by Lindsey Cooper about a year ago in friendship

In Places You Don't Belong


When you have people that you become really close with, what happens in their life affects you. It begs the question, when do you meddle and when do you let stuff go?

I am one of those people that respond very quickly to change or if I feel something is off, I need to address it. I become very anxious if I'm afraid something bad is going on and I have a hard time sorting through how to respond to uncomfortable situations. This is certainly the case with those you work with, because let's face it... you spend more time with those people than you do with your family sometimes.

I had a boss many moons ago that had a rumor floating around them that they were having inappropriate relations with someone on their team. While it was never confirmed or denied that was actually the case, it became an uncomfortable situation, especially when that boss happens to be married and have children. You wonder what you are supposed to do with that information, especially when you know their significant other.

I grew up in a house where cheating was a common theme. Somehow the men in my life were cheaters. Not my significant others, but the father roles and men my mom dated. It is unfortunate that there are people out there in the world that think cheating is okay. I saw the pain and hurt it caused my mom and I vowed never to cheat on anyone, no matter how badly I would want to do it. I think, courtesy of that vow, I have never wanted or needed to cheat. If a relationship is not working and you're ready to go outside the relationship, it's time to end it.

But when you become so involved with others and continue to be invested in their lives, when do you ask the question? When is it okay to say, "Hey... everything okay at home?" Is it okay to meddle in the lives of people you love because you're concerned for their well-being or the well-being of their family members? As I have gotten older and become of age where marriage, children, and family are a constant thought, I wonder a lot about things like this. When I get married, I want it to last forever. I want the person you laugh with, and cry with, and celebrate with, and mourn with. I want to have my husband with me in the old folks home cracking jokes and being that role model to our kids and grand-kids. I can't imagine being married and having my husband cheat on me, especially after kids. In my brain, it just doesn't make sense.

I know that I have never been married, but to me, making those vows to another person makes them sacred. And I know that when I take those vows, I will make that person my number one priority and I will try my damnedest to work on our marriage. From everything I've heard and read, you have to put all your effort into your marriage. You have to put your family first a lot of the time and the dynamics change in your life. Thus is the case for a lot of things as you get older. You don't get to be a kid anymore when you decide to have kids.

Obviously, all of this started with the thought of meddling into someone else's life. There are so many questions and every person is different. I try to give them the benefit of the doubt and understand why anyone would want to go outside their marriage. It also opens up a can of worms in my brain to figure out if that could ever happen in my life. For people who I'm close to, I value the fact that they were strong enough to make that commitment to another person and I look to them for their advice and appreciate that I can use them as role models for my own marriage someday. But if in fact, their marriage ends in shambles or due to cheating, can I separate my friendship, or relationship with that person from the fact that their marriage is over? That is one question I still need to ponder for a bit...

How does it work?
Read next: 'Chocolate Kisses'
Lindsey Cooper

I am a southern California native who just loves writing. I find that the more I write, the better I feel. One day, I would love to write for a living... one day... :) 

See all posts by Lindsey Cooper