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by Abigail Van Buren

Friend Feels Used When Meal Turns Into Sales Pitch

DEAR ABBY: "Lila," a friend from my high school days I hadn't seen for years, called me out of the blue and said her mom wanted to see me again. Her mother and I had been friends for years. "Mom" was a special lady, and I always admired her, so I agreed.

When I arrived at the restaurant, I greeted them and we engaged in a little conversation. When I went to order, Lila pulled out a sales book she was selling items out of. Because I didn't want to disappoint her mother, I looked at each item. The only thing I could afford was an umbrella for $29. I already had a $5 one at home (my budget).

Abby, I felt used and insulted. Lila's only goal was selling me something -- not reuniting me with her mother. Lila is better off financially than I am. She owns her own home and drives a brand-new SUV. My car was bought used for $2,000.

How do I tolerate a person like her? She wants all she can get, even if it means using an old friend. By the way, she was decked out in her fashionable finest and ordered the cheapest thing on the menu. -- SAD FRIEND ON THE EAST COAST

DEAR SAD FRIEND: You do not have to tolerate a person like Lila, and you should not feel pressured to buy something from anyone that you don't want or need. If Lila calls again, inform her that you are not interested in anything she is selling and end the call.

Read more in: Money | Friends & Neighbors