Is your romantic relationship making people around you feel uncomfortable?
I’m asking this question because there are many couples out there that don’t even realise this: they make other people, especially their friends, feel uncomfortable in their presence. So a three-friends reunion can easily turn into 2+1, and then 2+2,3,4 etc. It’s like they’re a “making one feel like a third wheel” type of couple.
Understandably, this is not an easy question. How dare someone judge one’s relationship and the way it is portrayed in the outside world? Nonetheless, an external feedback might reveal a perspective couples are not aware of. As the relationship becomes a material part of their life, it’s difficult to admit it needs improvement. Like telling parents their child is too naughty or not so well-behaved. After all, what’s your (my) darn business?
I’m not talking about prudies here, people for which PDA is horrible, a blasphemy and unless it leads to procreation, should never happen. I’m also not referring to a jealousy type (frequently common in exes) of relationship display. Merely, this is about friendship and the disappointment we sometimes go through, when this long-cultivated attachment is spoiled by the people who win the hearts and genitals of our friends.
I am surrounded by many friends in romantic relationships, a lot of couples around, and that gives me a compelling opportunity to analyze their dynamics. But I also know stories heard from others, because people tend to tell me a lot of things, for some reason, and overall, I have this impression of how some people just (unconsciously) ignore their friends when they’re together with the significant other.
We’ve all been in love, but I don’t think it’s fair this new emotion dismisses a bond with someone who used to be your friend. Especially best-friend. There are two ways my experiences with couples (I sound like a family therapist, but I just pay attention) permitted me to draw two vivid traits:
1. The couples that would probably adopt you, if possible
I am gratefully happy to say I have a few friends-couples with whom, when we meet occasionally, they make me feel like one of their homies. Sometimes their counterparts is also a friend of mine, other times it’s people I recently met. But because their synergy is so balanced, I have no trouble connecting with these people and still feel I can talk to my friends. This doesn’t mean they don’t hold hands, kiss once in a while or talk cute to one another. Yet, they also respect your interaction with them and the intimate connection lingering before their previous existence.
We can easily watch a movie together, go out and party, dance, travel, sleep in the same room, have fun without feeling I’m “interrupting something”. And that’s so cool and, after all, as it should be.
2. The couples you’d like to throw a liquorice bar at
Why would one throw a liquorice bar at someone else? This is how it made me feel in some moments. The two of them being all over each other, touching inappropriately, or not listening to me, or annoyed because the lover’s annoyed we met, counting the seconds till the meeting’s done and so on. And I’m like “Hello…it’s me… How are you?”. No answer. Then I’ll be throwing the liquorice candy… because who the fanny pack likes liquorice anyways?
The situation gets tensed and doesn’t end well on both sides. The friends will go home and jiggle the balls to deck the halls (took this one from Will Ferrell, since it’s also the holiday spirit) like nothing happened and I’ll be left bittersweet, as my friendship neediness wouldn’t have been satisfied and indeed nothing had happened, no precious time spent together. (regardless if I can also go back to someone at home or not)
How do you tell these couples that you want your friend(ship) back? Quite challenging question if they’re not assertive enough (it will take some time even if they are). They’ll call you an attention-whore. Which one probably is, but like a cute puppy, not a pageant contest-like type. This is one of the reasons people don’t feel in the right place: misdirected attention. Personally, I also don’t think it’s healthy (socially, even psychologically) and perhaps there are other reasons I can’t think of — but you are warmly invited to tell me.
Eventually, it’s true we all change when we enter a new romantic relationship, let’s not hide around the middle finger. Still, I don’t think that should be in the detriment of forgetting one’s friends…and all relationships should steer towards showing a bit of respect and keeping a part of their intimacy where it belongs: at home. Try to think twice, then, if your relationship is making your friends feel uncomfortable. What are you going to do about it if it does?
Photo credits: Pixabay, Alexas Fotos