April 30, 2010

The Pitfalls of Suddenly Single Friends

(Reposted from Ask Dan and Jennifer)

When both you and your best friend are coupled up, it can be the greatest thing in the world. You can double-date, your boyfriends can become friends and you have someone who understands issues you face. However, when that friend is suddenly single, your own relationship can suffer. Here’s how it happens and how you can prevent it.

You Go Out With Her More
It only makes sense that she will want to go out and have fun, maybe meet new men (especially if she was dumped and feeling particularly vulnerable). It only makes more sense that she will want you to come with her. She needs a wingman to help her, to cheer her up, to just be around her. However, this can be detrimental to your own relationship since you will be spending less time with your boyfriend, and more time in the company of different men, which can lead to problems. We all know relationships are fabulous. But sometimes single-hood seems more fun when you have been with the same person for a long time. To watch your friend flirt (and be flirted) with good-looking or charming strangers, you may start to wonder if you shouldn’t also be single again.

She Wants You To Be Single
You know what makes being single much better? When your friend is single too. Living it up at the bar and sharing sexy stories about strangers is only fun if you have someone by your side. However, if you cannot relate with or participate in her single life, it stops being quite so exciting for her. She may subconsciously (or maybe not…) start saying things or putting ideas into your head to make you second-guess your relationship. It is understandable that the newly single friend doesn’t want your boyfriend hanging around. Firstly, he may remind her of the relationship she just left (or of relationships altogether). Secondly, his presence may prevent other men from approaching her. Thirdly, she may just want some girl-time. However, this unintentional ultimatum, once again, may take more time away from your boyfriend, which can potentially hurt your relationship.

You Start Analyzing Your Own Relationship Problems
You may not think things are so bad with your own relationship until your friend talks about how similar issues ruined hers. Maybe she grew tired of her boyfriend working too much or maybe she just decided she could find someone better. Having those relationship problems highlighted may make you think, “Wait, I think my boyfriend works too much, also!” or “Maybe I can do better too…” The best thing you can do for your relationship during this time is to stay positive. Think about the things you appreciate or enjoy about your boyfriend. Focus on the reasons you like being in a relationship. Also, talk with your boyfriend about what went wrong with your friend’s relationship. Together, brainstorm ways to ensure this won’t happen to you two, as well.

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