I need to vent about my friends.

I need to vent about my friends.

This is a discussion on I need to vent about my friends. within the Bob & Terry's Place forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Ok... this may get long, and may sound like high school drama. That's your warning. I'm 27 years old. I have two friends who I ...

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  1. #1
    Distinguished Member Array RKM's Avatar
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    I need to vent about my friends.

    Ok... this may get long, and may sound like high school drama. That's your warning.

    I'm 27 years old. I have two friends who I have know since elementary and middle school and still see on a weekly bases. We go out to eat, and relax at each other homes often. One of these friends, we're going to call him Kevin, he's 28, has a girlfriend who he's has been living with for about 2 and a half years now. We'll call her Mary, she's 22. She doesn't come from a great family, and doesn't have much. My other friend, we're going to call him Tim, he's also 28.

    Mary is MADLY in love with Kevin. I'm not sure Kevin feels the exact same way. He certainly doesn't show it. They argue a lot. Mary feels very unloved and unappreciated (You're probably thinking, well she's only 22, she's still a kid. I don't disagree...). Kevin has a short temper, but he's not a physical danger to anyone. My friend Tim also has a hard time with his own personal life. He works as an electrician and has been getting laid off a lot and has a hard time with self esteem issues. Sometimes Mary and Tim will text back and forth about their problems. Sometimes, Mary will also talk to me, about Kevin. I've known Kevin since I was about 10 years old. And Mary is such a sweet girl, it just breaks my heart to hear how much love and effort she puts into the relationship, and Kevin just doesn't really care or appreciate anything.

    Now Kevin has been on medication to help with anxiety. I'm not sure if Mary takes medication, but we were texting back and forth today about her and Kevin, and she told me today that sometimes she physically hurts her self to deal with emotional pain. This made my heart fall out of my chest. I couldn't believe it. I started to panic. I started screwing up things at work and I couldn't keep my head straight. She told me it's not a big deal. Kevin doesn't know about this. She doesn't want me to say anything to anybody about it. I don't want to go against her trust... but what do I do? She then told me that the other night they got into an argument, and Kevin was upset that she talks to Tim so much, and that he thinks she likes Tim more than him. Tim is the kind of guy who wants to talk when he's feeling down, and he'll text her and Kevin both, but I think only she primarily responds. Kevin doesn't want to deal with it (hence why Tim talks to Mary so much, and now Kevin is upset about it). Tim doesn't really reach out to me much... But I'm not sure whether or not telling Tim this information about Kevin think she has feelings for him will make Tim upset, or if he needs to hear it. She does not have feelings for Tim. Like I said earlier, she's MADLY in love with Kevin. But sometimes, I do think Tim kind of has a thing for her.

    I've only known Mary for about 2-3 years. I've always known she was..... I don't want to say mentally unstable, because I don't truly think that, but she just has a very hard time with emotions. But she's grown to be a very close friend of mine. I've taken care of her a few nights when she was upset, and a few times, I've thought to myself that I may have feelings for her myself, but I'm fought with myself to hell and back to resolve that. I feel like it's almost natural sometimes that if you're single to have a "crush" on you're best friends girl. There have been songs written about it..... But she really has become what I consider a close friend. I want to talk to Kevin. I want to ask him how he REALLY feels about Mary. Does he really love her. Does he want to make this relationship with her work? Tim and I have talked to each other about it. What do we do? We love them both. I'm just so worried about Mary. She's hurting herself, physically, and that drives me nuts. She just told me this today. She said she's been doing it off an on and has gone through phases since she was 14.

    I know this all sounds like petty BS. But these are my closest friends. I've been stressed out these past few weeks, just thinking about Kevin and Mary. I know if I talk to Kevin, I don't think he'll get mad, but he'll just blow me off, like it's no big deal. So it almost feels worthless to try.

    If they break up, I don't want to have to pick sides. It's natural to go with your best buddy. But I think the reason this relationship doesn't work, is mostly because of him. Don't get me wrong, she's not 100% innocent. But I don't think it'd be fair to take his side. But he's been my best friend for 17 years. How can I NOT take his side. Tim has already expressed how he feels, and doesn't want to stop being friends with her if they were to break up, and I agree, I don't either. But how can you maintain a healthy relationship with a broken up couple? They're not broken up yet. I'm not sure if they should be. But if he could at least TRY to put forth effort into this relationship, it could work out for the best.

