Jump to content

Would like some advice on a falling out with a friend


jio2009
 Share

Recommended Posts

I hope this post isn't too long. Kevin and I grew up together, though didn't start hanging out a lot until 15 years ago, we are 50 now. A few years ago the friendship dwindled to practically nothing and I'd like others opinions on how to handle it. We started hanging out a lot  because we had a lot in common, both single, liked watching sports and movies and drinking. At first it was great, though around 2010 I started having to deal with family more because my father passed away.

Around that time I started researching certain behaviors and realized I'd grown up with a couple narcissists in the family.  I sort of took the narcissistic traits for granted, ie, well so many people are like that, it's just how some people are. I've  realized now there are coping strategies. I'd like to describe my experience with him, and see if anyone can give me any insight on how i could have handled it better. In no particular order:

1. At work years ago, a girl told Kevin he seemed like an "accountant" type, which he took to mean nerdy. So, he changed his name to Kirk on social media, etc, anywhere he could. I asked him why, he said Kevin was too wimpy a name. I think he hates himself, and wants to sort of erase himself. I think part of it comes from small man's complex, and also that he was adopted. He may also have a mild form of Asperger's, and be aware of it. 

2. I also realized, almost every choice he makes is to be "special" in one way or another, to feed his ego. I'd ask him every now and then if he liked a certain popular tv show, he'd sort of bristle at the question and said no. I think its because if he's doing something popular, then he's not special, he often praises obscure movies and tv shows. I asked if he'd heard a certain song, he said he only listens to talk radio now. I think that's to feed his ego/confirmation bias as well. But, all these things however, are personal choices. Im not trying to say what someone else should or shouldn't do. Im mentioning them to see if others more versed in psychology can connnect dots or explain his behavior better than I can. He was a good friend and I'm trying to understand him better, for better or for worse.

3. Once a friend asked, "why is it so hard to make plans with Kevin, is he always working a bunch of girls?". I didn't realize it, but Kevin is very difficult to make plans with. If you ask him to do something, he'll give a vague response, he wants to be available if one of the girls he's working can meet. I gave up on making plans with him because it was like musical chairs, plans changing a lot or falling through. It's like he doesnt realize how difficult he is to make plans with.

A friend called these girls'projects" of Kevin's, where he befriends girls and tries to date them or sleep with them over time. The thing is, he has so many girls like this, and if he brings one around, he'll lie about them so that no one else will go for them. All have some undesirable trait that often is a lie... "oh she's crazy"..."she's really into that guy over there"..."she has an std"..."she has kids (but she didn't")..."she's engaged to some guy from europe (she wasn't)".

4. The final straw was how he treated our friend Stacy. I've read that narcissists will prey on weaker people. Stacy was in an abusive marriage and had addiction issues. After she got a divorce, we all started hanging out a lot, one time she and I made a joke about hooking up. When we got back to his place, he met me at the door saying "dont hook up with Stacy." To me it was just a joke anyway but he took it seriously. Later he told me she was in rehab for drug addiction. Once she told a story of him bringing ecstasy over to her place and coming on to her awkwardly. She said he was furious at her for this, saying "don't make fun of me in front of my friends." I was more disgusted with him for bringing ecstasty to a friend who had been in rehab. Then I thought, maybe she wasn't in rehab and he just said that hoping that would discourage his friends from pursuing her. Who knows.

5. Aspergers/narcissistic supply? - he may have a mild form of aspergers. He's very committed to his routine, and judging from social media posts, he's still doing it as much as possible.. He often brags about "only going to the same 5 places." In a way he's saying he's keeping life simple, but I also think he does it so he can get to know the staff at these places well, so they will treat him lieke "the man" when he's there, he often gets big groups to go to these places. 

So, we started hanging out less, about once a month instead of once a week. Kevin had a mutual friend ask why, I said I just didn't feel like drinking that much anymore, which was true. I was also having financial issues which I didn't want to tell Kevin about, because he often tells me things I'm sure others dont want repeated, he can't keep a secret. After that i didnt come around for a few months and met up with another mutual friend. That friend said "Kevin said to tell you they are about to give up on you." Now, I did feel kind of bad that I wasn't coming around nearly as much, but at the same time I was learning about how narcissists use social pressure, and my guilty feelings were also mixed with anger that he's trying to use social pressure (polite flying monkeys?) to get me to come around. 

