I have the keys to the kingdom

Hey y'all!! Paula Deen here again. What? You don't think Georgie could know Paula Deen? Hmmph!!
Fine then, it's Soxy Deb. I have been given the keys to the kingdom again... never thought she'd make this mistake twice, but I think she's been drinking.

Here is a message from Georgie:
I have to go to muskogee to take my ena to town. Yanno ena, my 86 yr old grandmother who has never had a drivers license? LOL Well thats where I will be with all the grey hairs...but hey she does have a handicap parking sticker that she plops up on the rear view mirror and since my foot is sore that will be nice while I am tryin to fight the blue hairs for the primo parking spot I will be thinkin about you keepin the home fires burnin on my bloggy.

LMAO NO I am not and have not been drinking.

I suspect differently, but who am I to say?
I am here today because I cannot post this on my own blog. I need an anonymous place because I know my BFF reads me from time to time and I don’t want to hurt her feelings. I guess maybe I just need to rant a bit. So please feel free to comment here to your hearts content – tell me I’m an idiot or whatever – but please do not comment over at my blog. Thank you.

I love my best friend. I really do. She has had plenty of struggles in these last few years and it makes me feel good to be there for her when she needs me. Her husband abandoned her leaving her to raise 3 children alone. Then there was the tree falling on the house incident earlier this year which had her and the kids living with us for about a month. Then if she has A/C trouble, or really anything around the house that she can’t do herself, my hubby (who is a HVAC tech) will run to her rescue – her landlord doesn’t get in a big hurry to do anything.

All that being said, I’m starting to feel like I took her to raise. I feel like every week she has more drama and needs more help. And lately all that help is financial. Again this week, she is struggling and needs more help. What makes it even worse is that she will be out of work for the last 2 weeks at the end of the month and will have no income coming in at all. There’s no way I can help her through that too, and be able to pay my own bills. You all know I have been laid off and yes, I think even laid off my financial situation is better than hers, but the well is about to dry up.

Right now she owes me $1035. I realize that may not be a huge sum to some people, but when your unemployed and times are as hard as they are all over, it’s a big sum. We’ve never had a big savings to begin with, but we were supposed to be using some of that to help the kids pay for their wedding in March. I haven’t paid a penny towards the flowers, like I promised I would a month and a half ago. Because Lissa needed help and I just figured it could wait.

She tells me she will pay me back everything in January when she gets her income tax refund. And that will be fine since the wedding is not till March and I can just go ahead and pay for things then.

I just don’t know how to stop this from continuing. I have become her crutch and I can’t continue to help her, but at the same time I can’t seem to say no.

I realize this whole post rambled in its randomness, but that’s how my emotions go sometimes. Sorry.

So now I ask you Internets. What to do? How to turn this situation around and be sure she gets on her own two feet and stays there? I also worry about the things her children are learning from all of this. Sure they’re learning that Auntie Debbie will always be there for them, but are they also learning that you never have to figure things out for yourself if someone is there to clean it all up for you? Is that too harsh? I have never been so conflicted and emotional about a situation. I think I need to know, do I continue to help her/them or do I put a stop to it and tell her she has to figure it out for herself? What does a best friend do in this situation?

All advice is appreciated. Thanks!

The Artist Formally Known As

aka Soxy Deb


  1. Weelllllll- have you heard of the word "enabler"? As long as you continue to bail her out of these financial situations, she will continue to let you. As hard as it may be for you to see her go through this(and I am including the kids, if there are any)that is exactly what you must do. You could also help her seek out all the resources availble to her i.e. unemployment benefits, food stamps, church groups, etc., there are a lot of people out there who are willing to help people in times of need. If you are not careful you could end up-not being able to do the things for your own, that you promised and feel like you should do. Try saying "no"-that IS a complete sentence, you know. You could also just say-I am sorry but I do not have any extra money right now. I do not mean to sound insensitive, but sometimes we all need to put our own needs first. Oh, and who says that when the income tax money comes in she won't need it worse than her promise to pay you back? My bet is on the former. Stand up and stay firm-that may push her to do something for herself. Good luck!!!!

