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Author Topic: Dealing with overly-sensitive friends (genuine update post #86)  (Read 34484 times)

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DavidH

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #45 on: March 26, 2012, 02:27:21 PM »
I think she's being ridiculous, since carrying a bag into a hotel is neither particularly burdensome or out of the ordinary.  It seems a reasonable favor to ask and, most importantly, after you addressed her concerns she agreed to it.  At that point, rather than put up concerns, she needed to say, "no, I don't want to do that" or "no, I won't do that".

I've tried to understand the issue, but the favor seems so minor and the risk nonexistant, it seems that she is just being difficult.  In no way can I get to the point of her being "brave" for carrying up a bag to a hotel room.

As for how can you address it in the future, I see a few options:

1. Don't ask for a favor in the future
2. If she demures at all after being asked something, let it go
3. Address the issue head on.  I don't understand the issue and why you are stuck on this.  You voiced concerns, we addressed them, you agreed to do the favor.  If you didn't want to do it, you should have just said no.
4. Distance yourself from her

drzim

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #46 on: March 26, 2012, 02:46:00 PM »
Sometimes, you find out that you have friends that you can really only enjoy their company in "small doses".   When I was in college, I had several friends that were fun to hang out with, shopping, dinner, concerts, bars etc.  But I could absolutely never travel with them, or have them as roommates.  It was the extended time and the day to day stuff that was tiresome and revealed all sorts of annoying personality traits.

It seems like Touchy is a "small dose" friend.  You don't have to dump her as a friend, but just be aware of the types of social activities that you enjoy together, and adjust plans accordingly.

CluelessBride

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #47 on: March 26, 2012, 02:56:32 PM »
So, you asked her a favor.  She said she wasn't comfortable doing it.  You asked again, telling her that her discomfort was irrational.  She's still hemming and hawing about it.  You push.  So she finally agrees to do it.  But resents you for pushing her into it?  Even with all the additional information, I'm having a hard time condemning Touchy on this one.  You can dislike that someone doesn't want to do a favor for you.  You can decide to distance your relationship based on their refusing to do a favor for you.  But guilting a friend into doing something they don't want to do is just low.

I get that her hesitance to do this seems odd.  But you minimized her feelings for your convenience.  And that's simply not something friends should do.  At least, I wouldn't want to be friends with someone who behaved that way. 

Either accept her as she is or let the friendship drift. 

Adelaide

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #48 on: March 26, 2012, 02:57:52 PM »
...    I think I am just going to decline to go on trips with her anymore (particularly when she doesn't have the common courtesy to clean all the crumbs and nastiness out of her car/remove things from the trunk space so we can fit luggage  ::) ) but remain friendly when we see each other out places or at social gatherings with mutual friends.

You know, I probably shouldn't say this, but you're coming across (probably only to me) as being a little judgmental.  If her car doesn't meet your standards, then perhaps one of the others in your group should drive.  Throughout your posts it seems you have very little respect for her.  Maybe she deserves that, maybe not.  But it kind of bothers me.

See, it comes off to me as being frustrated with a person who doesn't even have the basic courtesy to be prepared when hosting(driving). What kind of respect does it show to your friends if you can't even minimally prepare your own car for a trip with friends?

I guess I'm just frustrated because I have dealt with her "sensitivity" for years. If I don't give concrete scenarios people are inclined to say "Oh, she's just sensitive/emotional" without understanding the flip side, which is that she doesn't have any tolerance or respect for other people and the thought of being polite never crosses her mind, so I agree that I probably come across as a bit judgmental. But if she can "sensitive" her way out of something, she will, then turn around and berate someone who refuses the very same task or acts the same in the same scenario. I'm not trying to throw her under the metaphorical bus, I'm just trying to give more examples. My main point in this thread wasn't that she complained about carrying up bottles of wine.

I was trying to find a way to shut her down when she has bouts of "sensitivity" and insists that everyone pander to her and apologize for "making" her feel a certain way. If we don't apologize, or everyone agrees (without having to discuss it, as she picks what most people would consider very strange things to be sensitive about) that she is being too touchy, she'll give us the silent treatment. We typically have been ignoring it until it goes away but I want to find something to say to her that would get her to realize that sometimes she's being unreasonable. In this instance I don't think she was being unreasonable in not wanting to carry up the wine. I do think she was in the way that she kept whining about it, did it anyway, wanted an apology, and after an apology had been issued, sulked through dinner and tried to ruin a pleasant atmosphere.

