Failing at being a man

SO last night I was in my best (girl)friend’s room with my best guy friend just hanging out. I left the room for a little while and heard my lady friend scream. She ran out laughing saying that my guy friend had just “used her butt as a drum.” Now this got me angry, because my guy friend has a history of doing these types of things to girls (slapping their butts). But the thing is, he isn’t doing it to be dirty. I think this is why I’ve been so “lenient” about it – his intentions are playful. I know that this doesn’t diminish the seriousness of what he’s doing, I’m just including it for context. I’ve told him that he shouldn’t do it in the past, but I was never serious enough about it.

I didn’t say anything to him this time. Later that night, as we were about to leave the room and were saying bye to her, he did it again. Once again, I felt uncomfortable and angry. My girl friend looked at me and I could tell that she was hurt that I didn’t say anything. Then she made a playfully sarcastic remark about how I can’t protect her.

As soon as we left the room I told my friend that he shouldn’t do that anymore. Then as we were walking back to the dorms I get a text from my girl friend saying “You don’t even deserve friends! Tsk tsk can’t even protect them!”

This absolutely broke my heart. Because she was right. The first time he did it I should’ve confronted him about it. I sinned by omission by just letting it slide. She is the most innocent college girl I know, and I think this is why I feel so bad about it – I feel like I (by omission) contributed to her being sexually harassed. I havn’t felt this bad about something in a long time :frowning:

My question is, **was this mortally sinful? **Just as a side note, I suffer from scrupulosity and so I tend to think everything is mortal sin even when it may not be, but I know that I can’t allow my feelings of guilt to determine that for me.

Also, I am going to have a very serious talk over lunch with my guy friend in an hour, so I am definitely going to make it painstakingly clear that he can’t be doing that anymore. I also plan on personally apologizing to my girl friend later today for not being a man and allowing this to happen.

That certainly is an unusual and difficult behaviour to deal with…

It is good that you are going to apologise to your girlfriend, if anything - knowing your weaknesses makes you a better man.

Having a serious talk with your friend about this issue is obviously nessecary; I cannot see or understand any reason for anyone doing that - and have never heard of anything like it - the best thing to do is ask him why he does it – and not take any dismissive answers as acceptable; there is an underlying reason for his behaviour and the key to maintaining your friendship with him and keeping your girlfriend depends upon resolving this issue.

Perhaps he does not realise what he is doing is wrong, if you explain it to him hopefully you could persuade him to apologise to your girlfriend – that would at least be proof that you are willing to protect her like a grownup. It is far better that you responded like an adult than say starting a fight etc…

Perhaps if you both apologise it will be a nice surprise :thumbsup:

Also, if your Girlfriend has said anything whilst angry or upset, try to overlook it

NB: It is not a mortal sin, and I doubt if it is even venial, but you might want to speak to your priest about it- it is a very unusual situation.

You aren’t at fault; this has nothing to do with “being a man” or whatever. If your female friend doesn’t want to be treated this way, she is the one who needs to say so.

However, you say she ran out “laughing” the first time; it doesn’t sound to me like she really minds it as much as she wants you to think. My bet is that you’re being played.

Any man that touches me gets a mouth full of fist, with no laughter.


Yes, I agree, and will be letting her know that. But to her defense, she is EXTREMELY innocent. She has probably never had to deal with this before, and therefore didn’t know how to handle it. I guess she thought that the guy should be speaking up (which I agree with) – but she should know that she needs to speak up as well. Without talking to her, I am guessing that she felt very uncomfortable about it but didn’t know how to express this to my friend. Her response was to “laugh it off” and hope that it didn’t happen again. One doesn’t know how to defend oneself until they learn – and she was never taught.

She definately does mind. And I don’t think I am being played, we are nothing more than friends lol :slight_smile:

As he should :thumbsup:

oooh what a relief – thank you :smiley:

He’s playing you. Probably jealous of your girlfriend. No longer a friend.


  1. She is not my girlfriend, just a girl who happens to be a friend.
  2. He has done this to another girl before, not just this friend.

He wouldn’t do that if he knew that a knuckle sandwich or a face full of fingers was the reward for such behavior. Don’t be concerned about whether it’s a sin or not, it’s a lot more important to stand up against that sort of lascivious conduct, to my way of thinking.

If not invited basically it’s assault.
In your view he doesn’t mean it to be dirty, but how is it not sexual. Would he do it to you, a male, and if he did, what would your reaction be?

It would seem that a quick slap in the face by her would be the neatest solution.


I never said it wasn’t sexual, I just said his intentions were not “dirty” or “lustful.”

An aside, It is incredibly impressive when a male sticks up for a woman, to another male.

No, PCG2, it’s not a sin.

Moreover, please say this out loud: “Just because I might have done something differently does not necesarily mean that what I did was a sin.” Repeat. Often.

