Reply To: Best friend is really starting to get on my nerves. What should I do?

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February 5, 2024 at 3:14 pm #1128024

I’m curious what’s being split here. You’re responsible for notes and she’s responsible for… what, exactly? Assuming there is some benefit in here for you (I know you mentioned slides, but IDK what that really entails), you’ll have to stop taking advantage of that when you tell her this isn’t working. Different people have different learning styles — other people’s notes never made sense to me, so I was always happy to share my notes as needed, but I had to take my own. Taking them kept me engaged and attentive during classes, reviewing them jogged my memory and helped me learn.

Tell her in a kind but straightforward manner that your arrangement isn’t working. Neither of you is learning the material or able to keep up the way you want, and you think it’s best for both of you to do your own work moving forward. You can tell her in no uncertain terms that this move is also what’s best for your friendship, which is important to you, if you feel so inclined. If she protests or makes you feel guilty, well… is she that good of a friend?

You don’t mention anything about the rest of your friendship but I’ve seen dynamics play out where one person is a giver and the other is a taker who will keep taking. Givers and takers seem to find one another. Maybe this is you, maybe it isn’t, but either way this will be a great lesson in setting appropriate boundaries.

I had a friend once tell me “I can’t be a friend about this right now” when I was telling her about some personal struggles during a high-stress period of her own life. The friendship didn’t end because she said that. She didn’t have the bandwidth, I understood and it was helpful that she was direct. That friendship did end years later, though, when it became clear that she was happy to take support when it benefitted her, but unable or unwilling to give back in what felt like equal measure. Nothing explosive or dramatic, a fade out of a friendship that wasn’t for life and that’s okay.