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  • 04-01-2023 5:08pm
    Registered Users Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭ santana75

    Hi, I hope this question falls within the scope of the charter........I've had this thing happen in my life where I'd have a friend who would be nice, good company when its just me and this person, one on one. However when we're in a group, that person can turn on me and become antagonistic towards me. For example I had a friend(lets call him john) and again, one on one everything was fine, but when I invited John to hang out with a group of my other friends, his attitude towards me changed. I introduced john to the others and when I did, he said something along the lines of "Well I'm just embarrassed that I'm a friend of this guy(me)" and then he laughed. My friends didnt really know what to make of the comment and kind of politely smiled and moved on quickly. I was a bit stunned to be honest. I'm not adverse to a bit of banter but this caught me off guard completely. I had invited him to join me and my friends in good faith and what it seemed like was that he had thrown me under a bus to get a laugh from people he didnt even know. Anyway I let it slide and gave him the benefit of the doubt. But a couple of weeks later, with the same group of guys, he did pretty much the same thing, he made a joke at my expense in front of the others, like a proper cutting, put someone down kind of remark. And again, afterwards when it was just me and him, nice as pie. What is this? Is it some sort of personality disorder? I just cannot get my head around this kind of behavior, one way with its just the two of us and then changing when its a group.

    Post edited by The Black Oil on


  • Moderators, Category Moderators, Entertainment Moderators, Science, Health & Environment Moderators, Regional East Moderators Posts: 17,708 CMod ✭✭✭✭ The Black Oil

    Moved from Psychology, local PI forum charter now applies.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,498 ✭✭✭ StevenToast

    He is trying to fit in...he maybe nervous in your friends company and overcompensating by targeting you....

    Id pull him up on it if you value the friendship, if not...cut ties.

    "Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining." - Fletcher

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,382 ✭✭✭ ZX7R

    Has John any other mates..

  • Registered Users Posts: 312 ✭✭ NiceFella

    He is being a bit insecure. He sounds nervous in big groups of people he doesn't know and is looking for a way to be liked by the group in general. Some people have that way about them. They don't know how to have the craic without slagging someone constantly. It drives me up the wall at people who can't have a laugh without trying to insult someone. I wouldn't read into the first rip on you too much. But if he is constantly at it then maybe think about having a chat with him about it. Or ye know just forget about him.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 3,300 ✭✭✭ Airyfairy12

    He's not your friend, id really suggest you stop inviting him to be with your other friends, people like him are the types of people that will try to sabotage your other friendships.

    He sounds jealous, insecure, mean & not your problem to deal with, abuse doesnt just happen in romantic relationships, it can happen in friendships too and this sounds like it has the potential to become toxic and abusive. For your own sake, stop spending any time with him and certainly dont invite him into any area of your life such as friends/family/work/hobbies.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭ santana75

    It caught me off guard completely, I was just shocked and confused by the whole thing. It was like a completely different person had shown up that day because like I said, when it was just me and him, one on one, he seemed like a nice person. I let it go that time, I figured everyone deserves one mistake but then he did it again a short time after that. I Havent reached out to him since and I think i'm just gonna let things slide away. If he contacts me I'll be polite but I wont be pursuing a friendship. I just dont understand this kind of nonsense though, why be one way with someone and then turn on them when theres a group? Its madness. Anyway glad to hear I'm not alone in this experience

  • Registered Users Posts: 312 ✭✭ NiceFella

    Your describing the same thing on some level. Generally people will deflect attention because they don't want to be examined, they want to be accepted.

    He used his friend to get a cheap gag so as to be considered good craic. By the way, I didn't say he wouldn't make a good friend, but that if he does it constantly, then he needs to pull him up on it, or just forget him. His choice and only he knows which is appropriate.

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  • Registered Users Posts: 2,707 ✭✭✭ standardg60

    Agree that it can be maddening and needs to be pulled up on, just thought it was worth explaining that what seems to be unfriendly is actually the OP's friend using them to deflect attention/make conversation so they feel more comfortable.

    Unfortunately, this usually involves slagging rather than praise, because John has probably been ridiculed by strangers in his past, so his natural defence is to ridicule his friend first. There is no harm meant, it's just deep seated behaviour.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭ santana75

    I think that's a stretch. He's wasn't trying to deflect attention away from him. It happened more than once and each time I didn't get the feeling that this was a response to being uncomfortable around others. It was something else entirely, and I guess that's why I asked the question in the first place, to see if anyone else had experienced this kind of behaviour and if it had a name. It's an unconscious thing, I'm almost sure about that and because it's unconscious I'd say he'd do it again at some point if I gave him the opportunity.

  • Registered Users Posts: 18,684 ✭✭✭✭ road_high

    Cut this person out immediately- they’re like a cancer that will grow and grow. I don’t normally recommend anyone ghosting anyone but in this instance I’d let him go fcuk himself - unless he has the self reflection to come back and honestly apologise- wish I sincerely doubt will ever happen.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,707 ✭✭✭ standardg60

    If you know it's unconscious, and i agree it is, then a word with them should sort it. It's likely as they become more comfortable with your friends it will stop anyway, but it's entirely up to you whether you want to continue the friendship. I'm not judging you in any way as it's understandable to not accept the behaviour, just explaining it. I could be completely wrong and they're not that way at all, but you'll only know that by discussing it, why not try that if you've liked them initially, they could also be hurt and confused if you just ignore them now.

  • Registered Users Posts: 866 ✭✭✭ AyeGer

    I think it smacks of disrespect, he may like you ok but doesn't really respect you.

    Id be moving on from a friendship like that if it keeps happening.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,621 ✭✭✭ gameoverdude

    He's demeaning you to look "cool".

    It'll happen time and again. He's great on his own, but shows their true colours in front of an audience.

    This awkward, shy bit I don't buy. Bet they've got dropped by a few before this. Cut your losses.

    Also, why didn't your mates really stand up foryou?

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭ santana75

    It all happened very quickly. I introduced him to my friends, he made the comment, and then it was on to the next thing. I was kind of shocked and didnt really process what had just happened, it caught me off guard completely. I recall another friend a couple of years ago telling me about something that had happened to him with a friend. He told me that this other guy had been great one on one but when they were in groups he'd throw put downs at my friend. Eventually my friend ditched him. At the time I didnt really comprehend what the issue was but now I get it. I just dont understand it at all, I'm sure theres a name for this and a psychological condition that describes someone who would engage in this behavior.

  • Registered Users Posts: 1,872 ✭✭✭ JoChervil

    Well, I am a foreigner, so when I came here I couldn't get your slagging culture, which I found hurtful.

    I've read a such description of it: "Slagging is a term used to describe a kind of harsher form of teasing . While this may seem like an insult to some, to the Irish, it's considered a behaviour that shows affection or bonding, and, in some cases, is even used as a compliment."

    So, maybe he comes from areas, where they do slagging in a such way? Anyway I would have a word with him to avoid any misunderstanding before dropping him.

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,621 ✭✭✭ gameoverdude

    Good natured slagging can be fun, but you have to know the person and their limits.

    The person who gives it and not take it is an issue. Also important to be able to slag yourself.

  • Registered Users Posts: 2,914 ✭✭✭ skallywag

    Personally I would not be put out by something like this, but I can see how it can become annoying if it is becoming repetitive. I myself would have a nice comeback prepared to roll off the tongue next time round, he might think twice about going at you again if you manage to cut him down to size.

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