Smooching and Groping in Public

“I have a long-term friend, a 50-year-old bachelor who just started dating a girl, who is nearly 50. When I visit them, they frequently start making out and clawing at each other, sometimes even sharing the same spot on the couch with her on top of him,” writes a reader named SocialB.

SocialB finds the behavior disgusting: “I have to leave the room. How do I find a way to tell them that their behavior is revolting?”

Your friend is lovestruck, SocialB. Love is a many splendored thing, and it can also be creepy to watch. When people behave like teens and put on over-shows of affection, it makes the observer feel like a voyeur. One way to handle it is to speak privately to your friend, when his girlfriend is not around, and say that it makes you uncomfortable. Another way to handle it is with humor; next time they start smooching in front of you, try yelling something like, “Get a room, you two!” If neither approach works, you may have to simply wait it out; like teenagers, they’ll tire of each other.

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