How to Handle a Friend That Uses You
How to Tell If Your Friend is Using You
Are you always the one to make arrangements? Do they cancel your plans in favour of a better offer? Do they leave you out of plans with mutual friends? Do they have high expectations of you even though they don't seem to expect you to have any of them?
If any of the above is true, then there is a chance that you are being used and this friendship has become toxic. Any kind of relationship, whether it's romantic or otherwise, can turn toxic. Recognising when you are being used is the first step. Dealing with it is the next.
They Make Arrangements and Cancel at The Last Minute
When you've made plans and not even just the other day, but weeks ago. You've been looking forward to dinner and cocktails at that new gin bar for ages. You've bought a new dress and everything. You even declined an offer of dinner with that gorgeous guy from the office that you've been interested in for ages because you don't ditch anyone for a better offer.
You're having a nice hot bath before chilling out with a glass of rose while your damp hair dries into ringlets because you've given yourself four whole hours. This is the first night out you've both had in a couple of months, so you are making the most of it and getting ready is all part of the fun.
Your phone makes that noise you've been meaning to change for ages because it always startles you. You think it's your friend texting to tell you what time the taxi is picking you up.
Hey, soz lovely. Got a splitting head on me. Gotta cancel :( xxxxx
Seriously? You feel as if you have been kicked in the stomach. You tell yourself she wouldn't lie. That she hasn't really had a better offer. Of course she has a headache. You know she suffers with migraines. It's not her fault. You down the bottle of rose and then you pop another and rummage through the cupboard and empty four packets of monster munch into the empty fruit bowl before watching back to back episodes of Friends even though you've seen them all before.
You Only do What They Want to Do
You never get to choose. It's always her way or the highway. You tell yourself it doesn't matter because you aren't that bothered about going to the Cinema. You always spend too much money in Mcdonalds after anyway. A couple of drinks at the local will save you some cash. It doesn't matter if the pub is full of rowdy football fans because you know she fancies Darren behind the bar.
She Spends The Whole Night At The End Of The Bar Chatting to Darren
You are left sitting alone sipping lime and soda because you have to work in the morning. She has barely even looked in your direction since you arrived and you are constantly fending off drunk men in football shirts. You've had a lap full of cider and the bloke with the beard keeps resting his ass on the back of your chair. You desperately want to go to the loo but you daren't get up incase someone nicks your seat.
You start to wonder if she even likes you all that much.
When They Have Eroded Your Confidence
You think you need her. You don't have loads of other friends to fall back on and you don't want to upset your bestie....
You have lost your confidence. You have forgotten how much fun you are and how good you look in your Levis. You feel inadequate all of a sudden. Maybe it wasn't sudden, perhaps it's been slowly creeping up on you for a while.
Friends that use you for their own ends and entertainment are not friends. They are merely people you hang out with that don't treat you very well. If you are thinking 'well we've been best friends for years. I can't bin that can I? Answer: Just because they got their first, it doesn't mean they can treat you badly.
I met my two best friends in my thirties.
Old friends don't earn the right to treat you like you don't matter. No-one gets that right.