To be rude in this situation? [Content warning added by MNHQ: Child abuse]

(114 Posts)
Question2149 Mon 26-Jul-21 22:24:45

My parents have lived on the same street since I was small as have most of the people on it.

I had two close friends growing up who lived on the same street who I still speak to now although not as close these days as we've all grown up and moved away, had families etc.

One of the girls I used to play with on the street contacted me a while ago to say that there was an investigation going ahead relating to a man on the street inappropriately touching her when we were children. It has also come to light through this that it's not the first time he's been accused, he was accused previously by someone else of the same thing but was never charged. He is also denying this accusation from my friend.

I have been asked about that time, whether I remember anything, whether anything happened to myself (I believe not) and other than checking in on my friend occasionally have not had any further involvement in the situation.

My dilemma here is his wife is always trying to say hello, ask how I am, how my DC is, ask to see my baby etc... when I go to see my parents. It's incredibly awkward and I feel like she is trying to gauge which side I'm on.

I want to tell her straight not to speak to me, that my position is that I believe my friend and want nothing to do with either of them, even small talk. He has also tried to say hello and I have blanked him completely but the grey area for me is his wife.

Would you continue to say hello, or respond when asked how you are to this woman or would you think it acceptable for me to be rude and ignore her or even just say straight up "please don't speak to me"?

I absolutely believe my friend and so to me this is a woman who's stayed with a man who's twice now been accused of this.

OP’s posts: |
Question2149 Mon 26-Jul-21 22:27:41

Fwiw I'd never be friendly with her now. I am always replying very bluntly so it's obvious id have thought it was obviously an uncomfortable conversation for me. But she persists every time I see her.

OP’s posts: |
thinkfast Mon 26-Jul-21 22:40:03

How do you know this man's wife is aware of these accusations?

Question2149 Mon 26-Jul-21 22:47:58

thinkfast

How do you know this man's wife is aware of these accusations?

She's definitely aware. She's tried to speak to my friend's mother about it and my parents too.

OP’s posts: |
Mamamia7962 Mon 26-Jul-21 22:56:08

I'm a bit confused how this woman sees you every time you visit your parents. Surely you just get out the car and go in their house, or am I missing something.

Imnothereforthedrama Mon 26-Jul-21 22:56:31

Wow , So basically she’s guilty by association ? . Your basically saying because he’s been accused of something she should leave him. Not everything is black and white and you’ve not given much details to go on so I can’t really decide all I know is allegations need investigating .
Of course support your friend but your assuming a lot about this wife I think .

Question2149 Mon 26-Jul-21 23:01:15

Mamamia7962

I'm a bit confused how this woman sees you every time you visit your parents. Surely you just get out the car and go in their house, or am I missing something.

She lives next door to my parents and is in her garden a lot. When I pull up she often comes to the bottom of the garden (which leads directly onto the road where I park) and tries to speak to me.

OP’s posts: |

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Rosebel Mon 26-Jul-21 23:16:22

You believe your friend but she believes her husband which is fair enough really.
You can surely engage in small talk for a couple of minutes with her. She hasn't done anything wrong.

fairynick Tue 27-Jul-21 00:05:28

@Rosebel it isn’t really fair enough to believe a man who has been accused on two separate occasions of doing such vile things. It’s burying your head in the sand. She’s a paedophile sympathiser and she is part of the problem. Your poor parents having to live next door.
Next time you bump into her, I don’t think there’s a point in being too nice or too rude. Maybe something like “Listen, you’re standing by your husband which is your choice, but I’m standing by my friend. I think it’s best that we don’t speak”. And leave it at that.

PieceOfString Tue 27-Jul-21 00:12:43

I would say that in this situation you should be minimally polite and brush her off as gently as you can, but brush her off.
She will need to seek her support elsewhere as you have skin in the game on the form of your friend. It is not necessary for you to maintain the lines of communication with her and no-one should expect you to, you and she are too close to opposing sides of a very difficult issue.
You don't have to be nasty to keep her at arms length and more.

PieceOfString Tue 27-Jul-21 00:15:15

Even the fact she is reaching it to you is weird as judging by your post it seems to be connected to what's going on. I think most people in her situation would just give you your space since your friend is the one accusing her husband. Why on earth does she need to make a beeline for you. Make your boundaries clear and stick to them

Itsmeagainandagain Tue 27-Jul-21 00:27:47

She won't divorce him because according to the law he's an innocent man until proven guilty..

AtrociousCircumstance Tue 27-Jul-21 00:32:32

Oh fuck off PPs trying to #bekind you into making small talk with a woman who is supporting a paedophile angry

Yes be rude. You don’t have to talk to her. Just say excuse me and turn away if she presses the point.

Fucking hell.

Randomness12 Tue 27-Jul-21 02:58:01

Agree 100% with @AtrociousCircumstance

Why do women always think they have to be nice and comply?!! It is you right to ignore anyone who makes you feel uncomfortable for any reason whatsoever.

