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Needy friends: A friend indeed?

February 13, 2008 | By | 668 Replies Continue Reading

Do you have needy friends? There are some friends who feel like an emotional ball and chain. They’re always in need of one thing or another: money, favors, help, coddling, praise—or simply more time than you have to give.

Like a wailing toddler, they can be so demanding that their friendship tires you and weighs you down. Who needs that kind of friend? Many women do.

  • People who like feeling needed—or once liked the feeling (even if they don’t anymore)
  • People who feel like they aren’t worthy of healthier, more balanced relationships
  • People who are stuck—either feeling angry or sorry for their needy friend—and feel unable to get out of it

But if you have begun to recognize that a female friendship is a drag, you’ve taken the first step in relieving yourself of the burden.

HOW-TO UNLOAD:

  • Change the nature of your friendship by learning to say “no” and setting boundaries (e.g. “Even though we are both single, I don’t want to spend every Friday night together.”)
  • Tell her that you have to tend to your own needs (or those of anyone else you can think of)
  • Slip away – Spend less time with her and add other less demanding friends to your inventory
  • Take a relationship sabbatical or hiatus from the friendship (you deserve it!)
  • If it’s that bad, simply cut loose!

Remember, the term toxic friendships refers to relationships that are consistently negative and draining. It is the pattern, not the one-time or occasional lapses in the balance of needing that occurs between good friends. If your truly needy friend has been that way for some time, the real possibilities of changing the relationship verge on hopeless.

These are people whose needs can never be satiated. No matter what you give, what you do, how much, or how often, it will never be enough. Since character tends to endure, this person probably treats other people the same way she treats you. It’s likely that many of her friends have probably already dropped out of the picture and that’s why she is so dependent on you.

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Category: Needy friends

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  1. Kirsty Marie says:

    Hi,
    i need some advice i have a friend i have been friends with for over ten years this is the 2nd time we have fallen out and haven’t spoke for almost 8 months which i have found really hard.
    last night my friend text my sister and said i wish your sister would stop being so needy!!! I miss her as a friend, but she is sooooo to much!
    Now I didnt understand why we fell out now I do.
    How can I make this friendship work again?
    Do u think we have a chance of making up?
    Sometimes i do come across needy but i am a very caring person but maybe i need to be more of a no person, what do u think?
    Its my friends bday next week and i would like to send her a gift and card or do i just send a card and leave it there?
    Hoping u can give me some advice.
    I hate knowing im so needy,i did have a bad past and maybe thats the problem, i wasn’t close with my mum maybe i look at my friends more like family than friends? How do i stop that any tips?
    Thanks Kirsty x

    • Kirsty says:

      Can someone give me some advice if possible plz

      Thanks Kirsty

    • Ann says:

      Kristy,

      I think you need to give your friend some space, when a friend starts backing off being friends with you, because you can be too needy or clingy then you could lose the friendship. I think you really care about her, but you need to care about yourself, give her some space to miss you, as hard as it is, don’t call, text, or show up at her house. You have to make her miss you. I would only send her a card no gift. If she comes around before then get her something small it’s the thought that counts, some friends only come around and act nice when it’s their Birthday to get things, and then go back to being standoffish, and cold to you. Don’t fall into that. Just try to keep yourself busy, go out with other friends, make new friends. Trust me I have been there, and there will always be new friends. I had a best friend of many years drop me, after I gave her so much time, and not only that but so many gifts over the years, and i got little in return. You can’t buy someone’s friendship, no matter how much you love them, some friends will never give you back what you give them, no matter what you do. Friendship is a two way street, and you have to get back what you put into the friendship, you shouldn’t feel used, and that’s exactly how I felt. I should have dropped the friendship, but I had so many good memories, I couldn’t imagine her not in my life, but she took herself out of my life, and I didn’t have a say. Friends can drop you for no reason, and you never do find out the reason. You found out the reason so work with that, back off, let her miss you, and maybe she will come around, but don’t put all your apples in one basket, make new friends, and know that you deserve friendships that care about you, friendship should just flow, people care, and if they don’t there are more friends out there trust me. I hope you and your friend can work things out, but remember if she misses you she will notice that you are gone, but if she doesn’t then you know she just doesn’t care, and you shouldn’t want a friend like that.

      • Laura says:

        “Like”

      • Kirsty says:

        Hi Ann,
        Thank you so much for your advice. I think u are right my friend been though a lot these last couple of years she lost her mum and I just wanted to be there as a friend, I really feel for her not having a mum around it must be so hard so I just wanted to support where I could I never meant to get to needy I’m not like that. I am one of the most caring people you could meet.
        Me and my friend have gone though so much in the past I look on her like she is my best friend plus she knows so much about me too!
        For her birthday I made her a personal picture and it’s got her mum in it too thought would be nice to keep her memory alive uknw?
        I hate the fact I come across needy how can I not be if we do make up?
        Any tips would be great? I think I just care too much that’s my problem x

        • Ann says:

          Hi Kristy

          You are welcome, I hope that you & your friend work things out, true friends go through rough patches, and they still get through it all. Your friend lost her mum, so she is dealing with a lot of emotions, you just have to give her space, and let her know you care, and when she is ready to talk you will be there. I wouldn’t take it personal, she is dealing with a lot of feelings, as anyone would losing a parent. She will come around I’m sure. Just be there when she needs you, and give her space when she needs it. That was a very thoughtful gift, I’m sure she will love it, the best gift you could have given her. When friends go through hard times, it’s hard not being there, but just take comfort it sounds like it’s just her trying to get through the death of her mum, and she needs some space to grieve. Take care, and keep us up-dated. All the best!

  2. ruby says:

    So I’m very very confused I don’t know what to do maybe I’m the needy friend maybe I’m not a goodfriend… so me A.B have been friends for five years now shes like the best but we used to talk about everything so much to talk about all the time I cared about like my sister I know her problems she has and she has self-esteem low most of time she used to very negative about her self and I tell no you can do it Your smart and she is pretty. I used to to each others houses a lot my family likes her like part of our family I would be there when she really needs someone though I felt hopeless cause I couldn’t change her mind and when she got sick badly I went to the hospital and some other times she got sick I would go to her house just to get her moving cause knewshe would stay inside and that wouldn’t help or make more depressed yeah but yeah once she told something sad and again I was there to help her not that she needed me but I isn’t it want best friends are there for? Maybe I did to much well don’t get me wrong she also has done stuff for me we gone to clubs had fun since we are 17 both in her 15 birthday day I made her a big party at my house since her family really don’t care but I still told them and her mom brought the cake but one yeah it was awesome before I even risked having a cat for her since she said she always wanted a black cat so I did because she always alone at her house her mom lives with her boyfriend her older sister and brother are pretty mestup to her but everything went down my mom took the cat to her house but she end actually taking care of it at first…. then she got this stranger boyfriend that she said she wouldnt fall for him hard cause she new how guys were but then I had evidence he cheated on her since again I care about her so I told her and wow did I not espect this but she still thinks it’s all part of a movie see who’s better… (meaning fake) that jerk got to change her she lisend though I try to not judge but hopeless I do anyway maybe that’s what she needed a boyfriend to love her deep though again she was sick and I went and tryed to cheer her up and she tecringe the guy that she need him and I felt like that plastic bag that couldn’t do anything now when I talked about what was going on she put her head phones and say I’m sorry ruby I just don’t know what to say… I would be speechless like I wouldn’t care just a huge that someone there for me would be nice and she now dosent hang much I don’t care if we at least hang once a week and the rest u can be with your boyfriend cause I know it makes you happy… the kitten died a week ago I felt like crap cause I should have just token it to the vet I do think she ever needed a pet but since now her boyfriend her life for me I believed that was a sign that friendships don’t last and though me and her always talked about having boyfriends but I didn’t image it would be like this… maybe I espect to much she not that type of communicating best friend or I did to much or I’m the needy friend maybe I should make my life whitch I do.. but…

    • Kelly says:

      Ruby,

      I know it’s hard when a good friend gets a boyfriend and all of a sudden they are busy with their boyfriend all the time. It has happened to me and I didn’t have the time I used to to hang out with friends. Being in love makes people a little nutty anyway and it can be all encompassing. I wouldn’t throw the relationship away but just hand back and after a while when the infatuation wears off she will have time to talk again. They may even break up? If you don’t let go right now there won’t be any relationship left to go back to. Just try and put yourself in her place and cut her some slack. It isn’t like she just dumped you but fell in love. Stop taking it so personally and find some new friends. Life is funny sometimes and if you are true friends you will always be friends but maybe she needs space right now for her guy. I hope you understand where I am coming from and that I am hoping you don’t wreck the friendship. Be happy for her that she found someone and it is a game changer. Work on finding some new friends. I bet she will call when the honeymoon stage is over. One other thing. If she does call don’t talk negative about her boyfriend because it will backfire on you. She may tell him what you said and he will not like you. Just keep it light and if you are truely good friends you always will be. It’s normal to miss a friend when they get in a relationship but that is life and don’t take it personally. Good Luck.

  3. Nick says:

    I just had a fallout that has scarred me, but has made me want to change. Met a friend, and I lost my judgment due to my anxious-preoccupied personality. I truly did love her because she motivated me enough for me to change my ways as she was my opposite. I reached a point in my life where I was recpetive to change. Ironically we shared similar backgrounds, and knew she was special because it was time to grow. Long story short, I scared her off because I was afraid to lose her. Rather than give her the space she needed, and ACTUALLY listen to what she said, I felt led on and over invested my heart and trust. I thought she would trust me more, I was wrong. She wanted time. She showed signs of being a commitment phobe. We are both at fault, but I will never know as emotions were not her strong suit. The only way to really live is to forgive and love yourself. You’re self-confidence will thank you. Your inner beauty will radiate. Your charisma will flow into your life. Find people to rely on. Gather strength to control your emotions. The love we possess is not entirely wrong, it’s just unfocused and impulsive. We cannot force it. Otherwise we repeat the cycle. It was thanks to her presence and decision that I now find help and actually value my self even more. I miss you AD. Patience and support. Truly the only way to clearly see anything and not make the same mistake again. I deserve to be happy, so do all of us “needy” people. I refuse to be toxic, but I do have needs. We have to stick together, with the RIGHT people.

    • Buddy says:

      Wow. Are you telling my story, Nick? Are you my (ex) friend? I feel like I could be A.D. however my needy former friend is so angry with me. Our friendship ended yesterday. My dear friend became so anxiously needy and smothering that I had to be painfully honest and request some serious boundaries so I could be happy. It changed the dynamic if our friendship, and it didn’t survive.

      She did not want to honor the boundaries I asked for is my best guess, she just couldn’t do it, or it angered her. Either way, she sent me an email saying she doesn’t want to be friends anymore. I’m sad. I feel that if I give and give and give to her until I’m drained and unhappy, but stop and request her to honor my needs (space and boundaries) she cannot do it; it’s too much to ask. That is not a friendship I want in my life.

      At the end of the day, it really comes down to this: any relationship is about wanting someone in your life, not needing to. Need is not really love, it’s emotional hunger.

      Nick, I hope my friend does what you’re doing… Taking something positive and learning from all this. I know I am.

      RIP Our Friendship
      Many moons ago – March 2015

      • Nick says:

        Yeah. You’re definitely AD [figuratively], and that’s okay.

        Boundries are extremely important. You did the right thing. My definition of friendship WAS NOT THE SAME as AD’s definition of friendship. We are different people after all.

        You and your former friend just happen to have different interpretations of expression. Unless compromise isn’t met…it will never work. I COMMEND YOU on giving this a chance.

        I never gave up on AD, but she gave up on me. I’m okay with respecting her decision. I lost one person, but found 10 more in return, with myself in the process. Life can certainly be a trade-off. It’s really all about being rational AND emotional at the SAME time.

        Actions speak louder than words.

        It’s ironic….I became a better man and can admit to my mistakes….shame she never admitted the very misatakes she said she made to me. It’s not criticism, but a PLAIN MISUNDERSTANDING. She didn’t want that “type” of friendship, after all, its’ a two way street. So in the end – WE WERE BOTH WRONG.

        She lost out on a beautiful friend in me, but then again – maybe I did too..??

        I’m sooo complete now. It sounds like you are too Buddy. You were OBJECTIVE and HONEST, may that be returned to you as well.

        People change, I did – maybe your friend may too. We never know. As long as we can forgive ourself for our mistakes, and the mistakes of others….friendships may once again thrive. I know that all too well.

        PS – AD, I wish you the best. My initials are EC [I would laugh sooo much if you actually were AD, but its not possible because I’m a guy and I haven’t e-mailed anything – including my good-bye appreciation letter…life would be so much greater as a team haha!]

        • Buddy says:

          Thanks for your words, Nick. I feel that I did the right thing by being honest and standing up for my boundaries, but I have to admit I’m sad it turned out this way. It made me question if my friend ever really had a clear concept of who I was — or was I just a big, blank screen for her to project all her expectations on? Did he have a feel for who I really was, what made me tick… or did she see me as just a provider of things that made her happy? Did her neediness make her myopic, did she really, truly appreciate me? I can’t help but feel all the latter is true, because once I asserted my boundaries everything came crashing down.

          I felt like I was hoisted up on a pedestal, our friendship idealized (“you’re my soulmate, my sister!”)… and then when I voiced my need for space — reality threw me down to earth, but somewhere below in that her eyes and now I’m a terrible person who pushed her away. She’s the victim and I’m the villian.

          Wow… reading back on this, I’m realizing that maybe this was a blessing in disguise.

          Nick, it sounds like you grew leaps and bounds from where you once were. I think our culture emphasizes attachment and external validation as good things — when most of the time, they’re pathways to emotional pain and vicious cycles. I think if we all learn to love with the very least amount of attachment, then we can truly appreciate ourselves and the ones we love. We’ll be seeing them for who they are, not what they can provide us. Just a thought.

          • Nick says:

            Pedestals. People who have been truly hurt have tendency to do this. I thought about your post.

            You’re right. The relationship can feel one sided for both parties. The more fragile person usually needs a stronger friend because they possess and teach them something they lack.

            It’s sad for me as well. I was just starting to appreciate AD for the good and bad in her. Unfortunately she could not hold on. She wanted a basic friendship, but the deep friendship I was starting to CLEARLY develop not out of smothering, but out of appreciating her INDIVIDUALITY and my being unique proved too much.

            I accidentally didn’t text her, so she assumed I ignored her. So in return she validated her actions of ignoring me in kind. All I was asking for was a simple answer because I can’t read minds.

            Whoa. It makes sense now. Of course I’m guilty for my mistakes, but looking back…things ACTUALLY could HAVE WORKED out. Who knows….Can’t say I left things at “What If?”…Shout out to dumb-butt.

            Two weeks later, the roles were reversed. Someone from my past appeared, and long story short…apologized to me for something akin to what I had done to AD. I let go of this person in the past because he was a mess. I helped him with what I could, but he never changed. Never in my wildest imagination did I anticipate that I would leave an imprint in his heart to change. I was the only one who never gave up on him, and he saw what he lost, and here we are.

            We’re not friends at the moment, but I keep my door open to help him at a distance because his actions speak in volumes. I don’t stick around out of pity or regret. Everyone needs support, and we pay it forward in kind from the lessons we have learned.

            Every person who has invested their time and have STUCK around notice the CHANGE in me, and their investment has paid dividends for both parties.

            Attachment isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s the degree that it manifests itself as that becomes problematic. People leave imprints in your heart, mind and soul that allows you to connect to them. If you can rely on a person when life is hard, then why not? Once you can detach from the person whether they are there or not, then attachment isn’t an issue now is it? Connecting is not attaching.

            Validation. Emotional pain comes in all forms. It’s inevitable. People who look for validation need a purpose or do not want to screw things up. Confirmation is what they seek to be honest. They just want to be appreciated, but of course the cycle continues because something deeper maybe holding them back from appreciating what is right in front of them.

            Blessing in disguise – I agree. [It does make me wonder if we could work things out now – Just a thought [Literally] ]

    • Daniel says:

      I am a 29 year old guy from new orleans, I met the most beautiful with an out going personality. We went on a few dates and later had sex. I fail so deeply in love with her, like AD she had commitment phobia but later gained the confidence after seeing that I was genuine and honest. She finally told me that she was in love with me but I was so afraid of letting her feel loved I stayed silent so that at least I had her were I wanted. damn right? We stayed together from 2007 till 10, I never popped the question to marry her neither did I go out of my way to do the wonderful things she always did for me cause like you I had a preoccupied personality and all the attention from girls made me feel special. Long story short she broke up with me saying she didn’t feel we were going anywhere, out of anger I blocked her off. I still wonder why I let an amazing woman who understood me and cared so much about me go whilst I watched her cry and leave our apartment, I mean should I have told her I loved her? that she was beautiful? that I never pictured a future without her, till now this whole thing just fucks me up. I saw her Facebook picture she’s engaged and am dying inside. Please tell me how you moved passed this, I have forgiven myself. But how do I ever find an amazing girl like that I have dated a few but I still find myself wanting this girl. you are right I need to forgive myself and I need to be hopeful, is there hope really?

      • Nick says:

        Hey Daniel – For starters – A High Five for Admitting How You feel.

        There is hope sir.

