Home » How to Handle That Annoying Broke Friend
By ☆ Published: February 21, 2018, 2:06 am (updated 2 years ago) Views 13,734

How to Handle That Annoying Broke Friend

Always coming up short when you’re out. Never paying their fair share. What do you do when you’re always covering?

We’ve all had that friend. You know the one.

When the dinner bill comes, they severely underestimate their share (let alone account for tax and tip). You spot them $10 here and $20 there — and they always “forget” to pay you back.

But you let it slide every time. After all, what’s a few bucks among good friends?

That used to be your attitude.

Lately, your desire for a person’s company has a perfect negative correlation to how much of their crap you are required to put up with. You are, in fact, too old for this shit.

You’d like to stay friends with your broke friend, but it seems like an almost impossible task. If you want to maintain the friendship, it will take a little work. And maybe a couple of drastic measures.

Here’s how to deal with that friend who makes you feel more like a bank than their buddy — without killing the relationship.

Be honest.

The great thing about friends (real friends — not the people you pretend to like out of various social obligations) is that you can tell them the truth and they’ll still be your friend. A true friend gets that sometimes you say and do things out of tough love.

You’re not doing anyone any favors by pretending your pal’s poor money etiquette doesn’t bother you. Besides, leaving those feelings festering just creates an uncomfortable situation for everyone. Your friends can sense your displeasure.

So the next time they leave you hanging with the bill, be up front and tell them how much they owe right then and there. Clear the air.

Add that you’re pretty strapped for cash as well and can’t afford to cover them. Consistently push back rather than ignore the behavior. Eventually, they’ll get it and stop mooching all the time.

And if this honesty does cause a rift in your relationship, it’s probably time to reevaluate whether you two shared a real friendship at all. No one likes being the ATM all the time.

Find cheap or free things to do.

A novel idea, right?

As much as you’re annoyed by your pal’s perpetual brokeness, they likely feel pressured to keep up with the group financially, too. After all, if your group is always going out, the FOMO is real for you — and for your annoying broke friend.

That’s a tough spot to be in. As a friend, though, you can be part of the solution. Find ways to spend quality time together that don’t force your buddy into yet another awkward situation. There’s no reason to hit the clubs every weekend or go out to expensive restaurants.

Besides, one of the best things about friends is that all you really need is each other’s company to have an awesome time.

Check your local weekly for low-cost and free events such as concerts, art exhibits, and movie screenings. Have a picnic at the beach (or in the park). Go for a hike. Get dressed up, pretend you’re rich, and hop from one open house to the next while eating all their snacks along the way.

Or, just have a chill evening at home, playing games and laughing.

No matter what you do, the important thing is that you have fun together — without spending a ton of money. Once you start getting creative about these types of activities, it’s easy to have a good time without breaking the bank.

Consider it a gift.

That Annoying Broke Friend

When your friend does ask for money, and you feel comfortable parting with the cash, treat it as a gift.

Loaning money turns a personal relationship into one of business, which opens the door for guilt and resentment on both sides — especially if the borrower isn’t able to pay up.

When you loan money, things get weird. Often, it’s better to just consider it a gift. Or, take turns paying for each other. However, if your broke friend can’t (or won’t) take a rightful turn, that can get just as ugly. When you give money to someone you are pretty sure won’t pay you back, just think of it as money gone and move on.

Bottom line.

It’s your choice whether or not you want to support your friend financially — and it’s perfectly fine if you do.

Keep in mind, however, that you can’t expect things to change if you continue to enable the situation. If your friend starts to rely on you, and the situation suddenly changes, you could be doing your friend a huge disservice. It’s vital to think through the implications.

Friendship is something that only becomes more precious as you grow older. As you watch your time with friends dwindle, you might worry that soon there will be no one left. As a result, it can be tempting to over-compromise in order to avoid conflict.

But true friendship is also built on honesty and desire to make each other happy. It’s a relationship that involves give and take. If you’re always the giver, it can get old fast. So don’t be afraid to share your feelings in a caring but straightforward manner if things are becoming unbearable.

Besides, you also have to think of your own money situation. At some point, you need to stop sacrificing your own well-being on behalf of someone who offers nothing in return. If your own financial goals are jeopardized in order to keep the peace between you and a broke friend, that friendship probably isn’t worth it in the first place.

Like what you’ve read?

Join other #adults who receive free weekly updates.

