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In a perfect world, we would not only love our own partners, but also the partners of our dearest friends.
If your dreams of fun-filled double date nights and couples vacations are shattered by the reality of a friend’s partner you can’t stand, follow these four tips to cope with your dislike of your friend’s significant other.
You’ve probably noticed by now that you’re not going to love everyone you meet. It’s important to figure out what’s at the root of the problem.
I’ve had a couple of friends criticize an ex-boyfriend of mine for not being “hot enough” in their opinion. This is not a legitimate criticism of your friend’s partner!
If you don’t like him because you hate his sense of humor, fashion, lack of career ambition or some other factor unrelated to your friend’s happiness, get over yourself.
I know you want to tell your friend how much you think their partner sucks. I have been that friend who has more than once given my (unsolicited) opinion of the shortcomings of a friend’s mate.
More often than not, it doesn’t turn out well. However justified you might feel, a careless criticism could irreparably harm your friendship.
If your friend asks for your honest opinion, you should give it (gently), but make sure you emphasize your love and concern for your friend. Keep the judgment and any superficial comments out of your response.
“You’re going to have to accept
that this person is in your life.”
If spending time with your friend means spending time with their partner and you really don’t get along with their partner, this could damage your friendship in the long run.
You don’t want your friend to be put in a position of having to choose between the two of you. As a friend, it’s perfectly reasonable for you to suggest one-on-one activities from time to time.
I do not recommend avoiding their partner entirely, particularly if they’re in a long-term relationship, but taking time for the friendship outside of any romantic relationship will help to strengthen your bond.
Assuming it’s a personality conflict you have with your friend’s mate and not a larger, more serious issue (such as some abusive behavior), you’re going to have to accept that this person is in your life as long as he is in your friend’s life.
Maybe you don’t take that couples vacation to wine country or you make it a day trip instead of a long weekend. But when you do see their partner, take a deep breath and focus on the good that your friend sees in them.
Your friend will appreciate your efforts!
Photo source: idiva.com.