"A Friend's Unwanted Attention"

Also: "He Doesn't Like My Sister", "I Feel Manipulated"

I've noticed that when my husband and I get together with another couple, the other husband seems a little too chummy with me. I think he's coming onto me, and it makes me feel uncomfortable. Should I tell my husband?

A. It's important to listen to your internal alarm and pay attention to your discomfort, but don't automatically assume your interpretation of this friend's behavior is accurate. What you feel is "chummy" may just be a highly extroverted male with poor boundaries. Or he may be looking to ruin a marriage.

You definitely need to tell your husband what you're feeling and get his perspective on it. Let your husband know the specific behaviors causing your discomfort, and ask him to observe his friend's behavior the next time you're together as couples.

If you and your husband agree there's a problem, you have a couple options. The first and least confrontational would be that when you spend time with these friends, make sure you and your husband are "chummy" with each other, such as being complimentary and expressing appropriate affection. Send the clear message that you and your husband are very much a couple who love each other.

If that's not helpful, you and your husband may need to meet together with this friend and confront the issue. Express your appreciation of his friendship, then be specific as to what the problem is and what your boundaries are. This may cause some short-term conflict, or it might end the friendship. You'll want to think and pray about the best time and place, and how to approach this in ways that would honor and assume the best about him, yet at the same time address your concerns.

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May 25

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