Author Topic: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?  (Read 7665 times)

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quietgirl

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Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« on: June 04, 2013, 01:47:35 PM »
I have a friend, let's call her Suzy, who I enjoy hanging out with very much.  She is probably one of the nicest people I've ever met and we have a great time together.  Last fall she got back together with her ex-boyfriend.  Unfortunately, this BF does not seem to be very good to her.  I haven't met him because "he doesn't like hanging out with people he doesn't know".  Just to set the stage, when they got back together she confided in me that she understands that she can't put demands on him, such as expecting him to respond quickly to her texts and choose her over his friends because he's "just not that kinda guy".  Another gem about this guy is that he won't make plans in advance.  Which is how this impacts me.  (Besides that fact that it just hurts me to see this wonderful person allowing herself to be treated so poorly, but I digress...)

This means that when I try to make plans with her she "doesn't know" if she's free.  I can understand (slightly) if the plans are several weeks in advance, but I just invited her to see a band with me on Friday.  Suzy can't commit because she's waiting to see if her BF wants to go out Friday or Saturday.  Then she asked what I'm doing on Saturday and said that she'll join me for that if she ends up seeing him on Friday.  Um, ok, but I didn't invite her for Saturday.  Now, I'm normally a "more the merrier" kinda person, but by her own admission, she doesn't click with this group I'm going with and, honestly, she doesn't even try.

So now, I feel like a 5 yr old and want to just dig my heals in and say "No, you don't get to put me in wait & see status just because your BF puts YOU in wait & see status."

Here's my question:  Am I being petulant (and by extention just rude) or am I setting personal boundaries? 




JeseC

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2013, 01:49:39 PM »
You sound like you're being perfectly fine.  It's her job to stand up to her boyfriend.  You don't have to rearrange your schedule just because he won't get his life together.  And maybe if there's consequences for her she'll realize that she can stand up to him.

bopper

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2013, 01:51:17 PM »
Not rude to set boundaries if you do it in a not rude way.

"I didn't ask you for Saturday" is a bit rude.
"Saturday doesn't work, but maybe another time." is not rude.

Also you could ask "I notice that you have to give up activities with your friends because of what your boyfriend may or may not want to do. Are you really cool with that?"

amylouky

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2013, 01:52:54 PM »
So now, I feel like a 5 yr old and want to just dig my heals in and say "No, you don't get to put me in wait & see status just because your BF puts YOU in wait & see status."

Actually, I think I'd say exactly that. Maybe not in a 5 yr old tone, but friend needs to see that she's being disrespectful to you, and damaging her friendships by catering to bf's quirks.

TootsNYC

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2013, 01:53:57 PM »
Remember that when she asks you "what are you doing Saturday," you probably shouldn't give her details. "I have plans with other friends." or "Why do you ask?"
 

WillyNilly

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2013, 02:10:20 PM »
So now, I feel like a 5 yr old and want to just dig my heals in and say "No, you don't get to put me in wait & see status just because your BF puts YOU in wait & see status."


You feel like a 5 year old for this not because its immature of you, but because everyone else learned by 5 years old that your friend's behavior is obnoxious.

I think its not only perfectly ok, but high time, you say to your friend "no I won't wait and see. Either you want to make plans with me, or you want to make plans with your boyfriend. Either is fine but I'm not a back-up plan. I deserve to be given priority for plans once in a while. If you can't come I'll invite someone else, but I'm sure as heck not putting my plans on hold for your boyfriend."

I mean sure, once in a while people can't commit to advance plans, and sure its reasonable for anyone to say "hey let me check on that date/time and get back to you" (and then respond in a reasonable time) but its not ok to never make advance plans and expect other people to just wait to the last minute all the time. And if she is going to choose to do that, she needs to be the one who suffers/looses out, not anyone else.

Daydream

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2013, 03:28:44 PM »
I don't understand why you would feel like a five-year-old for setting boundaries in this situation.  It's a very adult thing to do.  A child probably wouldn't have that choice.

This sounds like it might be a texting or email situation since it seems like you haven't answered her yet.  If that's so, let her know that Saturday won't work for you and you'll catch up with her another time. 

Maybe you can also gently tell her in a face-to-face or phone conversation that's it's fine for a woman to make plans with a friend and not be able to see her boyfriend because of those plans.  The boyfriend might learn that he sometimes needs to make plans with her in advance if he wants to see her.
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 04:06:41 PM by Daydream »

Zizi-K

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2013, 04:07:14 PM »
I'm not sure why you would feel like a five-year-old for setting boundaries in this situation.  It's a very adult thing to do.  A child probably wouldn't have that choice.

