Doctor Love: Friends

Sunday, May 24th, 2015

Dr-LoveDear Doctor,
Why is it that some people just like to stir up trouble? I have a friend who spends a lot of time gossiping and it causes a whole lot of trouble. She has been beat up because of it. She has been embarrassed and all of her friends have been embarrassed but it is like she can’t quit. One time she almost caused one of my friends to get a divorce and then the friend found out that the whole thing was just a tale that had no truth at all. The other friend was repeating the story and adding a little bit to it each time she told it until it got all blown out of proportion.
She is not really a bad person but it is like she needs attention so bad that she will say almost anything to get it. Last week she said something that is causing me trouble and I am thinking that it is time to get rid of her myself. Do you think there is any way to change her or should I just drop her?
/s/ Still A Friend

Dear Friend,
Unless you are a psychiatrist who can help her there is not much you can do. You already know she does it just to get attention. People like this usually have problems with self-esteem and they feel that if they know the latest gossip they will be considered important because a lot of people will want to talk to them. There are other, less risky ways to gain self-esteem besides being a gossip but they require work and introspection (the ability to look inside oneself).
We know that everyone gossips and whether they admit it or not, everyone likes to know what the latest gossip is. The problem is in overstepping the line of gossip and moving into making up tales. That’s when the trouble really starts. If your friend can’t control herself maybe it is time to drop her.

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