Saying 'No' To A Good Friend

A real friend helps you in time of need.Maybe, but there are times when a real friend just cannot help and so needs to say ‘no’. We have been ‘programmed’ to believe that a good friend should always be there, willing to help, no matter what. I strongly disagree, because it is not always possible, and when the friend is not always able to be there or to help, does it mean that person is not a ‘true’ friend?

No one likes hearing the word ‘no’, as it seems very negative. Saying ‘NO’ is a right we all have and we do not exercise it often enough. It is one of the most liberating things we can do for ourselves even when a good/best friend is involved. You CANNOT always be there for your friends because you have to be there for another friend – YOU! You should be your best friend, so why should you put yourself out, or miss an opportunity that is important to you, because you are afraid to disappoint your friend by saying no. A good friend should understand this, especially if you are usually there for him/her. How do you say ‘no’ to a friend who is so dear to you without the fear of hurting that friend?

Your friend might have asked you to do something and you are incapable of doing it. Explain the reason for your incapability. It may be that you have other commitments, or it may be something that you do not feel comfortable doing. Say that you would love to help and how bad you feel for not being able to. Then explain your reasons and if possible, assure your friend that you will surely make it up to him/her. Maybe you can see if there is a part of the favor that you could do to help your friend. Try to help the person see your side and understand your particular situation.

Saying ‘no’ can sometimes put a strain on a friendship, but sometimes there is no way around it. You have to do what is best for you. A good friend will understand that if you cannot do something, it is because you cannot, and although may feel hurt, be respectful of your feelings. Remember, when someone else says ‘no’ to your request that you give the same understanding and respect back, as it may have been a tough decision for them to say ‘no’.

A good friend is one who understands the meaning of ‘no’ and respects you for it.

Do you agree with me, my friends? No?

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Comments 25 comments

HattieMattieMae profile image

HattieMattieMae 5 years ago from Limburg, Netherlands

I agree, it's the truth!


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Hi HattiMattiMae, thank you for being the first on my hub. I am glad that you agree. Keep following, I will do the same


almasi profile image

almasi 5 years ago

Yes, I agree with you that a real friend can say no and continue being a real friend if she can't say yes for various reasons a prime one being that saying yes to the friend would mean saying no to herself.

Make sense? No?


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

almasi, yes it makes sense, I totally agree with you. Thanks for your visit and your comments. Keep following and I will do the same


marcoujor profile image

marcoujor 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

Your subjects are always thought provoking, Dr Ope and this is no exception. I absolutely agree that we need to be honest with our friends on all matters, including saying "no" when the need arises. Voted UP & AWESOME...!


Ann-Marie 5 years ago

I agre with you. It is called being assertive! Saying "yes" when you really should have said "no" sometimes leads to passive-aggressive behavior. While saying "yes" provides temporary satisfaction to the friend-in-need it slowly erodes the relationship. Keep telling it as it is Dr Ope.


TINA V profile image

TINA V 5 years ago

I agree with you. A person should learn when and how to say "no" even to their loved ones. A good friend doesn’t put up to a wrongdoing, but rather, he / she should help a friend to become better individual. Perhaps, one should also consider the manner of saying “no” to his/ her friend.

Enjoy your week!


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Thank you TINA V. I do agree with you. Thank you for following and enjoy your week too.


MysteriousOne profile image

MysteriousOne 5 years ago

Very true,Dr Ope....many of us have a very hard time saying 'NO' to our friends, relatives, etc....Thanks for sharing that....I will begin to follow you!


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Thank you for your visit to my hub MysteriousOne.Saying 'no' is sometimes hard,especially to person whom we love. Thanks also for following me.


4seazons profile image

4seazons 5 years ago from Queens

I TOTALLY agree! What a much needed Hub. It took me a long time to learn about boundaries and saying "no". I was always exhausted from all of the time and energy proving I was a friend. It turns out, that when I began saying "no", some of my so-called friends disappeared. Saying "no" is healthy, refreshing and liberating. I have been "slacking off" lately - thank you for reminding me that it is okay to say NO!!!! And in case they didn't hear me the first time, "NO" again.


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Thank you 4seazons. I am happy that you found this hub interesting and useful. Yes, saying 'no' is indeed healthy, liberating and refreshing. Being assertive helps you to know who your true friends are. I am Thank you for your comments.


stars439 profile image

stars439 5 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

Wonderful hub. God Bless You.


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Thank you stars439 and God bless you and your family too.


Ask_DJ_Lyons profile image

Ask_DJ_Lyons 5 years ago from Mosheim, Tennessee

That is definitely the truth. You explained it very well. Thanks for sharing!


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 5 years ago Author

Thank you for your visit. I am happy that you agree with me. All the best to you and your hubs!


Ask_DJ_Lyons profile image

Ask_DJ_Lyons 5 years ago from Mosheim, Tennessee

All the best to you as well.


dianacharles profile image

dianacharles 4 years ago from India

Saying No is so difficult. I think I am finally getting there. Great hub :)


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 4 years ago Author

Thank you dianacharles. Yes indeed, it is very hard to say no to a friend.Thanks for the visit and all the best to you.


teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

It is hard to say no to a friend or family member. I think we feel guilty for stating our mind. Thank you for the information and education.


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 4 years ago Author

You are welcome teaches12345. Yes, it is indeed hard to say no, especially to persons that we love. All the best to you and thanks for the visit.


Express10 profile image

Express10 4 years ago from East Coast

I can relate to this hub as a former people pleaser. Here you provide ways to handle friends and others that don't respect you.


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 4 years ago Author

Hi Express 10, thank you for your visit and comments. I have been away from my hub for a while. I am happy that you can relate to my hub. All the best and I shall be visiting you!


4seazons profile image

4seazons 4 years ago from Queens

When people set boundaries in their life, people and especially friends will revolt. Your Hub is a great reminder for me to stand my ground. Thanks.


Dr.Ope profile image

Dr.Ope 4 years ago Author

You are welcome 4seasons. I am happy that you can apply the tenets of this hub to your personal life. Thanks for the visit and all the best!

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