The last i heard from him directly, I invited him to a movie with a buddy, and he said he may, then i didn't hear after that. Then I quit coming around entirely, and all I heard was the threats of "we're about to give up on you." I really dont want to be his friend anymore, since its been a few years thats probably obvious, but it seems cruel to reach out to a former friend just to "pile on" to him like I did above, however, I believe all of it is true and pretty disappointing really. Sorry for the long ramble, any advice is appreciated.


 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

If you haven't talk to him in a while, why bother with him now?  

You don't have to break up with a friend. You've distanced yourself and just keep doing that. 

If anyone is saying things like "we are almost giving up on you", ask them what they mean exactly.  Those kind of statements are passive aggressive. 

You be more direct. if they say because you don't come around. You can say something like, I have been pulling away. I'm not into the drinking as much. I feel like Kevin hasn't been such a great friend. I've busted him in lies. he gaslights me at times and I don't want to argue about it.  He knows what he does and I don't need the aggravation. If that means you or he give up on me, ok. 

Be strong  you're 50 years old. You can decide anything you want for yourself. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

48 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

I hope this post isn't too long. Kevin and I grew up together, though didn't start hanging out a lot until 15 years ago, we are 50 now. A few years ago the friendship dwindled to practically nothing and I'd like others opinions on how to handle it. 

...

 

The last i heard from him directly, I invited him to a movie with a buddy, and he said he may, then i didn't hear after that. Then I quit coming around entirely, and all I heard was the threats of "we're about to give up on you." I really dont want to be his friend anymore, since its been a few years thats probably obvious, but it seems cruel to reach out to a former friend just to "pile on" to him like I did above, however, I believe all of it is true and pretty disappointing really. Sorry for the long ramble, any advice is appreciated.

I'm not sure why this is disappointing when it has no impact at all on your life now. Are you looking to contact Kevin/Kirk again? You mentioned you do not want to be his friend so don't.

I do empathize because I have thoughts like this too (maybe everyone does). I try to think about how it impacts me now or if it does at all. If it doesn't, then I treat it as a passing thought. Sometimes I even amuse myself that way. How does this old childhood friend's quirks affect you now? Are you in direct contact with someone else in your life  who is similar to Kevin/Kirk? 

I don't think Kevin is a nerdy name either. That's too bad.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

35 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

I think he hates himself, and wants to sort of erase himself.

Narcissist love themselves and believe they are better then anyone. Now he maybe wants to give himself importance by changing name, that is different, but narcissists have grandiose sense of self-importance and love themselves to death

38 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

I'd ask him every now and then if he liked a certain popular tv show, he'd sort of bristle at the question and said no. I think its because if he's doing something popular, then he's not special, he often praises obscure movies and tv shows. I asked if he'd heard a certain song, he said he only listens to talk radio now.

Just a hipster thing. Though it does play in self-importance part

41 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

I didn't realize it, but Kevin is very difficult to make plans with. If you ask him to do something, he'll give a vague response, he wants to be available if one of the girls he's working can meet.

Just "ladies man" property. Narcissist for example wouldnt care because as the world revolves around them they wouldnt work their schedule around someone else

 

51 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

 Once she told a story of him bringing ecstasy over to her place and coming on to her awkwardly. She said he was furious at her for this, saying "don't make fun of me in front of my friends."

That could be narcissistic trait. They can do no wrong and exploit others without guilt or shame

53 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

I also think he does it so he can get to know the staff at these places well, so they will treat him lieke "the man" when he's there, he often gets big groups to go to these places. 

That again could be playing into self-importance part

58 minutes ago, jio2009 said:

After that i didnt come around for a few months and met up with another mutual friend. That friend said "Kevin said to tell you they are about to give up on you."

If he wanted you there from some reason and felt you were pulling away, yes, he would use that. 

He displays a lot of narcissistic traits so he could be one. He has that sense of self-importance, shows lack of empathy for others like your friend, responds very poorly to anything making him in bad light in front of others(as that would means he is not that perfect) and frequently lies and manipulates to get what he wants. Which brings me to question: Why would you even want to be friends to somebody like that?

Move away as far as poossile from that person.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

2 hours ago, jio2009 said:

I really dont want to be his friend anymore, since its been a few years thats probably obvious,

Then don't. Why reach out to a 'friend' who hasn't treated you or others with respect? If you didn't feel like drinking that much any more, he needed to respect that. There are other things friends can do that don't involve drinking or spending heaps of money.

Edited by greendots
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think you're working way too hard to justify not wanting to see Kevin.

