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AIBU or more accurately, am I being manipulative?

(28 Posts)
NKfell Mon 22-Jun-15 14:39:04

I'll try and be as objective as I can- my friend was with a man, had a baby then HE cheated her and then HE broke up with her.

She was single for a longish time (4 yrs)- with full custody of their child. He is a good Dad as in he has his son frequently and seems OK- the child loves him. Him and my friend have got on very well over the years as 'almost' friends- as in completely friendly but only spend any time together at their DC's birthdays, Christmas etc. I've always been very polite to him, I don;t think he's the devil incarnate or anything and my DP is a friend of his (not close but, they play a sport together).

He has since had several girlfriends some longer term than others. My friend went out on a date and started seeing someone a month or so ago. Her ex went crazy and told her she should "concentrate on being a good mother".

So, this was a few weeks ago so I've heard her initial anger turn to upset and now to considering asking him to give HER another chance because this jealousy must mean he wants her, in her eyes.

My DP told me to stay out of it because quite rightly it's none of my business but this weekend DP called me manipulative by offering my opinion to my friend who was at our house. My opinion is that he wants to keep my friend in a little box so no one can have her but I'm not convinced he wants her and in my opinion she shouldn't consider asking him anything.

Am I being manipulative when it's my opinion that my friend asked for? I know I'm being sensitive but DP overheard me saying my opinion again this morning to my friend and DP said "stop trying to manipulate her and let her make her own decision".

I don't like the idea of being manipulative.

haveabreakhaveakitkat Mon 22-Jun-15 14:47:39

Manipulating means trying to get someone to do something to benefit yourself. You're not doing that, so you're not being manipulative. You're giving advice that any good friend would give. You obviously know the situation well and can see it from an outside perspective. If your friend is asking for your opinion then you're doing nothing wrong.

redshoeblueshoe Mon 22-Jun-15 14:50:23

I don't think your being manipulative, I think you are just being a friend. Does she know he has seen other women ?

JeffTheGodOfBiscuits Mon 22-Jun-15 14:51:58

Sounds like truthful to me, not manipulative. The ex is the one being manipulative, how dare he try to tell your friend what she can do, and that dating makes her a bad mother! You sound like a good friend to me.

Also how can she want another chance with him, her phrasing of that sounds like she thinks she was in the wrong at the end of the relationship, not the ex who sounds like a controlling arse.

Ooh, I've got more annoyed the more I've replied!

Golfhotelromeofoxtrot Mon 22-Jun-15 14:56:08

He doesn't know what the word manipulative means, unless you have some personal fair from them not being together.

You may be trying to pressurise her into making a decision you approve of- but to be fair, watching someone in this situation would be painstaking. It would make me very frustrated too.

Why does your DP not want you to give your opinion? Does he think she should try again with him?

SurlyCue Mon 22-Jun-15 14:56:42

I agree with others, you are not at all manipulating your friend, you are looking out for her! This is what friends for and why she asked your opinion. I agree with you too. She needs to close the book with this guy. He doesnt want her, but seems like one of those controlling idiots "i dont want her but dont want anyone else to have her" ive never understood the logic behind this but it exists. Not sure what your DH's problem is. I'd be questioning that tbh.

ollieplimsoles Mon 22-Jun-15 14:56:59

Her ex is a bell end, I would make sure my friend didn't go this route. She is obviously shaken by his response to her having a new partner. Its a classic- he doesn't want her, but he doesn't want any one else to have her. Probably doesn't like the idea of another guy near his dc either, but he can have another partner. Controlling, cunty behaviour.

ApocalypseNowt Mon 22-Jun-15 14:59:36

I'm wondering if your DP has been given a very different story by your friend's ex or something. Seems quite an odd and strong reaction otherwise.

Fwiw I don't think you're being manipulative at all. You sound like you're being a friend.

DoJo Mon 22-Jun-15 15:02:21

I agree with PPs - if you were going to benefit in some way from her deciding not to hang around and wait for this man, then maybe it would be considered manipulative. However, offering your honest opinion because you think your friend is misinterpreting the situation and allowing herself to be strung along by someone who clearly does not have her best interests at heart is not manipulative, it's called being a good friend.

MaxPepsi Mon 22-Jun-15 15:10:19

My first thought, before you said it yourself, is, he doesn't want her but he doesn't want anyone else to have her.

I had a 'friend' like this, knew I liked him, however he wasn't ready to settle down. Fair enough, I tried to move on, but at each and every turn he was there sticking his oar in and basically warning other men off me. I was so besotted with him, despite realising he was a selfish arse, that I was totally convinced it was because he had feelings for me.

How I wish I had had a friend like you to tell me straight.

