Friendship deal breakers

Let’s say you have a friend. You get along, they’re cool … till one day they do something that you absolutely cannot overlook. You must end the friendship.

Here’s the catch: this thing they’ve done has absolutely nothing to do with you. By that I mean they haven’t done anything TO you: didn’t sleep with your spouse, say something bad about you behind your back, etc.

What’s a deal breaker for you?

Let me think on mine and I’ll post later. It’s late.

I’d think long and hard about staying friends with someone who cheated on their spouse. Maybe it wouldn’t be a “deal breaker,” but I know I would have subconscious limits on my level of friendship. I mean, if they betrayed the trust of someone that close to them, how could I ever trust them, either? Obviously, there might be ameliorating circumstances, like mutually-agreed-upon seperation before divorce, abuse, an open relationship, etc. I would feel differently about those kinds of situations.

The same for a person who was not there to care for one of their children. I have friends who’ve been in prison. I have friends who have worked as prostitutes. But I’d have a harder time staying friends with someone who won’t acknowledge their own child. It’s a very personal issue for me, and has very bad connotations.

Murder, Adultery, Treason and chronic use of Pepsi products other than Mt.Dew.

THis is quite relevant to me now.
A friend of mine has taken up sleeping with 3 different ladies at the same time. Granted, he has not commited to any of them.

And I suppose it’s not the amount that bothers me, so much as when he says he’s “ashamed and not proud to tell anyone he’s sleeping with them” (they aren’t hotties) and… the worst of it is, he bragged to me about how they buy him stuff.

Ok, he was dumped by a long term g/f and has recently gone through some financial troubles… he is hurting inside, but I don’t want to be around him as he goes through this “stage” of womanizing and using.

I haven’t broken off the friendship, per se. I just chose to tell him that it makes ME uncomfortable, and I’d rather not be a part of his life now. I tried as best I could not to sound judgemental, I’ve never walked in his shoes… but still, I want no part of his current phase.

Well, a friend of mine slept with this one jerk (who she later married) and then after they broke up, started sleeping around alot and ended up pregnant. She then miscarried. The thing is, no matter how many times I told her, she refuses to use protection and the guy isn’t protection either! My best friend died from AIDS-related complications through rape and I’m leery when no one uses protection to protect themselves. She got pregnant by the original guy she slept with, had two babies and then got married. From what I hear, she’s busily punching babies and one time called me to say she can’t do anything with her. Duh, I wonder why? I haven’t really talked to her since she told me that she doesn’t use protection. Really, how stupid is that?

When I was in High School, I found out that one of my best friends had raped a girl after she got drunk at a party. I knew this girl quite well as we’d usually chat during study halls about her life and her family, so I genuinely cared what happened to her. This was a guy who I’d had over to my house for dinner, who’d eaten at the same table as me and my family, so when I found out what he’d done, it was almost like a physical blow.

That was certainly the end of our friendship.

Piss off my wife or hurt my kids, and I don’t think I’ll be inviting you over to play D&D any time soon.

Ehtilrist, good answer but I think hurting your wife or kids would fall under “stuff they did to you.”

As for my answers …

Drugs. I can overlook drinking in moderation. I can even overlook pot provided said friend is very private about it and only does it occasionally. Anything else and I’d have to remove myself from the situation. Druggies will steal from you, they hang around dangerous people and being associated with people like that can hurt your own reputation, even if you’re not involved in it yourself.

As far as cheating on their spouse, I’d have a big problem with that too. It would depend, though. Was it a one-time thing, never to happen again, and they are truly sorry and in counseling and etc etc? Probably wouldn’t cut off contact. Is it an ongoing affair and they have no shame whatsoever? Can’t hang with that.

The one friendship I have broken off terminated because of vastly different parenting styles. This couple had absolutely no common sense when it came to the safety of children and I found it increasingly hard to offer up excuses as to why my children could not go on outings with them. And then, worrying about my kids seeing them sitting on the porch, or driving the minivan while toking on a joint was just the breaking point.

