Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: How to gently tell a friend to back off without hurting her feelings

  1. #1
    Labified Senior Dog Member+ GretaJack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Location
    Fond du Lac, Wisconsin
    Posts
    3,268

    How to gently tell a friend to back off without hurting her feelings

    I have had a crappy summer. It is one that I look forward to being over. I lost a close friend to cancer. I lost my horse and just simply life has been overwhelming with everything that has been going on between work, school, the kennel club that I am treasurer for... etc.

    I have a friend who has a wonderful heart. She has nothing but good intentions with everything she does. She has felt a need to take me under her wing and "mother me". It has become almost obsessive, if you ask me. She seems to forget that I have real parents, family and other friends. She is very involved with me in the dog obedience show circuit locally, she is someone that I have know since I was a kid, she is about my mother's age, and is also on the board as president of the kennel club with me.

    I enjoy her friendship most times, but there are times where she has crossed the line. She came out to my horse barn uninvited the night I put my horse down since she was worried about me being alone (but she forgets I do have other friends), the night before that she left several voice mail messages wanting me to come to her house since she was worried about me and when I called her back to tell her I was at my parents' house she almost seemed shocked. She does not want me to get another horse since Aries did nothing but take away from my dog training and I really should focus on that (that is a bit selfish on her part since she is failing to realize how much joy Aries gave me). She has plans for me to marry one of her sons so that I can be her daughter in law. She feels a need to cook at least one meal a day for me no matter what my plans are. Assumes that I do nothing other than work, go to school and train dogs so I must be available outside of those times with all this idle time on my hands (which is never) and is put off when I have plans with others. She has interferred with my training of my deceased friend's coonhound that I am going to be showing in a couple of weekends to the point of extreme frustration for me, but I am trying to be considerate since this woman was a good friend of hers also and I know she is hurting by her death as well as the decision by her family to let me show the dog and not her.

    Honestly, I don't think I can tell you how crazy she is making, but on the other hand how good hearted she is and doesn't realize that she is overwhelming me. I feel lost at how to handle her since everything I have tried lately doesn't seem to get through to her and I am not a very direct person, especially when it comes to other people's feelings. I just hope they get subliminal hints rather than me being all out hurtful.
    See Jacob grow http://katiejmcnamara.blogspot.com

    Missed Greatly, Forever Remembered. In memory of my lost ones; Moby (9/13/03), Carbon (09/13/03), Tanner (10/16/05), Aries (07/31/07) and Millie (09/25/07).

  2. #2
    RIP Hudson my love Senior Dog Member+ Hudsons~Mom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    11,110
    Wow that is a toughie....I think what I would do (because I am a chicken when it comes to confronting my friends) I would write her a letter, telling her how you feel, and thanking her at the same time for everyhting that she has done.

    I find a letter works better because you can really express what you want to say without being intrurupted or losing your chain of thought.
    Owned by Noodle, Nalla, Squeek, Lucius, and Bella....RIP Hudson my love I miss you.

  3. #3
    Collie Magical Senior Dog Member+ SalemWitchChild's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    7,685
    Blog Entries
    8
    Could it be that she doesn't have many friends so she is relying on you? It's a hard one. I think I would write out your feelings but tell her in person.
    Women are Angels.
    And when someone breaks our wings,
    we simply continue to fly....on a broomstick.
    We are flexible like that.


  4. #4
    Senior Dog Member+ fairlight's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Texas
    Posts
    17,260
    I have many aquaintences but keep my true blue friends very limited. If they cross the line or make me feel uncomfortable I come right out and tell them Wooohooo crossing the line!
    Love knows not its own depth until the hour of separation.

    Kabil Gibran

  5. #5
    Echo Senior Dog Member+ southern_girl09's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    California
    Posts
    5,335
    I have a friend like that, i know i am young and all, but she is the same way.
    Anyway, i think i would either write a letter or send a email. I cant stand hurting peoples feelings either.
    -Erin
    Echo(APBT)&Tattoo(JRT)

  6. #6
    Pom Mom Senior Dog Member+ Deb's Tiny Dogs's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    10,952
    Blog Entries
    1
    I think she deserves to be talked to in person. Then you can guage how it's hitting her and make adjustments if desired.

    I would just express to her how valued she is to you, how you realize many people never have a friend care for them like this and that's why it's so difficult to say the following.

    Just tell her you need to grieve in your own way, which sometimes means being alone. Tell her it's comforting to you just knowing she's there if you need her. But by having so much daily contact you find the relationship a bit smothering lately. (You might say it's probably just a phase you're going through, etc., even if you know it's not)

    I guess bottom line I would just try to be really kind but assertive. I'd kill for a friend that interested in my well being, but I can imagine it could become too much.

    Nearing the end of the talk I'd try to set some boundries for the future (like perhaps please call before just dropping in, etc)
    Forever my boys, Bogey and Miko. All my love till we meet again.

