Ask Lisi: An old friend is not a good person. Should I tell others why?

Ask Lisi: An old friend is not a good person.  Should I tell others why?

QYears ago the three of us were friends; we raised our daughters together. Our daughters are grown and we haven’t seen each other much in the last 10 years. One friend, A, tried to get closer to me again. The other friend, B, thinks it’s great to get the band back together.

In the past few months, I have visited A without B several times. Every time he was embarrassed by her terrible manners. We went for a pedicure – he was rude and demanding of the women working there. We went for lunch and he was rude to the waiter. We went shopping and he was rude to the sales staff. It does not tip and returns used products to stores. Everywhere we go he tries to get something for nothing or a discount.

He just inherited a large sum of money, so frugality is not the point. We recently went to Ikea and he stole something. I gently faced him; i told him i saw him hide an item and not pay for it. It was a quiet ride home.

I kept all this to myself and decided to quietly withdraw from this friendship. It was A’s birthday recently and I refused to join them for a celebratory dinner. Now B gives the cold shoulder. I think A was lying to explain why I didn’t come to dinner and meet him.

Should I tell B what happened to A? Or wait until he finds out for himself?

Old friends, bad habits

THEIf A isn’t the kind of friend you want to keep, you don’t owe it to him to stick around. You were friends when your daughters connected you. They are adults and the relationship is no longer there. I’m sure it was nice to see each other and reminisce. But if there’s no common thread, it’s okay to leave.

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The same goes for your friendship with B.

As for A’s antics – he knows you know. Other than being booked for shoplifting, you can’t change his bad behavior. B soon finds out and either rolls with it or walks away.

FEEDBACK: Regarding the married woman thinking about her youth (Jan. 18):

Reading: “You gave ‘Confused’ bad advice based on the information you provided. I realize that the original letters are much longer and condensed for publication purposes, but I assume the basics are accurate.

“Confused has had female-to-female sex for a long time. She is now happily married to a man and has two children. He expressed complete satisfaction with his current life, but thought about his past and wondered if he should tell people.

“The fact that she’s young, vulnerable, coming out of a breakup, wanting a relationship, wanting a summer love, open to discovery – these are all reasons why she had such a relationship.

“You don’t have to tell anyone. This is her personal information and there is no reason to tell anyone, not even her husband. He stated that this was in the past, he was not worried about his heterosexuality, nor about the marriage. Why upset a good marriage with information that could upset it? Some people, especially men, have a hard time accepting their spouse’s past. It disturbs them and taints the current relationship.

“You have to accept that your partner has a sexual history. You don’t have to discuss it with anyone unless you decide you want to. But be aware that once you tell one person, you have no control over who else will find out. It can also reach people you don’t want to know, including your children and parents.

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“I had 32 years of experience as a sexual health nurse and was entrusted with ‘secrets’ that no one else would ever know.”

Ellie Tesher and Lisi Tesher are advice columnists for the Star and live in Toronto. Email your contact questions to [email protected] or [email protected]


The conversations are the opinions of our readers and the Behavior codex. The Star does not endorse these opinions.

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