Your friend is blissfully humming the tune to her new romance, but honey, you’ve got the words to the sad country song that is her real relationship. Tell her, don’t tell her? And c’mon, reeeally what you want to know is – how will it affect you? — BadWitch
Readers Are Spellbound & Perplexed…
Dear GW/BW — My good friend Taylor has a boyfriend who is also my supervisor at work. I know he’s screwing around. Classic – should I tell her? I don’t want her to get mad at me when he lies to her face and denies this (I wish I could catch him on my phone camera!). I also don’t want him retaliating and making things hard or make me lose my job I need. I would want to know if I were her, but I’m not in love with a no good bastard. — Truth or Dare
Dear Truth or Dare,
Sounds like you care about and know your BFF Taylor well enough to anticipate her reactions…to how they will affect you. You go, mama! But if you want drama, tune into TNT (TV-head reference). Don’t get swept up in it (present or future) — and especially not anyone else’s. Nooo that does not let you off the hook, here’s what you do for your friend.
Stick Taylor’s toes in a pedi-bath so she can’t escape (and maybe chillax) when you sock her smack dab in the middle of her Wake Up, girl!, with that nasty bit of truth that will only hurt a grown up like her for a week or two. [This is a historically-proven appropriate period of time to devise a few new cocktails, or non-alchy refreshments – whatever floats your Get Your Groove Back boat.] How you frame it is the thing here. Let her know up front you value your friendship, job and a retaliation-free workplace (order of importance your choice). But share with her that you would definitely want to know if the tables were turned, which is why you could not sit by, mouth zipped from the sidelines (aren’t there By-stander laws? Be a good citizen), watching a real friend like her have her trust trampled on, and get used by a jerk…who you happen to work for (so, uh, sistah, could you keep that in mind and reciprocate what I intended as a favor?).
Listen up, you little zesty sweet tangerine, you are a truth teller. You are my peeps. We know what we’ve got to do.
Out loud…but gently,
Dear Truth or Dare,
The question is how is your relationship with your friend? Are you two honest and open with each other? Have you built a relationship of trust over years? Realize, then the history of your relationship will be weighed in evidence. Can you talk to each other about anything? Do you have a history of sharing the gory details of relationships? If so, open communication with as much circumstantial evidence as you can piece together should allow for a conversation. It’s about giving your friend the heads up to be aware, not convicting.
If, however, you two are not that close, as I would assume from your belief that she might retaliate by getting you fired, then I have to ask, is the need to tell coming from a true friendship place, a “hate my boss” place or a feminist “sistahs need to stick together” place. If you are true friends, you have my answer. If you just want to bash your boss, go find a new job or transfer to a new department. I would also suggest meditation classes or therapy. That kind of behavior is called slander. It’s not right. If, however, you are feeling the bonds of sisterhood, but are not that close to this person, I have to wonder that sisterhood would come before self-service. Drop a hint. Realize, in the end, it really doesn’t involve you and go on with your life—job and all.
You are truly between a rock and a hard place. In my world, my friendships are open, communicative and, as you can see, full of me spouting of plenty advice and my opinions. I can see initially because of this, such information might be taken with a grain of salt or dismissed as my over-protectiveness. I do not think anyone in my life would think I was “out to get them” or “sabotaging the relationship.” I actually think, despite the shock, most friends would take such comments very seriously, as I would.
If I were to tell a girlfriend such info, it might be taken defensively, but I would make it clear:
a. I want the best for my friend and think she deserves to be loved and treasured
b. I have reservation as to whether her current partner is in fact treating her the way she deserves to be treated
c. I hope I am wrong and if I am wrong I will do my due diligence to make amends to her and her man
And I would mean it. And that may be the best evidence of all, a caring heart and a warm shoulder to lean on—no matter which way the chips fall.
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