The trajectory of a dwindling friendship can take a couple different forms.
There is the gradual death approach, when years of mutual distance simply allows the once close bond to peter out. In this variety, there are often no hard feelings, just some nostalgia and the somber recognition that people grow and change.
But there is another way that friendships end: problematic behavior from one side crescendos until a breaking point is reached. Then, suddenly, the bond is snapped in a single instant.
It was this second kind of end that a recent Reddit thread was concerned with. Internet strangers of all ages and temperaments contributed their experience of a time when they just couldn't take it anymore and called it quits with someone they used to feel so close to.
Aidennn92 asked, "What was your 'I'm done with this friendship' moment?"
A Profound Lack of Empathy
"When my son died, who was an identical triplet, one of my friends told me that grieving would be easy as I have two other sons who look just like him." -- lucina20
"I would'a smacked him three times. 'This last slap should be easy, as you had two already.'" -- Stargazer7t
One Can Only Do So Much
"I output a lot of effort to help her try and get out of a debt caused by shopping sprees (no car, no school, racked up 25k just to buy stuff) she admitted to spending like $1000 a month on doordash so we focused on getting her out of that."
"I work in a place where I get a lot of excess food for free (meal kits so I have an excess of meat and produce every week!) and I offered to help her out that way."
"I brought her a selection of foods and recipes and when I brought it to her she expected me to cook it for her, stating that she hated cooking and would not cook for herself ever."
"It was the nail in the coffin that suggested she wouldn't take care of herself and would find a way to get someone else to do it. At that moment I couldn't do it and bounced."
Not at all a Safe Space
"When I quit doing drugs and informed all my friends that I am going clean. I was still drinking though so one night I got really drunk and closed my eyes on the couch."
"Everything was spinning but I can hear my former friend trying to convince my gf to allow him to put drugs in my nose, That itll make me feel better."
"She yelled back at him and said that we quit and we are going clean. He kept trying to push it and after a little while, she helped me into the car and locked the doors. Sleeping there till we sobered up and drove home."
"That was 5 years ago and I've stayed clean. I haven't hung out with him since and from what I heard, he's moved onto meth and never got clean."
"We were maybe 12 years old, and every single day was nonstop drama and a self-pity party with her. Every time her custom text tone rang from my phone, my heart jumped. That's how exhausting she was."
"One day she said 'you're not as fun as you used to be.' I was just furious and hurt by that comment after spending many nights trying to make her happy because she was always so sad."
"I basically said 'excuse me for acting like an adult.' She never answered back and we didn't talk at all after that."
"Until I was 19. I reached out to her for nostalgia's sake, and she was a lot more mature. She actually apologized to me for acting like an immature emo kid all the time. We chatted for a little bit and it was nice."
"We still don't talk, but it was nice to catch up and be on good terms with each other."
Didn't Realize What They Didn't Have
"I deleted my entire friend group who I was friends with throughout high school from my life entirely after I went to uni."
"My uni friend group were all very caring for each other and so supportive, and celebrated each others successes. My friend group from my home town were quite the opposite, always in competition with each other and full of macho egos."
"It wasnt until I'd experienced what being involved with a genuinely good group of people was like, that I realised that wasnt what I had with these people at all. After that realization I didnt want anything else to do with them and their toxicity."
Taking the Wrong Side
"Disinvited me from a board game night because he'd turned it into a birthday party for a guy that assaulted me at the last minute (like, I was literally almost on my way out the door). And yes, he'd known what had happened, and had promised to never let that person set foot in his house again."
"Then, when I got upset and called him out on it, he told me he thought I'd made the whole thing up, that I was overreacting, and not to talk to him until I 'calmed down and got over it' (IIRC, he told me that I needed to 'be rational' as well)."
"That was 7 years ago. I'm still f***ing furious."
"When they would only be 'friends' with me when they needed help with their homework, and then afterwards would proceed to make fun of me for being a nerd" -- PhysicsQueen
"I know that feel. I even did their homework, thinking the teasing would stop." -- Agitated_Signature_
The Cut Off
"Texted him to have coffee three times, he cancelled twice and ghosted the third time. We had been friends for 7 years. To this day (5 years later) I still have no idea what I did to piss him off."
"(Edit: we are both 50+ year old men. I know, right?)"