What made these people particularly hard to abide was that they constantly criticized me for being such an “overprotective” mother. You see, I require my children to wear seatbelts and I am not comfortable with the idea of my 8-year-old patrolling the neighborhood streets at midnight and lighting off fireworks.

Many years ago (like twenty), I was dating a girl that seemed great. She was strikingly pretty, was a whole lot of fun to go out with, and she really liked me. One evening, she flashed a large wad of cash and said, “Let’s go someplace really special tonight. The boss put me in charge of petty cash today.” I said, “You took that from the petty cash box?” “Yep,” says she, “There’s usually about a thousand in cash in there. He’ll never miss this.” (She probably had taken fifty or sixty bucks. This was back when fifty or sixy bucks COULD buy you fine night out.)
After that night, I never saw her or called her again. I figured if she would steal from her boss, eventually she’d steal from me. I’ve never been able to abide a thief.

Organ theft. I mean, if I can’t fall asleep on their couch without losing a kidney, what kind of friendship is that?

I’ve dumped friends who I’ve discovered treated other people poorly. This has including sleeping around on a SO or hitting an SO.

I’d have to agree with whoever mentioned using protection when having sex. I used to be friends with this girl and she had an abortion right before I met her. Big whoop. Well, turns out she slept with a LOT of men (still no biggie, not a choice I would make, but also none of my business) the dealbreaker was when she told me she never used protection. Ever. At that point I had to walk away. I have no respect for someone that stupid and can’t be friends with someone I don’t respect. And yes, she got pregnant about a month after she told me that. Suprise, suprise.


I’d have to say it’s a combination of repeated stupidity, lack of maturity, and the company you keep. I’m currently going through this myself. My best friend from childhood has just recently started dating what I consider trash. Within the first five minutes of meeting him this past weekend he excused himself to go and fight some guy. Two minutes later the guy came back in covered in blood because her boyfriend had busted his lip open. Not a great first impression (not to mention all the things she’s told me about his past weren’t exactly the most flattering). “But he did it because of me!” Not a good arguement.

Also her lack of using any form of birth control. She’s been pregnant before, so it’s not like she hasn’t had the opportunity to learn her lesson. She reasons that if they’re heavy drinkers or smoke pot then she’s okay because that method worked before. Did I mention this guy has 2 kids? (Pregnancy was by a guy who didn’t do any drugs and rarely drank.)

I just see the same mistakes being made over and over again. After a while you get tired of helping someone because they don’t care to ever learn. It’s not like I want to end the friendship, but I want to at least grow up a little bit.

Friendship deal breakers - self destructive behavior has ended most of the friendship that I no longer maintain.

2 friends with hard drugs, one friend dating / living with an HIV+ man and not using protection when she already has 2 kids (she’s still HIV- but they have a child together now), and a friend who is very sexually permissive (swinging) and has 3 kids.

When they put kids in danger or themselves in danger I can’t feel comfortable with being their friend. Selfish of me - I know, but it is not the type of thing I can keep quiet about.

A female friend of mine had a boyfriend, broke up with him, and slept with some other guy before getting back with the original boyfriend.

At one point, she stated that there was a good possibility the the baby wasn’t her boyfriend’s. Later she retracted that statement, saying she was angry at the time and trying to hurt the boyfriend. Due date and timing dictated that it had to be the boyfriend’s baby.

Fast forward several years. Boyfriend has been daddy for several years. They’ve even broken up and gotten back together, and during the breakup period he stayed responsible with financial assistance and visitation.

The the female friend got a stupid crush on some other guy, and wanted to date him. She wanted to break up with the original boyfriend once and for all, and never go back to him. She forced him to get a blood test, and sure enough, the child was not biologically his. Never mind that he has been the father for years, from his point of view and the child’s. Nope, surprise, you’re not the daddy! Get out of our life and never see the child again.

I can’t call this, ahem, girl a friend anymore.

