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So-called Friends and True Colours!

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Ellisonia, Mar 20, 2012.

  1. A few years ago, I 'befriended' another teacher in my Dept. She later left to do a similar job in another school nearby. I know she found the school very difficult ( it is but others have worked there and coped with it! ) and she was contantly calling me to tell me what a terrible day/week/lesson she'd had or because she wanted something for work etc. I'm not really a morning person but I frequently got calls requesting something or other! She used to get quite annoyed when others didn't get back to her straight away with things she requested.Even when we met outside school after meetings etc,all she could talk about was work! I always listened and offered advice whenever I could and rarely looked for advice myself, ever. She knew the people in my dept and how difficult they could be, especially the HOD.
    Fast forward to a little while ago and I found I desperately needed help with a situation at work ( I hadn't done anything wrong ) but was effectively being stitched up by the HOD! This teacher's older and more experienced than me so I asked for help with writing a letter, that's all. I couldn't believe the reception I got ( having listened during the first part of the conversation to her own problems once again-there's always something! ) Firstly she referred me to the union ( fair enough I could understand that but as it turned out the rep was useless! ) then she proceeded to tell me in a very indignant manner how she wanted to 'forget all about that' - she's recently left the school and borough in question and was off at that time, she didn't wish to listen to this on a Friday night! ,So I was left in no doubt at all that she was totally unwilling to help me with a situation that even she knew could have serious consequences for me! She very reluctantly agreed to have a look at the letter in the next few day, which of course she never did! She knew I was very worried about things!
    I really cannot understand how mean and self-absorbed some people can be. I actually feel quite 'used' over the years I knew her and now she doesn't need me any more! Thankfully I have other good friends who helped me out with the situation, all in all a very stressful business!
  2. kittylion

    kittylion Established commenter

    What a horrible "friend". I hope if she EVER contacts you again for anything whatsoever you give her the cold shoulder.

    Say something like you don't want to think about it on a Friday, Thursday whatever night and you are trying to forget about it - in fact if she ever asks for help again, just remind her of this - "Well I don't feel much like helping you when you were so unsupportive of me - especially after I had gone to quite a lot of trouble to support you frequently when you were working at X school".

    I know she doesn't need you now - and probably thinks that she won't do ever again, but these things have a way of coming around again so she shouldn't have burned her boats. Give her the brush-off next time.
  3. I am really sorry to hear about the horrible situation that you were in. Has it been sorted out now?
    It sounds as if your friend is one of life's "takers" and that if she hadn't been pouring out her woes to you, she would have looked for the next kind, patient person dispensing tea and sympathy. I've been there myself and it's an awful feeling to discover that your friend isn't the person you thought they were.

    I am glad that you have other friends who support you and hope you are doing OK.
  4. Vampyria

    Vampyria New commenter

    Hi Ellisonia - I can certainly identify with how you're feeling having found myself in a very similar situation once! The 'friend' in question would take up so much of your time with her problems but when the situation was reversed she had a 'put up or shut up' response to your predicament. She actually told me that once.Incredible! Everytime she got in touch there was always something the matter and managed to switch every conversation you had with her back to her own problems. On one occasion when she actually offered to help with something ( serious ), when I called her back I was obliged to listen to her 'banging on' about the same family situation I heard over and over again. In the end when got a chance to talk about the problem she'd volunteered to help with, after swtiching things back to focus on herself again, I was told she had a lot to do and I could tell she had no interest in listening to me.
    The final straw for me was when I texted her that something I'd feared all along ( related to the above ) had actually happened me. I was truly devastated and she would have known this. Apart from a battery of questions about the details ( nosy! ) she never once asked how I was or got back to me that day. In the end I never heard anything from her for six whole weeks. I assumed at the time something had happened but in hindsight I now know this was deliberate-she just didn't want the bother and had hoped things would have blown over at this stage. I can truly understand when people are very busy but with this person this wasn't the case at all, ever.
    So basically any more I just avoid her and I'd advise you to do the same! Even though I'm a very sympathetic person and will go out of my way to help others, if she rang me in the morning with some really bad news, I can say I truly couldn't care less!
  5. Thanks so much for your responses-really appreciated.
    Kittylion - You're absolutely right. People like this need to be taught a lesson and I no doubt an opportunity will present itself soon since she's<u> always</u> got something to let off steam about and needs a listening ear! Along as it's about HER then all is OK but as soon as the tables are turned then it's a different matter entirely.I wouldn't mind but she's perfectly capable of giving good advice but for some reason appears incapable of thinking about anyone but herself. The reference to wanting to forget about things truly amazed me - the utter selfishness and hurtful remarks since she knows shoe horrible these people are. On the rare occasions I wanted advice on my own school situation and was explaining things, she always interjected with some (irrelevant) reference to her own recent experience, so in the end I never got to finish what I started to tell her! My OH is fuming about this situation! He know how demanding she can be herself!
    Vampyria - Thanks for sharing your experience. These two sound sooo alike it's uncanny! I'm really sorry to hear you've been treated like this at what sounds like a truly awful time. That's the last thing anyone needs at times like this. I hope things are better for you now. I will never understand people like this - no matter how things are in my own life I will always, like my other friends, manage to find time for others. She could easily have sent a text message asking how you were. I truly hope you told here where to go when she contacted you at last!
  6. Hi Blossom and thanks. Your post hadn't appeared (being moderated, like mine! ) when I responded on the last occasion.
    I've never had this 'friend' in the best-friends list and always knew she 'felt' she had so many problems herself ( debatable, a bit of drama queen and attitude doesn't help! ) she never had the head space for anyone else's. However, I was very taken aback by her uncooperative response on this occasion. Previously, she'd been rather restrained with me, though I've seen her get quite unreasonable with others and offered limited amounts of help along the way. Received a text from her a few mornings later mentioning the union again which I've ignored.
    In the end the union rep took ages to get back to me and wasn't too helpful ( one reason I just wanted to get this sorted quickly to stop it escalating ) but in the end another friend assisted me.
    I've resolved to cut her out entirely now, given this display of unkindness! I've taken this as a red flag. Have heard she's due some ( non-serious ) surgery soon and haven't the slightest intention of enquiring about it! People reap what they sow in my view!
  7. kittylion

