Did we handle the guy who's dating multiple chicks (*) and seeing a girl whom he considers a 2nd class citizen, and a sex toy, but didn't want to see on a Saturday night, question appropriately?

How to tell romantic partner I do not want to meet during Saturday night?

Or, maybe, just maybe, the OP was taking the piss?

Because it had the necessary detail...

I am attending a party during the weekends, but I do not want her to be there because it will probably be embarrassing to me since coworkers are going to be there. I do not want my coworkers to meet her because she much lower class, and sometimes does things that would make me look bad.

There was conflict and a dilemma....

She's not really that attractive either; I am mainly interested in her for sexual intercourse. We usually meet at this time.

He especially needed advice that involved specific interpersonal skills...

How do I navigate around this obstacle? What excuses can I use? The party will probably be mostly friends and family and playing games and stuff. No drinking or anything like that. There will be many coworkers there.

He also cares for her, so there's empathy...

I can't really tell her I'm busy because it's Saturday night. Obviously, I don't want her to feel bad or think that I don't care about her.

Inviting her to the party is off limits, however.

But most importantly, he added his location, without prompting! prompted by one of the mods.

We live in the United States.

All the boxes were ticked.

(*) That's not how a true player thinks... In fact, I'm actually dating multiple women, and they do not know each other, and I usually swap new women every month or so. Embarrassment is one reason I do not want to bring her to the party, but I also do not want to bring a different girl every time because I don't want my coworkers to think that I'm a player because they're married people. Interpersonal skills are all about getting around difficult obstacles like this one

And while we're at it. Who are these five users who upvoted an answer that even took this question seriously in the first place?

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    Um... I asked him to add his location twice... so I'm not sure where "without prompting" comes from. – Catija ModStaff Oct 4 '17 at 22:38
  • @Catija you're joking. You took his question seriously? I didn't read all the comments, my bad. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 22:41
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    I'm not sure how that relates to my comment. Until he edited the question to add those horrible statements and, later, that awful comment, part of my job is to assume the best. – Catija ModStaff Oct 4 '17 at 22:42
  • @Catija that question should have been shut down, immediately. Then he fixes his question (but how?) and then the community can vote whether to reopen. He got an answer with 5 upvotes, which is crazy. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 22:47
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    It was closed in under an hour... That's pretty damn fast for this site. I don't know what you expect. You've already accused me of doing too much... now you want me to do more? Which is it? The original version of the question was not immediately objectionable in a way that called for a "burn it with fire" response. – Catija ModStaff Oct 4 '17 at 22:50
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    The moment he edited that piece, slam. Down. I'm all for giving a newcomer the benefit of the doubt, and second and third chances but this was pure trolling. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 22:52
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    May I ask what alerted you to the idea that OP is trolling, @Mari-lou A? – English Student Oct 4 '17 at 23:28
  • @EnglishStudent That's not a question I can reply in the space of a comment box. I've seen troll questions and trolls in my time on SE, and this one is suspiciously like a troll. Or he got fed up with the comments, and downvotes and decided to be an online troll. One or the other. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:36
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    Thanks for the explanation @Mari-lou A. You basically depended on your vast experience on SE to diagnose it. Since trolling is rare on IPS.SE, we have tended to take every question at face value here. Hence the relative delay in response, I think. – English Student Oct 4 '17 at 23:40
  • @EnglishStudent I don't have vast experience of trolls, I have some. And I'm sure others, who are members of dozens of sites, have much more experience than I. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:43
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    Wait, what specifically do you think was "handled inappropriately" about this? Your question seems to suggest you think it was an appropriate interpersonal question, while your comments seem to suggest the opposite. – JMac Oct 4 '17 at 23:44
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    @EnglishStudent To me, phrases like "She's not really that attractive either; I am mainly interested in her for sexual intercourse" and "That's not how a true player thinks... In fact, I'm actually dating multiple women, and they do not know each other, and I usually swap new women every month or so" sound very disingenuous. "True players" don't use that term, and no one I've ever met uses "sexual intercourse" this way. At the very least, a stated goal of "navigat[ing] this rough terrain to further my best interests" sounds rather antithetical to interpersonal skills. – 1006a Oct 5 '17 at 0:49
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    @Mari-LouA : I'm really sorry, but I don't get the point here (the whole page, I mean), from no one of us :(( I can't see what's going on, and why we discuss this. Q was unclear, and after a few comments, it became clear that it was really VLQ. It's quite too difficult for me to understand the pros and cons here, maybe it'll be better if I let go for a couple of days and see whay happens. Nothing against you or the others though, just that I'm lost... – OldPadawan Oct 5 '17 at 6:38
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    @1006a At first I thought that made it clear he was trolling. Then I realized he mostly is active in information security SE and does seem to answer questions there. He may actually be serious, just really immature and misguided. – JMac Oct 5 '17 at 10:21
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    The point of this page @Old Padawan seems to be that Mari-lou A (rightly) expects the community to be very quick to recognize a disrespectful question or a case of trolling and 'come down on it like a ton of bricks' -- don't answer the question; close it, lock it and throw away the key -- to make a strong statement that disrespectful questions are unwelcome and trolling will not be tolerated on IPS.SE! – English Student Oct 5 '17 at 11:13

