Who Needs Friends When You Can Have Frenemies?

I have a serious problem and it is starting to drive me up the wall.

In short, people keep treating me like some kind of magical personal piggy bank. The worst part is, almost everyone seems to do so under the belief that I must be absolutely stupid.

My biggest offender to date is a homeless person I recently made the acquaintance of. I have a lot of sympathy for homeless people. I’ve been in that situation myself and I know how Catch 22 everything becomes. However, the person in question is someone who… Well, as much as I hate to say it, they are to blame for their situation.

First, I got her a job at an old restaurant I used to work at. She would be cleaning dishes for 5 euros an hour. (That’s normal/good for a dishwasher here.) Within 3-days, though, she’d quit and had a list of excuses which she still hasn’t got to the end of.

I was shocked by this. Since I know the people, I know that they are actually one of the better people to work for in the area. More bizarrely, the day my friend quit, she developed a taste for Coca Cola in glass rather than plastic bottles. Per bottle, this costs more than a beer here. However, she has no qualms asking me to meet her every day, during which time she will inevitably say several times, "Oh, can you get me another coke?"

A couple of weeks ago, things went up a notch. Instead of just asking for coke, my ‘friend’ started saying things like "shall we go for dinner at…"

At first, I obliged. Then I had to put my foot down and say "look, I don’t go out for dinner every night, and I can’t afford to do this and buy you stuff everyday." (Buying stuff meaning bread, milk, basics, etc.) I compromised by suggesting we have a BBQ by the beach. Then, though, my friend started inviting other random people in the form of lots of local Somali people she knows. (None of whom were about to chip in to make it happen.)

To make matters worse, my friend has started saying things like "we should move to Spain," and "I can get is a cottage in Wales for really cheap. We should move there." - i.e. There are suddenly relationship-like life plans popping up.

Needless to say, what isn’t popping up is any suggestion who will pay for all these lifestyle upgrades. At least, not anyone but yours truly.

During the brief time I’ve known this person, it has also become apparent why she is homeless. She has been homeless on and off for 10-years. When she gets a place, she then tries to lease it out while she continues to sleep rough, to try and make easy money. For this reason, no local landlords will touch her, even when she can pay rent.

In short, I’m fast realizing that there is no way to help my friend other than by just giving her cash every day. Bizarrely, I’ve even given her an old smartphone, but she keeps hinting that she wants another phone, because she can’t figure out how to use it…

I can’t afford to dole out money every day, and it is starting to grate on me how this seems to be what my friend wants. i.e. If I don’t see her for a few days, I get a deluge of horror and sob stories. "I didn’t have any water and my pee turned black" and "I’ve had a fever and everyone was really worried I was going to die" are the stories of choice at present.

Thankfully, I am not an idiot and I have made it clear that I and this person are not in a relationship. I have even barred her from my home. I did so after the first " you can make loads of money by renting out your spare room, etc, etc." Plus Chico doesn’t like her, which is always a good sign.

What is really annoying me though, is the fact that almost everyone I know treats me the same way. Last year I started to lose count of the number of people I’d loaned money to in so-called emergencies. Then when it became known that I was planning on leaving, everyone avoided me like the plague, obviously because they feared I would call in old debts.

Anyway, today I realized that I have had enough. Last year, I pretty much holed myself away for most of the year just to work. I think I’m going to do this again and just close off from the world for a while. If I don’t, the next time someone asks me for a euro, I think I might do something regrettable.

That’s not the girl from a few months back with the mansion thingie is it? Well, better off without having to deal with her BS anyway. I’d suggest being less generous with your time and money in general IRL as it only ever seems to attract certain types of people.

You could purchase a lot of currency in money that looks a bit like a euro, too, but is actually pretty worthless (I have no idea what currency that would be, mind, the £2 springs to mind but maybe that’s closer to 2 euro). This could go either way once your cunning ruse is discovered.

I’d just shout at them, tell them to go away, slam the door in their face etc tbh. And master your inner tightwad when it comes to scroungers and opportunists. They don’t see you as stupid, so much as an easy mark and an easy, very favorable business transaction to them.

I also find public shaming works well (depends on your general area and people though), along with turning the tables on them with my own requests. The art of discomforting people with a surprise backbone is a underappreciated skill, I find.

She is to blame for her situation, and you bear no responsibility for that - she took advantage of you plain and simple. So turn off the tap and ignore her completely, or turn the tables.

Probably better not to hide in your room though, esp. if that’s your usual reaction - business as usual signal. Change the script up a bit.

Yeah, the mansion turned into a disaster. It wasn’t abandoned. It is owned by the chief justice of Malta. - AKA Not someone you probably want to mess with. Thankfully, I did enough research beforehand to avoid any trouble.

a 200 Thai Bhat coin is almost identical to a 2 Euro coin. Someone over here is already running that scam. I’ve been given more Bhat in change in Malta than I ever got in Thailand.

Yeah, I shouldn’t have turned on the tap in the first place. I didn’t intentionally. I fronted her 50 euro for a monthly bus pass so she could get to work and back every day. In my mind it was the right thing to do.

She wasn’t paying any rent due to having acquired an abandoned villa. She would have got free food at the restaurant every day. She could have, therefore, easily come away with 800 euros to a grand if she just stuck at the job for just a month. Instead, she sits outside at bars all day waiting for more magic money to come along.

IDK. Every time I start being more sociable I end up regretting it.

Oh my, looks like she has her hook deep into your veins.

I get people “requesting to borrow” :smirk: funny, since they never pay it back money from me as well. It gets annoying. For some reason, people think I’m a millionaire.

I have no idea where they get this idea. I have a decent job with benefits but far from being rich.

It’s funny how quickly people forget they borrowed and forget to pay it back. I had to put my foot down and say no to everyone. Needless to say, I have less friends ( :face_with_raised_eyebrow: ) than I used to.

Cut her off quick before she sucks the life out of you.

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Or suddenly never ever need to call you again, and always hide in the toilet when you happen to be in the same bar…

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Once it becomes known that you say ‘sorry, but no’ to whoever asks you for money, people tend to stop pretty fast, as long as you’re consistent with it. Of course, some people will also stay away from you after that, which is pretty useful since then you see who was with you only so they could take your money.

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