There is this weird curveball life can throw you, just when things are going great. Around your late twenties to mid-thirties, you’ll have your social circle on point. You worked hard to cultivate a group of good friends—not everyone made the cut. People have fallen off who proved to be flaky, gossipy, unreliable, or dishonest. Now, you have your crew. They’re amazing. When you get together, it’s so fulfilling and it feels well-earned. But, you can’t keep everybody intact forever. People start to get married and while you can control whom you befriend, you can’t control whom those people attach to later. Suddenly, your perfect circle of friends can have some appendages that you may not like i.e. their spouses. It can feel like a huge betrayal but, hey, they didn’t tell you whom to marry and you can’t tell them. Here’s what happens when your best friend marries someone you don’t like.
You forget to ask about him
You aren’t naturally inclined to ask how your friend’s husband is doing (you know—the polite thing to do). It’s only an hour into hanging out, when she brings him up, that you realize you totally neglected to ask about him.
You always want girl time
You always push for girl time (rather than couples hangs). It’s a little trick you have to get around seeing her partner. But, you can feel it putting a strain on things because she has to choose between being with her man or seeing you, and that limits how often she can see you.
Your spouse’s duties are shaky
Why should he befriend the guy if you don’t want to? This is a question he’ll ask you a lot. You can’t avoid double dates forever and so, eventually, you have to ask your partner to befriend a man you don’t even like.
Couples vacations are testy
You literally do not ever want to go on a vacation with this couple. Your vacations are far too precious to spend with someone you less-than-love, just to be polite. This is a conflict you’ll deal with for years as your friend keeps trying to get you all to go on a couples’ trip.
Remember to smile when she praises him
You have to remind yourself to smile and nod when your friend talks about how great her husband is. You know—as opposed to that thing your face is naturally doing that is a confused/disgusted grimace.
She asks you to make intros
Your friend thinks that you’re happy to welcome her spouse into the fold, like one of your own close friends. Why should she not think that? You do that with all your other friends’ spouses. So she asks if you’ll introduce her partner to a professional contact of yours but, you don’t really want to be associated with him.
You’re a little giddy when they fight
When your friend complains about her partner, or tells you she’s in a fight with her husband, you have to fight the urge to become a little giddy. I know—you want them to split up.
Remember to be supportive
You fight the urge to push your friend to leave her partner. You want to encourage her ideas that he’s wrong and bad. But you have to remember to stay neutral so it’s not awkward when they make up.
You question her judgment
You kind of question your friend’s judgment on everything now. If she could think that that guy is attractive and fun, then she must just be a little out of touch with reality.
You lightly mention it to other friends
Eventually, you crack, and you just have to find out if the other friends take as much issue with this man as you do. You’re delicate about it at first. You don’t come out and say, “I hate so-and-so’s husband.” You put a little feeler out there to see how people respond.
Okay, you full on gossip
It probably turns out that nobody really likes him. If you’re noticing some odd things, your friends are, too. And now you all start full-on talking sh*t about that one friend’s spouse.
Then tell yourselves to cut it out
Things can get out of hand and when you all get together without that one friend, you find yourself talking a lot about her spouse. You have to remind yourselves to cool it, and talk about something else.
You notice her flaws
You start almost searching, desperately, for some explanation as to why this woman connects with her husband. That’s when you start seeing strange behaviors and flaws in her, that you think line up with her spouse’s. Is it reality or just your imagination?
Group plans become tricky
You used to just invite the whole friend group, and their significant others, over for dinner parties, on trips, etc. But now it’s tricky. Inviting everyone means inviting that guy so you don’t invite everyone anymore. You have to hand select one or two couples at a time—pairs that you can justify inviting over together (in case your friend asks why she wasn’t invited).
You’re always resisting
You’re always resisting something your friend wants—which is, for you, her husband, and your husband, to all be closer. It’s a non-stop negotiation you’re handling, that she doesn’t even know you’re handling.