Advice for a woman whose friend is chronically late.

Advice on sticky friendship dilemmas.
Dec. 28 2010 7:01 AM

Should I Dump My Flaky Friend?

Once she bailed on dinner plans because she had just painted her nails.

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Sincerely,
Tired of Feeling Like a Doormat

Dear TOFLAD,

It was great having someone else in the house with whom to share responsibilities—just not the rent? File this one under "No Good Deed Goes Unpunished." Or maybe the more apt tried-and-true saying is, "Beggars can't be choosers." The woman is living gratis. Yet she can barely be bothered to speak to you for the mortal sin of having—hooked up with a guy she doesn't like? Unless there's something else to this story you're not telling me, it seems to me that the only thing you need to reconsider is your hesitation to join the list of Ashley's Former Friends.

If I'd heard anything good about this woman, maybe I would feel differently. But your letter suggests that she's not just a user but a psycho who turns on all who dare show generosity toward her. If I were you, I'd get in touch with her other excommunicated roomies and find out what their "crimes" were. (Not ironing Ashley's clothes?) You might begin to see a pattern. At which point you might also want to send Ashley a bill for the previous six months of mortgage or rental payments. If she refuses to pay, tell her the "living free" part of the deal was dependent on her not making your life a misery.

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Sincerely,
Friend or Foe

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