General Etiquette > Life...in general

Seriously Offended By A Friend

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SamiHami:
A little b/g: I have a very strong group of friends. There are probably thirty or so of us that get together every Friday night at our favorite pub (not always everyone, but usually at least a dozen show up). Some of the friendships go back 25+ years. We are a close knit group and I value these friendships very much. end b/g.

One of the guys in the group, "Charlie," is a divorced man in his mid-fifties. He's usually quiet, very nice and very well liked by everyone. DH and I haven't socialized with him outside of the group, but I did help him get some art work that he'd done put in the gift shop I used to work in part time. Charlie's mother died recently and he has not been coping well with it at all. I'd expressed to my DH that I was a little concerned because Charlie hasn't been working much since her passing; another in the group works for him and has been hurting for money since Charlie is blowing off all the jobs they are supposed to be doing.

Last night we were hanging out at the pub as usual, and I brought in some of my homemade pepperoni for folks to try (my best effort yet!). When I offered some to Charlie, he said "I really want to fornicate with you." Yeah, he actually used that exact wording. Thinking he'd had one too  many and was trying to make a joke that went awry, I sort of laughed it off and reminded him of Mr. Samihami. He then said "I wish I could marry you." Someone else (that I don't know) heard what he said and said forcefully, "Hey, that's not cool, man!" I walked away, stunned.

I didn't know how to react. I was so offended, but I didn't say anything to DH at the time; he was having a good time and I didn't want to ruin his night. We left shortly thereafter and I told him this morning. Needless to say he was not amused. We both agreed that it was probably the beer talking but we also agreed it was inexcusable. DH went back to the pub a little while ago and sure enough, Charlie was there. DH confronted him and Charlie says he doesn't remember anything about it that he must have been drunk. He was falling all over himself apologizing. DH told him that he needs to apologize to me and he said that he would next time he saw me. Embarrassed, Charlie finished his beer and left.

What do you think? Did we over react? Under react? I really don't want to make a huge thing of it and cause a bunch of tension among my social group. And I really do think he was just drunk and stupid and didn't mean it, but come on, that was really crossing a line.

I know. I am incapable of writing a short post apparently. This is probably way too much detail. But, well, what do you think?

WillyNilly:
He did cross a line and he dos owe you an apology.  But honestly, he can't go back in time and unsay it. So I think, considering his current emotional state, and that there was alcohol involved, I think your best course of action is to simply accept his apology and vaguely avoid him (not a direct cut, but you know, stay to the other side of the room, etc from him generally.)

SamiHami:
That's pretty much what I was planning to do.

doodlemor:
I POD WillyNilly.

I want to add that Charlie may have a real problem with alcohol, and not actually remember that he did this.  Perhaps he's been drinking heavily since his mother died.  If these sort of incidents continue, whether with you or others, maybe the group could persuade him to get some help for himself.

I think that you and DH handled this very well.

m2kbug:
He crossed a line and he was wrong, just how much you need to worry about it, I guess it's up to you and your feeling for the situation.  I've had someone make a pass at me and I have just simply refused the advance, let it pass, and life goes on without telling anyone about it and it hasn't been a problem again.  It certainly would not go over well with the husband/boyfriend if I told him and didn't really see the need.  I don't know if I was wrong or right to not say anything to him, I certainly didn't want it to turn into a bigger issue than it already was.  I don't think you or your husband were wrong, however, in handling the situation.  You may just want to avoid being alone with this person and avoid any direct communication or contact for awhile (stay further away or always have someone with you if you do talk).  I would give his behavior a little bit of a pass right now, people make mistakes, and hopefully nothing more will come of it.

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