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"Breaking up" with a friend because of THEIR relationship drama...


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Old 15th January 2009, 1:11 PM   #1
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"Breaking up" with a friend because of THEIR relationship drama...

Has anyone ever done this?

I think I've written about this situation before, not sure.

A good friend of mine is in a toxic relationship. Toxic is actually an understatement. Her BF basically cheated on her for 2.5 years by carrying on an entirely separate life/relationship with another girl (who he also lied to). She took him back, and let him invest in her company - which he is now running into the ground - so that they'd have a reason to stay together and so that she could keep an eye on him. They fight like cats and dogs - often about the other girl, but mostly about trust, being an ass, etc. They're often drunk when they fight, and it's ALWAYS melodramatic, and sometimes even involves HER hitting him. Her descriptions of their fights often sound like something out of a movie. Now he's back in contact with the girl he cheated with, and my friend is at a loss to stop it.

I do NOT understand why she stays with him. She justifies it as that he is "worth fighting for," that he's "her one," that they are "meant to be," and just going through a difficult time.

In short, I (and all of our friends) think he's a complete f**ktard, and waste of space.

Four of us had dinner last night, and 1/3 of the evening's conversation centered on this sh*tty relationship. She said, "I know you all want to say I told you so, but yes, it's gotten worse," and goes on to explain what's been happening. And yet, she still wants to stay with him. She seems to conveniently forget fights...saying, "Oh we haven't fought like that ever." Then I'll remind her: "What about on Halloween? Or your birthday? Or the first weekend of December? And New Year's Eve?" to which she'll say, "Ohhh yeah, we did fight that bad that night."

During dinner I literally tuned out - started staring at the wall, people walking by outside. I didn't want to hear about the drama. And that's all it is: DRAMA. I felt emotionally exhausted after dinner, and felt so thankful when I got home that I have such a wonderful, stable, supportive, awesome new BF who I absolutely know would never be such a f**ktard as my friend's BF.

I can't take her seriously.

She and I used to be really close. Now she's become much closer with another girl in our group, the girl who just listens and never has an opinion.

What do I do? Just... stop talking to her? I honestly cannot deal.
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Old 15th January 2009, 1:14 PM   #2
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This isn't just about him being a jerk but her for "needing" the drama.

Does she create drama through other aspects of her life, like friendships and workplace?
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Old 15th January 2009, 1:16 PM   #3
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Been there. Done that. You may have to just walk away. You've done all you can, it's her life. You have no choice but to move away from the situation because there is nothing you can do. The only explanation I can think of is that some people like the excitement of the drama. Personally, I find it too emotionally exhausting. She may even enjoy complaining or talking about it in order to receive sympathy/support from others. Explain to her why you can't take it anymore then walk away for awhile and see what happens.
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Old 15th January 2009, 1:19 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Trialbyfire View Post
This isn't just about him being a jerk but her for "needing" the drama.
I agree, and just told another friend as much. She agreed as well.

I even told said f**ktard (when he tried to befriend me to get my *blessing* for her to get back together with him) that he's a sociopath who thrives on deceit. I also think my friend thrives on the drama in her relationship.

Quote:
Does she create drama through other aspects of her life, like friendships and workplace?
As for friends, no. She's anti-confrontational.

As for work, perhaps. Her old company shut down because of drama with another one of her business partners...and now she's creating drama in her new one by allowing him to invest in it.

He's single-handedly destroying her new company, literally.
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Old 15th January 2009, 1:39 PM   #5
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It's difficult to watch someone you care about, degenerate to this level of negative drama feed. You know there's nothing you can do about it.

If you express too much, she'll turn on you and make you a demon. If you express too little, it feels like you're not doing enough to try to help her.

Maybe let her know that if she's not going to do anything about it, it's difficult to listen and sympathize. If anything, maybe it's time to allow less contact to create a normal separation. It appears as if she's found a more willing listener, which sounds like what she wants right now. I'm guessing she needs to bottom out first, before she's willing to do anything about it. This is such a shame and a waste of someone who probably has a lot going for her.
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Old 16th January 2009, 1:01 AM   #6
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Maybe let her know that if she's not going to do anything about it, it's difficult to listen and sympathize.
Do you think I should actually say something to her?
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Old 16th January 2009, 1:09 AM   #7
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Do you think I should actually say something to her?
You can see I'm torn about that. I would hate for her to think of you as an "enemy", when you were only expressing your honest opinion.

Maybe it's best to just let some distance happen. Withdraw a bit from her and see if she reacts. If not, let more distance happen until you've got some breathing room. You may find that seeing her less, helps your negative feelings and you can take small bouts of her.

While it's always nice to be there for people, there's only so much a person can take before you want to shake her and tell her to smarten up.
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Old 16th January 2009, 1:15 AM   #8
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Well, actually... Since they got back together there's been a lot of distance between her and the rest of her friends. For example, we used to at text several times a day and see each other at least once a week. I always knew where she was, what she was up to, etc. Like I said, we were close.

