What do you do with selfish friend and acquaintances?

Throw them out of your life. At least, that’s the conclusion I reached through life experience. I noticed that once a person shows certain characteristics, it’s not very useful to give them a second chance. If I have enough friends and acquaintances, perhaps I don’t need more, and thus don’t need to try my hardest to draw the best out of bad friends.

Here’s my experience:

1)I accidentally broke my friend’s shoe. I was apologizing over and over, while she was saying “your apologies are unimportant to me”. Later, she accidentally broke my hat. I was crying over it and she told me it was all my fault anyway. I still continued being friends with her. Later I learned she stole from everybody, including me.

2)Another friend and I had different interests, but liked to hang out. One day, we promised each other that first, we’ll take care of the friend’s interest, then mine. But at the end of the day the friend was too tired to do my stuff, and said we’ll do it another day. Another day we met again, and the same thing happened.

3)Another friend got mad at me for not being supportive the right way (I offered advice instead of pure emotional support), and demanded something I wasn’t in the power to get for them. I told them it was rude, and they offered a fake apology, disguised as a real one (essentially “I’m sorry YOU are so unreasonable”).

There are other examples, but these are most memorable. Anyone who does anything close to that, I dump. If I can’t avoid them, I deal with them only as little as possible.  Because the moment they act like that even once, it shows me that

1)This person probably doesn’t care about me.

2)This person is only interested and friendly as long as I keep giving. If I have nothing more to give and need help myself, they will turn their back on me.

I must mention that these three people had problems in their lives too, like bullying or lack of other friends, and some even had psychiatric diagnoses. But this doesn’t excuse their behavior at all. I also have other friends with similar problems (bullying, lack of friends or partners, psychiatric diagnosis), and they don’t act like that. A harsh life is not an excuse for shitty behavior.

What do you do with friends and acquaintances who do this? Should I be more forgiving?

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8 Responses to What do you do with selfish friend and acquaintances?

  1. Liz says:

    I also try to avoid inconsiderate people.
    I’m nice to everyone (no sense in burning bridges, outright unkindness is a poor reflection on the giver even if the receiver might warrant it), but do my best to avoid those types and politely decline their invitations, ect.

    • emmatheemo says:

      I don’t usually bother explaining to them what they did wrong, it usually doesn’t work. Those times I tried, it was because I thought they might understand. So ironically, only those I had hopes for got any of my criticism. But it’s not my job to teach them anything and they’ll have to figure things out on their own now 🙂

  2. I drop people that show such issues unless they also demonstrate an ability and will to change themselves. I guesstimate that about 10% of people are actually able to address faults within themselves to any significant degree. The rest will always continue to act within their current nature, simply applying that same nature to changing environmental factors. Such people should be acknowledged to be as they are, without effort spent on changing them, as they will only get negatively emotional if you threaten their nature with good advice, or they will take advantage of your efforts to help them.

    I give people one chance. When the second chance comes up without them addressing anything concerning the first, I NEXT them as people.

    • emmatheemo says:

      “I give people one chance. When the second chance comes up without them addressing anything concerning the first, I NEXT them as people.”

      This seems logical to do, I haven’t thought about that. But I think those people I nexted did exactly that, and I did what you suggest anyway (except the first girl, to whom I gave way too many chances. But I was 7 years old, so don’t blame me, lol)

  3. RS says:

    I gave people a lot of chances when I was younger- usually to my own detriment. In the end I had to let the friendships go and could have saved myself a lot of grief if I had ended them sooner. The end result is always the same because inconsiderate people don’t tend to change.

    I look at romantic relationships and friendships the same way. If I wouldn’t tolerate certain behavior in a romantic interest (where we seem to be our pickiest in picking partners) why would I tolerate the same in a friendship? Sure, I don’t have a lot of friends, but the ones I do have are good ones.

  4. G says:

    Is this like lines, barriers, defenses which people should intuitively navigate or do you express in terms of ‘deal breakers’ or standards people must live up too? In my own life I am always careful to give chances to make sure i’m not jumping to a conclusion that someone is conceited or abusive. Perhaps they just didn’t have the intuition to know that they crossed a line? Sometimes its felt that i’ve been ignorant of someones limit and have caused harm to a friendship when if i’d only been more emotionally aware then things would have gone differently.

  5. Valentin says:

    – What do you do with friends and acquaintances who do this?
    I drop them like a fresh k9 turd

    – Should I be more forgiving?
    Fuck no, don’t get me wrong I’m not unreasonable and can see when people do something because of a character flaw. But most of issues like this betray a total lack of consideration and care towards you and just shows you’re there for them. THAT is just unacceptable and there is nothing to gain for *you* to keep that relation going.

    I know it’s cynical but my best advice is to evalute friends on a pro/con list. For instance I got a friend who never keeps track of time and is always late. I know however it’s something she just can’t help and goes so far that she’s missed a flight for a trip she had saved up and paid for already for half a year. It’s a character flaw and not a lack of consideration for me, also she’s damn fun and likeable to be with WHEN she finally shows up. So I accept her character flaws for that.

    • emmatheemo says:

      I like that. I also have friends with flaws, but usually their offenses are not as great as those done by inconsiderate people. That’s why those other people never became friends. Real friends also apologize when they do something flawed, even when they can’t stop it.
      It’s when they start consistently justifying it that I start considering leaving a friend… Not out of hate, but because I don’t wish to enable it and will give them some time to think.

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