        I can only offer you my sympathies because the manner in which you lost this person is the opposite of mine. That being said: I am going to be objective here. I lost my friendship due to opening up TOO FAST AND WANTING MORE [ANXIOUS-PREOCCUPIED] you write that you WERE AFRAID OF OPENING UP…so the issue to address is quite the opposite..perhaps [ANXIOUS-AVOIDANT] and this is not the right forum.

        I didn’t let the relationship grow [aka – smothered] , and given your statement [you DIDN’T GIVE enough] you let it stagate and your partner felt unreciprocated.

        I can only point out some examples in your case that opened my eyes when I lost AD. You and I are two different people.

        I’m just going to be perfectly blunt. Part of admitting a mistake, is facing it, and owning up to it. Do not feel attacked by what I state, our own two eyes will never see all perspectives if we don’t find another.

        You had the opportunity I wish I had with AD, and again – let that be a lesson. You took her for granted. What I can say with certainty FROM WHAT YOU WRITE: this woman I admire because she GREW to KNOW WHAT SHE WANTED by SLOWLY and SURELY opening up to you. A poster child of how we should neither RUSH or WAIT too long in a HEALTHY relationship.

        NOBODY IS PERFECT – WE ALL MAKE MISTAKES. Hindsight is 20/20, but that is no reason to shame yourself. I read the guilt and pain of what you lost, but I’ll be frank….You haven’t forgiven yourself. If you truly have…you wouldn’t question if there was hope. You made a mistake. YOUR CHANCES AT LOVE HAVE NOT ENDED, JUST THAT RELATIONSHIP. It’s okay to feel hurt over the loss, IT’S NOT OKAY TO KEEP DWELLING.

        You’re going to have to let HER go. I MEAN IT. LET GO. If she’s engaged, then LET GO. You CANNOT COMPARE future dates to her…because now you’re taking the women you date now for granted and holding them to a standard that is UNREALISTIC.

        You and I were not strong enough in our respective relationships, but that is what life is all about: Growing [regardless of age], I got stronger because I wanted it and WAS CONSISTENT.

        If you want my honesty of how I moved on, we may have to take our discussion to another forum because be it far from me to give advice to that degree on this site without permission.

        I can simplify a list of what I did, but that is the equivalent of a band-aid. You require [metaphorical] surgery to identify the root cause…it will be painful, but it is necessary to move on. It’ll be allright.

        • Daniel says:

          This was really helpful, so what forum should I join in order to get tips on how you moved on? I wish I was you right now, so is this happening to you for the first type or have you had past break ups that helped you prepare for your new relationships and have they always been similar? I have dated chicks before this one and honestly I was aways the one to initiate the breakup because of their constant bitchy attitudes, why are some girls such bitches for no reason? whats the social dynamics behind it? Honestly never saw this one coming because I always told myself if this isn’t love then I don’t what is because this girl was different from everyone else and thought she felt the same way. And now I find myself dating the same old girls, any help on what to look for or were to find girls that are special. I honestly feel like if you found another special person already then I can too. If not good luck man I hope you can rekindle your love with AD or you meet someone better.

          • Daniel says:

            On top of that how did you get closure?
            Thanks again

            • Nick says:

              Part Two
              Ask yourself one question – If you were single, would you date yourself? If you wouldn’t – then why?

              Yeah – that’s what losing AD made me look at

              How did I learn? This was easier than I thought. I had the answers in front of me, I just didn’t know it. Losing AD forced me to reevaluate my weaknesses.

              AD personified who I used to be because she was my opposite. It was like looking in a mirror. I was like her at one point in my life, and I chose not be like that anymore, because of the negatives and other things.

              But then I remembered the positives of what I had lost. The positives of what I had when I used to be like her – I saw why I loved her, but I didn’t love myself because I had made mistakes. That was my epiphany. Besides – AD and I ARE DIFFERENT PEOPLE. We were SIMILAR but that means NOTHING if you DON’T LOOK PAST THAT!

              All I had to do was FORGIVE MYSELF for my past mistakes. I had no intention of hurting anyone, but mistakes happen, never SHAME yourself, JUST DON’T REPEAT THAT MISTAKE AGAIN! I saw my strengths and improved my weaknesses and accepted myself. I AM STRONG, my actions speak volumes over my words.

              Closure. That requires utmost confidence. You will experience hurt. If you’re not ready, don’t do it. Not everyone gets a chance at closure, but you do have a chance at moving on.

              I have only lost 2 true friendships AD and one being a relationship of 6 years, but that was enough for me. I already knew my strengths, I just couldn’t get past my mistakes. I forgave myself 1st.

              I’ve actually reached out to people I have hurt, and sincerely apologized to make amends. One of them didn’t forgive me. Life moves on. If I don’t make them happy, I can’t force them now can I?

              Simplicity….coupled with emotional control. Life gets a LOT EASIER that way.
              AD ended our friendship.

              I plan to send an objective letter of how I was wrong, and how I felt. Only AD can choose to believe me. I can only prove that in my words and actions. If she doesn’t…then okay, because our lives keep on going. I’ll ALWAYS LOVE HER, but I DON’T NEED HER. I WANTED HER, BECAUSE SHE WAS SPECIAL. I HAVE MYSELF anyway, EVERYONE else is a BONUS because YOU ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSON. Can’t LOVE ANY ONE IF YOU CAN’T LOVE YOURSELF.

              We are all a work in progress. Look in Books, the Web, anywhere…..Answers are everywhere….and most require TRIAL AND ERROR. More importantly CONSISTENCY.

          • Nick says:

            Awesome Daniel. I’m glad you feel enlightened.

            This is will be in 2 parts.

            I should apologize though. [Apologize for a mistake made, not for misunderstandings.] I should have typed TOPIC, NOT forum. The Topic is for NEEDY people, but the FORUM (website) is for all kinds of Relationships. Browse and ABSORB KNOWLEDGE. I got some here!

            Blunt time. I wouldn’t be telling you these things, if they would harm you in the long run. The actions I took after losing AD has led to amazing things which is why I don’t mind answering your questions. Otherwise, I would BE STUPID and hurt you EVEN MORE. If I am wrong, please go ahead and tell me, I’m not perfect. You’re the only one who will allow the bad and good in. I’m bouncing MY OPINION, on YOUR TOPIC like YOU ASKED.

            Part One
            Your former relationships are giving you an idea of what you don’t like, but no woman will completely fulfill EVERY requirement. I would suggest staying off the market for now because you say that you FIND YOURSELF DATING the SAME GIRLS. All WOMEN ARE DIFFERENT, the only thing REMANING the same is YOU. If you don’t that like that type, move on…why is that even an issue? Enjoy being single, being a MAN, ENJOY LIFE. Just like your ex once accepted you [a woman that is NOT YOU’RE EX] SOMEONE ELSE CAN as well [perhaps even better]

            WHO CARES WHY THEY ARE B@#$%#? There are millions of people that are not. Keep looking. A wise man said: Believe the negative, and ignore the positive. NOT PESSIMISM. A person can be awesome, but if their negatives over shadow the positive in a REALISTIC manner, move on. Everyone has negatives. NOBODY IS PERFECT. Either ACCEPT THEM, COMPROMISE or MOVE ON.

            The more friendly exposure you have, the more room for growth that EVERYONE you approach has to make something happen with no one getting really hurt. The worst case is that you don’t become friends. Life is not always positive, but you can always tip the scales in your favor.

            I admire that you analyze things, [I do that too] but if you live in the moment [RIGHT NOW] now that you have a chance to meet more people, then things have a knack of falling in place if YOU’RE CONSISTENT and CARE ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT [not guaranteed, but it will CARVE YOUR FUTURE, while MOVING ON from your past REALISTICALLY]

            I have found special people. They are special because I APPRECIATE them because they ARE DIFFERENT and COMFORTABLE BEING THEMSELVES and they APPRECIATE me because of WHO I AM, not WHAT I’M SUPPOSED TO BE.

            Thanks Daniel – I TRULY WANT YOU TO BE A HAPPY MAN.

        • Marko says:

          This is so nice

  4. Ann says:

    My best friend & I stopped talking a couple weeks ago. We met 10 yrs ago online. She is an introvert, and I was homebound taking care of a family member for 7 yrs of our friendship. She leaned on me, and I leaned on her when I could get a word in, when she wasn’t taking up the conversations with her problems. She has been in an abusive relationship for about 3 years, which also happened the same time as the death of my family member I was taking care of when we first mer. I have always been there more for her than she was for me, when I needed her she was never available the last 3 years, but the moment she needed to talk she was calling me 24/7. Her relationship has been the worst that you can imagine, I could write a book. Since we live in different states, I felt my hands were tied, she would be getting abused call me, the phone would go dead, I would fear the worst, then finally after waiting what seemed liked hours I would hear from her. I would call the police they would take forever to get there, and then when they finally did, she would lie, like I was the one crazy for calling the police. This is what I dealt with for 3 years. I was always in constant fear for her well-being, she refused to get out of the relationship, every day it was some new drama, I tried to be the best friend I could be to her. I was at her beck & call, because of her dire situation. This relationship she has is always causing problems with us, I was tired of the drama & the abuse, and her just sweeping it under the rug. So we argued constantly. We have a mutual friend in common she knew the situation, but not as indepth as I did. Her friend told her we were in communication, and she turned on me, she said i was not letting her make her own decisions trying to control her, when that wasn’t the case. and she said that now her other friend doesn’t want to talk to her, so basically she dumped me for this friend that is never there for her like I have been. I was mentally drained from her situation for 3 years, not many people would have stood by her for as long as I did. She would call me when I was out with other friends, when I was out to dinner with family, and I would take her calls. But when I would want to talk, or just check in to make sure she was alive, she always had excuses why she couldn’t talk. She didn’t see anything wrong with that. She would get angry, that I was upset she couldn’t talk, I said the very few times I need to talk you can’t & that’s not right when I am always there for you. I am having a hard time not contacting her, because I worry about her, but she told me to leave her alone, she said I was draining, I said are you serious you made me worry you were getting beat up, or worse for 3 years, I had to call the cops, what did I do to drain you, but be a friend. There is no talking to her whatsoever she twists, and manipulates everything I say & do. She made me how I am always worried even when I don’t hear from her, I wasn’t like that before. And she thinks I shouldn’t give her issues if she doesn’t contact me for days. We have had fights before, and always made up, but I’m not so sure this time. It’s hard letting go, even though I know I should. Someone that cares, always shows you they do, but she doesn’t. It just hurts, because I was always there, doing things for her, and I get disposed of like I am garbage.

  5. Rachelxx says:

    Hello,

    Hoping someone could help me out a bit and give me some advice, I have been friends with a girl for about 5 or 6 years, she recently got dumped by a boyfriend and her auntie died. I have always had some issues where I feel like she is using me, for about two years I drove her to work as I worked at the same place as her, I still had to go out of my way to pick her up to which she occasionally gave me gas money, as well as driving her whenever we went out to movies, diner, clubs, etc… When we go out she will be moody and silent one night and then happy and cheery the next time but still seems to expect me to make all the effort with convos. I have always felt frustrated and confused as I am always feel I am trying to entertain her. After hanging out I feel exhausted and stressed from the pressure of keeping her in a good mood. She went through about a year with her boyfriend of pretty much always being happy. Since he dumped her she has been extremely needy and depressed seeming. When we go out she never asks me anything about my life, I will be like “so how are you?” and she will respond with a simple “good” and that’s the end of the conversation. She does not take an interest in my schooling to be a nurse or any relationships I have with my other friends or family. She still expects me to drive her even though she is fully capable of driving herself. I often feel I am being used by her, when she enters the car she sits on her phone and doesn’t even say hi but then minutes later will respond willingly to my questions but does not ask anything back. She is constantly texting me asking to hang out but then when we do she seems to be hating it, and if I say no I can’t hang tonight she responds with a simple ‘k’ or ‘ok’ like she is angry with me. What should I do? Am I being to sensitive towards this and expecting too much especially since she is going through a hard time? My mom and sister seem to think I should end the friendship but I am not sure if I should give up on her. Please help, I feel so frustrated and angry after hanging out with her but I don’t want to just dump her after a long friendship. I love her when she is happy but it seems so rare that im not sure if it’s worth it anymore!! Thanks xx

    • Rhiannon says:

      She’s using you. Are you going to these movies and diners you drive her to? If not then, I hate to tell you this, you’re just a free ride to her. It’s time for her to grow up and be an adult. If she leaves you feeling exhausted all the time, it’s time to find a new friend.

  6. Someone says:

    I think that a big piece of this puzzle comes under Attachment Theory. Most of the people we’re reading about who are clinging, needy, desperate, and suffocating have an “Anxious-Preoccupied” Attachment Style.

    Google it… it’s a bit of an eye-opener!

  7. Marko says:

    so i’ve got a dilemma if it’s okey to be angry at my bets friend becouse she slept with two of my friends?

    • Lonnie says:

      It’s okay to be angry because that’s how you feel. Your feeling are okay, it’s how you may react to your feelings that is tricky. Why are you angry? Dig deep and ask yourself what has triggered your anger.

    • Someone says:

      Are you angru because you want more than friendship from them, and you’re jealous that they slept with your friends? Unless they’re aware of your feelings, they did nothing wrong to you. If they are aware but don’t return your feelings, then they didn’t really technically do wrong sleeping with them, BUT it’s possible they’re using you for attention. Also possible they have no idea you feel hurt though. Not enoigh information to say.

  8. emma says:

    So I’ve been very needy and clingy with one of my closest friends and because of that, I started arguments with him and pushed him away. I admit I messaged him too much, didn’t give him space, and was not patient with him since he started law school. I was very mean and we argued for 3 months. Now, my friend blocked me and refuses to talk to me for good, even if I tried to apologize, call him, or get a friend to talk to him. I do my best to move on because I’m 100% sure we won’t ever be friends again. However, deep down inside, I feel like he might come back one day… what to do? :(

    thanks

    • johan says:

      hi emma , i feel i did that too to the first companion i ever had which was most recently , i feel i was and still am to hungry now that ive had my first companion , i drove her away too and over whelmed her . know ive continue to learn about people and how they might feel , i dont really seem to be very liked by the people i meet , i do have a few aquantinces but no friends and really im not even sure how it is to be a friend muchless how to gain one , i do wish i knew how to meet other people that might give me a change at having friendship .she did open my heart and make me notice i now want friendships so its all good

    • Marie says:

      You were “needy and clingy,” you “messaged him too much, didn’t give him space,” and now you want to make amends by… reaching out to him, calling him, getting friends to talk to him… It’s like you’re trying to fix it by doing exactly what you did to push him away to begin with.

      Give the guy some space! If he comes back, I can guarantee it won’t be because you suffocated him further with your numerous attempts at apologizing and getting him to forgive you. Gosh, I know that if I had a friend I needed space from and she sent MORE of our friends to try to get me to talk to her, I’d probably never speak to her again. That would be incredibly disrespectful.

    • Hammy says:

      Emma! I know your pain, I am currently dealing with the same problem. I was so dependent on my best friend that it drove her away. Of course the friendship in itself wasn’t as strong as it was from the beginning, we were drifting and I could tell. My constant need for her attention and care wasn’t helping it made her emotionally drift from me..Oddly enough I blocked her in order for her to not block me, my fear of rejection/being blocked took a toll on me. I miss her dearly and don’t think she will ever be my friend again, so really my only option is to move on! I want to know how to move on as well, but I think the most important thing for us is to meet new people, and to gain strength in ourselves. Be our own best friends.. if we’re able to depend on ourselves on an emotional level then it can only provide us with strength to nurture new and healthier relationships in the future..:)

      • Lyla says:

        How long were your freinds? Some people need a break from the stresses of a relationship. You never know it might be a great thing, of course, prepare yourself for anything. I have a friend who I fell out with for a year or so, and we are back to a better, stronger relationship after the break.

        • Hammy says:

          Lyla!

          Not sure if this is directed towards me or not, however my friend and I had a long and complicated friendship. We’ve known each other for a bout 6 years, and we ended our friendship after a year and a half. So then that break lasted about 2 and a half years. Then we became friends again and our friendship lasted about 2 years again…So it is a pattern, I’m not too sure whether or not she will come back to me or not because of how repetitive our break ups were.

          • Lyla says:

            No, no, just adding some thoughts, not directed to you. :)

            • Emma says:

              Thanks :) our friendship lasted a year now my friend blocked me all together and wants nothing to do with me. I tried to tell him it’s my fault and i hurt/pushed him away but he refuses
              To listen :(

              • Lyla says:

                I try to live by the idea that people show you who they are, believe them. Perhaps it is time to let go to allow room for a new friend. Good luck.

  9. Sunflower 858 says:

    I agree with Cherries…There are some of us that are needy too..But to abandon friends with out no if and or batsmen when and where is unfair. To just.not call and explain baffles me. Im starting a new year and I won’t be taking none of this baggage with me. I’m taking driving lessons, going back to college, giving all my problems to GOD, looking for me a job no matter how far it may be from my home and hope and pray that I dont have to rely on any of the people that made or ABANDONED me. I promise myself to never put myself in that situation again. We can always say someone is needy but we have put ourselves in that situation to figure out how that way. I had a really horrible childhood, abused by many (sexually, physically and mentally) and when I met this one girl I felt like she was the.mother or sister I always wanted. She knew my whole life story, I was hesitant to become friends with her because everyone that we work with didn’t like her and we became friends and I would always wonder why she wasn’t in good standings with her family and people and her family told me why. I couldn’t believe it, because I loved her and stayed her friend no matter what. But I learned the hard way and I still love her to this day, but I would always.pay for our dinners out together, going to the clubs together, our family get togethers, paid for her share on everything, lied for her and she just fell out of my life which I realized was a good thing it if she calls me to this day I would still talk to her.. I dont know why.

