Girlfriend's husband "not too friendly"

by Rosanne
(Metuchen, NJ)

I have been friends with Lisa for several years. Our friendship has become very close since our seven year old boys have been friends since preschool.

Lisa's husband has done very well for himself, making a lot of money. He enjoys spending his free time playing golf at the local country club.

My husband and I, coming from essentially the same background, are not quite so financially well off. However, both my husband and I are very well educated; I have an MSW and my husband has an MBA. My husband prefers to spend his free time getting involved in my son's sporting activities and other family pastimes.

When I go over to Lisa's I have been noticing that her husband barely takes the time to say hello to me and somtimes doesn't acknowledge my presence at all.

He can be on his cell phone walking around the yard in the evening "on business" and doesn't even bother to lift his hand to wave if I am dropping the kids off.

I am beginning to get really ticked off about this. Lisa says not to take it personally. She says her husband is friendly but only to people he chooses to be friendly with. To me this sounds like a bit of elitism but his total lack of civility is a total lack of manners.

What do you think and how should I handle this situation?

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Oct 02, 2015
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Mar 03, 2010
Exact Same Experience
by: Anonymous

My girlfriend and I have been friends since we were 10. In college, she married a man I had never met (which does sound odd for being so close, but circumstances prevented it). When I did meet him, he was quite rude to my fiance and myself.
Three years later, he was still withdrawn and rude. He and my husband have very little in common and prefer to avoid each other. My friend and I, on the other hand, are often at each other's houses. He refuses to make eye contact with me and is often "busy" on his phone. My friend always told me he was nice to some and ignored others.
I pushed my best friend to her breaking point one day. She told me that he ignored those who made him uncomfortable. He had a low self-esteem and was afraid of eye contact because that opened up friendly conversation - where he could be hurt. Their marriage was very sensitive because of it. She loved him and he loved her, but he saw no reason in having "friends" when they were married.
I've learned that it's nothing personal... he's just scared. Because he's scared, he may also have a tendancy to blow up if pushed. Just be polite; he may eventually come around. My friend's husband eventually said "Hi" eight years later, but he still hasn't waved.

Oct 26, 2009
Three Ways You Can Play This Game
by: Eunice

I feel a little upset reading your email. It is because I have witnessed and experience this behaviour personally as well and I wish I could personally eradicate such behaviour.

The lady in me will tell you to simply stick to your courteous and polite manner saying hello whenever you are around but ignore him after that.

The slightly upset person in me will tell you to go further, and ignore him even when he steps into the room. (Of course, initial greeting is still required, you do not want to lose your manners over him). Do not pay too much attention to him. If he steps in to boast to your friend about his business deal. Don't even fawn or act that his success is any big deal.

Sometimes, you might go even further to boast of your success, even if you exaggerate to your friend, as long as he is within earshot. You might find yourself surprised how suddenly he might want to be friends again. Then you'll know that this is what makes him tick. This is how you get him to be interested in your friendship. Honestly, no judgment to him at all, but it is unfortunate that "this" is how he chooses his friends, quite superficially.

I think everyone chooses their friends, it's not up to us to say, "my way" or "your way" is better. Ultimately, the life we live is a result of what we choose. The people we surround ourselves with are who we chose.

There is no law to say how one should choose their friends, though I wish he employed a bit more discretion and taste and much more manners.

But if you are serious of being his friend, you can do the above. If you are not but wish to express your dissatisfaction, you can simply ignore him, and if you would like a little fun and trap him, you can also play up your success a little and watch him grow interested.

Just my 2 cents worth.

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