    kittylion Established commenter

    Too right!! - Good for you Ellisonia!!
  8. Vampyria

    Vampyria New commenter

    Abolutely! This is exactly what happened when I finally heard from her. She cited a litany of excuses, ( even though I couldn't prove otherwise ) none of which I believed. I was soo, untypically, angry at the time. The final straw was when, yet again, she tried to turn the conversation around to herself and the 'awful time' she'd had! Enough. I just put the phone down!
  9. I have no time for people like that-people who take, take, take all the time and can't be sympathetic themselves. I had a "friend" at my workplace whose only topic of conversation was how much she missed her ex boyfriend and how terrible he was acting towards her (even though she would get drunk and then follow him around trying to start arguments!) but, whenever I needed to talk about something, would either be very dismissive or try and turn it round to her and this man once again. I gave up in the end and, since she left this workplace, we don't have contact.
  10. Before anyone thinks I'm really heartless, I should point out that she had been obsessing over this one man who she had been in 2 week relationship with for 12 months!
  11. Before anyone thinks I'm really heartless, I should point out that she had been obsessing over this one man who she had been in a 2 week relationship with for 12 months!
  12. It is rare that colleagues are real friends.
    I have a few, but I do not consider most of my colleagues, past and present, as anything close to what I consider a friend.
    Some colleagues, however, have turned out to be better friends than "private" friends were, when the chips were down.
    I treasure them.
    And forget the rest. I don't have great expectations. I don't listen. I don't ask for advice.
    I only do that with real friends.
  13. Vampyria

    Vampyria New commenter

    I've been quite lucky then since I've made two really good friends in teaching. Even though now we're all in different schools twelve years later , we're still in touch, see each other regularly and know we can rely on each other in times of crisis or otherwise.
    The likelihood depends I believe on how much you have in common - other than working together, of course.
  14. kibosh

    kibosh Star commenter

    Apologies, another thread I have not read in full . . . . . .I have found that people that appear interested in you can fall in to many categories - sadly one of those categories must be avoided at all costs; emotional 'vampires'. People, who like black holes, suck you dry of all important matter and matters of importance to you, instead replacing them with matters important to them.
    I currently have one member of staff under the microscope, just to see . . . .you know . . . . if they are a vampire [​IMG]
  15. Although I've not, to my knowledge, met someone this extreme, I think you've got a point here Kibosh!
    My own experiences have seen people who are so self-absorped/focused they lack any empathy with the result they are completely oblivious to the turmoils of those around them. Looking back on my own situation, I believe this 'ex-friend' regards people as 'opportunities' on two levels-emotional and practical support for her coupled with a possible network for job opportunites in the future. I really should have been more wary since her employment record includes lots of instances of her falling out with people and leaving!
    Let us know if your own hunch re staff member is correct! [​IMG]

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