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Friday, April 07, 2006
Love Thy Brother

“He is following me,” Rosie grumbled through the phone line. 30 kilometres away, a slim mother of two was relating her traumatic incident. Rosie suspects that her brother is stalking. Rosie and this brother are not blood related siblings. They do not call the same woman “mother”, neither do they share blood relations at all.

They shared similar interests, which was how they met. It was all innocent in the beginning. They were in the same group when they started rock climbing six months ago. He taught her the ropes and the little tricks to inch her way up the wall. When someone initiated the idea that the group adjourned for drinks, Rosie attended it. So did this brother of hers.

Soon she brought him to the house and introduced him to her husband and two children. They met for bowling and rock climbing twice a week. They had lunch whenever he was around her part of town. It was evident that they shared a lot in common and had lots of fun together. He would help her carry her groceries when she was out running household errands.

One afternoon not too long ago, he suggested that they be brother and sister. “I’ll be your big brother and you can call me ‘brother’. I will call you my ‘sister’”, he said during one of their usual lunch breaks. Rosie was so thrilled and so she accepted it. From that moment, they introduced themselves as brother and sister.

He did all the brotherly things. He was helpful, considerate and thoughtful. He would patiently listen to her stories and her domestic woes. He was there to share her burdens, offering a nod, a sense of validation each time she felt like tearing up because of a problem. He patted her back and made her feel good again. He was her brother.

Sometimes he did favours for her, which included some of her workload. Rosie never questioned his help “since he is always free anyway”. He did her company’s banking for her. He brought her kids to the pre-school on days when they were moody. He even co-hosted a dinner party in Rosie’s house, greeting and ushering guests who arrived at the party.

He ate with Rosie’s family and was taken in as part of the family. After all, he was sweet natured and helpful. Rosie often informed her husband what they were doing together – their lunches, their weekend shopping together, late night suppers at the neighbour shop etc.

Puppy Love
They had meetings to discuss what puppy was suitable for her two young children at home. The little ones started pestering for a puppy when their cousin had one. Rosie and her brother decided that they should get a Beagle. He was there to help her choose the right puppy for the family. And when they found the male puppy, he said that it should go home alone. So he bought a puppy too from the same litter, to keep Rosie’s puppy company.

”You know, he said that he would get a female puppy to keep Ah Boy company,” Rosie said ten minutes later, as she continued to relate her story. I was at work, sitting in my office trying to finish the Powerpoint presentation.

“But don’t you think that there is something wrong? Ah Boy and Ah Girl?” I asked, stressing on the names of the puppies.

Rosie kept silent. Three months ago when I met them for lunch, they announced that they bought two puppies. She bought Ah Boy for him and he bought Ah Girl for her. “Like brother and sister, like the two of us. Two peas in a pod!” they said. They sounded so excited and happy about the whole puppy affair.

Two weeks ago was the final straw when he held her left elbow and edged her to the corner of Chilli’s. It was a party for all the rock climbing buddies and their partners. People were watching and wondering what they were discussing. Rosie seemed upset, according to a common friend. She was almost crying and people could see that she was chocking on her words. He was talking to her in a low voice.

“Oh we were talking about work,” she told her husband when they reached home. Her husband did not suspect a thing. Perhaps her husband did not want to know. This brother of hers has penetrated her life is deeply that he was even present at her work place, often with tea for everyone in the late afternoons. He had contracted a project from her company, which was family owned.

He had asked her why was she ignoring him. Truth was, Rosie was not ignoring him. She was busy with work and travelled to Singapore and Jakarta in the pass month. So she said she was not and that he was behaving oddly. It was in the restaurant, with all eyes glued on their private conversation in the corner of Chilli’s that he confessed. He said that loved her and that he understood her situation. “Leave your husband and be with me. You are not happy with him anyway and we laugh so much together,” he whispered into her ears as they were standing in the corner of Chilli’s. She asked him to let go and she walked away that afternoon.

I Love You Forever
A friend called and asked me to read what was on my Yahoo! Messenger. I did. Right next to Rosie’s brother’s name was “Why are you denying that I love you? Even if you don’t talk to me, my feelings are still the same. How can I deny my feelings for you? I love you forever.” By then, Rosie had ignored her brother for three days.

