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On hols with bickering friends

(24 Posts)
Clearoutre Tue 02-Jun-15 00:44:06

I'm friends with a couple who are lovely people, we went on holiday and the experience revealed near constant bickering between them followed by 'making up' as we were out and about (that sounds so teen-like as I type!). Most of it seemed to be the guy picking the girl up on a dozen things - pulling her aside and saying don't do/say this and that. I seriously can't figure out what his problem was as she's lovely and good fun - certainly not rowdy, offensive or anything that would warrant bring pulled up on like that!

My issue is that I asked the girl if things were ok and I'm pretty sure he overheard me - she changed the subject instantly and he now seems to be pretty angry with me, he can't/won't even look me in the eye. I wish I'd kept my big mouth shut, I was just concerned. Half of me thinks he must be embarrassed at what he overheard but I'm also annoyed with myself for sticking my nose in AND I obviously wasn't subtle about it which may well have made things worse between them.

Lesson very much learnt but how unreasonable is his behaviour towards me? After my spectacularly uhelpful show of concern, I feel I can only wait for the dust to settle.

BertieBotts Tue 02-Jun-15 00:56:10

He sounds like an abusive twat.

Yes I'm jumping wildly to conclusions. But really. He sounds like one.

lilbert08 Tue 02-Jun-15 00:59:39

What friend wouldn't ask their friend if they were ok after a row with their partner. Sounds a right wanker tell him to fuck off!

missingmumxox Tue 02-Jun-15 01:08:08

Is this a parent and child as you say girl?
Worst case EA or best case a relationship in freefall, I witnessed it on holiday once about 20 years ago only it was the men of TWO! couples who where being criticised constantly fortunately there where 4 other couples.

They where not my friends but awkward ... Both couples split up weeks later one lady just to be single the other to move in with the lady she had been having an affair with.

Topseyt Tue 02-Jun-15 01:10:51

If he is sulking with you then ask him a direct question about it.

Tell him that his sulking is childish and is ruining your break, and ask him to stop.

If he won't stop the you and his girlfriend go out without him so that you can at least have a conversation in peace.

Canyouforgiveher Tue 02-Jun-15 01:49:29

Depends on how old you are - and how old your relationships are - in my mind. If you are all in your 20s or so then they may be lovely people who are in the end stages of a relationship. They'll become lovely people again when they split or resolve whatever is bugging them.

If you are all 10 years together then possibly they are going through a rough time or possibly he is being a bit of a bastard to her.

If this is their normal way of being together, I just wouldn't go on hols with them again (very few people I would go on hols with tbh)

No matter what the scenario, you were perfectly reasonable to ask her if everything is ok.

If he gives you the evil eye again, why not go over to him and ask him if he has a problem with you as he seems angry?

FastWindow Tue 02-Jun-15 01:54:24

Well if they are bickering in your presence on your holiday, it becomes your business and he has no right to think you are interfering. Front him up if you can, but if it were me I'd up sticks. Can't be having with that. It's your holiday.

FruChristerOla Tue 02-Jun-15 09:51:08

He sounds like a controlling arse.

You can hardly be blamed for asking her if she's OK - especially if you've never seen this behaviour in their relationship before.

flora717 Tue 02-Jun-15 10:00:32

I'd be asking if they're always like that or if the guy is under some sort of stress.
Abusers do get bloody angry when they're behaviour is called out.

ApeMan Tue 02-Jun-15 10:24:41

Personally I would disappear for increasingly long periods without saying why until they get the message. That way nobody can unfairly accuse you of interfering for trying to enjoy your own holiday.

My advice is don't insert yourself into a common or garden tiff, as you will probably just escalate it by sticking your oar in, which could ruin the whole holiday even more. They might even both be annoyed at you afterwards.

You have my sympathies as you have been put in a horrible position, it is bang out of fucking order for them to put you in it.

morelikeguidelines Tue 02-Jun-15 10:30:54

Sounds like he is being abusive to me, although I admit I'm basing on very little info.

Agree that this also explains him being angry, as a normal partner would appreciate your concern for his dp/girlfriend.

morelikeguidelines Tue 02-Jun-15 10:33:20

You do have my sympathy though, as my parents tend to keep up a low level bicker at all times these days and it is exhausting to be around. Just because they disagree about everything, but also my dad has asd (imo) and tends to panic about everything, especially timings and queues.

viva100 Tue 02-Jun-15 10:38:05

YANBU for asking if she's ok, I would have doen the same. A similar thing happened to me but the couple were staying at our place so we had to put up with them huffing and puffing and not talking to each other for 2 days. What possesses people to be this inconsiderate, I'll never know.