Enough Was Enough
"Friend wanted me to get involved with the church, I did. We read the entire Bible. But eventually he kept insinuating I'm going to hell no matter what and that I need to keep listening to him."
"After a year I'm just like, 'Go f*** yourself.' "
Not a Good Look
"I asked him how it was going in his city during the protests, and he said, if he was a truck driver, he would have plowed full-speed right through the protestors for getting in his way."
"Done. F***in' done. Not giving someone like that the benefit of my friendship."
A Follower is Not a Friend
"She was in my wedding and came to the hospital to meet my son the day after he was born."
"She moved to a different state, got married & pregnant all without telling me. Apologized then asked me to come to her baby shower, where I very briefly met her husband."
"She has since returned to the state I live in about 5 times and each time she has done so without telling me...I find out through social media, the same way I learned all the other details."
"Friendship is a two-way street, and I'm tired of driving it alone."
Open and Shut Case
"The second his gf told me he sexual abused her. Literally it hit me that I had years of evidence of his predatory nature but I hadn't put it together. A decade of friendship burned down in less than a day, easy peasy."
"When we intervened/confronted him he didn't deny a thing. I have no regrets."
Witnessing True Colors
"We were friends and part of a nonprofit organization. This friend straight up told me she would do whatever it took to get another friend (who's one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet and supposedly one of her best friends) asked to step down from a management position because she wanted it."
"I didn't warn the friend because I didn't think she was serious."
"The f***ing sociopath did whatever it took to achieve her dream and lied her ass off. Things imploded, he was made to step down, she got her f***ing way."
"Joke was on her though because I helped get her yanked out of there. Only difference is, I did it with TRUTH, because that's how I roll."
Stepping Away When it Counts
"They dismissed our other friend's claims that 2 members of our group (who were known for having horrible attitudes towards women and sex) had taken advantage of her sexually when she was drunk and/or vulnerable."
"They also tried to play it all off as her being "a crazy bi***" and her being "unstable". She was neither of those things."
"I realised if I wanted to live up to my principles of listening to survivors and believing women, then I had to make the right choice. So, I ditched that group of 5 shitty men and their gross misogynistic attitudes and I'm glad I did."
"I was out to dinner meeting my best friend's new boyfriend. We were all having a good time. Then she asked him if he thought I was pretty. He handles it perfectly and told her that he only had eyes for her. But she would not let it up."
"Finally she told me to keep my hands to myself. We were best friends! I never once even looked at a guy she was remotely interested in! And I was engaged at the time! So I finished the meal, told him it was great to meet him, went home, and never called or texted her again."
A Very Bizarre Way to Go About That
"Best friends as kids. Still really good friends in highschool. Left highschool. Went over to see him after he came home for Christmas from university. We hadn't spoken in 4 months and I was really looking forward to catching up."
"I went to his parents house and they invited me in. He sat opposite and proceeded to stonewall all attempts at conversation with single word answers and no return questions."
"I got the hint he wasn't in the mood and told him to contact me in a few days if he wanted to get a drink and catch up properly. No call ever came. That was 8 years ago."
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There are few things more annoying than when you are seeking advice and someone responds with a boring platitude that helps no one. Believe it or not, if you choose to provide advice, it needs to be specific to the situation and shouldn't be dressed up in trite phrasing. Does saying, "Keep your head up" actually contribute anything if that's all you have to say when someone comes to you in search of a listening ear?
But this goes deeper than just advice, to be fair. Some of us are sick of greedy corporations that stress the importance of being a "family" while refusing to pay proper wages. Still more of us are tired of people using certain language when other language can suffice.
After Redditor BensReddits asked the online community, "What is a phrase you absolutely hate hearing?" people shared their stories.
"At any sort of conference..."
At any sort of conference/gathering/presentation:
"How're you all doing today?!? C'mon, I know you can answer louder than that! HOW ARE YOU ALL DOING TODAY?!"
Instant resentment every time.
I second that resentment.
I attended a conference once where the main speaker did this several times in the span of thirty minutes as he announced different initiatives.
Such a headache.
"At my work..."
At my work upper management has started using the word "activate" a lot. As in, "We are working on plans to activate underutilized spaces." And, "Let's activate a few other teams on this." It just sounds silly to me and like they are trying too hard to avoid using simple, perfectly adequate language.
