On Sep 8, 2009, at 11:37 PM, Witty Pseudonym wrote:


I have the rage. Ear­lier this week, I spent a large part of a night coun­selling a friend about a fucked up rela­tion­ship prob­lem. Then today I find out that she’s going out with the object of said drama for drinks. After all of the talk­ing and under­stand­ing and wil­ing away the hours, she goes crawl­ing back to this per­son? As the shoul­der to cry on, what am I sup­posed to do here? I don’t think I can han­dle hav­ing this con­ver­sa­tion over if he messes her around again. How do you deal with some­one who comes to you for advice and con­sol­ing, then, after com­mit­ting to pos­i­tive change, just goes back to their well-worn habits?

Witty Pseu­do­nym

Witty Pseu­do­nym,

Why the rage? Is it a reac­tion to the fucked up prob­lem or a reac­tion to your friend’s deci­sion to go out for drinks?

When peo­ple come to me for advice or to sim­ply open up and vent, I make it a point to keep two things in mind:

  1. They are their own person.
  2. At the end of the day, any­thing I say is only my own opinion.

What they take from that is com­pletely up to them.

Does it suck to see a friend place them­self into a destruc­tive sit­u­a­tion? Absolutely! You, how­ever, are not their par­ent and they are, pre­sum­ably, an adult. We are all indi­vid­u­als, each one of us unique and capa­ble of mak­ing our own deci­sions, both good and bad. Some­times we choose to repeat­edly make the same bad deci­sions. Human beings are, after all, crea­tures of habit.

It seems you care for your friend and I assume you only want what’s best for them. All you can really do, though, is be there for them when they need you. That’s not to say that you should enable bad behav­ior, how­ever. There may come a time where you might have to exer­cise some tough love and let them con­tinue with­out your shoul­der. Change should not be forced upon some­one; it won’t stick unless the per­son chang­ing really wants it.

There may be a pos­si­bil­ity you might have to duck out of this person’s life for a while, which is per­fectly fine. That’s not to say you should aban­don them. You have your own life to live, how­ever, and shouldn’t put your own aside for theirs. There is a dif­fer­ence between being avail­able for some­one and allow­ing some­one to wear you down. You can offer that ear, that shoul­der for them as they need it, but ulti­mately it’s up to them to adjust their sit­u­a­tion as necessary.

And if they don’t take your advice? So be it. You’ve done what you could. There’s no rea­son to become enraged. The sit­u­a­tion may be unfor­tu­nate, but you shouldn’t beat your­self up. Again, all you can really do is be there for them when they need you so long as you don’t make them your respon­si­bil­ity. We’re all human, we’re all indi­vid­u­als, we all make mis­takes and we all need to be respon­si­ble for our own selves.

Just my $0.02
Julius Pleasar

On Sep 2, 2009, at 6:51 PM, Hopeful in Hanna, Montana wrote:

Dearus Julius Pleasar, I find myself in a bizarro sit­u­a­tion and request your advice on the mat­ter. I must resort back to 3–2–1 Con­tact meth­ods and men­tion that the names are made up, but the prob­lems are real. Let me give you a li’l back­ground info. I was liv­ing in Saska­toon, which is in Canada, […]

On Sep 3, 2009, at 11:01 AM, Sleepy Texter wrote:

I got a 4:30am text from this girl I went out with last night say­ing how much she wants to see me tonight. There’s really two things that bug me about it. It’s 4:30am. She knows I’m busy tonight. Is she being sweet or crazy?” Sleepy Tex­ter Sleepy Tex­ter, Hmm. There are def­i­nitely aspects about this that […]

Are You Happy?

In lieu of a proper Hail Pleasar post[1], I’ve decided to post a rather clever info­graphic by Alex Koplin that was sent to me by Scheisse Min­nelli of Pirate City Rollers. It’s well designed (I want a print!), yes, but the con­tent is quite blunt and real. There are many things that may very well […]

On Aug 19, 2009, at 4:14 PM, c0nfuz0rd 1337 h4x0r wrote:

I’m a geek. A bonafide, bespec­ta­cled, suspender-loving, internet-dwelling geek. No one seems to have a prob­lem with the amount of social net­work­ing, instant mes­sag­ing, online gam­ing and email­ing that I seem to do, but when it comes to real-life love in a vir­tual world, peo­ple turn up their noses. They say you can’t find love […]