Also, when I say "crumbs", I mean that there was a carpet of them on the floors. The black floor looked completely off-white. There was smeared frosting from what I assume was a cupcake on my door handle, and a sprinkling of crumbs all over the carpeted seats. The trunk was so cluttered with books, school work, paper, and trash that we couldn't fit our luggage in, and this is in a normal car. About 75% of the trunk was stuffed to the brim. I sneezed most of the time from the dust (and ground-up bits of colored pencils) in the car and had to put some of Touchy's old, mismatched shoes in the trunk because they smelled. I just find it odd that basic courtesies escape her notice, but she thinks nothing of holding up an entire group of people whenever she feels slighted.

Part of what keeps us together is the nostalgia factor. But everyone's right, I'm going to have to limit my time with her from now on and restrict it to social gatherings from our "old group" where I don't have as much one-on-one with her.

NyaChan

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #49 on: March 26, 2012, 03:00:32 PM »
I think the reason people are responding this way is because the incident you initially described - the carrying of the wine - was not one where Touchy was clearly in the wrong.  Now the question of how to deal with a friend who expects a great deal of tolerance for her sensitivities while extending little or none to others is a separate matter. 

CluelessBride

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #50 on: March 26, 2012, 03:05:27 PM »
I think the reason people are responding this way is because the incident you initially described - the carrying of the wine - was not one where Touchy was clearly in the wrong.  Now the question of how to deal with a friend who expects a great deal of tolerance for her sensitivities while extending little or none to others is a separate matter.

I agree.  I also don't think there is anything wrong with choosing not to be friends with someone for any reason.  Even if the reason is an isolated incident of not wanting to do a favor. But even if you think someone is ridiculous and even if they are sensitive about things but don't extend consideration to other, doesn't give you the right to pressure them into doing a favor for you when they say no.  This is doubly true if the reason they say no is because they are uncomfortable. 

So I think owning up to your own mistake and apologizing is important - at least from an etiquette standpoint.  But you aren't required to like Touchy or continue to be friends with her.


Adelaide

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #51 on: March 26, 2012, 03:17:32 PM »
So, you asked her a favor.  She said she wasn't comfortable doing it.  You asked again, telling her that her discomfort was irrational.  She's still hemming and hawing about it.  You push.  So she finally agrees to do it.  But resents you for pushing her into it?  Even with all the additional information, I'm having a hard time condemning Touchy on this one.  You can dislike that someone doesn't want to do a favor for you.  You can decide to distance your relationship based on their refusing to do a favor for you.  But guilting a friend into doing something they don't want to do is just low.

I get that her hesitance to do this seems odd.  But you minimized her feelings for your convenience.  And that's simply not something friends should do.  At least, I wouldn't want to be friends with someone who behaved that way. 

Either accept her as she is or let the friendship drift.

Honestly, I don't feel like I guilted her into doing anything. She was concerned about two things: the legality of the situation, and the logistics of hiding the alcohol. I told her it was legal, another friend suggested putting it under a blanket, and Touchy found a sweatshirt herself and proceeded to carry in the wine. The only thing I dislike is that she whined about it, did it anyway, and then hours later decided to pout, demand an apology, and give us the silent treatment. All I want is for her to say "No" or "Yes", and by her actions to load up the booze herself, I took that as a "Yes". I don't want to have to "read" what someone is "really" thinking after they agree to do a basic, non-illegal favor that doesn't inconvenience them. Although Touchy is not the same-she repeatedly whined me that I "had" to get a drink when I said "No, I am not drinking at dinner" because she didn't want to be the only one who ordered alcohol at the hotel bar.


I think the reason people are responding this way is because the incident you initially described - the carrying of the wine - was not one where Touchy was clearly in the wrong.  Now the question of how to deal with a friend who expects a great deal of tolerance for her sensitivities while extending little or none to others is a separate matter.

I agree.  I also don't think there is anything wrong with choosing not to be friends with someone for any reason.  Even if the reason is an isolated incident of not wanting to do a favor. But even if you think someone is ridiculous and even if they are sensitive about things but don't extend consideration to other, doesn't give you the right to pressure them into doing a favor for you when they say no.  This is doubly true if the reason they say no is because they are uncomfortable. 

So I think owning up to your own mistake and apologizing is important - at least from an etiquette standpoint.  But you aren't required to like Touchy or continue to be friends with her.



