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My boyfriend's friend flirts with him

Posted by Meredith Goldstein  April 7, 2011 08:45 AM

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Book reviews will be posted tomorrow.


Q: Hi Meredith,

My boyfriend and I are happily in love, good for each other, and it's pretty great.

Recently, a friend of my boyfriend came on to him; she asked him to break up with me and be with her. I had always had my suspicions about this girl, and though I made them known, I never asked him not to see her or anything as they had been friends for years. She's one of those girls -- dresses just a little too provocatively, feels the need to touch members of the opposite sex while in conversation just a bit too often, and in my opinion, is obviously insecure.

After this happened, I was pretty upset, but decided that since he had done nothing wrong, I wouldn't let it ruin us. Unfortunately that's not the end of this story. She continues to periodically reach out to him to see how he is doing, make plans, etc. The message back to her has always been clear -- thanks, but no thanks.

It's inevitable that I will run into her at some point. Never once has she made any effort to acknowledge me (or her outrageous actions) when trying to get back into his life. How do I handle it when I see her? I know the high road is best, but I would really like to express to her that her inconsiderate actions were very hurtful to me and that she put my boyfriend in a terrible position (some friend, right?).

– Can I Put Her in Her Place and Still Be the Bigger Person?


A: Would you get anything out of telling her that she has been disrespectful? Besides the instant gratification of speaking your mind? I don't think you would, CIPHIHPASBTBP. She knows that she has misbehaved. She doesn't care. I know the high road seems, well, lame, but it's the safest route.

My advice is to be nice. Not just diplomatic, but really, really nice. You have some empathy for her -- you've already figured out that she's insecure -- so use that empathy to fuel your smiles. Ask her how she's doing. Remind her that you're in the room. Be genuine and friendly and maybe she'll learn to follow your lead.

As for your boyfriend, well, it's his job to keep you comfortable. It's his responsibility to set boundaries and to say to his so-called friend -- if it becomes necessary -- "I need you to respect and support my relationship." It sounds like he's figuring this out, and I'm glad he's keeping you in the loop.

Hang in there and stay on the high road. It's a good road to be on. You'll never have to doubt yourself up there.

Readers? Should she have a talk with the woman? Should the boyfriend be doing more to help? Should the LW engage this woman or ignore her? Discuss.

– Meredith


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ABOUT LOVE LETTERS: Welcome to Love Letters, the place for love advice (giving and getting). Globe relationship columnist Meredith Goldstein and Boston.com readers are ready to take your letters and tell you what's what. Have a question? Click here to submit or email us at loveletters@boston.com.
Blogger Meredith Goldstein

Meredith Goldstein is a Boston Globe columnist who follows relationship trends and entertainment. She offers daily advice on Love Letters — and welcomes your comments. Meredith is also the author of "The Singles," a novel about complicated relationships. Follow Meredith at www.meredithgoldstein.netand on Twitter. Love Letters can be found in the print edition of The Boston Globe every Saturday in the G section.

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