My friend talks about herself so much that I think it’s affecting my health. Should I talk to her about it?

Have the conversation, says our elder. It may be painful in the short term, but she’ll thank you later.

EWC

I have been friends with this girl all throughout high school. And we have had a great run; we went to parties together, had sleepovers at each others’ places and we even joke around and say we have two pairs of parents. So we are together almost every day in school and she is a very nice person and my dear friend. That’s why I am confused when I start feeling bad around her. She starts talking about herself and all her abilities and that’s annoying to me because I hear that all the time (she says all that to me and then she repeats is to all of our common friends and every single person she meets, even the ones she sees for the first time). And that’s all she likes talking about.

Now I understand that it could be that she is simply like that, but I feel so annoyed when she interrupts a conversation I am having to say something about herself. And she won’t let me breathe, whenever I am talking to somebody and she is there, she has to come closer and change the topic so that she can lead the conversation. That is the moment I just leave because I can’t stand it, but I don’t feel comfortable saying anything so as not to hurt her feelings. However, I talked to some of our friends about that and they say that they feel the same, but I feel I am affected by that the most because she spends the most time with me and that’s why I am unsure if I should point that out to her or not. On the other hand, I can’t keep stressing myself out like that because my health might be affected. Please help me; I have been dealing with this for too long.

Sense replies

My advice is to talk to her about it. She may have hurt feelings, but in the long run, you are doing her a favor, since she is probably not aware of how much she talks about herself. If she is truly a very nice person and a dear friend she will listen to what you have to say. Find a time when you and she are doing something together and then tell her how you feel without showing anger toward her.

Your friend may be more extroverted than you are and that is perfectly okay, but interrupting and needing to control and lead the conversations you have already started is not okay. She is in danger of losing other friends as well, from what you tell me. Enthusiasm is good, but being overpowering and overwhelming not so much.

If you feel you can’t breathe and your health might even be in danger, for goodness sake (and the sake of your friendship and peace of mind) please tell her what you are experiencing. She may be angry at first and feel defensive, but if you also tell her how much you care about her and appreciate her, and continue to show that you are her friend and enjoy her company, then she should get over her hurt feelings and may even thank you for being honest with her.

Letter #: 440490
Category: Friendship

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