  7. #7
    Senior Dog Member janice bronson's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    sutton, quebec
    Posts
    421
    assertive is the word that came to my mind. >>> if this is the case this lack of assertiveness probably generalizes to other areas of your life as well. one well read and recommended book used by therapists is "when i say no, i feel guilty" >>> it has some excellent methods of expressing yourself and prevent from being run over. my favourite is the "broken record method" >>> like if you have a defective purchase, and they're trying to loose you from the customer service counter ..... "this article is not what it was advertised to be, i am bringing it back to you and YOU ARE GOING TO REFUND ME MY MONEY' >>> no matter what they come back, with just repeat those same three facts.
    so .... for your friend: "I have a really busy schedule and personal issues which I am dealing with .... please call two days ahead if you want to catch me in ... " or whatever, but to expect to be notified of company or droppers-in is not unusual. i used to have so much trouble with this, for instance, i couldn't tell the fellow that i didn't want to see him and his child every saturday, i would stay away from the windows and let him come and not let him in. I couldn't say: "I don't want you to come here" because i knew that they were lonely and didn't get only one day a week together and it was easier to entertain the child by letting her pet the dogs , for him. well, >>> my place isn't an amusement park. but this was not a functional way to deal with him. i should have said:"this is not an amusement park, ... i have work to do which i can't while you are here" .... or suggest some other activity that we could all do together,

    like, tell your friend, >>> busy all week, meet you for coffee after classes on wednesday ... something to establish that the time and place of your meetings is a matter of mutual choice,

  8. #8
    Senior Dog Member P3tm0m's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tahlequah, OK
    Posts
    1,200
    I know how you feel, I have a friend like that, she's not my best friend but a really good friend. One time she made a comment that really hurt me. I ended up telling her that I really like her but maybe she needs to watch what she says. She acted a little upset at first but she got over it and we are still friends!

  9. #9
    Couch Potato City
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    18,260
    Blog Entries
    2
    Considering there are two parts to communication- what is said, and how it is received, I would talk to her in person verses a email etc. Written word without voice inflections and sincerity can lead to how its read. Same problems that happen on forums- its written word and subject to the voice inflection of the person reading it.
    Start with something like " I appreciate what you are trying to do for me, and the help you have offered, however sometimes it just a little bit much. I know you mean well, however it comes across a little bit dominanting. Could we agree that when I tell you I am fine, I mean just that..." etc.
    I have a dear old friend that I care for but honestly - when there is a problem she just "swoops in" making me feel more out of control as it adds another detail I have attend too other than whats going on.
    Remember- the written word can be received as insultive as it lacks the communication skills of the voice tone etc. Something I was taught a while ago was if you read what you wrote as it being back at you- it shows you how it could be received..

  10. #10
    RIP Hudson my love Senior Dog Member+ Hudsons~Mom's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Posts
    11,110
    I think this is WAY to harsh for the kind of friend that she is.

    I so agree with the others though, and myself....write a letter, but read it to her. That way you have the best of both worlds, you get to tell her how you really feel, but you can controle your tone and how you say words to express to her warmly and none offensive.


    Quote Originally Posted by janice bronson View Post
    assertive is the word that came to my mind. >>> if this is the case this lack of assertiveness probably generalizes to other areas of your life as well. one well read and recommended book used by therapists is "when i say no, i feel guilty" >>> it has some excellent methods of expressing yourself and prevent from being run over. my favourite is the "broken record method" >>> like if you have a defective purchase, and they're trying to loose you from the customer service counter ..... "this article is not what it was advertised to be, i am bringing it back to you and YOU ARE GOING TO REFUND ME MY MONEY' >>> no matter what they come back, with just repeat those same three facts.
    so .... for your friend: "I have a really busy schedule and personal issues which I am dealing with .... please call two days ahead if you want to catch me in ... " or whatever, but to expect to be notified of company or droppers-in is not unusual. i used to have so much trouble with this, for instance, i couldn't tell the fellow that i didn't want to see him and his child every saturday, i would stay away from the windows and let him come and not let him in. I couldn't say: "I don't want you to come here" because i knew that they were lonely and didn't get only one day a week together and it was easier to entertain the child by letting her pet the dogs , for him. well, >>> my place isn't an amusement park. but this was not a functional way to deal with him. i should have said:"this is not an amusement park, ... i have work to do which i can't while you are here" .... or suggest some other activity that we could all do together,

    like, tell your friend, >>> busy all week, meet you for coffee after classes on wednesday ... something to establish that the time and place of your meetings is a matter of mutual choice,
    Owned by Noodle, Nalla, Squeek, Lucius, and Bella....RIP Hudson my love I miss you.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Dog Wars 3 - Contest #1 - ENTRIES ONLY
    By Dax in forum Dog Contests
    Replies: 57
    Last Post: 05-16-2006, 03:47 AM
  2. From Friend to Friend
    By southern_girl09 in forum Dog Memorials
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 12-21-2005, 02:17 PM
  3. Back To School Tipsí for Families with Dogs
    By Dax in forum Dog Training
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-16-2005, 10:37 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •