A best friend (BFF) is that one person who is valued above other friends; someone that is fun to be with, who can be trusted and who is a number one fan. Trust me, the term ‘BFF’ is not used sparingly and when someone is referred to as a best friend, then they truly are.
This BFF matter, however becomes an issue when it’s your spouse/partner that has a BFF besides you! We have heard or talked about this matter before; its not new, neither is it limited to a particular gender. Can you picture a BFF that knows every single likes, dislikes and preferences of your partner and could even give you tips on what is best to buy or not buy for your partner as a gift? How about you and your partner decide to host ‘BFF’ and all they talk about are their fun past or about other friends you don’t know about! Imagine if your partner and their BFF can share throw back pictures (#tbt#) that dates back to when they were still in nappies and pants….
The worst-case scenario of this matter is if the BFF is of the opposite sex! I would not want to assume that it’s only husbands and boyfriends that have female BFFs. I have heard of taken women who also have male BFFs. Whatever the case may be, it can become a little too much to bear for the other party and has often times led to the end of relationships and even marriages.
So are there tactical ways of dealing with these BFFs? Clearly there are no one size fits all solutions to relationship matters, but that there are ways of managing this situation:
Identify What You Feel When The BFF is Around
Sorting out your feelings (i.e. anger, anxiety, disdain, indifference) will give you a plan of action. For instance, if it’s anger, why are you annoyed? Do you suspect there’s a mutual attraction? Does their friendship fill a void in your relationship?
Evaluate The Evidence(s)
They say there are three exclusive commodities in every relationships- time, money and sex. Is your partner sharing any of these commodities with the BFF? For instance, does your partner make time for BFF that could be spent with you? Does your partner spend money on BFF?
Reassess Your Partner
You must know what sort of person you are dealing with; take a moment to genuinely ask yourself what they can or can’t do. If you can’t think clearly, consult your sibling or some well-intentioned friends—preferably those in healthy relationships—for their objective opinions.
Confront The Issue
This is an opportunity to problem-solve together not to quarrel. Rather than rambling on, be specific. Say something like, “When you make plans for us with BFF and I don’t know about it, it makes me feel like you don’t prioritize our time together.” Give opportunity for your partner explain. If there are underlying problems in the relationship, be open to hearing it.
Try Not to Give Ultimatums Unless Absolutely Necessary
Try not to give your partner an ultimatum like “it’s me or BFF” unless you want a big fight… or breakup. Ultimatums are a really bad idea in any relationship, because they leave no room for compromise. If you try to make your partner choose, there’s a chance they might choose BFF just out of principle, and then the relationship is over. Only go as far as giving ultimatums if you REALLY feel like something is going on between them.
After all, a relationship worth being in at all is worth given a chance to work.
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