Friday, 3 November 2017

Upsetting Friends

Dan and I have a problem with saying no sometimes, him more than me if I'm honest. I feel bad inwardly but have less of a problem just declining things. Dan feels like saying no more than I do and doesn't feel bad about it, but he is prone to over explaining his reasons which can make things more complicated than it needs to be - often people will try to find solutions for his reason for saying no or whatever. 

This week we've not done our usual thing of trying to soften the blow and always be the nice guy (I'm not actually a nice guy at all), we've said how we feel and let things unfold as they will. 

I upset two of my friends this week by being a bit more vegan than usual, they said that eating a sausage was hardly the end of the world (we were talking about dieting), so I dropped in "other than for the pig", I was clearly being flippant, but it didn't go down well!

Secondly we had to deal with a couple of frenemies. One is a former colleague of Dan's, who is a nice enough person, but very overbearing. They asked if we wanted to go out for a meal at a posh (their word) restaurant near us next February. Dan just said no, we don't eat at fancy places, it's not our scene and we don't really want to commit that far in advance. They replied suggesting maybe we could meet for drinks afterwards, that sounds fine, and it was left that we could arrange something nearer the time. Perfect. 

Thirdly, we were supposed to be meeting a person we know this weekend. Initially it was to celebrate their birthday and Dan felt bad that hardly anyone turned up for their actual celebration. So the person suggested coming here and we would have a wander to see the illuminations, which was fine. I'm not bothered about this person either way, I find them to be a little rude and a bit of a know it all, they're a friend of a friend of Dan's, but the friend has fallen by the wayside over the years, it happens. 

It became clear that they didn't really want to come here, so we said we'd meet in Manchester, which then revealed their actual wishes and they started to add other people (that we don't know) to the meet up, that's fine with me, dilutes the input of this person. Then they started to manage our travel, food and other arrangements, this was the final straw for me and I was furious (it doesn't take much with me). I was going to cancel anyway as I was totally in the wrong frame of mind, but as luck would have it yet something else has gone wrong with the car so we can't go anyway. It remains to be seen how this will go down, and to be quite honest I don't care, I don't need someone who makes me feel so cross in my life. 

So, we've had a week of saying no and nothing bad has happened, a lesson we'll hopefully take forward, and now I have time to make waffles this weekend.  

20 comments:

  1. Oh my! I could have written some of your sentiments. I loath when something simple starts being more and more complicated, as you described with the Manchester meeting-no one has the need as an adult to have someone else manage their plans, their time, their budget. Unless it involves possible sold out tickets, who arranges dinner three month ahead of time anyway. Who knows what could come up between now and then. I've had to get like that with a family member that wants to schedule things so far in the future. Great for her that she needs to know 2 and 3 months in advance, but I refuse to commit anymore and tell her so. I like how you described the people trying to resolve your issues when trying to explain your "no". A simple, no thank you is much saner, isn't it?

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    1. It really is so much simpler to just say "no thanks".

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  2. Friends don't get upset-these people are not friends. I now correct people when they refer to someone as my friend-I say aquaintance and leave it at that.,Hope the car's not too expensive to repair.Catriona

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    1. Thanks. I don't think the car should be too expensive, it just seems to be one thing after another at the moment!

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  3. Saying no is often empowering. Good for you!

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  4. Most people have a problem with saying NO. Dieting is a tricky subject. I've been there, done that (quite successfully) so I know how people can get or make you furious.Anyway, you seem to deal with all very well.

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    1. Thank you. Dieting is such a tricky subject, in terms of the conversation I had this week, I've been having exactly the same talk with this person for around a decade, hard to see that they'll ever change!

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  5. Goodness me, I could have written this.
    Like Dan' Jon's the one who gets into great, long involved excuses about why we can't meet people rather than a simple, thanks but no thanks.
    We've got a brilliant circle of friends, they're kind, supportive and lovely but man oh man, they're so middle class. We can't just go for a drink and a laugh, there's always got to be a meal involved. Trouble is that they're all highly paid professionals (lawyers, IT experts, teachers) and want to eat fancy food in fancy places. Even if we persuade them to go to the local Indian they all want starters, elaborate fish dishes and meat platters. Sharing the bill is painful!
    Luckily we work most weekends so we don't meet up very often any more but once the Christmas madness starts and they all break up from work that'll be it.
    The worst thing is that one of them is in a band and its absolutely dreadful - we book fairs to avoid his gigs sometimes - like this weekend we're travelling to walthamstow rather than go to a gig down the road! aren't we awful? xxx

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    1. No, not awful, saving your sanity!

      Yes, yes and yes to your comment, great people, but all really middle class and just see what they do as the norm. We don't see most of them very often at all so when we do I have a bit of culture shock, so much faffing about. I think some of Dan's friends think because I'm common I'm also a bit thick, which I choose to find charming!

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  6. I envy you your ability to say no easily. Good for you.

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    1. I do feel a bit of a knot in my stomach sometimes, but I know its for the best so I get over it!

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  7. I really have a problem saying no, though I am trying much harder.

    God bless.

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    1. It is tough, but I think most people respect honesty, and some will never be pleased unless you're doing exactly what they want you to do.

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  8. I'm pleased you had a good outcome and one you are happy with - they are always difficult situations that develop when someone wants you to do something that you are not in tune with. If I am invited somewhere I always say I would love to come but will have to check my availability and get back to them - giving me time to consider if I actually want to go. Over explaining can often dig you into a hole where as you say other people love problem solving but can often complicate everything far more!
    I liked your comment about the pig - good for you - I would not eat a sausage for anyone.

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    1. Giving yourself a bit of thinking time is an excellent tip.

      I know so many problem solvers, they're used to doing it at work and they take it into their personal life (or maybe they're naturally good at it which is why they follow the career path they do). My older friends know I hate to be pinned down so it's always more easy come easy go, which I know would drive some people (Dan) crazy!

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  9. It was quite the revelation to me too, that I was able to simply say 'no' with no embellishments/excuses/placations and the world kept turning! I do always add a thanks mind! Manners cost nothing! Hope the car gets fixed quickly!

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    1. Of course, there's always a thanks (even if I'm actually thinking "go away and leave me alone"!). It is amazing when you start to use the simple no though isn't it.

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  10. I always find the excuse "I'm afraid I've got something else on that evening" quite useful - it's not a lie, because I know I'll have the TV on that evening!! I used it a lot when I was teaching: my Headteacher would suddenly schedule an extra meeting in the evening, so I'd just tell him I had something else on and couldn't go.

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