One married woman wonders what to do about her friend who has crossed the line with her husband.
By Kristina Grish
Lara (some names have been changed) is one of my closest friends... and when we were single, my dating partner in crime. I watched her charm men with an easy laugh or fixed gaze and eventually learned how to read her like a body-language expert on
Extra. I like you, she'd say with her smile. What do you think of me? Lara's moves landed her a college boyfriend, a few flings, and her husband,
Ken. And none of them mattered to me-until she started using them on my husband, Scott.
MORE: "How I Knew I Wanted to Marry Her"
Lara never flirted with Scott until we began going out on double dates as married couples. Now she asks him too many questions about his guitar collection and laughs too hard at his quips-all while flashing him that smile. Ken and I are left to make small talk, pretending not to listen to their conversation.
I didn't tell Scott right away that I noticed Lara's antics since I trust him and didn't want to sound catty or insecure. But after our eighth double date, I asked what he thought of her flirting. His typical guy response: "I've never noticed." Seriously?
Crossing the Line
Another weird aspect of this whole thing: Scott acts randy toward me after we're out with Lara. When I tell this to Elizabeth Lombardo, PhD, author of A Happy You, she suggests I relax. "Even though Scott doesn't notice Lara's gestures, they still boost his ego," she says. "And that primes him for great sex with you. Take advantage of it!"
PLUS! 30 Things to Do with a Naked Man
Good advice, but I can't promise I'll react so rationally.
Paul Dobransky, MD, director of womenshappiness.com, assures me that it takes men four times longer to pick up on subtle social cues than it does women, which is why Scott is oblivious. He adds that since Lara and I have never competed for men, her flirting is subconscious. "It's a way for her to feel attractive and alive," Dr. Dobransky says. He advises me to steer Lara's thoughts in a different direction. "Call attention to the fact that you and Scott are a 'we'" he says. "Try 'Scott and I had a great time in Miami. Are you guys going away?'"
Easy Way Out
Should I confront Lara? Lombardo says Lara will have stepped over the line if she suggests that she and Scott do something solo. She also says a confrontation is in order if I start to see events in a distorted way-like thinking Scott is falling in love with Lara or that Lara is doing this to spite me-which means my happiness is at stake in a more serious way. "In that case, make a lighthearted comment, like 'Wow, you laugh really hard at Scott's jokes,' " she tells me. "Lara should get the hint. If she doesn't, that's a sign her intentions may not be innocent."
In the end, Lara's flirting pushed me to limit date nights with her and Ken; now we hang out alone or with the girls. It may not be the expert-approved way to handle things, but it works for our friendship and my marriage...and that's what's most important.
What do you think about Kristina's situation with Lara? What would you have done?
Read more at Cosmopolitan.com!
- 6 Worst Things You Could Say to a Guy
- 10 Things You Don't Know About Kissing
- Why Guys Dump Girls They Dig
- Sex Tips from Guys
4 Signs He's Hiding Something