Do you feel that your friends are using you for money? It isn't the most pleasant thought. However, if a certain group of people only come around when they're able to get something from you, chances are that these people are using you. This might be especially true if you're in a better financial state than they are. However, you don't have to accept this abuse. Here are seven options if you believe your friends are using you for money.
1. Stop Offering to Pay
If you suspect that friends are using you for money, stop offering to pay when you go out. Unfortunately, some people may become accustomed to your generosity, and start to expect it. Going forward, suggest that everyone pays for him or herself.If you have more resources, you may offer to pay on occasion as a nice gesture.
2. Stop Giving, and See What Happens
Once you put your foot down and stop going into your pocket, sit and observe what happens. The aftermath can determine who are your real friends. If you stop paying for things and these people distance themselves from you, then they weren't real friends. However, if they stick around, there's a chance that they weren't using you, but simply became accustomed to your generosity.
3. Establish a Contract
If you have more disposable cash than your friends, they may occasionally ask to borrow money. There is nothing wrong with helping a friend. However, establish a contract or agreement between you and the other person. This can alleviate any misunderstandings regarding the money. For example, your friend may view handouts as a gift, whereas you expect full repayment. Put your wishes in writing and there's no confusion.
4. Get a Second Opinion
If you feel a certain way, there's a chance that your mind is playing tricks on you. Rather than make an accusation, or dismiss your suspicions, ask a trusted friend for his or her observations. Their opinion can shed light on the situation.
5. Explain Your Finances
Even if you're better off financially than your friends, you might be living paycheck to paycheck — just on a higher scale. Going forward, explain that you can no longer afford to lend or give money. You don't have to go into details.
6. Have a Talk with Your Friends
If you firmly believe that a particular friend (or friends) is using you for money, have a candid discussion with this person. Explain how you feel, and allow this person to express him or herself. This discussion might bring to light behavior that your friend was unaware of; and if you keep the lines of communication open, you can fix the issue and maintain your friendship.
7. Spend Time with Those Who Truly Care about You
If you're being used by your peers, maybe it's time to find another group. These friends only want what they can get from you, and nothing more. You don't deserve this, and there are plenty of people who are willing to offer you true friendship. No strings attached.
The realization that you're being used by friends is never a good feeling. However, the sooner you recognize this behavior, the sooner you can take steps to resolve the issue.
What are some signs that friends are using you for money?