My best friend's girl on my other best friend's knee
January 25, 2008 11:23 PM   Subscribe

So I saw a best friend's leg adorned by another best friend's fiance's hand. This is not the first time I have witnessed this, but it is the first I have independent verification.

I have mentioned that I saw this to the leg'ed friend. He claims it would be rude to refuse. I asked about how rude it would be to her fiance if he found out. Awkwardness ensued. Both these guys were groomsmen at my wedding, I love and trust the both dearly. Where do I go from here?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (24 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
This is not infidelity. If you trust him like you say you do, leave it be. It's really not your place to do or say anything.
posted by bigmusic at 11:42 PM on January 25, 2008 [2 favorites]

Mind your own business.
posted by Roman Graves at 11:43 PM on January 25, 2008 [4 favorites]

Well, you give no information on the engaged friend, but the one who thinks it's okay to help himself to someone's fiancee sure sounds like a treacherous dick, so I know which friend I'd be less sorry to lose.
posted by Krrrlson at 11:44 PM on January 25, 2008

A truth -- in cases like this the messenger often gets shot. I once had to tell my best friend about seeing his girlfriend making out with a guy. He yelled at me and didn't dump her, which made for unpleasant times for everyone. You might ask them to do you the favor of being discrete enough to leave you out of the flirtation/affair, with the addendum that if you ever see anything again you squeal.
posted by Bookhouse at 11:46 PM on January 25, 2008

Talk to the other best friend, the engaged one. I'm of the intervention camp. It is your place. You'd ask the same of your pals. Anything else is dishonest, although I'm entirely aware that this is meddling and such and you might get your hair torn out, but really, life's a fucking shit that way, ain't it? The situation would be drastically different if you didn't know the engaged one -- like 180 degrees different.
posted by incessant at 11:51 PM on January 25, 2008 [1 favorite]

It's not your place. It's enough that the people involved know that other people know about the flirtatious stuff...

Leave it alone...
posted by wfrgms at 11:51 PM on January 25, 2008

Flirting is flirting. In my country you'd be laughed at for even considering this a big deal. It's not like you saw them engaging in orgasm-possible sexual activity or even smooching. So drop it.
posted by Dee Xtrovert at 12:23 AM on January 26, 2008

Leg touching? Relatively meaningless to my friends. Potentially very meaningful to other people. Without knowing for sure what leg touching means (and how was the leg touched? Was it partytime everyone drunk hanging out, or was it loving, eye-staring, stroking?) to every party involved you're going to be walking into disaster (and might be anyway, as others have pointed out).

That being said, if leg touching is indeed OMGADULTARAY to y'all, I'd say either 1) talk again to the touchee and say, fella, sometimes you gotta be rude. Stand up and set your boundaries; or, 2) talk to the toucher and ask her what's going on? Don't get too accusatory 'cause you may not know what leg touching means to her. Tell her you don't feel comfortable with it and that yr boys don't feel comfortable with it and it's probably best not to continue the activity. And use lots of "I" statements.
posted by wemayfreeze at 12:32 AM on January 26, 2008

A lesson in business:

It's none of yours.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 3:58 AM on January 26, 2008 [3 favorites]

but the one who thinks it's okay to help himself to someone's fiancee sure sounds like a treacherous dick

Really? I'd say the fiancee is the treacherous dick, as she's the one who's actually made the promise to someone else. Sure, the guy is also an asshole, but..
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 6:11 AM on January 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

posted by lungtaworld at 6:21 AM on January 26, 2008

this is somebody else's personal problem. don't make it your personal problem. there's enough trouble in the course of a day without actually going out and looking for it.
posted by bruce at 6:52 AM on January 26, 2008

Well, just to play devil's advocate, put yourself in the shoes of the touchee and assume he's being honest with you: A friend's fiancee is being borderline flirtatious with you, but if you call her out on it then you're making a pretty serious accusation. And it's not quite overt flirtation, and you don't know how people would react if you said anything, so you just keep your mouth shut and pretend it's no big deal.

Sounds plausible to me. I'd stay out of it until you see something that is unmistakably out of line.
posted by AV at 6:58 AM on January 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

You've already done the best thing you can do, which is acknowledge to your friend that he witnessed the behavior and that you're not cool with it. This means he'll either cut it out entirely, or continue to enjoy it in a way that keeps you in the dark.