“He is following me!” Rosie exclaimed on the phone. She was sure that he was. She explained to him that she will never leave her husband and kids. She warned him to leave her alone. He called Rosie’s family members, office mates and common friends, often asking about her, on the pretext of work related issues. No one knew about what was happening and that put a lot of pressure on Rosie because she had to make up excuses why he was not around her anymore.

“What am I going to do?” she asked me last night. “Why must he spoil everything?” I did not have the heart to tell her that it was partly her fault that this happened. If she seriously looked into her heart, she must have known that this would happen some day. All the errands, all the driving, all the meetings, lunches, dinners, suppers, weekend family shopping, movies - everything led to this moment in time.

Unfair Generalization?
I know it is unfair to generalize men but I have to do it anyway. Ask trusted men around you whether they would do anything or buy anything for a lady just because she is a sister or a friend. Most assuredly the answer will come back as a negative. There are hardly any man who would do things or buy things for nothing. When it comes to the opposite sex, the short skirt and the pair of boobies, honest men will tell you that they hardly ever are THAT generous. Most of my male friends admit to this.

Men hardly buy any gifts for women, what more expensive gifts. How often do you hear a husband forgetting his wife’s birthday or wedding anniversary? How many women complained about their partners’ lack of attention? And this brother of hers want to buy her a RM3600 Beagle puppy with champion lineage or spending hours accompanying her for a movie, then carrying her cans of tomatoes and corn home during the weekend grocery shopping? Phhhhffff!

Men often buy gifts under the following conditions:
1. He has interest in you and wants to create a positive impression.
2. He wants to get into your panties.
3. He has done something wrong and is trying to make up for his mistake.

Men do not buy gifts for you because:
1. He loves you as a sister.
2. He appreciates you as a friend.
3. He thinks you are a sweet person and deserves those gifts.

Men who would buy you presents and do nice things for you:
1. Your husband.
2. Your boyfriend.
3. Your potential boyfriend.
4. Your suitors.

Other excuses are plain hogwash.

The Liar's Connection
Rosie accused him of being a liar. He was not a liar. Think real hard and be honest with yourself. Would you run around like a mad dog in the crazy afternoon heat, lining up and battling the traffic for a guy friend, who is really JUST A FRIEND? Some might not even be willing to do such things for a BLOOD RELATIVE! Would you buy your workmate a Tag Huer on his birthday just because he is your workmate? Would you sacrifice your time and energy for a nobody in your life? Or would you do it for someone you think deserves your efforts?

If you willingly part with your money, time or energy, is it not for a person whom you feel connected to? Even if it is just your rock climbing buddy, do you not think that you like the person, no matter how little? If you have lunches or meet up for drinks, do you not agree that you must share some sparks with that person? That the person makes you happy and makes you feel light?

A friend might send me home once a while or when I am in trouble. It is a different kettle of fish when it is the same friend who drives 30 minutes out of the way to fetch me home each evening. There is something wrong when your friend or whatever you want to call the relationship spends the whole weekend with you when he could be with his girlfriend/wife.

Real buddies know their lines and draw limits. Lovers do more than necessary because they are driven by love.

Brothers and Sisters
We girls should shoulder some responsibilities. It takes two hands to clap and the man has no opportunity to meet you unless you offered your company. He can buy you the moon and you can refuse because it is not a friend’s duty to buy you the moon. That is the duty of your boyfriend or husband.

When you know he has to sacrifice a lot of things, you can refuse his help. Anyone would appreciate a helping hand every once in a blue moon. Be honest with yourself and you will realise that it is not right for a man to help you constantly or be your shoulder to cry on during your mini crisis.

You would not do that for just any common friend, so why expect a man to do so for you?

Love Thy Brother
The only reason why the man is still hanging onto Rosie is because she allows him into her life after a few days ignoring him. It sends mix messages and he senses that he has a chance with her. So he tries to penetrate deeper into her life, into her schedule, into her soul and when he does, she scolds him and tells him that he has no right to govern her.

