I play third wheel a lot with two friends. They sell weed and I love smoking weed, so it works out pretty good. I get high, they get to hang with someone as cool as me. Anyways, he is a long-time friend and she has been with him for about two years…and she is bad news. She is unemployed, and sleeps, eats, or watches TV pretty much all day. She is also incredibly bossy to everyone, but especially my friend. She is an all-around bad person and a horrible influence on my friend–they do a ton of cocaine and even smoke crack! I want my friend to do better. I am super nice to her though and hang out with her all the time for free weed. He has never had a girlfriend before her, and I feel like she robbed him of relationships he would actually enjoy and benefit from. He doesn’t seem happy…but I can’t say anything, can I?

TC Rambler

You can say something, and you should…

…but first you have to give up the free weed hookup.

There’s a lot going on here; your friend is likely with this person both out of mutual dependency (nothing makes occasional crack-smoking seem like less of a big deal than making it a group activity) and low self-esteem (the “never had a girlfriend before” thing is almost certainly contributing on that front).

Both those things are going to make it really hard to get him out of this relationship; it’s scary enough for anyone to end things, but if you have it in your head that a.) you’re probably not good enough for anyone else and b.) you might have to address a crack habit if you leave, well…you might not leave.

You don’t have to put that into words for your friend. In fact you shouldn’t. You also shouldn’t tell him that you think his girlfriend is lazy and a horrible influence; he’ll probably defend her at least in part because defending her is also defending other bad choices he’s made…and which, without her, he’d have to face up to as his own responsibility.

What you can do: tell him that you care about him, and that you’re worried. That some of the things he’s doing lately–mainly the crack–make you scared for him, and that you know he could do better. And then tell him VERY GENTLY that you think maybe the girlfriend is making it harder for him to change his life, and that you believe that he deserves better.

Then stop hanging out with them. And (sorry) abandon your free weed hookup.

Tell him that you want to stay friends, but that you don’t want to enable him in self-destruction, and that you feel dishonest playing nice with someone you think is hurting him. If you want your words to resonate, they have to come with consequences; the one you have it in your power to control is your

Your friend needs to hear these things, but until you’re willing to put your money where your mouth–and pot source–is, it won’t sink in.