There are few worse things in this world to happen to a friendship when you absolutely hate your friend’s boyfriend or girlfriend. Perhaps it’s totally justified, and perhaps it’s not. Either way, it’s a pain in the ass that you’re going to have to either figure out how to live with, or just end your friendship entirely.
Luckily, there are things you can do, especially if you know for sure your friend’s boy/girlfriend is a dick, or if your friend is being a dick about the whole thing. Here your a survival guide:
1) Know Your Enemy
First, you’ve got to nail down exactly what it is that sucks about your friend’s significant other. Is it that your friend continuously puts up with emotional abuse from them? Is it that he/she is rude to you and your friend’s other friends? Do they get out-of-control drunk every.single.time you guys go out? Maybe it’s all of the above? It’s important to really know why, though, because if it’s just that you hate them because your friend’s attention is being diverted from you, uh, that’s not a real reason. HOWEVER, if your friend is being a DICK and blowing you and her other friends off every time her boyfriend expresses a mild interest in hanging out, that IS a problem.
2) Support, Don’t Enable
It’s important to be supportive of your friend, even if what s/he thinks is really stupid and it’s the 5 millionth time you’ve heard the same story in which you’re giving literally the exact same advice. Don’t let it break you down into agreeing with such horrible things as: “Well, maybe he IS right, and I was being TOO selfish in spending time with my family instead of him”. Though you obviously want all the best for your friend, and it’s tempting to want to make them feel better in the short-term, you’re really doing them no favors by agreeing with everything they say.
3) Be Honest, Not Judge-y or Passive Aggressive
If something legitimate is bothering you, don’t make passive-aggressive comments under your breath or tell your friend how to live her life. Rather, tell your friend how you’re feeling and why– try to state as many facts as possible, and don’t make any extrapolations about why anybody did anything, except if you’re talking about yourself. By taking a defensive or patronizing tone about things, there is no way your friend will be receptive to any ideas about something she probably doesn’t think is a problem in the first place.
4) Don’t Make a Scene
Whatever you do, unless you were friends with the boy/girlfriend beforehand, do NOT confront them about their relationship with your friend. Unless they’re like physically assaulting your friend in front of you/in public or threatening you with violence, there’s no need to cause an uproar. Always be the bigger person and don’t escalate things more than necessary. When you and your friend are looking back on that time she dated that fucking nutjob, you’ll seem all the more sane.
5) If You Can’t Deal…
Let’s face it, there are total dealbreakers in terms of other people’s behaviors– whether it be your friend, her/his boy/girlfriend, or both. Perhaps you just need to stop talking to those people for a while, until they come back to their senses. Or, maybe it’s time to realize that there is no reason to be friends with someone who doesn’t respect you as a friend or as a person. There is no reason to be dragged down into someone else’s emotional mess, especially if it’s not even your own boy/girlfriend, and there’s only so much patience one can have.
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