    • Someone says:

      Sunflower, with all due respect bc I know you feel very hurt, as opening up was probably very hard for you to do, you say you looked at them as a mother/sister…it’s possible they felt overwhelmed because they were looking for a friend, not a daughter to take care of. I understand your pain, perhaps seek counseling so that your future friendships aren’t codependent, or too intense, etc. Best of luck to you :-)

      • Sunflower says:

        I’ve never heard of The Attachment Theory. But I sure will take the time to research about it. I’ve never thought of myself as needy but more of I put others before I put myself and I guess that’s what has bothered me the most. I expected people to be there for me like I was there for them. When someone say to me I wish you were my daughter or wish you were my sister I take things like that serious and consider that a genuine friendship. I hope it doesn’t seem like I’m angry as I write because I’m not it might just be coming out that way, then I apologize.

  10. johan says:

    wow ! i really know nothing about people thats for sure . i have some limitations too but im over coming them mostly i was injured badly in my 40s , know i see i have social skill limitations and dont now were to look for ansewers . mostly im getting a lot of negitivey learning how to socialize , maybe people are use to seeing me alone and figure i want to be that way , what would cause someone to leave during a conversation with them ? or act like there scared .

  11. Gabby says:

    I have a best friend who is going through an emotional time ever since she broke up with her boyfriend, and i usually spend the holidays with her especially new years and this year my family and i are going out of town and i wont be able to spend new years with her but she really wanted me to. How do i explain to her that i wont be able to spend new years with her this year with out her getting mad at me?

    • Kelly says:

      I would just tell her the truth just like you explained it here. Things come up sometimes and this is one of those times. Tell her to lean on her family this year. That is what family is for. Good Luck.

  12. Calendula says:

    I had to dump a needy friend. The sad part is that she is needy as in, actually needs help. But is a black holt of human help compassion time resources money energy….you get the idea. But she cannot help it. She is a bi polar opiate (pill) addict.
    We met in as early teens, (that was forty years ago) got in trouble together, stayed overnight at each others homes, and lost contact during our colllege years. We reconnected a couple of years ago. I had hoped that I would find her employed, in a relationship, and relatively happy.
    Instead I found an addict who plays one doctor and pharmacy off of the other, and keeps two sets of care-takers. When one set gets suspicious, and asks direct questions, the bi-polar conveniently kicks in and the subject is changed. Fortunately (?) for those around her, she mostly is on manic cycle, and not frequently on a downdraft.
    The first time we visited after many years of non contact, I expected maybe to meet for lunch or dinner, and maybe chat for a couple of hours, but due to her situation, she doesn’t drive, so I was forced to go hang out at her apartment. She used several manipulative tactics (and was sucessful) to get me to stay for five and a half hours! A couple of weeks later, she needed a ride to the doctor, to the pharmacy, to bring household supplies to her, and used the typical bi-polar victimhood maneuver of “I can’t trust my evil family and friends, but YOU, I trust…” That was supposed to compliment me and keep me coming back.
    I backed off quickly and largely. I don’t want to get roped in to being needed and depended upon. I don’t need to be party to knowingly aiding in helping her to obtain controlled substances. I can’t have her and whatever is in her pockets in my vehicle while I’m chauffeurring. I don’t wish to be the subject of distain during a future bi-polar rant. I don’t want to spend hours and hours and hours there because there’s no one else.
    I feel saddened and guilty because she DID pay me for what I did, and I GET that she can’t help being her manic, over-talketive mind bouncing self, and the the addicted side has to tell warped truth, un truth, half truth to get what she needs physically. I’m sad that her relationships end. I’m sad that her caretakers get fed up with her. I’m sad that she is not interested in detoxing or living as straight as possible, considering her organic chemistry needs correcting. So I keep her at arm’s length.
    She could easily be one of these ladies who wonders why thay got dumped. The fact is, I like the “her” inside, but it’s so hard to find underneath so many layers of chaos.
    My point of all this, is that I wonder about the untold other half of some of these friend stories? I believe that they’re told in ernest from the perspective of the one left wondering “why?” Yet, I wonder what the people who acted so unkindly might say from their angle?

    • Darlene says:

      I think that the people who have dumped your friend in the past were probably very simple overwhelmed by her, as you are. I think that people ‘dump’ others for lots of reasons; not enough in common, too needy, the person turns out to be really negative and the list goes on.

      Your friend is way out there, so the answer is more obvious. For others, it could be more subtle, including not being able to connect for some reason. for example, I have distanced myself from a potential new friend because the person, while nice enough, was so guarded it was uncomfortable for me. That’s is another general reason, people like to be with other people they feel comfortable with and can be themselves with. People they feel good for having spent the time with. In my opinion anyway :)

      • johan says:

        wow i dont believe what im reading , people do have feelings even though they can be challenging , god if we are really human beings we should try taking to our needy friends and help them find other friends too , i might not have friends but to just dump a friend because there needy seems very wrong and hurtfull .at this point of learning i feel needy , but i dont get much attenton reguardless , a few aquaintances thats it .

        • Dani says:

          I don’t think people are obligated to take care of others when they clearly aren’t taking care of themselves. Sometimes relationships with others, especially when they are toxic, can take a toll and become damaging. We all need to enforce boundaries, and we do, the users in our lives may be compelled to take better care of themselves because they don’t have us enabling them anymore!

        • Suzy says:

          Johan, I don’t think it’s heartless dropping needy friends, I had one for years, she still texts me, asks me for money, support ect, quite frankly if you don’t drop these leeches, they suck the living life out of you, those needy friends should stop bloody thinking of themselves and start giving back, what you sow is what you reap, so over the victim mentality..those people are toxic and need to wake up!

          • johan says:

            hi suzy , i really dont know what is like to have friends , but if i had a friend like these i would be friend enough to tell them the truth about how i feel and tell them not to look for money from me , unless they want to earn it , if i can afford to pay them to work . to me a real friend would be always trying to give back not just take .

          • Virginia says:

            If someone listened to them they can improve ,they are needing help and it could make a difference.

        • Someone says:

          Yet you have nothing negative to say about being used and manipulated? Be fair.

    • Taylor says:

      I have a friend exactly as you describe, although he is a non functioning alcoholic, not a pill popper. I met him when I was 12 26 years ago. He wanted to move to my town because he wanted to return to the coast.

      The guy tried to kiss my girlfriend, perpetually couldn’t get or keep a job, was always stealing my liquor and despite staying in a room I normally rent couldn’t pay rent for more than 2.5 of 7 months he stayed with me.

      I really didnt want to kick him onto the street given how long we go back, but eventually enough was enough. Pounding back a whole bottle of my vodka and then trying to tell me I was too drunk to remember drinking it myself, the guy even drank my vanilla extract because it was vodka based, my sister made it and I never touched it because I rarely bake.

      Eventually I felt bad for him because he was staying in a shelter four or five months later. He again tried to get with my girlfriend (another one) and was constantly stealing little things and once he got into my house he wouldn’t ever really leave. I was 38 dating a 26 year old, and he somehow got her so mad I was afraid I’d never see her again. I was furious and kicked him out onto the street at 2am.

      Then again he came over just for a while to help me with yardwork. Guy ended up camping in my unheated detached garage for five weeks, stole a bunch of change from one of my room mates. By this point he’d been in town a year. I sat him down and asked him point blank hey man what is the impediment to you just getting your act together. He claimed depression which I can empathize with but sleeping all day and getting fired from every job you get because you steal your friends liquor and drink it all night then call in sick because your a truck driver and cant show up loaded to work… no wonder your depressed.

      The only way I got him out of my house was the lock the house and the garage. I talked to his sister and she was trying to help him too, but he would steal little things and lie about his job, employment, or housing status.

      I am a kind person but I had had enough and I just cant handle having someone around like that. Help a brother out but because of him I’m thousands in debt to my landlord and trying to crawl out from under this rock.

      On the other hand I am lately being a very needy friend because of all this debt I am in with my landlord and given what an ex girlfriend did between stealing and making my tenants angry my home life is like living behind enemy lines. It is quite annoying when I rarely ask for help or a helping hand or just a buddy to come hang out because I’m under so much stress I’m going insane, and then to have them decline because they’d rather hang out with you when times are good.

      I’ve really learned who my friends are throughout all of this. I’ve dropped the loser friend, and I am stuck dropping a bunch of other friends who wont be there for me. A friend I asked to come over who was going 100 yards from my house actually said he couldnt make it over but I could accompany him to buy Saran Wrap if I wanted to see him. Beyond the pale.

  13. Sunflower 858 says:

    I know how to start. Sometimes I think im a needy friend. I have problems making friends and maintaining friendships. I have friends I feel use me until I have nothing left. I dont have everything that they have. I dont have a husband, boyfriend, no drivers license, car, job and I’m a single mother. But I do provide for my children w/o welfare. Alot of the peoplethat I do consider friends only use me for when there a need of money food party girl or something like that. But when I need something I always have to pay gas money or cook for them for the in order for them to come and visit me buy them stuff in order for them to come and hang out with me and things like that.but all these women that are supposed to be my friends they all have husbands and job they get they all come to me to borrow money, use me as a alibi. I dont use them in any way like that and I never would. I know I may seem timid and won’t speak up when they say things I dont like. I only really bother them when I really need them or I’m just going through something really bad or I dont understand. I dont have alot of family that I talk to and I’ve been through alot and I really feel lonely. I just would like to know that I have someone to count on when I’m in need. The point is I feel like I dont have any friends or they only use me for when its convenient for them. If I let go of these people o would be even longer than I am now. Some one told.me.that if someone is your friend they would make time for you no matter what and listen to you no matter what becayse I always listen to them no matter what even of ots in the middle of the night. Its crazy. I dont know maybe I’m one of those toxic people you guys are talking about.

    • Rita says:

      I wouldn’t label yourself as “toxic” — you don’t sound toxic to me, just lonely. Sometimes friends are not the best source of comfort or personal healing. Have you ever looked into therapy? I know most people cringe when therapy is mentioned, but it doesn’t mean there is something wrong with you — it just means you may need some support and a (professional) listening ear.

      A lot of therapy places have sliding scale fees, so you don’t have to pay too much. Perhaps if you had an hour a week to speak to someone about your feelings, you wouldn’t feel the need for friends to fill this role for you and you’d be less dependent on them for anything — which is a win-win for you! Friends also aren’t always unbiased or have sound judgment… a therapist will be a professional, balanced, healing source of insight for you who is dedicated solely to you. Might just be the very thing you need right now. Hope that helps!

      • Kris says:

        Honestly, therapy never helped me. I am in fact annoyed that you even mentioned that. They won’t be balanced or fair. They will just rip you off, tell you something’s wrong with you and won’t ever help you again. That’s what happened to me. I am sorry but I feel like I am better off alone. I have given up on friendships or any relationships. I have the same problem as they do but no one ever talks to me. They don’t use me. I am just forgotten by my friends. If we hang out, they are too busy. I’m sorry but I will not pay for someone to listen to me and meet me every 2 to 3 weeks because I am lonely and can’t get anyone else to bother with me. ugh.

        • Kris says:

          Also, if they see other people, like mine did, then they aren’t really focused solely on you. I promise you my last therapist was thinking something was wrong with me and didn’t give me a chance. She never acted like that to her other clients.

        • Mike says:

          I have found that when I’m lonely or feeling depressed, volunteering helps immensely. People suck, so why not look into a local no-kill animal shelter that needs some help? I am gravely serious, service to helpless beings has a way of taking you out of your own head and unhappiness.

    • maggie says:

      Its so insane its like someone just wrote about my life right now! I feelso much better knowing that i am indeed not alone with these feelings….
      I am a single parent. I have a couple of what I thought were close friends. I went above and beyond for them just to make someone else day a lil better. They didnt have to ask even. Its little things that I thought people did. Let me make it clear no I did not keep track of the good deeds and no they are not indebted to me. My car broke down on a wed i twisted my ankle friday my father was out of town and really each of them live less than 8 miles from my home. I asked for a very small very simple favor helping to get milk to us i think shouldnt be a burden. One promised to be on her way hours passed I tried the other one to see if she had talked to the one supposedly on way it took hours for even her to respond and she said no yet her roomate said they were both there in and out going to stores and lunch and both were ignoring me. That was all it took for things to really hit me and to take a good look at my relationship with these “friends”. It hurt it hurt real bad and my emotions took over. I do admit I should not have lashed out like i did but i said over and over I am very hurt feeling. 3 days neither one could find the time effort nothing to help me. I myself am able to remove myself from an emotional situation when someone is freaking out I know that they are just angry and I let them vent I apologize reassure and we move forward. Not them nope she actually got mad at me for being hurt. I pointed out that they would never let eachother deal with a situation like i was in. They jump when one or the other asks for a cigarette for goodness sakes. I pointed out that if i dont call them or stop by I do not see or talk to them. It like if I dont shove myself in their face I dont exist. I felt like nothing unimportant and all the nice things I have done just to brighten their day and even though I had money for gas I had money for the milk no one stopped by to help us out. It was just me and my 2 kids(2&8)I decided to leave it be maybe a couple days it would work itself out. 1 week turned into 4 then 4 into 8. Not one text not one call. Another friend even was hanging out with them and mentioned me and the situation and they just acted like nothing. I dont get it. I dont understand. Im floored baffled however you want to put it. I really do feel like I am in the twilight zone. The day it happened the friend coming ignored until 11 pm and then just replied saying i am at work! I tgexted the friend that lied and asked why she lied and why if they were out and about why in the world would my request for help not be priority. Yes that sounds really demanding but i wasnt demanding at all and the amount of things i have done for them in my opinion if they are a friend than absolutly you dont even think twice about something that takes no more than 30 minutes. I very rarely need or ask for anything. I listen i try to help if they have problem i will do anything to help. I always have their back with anything. Im so heartbroken and I know to many its just a gallon of milk but the actions my”friends” took that day just the way that weekend played out it was so depressing and lonely because the people I thoughtI could count on like they counted on me I guess you could say let me down but that doesnt do it justice. I am working on getting over this and since have talked to them a couple times but I am realizing that they did make some very self serving choices and i dont think they had the intention of hurting me. Their reaction to my hurt because I just want so badly to understand their motive of thinking didnt they at any point say oh yeah maggie really needs that milk I want to understand thats all. They are not the kind of people I thought they were and I may feel used but good deeds are just that and not kept track of and I did them on my own so they didnt owe me there is no track score. Those are hard truths. I have no boyfriend with both my childrens fathers they ended the same me begging and pleading for them for their love. I can not handle to feel abandoned I need reassurance. Its really hard not having any real close friends that I can vent to and be wierd and silly and most of all laugh and watch stand up comedy and talk about wierd conspiracy alien stories it silly therapy and my way to get away I truely loved cared and would done anything to help these people encouraging them….. such is life and i have to accept what has happened cuz life is to short i just have to accept forgive and I am choosing to leave it and not put any more time into their lives. I will always be here for them but i will not be the one to push effort into their lives. They know where i live they know my number. I am working on forgiving and moving on. just typing all that was huge therapy. my spelling horrible i had alot to say and it was coming out faster than i could type. Every one can be needy in some way and we all at one time or another have made a self centered decision. All these comments could be the person on the other end of the story.

      • Darlene says:

        Hi Maggie,

        I think there is a difference between needy and needing. In this case, you had a legitimate request for help and your friends ignored it. There are always 2 sides to every issue, but your friends should have lent you a hand, especially given that you did not have any other options at the time and there are kids involved!

        The problem is that this situation will repeat itself in your life until you find a way to like and respect yourself and expect to be treated well by others. I used to be very needy, feeling a panicky sense of fear every time I thought I’d offended someone and I may lose them. So I scampered around catering to other people and acting like the second class citizen that they eventually began treating me as. It was awful and I got treated with at least a certain amount of indifference by others, except those who were really kind.

        Working on how you feel about yourself has to be the starting point, I’m afraid. It’s worth the hard work, though. :)

        All the best!

        Darlene

    • maggie says:

      So I feel ya girl. No you are not toxic. You are a kind selfless human being. You see feel an unjustice and you want find undertsnading and closure. You are not alone. Its all part of this journey. Our thoughts can corrupt. Be positive stay positive dont let anothers selffish choices prevent that. Love forgive and know it will all come back to you in some way.

    • johan says:

      hi , sunflower , u dont sound toxic to me , u sound caring , kind ,and working to keep friendships , sounds like u give too much to me , i dont have friends but i know i dont want friends that just use me . i feel in someway even friendships are like a marrage should be 100 -100 from each other always forgiving and with love .

  14. SB says:

    After reading a lot of the comments here it appeared to reach a point where it went from discussing emotionally needy friend to getting basic needs met due to physical limitations. I think they are two different topics.

