DRUM - - Advice -

I’m 25 years old. I’m work­ing and rent­ing a small flat with one bed­room. About seven months ago I let my friend move in be­cause she was feel­ing down.

She’d split up with her boyfriend, she didn’t like her job and she didn’t like the peo­ple she was liv­ing with.

I said she could stay for a bit, and sleep on the sofa, un­til she got her life to­gether – think­ing it would be one or two months at most but she’s still with me and I don’t see her do­ing any­thing to find some­where else to live.

How can I tell her I want her to move out with­out hurt­ing her feel­ings and ru­in­ing our friend­ship? FRUS­TRATED, SMS It’s sad when peo­ple who are close to us take our kind­ness for granted and even end up abus­ing it. Your friend needs to un­der­stand you can’t put her up for­ever. She’s an adult and should know she can’t just de­cide she doesn’t like peo­ple or her job and there­fore it’s all right to sponge off some­one else.

She acted ir­re­spon­si­bly and you’re now suffering the con­se­quences of that. You could eas­ily have been there for her on an emo­tional level only – en­cour­ag­ing her to keep her job un­til she found an­other one and as­sist­ing her to find an­other place to live. In­stead you gave her an easy way out.

You shouldn’t have to be her provider to be her friend. Talk to her frankly about the ini­tial ar­range­ment you had with her when she moved in.

She needs to un­der­stand she’s cramp­ing your lifestyle – you need your free­dom and in­de­pen­dence, which was why you de­cided to move into a place of your own.

She should find her own place too. Straight-talk­ing won’t break a true friend­ship. Need ad­vice? E-mail sis­[email protected] or SMS the key­words SIS DOLLY fol­lowed by your ques­tion and name to 36489. Each SMS (160 char­ac­ters) costs R1.

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