You can't take this any further without being a serious drama queen.
posted by hermitosis at 7:19 AM on January 26, 2008 [2 favorites]

There are plausible explanations for your friend's behavior (the touchee), such as him feeling uncomfortable with calling her out, etc. There are fewer plausible explanations for the toucher's behavior. You've already told the touchee that this seemed inappropriate. If anything IS going on, he's on notice now that you know about it. If it's simply the girl trying to flirt with him, well, is that worth risking 2 great friendships over?

I'd just make a note of what you saw, and if more problems arise, then go to the girl's fiance. If you had an open enough friendship where you could just tell the guy without it being a big deal, you would have done so already. Let it go, for now.
posted by Happydaz at 9:23 AM on January 26, 2008

A claim that 'it would be rude to refuse' sounds like there has been a lot more going on that he has been to polite to decline.

Boot him out of your circle and let him go find another little group of innocents to prey upon; he may be acting the friend (look carefully, I think you'll see you've all been making a lot of excuses for this guy), but the warmth is about a millimeter deep, if that. Then tell your other friend what you saw his fiance doing. Probably he'll explode and you'll lose him for at least a year, but even if he never returns to you, he will look back at this with the perspective of years, and know what true friendship is.

I've done a lot of damage to my friends, my family and myself by opening my mouth and letting out whatever wanted out, but the things that wake me up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat are the things I didn't say.
posted by jamjam at 9:25 AM on January 26, 2008

Yeah, the way I read the question, it seemed there was more than innocent leg-touching going on.
posted by Krrrlson at 9:44 AM on January 26, 2008

Yeah, the way I read the question, it seemed there was more than innocent leg-touching going on.

I read it the same way, but my answer remains the same:

You did as much as you should do by letting the leg'ed friend know he was observed. Now back off and let nature take its course -- you trying to guide the outcome will be counterproductive no matter what the real situation is.
posted by tkolar at 12:02 PM on January 26, 2008

Agree that you've done your part, and now it's time to back off.
posted by desuetude at 12:38 PM on January 26, 2008

I disagre that it's none of your business. If it turns out to be something more, and your engaged friend found out that you knew, would he say "I don't care that you didn't mention it, it's none of your business"? I doubt it.

You said you spoke to the touchee and he thought it'd be rude to refuse. Did he mention if anything else had happened? What he'd do if it did? What he'd think about your engaged friend finding out? If your friend (touchee) seems to know that there are boundaries here, then just leave it- there's no point making a huge deal out of relatively little. If, however, he thinks there's nothing wrong with it and nothing wrong with anything more happening, I'd first try to explain why that's dodgy, then, as a last resort, cautiously explain your worried to the engaged friend.
posted by twirlypen at 1:18 PM on January 26, 2008

If it was me and my girl was touching up my friends, I'd want to know. You can mention it and not be accusatory I think. "Hey is she normally a touchy feely kinda gal? Yeah? Cool, just lookin out for ya man..." My ex fiance did flirt excessively and it did lead to a breakup.
posted by CwgrlUp at 2:51 PM on January 26, 2008

None of your business. And if you chose the meddling route, you would be making the assumption that you fully understand your friends' relationships, which is a very bad assumption to make. Nobody understands a relationship unless they're in it.
posted by lackutrol at 4:32 PM on January 26, 2008

Well, to be fair, her wanton ways would seriously devalue her bride price.

Oh, wait, you're not in Yemen? Then this is probably nothing more than affectionate and friendly touching. Had I not been raised by Germans, I might be able to give you examples.
posted by klangklangston at 7:20 PM on January 26, 2008 [3 favorites]

anonymous, the circumspect manner by which you worded your question is causing some confusion.

Did you witness a gesture which was indicative of:

a) an affair between the two, clearly;
b) mutual prurient interest with a possible intention of consummation;
c) prurient interest on the part of the engaged woman (i.e., flirtation); or,
d) an improper appearance of over-familiarity, perhaps, but without indication of infidelity?

(If you ask, the moderators will post your reply for you to maintain your anonymity.)
posted by desuetude at 8:40 PM on January 26, 2008

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