    I met a woman a little over a decade ago through the school our children attended. We developed a friendship that was a struggle for me to maintain. I was raised to be of service to others so in the beginning I listened patiently to her constant claims of being a victim of many things. I had to step back from the relationship eventually because it was too emotionally exhausting. I had a marriage, children and a life to maintain as well. We have now been in touch again for 2 1/2 years. It appeared that she had gotten her life on track and was happily engaged. That was all a facade. It wasn’t long before it was pretty evident she was miserable – still. Again I feel like a therapist most of the time. She calls in a panic about an issue she is completely capable of handling. I try to encourage that but she plays helpless, not trusting herself at 46 years old. The glass is always half empty, never half full.

    After my marriage breakup 5 years ago I have been on a path of healing and personal growth. I had to do it. No one else could do my recovery for me. Yes, I had the support of some wonderful people that aided this process but ultimately it was up to me to do the work. Like some other posters have said, become friends with yourself first. Be kind to yourself in your thoughts and actions. As a result of my discoveries I feel that this woman really has no place in my life anymore. I do not want to expend the energy it takes to satisfy her constant need to be pacified and soothed. It’s as if her criteria for our relationship is that I’m expected to condone her choices and make her feel better about herself. I have tried to do that but I am giving myself permission to move on. After over a decade with no real, genuine progress in spite of her declarations I feel we’ve exhausted any possibility of a continuing relationship. I am releasing it with a pure, caring heart and wish her well.

    • Sher says:

      I really like the way that you’ve stated things. I feel much the same with my friend who’s had a head injury. The difference is, that her way of being now is somewhat due to the injury and that causes me guilt in knowing how much she does need me (although she was a needy friend before the injury and I had to take a break from her at one point, too).
      I’ve been focusing on finding support systems for her to help her with her needs. I’ve found a retired person who is able to help her sort out her insurance and bill paperwork. I’ve joined a brain injury support group with her (it meets one evening per month) to help her find additional resources. I feel like once I’ve helped her to be more social and independent that I can back away some for my own good.

  15. K C says:

    I used to go to church with this woman (she’s an older woman in her early 60’s, possibly), but lost contact with her a long time ago. I ran into her where I work recently, and thought it would be good to meet with her for Bible study. The first time we met, we were there for 4 hours, which wasn’t my intention. This happened due to her need to talk about everything, and her inability to focus. She noticed every bird, every dog being walked, and couldn’t stop talking to people as they walked by. But I suppose that’s another issue. However, as we were leaving, she followed me to my car (we had parked in two different places) and was still talking to me. I got in my car and started it, and she was still talking. Ten or fifteen minutes later, with my car still running, she was still talking. I kept saying “I have to go” and I mean I literally had to go because I didn’t want to use the public restroom there. She kept talking. I started backing my car up and she was still talking, then finally started walking to her vehicle and was like “Call me!”

    So cut to last week. I had told her multiple times that I was going out of town to a family member’s wedding. I decided since we weren’t going to be able to meet for our normal Bible study time in the afternoon since I was actually working Monday night, that I’d try to set up going out for breakfast instead that day. So we met for breakfast, and she asked me about Bible study next week. I told her again that I was going to the wedding in Ohio. She had already tried to talk me out of going the week before. She basically seemed upset that we wouldn’t be able to meet. She has already made comments such as “I guess you have more of a social life than I do.” So I told her that I would only be able to stay until 10 and I explained about working that night. She answers with “On the dot?” and I said that I’d like to, that I had things to do at home and had to get to sleep for work. She goes “Well, hopefully you won’t mind if we go over a little bit.” I told her when it was 9:50 that we had ten minutes. She seemed irritated. I picked up my backpack, put it on my shoulder, and started scooting to the end of the seat at 9:55. When I stood up, she said “Let me just finish reading this really quick.” I stayed until she finished, and then I said bye and started to walk away and she was still talking. I just turned around and left her there.

    Cut to today in Ohio. I wondered if I’d hear from her while I was there. When I got no call from her, I thought she remembered that I was out of town, but I was doubting that she did. I get a call this afternoon around 12, and I let it go to voicemail. She asked if we were still meeting at our regular time at 2 at the park. I never did answer her. I’m not sure how to handle breaking it off with her. I considered just saying that we should maybe take a break for now, that there’s a lot going on, but I don’t think I could really use that excuse until mid November when the holiday season starts really ramping up. How should I handle this and what should I say to her?

    • Sher says:

      You sound a lot like me. I can tell this “friend” is draining you, but you want to be kind to her. Being with her has become more of a job than a fun, friendly experience. I think letting her know up front the amount of time that you have allotted to spend with her is a very good start. It’s important for you to strictly adhere to the time frame you’ve set up for yourself, so that she knows you mean it.
      You didn’t mention your family situation, whether you’re married with children, or have family that relies on your care. Family obligations are usually the excuses that I use to carve out my own time (although it’s hardly a white lie because I really do have a large amount of family obligations with a special needs daughter). You could also use work as an excuse–that it gets really demanding during the holiday time and you don’t have as much free time. Perhaps you could help her to find other friends through some sort of group activity. Or, you could somehow encourage her to sign up for Christian Mingle to help her find a significant other that would keep her occupied.
      I love my needy friend, but I’ve set certain guidelines. I have one day per week that I spend time with her. I’ve told her that I don’t have time to talk on the phone daily, but I can text with her.(That way I can reply when I have time) I also emphasize to her how busy I am–especially with my daughter’s needs. If she wants to do something beyond our regularly scheduled day, I use family obligations as an excuse. She’s starting to be much more considerate of my time.
      It sounds like the woman that you’re spending time with is very lonely. Unfortunately her own self-centered neediness has made her that way. Good luck. I hope you find a way to kindly spend less time with her, because she doesn’t seem to respect your needs, or even be capable of recognizing them.

      • K C says:

        Thanks for responding. I’m single, no kids, so I can’t really use family obligations as an excuse. My family all live in other states; I have none here where I live. I have thought about using the holidays and work as an excuse to take a break, since I work retail. We only got together one day a week, and it was on my off day (she doesn’t work) but I didn’t expect to be with her for 4 hours. She’s an older lady; I think she’s in her 60’s, and she doesn’t have Internet or even a computer, and she has an older cell phone, and says it’s not easy to text on it. When she does get me on the phone, it’s hard to get off the phone with her, and when I don’t return her calls, she will call again, and will talk on the message until it cuts her off. I told her once that I’d call her later, and she called me back later that day and says on the message “I thought you were going to call me back today, I don’t know why you haven’t returned my call.” I’m very surprised that she hasn’t called me back yet since she called me yesterday and I haven’t gotten in touch with her. I don’t want to be rude, but I believe that taking a break until after the holidays is the best option. Maybe she’ll find someone else to hang out with in the meantime. Thanks again for your response. :)

        • Sher says:

          The fact that she’s in her 60s gives me an idea! Do you have a senior center in your area? My mother used to be a director for the Retired Senior Volunteer Program in our area many years ago. Perhaps you could find out programs available for her in your area that could help her to meet new friends and have more of a social life.
          Situations like this are hard when you don’t want to be rude. I have a very hard time doing anything that might hurt someone’s feelings.Once again, good luck! :)

          • Karen says:

            I could try that. I’m really not sure if she’s in her late 50’s or early 60’s. She’s not getting social security yet, so I know she’s not quite senior citizen age. But I’ll check around and see what I can find. :)

        • Mina says:

          I was going to say, it sounds like she is placing a lot of expectation of her own happiness in your friendship. That is not fair to you, you are not a cure-all for her loneliness. Only she can fill that void. It sounds like you definitely need to put in place some boundaries. Look at what Lyn said in the comment above to Lorna about telling a needy friend “Hey, this is how many times you can expect to interact with me a week” and see if that works.

          My suggestion would be that if she doesn’t respect your boundaries, you may be better off not contacting her — for your own sanity. This woman sounds like she needs help.

        • Deanna says:

          You say that you don’t want to be “rude” but “I thought you were going to call me back today, I don’t know why you haven’t returned my call” is pretty demanding and rude itself! I experience that type of behavior as very controlling — you don’t run your life according to her schedule but that seems to be the set up here. It sounds like you need to set down clearer, more direct boundaries–but most importantly, be okay that you are doing it and know that you have a right to do it. Her behavior has shown that she disrespects your feelings and wishes, so you’ll need to be very firm, maybe firmer than you feel comfortable. But what is the value of your peace, and independence, and how you spend your time?

  16. LR says:

    How does one escape a needy friend that lives with them? This friend also didn’t pay rent for 3 months so I ended up paying it and told him that he would have to pay me back ASAP. I also told him (as nicely as I possibly could) that if he doesn’t have a job by the end of the month that he is going to have to move out, since this is unsustainable and he also hasn’t paid electric or internet for those months either. He quitely accepted me telling him this but then he went in his room and screamed and punched something. It makes me feel awful since I know he struggles with major depression, but what is a person to do? I can’t pay his rent forever. I feel so emotionally drained from this relationship and I’m constantly stressed and worried that if I say anything that might make him upset that he will do something crazy like kill or hurt himself. I feel like I am the only person he opens up to about these feelings, and although he has a therapist this is a very stressful burden for me to know I’m the only person that knows. My boyfriend also lives with me, and we would like to continue living in this apartment when the lease is up, but would like to escape feeling stressed in our home and I’m wondering if even if he ends up getting a job and being able to stay, would we be in the wrong for asking him to move out anyway? if so, what would be the best way to word this without hurting his feelings? Its not that I don’t want to be friends anymore, I just don’t want him to be in my life 24/7 because its draining me emotionally and financially.

    • Lyn says:

      This one is the easiest to answer on the blog:

      Get him out of your home whether he gets a job or not. This person is not stable. This person has anger problems as well.

      Get this person out of your home and out of your life.

      There is no better option.

      I would not even hesitate.

      • LR says:

        Hi Lyn,

        Thank you for confirming my feelings about it. My boyfriend and I have decided we are going to tell him to move out when the lease is up if he does get a job. Do you or anyone have any suggestions for how to go about wording this to him? I’ve been terrified to have the talk in fear that he will throw a tantrum when I do, or kill himself. What would be the best way to break it to him?

        • Kelly says:

          Hi there. Well I am glad I can help. Included below are my further thoughts & a response to your question.

          Here are some hard truths for you to realize (hard truths are something that we all need to hear – listen to & before reacting – just sit with them):
          1. Whether or not this man kills himself has nothing to do with you – your decision – your request for him to leave. It has literally nothing at all to do with you. Healthy minded people, when asked to move out of an apartment or home may struggle internally emotionally – even with words – but not with their life. So, do not carry the burden of worry about this rather, if you believe in God, pray for him and detach yourself from ‘his outcomes’.

          2. We are called to be of service to others – help them – etc. but we are FIRST called to create a safe & healthy environment for ourselves. You currently do not have one. Accept that. And make a change.

          3. Decide what is fair & realistic. Is the end of the month realistic for him to find somewhere else to go? If so, pick a date and stick to it.

          4. Do not talk to him alone and after he leaves, prepare ahead of time to have all locks changed. This person – I know you love & care for him – is not stable. Protect yourself and don’t think that is too much – changing the locks I mean.

          In my years of learning, I would say something that is 1). Loving, 2). Specific, 3). Quick/Concise. 4). I would not react to whatever he replies to or change my mind under any circumstance.

          Let’s call him Dan….& memorize what you will say.

          Dan, we love you, you must know that. I opened my home to you b/c I care about you and I have wanted to help you. And I hope I have. Do you feel I have?

          We both knew when I opened my home that it wouldn’t be ‘forever’ and it’s time for you to move out. We need you to move out by October 31st. We decided that you do not have to pay us back for the money we have lost in covering the cost of your rent. It’s a gift from us to you.

          We do need you to be out though by Oct. 31st and hope that this change ends up being a new adventure for you.

          And that’s it.

          I would not explain WHY. I would not justify. I would not apologize. I would be very carrying, kind, gentle and loving in my delivery of those words.

          If he says ANYTHING….’But, what if I do x,y,z’ or ‘I can move out by not until November’, etc. You get stern & direct but kind – “No Dan, the move out date is Oct. 31st and that’s the day you need to be fully moved out’.

          And then I would put together a game plan if he does not move out by then. As that week approaches, if he is not gone, I would put the plan into place “Dan, we will contact x, y, z. to remove your things should you not move out today’. And then go do it.

          I am a VERY compassionate person – super empathetic. And I will say this, you need to pull back on your empathy for this person b/c as unhealthy as he is, your worrying about him to a degree you are – what’s the word – gosh, cannot think of the word – kind of cheapening your own health by having him this closely in your life, is AS unhealthy as him being there. Does that make sense?

          I have struggled with so much – as you are – and it took me YEARS to work through it and I have. Do not sell your own life short and start putting your own needs FIRST – creating a healthy – safe – happy – home. When you help others in the future, I would take a step back first and say ‘What is this going to cost me financially, emotionally, physically & spiritually – weigh it out and THEN make a decision.

          My ONLY concern is not this man but in him harming you or your boyfriend. You may not think he is capable but the temper – the instability emotionally – the lack of motivation via finances – etc. Just be careful – get him out.

          • Kelly Lyn says:

            By the way, my real name is Kelly (Lyn).

            • Kelly Lyn says:

              Also, just a backup for you:

              If he asks any questions ‘Why are you doing this’? ‘Where am I supposed to go’?! ‘What the fuck’?! ‘What did I do wrong’?

              I have learned something that has taken me years to master & I only have recently. I learned it from a really amazing friend in NY and a counselor. Giving no explanation. It almost feels mean or rude but it isn’t.

              No matter what he says, you say ‘We feel it’s time you move out’. Why? ‘We just do’. ‘Why are you doing this’? ‘We simply feel it is time to move out’. Sit & stare at him with care.

              I know you love him but that doesn’t mean you owe him or anyone explanations b/c it doesn’t matter ultimately ‘why’. What matters is that you are responsible for your own environment and you want it to yourself again.

              I would be VERY careful proceeding with this friendship when he is gone. I personally would quietly and kindly, let go – release him – and move on surrounding yourself with healthier people.

    • Kelly says:

      LR,

      His name isn’t Tony by chance? You just described someone I was taken advantage by years ago. In the end I had to just ask him to leave and when he wouldn’t leave I had to get the police involved. It may have saved my life because he had anger issues. After he left he pulled the same thing on many other people and was a pro at living for free off of saps that fell for his sob stories. He doesn’t want to work and as long as he can find a person to take him in he doesn’t have to. He also is full of rage when the jig is up. He went to a friend of mine who took him in for a while and to get rid of him he asked for rent to cover his food. He gave my friend his EBT card and said to take it off of that! He had food money all along but just spent it on himself! He probably was collecting SSI too and didn’t mention it. Just ask him to leave no matter what he says and if he doesn’t call the police and they will help remove him without any more drama. These types can be found on Craigslist under “Housing Wanted”. They never have a job and ask for a 3 month lease or to pay monthly which they never do. Never sign any agreement with them or they will force you to evict them which takes a few months on a three month lease. Good Luck…

      • annie says:

        Kelly:
        Was this in NY (with Tony) – sounds like a similar situation of a person who moved out of NY to PA.

        Thanks, there is one thing of helping but a another thing of having someone super dependent and not taking care of their own responsibilities. That Tony matches the description, not working, living cheaply wherever he can find and trying to use food stamps to pay for rent,,,,

        hope you respond, me too have health issues: Chronic Fatigue, etc. so feel like i won’t find someone special because of my body and mind health issues…

        please let me know, important before we help him if this is him. thanks.

  17. Lorna says:

    This hits so close to home. I have a good friend who I dearly love, but her neediness is triggering my anxiety. She is always asking me to hang out every single weekend, and when I tell her no, she still asks “Hoping you’d change your mind!” She doesn’t like to be alone, whereas alone time is of utmost importance to me. I can set boundaries and say no to her, but the problem has compounded — our circle of friends are now enmeshed. I feel like George Costanza — “Worlds are Colliding!”

    When I want a weekend away from her (to hang with some other friends or just to be alone), she will call up one of those friends and ask to hang out with them… so I will often come over to this person’s house and see her there unexpectedly, or she will come over, not knowing I was there. On Facebook, she is RSVPing to events my friends posted and events I’m interested in attending. I feel like she is reaching out to my friends, which are now her friends, but now I can’t escape her.

    I am terrified of hurting her feelings, because she really is sweet and I care a lot about her. I don’t really know how to phrase how I’m feeling without making it sound critical. In seeing her side of things, she is only having a good time with me and my friends, and wants to spend as much time as possible with us. She doesn’t have many other friends to reach out to, we are her source of fun and her “go-to people” as she says. I don’t think she is trying to be invasive, but I feel smothered and my resentment will build unless I say something to her.

    I guess I feel trapped because I feel I don’t have much of a say anymore as to when I’ll see her. I am worried and scared that she’ll be so hurt if I tell her any of this, and at the same time… I know I simply must say something! Any insight?

    • Lyn says:

      Lorna,

      I prayed a lot before responding to you b/c I think this situation is a bit challenging. So, first and foremost, you did a great job at verbalizing the challenge. And it’s clear you are a loving & compassionate person who doesn’t want to hurt this young lady’s feelings.

