Gransnet forums


Friendship not relationship offer

(126 Posts)
Lucyloo12 Thu 15-Apr-21 16:03:56

I have got myself into a bit of a muddle. I befriended a gentleman who is 15 years older than me. We go walking and I thought we were friends, however he now wants more. I have been very clear that friendship is the only thing I want but he says he has feelings for me. He said I have been very nice to him, more than his late wife, and he interpreted this as me wanting more. Today he said he may as well die as he doesn't want a relationship with anyone else. This makes me feel sick. He is lonely and wants me to replace his wife, I'm beginning to feel he is becoming selfish. He wants me to fill the void in his life though has no interest in what I want, or in this case dont. I'm getting irritated now as he tries emotional blackmail. What on earth can I do to stop this. I tried to tactfully tell him I'm not interested and try to encourage him to join clubs, online dating etc but he is so insistent I'm the one. I hate it and don't know what to do. Any Ideas?

Grandmafrench Thu 15-Apr-21 23:14:48

....but you have an old gadgie radar if needs be !

EilaRose Fri 16-Apr-21 01:08:21

Lucyloo12 in the nicest possible way, I think it's time for the 'big girl pants' he needs to be told you are NOT interested and also your friendship now has to end due to him being so persistent. You are not his wife-substitute if this is not what 'you' want, also I would not help him find clubs/online dating/etc he has to stand on his own two feet and meet someone, if that's what he wants. His death threat is just to lure you, again, don't listen.

You have to put yourself first and do what 'you' want. He's not thinking about you, he's only thinking of himself so it's time to cut 'all' ties, not more walking or meeting for coffee or whatever you did previously. Don't be available any time and definitely don't apologise or offer an explanation...this would only feed his need to know where you are every minute of the day. Sorry, it's time to get tough.

Normally I would not be so blunt (I treat people as I like to be treated myself) but this man hasn't taken 'no' for an answer and still continues badgering you...that's not being fair to you and causing you distress.

He has told you who he is...please listen! Hope you have a great weekend flowers

Savvy Fri 16-Apr-21 02:01:44

This guy is ringing the narcissistic personality disorder bell with me, and I've come across them before! You have to break it off or he'll keep trying to chip away until you cave in. Emotional blackmail is only one small weapon in their arsenal and you cannot be held responsible for his feelings or his actions.

From what I've read, to me, he sounds dangerous.

You need to break all contact and be firm, he may try to contact you again with an apology, but don't listen, that's how they draw you back in.

For your own sake, get away and keep him away.

tarakate Fri 16-Apr-21 10:43:18

You're not responsible for him in any way at all; not for his emotions, not for his well-being, not for his social life. END IT NOW. As an aside, don't heed this empty suicide threat; people who are going to do it don't threaten it. You need no gentle letting-downs, nothing like that, make it clear to him that you have made yourself clear and that the relationship is now over. Best of luck.

Theresamb Fri 16-Apr-21 10:44:23

Do you have another friend who you could confide in and who could also come on some of the walks with you so you are not alone with him? Then slowly cut down on contacts.

SparklyGrandma Fri 16-Apr-21 10:44:52

Personally, if you were a relative or friend, I’d say no more walks alone with him. End of acquaintanceship.

NannyG123 Fri 16-Apr-21 10:46:02

Don't put up with this man and he's selfishness. Tell him straight you like he's company, but only in friendship. If he can't deal with that then end the friendship. Block his number etc. Cruel to be kind come to mind.

Madwoman11 Fri 16-Apr-21 10:48:02

He's a chancer and in my opinion you need to stop all contact with him. I personally wouldn't feel comfortable in his company. Your body and you are in control.
He won't kill himself he is definitely using emotional blackmail, which is disgusting.

Newatthis Fri 16-Apr-21 10:48:57

Yes, reduce contact then stop. Emotional blackmail, with suicide threats, is awful. Who knows what the future would bring in this relationship or where it could go. You need to be kind and gentle though as he seems in a fragile state.

henetha Fri 16-Apr-21 10:49:37

I'd feel like polking him in the eye. He is way out of order and doesn't deserve your friendship. Tough talking might be needed.

Teddy123 Fri 16-Apr-21 10:50:11

I'm with MADGRAN and GALAXY on this one. Goes to show how very careful one needs to be.

