HOW DO YOU TELL A FRIEND THAT YOU DONT WANT TO BE AROUND THEIR PARTNER??!

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006
HOW DO YOU TELL A FRIEND THAT YOU DONT WANT TO BE AROUND THEIR PARTNER??!
10
Mon, 11-12-2012 - 10:43am

Hello.I've known my friend for 6yrs.We met at work and I tell you she was such a totally different person socially then she is now.To make a long story short she has had a long streak of dating horrible men.Well a few yrs ago she and I went out to a club and that's where she met her future bf/husband who she is now twice divorced from him.Well before she had started dating him,she'd still  go out with her friends,she would be easy to reach on her cell(she was always attached to that thing).Well when she started dating him,I didn't hear too much from her.I was thinking that..well it's a new relationship and sometimes you know people get all caught up in it.I did notice that the times I did get her on the phone...it felt rushed.She wouldn't have time to be on the phone for too long.Well it was much later when I did get a chance to hang out with her alone...we had gone over to another friend of ours and that's when she proceeded to tell us what REALLY she was going through.Well to get to the chase..he's been verbally/physically/emotionally abusive and not to mention he's possesive.Well inspite of that they got married for the 1st time and of course it ended in divorce.I was very happy thinking that she wouldn't go back to him BUT she did.Then thay got back together and decided to get remarried again.Now before all of that,she had already moved to get away from him and he followed her from work one time and found out where she lived.I had told her to NEVER tell this person where I lived incase she would need to get away from him because of course he KNOWS where her dad lives  and other family members.Anyways through all of that...I did keep intouch with her and during her time getting ready for her 2nd marriage to him...I was there to help her find a wedding dress.ALL I really wanted to do was to hang out and spend time with her alone like we use to .She already knew that all her friends don't like this man but I was so done in trying to convince her about him.It was like beating a dead horse.Anyways we were at her apt before we went looking for a dress for her and her partner calls her(he was always calling her out of possessiveness) and when she said that she was hanging out with me...he stated to her and I quote" why is it that when I'm not there she's visiting"...People...I did that on purpose because I had NEVER wanted to be around him.He's not my friend and never will be.I'm HER friend but he;s the type of person that always wants to be in the fold when it comes to her friends!! Why should he have to be around if I'm visiting MY friend?!! Anyways now to the present.Since then I haven't seen her in over 1yr although she doesn't really live that far away.It's because I DON"T like this person and that's putting it mildly.I haven't told you guys everything BUT the bottom line is is that she's always inviting me to come visit her..meaning 'them' because of course he lives with her YET again even after the fact that he one day had taken appliances from the house(he had bought them so he hadn't stolen them)while she was at work and left her.ALL his friends knew what he was planning to do but she was the LAST one to know.Well after that she had gotten divorced from him for the 2nd time and she did it fast SO I thought FINALLY she sees the light and she will NOT take him back.Well I was wrong and I'm done with it.So basically the reason  I hadn't told her that I do not want to be around this person is because 1st of all I thought I could get away with just visiting her...meeting somewhere and of course I don't want to hurt her fellings BUT she has always wanted to meet at her home...where HE lives too and I don't want to be around him.So how do I tell this  person this?I'm thinking if you KNOW that your friends don't like him....then WHY haven't you suggested meeting somewhere to hang out and just chat and have some fun with YOUR friends for awhile?Why do we have to meet at your home and being around someone we don't want to be around because you're with him??!! We DONT!! I'm just tired of keeping this in for so long.I am VERY tempted in NOT saying anything and just letting the friendship go BUT I feel that I should at least tell her and it shouldn't be a problem...BUT I already know that her partner will make it a problem because say what if she doesn't have a problem with us meeting somewhere and we do...well knowing how he likes to know all her business he will ask her why I wasn't visiting at the home...(oh and I will also tell her that I would not have a problem visiting in her home as long as he's not there.as long as she knows he's going to be gone somewhere for awhile I would come over and visit).So this is where I am. I really have thought about just telling her this in an e-mail BECAUSE everytime I cal there house...he's always there.The straw that broke the camels back happened this past Friday.Basically she calls me around 7 that evening to tell me that she had gotten in trouble and why.It was a conversation between she and I BUT I heard his mouth running off in the background.You don't know how much I wanted to start yelling and cussing BUT I didn't.Oh.and he ALWAYS asks her whom she's talking to..everytime I have called just to chat with her...he wants to know...who she's talking to  and it's NOT out of just idle curiosity....it's about being possessive.

