An askhole is basically a person who asks for your opinion or advice, yet never takes on your advice and does the opposite of what you told them. Askholes sometimes ask questions for the sake of asking questions or making conversation. They zone out when you give them an answer, and they always end up doing their own thing. They sometimes will even ask advice of multiple different people so they will eventually come across an answer that best suits what they want to hear.
To a certain extent I can understand the need to verbally process, as I am a verbal processor myself at times, but I do think that there is a time and place for genuinely asking advice, and then for just asking a friend to listen.
What it comes down to really is the seriousness of the topic in question, and the seriousness of the answer the ‘askhole’ is requiring. Sure, if Josephine asks Wanda for advice on what to feed her cat since he is lactose intolerant (yes that’s a thing, I Googled it), Wanda shouldn’t feel upset or disappointed if Josephine ends up buying milk for her cat anyway and then suffers the diarrhoea consequences after, Josephine should've known better anyway. But if Josephine asks Wanda for advice on how to break up with her boyfriend Steve, and then doesn’t end up breaking up with him at all, this may make Wanda feel like she put thought and effort into giving an answer that wasn’t really required, appreciated or acknowledged. Basically as a person being asked, you’ve got to pick your battles. Yes, I know, Josephine could’ve easily just found out what to feed her lactose intolerant cat by typing it in Google, but is that really worth getting annoyed about when she feeds her cat milk anyway? However, on the other hand, did Josephine really want to know what Wanda had to say in the potential break up situation, or did she just want to talk about her problems without actually doing anything to fix them?
I’m not necessarily saying that Josephine has to do exactly what Wanda suggests, but in my opinion you shouldn’t ask for advice on an issue unless you're willing to hear what the person has to say, and take it into consideration. Askholes can make their friends feel used and abused; as if they are just being used as person to go to when life gets tough, but never contacted during the good times. If you don't respect the person you're asking for advice from, don't ask them in the first place! By choosing to only ask people in our lives that have wisdom, have our best interests at heart and are willing to give us answers and advice that we may or may not want to hear, we may limit the quantity of answers we receive, but as a result, we gain a better quality and richness.
Additionally, askhole victims (or just people who are askholed (verb)) need to identify boundaries. My mum would always tell us “it takes two”, when it comes to conflict etc. So not all the blame can be placed on an askhole. If you know that a person only comes to you when they need advice or help, then set boundaries or lose expectations. Majority of the time people may become upset or offended because they expect their friend to take on everything they say, and follow their advice word for word, which of course, never happens. From personal experience I’ve found it easier if I say what my opinion or advice is (when asked) and then move on from the situation. I can’t say I didn’t try help, and now the ball is in their court as to whether they take on board what I’ve said or not. By not allowing myself to set too higher expectations, or by not getting too involved (physically or emotionally) in other peoples’ life issues, I am freed from potential disappointment or offense that could occur.
Are you an askhole? Do you spend most of your time asking other people questions? Or do you try to figure out some of the easy answers yourself (or on Google)? Do you ask certain people for advice that will give you the answer you want to hear, rather than what you need to hear? Think about how your friend may feel when you ask them for advice but then don't listen to anything they said.
To the victims:
Friendship is a two-way thing, a mutual exchange of love. When you stand your ground and set clear boundaries there is less conflict and hurt when your friends come to you for advice and opinions. With friendship comes a degree of responsibility and mutual effort. There's nothing worse than feeling used or treated unfairly.
To the askholes:
Carefully choose people in your life that you trust and will give you unbiased and wisdom-filled answers. Listen. Absorb. Reflect. You obviously want some type of guidance if you’ve asked the question in the first place, so listen to what your friend has to say, and respect their opinion. You don't have to do what they say, but keep in mind that they aren’t as emotionally involved as you are, so they can sometimes see a situation more clearer from the outside than you can from the inside.
Let’s start treating our friends the way we would want to be treated, and let's start communicating better with the people in our lives. So much confusion and offense can occur through misunderstandings, so if we learnt to be less vague and more straight up then maybe our friendships would benefit too.