Friend envious and ungrateful behaviour

by Barbara
(Melbourne , Australia )

I started up a not for profit arts org for like-minded artists to earn income from the sale of their work and from teaching .

My friend has been a major part of this social enterprise as in producing art work and sharing rented studio space. Her behaviour over the past three years has become overwhelming and unbearable . I only just realised what she has been doing to me . That is she has turned into a 'gollum ' character ( Lord of the Rings ) - everything she must touch , claim , envies , she resents other peoples successes , trusts no one. I have been cocooing her behaviour , as she is bi polar and a drug addict - dope , 'ex', heroin- Yet I back her as I see her as a great artist who needs help.

I have tried to nurture and ignore her scary irrational and abusive behaviours , either she is sick, down , depressed or surrounded by family dramas and or / abusive men - one of whom threatened me .Despite 2 Restraining orders against her ex lover , she'll dredge him up when things are bad like her evil monkey.
All these things have impacted on the organisation and I sense many psychic attacks from her , especially when new members join - they all leave.

I realise I have been enabling this beheaviour . I have been worried about how she would feel if I did this or that or the other. I have a fabulous husband and 3 very successful daughters who all tell me is is trouble.

I now see the errors of my ways. I have not spoken to her for 3 weeks - as we had a major falling out over an exhibition. I am so addicted to 'helping' her that I have thoughts of calling her, or giving her another chance (which she will probably just abuse again with her foul and angry outburts)

So I need help to get this over with. I am quite scared as she has criminal connections. I don't know how to close the relationship down as eventually she will have to collect her gear and move out of the studio and I fear her even though I am strong . I don't mean her any harm.

I feel like she will blame me for everything yet when I add up all the opportunities that have come to her via the NFP org, her victoroes - that I owe her zero. How do I end this 'friendship'
any help much appreciated.

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Dec 24, 2010
Safety First...
by: Don

Hi Barbara,

Safety is the most important thing to take care of first. If you have fears for your safety it is wise to seek counsel of someone trained in dealing with domestic violence situation.

In the US we have Rape and Abuse Crisis Centers; they have hotline phone numbers and services where you can come in to talk with a counselor about safety plans for yourself.

You wouldn't want to confront an unsafe person without having taken the appropriate precautions: restraining orders, etc. if necessary.

Once a safety plan is in place it's a good time to learn; get counseling, read recovery literature, go to 12-step meetings, build a support network of people who know about these things.

It sounds like you are becoming or already have become her chief enabler or co-addict. This pattern will only get more and more powerful if allowed to continue. Take action as soon as you can to protect yourself. Then become an expert on addiction, codependency, and addictive relationships.

Hope this helps,
Don Carter

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