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Ungrateful Friend


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I found  a rent-a-friend a few years ago.  She has a hard life, works three jobs, and is from another country.  She comes over every 3 or 4 weeks and I have dinner delivered, we watch a movie, she goes home, and I give her $100.  Strictly platonic. She has a few forkfulls and takes the rest of the dinner home.  A little annoying.

Last week she was here and said I didn't have to pay her, but I did.  I want to keep it businesslike.

This past weekend she thanked me for the time and money, and recalled that I would be renting an Amtrak roomette for a 2-day trip to the mountains, and she wanted to go with me.  I said yes.  So we went up the other day.  I paid for the Uber to the station, the train (food included), hotel, etc.  There was a problem with her ticket but she was able to eat free on the train. I fixed it later so that she could eat on the return trip, also.

I told her that if she wanted to go into the hot springs to bring a bathing suit.  She forgot, but said she would improvise.  See we took a taxi ( I paid) to the area and I paid the $64 ($32 each) for the hot springs for 2.5 hours.  She then decided she didn't want to go in.  I felt uncomfortable in the water by myself while she sat it out with a parka on.  A big waste of $32.  We then headed to a Mexican restaurant.  She ordered a huge meal even though she wasn't hungry, ate a tiny amount, and decided to take it with her for the train the next day.  I figured she would pick up the tab - or at least offer.  Nope.

So the next day we eat on the train, so she threw away the food from the night before. What a waste.

I am not poor.  I'm also pretty generous.  But I'm still pissed off about this.  Not even an apology for the wasted hot springs ticket.  She didn't spend a dime on this trip.

If I see her again I will tell her that I won't be supplying food when she comes over.  I feel taken advantage of.  Feeling bad for her working 80 hours per week has clouded my judgement.

Am I being too harsh, too easy, or too cheap?

 

 

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She’s not a friend. You’re her client. Even if you stopped paying her the arrangement didn’t essentially change.  Because it’s a business arrangement my suggestion is to make all of the payment arrangement very specific and in advance.  This is not a friendship where - even platonically - people take turns or don’t keep score on who pays what. It’s a business arrangement. Continue to itemize and communicate in specific financial terms. 

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She's a freeloader and sponges off you.  I agree, she is indeed taking advantage of your hospitality and generosity. 

She won't change for you.  As long as you allow her to mooch off of you, she will continue to expect you to pay for everything.  Some people including her will never give you good manners, apologies, etc.  The only way you can be free of this leech is to let her know that it's time to go your separate ways.  No explanations required nor necessary.  Simply tell or text her that both of you are incompatible, request no contact,  it's time to permanently part ways and wish her all the best.  Then type your name.  Keep it brief.  Should she refuse to honor your request, then ignore, ghost, block and delete her. 

Don't feel bad for her.  She's responsible for her own life as are you.  No, you're not too cheap.  To the contrary, you've gone above and beyond and it's time to stop the gravy train. 

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It sounds like to her it's a business trip. And to you it's friendship. 

As bolt suggested, you probably should set new ground rules and boundaries.  Like:

if she agrees to an event and cancels, the cost of the tickets will come out of her pay. 

When you pay for meals she is limited to a certain dollar amount per meal or day.

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If you want to retain her as a friend, do activities which don't cost money such as a walk without food involved.  No more trips, vacations, tickets, purchases and the like.  Perhaps two water bottles and that's it.  Don't entertain her anymore.  If this arrangement won't suffice, then dissolve and exit this dysfunctional friendship.

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OP, this is really easy to solve.  She has shown you exactly what she's all about - she's a leech and as long as you keep doing what you're doing, paying for everything, she'll stick around.  Clearly, this is a one-sided "friendship" and it's not working.  Don't be that desperate.

Two choices:  Carry on with what you're doing and let the resentment build up, OR dump this leech and be done with it.  It really is that simple.

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26 minutes ago, Capricorn3 said:

OP, this is really easy to solve.  She has shown you exactly what she's all about - she's a leech and as long as you keep doing what you're doing, paying for everything, she'll stick around.  Clearly, this is a one-sided "friendship" and it's not working.  Don't be that desperate.

Two choices:  Carry on with what you're doing and let the resentment build up, OR dump this leech and be done with it.  It really is that simple.

He refers to her as a "rent-a-friend". So that sounds like a business arrangement, not a leech IMO.

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The line blurs a little between friendship and business.  She has acted as though she is interested in me.  The train trip was not business in her mind.  She was not paid. Anyway, I see her as a leech and I will stop this nonsense.  Thanks for your responses.

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When you are no longer happy with a doctor's services, a restaurant you used to frequent but now has changed its menu for the worst, etc., you stop doing business with said office/restaurant. This is the same situation, so stop doing business with her.

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25 minutes ago, DenverDude said:

She has acted as though she is interested in me.

Perhaps, but when she offered to visit without compensation, you rebuffed her:

1 hour ago, DenverDude said:

Last week she was here and said I didn't have to pay her, but I did.  I want to keep it businesslike.

You feed her a meal and pay her $100 every time she comes over. You pay for her entire train trip to the mountains. But for some reason, you're upset over $32. Why is that? 

