I logged onto Facebook not too long ago to see another one of my friends had gotten engaged. Although happy for him, it reminded me of this awkward phase we’re experiencing in our friendship right now. After meeting his now fiancée once and introducing myself by trying to get to know her, I later found out she didn’t like me. And she’s not the only one.
I was faced with the same issue last year when I found out one of my best guy friend’s girlfriend didn’t like me, or any other girl for that matter being friends or around him. Due to that, our friendship also entered an awkward phase in which he wasn’t around much, or I wouldn’t hear from him for weeks at a time. Whereas before, he was always someone I would talk to. It bothered me at first, because I defended our friendship to an ex-boyfriend who had a problem with it. And, it seemed now that it was his turn to stand up for our friendship— he did the opposite— he chose to avoid the problem. With the recent distance that has taken place in another one of my male friendships, it makes me wonder.
Is it always OK for relationships to trump long time friendships because your partner doesn’t like that person, especially if there is no solid reason?
In 2010, Institute of Cognitive and Evolutionary Anthropology at Oxford University, found that “men and women were equally likely to lose their closest friends when they started a new relationship,” according to guardian.co.uk.
I remember when I was dating this guy, I didn’t like too many of his male friends. For one, most were immature and weren’t in relationships. The perfect combination for a few guys nights, that could result in bad influences and him making wrong decisions. Yet, I understood that he had been friends with some of these guys for years—long before I came into the picture. Who was I to tell him not to be friends with these guys who he is probably still friends with till this day— and we’re not together anymore? I just had to come to the conclusion that if he made bad choices, it was his fault and his alone; not his boys, because he’s old enough to know the difference between right and wrong.
Growing up, I remember my aunt always telling me “Baby, you don’t need a lot of friends— just a few good ones.” I’m happy to report that till this day, my aunt and her few “good ones” are still friends, and have been through many years, in some cases decades. So I’m sure you can imagine that friendship was an important lesson I learned at a young age.
Relationships come and go, and yes so do friendships, but you never know if the person you think is “the one” really is until one day you awake from a nightmare. In that case, you just lost a possible lifelong friend over the prototype.
Jasmine Berry is a senior majoring in journalism at St. John’s University. Follow her on twitter @signedjas.