Now, some points:

  1. The guy IMHO was way, WAY out of line whacking her as he did…especially a second time, if she signaled in some fashion that she didn’t like it. I note he did it he minute you were gone…and there is something really, really vaguely scary about that. Maybe he’s a jerk, and abusive. Maybe it’s an odd dig at you, in that he’s showing her and you that he can “do” this and you can’t or won’t…either way, guy is a lowlife IMHO.

  2. Note the words,“if she signaled in some fashion that she didn’t like it.” She did not appear to do that…in which case, some of this is on her.

  3. I’m sorry, I don’t buy the “she’s innocent and didn’t know how to handle this” defense. Maybe you can be shocked once, if some guy you are kinda friendly with does this once…but if it happens a second time you respond. Otherwise you are letting yourself be walked on…or worse, setting yourself up to the victim of violence…

  4. Also, I do not like the nonsense of failing to defend oneself, then texting you and making you feel guilty for not “protecting her.” Perhaps you could have said, “what’s the matter with you?” when guy did the whacking, but, with all due respect, I think it’s a bit much for GF to lay on you that you have an obligation to real GF’s mind and “defend” her for something which she didn’t really seem to mind when it happened…after all, she’s the one who “laughed” after whack one, and did not respond, such that whack two happened., and then didn’t respond yet again.

  5. GF appears to be blaming you for not defending her when, IMHO, 88% of the blame is on the guy for whacking her and 10% is on GF for laughing when he it did instead of socking him. Maybe 2% is on you, merely b/c you have a feeling you could/should have acted differently.

PCG2, last we checked in with you you were sleeping on someone’s floor ( I presume it was the same lady). I think the behavior and maturity of both the guy and the girl are, with due respect, pretty poor and pretty immature. With all due respect: What are you doing with these people?? The guy sounds like a first class punk, and the grl seems to, at a minimum, have some serious maturity issues.


You mean like a drum roll?

If your “buddy” had his grubby paw on that girl’s hiney, even for a femtosecond, it was definitely dirty and lustful… and it’s not a laughing matter… even if he is known to have done it to other girls on various occasions. That just means that he’s gotten away with it for far too long, and “course correction” along with “attitude adjustment” is way overdue.

"Attitude Adjustment"

In my opinion, your lack of action was not a sin.

But yes, you should have protected her from this guy’s sexual assault.

You also don’t know whats in your friend’s heart. See a butt isn’t a sexual organ, so it may not have been a lustful act.

Oh and as for your girlfriend’s text message, text messages are 99% of the time in jest or not serious. It’s not worth getting heart broken over. :thumbsup:

I agree, he was way out of line for doing this as well. Which is why I came here :slight_smile: No, this doesn’t have anything to do with showing anybody anything. He’s done it to other girls, even when I haven’t been around. This wasn’t a “he only does it to her” thing.

And I think the lowlife thing is a bit harsh, in all honesty. I know that it’s easy for you to paint that picture of him (seeing as how all you know about him is this one incident), but I can assure you that if he was a low life, I would not be hanging out with him. He is a loving and sweet guy that so happened to make very, very bad decisions in the way he interacted with women.

Agreed, and I told her about that last night. I had talk with her about it, letting her know that I was sorry I didn’t say anything sooner, but at the same time, she should have said something. I let her know that no one has the right to touch her in that way, and that she needs to speak up in the future because she can’t always count on a guy to be there to “protect” her.

Yup, I let her know that she made a booboo with her inaction.


To be honest, I don’t think you know enough about them to be making a judgement on their level of maturity. Yes, both times you heard about them I discussed them in a negative connotation, but it was only becasue of just that – I came on this forum to ask about sticky, negative situations involving them. If I came here to discuss every time they did soething loving, holy, or favorable in God’s eyes, I’d have 524435 posts by now :slight_smile:

The guy is not a punk, just a sinner (like all of us) who made a BIG, BIG mistake. I talked with him about it and he apologized to her, letting her know that he if he ever does something that makes her feel uncomfortable in any way, that she should let him know and he will stop immediately. This isn’t to say that he plans on continuing to do these kinds of things – I’d say he just wanted to make it clear that she ought to know that he’s sorry and that she should speak up :thumbsup:

I have imperfect friends, just like all of us. But believe me when I tell you that they are some of the best people I’ve met here in college (and I go to a school with 25,000 undergraduates!) They are Catholic, actually practice their faith, and are my best friends here. If I’m being completely honest, I don’t think I could do much better (not that I feel like I need to, anyways), considering the state of the collective mind of most college kids these days. They are good people who have faults just like the rest of us

What is the difference, if the man has no right to touch her sexually?
I think that to your credit, your mind kindly sanitizes it because of your friendship and your good heart, but the truth is…
If your friend keeps this up, and includes whatever females he wishes throughout his life, he will have a reputation as a ‘dirty old man’. I’ve seen it happen. The girl may laugh because she’s embarrassed, but it is remembered and is very much disliked.

Perhaps he just needs a little kind reminder from a friend. He may have hidden concerns about how to be liked and how to approach females, but this isn’t a beneficial way, to others, and in the long run, himself. I hope your friend finds healthy and positive and respectful ways to approach a liked female.

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