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How Do You Deal With Judgmental Friends?

You know her. It could be any of your friends at times, but everybody seems to have at least one friend who excels at passing judgment. Whether it's a raised eyebrow, a disapproving stare, or a sweeping statement that just happens to directly relate to you, the judgmental friend can't seem to help herself. The other day mine said to me, "I would have done X like this, but oh well!" Ugh, well.

To be honest, I'm not sure how to handle these friends. Usually, I argue it's too small to make an issue out of, but the problem is how these statements build up. Do you address them as it happens, or have a small talk about the bigger problem?

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amber512 amber512 5 years
it is usually my family that is like that, not my friends. And since I don't feel like cutting them out completely, I just try and keep all conversations light and moving along quickly.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 5 years
Elena2911 and Frenched: It's hard to give input, as setting boundaries depends on the specific personality you're dealing with. Also, the STYLE of setting boundaries depends on your nature, too. What are you comfortable dishing out? Personally and generally speaking, I don't take intrusive, critical comments personally. In my opinion, those comments say more about the speaker than me, per se, do I do not internalize those comments. I keep my answers short and sweet. And I deflect. Deflect, deflect, deflect. :) Frenched: I identify with your situation. I regret your co-worker upset you. As far as answering her (rude) question of why you got married and if you're happy, I would have replied nicely,"We're in love. You know how it is. You were married once, right?" Turn the subject back to her. Deflect. :)
Frenched Frenched 5 years
Yes, GlowingMoon, please give us more insight into this. It's really difficult when a friend is nice and a good person but this is their one problem. I have a co-worker who sometimes doesn't know her boundaries. Just because she's 25 years my senior, she thinks she can just go ahead and tell me how I'm supposed to handle my life. I honestly think that a person's maturity level has little to do with an actual person's age. This is what she seems to fail to understand. You can be 40 years old and still be an immature prick, right? The one time she really upset me was when she asked me WHY I got married and if I'm happy. It seems a lot of women think that ALL MEN are a**holes and they'll always bring you down. It's not my case. It seems like it's hard for some women to fathom a happy marriage. My co-worker is divorced so, no surprise there.
Elena2911 Elena2911 5 years
hey glowingmoon- can you share HOW you put down boundaries? sounds like you've got some good tips.
postmodernsleaze postmodernsleaze 5 years
I'm always pretty blunt when I encounter people that like to tell me how they would have done things. Usually I just say, "Well it's fucking great you aren't me then, eh!?" I can't stand people who have to go around telling everyone how wrong they're doing everything. You know, you shit just like the rest of us, so get over yourself.
jazzytummy jazzytummy 5 years
Agree with above. People like this usually never change, and are not true friends, so I limit my exposure to them as much as possible. There's a big difference between expressing a concern for a friend's actions and judging them, but some people honestly do not know when the line is crossed.
GlowingMoon GlowingMoon 5 years
I'm with Inlove23 and Totygoliguez. If it's possible, I would shy away from people like that, and certainly elect to keep people like that out of my life. If I could NOT keep these people out of my life (such as family members and in-laws), I would share very little about my life to them. I've learned to put down boundaries artfully (especially when it comes to those who are particularly intrusive and critical in an appropriate manner)
totygoliguez totygoliguez 5 years
I think the best way is to not tell them much about your life, and to keep things to yourself.
inlove23 inlove23 5 years
I try to avoid people like that since I hate negativity.
skigurl skigurl 5 years
Of course this could be any friend at a certain point in time, but one friend stands out in my mind as always being like this (we used to work together) and I always thought of her as I got dressed in the morning because I knew she'd have something to say about my outfit, and I always thought twice about telling her certain things (like what my boyfriend bought me for Valentine's Day or where my parents were taking me for my birthday dinner) because I knew she would have something to say about it...it was always couched in a "good" way but it was constantly a backhanded compliment. I just stopped hanging out with her as often and stopped telling her stuff. Now that I don't work there anymore it's easier to avoid her.
Girl-Jen Girl-Jen 5 years
The only solution I've found is to spend less time with them. I've actually broken plans with a judgmental friend by saying, "I can't hang out with you tomorrow night. I'm going for coffee with a friend I haven't seen in way too long." The friend asked, "Well, how long is too long?" My answer? "Two weeks. But he's a really nice friend."
chillchic chillchic 5 years
I've been the judgemental friend beffore. All through high school and most of college, I always said things that I wished I hadn't. I can tell it made some friends uncomfortable and I knew they talked about me behind my back but I couldn't help it. I guess I was sheltered and I couldn't believe some of the crazy things my friends would do. SO, if I felt they were acting like hoes, I would say it. If I felt that they were behaving immorally in any way, I would say it. I thought it would help them realize the evil in their ways and they would fix their actions but really, I just alienated people. I have since learned to keep my mouth shut and just lead by example.
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