What To Do When You Get On Waaaay Too Well With Your Best Mate's Boyfriend
The Debrief: There's getting on with your best mate's boyfriend, and then there's leaving her out. Here's how to not do that
When you have been best friends with someone since primary school, it's inevitable you're going to meet your fair share of their boyfriends. It's not inevitable, however, that you'll get on with them. Nor is it inevitable that you'll get on with them so well it'll just get awkward. This is true for me and my best friend, Ruby - I've been there through all the awkward, dull, downright weird relationships, from Thom who really, really loved My Chemical Romance in Year 9, right up until her current love interest, Brad (I've used a fake name here. You can tell by the fact I've called him 'Brad' and this is 2015).
I've been there through the absolute prats and survived - but I never anticipated the series of totally awkward moments that come with being so very similar to my best pals boyfriend. Here are the worst offenders in terms of awk-o-meter, and how to navigate your way through them like a boss. A boss who doesn't fancy their mate's boyfriend.
People often think it's you guys that are the couple
Take a fancy dress party we were all invited to at a mutual friend's student house last year. Me, always wanting an excuse to don a beehive and draw some sharpie tats on my arm, went as one of my musical heroes, Amy Winehouse. Ruby went as...a cat. Well, her estimation of a cat, being a very short dress and ears (hello Karen from Mean Girls). This was fine, until I arrived and saw that Brad was dressed as Pete Doherty. Endless instagram pictures were posed for along with a barrage of comments from drunk people in the kitchen saying 'how much of a good couple we make'. Luckily, super good natured Ruby took it as the simple mistake it was and laughed it off- but I took my wig off to make our costume pairing less obvious- and to spare constantly having to say 'OH NO that isn't how it is, THAT'S his girlfriend, over there HAHHA'. In these situations, there's nothing more you can do than shut it the hell down. And refuse to engage. Ever.
Being stuck in the middle of an argument feels really, really awkward
Me and Brad are obviously similar people, and that is why Ruby chose us to be parts of her life. Who she is gets on with who we are, for the most part. She is laid back, airy, floaty, clingy...whereas I am a bit neurotic, a planner, very independent, and I can see these qualities in Brad. So, it sort of follows that when they argue, I can see it from Brad's side just as much as from hers. Sometimes a bit more. Take for example, the other day, planning a trip interailling around Europe. Ruby doesn't want to book hostels, Brad does. They argue whilst I am there, sitting awkwardly at their kitchen table. My rational mind wants to shout 'YOU NEED TO BOOK HOTELS! THIS SEEMS LIKE SUCH A SENSIBLE IDEA, BOOK THE HOTELS AND BE ORGANISED. BUY A TRAVEL WALLET, TOO' but I know that this would be silly. Even though you agree with her boyfriend, make sure your loyalties always lie with your bezzie. Like, when she asks for my opinion on these things, I do really try and drop hints about how sensible it would be to book accomodation before travelling anywhere. Just using a random example, there.
But you never feel awkward around your best mate's boyfriend
If I ever go to the pub as an awkward third wheel to any of my other friend's relationships, it consists of me living in vague fear of them going to the bar/the toilet/answering any unwarrented phone calls because then I might have to try and cultivate conversation. However, this is never a problem when I'm gooseberry-ing myself onto Ruby and Brad's cosy nights at the pub- we always have plenty to talk about. All of us have the same taste in music/ books/films, but Ruby has no interest in politics, news or current affairs. Problems arise, though, when we get too comfortable - Brad is a politics graduate, and I live off that stuff, so we have to be careful not to go off on a tangent that bores Ruby to death - or makes her feel at all left out. Nobody wants to be a third wheel in their own relationship, obvs.
Be wary of hitting on his friends
It's useful getting on so well with Brad - it means that if he ever comes on a night out, or to a gig or festival, it all works out fine. Him and Ruby carried me back to my tent at Leeds Festival after I drunk a mixture of gin and vodka (never decant clear spirits into water bottles and don't label them) and he's seen and supported me in just as many terrible states as my own girlfriends. However, when you are trying to flirt with his fit friend, and he drops in 'oh yeah, remember that time you got thrown out of that club in Wakefield for trying to dance on a table? And then you threw up in the taxi? And then again on my shoes?' it doesn't set you up in the best, most attractive light maybe.
Don't actually fancy them
That's a whole other article. And not a pretty one, so just obviously avoid this at all costs (if that's possible).
Be happy in the knowledge that your BFF has made a good boyfriend choice
I've known Ruby for 16 years, and we have argued properly twice. Once was when she used a pringle tube to hold apple juice at a festival, and the cardboard melted and apple juice went in my sleeping bag. And once was when I got the wrong day for a Killers concert when we were 14, and we missed it completely. But it's good to know that we came through those tough times and get on like a house on fire. I love her, and know I can trust her and rely on her. And she feels the same about me- and hopefully, therefore Brad. It proves to me, that having a synergy with Brad means she has picked a good 'un for a boyfriend, one that hopefully will never let her down. Knowing he's very similar to me affirms one thing- she obviously has good taste in people.
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Picture: Eugenia Loli
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