For a limited time you’ll receive our new book, The Best Bank Accounts for Adults, when you sign up!
How to Handle That Annoying Broke Friend was last modified: March 2nd, 2018 by Casey Bond

4 thoughts on “How to Handle That Annoying Broke Friend”

  1. I’m debating on cutting ties with my “broke friend”….. I’ve been friends with him for about 10 years, and ever since I met him he’s never been the one to invite me anywhere, never paid for anything for me (while me or my parents have paid for him many many times), nowadays I ask him if he wants to go out even somewhere cheap like fast-food but he doesn’t want to spend any money so I rarely ever see him. You could say “do free things like hanging out”, but hanging out generally implies that I provide food which may seem trivial, but for a friend who never gives anything in return it starts to add up over the years.

    Anyway, he’s not a bad guy, but he’s just lazy as doesn’t want to go anywhere in life. He’s in his late 20’s living at home, jobless, His mom is more-or-less the same as him, mooching off his step-dad while she also lives at home, doing nothing. I wish he would change, wish he would get a job, wish he would be more open to leaving the house, but its been hopeless over the years.

  2. My BFF and I did a road trip for a week. She was supposed to contribute to 1 third of the expenses apposed to my 2 thirds as she is always broke and struggling financially. We have been friends for over 30 years and i feel that Im always financing everything we do together. On this particular occasion I completely lost the plot after financing nearly all the trip including food and drink because she didn’t have enough money. However, her grown children were putting money into her account to help her financially which is wonderful but she then spends all the money on pampering herself, getting nails done, new clothes, expensive creams, hairstyles, botox and the list goes on. I dont begrudge her being able to pamper herself but I work hard for my money and rarely have enough left to afford these luxuries for myself. I feel resentful when she shows up all glam because I inevitably pay for her everything when she comes to stay with me and I feel like she takes advantage. The trip was the last straw! After I’d payed for everything her daughter puts money into her account and she wants to go shopping for new cosmetics. I blew a fuse on the return trip and we parted ways. After a week of calming down I sent her a text saying I was sorry for being such a hurtful and mean friend, and took full responsibility for the screaming and nasty words. Admittedly we’d been driving through the night as she wanted to get home asap and not pay for a hotel room. I dont fair well when sleep deprived and at 4am I let loose on her. I truely regret my actions and cant take back words said. She has such a kind heart but no reasoning ability financially. I dont want to loose our 30+ year friendship and fear that she will never talk to me again. I wish i could have found the words to express my thoughts without all the angry words. I hope we will talk again one day as I will truely miss her in my life.

  3. Hi everyone. I have been friends with this particular individual for about two years now, and need some advice. I am a full time sixth form student and have a good part time job as well as this, which pays pretty well. I run my own car, and although expensive, my job was more than enough to cover this and my other outgoings- until I met my friend. She is 20, but refuses to get a job and instead relies on me and her girlfriend to bankroll her. She is a heavy cannabis user, and got me into smoking occasionally too, although I do not do it as regularly as she does. It’s got to the point where every single time we hang out together, she expects me to pay for everything- fuel to drive out to pick her up, food, cigarettes, and of course weed. I didn’t mind so much in the summer when I was working full time at my job, as I could afford it and I thought, ‘hey, she’s a good friend.Why shouldn’t I pay for things from time to time’. She didn’t take advantage as much then, but lately I have noticed things going missing. Cigarettes, food, spare change, weed etc. It was bad enough that she doesn’t pay her way, but I am struggling to believe that she is stealing from me. I don’t know what to do. I have offered to help her apply for jobs, offered to take her to drug dependency meetings (as I know she abuses harder drugs as well as cannabis), and even tried to teach her to drive so she can have more independence. Lately I feel our friendship is coming under pressure due to these factors, and I am not sure what is the best course of action to take.

  4. I’m a relative rich person and earn a lot from what I’m doing. I started graduate school this year and met some young people. My group partner is a poor girl. She’s not like the one that owes money from others; both her parents are professors at some universities and I believe they’re paid well. It’s all about how she thinks and talks! She keeps talking about money in whatever conversation. She eats free food and blames free food. She blames me for spending money on ANYTHING. For example, she found that I bought a ticket to some show, she judged me like “as a student you can go there for free! why not!”
    I’ve already told her that I’m rich (albeit embarrassing). She just couldn’t stop judging my lifestyle. I tried so hard to fit into younger generation community, but this person is really annoying. Can she just stop talking about money?
    What should I do?

Leave a Reply

Featured Articles

Make bills your bitch.

If you can handle a credit card like an adult, you might as well maximize the benefits! These best credit cards offer bonuses and other perks.

You don’t need big bucks to get a jump on everyone else.

It’s ok to get your freak on. Here’s how to do it comfortably with your partner.

Last year’s finances were rough? No problem. Here’s how to make smart money moves.