A reader asked:
Is it ok to stop being friends with someone because the steps necessary to ensure their consent stress you out to the point of making you miserable? On one hand, that seems like a shitty thing to do to someone you otherwise like. On the other hand, trying to figure out what this person wants to do or wants me to do sometimes stresses me out to the point that I actually end up cutting myself to calm down. I don’t know what the right thing to do is anymore.
Yes, it’s ok. Because your consent also matters. You do not have to spend time with people who make you miserable, even if it’s not their fault that they make you miserable.
That said, sometimes people who are far too stressful to interact with regularly are great if you limit it some.
Are there boundaries that you could draw that would make interacting with them enjoyable again?
Like, maybe only seeing them occasionally? Maybe only at activities they suggest? Maybe only online?