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What do you call a person who sticks to you and try to be friend with you while you don’t like them very much but he or she keeps sticking to you and it really bothers you?

closed as off-topic by Lawrence, lbf, JJJ, Cascabel, Rand al'Thor Apr 7 at 15:51

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  • "Questions on choosing an ideal word or phrase must include information on how it will be used in order to be answered. For help writing a good word or phrase request, see: About single word requests" – Lawrence, lbf, Cascabel, Rand al'Thor
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    Could you have a look at the tag help for single-word-requests and translation please? In particular, we need to know how bad the word needs to be: fairly neutral ("hanger-on") or worse ("leech") or worse still? What is the connotation of your native word [and what is that, in which language?] Basically, you need to accept an answer, and the rest of the community needs to know how you will do that. – Andrew Leach Apr 6 at 9:30
  • Actually in my language (Persian) the word for it is زگیل if I wanna translate it in English it will be (wart) means someone who is always with you. He or she likes you but you’re not interested in them but, I know this is not the word I’m looking for. Wart is kind of skin issue. I think the word you gave me is used for people who somehow want to take advantage of you or use your money but, what I say is not about taking advantage. The person I mean is like that because they like you so they stick to you(they keep on messaging you, coming into your way,...)but you don’t like them enough to be – Shorecoral Apr 6 at 13:43
  • to be with them. The person I mean doesn’t want to take any advantages – Shorecoral Apr 6 at 13:43
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Several words come to mind:

  • parasite ( One who habitually takes advantage of the generosity of others without making any useful return.)
  • leech (One that preys on or clings to another; a parasite.)
  • barnacle (A person or thing that is difficult to get rid of)

All three words are highly metaphorical, but I find the third word quite apt for a person who clings to you and wants to be a friend but whom you have no intention of befriending.

You could also say that the person who wants to be your friend but will never be has established a non-symbiotic relationship with you. Symbiosis involves mutual benefit, whereas the relationship you describe has no beneficial mutuality, since it is all "one way."

Word History: The word barnacle is known from as far back as the early 13th century. At that time it did not refer to the crustacean, as it does today, but only to the species of waterfowl now more often known as the barnacle goose; more than 300 years went by before barnacle was used to refer to the crustacean. One might well wonder what the connection between these two creatures is. The answer lies in natural history.

Until fairly recent times, it was widely believed that certain animals were engendered spontaneously from particular substances. Maggots, for instance, were believed to be generated from rotting meat. Because the barnacle goose breeds in the Arctic, no one at that time had ever witnessed the bird breeding; as a result, it was thought to be spontaneously generated from trees along the shore, or from rotting wood. Wood that has been in the ocean for any length of time is often dotted with barnacles, and it was natural for people to believe that the crustaceans were also engendered directly from the wood, like the geese. In fact, as different as the two creatures might appear to us, they share a similar trait: barnacles have long feathery cirri that are reminiscent of a bird's plumage.

This led one writer in 1678 to comment on the "multitudes of little Shells; having within them little Birds perfectly shap'd, supposed to be Barnacles [that is, barnacle geese]." In popular conception the two creatures were thus closely linked. Over time the crustacean became the central referent of the word, and the bird was called the barnacle goose for clarity, making barnacle goose an early example of what we now call a retronym.

  • @Shorecoral: You're welcome. My pleasure. Don – rhetorician Apr 8 at 1:00

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