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You Asked: I Am a Better Friend Than She Is

Dear Sugar--

I have this friend, we met through business two years ago. She's quite a bit older than me - I'm 27 and she's 46. We get along like a house on fire, but the friendship is pretty much one-sided. If I don't phone, go to visit or text/e-mail her, then I just about never hear from her. I once did an experiment: the "silent treatment." It lasted 12 weeks exactly, then she called and said: oh you are so quiet, I haven't spoken to you for like a month! I have tried to confront her, but we end up arguing, she says I'm oversensitive.

What bugs me most about our friendship is this: she seems to always call when she needs me, but she's never there when I need her. She had a hysterectomy last year and I did everything in my power to support her, even visiting during business hours when nobody else could. I know she appreciates it and I certainly didn't do it in order to get anything in return, but she is never there when I need her. Are friends not supposed to care for one another? At least just ask: Are you really OK? You look very stressed. Or insist: you look horrible, can we meet up for coffee and a chat? We just never seem to get to it, she can never commit to a date or find the time for me. Perhaps it's the age thing? I made a New Year's resolution to just let it go but it's difficult. I love my friend and I'd feel cheated to lose her since I've invested so much. Please Help! ~One-Sided Wanda

To see DEARSUGAR'S Answer,

Dear Wanda--

It's tough when you feel like you are pouring your heart and soul into a friendship and getting nothing in return. You should feel good about yourself that you are such a great friend. I hope your other friends appreciate your devotion to them more than this woman does.

Although you have tried expressing your frustration, it doesn't sound like she is listening. Unfortunately, in this situation, I think you are going to have to stick to your New Year's resolution and just let it go. It is obvious to me that this woman does not value your friendship in the same way that you do. Perhaps she is just at a point in her life where maintaining friendships is not a priority. I have a feeling that if she is treating you badly, she is probably treating her other "friends" badly as well.

I don't think you should feel cheated to lose her. You are only cheating yourself if you continue to waste any more time and effort in a one sided friendship. I think you should continue to remain friendly if it makes you happy to do so, but you have to face the fact that she is giving you everything she can. If her lack of effort continues to bother you, I think you are better off finding a better friend.

Join The Conversation
angelbaby2 angelbaby2 10 years
i liked the site the old way-i agree with more questions again. It is not as good as it was.
t0xxic t0xxic 10 years
so just curious how many dear sugars have we gone thru now lol
DearSugar DearSugar 10 years
Hi Everyone, You are right Andaman, this is a re-post. We are going through an editor transition so I am really sorry for the mistake; some things fell through the cracks. On a good note, I am so happy to see what attentive readers you all are! I have heard your wishes for more Q&A and I am pleased to tell you we are bringing them back... and Sunday confessionals, so please continue to submit questions for me to answer. Thanks for all your great comments, keep them up! -DearSugar
andaman andaman 10 years
Well i aggree April7
vmruby vmruby 10 years
Do yourself a favor and drop her like a nasty habit. You deserve to be friends with someone who will appreciate your qualities and not take advantage of your friendship....
April7 April7 10 years
This is a repeat post and it's not the first time it has happened. I wish that this site would have more questions posted (like they used to)...more group therapy and what about the Sunday Confessionals? I don't get it....
Marci Marci 10 years
We just did this one recently.
ESPNgirl ESPNgirl 10 years
if you're worried about losing what you 'invested,' as stated, then it sounds like you've given her every reason to feel like she has a full bank acct (to come to you whenever) and you're left with nothing in your emotional acct. when we enter friendships, we choose to make ourselves vulnerable and to give of ourselves - it usually determines how much we receive in return (not that receiving should be an issue), but not always. i can speak easily for myself and i KNOW that i put in more effort in my friendships than some of my friends do - i've voiced my feelings and concerns once, and most of them are admittedly bad at calling, emailing, etc - it's just who they are. but i love them and accept them and realized that having them in my life is much more important than getting upset just because maybe they didn't call when they said they would. besides, i think it's really only fair to vent a frustration once - repeatedly nagging someone on something is a waste of time - if they didn't hear you the first time, they probably won't the second or the third... this person does not sound like they support you at all (which on that i can't speak to specifically because i have not been in your shoes...) - i think you need to spend time talking with friends who care about you as much as you care about them. let her go.
Hope5 Hope5 10 years
I've never had to deal with this. True friends would never do this.
cubadog cubadog 10 years
Your 27 years-old you gave her the silent treatment to see what would happen? Come on, grow up. Who would want to be friends with someone that "confronts" or ignores them when you don't feel they are being a good friend. I wouldn't want to be your friend either. You say you don't expect anything in return but the reality is you expect her to be the same kind of friend that you are. There is nothing wrong with that. I think you both have different definitions as to what is a good friend and I have a feeling you are leaving something out. I am sure you have other people that you can spend time with. Lay off and let her make the effort if she doesn't she doesn't.
cubadog cubadog 10 years
I thought this sounded familiar... More to come!
andaman andaman 10 years
this has already been posted!
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