Are you the person that people feel comfortable dumping their problems on?
Dumpers aren’t really looking for solutions to their problems, they just want sympathy and to restate the wrongs being done to them.
And then pretty soon they want to do it again.
Nothing changes because responsibility is not accepted and they are getting something out of the situation. It may be attention or comfort in being a victim.
The drain on clients who are caught up in this vicious cycle is obvious.
This is one of those situations where until someone sees something as a possibility it really isn’t.
I ask them, “What if you refused delivery?” They look at me quizzically.
“You know, like refusing a letter or a package?”
The quizzical face now turns to incredulity.
They ask, “You mean, not listen to their problems?”
“But, but…I never thought of that.” Or if they did, they might be afraid their friend would get mad at them.
There are ways to Refuse Delivery.
- Gently remind your friend that you are not a therapist and that no matter how much you would like to, you cannot “fix” their problem. Tell your friend that you would like to help them find someone much more capable they can go to who will help them to work through the issue. (Hint, their refusal for help will let you know they are fine staying where they are, in victim mode.)
- Limit your availability. Let your friend know that you only have 10 minutes to talk and then you need to go. That probably won’t be enough time and they will move on to the next person in line.
- Tell them that you are uncomfortable discussing the issue with them. For instance, if your friend is complaining about their spouse, tell them that you are uncomfortable with what they are sharing and it is best to talk to their spouse or get a therapist or coach who can help them figure out the problem.
- Figure out if the friendship is worth the emotional drain.
We have coaches who can help you to navigate the difficult friendships.
May an appointment today at www.drpauljenkins.com/breakthroughcall.