“reign in blood”

Since: May 09

Braidwood, IL

#1 Jun 7, 2013
DEAR AMY: I am a 22-year-old woman, and I'm having issues with a friend. She and I have been very close friends for half of our lives, but as time goes on she is changing.

I can't figure out if I should start to keep my distance from her because I really don't like her new "career."

She has found herself doing extreme (sexual) things with guys she doesn't know -- for money.

I don't condone any of these decisions she's making. I worry about her so much. It's not as if I'm superjudgmental or anything, but I value myself as a person, and I see that she's devaluing her worth.

I love her like a sister, but I hate her choices. I don't feel I can be around this. I have to worry about myself to get my own life together.

She gets defensive and says she doesn't give a "bleep." She's kind of like an alcoholic who is in denial.

What should I say to her? Should I say anything at all? Should I just keep my distance?-- Worried Friend

DEAR WORRIED: Your friend's denial protects her from the reality of her frightening and potentially dangerous choices.

You should express your love and concern for her, carefully and consistently. Tell her, "I'm so worried about you. I wish you would get help to make different choices." She might be struggling with addiction issues; if so, she has a challenging road ahead.

Sadly, you cannot save her; you can only support healthy choices while keeping your distance from the rest. It can be extremely challenging to detach from a loved one's choices while still caring about her. However, you need to realize that this burden -- being honest, kind and loving while not becoming overly involved -- is one you are strong enough to handle.

You are absolutely correct that your first responsibility is to yourself. You must get and keep your own life together. That will be your best and most important gift to others.

DEAR AMY: I belong to a writers group. We submit writing samples to be critiqued by members of the group.

One person has consistently said hurtful things. Not just pointing out writing flaws, but predicting future failures or making value judgments about the writer's character. Some people have dropped out of the group over this. I simply decided to throw away all critiques from this person.

We recently discussed how to give more productive critiques, and I mentioned that someone offers spiteful critiques, that people have been hurt, and I asked that it stop. I did not mention names.

It's caused a lot of drama. And to make it worse, this person is now trying to "friend" me on social media.(I previously "unfriended" him over some of his comments.) I honestly don't think he does this intentionally, but I'm actually a little afraid of him.

Should I make an effort to contact him away from the group? I'm trying to let it drop gracefully, but that doesn't seem to be happening.-- Written Into a Corner

DEAR WRITTEN: I'm going to assume that the content and quality of this person's comments are not debatable, and that this is not just a matter of perception. If so, then you did the right thing in confronting this issue; I cannot imagine why this was met with drama rather than applause.

In this case, there is no reason to connect with him through social media. Confine your contact to the writing group, and do not let him bully you out of it.

Thoughtful first readers and editors are a writer's lifeline. Stay open to the toughest critiques.

DEAR AMY: "Worried Mother" was eager for her daughter to begin dating again after coming out of an abusive relationship.

When I broke up with my first serious girlfriend (who was manipulative and cheated), I swore off relationships for almost two years. No amount of convincing could've made me get back out there. I have since met the love of my life, and we've been happy together for more than three years.-- Took My Time

DEAR TOOK: If you had rushed this, the outcome would have been different.

“Where is Tonka?”

Since: Feb 09

Neda, stay with me! Charlie

#2 Jun 7, 2013
1 What? No phone #?
Your friend will be laughing all the way to the bank, and if your lucky she may give you a ride to work in her new porshe on her way to the beach after your clunker breaks down (again)

2 Apparently the hint was not received, so just find another group.

3 How the F* do you know what would have happened amy? You got a crystal ball or something?

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#3 Jun 7, 2013
L1: Your friend is prostituting herself and you wonder whether you should say anything? She could be dealing with mental illness, past sexual abuse, whatever. Do you love her? THen urge her to seek counseling. But I'd also change my locks and protect my valuables, because she sounds desperate, and desperate people do desperate things.

