In a pickle with "friends" – advice please

posted 3 years ago in Relationships
Post # 2
Member
6525 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

Sunshine09:  Personally, I wouldnt try to repair these “friendships” I am in a similar situation where my “friends” and I are in different places in our life and they dont care to hear about our happy moments and achievements. And I have learned that those are not friends. Friends are happy for you not upset bc they are “sick” of hearing about all the good stuff going on. Its sad, but since my wedding, my social life went from me being a social butterfly to nothing at all. And i dont care becase at the end of the day, the most important person is my husband and my family and his family and if thats all I have, I am happy with that. I am over people not wanting to hear about my happy life because they arent happy. If you were my friend you would be happy to hear it.

Post # 3
Hostess
8680 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2014

This is a tough situation, perhaps your friends tried in subtle ways to get you two off the subject of yourselves? Trying to bring up conversations and weren’t about you, engagment, kids, or homes?

I know it might seem kind of childish, but I honestly don’t know a single person, friend or not that would tell someone else to stop talking about themselves, I can’t even think of a good way to tell someone that!

My brother is like this, everything we see him he is ALWAYS talking about him, he never stops to ask about anyone else, how they are – everything is 100% about him all the time. About him, his job, his house, a new car he bought, a new phone, whatever, if it’s about him, everytime you see him, you’ll hear about it.

And quite honestly, everyone in my family, and many of his friends just avoid him now. Our own mother doesn’t even visit him more than a few times a year!

Maybe the next time you are in the same area as them, you can ask them how things are going with them, invite them out to do things that doesn’t have to do with you, and don’t mention yourselves for awhile. It takes awhile to repair a relationship like this.

Post # 5
Member
2725 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: August 2012

jenilynevette:  I have to agree with this. Just going by what you said, OP, maybe you are talking about yourselves too much. As much as I am happy for my friends when great things happen to them, I also wouldn’t want to feel like every interaction revolved around them. To me that isn’t a real friendship.

I think you need to think about what you want out of this. Do you want to repair these relationships, or not? If the answer is yes, then maybe the key is not to think about it as having to downplay your life, but rather just giving them a spotlight for awhile. if you care about them, you should want to give their lives focus and attention too.

Post # 6
Member
439 posts
Helper bee

Is there any possibility that you two just talk about yourselves ways too much in conversation? If there is any possibility that you come off as essentially self-oriented, it could be that the friends are tired of that behavior rather than actually irritated by whatever success you have had.

While it’s possible for an entire pre-existing social group to act immaturely and cut off a friend for no good reason (or jealousy), it’s far more common for this to happen with one person at a time. When an entire group thinks/feels the same thing, and responds in the same manner, there comes a point where it is wise to wonder if perhaps they all have a point.

Obviously, we don’t have their side of things to go on, only yours, so it’s next to impossible to determine if they have a legitimate reason to be annoyed by your behavior or not. If you may harp on your own successes, and perhaps drive the conversation to yourselves more than is appropriate, it’s worth assessing. It takes an extremely mature person to be able to do such a thing, however – it’s difficult to analyze your own behavior in light of criticism and conclude that you may not always have been in the right.

Post # 7
Member
1197 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I think it’d be nice to somehow work your way back into their graces, especially for your husband’s sake. Can he hang out with them without you? They may talk less about family-related things then.

Post # 8
Member
255 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

I would be guessing they are envious, as from the sounds of it things have changed since you got engaged. 

Even if, as previous posters suggested, you did talk a lot about yourself when you caught up with them, why would they continually discuss you when you weren’t there? Surely they have better things to talk about if they are really sick of you.

I would distance myself from them and try to meet some people in the same place in life as you.

Post # 9
Member
1137 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Agree with jenilynevette there are always two sides of each story. If you and your DH really care about this people I would simply sit down (at least with the one I am closest to) and talk about the issue, about how they and you both feel. I mean, if you are friends and adults I assume you can discuss the situation and after that you can think about what to do.

 

Post # 10
Member
8706 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

There are two types of people in this world.<br /><br />Type A: After they get married/have children, everything becomes, “Oh, my baby did…” or “Did you know my husband…” “This one time, when I was with the baby…” or “Haha, you’ll never guess how my husband feels about…” The people who fit into “Type A” Don’t realize they’re doing it. They can no longer have a “normal” friendship conversation with anyone without interjecting a story/relation/similar story/comparison about their husband and or child(ren). <br /><br />Type B: People who aren’t type A.

 

I have both types of friends, and I have little desire to converse with Type A friends. I am not envious, I am not jealous, I do not in any way want to be them. These people have transformed entirely after they got married and/or had children. They are no longer friends, they are “Friends who got married” and “Friends who turned into parents.” Would I gossip behind their back? No, but it sounds like you’re falling more into Type A than Type B. If they’re sick about hearing about your baby or your husband or your wonderful life together, that’s how they feel and that’s how it is. You have two options, you can stop talking as if your life revolves around these subjects, or you can find new friends.*<br /><br />Even the best, most loyal, honest and truthful friends have their limits. I know I’ve reached mine with a friend or two.<br /><br />*This is speculation. You’d know what you talk about more than I do.

