As we become adults, we believe we are going to leave this kind of social game behind. No such luck, at least not in my world. I have been involved in many situations where I must work closely with other adults. And, there always seems to be at least one that still acts like they are still 16.
Now, I'm not saying that I've never talked about someone behind their back. However, I have never talked about someone I consider a FRIEND behind their back. I care deeply for my friends and hurt when they hurt. So, I do not understand this behavior.
There is one person in particular that I cannot seem to get away from who is horrible about this. This person will go so far as to speak about a friend's child behind the friend and the child's back. This person is not very careful about who is around when they are speaking so I don't think they realize how much of their habit has been observed/heard.
I would love to out said person, but other people I really care about would be hurt deeply if I did. So, I grit my teeth and walk away before I start throwing punches and leave the rest to karma.