I think my friend should probably break up with her boyfriend. Can I/Should I/How do I tell her?
May 24, 2012 6:36 PM Subscribe
I'm worried about my friend - I am afraid she going to marry a guy she doesn't like or respect. Any recommendations for things I can say or do to encourage her to take a critical look at the relationship?
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (31 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Here are the too-long details. Everyone in this question is in their 30s, FWIW.
So, my friend. She has this boyfriend. He is kind of a drip, and I don't much like him, and I've gathered that other friends of ours don't much like him either. I won't go into the details, because it's not really important why *we* don't like him - I'm more concerned that *she* doesn't like him.
I don't see them that often because I live on the opposite side of the country. But when I do, I've noticed that when he does something doofusy (which happens regularly), she looks at him with an expression that seems really contemptuous. Not the kind of expression I see on the faces of healthy couples. Not the kind of expression I would like to see on my own face.
Also, that contemptuous/disgusted look? I've seen it on her before, looking at the guy she stuck around in an unhappy relationship with for six years. Six-year-boyfriend was really unkind to my friend, and I'm glad she broke up with him. But I feel like maybe after that she thinks that any guy who's not actively mean to her is a good boyfriend.
Anyway, hints from her and other friends have given me the impression they might be getting engaged/married/pregnant/houseowning-together soon. If this is what she really wants, OK, fine, I'll deal with having this guy in my life. But they really don't seem like remotely equal partners in the relationship; I have trouble imagining a way in which she would be happy with him long-term. In general, I am a "people are in relationships because they're getting something they need out of them" kind of person, and I do not advise or judge, but that's the attitude that kept me from doing anything more than dropping extremely gentle hints during the six years she was with the mean guy, and in retrospect I think that was probably the wrong way to go.
So, I want to be more explicit, but I am PETRIFIED by the idea of saying to her, "Hey, so I gather that you and Boyfriend are really serious - is that a good idea? Do you even like him? Because it seems like you don't." With a side of "Just because you're 36 doesn't mean this doofus is your only chance to have a family." (Fingers crossed.) I'm going to see them next month. I know a lot of you are going to say she's a grown woman and he's not abusive and it's none of my business and I know there's truth to that, but I hate to see her backing a loser (of a relationship) again, and if they have kids together she'll be stuck with him for life!