Unexpected Friendship RuinersWanna keep tight with your wifeys? Read on dear friends…
She earns more than you
It’s a close friend’s b’day next week and she sends out a Facey invite to Mexican and mojitos… and it’s $80 per person. Sure, she can afford it on her law-firm wage, but you’re still making lattés for a living, and sorry but that’s <way>more than girlfriend can afford.
If you have a mate whose exxy tastes are leaving your bank looking bare (“Wait, you want me to fork out how much for a bridesmaid’s dress?!”), the resentment can start eroding your friendship. So why does it feel so awkward to bring it up?
“It’s often considered impolite to talk about money,” says finance expert Sarah Reigelhuth. “This can lead to misunderstandings between friends about what they can or can’t afford.”
Chances are your friend has no clue – so bite the bullet and tell her. “Be open,” says Reigelhuth. “Explain you love spending time with her, but right now your budget isn’t the same as hers, so you’d like to find things to do together that cost a little less.”
On the flipside… If you’re the one raking in the moolah while your soul sister is still at uni, be mindful that she might not be so flush with cash.
She’s on a detox
You text your friend: “Lunch today?” She writes back: “Hell yes! But I’m on a cleanse, so cold-pressed bevs?” Insert eye-roll emoji.
So much socialising revolves around chowing down on tucker, so if your buddy exists on kale alone it can be seriously boring. “The reason behind following fad diets and detoxes is usually poor body image,” says nutritionist Rosie Mansfield. “If your friend rearranges or cancels plans to fit in with her meal plan, it’s a warning sign that she may have an unhealthy relationship with food.”
The thing is, it’s not really up to you to tell her what to do with her health, according to psychologist Meredith Fuller. “She’s your friend, you’re not her doctor,” she says.
So stick to doing what mates do best – listening. “Enable her to talk about her worries and concerns rather than labelling her,” suggests Fuller.
She loves to party… too much
Well, in your opinion. She’s one of the raddest people you know, and you adore her when she’s sober, but as soon as there are shots involved, she can’t stop, and she won’t stop… until she’s throwing up at 4am.
The Aussie government classifies more than four standard drinks per sitting as a binge, but according to Dr Ginni Mansberg, you should be more concerned with how your pal acts when she’s drinking.
“What would alarm me is if they’ve started missing work or uni because they’ve drunk too much the night before; if they’re drinking alone, have an alcohol-fuelled potty mouth, or they’ve had brushes with the law, such as a DUI,” says Dr Mansberg.
If you are really concerned, be subtle. “Gently plant seeds, but in a non-judgemental way,” says Fuller. Maybe steer clear of clubbing with her for a while. If you’re feeling really self-sacrificing, suggest doing Dry July together (or any month). Swap the pub for plays, and instead of meeting for a vino, catch up over gelato or dumplings. Don’t make a big deal of it, though. She really doesn’t want to feel like Amanda Bynes at rehab.
She’s got a new boyfriend (and you’re not his no.1 fan)
When a sister gets a mister, things can change. She may not be so keen to hit the clubs until 3am, which is cool. But what if she flakes on your lunch plans? Or worse, she brings him to a girly dinner without asking?
Losing your wingwoman to a guy can be hard (espesh if you’re not his biggest fan). But kicking up a stink will only push her further away. “We all spend a bit of time dating the wrong person. Let her learn from her mistakes,” says Fuller. Even if he’s a d-bag, bite your tongue!
“The worst thing you can do is criticise him – she’ll just think you’re jealous and cling to him more,” says Fuller. “Instead, show you are accepting of him. You want him to say, ‘She’s a great friend, go and have a drink with her.’” Fingers crossed she’ll see he’s like Spencer Pratt: a sucky person.
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