To break off ties with a long-time friend for carrying on with a married man?

(18 Posts)

Will try and give all the backstory so as not to drip-feed. This is something that has been bothering me for a long time.

I met this friend when we were both teenagers, via a fan site. We used to instant message each other daily and got on really well - however, as we were both very young (she was 15 and I was 17), neither of our parents were thrilled about us wanting to swap addresses etc. When I turned 18 I moved out and wrote her my first letter - overseas to Australia. We began writing to each other once a month or so, and I now have a large box in my attic absolutely full of letters from 2003 to now, sharing hopes and fears, growing up together really.

We met for the first time in 2006 - she was travelling around Europe with her family and I went on my first solo travelling adventure to Paris to meet her. She then came to visit me and stayed with me for three weeks in summer 2007, and then when I got married in 2010 she came over to be a bridesmaid and ended up living with me and hubby for two months before getting a visa, moving to London and getting a job. It was great having her so close, but the closer we were, the more I noticed her irritating habits and frankly pretty immature behaviour - she'd get sulky if I was ever busy when she wanted to see me, she'd stop talking to me or hubby if we were too couple-y when the three of us were out together, she'd be quite bitchy about my other friends and generally just want me all to herself. This kind of culminated in one night where me and DH went out for drinks in London with her, and whilst drunk she attempted to kiss me whilst DH was getting more alcohol from an off license. I pushed her away and told her to stop being silly, her response was "Well I won't tell him... or he could join in?" I was disgusted, but joked it away and when hubby emerged we carried on with the evening and all was fine. I told him about it the next day and he agreed it was out of order but that she had always been a bit of a flirt.

Anyway, over Christmas she calls me to tell me all about this guy she's seeing. He's cute, artistic, great in bed... oh yeah, and married. With a kid. And she gets pissed at ME because I go all quiet when she's telling me about him and all the lovely things he's said to her. I didn't say anything unsupportive, just sort of... refused to comment. A few appropriately placed "uh-huh" and "mmm"s.

Unfortunately this isn't atypical behaviour for her - she's had a long, long history of kissing guys when they have girlfriends, and when we were just penfriends she used to write and tell me about copping off with her Australian best friend's bloke for well over three months. I just figured she's grow out of it - she was younger than me after all, and we can all be a bit stupid.

Since telling me about this affair she's having with this guy, I don't want to see her or call her because I really just don't want to hear about it. It breaks my heart when she tells me about how she was secretly holding hands with him with his wife in the same room, because all I can think about is how sad for his wife, and his little boy. It's a terrible shame because I am pregnant with my first, much longed for child, and there are so many moments I would have loved to call or write to share with her... but feel I can't because when I think about her now she doesn't seem like my friend anymore, she can't understand why I have a problem.

So... am I being unreasonable to not want to be friends with someone who literally sees nothing morally wrong with having an affair with a married man?? Even my mum has said to me I might be being unfair to her, and maybe I'm letting my own issues get in the way... please help, I feel like either way I'm totally failing as a friend right now.

Tee2072 Tue 26-Feb-13 13:22:36

People grow up and grow apart.

I'm wondering why you were 'disgusted' she tried to kiss you, however.

FellatioNels0n Tue 26-Feb-13 13:26:49

Say to her in a nice but firm way 'Look, it's really none of my business how you choose to conduct your private life but in view of the fact that I am married and expecting my first child I'd really rather not hear you gloat about this. I find it upsetting. If you want to continue with it then please spare me all the gory details.'

Depending on how she reacts, you either continue your friendship with her or you don't. You've known her a long time though so it would be shame to throw out all that history over this. Although it sounds as though you were always more in love with the romanticized idea of the long distance friendship, rather with the personality of the woman herself, so maybe it will be no great loss.

SenoritaViva Tue 26-Feb-13 13:30:10

It sounds to me like you're not that compatible. If she makes you uncomfortable and your lives are on different tracks then I don't see why you shouldn't end the friendship.

Tee I didn't read it as disgusted about the kiss but disgusted that she should suggest either not telling her DH or that they have a threesome.

