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How do I avoid being masculine?

Friends and Lovers Progressing into "Friends with benefits" and beyond: When platonic relationships become more intimate.

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Old 23rd October 2017, 6:26 PM   #1
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How do I avoid being masculine?

My friend Sakshi lives a culturally traditional lifestyle of being a stay at home wife. Her husband takes care of her in every way. We met through an in-line skating class where she was so dependent. She needed the instructor to hold her hand. And she uses four wheel skates, instead of roller blades. A year later, skating once a week, she hasn’t improved. Everyone is sympathetic of her, including me. I welcomed a friendship with her despite us having vey little in common. But now it’s becoming a problem.

Recently she invited me to spend a weekend with her at the beach, which is 4 hours away from where we live. It wasn’t until the day before that I learned she expected me to drive. Her excuse was that her husband won’t allow her to drive that far without him. She agreed to help with gas. But she gave me $10. That’s only 3 gallons. And this trip took around 30 gallons, not to mention all the miles on my car.

Ok fine. So I drove. But when I realized that she expected me to pay for the hotel, we only spent the day there. Well actually a few hours. It was such a waste of time. The only thing we talked about was why I’m not married & how I manage a successful career. She pretends to admire these things about me. All the while, taking advantage of my independence.

I don’t like this because I’m a very feminine person. Not to the extent that I can’t drive myself anywhere. But I don’t like being responsible for someone else’s wellbeing to the extent that she forces me to be. We’re the same age. Neither of us have children. It it too much to ask that we both take care of ourselves when we hang out? None of my other friends are like this. I’m used to taking turns driving, picking up the tab, etc.

Should I end the friendship with Sakshi?

Last edited by Butterflying; 23rd October 2017 at 6:28 PM..
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Old 23rd October 2017, 7:32 PM   #2
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Why would you continue a friendship that is not bringing good things into your life?

You don't have to cut her out completely. You can still speak nicely to her at skating class but there is no reason for you to give more.
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Old 23rd October 2017, 7:50 PM   #3
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This isn't about masculine and feminine. Even the most feminine women can be responsible for themselves.

If you don't want to completely ditch her, then you need a good lesson in assertiveness.

With this recent trip, you should have told her upfront what the cost of gas would be. "OK, that will probably be about $50 in gas. You can pay me $25". Next time there's an outing, tell her it's her turn to drive.

Why did you pay for the hotel? Surely it would have been simple enough to say "OK, so half of this is $X each and put down your share. If she says that she thought you would pay, respond with "Why would you think that?". If she has no cash on her, point out an ATM. If she's not allowed money of her own, then tell her that when you drop her home, she can get money off her husband to pay for her share.
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Old 23rd October 2017, 9:59 PM   #4
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I understand the feeling of sympathy for her, but it's not worth the effort or stress it will inevitably bring to your life in trying to make her more independent or a good friend.

She will likely only get along with women who have the same mentality/situation as her, unfortunately.

Be cordial during the skating class, but that's it.
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Old 24th October 2017, 4:57 AM   #5
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I agree that this has nothing to do with masculine vs. feminine. It's responsible vs. irresponsible. If she comes from a family or culture or whatever where the man is 100% responsible for everything, it doesn't mean she sees you as masculine, just as a confident person. Maybe she associates confidence with masculinity, which is not true at all.

Maybe you can educate her? Bring her out of her shell? Let her know you are OK with being friends, but you aren't responsible for "taking care" of her when you two do something.
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Old 24th October 2017, 9:14 AM   #6
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How strange. Her husband doesn't let her drive far without her but she's "allowed" to spend the night away? How did the cost of the hotel not come up before? How did you find out she expected you to pay?

I can't imagine this ever happening with a friendship. I agree with the others, it isn't a masculine or feminine thing, I'm not even sure it's an irresponsible thing, I'd say it's a taking advantage thing. She likes to play damsel in distress. I don't get why you're friends with her, you seem to only be friends because you took pity on her. That's not very fair on either of you.
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Old 24th October 2017, 9:39 AM   #7
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Like others said.... This isn't a masculine vs feminine issue, it's capable vs. incapable. One can be feminine and capable at the same time.

It sounds like she is subservient. That her and her husband are not equals. He decides, she obeys.

Personally I would have a hard time hanging out with someone who has chosen that path.

If she wanted to talk about it and change that would be one thing...

But I wouldn't be playing role this care taker role she appear to need as she is incapable of operating like an independent adult.
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Old 24th October 2017, 10:06 AM   #8
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She may of course be trying to branch out and it attracted to your confidence as she needs a role model.
Maybe if her husband does everything and she is from a sheltered maybe male dominated upbringing she genuinely had no idea how much the gas would cost. She may drive but NEVER fills up the gas. Or she did not have any more money on her to pay you.
I think, if you hang out again, you need to tell her what you expect from her, how much things cost and what you need from her as a more "active" friend.

Maybe also read up on her particular culture as sometimes things that seem so "obvious" to us, can be an alien concept to others and vice versa.
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Old 24th October 2017, 11:26 AM   #9
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I would have no sympathy for her but would tell her frankly how I felt. Why do you put up with this?
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Old 24th October 2017, 1:44 PM   #10
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Id end it, she sounds like a user.
Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing, there is a field. I will meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass, the world is too full for language & ideas, even the phrase 'each other' doesn't make any sense. - Jalāl ad-Dīn Muhammad Rūmī
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Old 24th October 2017, 2:57 PM   #11
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I'd be talking to her about why she can't do anything for herself, but first make sure she doesn't have an actual mental deficit of some kind. Also, if you even want to make the effort, any little thing she does on her own accord, praise her lavishly and tell her how well she does when she decides to do something on her own. Otherwise, like said above, just let it go to more an acquaintance.
"I care not much for a man's religion whose dog and cat are not better for it." -- Abraham Lincoln
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