• Mon, Jun 28 2010

Modern Etiquette: A Guide to Handling Your Friends’ PDA

This weekend I met my friend “Nate”‘s new girlfriend. Nate has been kind of unlucky in the relationship department over the last few years, and I’m glad he’s met someone who he’s totally crazy about. But when he brought “Pam” out for dinner with a group of his nearest and dearest, they spent more time nibbling each other than the food. What do you want to simultaneously be happy for your friend and tell him to get a fucking room?

1. Pull your friend aside and say something.

It’s likely that your friend is so blinded by love that he hasn’t noticed all the eye-rolling. When his girlfriend goes to the bathroom, take advantage of the rare untangled moment to pull your friend aside, and very politely suggest that they lay off a little bit. I also like adding a bit of guilt here to help them retain perspective: “Kelly is still really depressed about her breakup, and I think seeing a happy couple hurts her right now.”

2. Ask pointed questions.

Rather than ignoring the couple and pretending they’re not there, try to engage them in conversation so they have less time to engage with each others’ earlobes. If you want to start small, ask them how they met – most new couples love to talk about their relationship and how star-crossed their union is. Or you can just pepper Pam with questions about what she does for a living, where she went to college, and what her real hair color is. The more they use their mouths to talk, the less they’re using them for, well, you know.

3. Make a joke.

Openly cracking jokes about their PDA might shame them into stopping. Or, at the very least, you and everyone else at the table can get your frustrations out via humor.

4. Beat them at their own game.

If you have a significant other with you or are comfy sucking face with one of your friends for the hell of it, try to beat the face-suckers at their own game. It could help them realize how uncomfortable they’re making everyone else, or it could just up the ante. Proceed with caution.

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