The age-old advice to never lend your friends money is sometimes ignored but always the best advice in the end. You could be the best and closest friends, but a simple money lend can always go wrong.
It’s along the same lines as: “Don’t move in with your best friend” and “Never go into business with family”. These gems of wisdom are often tried and tested and in some cases, proven wrong. But the average person with average friends should think twice before handing over any cash.
Friends and money come together in awkward situations in various forms and it doesn’t always have to be about a loan. Friends who make different salaries can often forget that one of them is at a lower pay scale than the other. For example, in an episode of Friends, the group is split down the middle on the income ladder and the friends on top don’t seem to notice.
Sometimes a loan isn’t welcome, either. The wealthier friend sometimes pays for an item or two without asking. This can be misinterpreted like in this Seinfeld scene when Elaine is just trying to be nice.
But there are times when a loan between friends doesn’t end in resentment and hurt feelings between friends. In an episode of The Big Bang Theory, Sheldon lends Penny a significant amount of money to help her stay afloat and doesn’t seem to be bothered in the slightest.
It might be worth noting, however, that it’s likely Sheldon and Penny’s situation worked out because of Sheldon’s serious lack of social skills and awareness of social protocol. While this situation ended peacefully between the friends, the test subjects are skewed and don’t portray the realistic or likely response to friends entering into a financial agreement of this nature.
Friends and money are bound to collide once in a while, but to save your friendship, it might be wise to seriously consider making any promises, assumptions or deals that one of you might not be able to keep. Enter into an agreement with clear expectations and perhaps even a specific time frame. (And don’t tell your friend, but it might be wise not to expect the whole amount back). This may sound cold and business-like and counter-intuitive when dealing with friends, which supports the point that friends and money don’t always mix.
Has a friend ever borrowed money from you? How did it turn out? Tell us about it in the comments below.