- 6 years ago
- Wedding: July 2014
I am in a serious bind and wonder if anyone has advice on how to end a toxic friendship. here’s the troublesome story:
i have a “friend,” let’s call her Gina (not her real name). We have been friends for about seven or eight years, starting in high school. Let me being by stating that i have kind of dug my own grave with this one. The reasons why will become clear soon enough, but I will admit I share the guilt that has caused this problem. At this point, however, I need a solution.
Gina and I became friends fairly young and throughout the course of our friendship we have both changed a great deal. In most friendships this tends to lead to a process of growing apart, but unfortunately, despite my desire for that separation to begin years ago, Gina has only clung to me harder. I made no effort to maintain my high school friendships after leaving for college. I did not especially care for my high school friends and looked forward to starting fresh. I had no animosity toward anyone however, and did not feel a reason to make a clean break or “break up” with any of my friends. Gina, who has no long term friends other than myself and the married man with whom she carried out a long term affair, always made an effort to stay in touch and see each other. We never had constant interaction, but the level of invasion she felt was acceptable in my life has always been deeply inappropriate. She will call my cell phone upwards of 20 times in a row trying to get me to answer (this is not an exaggerated number), then text me and incessantly call my home phone and my fiance’s cell under the guise that she is “worried” about me for not answering her calls (which I never do, thus this entirely ordinary behavior has no reason to worry her). Sometimes she will even drop by my apartment looking for me if I have ignored her too long.
Gina has extremely deep seated mental problems (bipolar disorder, anxiety induced seizures, and borderline personality disorder for starters) and the lowest of the low in terms of self-esteem. These issues stem from her enormously disturbing parents and family life. It is extremely difficult to be upfront with her because
a. her issues are only so much her own fault and I feel like a troll trying to tell her she is behaving inappropriately.
b. she has an extremely defeatist attitude, which makes it impossible to help her help herself. (example: “oh I have daddy issues so I am destined to be a slut, but I still become extremely unhappy when i sleep with a guy I just met and he doesn’t want a serious relationship with me”)
c. she is extraordinarily hypersensitive and takes the most minor criticism extremely personally and begins frantically apologizing and promising to change her unchangable behavior so I won’t be mad at her.
For these reasons I have long been her shoulder to cry on and her cheerleader, giving genuine solicited advice (which she does not take, but enjoys nonetheless as it makes her feel like she has options, despite not having the strength to choose the best ones), and giving her a positive outlook on her circumstances whenever I can.
As a result I have become her “best friend,” which as the announcement of my engagement approaches is a more and more horrifying prospect. My fiance and I JUST got engaged and haven’t told anyone but our families and closest mutual friends.
4 months ago she completely abandoned her life (living with her mom after dropping out of school) doubled her already substantial student loans and moved to my town to be with me and run away from her problems. I have long been wanting to rid my life of the hell that is Gina and though we have recently spent less time together, I know it is only a matter of time until she starts trying on bridesmaid dresses before I even talk to her about it. I admit this is somewhat my fault as, for convenience, I have let her believe over the years of our friendship that she will of course be in my wedding.
She is irrationally self-centered. It is to the point where it is clearly mental instability more than her being a bad person. She has always talked about my wedding (which has been a long time coming) with a mix of excitement and depression varying between “I can’t wait to be your bridesmaid” and “I am going to be so depressed when you’re married and I am not.” She has no genuine interest in my life, but for the role of cheerleader/therapist/mom I play in hers.
Knowing her patterns and behaviors I forsee EXTRAORDINARY problems if she is a part of my wedding. Any or all of these are likely to occur:
-she will become extremely offended if I disagree with her input in my wedding planning
-she will constantly mope about being single whenever the idea of my wedding comes up
-she won’t be able to afford any of the costs of being a bridesmaid
-she will attempt to have sex with a groomsman or guest
-she will get incredibly drunk at every event and need to be babysat or taken away (engagement party, shower, the wedding itself)
-she will bring a date who will act as bad or worse than herself
-she will mask her jealousy with constant criticism
… I could go on.
WHAT ON EARTH DO I DO WITH HER? Ending the friendship flat out cold does not feel like an option (quite literally she can and most likely will stalk me). I think if she were in my wedding I would eventually have the stress and anger to finally tell her to leave, but I don’t want to ruin my wedding experience by accomodating her or the drama our “friendship” creates.