Ask Kari: My best friend only talks about herself and her drama — should I end our friendship?

Dear Kari,

My best friend of 6 years is becoming unbearable. She has moved from being able to talk about many things, to turning every conversation back to her, her needs, her family, her challenges, her bad marriage. I am beginning to feel like I want to end our friendship. I can’t keep listening to her life and drama. What do you suggest?

--Over It All

Dear Over It All,

It is challenging to talk to someone who reverts every piece of the conversation back to themselves. I am sorry that is happening to you and your friendship. I would suggest that your friend is probably going through a troubling time and has at this point gone into survival mode during her daily encounters with others. She is there physically but her mind elsewhere, absorbed in her troubles. This is effecting her ability to focus and concentrate on others, even to hold a good conversation with you. Pick a quiet time to talk to her. Express your concern for how distracted she appears. Use her lack of concentration on others/activities you do together as an example. Remind her that you care about her. Then, allow for some time to pass to see if she reflects on herself and begins to return back to your old friend.


As published in the September 2015 issue of Connections.

About Kari:

Kari O’Neill, MSW, LICSW, is a Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker and the owner and Clinical Director of Issaquah Highlands Counseling Group (IHCG), which is now Kari O’Neill Counseling.

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