Want to Kill a Friendship? It Just Takes One Word

So what's the one four-letter word nobody likes to hear?  No, it's not that one.

A new study says it's "busy." 

Probably because that implies that the person who is doesn't really have any time for you.  You're just not that important. 

The study claims this word is a friendship killer.  I'm not so sure.  Telling your best friend not to tell anyone that your husband's having an affair and her repeating it anyway.  That's a friendship killer.  The friend the one having the affair with your husband?  Now that's a friendship killer.  Decorating your family room with neckties and your friend copying you?  Maybe not so much.

These days, yahoo.com says, being busy is being alive.  I suppose so.  But as a Type A personality myself, if I have a free minute, I go running.   Or vacuum.  Or play soccer with my son (hate that).  I can't stand to sit still.  (I suppose I'll live longer.  Other studies say if you sit too much, you die earlier.)

Anyway, another reason not to say you're busy is that it leaves things up in the air.  Is she busy because she has to take her mother to the airport?  Or is she busy because she's really sick of seeing you?

Finally, sometimes buy simply means, "not right now."  No reason to get out of whack. 

But I guess the point is that saying you're busy is just too nebulous.  People may not know what you mean, and if they're insecure, like, yes, I admit it, me, they may think you just don't want to have anything to do with them.

It's nicer to be specific, the web site says, and say you're just dusting your dishes right now.  Or your kid's hanging upside down from a tree and maybe you better go have a look.  Set a time frame for when you can get back to her.  And if it truly is because you're avoiding her, well, maybe it's time for a talk.

"As we all know, being busy can be a method by which we disengage from a relationship we no longer want to have," writes Kira Asatryan, a relationship coach. "Kids call it 'ghosting' — distancing yourself from a relationship without ever explaining why. If you’re using 'busy' in this way, it’s worth determining if you need to have that difficult conversation with the person you’re ghosting. While it’s always uncomfortable to 'break up' with a friend, some friendships deserve this attention."

So, if I tell you I'm busy, assume I am -- unless we need that talk.  But knowing me (big mouth), we probably already have.


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