T Nation

SAMA in Real Life

It’s easy to sit back and dole out advise from behind the key board on some of these breakup threads but what do you guys do in real life when it’s someone you know?

A young friend recently confided to me what he’s going through with his wife and I can see so clearly what really is going on and what the kid should do about it but I bite my tongue because I don’t know if I should risk influencing his path in life on a matter this big. I think I could save him a lot of heart ache in the long run but I hesitate to be so blunt with him.

About ten years ago there was a similar circumstance with a friend and I told him he needed to hire a PI to follow her to find out what he needed to know. That’s what he did and he learned a lot of valuable information. I’m not sure why I didn’t hesitate to speak up to that friend, maybe because he is my peer whereas this young friend could be my son.

I’m very conflicted. On one hand I want to tell the kid what he needs to do and on the other hand I think he needs to find his own way.

In real life I don’t give friends advice on something like marriage or serious relationships. As a matter of respect for their ability to make decisions based on what they are experiencing, I just let them know that no matter how it shakes down I’ll be there for them as a friend and confidant.

After warning then watching one of my brothers marry a woman from Chile who cleaned him out and put everybody within reach through hell I retired from advice giving. People see what they want to see when they want to see it, and it isn’t my job to show them otherwise.

If he’s a friend, you should try and help. Easy for me to say from the sidelines, but if you don’t feel comfortable being completely blunt, then maybe try and guide him in that direction without completely dropping the bomb.

Would you rather someone just leave you to your fate?

I would give advice especially if I was asked by a family member or friend. And I would be completely honest.

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:
I would give advice especially if I was asked by a family member or friend. And I would be completely honest. [/quote]

X2

This is my philosophy. If I am asked for advice. I do NOT give unsolicited advice. But I see the world pretty clearly and I have no problem sharing my perspective. I do NOT take responsibility for another person’s actions, though. It is ultimately up to the individual to decide what to do.

[quote]angry chicken wrote:

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:
I would give advice especially if I was asked by a family member or friend. And I would be completely honest. [/quote]

X2

This is my philosophy. If I am asked for advice. I do NOT give unsolicited advice. But I see the world pretty clearly and I have no problem sharing my perspective. I do NOT take responsibility for another person’s actions, though. It is ultimately up to the individual to decide what to do.[/quote]

X3

1.)If he’s confiding in you about his problems just hear him out, empathize, help him work through his own shit etc.

2.)If he’s asking your opinion, be honest. Your opinion is a “here’s what I think might be happening based on what you’re telling me and my own experience” type of conversation. This may involve helping to hash out an action plan of some kind and generally providing the sober clarity of an impartial third party.

3.)Advice is a “here’s what I think you should do” type of conversation. There’s a difference.

I’m the most comfortable with 1, still fairly comfortable with 2 and I avoid 3 like the plague, both on these boards or in real life.

That being said, when it comes to love and relationships it’s been my experience that people will do basically whatever the hell they were gonna do anyway, however disastrous that may be, regardless of whether they receive the best possible “advice” on the subject or not. Of course, that could just be what I do…

If I am asked I am very, very blunt.

I am not asked ofted, people prefer their pretty lies.

[quote]batman730 wrote:

That being said, when it comes to love and relationships it’s been my experience that people will do basically whatever the hell they were gonna do anyway, however disastrous that may be, regardless of whether they receive the best possible “advice” on the subject or not. Of course, that could just be what I do…

[/quote]

This is very true and the main reason why I don’t care about being blunt and honest. I have a younger sister who was 19 wanted a baby so much, was dating a jerkoff who had 2 children from previous relationships and was not involved in the lives of the children at all. I told her she could do better and to just wait a few years and at least finish school. Well she of course doesn’t and now has a child and the guy is on with another chick about to have his fourth child with as many different woman.

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:

[quote]batman730 wrote:

That being said, when it comes to love and relationships it’s been my experience that people will do basically whatever the hell they were gonna do anyway, however disastrous that may be, regardless of whether they receive the best possible “advice” on the subject or not. Of course, that could just be what I do…

[/quote]

This is very true and the main reason why I don’t care about being blunt and honest. I have a younger sister who was 19 wanted a baby so much, was dating a jerkoff who had 2 children from previous relationships and was not involved in the lives of the children at all. I told her she could do better and to just wait a few years and at least finish school. Well she of course doesn’t and now has a child and the guy is on with another chick about to have his fourth child with as many different woman.[/quote]

I dont know about you but I for one look forward to a future populated by our best and brightest.

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:

[quote]batman730 wrote:

That being said, when it comes to love and relationships it’s been my experience that people will do basically whatever the hell they were gonna do anyway, however disastrous that may be, regardless of whether they receive the best possible “advice” on the subject or not. Of course, that could just be what I do…

[/quote]

This is very true [/quote]

I agree as well. Most of the time people are going to do what they are going to do and there’s not much you can do about it.

[quote]batman730 wrote:

[quote]angry chicken wrote:

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:
I would give advice especially if I was asked by a family member or friend. And I would be completely honest. [/quote]

X2

This is my philosophy. If I am asked for advice. I do NOT give unsolicited advice. But I see the world pretty clearly and I have no problem sharing my perspective. I do NOT take responsibility for another person’s actions, though. It is ultimately up to the individual to decide what to do.[/quote]

X3

1.)If he’s confiding in you about his problems just hear him out, empathize, help him work through his own shit etc.

