My NB has also recently included a new apartment, where I met a downstairs neighbor who is also single. We'll call her S. We are just getting to know each other and have hung out a little. When I told her how much I love to dance she mentioned she does as well. Last night I was headed out to the nearby country bar to meet some friends and I decided to see if S would like to go. She eagerly joined me. She does not own a car, so I drove.
We get there and meet my other friends. The bar does a free lesson every night, so we all do that. Everyone, including S, seems to be having a good time. After the lesson the dancing is the usual mix of partner dance (two step etc), pattern dance, and line dance. S doesn't know most of the dances but guys are helping her and she is doing well. Then I return to our table and she is sitting there looking cross. I ask her what's wrong, and she launches into a total tear down of the bar and everyone in it.
The bar is too hot, too crowded, there are not enough men. She says the dancing is "stupid, boring, fake, silly, robotic, pathetic and like Disneyland animatronic", among other things. She declares this bar is "not a real country bar at all." Her main complaint is that everyone is dancing the same, which they are not. Couples are out there doing all kinds of moves, spins turns etc, but YES, if the song is a two step then everyone is two stepping. She has a major problem with this, and why is everyone acting like "sheep" when according to her they should go cha cha or disco or wtf ever even though the song is a two step. I try to explain its the beat of the song dictating what dance goes with it, not people just deciding to all do the same thing, but she won't listen.
Then she rips apart the line dancing and how pathetic that is, and that "real" dancing involves touching a man, not a bunch of pathetic women all doing the same thing like robots in a line. (keep in mind, I was one of those "pathetic women" just moments before.) I try to explain that not everyone has a partner, or is brave enough to ask someone. Some "pathetic women" are stuck with non-dancing H's. This was me when I would go there with XWH. He was an unwilling partner, but he wouldn't let me dance with anyone else either. So line dancing was the only way I could dance at all.
Anyway, S wanted to leave. She said she would walk home but of course I could not let her do that even though I was upset. So we left, even though it was very early and I was not ready to leave. In the car I tried to explain how hurtful it was to listen to her tear down something that I love, especially after I went out of my way to include her. She asked "Why are you absorbing my opinion? I would never let anything someone said bother me like that."
The whole evening left me upset and confused. Of course she's entitled to have her opinion, but to unload it all over someone, when you know damn well it conflicts with their own feelings on the matter... well to me that's just rude and hurtful. We talk so much on here about self worth not being dependent on other people, and for the most part I think I do okay at that, but this really bothered me.
Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one's courage. ~ Anais Nin
Married - 2008
PA with boss for at least 5 months in 2013, possibly longer.
DDay - Feb 2014
Separated, heading to D
At this stage, I'm pretty much bulletproof.
"Why are you absorbing my opinion? I would never let anything someone said bother me like that."
Just knowing what I NOW know about some types of people, I wouldn't bother with her again, but that's just me.
ETA: I feel I should explain- you have a few hallmarks of NPD behavior here and that's why I said I wouldn't deal with her again.
[This message edited by ThoughtIKnewYa at 1:54 PM, August 17th (Sunday)]
I think I'd limit this "friendship" to hello at the mailbox and, if you are in the right headspace, maybe a drink in a common area.
She wasn't rude. She was pathological.
Her main complaint is that everyone is dancing the same, which they are not. Couples are out there doing all kinds of moves, spins turns etc, but YES, if the song is a two step then everyone is two stepping.
Maybe she was expecting more variety of dances. As one that dances quite a bit and knows many dances, I love to play the "what would I dance to this song" game, and often there is more than one answer.
Think of the haters in your life as sandpaper; they’ll scratch you up time and time again but in the end you’re polished, smooth, and spotless..while they end up useless
We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.
you have a few hallmarks of NPD behavior here and that's why I said I wouldn't deal with her again.
Bingo. Thank you!! I couldn't figure out why this was getting to me so much and I think this is the answer. Her comment about absorbing her opinion etc is definitely a red flag, and was a blame shift making her bad behavior somehow my fault/my problem. At the time it struck me as both arrogant and massively insecure. But that is NPD and reminds me a lot of XWH now that I view it in that light.
Thanks everyone for your insight. I feel a lot better about this now. I will be neighborly when I see her around the apartment complex, but that is the last invitation she'll ever get from me. Since becoming single I've made a lot of good new friends, so I am hardly lonely. And there is no room in my life for another NPD, EVER.
Gosh, this sounds like the OW my H ran off with. She'd say stuff like this....
No normal person treats anyone this way...
Her comment about you "absorbing" was telling, but I think THIS was the most telling thing you wrote:
The whole evening left me upset and confused.
I also get upset when people are upset, I'm trying to get better boundaries about that so I avoid internalizing it. Maybe some extra reading on baggage reclaim would help you process the situation?
IMHO, this is an indicator of what a friendship with this woman is likely to look like.
This sounds like a new relationship? You have had some *hallway* convo's but his was the first time you've been out together? She may not have realized how passionate you are about the dancing?
I agree she was a rude how she presented her unhappiness to you, but she may not have damn well known.
The next time you see her, get it off your chest, gently, to clear the air so that there isn't that uncomfortable vibe when you see each other in passing.
[This message edited by Lucky2HaveMe at 7:54 AM, August 19th (Tuesday)]
Thanks for responding. It is/was? a fairly new friendship, but dance is something we discussed at length as we compared singledom and how it differed from being married. I love dancing and anyone who knows me for more than about 5 minutes is going to know how passionate I am about it.
Even if she *didn't* know, I said very clearly that it was hurtful to hear her tear apart something I love so much. Wouldn't a normal person who simply didn't realize have stopped there? Or at least backed off a little? Instead she ramped up even more, and gave the "absorbing my opinion" line. Whether she knew or not before, she definitely knew during this encounter exactly how I felt. And if this is her way of handling it... well, it doesn't make eager to pursue the friendship.
It's now been several days. No contact or apology from her. So perhaps she's decided I'm not friend material either, since I'm a silly, pathetic, line-dancing opinion sponge.
I'm over it now. Live and learn.
ETA- this was not the first time we had been out together.
[This message edited by gypsybird87 at 1:59 PM, August 19th (Tuesday)]
I'm a silly, pathetic, line-dancing opinion sponge.
How did things go the other time(s) you were out with her?