Sunday, September 27, 2009

Vanilla, Kool-Aid, pass the Valium, please

I went to lunch with an old friend the other day. I’ve known her for over twenty years.

We met at work and had a few things in common at that time. We were both married young, had a boy and girl, were from New York, and liked to sew and to do needlework. So, we got on very well. I see her for lunch about once every two months. But recently, I’ve noticed the differences we have are beginning to grow exponentially to our similarities.

She has never had any financial difficulty in her life. I don’t begrudge her this and am happy that she hasn’t nor will she experience what I have gone through in the past and am currently dealing with. She also has three grandchildren, I have none. I’m one of those oddball women that really doesn’t care much for babies and/or children. I really don’t have much to say about them and will never willingly engage random women with babies in conversation about the cuteness of their child. I also will never ask to hold a baby just because it’s there. My friend is also still married and I believe will remain so until, “death do them part.” One of our other differences is religion. She is a church going Catholic and I’m not.

"Notoriously insensitive to subtle shifts in moods, children will persist in discussing the color of a recently sighted cement mixer long after one's interest in the topic has waned”
~ Fran Lebowitz

We also have never discussed anything about sex. Ever. I just know that my views on polyamorous relationships, sex for recreation, being submissive, aggressive sex, sex blogs, etc. would give her apoplexy. She went to church to say a novena when I became a Slumber Parties distributor. Any chatting about the qualities of vibrators, lubes and restraints is out of the question.

My friend has now found something new to talk about that not only annoys the shit out of me but actually makes me want to stick a fork in her eye. She is selling a product through a multi-level marketing company (Think, AMWAY) and has not only drunk the Kool-Aid but now makes it herself. The product is a good one, I use it myself and know that it’s good but I cannot and will not chat up total strangers, even close personal friends, about purchasing this product or becoming a “distributor.” My friend who has known me for over twenty years is totally unwilling and/or unable to get this through her fucking thick skull!

She is so brainwashed that she just won’t see that she is not going to become a millionaire selling this product. That train has left the station with the people who started selling in 30 years ago. I’ve tried politely the last couple of times I’ve met her to move the conversation past the selling, distribution, presentations for friends, etc. on to any other topic – even the grandchildren. She is tenacious as a dog with a T-bone. This last time, I became sharper with my comments regarding my desire not to speak about this. My words fell on deaf ears. It became very uncomfortable for me when she began cornering sales people in various stores and the waiter at the restaurant extolling the virtues and possible additional income of this product. It was her goal to speak to 3 people about the product during our outing. Well, who the fuck cares that I don’t want to talk about anything relating to the product or the fact that it’s a pyramid scheme?

I needed several alcoholic beverages at lunch. I love my friend but am starting to think that we’ve grown very far apart. Her agenda and lust for the possibility of untold fortunes by her single-minded devotion to this product is definitely driving a wedge through our friendship. She doesn’t respect my thoughts regarding this. I almost feel like a child that does not understand the lesson. She feels that she repeats it over and over again, I’ll suddenly agree with the brilliance of it.

This will not happen. My path is in a very different direction from hers. I’ve changed drastically from the woman I was those 20 plus years ago. I respect that she has changed as well but I’m not getting the same respect from her.

My lovely, brilliant readers give me some advice, please. I really don’t want to stick a fork in her eye next time we meet.

15 blew out from under the bed:

vixen kitten said...

I had a similar situation with an old friend. We grew in very different directions. To use her brothers phrase, she became a Stepford Wife!

I understand that there is give and take in every relationship, but when it becomes ALL take ALL the time, it didn't seem healthy to me any more. I just quit returning her calls. I let things die.

Of course there is a lot of history with some one you know 20 years, and I could never sum things up in a comment section, but basically I chose to cherish and remember the good times we had, and let the more current events go. I appreciated what we once shared and were to each other, accepting that she could no longer be that to me any longer.

I found my sanity again when I did that!

Whatever you decide, I wish you peace with your decision.


Deech said...

The only thing you really need to do is to be true to yourself.

Talk to her about your feelings. Now granted, please serve it on a plate that she can take and that her feelings won't be hurt, but you have a right to feel the way you do.