  2. I don't mind the insensitive - not one bit. I expected to be beat up a bit here and that's ok. But why can't I know who you are? If your someone I "know" it doesn't mean I will be mad at you for giving me advice I asked for. I don't expect anyone to sugar coat anything for me.
    Just looking for some reassurance maybe that I am not a horrible friend if I do indeed put my foot down and tell her I can't help her anymore.
    Thanks for the advice anyway - even if you won't tell me who you are.

  3. Ah I ain't putting anonymous on my comment. LOL

    I think you should tell her that you really care about her well being and also the kids but you can't give her anymore money because you are struggling as well. Let her know that you will help any way you can but just not financially. Maybe she can get a loan or something to help her make it through the month. Yea I suck at advice but you said you wanted ANY that people had. Well there it is.

  4. I thought about posting anon but didn't want to send you over the edge, Hey, that would make a great blog title...
    I am in the same boat with multiple people. I had a set amount that I was willing to loan as whole (say $1000) When A would need money, I would tell her B owes me $x and you can get it from her. Then C would get it from A and give it to D. It worked for awhile and they were bitchy to one another because they wanted their money... SO I sat each of them down individually over a lunch that I bought(sigh) and told them I loved them but that i needed them to know how much they owed me. 4 of them had no idea they were that in debt to me. I was very nice, but firm and said they had to pay me back by Feb 15th. ( i told them that my daughter and son in law were getting laid off inJan and were going to need my help, which is the truth) They all were very understanding and I told them I would text them to remind them weekly. That did 2 things: 1) They understand I am not Jill Nat'l Bank but I expect to be paid back by a certain time and 2) They won't ask for anymore.
    Good luck. Stand firm. She may not know what she owes you and she needs to be aware that your life goes on and you expect to be paid back. Make a little receipt and let her know you mean business. This is so hard. There is one I will probably never get a dime from. And she will probably not want to be my friend which makes me see that she just used me. Whatever.

  5. Heeeeyyyy Fellow Okie!!! I'm an Okie (not from Muskogee), but from western OK, currently living in DC with my military hubby and kids. I love your blog!!! Very funny and sweet!!! I'll def be back; I enjoyed my visit!!!

  6. Tell your friend you cannot continue to help her financially now that you're laid off. If she is a true friend, she'll understand.

  7. tough love, girl... you got to be tough with her- firm- not your ass- with your friend!Ooops this is Georgie's place not your's I forgot...I mean- "ARSE"...

    Now I must go to the Jill Nat'l Bank and take out a loan.

  8. I love the phonetical correct spelling in the conversation! I feel like I'm right back in OK!

  9. This is how I firt come meet you! Here on Georgie's blog!!! I've missed you! I need to get back over and see what you are up too! The whole Christmas thing and swap partners and new people have had me going round and round in blog world!!! lol

    Wow! Auntie Deb...you are one kind best friend!!!! I wouldn't be out that much at this point I tell you!!! No way!!! She needs to figure it out on her own! You didn't take her to raise!!!! Some help, yes...I can see it! But to go all out like you have! That is crazy! That is a lot of money! Just tell her NO! You can't give her any more money! She will have to find it some where else! Tell her you have the kids wedding (I'm sure she knows that)! Tell her you are having a rough time too! It's just that time of year!!! All I can say is "I HOPE SHE PAYS YOU BACK WHEN SHE GETS HER REFUND"! You have to put a stop to it some where!!!! Do you really think she is good for the money? How long have yall been BFF's?

    Hang in there!
    We've got your back!

