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Running into High School Drama As An Adult


Running into High School Drama As An Adult

Hi Miss A,
I am a working adult female and am currently facing a problem, which I have always thought that only teenagers will face. I have a very nice group of running friends and we run every weekend. I got to know a very ‘nice’ chap not long ago and he likes to run too. I introduced him to my group, everything was fun for the next few months. He then confessed his love for me, telling me how beautiful I am etc. I only wanted him as a friend and nothing more. I told him so in a nice manner. I also told him that it’s ok if he doesn’t want to see me for a while and that I will be there when he is ready to resume our friendship. He has since stopped talking to me –even when we go out in a group. He sulks, too. I could understand that he might be hurt etc. But worst of all, he is starting to plan all kinds of trips with my friends. The emails are sometimes forwarded to me because they are forwarded as a group mail, sometimes after some common friends accidentally sent to me.
The thing is, either I don’t get invited (when it is planned by him) or he will write something sarcastic like ‘no sulkers’ etc just because I lost my temper once and sulked (which by the way, he comforted me and said it is ok, people lose their temper from time to time-that was during better times when we are talking). I feel that those words are meant to keep me out. Now I feel as if he is trying to isolate me from my friends but in a subtly devious manner. I feel angry and also don’t know how to manage this person, who just turned around and hurt me when just not long ago, I was the most ‘beautiful’ person in his eyes!

Dear Jen,

Yes, unfortunately dealing with cliques, social climbers, friend climbers, toxic friendships and such is a part of life that doesn’t end when you graduate from high school. That this stuff is just what you deal with in high school is one of those little white lies that parents tell their tweens and teens. Unfortunately, it’s just part of human interaction in society and it never goes away. As I’ve written before, you will find cliques and social climbers when you get the nursing home one day.  

This situation has happened to me in the past. You bring someone into your group, you have a falling out with a friend or aren’t interested in a guy romantically, and next thing you know they are backstabbing you, stealing your friends, talking behind your back and isolating you from YOUR friends. It’s awful, but it happens all the time. As you said, you need to “manage this person” and do some damage control. I think you need to go on these trips and not let him push you out of the picture. Don’t give him what he wants, and make this easy for him. They are your friends. You could invite your friends to do things without him, but at this point I think your friends like him and consider him part of your group, so you are probably going to have to find a way to deal with him. Rather than resort to his devious underhanded ways, I suggest you be the bigger person and have a conversation with him again and call him out on his behavior. Tell him that you introduced him to your friends, and want to go back to having a strong friendship with him, and that you’re sorry if you made the relationship awkward. See what he says. Hopefully, this will help. Again, do not let him push you out. Continue with your friends as you would before him, and don’t let this jerk intimidate you.

I wish you the best, let me know how it goes!

– Miss A


In 2008, I launched AskMissA.com which grew from my personal blog into a site with 700 writers, covering the intersection of charity & lifestyle in 20 U.S. cities. With Charity + Life, I am going back to a personal blog where I can share my favorite things, and continue to shine a light on nonprofits, and cause marketing campaigns to inspire others to give as they live.

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