So basically this isn't about me talking to her about how she should get away from this guy(been there done that)BUT it's about telling her what I have told you guys here today.I am seriously thinking about just telling her through e-mail because honestly if there is the SLIGHTEST hesitationon her part about what I have suggested...then I will be done with the friendship.

I would like to hear your advice.Thank you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999

I would be concerned about saying anything in email because considering this guy is abusive (at least controlling from what you said if not physically abusive) he may have convinced her to give him the password to her email & might read it.  Is there some time you could call her when you know he won't be around, like in the day when he's at work?  I think I would tell her kindly that you are uncomfortable being around him where you would have to pretend to like him or be nice to him--which is understandable considering the 2 divorces and that she tells you the problems they are having, then how could she expect you to like him?  Tell her that you would be happy to go out somewhere with her or have her over to your house but that you don't want to hang out with him.  then it's up to her to follow through or not.

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-05-2006

First of all, she already knows what you are struggling to tell her. Second, if you can't trust a friend to share the truth with you (no matter how difficult that may be) who can you trust? Based on that, are you really being a good friend to her?

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006

I did finally tell her the truth through e- mail.Someone had already suggested trying to talk to her alone..TRUST me...I have tried that BUT everytime I have called her...its always too late.She's already at her home.I am a VERY good friend to her..have always been and that's why it was so hard to tell her this BUT I had to.I also thought about the'what if' if he reads her e-mail.Well you know...I said what I needed to say to her.She has chosen this person time and time again and I feel that she just assumed that everything was  ok now between her friends and him....actually I feel that she doesn't even see most of her friends anymore because she's always spending time with him so she doesn't realize that he's just insolating her more and more...I wrote her a very direct e-mail basically stating about hanging out and how uncomfortable I have been around him ever since he had started treating her badly and that I want us to go somewhere to hang out...at least once a month..like a girl's day or something.I simply asked her does she have a problem with that ...yes or no.I wrote it today and I feel so much better but I am prepared if I have to lose her although I don't want to but it takes 2.

Community Leader
Registered: 05-14-2001

Bingo, Honestgirl.  She wants you to visit THEM because it's what he pushes.  Because he's a controlling abuser.  The more he can control her, the more he can isolate her.  The more he insists her friends come to see both of you, the faster those friends distance themselves from her and with that, distance from any source of help and an outside input/encouragment she has.  She probably knows you'd rather meet without him and she probably would love to do the same, but at some point when you're with an abuser, it becomes easier to just do things the way they want them done rather than face the consequences of fighting it or doing it the way you want to anyway.  As you said, she's always telling you what she's in trouble for, so you know that's the kind of fight she has with him.  Believe me, when you're with an abuser you'll compromise a lot of things you know you shouldn't just to keep the peace.  Think back to your past relationship, you took a lot that you shouldn't have had to deal with.  

My suggestion is that you give her the book "Why Does He Do That?  Inside the Minds of Angry and Controlling Men" by Lundy Bancroft.  If she works, tell her to stash the book at work and read it there; do whatever she needs to do to keep the book away from him but to read it.  You should also make sure she has the number of your local DV resource, or the national hotline number.  If he's successful in isolating her, it may be what she needs to escape.


