A girl having a guy best friend is no joke, and it certainly invites a whole lot of questions and potential complications.
From the girl’s point of view, the male best friend makes for great company. There’s no sexual tension there, just good old friendship that a lot of people can’t seem to comprehend. People may be wondering why they don’t date, but for the two people involved, it’s simply not something they’re interested in.
From a guy’s point of view, the male best friend is a potential threat. The male besty’s friendship can sometimes feel too close for comfort. He knows that she’ll come running to her best friend at the first sign of trouble, and imagining another guy comforting his girlfriend isn’t exactly easy to accept.
Ladies, here’s why it’s threatening
Here’s a little insight into why guys won’t be so thrilled to find out that your best friend happens to be a dude.
#1 Can men and women just be friends? The age old question is in the eye of the beholder, which makes it all the more cringe-worthy for your guy to wrap his mind around. Your male best friend has gotten the chance to be close to you at various stages of emotional need. Your guy will always wonder why you aren’t in a relationship with your best friend or if you at least didn’t harbor a bit of a crush on each other. [Read: How to make a jealous boyfriend less jealous]
#2 Your male besty probably knows you better than anyone. If this guy is truly your best friend, then odds are he knows you better than almost anyone else in your life, including your current boyfriend. He’s seen you are varying levels of vulnerability and has walked you through important stages of your life.
You’ve laughed, you’ve cried, you’ve connected in a way that nobody else ever has. That being said, the last thing your new beau wants to know is that he’s already playing second fiddle right at the start of your relationship. After all, he wants to be your best friend.
#3 You probably complain about your boyfriend to your best friend. It’s a fact of life, mates complain or vent to their best friends about their relationship. This is normal and in some cases healthy, so long as the one complaining maintains a level of respect for their mate. Regardless, your boyfriend doesn’t want to think about how your male best friend knows his downfalls every time he looks at the guy. [Read: 10 perks of having a guy best friend]
#4 There’s a possibility your male besty is actually being a jerk. Before you go about yelling at your boyfriend for overreacting to your best mate, take a step back to make sure he’s not telling the truth. Is your male best friend jealous of your new boyfriend? If so, he could be blatantly or inadvertently stirring up trouble for you and your boyfriend. Find out if this is the case, and then act on it before you lose both your friendship and your relationship.
Men: How to handle your girlfriend’s male best friend
There are some simple do’s and don’ts when it comes to handling your girlfriend’s male best friend. Take a deep breath and try to remember the following:
#1 Don’t have a power struggle. Whipping your dicks around in a symbolic sword fight isn’t going to get anybody anywhere. The male besty probably wants to show that he’s sticking around and that he has importance in your girlfriend’s life, while you want to show that you’re the one she’s in love with.
While it’s important that both men find a way to establish their place in her life, this is not the way to do it. In the end, you’ll both probably end up in a fight with the woman in question. Make her life a little easier and avoid this juvenile behavior.
#2 Don’t make her choose. If you’re trying to make your girlfriend inadvertently choose you over her best friend, then you’re being a jerk. Unless he is causing unprovoked, real complications in your relationship, then you’re probably just going to have to sit back and accept that he’s a part of her life.
After all, if the two of them wanted to be together, they would be together. You aren’t standing in the way of that. That’s not to say that you should keep quiet if you feel underappreciated or uncomfortable, but you need to approach the subject carefully so that she doesn’t feel like she’s on the defensive.
#3 Do have a talk. Talking it out with your girlfriend is tricky business, but it has to be done. If something is bothering you about her relationship with her best friend, then you need to bring it out into the open before you explode!
Don’t be accusatory. Tell her you don’t expect her to get rid of him, no matter how much you want her to, and that you know you’re being jealous and you’re sorry in advance if this puts her in an awkward spot. Afterwards, calmly explain that you feel like he’s a third wheel, you’re worried they might secretly like each other, and address any and all other concerns you might be having about the situation. If your girlfriend is any kind of a woman, she’ll be sensitive to your feelings and talk it out with you.
#4 Try to be friends with her guy friend. Alright, so you’re not the type who likes other guys in your way, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. In fact, this will all go a lot easier, if you make progress towards being this guy’s friend. Find something in common like a video game or a band that you both like, and work up a friendship based on that.
#5 Put yourself in her shoes and show respect. Remember, your girlfriend had a life long before you were ever in it. She is entitled to be friends with whomever she desires, and while you don’t have to like her friends, you do have to show respect. Put yourself in her shoes. What if she told you to ditch your best friend, after years’ worth of friendship? The very notion is ridiculous.
[Read: Are guy best friends really nothing but trouble?]
In the end, both the boyfriend and the male best friend just want to know that they have a place in the girl’s life that won’t be threatened by another elephant at the watering hole. It’s up to all three parties to make it work, so slap on a smile and get to it.
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Waverly Smith is a freelance writer who has been getting paid for spreading her sarcastic take on love, life, and sex since 2010. She is many things that peo...
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