It’s often a refreshing, spirit-lifting thing to become good friends with a coworker. The days pass by faster, you have a trusted person to bounce ideas off, and you may even laugh throughout the day.
But a recent post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit showed that sometimes friendly goes a bit too far.
The Original Poster (OP), known as Equivalent_Bottle_76, led with a puzzling title:
“AITA wanting my friend to stop pretending I am her husband?”
OP then explained the work friendship in question.
“My (28-year-old male) coworker and friend Amber (26-year-old female) usually go on work trips alone and spend the night on different cities and hotels.”
“Or friendship is purely platonic and we never did anything sexual or romantic at all.”
“I have a girlfriend (27-year-old female) but Amber is single and always have casual sex with guys she meet on our trips.”
A sort of rhythm has taken form during those trips.
“Our routine is that after we end our work for the day we go to a bar our something line that so she can find some men.”
“She likes me being there to ‘protect’ her when she is hunting but there has never been a problem that required me to intervene.”
Then there was a surprise.
“One morning, she told me something new.”
“Apparently, the man she had sex with the night before thought that I was her husband or boyfriend and she didn’t correct him.”
“She liked the idea of the men she was doing thinking I was her ‘cuckold’ and wanted to do more of that.”
“I didn’t said anything because I thought she was joking.”
But things progressed from there.
“That night, when a waitress came to take or drink’s order on the bar, she referred to me as her husband. I was shocked but didn’t say anything.”
“Later she left with a men and I saw the waitress looking at me and smiling.”
“Next day, I told Amber to never do that again because I have a girlfriend but she said that she already asked my girlfriend about this and she was okay.”
“I told her that she still shouldn’t do it. She told me I was being crazy and we argued more.”
“Am I the A**hole?”
Anonymous strangers weighed in by declaring:
- NTA – Not The A**hole
- YTA – You’re The A**hole
- ESH – Everyone Sucks Here
- NAH – No A**holes Here
Most Redditors assured OP he was not an a**hole at all. One person offered a thorough criticism.
“NTA Amber is abusing your friendship. Frankly, she’s been abusing it, but in such a minor way that I don’t think it matters (she’s at the bar with you only until she meets someone to sleep with, and then you’re on your own…that’s not necessarily how friendship works but that’s really b/w you two.).”
“But by placing you as a part of her narrative, by presenting you as her cuckold, suggests she has moved past using your friendship to using you for her own fetishistic pleasure. That’s a line I would not be comfortable crossing, either. And it’s a line I would draw in the sand.”
“She is intentionally making you look bad for her own sexual gratification. That’s literally using you. This is also occurring on business trips, which means there’s the potential for blowback on your career, which is also entirely uncool and should not be permitted to continue. Amber is the AH.”
“And, FWIW, your GF is an AH for agreeing to this little plan without discussing it with you first (possibly agreeing at all). Does your GF think so little of you, as well?” — FrnchsLwyr
For others, it was all about consent.
“NTA. if she can’t respect your boundaries, stop offering to be her wingman.”
“ETA* because I’m not sure someone else has already covered it… But this is actually sexual harassment. Cuckolding is a very specific fetish and the fact she is including you in her fetishes without your consent is downright harassment.” — xoxstrawberrywine
“But she didn’t ask you, and you’re not okay with it. This is not someone I’d be continuing a friendship with given the blatant levels of disrespect she’s showing for you and your comfort level and feelings.” — cillianellis
“NTA. Amber is involving you in sexual situations without your consent. Further, she’s trying to push you to directly participate without your consent.”
“Stop going out with Amber. And have a serious conversation with your girlfriend. Your girlfriend is basically pimping you out without even having a conversation with you about it, assuming Amber is telling the truth. Amber may have lied to either you or your girlfriend.” — 0biterdicta
“NTA… if you are not consenting to it, she is breaking a cardinal rule of kink and needs to grow up. The next time she does something like that, I would call her out on it in front of the person. Make it clear you are co-workers and nothing else.” — Stitchapuss
Others advised OP to plan for the worst.
“NTA, hell no! Why is that even a question. Even if you didn’t have a girlfriend that doesn’t matter. Your co-worker is playing a dangerous game. This is an entirely different level because you are on work trips.”
“First of all you stop going to the bar with her while she is ‘hunting.’ You also tell her she is NEVER to tell anyone you are her husband. Send it in an email and keep it somewhere. You need to separate yourself from her on the road shennigans before you get your a** in trouble.”
“She is a grown woman and if she wants to fu** around that is her choice and her business. You stay out of it completely and do not be involved if that means going straight to your room every evening . stay out if this. I am certified in Human Resources. Trust me on this. This is trouble you don’t want or need.” — mcmurrml
“NTA and this type of interaction with a work colleague puts you at risk in future for a sexual harassment claim, even though it’s not true. Be very careful.” — lolikamani
If OP takes these comments to heart, it looks like those work trips may begin to look very different from here on out.