~ cl-2nd_life

cl-2nd_
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006

I remember the crap that I went through in my relationship but one thing that I never did was to ever isolate myself from my friends.In my opinion...she's had lots of times where he was out of her life BUT she let him back again and of course he KNEW that she would so now I know in myself that I can't keep going on like this without telling her what I have stood for the longest time...brining it out in the open..I can tell you that after I wrote that e-mail..I have felt so much better! You're not living when you let someone control you and although he never controlled me...i felt that I was still involved in this toxic relationship!!

Community Leader
Registered: 05-14-2001

I know exactly what you're saying.  From the outside abusive relationships seem a no-brainer.  Leave!  (Or in your friend's situaiton, stay out!) and stand your ground and don't compromise on what you isn't right to compromise on. But it's a lot more complicated than that. Sooo many mind trips and so much destruction of self worth and self esteem. Telling her what you thought was good, I think and keeping your distance is good too; sticking around if it plays hard with your frustration level isn't good for you and you've got to take care of yourself. You might just tell her you'll be there for her if she's done with him and will be willing to help at that time if she needs it. But until then you have to bow out for your own sanity level.


~ cl-2nd_life

cl-2nd_
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006

Yes you hit the nail on the head.It really has been effecting me and now I feel that I am totally out of all of that.It also has made me not to be afraid now of telling others if I feel uncomfortable around a ceratin person.For example last night my friend's now ex-friend did something horrible.Basically she had gone to the bathroom and  when she came back...her coat,purse and phone was gone.Apparently,the guy and his cousin just left the club with her stuff and didn't even look to find her! Well so we ended up going to his place thinking that he would be there...long story short..he had gotten jealous over seeing her hug some guy friends who had shown up there and so when she had gone to the bathroom.....they up and left!! Well I was just as pissed off and she was so we went to  his house and waited for him to come home.Well today I told her that I never want to be in that person's presence again just incase by some miracel they end up hanging out again.I just wanted to make sure that she understood that I dont want to be around him period so there is no misunderstanding.So I have become much stronger over this.

Community Leader
Registered: 05-14-2001

Good for you for being strong :) It's a good feeling knowing you're able to take care of yourself and stand up and face adversity.  It's a secure feeling knowing you won't go back to being someone's victim.

I wanted to say that the book I suggested you pick up for your friend is a book that may make all the difference in the world to her.  In it, she'll almost certainly recognize her boyfriend/husband and realize what's behind what he says and does.  She'll (hopefully) realize that his behaviors aren't subject to change and aren't her fault at all.  When you read an exact description of what your dealing with, it gets your attention.  The book is written by a therapist who specializes in working with abusive men.  His book is written for the women who are in relationships with these men to help them see what's going on and to help them get out.


~ cl-2nd_life

cl-2nd_
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006

Hello again :)

Well I'm going to check that book out at the library so I can read for myself.Like I've mentioned before I was in a toxic relationship but I never allowed myself to be isolated from my friends...never...yeah sometimes it takes some of us longer then others to get out of these types of relationships and I do wish her well but I'm very happy to have finally expressed how I have been feeling.The way I see it....if she was crying out for help....she has a chance where she could pick up the phone and call and talk to someone...like when she gets off of work..she could call a friend while parked in her vehicle...she could BUT she never has...he wouldn't be around...so..anyways I just thank GOD that I'm not in a toxic relationship.I know the signs when I see them and it's not worth it to go through hell just for the sake of saying you're in a relationship...You're dying inside everyday...not living...there's life out here!

Anyways I'm going to read the book.Thanks.

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-13-2006
Well it's been over a week since I sent that e-mail to her so I know that I have lost a friendship due to her choosing an abusive prick over a good friend.All I have to say is that Thank GOD I'm not in that mess and I have learned my lesson and that's to be a much stronger person and to always stick up to what I believe in and feel and NEVER be in ANY toxic relationships...EVER...to RUN away at any indication of anything abnormal...to always EMBRACE a loving healthy relationship because I know that there are really good men out there BUT you have to NOT settle to find them! :)