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Friends and Family Everyone has disagreements, even best friends and family. If you need advice about a relationship, ask us here.

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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
bigwheel Offline
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Shall I stop talking to this friend? - February 22nd 2014, 10:43 AM

So there's a girl I know at University. Let me make it clear: we are friends only...nothing more.

Lets call her 'Sarah'. Sarah gets pretty low grades. In the past i've offered her help via Skype (as it's convenient that way). She would sometimes come online for like 30mins or maybe 1 hour and she'd do no work, then say she has a headache or she's got "chores to do" - then leaves. I offered her help countless times but she's always makes excuses like "I'm sorry, my mum's car is broken, we're going to get it fixed today!" etc. Or when she

A while ago she told me that her friends would always come to her with relationship problems and it takes up so much of her time. Now, the girl is about [Edited] (weight) and has never had a bf, so I kinda doubted that people would come to her for dating advice...(Not being nasty, but why would you talk to someone about relationship issues if they've never had a bf/gf before).

Yesterday, I asked if she wanted to do some work done via Skype, but she said: "I can come online for 30 minutes-ish".

30 minutes? Is that a joke? How are we going to get any serious work done in 30 mins?

I told her thanks but don't worry about it, it'd take me longer to walk home to get on Skype than she can stay on Skype for. Then she messages saying: "I didn't sleep at all last night, my friend split up and I had to deal with them all night".

She'd obviously forgotten she'd told me that line in the past. So I replied: "Your friends always seem to split up."

Whenever we've been on Skype and supposed to be working, she sends pictures from the likes of funny-junk and those cat-funny-pics: pics that she finds so hilarious but I don't.

Yesterday she was showing me those pics and I said: "If you stopped going on those sites your grades would improve!" To which she replied: "You have no sense of humor".

What shall I do? I'm pretty sure she is just lazy and doesn't appreciate my help. After all, I'm 24 with 5 years work exp and she is 21 and never even had a paper-route in her life...

I'm kinda tired of always offering help to boost her grades. I'm tired of her lies.

Last edited by PSY; February 22nd 2014 at 03:32 PM. Reason: Body weight numbers are not permitted on TeenHelp.
   
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coolkid98 Offline
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Re: Shall I stop talking to this friend? - February 22nd 2014, 02:25 PM

Hi there, have you tried sitting down with her so you can discuss what is going on? If not then I would suggest doing so as it could help you and her to understand each other and maybe improve your friendship.
If you are offering to help her improve her work and if she constantly distracts herself and isn't focused on her work then you could ask her nicely to concentrate on the work. You could arrange certain times to meet on skype to study. I hope this helps, feel free to contact me if you ever need to talk.






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Re: Shall I stop talking to this friend? - February 22nd 2014, 02:42 PM

Hi,

Well, your friend seems to be something :P hahhhaha
I agree, I think maybe talking to her face to face can help. Tell her how you feel and emphasis that you are serious. This is for her sake. Tell her that you want to help as a friend.
If your friend finds it hard to concentrate via Skype, how about meeting just like a few times a week in the school library? I know its not practical, but it beats going on skype just to have her send you funny pictures. hahaha
   
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Re: Shall I stop talking to this friend? - February 22nd 2014, 06:46 PM

It's admirable that you want to help your friend with school work. Not many people would actively go out of their way, especially to the extent that you have, to help someone else.

However, it appears as though she doesn't want your help. I know that might be confusing, because her words tell you that she does want your help. The thing is, no matter how much help you can provide another person, they need to want to help themselves. Or else, nothing is going to change. You can hold her hand through everything, but nothing will improve if she doesn't want to help herself. That's the sad reality of situations such as this.

My advice to you is to stop trying to help her. I'm not suggesting that you cut her out of your life as a friend, but when she asks you for help, explain that you don't have the time to help her because you have your own work to focus on. Make a better excuse if you don't like that one. This will do one of two things: a) make her angry b) make her realize that she can't take advantage of you anymore. If it angers her, understand that her anger is likely a projection of what she feels about herself. It might take her time to really understand the situation, so give her that time.

At the end of the day, you need to do what you feel is best for you. It's nice that you want to help your friend, but not if it's going to come at your expense.


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Re: Shall I stop talking to this friend? - February 25th 2014, 11:58 AM

I dunno, it sounds like she's spending more time on other things (ex. constantly dealing with her friends problems and stuff) and that she's just not "really" ready to put the effort to fix her academic situation yet. I know it's stupid, it can be hard to understand when someone seems to want to change and just isn't doing it. Think about all the overweight people who "just want to lose 30 lbs"... but don't go to the gym and keep eating way to much unhealthy food... or all the smokers who "just want to stop"... but keep smoking like chimneys...

