He Asked What to Do When She Flirts Right in Front of Him — Reddit Answered | 22 Words

Picture this: you're out with your significant other, having a great time at a party and someone else comes over to chat with you both. But something feels off...they just won't stop hitting on your special someone and even worse? Your SO is flirting back. Freeze frame.

What are you supposed to do in this situation? Is it controlling to ask your SO to stop? Or is it a sign of something worse?

Never fear! We're about to take you to the source of all great relationship advice: Reddit. Yes, after one man asked Reddit this very same question the denizens of the internet came to his rescue with advice born from experience (and in some cases born from nothing but the confidence of being online). Find out what people really think when they see their significant others flirting.

And if you don't agree with the advice? Jump in on Reddit and share your own advice.

Redditor Maangeella started the conversation with a pretty vulnerable question.

from AskMen

Have the general experience that when we are out, she gets hit on quite frequently but leads the guys on by flirting back.

I'm not really bothered that she gets hit on, I take that more as a compliment for her and for me, but the fact that shes flirtatious and sometimes completely disregards me makes me wonder how I should approach it if and when it will happen again.

There were some strong opinions right out of the gate.

Council of Beards immediately jumped in with this: That's gonna be a big "not cool" from me, chief. I don't even know if I'd bother having a boundary-setting conversation, cos it sounds like she's just going to keep doing it behind your back.

There were a lot of agrees on this one.

I had this problem with an ex. He would brush me off and always complain about how he's just a flirtatious personality and he can't help it... Long story short he cheated on me HARD for the majority of the relationship until I found out and dumped his ass.

It seems like attention seeking behavior OP and that's not good


There were some...not great stories. Oof.

My ex, she told me, it's just harmless. Then I found out she was texting. It's just texting. Then I found out she was cheating.... I didn't mean to.

2 kids, a home, 2 cars, everything, she fucked it away.


Seriously there were a LOT of stories about cheating.

I agree, my first LTR ex was like this. When girls obviously liked him he would flirt back easily. Made excuses in my mind that maybe he just needed the ego boost and I'm still the girlfriend at the end of the day. Obviously, he cheated on me a couple of times before I left him and finally accepted he’s not gonna change. That's who he is that is what brings him joy and would literally flirt with anyone who shows interest there comes a time you just get tired of waiting for shit to hit the fan. If she does that with you around imagine how it is without you around. Some people are just like this from the get-go it’s good she’s being transparent with you. Now you have to have a talk and its up to you if you have the mental and emotional energy to check every time whether she’ll be flirting back or flirt behind your back. -Derpinana

So many warnings to tell OP to leave now.

I've only experienced it once. I let it go and thought it was just her personality. That personality led to her cheating on me with multiple people and her step mom is the one who told me about it. I dumped her. No idea at all why she wouldn’t just leave me if she didn’t want to be with me, it would have been a lot better. I’ll never understand that. -LemmieBee

Some of the thoughts came from a woman's perspective and still didn't like it. OP's girlfriend is seriously disrespectful.

As a woman, I agree. What kind of a girlfriend does that when you are clearly in a relationship? She's trash and she needs to be dumped. She has no respect for you if she does something shitty like that. The very least she could do is show some respect, and, you know, not flirt with other dudes. Get rid of her before she starts throwing out more red flags. -justalittleparanoia

And the biggest question many people had:

And if that’s what she is doing while you are with her, how is she acting when you aren’t ? -mrenz9

Many people were convinced that this showed disrespect and that the OP deserved better.

Lol leave her... she clearly doesn’t have her eyes on the real prize, seems to me that she doesn’t respect you and your relationship with her. -sagmarth

And whether she's cheating or not, people didn't like the behavior.

To me that would be a huge red flag that she either can’t establish boundaries or is purposely ignoring boundaries. Either way, that type of behavior is so uncool and just asking for a catastrophe. -thedude2017

Some people weren't so quick to think it was a bad situation though.

Uhh, that is terrible advice. You are making huge assumptions. OP shouldn't just assume bad intent on his partner's behalf without even talking to her about it. She might not even realize she's doing it.

OP, here's what you should actually do. First, assume good intent. You will never have a happy relationship if you always assume the worst about your partner. Second, talk to her. Let her know you feel uncomfortable. That's it. That's all there is to it. She either respects your feelings and stops flirting or she doesn't, and you move on from there.