    My rant is over.... I apologize for putting anybody who actually read this through this petty crap.


  2. #2
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    Bail out, walk away, jump out the back, jack. Put as much distance between you and your friends' problems as possible. It sounds like you're already caught up in that whirlpool that's about to get flushed.
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
    Paranoia strikes deep, into your heart it will creep. It starts when you're always afraid... Buffalo Springfield - For What It's Worth

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    Senior Member Array Hoplyte's Avatar
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    You need to consult a professional( Counselor, clergy, pastor, rabbi, etc) who can bring an objective viewpoint to this situation. Be careful, this situation has the potential to become volatile very quickly. I know they are your friends, but you need to get some distance from this. I will keep you and your friends in my thoughts and prayers.
    tcox4freedom likes this.

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    I have been in a situation where I've become friends with a friend's wife/girlfriend. When they are in a relationship it is easy to stay friendly with both of them. When/if the relationship ends it isn't your relationship that is ending. It isn't on you to determine who is at fault in the end of their relationship. It isn't your responsibility to take sides in the breakup. It is your responsibility to be there for your best buddy and not berate him for doing something that brought an end to his romantic relationship. If you being friends with his new ex is difficult for him you need to walk away from that friend ship at least to the level that it effects him.
    "The only people I like besides my wife and children are Marines."
    - Lt. Col. Oliver North

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    VIP Member Array shadowwalker's Avatar
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    I agree with Echo it's time to go try to do it as easy as possible and explain that you have a lot on your plate and you can't go into detail.

  6. #6
    Nix
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    Quote Originally Posted by RKM View Post
    My rant is over.... I apologize for putting anybody who actually read this through this petty crap.
    I read your rant. Seems to me that forums like this provide the opportunity to vent and get some different perspectives.

    Firstly, I do sympathize with the mixed emotions and frustrations you have expressed. At the end of the day, it is our relationships that bring meaning and value to our lives, at least in my world.

    Now for some of my own perspective.

    1) Talk to Kevin. You seem to think your concerns will fall on deaf ears, but even if he ignores you, at least you tried. I don;t care if Mary told you not to. Why does she feel she can't be honest with the man she supposedly loves? Deceit has no place in healthy relationships. Ya?

    2) Mary seems like a problem. The three of you were good friends. Mary now is talking secretly to you and to Tim. You are now talking to Tim behind Kevin's back. Mary appears to be the primary agent in generating this 'colusion'. She is dividing the friends from each other and creating conflict. If I were Kevin I'd be a little pissed off.

    3) Kevin is your friend. Tim is your friend. Keep your friends. Women come and go. (Flip that around for the fairer sex: keep your friends; Men come and go.) If Mary breaks up with Kevin (I'm not hearing that, but if), then the three of you need to move on. If Mary is content to remain in an unsatisfying relationship, that is entirely her affair.

    4) Mary is hurting herself (cutting? burning?) for a reason(s). The reason(s) are her own. She needs to deal with that. Not your problem. I know that sounds cold, but if you get dragged into that drama, she will continue to engage in that self-harm behavior. YOU will enable it. If you care about Mary, be sympathetic, but also advise her to get some help from a priest, counselor, mental health guru, shaman. Only she can decide that that behavior is not healthy and make the decision to change. Everyone else will only get sucked into the drama. If she finds it helpful...well, I'd say they are better ways to deal with stress, but WTFDIK?

    Again, I'm sorry you are in this predicament. You can cut the Gordian Knot here by opening lines of communication. Let Mary know Kevin is your friend and he needs to be aware of the situation. If she protests, tell her your loyalty lies with Kevin and he deserves the truth. The truth is always the best course. Anything else will have consequences later. Word.
    oneshot and 91wm6 like this.