I'm sticking with the "fat person" analogy for now... Think about it, it's not like the overweight person doesn't know that their having lots of excess fat isn't bad for them. Make no mistake, they know. And even when they try to change, it's like, what if you go out with friends, you still want to have the burger because that's "what you always do", now a person really committed to losing weight won't do it, or if they do they manage it (ex. salad instead of fries or chicken burger vs. the double pattie beef etc.)... But it's not like you aren't upset cause you know what others are thinking ("oh well, that burger is why your such a cow" or what ever)... And even if people aren't that dramatic about it, it's hard to change if no one is being supportive in the right way.

Also, you need to be able to stand on you're own 2 feet. For what ever reason you're friend doesn't want to deal with school. Maybe she doesn't like it, maybe it's that simple and just needs to take something else. Maybe she just doesn't care as long as she gets by. Even if poor grades, on some level, make her feel bad enough to "think" she wants to change she needs to want to tackle it. And it takes so much work to consciously put that level of effort in. Think about being overweight again, you have to consciously be like "no, I can't eat that, no no on on ononononononononono!" over and over. It might be better for you but it's hard to change bad habits. As I am someone who is a high achiever in school I think it is similar to living a healthy life, you have to consciously think about it. It just gets easier because it's just how you do things, but it takes so much more work to be doing that extra studying (just like it takes more time to prepare healthier meals), or to not make up excuses to avoid homework (just like you might make up excuses to avoid going to the gym).

It's hard to sit by and watch the "train wreck", trust me, I know. All you want to do is help, especially when they asked for it. But it's one of those things where sometimes you're better off stepping back and saying "no, this approach isn't helping either of us", you can choose to discontinue help all together... or you can take a different approach, like don't just agree to help her if you know nothing will get done. I think it's ok to prioritize yourself and just say no. But she might really need a friend. So instead of just trying to help her get through work you know she really doesn't seem interested in doing maybe try to talk to her about if she even likes her classes (just don't be condesending... saying "do you even like you're courses" might seem judgemental, using "even" can very easily turn a sentence into a judgey version if you're not careful), or maybe offer to study with her in the library or something (seeing you work might help her), or maybe ask her about when she studies on her own...

The fact of the matter is that there are probably underlying problems here that probably have nothing to do with her disinterest in succeeding. Maybe she needs help with time management skills or studying skills. Maybe she needs to fail for real. Maybe she's bored and just can't make herself care about doing better. Who knows.

You don't need to stop being her firend. But I think the best solution here is to simply not feed into the existing situation. Like I said, what it seems on the surface might be only the tip of the iceberg so don't assume she doesn't care or is lazy or what ever, she just might not be ready to make the changes, or maybe she's struggling to figure out how to make the changes (ex. if time management is the issue, she might make up excuses to explain why she never did her work instead of just dealing with it).... Not everyone is naturally gifted with time management and other such skills and need to work harder to acquire these skills... So you can back off the current situation, but if you're exposure to her still puts you in a position of seeing her a lot and you feel like you can't leave her stranded, take another approach, such as asking her about if she likes her classes, what time of day she likes studying at the best, etc. and see if you can figure it out.

PS. *insert rant here* don't assume being fat OR being single/never having had a bf make a girl unable to give good advice. I don't want to be harsh, but things like that are actually really upsetting for me. I had to work SO hard to get to the level of "good health" that I currently experience and it's actually insulting on a level I can't begin to explain when people start acting like a girls figure is what makes her competent (or not competent) to give advice about boys or any other subject. Sure, I am not about to ask someone who's very heavy for dieting advice (unless they talk in a way that suggests they actually know what their talking about due to trial and error or what ever). Maybe you didn't mean to it to sound the way it sounded, but you basically made her being single a lot about her weight (not her personality or general attractiveness)... Is she pretty and overweight? Maybe, maybe not, but let's not define a girls attractiveness by her figure, shall we... I know some ugly girls out there who are skinny as twigs, so it's insulting for me how you've put her weight as the one and only serious level of measuring attractiveness (which completely disregards other traits people are going to notice... pretty face, big boobs, nice smile for some potential physical characteristics... friendly, kind and funny for some personality traits)... I know plenty of single girls who are thin and plenty of heavier girls who get guys left right and centre... and I also know plenty of girls who have never dated a guy in their life who've given me amazing dating advice... So lets' not be so quick to judge.... Again, I know maybe I'm being harsh, but I just think you need to think about how your words will be heard




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