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Venting Friend

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Venting Friend

Postby Aj86 » Fri Apr 19, 2019 12:22 pm

I have a close friend of mine who vents to me frequently about her bf. She says things like "I just want him to leave" or "I don't give a f#%@ about him" or "he stresses me out" or "I don't want to be around him." Now, I know he doesn't respect her or treat her very well but I'm trying to figure out if this is a "cry for help" or if she's just the kind who likes to vent and live in misery. I've told her several times to just leave his ass. I would venture to guess she's afraid to or worried about where she would go if she did even though she acts like a tough independent woman. I want to make sure I'm not reading things wrong and also get any advice on how to address this so she us steered in the right direction.

Thanks
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby xdude » Fri Apr 19, 2019 2:54 pm

Hey Aj86,

2 cents to throw in (just one opinion) -

I am a big believer in listen to do what people do over what they say. Perhaps she wants both? Both the sympathy, and to continue the relationship.
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby Aj86 » Fri Apr 19, 2019 3:20 pm

Can you elaborate more on what you mean by this xdude?


xdude wrote:Hey Aj86,

2 cents to throw in (just one opinion) -

I am a big believer in listen to do what people do over what they say. Perhaps she wants both? Both the sympathy, and to continue the relationship.
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby realityhere » Sat Apr 20, 2019 1:08 am

Hey Aj86,

Do you believe what a person says over what she does?

Actions speak louder than words, as the adage goes.

She sounds like a whiner. All talk, no do.
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby xdude » Sat Apr 20, 2019 2:23 pm

Sure, I can try to elaborate some.

It just seems to be human nature. We have our intellectual side, and this side may really believe what it does, but also we have our emotional (and sub-conscious) side, that can have different goals. Intellectually she may really believe she is done with her relationship, but her emotional/sub-conscious side is not.

Some people do seem to have very good alignment between their intellectual side and their emotional side, but not everyone does, and there can be big discrepancies for them.

For example, some people create a lot of (avoidable) drama in their lives. They may not like the consequences when it goes wrong, but they are getting something out of the drama else they wouldn't repeat the same pattern. Intellectually they may really believe they'd like the drama to stop, but emotionally they are getting something out of the drama else they wouldn't repeat the same pattern.

In your case, if she is conflicted, then she is probably living in that state of the best of both worlds -

1.) She appreciates your sympathy, and to vent her intellectual side.
2.) She gets to keep the relationship, which may be very bad, but odds are she is getting something/s out of it too or she wouldn't stay.

BTW, that's no condemnation of her. People do that, but you get to decide what's good for you too. I think it's your choice, do you go on listening and expect no change, or withdraw your support. Odds are though she is not ready to make an actual change yet whichever way you choose.

p.s. and yes, as reality wrote, the short phrase is 'actions speak louder than words' - it's a wise saying ;)
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby RottenFish » Mon Apr 22, 2019 4:35 pm

Aj86 wrote:I have a close friend of mine who vents to me frequently about her bf. Now, I'm trying to figure out if this is a "cry for help" or if she's just the kind who likes to vent and live in misery.


I can relate to this 10000% percent. I had a friend who was exactly as you described. She would say something, complain about it, and then I would tell her how to fix the problem. She would actually follow my advice. She would be in peace for about 2 hours, then find some other drama to make herself miserable again. She loved being unhappy. She loved the drama. She loved hearing herself whine and complain. She only felt important when she had drama because she thought she was boring when she was happy.

After many years hoping she would change, she never did. What did I do? I dropped her as a friend. I told her face-to-face that she is a miserable witch and to never contact me again. Best decision I ever made.

As for your friend, it appears she likes to be miserable and she loves venting about it. She loves coming to you and "dumping" her drama all over you. The question then becomes -- will you be that kind of friend that disappears into her whirlwind of nonstop drama?

Life is too precious to waste it on miserable people. I'm glad I learned this when I was a teenager. :D
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby Aj86 » Wed May 15, 2019 4:04 am

Why would she (or any woman) enjoy "dumping" there drama on their friend? She claims she doesn't like being miserable and says all the time she wishes he would just leave or she enjoys when he's gone on the road. Is she in denial or what could the issues/situation be? Does he have her emotionally bonded to him against her will? She said the other day, "there are good times but mostly not"
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby xdude » Wed May 15, 2019 9:15 am

I don't know if it's so much about enjoyment as it is probably a healthy thing that women are more likely to talk about what's stressing them with others. Maybe a better way to think about is "it's a relief" to talk it out with someone else, but that written, there are a lot of reasons people can get into a perpetual drama cycle including this -

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Victim_mentality

Problem is we don't know her (you know her better than any of us), and we definitely don't know her partner, whose view on what's going may be very different than hers.

p.s. And obviously there are real victims, but unless you get to know someone for a long period of time, it's pretty much impossible to know if they are going through a temporary thing and really want life to improve, or if they have developed a set of habits that result in them endlessly living in self-perpetuated crisis. It's of course very reasonable to want to help out a friend by listening to them, and to start with the assumption that the crisis is temporary, but also... if you are sensing a red-flag, that she is someone who would be unhappy in any relationship, your intuition may be correct.
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby Aj86 » Wed May 15, 2019 12:10 pm

Something else I should throw out there is when she does vent or have a breakdown I give her suggestions on what she should consider doing but it don't seem like she received them or lacks the attention to them. She rarely asks for my opinion or input on that subject but will ask at times for my input on other matters in the world. She calls me her best friend. Well this best friend is confused. Should I just sit there, shutup and nod my head when she vents? I get the feeling when I agree with her about things she says and how he disrespects her so badly she seems to shrug it off amd almost seems to move towards his direction again. But yet she seems to have so much hate towards him. Women don't make sence.
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Re: Venting Friend

Postby xdude » Tue May 21, 2019 1:20 pm

Aj86 wrote:Something else I should throw out there is when she does vent or have a breakdown I give her suggestions on what she should consider doing but it don't seem like she received them or lacks the attention to them. She rarely asks for my opinion or input on that subject but will ask at times for my input on other matters in the world. She calls me her best friend. Well this best friend is confused. Should I just sit there, shutup and nod my head when she vents? I get the feeling when I agree with her about things she says and how he disrespects her so badly she seems to shrug it off amd almost seems to move towards his direction again. But yet she seems to have so much hate towards him. Women don't make sence.


Ah well there is a book, Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus...

I don't want to be a sexist here, but a realist, and as a realist, yes males and females continue to be different in some ways in how they approach life. It's what attracts us to each other, and what drives a wedge between us too.

So to get to the point...

This seems like a common enough matter. Males tend to want to hide their emotions, and take a 'lets fix it' approach to life (nothing wrong with that). Females tend to want to express their emotions, and take a 'lets talk about it' approach to life (again, nothing wrong with this).

And again, if any females are offended by my next comment, sorry in advance...

There is a kind of wisdom in the female approach, just as there is wisdom in the male approach. It can be non obvious, but discussing 'problems' can become a catharsis or anchor for social interaction and binding. In shorter terms, that's the topic you and her have in common now.

We guys may jump to the conclusion that she is looking for a fix. We believe fix stuff, and move on, and hey nothing wrong with that, but... she may not be looking for a fix. She may just be looking to vent. There are other possibilities as well, what her real motives are, but what you do know for sure is she is not looking for a fix.
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