  7. #7
    Distinguished Member Array RKM's Avatar
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    You know, I agree. I probably should stay out of it. But I feel like I'm to deep to give up. I understand when you guys say to bail, I really do. But my friends happiness is my happiness. I at least want to say something to Kevin ( I feel so ridiculous calling him Kevin) to try to get his true feelings about this. But I won't lie, I'm terrified to talk to him about it. And it seems advised not to. But I'd like to think, he's been my best friend for almost two decades, I should be able to talk to him.

    I just feel like the only sane person sometimes, which is sad because I feel like I have my own issues, being underpaid at work, hating my job, not knowing where or how to start a new career, trying to afford a house, etc. It's just hard to walk away from my friends problems. I want to help them and be there for them.

  8. #8
    Nix
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    Quote Originally Posted by RKM View Post

    I just feel like the only sane person sometimes...

    That's a sure sign you are not as sane as you think.

    I'm not advising you to 'bail'. I don't bail on friends. Stick with your friends. But clear the air! No doubt you are worried about talking to 'Kevin'. Avoid being judgmental. I have confidence that he can see that you are speaking as a true friend. If he can't see that, I have to wonder about 'Kevin"....

  9. #9
    Distinguished Member Array RKM's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nix View Post
    I read your rant. Seems to me that forums like this provide the opportunity to vent and get some different perspectives.

    Firstly, I do sympathize with the mixed emotions and frustrations you have expressed. At the end of the day, it is our relationships that bring meaning and value to our lives, at least in my world.

    Now for some of my own perspective.

    1) Talk to Kevin. You seem to think your concerns will fall on deaf ears, but even if he ignores you, at least you tried. I don;t care if Mary told you not to. Why does she feel she can't be honest with the man she supposedly loves? Deceit has no place in healthy relationships. Ya?
    She's ok with me talking to him about the two of them in general. She doesn't want me telling him that she hurts her self. I still can't get over that. It pains me to even think about it.

    2) Mary seems like a problem. The three of you were good friends. Mary now is talking secretly to you and to Tim. You are now talking to Tim behind Kevin's back. Mary appears to be the primary agent in generating this 'colusion'. She is dividing the friends from each other and creating conflict. If I were Kevin I'd be a little pissed off.
    I think Kevin is pissed off at Tim. But not to the point he wants to disown him as a friend. When Tim and I have talked, we have both expressed how we don't like talking like this behind his back. I just said that two days ago when I was talking to him. As far as her being the problem., you may be right. But from what I see, if Kevin REALLY does love her, he could fix a lot of this by just putting effort into the relationship.

    3) Kevin is your friend. Tim is your friend. Keep your friends. Women come and go. (Flip that around for the fairer sex: keep your friends; Men come and go.) If Mary breaks up with Kevin (I'm not hearing that, but if), then the three of you need to move on. If Mary is content to remain in an unsatisfying relationship, that is entirely her affair.
    I understand that completely. It's just hard, because she's truly become one of my closest friends. She's not 'just my buddies girl". I've almost suggested to her to break up with him. I really have. But I don't, honestly, it sounds selfish, but I want to keep her around. When she's in a good mood which she is mostly, she's a really fun, and entertaining gal to be around. I like having her around. Yeah... I'd say that's selfish :(

    4) Mary is hurting herself (cutting? burning?) for a reason(s). The reason(s) are her own. She needs to deal with that. Not your problem. I know that sounds cold, but if you get dragged into that drama, she will continue to engage in that self-harm behavior. YOU will enable it. If you care about Mary, be sympathetic, but also advise her to get some help from a priest, counselor, mental health guru, shaman. Only she can decide that that behavior is not healthy and make the decision to change. Everyone else will only get sucked into the drama. If she finds it helpful...well, I'd say they are better ways to deal with stress, but WTFDIK?
    I still can't believe this. When she told me, I asked... does your mom know? She works with her mom, and they're pretty close. She said her mom does know, so I'd hope, and trust that her mother would help her. But I don't think they can afford it financially. I just told her to stop, and try other methods to help with your emotional pain. She didn't want to make a big deal about it, and I didn't. But in my head, I was in shock.

