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Dear Wendy

How to get a friend to stop texting me

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  • #1031666 Reply
    avatarRachel
    Guest

    I have a friend who doesn’t text much. It usually takes her a week to respond and she doesn’t respond to everything my text says. And to be honest, I’ve always been fine with that. I’m an introvert so I completely understand. She’s even told me in person she doesn’t like texting much unless it’s to ask to hang out. But I do know, if she textes me a lot and carries a convo through text for more than a day, it means she wants something from me.

    For example, last summer she kept asking how I was doing and responding back and forth through text. Then revealed how “it’d be nice if someone threw her a birthday party.” So I threw her a huge birthday party, and then she went back to not texting much again after that.
    And that’s fine. She does stuff like that a lot.

    Anyways, fast forward to now. She’s been texting me back and forth lately. It’s very strange. So I know she wants something. Right now I’m going through a lot. I recently had a miscarriage and I’m having to go to therapy over a traumatic event that happened to me a while ago and is resurfacing in my life again. I’m not emotionally ready to talk to anyone. But she keeps texting me even though I’ve told her this. When I didn’t respond to her text messages for a day she randomly told me “you’re going to be a god mother to my child.” Which normally I’d feel honored about. But I have a sneaking suspicion she said that so I could do her a favor later. Just because of how strange it is she’s been texting so much.

    I do feel like a bad friend because she’s pregnant and just bought a new house. So I can’t be as strong as support for her as she goes through these exciting life changes. But at the same time I feel I need to take care of myself right now. How do I politely get her to stop texting me? I’ve told her what’s going on in my life and that I would like some space. But she still textes 3x a week. Mostly just checking in. But it makes me feel pressure to text back.

    #1031667 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    Don’t reply. Assuming you’ve actually been clear that you need space right now to deal with the stuff you’re going through. Make sure that’s true.

    #1031668 Reply
    avatarCopa
    Participant

    If you’ve told her you have a lot going on and need space, then yeah, it’s okay to stop responding.

    You also aren’t obligated to do favors for other people, btw. If someone suggests it’d be nice if someone threw them a party and you don’t have the bandwidth or the desire to do so, don’t do it.

    #1031670 Reply
    avatarLisforLeslie
    Guest

    Practice saying “No, that isn’t going to work for me” or any version that works for you. Just because someone asks you a favor doesn’t mean you have to do it, especially if the favor asking is all one sided.

    Just reply randomly or not at all. Or respond every time with a long, text to type stream of consciousness about your troubles. That is a great way to get someone to stop.

    #1031672 Reply
    avatarbrise
    Guest

    I find it a bit mean to assume that she texts you because she expects a favor of you. Perhaps she texts because she knows you are going through a lot now and is concerned about you. Perhaps she acts just as a friend and wants to show support. Asking you to be a godmother to her child is a gesture of friendship. It is sad that you see it like a future exchange of favors. If it is too difficult for you to take this role, given your recent miscarriage, just say so or ask for a reflexion time.
    Perhaps it is difficult for you to warm to her and exchange with her because of your opposite situations now. I understand your sorrow and wish to have space now, and I am sorry for your loss, but don’t project your grief on her. She is just a friend.
    It her attention is too much for you, just take some days to reply, and with short statements.
    My main feeling is that you focus on her with some hostility because you are upset about other and much more important parts of your life. I understand but be aware of that. Be kind. And then focus on yourself and seek support if you feel down.

    #1031675 Reply
    avatarBittergaymark
    Guest

    Warning: People who demand to be left alone — often are. I hope you are truly ready for that.

    #1031676 Reply
    avataranonymousse
    Participant

    Why did you throw her a huge birthday party? Just because someone says something like that does not mean you need to act on it.

    On the surface, I wouldn’t take her messages as anything more than she’s trying to be nice. Ask her once more to give you space, or just mute or block her number for a little while. If you don’t count her as a friend, you can mute her if she’s not listening to what you want.

    #1031693 Reply
    avatarRachel
    Guest

    Some time before her birthday my cat passed away. When she found out, her and her husband would make surprise visits to my house and send me flowers and treats. She’s nice. So when she said she wanted a party, I wanted to do something nice in return. Her daughter’s birthday was 4 days after hers and she wanted me to plan something, but I could not. So I swear I am not always jumping at the opportunity to do favors lol. I just know when she’s about to ask for one.

    #1031694 Reply
    avatarRachel
    Guest

    I mean, when she leaves me alone for a few days I feel relieved. My other friends have been respecting my privacy and leaving me alone til I’m ready. So I believe I’m ready for her to do the same.

    #1031695 Reply
    avatarRachel
    Guest

    Thank you! I am doing my best to be as kind as I can be. And well, we’ve only been friends for 2 years. And for as long as I’ve known her, she only carries a conversation with me through text if she wants something. Could be something small like advice, or to ask to watch her kids, take photos of her for social media or to just hang out. If she doesn’t want something she will take a week to respond or send me 1 to 2 words back. That’s how it’s always been. I’m not mad about it. If you don’t talk to someone that often, you might as well see how they’re doing first and make an effort to talk to them if you want a favor. I just don’t have the energy and mental capacity for it.

    She started texting me long texts before she knew about all the bad stuff happening in my life. So I think it’s fair to assume she wanted something at the time. Hopefully now she understands I can’t do the favor.

    I think you’re right. It is all just bad timing. I’m going through dark times as she is going through happy ones. It could also be my hormones as well. I am pregnant again and it is causing me to feel all sorts of things. I still would like her to respect my privacy and leave me alone til things settle. Any advice on how to say that politely so it gets through to her would be super helpful.

    #1031696 Reply
    avatarRachel
    Guest

    Lol that is what she was doing with me. Typing a long stream of consciousness about her troubles. And if I didn’t respond for a while she would continue texting about her day. This is not something she normally does unless she wants something. I finally told her all the dark things going on in my life and that I need space. So she’s kind of backed off a bit, but now she’s checking in every few days. I know the intentions are good, probably mixed with some boredom, but I need a break. Do you think it’s rude to respond with “no need to check on me”?

    #1031697 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    Do you think it’s rude to respond with “no need to check on me”?

    Kind of. Why do you feel like you have to reply? Just don’t.

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