I think you need to take a step back and do some activities separately from them if you can for the rest of the holiday. They have issues and they need to resolve them between them.

WowProjectingMuch Tue 02-Jun-15 10:39:04

Id try and leave the room as soon as they start and would make it very obvious that it irritated me. It does depend on the level of bickering though

I have friends who bicker all the time- it extremely annoying- they have been married for years and I am not sure that they see it as a problem

Clearoutre Tue 02-Jun-15 20:29:05

Thanks for all these helpful comments - I'm encouraged that it was reasonable for me to show concern...we have 2 more nights left together smile

Am caught between wondering if this is inconsiderate behaviour or a worrying insight. I thought he seemed to be totally unreasonably overstepping boundaries and frankly pestering her although my tolerance to this sort of behaviour is SO low I'm not sure if I'm the best judge. Apologies for confusing references to 'guy' and 'girl' - they are a married man & woman, early-30s. Yes I will re-think any more trips with them...

CrapBag Tue 02-Jun-15 22:02:52

You were not being U to ask. I'd say this is an insight into his behaviour and she was too embarrassed to tell you or didn't want to within his earshot.

I certainly wouldn't go away with him again (or socialise actually).

fourchetteoff Tue 02-Jun-15 22:07:41

Who else is on the holiday? Is he avoidable? How is she acting now?

Aermingers Tue 02-Jun-15 22:16:31

People do tend to bicker a lot on holiday. I know my DH drives me up the wall and we really needle each other when we're together.

You do tend to have people on Mumsnet jump to exactly the worst conclusion of the bloke on very little evidence. It's hard to see into people's relationships just via a week or so away. I know I have friends who would tell you that I am lovely and great fun, but I also know that I am a very hard person to live with.

Also you potentially don't know exactly what is going on. For all you know the day before they came away he discovered that she had been sleeping with the plumber, the electrician, their bank manager, their next door neighbour and their bisexual dog groomer Sue. And he's putting on a brave face. Maybe she has a tendency to drink to much and embarrass herself and he's trying to protect her?

If I was you I would put up with it for the rest of the holiday and tackle your friend about it when you are at home and away from her DH to find out if there is a problem.

If there is really something sinister going on you making a big deal out of it on the holiday in a way that is noticeable to him is probably not going to help her but will be more likely to get her thumped when you're out of the way.

Wait until you are somewhere neutral and he's out of the way before you tackle it.

maddening Tue 02-Jun-15 22:18:35

How do you know this couple?

BertieBotts Tue 02-Jun-15 22:20:39

Yes it is a small snapshot, but even if this was a one off it's still alarming. No normal relationship involves overstepping boundaries, or constantly nitpicking.

Please feel free to explain to me in which situation these things would be okay, otherwise I stand by my snap judgement.

HoldYerWhist Tue 02-Jun-15 22:23:16

Is it just you on holiday with them? How awkward for you.

Aermingers Tue 02-Jun-15 22:29:34

If you want to see a situation where a lot of people were saying it was okay I suggest you look for the thread from yesterday where people were moaning about their husbands breathing/the way they get into bed/them looking at them the wrong way etc was annoying. It was called something like AIBU to kill DH.

WhereYouLeftIt Tue 02-Jun-15 22:39:05

"he now seems to be pretty angry with me, he can't/won't even look me in the eye."

"Half of me thinks he must be embarrassed at what he overheard but I'm also annoyed with myself for sticking my nose in AND I obviously wasn't subtle about it which may well have made things worse between them."

Oh, I reckon you were right the first time - he is angry, not embarrassed. You see, by asking her, you MAY have planted the seen in her mind that maybe his behaviour is not the normal, loving, concerned and caring behaviour he may have convinced her that it is. She MIGHT start to question his behaviour and ask him to behave more respectfully towards her.

Yep, he's angry.

And you were right to ask her if she was OK.

BertieBotts Fri 05-Jun-15 23:30:21

That's not remotely the same thing. Getting annoyed at tiny things your partner does is perfectly normal. Joking hyperbolically about it on a talk board is harmless. Berating and picking nastily at them about it would be abusive, from anybody.

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