Girl has friends, girl meets boy, girl forgets all about friends and only has eyes for boy. This is a classic situation throughout history and one that can be very difficult if you are a friend. You may be feeling like you have lost your best friend. This is especially difficult when you feel that your friend’s new man is a real jerk and you don’t understand why she can’t see that. What is a friend to do?
First, there are some things you must understand. If this is her first love she may not understand how to place him in her life. Chances are first love or not, she is in a stage of infatuation which is very powerful but will dissipate. Biologically, her body is releasing euphoric hormones that are intensifying the feelings she has for her new man. Despite what family and friends say, or despite any negative actions her boyfriend may be taking, she will have difficulty looking past any of that and will probably only see good. The saying, “love is blind,” is especially true here. Who wants to ruin their own parade? And if you are someone who is attacking their relationship out of concern only to be met with a defensive and angry friend, it is probably because she feels you are trying to rain on her parade.
So what can you do to save the friendship? Unfortunately, not too much other than wait it out. If you make her choose him over you that may end badly. If your friend isolates herself with just her boyfriend, chances are that they will break up eventually and when they do she will come running back. If you can forgive her and she learns from this then great, but you may still be angry. But before this happens you have difficult decisions to make and need to make boundaries:
1. Let her know that breaking plans with you to be with him is unacceptable.
2. If she has a fight with him and then comes crying to you, only to get back together with him the following day-you need to let her know that as much as you care for her it hurts you to see her continuously hurt herself and you can’t be a part of it.
3. If you have a group of friends who feel the same way, try to stick together with the boundaries.
4. If she is being abused or if you suspect foul play, you owe it to her to inform her family. If you are afraid she will be angry with you, you need to perform this selfless act for the safety of your friend. In time, hopefully she will see what a huge favor you did for her and come around. Besides, do you really want to standby and watch until something really bad does happen? Then spend the rest of your life wondering if there was anything you could have done?
5. Talk and listen to her while keeping an open mind. If you still feel that you are not reaching her and that she might be in danger, find a neutral third party; preferably someone with training in relationships. If you are in high school, talk to your school counselor or psychologist, colleges often have counseling services, and if you are an adult, check out some therapists or women’s clinics for help.
This is a difficult time in your friendship and it is time for you to make a decision that is best for you and hopefully helpful for your friend. If you two are able to maintain your relationship then you know you have a life long friend. But if this is becoming a one sided relationship and you are feeling helpless, you might need to take a break from the friendship.