Woman Being Hit On By Friend's 'Creep' Husband Begs Internet For Advice

A woman's story of a friend's husband hitting on her has split the users of a popular parenting forum.

Posting to Mumsnet's Talk section on 27 June, user JennaBear shared how her friend's "creep" husband harassed her during a recent birthday party, where the blame was pinned on her for his actions.

She wrote: "Invited out by friends' husband (who I don't know very well) to celebrate her birthday with two other couples. I ended up sitting between her husband and another [man].

"Throughout the whole meal, her husband kept his arm draped around my chair (which my [husband] saw and thought was odd, but not exactly boundary crossing).

"However, what my [husband] didn't see was that he also kept touching my back, rubbing my bra strap, pushing his legs against mine, touching my hand, etc.

"It made me feel REALLY uncomfortable (and not just because both our spouses were there, but because I didn't want him to touch me)."

The poster tried to subtly get the man to stop touching her, but he continued with his behavior.

"I [leaned] as far forward as I could away from his hand, moving my legs away from him, going to the toilet in order to be able to come back and reposition myself, etc," she explained.

"I know I didn't imagine it though, because two of my other friends were in the pub that evening and asked me afterwards if I enjoyed 'being creeped on.'"

After running into her friend while dropping her child off at school, she noticed the woman behaving strangely towards her.

"My friend seems [cold] with me," she said. "I might just be imagining it, but I don't know what she saw / thought at the time.

"Looking for advice really (even if just retrospective advice about how I could have handled it better, as it's left me feeling quite upset)."

An online survey conducted by Stop Street Harassment reported that 81 percent of female and 43 percent of male respondents had experienced sexual harassment. Undertaken in 2018 in the wake of the #MeToo movement, the study also explored the most common forms of sexual harassment men and women experience.

The most common form of sexual harassment women reported was verbal at 77 percent, while 51 percent had been touched without their consent. Some 41 percent reported being harassed online, and 27 percent of those surveyed were survivors of sexual assault. Out of all of the women who participated, only 1 percent confronted their abuser, and just 10 percent filed an official report with the police or another authority.

Mumsnet users were divided over the situation, with some users believing that the poster should have spoken up at the time.

"The mistake you made here was not calling him out on it," commented MolliciousIntent. "Your friend [saw] her husband hitting on you and you 'letting' him, and it is much easier for her to be angry with you than it is for her to face up to the fact that she married a s***."

AnneLovesGilbert agreed, writing: "You could have moved. You could have asked your husband to swap seats with you.

"How he behaved was gross and entirely his own responsibility and it's awful you put up with it because you prioritised other peoples feelings over your own."

While Peakypolly said: "I never understand these dilemmas. I would have pushed the arm away and said loudly 'If I didn't know you better I would have worried you were being inappropriate.'"

However, others jumped to the woman's defense, slamming the commenters blaming her for the man's behavior.

"I hope you weren't wearing a short skirt OP otherwise you were asking for it," said RealBecca sarcastically. "I cannot believe people are putting this on you."

"The reaction on here is utterly soul destroying," agreed LuaDipa.

"Not your fault OP, " wrote Paprikapommes. "I'd be sad that my [husband], friends and the wife all saw this and didn't say or subtly step in to help.

"Do NOT feel guilty."

Hoppinggreen commented: "YOU did nothing wrong. Please please please can we stop taking responsibility for the bad behaviour of men."

Woman Being Hit On By Friend’s Husband
A stock photo of a man putting his hand on a woman's thigh and her pulling away in disgust. Mumsnet users were divided over who was at fault—the man for being a "creep," or the woman for not speaking up. Tero Vesalainen/iStock/Getty Images Plus