Are you done dealing with freeloaders and moochers in your social circle? | sex and relationships | Hindustan Times
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Are you done dealing with freeloaders and moochers in your social circle?

If you don’t want to drill a hole in your wallet then you ought to know how to deal with friends and family members, who mooch off your hard-earned money.

sex and relationships Updated: Dec 05, 2017 19:15 IST
Abhinav Verma
The word ‘mooch’ became famous because of the hit American TV show Two and a Half Men, in which actor Jon Cryer,who played the role of Alan Harper, mooches of his elder brother Charlie Harper,  played by actor Charlie sheen.
The word ‘mooch’ became famous because of the hit American TV show Two and a Half Men, in which actor Jon Cryer,who played the role of Alan Harper, mooches of his elder brother Charlie Harper, played by actor Charlie sheen.

Some of us have friends who always help us out, and share things with us. And some of us have freeloaders, moochers aka leeches, who masquerade as friends. These are a special breed as they have an uncanny ability to borrow things and not return them ever. They also tag along for a meal without ever splitting the bill. Moochers and freeloaders skill set lies in exploiting the fact that you are generous, and too nice to do anything about it. So, if you have a friend who mooches off you, and you don’t know how to deal with him/her, then here’s what you need to do to stop them from freeloading off you.

Understand the type:

1)The constant borrower

The borrower is perpetually in need of money. This one cleverly manipulates your emotions, by sweet talking you into lending cash. They also provide convincing reasons for borrowing money such as: “If you don’t lend me money for rent then I’ll be on the streets!” And when you ask for your money back, they keep giving excuses like: “As soon as I get my salary, I’ll give it back to you.”

By giving one excuse after another, they hope that you will eventually forget that you owe money to them.

2)The moocher

We all have that one (or if you are too sweet then more than one) friend or family member, who crashes at our place because they’ve had a bad breakup or because they can’t pay the rent anymore, and need a place to stay. However, the problem starts when you suddenly realise that their temporary arrangement has become a permanent one. They mooch off your food, electricity and everything, and don’t even consider contributing to your house in any capacity. These moochers are like worst nightmares coming true!

3)The evader

The evader, also known as the artful dodger, is a smooth operator when it comes to freeloading free meals. Every time you are out with your friends for food, the artful dodger will manage to sneak out and avoid paying for their share of partake. A common trick they pull is whenever the cheque is called for, the evaders excuse themselves to head to the washroom. And by the time they come back, the bill is already paid for.

How to deal with them?

Dealing with friends and relatives who are freeloaders and moochers is a bit tricky. If you decide to be brutally honest, then you can end up burning all bridges with them. And that’s fine if you want it that way. However, if you want to preserve your friendship then a little bit of subtlety is required.

When dealing with the borrower, you can try to divert the conversation by changing the topic or simply explain that even you are short on cash. And while having this conversation, if you want to enquire why your friend is always in this situation, you can subtly ask: “Hey, am worried for you. Lately you have been having monetary troubles.”

As for the moocher, don’t say yes to them moving in until they specifically tell you when they are moving out. Also, when you have this conversation, casually ask them: “You will be cleaning the house right?” This will ensure that the moocher knows that they can’t stick around for long.

And when you are dealing with the artful dodger, stop inviting them for meals, and being hopeful that they become aware that you know how they evade the bill. Another way to get them to pay their share is when you make a plan with them, you can say: “It’s your treat right? Since I paid last time!” if this doesn’t work then it’s time to move away from such friends.

With inputs from psychologist and counsellor Dr Anil Sethi.

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