What’s The Appropriate Response To This?

Miss Manners

I feel like she didn’t cover this one….

I am the girl you want to have around in any kind of social situation. I’m an expert at navigating social minefields, I have impecable manners, and I am a pro at witty banter. Seriously, when it comes to any sort of social situation, I’m your girl.

Having said that, I found myself in the strangest social predicament of my life a few weeks ago. It was such a clusterfuck of awkwardness that even I, the queen of social navigation, was left speechless and absolutely clueless as to how to repsond.

I was attending a wedding with my grade-A stud-muffin of a boyfriend and we were at the reception completely dominating the dance floor with our signature move (it’s called the underwater robot) and all around having a merry time. The booze was free flowing and everyone seemed to be having a lovely time. Everyone except one of the bridesmaids who I noticed had made very good use of the open bar and was now crying her eyes out. You know, typical wedding stuff. As we were leaving we said goodbye to the crying bridesmaid (who went to high school with my boyfriend) and then I had this conversation…

Me: It was so nice to meet you! Have a wonderful rest of the night!

Crying bridesmaid: Do you love him? (gesturing to my boyfriend)

Me: I do. Very much so.

Crying Bridesmaid: You should! (As she begins to sob) He’s the most amazing guy…he’s such a good guy…..I should know……he’s…….so…..

Me: Ummmm………I know. He really is amazing. Thanks? Umm….bye…….

So, I’m thinking that crying bridesmaid was declaring her unrequited love for my boyfriend. Which leads to the question, what’s the appropriate response to this?

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34 thoughts on “What’s The Appropriate Response To This?

  1. Exactly what you did…walk away. Nothing more, nothing less. And don’t ask him about her later, cuz that could lead to a fight that you don’t want or need. And you really don’t care that much anyway, right?

  2. Oy! There is no right way to handle a drunk girl sobbing to you and essentially telling you she’s been in love with your boyfriend for years. You just thank your lucky stars that there wasn’t anything sharp within reach and hope for her sake she doesn’t remember making a fool of herself the next morning.

    • Poor girl! She did remember because we saw her at the goodbye brunch and she practically ran away and hid behind a pillar. I almost felt bad for her.

  3. Oh dear. That is awkward. Unless you plan on ever seeing her again, I’d probably just let it go and forget about it.

  4. I don’t think you needed to come up with an appropriate response. She confronted you, basically telling you that she had a thing for your boyfriend… that was the inappropriate part.
    Sometimes, walking away is the best thing to do.
    Seriously, what other options did you have? Tell her you were sorry? Certainly not! Offer her a hanky? Well… no. She probably hates you for being with the guy she loved and afterward would have told her friends: “Did you see how she tried to be nice after rubbing it in my face that she’s with him now…?!”

      • I don’t think it’s crazy to feel hurt and sad at losing, or possibly never getting, the man of your dreams. Knowing he’s out of reach, after investing emotionally in him, wether realistically or fantastically, is painful for any girl (or guy). That hurt goes a long way and deep. Plus, she was loaded, and alcohol definately lubricates those emotional channels, loosening the valves and allowing for embarrassing gushiness.

        Though I’ve never been in quite your situation, being kind and making an exit was probably the only thing you could do – it wasn’t your job or obligation to soothe a strangers crushed-out heart just then. You didn’t knowingly steal him away, like some greedy whore, so he’s all yours. If anything, I guess you can gloat and revel in your success ;) Having a partner who is in such high demand reflects well on your famale ego, does it not??? (although I’d still feel uncomfortable ever seeing her again, for sure)

        • I don’t think she was crazy or hurt for feeling the way she did, but I so think it was maybe just a *little* bit crazy to cry to me about it. Although, I also totally want to give her a “had too much to drink” break.

          And yes, my female ego did get a little bit of boost out of this. ;)

  5. Etiquette dictates that no one is obligated to entertain another’s drunken ramblings. We are only required to remain civil as we terminate the conversation and make our exit. You did perfect. :)

  6. Think you handled it gracefully enough by walking off.

    If I was in your shoes and feeling exceptionally childish, as I’m walking away I might be tempted to do that over the shoulder stick your tongue out thing. Only if I’m feeling evil and childish!

  7. The paranoid psycho in me says you should take preemptive measures and “handle” her before she has a chance to boil your rabbit or something.

    The guy on my other shoulder says you already did the right thing by shrugging it off.

  8. Perfectly handled. You remained graceful and kind and walked away. That’s all you could do, and that’s probably what you would have advised someone else. Perhaps you should write your own etiquette book?

  9. Offer her a drink? Oh, wait…

    I had a situation like this happen in college, with the exception that I was not in love with my boyfriend. I made him dance with her for one song. And then I laughed in the corner.

    But that’s why I’m not writing a blog on etiquette…I am grateful I found yours! :)

  10. You did the right thing – leave and say nothing – no good can come of any other circumsntance. My nephew got married recently and a former boyfriend of my niece was there with his new girlfriend. Several hours in and yep… you guessed it he does a decent impression of Gwyneth picking up her Oscar. Felt sorry for hi, sobbing like a goon in front of my niece with new girlfriend looking on and probably thinking about ending thngs. . But on closer inspection he actually looked like a giant dwarf. So a lucky escape for my niece!

  11. Guh it is my absolute fear that I will accidentally drink that much at my high school reunion and do that to my ex boyfriend. Not that I feel that way. It’s just a recurring nightmare I have. Good for you for walking away. I would have been like “Yeah he’s probably only gotten better in bed, too, right?!”

  12. Probably no good response to this ever, especially if she’s acting like a drunk girl. What is more important, though, is posting a video of this underwater robot move. I’m very interested in this. :)

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