M asked in Society & CultureEtiquette · 1 month ago

Did I handle this flaky friend the best way?

I went on a trip to St. Augustine with 3 friends over the long weekend (we live in Greater Charlotte).  One of my friends "John" flaked out on the departure time, and want to get input as to how I handled it.


Our plan was to be on the highway at 9 AM at the latest (ideally 8:30), and everyone except John stayed the night before at my place.  John said he couldn't, but promised to be at my place early.  I told him to leave his place by 7 to allow for traffic.  I made this very clear, because John has a habit of being flaky, and while I wanted him to come, I did not want us to fall victim to his flakiness.


On Thursday night, he said he may be late.  I told him "I'll guarantee you that we will wait for you until 8 AM, but after that we will leave as soon as we are ready, with or without you.  If you arrive later, you'll have to drive separate."


John tried to persuade me into waiting, but I refused.  Apparently he was planning to work in the car, so he can't drive separate unless someone waits for him and drives - none of us wanted to do that.  We did not take the day off so that we can spend half of it waiting for him.


John did not come until Saturday night, and was pissed at me for leaving without him.  I told him that this was all on him.  HE agreed to arrive early Friday, and we weren't going to waste a day off because he failed to plan.  I told him that he still owes me for his part of the hotel for Friday night.


Cholo_canyon - This was not a "theoretical" scenario.  It happened.  Don't pretend to be the arbiter of what did or did not happen.  Secondly, 9 AM was NOT the departure time.  9 AM was the absolute latest time we planned to be ON the highway - not just leaving.  I said this very clearly.

Update 2:

chiki_canyon - Some people get tested regularly for work.  Or, we could all quarantine for 10 days prior to the trip so that we know that nobody is likely carrying the virus at the time of departure.  And during the trip, we could all make sure that our activities are outdoors, and COVID safe.  Bottom line - you do not know the situation.  So why pretend like you do?  Why not just take the question at face value?  What harm would it cause you?

Update 3:

linkus - You contradicted yourself.  Did I handle it great, or should I have let him walk all over me?  Are you saying there is no happy medium between wanting to hang out with him and not putting up with his flakiness?

6 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    I assume he has some redeeming quality that isn't evident here?  You handled it fine, with the exception that you probably shouldn't have been "handling" it at all.  In other words, maybe you're being way too nice.  

    You keep calling him flaky, but if this involves always being late, I wouldn't describe it that way.  When people make a habit of this, they're rude, self absorbed, and immature.  It's a form of power play.  It makes him feel important and busy to know others are waiting around for him.  I had 2 people in my life who were like this, and I just stopped making plans w/ them.  You say you still want to be around him, which is fine, but maybe it's time to stop exposing him to others.  You call him "my" friend, not our friend, so I assume he was part of this due to you. If it doesn't bother you to be treated that way, this is your call and only your business.  But maybe stop including him when others are involved.  Tbh, most people have a shorter leash than you do (although it's possible age might be a factor.  People in late teens/early 20s are more forgiving than those of us a bit older and with busy lives).

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    no you handled it just fine. I know people like John and they are annoying to deal with. he's probably just mad bc you guys didn't budge (good on you all) and wait for him like he thought you would. people like him need to be reminded that they are not the center of the universe

  • 1 month ago

    You handled it great, but don't think you should address him as a friend.  A friend would have waited and not been so rigid on the schedule, but have been accommodating because they are a friend.  Plus if you knew your "friend" to be unreliable, that is on you for inviting him to join you.

    If he was my friend I would have waited and gotten there a little later than I planned.  And if he canceled on leaving on Friday, I would not expect him to pay for a share of the hotel for a night he wasn't there.  

    Edit.  No, I didn't contradict myself.  There is a way of dealing with people and a different way you deal with people you call friends.  The people you call friends are people whom you accept despite their faults, just as they accept you despite all of yours.  You handled it well if it was just some random person, but not if that person was a friend.  Sorry I can't offer the validation you were seeking in this question, and was forced to tell you the truth (it can sting sometimes).

  • drip
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    Next time get everyone’s share of the hotel before hand. You will never see that money. 

    I have a friend that is ALWAYS late.  She showed up late for my daughter’s wedding. Actually the ceremony and most of the cocktail hour was over.  I haven’t planned anything with her since. 

    Do any of the other friends feel the same as you? Let them back you up. Why is he just mad at you? 

    People like this seem to think everyone else will just wait for them. That only they are just too busy to get someone on time. 

    There was nothing else you could of done or said. You made it clear all of you were meeting at  8am and leaving ASAP after that.  He was probably shock you did just that.

    There may not be a medium between asking him to out to do things and always having to wait on him to show up.  Are you willing to always wait on him?  Seems not.  

    If this is his normal behavior, always being late, then why not talk to him about it. We all love hanging out with you, but always being late when we plan things is just getting to be too much. We all make the effort to be on time.  We would appreciate it if you would do the same for us.  

    Or are you the only one that is fed up with his tardiness? 

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  • ?
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    i think you handled it the right way

  • 1 month ago

    Yes, you handled this theoretical scenario correctly (aside from telling him you were only going to wait until 8am, when the official departure time was 9am). 

    Ah yes, I see that now. In that case waiting only until 8am was a reasonable limitation, and you seem to have made it abundantly clear. The only reason I assumed the situation was theoretical is that it appears to violate a number of common-sense COVID precautions, and you don't seem like someone who would do that for recreational purposes. 

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