Dear Wendy
Dear Wendy

Friends hate other friend I tried to include

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  • #1006247 Reply

    This one is a long complex one so buckle up: To set some context, I’m a female in my 30s, as are my group of friends. There’s about 6 of us and we all worked in a busy ICU together. It felt a little like being in the trenches and we bonded over a period of time. Two of us knew each other for well over a decade at this point so we aren’t just work friends, but the other 4 are women we have gotten quite close with. We go out to dinner together, take trips, host dinner parties, themed parties, and usually exchange birthday gifts. We have a group chat and a Marco Polo group so we are in contact daily even though a few of us have went on to other jobs—-we have remained close. While working on the same unit, other people have kind of came to occasional outings with us or attended our parties, but never anyone that “stuck.” And not because we didn’t include them specifically, more because we don’t have children and we are able to do a lot more activities and things spontaneously. We like clothes, make up, cosmetic medicine, silly luxuries and other stuff and those people just had family responsibilities and things that preclude spending time and money on frivolous things like that. Sincerely no shade to anyone, we are self aware and know we aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. Some people just mesh and some don’t. That brings me to the 7th wheel I invited. I had worked with this girl, let’s call her Katherine, for about a year and had not gotten close with her. I worked nights, she and the other girls worked days. I would talk to her in passing, but she was never a person I gravitated toward or felt compelled to spend extra curricular time with. The other girls complained during the day she was somewhat lazy and not helpful but never any specific grievance. Katherine was pregnant at the time and eventually had her baby, but subsequently her and her husband lost him when he was a month old in a VERY tragic accident. She took a long time off work (understandably) and when she eventually came back she seemed like she was coping well. Around that time she posted something on fb about all the things she had endured in her life and I started to see her in a new light. I realized she was very strong and had been through some terrible things in her life but was still a very positive person and I admired that. I myself am often very cynical, even though I have been very fortunate, so I tend to respect people who are positive even when I cannot be. She seemed like a good person who had been dealt several bad hands. So I started to get to know her more, although we never spent time together outside of work, and eventually she got pregnant again and I even made her a little picture for her nursery. She asked me to come help her get rid of some of her sons stuff because she was now having a girl and basically just needed help physically letting go. So I helped her pack up some clothes and things to donate and we talked. I guess if I am completely honest, I felt sorry for her more than anything. She moved here to live with her husband and her family is 9 hours away, she lost a baby on top of many other tragedies in her life and she didn’t have a lot of friends here. So I thought hey what’s the harm? She seems like she could use a friend. Over about 2.5 or 3 years at this point, we have went to flea markets and lunch, she came swimming with me at my in laws pool, and she has came to several of the functions my friends and I have held. They initially voiced that they didn’t really want to spend time with her. They resented her for her laziness at work and they believe her to be manipulative and frankly, they just feel like she is a joke. She posts all the time about a work out routine she is starting but she is never successful in losing weight, she posts all over social media about her new program and regime but then after about 2 weeks she gives up and then waits a couple months, starts over and fails again. I can see some of the things they point out about her. Our whole group is very high achieving type A people. 2 of us have masters degrees, one is about to graduate with hers, and 2 of us are in school for it. Two of us plan to open our own practice eventually, 2 of us currently work 2 jobs. One uses to be a competitive body builder. And Katherine is kind of a mess. She’s ALWAYS late for everything. Work, functions, she recently came to one of the girls’ destination weddings and I was flying with her and we missed our flight because she was late even though I literally told her I was concerned she would be late and she assured me she understood the importance of being on time when it comes to flying, etc. She always looks disheveled and like she just rolled out of bed, although lately in the last year she’s been trying to put herself together a little more. Her car is always a mess, her house is always a mess which is another facet of the story entirely I’ll explain shortly. And she seems to tell little white lies and none of us can understand why she does it. She also is going through a divorce right now. That’s a whole different problem too and another reason the group of girls don’t respect her. She’s been saying pretty much the whole time we have known her she was divorcing him but she never went through with it. And any time anything goes wrong, like missing the flight, she blames it on him. While I do think he’s a loser and she should leave him, she needs to take some responsibility for her own life and actions. He is a hoarder but she kind of is too and she blames it ALL on him. You can’t even walk through their finished basement because junk is stacked high and low. The thing is, this whole time, I felt sorry for her so I made excuses for their house being a wreck and her being a mess. I said I think she’s depressed and unhappy with her life and feels stuck so I gave her some grace. In amongst this divorce she was also applying to grad school to a very intense CRNA program at a very expensive elite school in the area. She didn’t get an interview the first time. Her second try, I basically wrote her paper for her holding her hand the whole way, she got an interview and bombed it and didn’t get in. Me and my other close friend who has tried to be friendly and accept her agree that if she gets in, it’s unlikely she will finish. The program is demanding and they won’t tolerate her being late for everything and showing up unprepared. Recently, before she was divorced she also cheated on her husband and that was the last straw for some of the girls. They didn’t respect her to start with and they judged her for cheating. I tried to be understanding. Even though they weren’t divorced, they hadn’t been happy or been intimate in a long time. Again, I tried to give her some grace. Then, the last couple straws broke the camels back. One of the girls was exchanging messages and planning a date with a guy and Katherine asked if it was ok if she approached him for a date also. Not cool. Then she asked that same girl if she could store some boxes while she moved in her garage. They aren’t that close and the girl felt it was an inappropriate and too forward of a request. The final issue is, when the other girls have functions, for example their birthday party at a local restaurant, and don’t invite her, she then backs me into a corner and wants to know why she isn’t invited. It puts me in an awkward position and then I tell her it isn’t my event to be inviting people, so she questions them and puts them in an awkward place until they just pity invite her. If you have to ask why you aren’t invited—-THERE IS YOUR ANSWER. She either doesn’t read or ignores social cues. Lately she has been invited to get together a pretty consistently because me and my other close friend are both getting married so she has been invited to the engagement parties, showers, bachelorettes and weddings so I suppose she started to feel like part of the group. Well the other girls sat us down and said they don’t HATE her but that they would appreciate if she no longer is invited to the group get together unless it’s one that me and my close friend are hosting. They don’t want us or her assuming an invitation is extended to her or us inviting her to their homes, etc. Up to this point they’ve just kind of tolerated her but they’re done. What do I do?? Should I have a talk with her and explain, should I just not invite her to their stuff and when she wants to know why, tell her to ask them and pretend like it’s not a thing? I feel like since I kind of forced her on them and tried to make them like her that I have some responsibility here.