I'll take your "activate" and give you...
What is wrong with the word "use"?
"I was born in Australia..."
"Your English is so good!"
Thank you, I was born in Australia and English is literally my first language. My standard response these days is, "Oh thank you, yours too!"
This one is especially annoying...
...if you're not alabaster white.
This is a big one:
"Where are you from? No I mean where are you from."
Also annoying if you're not alabaster white.
"Someone saying to a teenager..."
Someone saying to a teenager, "These are the best years of your life!" I am in my mid-40s now and most people my age remember high school as horrible and awkward. The more appropriate thing to say is, "Hang in there kid! I promise life gets better. Just get through adolescence the best you can."
High school sucked.
My life vastly improved in my 20s. Let's not convince teenagers that they have nothing to look forward to after high school's over and done with.
"That's nothing... " when I tell them something only for them to turn it onto a competition and say something worse that happened to them.
The chronic one-upper.
"But she's your mother!"
Yeah, well she should've acted like one.
"I've heard it from people..."
"When you have your own children you'll understand."
I've heard it from people who don't understand that I want nothing more than my own family but being pregnant will kill me, and when I bring up adoption as a valid way of having children they'll buckle down on that phrase as to say adopted kids are not the same. It's disheartening to hear as a formal foster child and has reinforced my beliefs that no one really saw me as enough. Why would you say that to someone? All kids are the same and those without kids shouldn't be dismissed.
"I lost my daughter..."
"God has a plan" or "It happened for a reason."
I lost my daughter when I was 36 weeks in because of a sudden placental abruption followed by a uterine rupture, lost 2.2 litres of blood. I can't carry again without risking the child or myself. And I had to listen to a variety of phrases that made me want to hit those people. Those two were the worst. Followed by "You can try again" or "Did you get the child baptized?" (got this one only once though).
"Who on earth..."
"When are you going to have kids?"
Who on earth are you to not only insist I should stop and redirect my whole life for kids, but then put me on the spot and make up a timetable to change my whole life? Not everyone wants kids.
Now that you've learned a thing or two...
...you could say that all of the responses here are an exceptional opportunity to improve your social skills.
Have some of your own stories to share? Feel free to tell us about them in the comments below!
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Dating is difficult––and truth be told, I don't know how anyone can do it right now, what with a pandemic going on and all. Just the thought stresses me out. Dating is especially hard for people who defy expectations in a heteronormative society. Take bisexuals, for example.
Bisexuals have been open about their struggles maintaining relationships with both men and women, even having to lie about their sexuality if they want to date certain people.
"I feel like if I end up in a straight relationship, I'll look like I was just experimenting all these years, but if I end up in a gay relationship people will say I was never actually bisexual," one man told the BBC in 2019. "Then if I don't have a monogamous relationship people will say I'm just greedy."
Indeed, the pressure to be either gay or straight can be a lot to navigate. After Redditor Trevor-on-Reddit asked the online community, "Bisexual people who have dated both genders, what are some notable differences you've learned about dating both men and women?" bisexuals spoke candidly about their experiences. Take note: You might learn something new.
We all know someone who really cannot figure out even the most basic thing without copious amounts of help. But when you meet someone who is completely and totally past all help, how do you even begin to try to help them get along?
Most of the time, they will just be flustered, or they won't listen. And you have to just stand Idly by and watch them fail.
What is your "This person has no idea how the real world works" moment?
Here were some of those stories.
The Boot, Not The Camp
When I was in boot camp, some kid put his letter addressed to 'mom' with no address attatched.
I was gonna say that its not that stupid for a very young kid to do that, but then I realized you said boot camp and not summer camp.
Don't Steal Dangerous Chemicals
A student working part time at my laboratory at a University came into my office and asked "so what all can I eat in the refrigerator, I didn't know I was supposed to bring my own lunch". I looked at him, stunned and replied "nothing, that food is what people brought for their own lunch, but you can use my grub hub to order". He DID NOT UNDERSTAND. It took 4 tries to get him to realize he can't just eat someone else's lunch.
Same student: I walked into the lab room and told him I made a full pot of coffee in the office and he could help himself. Him: "a pot of coffee? What's that?" He never used a coffee maker other than a Kuerig before and didn't even know it was a thing.
