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Friendship Ending

(24 Posts)
GrownUpNow Thu 08-Sep-11 10:47:09

I made a school mum friend early on this year, she invited my DS for dinner and it developed from there. We got quite friendly and it was a regular thing for us to have each other's DS for dinner on a Wednesday.

She also helped me out with my DD, I am a single parent with significant health problems and she took her a couple of times for the school day so I could do appointments at hospital or rest when ill. In return I helped her out with getting her DD used to going to someone else's house and having dinner, learning how to do her daughters wet wrapping for eczema to help her out, doing a couple of sleepovers and have had all four of our children on quite a few occasions.

It's been a reciprocal relationship, I've helped her out a couple of times with money, which she paid back quickly, and we we're getting friendly despite a few differences in the way we parent. We are both single mum's so we appreciated each other's situation.

Her children are not the best behaved, her son is being investigated by CAHMS for behavioural problems and neither of them behave (or sleep) particularly well. It's rubbed off on my DS a bit who learned swear words from her DS (who often called her a stupid bitch) and was in trouble at school (in Reception class) for that and general messing around, and the two boys were not allowed to sit together in class.

I have been as supportive as I could be without apportioning blame with regards to the origins of this naughtiness, however as time goes on I can see that her parenting style is not helping her children learn boundaries. For example, today her son was throwing logs in the playground and she was not firm with him despite nearly hitting other children, she didn't even go over to him just shouted his name a couple of times and continued the conversation we were having.

We've mostly socialised around our kids, but have talked about our lives and experiences. She has had a few boyfriends and I never really judged or got involved with it, particularly when there was a drama involving a married man who she was in love with and whose wife found out. Her business really.

The other weekend we had our first evening drinking together, she'd found herself at a loose end with both kids away and wanted to go out, but I couldn't as I had mine, so invited her around and even got my DP to pick her up (we've been seeing each other three months and dating for the past year). He took her to buy some beer and picked up his own friend (and his children) and we were having a couple of drinks and listening to music whilst the kids played on the Wii.

She got pretty pissed pretty quickly and there was an incident where my DP went upstairs to have a quick shower as he hadn't had time beforehand and she walked in on him. Of course I caught the tail end of the encounter with her walking out the room adjusting her bra and him walking out straight to the bathroom naked and thought the worst, got upset and was shouting at him.

DP tells me nothing happened and was adamant that she walked in accidentally, and she said the same thing when she came back after we'd sorted things out. However I now know that what happened is she made a move on him and was rejected, and he has had doubts about her for a while, but seems to be trying to protect the friendship for my sake, though he is sticking with the first story. I am happy that this is the case and do not doubt him at all, and know she has a history of going with other women's partners.

So find myself in the position where I am beginning to dislike this girl, she knows I've been alone for a long time and that I really like this guy. We've shared our stories of abusive pasts and she knows how much I struggle with infidelity and trust, yet she still made a move on my partner with me downstairs. I was and still am really grateful for the support she has given me previously, when I was ill with a kidney infection unable to move she took my daughter out for a few days, she was good to me, however this incident on top of the fact that I believe the friendship is not good for my children either is making me feel I need to stop socialising with her.

What the heck do I do? Say something, drift away, move schools and change names? I haven't done female friendships for a very long while and I am new to playground politics and very naive about how people are anyway, I struggle with understanding behaviour and cause and effect, and I want to get this right because I know she isn't terrible so don't want to fight, but too much is not compatible with me so it can't continue either.

Sorry it's long. I'm just stuck and wanted to give a good background.

MangoMonster Thu 08-Sep-11 11:09:21

I really wish I had some good advice to give you. It's a complicated situation. I have to say, the bathroom episode sounds very suspicious. Hope you find a way to resolve it.

Helltotheno Thu 08-Sep-11 11:19:02

OP don't be too down on yourself about thinking you're naive about people because we all make mistakes and misread people, it's easy to do because people can be unpredictable/untrustworthy. On the face of it, it looked like you had a lot in common with the girl and the two of you seemed to get on well.
But she's not in your corner, that's the bottom line. Anyone who'd come into your house and make a move on your man practically in front of your nose is not a friend and not someone you need in your life. You need to make your feelings known to her and basically tell her exactly what you wrote about in the second last long paragraph, that you trusted her, that she knows your past and that you can't have someone in your life who isn't supportive to you in every way. Tell her you know about the come-on to your dp. If the friendship breaks down because of you laying it out like that, so be it. I know people find it very hard to be confrontational about things like this, but it saves a lot of trouble in the long-term.

Don't get involved in playground politics. I find that the best way to suss out parents is to get to know your kids' friends on playdates etc. It's probably not a hard and fast rule but I've found that if I really like a friend of my child over time, the chances are I'll like the parent too.

