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I’m having problems with a spinster friend

January 26, 2013 | By | 5 Replies Continue Reading
How do you handle a friend who never supports your relationships with men?

QUESTION

Irene,

My spinster best friend is dragging down my love life! We are very close and talk about everything but I’ve noticed over the years that she is NEVER supportive of my relationships with men.

I don’t date often, so when I do find someone, it’s very special. No matter who the guy is, she has something negative to say about him and about why the relationship will never work out.

Should I downgrade her to a friend that I don’t disclose my love life to? Is that even a best friend anymore?

Best, Kate

ANSWER

Hi Kate,

Ouch! If you are referring to your friend as a spinster, that certainly isn’t a term of endearment. It sounds like you’re at the breaking point with your “best friend” and may have good reasons.

Your friend may feel jealous of your dating men and/or feel threatened that your relationship with a male friend would dilute your relationship with her.

Clearly, it’s reached the point where you need to change something about this friendship. Have you openly discussed your feelings with your friend? Could it be that she lacks insight into the way she is treating you? Since you were once close friends and have a history together, do you think she merits a heart-to-heart conversation before you downgrade her?

If you have given her (and you) this opportunity—or feel that it would be useless to do so—or wouldn’t feel badly about the loss of the friendship at all, there’s no reason why you should continue to consider her a best friend, certainly not one  with whom you can share your love life.

Hope this helps.

Best Irene

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Category: Jealous friends, RESOLVING PROBLEMS

Comments (5)

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  1. Mitsy says:

    As a “single” gal myself, I find the term “spinster” very jaded & old-fashioned; certainly not an endearing term. However, the poster’s friend is not being supportive either. She is likely jealous (and I also know what it’s like to be single with no prospects & be around people who have someone significant). However, there is a balance. Dating someone doesn’t mean you give up your friends, but it also doesn’t mean you have to take negative comments from people who claim to be friends. One of my former closest friends & I are no longer close (still friends but changed) due to her guy. But, it wasn’t the normal type of newness that changes a friendship-it was because he didn’t want her to spend time with friends (me or anyone else). She has been difficult, moody, irritable off/on for the last couple years but just within the last few months, she’s been much better to be around. We still do not do anything social but that’s OK. Her guy is her priority & she doesn’t want to do anything to tick him off. I will assume that the poster’s guy is not like my friend’s guy & he isn’t forbidding her to hang out with her friends at times. Really good dating relationships allow for each person to have or keep their former friendships (at least in some capacity). Really good friends don’t say negative things about their friend’s guy unless she asks advice about the said relationship. I’ve never dissed my friend’s guy but she knows that I know he’s the reason we are not as close. In my case, she has chosen the guy over everyone else (sometimes even her own family) & that is very hard to accept. Otherwise, if the guy is decent, then there’s no reason you can’t be friends with the couple. Jealousy is a hard thing to get past but if you are mature, you must get past it or you will drive away any future friendships.

  2. Cynthia says:

    I had one of those friends in high school and she always had something to say about me and my relationships too. I never did anything the right way. Needless to say we haven’t been friends for years. But to this day she is still single and no children. Sad since she was such an EXPERT.

  3. CS7 says:

    Agree with everyone. Never, ever say spinster again. And the friend does sound jealous or insecure. I wouldn’t consider someone like this a best friend. Best friends are supportive and give positive criticism. You say she has something negative to say about every guy you meet. Sure, everyone has negative qualities and the good should be focused on until real deal breakers come along. Don’t tell her about any more guys you like. Good luck!

  4. jacqueline says:

    Kate,

    I think Irene’s advice is right on. Your friend is afraid she will lose you to a man. She wants you all to herself, which is why she always has something negative to say about any guy you are dating.

    If you value this friendship with her, except for the boyfriend situation, then just don’t talk to her about it. In other words, keep your happiness to yourself. As time goes on, the friendship with her may just well fade itself out.

  5. anonymous says:

    Never refer to someone as a spinster. It is wrong, wrong, wrong.

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