    #1006284 Reply

    You can’t impose a new friend upon your friend group. Neither do you have to limit yourself to one friend group. You and your other friend who like new friend can continue to do things with new friend. The larger friend group says fine to include new friend at your house. So, you have partially overlapping friend groups in both membership and geography. Nothing wrong with that, although if awkward for new friend to include her in big group meetings at your house, then you have to reduce overlap between groups, whether that means abandoning old group, abandoning new friend, or just keeping new friend in the smaller group of 3.

    No need to explain what others in group are thinking about new friend. It’s their job to do that. If she questions exclusion from things they organize, they’ll just have to summon the courage to tell her they don’t feel like she and they are a good fit.

    It does sound like this is a problem of your own creation, since you unilaterally added her to the larger group after the other members told you they didn’t like her, because they saw her as a shirker at work. What she doesn’t do at work, presumably they have to pick up the slack on. That does get old quite fast.

    #1006459 Reply

    You are obsessed with her. It is all about her, her life, her problems… It seems that you are carrying a lot here which is her stuff and why? You don’t even like her so much, criticise her a lot. It is a bit parasitic. Just take some distance with all this.
    And don’t impose anybody to your group’s function. That is really impolite. Especially if this woman tries to compete with dates, how dumb is that. I completely understand that your group doesn’t want to include her. I wouldn’t either.
    Just see her individually or with the other close friends. Why do you have to be all in a pack? And meet separately the other group.
    If this Katherine asks why she isn’t included, say: we don’t need to be all together. It works better like this in smaller groups. If she “corners” you, say “please stop pushing”. If she insists, just stop seeing her.
    Do you still all work together?