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1 hour ago, Cherylyn said:

She's a freeloader and sponges off you.  I agree, she is indeed taking advantage of your hospitality and generosity. 

She won't change for you.  As long as you allow her to mooch off of you, she will continue to expect you to pay for everything.  Some people including her will never give you good manners, apologies, etc.  The only way you can be free of this leech is to let her know that it's time to go your separate ways.  No explanations required nor necessary.  Simply tell or text her that both of you are incompatible, request no contact,  it's time to permanently part ways and wish her all the best.  Then type your name.  Keep it brief.  Should she refuse to honor your request, then ignore, ghost, block and delete her. 

Don't feel bad for her.  She's responsible for her own life as are you.  No, you're not too cheap.  To the contrary, you've gone above and beyond and it's time to stop the gravy train. 

Great post.  You nailed it and you get it.   That's the way I will go.  She's gone.

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8 minutes ago, DenverDude said:

You didn't understand what I wrote before.  AFTER I paid the money she decided that she didn't want to go in the hot springs.  She could have told me before.

People sometimes change their minds. Maybe she didn't like the look of the place once she got there. 

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"Rent a friend" sounds to me like you pay and in return she accompanies you to wherever.

It's like being hired for a job but being expected to provide your own desk, computer and office supplies.

If you expect her to pay for some things I suggest spelling it out clearly in your agreement. That way no one gets upset.

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2 hours ago, Cherylyn said:

She's a freeloader and sponges off you.  I agree, she is indeed taking advantage of your hospitality and generosity. 

She won't change for you.  As long as you allow her to mooch off of you, she will continue to expect you to pay for everything.  Some people including her will never give you good manners, apologies, etc.  The only way you can be free of this leech is to let her know that it's time to go your separate ways.  No explanations required nor necessary.  Simply tell or text her that both of you are incompatible, request no contact,  it's time to permanently part ways and wish her all the best.  Then type your name.  Keep it brief.  Should she refuse to honor your request, then ignore, ghost, block and delete her. 

Don't feel bad for her.  She's responsible for her own life as are you.  No, you're not too cheap.  To the contrary, you've gone above and beyond and it's time to stop the gravy train. 

Holy cow have you been used.  Dr Phil has a good line - you teach people how to treat you.  You've taught her you are a push over and will pay for whatever she wants and take her along on a trip and pay for all of that too.  Do you not have any REAL friends you can hang out with and give the odd treat to?  Time to end this farce and send her on her way.

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Just out of curiosity and also to get a better picture of the situation, do you mind if I ask you more questions? I actually didn't even know that renting a friend was a thing, except some movies I've seen where people may have done that.

Do you mind if I ask, do you not have any actual friends or even family to spend time with? Why do you have to pay someone so much money just to be your friend? I guess I might understand it more if this was an escort and you were getting  the "girlfriend experience". If it's really only platonic though then can't you try to make some actual friends or acquaintances? If you're spending so much money just for some companionship then maybe even having a distant acquaintance you could see once a month might be better.

To be honest I wouldn't actually call this woman a leech as such because you do have a business arrangement. She doesn't provide her company to you for free. It seems she does only want to get paid for it, whether it be in actual money, meals, expenses paid, or all of the above. I'm not sure where you found this woman or if there are any actual rules or any contract as to how you conduct this business. To me it seems though that since her friendship is paid then yes unfortunately you do have to pay for everything. If you want someone who wants to be your real friend and pay their own way, then this woman is not it.

I agree with the others that if you don't like this situation, you simply need to exit out of it. Don't see this woman anymore and the problem will be solved. Make an effort to meet new people and find people to spend time with for free.

Edited by Tinydance
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4 hours ago, Seraphim said:

I am not even sure what a rent a friend is

I was curious and googled lol

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RentAFriend is a bare-bones site built to do one thing: show paying customers a list of potential rentable friends so they can get in contact as quickly as possible. Members can peruse the profiles of local friends, check out their pictures, and read their bios. They can see a list of their preferred activities and of physical traits, including height, eye and hair color, and body type. This is where RentAFriend diverges from standard expectations of a platonic relationship and veers closer to a dating app or site. The presence of physical data points in each profile has a distinctly meat-market vibe that felt far removed from how I personally find real-life friends — or even date.

Quote

The site suggests that you reach out to potential friends with a full description of what you’d like to do, how long it will take, and what you’ll be paying for — like theater tickets, happy hour drinks, or anything else that needs to be paid for during your brief friendship. This is on top of the hourly fee, which friends can either list on their profiles or reveal after being contacted. Friends are paid in person, in cash. No money is exchanged through RentAFriend.com, which means the site is essentially a big list of profiles with a simple messaging service that mostly serves as a jumping-off point to text or phone friends directly — an extremely similar platform to most dating sites.

You essentially rent somebody to do an activity with you. Find somebody who would enjoy hiking and go to a weekend with them instead of alone. You pay them what they require for service at the end. I think that is what OP is reffering to. Personally I think there are better ways to meet like minded people who would do activities with you, but in todays lonely world I am not even surprised there is a website and possibly an app where you pay people for that lol. 

Anyway, since it is business and OP probably agreed on paying for all, I dont see an issue. Dont "rent" her next time or define who is paying for what better if you have a problem.

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