    Again, I'm sorry you are in this predicament. You can cut the Gordian Knot here by opening lines of communication. Let Mary know Kevin is your friend and he needs to be aware of the situation. If she protests, tell her your loyalty lies with Kevin and he deserves the truth. The truth is always the best course. Anything else will have consequences later. Word.
    I'll do my best. I'm still really at a loss as to what I'm going to do, if anything. I'm actually headed to his house here in a few minutes. I'm not sure if she'll be home or not, but I'm just going to try to have a good night with them. Tim is actually away this week, so he won't be there.

    The odd thing is, Tim's ex-girlfriend from 2 years ago is actually the one who introduced us to her. It was actually me who was supposed to "get hooked up" with her. But I'm a very shy person and kind of just slide out of the picture, when then, Kevin met her. Which I don't mean to make it seem like I'm upset about this. But I sometimes wonder how things would be if this was me with Mary.

  10. #10
    Distinguished Member Array Hoganbeg's Avatar
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    The fact that you don't want to call Mary unstable is part of your problem. Her wanting to hurt herself is the very definition of unstable. Getting involved with such a person is a fast track to creating problems in your life. She needs help and the sooner the better.

    You can try to help by getting her to open up about what exactly is going on with her and exactly how she is causing her pain, and then helping her find professional help. Be advised she may be lying about harming herself just to get sympathy--a bad sign in and of itself. Be aware that it's a slippery slope you would be walking on and you could easily get in over your head. Whatever else is going on with them personally, Kevin and Mary both have communication problems. This is a recipe for disaster in any relationship.

    Re-read what Nix had to say above; it's good advice.

    Be Strong!
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  11. #11
    Senior Member Array Hoplyte's Avatar
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    Not encouraging you to abandon your friends, but the potential for this to get ugly is very real. When people get angry, really angry, they have the potential to become irrational(i.e. practice displacement/transference- instead of directing/channeling anger in a healthy, constructive manner they select someone/something else to vent their anger on). They may not mean to hurt you, but when emotions are high the potential is there. In situations like this distance is your friend. Please be cautious in this matter. Tread lightly. 3rd party mediation should be seriously considered.
    91wm6 likes this.

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    It is never wise to stick your nose in your friend's personal business. It is the quickest and surest way to lose a friendship.
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    No Guns, No Safety, No Peace.

  13. #13
    Distinguished Member Array Hoganbeg's Avatar
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    Does Mary have access to any firearms?

  14. #14
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    If it were me, with two people I know blowing up in myriad ways: allow them the space to deal with it, maintaining some distance and avoiding getting in the middle. Generally speaking, I'd say, it's just not worth it to become a "middle man" in such situations, unless it's a clear-cut situation of one person blowing sideways (ie, an abusive, violent drunken lout beating up on his family, or similar).


    You've got a decision to make: whether to remain close while two strung-up, volatile people risk each other and those around them; or to eject a bit, to gain some distance from it, to allow them to deal with it.

    With such psychological-torment type issues as they're both going through, oftentimes the pro's are the ones who best know how to assist and deal with it. Be a friend, yes, if you value one or the other (or both) relationship(s) sufficiently to get some on ya, if it turns out that way. But, then accept the mess.

    Hard to get really impacted by the relationship trials and tribulations between others. There are plenty of other things in this life to get cranked over. IMO, this isn't one of them. This isn't your deal; it's their deal.

    Up to you, whether to be involved, or maintain some distance. No telling whether that'll have any impact whatsoever, whether one or both of them will blame that for contributing to outcomes, or whatever. Not your doing, though, either way. They've got some things to work through, with deep enough issues of maturity, stability, responsibility that little you do or say will likely affect things in any major way, other than how they perceive they feel about it. The pro's can help. Likely, you cannot, much.
    oneshot likes this.
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    I agree with Nix and Hoganbeg except that self-mutilation (if it's that) is a precursor to suicide. And whether "you could easily get in over your head" (not sure what Hoganbeg means) is of no consequence beyond a passing bump in your relationship. Never discount a statement of intent to harm self or others as a ploy for attention. Check the yellow pages for self-mutilation. Do it now. You won't cause any harm and could save a life.
    Nix, ccw9mm and Hoganbeg like this.
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    -Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)

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