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Friends making critical comments

Posted by on Jul. 30, 2013 at 7:18 AM
  • 19 Replies
My husband's friend from childhood has always had various insecurities about himself and it's always been clear he puts a lot of concerning how others think of him as well as his image. He can be awkward at times and in a way is a bit of a misfit but we have always known that of him and have just always accepted that of him. He is generally a sweet person.
Over the past 5 yrs he met his wife, married and they now have a son who is 2 and a year younger than our boy. We have enjoyed a lovely friendship with his wife and look forward to seeing the boys grow up together.
Despite the years of friendship one thing we've always noticed about 'Mike' is that every so often he makes critical comments of either my husband or others. He tries to come across jokingly but what really comes out is his obvious insecurities and at times envy for others. So for the most part we just don't invest a lot of time engaging in that kind of chatter with him.
Recently he has made critical comments comparing his son to ours. Our boy, is on the short/petite side, which we have never had issue about because both hubby and I were the same as kids so we get the genetics we bring to our boy. But 'Mike' has recently made comments such as "Isn't it interesting that your boy is a year older than ours and they're pretty much the same height! In fact it looks like ** will be taller!"
At first we ignored the comment, but in a recent outing he made this comment more than 3 times and in front of the boys.
I finally responded quite curtly and said "Their size doesn't matter. What's most important is that they are healthy and thriving." He backed off at first, only to make the comment again later.
I'm angry about this. It is so important to us not to foster any sort of body image issues in our child. It is clear that *Mike* has some sort of feeling of inadequacy about his son (which is really sad) and he is criticizing my son to make himself more at ease. Furthermore, this kind of talk in front of the kids sets them up for rivalry.
When I asked hubby to have a chat with him about this, he said he'd talk to him about it the next time they are 1on1, which happens about twice a year. I don't feel it should wait.
I'd like to address it myself...any thoughts?
by on Jul. 30, 2013 at 7:18 AM
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Replies (1-10):
funhappymom
by Silver Member on Jul. 30, 2013 at 8:15 AM

I think you are right, he's insecure. Unfortunately, when it comes to insecurity, there isn't much you can say to make things better, they'll just continue. I would just suggest, coming up with a retort to it then makes it known that it doesn't bother you and then change the subject.

If you are really concerned, you may want to limit the amount of time you are around him.


bamababe1975
by Stephanie on Jul. 30, 2013 at 11:53 AM

 I agree with funhappymom. There's not a lot you can do but try not to let them see that it bothers you and avoid him if you can.



ditsyjo
by Gold Member on Jul. 30, 2013 at 9:00 PM
Letting it show that what he said bothers will be much more likely to affect your sons self image than your friends comments. I'd just say yep he is kinda short right now" like it's no big thing to be short.
jconney80
by Gold Member on Jul. 30, 2013 at 11:26 PM
It very honestly sounds like he could have Aspergers. Maybe he doesn't realize how rude he comes across. If you have not been direct about it I'd give him a chance to be very direct and explain that you don't talk like that in front of your son and that you don't want him saying those things. If he can't stop I'd avoid seeing him.
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BeccaJoy622
by on Jul. 30, 2013 at 11:34 PM
1 mom liked this
Maybe appeal to his insecure side. Maybe try pulling him aside and say, "you know, my son has been making comments about his appearance that makes me believe he feels a little insecure. Could you please not make any mention towards physical appearance around him, especially comparing the boys?" That way he can empathize, even if its false. The one thing he does understand, if not tact, is feeling insecure, ya know?
jenniferv27
by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 9:47 AM
1 mom liked this
I agree...i would let him know that it is not ok for him to constantly mention your sons physical appearance. Just because a child is short during childhood doesn't mean they will stay short. Tell him if he continues to compare the 2 boys then as much as u don't want to u are going to have to put some space between ur 2 families.
mamamiajk
by Ruby Member on Jul. 31, 2013 at 3:24 PM
1 mom liked this

Some people are just natural born assholes and there is not much you can do other than distance yourself and move on. When my twins were born in Dec. from his brother inviting us over for holiday buffet. They were NEVER close and I'd been with my SO for 5 yrs. and never met him or his family. When arriving they all took  turns "rating" my sons and outwardly looking for something to be off with them.We left within the hour....I didn't want to go to begin with. As I said assholes.hugs

MelanieJK
by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 3:34 PM

I agree with trying to get him to think in terms of how this might make your son feel.  

If that didn't work,  I'd probably take the "Don't be an idiot " approach by pointing out that nobody in their right mind would suggest to kids that things they have no control over and can't change make them better or worse than anyone else.

Kathy489
by Bronze Member on Jul. 31, 2013 at 3:35 PM

The first thing I thought of is to make a copy of your post and give it to him. It is very clear, to the point, and shows concern without being harsh. Or maybe meet with his wife and talk to her first.

The next thing I thought of is, why does your husband only see him twice a year? If that's the case, then don't see them at all. I thought you were around each other more often.

MamaD10
by on Jul. 31, 2013 at 10:47 PM
We interact with them often as a foursome + our kids but it's less seldom (especially since we've all married and have kids) that my husband and he get together on their own eg.a guys night out.


Quoting Kathy489:

The first thing I thought of is to make a copy of your post and give it to him. It is very clear, to the point, and shows concern without being harsh. Or maybe meet with his wife and talk to her first.


The next thing I thought of is, why does your husband only see him twice a year? If that's the case, then don't see them at all. I thought you were around each other more often.


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