What transpired between them is all too natural. After all, aren't brothers supposed to love and protect their sisters? The only way to remedy the situation is to severe all ties with him and stop communicating with the man - brother or not. Feelings will die off and who knows, he might find another sister six months down the road.

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I am a guy and i know a guy friend who's almost like the guy friend you mentioned, though i don't think they are the same person, his actions of affection and asking ppl to be his godsister is like a way to soften his approaches.

well i know this is because the girls are also my friends and they come complaining to me about how to get rid of him when he become to much of a pest....owell....because i know this guy fella well, i just tell him what the girls really think. i pity the girls because they feel helpless when he asserts that he wants to help no matter what...owell....i think he's more like a desperado in things like these.

9:50 am  

gosh this is sooooooooooo true!!!!!
I mean, its so true that women is able to have a person of the opposite gender as a best friend but men CANNOT!!!!!!they alwaysssss fall for the girl in the end!!

10:08 am  

fashionasia: If men cannot be best friends with the opposite sex because they eventually fall for her, wouldn't that imply that women can't have best friends of the opposite gender as well because the relationship usually goes both ways?

Otto: I can't say that I disagree with your generalisation. But I think its case to case. There are always exceptions although it may turn out that it is mostly true.

But ultimately, when you spend time with each other, you are effectively nurturing the relationship. What it grows into depends on the different individuals involved.

10:26 am  

Oh yes, there are those who use "god sister/bro" to soften approach..... I am not talking abt friendships that are purely friendships... If you define the friendship and stick to it, men and women benefit from mixed friendships. It is when the lines are blurred......

There are exceptions to the rule though. Men are able to befriend and remain friends with girls... like my BGF... we set rules and we stick to them and everything is ok.... Eg: Now that BGF has Nikki, I do not intrude into their time or space...

This generalization is like 85% correct lah... *hahaha* There are always exceptions and friendships between male and female do exist platonically - if you mark the territory clearly.

Obviously the friend should not take over the role of your lover, right? If that's the case, then there is something wrong.

I honestly believe that girls should not allow a man to do stuff for her (if she has no intentions of pursuing a relationship with him) because frankly most men "memang ada udang di sebalik batu..."

Ditto on your remark, "when you spend time with each other, you are effectively nurturing the relationship".

10:38 am  

Men or women, we are human all the same, defectively created with an emotional handicap to a certain degree.

5:21 am  

So we are doomed lah.........

5:24 am  

To exhibit yourself as an higher intelligence being, and the Champion of the food chain, we have to show that we can think.

If your a married man, and you serioulsy like this other lady who you called close buddy. Then you gotta think about what you really want.

Has your interest in wife faded? Do you really want to change partners? Is it just a fling? Is it just sex? Maybe your greedy?


Maybe its just pure friendship? Like having common interests, good chit-chatting sessions, great buddy to hang out with, etc etc. Sometimes having pure innocent friendships is ungodly blissful.

I won't mind driving 30mins to pick up my gal friend at 12am, for Dim Sum supper. That is only if my girlfriend is not around, and I'm seriously bored with my online game. (yeah, my gal friend is my back up 'boredom-neutralizer', hehe)

4:07 am  

"I won't mind driving 30mins to pick up my gal friend at 12am, for Dim Sum supper. That is only if my girlfriend is not around, and I'm seriously bored with my online game. (yeah, my gal friend is my back up 'boredom-neutralizer', hehe"

That is your line for a friend =) That is exactly what I am saying... friends have lines to draw, like coming 2nd to wife/gf etc... Be careful the moment you prioritize another woman above your partner.

4:16 am  

But, but I buy gifts for my friends....


I can honestly say without ulterior motives. I just like making my friends happy.

But erm, they get less expensive stuff and probably less thought put into the purchase compared to gifts for the partner.

5:29 am  

You buy gifts for your friends... but are they RM1000++ per gift?

Of course we buy gifts for friends. I do that... I even make things for friends.. but I am yet to receive a RM2000 present from a guy who is "just friends".

7:06 am  

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