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Taking Shelter In Some Weird Notions

, , , , , | Friendly | December 9, 2020

I have a semi-regular weekly dinner with a friend who’s been suffering from depression and anxiety, to help get them out of the house. Unfortunately, this person can be very intense and draining for me, an introvert. They also don’t believe that “quiet and alone” is how I regain my mental energy, and so they think me leaving to be alone is terribly dangerous for MY mental health. They are always convinced they are correct, especially if they’ve seen a video about something on Youtube, to the point of telling someone who had studied the subject they were “wrong” on more than one occasion. Still, depression, anxiety… so I try to be a good friend and make sure they get some world time.

This is the story of when I realise I need to cut them out of my life to stop myself from spiraling into heavy depression and anxiety trying to help them.

We are having dinner in a pub, discussing what provisions there are in place for victims of abuse; there is a sad amount of abuse in our country, and my friend was a victim of it in another country. Wonderful dinner discourse, but it’s interesting and needed nonetheless. Then, this gem pops out of their lips.

Friend: “[Woman’s Shelter Group] is an anti-men hate group.”

I’m startled, thinking I’ve heard them wrong.

Me: “What?”

Friend: *totally straight-faced* “[Shelter] is biased against men; it won’t let men into the shelters and it’s teaching women to hate men. It’s an anti-men hate-group.”

I just stare for a good half-minute.

Me: “I’m sorry? They have ‘women’ in the name, and we have an overwhelming majority of women needing shelter. I don’t know if they’d be able to find a shelter for men, but they’d try to help. They’re not… anti-men?”

Them: “No, they totally teach those women to hate and fear men; they won’t even make them interact with them. They shouldn’t be allowed!”

Me: “What? I just… Wow. Nope, that’s it. I’m done.”

And with that, I walked out on them and haven’t seen them since. I’d already paid for and finished my meal, so no dining-and-dashing was involved. They sent me some… interesting texts afterward about how it was very rude of me to just up and leave and that I was a bad friend for it. They also ranted that saying a guy was in the “friendzone” was the worst insult a man could receive.

To this day, I don’t know what they wanted out of that interaction, and I support that group more than ever to try and level out that weird, fixated bigotry.