The Case of the Missing Loot


Dear Amy:I’m torn. I was recently at my best friend’s birthday party. I’ve known him since childhood.

I usually never carry cash, but I had some in my purse on this particular evening.

I was mostly hanging out with his girlfriend and left my purse, closed and tucked away, in the living room.

There were only four other people at the party besides my friend, his girlfriend and me.

The next morning I noticed that $80 was missing from my purse.

I was really blown away by this. I confronted my friend about it to see if he knew who would have taken it, and he completely blew me off.

He told me that no one at his house would do that, but I know I didn’t lose or spend it because it was in my purse when I arrived.

I feel completely betrayed because I think he should replace it, and he says it’s not his problem. What should I do?

I love our friendship, but if he’s not willing to help protect people’s personal property when they’re in his house how can I really trust being in his house unless I have my purse tightly in my grip?— Hurt Friend

Amy actually buys into this nonsense:

Dear Hurt:I agree with you that this creates a problem in your friendship but disagree that your friend should replace your stolen money — unless, of course, he took it, which you don’t seem to believe he did.

Approach your friend again, and tell him that his reaction concerns you. Ask him if he has any ideas of who might have taken it, and ask for his help and advice.

For the sake of your longtime friendship, you should give him an opportunity to step up and be a compassionate friend to you now.

And yes, I agree that in the future you should watch your valuables while at his house.

This issue requires some group intervention. I’d like to come over to your house some evening and discuss this in person with you and everyone who was at the party.  I am sure that I’ll find $5000 missing from my wallet that I knew I had when I arrived, but discover is missing the next day.  Even though you never saw it, I’m sure since we were all at your house, you would agree that is your responsibility to re-imburse me for my lost money (which you never saw by the way – just trust me).

Do you see how bat-shit crazy that sounds?  Now imagine how your friend feels. I don’t know where you grew up, but here’s a lesson that us city folk learn when we are children: Always watch your shit. If you don’t, it’s your own fucking fault. Just because you invite people over to your house, doesn’t mean that you are responsible for everything they may do. If you want to hang on to your valuable stuff, use the sense that God gave a squirrel and don’t let it out of your sight or hide it where no one will find it.

"Ridiculous --- NEXT!"

The last thing I would do is bring it up again. Your friend didn’t care much the first time.  Bitching about it again won’t help either. It will sound accusatory. And let’s be honest, you obviously think he had something to do with it and was using his girlfriend to distract you. You wouldn’t think he had a responsibility to replace it if you didn’t.

Had you discovered it before you left, or had some hard evidence, I would say press the issue, but you don’t.  Any number of things could have happened in the time you left his house until the next morning.  Accusing others of theft without any real proof only deflects any responsibility from your own actions.



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