Part of maturity is learning how to adopt different kinds and degrees of acquaintanceships or friendships over the course of our lives to meet different needs.

Unlike when we were blank slates as kids and could fantasize that one bestie is our EVERYTHING, we solidify into our own personalities, and not everyone will be our cup of tea. So having a tennis friend who's lousy at conversation, and a movie friend who disagrees with our politics and a confidant who hates crowds and won't go to events or parties with us means respecting the limits of each person who adds a little 'something' to our lives and social calendar.

So why hold big expectations that a long-term friend will continue to satisfy in all of the ways that they once did?

Friendships, just like people, change OR stagnate OR diverge over time. Sometimes they roll back around into new relationships that look nothing like they did before but contain aspects of shared experiences as a comforting base.

Rather than fighting with yourself to burn a bridge, just move your focus beyond the guy. If he ever reaches out to see you, indulge in learning whether there are ANY aspects of your shared experiences that might bolster a limited relationship where you visit and reminisce on occasion or do something else that's productive and rewarding.

Otherwise, consider that analyzing someone else is often a distraction from focusing on more productive pursuits. It might serve to help us feel holier-than-THAT-one, but what is so important about that?

Edited by catfeeder
Link to comment
Share on other sites

You don't need to complain, explain nor make excuses to Kevin (aka Kirk) if you wish to dissolve and end this weird and abnormal friendship. 

Simply text him this:  "We're incompatible.  Please do not contact me anymore.  I wish you all the best.  Your Name."  That's it.  If he contacts you, ghost, block and delete him permanently.  Be done with it. 

Never waste your time and energy on people who don't bring you joy, habitual respect, trust and security.  Don't be with people who don't treat you with dignity and common sense morals.  They're a drag. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

Thank you for all for the replies, I agree with almost everything said. After thinking this over, I guess it boils down to I miss my friend, but the relief of not having to deal with him anymore, is greater. So, maybe somewhere down the road one of us will try again, but probably not. Just wanted to say I appreciate everyone taking the time to offer insight.

  • Thanks 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry you miss your friend -I get how complicated it can be and how it's tempting to indulge in analyzing why something didn't work out.  I'm concerned though at your insistence on gossiping about him, reacting to gossip, talking behind his back - you have the choice if someone gossips to you not to continue the conversation awkward as it may be and tempting as it may be to gossip.  

Accept that friendships can and do end and fade despite friendship -at least to me -being just as important as other close relationships like family, with a partner, with a spouse (but acquaintances or activity buddies are not as important).  But your analysis and gossip doesn't lend itself to you valuing this friendship -that's really about you -it's self-absorbed and interestingly you're into diagnosing narcissistic traits in others.  His height has nothing to do with it -that silly and offensive stereotype about short men is just that - and if you see yourself as trying to go deeper please don't succumb to such labels and generalizations.  If he is on the spectrum -if - he can look into that as he pleases or his doctor will recommend an evaluation.  Not your place/none of your business.

I like Cheryln's advice and please ask yourself -are you looking for insight or trying to justify not being friends anymore?

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Letting go of a friendship can be hard. You did bond at one time...but as time wore on Kevin started to become something else. Whatever the reason, or mental disorder, there is nothing you can do about it. We all can out grow friends. I myself have moved on from social circles because they changed or I changed good or bad.

It sounds like remov

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

5 hours ago, jio2009 said:

Thank you for all for the replies, I agree with almost everything said. After thinking this over, I guess it boils down to I miss my friend, but the relief of not having to deal with him anymore, is greater. So, maybe somewhere down the road one of us will try again, but probably not. Just wanted to say I appreciate everyone taking the time to offer insight.

I too have mourned the loss of former friendships because I remember a person's good qualities,  joyous times together and poignant memories.  Then reality sets in.  Unfortunately, bad memories, immoral characteristic traits, dishonesty, deception, betrayal, gaslighting and pain overshadows and annihilates any goodness I once naively perceived in said person.  I don't want both good and bad in a person, friend or in my case a formerly dear cousin from childhood.  Innocence was lost and once we became adults, it's all about treating each other with genuine respect because nothing else matters.  Once respect is destroyed, it's over, for me anyway.  Can I forgive?  Yes.  Forget?  NEVER.  Boundaries are in place permanently and forever including estrangement if it's the only way to attain safety, security and everlasting peace. 

I agree with you, it's definitely a relief when ridding toxic people from your life. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...