Help! She talks behind my back

A girl I don’t even know is talking me down to my friend. What can I do?

Try to ignore it, counsels our elder, and concentrate on the good stuff.

Dear EWC

So, recently I heard from a friend that there’s this girl who’s been talking about me behind me back even though I’ve barely talked to her and her friends. As it turns out, she’s been complaining about things I do like ‘raising my hand too much’ and how I’m not funny and stuff like that. I admit there are extremely understandable reasons to why she doesn’t like me, but I’m still annoyed about how she’s been so vocally complaining about me when we’ve never even talked. I’m also annoyed about how she’s never approached me. If she went up to me and addressed her annoyances I’d be angry, yes, but not as angry as I am now because at least I’d be able to explain myself. And, as it turns out, she’s been complaining about me to my friend (the same friend who told me this). I don’t think there’s anything I can do since we both stay in our separate lanes, but it’s ruined the new year for me really and I can’t stop thinking about it. It’s made me wonder what other people say about me and it’s made me feel as if I’m being watched. I’ve started to even mistrust my best friend. At this moment, I just don’t know how to deal with this.

Sense replies

Having someone talk about you behind your back is certainly not fun, especially when your best friend is the one telling you about it. Your reactions are normal, it seems to me, as being watched or targeted in some way by others can make one nervous and apprehensive.

Some people like to talk behind others’ backs because it makes them feel better about themselves. Putting others down is a way for them to boost their own egos, in some cases, which is kind of sad actually, when you think about it. Perhaps this person is jealous of you in some way and seeks to undermine your abilities.

I am sending you a link to some possible ways to handle it. The best way is probably to try to ignore it. Confronting the gossiper doesn’t usually do much good. I don’t know enough about those involved to give you a single opinion, but if you can’t stop thinking about it, these people have gained control of your emotions, which is possibly what they intended to do.

Make sure your best friend has your genuine well being in mind. If you ignore the idle talk, it may end by itself. If there are things you are doing that bring on the gossip, such as raising your hand more than others do in class, then examine your behavior and see if you wish to modify it. But don’t let a few negative people keep you from feeling good about yourself, enjoying life and pursuing your goals!

Letter #: 428525
Category: School

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