torsdag 5 september 2013

Article 3-4 In a Series of Articles on Balancing Your Friends and Lover

How to Treat His or Her Friends

Tell your new girlfriend or boyfriend that you would love to meet his or her friends because they're so important to them. Just as you would like your partner to meet and like your friends, you should show an interest in meeting theirs.  Of course, everyone needs their space, but it's always a good idea to join each other's group of friends once in a while.

Suggesting a night out with his or her friends is a great way to prove that you're not a threat to them, and that you want to be familiar with that part of their life. This can be anything from dinner with her friends and their respective dates to a get-together at your place with your man and his closest friends can work wonders, and score you some much-deserved bonus points in the process.

When you do finally meet the friends, show a sincere interest in them. Ask questions about where they're at and what they're up to, and ask them about their interests.

For extra brownie points, next time you run into them, ask them for an update of whatever they were talking about such as how a job interview went or how the trip to London was. This requires that you actually listen when you are talking to his or her friends, so be on guard! Even a simple, "tell Julie I say hello" to your girlfriend can get you on your significant other’s good side.

When You Don’t Like Your Love’s Friends

You are not always going to like all of your significant other’s friends.  In fact, you may not like any of them.

It's not the ideal situation when this happens, but it's important to remember that you're going out with your girlfriend or boyfriend, not their friends.

Do not badmouth them or insult them.  Do not involve your love. Do not be rude to them if you happen to see them.

Simply try to separate your relationship from his or her friendships, and suck up whatever dislike you feel during important events of your partner’s life, like her birthday, promotion, or your wedding.

Girl’s & Guys Nights Out

You won’t be spending 100 percent of time with either your partner or your friends.  In fact, making sure that you have time for girl’s or guy’s nights out is quite important in any relationship.

In addition to having time with your friends, you need to respect your love’s need for time with his or her friends. 

If your partner asks to join you on your night out, consider asking him to get a group of his friends together to meet you for drinks at the end of the evening.  Don’t let him intrude on the time you have set aside for your friends (and vice versa).

If she does absolutely insist on going to your weekly poker game, you may have to give in.  But, don’t cater to her just because she’s there.  In fact, try to make the whole experience as boring for her as possible.  That way, she won’t ask again and you’ll have your guy’s time secure.

If your love is somewhat suspicious about what you do with your friends, let them know where you’ll be and when you’ll be home.  Drop a quick text or phone call if things change.  While some people might consider this controlling, you can deter a lot of fights by just keeping the other person informed and not suspicious.

One final thing, if you have a fight before you are scheduled to go on a girl’s or guy’s night out, sort out the issues and clear the drama before you leave home.  You don’t want the evening with your friends to be disturbed by an upset partner, and you don’t want to go home to yet another fight.


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Focus On the One You’re With

One thing that will help you develop and maintain strong relationships with both your friends and your partner is to laser focus on the person or people you are with at the moment. 

When you are on a date, turn off the phone or train your friends to only call in an emergency.

If you are with your friends, ask your love to respect that time as well.

Only talk about your friends or love as it is appropriate in the conversation.  Don’t make your friends listen to long descriptions of your undying love.  Don’t make your partner delve into all of the details of a good gossip.

Respect that your friends and your partner are different and they need different things from you.  While they will naturally be curious about each other, don’t overwhelm them with details from your “other life.”

Don’t Make Him Into One of the Girls or Her Into One of the Guys

It is important to understand that a girlfriend is, at her core, a girl and a boyfriend is a guy.  It’s not to your advantage to turn him into “one of the girls” or her into “one of the guys.”  You should appreciate the masculine or feminine traits they offer.

For instance, if a guy wants his girlfriend to be “just one of the guys,” he’ll force her to take on roles she’s not suited for.  Instead of having time with your real guy friends, you’ll be placing her into it.  You’re better off watching March Madness with your guy friends than insisting that your girlfriend who doesn’t like basketball, watch with you.

Similarly, a woman shouldn’t try to force her boyfriend to be “one of the girls.”  No, he doesn’t like shopping and probably doesn’t want to have long gossip sessions with your friends.  You should appreciate him for that.

While it’s okay for your significant other to be your “best friend,” you shouldn’t expect them to change genders for you.

Turn Her into a Matchmaker

This is one section that works better for men than women.  The idea is for a guy to set up his girlfriend as his “wing woman.”  A Wingman is a guy you bring along with you on singles outings (like to bars) who can help you out with women.  Your girlfriend can play wing woman for your friends in these situations.

One way to balance your friends and your girlfriend is to plan outings with both parties. For example, try taking your girlfriend with you when you go out to the club with the guys. Turning her into a wing woman can be a great opportunity for friend-girlfriend bonding. Your girlfriend can actually be an asset for your friends in the pickup game. Single girls will feel more comfortable talking to your male friends if there's a woman in your group. Also, the sight of your friends talking comfortably with your cute girlfriend is sure to trigger a single girl's competitive nature.

Your girlfriend will enjoy these outings too because women can't resist playing matchmaker. She'll also be happy to lend a hand to your friends because, generally, girlfriends want your male friends to find girlfriends. When your friends start pairing up with girls, they're less threatening to her as you can start doing things like double-dates (instead of having them steal you away to prowl for women). Turning her into a wing woman is a win-win situation.

Alternatively, she can play match maker for your guy friends.  Women like nothing better than to “set people up.” 

Let her try to arrange dates for your friends.  Your friends will appreciate having someone with their interests at heart match them with beautiful single girls.  It’s much better than trying to hook up with a girl at a bar.

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