Carolyn Hax: Red flags in other girl's behavior

The Washington PostMay 31, 2014 

Adapted from a recent online discussion.

Hi Carolyn: My housemate is smitten with a girl (nothing has happened yet), and he asks me for advice and I just have SUCH A BAD FEELING. It's so viscerally anti-her that I wonder if I'm secretly harboring feelings for him. And it's nothing glaring - she seems thoughtful and is very friendly.

Can you tell me if my red flags are ludicrous? (1) She has dated at least four of his friends. (2) All of them still have strong negative feelings about her. (3) She started getting very close to him (gifts, late-night texts) while still dating someone else. (4) She seems to need to be desired, by a lot of people, a lot. (5) She is MUCH friendlier to men than women.

Am I a jealous hag?

RED FLAGS

Each flag seems legitimate, and you do have feelings for him.

The former isn't a tough call, and the latter isn't my call at all - you basically admitted it. If I'm right, though, then think of it as a game of hearts. Either stay out of it while his crush runs its (collision) course, or shoot the moon - admit you're allergic to her for what you think are legitimate reasons in spite of your blatant self-interest due to your, ah, feelings for him.

To Red Flags: I don't know if I agree with Carolyn. I have had similar feelings about a woman whom you describe to such a tee I genuinely wondered if it was the same person. This woman didn't really encroach on my marital territory, so it wasn't an issue of romantic jealousy. She just … triggered me. It can be personally offensive to watch a woman use your (male) friends for their affections, and also not value other women at all.

ANONYMOUS

You're right, someone can still offend you when you have no personal stake in her actions. To the extent that, when I read the description, I too thought it could be someone I once knew. Same thing - couldn't abide the person even when nothing of mine was at stake. Still can't.

Email tellme@washpost.com. Chat online at 10 a.m. Fridays at www.washingtonpost.com.

Idaho Statesman is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service