My best friend has a habit of holding on to perceived offenses, and then disclosing those feelings at random times. In the 22 years of our friendship, I’ve pretty much mastered the art of knowing how to navigate her Capricorn-ness. So it came as a surprise when she told me a few years ago that she felt awkward mentioning her boyfriend during our conversations because she “knew” I didn’t like him.
I’d made an offhanded comment that I was a bit bothered by a joke he made when we first met. Naturally, she thought that meant I didn’t like him at all. Once we sorted out the misunderstanding, I grew to really like him for her.
It’s been a few years since then and I hadn’t thought of that conversation until recently, when someone I enjoy following on social media had a public falling out with her former best friend.
Insults were hurled as the ex-friend publicly dragged her once-bestie and man for filth-revealing personal details and saying the kinds of things that would totally justify a physical altercation. While her actions were awful, it wasn’t a secret that she didn’t care for her friend’s man. Throughout their friendship- she’d made it plain that she did not like him. But like any immature person without a filter, she seized an opportunity to voice her distaste in a public forum.
This is why I think it’s a big deal when your close friend does not like your significant other or vice versa.
People are rarely equipped with the tools to manage one relationship- let alone two relationships in conflict with one another while you’re in the middle. It takes a special kind of person to navigate the delicate balance of not mentioning the other person during inopportune times, knocking down any badmouthing, filtering your thoughts, and keeping the peace when they have to be around each other.
I don’t have time for that. And more importantly, I think it cannot be overlooked when the people closest to you don’t like your friend or partner. Perhaps they see something you don’t see.
Do I think that everyone in your life has to be the best of friends like a 90s sitcom? No. Some personalities just won’t mesh well. But active conflict has no place in my life and sooner or later – things will come to a head. That’s why I think it’s important to either:
- Choose a side. I know this is probably considered a death sentence to my Libra and Aquarian friends, especially, but the middle ground isn’t always an option. Sometimes a line gets drawn in the sand and playing tightrope ain’t an option.
- Resolve the issue with them. Tension is like a ticking time bomb. Try to address it.
I’ve fortunately haven’t had to deal with this personally, but I’ve been the friend that actively disliked the significant other.
Thankfully, those fools got broken up with.