One friend sleeps with the spouse of another

Posted: June 29, 2012

Question: My fiance's close friend always complains that his girlfriend picks ridiculous fights and escalates everyday issues into big dramatic episodes. This is supposedly because she's insecure about the relationship, but I find her a very cool, interesting person and him nice but neurotic.

Fiance's theory is she's erratic and craves drama and his friend is just inexperienced; my theory is they're not compatible and need to break up, end of story.

Now Fiance tells me he advised his friend to propose as a way to "test" whether she's truly insecure or just crazy (and then break off the engagement if it's established that she's just crazy). I told him I think the idea is absurd and will end badly ... they will probably get married regardless.

I genuinely like this girl, and I've seen no signs of her alleged "crazy" behavior. Obviously I can't tell her what they're planning, but do I have some obligation here, or do I just wait for the impending disaster?

Answer: You've got an impending disaster of your own to wait for, since it's generally not advisable to marry the cutest guy you meet in a middle school cafeteria.

Propose to her? As a test? And if he retracts the proposal, what's he planning to say — "Psych!"?

OK, you called the idea "absurd." But that's hardly strong enough. It's not just a juvenile thing he suggested, but also breathtaking in its cruelty.

And, pardon my pragmatism at a time like this, it won't even work. No matter what her emotional failing, be it insecurity, instability, or just lousy taste in men, it won't be magically erased by a proposal.

E-mail Carolyn at tellme@washpost.com, follow her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/carolyn.hax or chat with her online at noon each Friday at www.washingtonpost.com.

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