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Wed Mar 26, 2014, 08:17 PM

How do you tell your friends the truth of why you don't visit anymore?

I am lucky to have a lot of dear friends.

Long story short: I have some dear friends 30 minutes away. I love them very much, but the honest truth is, it's always been a one-sided arrangement. They will talk on and on and on about their own issues, but when I open my mouth to speak to these friends, they basically just talk over me, ignore what I'm saying, or answer with a "hmmph" and then continue talking about their own problems as if I've bored them to tears and as if my problems aren't worth their concern.

It has always hurt me, but I've let it slide for over ten years because they do seem to have a lot of problems and drama. Additionally, in ten years, I've always had to visit them. I can count on one hand the times they've visited me. It's been completely one-sided as to visits. I do feel very taken for granted.

Now, I have a lot of other friends who come see me, who love to hear my opinion on things, who are interested in what I have to say and in the issues I'm interested in. My phone rings off the hook. Yesterday I had 28 messages from friends and family wanting advice, wanting to come see me, etc. So I know it's just the particular characteristic of these other friends, and not me. And like I said, I love these often thoughtless friends very, very much.

Lately I haven't been able to drive due to money issues. A large donation to my funding site never made it ( will have it soon ) due to the donor messing up the info ( just some wrong numbers entered ), which has;left me very broke currently and before that for the last few months I've had bald tires and no gas money to visit anyone.

They have called me several times leaving messages wondering where I am and why I am not visiting.

I am afraid to call and explain to them that A ) I bore them to tears, and right now I need some listeners myself and B ) They can drive more easily than I can as they have incomes.

I've been waiting for them to call and say they are coming to visit, as proof they get my silence on the issue, but they just seem confused as to MY not visiting even when they know I have no income.

So, dear ASAHers ( I brought this to this safe group as I trust the judgment of the members here very, very much ) should I just tell them the truth or should I let them continue to chew on it til they figure it out? Should I mention how they shut me down whenever I say anything, or just leave it about the transportation issues? Or should I just accept that my love and concern for them will always be a one-way street - not that they don't love me or help me as they have - as far as visiting or listening?

How should I word things to not hurt their feelings but to make them understand?

I have to go paint and practice music, but will check back later tonite.

Love you all and thanks for the input

11 replies, 1607 views

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Arrow 11 replies Author Time Post
Reply How do you tell your friends the truth of why you don't visit anymore? (Original post)
Tsiyu Mar 2014 OP
Sweet Freedom Mar 2014 #1
Tsiyu Mar 2014 #2
Sweet Freedom Mar 2014 #3
Tsiyu Mar 2014 #4
Sweet Freedom Mar 2014 #6
DeSwiss Mar 2014 #5
Tsiyu Mar 2014 #7
arikara Mar 2014 #8
Tsiyu Mar 2014 #11
icymist Mar 2014 #9
Tsiyu Mar 2014 #10

Response to Tsiyu (Original post)

Wed Mar 26, 2014, 09:22 PM

1. Yes you should speak up

because they appear to be clueless.

You can reiterate that at the moment you do not have the funds to come to them, but more importantly, you've gotten the impression that you have bored them. You've noticed that when you are with them they do not seem interested in hearing how you are, and due to your $$ situation, you really need someone to talk to, so you are concerned that you won't be enjoyable company.

(I suggested you phrase it as your problem because it gives them an opportunity to save face.)

Good luck!

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Response to Sweet Freedom (Reply #1)

Wed Mar 26, 2014, 09:31 PM

2. That seems like a good way to get the message across without seeming like I am attacking them

Should I call them or wait until they call me? I've avoided them because I fear having this conversation, but the way you put it seems a gentle way to bring it up.

I need to keep this page open when I call so I can read your post

Thanks for your response. Now I really DO have to get off of here for a while. I lied!!!! I can't quit you, DU!!!!!

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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #2)

Wed Mar 26, 2014, 10:04 PM

3. I would call them

Then it's on your terms, so you can be prepared and you can get it off your chest!

You'll feel better!

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Response to Sweet Freedom (Reply #3)

Thu Mar 27, 2014, 12:10 AM

4. It has been eating at me

Year before last, I spent $65 bucks and all day cooking for one of the group's birthday dinner. When my birthday came around, crickets from him. Just a Happy Birthday would have been acceptable, to know I was thought of.

So this year, they did call on my birthday and left messages. And I didn't call them back, partly because 3 of my kids came to see me to do repairs so we were really busy and partly because, hell you know where I live, too, dammit!

And I feel guilty about it. You picked up on the need to really get this out, smartie pants you! So I think tomorrow I will call. One of the group did call and say "please call and tell me what I've done!" and I thought "Jayzuss just THINK about it! Are you so dense you don't remember I've come to your house hundreds of times and that I am completely broke right now?" But I hate to be so mean.