  10. I agree with many that have commented already. You must stop being an "enabler". There are people in this world, that unconsciously expect everyone else to always be there to bail them out of a tight squeeze. I once had a roommate (my best friend), that was crooked with her half of money for our condo! Due to bad checks written by her to our property management, they only allowed us to pay by money order. When it was my month to drop off the rent, my roommate would write me a check, I would have to go to the bank and get a money order. Her checks to me began to bounce. The first couple of times, she eventually came up with the money as I covered our bills. One month I went to her bank with her check that she had written me,(to cash it), and the teller laughed at me. He told me that he couldn't tell me the status of her account, but advised me not to bother ever trying to cash one of her checks there again. I told her what happened, and she stopped coming home, or locked herself up in her room. This went on for two weeks, then one day, I came home from work, and she had moved out. I haven't heard from her since. This is just one example of the MANY times she took advantage of our friendship.

    She always had major drama in her life, and I always helped her pick up the pieces. When I had a problem, she was never there for me. The moral of this story is, once she saw that I wasn't going to foot the bill for her anymore, she had no need for me.

    As said by someone earlier, there are a lot of groups helping people in financial trouble. Churches are taking names of needy people to help provide Christmas and food for their children. Electric companies have assistance available for people who cannot pay their bills. Many fire and police departments have assistance programs. Is she applying for any of this. Probably not. There is no shame in it, it happens, it can happen to anyone. It sounds to me though like you are giving her an easy way out, so she takes it. And she will continue to take it as long as it is there for her. Don't let yourself be the victim.

  11. I say just be straight forward and tell her that you are unable to assist financially anymore - that is the truth. Offer to help her look for jobs too.

  12. Ah, you know I'm not one to beat around the bush. So yeah...you just have to say no. And you don't have to be mean about it, but just explain to her what you've said here...you don't have anything left to loan. And remind her that you are really counting on getting that money back to pay for flowers...but I gotta tell you, I'm betting you won't see that come tax refund time.

    I've always found that every time I've loaned a friend money, it's ended up being a gift. One of my closest friends right now owes me $250 for Nascar tickets I let her charge on my credit card two years ago, and every time she tells me something new she's gotten (new car, new puppy, new whatever, another trip to a race, etc.) I just want to say "Hey, I could really use that $250 now". But I don't, because she's been my friend for 30 years, and it's not worth losing that over.

    You're just going to have to toughen up, and realize that in trying to help her, you are also keeping her from standing on her own two feet. It *is* like raising a child...and you've done fine at that, so let this baby of yours fly off on her own too!

  13. everyone is giving the same advice, it seems. I wouldn't call you an "enabler" so much as a great friend, but now it's time to set some boundaries for this friendship. You just tell her that you can be there for her in just about every manner but because of your job situ and the upcoming wedding you are no longer able to provide financial help. She will understand.

  14. Hey Deb, I can't really tell you what to do.,.. but I can tell you what my friends did to me... I am the friend that always had the drama, and my friends started bailing on me... that is what it took for me to realize I needed help. Now I am in counseling once a week, and I am learning to cope. I was an emotional drainer to my friends..and it took loosing a few to realize I needed help.
    Honestly I would have preferred my friends saying something before they bailed... so may I advise you just tell your friend the situation about the wedding, and since she is your best friend I am sure she will try and fix this, the last thing any of us want to loose if our BFF.
    All the best, Helga

  15. Deb, Deb, Deb.....time to cut the cord a bit and tell her that you really love her, and want to help her, but your situation has changed and as such, you cannot at this time. Maybe offer to watch the kids i she can do an extra shift or something. See if you can hook her up with a social service agency, refer her to the kids school counselor ( who will know if any resources are available for her).
    Listen to her, but don't loan to her anymore.
    I'm with Tena, tough love.
    Good luck!

  16. First...I do not think you are an enabler unless...you are helping her spend her money badly or you cut that tree down! Things happen to all of us...it is a bad time for many of us! Be honset with her ASAP for both of your sakes...if she has a unhealthy relationship with you based on what YOU only can do for her...she will go away! If is is a real friendship...you will both help each other brainstorm ideas to pull each other out of the frying pan! I know that everyone is calling this tough love but I think it is Real love...you want the best for her and yourself and if she is your real friend she would never want you to do something that would harm yourself or your family! Be honest!