    #1006462 Reply

    By the way, I would never miss a plane for the sake of a not-such-a-great-friend who is always late. You seem a bit masochist here.

    #1006535 Reply

    So, I apologize, this was too long and I could not follow. But, from your title alone, I would just say, you can’t force other become friends.

    All you can do is introduce people and hope that they mesh. If it doesn’t happen, if they aren’t enthused about each other or worse, outright dislike each other, don’t keep trying to force it. Maintain separate friendships.

    We’re adults now, we don’t have to act like we’re in high school or college where we have huge sprawling groups of friends that all hang out in packs. You can have separate friendships, its okay to have separate friendships.

    #1008050 Reply

    When you talk about “the engagement parties, showers, bachelorettes and weddings,” I assume these events were in 2019 or planned for 2022, because people who work in healthcare (in ICU!!) cannot possible be hosting super-spreader events like this, CAN THEY?!?!??!!

    No way would I miss a plane for someone else. No way. Especially not for someone who had been warned about punctuality. You have to triple-check your boundaries, because you let her seriously screw you over on that — why?

    It’s also super-rude to bring an uninvited tag-a-long to a host’s home. If she wants to know why she isn’t invited, tell her the plain truth. “I guess she didn’t like the fact that you wanted to mack on her date.”

    #1008097 Reply

    No, you should not be inviting another person to events your friends are planning and hosting. That’s rude and inappropriate! If you want to invite a friend to another friend’s birthday party, you have to ask the host if it’s okay. If Katherine asks you why she wasn’t invited to someone else’s birthday party, you say you don’t know. If she wants to then go bug other people with the same question, that’s up to her and how they choose to answer is up to them.

    I also wouldn’t pull her aside to tell her the whole group merely tolerates her and does not wish to include her moving forward. That’s mean.

    You and your friends sound like mean girls, tbh. Befriending/spending time with/including someone you don’t like because you feel sorry for them is a jerk move — especially since you talk about how she’s a joke behind her back. You have nothing nice to say about her. The white lies, the trying to date the same guy another woman in the group is already dating, the pressing for info on why she’s not invited to events are all obnoxious, I’ll give you that. But most of the negative traits you cite as reasons the group dislikes her are petty. Her car is messy and her appearance is untidy and she’s not Type A like the rest of you — really? These made the cut for the reasons your group of friends dislikes her?

    I’m also in my 30s and all of this sounds exhausting. And yeah, I do think it sounds like you’ve created a lot of your own problems here. Cut it out!

    #1008222 Reply

    It sounds like she is always the topic between you and the other women.
    It’s Probably not even that bad – sounds amplified – but ok.

    Did you come here for validation that she is a “low life”? Honestly – this is mean. Might have started as a friend during her lost of the baby – but definitely not a friend now.

    It may be best if you exit her life too. Hence the already bad hand at life she was dealt.

    Type A my butt

    #1008223 Reply

    In addition – you stated the Pros, her are the Cons

    Type A personality:
    Hostile, impatient, irritable, and self critical.
    According to Health-line – can lead to problems in your personal and work relationships.

    #1008369 Reply

    Honestly? All your friends sound awful. Your friend everybody hates sounds awful. You sound awful.

    Yeah, hate to say it —- but you ALL sound awful. Each and every one of you should reexamine both how you live your lives and how you treat people. As neither strike me as very impressive.

    #1008433 Reply

    Sometimes you can’t combine friends/friend groups. I have a diverse mix of friends and I know that not everyone will meld well together. Respect the group you had first and don’t impose others onto them that they don’t want to be around. Quality girl time is precious. Don’t ruin it for yourself or others.

    This girl sounds like a train wreck. She knows social cues and ignores them out of selfishness. Why would you want to spend time with someone like that? Consider dialing way back on the time and effort invested in her. She sounds very one sided. What has she done in return for you? If a friendship doesn’t bring you joy and reciprocity, then you should be asking yourself why you should maintain the relationship.

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