Author Topic: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.  (Read 7338 times)

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DottyG

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #15 on: August 15, 2013, 01:25:20 PM »
I had a coworker like this.  All of a sudden, she started treating me just like you're being treated.  I knew I hadn't done anything wrong, so it baffled me.

So I just stayed being myself.  When I'd see her in the hall, I'd smile and say hello.  I'd treat her just like I treated anyone else and was pleasant to her.

In the process, I felt better myself.  I wasn't stooping to her level.  I was just being friendly.  And the result of that is that I was happier.  If she wanted to sulk around and be unfriendly, it was just hurting her.  And she was the one that was coming across badly to everyone else.  Her attitude was noticed by others.  And then they saw me and how I wasn't responding to it and was just being pleasant.  So it only made her look bad.

The really weird thing is that I think she finally realized all that herself.  And she started thawing.  She ended up being friendly to me.  And all because I never gave in and was rude back.

bopper

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #16 on: August 15, 2013, 01:50:23 PM »
Maybe instead of directly talking to them, you could triangulate off of some one they will talk to.  For example,

"I really love my 'Popular Car Brand and Model'. It's never given me issues and it is fun to drive.  <Person who is in Melissa's inner sanctum>,  you have a Toyota Corolla, how has that been?"

So you get a chance to say something, but then redirect their attention to someone else.

What I actually think is you need to imagine them to be a toddler or a grumpy teenager.  You model good behavior, say Hello, but don't make too much eye contact and don't expect much from them.   Do you feel foolish when a toddler doesn't say hello back? No.  They are the ones with some social issues, not you.

PennyandPleased

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #17 on: August 15, 2013, 02:11:51 PM »
********** ORIGINAL POSTER HERE! ************



Thank you everyone! This has been very helpful.

I definitely have zero desire to be friends with these people but I am glad to read that aside from a brief "hello" upon first encountering them at an event I am within my right to ignore them as well and not engage.

« Last Edit: August 15, 2013, 02:18:42 PM by PennyandPleased »

ettiquit

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #18 on: August 15, 2013, 02:38:27 PM »
I'm kind of with Outdoor Girl, but my goal would be to make them converse with me. So in the car situation, if they responded to my input with a withering stare, I'd ignore it and say to them: "Do you like that kind of car? Have you ever driven one?". They would look ridiculous if they just sit there and continue to ignore you.

I don't think it's necessary to do that outside of a group conversation, but I don't think I could let someone deliberately ignore me like that.

doodlemor

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #19 on: August 15, 2013, 02:55:36 PM »
I have been friends with "Jenny" for about 3 years. Jenny has a group of girl friends from College who she is still very close with. When she has them over to her house she always invites me and if she hosts events where partners/husbands/etc. are invited she always invites me and my boyfriend as well. They are a great group of people and I have a great time with them all - except Melissa and Mike.

It seems to me that Melissa and Mike are a bit snobby and just don't like "outsiders" in their group. They make zero effort to say Hello when someone new (i.e. someone not an original member of their "college friends") walks in the room, they don't engage in conversation when someone "new" is talking and if they are asked a question by someone they don't seem to "want" to speak to they answer with one word answers, or not at all, etc.

Melissa and Mike are NOT shy. They just seem to pick and choose who they want to engage with and have no issues with being completely unfriendly and just straight up RUDE.

I've made an effort to be nice to Melissa and Mike and so has my boyfriend. Others have said the same thing about them being totally unfriendly, rude.  Sometimes, in an effort to be polite and friendly towards them, I end up looking stupid.

Example: They were talking about how they were in the process of buying a new car. We were all sitting in a group and they were talking openly about it. When they mentioned they were not sure what type of car they wanted I said "I really love my 'Popular Car Brand and Model'. It's never given me issues and it is fun to drive". Melissa made a "why are you speaking" type face and completely ignored me. There was an awkward silence and I felt like an idiot.

Example 2: I was sitting in the empty living room, fixing my shoe lace, when Melissa and Mike arrived through the front door on the other side of the living room. I looked up at them, smiled, and they acted like I was not there, walked right past me, and out the back door to the people outside.

Jenny does not seem to notice this and Melissa and Mike are super nice to her and people they feel like being nice to.

Since besides them everyone else within this social circle is great I don't plan to stop hanging out with them and unfortunately for me I see them pretty regularly. Everyone seems to like me and is always to happy to see and meet new people so I don't think Melissa and Mike's behavior has anything to do with me personally. I should also ad that Melissa and Mike do not ruin these social situations for me, it's usually a larger group when I do see them.

My question is - since Melissa and Mike will never change, and engaging them is awkward and embarassing, how the heck do I act around them?? I don't want to return rudeness with rudeness but I also don't feel like being ignored and made to look foolish when my "Hello, how are you" is met with silence and a nasty look. Do I ignore them right back? Help!

Please, QUIT thinking you look stupid or foolish! They are the ones who are behaving badly, not you. Others see how they behave, too.

ETA a helping verb.

My thoughts exactly.  If I were you I would ignore the rudeness and continue to be polite.  I wouldn't engage unnecessarily, but I wouldn't back down, either.  Let Melissa and Mike continue to show themselves for what they are.

  Sometimes, in an effort to be polite and friendly towards them, I end up looking stupid.

You have this backwards, OP.  The people who look "stupid" are this couple who are acting like escapees from junior high.

Just Lori

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #20 on: August 15, 2013, 03:06:27 PM »
I admit, if I'm in that position I tend to look at the person next to me with a "what just happened" look.  If they roll their eyes or give me a small sympathetic smile, I figure my reaction is warranted. If they don't respond, I wonder if perhaps I overstepped some etiquette boundary.  I might bring this up with the hostess or mutual friend the next time to see if I was missing something in the conversation.

siamesecat2965

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #21 on: August 15, 2013, 03:20:34 PM »
If it were me, and I've done this when faced with a similar situation, I simply say hello, and let it go at that. I figure for whatever reason, if I'm not worth their time, they're not worth mine.