      I am direct so, here are my thoughts:
      1. This woman has absolutely no boundaries.
      2. She smothers.
      3. She doesn’t seem to have social etiquette skills or better yet, social awareness because latching onto your friends like this – at this speed of hers – isn’t healthy.

      So, what are you to do.

      I am going to recommend something unique rather than confronting her. I think you confronting her right now could potentially lead to more headache for you -and other friends might weigh in.

      Would you be willing to step away from this group of friends as much if she is going to be there? I know you may think ‘Why should I have to do that – they are MY friends’? I guess I am asking you to change your perspective.

      Boundaries are not always about confronting. Sometimes, boundaries are about saying nothing at all which can be ‘as’ powerful – if not ‘more’ powerful.

      My recommendation is to say nothing to her at all. I would explore teaching yourself the skill of detachment. She is getting to you emotionally (it would me too so no judgement). You need to learn how to not allow that to happen. The process might teach you to be more patient – and anytime we embark on a new skill, we learn more than we bargained for.

      If she is going to be where you are, don’t go. Go do something else. For a short time frame, set up social times with your friends one-on-one where YOU are in charge with who attends. Go to lunch one on one with a best friend, etc.

      If you go to an event and she is there, be very kind but then walk away and spend time with others.

      And then after a mix of this new behavior from you, spend time with her.

      Do you understand where I am coming from? I think with your focus on her and her behavior, your boundaries are not going to work b/c frankly, she doesn’t have boundaries. You can only control you and your own boundaries and in this case, it means spending less time with her directly and where she is – you won’t be.

      If you must confront her, a great time to do so would be when you get that text ‘If you change your mind, call me’. I would pick up the phone and call her and say this “Hi Ann (I am calling her Ann), how are you? I got your text and wanted to just share with you a bit more about me so that you aren’t getting your feelings hurt AND b/c I really appreciate your friendship. I am not someone who likes to hangout with the same friends or one specific friend every single weekend. I am someone who requires just a lot of time to myself. So, in order for our friendship to work – which I want it to – I guess I just wanted to explain more about me – that you won’t hear from me weekly but mainly once a month (be specific when setting a boundary) and I tend to spend more time to myself too which means, I won’t be available as much”.

      You can set a boundary never having mentioned her. You don’t apologize b/c you don’t have anything to be sorry for.

      I would also recommend reading the book http://www.amazon.com/Setting-Boundaries-Difficult-People-Relationships/dp/0736926968.

      This book changed my life. It taught me that you can set boundaries very lovingly – and make them about you. Once you get good at it, you will be a pro!

      Good luck!

      • Lorna says:

        WOW! I can’t tell you how much I appreciated your advice… you are absolutely spot-on about a lot of things I’ve been feeling, especially with my emotional investment and the way I’ve been feeling about all of this. It truly was the perspective I needed… I will not only take some time to just spend some time away and bring it up later on after some time has gone by. I’ve known her for over 15 years, so I don’t want to completely sever ties, but just tell her what will work for me just as you said.

        Thank you once again for your thoughtful, comprehensive, and caring approach. I appreciate your wisdom and I’m putting that book on my Kindle list! :)

      • Lorna says:

        PS – I specifically loved your suggestion about not showing up to any events where she may be there for a time being, so I will have more control as to when I do see her. You’re absolutely right about me being in charge of my own boundaries, not her… so I will definitely be doing that in the future. I have been a close friend to her for over 15 years, and she has always been a bit needy, but this past year the level of clinging has hit an all-time high. I think she is very lonely and has not tried to venture out and diversify her friends. But, as you said, that’s not my fault. Thanks once again!

        • Lyn says:

          I am so grateful this helped you!

          I experienced this before Lorna rather recently with a similar friend who I’ve known my whole life.

          The truth is, after reading the book in combination with learning why this person was ‘affecting’ me emotionally SO much, I have grown as a person leaps and bounds. They say people are in our lives to teach us something.

          I have never felt more in control of my life – empowered – and once you DO have what you ‘perceive’ is a difficult conversation, you will feel free. The more boundaries discussions I have had (very lovingly), the better I feel. I feel actually free of that friend now and yes, she is still in my life but not like before.

          I wish you the best – the book is amazing. Let us know how it all goes!

          • Lorna says:

            Well, I’m sad to say, it didn’t go well. There is a public event this weekend that I’m attending, and that my friend is aware of (and assumed she’d be going to with me). Now that the event is approaching, she asked me if I’d be going, I froze with worry. I decided it would be best to be honest, so I told her “Yes, I’m going. I hope you don’t mind, but I’m going with [another friend], as I’d like to spend time with her and we’re going to make it a “friend date”.

            I also mentioned that I’d like to set up a “friend date” for the two of us, one on one, as we hadn’t done that in a while. She has yet to respond to me (which is very unlike her) and ignoring me now. I know she’s upset with me.

            I can put myself in her shoes — she probably feels hurt and disappointed because she assumed she’d be going with me to this event… because it is the same group of friends who always attend the events. She probably felt that because we attended things as a group in the past, she’d naturally be a part of this outing as well.

            I feel so badly, but at the same time, I feel very clear now that there needs to be a serious talk about boundaries in order to make sure her feelings don’t get hurt and there are no more assumptions, and my space is respected. I feel I erred in not speaking to her earlier about how I was feeling when I had the chance… and this incident was allowed to happen. I guess I was not ready, but I am now. Just gonna wait to talk to her about this, I guess.

            • Darlene says:

              Hi Lorna,

              I think Lyn gave you sound advice. Sounds like you ended up having to deal with this straight on before you were ready to. I can understand being uncomfortable but your friend is responsible for her own feelings, you aren’t. You very reasonably set a boundary. One of the problems with dealing with people in a healthier way is that the ones who aren’t healthy themselves very often don’t respond well, which is kind of sad. Continuing to speak to her in a kind, fair and reasonable way, as you set necessary boundaries is the only thing you can do, in my opinion anyway. Darlene

              • Lorna says:

                Hey, Darlene, thank you for that… and you can say that again. :( Healthy boundaries and neediness do not mix — lesson learned.

                Things have not gone well at all since this transpired in October. I’ve put my boundaries up, and at the same time, I have been trying to show interest in spending time with her by inviting her out one-on-one. I have been met with silence, and I just found out why.

                A month ago, I was invited out of town for New Year’s by some other friends, and the friend I’ve been writing about got very hurt/angry/upset and has accused me of excluding her from the plans. Mind you, I never made New Year’s plans with her. I even spent last New Years with her. I was not even the one to initiate this trip, I was invited by other friends.

                I think this friendship has spiraled out of control. My boundaries have scared her and caused her to jump to fearful conclusions, and now I’m left with the mess and stress of having to explain myself. I’m drained and tired and I am not sure this friendship is going to work out after all. I am so sad about this, this has been a very hard lesson for me to learn.

                • Someone says:

                  Hi Lorna,

                  I wouldn’t stress over it so much at this point. I can SO empathize with you, having been.in.a similar type situation with a “friend” as you described above. The reason I say not to worry at this point is because it’s unlikely yoyregoing to be able to reason with or “satisfy” someone who gets upset over you changing plans on them….when you never had plans with them to begin with, only their self-centered assumption thay you’d do something with THEM. They might not realize just *how* unreasonable they are; but it’s likely that they’re at least partially aware of the fact that they attempt to guilt trip you/move you to do things THEIR way via making you feel bad. They’re taking advantage of you. They are draining you. You have the right to back away. Peace.

  18. Tess says:

    My best friend is needy for a good reason. She was in an accident and sustained a brain injury. She frequently needs my help, which I give to her. I have a lot on. My plate and sometimes her needs are draining. We’ve been friends for 35 years and I feel badly saying no to her, but would like to sometimes because it’s so exhausting caring for her. How do I find a balance?

    • Lyn says:

      Hi Tess. I actually feel qualified to answer this question because I have a horrid health condition and I have also sustained a brain injury. I have needed so much help the past 3 years and one of my very best friends was in your exact shoes dealing w/ what you are conflicted about.

      My first question is, does she have anyone else to help her? If not, I would recommend to her that there a lot of avenues to finding help (church, foundations…even hospitals have programs to help).

      Secondly,I will tell you what my friend did and while it was hard for me at first, I ended up respecting her as a person SO much more (and I already respected her a ton).

      My friend came and talked to me (she is still one of my very best friends) and said this “I love you so much Lyn and I need to tell you something that is so hard for me to say – so hard. I prayed over this for weeks. I am going to be here for you the rest of your life but I also cannot handle being here for you to the level I am now. I am feeling so depleted b/c I am taking on too much emotionally in handling what you are going through along with living my own life. This is what I can do for you moving forward (and she was so direct): I can bring you groceries every other week – I can give you money once a month if you need it – up to 200.00 each time) but I cannot do anything else. I think you need to find others that can help you in the other areas. If I didn’t care about our friendship, I would say nothing but I love you. Do you understand?

      I would proactively go talk with her – IN PERSON. I would not wait for her to ask for help and you say ‘no’ b/c of whatever reason. I would be so loving on the front end of the conversation – tell her how much she means to you – how much you love her and that you will always help her. And then tell her that doing as much as you are cannot go on b/c you are overwhelmed. BE SPECIFIC as to what you will do moving forward for her – be explicate and then stick to it.

      When I was told this by my friend, she also added that she could no longer be of ‘emotional support’ to me. At the time, I remember thinking ‘you are so selfish’ and I was so hurt – our friendship went on but I was hurt. And then I started to realize as I healed and I was of service to others, that I couldn’t take on their emotional ‘stuff’ much anymore b/c it affected me Neurologically.

      What I learned was that my friend adored me but she has a family and responsibilities. She was setting a boundary with me. It caused me to reach out more at church. And I ended up building the most amazing relationships. And our friendship flourished again in time.

      • Laliata says:

        Thanks so much for sharing your very important perspective. So much of these issues are so fraught with the fear and anxiety of the other person’s reaction that we fail to remember that the truly good-hearted people will listen and see that no one is super-person (and that really, the only person to take every single burden off of us is God), we’re all imperfect and have limits. Thank you, thank you thank you.

  19. Lyn says:

    This is my question: How do you disengage respectfully with a close friend who will not stop not only calling you repeatedly each day but asking about endless emotionally charged topics i.e. my breakup with my fiance, my childhood, my illness, etc.

    I have already tried not answered the phone. I have talked to her directly and said “I really do not want to talk about my breakup anymore’.

    The problem is partially of my own doing. I engaged with her in a daily unhealthy series of conversations about the demise in my relationship. I was often calling as much as she was calling me.

    So now I want a healthier life and healthier friendships – I am getting healthier myself and do not want any of my friends involved in my love life at all. I am in my early 40’s and do not want to spend another day feeling I have to engage in conversations I simply do not want to. It’s not just that I don’t want to answer “Have you talked to Dan’? It’s that I don’t want to talk about my relationships with whom I date or Dan – ever again.

    Advice would be greatly appreciated.

    • OwlJulie says:

      Lyn, first you must understand that she doesnt spend lots of time talking on the phone to you and giving you advice for her own sake.
      She believes that if she works hard by giving you advice, that you will like her and remain friends with her.
      That is why you are hoping for her to stop giving you advice but she won’t stop.
      So if you want her to stop you need to tell her very straightforward and clearly that you no longer want advice, but instead want to have fun. If you are very clear to her, she still might give u advice if it has become her habit. But its only her habit bc she is trying to be helpful to you. So please be patient with her and once again tell her that you don’t need advice anymore but that what you need is som do fun things with. Give her some time to be able to adjust/change. Then if she doesnt listen to you then you will need to ignore her.

      • Lyn says:

        Thank you so much for your feedback! Grateful!

        I have one more question if you are willing to give me advice (0: It isn’t simply the advice. It is the questions….Have you talked to your ex? You haven’t? Do you plan to? Do you think he will call? You haven’t even texted him? Have you emailed? These are the types of questions I get repeatedly throughout the day even after I have said ‘I really do not want to talk about him’.

        It makes me feel like my relationship with my ex is ‘monitored’. When I do talk to him (b/c I likely will), I don’t want to discuss it with friends. I want my love life private.

        It’s really the questions that are feeling so intrusive.

        I have no idea how to stop this b/c my saying ‘I don’t want to talk about it’ isn’t being accepted.

        • Deanna says:

          You know what my therapist would say? She has boundary issues. And people who repeatedly violate our boundaries need to get gone. It doesn’t matter what her intentions are–you’re uncomfortable and you need it to stop. You need to get clear on that, then you will be able to set a clear boundary for her (this is what I learned and it wasn’t nearly as hard to figure out once I made up my mind to listen to what my gut was telling me).

          • Lyn says:

            Thank you so much Deanna. She does have boundary issues. What I need to do is be BOLD. It’s hard setting a firm boundary but it’s time. Thank you so much for the advice and insight. I am taking your advice!

            So very much appreciated!

      • Someone says:

        People shouldn’t “work hard giving you advice” so that they will be liked and so someone will remain friends with them. They should give advice to help someone; that is, to keep them from harm, to keep them healthy and happy, etc.

        And really, “advice” can be tricky depending on the person’s desire to receive said advice.

        That is a whole other conversation in itself, however, as there are so many variables and possibilities within such a range of experiences.

        Peace.

  20. Rupi says:

    Dude i seriously need ur.. Last year i happened to come across a girl .. She was really good initially. She is currently studying physics and cincidentally i wass too pursuing a bachelors degree in this subjct. In the courss of tym we became great friends 1 can possibly imagine. She began talking to me ovr phone and shared all her secrets and frankly speaking we even spoke till late night. I was so much tied to her that i fell for her , a thing which i had always trying to avoid till date. I thnk she got a hint of my weakness for her. One thing i would like to say that she always needed my help in her studies. I used to teach her every bit concepts of this subjct even though she studied in a reputed college nd even took coaching classes under quite fyn teachers. Actually she was aware of the fact that i receivd medals for exellence I
    . However she didnt leave it. The fact reached its peak when she was unable to come out of her home and i had travel 5 kms for her just to deliver her mt notes. Can u possibly imagine how much i have shedded my self respect. But frankly i just did it not because i liked her(maybe 20% was dere fr it)but for friendship because i prefer friendship more than any other relationship n. But as days passed by i began to feel frustrated and let down as i felt that it wasa one sided friendship. Evn though i helped her so much she used to even fight me ovr phone for various smaall reasons and i usd to keep quite . I dnt know why .. I guess i was trying to protect this strangled frienship. Anyways the thing is what should i do now. ? How to avoid her !! I think u all might possibly posssess a solution for it ? Enough is enough… If u suggest by breaking dis frienship then i would try my best to do what it takes by following ur suggestions.. I really need ur hlp.. It always distrbs me when i evn try to study. I cant even concentrate . I m not able to keep myself bsy .. Pls hlp.. Hoping for ur favourable reply ..

    • Kelly says:

      Rupi,

      I’m so sorry to hear that your friend has mistook your kindness for weakness. I am flypaper for these types and they just seem to know who to pick on for support. This woman is not capable of being a friend so you should feel no guilt at just dropping the friendship. I recently had to do this to an old work friend I ran into and we started to get together as friends. It always had to be when she wanted to and she wanted someone to listen to her problems at work. She also would get very angry at things in her life and want to vent to me which got me shook up. Then she was angry at her family and I had to listen to that tirade and I was getting really sick of it. I really wanted to be a good friend but one day I called her when I got some bad news and she yelled at me she was at work and she would call me on the weekend and hung up. That was the end of this friendship and I never took another call from her. I feel better and that is what is important. You just need to screen your calls and if it is her don’t answer. She knows the score and that she was not being a real friend to you. No friendship is worth being used or treated badly. Some people can only take and not give back in any way and that is unfair. Be good to yourself and I hope you find a real and worthy friend soon.

    • OwlJulie says:

      Rupi, when she fought u on the phone for small reasons you should not have kept quiet. When you kept quiet that signalled to her that you don’t care about yourself or have self esteem. If you don’t have self esteem, people will walk all over you and take everything they can get from you. Next time you are in a situation where someone is fighting you, you need to show them that you have high self esteem by standing up for yourself. That will either make them treat you with respect or they will leave u and it will make you able to learn that they were not your friend to begin with.