He was fired a month later for stealing chloroform.
No Ma'am, Like, REAL Bears
At a national park, the park ranger says "stay on the trails, there are bears in the area."
One lady says "isn't that dangerous? Why aren't they in their cages?"
"Ma'am, we're not a zoo."
These people are lucky to make it out of bed every day.
Sleeping On The Job
I lived with some Japanese exchange students during the final summer of college. They were really nice girls, but one of them (Mari) (~19 years old) obviously had no idea how anything worked. She spoke the best English and I was tutoring some of the other girls, while they helped me with my Japanese.
But Mari would constantly call me to come to get her because she thought we had free buses (all the buses). After all, we were students. That wasn't the issue. I could deal with that. It was a whole new culture. She was learning.
But what happened that made me realize Mari could not be left on her own was when she ended up in Eloy, Arizona. Which was ~400 miles and five hours from where we were. She had been talking to some guy on campus, he said he was visiting family in Arizona, and she said "I want to go."
He just took her with him, and she went without even telling us. She had just assumed the guy would take her back, but he said he couldn't because he was staying in Arizona. So I had to arrange a ticket, get her on the bus via the phone, and then pick her up two hours away because she missed her second bus by napping.
How...? What...? Huh...?
Had a friend who was in some uncredited scam online college for her master's degree in medical billing or something. She was on a loan program that was sending her about $5k every 3 months directly to her via check in the mail.
This was her only source of income. She kept calling it a grant that didn't need to be paid back. She was flat broke as a joke for 2 months but then the check would come in and she would be living the good life for a few weeks before being poor again.
We tried to do an intervention and show her the insane interest rate that would be back dated as soon as her "school" was done but she didn't want anyone to bust her free money dreams.
She just kept talking about all the money she would eventually be making billing insurance companies...turns out she wasn't even logging in to the online college or even attempting to get this degree.
She thought the money was free, the degree was automatic and the job was guaranteed. Some people are beyond help.
Such Brilliant. So Money. Wow
My boss told me about a friend of his, who told him af a "life hack". She would get her bills in the mail, NOT pay them, and then wait a couple of months to pay. Then she would cry so the debt collectors would feel bad and waive the fees for not paying on time. That was her "brilliant life hack"
Himbo Rights Activist
The other day, my 18yo brother-in-law got married to his highschool sweetheart in a parking garage so that they can live off campus at college together.
Girlfriend's, now wife, mother is an ordained minister. His parents, my in-laws, were very upset and he couldn't understand why because "it's just a fake marriage for school". Oh no, sweet boy. You are MARRIED. I just laughed and laughed. I love him dearly. He is a dumb*ss.
And yet somehow they are there to add these stories to our dull, dull days.
A dude (18 yo) in boot camp got a letter from home and I can see he is agitated. Being 22 and concerned for his well-being, I asked him if he wanted to talk about it. (I'm thinking a Dear John letter or the Mom and Dad divorcing letter.)
He dead *ss told me that his younger brother got a Mercedes for his birthday and that he was pissed bc he "only got a BMW". Can't remember what I said, but I knew boot camp was gonna knock down. (It did.)
Who Pays Your Bills?
When my roommate, who never once paid for rent or groceries or anything, turned down the only job offer they have ever gotten, in front of me, TWICE.
They were so desperate they called him twice, offering good pay, during covid, and he had the gaul to say no in front of me. His excuse was "nah I'm sure there's something better. $20 an hour is garbage in this city" -_-
Just Read ONE Parenting Book
I worked for a clueless couple who had no idea how to raise a kid. He wore the same outfit everyday for a month until I gently suggested that he needs new clothes. His parents asked me "Where can we get baby clothes?" This was slightly hilarious given that they lived above a Target and next to a baby boutique.
I had to have the same conversation once the child was old enough for solid foods. I was asked "Where can we get baby food?" I had to explain that most grocery stores carry a baby aisle, or that she can mash up her own fruits at home for the baby. This family decided that sour cream would be a great first food for their baby!
I'll mention that this was a wealthy family who went on vacation at least 2-3 times a month. By far the weirdest thing they did was try and drop off Grandma at daycare along with the baby.
Stories like this make you feel like the most well-equipped, with it person alive, right?
We're all well aware of the weird, horrible, predatory things men do when attracted to women. But what about when women are the culprits?