If she won’t take the hint, a firm but polite - look I don’t wish to talk to you, please leave me and my family alone from now on is more than acceptable!

I’m sorry this happened to your friend.

Zebraaa Tue 27-Jul-21 03:18:39

@AtrociousCircumstance and your attitude is exactly what’s wrong with the legal system.
He isn’t a paedophile because he hasn’t been charged with anything!

MissTrip82 Tue 27-Jul-21 04:12:29

Itsmeagainandagain

She won't divorce him because according to the law he's an innocent man until proven guilty..

This maxim applies in one place only: a criminal court.

Outside of that people are free to judge as they see fit.

If you think the only paedophiles are those who’ve been convicted you are very very foolish indeed.

I wouldn’t choose to engage with someone who believed this man if I did not.

Question2149 Tue 27-Jul-21 04:29:53

But what he is or is not in the eyes of the law is not really my concern. He likely won't be charged because this is an incident which happened many years ago and is essentially one person's word against anothers. (Which happens all the time and doesn't mean the person isn't guilty).

However to me, as a person who believes my friend completely, he is a paedophile and I don't want anything to do with him or his wife as that makes me uncomfortable.

If you believed someone had raped your friend for example, would you want to make small talk with his girlfriend or wife who had essentially called your friend a liar by believing he hadn't done it simply because he had gotten away with it in the eyes of the law and so technically was innocent?

I believe he has done this and by the sounds of it it isn't the first time either. I have made that judgement based on the information I have from the people involved and from my own gut feeling. What happens in court doesn't change that for me.

She doesn't have to divorce him or leave him that's her choice. Is it not mine to then make the decision that she's no longer a person I wish to be in contact with?

I recently had a baby and received card and gifts with his and her name signed on them! This is a person who I believe did this horrible thing to my friend and they are trying to act like nothing is happening and it just feels so wrong.

OP’s posts: |
SquashMinusIsShit Tue 27-Jul-21 06:47:16

Listen, you’re standing by your husband which is your choice, but I’m standing by my friend. I think it’s best that we don’t speak

This is good, you are being polite enough but hopefully she'll get the message. Like hell would I speak to her, she's chosen to stand by her disgusting husband and she has to live with the consequences.

AtrociousCircumstance Tue 27-Jul-21 07:43:58

Zebraaa

*@AtrociousCircumstance* and your attitude is exactly what’s wrong with the legal system.
He isn’t a paedophile because he hasn’t been charged with anything!

You’re confused - I’m not the legal system and neither is the OP. It’s her right to decide to believe her friend and not want to interact with the man who abused her or those who support him.

So you’re saying it undermines the legal system for a woman not to be a good girl and say hello nicely to someone she abhors?

Yeah ok hmm

PieceOfString Tue 27-Jul-21 08:22:48

"This is a person who I believe did this horrible thing to my friend and they are trying to act like nothing is happening and it just feels so wrong."

Trust your instincts, it's not rude, it's not surprising, you absolutely don't have to tolerate her desire to talk to you. Squashminus and atrocious circumstance are spot on.

orangejuicer Tue 27-Jul-21 08:26:41

Regardless of anything he may have done, you are not obliged to talk to anyone you don't want to. Stand your ground.

SilentPanic Tue 27-Jul-21 08:29:26

You have no idea what kind of life she is living. You have no idea what kind of pressure she is under to chat to you or try and befriend you. If her husband is the kind of man who is capable of child abuse, he's automatically a master manipulator and liar. I'd say hello to her and then make my excuses. Don't punish her for being with someone who is probably making her life hell.

Terminallysleepdeprived Tue 27-Jul-21 08:30:47

Having seen a friend go through this where her now exh was charged and subsequently found guilty of grooming I am torn.

I do understand your need to believe your friend, but equally his wife may have had absolutely no knowledge of what was going on (if indeed the accusations are true and none of us really know for sure).

I think you are wrong to be rude to her. She isn't the one who may have hurt your friend. I know how devastating it was for my friend when people would shun her in the street.

You don't have to be her friend but I do think you should be polite.

DancesWithTortoises Tue 27-Jul-21 08:31:44

It's up to you who you talk to but she is innocent and has had no accusation made against her. So I think You are being a bit U.

Nanny0gg Tue 27-Jul-21 08:34:02

fairynick

*@Rosebel* it isn’t really fair enough to believe a man who has been accused on two separate occasions of doing such vile things. It’s burying your head in the sand. She’s a paedophile sympathiser and she is part of the problem. Your poor parents having to live next door.
Next time you bump into her, I don’t think there’s a point in being too nice or too rude. Maybe something like “Listen, you’re standing by your husband which is your choice, but I’m standing by my friend. I think it’s best that we don’t speak”. And leave it at that.

He's been accused but not convicted? Has he even been prosecuted?

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