I don’t like my friend’s partner

don't like my friend's partner
Relationships that were close can change when one has a new man on the scene.

My closest friend has just become engaged to a man I don’t trust. He is attentive to her but doesn’t seem to like her friends. I’d hate to see my friend hurt and I don’t know how to manage our relationship now he is on the scene.

You might be right. The man might not be trustworthy. But that is no business of yours.

Your friend is an adult. She can do whatever she likes. This man might bring her grief. If so, she has some important lessons to learn. Experience is the best teacher and her relationship with this man will teach her much, even if it also brings her some pain.

It is distressing watching those we love embark on a relationship that we are sure won’t work. But there is nothing we can do about it. If we respect them, we respect their right to make their own path in life, whatever it brings.

Although your instincts about this man might be correct, you don’t seem to have any hard evidence of his unworthiness. In the absence of any hard evidence, I would advise you to say nothing of your fears to your friend. In any case, she is unlikely to take any notice. People only hear what they want to.

My sister married in haste and it didn’t work out. She asked me to warn her if she ever did anything as foolish again. A decade later, she called me from overseas to let me know that she was to marry a man she’d recently met. I recounted our earlier conversation and warned her not to marry in haste.

Nevertheless, the marriage went ahead. After it ended badly a couple of years later, she had no memory of my warning. It had gone right over the top of her head. In the flush of lust and love, she did not hear me at all.

Given you’ve had a close relationship with this friend, you might be feeling a bit put out. Naturally, she is going to be distracted from her friendship with you and enthusiastic about this new love. You see him without the glow of rose-coloured glasses and know her view is distorted.

You are not sure how to manage the relationship. You are probably used to being very honest and would like to express your doubts to her. But every relationship has limitations. It is not appropriate to speak your mind without considering the effects of doing so. If you think this through, you will realise that some things are best left unsaid.

You can listen to your friend talk about her fiancé without agreeing or disagreeing with her. Tell her your deeper truth and that is, you see that she is in love with him and you are happy knowing she is happy.

You do not have to like the partners of your friends. Tolerance is necessary; liking is optional. You only need to be friendly and polite. As a couple, it is healthy for each individual to have their own friends. Sure you might get all the partners together on some special social occasions, but the primary friendship is with just one of the couple.

Don’t insist that your friendship remain the same. Accept that it is changing. Create a new relationship with this close friend, one that takes her new man into account.

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