Skip to main content

When Friends Invite People Along (And You're Not Happy!!)




My post today is from the relationship column that I write for Insight, a Tampa newspaper. This month I tackled several questions and this was one of them. I'd love to hear your thoughts about how you handle this when it happens to you.  

Dear Deanna:
I am having problems with a friend who invites me to do things with her and then after I have already agreed, invites someone else to join us. This may not appear to be any big deal, however my discomfort with the situation is that she often asks people I’m not particularly fond of and don’t want to spend an evening or an activity with…people like my ex-sister-in-law. Yes, AWKWARD!!!  Once I’ve agreed to attend, I don’t like to back out just because she invites someone to join us that I’m not comfortable with. But I’m really tired of dreading these times together. What do I do? I don’t want to lose my friend but I also don’t want to keep dreading her events and invitations.

Signed,
Dreading

Dear Dreading:
 I understand. This has happened to me. One thing I’ve come to believe is that if a friend changes something we initially agreed upon, the initial agreement is no longer in play. When I RSVP to a friend’s invitation, I do so on the condition that it regards specifically what she asked me about -- not something else I’m unaware of. If she changes major details there may not be an obligation to follow through as I have not agreed to the new terms. For instance, if a friend invites you to go to the movies and you say yes but later says, “by the way, we’re not going to to the movies…we’re going water skiing…” would you feel obligated to follow through? Probably not. You didn’t agree to water skiing and it is perfectly reasonable to decline. In your case, you did not agree to spend an entire evening with your ex-sister in law.

I am very careful about accepting invitations. If a friend has been known to do what your friend is doing, I become reluctant to say yes to invites.  They usually notice that and ask me, “well…are you going to join me…or not?” and I’ll say, “Hmmmmm…not sure yet.  It depends on who’s attending. Will it just be us?” If she says yes then I take the opportunity to say, “Great. As long as it will just be us, I’m in.” If she asks me why I’ve made this clarification, I would let her know  that while I’m looking forward to spending time with her, I appreciate the opportunity to know who and what is involved before I make a decision. This usually solves the problem. I hope it works for you and you can enjoy, rather than dread, upcoming times together.


E--Mail your questions for future columns to deannashrodes@gmail.com. Due to space and time every question will not appear in the monthly column, however Deanna welcomes you to interact with her where she blogs daily at  www.deannashrodes.net. 

Deanna is an author, speaker and certified coach who loves living in the Tampa Bay area with her husband of 25 years and their three children.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

This Could Have Ruined Everything... (But It Didn't!)

No one would ever guess what happened to me this weekend in Jacksonville, Florida...so I'm going to tell you. :)


As I was preaching at the Fearless Tour at New Hope Assembly of God this weekend,  I got choked up, literally. For probably 2-3 minutes I coughed profusely and greatly struggled. Then I drank some water and kept preaching. Everyone was gracious to give me a few moments to get my bearings. If you were there, you'll remember it!

What no one realized at the time was that I swallowed a bug that flew right in while I was preaching! So disgusting! I said nothing because I was at a point in the sermon where I was really connecting and I knew if I said, "I swallowed a bug," everyone would either laugh profusely or be really concerned, or start feeling sorry for me.  And at that point whey wouldn't be thinking about the message anymore, but the fact that I had just swallowed a bug. They would then imagine what it would be like, and feel grossed out which is u…

I'm Just Being Transparent...

This year at the Stronger Conference, a young minister stopped me as I was walking out of the room at the conclusion of a workshop and she said, "I want to tell you something..." (I was all ears.) She said, "Do you notice how many of the speakers this weekend are saying, "Now, I'm just being transparent when I tell you..." or "I'm just keepin' it real..." I nodded yes. In fact, I mentioned that I was one of those speakers. I think I probably said a few times in both my keynote message and my workshop that I was just "keepin' it real."

After I affirmed that yes, I had noticed that -- she said, "Do you know why they have to do that? They do it...and you do it, because so many people don't keep it real. So many in leadership aren't transparent, Deanna. That's why all these people speaking here feel an urge to declare their transparency.." I let her know that usually when I say, "I'm just keeping …

What To Do First to Make a Profit

Today on Seth Godin's blog, he said:

It's tempting to decide to make a profit first, then invest in training, people, facilities, promotion, customer service and most of all, doing important work. In general, though, it goes the other way.
Yes, it does. If you are waiting to make a profit before you do these things, in my experience you're  not going to make a profit. So many organizations, ministries and churches are struggling with financial issues. I know your pain. As anyone who follows our story knows, our ministry was in a ton of debt four years ago when I came on as director.  Since that time, we've gotten out of debt and turned a profit every year.  God has done amazing things through out team, for which we give Him the glory!

I find that what Seth is saying here is absolutely true, with one disclaimer. For Christian leaders, spiritual disciplines must always be first. Before we started investing and training and all of that, seeking God for his blessing and…