This sounds like it might be a texting or email situation since it seems like you haven't answered her yet.  If that's so, let her know that Saturday won't work for you and you'll catch up with her another time. 

Maybe you can also gently tell her in a face-to-face or phone conversation that's it's fine for a woman to make plans with a friend and not be able to see her boyfriend because of those plans.  The boyfriend might learn that he sometimes needs to make plans with her in advance if he wants to see her.

I agree wholeheartedly. Further, you might want to explain that her indecision puts you in an awkward place of having to wait for her boyfriend to decide his schedule. If she ends up hanging out with him at the last moment, what does that mean for you? It means that you'll be stuck a)having nothing to do or b)stuck with an extra ticket to a concert and having to scramble to find someone else to go. I would explain that if she can't commit to going with you on Friday, that you'll have to find someone else to go with because you really want to go - and are trying to make the plans to do so.

kudeebee

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #8 on: June 04, 2013, 04:20:17 PM »
You are setting boundaries. You should not have to put your life on hold while she finds out when her boyfriend has time for her.

I like any of the phrases the pps have given.

Amava

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #9 on: June 04, 2013, 04:30:21 PM »
Tell Suzie to tell her boyfriend that she is not available on Friday night, because she already has plans with you.
After all, he should understand, since he is against being demanding in a relationship, and he wants friends to come first. Oh wait... did that only work his way round? My bad.  >:D

But you know, maybe the boyfriend isn't as bad as you think - maybe it does not only work his way round. Maybe he would applaud it if Suzie sometimes made plans without him. It's worth a try and I think Suzie should do it. Make herself less available so that he learns that if he wants to see her, he needs to make plans in advance; that she has a life and friends too.

Roe

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #10 on: June 04, 2013, 04:36:44 PM »
I'd totally just tell her what you wrote here.  It makes perfect sense and it isn't a rude thing to say.

 "No, you don't get to put me in wait & see status just because your BF puts YOU in wait & see status."

gramma dishes

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #11 on: June 04, 2013, 04:43:43 PM »
Let's see if I have this straight:

1.  Friend's new boyfriend prefers to hang out with his friends, doesn't want to meet HER friends, only sees her if all his plans with his friends either never materialize or fall through.

2.  Because of boyfriend's indecision as to with whom he'd rather spend his time, she puts off making plans with her own friends and expects them to wait until the last minute for her to decide.

Do I have it about right?

I'd tell her "No, sorry.  I already have other plans for Saturday.  If you aren't sure you will be able to go Friday, I'll just ask someone else.  Maybe we can do something together another time."

And the next time you see her?  Hand her a copy of "He's Just Not That Into You". 

gen xer

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #12 on: June 04, 2013, 06:07:19 PM »

Just like everyone else has said - you are not rude for insisting that plans be finalized and followed through with.

You don't need to make any commentary on her relationship with this guy if you are not comfortable with that - but you are absolutely correct to expect an answer to your invitation within a reasonable time frame.  I understand that sometimes people have to check their schedules - but you could tell her you need to know by a certain time / date and if she can't answer then you move on. 

And if you didn't invite her for Saturday then you simply tell her that won't work.

You don't need a domino effect of doormattishness.

shhh its me

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #13 on: June 04, 2013, 06:52:21 PM »
  Well I don't think you are waiting and seeing on your friend or even her boyfriend but his friends...it sound like friends boyfriend wont commit to her unless his friends aren't available. 

I actually think what you said is perfect , its bit blunt but not rude.  Sometimes you need and should express anger , hurt and frustration, this is one of those times.

Out of kindness it may be nice if you invited her to things she didn't have to commit to every once in awhile. If she keeps on this course she may not have many other friends left soon.

Penguin_ar

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Re: Am I being rude or setting boundaries?
« Reply #14 on: June 04, 2013, 08:35:55 PM »
Like everyone else said, you are fine in how you feel/ what you said.
In terms of the concert on Friday, I'd give her a deadline: "I'd really love to go with you to the concert, but I don't want the ticket to go to waste/ don't want to risk having to go alone at the last minute.  Let me know by Wednesday eve if you can come, and if not, I'll ask Susie."