In a spin

I live in a rural community where everyone knows each other's business and if they don't some will make things up for the chance of a good gossip - you know the type of place? We have never got on with our next door neighbours, but I had a good friend for 6.5 years who lived in the estate and supported me, particularly with the neighbour.

This was not always easy to deal with having suffered from depression herself and in hindsight it was an unhealthy relationship for me, nonetheless it continued. That was until the end of last year when she suddenly decided our friendship had "gone", deleted me from her social media friend list and cut off contact.

Like I say I realised our friendship had been unhealthy so wasn't bothered until a month or so into the new year, after she found out I was going to be working for the same employer as her, she became very friendly with my next door neighbour.

I thought long and hard about taking the job with her employer, but at the end of the day it was a no brained due to money and commuting time saved. Now 2 weeks in I'm an anxious mess, feeling sick and tearful, not sleeping, driving my family mad and thinking I've made a huge mistake.

This is all due to me being polite with this ex friends mother, who also works with us, which lead to a mutual friend telling me she had posted a really nasty rant about me on Facebook and said neighbour had joined in.

I feel like I'm tiptoeing on eggshells at work, not wanting to go and when I'm there feeling isolated because I can't join coffee time, paranoid she's gossiping about me to colleagues who are virtually all related.

Every time I see her I feel sick as she has a gleeful grin on her face knowing the impact on me. Last night I just happened to see she was socialising with my neighbour and I was in tears.

The other really difficult thing is that, years ago I confided something in her which I would never want to get out, so feel I can't even deal with this formally if it got that far.

I do wish I was one of those people who could shut things off and not care what people think or do. It sucks having the anxious, panic gene :-( .

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3 Replies

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  • Confront her !!

    Don't let people make you feel this way, it's you or them !!

  • Hello

    It can be so hard dealing with people when we have anxiety and we sometimes read so much more into things than are actually there even though I know something will be there for you to be worried

    As for worrying about will what you told the person will it ever come out you have to try and let go of that thought , chances are "no" it won't and you cannot live in fear it will and if it ever did happen trust me you would deal with it if needs be

    But I agree with the last reply I think talking to this ex friend first would be the way and only way to go to try and resolve all this

    You could simply say could I have a chat with you please

    Then go on to say something like , we had a really good friendship that I valued and for whatever reasons it did not quite work out the way I wished , but I do still respect what we did have as you were a huge support ( flattery even if you don't mean it can go a long way :-) ) and now we are working together I would like nothing more than if we could get on as work colleagues , I know we can never go back to what we had but would be lovely for us to have the best working relationship :-)

    Hopefully she may listen and if you break the ice with her then the others may follow :-)

    If things get really bad and if it is to do within the work place do not forget that you have every right to speak to the boss

    If you let people know you will not be bullied or intimidated they will eventually back down , I know it is never easy but if you do it once it does get easier and it is part of life that sometimes we have to do these things but it is better in the long run than living in fear of others

    Also these people , they are just that people , they will always gossip which says a lot about them ! but they are nothing , no better than you , so stand up and hold your head high you are just as good as everyone else and maybe even more :-)

    I hope everything smooths out and you ave a lovely Easter Holiday :-)

    Take Care x

  • Thank you both, what you've said makes sense and I really do need to either let go or say something. Just a big, fat coward at heart and hate having to make the first step.

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