Monday, October 8, 2012
How To Ditch A Friend In Three Easy Steps
There's this woman I've known for several years, who I've never been very close with but socialized with when we were living in the same city and now sort of keep in touch with via email. She was always much more proactive about our friendship from the very start, she wanting to hang out and me just going along with it. She's sweet, caring, funny, and smart; there's nothing really unpleasant about her. But I've always found her to be too sweet/bubbly/polite for my style, not that interesting, and a bit socially awkward. I'm probably those last 2 things myself, but the thing is, I've just never been that into her. In the grand scheme of friendships, hers is just not a high priority, especially in recent years.
I moved thousands of miles away a couple years ago, I've been extremely busy, I have family all over who I'm close with, I have local friends who I want to become closer with, and just other friends in general who are more my kind of people, if y'all know what I mean. And yet she continues to send check-in types emails and voice mails (I never answer when it's her), and I always take a while to respond, even admitting recently how I'm bad with the phone (truth: I rarely call anyone besides family, and email/chat has been fine for everyone else). I suggested that we communicate online, which she cheerfully agreed to. Yet she still called again the following weekend (straight to vm again). I feel bad for ignoring her, but I'm also annoyed that she's not taking some pretty obvious hints.
Another thing that's bugged me for a while is how, over a year before my wedding (we had a long engagement), she asked when the wedding date was so that she and her bf could plan travel accordingly, mistakenly thinking it was that year, not the following. We hadn't made the guest list yet (she did hint that she knew this), but I naively told her the date anyway. When we finally did make the list, we realized our venue was too small for everyone we wanted to invite (lesson learned: hash out your guest list before doing anything else for wedding planning!), and I started to regret having given her the date and the expectation that she'd be invited. I know this is a run-of-the-mill guestlist woe, but what made it more frustrating is that she RSVP'd no because she had another event the weekend before our wedding. Huh? She knew the date over a year ago, and her conflict wasn't even the same weekend. It was weird. They did send a gift and congrats, and we sent a thank you. But the incident just made me feel even more that our friendship -- to me at least -- was more of an obligation than something truly heartfelt.
Given these odd interactions lately, I don't know what to do... if anything. Continue with my half-ass attempts at communication while she comes on a lot stronger? Confront her... and ask for what exactly? ("Let's be sort-of friends"? "Don't contact me again because you're not that interesting and you're not my kind of people"? I'd rather tell rape jokes if I'm gonna be that much of a dick.) Just completely ignore her? None of these feel right, and I know they're all somehow hurtful. But I also don't want to put in more effort for someone who is just not that important to me, to be totally frank. I honestly would not mind never talking to her again, but I feel bad that she sent us a wedding gift and continues to check up on me and hasn't done anything to warrant a "break up," so to say.
I just wanted to get some perspective from you sensible people. How do you deal with overeager friends? Is it ok to break off friendships for no good reason besides the fact that you were never into them as a friend to begin with? If so, how? Am I a horrible person for even having these thoughts?
- Possibly cunty not-really-friend
Okay first of all, it sounds like maybe she's not that into you either. You should be THANKFUL that she gracefully bowed out of attending your wedding, since YOU DIDN'T WANT HER THERE ANYWAY.
If you really want to ditch this woman: 1. Stop returning her calls. 2. Stop emailing her. 3. Stop feeling bad about it.
As I've said before, life's too short.