No way are you being manipulative.

NKfell Mon 22-Jun-15 15:16:46

Thank you very much. It's such a horrible thing to be accused of, several times!

I won't gain anything other than peace of mind that my friend isn't pandering to that numpty.

I haven't even bitched about him other than saying I think he's a hypocrite and has no right dictating who my friend can or rather cannot see.

I know it's not my business and won't be anything but my usual to him (civil) when I see him next. I'm not saying "don't get with him or I won't be your friend". I'm just sat here at work worried about her because I know she does love him and irritated that my lovely friend feels like she is the one who needs a 'chance'.

Regarding my DP, I think he feels sorry for him. DP said he'd hate the idea of someone dating me and being with our children. I totally get this and I'm not trying to bitch about the guy, I just don't think he's treated my friend properly and when my friend asks for my advice unfortunately for him it isn't in his favour. I will try and point out to my friend that I think she can do better and that she doesn't need a 'chance' but I don't want to manipulate her!

NKfell Mon 22-Jun-15 15:22:50

I meant to say, I'm so frustrated that at every turn he always has the power/control.

He cheated, he broke up, she begged him to take her back at the time, he decided they could be friends, he has girlfriends, she can't see anyone, she has to apologise for seeing someone, he then decides to forgive her, she wants to ask him for a chance.

In every other aspect she's a strong woman- she works and raises her child on her own with no family just friends (probably all 'manipulative' like me!). Is super organised and a lovely person. When it comes to him, she's like a different person.

MrsTedCrilly Mon 22-Jun-15 15:25:12

Your DP has a strange view on things. First of all you are not being manipulative, that is a strong word to use.. You are caring about your friends happiness. Second of all he feels sorry for this man! A man who cheated and broke up with HER, she hasn't dated for FOUR years and now that she is he is getting wound up? Poor woman, is she not allowed to see anyone until their child is 16!? Your DP should be feeling sorry for her, not him. Disgusting attitudes.

NorahDentressangle Mon 22-Jun-15 15:35:52

In affairs of the heart she is 99.99% likely not to listen to you.

So advise but prob wasting your time. Better just take her out somewhere or babysit, leave her to work it out.

MrsTerryPratchett Mon 22-Jun-15 15:39:55

Regarding my DP, I think he feels sorry for him. DP said he'd hate the idea of someone dating me and being with our children. I would be making it very plain that the time to worry about that was when this man was lying, cheating and betraying his GF, not afterwards.

NKfell Mon 22-Jun-15 15:58:12

MrsTerry I completely agree, I said imagine if it was his sister or our daughter when she's an adult- somehow I doubt he's be feeling sorry for him.

Jackw Mon 22-Jun-15 16:50:43

You are being a good friend. Your friend's ex sounds awful, is she supposed to spend the rest of her life in purdah while he shags around? What a bastard. Your husband needs telling his friend is a bastard.

NKfell Tue 23-Jun-15 12:37:34

She asked him for another chance, he said he didn't feel ready to commit but would feel better if she cooled it with other men and he said he'd think about getting back with her in the meantime.

When she'd finished telling us this my DP said "what a prick tell him to eff off".

So now I wish I could persuade or even manipulate her into getting rid!

NKfell Tue 23-Jun-15 12:38:55

Oh and my civility might waver when I do see him next.

GoringBit Tue 23-Jun-15 12:43:06

She asked him for another chance, he said he didn't feel ready to commit but would feel better if she cooled it with other men and he said he'd think about getting back with her in the meantime.

That's manipulative. YANBU or M.

SanityClause Tue 23-Jun-15 12:44:16

Love the way it's manipulative when you say it, but not when your DP says it!

MrsTedCrilly Tue 23-Jun-15 13:20:15

What a control freak!

NKfell Tue 23-Jun-15 13:51:44

I know, it didn't go unnoticed! DP said he didn't realise the ex had been such a tool- said he just thought he'd got jealous of her seeing someone else.

Does anyone have any ideas how I might make my friend see it from the rest of the world's perspective? I know it's not my business but, I really just want her to see.

MrsCaptainReynolds Tue 23-Jun-15 13:56:41

Yuck. Your DH is using "manipulative" like some men use "bitchy". Misogynistic crap in response to you having an opinion. I wouldn't be suprised if your DHs disapproval arises from sharing his friends double standard that allows him to date but not the mother of his child.

Stormtreader Thu 25-Jun-15 10:41:13

Sounds like a bit of "us guys have to stick together" rubbish.

Id say your friends ex feels guilty that he didnt stick around to be a fulltime dad. He doesnt want your friend dating because then she might meet someone, theyd move in together, and he would have competition for the role of "his sons dad/father figure".

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