I was one of the users that upvotes @apaul's answer. And I did that after the question was put on hold.


Because the question could have been perfectly valid one. I voted to close as the first user, when the question was still in its first revision. I chose off-topic with a custom reason:

because we're not here to give you ready made excuses. We're here to teach you how to fish, not throw you fishes.

I based this on the part of the question that asks What excuses can I use? I thought quick close-voting would be necessary to avoid answers that only list excuses (a bit like the question here, that was afterwards discussed in chat and we basically agreed that this wasn't a good question because it was asking for fish instead of how to fish).

When I close-voted, the 'player-comment' hadn't been made, and if OP at that point had edited out the part of the question that was asking for excuses and added the info there is now, the question would have been good enough to answer.

And @apaul's answer would have been exactly what I would have answered. It was written before the question was on-hold, and I thought it very plausible apaul hadn't seen the player-comment because he would have been busy writing an answer to the valid part of the question.

I had no idea the OP of the question was a troll. I can easily imagine a male so full of himself and his playership that he thinks it's okay to ask such things on a site about interpersonal skills. So I thought an answer firmly telling him not to be like that was worthy of an upvote, regardless of the worthlessness of the question.

  • "Why? Because the question could have been perfectly valid one (...) I had no idea the OP of the question was a troll. I can easily imagine a male so full of himself and his playership that he thinks it's okay to ask such things on a site about interpersonal skills." -- that's very possible, @Tinkeringbell, and this is an exceptionally clear answer that helped me better understand the situation. – English Student Oct 6 '17 at 12:53

I guess I'm the guilty party here, so I'll try to explain why I did what I did.

I saw the question, read it and like most people downvoted pretty immediately. I saw it had close votes, but the question was not yet closed. I skipped the comment section and started writing what I think was an appropriate answer to a bad question. Bad meaning that what the OP was doing and/or wanted to do was bad.

Sometimes people will ask questions like these because they really are that misguided... It's a sort of XY problem and in these cases sometimes giving a correct, but not what the OP wanted, answer seems reasonable.

The question itself seemed on topic to me. They were asking how to do something that they shouldn't be doing, but as far as I know that's not a reason to close.

Sometimes someone asking how to do something awful makes for a good opportunity to explain why they shouldn't do it. Take all the questions on Stack Overflow about sending spam, or building exploitable flaws in to a program, as an example...

After going back and reading the comments, I understand why the question was closed. Specifically:

Yeah, we're not here to teach you how to "be a true player". That goes against the Stack Exchange Be Nice policy. Using women for sex and not respecting them isn't nice and that attitude isn't welcome here. – Catija♦ 2 hours ago

The question and the comments taken together kinda point to the question skirting the line of the be nice policy. So in the end I think the situation was handled appropriately.

I may be a "high rep user", but I'm obviously just as flawed as everyone else. Whenever I do something that seems off please, please, please, feel free to call me out on it.

