Dear B. Scott,
My homegirl and her boyfriend have been together for almost a year. They're madly in love and I'm truly happy for her, but the problem is that she keeps involving me in their personal affairs. Before you start laughing, I don't mean sexually—it's just that I feel like I'm a part of their relationship. She always tells me every little detail of their day, their ups and downs and I'm constantly being invited on their outings. Mind you, I'm single. So I'm often the third wheel. She says she just wants me around for moral support, but I'm tired of going on dates with them and listening to her talk day in and day out about her man. How do I get her to leave me alone without putting a strain in our friendship?
Dear Love Muffin,
Distancing yourself from your friend’s relationship doesn’t make you a bad friend. In fact, being honest enough with both yourself and her is a sign of a healthy friendship.
This situation, like a lot of situations dealing with friends, depends solely on how you approach it. If you want your girlfriend to stop talking about her man with you all the time, try changing the subject. I know it sounds simple, but if you get a bit more assertive and come into the conversation with a few other things to talk about then not only will it give you a break from the boyfriend stories, but may also satisfy your girlfriend’s need for an outlet.
If that doesn’t do the trick, then sit her down and tell her how you feel. You have to be super careful with your words so you don’t come across as a “hater”. Make sure you adequately express that your feelings are coming from a place of love and not jealousy. We both know they probably aren’t, but when people are blinded by love they tend to see things a little differently.
I’ve been in a very similar situation with one of my friendships. We talked about her relationship so much that eventually when we would speak she’d get so caught up in telling her stories that she never took the time to consider me or ask how I was doing. I finally got to a point where I just had to tell her flat out that I could no longer talk about her and her boyfriend anymore. I had reached my limit. I do believe it’s okay and sometimes necessary to set boundaries and limits in friendships.
Try your best to make her step outside of herself and see the relationship from your point of view.
As I’ve said before, sometimes you have to take your happiness into your own hands. If that means declining a few outings or not answering the phone quite as frequently -- so be it.
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