Zaphiro Tue 26-Feb-13 13:33:02

I agree with Fellatio.

Zaphiro Tue 26-Feb-13 13:33:35

...Never thought I'd post that on the internet! hmm

BambieO Tue 26-Feb-13 13:35:33

zaphiro your comment really made me laugh, I was going to add 'don't we all' but thought it in poor taste grin

mmmuffins Tue 26-Feb-13 13:41:57

YANBU, she clearly has little respect for other people's marriages (yours included). I think you are perfectly reasonable to end the friendship, or do as Fellatio says and tell her not to talk about it as you find upsetting.

She sounds very silly and immature on the whole, so perhaps you're friendship really just has had it's run.

LessMissAbs Tue 26-Feb-13 13:45:14

Do you think shes making it up to shock you OP?

Tee, I was disgusted at her disregard for my husband and our marriage. I have had relationships with men and women in the past so that aspect of it wasn't a problem, just her attitude.

zaphiro your post made me chuckle too!

It's true that in person she's not quite who I thought she was when we were corresponding for years... it was wonderful to have a perfect confidante in her, and I suppose she saw me in the same way - maybe that's why she's upset with me now, because I'm no longer that person.

Maybe we have just grown apart sad I don't think she said it just to shock me, she's posted photos of him AND his little boy on Facebook (though seemingly as 'good friends'), the things she's said make it seem like she's totally idealised and romanticised the whole situation, like it's so wonderful how secret and whirlwind it all is... I can't get my head around someone being so incredibly self involved when there's a marriage and a child at stake. This man's poor wife even invited her over for New Year because she knew my friend had nowhere else to go (hubby and I were away).

kalidanger Tue 26-Feb-13 15:26:20

I don't think you really know her at all tbh. It might feel like it from the years of letters but that's entirely different to growing up from teens together. I hazard that if you'd met a sixth form in 199-something, for example, that you wouldn't still see her now. She's 70% a stranger and you don't like her much, right? So, don't see her.

You might be right kali. Thing is, we had years of great times too, and it's all those memories I will find hard to let go... we travelled together and went on random road trips together - she can be very warm and affectionate and generous, we have tons of in-jokes and when she lived here with me she helped me through a very rough patch prior to and just after getting married...

I will be sad to lose her.

kalidanger Tue 26-Feb-13 15:38:30

Oh OP it is sad sad I suppose it's one of those things that people settle down at different rates. She's still all over the place, getting into sexy scrapes and hijinks and its suddenly seeming a bit distasteful to you grin

FellatioNels0n Tue 26-Feb-13 15:58:37

She's posting photos of her married lover's child on FB and his wife doesn't even know he's being unfaithful? shock

That is fuckwittery of the highest order.

kalidanger Tue 26-Feb-13 16:01:54

Oh, the drama, Fellatio!! Won't it be so exciting!!1!!

greenfolder Tue 26-Feb-13 16:10:37

i would drop her like a stone. and tell her why.

Mumsyblouse Tue 26-Feb-13 16:14:09

Many of my friends have done some pretty silly things over the years, including seeing more than one man at once, having affairs etc. But, I guess I stuck by them because in the main, they knew they were doing the wrong thing, even if they didn't stop, IYSWIM. So, I wasn't forced to say 'great' but rather they were able to accept that I didn't think it a great idea.

But, if I was to get rid of every friend who had ever kissed someone who was not their husband/had an affair/done some other thing I didn't personally think was a good idea I wouldn't have many friends. This has died down in recent years, now we are all early forties with children we are mostly too tired for such nonsense, it was more early-twenties etc.

I don't think you have to be friends with her, if you dread calling her, perhaps stop for a while and see what happens.

HoHoHoNoYouDont Tue 26-Feb-13 16:17:10

If she was my friend I wouldn't necessarily defriend her for seeing a married man if she didn't already have form for this kind of behaviour. However taking into account other behaviour you have mentioned then I would probably defriend her. I certainly wouldn't trust her around my partner that's for sure.

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