Ever have to have a tough talk with a girlfriend? Have an uncomfortable conversation with your best friend?
Sometimes being a best friend means being honest and sharing things that might be tough. Fortunately, we love our girlfriends and (hopefully!) appreciate their concern and care. This guest blog by MEAGAN MCCRARY, co-author of The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags shares some girlfriend advice on …
Having “The Talk” with Your BFF
Watching your beautiful, intelligent, girlfriend date an undeserving dog of a man can be painful. But the alternative—telling her that she’s dating a complete jerk—can be detrimental to your friendship. So what do you do when your best gal pal is either missing or clearly ignoring some major relationship red flags?
First off, talking smack about your girlfriend’s boyfriend, no matter how terrible he is, is ill advised. After all, she’s the one choosing to be with the guy and any attack on him will feel like a personal attack on her, putting them on the same side against you. I don’t care if she’s carrying on like she’s completely fed up with him, until they’re broken up—and you’re positive they will stay broken up—you cannot go gang busters on her beau or you run the risk of becoming enemy number one.
Instead, approach her from the you-deserve-better angle and leave the name-calling out of it (some self-restraint will be necessary, but try). Remind her of how much she has going for her. Keep bringing the conversation back to the way he makes her feel. Most likely, if she really likes the guy, she’s experiencing moments of happiness or excitement that resemble love, but for the most part she’s really either anxious or upset. Like an addict, she will cling to the last dose of the love drug he dispensed, forgetting how awful she feels the majority of the time. Your job is to make her focus on the whole of the relationship: Empathize with her and let her know you understand why she wants to be with him, but explain that relationships aren’t supposed to make her feel bad about herself.
Advise her pay more attention to his actions and less to his words. If he’s claiming to be in love with her, his behavior should clearly reflect that. But if he, let’s say, doesn’t show up for her med school graduation or refuses to accompany her to her father’s sixtieth birthday, chances are he’s in the relationship for selfish reasons. Your girlfriend’s got her I-want-to-believe-what-he’s-telling-me blinders on and she may need you to point out the obvious (in a compassionate, loving way of course).
Remember: We’ve all dated a Mr. Wrong who was clearly a jerk from the get-go but, for whatever reason, decided to pursue the relationship. The last thing your girlfriend needs is for you to pass judgment. Chances are she already feels bad and your disapproval will only serve to drive a wedge between the two of you, rather than her and the guy who’s helping her to feel so terrible. More than anything she needs a true friend, one who will listen without giving unsolicited advice and who will continue to be there when she falls apart … again and again and, sometimes, again.
The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags: Relationship Warning Signs You Totally Spotted…But Chose to Ignore, is available now at Amazon.com and wherever books are sold.
Meagan McCrary is the co-author of The Little Black Book of Big Red Flags, as well as an L.A.-based yoga teacher with an adventurous spirit for romance and a proclivity for the ethereal. She writes Glo.com’s “Live by the Stars” monthly horoscope column, which has appeared on MSN.com’s homepage, and is currently penning a book describing the ten most popular yoga styles. She earned her Master’s degree in writing from USC in 2009.
Girlfriend – have you ever had to point out any ‘big red flags’ for girlfriends? How did it go? Advice?