Do you fully trust your dp? Because you also need to be prepared for her to say he was on board when she made a pass at him, as at the moment, you only have his side.

missmehalia Thu 08-Sep-11 11:21:03

Hum.. sounds like it may have run its course? How can things be the same from now on? It's OK to have boundaries, and I find friendships with women in particular are difficult on this score - sometimes there are people who'll push boundaries and expect you not to say anything to them directly, but to bitch behind their backs instead.

In your case, hard though it is, you could just kind of withdraw from it all with her. Say you think it's best - now is a good opportunity because there has been an incident. If you carry on with the friendship as is, you'll only notice more and more things that will annoy you. You could start by just not contacting her, maybe say hello at school run time, but not have time to stop and chat. Be v busy. If she contacts you to arrange childrens' dinner swaps then just say it isn't really working for you anymore. You can be honest but not fall out.

Cultivate other help with childcare. Make other friends!! Not everyone is like that. She obviously has a good heart in there somewhere, but you don't have to be bezzie mates with everyone.

GrownUpNow Thu 08-Sep-11 11:38:57

We're on opposite ends of town now as I moved in the summer holidays, whereas we were just round the corner before, so it's easy to not walk to the school together and plead being busy. I could just let it fizzle out that way, and maybe invite some other children on play dates instead. I am pretty sure she'll feel guilty in some way and will get the idea.

I think I'd be happy to say to her if she does try to keep it going that I don't feel I can trust her around my DP and as such don't mind being civil but don't want to socialise together anymore... if I really steel myself. I've never felt this way about anyone before, I'm surprised what I find myself capable of to keep it healthy and happy.

I absolutely have no doubt in my mind about my DPs conduct, on the night itself I just reacted to what I saw without thinking on instinct... my history involves a lot of parental infidelity so I guess my brain was on the wrong setting that night, fuelled by a couple of vodkas of course. We're fine now, I am just trying to deal with it appropriately.

Ragwort Thu 08-Sep-11 11:44:12

This sounds totally bizarre - why would your 'friend' walk in your DH when he is in the shower - is your toilet upstairs? Why was she adjusting her bra strap?

I would certainly 'drop' the friend, but I also think your DP's behaviour is slightly odd - if he knew your friend was in the house why walk naked to the bathroom?

GrownUpNow Thu 08-Sep-11 12:05:59

She went to the toilet, bathroom is upstairs. DP went upstairs to get ready for a shower, stripped in the bedroom and she walked in. I believe offering "herself", thus the need to readjust on the way back out. She was walking downstairs as I saw her and asked where he was, as she was halfway down the stairs he walked out naked across the short step to the bathroom. I rushed up and opened the bathroom door, which he tried to stop me doing and shouted what are you doing before he even saw me.

His behaviour isn't odd to me in the slightest with my sober sensible head on. If it helps any, we have a best mutual friend who I spoke to following who told me that he had spoken to her about getting vibes in the past from this girl that made him uncomfortable.

stayforthekids1 Thu 08-Sep-11 12:11:52

Your DP is probably very aware that its his word against her and that could account for why he is sticking to the first story. I dont think you are wrong to trust him. You end the friendship now. Simply by saying, you made a pass at my husband and ignore any of her pleas. Forget her.

badgerbrisket Thu 08-Sep-11 17:44:05

she sounds like a bloody psyco and very dangerous just a short sharp shock to end the friendship will do she will end up a very lonely woman

NanaNina Thu 08-Sep-11 18:01:31

I think that's very unkind badger - I don't really know what to make of it. I may be stupid but I can't fathom who was in the bedroom/bathroom at the same time. Why did your DP not want you to go into the bathroom. I think at the moment it's 6 and 2 threes, so I wouldn't make any precipitpous move. Talk to your DP again and then talk to your friend again - take time to consider what did or didn't happen. Then make your mind up about the friendship.

ImperialBlether Sat 10-Sep-11 13:51:54

OP, your DP's behaviour doesn't make sense to me. You say:

"She went to the toilet, bathroom is upstairs. DP went upstairs to get ready for a shower, stripped in the bedroom and she walked in. I believe offering "herself", thus the need to readjust on the way back out. She was walking downstairs as I saw her and asked where he was, as she was halfway down the stairs he walked out naked across the short step to the bathroom. I rushed up and opened the bathroom door, which he tried to stop me doing and shouted what are you doing before he even saw me."

If I was going to have a shower when my partner's friend was in the house, I'd take my clothes off in the bathroom and dress there afterwards.

If my partner's male friend came into my bedroom whether I was naked or not and made a pass at me, I'd shout out.

I wouldn't then walk naked from the bedroom to the bathroom.

Our instinct is to cover up if an unwanted pass is being made. I find it strange he acted in the way he did.

