When Friend’s Cross the Line
  • | October 5, 2016
When friend’s cross the line it can be an awkward situation. You and your buddy have been digging into each other and pushing limits for years and now, for whatever reason, it’s gone too far.

Whatever the infraction, it’s time to confront the situation and deal with your friend. It’s possible he doesn’t think he did anything wrong which can make this all the more difficult to deal with, however if there are other friends or family members involved it’s a conversation that needs to happen.

Communication time

As guys we don’t tend to use the words “communication” or “connection” very often. On television and in the movies whenever a guy tries to “communicate” with his buddy it’s always an awkward, forced situation. In most real-life cases the situation isn’t nearly as forced or awkward.

Your best approach will almost always be simply talking to your friend and explaining what happened and where he crossed the line. More than likely he isn’t aware that his behavior was inappropriate or unwelcome and oftentimes if you simply explain where he went wrong he’ll get it and understand.

You don’t have to hug and use words like “my needs” to get through to him. This is a guy you’ve said some pretty raunchy things to in the past, right? Saying “hey man, let me talk with you for a sec” should be a cakewalk.

Be Firm

You don’t need to have a serious sit-down like you’re negotiating nuclear disarmament, but you do need to stick to your guns. If you come at the situation as though you’re only half-serious you aren’t going to get the response you’re looking for.

Don’t use phrases like: “look, it’s not a big deal, but…” If it’s not a big deal, then why are you bothering to have the conversation? Be firm about your position. If you come off as though this isn’t really important to you than they’ll take the situation just as seriously.

Don’t blame your wife / girlfriend

If your friend crossed the line with your special lady and they’re upset, you should be too. However, when you have the conversation don’t frame it as though they are the ones complaining and you’re just the messenger. If they crossed the line enough to be upsetting then you should be upset with them as well and if you aren’t, ask yourself why.

Your goal is correcting improper behavior and setting a better standard for the type of behavior you expect. If you throw your wife under the bus you’re being dismissive of her feelings and basically siding with your friend over her. What’s more, you’ve now given your friend permission to have a reason to dislike your wife.

When a friend crosses the line it’s necessary for you to confront them and explain your position to them. If they truly are a friend, they will be receptive. It’s likely they’re not even aware of their behavior or meant no harm either. If they are aware, then the discussion will not be a surprise. Be firm on your position.