To Tell or Not to Tell...
Monday, January 15, 2007
The husband of my closest friend, I'll call her “Jasmine”, made a pass at me when she was away on a business trip. I was asked to stay with the kids while she was away and late one night as I was sitting on the couch, her husband came and sat beside me and started stroking my hair while telling me he has feelings for me and has had them for a long time and didn’t know how to tell me. Sammy, I was simply disgusted. I got up immediately, went to my room and locked the door. At first I didn’t get it. I never thought that my friend’s husband could even do something like that! “Jasmine” is the most loving wife and mother; she doesn’t deserve to be shown disrespect like that by her own husband in her own home. I know my friend deeply loves her husband, but with this uncomfortable and unfortunate situation, I’m now deeply skeptical if the feeling’s the same.
I have been struggling for 2 days now as to how I am going to handle this situation. This is a family I deeply care for and I’ve been best friends with “Jasmine” since high school. Over the years, we’ve done so much together; we hang out on weekends and even take shared vacations and not once has her husband ever acted with disrespect, he’s always been loving and attentive towards his family. I feel extremely uncomfortable being around them now. My friend will be back in 3 days and I can’t bear to keep this incident from her. The guilt of not telling her the truth is killing me, so should I tell her about it? I’ve respected her husband for 9 years but now I just see him as weird and if he could do this so close to home, I’ve been wondering what else he may have done away from home? Sammy what should I do? I seem to be at a crossroad here.
It’s absolutely sad that “Jasmine’s” husband would risk making such a costly and foolish move at the expense of his wonderful family; not even caring about the impact his indiscretions could have on his wife, his children and you, a close family friend. First of all, please accept my condolences to you and this family in advance, should you decide to tell. “Jasmine’s” husband’s unsavory behavior, if exposed, will certainly destroy this family, and tarnish your friendship with “Jasmine”. Most often when a friend tells another friend that their loved one has betrayed them, the embarrassment of the action often causes the deceived to isolate from the storyteller. In this case, that would be you.
Not that she is going to be mad at you, after all, you have done nothing inappropriate, but she would never get over her husband pursuing you, her youthful friend. Bewildered, you and you alone, have the power to prevent this needless grieving for your friend and her children. You have the power of your silence and I strongly suggest that this is a good time to exercise that power. I understand how you feel. You’re caught between right and wrong, but you must do the right thing and in this instance that means saying nothing. I know this situation must be difficult for you to handle because now you have to pretend with this family whom you have loved for so long, but you will find clearly that there is too much to lose and too little to gain. You mentioned in your e-mail that the husband has never made you feel uncomfortable until now. You also said that his wife and children adore him. All this goodness is too important to destroy over what can only be summed up as a grave mistake.
The man may be unfaithful but he is a good father and husband, who might just need a pardon and an opportunity to redeem himself. Hang in there until your friend gets back, and use the time to address your disappointment to your friends’ husband and express to him your discomfort with his actions. Let him know sincerely that you have just saved his marriage and his honor, and if this is to ever occur again, with you or any other, then you’re not sure that you will be as understanding in the future.
Keep the faith in your goodness!