Dear Janice, I expected my friend to support me after my husband’s sudden death, but she didn’t.

She barely visited and when she did, she talked mostly about herself, the holiday she had booked, the new dress she just bought, the humdrum of her life. Anything except my poor husband, or me.

I am so very upset with her that I could barely look at her when we last met up. When, by the way, she asked if I was okay she then garbled on about her car repairs!

Whenever I think about her I feel so angry, but what can I do? Sheila.

Dear Sheila, I am sorry for your loss.

Some people cannot deal with grief.

They don’t know what to say, or how to behave, and often avoid the bereaved until they think the ‘matter’ has moved on.

We all have different expectations of each other, and she has failed miserably by her actions.

Chatting about the mundane could be her way of ‘holding it together’, or not upsetting you further, or perhaps she is only now showing her true colours.

Either way, I believe the majority of us would expect more from any friend.

Sheila, you need professional help, so contact and leave your friend to indulge in herself. Take care.


Dear Janice, my friend of 10 years is wearing me down. At the start of our friendship, we got on well, and I don’t know if it’s just me who is finding problems, but she now gets on my nerves.

She continually talks over me, forgets her purse more often than not and is abrupt and rude to people.

She’ll ask me where I fancy going (I always have to drive), but then makes the final decision!

I now feign an illness or make lame excuses not to go out with her, but I’m running out of ideas.

What else can I do? Joan.

Dear Joan, often as we get older, we get less tolerant. Not because we are cantankerous old gits, but because we finally realise our time is precious.

You have unselfishly been a good friend to her for 10 years, but now your friendship has run its course.

Your lame excuses are over her head, and you could try turning the tables and insist she drives, pays the lunches and you decide where to go, but it sounds like you are past this.

Be frank and tell her you have realised that after all these years you are not compatible, and if you were a married couple, you would have divorced years ago. Tell her it’s no one’s fault, it just is what it is.

Life is too short to spend it with people who irritate the hell out of you, so wish her well, keep in touch if it suits and move on.

Time spent should be something to look back on with pleasure. Not distain.