Ask her if she feels the same way? She probably does.

Ronjazz said...

Nitebyrd, she's not going to listen until she sees the handwriting on the wall. There are two things about people that I've learned...They detest change in life...and they will not be told they are wrong. Both things have to be discovered on their own. If/when she does so, then you can offer some comfort. Until she's ready, I would maintain my distance if I were you.

Fire Byrd said...

Yep, I agree a fork in the eye is not on, how about a pair of scissors to the tongue instead!

Sometimes we just outgrow our friends and the relationship becomes more and more toxic to us.

As in the conversation with three friends of mine of 15 years standing, who were seriously discussing the right depth of ironing board cover for optimum ironing..... what the fuck.

Exit three friends, and my sanity intact


Akelamalu said...

Just tell her straight you're not interested and to shut the fuck up!

I've been there, it drives you mad.

rage said...

That's really sad that she had ulterior motives in your meeting.

Ron said...

Well, first of all I think because you and I are like Bro and Sis..."This would drive me crazy too!!" I make it a rule to never pressure my friendships in anyway, so I don't like when it's done to me. I have this thing about respecting people's space.

And I think I know you well enough know that you've been patient and understanding and have handled these frustrating times with her in a respectful and diplomatic way.

I think Vixen Kitten pretty much shared how I feel. Because I too have done the same. And felt good about making that choice.

Honestly? I think sometimes relationships get to a point where they are complete and finito. You've learned and shared all you can with someone and then the relationship moves in another direction, taking each other on different paths.

Love ya, Sis!

Anonymous said...

your standpoint about multi level marketing is the correct one, on the other hand it can be a means to make a few bucks. but the energy spent on the process would be of far better use spent on creating a genuine business for yourself!!

Indi said...

Wo!! God she doesn't go on a bit too much doesn't she? I'd give her a nice piece of my mind, kindly and if she didn't listen I'd tell her straight that she has obviouslt got to get a life. Your's however is a nice one, you thought you'd be friends for a long long time but things have changed between her and you. Tell her from the heart that you cannot take any more of her 'drudge' and if it comes to this tha she can't change.. then it's 'Goodbye!' You don't need some one like her to drag you down, life's too short to drink bad wine... That's what I'd do anyway..good luck nitebyrd x~x

Casdok said...

I agree with everyone else, you need to be honest and upfront - good luck!

Jackie Adshead said...

Mm.... its a difficult one - you don't want to upset her, but she continues to upset you, and isn't respecting your wishes. She just sees the money shes been brain washed into believeing she'll get with this pyramid selling system to the detriment of losing an old friendship. In a way its nice that she's so focused on it, but she's driving you mad. You could either... tell her that you are NOT interested, NEVER will be, and she can take her boring subject matter elsewhere. OR if you're in a particularly naughty mood, and have got to the point of not being bothered if you lose her as a friend or not.........could fill her in graphically on your views on sex, sex aids, sex blogs etc etc until she leaves the room screaming. It might be a little extreme, but you might find some satisfaction in it! LOL

Grump said...

I think you have two issues here. One do you tell her not to talk to you or mention in your presence this drink again. And two do you still like this person enough to keep seeing them. I think you probably know the answer to both. It ain't rocket science.
Woof x

Sorrow said...

Some folks just don't want to hear you. So, take care of you, forks in the eye might have jail time.
perhaps the old " call me when you come back from the edge" might work?
Sorry sweet, I have no sage advice!

JW said...

From my personal observations, I'd say that these kinds of obsessions take hold, but then generally pass in time. Usually it's when the obsessive realises that, contrary to what has been promised, he (or usually she) isn't actually making money.

Until then, as others have suggested, keep your distance.

And until you feel the obsession has passed, stay away from sharp and/or pointy things :-)

ZomBee said...

While the fork option is always a crowd pleaser it does make the next lunch date a bit awkward.
I had a friend that was in the same bucket.
There is really not a lot you can do, just ride out the storm.
I basically had to ignore his prattling on. Soon enough the realization will set in that this is just another pyramid.
I would say about 6 to 8 months but each person is different.