2.)If he’s asking your opinion, be honest. Your opinion is a “here’s what I think might be happening based on what you’re telling me and my own experience” type of conversation. This may involve helping to hash out an action plan of some kind and generally providing the sober clarity of an impartial third party.

3.)Advice is a “here’s what I think you should do” type of conversation. There’s a difference.

I’m the most comfortable with 1, still fairly comfortable with 2 and I avoid 3 like the plague, both on these boards or in real life.

That being said, when it comes to love and relationships it’s been my experience that people will do basically whatever the hell they were gonna do anyway, however disastrous that may be, regardless of whether they receive the best possible “advice” on the subject or not. Of course, that could just be what I do…

[/quote]

Good post. I’d say the conversations have been more of the #1 type. Basically I asked how his weekend was and ended up getting quite a detailed answer. LOL I don’t think he ever asked me what i thought and he definitely didn’t ask what he should do. In a conversation lie this there’s a certain degree of back and forth though and the lines you draw in such a conversation can be fuzzy.

Perhaps just use the Socratic method, i.e. keep asking him questions until he comes to the conclusion himself.

I feel like now is as appropriate a time as ever to ask; what does SAMA stand for?

[quote]lemony2j wrote:
I feel like now is as appropriate a time as ever to ask; what does SAMA stand for?[/quote]
Sex and the male animal

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:

[quote]lemony2j wrote:
I feel like now is as appropriate a time as ever to ask; what does SAMA stand for?[/quote]
Sex and the male animal[/quote]
Well I never, I had about 6 other possibilities and wasn’t anywhere near

[quote]lemony2j wrote:

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:

[quote]lemony2j wrote:
I feel like now is as appropriate a time as ever to ask; what does SAMA stand for?[/quote]
Sex and the male animal[/quote]
Well I never, I had about 6 other possibilities and wasn’t anywhere near[/quote]

Sex and the Male Animal used to be a section on this site. I chose that title because my young friend is a lifter and we’ve talked about this site. I figure at this point he still comes to the site for lifting discussions and hasn’t degraded into Get a Life yet. Nevertheless I wanted to choose a title that veterans would likely click on but a young guy with marital issues would likely not.

PS Sorry if this double posts. I just had some wifi trouble and I’m not sure if the 1st one went thru.

[quote]on edge wrote:

[quote]lemony2j wrote:

[quote]bdocksaints75 wrote:

[quote]lemony2j wrote:
I feel like now is as appropriate a time as ever to ask; what does SAMA stand for?[/quote]
Sex and the male animal[/quote]
Well I never, I had about 6 other possibilities and wasn’t anywhere near[/quote]

Sex and the Male Animal used to be a section on this site. I chose that title because my young friend is a lifter and we’ve talked about this site. I figure at this point he still comes to the site for lifting discussions and hasn’t degraded into Get a Life yet. Nevertheless I wanted to choose a title that veterans would likely click on but a young guy with marital issues would likely not.

PS Sorry if this double posts. I just had some wifi trouble and I’m not sure if the 1st one went thru.[/quote]

Wait, this site has stuff about lifting on it?

Huh, who knew?..

[quote]on edge wrote:
It’s easy to sit back and dole out advise from behind the key board on some of these breakup threads but what do you guys do in real life when it’s someone you know?

A young friend recently confided to me what he’s going through with his wife and I can see so clearly what really is going on and what the kid should do about it but I bite my tongue because I don’t know if I should risk influencing his path in life on a matter this big. I think I could save him a lot of heart ache in the long run but I hesitate to be so blunt with him.

About ten years ago there was a similar circumstance with a friend and I told him he needed to hire a PI to follow her to find out what he needed to know. That’s what he did and he learned a lot of valuable information. I’m not sure why I didn’t hesitate to speak up to that friend, maybe because he is my peer whereas this young friend could be my son.

I’m very conflicted. On one hand I want to tell the kid what he needs to do and on the other hand I think he needs to find his own way.[/quote]

I’d go with the “blunt” route. Whatever message you’re trying to convey by not being blunt is going to be further diluted by the fact he’s probably still looking at his wife with rose-colored glasses. And given the situation, it be better for the guy to have any advice rather than no advice. I’m tired of hearing about well-to-do-guys getting fucking reamed by their wives (and ditto for the women too).

Doubly for the fact that a different friend of yours had a similar situation and needed to hire a PI. If this is something where a PI needs to get involved, then I think you should definitely be blunt with him. Although, as far as bluntness goes, I’d probably refrain from being too blunt about his wife. The message should be focused on the situation at hand and not be directly pointed to his wife and/or her character (or lack thereof).

I think a lot of these situations keep happening to guys because other guys who’ve been through it don’t speak up and give them the real. So now you have someone that missed the warning signs, his marriage ran amok, and now he’s literally and figuratively destroyed because he didn’t have the necessary tools to handle the situation. Now going into his next relationship, his thinking is going to be “All women are bitches” rather than “my ex was a bitch”.

Falling and then picking yourself backup is indeed a good learning mechanism. But the fall can be less damaging and the recovery can be more swift if someone is there guiding them along.

I say tell him.

My 2 cents.

As many other have already said, If I am asked, I say things as I see them. If not, I keep my mouth shut.