Now? Prior to last night I hadn't seen her since before Thanksgiving.

So I guess the distance is already there.

Hmph.
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Old 16th January 2009, 4:18 AM   #9
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You know what I've found? People react much, much calmer to anything said in a letter, then they would if it was said in a normal conversation. Maybe it's the fact that writing a letter takes time and effort, and has become such a seldom treat nowadays...no idea, but for me it worked on a couple of occasions.

Maybe you could write to her. Ease her into the tough love by telling her what you value in her and how it troubles you to see her in such a bad relationship.
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Old 16th January 2009, 4:57 AM   #10
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At the bottom all this is alcohol. I'd bet my life your friend is drinking a LOT more than you think and when people aren't looking. I've seen this sort of stuff happen before. It's shocking and heartbreaking when a great friend's behavior changes dramatically, no matter what the reason, and alcohol...or even drugs...are behind it. There's nothing in the world you can do but back off until she straightens herself out. If she's found a boyfriend who will drink with her and perpetuate the dysfunction, you may have lost a friend permanently.

It will take her realization somewhere down the line to seek treatment for her issues. Don't make them yours in the meantime.
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Old 16th January 2009, 5:57 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Star Gazer View Post
Do you think I should actually say something to her?

Regardless of your interim posts, I would reply "no" here, for two reasons:

She's in a cyclical spiral of self-destruction, and she really can't see it or break out of it.
The only way she'll step out of the vicious circle, is if she finally realises that she's just too dizzy to stand and know which way is up, any more.

Secondly, she's an emotional vampire.
She uses her drama to feed off of others' strengths, and basiclly recharges her batteries for more of the same, by sapping all her 'strong' friends of their forceful emotions. This is what you do at gatherings when the convo centres around her. It's feeding her need for validation and attention.

You did the best thing possible by switching off. Ergo, the fall in contact.
If she could get the same feedback from you as before, she'd be on that 'phone 10 times a day.
But you've cut her off. And as such, have deprived her of a source of strength.
She'll move on to some other unsuspecting soul....

Maybe if her options run out, and she finds herself battling this one on her own, she'll sober up and see the light.
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Old 16th January 2009, 7:00 AM   #12
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Secondly, she's an emotional vampire.
She uses her drama to feed off of others' strengths, and basiclly recharges her batteries for more of the same, by sapping all her 'strong' friends of their forceful emotions. This is what you do at gatherings when the convo centres around her. It's feeding her need for validation and attention.
I had a friend like that, she called me day after day telling me about her battles with abusive boyfriends and drained me with her negativity so much that I felt depressed being with her.

then when she realised that I handled men differently from her, it got worse because she got angry with me and started trying to compete.

it became really pittyful and I didn't know what to do about it anymore and I just cut her off. I got to the conclusion that there is no need to be apologetic about things like that, you cut unhealthy people out of your life because they try to bring you down with them.
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Old 16th January 2009, 1:40 PM   #13
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you can tell a person is an emotional vampire when all the discussions you have with your SO revolve around the EV. Even when they're not there, and you haven't had contact with them for a day or 2. All you can do, is talk about their situation - what you think they should do, what you would do, what you think of what they're doing. The best way to 'fend off' a vampire is to fight fire with fire.

Whenever the EV tells you about how miserable he or she is - you tell them how happy you are.
You don't even comment or reply to their complaints. You just gloss over them, fly over them, and make like they were never said.

I did this. With 2 different Emotional vampires.

The thing that truly astonished me, more than anything else, was how virtually instantaneous the results were.
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Old 16th January 2009, 2:09 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Geishawhelk View Post
you can tell a person is an emotional vampire when all the discussions you have with your SO revolve around the EV. Even when they're not there, and you haven't had contact with them for a day or 2. All you can do, is talk about their situation - what you think they should do, what you would do, what you think of what they're doing. The best way to 'fend off' a vampire is to fight fire with fire.
Ugh. I totally do that. My SO has heard me talk about her and her situation 3 times now. He actually told me that as soon as he met her - before I told him anything about her relationship crap - that he could tell she had a victim mentality. He's very perceptive. I think he's frustrated that I even care, as he (like myself) simply cannot understand what would keep someone in a relationship like that.

Quote:
Whenever the EV tells you about how miserable he or she is - you tell them how happy you are.
You don't even comment or reply to their complaints. You just gloss over them, fly over them, and make like they were never said.
Another girlfriend at the dinner table changed the subject to me and my lovelife - which is going very well. I think she did that to demonstrate to my drama-friend that good guys/good relationships do exist. My drama-friend seemed... resentful.

Last edited by Star Gazer; 16th January 2009 at 2:11 PM..
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Old 10th February 2009, 10:44 AM   #15
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I just spotted this thread and wondered how it is going?

I know my friend feels like this about me at the moment as I have taken my bf back when I shouldnt have as he treated me bad
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