If friend's parents are normal, loving parents and they have no idea their daughter is doing this, I would tell them. How can you NOT try to help? I'm not saying try again, over and over. But you have to try even just once.

L2: Great. J ust what the world needs. A bunch of spineless people unwilling to deal with the one rotten apple and instead, let him ruin everything. Contact those people who dropped out and start a new writers' group and ban him from attendance. BAM. Problem solved. Amy, you're wrong.

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#4 Jun 7, 2013
RACE wrote:
3 How the F* do you know what would have happened amy? You got a crystal ball or something?
I know, right? I can deal with rehash if it presents a new angle or points out something that wasn't mentioned before. But this "I did that, same thing happened" or whatever just wastes space and gives us nothing to nosh on!

“Colorful Beyond Words ”

Since: May 11

" Live, Laugh, Love "

#5 Jun 7, 2013
L1 "Extreme" , I take as S&M type stuff ... well .. I'll take Azz whipping for $500 Alex ..LOL.. j/k ..( sorry crude humor )..

The girl needs some self esteem counseling and maybe some type of therapy. There could be underlying issues . Or she could just be a freak.

L2 Team Red and Team Race .

Since: Jan 10

Location hidden

#6 Jun 7, 2013
Over at the WaPo forum, re: L1, several people have offered that the friend could be doing something like being a dominatrix (they often do not have sex with their clients), not necessarily being a hooker per se. So if that's the case, my response is of a much less dire nature. And if IT IS the case, don't tell her parents.


“Where is Everyone?”

Since: Jul 12

Location hidden

#7 Jun 7, 2013
L1: You've already told her how her choices make you feel. Say it one more time and then tell her to please call you after she gets her life together. Then go live your life.

L2: I do like the idea of contacting the ones that quit and starting another group. Keep your distance from that creep. Who needs that?

L3: If he rushed it, the outcome PROBABLY would have been different. But who cares?

“The two baby belly, please!”

Since: Sep 09

Evanston IL

#8 Jun 7, 2013
LW1: I'm conflicted on this one.

On one hand, the friend is doing potentially dangerous stuff and the LW doesn't want to see her friend get hurt.

On the other hand, the friend is a big girl and free to do what she wants.

I think maybe the LW needs to determine if what her friend is doing is *really* dangerous (standing out on the street corner, getting into any car that drives up) or just something that the LW disapproves of (being a dominatrix). If it's a judgement thing, LW needs to back off; if it's truely a safety issue, then LW should have a serious talk with the friend.

LW2: "I cannot imagine why this was met with drama rather than applause."

No, I can't imagine a bunch of writers being dramatic. <eyeroll> The writers I've known are ALL drama queens.

Start a new group and don't accept his FB friend request.

LW3: Listen up fools! Amy is omnipotent. Ignore her at your peril!!

Since: May 13

Marina, CA

#9 Jun 7, 2013
LW1: Team squishymama. I would focus my attention toward the safety aspect of the situation because what she is doing is extremely dangerous. I can think of two serial killers who victimized prostitutes off the top of my head; one was Canadian and the other one's victims were found along the coast in NY or NJ. If she is having unprotected sex with strangers, she is also vulnerable to STDs. Just let her know that you care about her. Encourage her to at least record the names, numbers, and addresses of her clients for her own safety.

LW2: You did one thing right by throwing out his critiques. Now disband this group, wait a couple of months and then quietly form another that excludes him.

“It made sense at the time....”

Since: May 09

Itasca, IL

#10 Jun 7, 2013
LW3 - i too think that some time alone after breakign off a long or "damaging" relatinship is a good thing. But i'm not into critiquing or saying i told you so... My SIL is in a relationship, and had what i call a rebound fling before that. keep in mind, she just recently *filed* for divorce. she has had some down days and is realizign that she might have made a poor decision to move in w. the new guy, but she was broke and he helps iwth the bills (and just lost his rental b/c the land lord wanted it for his pregnant daughter).


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