Post # 11
Member
2421 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: February 2015

I agree with Hyperventilate: .  Some people just seem to lose the ability to have a conversation that doesn’t directly centre on their personal life.  I love to hear funny stories about my friends’ kids.  Or talk about their realtionship, wedding, whatever.  But I also want to talk about current affairs, the new Veronica Mars movie, this book they recommended I read (now that I’ve finished it!), that song on the radio that is played constantly, vacations, work changes, advice on how to handle situations, next season’s boots, recipes, etc… the list goes on.  

Is it possible that in all of your excitement (and you’ve had a lot of things to legitimately be excited about!) you lost sight of these other things or friends’ lives?  

Recently I was out to dinner with someone I’ve only met a couple of times.  We were in a small group of couples and everyone would ask questions about whatever topic we happened to be discussing – someone’s post-doc work, another person’s injury, someone’s upcoming vacation, and no matter what topic we were on she would interject how it related to her.  She didn’t ask questions of anyone else, she didn’t further the discussion, she just found a loosely related subject that brought the attention back to her.  It’s exhausting.  And it stunts the flow of conversation. 

It’s hard to be friends with someone like that.  I’m all for hearing my friends’ opinions and stories, but no one person should dominate any conversation, it becomes a lecture, not a conversation at that point. 

If you want to rebuild these friendships, then you’ll have to work at it.  Only you can decide if their friendship is worth it.  You don’t need to beg forgiveness, just have a genuine interest in their lives, opinions, etc (if it was, in fact, that you were wrapped up in your own that caused the breakdown in the first place.)  Maybe you’ll decide it’s not worth it you.

Post # 12
Member
7285 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

If a whole group.of people are having a similar reaction, than honestly it sounds like you and your husband who are at fault.

Post # 13
Member
774 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2013 - Dalhousie Castle

I think there are two real possibilities:  

1. It might be a good time to examine how you and your husband are interacting with people. Are conversations a two-way-street or has excitement over the progression of your lives let to a little too much talking and not enough listening? It’s possible that you just got a little carried away and now you know you can work to resolve it. 

This may or may not be a contributing factor but I think something else is also going on. I think sometimes one or two people can infect a whole group with their negative feelings, especially if there was some jealousy issue.  The fact that they talked about you a lot behind your back, when you didn’t have an opportunity to defend yourselves, might mean you have become the villian of the group that everyone likes to hate on. That sucks if that happened, even if it was sparked by genuine annoyance, they have not dealt with it in an adult or respectful way. Only you can know if this is the situation by really examining your own behaviour critically and trying to talk to the others of the group.  

2. The second option is that you have simply outgrown the people you previously socialized with. If they are still single/ not parents its very possible that your lives and your interests no longer align well and that’s why they are not really interested in hearing about stuff. It might be time to move on and make new friends that also have kids etc and understand your lifestage more. 

Post # 14
Member
2474 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Msts of the replies here have said what I was thinking when I read your post. A lot of people who have a tendency to only talk about themselves don’t realize they’re doing it. They think they’re just sharing, or whatever.

I have a good friend who I love to pieces but I can’t be around him too much because he gets on my nerves. I am SO happy that he seems to be doing so well in his life, but I can’t get in a word about my own life – and if I do, he either stomps on it with something he forgot to tell me, or he forgets about it. I’ve just come to accept that this is how he is. Now, we don’t gossip about him, we just know that for him, that’s how he communicates. His mother is the same way. 

Perhaps instead of placing all of the blame on everyone else, you guys can look at this as an opportunity to examine yourselves and really think about the type of friends that you are. It’s hard to not want to share every single detail with everyone — it’s even harder to make sure that you are not always taking up the entire conversation. It is a conscious decision that you may have to start making for the sake of being a better friend. 

Post # 15
Member
2649 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: October 2010

Sunshine09:  Honestly, it sounds like you’ve become “those” friends.  The ones who have become self-absorbed, braggy, one-uppers who can’t talk about anything but themselves. In a word, tiresome.

I get that you feel hurt, embarrassed and as a result of those two things, mad – but unless you’ve never talked/gossiped about anyone with your friends before, you’re being hypocritical and just defensive.

It sounds like you brought this on yourselves. Sure, you can tell yourselves everyone is just jealous of your milestones and happiness but if all your friends have backed away, the common denominator here is you.  Ask yourselves if it isn’t more likely that you just irritated the shit out of everyone with your non-stop,talk about yourselves and the natural consequence of that was they started to avoid you.  I think maybe you should take a long hard look at yourselves and your behavior and make some adjustments. It’s childish to try to claim you have to hide your milestones – no one is asking you to do that.  Share your news and then take an interest in the people around you. Talk about their lives, milestones, whatever too.  Don’t constantly steer the conversation back to yourselves.

You blundered but use it as an opportunity to grow rather than to feel victimized.

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