When a friend of ours behaves with strangers in a way that makes us uncomfortable, the second-hand embarrassment can be excruciating.
We’re stuck between a rock and a hard place: wait for it to pass, squirming the entire time, or confront the situation, a step that brings its own new set of discomforts.
A recent post on the “Am I the A**hole (AITA)” subReddit showed how one guy handled that predicament.
The Original Poster (OP), known as filthybee_ on the site, used the post’s title to give a hint at what exactly went down.
“AITA for calling out my thirsty (desperate) friend”
OP began with some quick exposition.
“This happened Friday night. Me and my friend went out. He had some drinks, and I know how he gets when he’s drinking.”
“He’s the type that tries to talk to every and any girl. No biggie.”
Then OP’s friend began to confuse him.
“Fast forward to the pizza parlor we decided to go to. We’re waiting inside for our turn to order and he starts walking towards the door and calls for me to follow him.”
“I ask him why we’re outside and he doesn’t really give me an answer. I’m thinking maybe we just have to order outside. (There’s a big open window with 4 seats and a long table. So the cashier can take orders from inside for the people sitting outside)”
Then it all became clear.
“Anyways, in two of the seats, there’s 2 girls. This is when it clicks in my head.”
“He asks them if the seats were taken. They said no they weren’t taken. He starts up the typical convo that millions of girls have already heard.”
“A few minutes pass and they decide to go inside to eat since it was cold.”
OP hoped that would be the end of it.
“Guess who decides to go inside too. My friend.”
“We’re at this long table that’s against the wall where people can eat but they have to stand. This guy says he’s going to the bathroom and looking for a table.”
“He comes back and I ask him if he found a table, and he said yes.”
But it wasn’t at all what OP had in mind.
“I follow him, and no sh** this guy walks up to the same girls that were outside and he asks them if me and him could sit with them.”
“I look at him like WTF.”
Eventually, OP was forced to step in.
“Luckily they were super cool. I even apologized to them when he left to check on THEIR pizza.”
“So we’re eating and they finish and decide that it’s time to go. Guess who decides to leave too.”
“We walk out. I rush past the girls and tell them bye, praying that my friend doesn’t try to follow them anymore.”
But OP had more to say.
“While we’re walking, I tell him to never do that again and I told him that it was creepy what he did.”
“He had the nerves to get upset with me. I haven’t heard from him since.”
“So, Reddit who’s 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 agreed that OP’s friend was being weird.
“NTA that is not “thirsty” that’s fu**in creepy.” — GiftRecent
“Nta. It doesn’t seem like it was really cold. They were attempting to move away from you guys. How awkward.” — Kreeblim
“NTA Talking to them at the first table, fine. They said the seats weren’t taken, sounds at least neutral.”
“Following them inside and especially trying to follow them when they are trying to LEAVE is super creepy. He needs to understand why, or he probably will just continue this behavior.”
“Talk to him a little about rape statistics, about the chances being 1/3 (? I think?) that one of those girls has been raped in her lifetime, that there are predators out there who follow girls and expect sex for being nice, that just being a friendly guy can be perceived as threatening in that context.”
“I’m definitely not lumping your friend in with that kind of creepy, unless there’s more you aren’t telling us, but he does need to understand that this kind of behavior makes girls feel unsafe. Hopefully that will help him get it that he needs to change his habits.” — warmgreyverylight
“NTA. They kept trying to dodge him and he refused to take the hint. His behavior was a total turnoff. It’s just as well that you haven’t heard from him. He’ll just do it again the next time he sees attractive women.” — ComprehensiveBand586
Plenty of Redditors thanked OP for his advocacy.
“NTA, and as a lady, thank you, OP, for letting your friend know sh** like this is creepy.” — tinyseed
“Nta. And good for you for telling him.”
“Nothing wrong with being friendly. But he followed them inside, and outside, and when they left. Creepy.” — HongKongMother
“NTA – Your friend is acting inappropriately toward them. It seems kinda obvious they weren’t interested. Good for you for calling him out on that behavior.”
“A lot of guys think sh** like that is okay when in reality he’s desperately following girls who probably just wanted him to go away.” — SpectreX10
“NTA. As a woman; I’m glad guys like you exist, I’ve been in the girls’ position before and I promise you they were super uncomfortable but too nervous to say anything because of possible retaliation.”
“To the men, please don’t think you’re an asshole for calling out your creepy male friends, because you’re helping make the world feel safe for women to exist in.” — oxythotinn
“NTA. This happened to me and my sister once. It was absolutely terrifying. Thanks for calling him out.” — Whiteroses7252012
OP appears to be left with a couple choices.
Simply let the friendship slip away if the friend continues to stay distant, or make renewed efforts to check the creepiness when they do hang out again.