You're definitely right, and I should have probably cited more incidents at the get-go or made it much more clear that the issue I have with her isn't about the wine, but how she chooses to express her frustrations, which is always in a very childish manner. And I would love it if she would say "no" or "I don't want to do this", but she never does. She'll do something or whine about aspects of it. When the aspects are resolved or alleviated she'll do it, and then later decide that she's offended or her feelings were hurt. Once we were eating dinner and she said "I'm going to go pay my tab!" and the three of us said "Okay, we'll be here" and kept talking. When she returned she stared at us like we'd grown horns and said "Why did you guys let me go alone?" The same with the water bottle-she kept going on about how small her purse was even after I said that I wouldn't carry her water as everyone's supply would wrench my back. What she wanted was "Oh, your purse is small! I'll carry yours." When that didn't happen she left hers and said "Fine, I'll just have to share with someone else".  We're 22 years old, and I just don't see how a simple "No, I am not doing that" and clearly expressing what she wants is so hard to get out of someone who doesn't have panic attacks/anxiety/other mental disorders.
« Last Edit: March 26, 2012, 03:19:08 PM by Adelaide »

shhh its me

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #52 on: March 26, 2012, 03:24:37 PM »
  Ever hear "Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get me?"   Just because you're friend is oversensitive doesn't mean she is always the unreasonable one.   If she behaves rudely , I still think you can politely call her out....." I do not like it when you do that , please stop" you can end an evening if she gets pouty " Touchy you don't seem to be having fun let call it a night"  you can also  not push her once she expresses she is uncomfortable , I think you(group) went wrong in this case. She's uncomfortable about silly stuff but it doesn't matter that's it's silly , that she doesn't want to do some things is not rude (it might be a deal breaker for a friendship) pushing her past her comfortable level because you (group) think her feeling are silly is rude and bullyish behavior about this aspect she has a valid point.    I get it she's high maintenance , simple things area chore. You have to decided if her not doing the simple things is a deal breaker or not , try to effect a different reaction isn't going to happen.   

It wouldn't be silly to me but I wont go skydiving period , if you(gereral you) try to tell me all the reasons that's silly I'd be annoyed too.

sparksals

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #53 on: March 26, 2012, 03:28:38 PM »
What if Touchy just didn't want to?  She has a right to say no.

Everyone is saying that it wasn't a big deal but to her, obviously, it was.  People on here have aversions to all sorts of odds things that I don't often understand and sometimes, I admit, I'll do an internal eye-roll but you know....everyone is entitled to how they feel.  Even if it doesn't make sense.

Point is, Touchy didn't want to do it. OP should've respected that.


Pod on all counts.

sparksals

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #54 on: March 26, 2012, 03:33:34 PM »
So, you asked her a favor.  She said she wasn't comfortable doing it.  You asked again, telling her that her discomfort was irrational.  She's still hemming and hawing about it.  You push.  So she finally agrees to do it.  But resents you for pushing her into it?  Even with all the additional information, I'm having a hard time condemning Touchy on this one.  You can dislike that someone doesn't want to do a favor for you.  You can decide to distance your relationship based on their refusing to do a favor for you.  But guilting a friend into doing something they don't want to do is just low.

I get that her hesitance to do this seems odd.  But you minimized her feelings for your convenience.  And that's simply not something friends should do.  At least, I wouldn't want to be friends with someone who behaved that way. 

Either accept her as she is or let the friendship drift.


Pod!

wolfie

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #55 on: March 26, 2012, 03:33:52 PM »
  Ever hear "Just because I'm paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get me?"   Just because you're friend is oversensitive doesn't mean she is always the unreasonable one.   If she behaves rudely , I still think you can politely call her out....." I do not like it when you do that , please stop" you can end an evening if she gets pouty " Touchy you don't seem to be having fun let call it a night"  you can also  not push her once she expresses she is uncomfortable , I think you(group) went wrong in this case. She's uncomfortable about silly stuff but it doesn't matter that's it's silly , that she doesn't want to do some things is not rude (it might be a deal breaker for a friendship) pushing her past her comfortable level because you (group) think her feeling are silly is rude and bullyish behavior about this aspect she has a valid point.    I get it she's high maintenance , simple things area chore. You have to decided if her not doing the simple things is a deal breaker or not , try to effect a different reaction isn't going to happen.   

It wouldn't be silly to me but I wont go skydiving period , if you(gereral you) try to tell me all the reasons that's silly I'd be annoyed too.