I’m definitely uncomfortable around people who use drugs and/or drink heavily.

Right now I’m in a difficult situation - my former roommate, with whom I had been friends for years before we got an apartment together, has developed a serious drug problem over the past year or so. She hasn’t stolen anything from me, but up until I moved out (it only took a couple of months) she hid the real extent of her problem from me.

One day when I went back to retrieve some of my belongings and pack in advance of the movers coming for my furniture, I found her in VERY bad shape, called 911, and she has been in the hospital for the last week and a half. Obviously I do care about this person, because from the tox report, I saved her life - but I’m very conflicted about continuing the relationship. She couldn’t get out of bed to go to a job interview or even to unpack any of her stuff that she moved in with, but she was capable of going to great lengths to illegally obtaiin massive quantities of the (perscription) drug she was abusing. I lived with her and had no clue because she also hid the bottles. I knew she had a problem but it was about 10 times what I thought, I thought most of her problems were due to depression over a recent, lengthy, bitter breakup. Since she has been in the hospital I’ve had to go into her room to look for a few things and have filled a small trash barrel to overflowing with pill bottles. (Like I said, she never stole from me, but there are some expensive belongings of mine that I’d lent her which are lost in the garbage pit she called her bedroom.)

Honestly, whether the friendship will continue will depend a great deal on what kind of shape she’s in when she finishes her treatment and where she chooses to go from there.

I’ve also cut off friends for being just plain ignorant… if they have some kind of prejudice that means I can’t introduce them to certain other of my friends, they have to go. I used to be friends with a couple different girls when I was younger, but they had serious issues about non-white people (one of them even had issues with dark-skinned white people - I don’t know if she ever knew I’m part Native American, despite my very light skin). It bothered me that even though I liked hanging out with them, I don’t only choose my friends from certain racial groups. Eventually, that outweighed the reasons I did like them, and now I only hang out with people who are going to be cool with ALL my other friends.

Racism would be a dealbreaker, in fact was a deal breaker with a friend whom I hadknown for many years. Any serious criminal activity, or seriously harming (physically or mentally) someone else would also be a dealbreaker, unless there was some extremely good reason for that behaviour.

Somewhat in line with a few others above…
About 13 years ago I became great friends with a girl (my then BF and her BF were best friends). She had recently completed a long treatment for alcohol/drugs. She gave birth while in treatment (at age 16, not a big deal, but the child spent most of her in utero development drunk and/or stoned). She promoted herself as being a changed person. Great! Wellllll… that lasted three years. She got heavily back into self-abuse. She would have parties at her house (with her kids present- she had another one in the interim) where she would literally be the “fuckbuddy” to any male that attended, as long as he brought her something- pot, a bottle of 3.2, crack.
When some other friends and I tried to get her to go back into treatment, she told us all she was an adult, could do what she wanted (By this time she was 20, two kids, little education), and that we should get out of her business.
So I left her alone.
Fast forward to about a year ago. Ran into her at my place of work. We chatted. She stated that I really let her down, I was supposed to be there for her, yadda yadda.
Nope. Sorry. Suffice it to say, we will say “Hi” to each other, but that’s about it.

I also have problems with people who are willing to put kids in any type of danger or who don’t respect their elders.

I once dated a guy who didn’t take care of himself. We were even engaged at one time, but I told him that I wouldn’t marry a man just to become a widow. If he didn’t take better care of himself, it was over. (He had high blood pressure and went from a 38 inch waist to a 56 inch waist over a four-year period. I didn’t mind that he was big, I minded that he was endangering his health.) He ended up going a bit psycho, so I dumped him for other reasons, but I found out about 1 year later that he had suffered congestive heart failure. He was probably 26 at the time. He has since returned to his old habits, I’m glad I didn’t end up married to a time bomb.

I also ended a friendship when my friend gave me an ultimatum. She wanted me to choose between her and my boyfriend at the time.

Let’s see… Of course I chose the one who wasn’t making me choose.

I even married him. That’ll teach her!