Suziemarie Fri 16-Apr-21 10:50:23

Don't tactfully tell him, outright tell him you can offer only friendship and nothing else and make it clear if he can't except that then friendship will be over, and be very clear.
If he says he wants to die again cut off all contact, that's definitely emotional Blackmail.

NemosMum Fri 16-Apr-21 10:50:23

Stay away! I wouldn't even say that you will still be walking buddies, because, believe me, this will not end there! You don't need to make excuses, just tell him that your friendship has run its course and you will NOT change your mind. Then stick to your word. If he tries to contact you, do not respond.

Heket Fri 16-Apr-21 10:51:37

He’s a sex pest. Dutch him - now. Block all access to you - and tell him you’ll report him to the police for stalking if he attempts to contact you again, due to HIS BEHAVIOUR.

Awesomegranny Fri 16-Apr-21 10:51:40

I had a similar experience ten years back, I just told the man straight that I considered him a friend but no more than that. Obviously he was disappointed and I didn’t hear from him for a while, but I can say we have stayed friends, we meet for meals, drinks though not as often now as we live further apart. I find talking to my friend about my dating disasters makes him realise I don’t have the hots for him. Eventually with a bit of encouragement he tried dating sites too. Men unfortunately see a friendship with as a woman to mean more, so it’s always important to keep reinforcing the boundaries. Just be honest, then it’s up to him to decide if a friendship is enough. Take no notice of emotional blackmail

Heket Fri 16-Apr-21 10:52:04


H1954 Fri 16-Apr-21 10:52:31

Tell him firmly but kindly that you only want a friendship and NOTHING more! Tell him you are prepared to continue going on walks etc but try to encourage doing this in groups; this might help him to extend his friendship network. He sounds lonely to me and could be grieving the loss of his wife but not admitting it.
If he still insists on a relationship, then cut all ties.

Blinko Fri 16-Apr-21 10:55:10

A lot of men need a woman in their lives - a lot of women don't need a man in theirs....

Get rid, pdq.

Aepgirl Fri 16-Apr-21 11:00:37

You really must back off from this friendship if you don’t want it to be any more than going for walks together. I would be very wary of a man who wants a ‘replacement wife’. Does he just want somebody to look after him in his latter years?

icanhandthemback Fri 16-Apr-21 11:01:15

Definitely call him out on the emotional blackmail and put him on notice that any talk on taking the relationship further will put a chance to any platonic friendship being gone. You will quickly see what sort of person he is and I suspect that he won't even be somebody you want as a friend.
Sometimes, in the wanting to be kind, we are more unkind. Better to be firm and to the point than leaving him wondering if he works on you a bit more, he'll get what he wants. You will only be delaying the inevitable and could be accused of blurring the lines. It's never nice to have to do this but you will be doing both of you a favour.

KaEllen Fri 16-Apr-21 11:02:05

It seems a shame, but I agree with everyone else. This man is his own worst enemy. Only you can decide whether walking away NOW, or giving the friendship a chance by setting very firm boundaries, is the right way forward. We don't know enough about this man, and your acquaintance with him.

MissElly Fri 16-Apr-21 11:03:44

Sadly, it has been my experience that men like this need an unequivocal NO as they will continue to twist your words if you try to be kind. Anyone who uses emotional blackmail like that knows exactly the effect it has on a kind person and will use that. Don’t give him any more space in your head. Chalk it up to experience!!

JaneR185 Fri 16-Apr-21 11:04:11

You might want to suggest he sees his GP as he sounds as if he may be depressed. But if he continues being demanding you could put your hand up (like you're halting traffic!) say NO, I'm not putting up with this, and walk away.

Pammie1 Fri 16-Apr-21 11:04:55

This is very selfish behaviour on his part. Assuming you made it very clear from the start that you only wanted friendship, then you have no obligation to anything else - or to try to sort him out with other activities for that matter.

You need to be direct - you’ve tried tactful and it doesn’t work. Tell him clearly that you don’t return his feelings and you don’t think it’s a good idea to even continue the friendship, given that his feelings for you would keep getting in the way.

Oldwoman70 Fri 16-Apr-21 11:06:42

I think the advice here is very sound. He is playing on your good nature - he is saying he may as well be dead in an effort to make you feel guilty if you end the friendship. My guess is he is far too narcissistic to harm himself. I wouldn't mind betting that if you end the friendship he will quickly latch on to someone else. Walk away and don't feel guilty.