Reacting to a Friend’s Thoughts


I’ve got a good friend who likes to vent to me about work through text message. I’ve worked with her directly, and I have some thoughts and feelings about her work style. I’ve recognized that those thoughts come from my own manual, and I’ve done a pretty good job of managing them. I’ve also done a good job of creating some boundaries for myself, out of love, about working with her.

She’s now encountering some situations with other colleagues at work and asking me for advice/feedback on them. I do not feel that I can be honest with her without hurting our professional relationship/friendship. I do not want to discuss these things over text, yet she continues to text me about them. I’d like to set a boundary but also not hurt her feelings (ha! people pleasing). Any thoughts/advice on this?

On a side note, I’ve read before the advice not to coach others, and to be careful of judging others for not using thoughtwork. But I’ve also found that I don’t like to text with people about thoughts that I consider toxic or hurtful towards others. I’ve decided that’s a reasonable boundary to set for myself, but am starting to recognize that it might require me to realign some relationships/relationship patterns. Please let me know if this sounds like I’m fooling myself or cheating somehow.