Content of the material
- What do you want?
- What if you hate confrontation?
- Write it down
- Time it right
- Can you do it over text?
- Two Big Questions to Ask Yourself
- Remind yourself that youre dating your partner — not his friends
- What if your friend doesnt want to chat?
- 14. Focus On The Bright Side Of Things
- Additional Resources
- If his friends are way out of line and are not being the least bit civil with you, it may be time to issue an ultimatum — or walk away
- 4. Make Eye Contact Or Not
- Hang out with them in a different setting
What do you want?
Before you do or say anything, think about what you want to achieve from this chat. Do you want to clear up a miscommunication, address an old argument or grudge, or set boundaries? Whatever it is, make sure it’s clear in your mind before you and your friend meet to talk.
What if you hate confrontation?
If you’re not a fan of confrontation (honestly, who is?!), the following steps will help you feel a bit more comfortable with talking about issues with your friend. Before you chat, you could even let your friend know that you’re a bit nervous and would really appreciate it if they were patient with you.
Write it down
Writing down what you want to say can help clarify your thoughts. Using ‘I’ statements is an effective way to communicate your feelings. Statements that begin with ‘you’, such as ‘You never come to my house’, can seem like a personal attack so your friend might get defensive. Instead, try this: ‘I feel hurt that we don’t hang out at my house…’
You could show what you’ve written to someone else you trust, such as a sibling, parent or another friend.
Time it right
The place and time of the conversation are important. A bit of privacy, and somewhere neutral where you both feel comfortable, will help ease any nerves. You could ask your friend to meet you at a specific time and place for a talk, so that you don’t just spring it on them.
Also consider that it may come as a shock to the person. You might try to avoid having the conversation at a time when it will spoil a special occasion for them, such as around their birthday or before an exam.
Can you do it over text?
Be honest: do you want to do it over text because it’s easier, or does it actually make sense for your friendship? If your main form of communication is texting and you’re used to having in-depth conversations over text, then go for it.
If this isn’t the case, think about meeting up face-to-face.
Two Big Questions to Ask Yourself
You might want to ask yourself some simple questions when in a friendship like this:
- Am I in a good mood after being with this friend? Is there a give and take? Am I entirely truthful with this friend? Do we respect each other? Would my friend talk about me in a negative way to others? Would I talk about my friend in a negative way to others? Does my friend criticize and belittle me? Do I hesitate to share my good news because of how it might make him or her feel? Does my friend abuse the friendship and take advantage of me? Do I even like this person?
- Why do I hold onto the BFF ideal? This isn’t a legally binding agreement. No one is forcing you to stay friends. It’s never an easy decision to break off the friendship. But if you saw one person physically abusing another, wouldn’t you encourage them to end the relationship? Why is emotional abuse any different?
Remind yourself that youre dating your partner — not his friends
At the end of the day, the only person whose opinion matters in this is your partner’s. They can hate you all they want. All you need to do is refuse to hang out with them, and there’s not much that they can do.
If your relationship is a healthy one, explaining that you’d want to hang out with your friends while he hangs out with his will not be an issue. Keep doing you, and don’t let the haters get you down.
What if your friend doesnt want to chat?
If you’ve tried to talk with your friend and they refuse to cooperate or are being nasty about it, you could suggest having the conversation at a later time. Maybe your friend needs some time to think about it, or they may be going through other stressful things at the moment and aren’t in the right headspace for this chat.
If your friend refuses to acknowledge they did anything wrong, and you’re the only one making an effort, it can be super draining. At a certain point, and only you know where that is for yourself, it could be time to think about ending this friendship.
14. Focus On The Bright Side Of Things
Negativity is contagious and can spread quickly; refuse to be that person who transmits negativity through your family, friends, and coworkers by complaining all the time. Instead, be that person who can look at the bright side of a difficult situation and keep tough times in perspective. This doesn’t mean to be unrealistic and overly-positive, it means to be that person who can look adversity in the face and focus on what you can control.Advertising
Here are some additional resources to help you determine whether or not you’re in a toxic friendship:
- 8 Signs of a Toxic Friendship (Psychology Today)
- 9 Clear Signs You’re in a Toxic Friendship (Reader’s Digest)
- Dealing With a Toxic Friendship (Reach Out Australia)
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
If his friends are way out of line and are not being the least bit civil with you, it may be time to issue an ultimatum — or walk away
Your relationship may be one that is healthy, but if his friends are way out of line with the way they’re behaving, you need to put your foot down.
For example, if they hit you, insulted you to your face, stole something from you, or refuse to even acknowledge your presence when you try to talk to them, it’s time to get assertive.
You need to understand what your partner’s actions are saying at this point. If your partner is not doing anything to stop this behavior from happening, he’s complicit in disrespect, and you should walk away.
If they are putting the moves on your partner in front of you, it may be time to ask him to make a choice between you and his “friends.” After all, they’re showing that they have no issue messing up your relationship with your partner — and it’s up to him to put his foot down.
4. Make Eye Contact Or Not
On a daily basis you are bombarded with distractions competing for one of your most precious resources–your attention. Making eye contact with the person you are speaking with face-to-face is an outward expression that you are confident and fully engaged with that person. However, if someone isn’t looking making eye contact with you, before you jump to conclusions, be aware that it may be culturally unacceptable for them to do so; they are intimidated by you; or it makes them uncomfortable.
Hang out with them in a different setting
Along the same lines, this person who kind of sucks when you’re in a small group may show a whole other, more palatable side of themselves when you switch up the setting. If your interaction has been limited to low-key, conversation-heavy settings like getting drinks, Chlipala recommends trying something else: Organize a group to go to a concert, a basketball game, a hike — anything with an activity to take some of the pressure off.
And “see how they are around their friends,” she adds. Everyone’s more at ease on their home turf. And while they clearly have at least a little good taste if they’re dating your friend, meeting the other people they choose to surround themselves with will also help you form a more complete picture.
- This is already difficult for them. Try to be calm and thoughtful.
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- If violence or something you’re not comfortable with occurs, get help from a family member or close friend.
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