      • Rupi says:

        Kelly ,

        In the due course time I became more serious . I am just not able to reciprocate it to u or by any means could make you understand . But i understood what u r trying to say . Now I feel how much time I have lost thinking and eventually caring for some1 who didn’t bothered my existence . In other words, She doesn’t deserves me .I understood that she keeps calling me a best friend and always behaves as if she’s my G.F only to keep me in . U see sometimes you cannot throw away precious things simply because you dont like its design . The same thing goes out here . Who would try to kill a hen that would lay golden eggs. I have now realized my worth . Yes its true that ignoring her would be quite tough coz she dominates me in my heart but frankly i am not willing to sacrifice my self esteem just to satiate someone else ‘ s needs .
        I know what it takes and know that eventually it is her who is losing something which she’ll one day regret for ( even if she doesnt i dnt care). I deserve more cause deep within me I know that I am a great FRIEND , a great PERSON and a skilled student( I m not praising myself , I hope what I am trying to say ) .
        Well thanks for ur support . Hope u reply . Farewell

  21. Nabeel says:

    Even I had a friend whom I have considered as a very good friend and always thought he’ll be always there in my life. I used to always help him so much, be always there with him for everything, even lend him money when he needed urgently and no one else whom he considers as his best friends were ready to give him. I have helped him so much tht I’m sure no one would help a friend that much. But I used to always feel it as a one-sided friendship where I was doing everything and even keep in contacts but he used to only contact when he was in need of my help, wat angers me the most is he still keeps in contacts wid our mutual friends whom he always consider as best friends but have never helped him in any way. Now I really feel exhausted whether to continue our friendship or just start ignoring him so that finally he myt realize my friendship but I’m nt able to do that because I had always considered him as my very good friend and even he knows that. Btw we both are guys and I like him only as a friend and nothing more

  22. Asha says:

    the person who is too nice and goes overboard for their friends all the time becomes so caught up in the problems day to day and nonstop issues that they don’t even realize they are neglecting their own needs.

    you need to cut off people like this….let them know that they are draining you…and you need to be selfish and take care of your own needs first then worry about theirs.

    the person that is always worrying about someone else is too good and easily taken advantage of either by real users in this world or people who are just unmotivated and latch on to the positivity of the person being used…….

    • Carol says:

      Sometimes it’s niceness and naivety. We want to believe our friends can be trusted and have enough empathy to sense when they’re pushing our boundaries or draining us. Sadly, needy people in general don’t have boundaries so don’t recognise other people’s boundaries and they lack empathy because they are so focussed on their own self pity.

      I’ve been caught a few times by these type of friends, and lost very large sums of money in my naive belief that a friend would never ask for a loan with no intention of repaying, so I do have more insight into the subtle and no so subtle manipulations played out by certain types of needy people.

      I recently made friend with a work colleague who on the surface is quite cheerful and talked often about how ‘generous she is’, i.e. she’ll bring you a flower, or a cake she baked, which is quite charming and thoughtful. However, I learned fairly soon, there was a big price to pay for these gifts.
      The talk soon turned to how broke she is, every single day our lunch break was spent talking about how she has no money. She works full time, has another private source of extra income and has a boarder who in effect, pay her rent. She also has a family member who often loans her quite substantial amounts of money, yet, she claims to be broke all the time.

      She told me one day “I have to borrow $20 from you’. I was shocked, it wasn’t a request, it was a demand! I refused. She sulked. Next day, she asked me for 10cents because she was broke again. Then goes to the ATM to take money and buy a take away lunch!! She has spun her story of how broke she is so well, that numerous people lend her money, it’s unbelievable that people fall for it.

      Of course she’s in debt and, it’s not her fault, it was her ex, who abandoned her after accruing the debt, so everyone feels sorry for her.

      She lies too, if you point out that she earns a wage, plus an extra income, she’ll deny having an extra income, then tell you the following day she earned $200 for her extra income.

      There’s an incredibly subtle manipulation that goes on, they can be charming in small ways to soften you up, then hit you for a loan, you feel guilty saying no, after all they gave you that little gift, how could you be so mean.

      Apart from money, she expects me to do everything she does, and is persistent in trying to convince me to spend money on the same clothing that she has bought, not that I do, if she runs across a road with busy traffic and I refuse to do the same, she sulks. If I don’t want to take a walk in my lunch hours, she sulks.

      She told friends and family, that she had no money for food for a week, yet I’d seen her buy take away lunches every day and pointed that out to her. Her response, ‘they don’t need to know that’.

      I became so stressed after a few months of spending time with this person, that I had to put her at arm’s length, the stress of anticipating that my lunch time would be spent listening to her talk of poverty, her lies to manipulate others into giving her money. In the end, I told her, I do not borrow nor do I lend money, and guess what, that was the end of that little friendship, as she walked away with a look of bitter disappointment. It’s just mind blowing how completely transparent this type of person can be, so the sooner you say, No, the sooner you’ll be rid of the energy and money drainers.

    • These folks are desperate for some help….

  23. Brie says:

    Hey, new to the forum. Wow, lots and lots of comments from both sides. There is that saying about never judging someone until you walk in their shoes,it is true, but who really gets that opportunity? Everyone responds differently. It is up to the person to decide how they are going to respond to the situation and interact with their friends about it.

    It is not a friend’s job to be the security net for another friend’s emotional hole they like to throw themselves into. I just dealt with a situation recently, hence how I found this forum, it is very frustrating for a friend to be constantly emotionally used by another friend. It’s conflicting by nature because caring for a friend that’s an emotional siphon depletes the emotionally giving friend to the point where they must push their needy friend away, which is the exact opposite of what they really want to do. Caring friends want to help! Not be used.

    I do believe if people are alone, maybe they didn’t put themselves there, but they are keeping themselves there. Everyone has a choice. I’ve had to deal with some hard ones, some of them with no support, that is why it is important to be able to emotionally support yourself. You will feel better about yourself and you will keep more friends if you do. But feeling better about yourself is the key.

    • OwlJulie says:

      I guess an old saying applies here: the more you have, the more you can generate from that; the less you have, the less you can generate from that. To those whom alot is given, more is expected. These people who don’t know how to generate their own support, are now at a double loss when their friends leave them. Additionally they may not even have another friend. So loneliness piles on top of more loneliness in a big heap. Supporting yourself is something that is taught from parent to child. To teach yourself how to support yourself may take upwards of 10 years or even 20. There are still older women in there late 50’s who, for instance, don’t know how to set boundaries or even what a boundary is. These people who are clueless in some areas may be well read, intelligent, and have lots of wisdom. It’s just that they have not been taught or supported by a community who they could learn these things from. Learning how to support oneself after experiencing a childhood of neglect is a lifetime achievement, something that may never be reached even with full participation in a supporting community. That is because it can oy be truly learned in the arena if intimate friendship-one on one- and if those friends leave you bc they don’t feel comfortable, then you have no arena to learn and grow anymore. And from my own experience, the lack of friends feels like Im living in a lonely desert, abandoned. So I think we should rethink the idea that if someone is pulling on you for support, that we should just leave them.

      • Needy says:

        Owl Julie, I couldn’t have said it any better! I was just thinking such a thing to that other person who posted, when I read your trenchant response. I know I am a needy person… but since I have no other resources and few people in my life, how can I be otherwise? Also, I am old, sick, poor and cannot drive, for a variety of reasons. So here I am… I cannot do for myself out of what I have nothing of, in the material world, right? So I try to fall back upon spirituality, but you know, that’s often just a front: I’m really lonely. It is a vicious cycle; I thank you so much for recognizing that, and explaining that truly needy people often just don’t have a way of getting out of their problems; so people dump them, and the problem just proliferates. Thanks again.

        BTW: I imagine that a lot of it has to do with our busy, surface society. When I watch tv shows like “The Waltons”, I wonder whether people were ever that community- minded? Some of us just get lost in the shuffle. I can’t even “join” anything that much, because I can’t get there?! You think someone could give me a ride, but that’s another story… and online, it’s very surface, too. Let’s face it: we’re all selfish, at heart.

        I also read another one of your posts: I have had similar experiences with therapy, etc. I think we are alike. Let me know if you want to contact me… (not sure how, on here?)

        Thanks for your experiences and ideas.

        • Kelly says:

          Hi Needy,

          I can relate to your post because I am disabled since my 40’s and I’m still trying to get used to living on 1/3 of my old salary. I have a used car but I need it to get to doctors and my part time job.

          I used to be a very spiritual person and went to church regularly until my health went down hill. I have Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue, Osteo artritis and I feel like I have the flu most of the time. I fell away from church because it hurt to sit an hour on a wooden bench aching all over. So I lost my church friends. My work friends too when I went out on disability. I had quite a few friends in AA but they wanted a ride, stole from me and reminded me constantly I needed to keep going to meetings even feeling as bad as I do. I have no urge to drink and it’s been 13 years.

          Luckily I have always been a loner type and it doesnt bother me. I need a lot of space and relationships are a lot of work even when everything is going good. The only part that scares me is dying alone and no one noticing for a while. I also need surgery but I don’t have anyone to bring me or pick me up and they won’t operate without someone waiting for me. I take care of a 92 year old lady a couple hours a day running her errands and doing light housework. She is very good to me and she has a close family and she doesn’t understand how I live all alone with no one. I have a sweet Boston Terrier that loves to cuddle and is a great companion.

          If I was to get in a relationship I could never cook and do the housework and be there for him sexually and that would make me feel guilty. I dated three men since I got sick and all but one cheated on me. The one that didn’t cheat just wanted free room and board and all the benefits without conributing or working. He drained me and I had to let him go. I told him he had to pay me a hundred a week for rent and he left. The few women I have tried to be friends with mistook kindness for weakness. I would offer to give them a ride and before I knew it they wanted me to bring them to doctor and dentist visits and not even offer me 5 bucks for gas. When I told them they needed to pay for gas they found someone else to cart them around for free. I would never ask someone for a ride and not offer them gas money. Knowing me I would just take the bus…

          I just worry that if something happened to me who would take care of my dog? It’s embarassing when your filling out forms and they want a friend or family member to notify and I say there is no one. They look at me like I’m joking. My son is in prison and I’m not putting that down.

          If I had money I could pay someone to help me out and kennel my dog but that isn’t an option right now. I am too ill to try and date a man but it would be nice to have a friend to talk to or go out to eat with once in a while. My neighborhood is nice but people are not friendly except to wave to. I guess that is a good thing really because there is no drama.

          • Amy F says:

            You certainly have a lot going on. I also have the illnesses you do, and I’m single so I know meeting new people is difficult.
            One thing that jumped out at me in your message is that you sound depressed. Have you talked to your doctor or a therapist about this?
            I know being positive when you feel bad can feel impossible, but try to think of your positive qualities-things that would make people want to be your friend? How can you increase this part of your personality? Remind yourself of all the qualities that drew people to you before you got sick. If you are unable to do this a therapist can help.
            You can find low or no cost therapy through Medicare and Medicaid, through your county or town in the blue pages of the phone book, or at mental health agencies like Jewish Family Services (not religious counseling), Catholic Social Services (it’s a not religious counseling, but I don’t think they do abortion counseling, not that it would be an issue for you) and you can google free therapy, sliding scale therapy, low cost therapy with your zip code. Some private therapists also do sliding scale, but you’d have to call around and ask.

            As for surgery, the church probably has volunteers to help with things like that, even if it’s not your church, they usually help anyone. Try Catholic, Mormon, and Jewish places of worship. The other thing you can do is ask an acquaintance or neighbor who doesn’t work during the day. Lots of people are generous with their time and heart and would probably love to help out. You could even offer to pay someone to drive you. I know asking can be difficult, I’ve done the suggestions above when I had cancer and few local friends. Even though it’s hard, rather than focusing on not having anyone, try to focus on the fact you found someone to drive you.

            For me, thinking about gratitude and what I appreciate helps me stay positive, and when I feel positive, I’m happier.

            Good luck.

          • Sympathetic1 says:

            I feel for what you have said. Since I have gotten older and my life is different, I have not been trying to make new friends due to feeling that I cannot, easily. It is complicated, and again, involves finances and health. I think that unless two people can relate, and wouldn’t know until they get acquainted, I feel hesitant to open up.

            I have always remained friendly out in public and have conversations, which has led to exchanging phone numbers, though will realize that one may be in a better position and plans on a real social lifestyle or another expects to spend a lot of time together, but doesn’t like to talk on the phone. I cannot afford what others might, so it has kept me from a lot.

            As far as men go, I gave that up a while back, really due to their expectations. I am still friends with an old boyfriend, which I am grateful for, but miss having a female friend who would live nearby, but don’t need constant contact, either. Luckily, I can be alone and have a pet, but it doesn’t mean I don’t want friends. Older friends have moved out of the area or we drifted apart. Some imply they would like to be in touch, but feel inhibited about my life.

      • Someone says:

        OwlJulie,

        While I understand what you’re saying, and even do agree to an extent/within limits, it’s equally true that people who you think should not give up on draining relationships have their iwn problems, families, obligations, etc, and need and DESERVE to take good, healthy care of THEMSELVES, too.

        A friendship is reciprocal. Of course given ups and downs in life, it’s not like a constant even flow of give/take is going to happen…it’s more like you give when they need and vice versa.

        However, there’s a difference between friendship “duties” for lack of a better word, and a friend who is codependent and wanting you to run their lives, as they make no progress in their self awareness and no gains in their coping skills. The saying “give a man a fish, he eats for the day. Teach him to fish and he’ll never be hungry.”I

        You can’t force anyone to learn, and just as true, you cannot keep “rescuing” a person.

        You can be supportive of their efforts to fortify themselves but THEY have to do the hard work. And there are many who’ve come from nothing and learn better ways. And many who’ve had a lot and are still in need if direction.

        As someone who has a good, deep, natural understanding of people, I often find myself attracting those who’d be happy to let me run their lives for them. It’s difficult bc I of course want to help. Help, not enable. Help, not reinforce helplessness or dependence. However, in my personal experience, most don’t want your actual HELP…which would lead them towards gaining emotional strength and confidence and independence. They want you to soothe them. While my heart goes out to them, again, it has been my experience that their concern for MY wellbeing, including having time for myself, is slim to none, for many reasons.

        We can endlessly debate the fact that everyone is different and has unique strengths and weaknesses, and therefore the more needy among us “can’t help it”.

        From experience and in my opinion, it’s rarely true that they have ZERO control and ability to improve…they’re afraid to try. Which isn’t a feeling unique to being needy and fscing the orospect of evolving a bit.

        While I definitely have sympathy for the struggles of needier folks, it often feels like my sympathy is a one way street. That is, they’re not the most.sympathetic to how incredibly difficult and draining it can be to be be on the receiving end of that constant need. Once you have tried to actually HELP them and your efforts are met with more and more demands, it gets to the point where you have nothing else to give.

        While some needy people are in genuinely difficult circumstances beyond their control, there are plenty of needy people who simply need to focus outside of themselves long enough to remember that EVERYONE is fighting a battle.

        Mind you, I have a plethora of painful health conditions and other circumstances that get isolating for me at times. I am aware that some people are in genuinely difficult circumstances beyond their control and ability to improve …that is a genuinely needy person.

        I’m talking physically limited, or SEVERELY mentally/emotionally disturbed. Because while working to improve your self awareness and then applying that for positive change is HARD AS HELL, it’s a HELL of a lot harder NOT to, in the long run.

        Peace.

        • Darlene says:

          Hi someone,

          Beautifully put. Some needy people are simply trying to soothe their feelings in the moment. People who are doing that really aren’t aware that they are draining the other person.

          I have no problem helping those who are figuring out how to help themselves, but not those who aren’t willing to do the hard work of becoming healthier. One feels positive and energizing, the other futile and draining. Opting out of being drained is not the same as being uncaring….

  24. barbara says:

    I am possibly a needy friend? The thing you need to remember is “needy friends” is not just some creation to annoy others, a selfish flee bag or whatever else was said here, it can be a person with quite serious emotions wounds, a person who feels overwhelmed with sadness, loneliness or self hate and needs to reach out. A person who has never had enough love and is possibly filled with self doubt and may have bigger issues like anxiety and depression. I feel so much of a burden, I hate myself, I wish I didn’t feel so needy but there is a gaping hole in me that I can’t seem to ever fill. Positive happy easy people is not realistic all the time, its such a complex issue, life and being a person and feeling okay about yourself and how you treat others and dealing with your past that may be extremely painful and damaging to how you operate as an adult. Of course people need to feel good in their friendships, loved, respected, equalled and cared about, and of course we all should have boundaries and look to ourselves for the majority of love and care but a needy person is way out of their depth. It is easier for some people not necessarily in life with all its unexpected events but to just feel okay and function well within themselves and others and much harder for others. Some of the more burdening people also have also the most burdens to bear in a very deep emotional psychological way. And its not as easy as just “getting over it” or quickly fixed by professional help, some rivers run very very deep. I don’t know how we solve these things, I don’t know how to solve my neediness and negativity, I wish it wasn’t there, I wish I was an easier happier person, I wish I didn’t fuck up every relationship but if we can remember these things
    come from somewhere! Sometimes experiences from a young legitimately needy time can be so negative and create such unfulfilled need and at such a crucial time that its your natural way to view the world and feel and you have to work very ver hard to get out of that hole. Perhaps we all just need to be more understanding, more love and take care of ourselves.

    • Lalita says:

      It’s understandable that past traumas, especially early in life, can mark a person for life and make it difficult to have a mentally/emotionally healthy outlook on life and healthy/balanced friendships. I don’t think anyone here is positing that all needy people are just a bunch of narcissist jerks just there to annoy the rest of us.

      What some people forget is the friendships, for the seemingly well-adjusted and well-balanced, are to have voluntary relationships outside of family that are to compliment them. Many of us with less than ideal families also are trying to escape painful circumstances and can’t deal with someone else’s emotional issues. That’s why it’s very difficult to have a health relationship with someone who is more needy than we might be.

