5:41 pm CDT

The ball's in her court.

Quote From: theta1

I'VE ALREADY TALKED TO HER ABOUT THE SITUATION , AND SHE TELLS ME THAT WE ARE STILL FRIENDS. I'VE ASKED IF I HAVE DONE ANYTHING TO MAKE HER MAD, AND SHE TELLS ME NO AND GETS DEFENSIVIVE TELLING ME  I HAVE AN ISSUE WITH BEING TO NEEDY. SHE SAYS SHE DOESN'T LIKE HAVING TO RE-ASSURE ME AND THAT I SHOULD TRUST THAT SHE IS MY FRIEND.  I DON'T WANT TO BE AGRESSIVE OR PUSHY. SHE'S  A GOOD PERSON AND FUN TO HANG OUT WITH. I KNOW SHE'S HAD BAD RELATIONSHIPS IN THE PAST, AND I THINK BECAUSE I'M A GUY SHE DOESN'T REALLY TRUST ME YET. I'VE TOLD HER THAT I HAVE NO INTIMATE FEELINGS AND ONLY WANT TO BE HER FRIEND, BUT I DON'T THINK SHE REALLY BELIEVES ME. I ALSO KNOW SHE DOESN'T LIKE FOR PEOPLE TO "INVADE HER PERSONAL SPACE", AND I'VE MADE THE MISTAKE OF GIVING HER A FRIENDLY HUG EVERY ONCE IN AWHILE, AND SHE HAS RE-AFFIRMED ME THAT SHE "DOESN'T LIKE TO BE TOUCHED". HAVE I CROSSED A BOUNDRY WITH NO CHANCE OF RETURNING TO A NORMAL FRIENDSHIP? IS THERE HOPE THAT SHE'LL FULLY TRUST ME?
 All you can really do at this point is to give her her space. You may have hit the nail on the head when you said she may not trust that you don't have an ulterior motive because she's had bad relationships in the past. Let it rest for now, that may be exactly what she needs, and if  you give her that she will value you for it.
 
September 29, 2005, 3:36 am CDT

HAVE A BETTER VEIW NOW

Quote From: ritehere

 All you can really do at this point is to give her her space. You may have hit the nail on the head when you said she may not trust that you don't have an ulterior motive because she's had bad relationships in the past. Let it rest for now, that may be exactly what she needs, and if  you give her that she will value you for it.
THANK YOU, I REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR OPINION. ALL I  NEEDED WAS AN UNBIASED POINT OF VEIW. I'M  VERY HOPEFUL NOW.
 
October 6, 2005, 6:56 am CDT

ending toxic relationships

Quote From: shelleyn05

Farmerchik, 

  

The first step here is to acknowledge that you and he do not have a great relationship. If you did, there would be a lot more respect flowing from him to you in terms of dumping the "other woman." Make no mistake, she is the other woman regardless of whether he is doing anything physical with her. If nothing else, there's an unhealthy emotional relationship going on. 

  

You ask "Where do I go from here?" The answer is that you go forward either with him or alone. Those are the only options. If he refuses to get rid of her and it bothers you, then you need to get rid of him. If you don't want to get rid of him, you're going to have to live with his disrespect. 


Remember - you teach people how to treat you. You've taught him that it's ok for him to keep this woman in his life. If that's ok with you, so be it. Quit complaining. If it's not ok with you, you have to be willing to walk away from him. 

  

Best of luck. 

Hi, 

  Thank you for replying to my message.  Actually, you said to me exactly what I've been thinking but I felt that maybe I was wrong.  I need to learn to follow my gut instinct instead of my heart sometimes. 

  

   We had another discussion last night but again, I don't think it went anywhere.  I guess I'm going to have to take control of the situation and do like you said, move on with or without him. 

  

   All I want in life is to be happy and so far, that's the only thing I haven't been. 

  

Sincerely, 

  

Farmerchik 

 
October 6, 2005, 7:41 pm CDT

Ending Toxic Friendships

Quote From: farmerchik

Hi, 

  Thank you for replying to my message.  Actually, you said to me exactly what I've been thinking but I felt that maybe I was wrong.  I need to learn to follow my gut instinct instead of my heart sometimes. 

  

   We had another discussion last night but again, I don't think it went anywhere.  I guess I'm going to have to take control of the situation and do like you said, move on with or without him. 

  

   All I want in life is to be happy and so far, that's the only thing I haven't been. 

  

Sincerely, 

  

Farmerchik 

Farmerchik, 

  

You can be happy in this life. It's about the choices you make and what you're willing to accept in this life. Your boyfriend keeps the "other woman" simply because he can. If this bothers you, you have to be willing to walk away.  

  

You deserve to have all the emotional energy your boyfriend has to give. You deserve not to compete with someone else for his affections. If you are unhappy with this behavior and he's unwilling to negotiate a solution you can both be excited about, then it's time for you to walk. There's only so much you can do. If you let this continue, you will never be happy. 

 
October 11, 2005, 6:39 am CDT

What to do

my close friend of a year and a half recently was told by her family that our friendship was unacceptable because I was too needy and manipulative.  Both of which are not true.  I have been very helpful to her many times with family relationship issues.  But now because of this "announcement" by her family, she has to talk to me and see me on the sly.  This hurts me and her.  But more and more she accepts this and is rude to me when I question her about the situation.  She also has become very close with another old friend, but insists that she and i are still best friends. This has really upset me, but she is very busy and doesn't seem to want to change the situation anytime soon.  How could we have been so close and all of a sudden, I am "thrown over" for somebody else?  Should I give up on this?
 
October 13, 2005, 8:11 am CDT

Take care of yourself

Quote From: abraham

my close friend of a year and a half recently was told by her family that our friendship was unacceptable because I was too needy and manipulative.  Both of which are not true.  I have been very helpful to her many times with family relationship issues.  But now because of this "announcement" by her family, she has to talk to me and see me on the sly.  This hurts me and her.  But more and more she accepts this and is rude to me when I question her about the situation.  She also has become very close with another old friend, but insists that she and i are still best friends. This has really upset me, but she is very busy and doesn't seem to want to change the situation anytime soon.  How could we have been so close and all of a sudden, I am "thrown over" for somebody else?  Should I give up on this?

I have a feeling that you are putting a lot into this friendship and that this recent issue is probably draining you of much energy.  

  

How does her family know so much about your friendship? They are forming an opinion of you from whatever she is communicating to them about you. 

  

You should take some time and focus on yourself, take a class alone...this time of year colleges offer seminars in a lot of cool stuff like water painting and pottery, beginner photography... join a gym or a yoga class...you will meet other people and feel much better.  

  

Good Luck. 

  

Kristen 

 
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