Saturday, March 21, 2009


Have you ever socialized with a couple who couldn't help but to have raging, screaming arguments in front of you? Whether in a double date situation or in a larger group, it's just no good for anyone involved. Sister and I were just talking about married friends of theirs who do it fairly frequently in front of her and her husband and then last night the Rednecks had it out in front of us. Awk-ward. I'd like to know if there's a proper ettiquette in handling it. Ignore it? Try to steer the conversation toward a more neutral topic like politics or religion?

Redneck Wife and I were leaving to go to the grocery store to pick up frozen pizza for dinner. Because we like to bring the klass on a Friday night. We've done this plenty of times in the past without incident. Except most of the time she brings her kids with us, which...I sort of hate and also doesn't make much sense when you figure Brian and Redneck Husband are there at the house, perfectly able to keep the kids from burning anything down, killing small animals or other things of that nature. I know it's possible, because I've seen it. But last night the kids had another friend over and the Wife figured (correctly) we could get the errand over with a lot quicker without bringing them along.

We went outside to where the men were working on Brian's truck and told them. You would've thought she had just announced the end of life as we know it by the way he reacted. There was cursing. There was throwing of large heavy tools. There was a very loud, heated and insulting exchange between them. Brian and I made eye contact for the briefest second and I quickly got into her truck. She got in, shut the door and said I hate him sometimes and I had no idea how to respond. I pretty much just agreed with her and quickly and awkwardly changed the subject.

I thought of how I could've maybe handled it better. I couldn't really commiserate with her and talk shit about Brian because he's never come close to acting like that. And she's known Brian since they were little kids so she already knows that. We're not close enough friends for me to give her any advice, not that I usually would anyway. If I could say what I am thinking whenever this happens: You're too good for him. You're too smart for him. You have a college degree and he's a functioning illiterate. I know he was the first real boyfriend you ever had (Translation: the first real good sex you ever had), I know you accidentally got pregnant when you were on the verge of breaking up and then figured you were screwed literally as well as figuratively so you did the "right" thing, but it's never too late and you know your parents would be thrilled if you divorced him and would probably buy you a new house. I don't think he's ever going to change and I don't think you're ever going to be happy unless you leave him.

Maybe some people could say it. I can't. Maybe I should though? She told me last night she only has four close friends and that I'm one of them. So if that's how she feels about me, do I OWE it to her to say it? All of the above is true, but I just don't feel it's my place to butt in when she's never asked me what I thought about it; she mostly just complains a little and then we move onto a different topic. Eh, who knows. All I know is whenever we're around them and something like that happens, I have the insane urge to go home and blow Brian to show my appreciation for him not being a douche. Maybe someday I'll actually act on it.

One of the responses I got back yesterday via text when I sent out my Bad News Bulletin was from my excellent friend Kristen. It said, "So, we just keep continuing to have baby prayers, that's all. What do you think about going bowling this weekend?" That ranks up there in the top five messages I've ever gotten in my life. And yes, I think we are going bowling tonight. Because when life hands you lemons you should always turn them into balls.


LL Cool Joe said...

For what it's worth, I don't think you should say anything. Some couples just function that way. Fighting and arguing and getting stroppy with one another, whilst others are all sweetness and light and lovey dovey. Doesn't always mean that one couple is happier than another anyway.

I think you did the right thing. :)

Have a great time tonight. You deserve it. :)

Scientific Lutheran said...

Tough call. I agree with LL, if she asks then go ahead and be strong and tell her, but until she asks I wouldn't offer the opinion.

I've been thinking happy baby thoughts, too. I didn't have a good phrase, though.

Kim said...

Joe - I agree; I think some couples thrive on drama. But if you could've seen this poor woman's face last night...and most nights, for that matter. She's not happy. But I know it's not my place to say anything.

SL - If she asks, I think I would have to say something, even if it's just to show her I care and would support whatever decision she makes. Thank you for the good baby thoughts!

Julie said...

My brother in law and sister in law are like that, and another set of friends we have. It makes me so uncomfortable. I think its really rude to everyone around them. And they wonder why their kids are always screaming.

Shari said...

Don't say anything. She already knows everything you said anyway and isn't doing anything about it and probably won't. So if you put it out there, it will just be uncomfortable between you two unless she leaves, which, what are the odds? We had a couple that was like that, and it was so uncomfortable. Everybody would get quiet and the air would be so thick with that energy. We finally stopped hanging out with them, when the angry outbursts turned towards the little kids. Leila saw one of the kids get whacked in the face for basically nothing and that was the last we ever saw of them.

Kim said...

Julie - I never thought of how it would be to be RELATED to that. Wow, that is sucky.

Shari - That's the worst part for me; they have two young kids who are getting older and smarter every day. What are they going to have to witness and be a party to? Sick.

Anonymous said...

Well, from what you've said, Mrs. Redneck already kind of has a contingency plan for herself should she decide to liberate herself from Mr. Redneck so anything you could possibly say to her has probably been said before and, more importantly, she's already been thinking it. I feel for her though.

As for the couples fighting in front of their friends? I don't like when they fight around me and I don't like when they make out around me. I kind of don't like hanging around most couples, even when I'm part of one and we're all hanging out together.