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Should I tell her about her breath?

9 replies

1950sHousewife · 24/03/2012 22:43

I have had a friend for about a year now who is having a terrible time on the dating scene. We walk the kids to school every day. She's a really sweet person, a single mum of two boys and I value her friendship.

She's been on lots of dating websites and lots of dates since I've known her. But...she never has any success on the dates. The guys she meets know that shes a mum, so I don't think that's the problem.

The only thing is, she has really bad breath. Not in a 'oops, bit of garlic bread last night way' because it's every single day. It smells worse than that. TBH, I don't really give a toss as it doesn't affect my friendship with her. There are worse things in this world. I've tried gentle hints - a new amazing electric toothbrush, a recent hygeinist appointment, but it's not been enough.

But I feel for her as she gets really upset when these men, who she chats to online and then on the phone for hours, meet her and then don't want a follow up date.
And at the risk of going "and another thing" but after she was telling about the latest dating disaster to my DH and I my DH commented after she left that her hair would put him off. Again, it's not something I give a shit about one way or another, but she has the kind of hair that's so long you can sit on it. It's streaked with grey (like mine, so again, so what) so doesn't really 'showcase' her.

I know I'm going to get flamed for being a superficial cow and caring about these things. Genuinely, I don't give a toss about them as her friend, but as the whole dating thing is driving her to despair should I mention them? She would just love to have someone there in her life after 5 years alone.

OP posts:
ClaudiaSchiffer · 25/03/2012 11:05

Tell her.

She may well be mortified but I'm sure you be kind. Better a bit of bluntness (sensitively done) than constantly facing men racing out the door.

Also can you both go for a makeover? I loathe straggly long hair, not that that's relevant really, but suggest doing a days shopping/hairdressers/dental flossing together.

DoubleGlazing · 25/03/2012 17:16

I think perhaps you should have a conversation along the lines of "I don't want to upset you but I'd like to make a couple of suggestions. Can I be really honest with you?"

cybbo · 25/03/2012 17:18

I can always smell bad breath on people, and am amazed by how many people suffer from it without being aware.

I think if you say it as a friend she will understand. She will be mortified, but wouldn't you want to know? I would

ZZZenAgain · 25/03/2012 17:24

I wouldn't say anything about her hair atm but I would mention her breath. She doesn't know about it. Her hair is her own taste so that is a bit different.

JasperJohns · 25/03/2012 17:26

Mentioning bad breath is hardly superficial.

I would tell her - there are few things more off putting.

MrsMcEnroe · 25/03/2012 17:29

If I had bad breath I would want someone to tell me.

ivanapoo · 01/04/2012 02:06

I would want to know.


My DH has suffered from it in the past and it's really hard because there seemed to be very little he could do to get rid of it (linked to digestion). Coffee, dehydration and booze certainly don't help though.

Why not suggest she sees an impartial style coach type person, who can tell her about her hair/ clothes etc without it coming from you? It could be a birthday gift?

CarolynR · 05/04/2012 12:21

I would maybe have a pampering session before her next day - go to the hairdresser, make sure she brushes her teeth etc and give her some mints "incase you get lucky wink wink"

Alternatively, just sit her down and tell her about the breath thing. It is quite a biggie as it might affect her working relationships (meeting new clients etc) too.

CR xx

IAmBooyhoo · 05/04/2012 12:28

her hair is part of who she is and for someone to reject her because of that isn't the right person for her but her breath is another thing. i think it would only be fair to tell her that you think it might be what is putting people off. not sure how you phrase that though.

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