Worried About Friend, Need Advice!
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|Mon, 12-23-2013 - 6:12pm|
I have been friends with this girl for the last 20 years, and it has come to the point where I am in need of some serious advice. I'm not sure how to approach her, so I was hoping to get some advice on this issue! I'll try to make it short.
My friend grew up with an emotionally abusive mother, she claimed. Even though we were friends, she never invited me over and I only met her mother twice in our entire 20 years of being friends. Even when we were in middle school and high school, I rarely saw her mother. She claimed that she emotionally abused her and was not a good mother, so I just assumed that she didn't want me to be around her. She would only go to school once or twice a week in high school, and when I would call her to see if she was ok- she wouldn't return my calls. There were periods where she would cut off all contact for weeks at a time (I wasn't the only person she did this to). She would say that she was too smart to have to go to school that often, that was usually the excuse she gave. I never really questioned her about that.
Part of me always believed that she exaggerated her family situation to get attention. I don't know why I felt that, but I just got that feeling a lot.
While we were in college, she randomly came down with a "mystery illness." She wouldn't go to class, and would always complain about fainting, throwing up, and just not feeling good. She claimed that the doctors could not figure out what was wrong with her, that it was a huge mystery. This "illness" has been going on for the last 10 years, apparently no doctor can figure out what is wrong with her. She told me and everyone else we know that she graduated from college at the top of her class, but I recently found out that she never even graduated.
Fast forward to present day, we are both in our mid 30s. I recently got married and have a daughter with another baby on the way. She is single and unemployed. In the last 10 years she has had two jobs, the first that only lasted for a year. She quit because she felt that she was too smart to work there, and that the doctor who she worked for felt threatened because she was smarter than him (she was a receptionist). The second job only lasted a few months, she said she quit because of her "illness." Her mother (the abusive one), now fully supports her- pays her rent, bills, etc.. I know that she lies to her mother about her financial situation- she has a secret savings account and leaves her checking account emply, so that her mother thinks she has no money. Her mother requests to see her bank statements from her checking account, she has no idea the savings account exists. She claims that she can't work because of her "illness."
While this is all going on with her, she can be very deceiving. To other people, she comes off as very smart and witty- she will lie about what she does for a living, and will always be the center of attention. She pretends to be doing a lot better than she really is, and people really do believe her.
Every single day she calls me, and expects to talk to me for hours. I have a very busy daily life, and just cannot sit on the phone all day with her. I rarely can get a word in- from the minute I pick up it's like she goes into a 30 minute monologue about her newest health issues and newest drama. If I meet up with her for dinner or a night out, the entire time she talks about her illness. Over the last year, she claims to have developed severe food allergies- so she has to question the waiter or waitress about every ingredient on the menu. It seems like she really loves the attention that she gets when she does this. Since telling me about these allergies, she has lost a ton of weight and almost looks unhealthy now.
Every single time we talk, she will tell me how many times she threw up that day from her allergies. She will go into gross detail, and will spend so much time talking about it. She will tell random people she meets about her throwing up, and it seems to really put other people off. I really think she does it for attention.
She was my bridesmaid in my wedding, and it was a total nightmare. My sister was my maid of honor, but she wouldn't have it. She demanded to be a co-maid of honor, and practically tried to take over the entire wedding. She even kicked another girl out of my wedding party without telling me, simply because she didn't like her. She caused a lot of unnecessary drama, it was really hard to get past that. I honestly did not want any drama surrounding my wedding, so I did just let a lot of this go. I think that was a big mistake!
She has another group of friends, who I don't know, who are also single. She hangs out with them very frequently, a few of them are much older divorced men. I met these guys a couple of times, and they clearly are all alcoholics. When she hangs out with these people, all she does is go out and drink. From what I have seen, it seems like these older guys don't even like her. It seems like she forces herself into their group of friends, and they just tolerate her. She gets very sloppy when she drinks and will often meet random men at bars and go home with them. She claims that nothing happens when she goes home with them, but I really don't believe it.
About a year ago, she got a DUI. She didn't even tell me about this, I found out after seeing her mugshot in the newspaper. When I called her to ask her about what happened, she immediately went into defense mode and said that the police framed her. She said that she didn't even drink that much, and doesn't know how she could have blown such a high number (.24!!!!). Prior to her arrest, I always had suspicions that she drove while drunk- so I always made it a point to offer to pick her up or just to remind her of the consequences. Apparently she didn't listen. Her case is ongoing, and when I ask her about it- she pretends to not hear me and changes the subject.
Another thing that worries me are her very short relationships. She will meet men in bars or at concerts, as I mentioned before, will go home with them- end up sleeping with them if they continue to date her, then the guy will just cut off all contact with her. After they cut off contact, she will call me and cry and complain for weeks. She thinks that she can get them back, and will come up with this crazy story about how the guy knows how awesome she is and that he broke it off because he's afraid of how great she is and may be freaking out because she could be "the one."
I know that we are friends and that as a friend I need to be there for her, but this constant complaining is absolutely draining. If I try to offer my advice, she acts like I am not being supportive and will just bombard me with more complaining about her life. When she complains about her illness, I point out to her that maybe she should stop drinking so much- that it is probably aggrivating her symptoms. She will then come up with a crazy excuse about how alcohol won't hurt anything. This is a big reason why I think she fakes her illness for attention, because I can't imagine how drinking almost every day could help the situation.
Do you guys have any advice as to what I should do? There have been so many times where I have wanted to just cut off all contact with her, but I really want to see her through this.