Here's where the rubber hit the road:

Is it controlling to ask her to stop?

Some people were very firm that it was not at all controlling to bring it up.

Establish your boundaries, op. Have a talk with her. It's not being controlling. If she has a problem with it, you have an issue. -Mikevoss7

After all, OP gets to have feelings, and how would she feel if HE started flirting in front of her?

If it’s the first time mentioning it I’d have a serious discussion about why she does this: does she do it for validation? To feel attractive/wanted? Just for fun? The first 2 are red flags - they imply that your affection isn’t enough for her. However, it sounds like you’ve already mentioned this, at which point it’s perfectly valid to get pissed about it. She’s doing something she knows you don’t like in front of you! If she wants to play this game it’s important to let her know you won’t stand for it. You won’t be controlling for doing it - this is something that’s just not okay in ANY relationship. Ask yourself how she’d feel if you flirted with women at the club every time you 2 went out. If she feels she can walk all over you and you won’t say/do anything beyond politely mentioning your discomfort, this behaviour will continue. It’s important to be VERY firm here. You should be more than enough for her, wherever you 2 go. All I can say is if my SO did this to me I’d be fucking furious. -pyreofdeath97

But there were some people on the other side, who thought that confronting her might be a bad choice.

Be careful of accusing people of doing something they are not.. make sure you have all the details first. I know people who were not cheating at first and were being accused of unfaithful behaviour so much that it pushed them away. To quote a friend of mine "the accusations and lack of trust were getting too much" "in the end i did end up cheating on her, but she was already accusing me of doing so almost constantly" "i figured the punishment for doing it couldn't be any worse than what i'm already copping" The term self fulfilling prophecy exists for a reason.. and chances are many of the people here may have caused the same to occur and then felt justified when it turned out to be true in the end.. was it always true? Yes it is shit that these people eventually ended up choosing to be unfaithful instead of just ending the relationship. They probably should have ended the relationship if the constant accusations were creating a toxic environment. Get all the facts before you make accusations, and if it turns out the flirting is innocent, you need to ask yourself if you want to put up with it, or with the potential that it might actually lead to more unfaithful behaviour.. if so, end the relationship and find someone who doesn't cause you constant anxiety. -Arkoden_Xae

But the overall best advice was to TALK to her.

Actually talk to her about it. Don't accuse her of anything, say it makes you uncomfortable. If you can't talk about it, then yall have bigger issues. -flyingcircusdog

In fact some people suggested that the only mature way to move forward is to have a conversation about boundaries.

The proper way to address this is a conversation about boundaries. But people don’t always approach that maturely or take it seriously, so the petty route for when you get the “that’s just who I am, I have a flirty personality" excuse is to flirt with other women while out with her and see if it is indeed “just who she is" -johnny4308

Honestly it's not an easy question to answer because every relationship is different.

So some people offered a lot of things to consider. I think there are a lot of complexities to this question and it's hard to answer for anyone. Some relationships are open, or semi-open. Other monogamous couples may be okay with it as long as it doesn't lead anywhere. Like feeling good that your girl is desireable to others. But for other people this may be a very hard and fast "No." Personally I think if your girl flirts back once or twice but then drops it or mentions she has a boyfriend or whatever else then you're probably fine. Everybody on Earth wants to be wanted and know they are desired. But how you feel about it matters too, if you feel like you're being ignored or disregarded or at worst, 'betrayed' then you need to speak up, set those boundaries if you haven't already and make sure she is aware that breaking them will hurt your feelings and make you uncomfortable. If you haven't had that talk, now is the time to make sure she knows where you'd like that line drawn. Just cause she flirted back doesn't necessarily mean she doesn't like you or want you, but she may or may not know how it's impacting you. How would you act if a beautiful woman tried to flirt with you in a club? Like your personal 10/10 asks to buy you a drink in a crowded bar. How much would you think is acceptable before you fall into an area of betrayal? That's the same line you need to put out there for your lady friend. If you've previously talked about this and she is ignoring you, then you may want to consider revisiting the topic or breaking up over it. -Woody_Harryishson

In fact, for some people the flirting might not matter at all, and all the stories of finding a great partner later could be misleading.