Though it seems that, statistically, men are problematic at a WAY higher rate than women, there are certainly times where the person bringing the creepy vibes is, indeed, the woman.
Some men of Reddit gathered to share the most bizarre and uncomfortable things a woman has ever said.
AidenTheGamer14 asked, "Men of Reddit, what is the creepiest thing a girl has ever said or done to you?"
For some, it was the stalkers.
The cryptic behavior and frightening detective work of ex-lovers can be unparalleled.
Some Light Sleuthing
"Found out my address from the phone book, this was the 90s, sat outside my house for multiple nights, all night just watching my house, I live in the middle of the woods miles outside of town."
"We only had one date and agreed to leave it at that. I found out sometime later what she had been doing."
"Girl I was dating asked if I had changed the locks since breaking up with my ex months prior. I'm like 'No, but she wasn't a crazy person so I never worried about it.' She says if I don't change the locks she ain't comfortable sleeping over, so I change the locks."
"This ex sends me an angry text the next day 'So you changed your locks huh? Real nice a**hole.' So she had been coming over this whole time and doing who knows what."
She Stopped at Nothing
"She kept writing me letters at every address I lived at during that five-year period. If she didn't have the address she'd send them care of my parents. The most memorable is the one where she told me she was married and 'he's a great guy but he's not you.' "
"Once not long after I'd moved to a new address I came home and found a box of cookies she'd FedExed to me. Eventually I moved to a new state. I knew from her return addresses that she lived and worked there, and was worried we'd run into each other but realized that was pretty unlikely."
"Then after less than a year, she found me through a blog I was keeping and left a message on my voicemail demanding we meet. I posted a message to her on my blog telling her to stop harrassing me or I'd call the police (up to that point I'd been ignoring her, hoping she'd take the hint). That night she called, I repeated my threat to bring the authorities in, and I haven't heard from her since."
Others dealt with the creepiness on the internet. With so many avenues of communication all around us, uncomfortable comments can come from all directions.
"Someone I considered a friend started to grow feelings for me, but when she found out I had a girlfriend and I didn't feel the same for her she found out who my girlfriend was somehow. She then DM'd her and tried to tell her that I was cheating on her with her."
"Luckily I was with her when she got that DM so I could explain the situation and then we blocked her. Next day she DM'd her again from an alt account."
Worst Kind of Pen Pal
"I started a new job, and I shared a small office with a woman my age (and a couple other people). She was kinda cute but also weird and super naïve (she grew up in a very rural area). She'd flirt with me a lot, but I wasn't interested."
"So she started sending me emails."
"They were super long, detailing her whole day. And she sent them to me every day. I never responded. Then one day she sent me this long email confessing her love. I replied with the (very obvious) reasons why it wouldn't work and asked her to stop sending me emails every day. She didn't."
"They kept coming. This went on for months. I asked her in person and online to stop, but I still got these email memoirs every day. Eventually I had another female office mate who was her friend have a talk with her. Finally the emails stopped."
That's A Lot of Passwords
"I've had a girl create about 50 different Snapchat, Facebook, and Instagram accounts all to try to get me to friend her. I've never met this woman in person and yet every few weeks I'll get a handful of friend requests from her"
"Met this girl online and talked to her a bit. I did started to like her."
"Later found out that the pic she showed me of herself was actually a pic of her friend who had passed away due to cancer."
In my early 20's I was at a party and the hosting woman full-on tried to reach down my pants to grab my business."
"Strange, yes, what made it creepy is that we were right in front of her mother, who was cheering her on."
Breaking Out the Scroll
"After 6 months from our breakup, my ex called me because she wanted to see me. It seemed strange to me but I accepted. When we met she was friendly and all..."
"Then at a certain point she pulls a sheet in which there was written a list of all men she fu**ed after our relationship and she read it all to me, with accurate description of every sexual intercourse. Well it was an awkward moment."
"I was going to head home after a night out and a I was getting into my taxi a girl jumped in after me. I asked what they were doing and she said 'I'm coming home with you.' "
"Nope. Taxi driver helped me and she got out the car eventually when I shot down her advances."
Again, it's important to read this thread and remember that this is a bias sample, solely focused on the incidents where a woman did act creepy.
But, yes, it happens out there.
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