  17. Okay, you've gotten great advice.

    I'm just going to say, I think you are an awesome friend. The kind of friend we all would like to have. And, not because you loan out money, but because you have a giving and thoughtful heart.

    I wish you the best with this. You know you are going to have to do something. And, I'm certain you will handle it with class.

  18. Everything I wanted to say has already been said.

    So I just say, ditto Jules & Dawn:)

  19. Seriously, tell her about the wedding flowers having to wait to help her out and then make it clear that she is currently as indebted to you as you can allow her to be. She's not the only one in financial trouble, and helping her any more than you have will break your bank. I have a rule about money lending to friends; never lend/help someone financially with more money than you can stand to loose. That way, God forbid, the friend can't pay you back, it doesn't ruin you and your friendship.
    Good luck, woman!

  20. Money can be the root of all evil. I have made the mistake of lending a boyfriend money in a time of need. We broke up and it took forever to get it back. I worked with him so I knew how to bother him.

    Then I leant another guy some money. He eventually paid me back, but I would see him buy other things and think... why is he not bothered about paying me back.

    I thought I learned my lesson and would never give money to guys again. Then my current boyfriend needed a loan. I gave in again. I don't have much money at all. So I live month to month and sometimes I am struggling to get put gas in my car and eat. I am a shopoholic so sometimes I overspend.

    I still have not gotten paid back and he went on a cruise and has done other things. I just don't work like that. I think money is a touchy situation and I would feel terrible asking a friend for money. I know myself that would be the first thing on my mind and I would pay it back immediately.

    My point is, there are some people that don't understand or can take advantage of you. There are always dire situations for some people but they have to learn to handle it on their own. I agree with giving her resourses and helping her out that way, but you can not go on continuing to give her money.

    If she is truely your best friend she should understand if you are honest with her. Just tell her that times are tough for you too and you are sorry.

  21. I didn't read all of the comments but I wanted to make sure that you didn't tell this friend of yours that you were sorry. You maybe sorry you can't help her, but don't tell her you are sorry. Do not tell her that you can't afford to help her. Do not tell her you are in hard times. Just tell her no.

    You don't have to justify your reasons. Resist all urges to do so.

    Just tell her you are no longer going to help her in any monetary way. You will not be dropping off casseroles, loaning them blankets or driving her to work because her car is out of gas. You are going to show her some tough love and let her figure this out on her own.

    The reality is that there are givers and there are takers and even though we love the takers, the takers will take every single last dime from us, or every emotion, or all of our brain cells or whatever it is that they think they need. Takers can be rehab'd but they have to want to change and they tend to change when the givers stop giving.

    Good luck to you, Deb.

  22. I can't add much more than what's been said already. I think that with your caring heart, she feels safe that she can come to you and cry on your shoulder and get the financial help she needs.

    If you value her friendship and want to keep that friendship then place boundaries on how much you're able to help with. You may be able to be a wonderful listener but just not a good option to help out when the money is tight. Or, you could be a great babysitter in a pinch but once more, you can't pick up every single piece of her life.

    The best thing you can do is to be honest with her and tell her. How she responds is totally up to her.

    If she's truly your bff, then she will understand.

  23. I don't want to alter my orginal opinion so I'm leaving my comment THEN reading the others.

    Here's what I think.

    1) $1035 IS a large sum of money. I'd love to met someone who thinks otherwise, and ask them to buy me lunch.

    2) Should you say No to her? Yes. Is it easy to do? No. Could I do it? Probably not. I'm a spineless helpless FOOL in this area. I'm ALWAYS taken advantage of because I have problems saying NO. I tend to worry too much about other people's feeling than my own. I think you might be a little like me in this regard.

    3) I have concerns that she might read this post. If she reads your blog whats to say she doesn't read your friends blogs? I have a lot of real world experience in the cross over connection blog world (My ex and my husband's ex ALWAYS found their way into my friends blogs) so I am a little jaded. I mean, I read georgies blog because I found her through yours (i think). Just a thought. I don't think you should remove this post, I just want you to know there is a possibility, even if its small, that she could see this.