But it isn't as if Touchy is saying "no I don't want to". She is giving reasons and her friends think they are helping by figuring out how to solve what is stopping her. It would be like you saying you don't want to go skydiving because you don't have a car that will get you to the place that does it. And I tell you I will give you a ride. So you say you worry your glasses will fall off. And I tell you I have goggles. And then you go ahead and do it, but get made at me for making you. I didn't make you do anything - I thought that you were okay with it but just had a few blocks that needed to be fixed. If you don't want to do something you have to say no and not expect other people to read your mind and know what you really want them to do.

shhh its me

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #56 on: March 26, 2012, 03:41:30 PM »
  Not being able to just say "no" is irritating but so is not being able to take a hint.(most people are somewhere in the middle , it almost seems like the two of you are on the extrems oppsite ends of the spectrum)  IF she were asking for advice we would all be teeling her "next time just say the word "No" instead of ..."  but you're the person asking.  "I want her to communicate the way  I do" is not reasonable , it may be a reasonably compatibility issue.  She's a hinter , you can learn to take hints or have the same thing happen again or distance yourself.   IT wont fix all the issues but it will fix some of them. 

wolfie

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #57 on: March 26, 2012, 03:48:21 PM »
  Not being able to just say "no" is irritating but so is not being able to take a hint.(most people are somewhere in the middle , it almost seems like the two of you are on the extrems oppsite ends of the spectrum)  IF she were asking for advice we would all be teeling her "next time just say the word "No" instead of ..."  but you're the person asking.  "I want her to communicate the way  I do" is not reasonable , it may be a reasonably compatibility issue.  She's a hinter , you can learn to take hints or have the same thing happen again or distance yourself.   IT wont fix all the issues but it will fix some of them.

I think being a hinter means that you get more of the blame if someone else doesn't pick up on your hints. It's just not a reasonable expectation that people be able to read your mind. I know that I have done it in the past and been hurt when I ended up doing something I didn't want to or missed out on something because I didn't speak up. But in the end part of being an adult is owning your own actions and realizing that I can't expect others to pick up what I am not saying. But the OP can't make Touchy be more clear - all she can do is stop interacting with her or accept that her doing something might come back and bite her later. I would be backing off the friendship - and it seems like the OP is going to do that.

Adelaide

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends (update #5)
« Reply #58 on: March 26, 2012, 03:51:26 PM »
  Not being able to just say "no" is irritating but so is not being able to take a hint.(most people are somewhere in the middle , it almost seems like the two of you are on the extrems oppsite ends of the spectrum)  IF she were asking for advice we would all be teeling her "next time just say the word "No" instead of ..."  but you're the person asking.  "I want her to communicate the way  I do" is not reasonable , it may be a reasonably compatibility issue.  She's a hinter , you can learn to take hints or have the same thing happen again or distance yourself.   IT wont fix all the issues but it will fix some of them.

I wouldn't have an issue with her being a hinter. I can take hints sometimes but I just hate catering to whining and beating around the bush, especially by someone who will do something and then complain about it after the fact. At the time of the wine incident I literally couldn't think of a reason why she wouldn't want to do it or how we "made her feel stupid". No one said "Geez, Tiffany, quit complaining. This is totally legal. Just throw a towel over it, dummy". She expressed concerns and we alleviated them. Especially in circumstances where she is only whining or providing strange "hints" I wish she would just say what she's thinking instead of making vague statements or whiny remarks. I'm very direct and have no problem saying "No" but as soon as someone says "No" to me I don't push the issue. If my group had a history of goading or peer pressuring each other into doing things I could see where she might try to hint around the issue, but I don't get why she just can't say "no" if she doesn't want to. Instead she said "I just feel weird because what if it's illegal? And I don't want people to think I'm drinking four bottles of wine". It's not illegal, here's a towel. In the rest of our minds, the problems were easily solved and I don't think any of us walk around thinking "Okay, what does this person really mean" because trying to read all of her subtext would get exhausting.

demarco

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Re: Dealing with overly-sensitive (Special Snowflake) friends
« Reply #59 on: March 26, 2012, 03:54:24 PM »
We were in an area where there was no parking for blocks and other cars were about to be coming through 

I don't get this.  If there is no place to park at or near the hotel, where were you going to park when you all came back for the night? 

I think lots of us have some things about which we are irrationally uncomfortable.  Friends make allowances for this kind of thing, out of kindness.  If you don't think she's worth  making allowances for, why keep her as a friend?