TO STAND UP TO A TAKER
State your needs this way
Your neighbor only appears when she wants something: favors, advice, money, time. “These people have ‘malignant intuition,’” says Dr. Northrup. “They know exactly what you’re longing to hear.” That could be anything from ‘You’re such a great listener!’ to ‘You’re so sweet!’ “They pull you in with a sob story and you want to be of service, but then they’re never there for you in return.”
What to say when she’s got her hand out? “First, state a preferred future,” suggests Shasta Nelson, author of Frientimacy: How to Deepen Friendships for Lifelong Health and Happiness. For example, you could say, “I want to feel like our relationship has equal give-and-take.” Then express what you need and invite her to problem-solve.” Try: “I don’t want to be put in this position anymore. What can we do to make our interactions more balanced?” Says Nelson, “I have found few people out there wanting to maliciously hurt others, so the challenge is stating what you need in a kind way.” After clearly communicating where you stand, the ball is in her court—you can’t control her response, but you can walk away with your heart still open, knowing you have your own back.