What should I do in this situation?
for context, this takes place with me (17) and my friend (18)
a few weeks ago during my winter break, she asked if she could come over. her home life isn't quite the best, and she often stays at my house for extended periods of time. although i was a bit hesitant (i planned to use winter break to relax from the stress of online school and both of my parents becoming ill with cancer, and the other one with diabetes) so i said yes (which may have been my first mistake)
when she comes over, i remind her again, that we currently do not have a lot of food. this is due to the fact that we are a very small family, and we aren't in the best financial spot right now.(normally we go to the store and fill the fridge and pantry for her, but we we're unable to do so) i asked her to be mindful of how much food she takes as well. as a result of my parents illnesses, they will both go an entire day (or even days) without eating if i do not remind them. for me, my policy is: as long as you ask, then it's okay.
as the days progress, everything is okay- we're hanging out like usual. until she eats an entire pan of cake, which i wasn't aware of until she told me she was going to eat the last slice. i was taken back by this, and she told me "oh it's only one tiny square!". which definitely hurt my feelings- i didn't have a chance to eat the cake i baked.
then, the next day. my mother goes to the store and picks up some oranges and other foods for our new years celebration. i let my friend know that my mother has brought some oranges, and i bring one for her, and one for me. however, the next morning the entire bag of oranges is gone.
and then the next day, again, she asks if we can go find something to eat. im already a bit annoyed at this point, but i go with her. she opens up my fridge and we both begin looking for food to eat, when she takes out chocolate sauce and says "you know this is expired right? you guys don't clean out your fridge? that's nasty." before tossing it in the trash, followed by other expired foods.
now, i will admit. yes, this is very, very gross. i understand that completely- and since then ive tried my best to keep the fridge looking clean. however, my family does not eat much, especially since they fell ill. its...difficult to stay on top of cleaning around the house because i struggle with unmedicated clinical depression. it's tough to try to keep my parents okay when some days i cant get myself out of bed-- especially when i explained my struggles to her. these comments were very hurtful.
around the last day she was here, my mother was cooking black eyed peas in a crock pot for good luck. my friend kept walking around the pot saying "oh it smells like ass, that's gross". i do not have a problem with someone not liking certain foods, but i was already very hurt and offended at this point.
eventually, after she left my mom began to pick up on the fact that ive been sad and withdrawn ever since. which lead me to telling her everything ive detailed in this post. however...another issue happened between us that made my mother very angry.
not too long ago, i was being stalked by a guy at school. he would follow me around, harass my friends, and always seek me out. i went to the guidance counselor's office crying because he would not leave me alone at all.
eventually, my friend confesses to me that the guy was messaging her asking about me, in exchange for snacks. snacks i would've had no problem buying for her. she watched me cry and distance myself from everyone because i felt like no one was safe. and it turned out my own best friend was stabbing me in the back the entire time.
when i revealed this to both my mom and another friend, they both went ballistic. they both told me what could've happened if the guy wanted to hurt me? what if he did hurt me? (not even a month later i found out this guy was a known abuser and rapist)
my mother told me she is no longer allowed, and i should begin to move on - the same sentiments my friend echoed.
tldr: my friend might be using me, and im struggling to cope with it. what should i do? am i in the wrong for feeling this way?
my mom told me that she's no longer welcome at our house. i know i should take her advice, and try to move on but it's very difficult. i don't feel strong enough to end this friendship because I've known her for so long.
at the same time, it hurts me in the long run to be friends with someone i feel like i can no longer trust.
Hi GREENB3AR: Let's start with you. Your situation is difficult enough without you being clinically depressed. Can we fix that first? Have you seen a physician who can confirm a diagnosis and then medication. If this is clinical depression, it does not go away with will power.
Once you start feeling better, I believe your decisions will become more clear. First identify your values. If your family, health, and safety come before friends, it should make it clear to you that you need to manage this friendship differently. By what I have read from your post, you control your environment, not her. Note here that I have not suggested you terminate the friendship, but only to take control of it. Once again, this will be much easier if you are feeling better.
If you need support in how to managed this friend, while keeping the friendship intact, let us know. We will try to help.
i recently recieved antidepressants and so far it's working okay. im steadily getting into the process of having a schedule set up for myself so im no longer in bed for long periods of time. it's a slow process but i'm feeling better steadily.
what should i do about my friendship? i believe keeping her at arms length is the best option, but i'm not very sure.
Thanks for the response. I am assuming the antidepressants were prescribed by a physician, right? Are you OK in sharing what the diagnosis was?
If you took an inventory of your values (as shared previously) and are feeling better, it is a good time to tell your friend that you feel she is taking advantage of you and your family, and that some of her behaviors in the past make you feel unsafe. I assume you are living at your parents home, so remember you mother's position and start with that. Perhaps, and only with your parents permission, you can put your friend on probation that allows her a "safe house" at your home while maintaining "your and your parents" conditions of her stay. Spell those out specifically and hold her accountable. She may even welcome these new standards, expectations, and consequences, if there is non-compliance.
Keep in touch with how it goes.
I'm very sorry for taking so long to update. My diagnosis is what I've suspected for a very long time, major depression.
I talked it out with her. We both agreed that it is for the best that we leave eachother alone for now. High school is ending very soon for us and our values and goals are starting to...become a lot different.
As selfish as it may sound, I really need to focus on recovering. Between graduating, college, and mental health, I'm no longer able to be at my 100% best for other people.
Regardless, I still wish her the best. I don't think she's a bad person per se, just very misguided.
Good to hear from you. It sounds like you made some good decisions. This allows you to maintain a distant relationship while taking care of yourself (not selfish) and potentially leaving the door open for her if absolutely necessary for safety reasons. Good luck!