    4) This type of situation sucks giant donkey balls. (Perhaps I should say elephant balls? I don't know if donkey's have big balls). Regardless, it involves a best friend.

    5) If you do decide to say no (in spite of item #2) maybe you could explain that due to Christmas money is so tight that you just cannot help right now.

    6) My gut feeling - You won't see that $1035 come tax time. As soon as I read that line I thought "newp, that ain't gonna happen" If times are tough for her she's gonna come up with an excuse to put off paying you. I'm sorry to say that because I don't know her and for all I know she could have every intention of paying you back. But my personal feeling, and personal experience tells me otherwise.

    Regardless of what you do, continue to help, or say no, it's going to suck. She's either gonna keep leeching off you and you'll feel bad, or she's going to be upset at you for saying no. It's a no win situation. Maybe you can use that to convince yourself that if you can't win either way, you might as well take the option that saves you some cash. *shrug*

    (((hugs))) You'll sort it out. I know it.

  24. Okay I have typed and erased at least 3 comments now. The bloggers above me have all said it better and nicer. My slogan is "Just say NO", don't let this affect you and come between your friendship because you will start to build up resentment eventually.

    Maybe offer to watch the kids while she gets a 2nd job.

  25. I forgot to add that anytime I let anyone "borrow" money now I never expect to get it back and if I do I just consider it a bonus.

    I have lent money to Hubby's cousin and my brother both who had promised up and down until they were blue in the face that they would repay me. You guessed it none have been repayed but going into it telling myself I won't ever see it makes it not bother me one bit now.

    $1035 is a really big deal though I would have a tougher time swallowing that then the hundreds I lent out.

  26. I agree with you... Georgie has been drinking again! lol but shhh thta's our little secret!!! I would sit and explain the situation to your friend...Sh'e just probably use to having someone there at all times...

  27. Deb, I think you are an amazing friend and you have helped her more than enough. Does your BF have any family? Any parents or siblings? Was she like this before her hubby left her or is it just since that time? Does she spend money on other things and then as for money on bills or is she truly, honestly out of money? Perhaps get the phone numbers of some places she can turn to for help. Anonyously send her some coupons to save money on groceries? I don't know how to stop her from asking as I have never been in your position. Sorry. I suck. LOL

  28. Ok, so I too have read all the wonderful comments and I'm sure you've grasped by now that we are all in agreement that you shouldn't lend any more money and that you probably won't see the full sum again, at least not at tax time. However, there was one commenter that stated that she was a taker and I can relate to that, I too was a taker, I was always drama this, drama that, however my drama was always emotional and not monetary, but I did manage to alienate a few friends because of this, so whatever you do make sure to reiterate that you aren't disappearing, but that the well has run dry. Also, don't feel like you need to explain why, just offer help in the many other ways that you are capable of doing so :)

  29. I agree with Amy. I would only lend something I could afford to lose, otherwise friendships are in jeopardy. Next time!

    I have learned to just say "NO" when I need to. Most people don't have the balls or inclination to ask for an explanation if you give a firm, "NO" or "Sorry I can't" Period.

    In your case, where the pattern is already set, I would start whining to her about how worried I am that we won't have the money we need for the wedding. Give her a dose of her own medicine. Why would you expect her to be any less understanding than you've been?

    Also my husband doesn't mind being the bad guy in a situation like this. I would say, this situation is really causing stress between me and hubby. We're worried about paying for X and Y. I can't give you anymore. I'll need to pay X as soon as you get that refund. A thousand bucks is a REALLY big deal, Deb.

    Good luck. Keep us "posted".


    (A) husband helped his daughter financially ALL HER LIFE
    (B) daughter married lazy husband. Had two kids. Daddy took care of ENTIRE family
    (C) Daughter ALWAYS IN DESPERATE NEED. House. Car. Kids. Food. Furnace
    (D) Daddy only asked her to PLEASE call him ONCE, just to say she loved him without asking for money.
    (E) Daughter got SO PISSED she never called him AGAIN.
    (F) It seems that without daddy's money, she managed to make it without him.