I had a similar situation, at a friend's bridal shower. I had never met her MOH, and the shower was at the bride's parent's home. I knew the bride, and a couple others in our group of friends. But no one else. The MOH, the hostess, was not very pleasant at all. Didn't even come over to introduce herself, or even say hello. Just looked at me and my other two friends like we were dirt. Which I thought was rude, but I figured its her problem, not mine. Same thing at the wedding.

Subsequent to this, my friend the bride, has invited me to in home parties the MOH holds, and I decline every time. Mainly beacuse I don't those type o things,  but also due to her rudeness at the shower.

hobish

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #22 on: August 15, 2013, 03:46:27 PM »
I'm kind of with Outdoor Girl, but my goal would be to make them converse with me. So in the car situation, if they responded to my input with a withering stare, I'd ignore it and say to them: "Do you like that kind of car? Have you ever driven one?". They would look ridiculous if they just sit there and continue to ignore you.

I don't think it's necessary to do that outside of a group conversation, but I don't think I could let someone deliberately ignore me like that.

Then stand there and do "the kindly brontosaurus" at them  ;) :P
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Just Lori

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #23 on: August 15, 2013, 03:48:27 PM »
I find that people like that are usually very insecure.  Maybe they were the leaders in the college gang, and now they're afraid of anyone who doesn't view them as such. Maybe they're narcissistic types who consider themselves above ordinary people and are threatened by anyone who might try to treat them as an equal. 

Confident, secure people treat others with kindness and respect.  But, there's often a certain amount of maturity needed to grow into that mindset.  Obviously, the couple in the OP haven't attained it yet.
 

veronaz

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #24 on: August 15, 2013, 04:24:55 PM »
I find that people like that are usually very insecure.  Maybe they were the leaders in the college gang, and now they're afraid of anyone who doesn't view them as such. Maybe they're narcissistic types who consider themselves above ordinary people and are threatened by anyone who might try to treat them as an equal. 

Confident, secure people treat others with kindness and respect.  But, there's often a certain amount of maturity needed to grow into that mindset.  Obviously, the couple in the OP haven't attained it yet.

Lots of ďmaybesĒ, but I donít think itís OPís responsibility to try to figure them out.

I also donít think that people who play the type of headgames described are necessarily insecure.  Insecure people often go overboard in trying to be friendly and make people like them, and then they waste time wondering why someone doesnít like them.  These people donít fit that mold at all.  They seem confident that they donít have to be nice to OP and that thereís nothing OP can do to change them, and they are right. 

I know quite a few confident, secure people who don't necessarily treat everyone with respect.

PastryGoddess

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #25 on: August 15, 2013, 04:34:35 PM »
I'm kind of with Outdoor Girl, but my goal would be to make them converse with me. So in the car situation, if they responded to my input with a withering stare, I'd ignore it and say to them: "Do you like that kind of car? Have you ever driven one?". They would look ridiculous if they just sit there and continue to ignore you.

I don't think it's necessary to do that outside of a group conversation, but I don't think I could let someone deliberately ignore me like that.

Then stand there and do "the kindly brontosaurus" at them  ;) :P


*snerk*

ettiquit

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #26 on: August 15, 2013, 04:39:21 PM »
I'm kind of with Outdoor Girl, but my goal would be to make them converse with me. So in the car situation, if they responded to my input with a withering stare, I'd ignore it and say to them: "Do you like that kind of car? Have you ever driven one?". They would look ridiculous if they just sit there and continue to ignore you.

I don't think it's necessary to do that outside of a group conversation, but I don't think I could let someone deliberately ignore me like that.

Then stand there and do "the kindly brontosaurus" at them  ;) :P


*snerk*

The kindly brontosaurus smile ought to creep them out enough to decline future invitations to group events!

AnnaJ

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #27 on: August 15, 2013, 06:00:55 PM »
I'm kind of with Outdoor Girl, but my goal would be to make them converse with me. So in the car situation, if they responded to my input with a withering stare, I'd ignore it and say to them: "Do you like that kind of car? Have you ever driven one?". They would look ridiculous if they just sit there and continue to ignore you.

I don't think it's necessary to do that outside of a group conversation, but I don't think I could let someone deliberately ignore me like that.

Then stand there and do "the kindly brontosaurus" at them  ;) :P


*snerk*

The kindly brontosaurus smile ought to creep them out enough to decline future invitations to group events!

I know that's mostly a joke, but the fact is that this couple has been part of the group for much longer; even if a few people think they aren't always friendly they are still part of the group, meaning that some (or most) of the other people like/tolerate/enjoy their company. 

I know a have a couple of friends who don't always mix well with others, but they are my friends and I wouldn't be happy if someone came into our group and decided we needed to oust them.

This is all hypothetical, though, since it sounds as though the OP is going with the polite hello then not engaging.

hobish

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #28 on: August 15, 2013, 06:14:57 PM »

Yes, it was a joke.

If you have friends who act like this, do you have an opinion? What would you want someone to do if one of your friends who "doesn't mix well with others" was being rude to your guests in the way that these people do to PennyandPleased (and others)? You've stated what you wouldn't want, but if you've got experience here what would you want? How do you deal with it now?
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gmatoy

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Re: Dealing with someone who is plain old unfriendly.
« Reply #29 on: August 15, 2013, 06:39:33 PM »
One thing I am thinking is:  When they act like this to other new people, could you point out to your friend that they are doing this and that they did it to you too? Say it in a way that lets her know that it is a form of bullying and that it isn't kind of her to allow this old friend to be unkind to the "new kids."