      Additionally, what I think most higher-than-average-emotionally-needy people do to their detriment is to fasten and hold tight to ANYONE who remotely is nice to them without picking up on the signals that the person is capable of only so much or that the person is really interested in a deep friendship. There is an unconscious “belief”, if you will, that there is a *one* friend that is supposed to fill up the deep black hole left by trauma, depression or what have you. That’s an impossibility. It’s really an unrealistic expectation and no one is really equipped for that. We’re all imperfect humans beings, capable of only so much.

      I also observe that many people substitute friends for much-needed therapy. A friend cannot absolutely compensate for a serious mental health issue like depression, crippling anxiety, etc. And I think that’s at the root of a lot of strain in friendships and why some people consistently lose friends. That’s why having more than one friend is important when one is emotional needy or has a serious mental health problem. One person cannot be one’s sole support. One needs a team of friends, in addition to a competent and caring therapist, and in many cases, going to a support group with people who are going through the same thing helps a lot. It’s frequently there that you can “brain dump” all the negativity of the depressive thoughts and have people understand exactly what you’re going through in a judgement-free zone. Journal writing is also an excellent way of dumping out the negative emotions when no one is emotionally available.

      Barbara, I’m very sorry you’ve suffered and I wish you the best life possible. It is possible if you have the right resources and the right team with you. My very best wishes.

      • Linda says:

        Dear, dear Barbara,

        I know exactly (or at least very closely) to how you feel. I am 61. I was a very high functioning person, despite childhood abuse and neglect, until five years ago when then husband left 30-year marriage to reunite with his high school sweetheart. I was totally blindsided and deceived. All of my “friends” were married and shortly began to exclude me from get-togethers. I was somehow a reminder of the frailty of their own marriages? Who knows! My one and only child/son lived with me for three years following his dad’s breakup of our family. For past two years, having lived with father, and having a girlfriend himself, my son has estranged from me because I dared to tell him I had health problems. He felt this was over-burdening him—and he’s a paramedic. I am an only child myself, no family, no friends, except my cat who I care for with her heart condition. I have always been there for EVERYBODY, but now I have no one. People just look at the lack of friends in my life and say , Hmm, it must be her..she’s such a loser. But, they don’t see the hurting, crying woman inside, who goes to bed alone in her little apartment, mourning for a life that was shattered by a narcissistic former husband, and now by an equally self-centered son, who has pulled the ultimate punishment on his mother—estrangement. I am dying of loneliness and I could literally die at night and no one, except my cat, would know. I empathize with you tremendously, and wish we lived close by so we could bond in friendship.
        Love,
        Linda

    • OwlJulie says:

      Therapists are only paid for 50-60 minutes once a week and you can’t ever go out with them to have a cup of coffee. Try using them to get everything off your chest? Ive tried that and realized what i really needed was a therapist 3 hours a day, 7 days a week.
      I also attend 12 step groups 2-3x a week, and although it’s helpful to hear others’ stories to know that I am not the only one having my issues, there is a certain amount of things that I just cant say in front of a group of 5-15 people.
      Also I do journal and that helps a lot.
      My point is that I need friendship- real friendship in my life but I believe that I was ‘dumped’ by my last friend because I was too needy. (She didnt confirm it.) That is why I am reading this article. But how do we get friends if we are afraid of being needy- and of driving them away?

      • Cherrie says:

        Darling…. You should be allowed to be needy…. It’s part of life. I believe there are just so many selfish people, with no compassion out there for others, and this is the problem…. I’m sending you LOVE vibes and peace and understanding sprinkled with compassion…. In love…. Sherrie <3

        • Shante says:

          That’s sweet, but dismissive. Neediness is a sign of attempting to externalize love. It’s not a happy way to function through life… but once this is recognized, steps can be taken to fill the void with yourself (cognitive behavioral therapy, etc). It’s not that others are selfish… it’s that you’re expecting others to give you what you need, and that will never happen. You are setting others up to fail, and even moreso, yourself.

          • Jamie says:

            That’s sweet, but also dismissive. Neediness is a sign of not having enough of something – love mainly. Everyone has a certain level they need and for people with no family to fall back on or long term friends because they’ve moved a lot… their cup is not full. The problem is amplified as they grasp on to try to fill it, which tends to push people away more, catch 22. I’m not saying it’s fair to ask others to help fill their cup more than people are prepared to give, I’m simply saying what is life without love, and some people aren’t given that love.

          • Someone says:

            Shante, that is very well put!

            Peace.

      • Lalita says:

        OwlJulie – have you though of connecting with just one or two of the people in the group? Are they the kind of people who would welcome a more intimate friendship? Gauge if they are by asking them out for coffee and proceeding slowly, with caution so you can read if they are really in it for a deeper friendship. Focus on making more than one friend though. Do not put all your emotional eggs in one basket, so to speak.

        Have you tried Meetup and other venues to meet people in real life? That might be one avenue to make friends. Cultivating interests and hobbies helps people find friends.

        Also, be up front about your expectations in a friendship. For example: are you the type of friend who calls up people at 4 AM to vent about why they weren’t invited to a party? (Mind you, she had had personal differences with the hostess). I had a friend like that. Mind you, she was from an intact family with no abuse/neglect, no clinical mental health issues. She just had high expectations of her friends and let’s face it, imperfect people can’t be “on call” for all of life’s disappointments. She is also unemployed and collects disability for a physical injury so that made her less conscious of what a working person feels when they get woken up at 4 am. Frankly, I thought someone had died. This is only an example and not meant to project on you but it is illustrative of the issue of unspoken expectations of a friendship.

        I would also challenge the thought of defining yourself as a needy person. For example: do you have to talk to your friend various times a day *every day* without fail? If you don’t, do you feel empty or angry at the friend? Do you absolutely have to have plans with them every weekend and get angry or disappointed when they don’t fulfill that expectation? Do your friends have to help you with everyday tasks (think laundry, food shopping, etc.)? Do you have to run by your friend every decision you have to make? Do you need this person to take your calls at any time of the day or night for whatever reason, while they’re at work, at dinner with family or when they’re asleep and get angry or disappointed when they can’t drop things and attend to you emotionally? Do you expect to the person listen to you vent without end about the same issues over and over again? Do people feel refreshed after being with you or do they feel drained? That’s what is needy, in my opinion.

        A lot of people get labeled as needy because they have very high and unspoken expectations of the other person on the other end, like they are expected to fill a void the person has. One can have needs and not be needy. There is a difference.

        Another article I found helpful is this one: http://jezebel.com/5577478/what-to-do-when-youre-the-needy-friend

        All the best.

      • Poppy says:

        I realize this sounds simplistic — and maybe even impossible right now — but I think the way that we meet friends is first by being a friend to ourselves. Meeting needs is interior work, often helped by people in your exterior world (if you’re very lucky :-)

        I think the label “needy” says more about other people than it does about you. We are where we are, and we need to love ourselves and have compassion for where we are, even if it’s frustrating, uncertain and scary at times. There are plenty of people who will meet us where we are, and get something out of being with us. There is no shortage of people at every stage of the journey to emotional health! If someone can’t handle your “neediness” keep looking, but first learn to accept yourself. It will make the whole process much easier.

      • kelly2 says:

        Hey there, I had tho issue of needing a huge hole filled with love. I believe its a see place in our heart that either our parents fill or God fills. My parents could not fill that hole so God did and now I don’t feel so desperate. I know god is always there for me and I can talk to Him any time and He always loves me. That’s what we all need, and unfortunately its hard when you get older because everyone has there own life.

    • Cherrie says:

      You have every right to express yourself totally to a REAL friend and have them LOVE you and understand you… I think LOVE is wafts missing in people that are in the need to UNLOAD needy friends… We are all needy as its part of life…. I’m sending you LOVE right now and thoughts n vibes of peace and happiness….. Much love to you <3

  25. Mufrend says:

    Thanks for this timely article and sharing your stories. I have been in a similar situation and I can relate with your experiences. My friend expects me to be there all the time. She pesters me to hangout together and all that she is willing to do is sit on my couch and talk negative things. One day, she opened up to me about her personal problems. I realized she needed professional help. She was not going to therapy or getting the help she needed. I encouraged her to get professional help. She was diagnosed with depression. Every time she would abuse alcohol and get angry at me, I took it all in. In my mind, I was trying to be there for a depressed friend who was going through a rough patch.

    But now she is better with therapy and medication, stopped alcohol abuse. I have started to slowly step away from her and put my needs first. She complains about this and makes me feel guilty about not being there. I am just tired of this friendship and guilty at the same time. Hope I can slip away.

  26. Dana says:

    My name is dana reilly I need help. I am gay .I had a girlfriend for 20 yèars we wère together. But her. But her guardians. Carole and john took her from me.she is 44years old.this why iam so deperest every day and night.. I can not live with our her.her name is pamela. Acabbo.all I want is to see her and to talk to her. I need her back in my live. Now I am even more deperest because I am I live. With some one new orleans her name is tiamaria. Torres from the tv show pitbulls and parolees it is called villalobos Rescue center.I want to talk to her so very badly and met her as. Well.I am very sad all the time I am never happy.if I could met tia I will be happy. That’s the only way .or else I will be deperest and sad for the rest of my live.that’s the gods honist truth. Thank you. Dana Reilly

    • Kyle says:

      I am sorry you are having a rough time with your girlfriend but your message was not clear and did not make a whole lot of sense.

  27. Julie says:

    Cherrie… no guilt.. move on! I have sooo been there! Many times over… You are going to have to stand up and TELL that person..I am busy and I really need to take care of ME… I hope that you take care of you and let this “supposedly close pal” go… I have been with close friends who treated me like you know what..but, it’s also because I let it go on and on and on..and I should have said.. “Buh bye!!!”

    I hate when friend’s guilt others.. what a huge pain!! :-(

  28. Elaine says:

    I have a very needy friend who has been draining me for years. I’ve pulled back, and just a few months ago, I had a face to face talk with her, that if she doesn’t stop pushing (for more and more, no matter how much I “give”, I will back out completely. The daily texts asking for anything and everything slowed for a bit, but she’s back at it. My husband passed away last year and she has NO idea how much of a struggle it is every DAY to do what I’ve got to do (go to work, clean, take care of our son all the while grieving for the wonderful man I had planned my future with. ). She is a good listener, but I don’t need anything from her. I rarely call her, but i do offer support that i hope she finds another job, etc. Even when I do have her here just to hang out for a bit, she’s asking, well what are you doing tomorrow? So it’s come to me now getting texts or voicemails that say “can you please find it in your heart to let me come over tomorrow, I can really use a friend and the companionship and a hug. I just don’t have it in me anymore. We have known each other since we were children, and she was somewhat like that then (like she had chores to do after school, and would say, hey if you mop the kitchen, i’ll be done sooner, so we can go out), I remember saying, I have my own chores to do, sorry.. and she says she wants to “be there” for my since my husband passed (I am young, 43) but again, I don’t expect or NEED anything from her, and I don’t force anything on her or anyone. I just don’t know how to get her to see that I’m doing the best that I can with having her over, etc. I’ve told her that I TOO need to get out and do stuff, yet she only wants to come HERE and sit (even if I tell her i am going to be napping, she’ll say, that’s okay, I’ll just sit there, I JUST need out). that’s bizarre. Seriously, for the past month, I’ve had debilitating acute vertigo, vomiting for over a week, and she said she just wanted to come and sit (while I slept). She offers to “help” if i let her come over, and when I do, she just sits while I do whatever. Not that I would ever expect a friend to do dusting, vacuuming, etc. but anyway. I just can’t take it. I have enough to deal with.

    • Elaine says:

      oh and PS: she keeps losing her jobs, so if I go out to eat, etc, she has no money and asks if I can pay for her, since she’s got no money . So the only thing she can do is come here and sit, in the hopes that I feed her, but sometimes I NEED to get out of the house too. If I take my mom out to dinner for her birthday, this girl is asking if she can go too, but I’ll have to pay since she’s out of work. I thought adults knew that if they dont have the money to pay for something themselves, they simply can NOT GO.

      • Sympathetic1 says:

        That is why I do not want to become involved with new people now, partly due to not being in a position to go out. Except when invited by others, I am only at home, taking care of my needs.

        It seems your
        friend is very desperate.

    • Alberta says:

      Unfortunately it sounds like your friend has no empathy for you. Creeping in your life like a flea infestation but offering no benefit. Don’t kid yourself. She does have an ‘idea’ of how much of a struggle it is, you want to kid yourself to think she ‘cares’ becasue you have shared history, which is her hook into you. You can’t get her to SEE that you are doing your best and struggling because she doesn’t CARE – that is the reality shown by her behaviour towards you in the super super hard times you have been going through. She comes across like a psychopath – zero empathy.

      I’m not sure who said it (Oprah???) but if someone shows you who they are, BELIEVE them. Most of us are caught up in our fantasies about how people should be, add shared history into this and you can have a real fantasy friendship while being treated like crap the whole time.

      You have reached the point where you can’t take it – that means you are completely drained. As Irene mentioned character endures – this person has been maniupulative for a very long time. You are under no obligation because of shared history -friendship is a choice. You have the choice to say no to having this bs in your life – though your ‘friend’ will do everything in her power to make you feel like you have no choice but to stay in this toxic vortex.

      If you have trouble being direct in real life and are easily bulldozed it can be helpful to watch shows,movies, read novels with confident characters (Nurse Jackie, Dexter are my faves for confident characters and Dagny Taggart from Atlas shrugged is good as well, Mr Lee from East of Eden) you can surprise yourself with your confidence.Being direct can be empowering

      . Your friend starts wanting to ‘help’ you, “NO” “I don’t have time goodBYE” and don’t engage with her guilt trips or whinging, engaging with these types is like putting naptha on a campire.

      Read the book The Gift of Fear – he has a good example about people who offer ‘help’ ie woman is in an underground parking lot taking out her groceries and the nice man offers to ‘help’, help that she isn’t asking for, help that she doesn’t want. Your friend is the same as the man in the underground offering ‘help'; she is ‘helping’ allright, helping herself to your time and energy and you get to be a marionette for her to control so she can have ‘power.”

      Another saying – ‘don’t argue with an idiot, they will bring you down to their level and beat you with experience’ You show indifference to her, as she has towards you -caring about a person who doesn’t care about you is a waste of your time and energy. If she starts talking about her personal issues – you start talking about yours – I guarantee she will exit the conversation quickly since it isn’t about her and her ‘issues’

      Read Ken’s posts – it sounds like your friend is feigning helplessness so you can feel sorry for her – even though you are the one going through major stuff right now. The situation is set up this way so the energy is always going her way, no matter what YOU are going through. Some people you just have to tell them to fck off and not worry about being ‘nice’ or ‘polite’ about it because they will ‘nicely’ steal your soul if they can.

      • Elaine says:

        Thank you Alberta, and ty for your suggestions on books, tv shows, etc. I actually did text her a couple of days ago and said I can’t do all that you need me to do, and it’s never enough anyway (in your eyes), so IF you can text or call me without needing anything from me, OR saying that you need such and such, it will be fine. Her reply?” I’m sorry I am a horrible person. Then, it was It seems like you don’t care, etc. I’m about to lose everything” . I got angry and said that she didn’t read or comprehend anything I said. I told her to read it again, and also to read how many requests she has had of me in the past 6 months. I said READ HOW MANY. There are many. Too many for me to be able to appease you. She even said something like, well you go out to meet up with others and it’s never “me”. Well, I’m not sure what to tell you, but this can’t continue. It’s been very “freeing”, but I still have a twinge of guilt at times. It probably won’t be permanent, but I do hope she’ll learn from our previous face to face conversation and then THIS. People have limits and I’ve reached mine. and people should know and learn boundaries, which she seems to have no concept of. Let me add just for giggles (and gasps) that my father in law also lived here with me and my husband. He passed the yr before my husband. and my mom called it for sure, when she said that “K” will soon be asking if she can move in. She did. and i told her no. Her answer was that well I thought that friends helped other friends who were down and out. So i said, well you live back in your mother’s house, which isn’t fun, but you’re not homeless. But since then, it’s reached this new threshold. and my tolerance level of her BS and demands and expectations is . at. it’s. end. Thanks again.

        • Elaine says:

          I wanted her to sift through the texts she has sent, to actually see how many times she’s asked me for something. I actually tried the detach emotionally thing first. With her, it didn’t work. So now I’ll try this.

          • Alberta says:

            Try watching on youtube 4mingthoughts videos – google 4mingthoughts emotional vampire series – she is very well spoken and has good voice tones and phrases. She also helps you to see through the guilt trips.

            Boundaries is a very interesting concept – I thnk some don’t care about boundaries because getting through the boundaries is a power trip for them. This is why you have to be strong and use firm tones and don’t back down or be afraid to say fck off. Boundary pushers – bulldozers – can use your own politeness against you. This is why you can’t even worry about her feelings – even whether or not she feels remorse for not caring about you. Guaranteed she doesn’t care- otherwise she would have shown you kindness and consideration after all that you’ve been through. These types are predators, a type of predator we are not taught to watch out for -and they don’t care about feelings. You have to be indifferent otherwise she will still push you through guilt and old ties.

      • Forgive says:

        Alberta, your advice is excellent. This is just what I needed to hear. I let needy friends return and their character endured. It’s no wonder that I’ve been feeling drained and unproductive as of late. I’m sure that I won’t be keeping them around. Ugly emotions follow when I have toxic friends around. A friend recently told me that there’s no such thing as a bad friend. I either have a friend or I don’t. I don’t want or need to have toxic friends in my life. I’m done trying to fix the toxic friendships. I’m much better off ending them than saving them.