ImperialBlether Sat 10-Sep-11 13:53:05

Surely she knew where the bathroom was, if you two were friends?

How could she ever justify even going into the bedroom?

And if she knew he'd gone for a shower in the bathroom which contains the only toilet, why did she go up there in the first place? Didn't you say, "Oh DP is in the bathroom, you'll have to wait"?

ImperialBlether Sat 10-Sep-11 13:54:07

And yes, why didn't your DP want you to go into the bathroom?

Also, if I was going to try it on with a man, I'd try to kiss him - I wouldn't just undo my bra!

The more I think about this, the less I like it.

HPonEverything Sat 10-Sep-11 14:05:02

I can't fathom your DP's behaviour either - she walked in the bedroom, made a move on him and left, and despite that he walked naked across the landing knowing she was out there? I also don't understand why he didn't want you to go in the bathroom.

But regardless I would think she's probably expecting you to end the friendship now, given what she's done, and it won't be much of a shock to her so I wouldn't fret too much about it.

ImperialBlether Sat 10-Sep-11 14:37:50

You may have to think about what she will tell you, too, OP.

TheOriginalFAB Sat 10-Sep-11 14:44:22

Have you spoken to her about what went on?

If her children are bad influences on yours why carry on with the play dates?

roses2 Sat 10-Sep-11 14:44:45

Well your dp wouldn't be stupid enough to do anything with you downstairs.

Exactly how long was she upstairs for?

I would give your dp the benefit of the doubt and drop this woman sharpish, she sounds toxic

ImperialBlether Sat 10-Sep-11 14:48:57

Not true, roses. I'm not saying he's done anything, but he'd still have to explain why he was scampering naked across the landing when a friend of his girlfriend's has just made a pass at him. And he'd have to explain why he didn't want her to go into the bathroom.

FabbyChic Sat 10-Sep-11 15:18:27

He might not have known it was her and thought it was her friend hence the bathroom issues. However I have to ask why when he knew she was upstairs did he go up? Why did he not wait until she had come down? Weirdness to be honest. A little bit suspect in itself.

TheOriginalFAB Sat 10-Sep-11 16:18:50

He went upstairs first.

springydaffs Sun 11-Sep-11 00:42:47

But it's a deal breaker, isn't it? If your friend makes a pass at your partner, that cuts your friendship off with an axe: it's over.

ime of being a single parent, I was often friends with, or in friendship groups with, women I wouldn't normally hang out with, not really, but we all clubbed together because we all needed one another - mostly practically tbh. (ime all the married women disappeared in a flash when my marriage broke up, which left us single parents lumped together). You've been 'there' for one another, it worked well for a while, but what she did is a deal breaker, nothing needs to be said, the friendship is over. It's betrayal - that's a dealbreaker, regardless of the quality of friendship you had before.

As you've moved, I would think a general cooling would be the best way to go about it, and not to have a showdown? She isn't trustworthy, so you can't trust her to respond maturely to rejection or face that it is, mainly, because of what she did, her betrayal of your friendship.

btw you sound great. You say you don't really get eg 'cause and effect' but it sounds to me that you approached this relationship maturely and with a lot of thought and care. You can be my friend anyday!

GrownUpNow Sun 11-Sep-11 09:33:08

I have no doubts about my DPs behaviour in this now, following my split second reaction on the evening, he would have rejected her advances and it's only my own insecurity that caused that reaction. He got undressed in the bedroom because she was in the bathroom and should have walked past and gone downstairs when finished, instead she walked in on him and I walked up the stairs as she was rejected and walking out. He walked across behind her and shut the door before I got up there, thus thinking I was her when I tried to open the door and objecting. No trouble believing this is what happened.

I'm cutting her out, we will still remain civil in the playground, but that's it for me on socialising outside of that. I do not need this kind of toxicity in my life when I am just sorting it out and feeling happy again for the first time in a long time.

My DS is inviting another classmate out for a playdate and my DD should make plenty of new friends starting at nursery tomorrow. I have a great number of friends outside of the school mums crowd, albeit not close like I was with this girl, but a lovely bunch themselves and a very good mutual best friend with my DP, so I don't need her.

I guess I was troubled about having received a great deal of support from her and cutting her out when I know she'll need mine in the coming future, but I guess she didn't value our friendship as much as I did, because she risked it with her behaviour and has lost out.

MangoMonster Sun 11-Sep-11 09:46:16

Glad you've decided what to do. Sounds very sensible.

ImperialBlether Sun 11-Sep-11 12:05:36

Sorry, OP, I didn't realise he was in the bathroom when he wouldn't open it to you. I still find it odd he would walk across the landing naked when he'd just been approached by a guest.

Also, why was she adjusting her bra? I don't understand that at all? Did she undo it?

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