So I will take your advice, Sweet Freedom, and call them tomorrow. Thanks for caring.

and there is one person here who has sent me stuff and I never could return the favor, so I'm being a hypocrite in a way, but that should change soon. You know who you are You are loved and appreciated and NEVER boring to me

Thanks again, Sweet Freedom

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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #4)

Thu Mar 27, 2014, 10:04 AM

6. You're welcome

I hope the result is whatever is best for everyone involved.

Come back afterwards and let us know how it went!

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Response to Tsiyu (Original post)

Thu Mar 27, 2014, 09:27 AM

5. Sweet Freedom gives great advice.


Take care.


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Response to DeSwiss (Reply #5)

Fri Mar 28, 2014, 06:46 PM

7. She does and I love that

One of my friends really came through for me today and it has made such a difference. I went from being despondent and losing it to "everything will be okay." "Temporary visitors." I should have thought of that today when I was crying and ranting but better late than never!

I'm afraid to say I have been too chicken to call these friends, although I dreamt about one of the group this week.

I just am not good at whining to them, or feeling like I would be taken seriously.

And I'm wondering if their failure to come see me isn't telling me something: that I care far more for them than the other way around. Given what I've been going through mentally lately with the PTSD, maybe the universe is telling me I have to just let some friends go, and focus on the ones with whom the relationship goes both ways.

But if I were hoping to salvage the friendships to get us back to being close, I would do precisely as Sweet Freedom has suggested!

I will update this if and when I hear from them or decide to call them.

Love you all, now gotta get off DU and work on a painting some more and practice git-fiddle

Stay sweet, DeSwiss and Sweet Freedom and all the awesome DUers!

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Response to Tsiyu (Reply #7)

Sat Mar 29, 2014, 12:11 AM

8. It sounds like its been a one way relationship for a long time

with all the doing and giving on your part. I wouldn't see any fault with you choosing to just ignore them and if they decide to press it tell them why.

But you seem a little nicer than me, I can take stuff for awhile but then I'll have to say something. I'll think I've been very diplomatic, but apparently I have that Scorpio stinger on my tongue.

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Response to arikara (Reply #8)

Sat Mar 29, 2014, 11:45 PM

11. Aw, you are kind arikara

They each can be sensitive, so I try not to hit their pride. I don't think they mean to be clueless; sometimes you get stuck in a rut of your own little world and you don't see what's up outside of that.

I can blurt out my own meanness - or just frustration - too. And I have on one or two occasions. But why have to get to that point at all?

I guess now it seems I don't have the energy....

Have a great rest of the weekend, Friend!

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Response to Tsiyu (Original post)

Sat Mar 29, 2014, 10:09 PM

9. Hi Tsiyu,

It sounds to me from your description above, that you have seem to take on the role of therapist to your friends here. I have a few questions for you: What is the relation of the people here to you? Later in the thread you refer to them as 'the group'. Does the group have a history together? (i.e. artist club? music group? coven?) It seems to me that the members of the group have learned to trust in your listening ability. This is a great part of therapy as applied by a psychologist, and you seem to be experiencing some form of burn-out (stress) from doing this for your loved ones over time. You have a bunch of your own problems and suddenly find yourself with no one available to help out, either physically, mentally, or spiritually. Painting and playing guitar are great stress relievers, but sometimes a little more is necessary such as another who is good at listening to help you. Maybe something as simple as a shoulder to cry on at times. It's not easy to be a Matron to a group. Try explaining to the members of your group that your car is wearing out and can't make it all the way out there as it used to in the past. Gently remind them that you have a cozy couch and a warm cup of tea in your house and that they are welcomed to come over. Most of all, be gentle to yourself and don't forget to allow 'me' time in your schedule. I hope this helps. Bright Blessings and Best Witches, icymist.

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Response to icymist (Reply #9)

Sat Mar 29, 2014, 11:39 PM

10. Thank you for your sweet reply

Yes, I have been sort of the "crone" in the group, the granny if it were.

There is always a lot of drama - relationship, health, etc. - in the group, but they have also helped me many times. I do know I am loved by each and every one. The dream I had the other day, which I won't recount, finally made sense when I thought about it. In essence I missed a very rare, wonderful opportunity and lifelong dream, choosing instead to help one of the group, and then that person took off and left me holding the bag ( in the dream )

It's just that I am exhausted, as you said, of putting others' issues ahead of my own. I have to stop and take care of me. I do have a lot of other friends who are there for me and willing to come to me. They lend an ear. Lend support. And are interested in moving forward and growing as people. I guess with the other "group" there is a sense of not really inviting positive change, but doing the same things expecting a different result. I don't judge but I just don't have the strength to be around it if that makes sense.

There is a lot of good in each and every one; it's just that I have to stop focusing on them and focus on me, as you've so astutely determined. I do a lot of other work around the community, and I have to face my own limitations too. I just don't like the feeling of turning my back on people, but I also don't want to get sucked back into other people's problems when I have enough of my own!

Thanks again and have an awesome weekend. The wind is howling outside, but I have an asparagus ( locally grown ) casserole in the oven and am about to make a tart using this crazy Parisian recipe and some frozen blueberries someone gave me. Insomnia is my very new best friend this week...again

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