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Love Letters

She says I'm an outsider


Q:

My boyfriend and I are 24/25 respectively and have been dating for one year. We're extremely happy together and both truly believe we'll be together forever. Throughout the past year, I've really enjoyed getting to know his friends and have become a part of their social circle. However there has been one friend who I just can't wrap my head around. She is a girl and all the guys describe her as "a guys' girl" and say "she has no girl friends." I've always been a girls' girl and can't imagine my life without the amazing friendships I have with women, and in turn, I've always been wary of girls like her.†

The first red flag was raised when she started doing things like talk to my boyfriend at a party and drape her arm around him, or I'd get up to go the bathroom while watching a game and come back to find her sitting next to him on the couch. My first instinct was that she was trying to hook up with him, and I discussed it with my boyfriend right away. He assured me that nothing was happening with them and unfortunately that's just how she is with all her guy friends. Throughout the year my feelings on her have been both positive and negative -- we do have things in common and have had some fun times together ... but her inappropriate behavior with my boyfriend hasn't stopped, even as we've become more and more serious.

She recently got a boyfriend (wahoo!), and I thought she'd have to stop that awkward flirting behavior with my boyfriend ... but wrong again. Recently I overheard her tell someone at a party that I was an "outsider" when telling him how everyone knew each other. I confronted her about it (in a nice way) and she actually reaffirmed her statement saying, "Yeah, like I mean you're not in our crew." It was in that moment I realized this stuff with my boyfriend isn't about wanting to hook up with him ... it's about territory.†

I discussed all this with my boyfriend, and he was devastated to hear that this issue has continued to impact us for a year. He said he will completely end the friendship and not be around her anymore, but who wants to be the girlfriend that goes around ruining friendships? There is a big, tight-knit group of friends so I know there would be a lot more friendships ended than just one. So, what do you think? Do I have him try to talk to her and change the behavior? End the friendship? Just bury my feelings about it and know that her behavior is a reflection of her insecurity and not an issue in my relationship?†

Thanks!

– She's a Guys' Girl, Boston

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A: It makes sense that you don't want to be the person who splits up the group. There's no need to cause friction when you know that your boyfriend puts you first.

You don't have to bury your feelings, but you can define them, give your boyfriend a conspiratorial look when things get weird, and then move on. You can also try to spend some time with his people in smaller groups. Parties of four donít really have outsiders. You can see his friends without seeing her.

As everyone evolves, the group will shift, so this issue could solve itself. The "crew" won't always hang out at the same bar every night like they're on a sitcom. People in the group will get married and have babies. There will be more newcomers.

Ride this one out. Unless she's outright mean or threatens you, just smile and walk away.

Readers? Should she have her boyfriend confront this woman? Do you get the sense that your boyfriend wants to end the friendship? What can she do to deal?

– Meredith