Dear Prudence

Dear Prudence Uncensored: The Pushy Matchmakers

Every week, Mallory and Nicole Cliffe discuss a Prudie letter. This week: I don’t want to date Jon, but our mutual friends won’t let it go.

Nicole: Oh, boy, my heart sank at “nonrefundable tickets.”

Your problems seem to be more with your mutual friends than with Jon!

Jon seems to have handled himself pretty well.

Mallory: UNLESS Jon has done the whole “I’m fine!!!” to the LW and “I AM NOT FINE, MY LIFE IS A GRAVEYARD OF TRAMMELED HOPES” to the LW’s friends

Nicole: Yes, true! Always a possibility!

Since you have a third party on the trip, I would firmly tell your mutual friends that you are not comfortable with discussing this any further, and then go.

Mallory: not that I think the LW should start by asking Jon if that’s what’s going on. It’s not the likeliest, but it is a possibility.

Nicole: Yeah, that is a solid no-go.

Mallory: I think even more than “I don’t want to discuss this” with the friends, specifically address the claims that she’s “stringing him along” by dating someone.

like, it sounds as if the LW has been very clear

I also just don’t understand behavior like this—why would you want someone to be in a relationship they had to get talked into?

Nicole: I think the LW can take a pretty good temperature of Jon’s ability to stay friends based on how not-awkward the trip is.

Mallory: and if you go on the trip and things get weird, you can absolutely take the day and go enjoy, I don’t know, Lyon or whatever by yourself

you’re not bound to their sides should things get bad

“Forget this, I’m gonna bicycle myself through the Pyrenees,” or whatever you like to do when you’re in France

Nicole: Yes! Baguettes!

Mallory: once when I was in France

(the only time I have ever been to France)

I was 12 and jetlagged and homesick

and I purchased a ham sandwich and I got really confused because French ham is, I don’t know, very THINLY SHAVEN and PINK or whatever and I lacked a Sophisticated Palate and I thought it was raw

and then some teens tried to offer me cigarettes

and i cried

Nicole: ahhahahahaha

I did keto in France once.

Mallory: wait, the keto diet?

or ketamine?

Nicole: keto DIET

Mallory: THAT IS A MUCH LESS EXCITING STORY THAN I HAD HOPED FOR

but pray, continue

Nicole: we ate at the same restaurant every night and they developed a nickname for me

Mallory: OH MY GOD WHAT WAS IT

Nicole: Madame Entrecôte, bc I had a steak every single night.

Mallory: MADAME ENTRECOTE

that’s your Dickens character name

Nicole: HELL YES

Mallory: a hearty trencherwoman who briefly cheers up the protagonist

Nicole: I would walk in and they’d be like “ah yes, the steak, the more cheese.”

Mallory: THE MORE CHEESE

your LIFE

Nicole: i know

i KNOW.

Mallory: Anyhow, Jon, you’re probably going to find love in France, and LW, you can always ditch your friends and wander around Provence and get a charming nickname

so I guess what I’m trying to say is you’re going to have a great time in France no matter what happens