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e_e
Community Member
Hi, I’m e e, and I just wanted to say hi. Having a few issues at the moment, but I’m coping ok. During Covid I’ve been talking a lot to a couple of single friends every day. But it’s wearing me down and I have to start setting boundaries. Any suggestions on how I can tell them to back off without hurting their feelings would be most welcome.
8 Replies 8

geoff
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hello e e, it is fair to say that every now and then we all deserve some time to ourselves and that people who continuously make contact with you can be tiring, just as you making contact with them every single moment can be exhausting for them as well.

Try and set some boundaries and do this as you want, you can do it slowly or depending on the situation but with this virus, everyone has a different opinion and a couple of suggestions are you need asleep, you are about to do a hobby, someone else is supposedly waiting for you to call them, going shopping or someone has come to your house and you can't talk right now.

Remember you need to look after yourself first and if anything is causing trouble, pull back.

Geoff.

e_e
Community Member
Thanks Geoff. Great ideas. At this time of year and with what I’ve been going through I definitely need to put myself and family first. I’ll still be there for these friends if they need me but just not every day! Thanks again.

Isabella_
Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hey there,

Welcome to the forums 🙂 I'm proud of you that you're putting yourself first and setting these boundaries. I think real friendships get stronger when you open up the ability to be honest. Depending on the relationships you have with these people, how do you think it would go if you were honest with them? Of course there's a way to go about it so you don't come across as rude.. But most of the time the fear of being rude dampens honesty.

There's nothing objectively wrong or rude about needing space and setting boundaries with friends. If you were honest about your mental health, and needing to be alone to process, wouldn't a good friend appreciate the honesty and respect your space, and hope that you're doing well?

Sorry if I'm rambling haha. I just wish we wouldn't have to feel guilt for things like this, but of course it's natural. I also think it's completely fine to not be obligated to tell them your reasons, because of course you don't have to. But perhaps one off excuses can't last forever, and they may catch on that there's another issue and may think there's something wrong with them or the friendships, etc. from not having answers.

jaz28
Community Champion
Community Champion

Hi there,

Welcome to the forums, we are happy you have joined us. We are all here to understand and help. We have been through similar stuff and are always up to write back. It's a great community!

Setting boundaries are important, I think you should have a conversation with them (preferable in person) and just say "I need some space to be with myself, maybe we can see each other 1-2 times a week or fortnight instead of every day. It is nothing to do with you, I just really value my alone time and like to recharge alone. I would love to see you, just not every day" ... or something. Make your boundaries clear but also make sure you tell them it isn't personal or you do not want them around...just less so. It's important for their mental health, and any good friend will understand.

Welcome and write back if you need,

Jaz.

smallwolf
Community Champion
Community Champion
hello. I just popped in to say hello and welcome you to the forums. I agree with the others who replied to you about setting boundaries. If you are not used to talking with others like this it could seem hard. However, boundaries are important for our own mental health.

geoff
Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hello e e, another idea is to tell them that on Monday you can't be contacted because you are busy, Wednesday make another excuse, same with Friday as well as the weekend, eventually, they will stop interfering with your days and the only contact is if you want to contact them.

Take care.

Geoff.

e_e
Community Member
Thank you so much! I agree. One-off excuses only last so long. I think I need to get really honest. And if they’re not real friends then that’s their problem, not mine. I know what I have to do but advice from this forum is reinforcing it. Big thanks x

smallwolf
Community Champion
Community Champion

what you just said is true.

you also need to be able to have your own life, time to yourself, etc. I am sure you will find the right words to use.