Beliefnet
Everyday Ethics

lipstick-on-collar-cropped-300x257.jpgWhen I say this happened to a friend and not me, I really actually mean it. My friend had a dinner party at her summer place with some old friends–two couples, plus herself and her own boyfriend. Drinks went around (she herself abstained) and things got merry. One of the guys accidentally broke something; I windowpane, I believe, and was very apologetic. Anyhow, everyone went home, and my friend got ready for bed.

Then the guy started texting her. Only, it wasn’t to apologize again about the window, it was to see if he could come over and hang out. Of course my friend was appalled. But she actually wasn’t that surprised. The guy had a history of stepping out on his girlfriend, who was my friend’s primary friend. (Getting confused yet?) She texted back that she hoped everyone had had a great time, especially he AND HIS GIRLFRIEND, and that she AND HER BOYFRIEND were going to bed. They’d see him another time.
Now, here’s what interests me. She felt no loyalty to protect the guy, but she also didn’t feel a need to tell the girl the exact nature of what had happened. She made sure to mention the ‘extracurricular’ contact to her friend, but did not stress her suspicions about the guy’s intentions, not feeling that it was her place. She figured she’d want to know if her boyfriend had made contact with another woman, but that was where her responsibility left off. Especially so since she knew their relationship fairly well.
So my question is, would you do the same? Or would you not even mention the text message at all? I’d like to think I would do what my friend did, remaining neutral while still providing my friend the necessary facts, but I know I’d be tempted to scream, “Get away from this guy, he’s a dirtbag who’s only going to do you harm!” I’d want to point out his behavior as part of my argument to dissuade her from seeing him.
When it comes to our friends’ love-lives, how much interference is too much?
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