What do I do about this friend

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
What do I do about this friend
11
Wed, 11-14-2012 - 7:20pm

I have this long distance friend who always wants to talk a lot more frequently than I can or want to. I have explained that to her but the way it always goes is that she will call, I call her back a week or two later and the call always has to last 1 1/2 to 2 hours so this is a call I really have to schedule for. After that I always feel that she should be satisfied for at least a couple of weeks but that's never the case. She always calls again a week after we talk so I end up feeling like I always have a pending phone call I have to make and I'm starting to wish she would just go away. I'm busy raising a family and trying to live my life and hate the feeling that there is always a chore (the phone call) that never gets done. Any suggestions? Thanks.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
Sat, 11-17-2012 - 1:44pm

Thank you so much Paradigmshifter. I didn't realize that the reason why this bothers me so much is because I feel guilty about it for no reason. I'm going to do what you suggest and she can't accept it then it is her problem. Thanks again. Have a great weekend!

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2003
Fri, 11-16-2012 - 2:11pm

Okay, so part of the problem is that you are putting a value (emotion) on the fact that you are not calling her back.  Think about it for a minute.  Are you truly wrong for not calling her back when you've already expressed to her that you don't have the time or desire to talk for so long and so often?  I don't think you are and I think you placing guilt on yourself for it is unfair to you.

Why don't you try messaging her on Facebook the next time she calls to complain about how you haven't called her back yet, and reiterate to her that you don't have the time or inclination with all the changes that have been made in your life? Respond to every phonecall by Facebook after that.  If her responses get angry at that, then stop responding and end contact, remove her from Facebook and wash your hands of her.  

I hope you can stop guilt-tripping yourself over this.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
Fri, 11-16-2012 - 11:20am

Hi Cowboys girl, it is not that I don't like talking on the phone, the problem is she wants to talk a lot more than I do (with her anyway) to the point that I feel stalked. I just wish she would give me space to call whenever I feel like instead of always having that pending phone call to return. I've tried letting more time go by before I call her back but she just calls again wondering why I haven't call her back even though I've told her already I don't have time to talk so much.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
Fri, 11-16-2012 - 11:15am

Thank you Paradigmshifter. I've tried telling her those things but she just keeps calling, it is like there is no escaping her. I wonder why some people arethat way.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2003
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 11:56am

I can understand the reluctance to discuss this with your friend, but in this case I think it's best to be up front because she can't take hints and it's going to aggravate you.  Normally I'd say to just ghost on her and not to call and allow the friendship to fade, but it sounds like you've tried that a bit and it hasn't worked.  It doesn't have to be a mean conversation.  It can be simply practical, like telling her that your lifestyle and responsibilities have changed and you really don't have the time or the inclination to spend your free time on the phone chatting for so long.

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 10:46am

Thank you Paradigmshifter. I think you are right about ending this friendship. It is usually hard for me to get out of "friendships" even if they are not good for me but I guess I have to learn to do that.

Avatar for cowboys_grl
iVillage Member
Registered: 03-28-2010
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 10:46am

emilypig65 wrote:
I have this long distance friend who always wants to talk a lot more frequently than I can or want to. I have explained that to her but the way it always goes is that she will call, I call her back a week or two later and the call always has to last 1 1/2 to 2 hours so this is a call I really have to schedule for. After that I always feel that she should be satisfied for at least a couple of weeks but that's never the case. She always calls again a week after we talk so I end up feeling like I always have a pending phone call I have to make and I'm starting to wish she would just go away. I'm busy raising a family and trying to live my life and hate the feeling that there is always a chore (the phone call) that never gets done. Any suggestions? Thanks.

I have a best friend that doesn't like talking on the phone either.  I moved away and she still lives in our hometown.  I do like to talk and catch up with her (not every week), but every 6 months.  If I had my choice? I would talk on the phone for an hour.  But, she is like you, she doesn't like to talk on the phone (hates it).  She has sent me an email, if I had ever called? to let me know, she is busy, but will get in touch.  Then, never does.  Over the years, I realize, she just doesn't want to talk on the phone, so I don't call anymore.. 

if you do like UK suggested, just respond with a text or email, sorry you are busy.....after she calls.  She (hopefully) will get the hint, you are not in the modd to talk on the phone.  Any mature person will understand. If she doesn't understand and takes issue with you? then you'll just have to 'spell it out' for her, you don't want to talk on the phone. Good luck!

Kiki (hit my magic age of 45 and no longer TTC),but mom to a beautiful teen DD & 2 angels in heaven & married to my best friend

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2003
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 9:48am

If your feeling is that she's selfish and is not contributing to the friendship in a balanced way, then this is a whole other thing.  I've been on the phone for hours with friends whose relationship with me is balanced and mutually fulfilling.  It's so different than being on the phone for even 30 minutes with someone where it's always all about them.  If this is happening to you then you are in a one-sided relationship and yes you do need to end it, especially if this has been the case for 15 years.  Keeping a friendship going out of obligation (such as - because you've known eachother for 15 years) is not a good reason.  It sounds like, from your perspective, you never really got a lot out of the friendship and it has always been somewhat lopsided to her benefit.  Is there any other reason why you might want to keep this going now that your life has changed and you have so many other, more fulfilling, things to spend your time and energy on?

iVillage Member
Registered: 06-18-2011
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 9:11am

Thanks for the answers. She isn't that good of a friend but I guess since I've known her for about 15 yrs it sort of feels like I should keep it going. We used to live in the same city years ago and everything was always about her so now it feels like she is making those calls not because she is giving to the friendship but because she needs to talk more frequently so it doesn't matter to her if I do or not. At first I thought that since we now live far from each other it shouldn't be that hard to keep in touch once in a while but clearly I was wrong. I have tried sending her emails or facebook messages but the minute I do that she figures I'm home and inmediately calls me on the phone. I'm starting to think that friendship shouldn't be this stressful.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-14-2003
Thu, 11-15-2012 - 8:29am

OP, I would just be upfront about it and not postpone calling her back because you're trying to avoid the long phone conversation.  I'd call her back sooner and after a 1/2 or or whatever time you can spend catching up, let her know you need to get off the phone.  It's a good way to reinforce boundaries and in the end you will feel better about yourself for being upfront about it.  I've had friends that I've had to say goodbye 5 or 6 times to on the phone before they got off the line and I found that making a clear break in the conversation, saying their name, telling them that it was a good chat and that I had to get off the phone, worked all of the time.  If it doesn't work for you, for instance if she said "oh wait I have to tell you one more thing"  I'd hear her out, give her a brief response, and say "Okay, gotta go, TTYL".  It's not necessarily the most comfortable thing to do initially, but it's worth the effort in so many ways.  If this works for you, you will in time not be so annoyed with her and I think you'll appreciate not having lost a friend.  Of course there are people who constantly test boundaries, but I don't know if this is the situation with you. Rather, I think your friend is not picking up on the social queues she should be, so it might be worth the effort to give her some stronger ones.

Good luck.

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