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My Friend Has Taken Over My Life!

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My friend has taken over my life, intertwined herself with all my friends (that I introduced her to), and I don't know what I am going to do. She is driving me crazy!!

woman with annoying friend

Jane from Atlanta writes: Dear Friendship Court, I moved from New Jersey to Atlanta ten years ago. My family (husband and two children) is "established" in a community. We have friends, belong to a church, and we have our routines. A year ago, my friend Kim from New Jersey excitedly announced to me that as a result of visiting us, her family would be moving to Atlanta, to our community and school district, and of course, she asked me if I would help her fit in. Well, I did, and they have lived a quarter mile away from us for three months now and she is driving me crazy!!! She has taken over my life, intertwined herself with all my friends (that I introduced her to), and I do not know what I am going to do. She joined the PTA committees I am on, joined my book club, my tennis league, and enrolled her kids in my kid's summer program. She asks a million questions about where to shop, where to go, etc. She has invaded my space! I want to be a friend, but this is above and beyond the "call of duty," isn't it?

Leslie Adler: Dear Jane: Interesting phrase, "call of duty." Friendship is not supposed to be a job with more obligations than perks. So, I ask you in my role as "Judge," to review the "perks." What do you derive from having Kim in your life? Is this just a rough adjustment period, or is this relationship more burden and "work" than mutually beneficial and fun? If it is the former, then I urge you to grin and bear it and hope that Kim finds her own way in her new setting. If it is the latter, be honest without being mean. A "breakup" would suit no one, as you may have to face her in so many of your day-to-day activities. So be mature and tell her that having her live in Atlanta, in your community, is an adjustment for you as well, and you need to figure out a way to have some space. Good luck.

Ever have a friend invade your space?

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3 comments so far | Post a comment now
redz102013 July 28, 2009, 12:44 PM

Dear Friendship Court, My friend is starting to make herself become a part of my family. She is getting along with my aunts and all very well. Which is fine. But now is already inviting herself to family fuctions. Even before I ask her if she would like to come. Which at times there is no need to have a friend come with you, when you want to spend time with the family. Am I crazy to think this is a little bit too much? And my friend is pushing herself on my family without even caring how I feel?

The Friendship Court July 28, 2009, 10:53 PM

Redz102013: I think it is okay to have some boundaries and to want to separate “friend time” and “family time.” It is all in the communication. Can you find a way to express to your friend that you need some space and time to be with your aunts when she is not around that will not “break up” your friendship? I bet you can!

Monica July 29, 2009, 3:53 AM

I can understand that. I have a friend who automatically thinks that if I am going somewhere that I want her to come along. I live about 80 to 100 miles from my parents and about once a month we go down to visit and stay with them. My parents watch our son and we go on a date or two. Its our time to spend with family or together, alone, on a date night. Last time we went she invited herself to come down so that we could hang out. She’s like ‘hey I am going to come down on Wednesday to come hang with you.’ Fortunately it did not pan out. But I didn’t like the fact that she insisted on coming even when I didn’t invite her. Even though I didn’t have plans it was my time to relax and do nothing. (The older I get the more i just like to be at home.) And knowing that I’m in my hometown I just might find something to do that I just don’t particularly want to do with that friend. (And I did.) She tried to come down another day but I told her I had plans with my mother. She tried to come down that next Monday and I told her that we were planning on leaving which was partly true and untrue. I ended up spending that day with my husband. My friend has a very overwhelming personality (bipolar) and so I can only take her in doses. To be honest when I go visit my parents its like me taking a vacation from her. I understand her issues being bipolar because I have a number of friends and coworkers who are bipolar. But, my husband is starting to see it too. He asked me why does she thinks she can invite herself everywhere we go. I saw it already but when my husband mentions it then its a problem. I told her about some plans that I was thinking of making for us to take a family trip and she says well maybe we can go with you. We took our son for a day out and she like how come you didn’t call me. I don’t want to make her feel bad but our family is close. We really enjoy our own little threesome. Every time we plan something as a family doesn’t mean that I want her to come too. I don’t know Friendship Court, I might need to write a letter to you on this. This relationship is complicated. There are so many issues that I am having with this friend. This is just one of them. I actually contemplated dropping her as a friend even though at times I do enjoy hanging with her. Sometimes I feel that the relationship isn’t mutually beneficial and fun.

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