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What do you think, does this happen to you?


Applewhite

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I have a friend from college who is fun and easy going for the most part but very easily takes offense or gets angry at you. For instance if you forget his birthday, forget to call him, or stuff like this he will take very personally etc.

 

We grew appart as I moved to another country and recently I fond out (he didn't even tell me) that he is moving to Florida (I am in NY) so we would be much closer. From the number on his facebook page I contacted him and started talking. First thing he said as soon as we got on the phone: Don't worry I am not angry for you forgetting my birthdays! *Awkward*.

 

Anyway he tells me that he needs to go to NYC for a few days to do some paperwork etc with the embassy. So of course we decide to meet up. On the day of, he texts me when he will be there (late) so I tell him I can be there as soon as I can. I am a few hours away from NYC at best, so I drive to the LIRR, I get on the Long Island Rail Road, then at Penn Station (and he knows this is where I get off) call and ask where he is. He is somewhere downtown about 25 mins if you walk really fast waiting with his friend that wants to leave (but of course she can't leave, as he wouldn't dare be left alone!) So I tell him if we meet in the middle, I am 10 mins away. So he tells me no, to walk there and call when I am there. So of course it takes me about half an hour to get there, and find the exact place they are at. By now he has called me once at least to ask where am I, why am I so late?! So I tell him, I am walking from Penn Station to where you are. You can't just SIT there and ask me where I am, why am I 'late' that is rude. Anyway he says ok then we get over it. Apparently they didn't want to walk because the friend's bus stop is there, and they were cold.

 

So we start walking around and he starts acting like I am a tour guide. Asking me where to go and getting disappointed when I don't know. I just don't know my way around the city so well. Some people are like that and some people aren't he acts like I am the lamest person and is quite unimpressed with my tour guide skills! (which I never signed up for). He is SO expectant. I should have known it would be like this. So then we start making plans about the next day! (GOOOD help me).

 

I had traveled all that way to be treated like a tour guide and walk up to him the whole way in the cold and then be asked why was I being so late, where was I etc. when he knows I was traveling all that way (about 6 hours total) to just see him. Anyway the next day, after his attitude and inconsiderate behavior, I did't really feel like meeting up so I tell him we have to go to my boyfriends sister through text and don't say anything else.

 

I am sure he is pissed at this and now acting cold (not calling writing etc). And I don't know what I can do, what he wants me to do, or whether I want to do it. What do you think?

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My advice is simply stop caring what he thinks and start caring about what you think. I am a pretty accommodating person myself and tend to have loads of patience in situations like this, but towards the end of the day I most likely would have snapped and said stop acting like a prima donna cause I am not having fun right now. Just think to yourself if he writes he writes, if he doesnt he doesnt. Honestly life is too short to walk on eggshells for anyone. That's how I personally feel.

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If he is in NY for a few days, just put up with it until he leaves. Once he is gone, you might just want to stop getting a hold of him. Im not sure how close you two really are but its obvious that he isn't doing his part in being a friend.

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He is one that prepares thoughtful gifts like putting together a CD or pictures etc. So he expects this of everyone. This part is ok (even though I am not crazy about the expectations part). But the way he acted like I owed him a tour around the city (when in fact I don't know my way around it either was weird). I mean I would like a relationship with him, but one that is more easy going, filled with less expectations. Is this not possible? How do I phrase this without being offensive?

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I would get annoyed mostly at the fact that they didn't want to meet you halfway, & got annoyed that it took you so long to walk there! As for getting upset that you weren't a great tour guide, I probably would have told him "Sorry but tour guiding is not my full-time job and this city is far too large to memorize everything you want to know. If you wanted a tour guide, next time you can just pay for one".

 

He takes things far personally that aren't meant that way, yet holds high expectations for everyone else & punishes others through passive-aggressive means when they fail to meet his standards. I would have done the same as you. If he wants things his way he can just go off on his own & do them himself. Actually, I probably would have told him why he was annoying me & he better knock it off if he wants help.

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Well I did tell him when he was calling me on my phone as I was walking 20 or so blocks to get to him that he can't just sit all warm inside with coffee while waiting for me to walk there in the cold and then complain that I am 'late' when I just traveled 3 hours to see him from Long Island. As we were walking in the city I guess he had expectations that I knew my way around the city and had places to show him - which I don't and I didn't. So he kept bringing it up again and again. He had already marked places he wanted to go on the map, so we did those anyway. But then he said he wanted to see a broadway show and since he would be busy tonight I should look it up online and buy the tickets. So when I went home, I really didn't feel like doing the same thing the next day, traveling 3+3 hours, just to be unappreciated and mocked for not knowing my way around the city. So I spent the rest of my weekend with my boyfriend instead.

 

Should I feel bad about this? Is there any way to save this relationship?

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If you really want to remain friends with him, you could apologize for bailing on him and explain why you did it. That you spent so much time & energy getting to him only to be met with complaints and no appreciation, and you didn't feel like you had the energy to go through it again the next day. Tell him that you're sorry you didn't explain right away what the problem was or give him the chance to redeem himself, but your reasons for bailing on him were valid and you're under no obligation to be his tour guide if he's going to complain about you doing a bad job of it the whole time.

 

I'm sure he won't be happy that you're saying it's his fault, but you did apologize & got your feelings out

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Tell him that you're sorry you didn't explain right away what the problem was or give him the chance to redeem himself, but your reasons for bailing on him were valid and you're under no obligation to be his tour guide if he's going to complain about you doing a bad job of it the whole time.

 

I'm sure he won't be happy that you're saying it's his fault, but you did apologize & got your feelings out

 

Oh he definitely won't be happy about that. I am sure if I tell him the things you say (even if I do start and end apologizing - which I don't really feel I should apologize several times for a minor fault - not telling him on the spot) it will be the end of the relationship right there. With me as the bad person. Does that mean this is not even worth trying to save? Just because we don't understand each other and agree on something that is so important to him does this mean we shouldn't be friends?

 

To be more accurate, I am not always walking on eggshells with him. It is just somethings he is oversensitive about. This time he was a little demanding too. Coupled together with his being demanding and being sensitive when I back away the next day, I felt like that pushed me over the top. I don't like being cornered into acting like someone I am not and feeling like I am a bad person in the end.

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If you can't apologize to him & explain why he was upsetting you without him getting angry, defensive & unforgiving, was he really that great of a friend to begin with?

 

I will give it a shot and try to write an e-mail like you suggested. If he reacts like I expect, then maybe you are right. But at least I will know that I gave it a shot. I just have to make sure I write it in a nice tone though.

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I will give it a shot and try to write an e-mail like you suggested. If he reacts like I expect, then maybe you are right. But at least I will know that I gave it a shot. I just have to make sure I write it in a nice tone though.

 

Yeah, definitely try to keep in non-accusatory. Even if something is totally someone's fault, they won't hear what you're saying if you place the blame on them. Instead try to say "When you do ___, it makes me feel___"

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Yeah, definitely try to keep in non-accusatory. Even if something is totally someone's fault, they won't hear what you're saying if you place the blame on them. Instead try to say "When you do ___, it makes me feel___"

 

I will try. This is hard for me, apologizing and keeping it low key when I'm very frustrated and angry at what he did too. But I will try it for the sake of the friendship.

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I will try. This is hard for me, apologizing and keeping it low key when I'm very frustrated and angry at what he did too. But I will try it for the sake of the friendship.

 

Yeah, that would be hard for me, too. At least you're doing it in an email where you have the time to choose your words carefully. Good luck.

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