Life Advice


Health & Spirit

Should I agree to revive friendship with manipulative man or just walk away?

Carolyn Hax on

Carolyn Hax is away. The following first appeared March 11 and 20, 2005.

Dear Carolyn:

I fell in love with a very close friend, although he was not interested in dating. I chose to continue the friendship and eventually fell out of love with him, then became aware that while I was in love with him I was overlooking many critical character flaws. I ended the friendship.

He has been pursuing me, claiming he recognizes the errors of his ways and wants me back as a friend. After a year of this I've concluded I would like to be friends with him only under two conditions -- that he have no involvement with people in my life and I have none with people in his, because I can't stand the way he treats others. He is rude, offensive and manipulative. I'm not sure this would actually qualify as a friendship. So should I try to make something work or just walk away?


I hear you; one can't have enough rude and offensive friends.


But you describe this guy as manipulative to "others," and then point out that he has spent a year pursuing, guilting, cajoling you into taking him back as your friend.

I.e., hello, manipulating you.

(And, hello, how were you planning to pull this off anyway -- call him and spell out your terms?)

You got away once, why make yourself do it again, when it's sure to be even harder.


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