Where do you draw the line?

As the title of my post suggests, this question has been troubling me a lot since last night. Where do you draw the line? While asking personal questions, giving your opinion, or just kidding around with friends? Perhaps a more pertinent question for our times might be, is there still a line?

I was chatting with a good friend from my college days last night. A male friend, a fact that has had absolutely no relevance to our friendship, in my mind at least. Till last night, that is.

So we were chatting. The friend wished me a belated happy birthday. I decided to give him a hard time for being late in wishing me. To which, his very shocking reply was something I wouldn’t like to quote on this blog, all I’ll say is that it was a clear case of very blatant flirting.

To add insult to injury, he responded to my shocked and enraged reaction with a ‘I know I shouldn’t be flirting with you but I can’t really help it’ kind of lame excuse! It took me a while just to believe what I was reading, that’s how unexpected and uncalled for his behavior was.

I consider this guy a good friend, we have spent some happy times together in college, sharing some great conversations and lots of jokes, pranks and fun. It’s difficult for me to break our friendship on the basis of a single odd conversation. To add to my confusion, he kept sending me apologetic messages and smileys once he knew I was upset with him. I told him I was feeling strange and would speak with him later, before signing off.

Was I making a mountain of a molehill? I thought I knew this guy, I always thought of him as a good and decent person. So was I overreacting? Was he just joking and had I taken his words far more seriously than he intended them to be? I have no easy answers on this one.

I know my generation believes in a far more intimate and casual culture than I am comfortable with. I know lots of people, my own friends, who wouldn’t think twice about our conversation last night. The common attitude is, ‘chalta hain yaar’, ‘who cares’, ‘just chill’ and the like.

On the other hand, shouldn’t there be some kind of limit even in the closest of friendships? A distance, a certain dignity to be maintained, even among friends? I think there should. And if our limits differ from other people’s, I think it’s up to us to clarify the difference.

A much better option than to give up on people who are different, wouldn’t you say? Of course, the latter might be the last option if repeated clarifications do not work. Do you guys agree?

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5 responses to “Where do you draw the line?

  1. As I was reading on I was thinking that it is best to be open and tell them what your limits are. if they value your friendship, they will understand and respect them. if they don’t, they aren’t your good friends. And you said it yourself :
    “And if our limits differ from other people’s, I think it’s up to us to clarify the difference.”
    That’s what I’d do too.

    Been out of blogworld for a while and I see you have a lot of posts here which I missed. but will catch up on the archives soon. 🙂

  2. Hi- bloghoppped here from Usha’s!

    I couldn’t agree more. Personally, I would bet my money on this: a guy and a girl can never be as close as two girls without either of them in the former case, getting some romantic notions. Maybe it’s just the way I feel coz of personal experience, or maybe that’s really the way it is- am biased for life!

  3. Hey dear,
    Couldnt agree with Usha and CW more.

    Maybe you should read my ‘Rant’ post too. Something on similar lines. Its really painful to see a very good friend say something ghastly as to put us to so much stress. Its hard to believe that ‘s/he’ would say or do something like what you’ve posted.

    I would definitely not have the guts (yeah, thats what it is) to say something back to him/her right there. I’m not that kind cos it takes a while for me to come to terms with the incident in the first place.

    And yeah, CW is very right !!

    Dont worry dear, I think your friend already knows by now..

  4. CW, contrary to my experiences (which seem to be similar to yours) I’d still like to believe I can be good friends with guys without any romantic complications arising. Otherwise it would be impossible to maintain so many of my friendships after marriage, wouldn’t you say?

    M, I wanted to say something strong then, but just like you, I seem to think of all the strong punch lines the next day only!

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