This depends heavily on your preference and what you want from your partner. It also depends heavily on you and your personality. Have you talked to her about this? How do you really feel about this behaviour? Does it bother you? How much does it bother you? This issue isn't a small one it's a very complex issue. You should take the people telling you to dump her with a grain of salt as well as the people selling you their amazing wife stories. Every dog has his day, every marriage has its problems. What I would suggest is you talk to her. Be really open, tell her exactly how you feel about it. Tell her what sort of behaviour you're uncomfortable with and what you're looking for but watch very closely how she responds. There's this myth out there that women are better communicators which isn't exactly the case. How she responds will determine how a lot of your guys issues are going to play out. Be wary of this. So many marriages fail because people are scared to admit they're with the wrong person or end up resenting their partner because they didn't have the will to walk away. She needs to be able to respond to your issue with respect and come to terms with it herself. You also need to say it's a problem but if she disregards this and continues with it but you don't leave, I'd say the issue may lie with your poor choice of partner -MonkeyD2209

But then came the bomb: can we trust OP's assessment of the situation?

Is she actually flirting or are your insecurities making you think this? -Dystopiq

Some of the women on the thread were quick to point out that people have different definitions of flirting.

From what I’ve read on here, guys tend to think that what girls see as “general politeness/friendliness" is flirting. Try communicating with her about what she is doing and tell her that you and other guys see it as flirting, she may not realise she’s doing it. -ohpine

It may even be OP's jealousy that is turning this into a problem.

Jealousy ruins everything. -MasterAdapter

Even if she IS flirting, she may not realize it.

She may not be aware that she is displaying the signs of flirting. Just like blokes, many women have low self-esteem and so don't think anyone would be interested in them "that way" so they think they are just being jokey, relaxed and friendly. I was a fellow student with this gorgeous Brazilian girl. She did all the "signs" touching my arm when she spoke, flicking her hair, making a point of seeking me out in a crowd of people to ask me about my weekend. Except she regularly talked about her boyfriend, and I was 25 years older and married. She was definitely not "interested" just friendly and vivacious. Very confusing. So approach this with caution, because she very well may not be aware of the effect she is having on these men. -arkofjoy

And here's where it gets really complicated: what if she just likes to be touchy/feely but it truly hurts his feelings?

Some people just like attention, to enjoy a nice 'harmless' flirt. But the fact is that you're a couple and you should both be able to consider each other's wellness. Talk to her, and see how she reacts. If she thinks this is nothing, or part of her freedom, or the way she wanna live her life of an independant woman or whatever, it is up to you to decide if this is how you see a couple and if you want that in your life. -icemanskov

And in some cases that complexity all comes down to degrees.

I mean, it's all about the degrees. I flirt with people all day whether I'm in a relationship or not. Cashiers, coworkers, classmates, whatever, man. I love a little playful flirting. I'm not gonna jump down someone's throat for an innuendo and a wink. But if she's massaging someone's balls through their jeans in the club, I might take issue with that. -kingcal

Everybody flirts! It's normal.

She's coming home with me, so it doesn't matter. We are out to have fun, so let her have fun. Obviously there is a line, but normal flirting is not a problem. We all do it. -razzlefraz88

With all those thoughts in mind, at least one person questioned OP's intention.

Be honest, did you create this thread for backup when you confront her about it? Surely you are aware this is unacceptable. -ajbrooks192

And that's about the time that things got whacky.

I take several things into consideration: - is she sober enough to be safe and rational? - does the guy seem safe and cool? - is he cute? - are there any vanilla friends or family nearby? If there are no problems I have no issue with her taking it to the logical conclusion and inviting the guy for a MFM threesome if he is down for it. -freevoulous

And if the threesome isn't for you, just go ahead and make out in front of the other guys.

Not a man but; Visited long distance BF, hanged out separately a bit, heard a girl started flirting more and more and first I was like "meh" I'm not only one finding him attractive, nice. But after 20 min she got worse and started touching him and he didn't seem to care or notice, so, I excused myself, went over to him, gave him the sweetest kiss on the neck and went something like "Hi honey, you having a good time?" the look on her face was priceless. He laughed his ass off when we talked about it later, I was not angry but not amused either. Told him I need to trust him when I am not there, if he lets stuff like that happen it is disgraceful for me. -jolantis

But at the end of the day a lot of people were clear: