Author Topic: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?  (Read 9308 times)

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CrochetFanatic

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #45 on: January 03, 2013, 05:26:44 PM »
I'm a little late to this one, but I've noticed that different people have different ideas of what is considered "appropriate" PDA and what is inappropriate.  I would have been very uncomfortable, even resentful, but it's mostly because I'm single and I feel like I'm always on the outside looking in at something I can't have.  That is my problem and no one else's, so if I see this kind of behavior I simply find something else to pay attention to, like my shrimp cocktail or an interesting conversation with a friend at the other end of the room.

I don't know if it was appropriate or not.  I think it depends on how casual or formal the gathering is.  Since it's your mom's home, she can object to something that she feels is inappropriate.  Venting to someone about something that's upset you might be a good way of letting off steam, but it doesn't do anything to change the situation.  I think that, depending on the relationship she has with Zoe, it would be fine if she had a discussion with her, just the two of them, and said, "This made me a little uncomfortable, and I would appreciate it if you didn't do this at my house or in front of me." 

LifeOnPluto

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #46 on: January 03, 2013, 09:40:36 PM »
Interesting to hear all the responses, and people's different perspectives!

I like the idea of meeting Zoe and Zac in a public place next time, and seeing if they've moved out of the "honeymoon phase". Assuming they have, I won't hesitate to invite them back to my parents' house.

Funnily enough, I had also invited two of my married friends (Amy and Andrew) to the coffee and cake party. They have been together for nearly 10 years, and married for five. They barely touched each other once during the entire evening!

And yes, I did think that Zoe's pose was not ideal for eating cake! I was also concerned that she'd be dropping crumbs down Zac's shirt!

SingActDance

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #47 on: January 03, 2013, 11:16:37 PM »
I've rested my head against a boyfriend's should and simultaneously been able to use a fork. It's not very difficult. If he has his arm over the back of my chair and I lean my head slightly into "the nook", it is still very easy to eat and carry on a conversation. It's often not a lovey-dovey or sexual stance at all. It's just casual and comfortable.

Anyone ever read that book The 5 Love Languages? Some people's language is touch. A little bit of physical contact, even if it's just a hand on the knee or an arm around the shoulder, makes them feel safe and loved. Some people are, say, acts of service people. And the little physical gestures are, in my opinion, no less innocuous than the boyfriend fixing a plate for his SO, refilling her drink, going to the car to fetch her sweater because she was cold.

I agree that without getting "the vibe" it's hard to say. Obviously if it felt overtly sexual or they were not paying attention to anybody else, that is rude. But touch isn't always sexual touch, even if it's between SOs. YMMV.
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afbluebelle

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #48 on: January 03, 2013, 11:23:55 PM »
I've been sitting on this post until I could attempt to do the sideways cake lean nom nom style. Still don't see much wrong in the PDA side of things, but I am in full agreement that this is not an optimal position for enjoying cake.
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mbbored

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #49 on: January 04, 2013, 12:26:14 AM »
I've been sitting on this post until I could attempt to do the sideways cake lean nom nom style. Still don't see much wrong in the PDA side of things, but I am in full agreement that this is not an optimal position for enjoying cake.

I did the same thing, but with cookies. Definitely not optimal dessert eating positioning.

ettiquit

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #50 on: January 04, 2013, 09:08:20 AM »
I'm going to try and eat my entire dinner tonight while resting my head on DH's shoulder.  It's chicken and noodles.  Will report back.

onyonryngs

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #51 on: January 04, 2013, 09:24:12 AM »
I think if you hold the cake plate directly up to your face and gnaw, it works.

I will try this the next time I eat cake.  For science.

Snooks

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #52 on: January 04, 2013, 09:57:21 AM »
I think if you hold the cake plate directly up to your face and gnaw, it works.

I will try this the next time I eat cake.  For science.

Don't make science wait, I think you must undertake this experiment without delay.

Flora Louise

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #53 on: January 04, 2013, 10:25:18 AM »
I'm going to try and eat my entire dinner tonight while resting my head on DH's shoulder.  It's chicken and noodles.  Will report back.

 ;D
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Twik

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #54 on: January 04, 2013, 10:50:31 AM »
I think Miss Manners said, about PDAs, that when in a group you should not engage in pleasures that you would not share with everyone else present. So, unless you could see yourself cuddling with your hosts, or engaging in quick smooches with other guests, one should avoid it.

There's a serious principle behind this. The behaviour mentioned in the OP has the effect of setting the lovebirds as a group apart from everyone else. They *are* engaging in activities that visibly exclude the rest of the group. This, particularly when one is being offered hospitality from someone, is offputting and rude, even if the activities are not quite foreplay.
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Lynn2000

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #55 on: January 04, 2013, 10:50:56 AM »
Anyone ever read that book The 5 Love Languages? Some people's language is touch. A little bit of physical contact, even if it's just a hand on the knee or an arm around the shoulder, makes them feel safe and loved. Some people are, say, acts of service people. And the little physical gestures are, in my opinion, no less innocuous than the boyfriend fixing a plate for his SO, refilling her drink, going to the car to fetch her sweater because she was cold.

I think this is an interesting point. I'm intrigued by the 5 Love Languages in general and feel like it's explained a lot about the people I know in real life. I wonder if there are sort of "anti-love" languages as well, that really turn off people who experience or even witness them. For example, I suspect that my friend Amy would find it very cloying and smothering if her DH were to fix her plate, refill her drink, etc. unless she specifically asked him to; and if she witnessed a friend's new SO do such things repeatedly for the friend all evening, Amy would find it weird and worth commenting about to me later. But I think Amy would see the couple snuggling physically as positive and adorable. Whereas I would be kind of the opposite--I would raise my eyebrow a bit at a couple snuggling etc. at a party, but if I even noticed an SO doing small acts of service (it would seem so normal as to not even be memorable), I would think it was nice.

But anyway, the point is that the hostess found it uncomfortable, for whatever reason. (I personally feel like understanding the reason behind something helps me to figure out what to do about it.) And I think the hostess or her designee can find a polite way to mention it to the guest--if they choose. Maybe using humor would be a good start? Kind of point out the behavior while hopefully not making Zoe feel defensive. "Thought you were gonna spill cake all over Zac's shirt, eating with your head on his shoulder that way! Ha ha."
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Mikayla

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #56 on: January 04, 2013, 01:14:39 PM »
For me, the X Factor is that this took place at a parent's home. 

When I'm with peers, anything goes.  Heck, back in college...oh, wait.   >:D ;)

But even in college, we knew enough to dial back on our tendencies when in a parent's home.  It was respect and just common sense.  That's the part that bothers me the most.

GoTwins

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #57 on: January 04, 2013, 01:39:19 PM »
I think Miss Manners said, about PDAs, that when in a group you should not engage in pleasures that you would not share with everyone else present. So, unless you could see yourself cuddling with your hosts, or engaging in quick smooches with other guests, one should avoid it.

There's a serious principle behind this. The behaviour mentioned in the OP has the effect of setting the lovebirds as a group apart from everyone else. They *are* engaging in activities that visibly exclude the rest of the group. This, particularly when one is being offered hospitality from someone, is offputting and rude, even if the activities are not quite foreplay.
This perfectly sums up how I feel. While their PDAs were not necessarily over the top, there is a time and a place for everything. Your friend's parent's house is not the place.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2013, 01:41:26 PM by GoTwins »

Hmmmmm

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #58 on: January 04, 2013, 01:47:40 PM »
I think Miss Manners said, about PDAs, that when in a group you should not engage in pleasures that you would not share with everyone else present. So, unless you could see yourself cuddling with your hosts, or engaging in quick smooches with other guests, one should avoid it.

There's a serious principle behind this. The behaviour mentioned in the OP has the effect of setting the lovebirds as a group apart from everyone else. They *are* engaging in activities that visibly exclude the rest of the group. This, particularly when one is being offered hospitality from someone, is offputting and rude, even if the activities are not quite foreplay.
This perfectly sums up how I feel. While their PDAs were not necessarily over the top, there is a time and a place for everything. Your friend's parent's house is not the place.

I had never thought of PDA in this way before but it does explain some of my reservations about it.  Thanks for posting it Twik.

JoieGirl7

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Re: Friends' PDAs, versus mother's discomfort. Who is right?
« Reply #59 on: January 04, 2013, 02:08:01 PM »
I think it would terribly rude to talk to the couple about what they can/can't do in your mother's house.  Just meet with them somewhere else other than at your mother's house.