  • Do you think the question should be deleted? Do think it is useful for future visitors? – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:47
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    I hadn't expanded the comments when I read your answer either, and it seemed perfectly valid. Even knowing the additional information, your answer is still very relevant to the body of the question, even if the premise was apparently inappropriate. – JMac Oct 4 '17 at 23:48
  • Not my Downvote nor Upvote :P – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:49
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    Eh... Few questions are completely useless. Even bad examples serve a purpose. – apaul Oct 4 '17 at 23:49
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    If the Q stays closed it will be a good example of what not to ask here on IPS.SE! – English Student Oct 4 '17 at 23:53
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    @EnglishStudent Sometimes someone asking how to do something awful makes for a good opportunity to explain why they shouldn't do it. Take all the questions on Stack Overflow about sending spam, or building in exploitable flaws to a program, as an example... – apaul Oct 5 '17 at 4:28
  • That's what I meant @apaul34208. Because your answer is useful that way. However the question must remain closed to be useful as a caution to future readers. – English Student Oct 5 '17 at 11:18

In general, we should always assume the best - at least initially.

And especially on a 'subjective SE' site like IPS, we know some people will not manage to write their post in a way that "works" - a fair few people come here specifically because they have problems in this area.

So some people upvoted an answer - that will happen on good answers. Even if the question is going down. The important thing is the question got downvotes, and close votes. People like @Catija tried to help to see if there was something there that we could work with. When it was obvious the OP was trolling (or has major issue this site is not going to help with) it got closed. Even better - it was closed quickly by the community - which is often a better message to trolls than a mod-close, as it shows solidarity.

Time-wise, that is perfectly quick enough on a subjective beta SE site.

In summary - no problem, business as usual, it was handled politely, and correctly.

  • I think she means upvoted the answer. If I remember correctly, the question has no upvotes. – Catija ModStaff Oct 4 '17 at 23:01
  • ...ahh - yes, I think you are right. One quick edit coming up :-) – Rory Alsop Oct 4 '17 at 23:02
  • You forgot the UVs for a good answer that is basically telling a liar to tell the "truth" to an unattractive sex partner and break off the relationship without saying anything to the other partners, if indeed there are others. C'mon, a liar can't think of an excuse (a lie) to tell a GF that they can't meet up on Saturday? – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:12
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    Mari-Lou - it appears you have some sort of conflict with the answerer. From my perspective, it is a good answer that shows both sides, and treats the question as a real one. It guides the OP politely. Sure, the OP may ignore it, but there is nothing in that answer to generate the ire I'm seeing from you. If it is a personal beef with him, just ignore the post, or even downvote it. – Rory Alsop Oct 4 '17 at 23:14
  • Business as usual and that question with its good answer is going to stay on the main page for at least two days. Great publicity. Because the site is lucky if it gets six new questions a day. – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:15
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    That really isn't anywhere nearly as important as you seem to think. It's closed. If necessary it can be protected, locked or possibly deleted. It's a non-issue. If it does concern you - you could ask some more questions to move it off the front page. – Rory Alsop Oct 4 '17 at 23:16
  • Questions that are off topic should not be answered by high rep users. I don't care who that user is, I would have said the same for anyone else who had more than 2/3K rep – user3114 Oct 4 '17 at 23:18
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    @Mari-LouA the answer is telling the OP to stop being cruel and to tell their "partner" what sort of relationship they actually have... the truth. That may not be nice to them in the short term but it will get them out of a toxic relationship with a horrible person will help them in the long term. – Catija ModStaff Oct 4 '17 at 23:19
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    Before a question is closed as off topic (and sometimes after, as questions do get reopened) it is not necessarily set in stone that it is off topic. Why shouldn't a high rep user try to help someone and assume good intentions first? I've had the odd one on a site where I have over 50k that got closed after I answered. It really doesn't matter. – Rory Alsop Oct 4 '17 at 23:19
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    @Mari-LouA The information about multiple partners was only mentioned in a deep comment chain that apaul wasn't involved in; and was only mentioned 5 minutes before his answer, so "not saying anything to other partners" may have been a lack of information/consideration. Either way; there is definitely a chance OP wasn't trolling; and just did not understand the issues with what he was doing. The answer actually addresses the situation pretty well - they are expecting different things from the relationship and not communicating that. – JMac Oct 4 '17 at 23:40
  • @Mari-Lou it's worth noting that after questions get sufficiently downvoted they fall off the front page. I think it's -8 on most sites. – apaul Oct 5 '17 at 4:45
  • @apaul34208 It remains on the new questions page though. – user3114 Oct 5 '17 at 6:24

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