Honesty with a friend

  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Jun 17, 2009 4:53 PM GMT
    I have a friend who recently came out of the closet. She's in graduate school, and is completely confident... and is falling in love with someone.

    In my opinion, this is going to end up fizzling for them, as many fresh-outta-the-closet relationships do. They are not a match.

    Sometimes, when I speak with her about it, I feel like a liar. I encourage her to go on with it, singing the praises of love.

    Should we be honest about these things with our friends? I want to tell her that I see all these problems with this romance she's building... that I don't see it working out... but that would be wrong. (Right?)
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jun 17, 2009 4:56 PM GMT
    I think you can be honest and talk to her in a way that doesn't "burst her bubble", but yet gives her some things to consider. Its the way you convey the message that may make it "right" or "wrong".
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    Jun 17, 2009 7:07 PM GMT
    Chris is right. While you don't want to see your friend hurt, you can present the hurdles to her to consider in a manner that is neither for or against the relationship. She will respect you more for telling her the truth and giving her a shoulder than lying to save her heartache.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Jun 17, 2009 7:12 PM GMT
    When it comes to things like this, I think people need to experience it for themselves. Unless you see her in some kind of abusive relationship, I'd just be supportive. You could run the risk of alienating her.
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    Jun 17, 2009 7:16 PM GMT
    Just mention to her that you hear this phrase among friends all the time:

    It's never forever with your first.
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    Jun 17, 2009 7:23 PM GMT
    Timberoo saidWhen it comes to things like this, I think people need to experience it for themselves. Unless you see her in some kind of abusive relationship, I'd just be supportive. You could run the risk of alienating her.

    Agree. And even worse, cause the problem himself. To the OP:

    There is a terrible gay tendency to meddle, to become busy-bodies, to stick our noses where they don't belong. Does that describe you? I can't possibly know, only you can. You may as helpful to her as you present yourself here, or as destructive as her worst enemy.

    Getting involved in the personal affairs of others is a serious responsibility. If you can see clear problems with this relationship, list them for her. If they consist merely of your vague feelings and perceptions, then swallow them.

    Speak when you have something tangible to show; stifle yourself when you do not.
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    Jun 17, 2009 7:26 PM GMT
    Why be a killjoy? Let her experience her first love affair in all its joys and disappointments. She should savor the experience and learn whatever lessons it's going to teach her on her own. Don't intervene unless it's clear the relationship is abusive.
    Anyway, if she's really in love she won't listen to anything negative you have to say. I know I didn't in one case where I was infatuated with someone my friends disliked. They were right, but I had to find that out for myself.
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    Jun 17, 2009 7:30 PM GMT
    Be supportive and keep your opinions to yourself. She'll learn soon enough. Besides, nothing you say will make an ounce of difference. We all know that.
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Jun 17, 2009 7:39 PM GMT
    The best thing a friend can do is to be supportive.
    Don't lie and say that you think her choice of a girl friend is just perfect.
    Say that you're glad that she found someone with whom she's happy.
    If she asks you for advice, then give it, but very carefully.
    It's her decision.
    If you tell her this woman is totally wrong for her, you'll almost certainly lose her as a friend.
    When her relationship falls apart, be there as her friend.
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    Jun 17, 2009 8:14 PM GMT
    People need to make small mistakes in order to learn and mature. Let her make them. Be supportive but don't be giving too much advice. She needs to own her decisions.
  • danisnotstr8

    Posts: 2579

    Jun 17, 2009 8:19 PM GMT
    I'm not going to say a word. Case Closed. I'll be there for her in the end. icon_confused.gif
  • ManinSTL

    Posts: 38

    Jun 17, 2009 9:54 PM GMT
    Wow, i remeber my first, and such a bad idea in hind sight. But it is something that was so needed and was a great experience i would not have changed for the world.

    Let her experience it, be supportive and let her make the decisions. And most importantly be there for her when/if it all falls apart.

    No one gets anywhere without some stumbles! The important thing is not the people that told you that you would stumble, but the ones that watched protectively and were there to help you when you did stumble, brushed you off, helped you out and sent you on your way to do it all over again if you so chose not to learn.

    One of my best friends is that person who was there when i was making all those stupid mistakes, so impressed with how he handled it, how he let me make my decisions and how he was so much there when it ended the way it did.

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    Jun 17, 2009 10:04 PM GMT
    Unless you are a verified Psychic shut up. You can't possible "KNOW" how this will turn out or what is right for her. You can say to her ," I don't like your friend" that is as far as you should go.
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    Jun 17, 2009 10:30 PM GMT
    Unless a situation is abusive, there's no need to volunteer an opinion if not asked. I've watched friends date people who were horrible choices for them, but since they weren't abusive and I wasn't being asked to comment, I figured it wasn't my place to say something.

    On the other hand, if your friend asks you what you think of her relationship, then I say you owe her honesty if you really consider her a friend. It doesn't have to be blunt if that's not your style, but even saying something like "I'm glad you seem happy" is a lot better than saying "It's great" if you don't think it is. I place a lot more value on people who will tell me the truth than I do on those who will just tell me what they think I want to hear.
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    Jun 17, 2009 11:10 PM GMT
    Timberoo saidWhen it comes to things like this, I think people need to experience it for themselves. Unless you see her in some kind of abusive relationship, I'd just be supportive. You could run the risk of alienating her.


    This is good advice. Unless things seem to become unhealthy beyond the normal trials and tribulations of first love, I think you'll have to let it run its course and be there for her if and when it falls apart. However, if she does ask your honest advice you should give to her.

    As for feeling like you're lying to her. You don't have to gush all over about her relationship, but you don't have to be an ominous dark cloud on the horizon either. Neither do you have to be completely neutral in your approach. If she is genuinely happy in the moment, then the least you can be is happy for her happiness in that moment. So much in life is transitory and we should not let what we perceive as a future ending let us dampen someone's experience today. She'll learn like we all do and she'll thank you for being there for her when it ends.
  • cbrett

    Posts: 609

    Jun 18, 2009 12:15 AM GMT
    friend should never say "told you so" they should be their to take you to the pub, go get coffee or just be your friend and remember honesty can be a 2 way street