  29. Renee says:

    This site helped me alot today. I have been dealing with a very needy friend that is very self centered but has a way of making me feel guilty for not constantly feeling sorry for her. I do so much for her, yet get next to nothing in return. She gets very vindictive when she drinks. I don’t drink more than one, and she gets blitzed and is very manipulative and verbally abusive. Just this week I distanced myself from her because of another drunken embarrassing evening with her. She keeps texting me saying that I am her best friend, can’t we get past this, on and on and on. I am so tired and really am tired of being embarrassed by her when she is drinking. It seems to always be about her and what she wants, what she needs and what she needs me to do for her. Any advice out there?

    • Ken says:

      Two choices:

      1) Become emotionally detached (maintaining contact from an emotionally detached/disentangled frame of mind).

      2) Cut all ties, Burn all bridges, AND
      become emotionally detached (assumes that #1 won’t work).

      • Renee says:

        Thanks Ken. I have tried Number 1 and she just keeps pushing. I am going to cut off all ties for the moment. I think I just needed someone else to tell me that was ok to do. I always feel guilty but I just can’t continue with her at this point. It is interfering with my life, my job etc. Thanks for your input.

        • Ken says:

          You’re quite welcome, Renee. Guilt can become debilitating (in my particular case) if it’s not stopped in its tracks. In my case, the woman was an expert at using guilt to manipulate me, the guilt of not doing enough for a convincingly helpless woman (the way she portrayed herself). Eventually, after nearly going nuts, I realized that her intentions were to simply manipulate and abuse me as her narcissistic supply (her behavior met all conditions for both BPD and covert NPD, simultaneously). But the good news is, once I knew the truth, it became easier to emotionally disconnect, knowing that what I pitied and cared for was the illusion (fantasy) and not the real her. Once a person can distinguish between fantasy and reality, it’s like waking up from a dream/nightmare, as if one took the red-pill in the movie Matrix. When you eventually recover from the rude awakening, you’ll become far more resilient in your character. That’s a very positive gain, spiritually (energetically) speaking. From an energy-focused vantage point, you’ve learned tons about the draining effects of “energy vampires”. The time and energy spent with that person can be viewed as getting clinical/internship experience on understanding how toxic energy works. That’s quite valuable from a long-term perspective.

          • Alberta says:

            To add to what Ken has said- in this thread – Renee you made the wise choice and also try to not think about her too much so she won’t get ‘implanted’ in your mind and you end up wasting energy thinking about her.

            Guilt is the tool of implantation. Anger drives it deeper into the soul system so try to think of this situation in a humourous way – pretend you are doing a stand up comedy bit about weird ass friends. This way she won’t get implanted in you and you can get rid of the infection of guilt and anger. Humour is like a broad spectrum soul antibiotic.

            It seems these types who feign helplessness choose friendships and romantic relationships in order to manipulate. When in this type of friendship I ended up playing the role of ‘spouse’ to these ‘helpess’ women at a cost to my own relationship. And the most verbally abusive manipulative ‘helpless’ feigning female friends were also the ones who told stories of how they were ‘wronged’ by men. When these types are ‘friends’ they can infect and affect and steal from spouse/partner relationships.

            This person could be your unintended angel – the lessons you learn can save you much greater problems later on.

            • Ken says:

              Alberta, you mentioned exactly what happened to me, once again, the part about not realizing that going the extra mile to help a “helpless”, covertly manipulative woman was affecting my own personal relationship. Thankfully, despite affecting it to the brink of collapse, I was able to save it just in time.

              At that time, I wasn’t aware that I was facing fraud in the sense that there was no true reciprocation of respect. Her niceness was superficial, a facade meant to continue her power quest for control/manipulation of my mind, because this brought her pleasure. But it all makes sense now, the idea of manipulating warm-hearted men by acting shamelessly helpless with tears and all. The acting would put Hollywood A-List actors to shame. And it worked supremely well for her, because she actually believed in her own lies. (Side note: M. Scott Peck wrote a book about such people, which happened to be titled “People of the Lie”.) It’s incurable self-delusion due to excessive pride.

              Nevertheless, it’s very possible that she was also my “unintended angel” as you put it, because this experience was priceless in enabling me to see the intricacies of mind manipulation. Now I can spot these types from a distance. Have her to thank, because if it weren’t for her, I’d still be naive.

              Here’s one more positive lesson to be grateful about: At least all this wisdom was acquired without such a selfish person actually being my spouse or my daughter (God forbid!).

              Life is simply too precious to live in misery and confusion generated by manipulative fraudsters. I’d rather spend my time helping those whom are truly genuine/respectful in character. But thanks to her, I’m now able to identify the genuine from the fake. I’ll end by saying to her in my heart, “a sincere thanks for all the wisdom, but it’s time to bid farewell.”

              • Renee says:

                You guys hit the nail on the head several times. Thank you so much for helping lift this burden off my shoulders. This particular friend has a way of making it seem like I am the “bad” friend for walking away and not accepting her apology. She only apologizes in order to worm her way back in and never actually means it because she repeats her behavior over and over. She keeps telling me that I am her best friend. In my mind she is very good at having a best friend, not so good at being one. Thanks a ton for all your advice. Greatly appreciated.

                • OwlJulie says:

                  She is an alcoholic. She needs help and isnt able to help herself. Alcoholics’ undergo personality changes which include becoming narcissistic and also blaming others. These are alcohlic characteristics, and have nothing to do with her as a human being. She needs help.

      • Elaine says:

        Hi Ken, I have comments here on this thread explaining my situation. and it’s difficult to say the least. I tried step 1 with “K” and it didn’t work, and I warned her that if she kept pushing that I would pull back. So 6 months later I ended it. After about 38 years or so of knowing her as a friend. I tried my best. After seeing a few of the newer comments posted recently, I felt the guilt again, but I remind myself that I did my best. It was never good enough for her, and I have enough to deal with. Not being selfish, I just have 0 tolerance at this point in my life. So anyway, thank you for your advice, and to all for their input. I appreciate it. and I must add that it’s been very freeing. It’s been a few months now. I can only hope that one day she’ll TRULY understand where I’ve been coming from. Only time will tell I suppose.

        • Ken says:

          Hi Elaine,
          Step 1 is really for those whom are not yet ready to “burn the bridge” due to strong emotional bonds, yet feel the need to create some sort of an emotional distance for self-protection from those with toxic personalities. You know that the other person is toxic to you if you feel yourself being manipulated into doing things you otherwise wouldn’t do, inadvertently becoming an “enabler” to their morally-deficient, defiant, or supercilious mindset/behavior because you happen to be a supportive, kindhearted person.
          Thus, in dealing with adults, step 1 is meant to be a stepping-stone for step 2. Step 2 is really where the healing starts in my opinion, because it takes great mental strength to decide to end a “cancerous” relationship.

  30. Alberta says:

    Co-dependent would be a more accurate word than needy. Toxic friends are those who want to be co-dependent on you – they want you to be their ‘parent. They act ‘helpless’ so you do stuff for them and go out of your way for them at the expense of your own life. This also gives them a sense of power and control through the manipulation of pretending to be more helpless than they really are and seeing what they can get others to do for them. I have seen some really evil women do this pretend-to-be-helpless behaviour and it is disconcerting and makes me ashamed to be part of the female gender who does this to others.

    • Ken says:

      Alberta, you’ve summarized quite accurately the predicament I fell into, as a result of pitying the seemingly innocent, helpless/victimized damsel-in-distress. It’s how she gained manipulative power over me, knowing too well that I’ll soften up and feel sorry for her and go out of my way to help those whom appear helpless.

      Therefore, never feel sorry for the narc. Had I not pitied her, I would have helped from a distance but not given her any special treatment. Would have just, figuratively speaking, thrown a rope to the drowning damsel-in-distress, instead of diving in full-fledged, finding out that it was a “Trojan Horse”.

      With the way the universe operates, however, I for one believe there is justice. Narcs are inherently negative/hating inside (in their cold hearts).
      For example, self-destructive negative emotions including anger, jealousy, etc., cause the physical body to tense up, blocking oxygen, resulting in inadequate supplies of oxygen being circulated, and when this is prolonged, may become cancerous or result in other debilitating ailments. Hence, narcs are self-destructing every moment of every day, due to their willfully destructive thoughts and emotions. It’s just how nature operates. Can’t flout the rules.

      As for those who are recovering from the narcs’ malevolent influence, find stuff to be grateful about (there’s TONS if you dig deeply enough). If you cling to the negativity that the toxic narc implanted in you, you will also destroy your own life with hidden anger within. Find the strength within to eliminate all inner negativity, consciously leading a life of gratitude, even gratitude from having developed greater wisdom from your experience.

      • Alberta says:

        You are so right about clinging to that negativity implanted within – timely to read this at this point – very powerful.

        I’ve been clinging to anger because it feels oddly comforting to be angry. Growing up around angry people I hated them but was one of them at the same time. It is too easy to be angry – to be angry you have to generate negative thoughs – and also to derive energy from that anger generated by the angry thoughts. This is the twisted aspect of how anger can be comforting – it is a source of energy, but, like junk food, not a good one.

        I can see angry people about me and know that this is a short term solution and so NOT the way to be, even if it is strangely comforting. Chronically angry people are the old hags – the elders who chose to complain instead of to be a good example for the younger generations.

        Since reading this post – the last sentence is powerful – have been doing gratitude thinking. Being grateful and watching out for things to be grateful for is THE remedy for dealing with the implanted negativity. It helps to prevent being further caught in the web of the toxic behavior. It is a way to work the anger out of the system so it doesn’t fester and become a way of being.

        • Ken says:

          It’s true about not letting anger fester in our hearts. Prolonged, the anger becomes our personality. When necessary, I remind myself to avoid anger at all costs. By letting go of that anger, I have become far more resilient and simply more energetic. Acquiring wisdom and always looking forward (not dwelling in the past) is what the ancients (Lao-Zi) teach. I think it still applies even today.

        • Ken says:

          Here’s a helpful article on gratitude, and it’s written in a somewhat spiritual (energy-focused, health-focused), yet non-religious way:

          http://happierhuman.com/benefits-of-gratitude/

  31. Jess says:

    I consider myself a needy person, partly because what Cherrie said above is true – we need to need and feel needed by our friends, even more so in my case. I have had a history of abandonment by people close to me; my parents were divorced when I was quite young and my mom, a single-mother, had to frequently leave me at home due to work or vacation – without me tagging along. She would lie about going too because I was that clingy to her before. Then, during my school days, I was abandoned at least three times by my best friends – one went overseas for good without telling me, the other became popular and left me for the “cooler” group and the last became close with someone else (we are still in contact, and last I heard, she told me that that someone else dumped her as well).

    All these “traumas” made me wary of meeting new friends and always doubting whether they are sincere to me or not. I know it is unfair to my new, innocent friend(s) for being constantly judged and tested for loyalty, but I guess it is my natural, defense mechanism against possible heartbreaks. Everytime my current best friend texted me late yet she was online at Whatsapp, I always had a notion that she ignored me on purpose. And when she refused to meet up with me and went with someone else instead, all Hell broke loose. My mind was screaming, “Traitor! Traitor!” even when my logic tried to make other explanations such as, “Perhaps she needs to discuss schoolwork with her” or “Perhaps she just wanna catch up with old friends”, etc. My inner insecurity always wins.

    Around a few weeks ago, I started ignoring her when she prioritized some other friends over me (again) by saying that she didn’t receive my message for dinner even when I’ve sent the message almost 6 hours prior and I saw her being online several times during that time period. I was stressed out at work and not in my best physical condition. I haven’t met up with her for almost a month and would like to catch up and perhaps share my worklife stress out so I can chill for a bit. But that happened, and now I was even more stressed out than before.

    I finally wrote her an email because I think it’s unfair to just ignore her without explanation. So I wrote to her what I felt and said that I wanted to either find a way out either through compromises (she would care about me more and I will try my best to not be clingy or needy around her) or parting ways in good terms.

    No replies. Not even an acknowledgment whether she has received the emails (sent two emails from different servers to make sure they don’t go to Spam folder). And now I was tormented from not knowing whether she still wants to go on or part ways. The frustration is killing me, and I hate being made this way. I waited because I wanted to be fair: perhaps she is mad herself and need a time-out, or perhaps she wants to arrange the wordings of her reply, or perhaps there was an email delay and she is still not receiving the mails yet. Still, I’m afraid I will think something negatively and make the situation worse….. I hope God will show me a way to get through this soon…..

    • Someone says:

      Hello Jess,

      It sounds like you’ve got a lot of stress, leading to frustration and anxiety. It sounds like you feel very overwhelmed. I hope you will hear me out and read my entire comment, even if you don’t like the suggestion I’m about to make, because after I make this suggestion, I will explain why I think it’s a good idea. Perhaps once you see my reasoning, you will embrace my suggestion.

      My suggestion would be to receive counseling. And there are many places that offer sliding scale payment arrangements, meaning that you pay according to your ability/income. A good place to look for a therapist that is suitable for you in your area is therapistsDOTpsychologytodayDOTcom.

      The reason I suggest therapy is that it will relieve you of a lot of stress by allowing you to have a safe place to talk and get things out. It will help you to learn healthier and more effective coping skills for a variety of situations and circumstances, reducing your general level of stress. And it will help you gain insight into yourself, and others.

      When you utilize a professional therapist, their feedback and their understanding of you will be far more unbiased or objective than a friend. While our friends ideally should be there for is, and us for them, there is more to consider than that. Life is more complex than that.

      There are other factors to remember when considering what you feel/think a friend “should” do for you. Our friends are only human, and they’re also individuals with their own lives, duties & obligations, and varying degrees of social comfort (one example, introvert vs extravert dominant personality, etc).

      It is easy to forget for some people, too, in this day and age of technology & communications, that we don’t have the right to decide that, for example, since we saw so-and-so online that they *should* have been replying to you/contacting you since they’re obviously around. But the fact is, that sort of thinking pushes people away aggressively. No one wants their freedom and orivacy controlled. No adult wants another adult deciding how they should be spending their time. The more you think this way – and believe me, even if you don’t mention these thoughts and judgements, people still sense the attitude in yoi… it comes out in many ways – the more people pull away because it feels too demanding.

      The end of your 3rdbuilding paragraph struck me. You were upset because your friend didn’t make herself available to you so you could unload your stress onto them…you mentioned your needs repeatedly throughout your post, but nothing about their needs. I’m trying to gently say that perhaps your friend feels drained and exhausted from constantly being expected to absorb your stress, and negative feelings. It’s difficult to be expected to endure another person’s nonstop negative energy. While YOU leave the encounter feeling relieved and relaxed, THEY leave feeling exhausted and drained.

      It’s unrealistic as well as unfair to rely on any one person to do so much soothing and comforting and listening and giving, because they inevitably have problems and stress of their own…perhaps much more than you realize they do, since you’re so focused on getting what YOU need to feel better.

      When really, you simply need better coping skills, and to evolve and grow through self awareness and insight within. It’s not easy no…but NOT learning these things is much harder in the long run. And don’t underestimate yourself! You can do this! You CAN throw most of your insecurities away! With some hard work, a willingness, honesty, a good therapist, and the knowing that you can’t be brave if you’re never scared…you can feel better with or without company, and start building better and healthier relationships that are supportive, loving, and reciprocal.

      Best of luck to you :-)I Remember, you can do it! Push through the fear and face you…you’re worth it!

      Peace.

  32. Cherrie says:

    There is a big difference between “needy” friends and toxic friends. I believe we are ALL needy at times. We do NEED each other. I try to never be so self involved not to lend an ear, a loving hand, or just be there for a friend, and make time for a friend. Lift them up, send them well wishes n hugs n kisses. Being very self involved and just selfish and not making the time for your friends is WAY more a problem than having a friend in need. I believe we need to reach out more to our friends who are in need. Love them…show them you love them by your actions. There are WAY more selfish gurls and women out there these days and I find it very sad, sad indeed. To me, you should never have to hide the fact you NEED to your true friends. Love is the key…. Love your friends….. No one is leading perfect little lives out there…. No one.

    • Audrey says:

      I agree with Cherrie. Yes, there are some people who take needy too far, but it is important to realise that everyone has some stage in their life when they need support.
      I had a friend who I saw often, we had great times together and lots of laughs. The warning sign should have been when she told me how she had divorced two husbands because they were “needy” – in that they asked for affection from her.She declared that she hated needy people.However, we got on really well and I didn’t think she would turn on me.
      She opened up to me about all her own issues and especially her grief when her dog died – I was the person she phoned when it happened;I let her talk out her grief and sent her flowers.
      One day we were lunching I let slip about a problem I had that at that time had no possible solution;I wasn’t asking for her help, I just wanted to talk about it.Anyway, after that she gave me the cold shoulder and we never met again, although I emailed and left messages on her phone.She had wiped me completlely.

      • Cherrie says:

        Well, she certainly sucks!! You were there and then when you needed her to be just a little supportive, she just bails…. Not cool at all. She seems a total selfish pig!!!! Happy day sweetie :) you’re so good to be rid of her!!! :);)

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