How Do I End a One Way Friendship Tactfully?

I have a "friend" that I only hear from once a year, when there's something to celebrate regarding her baby's (birth, birthday, baby shower, etc). Staying in contact with her is a one way street any other time of the year.

She's a mid twenties, single mother, that I feel takes advantage of the people around her and I really don't want her in my life. Ignoring her on these occasions is also useless because she'll seek you out to "remind" you of her child's big day. How do I get through to her that our "friendship" is past its prime, without coming off as a ::insert raw word here::?

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By Tricia

August 12, 20100 found this helpful
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I think the adult thing to do would be to tell her that the friendship has become one-sided and it takes two to be friends. Tell her what's bothering you instead of going to us.

Honesty is the best policy.

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August 12, 20100 found this helpful
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When you get an invitation to something, I would go to the dollar store, get a card for the occasion, and send it with a little note of regret that you cannot attend. That way it will be clear that you got the invitation, your RSVP will be in writing; and hopefully, over time, she will get the idea that you don't want to come. (And the bonus is, you will not give her fuel for gossip.)

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful
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There is nothing wrong in telling her you don't want to be friends anymore! Why do you care what a self-absorbed, greedy person thinks of you? You don't have to be harsh. Just explain how you feel. You will feel so much better to have her out of your life. Ignoring her will take forever for her to get the message, since you only hear from her once or so a year. Get rid of her and be done with it. You've got nothing to lose but a headache! Take control of your life.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful
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If she is only contacting you once a year, it is hardly that much of a nuisance. Just "have other plans" for whatever the occasion is, and I like the idea of posting a card with regrets.

I have a friend who is a single mom whose whole existence revolves around her little girl. She had a tremendously elaborate party for her on her first birthday. It may be that this friend is just as absorbed with her kid, and assumes that the rest of the world is too, and so invites anyone she ever knew to these momentous occasions.

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February 26, 20110 found this helpful
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I agree with garnetgirl9 that the adult thing to do would be to tell her that the friendship has become one-sided and it takes two to be friends. Send her en email or a note in the mail.

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August 12, 20100 found this helpful

I would just ignore her, even after she reminds you. Eventually she will get the idea.

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August 12, 20100 found this helpful

Does she always expect a gift? You could also tell her that you won't be able to afford any gifts.

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August 12, 20100 found this helpful

Reading through the responses here I would have to say Jilson (the post before this one) has the best answer. A simple card for the child or a simple note to her saying "Sorry, I can't attend".

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August 13, 20100 found this helpful

I agree with Jilson. Saying you won't be able to make it and sending a card is the best route to take.

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August 13, 20100 found this helpful

Tricia. sorry I misunderstood. I just reread your question; I thought she was sending written invitations. In any case I would ignore and I wouldn't bother sending a card. If I answered the phone (which I probably wouldn't since I have caller ID) I'd be really busy. Sorry about the long winden previous answer.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful

You must have encouraged this friendship in the past, so she might feel you actually care about her and her baby. It's tough being a single mother, and I wouldn't recommend it. I wouldn't hurt her feelings, but I would probably ignore (forget) the birthdays, etc. until she stops notifying you.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful

This is how I ended a one way friendship, I found a card, that basically said it was time for this friendship to end. They do have them both on line & in stores. It was Polite, It was something that I had to do. I would of done it face to face but the other person would of made a totally big issue & the whole world would of jump. Also she would of started a fight of some kind. I wanted quite peaceful & right to the point. Yes she got the message, Now it is a Hi & Bye

I am not a bit sorry that I ended this friendship. My life is peaceful.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful

I don't think you need to do anything. If she calls, don't answer, if she writes, don't respond. People grow out of friendships and apparently she has but for some reason she still feels like she wants you to enjoy milestones with her. I would not respond, if you run into her along the way you can just say, things are busy and you don't have much time to yourself. It's sad but sometimes things just end because of where our lives lead us. Don't feel guilty, just move on, she will understand.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful

It was said before and I think is the most tactful way is to send a card for the birthday, christening whatever. You are being socially polite but not letting her "take advantage", good luck.

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August 17, 20100 found this helpful

Mine is also to simply not reply to a letter or card, don't answer a telephone call if you know it's her (and don't call back) and if she approaches you face to face just say kindly that you're in a hurry and need to go and that maybe you'll run in to one another again sometime. She'll either get tired of not hearing back from you and stop contacting you altogether or, if she really was a good friend and wants to be one, she'll take the time to write a letter that has nothing to do with her child or other circumstances but rather asking about you.

I had a couple of friends like that when I was young and used the advice I just gave. I never heard from one of them again and it took a few years to hear from the other and, even though we don't see or talk to one another often now, it's two sided instead of one sided now ;-)

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