    It might happen once. Maybe twice. But if it's ON-GOING, it will end one way or another. You will either run out of money, or have to tell her "NO". Either way, that will end it.

  31. Deb-
    My advice to you is to say no. blame it on Christmas, that you have been laid off. Say I'd love to help but just can't.
    Then later on when she doesn't have money for food for the kids, go buy food for her.
    When we were growing up, we lived in Seattle. It had a lot of homeless people. (Not that I'm comparing your friend to homeless person.) The rule that they even say on the news is buy a homeless person food, instead of give them money.
    If you want to help, help her with what she needs. Like food. And keep in mind that people only need food, water and shelter to survive. Cell Phones, cars, even electricity is a priviledge. It's hard to think like that. And even harder to watch but... if you don't take care of you, first. they will really be NO ONE to help her, even with a warm meal or a happy place to come visit. You need to take care of yourself first. Family second. Friends third.
    Money is the fastest way to start a fight. It's just a tough subject. but as hard as it is for you and your friend, it's that much harder for you and your hubby. You and your kids.
    I'm with most people up there and say not to count on getting that money back. Just remind her that she owes you that money just before Tax time. And call it good. My guess is that she will need it more then.
    I hope I gave you something to think about.
    I think you are a great person. You need to take care of you! I support you, in whatever you decide to do. Have Georgie do a update to let us know!
    Or email me

  32. If it's hard for you to talk to her about it, maybe writing a letter would help? You could get it all down on paper and give it to her to read when she's by herself. That way you can say exactly what you need to without being nervous and second guessing yourself about what you should have said, etc...
    This works for me when I'm in a similar situation. And remember that if she's your true friend she will understand....
    Good luck to you! And could you take the bottle away from Georgie? lol

  33. The rule I was always taught is that "If you can't afford to not get it back, then you can't afford to lend it out." With that large of a chunk of money I really hope she pays you and doesn't come up with some other pressing matter where she stiffs you. (not trying to be a total be-otch but I've been in your shoes before).
    If you help someone constantly then they aren't forced to rely on the strength that is inside of them to pull through the rocky waters. There are payday loans, emergency rent relief, food shelves that can pull her through her rocky situation and she can pay that back out of her tax check. On that note, there is no way for her to be certain what amount she will get (although I do admit kids are a nice tax deduction). At some point you just have to say "I'm sorry but I can't do this anymore, I love you to pieces, but this isn't helping out my situation." Explain to her about the kids wedding flowers and how you haven't paid for them because you've been helping her out, that the holidays are upon us, and that times are tight for everyone etc.
    I apologize if I sound heartless, but I've been walked over many times before I learned how to say "No" and suprisingly most people understand, if they can't then they aren't worth being friends with in the first place.
    I know it's cliche but keep this in mind "God grant me the serenity to accept the things I can not change, courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference." Her bad spot is NOT your bad spot, but it IS starting to affect you, or you wouldn't be blogging about it for advice. So just lay out straight, if she's a true friend, she'll understand!

  34. well that sucks ass, is what that does. I am sorry you are in a bind, I know you will work it out

    and telling her it stops here is a good thing to do

  35. good lordy! these are the longest comments in blog history. so i will make mine short. I agree with most of the comments here. You've got to tell her that you have no more to give.

  36. fun having you as the guest star! i just left a message on your blog about what i think you should do.

    just kidding.

    listen, you have GOT to stop it NOW, although i fully admit it is WAY easier for me to say than to actually do. i would probably be the same way. but it won't stop. and i hate to sound mean, but i bet you won't get paid back in january. just tell her you still have lots of love to give, but are out of extra dough.

  37. I would say this: You know when the flight attendants tell you to take care of your own oxygen before tending to others? Well, I love you and want to help you, but I am having some trouble breathing here myself, so I'm only going to be able to offer you moral support from now on. I found some resources for you (here they are). I love you. Please don't be mad at me.