Challenge: How can I maintain strong relationships with my BFFs and my new BF?
Solution: Schedule time for everyone—You can’t have a wedding without bridesmaids!
We get into a relationship, and as things start to get more and more serious, the time that we spend with our girlfriends diminishes. Frat parties are a thing of the past, and Friday nights change from going out with the girls for a few too many margaritas, to staying in with our man and enjoying a bottle of nice wine. Without the incentive of possibly meeting a cute guy, going out doesn’t seem so appealing, and soon you’re not getting dolled up with your girlfriends as often. This shift is normal, especially as we get older, but it can take a serious toll on the relationships we have with our closest friends.
As understanding as girlfriends can be, they do not like being dumped, and that’s just what this transition feels like. They’ve been there for you for years, playing wing woman and entertaining more than their fair share of weirdos to help you find your Prince Charming. Even if snuggling on the coach with your guy sounds better, you have to make the effort to throw on your stilettos, and hit the town with the people who really know you best. Nine times of out ten, it will turn out to be exactly what you needed.
Girlfriends offer a unique support system that can NEVER be replaced by a guy. They can relate to everything you go through and share all the same experiences, emotionally and physically. Your girls will always be there to give you advice on sex, beauty, clothes, relationships, love, family and style. Even if your boyfriend can offer you his advice, it’s just not the same.
Your relationship with your guy will actually improve if you take a break from one another and hang out with your friends. You will come back together feeling refreshed and excited to spend time with one another. And I know that no one wants to hear this, but who is going to be around when that guy inevitably does something stupid (sorry girls, but they all do it sometime)? It’s vital to have quality girlfriends that you know have got your back, and it’s impossible to have those if you don’t foster the relationships.
The best way for me to stay on a consistent BFF schedule is to plan our time in advance. If we don’t do this it probably will not happen. My girlfriends and I have made it a point to plan dinners, hikes, cocktail hour or beach days a week before, which pretty much guarantees we do not make any other plans. This is an easy way to ensure we will not only be taking care of our friendships, but keeping our romantic relationships fresh and healthy.
5 tips for balancing your friendships with your boyfriend
- Girls Night—Dedicate one night per week to just your girlfriends, and stick to it! Plan it in advance, and your guy can do guys night. If both of you have plans, then no one gets left feeling abandoned or lonely for the evening. And if he doesn’t have plans, well too bad.
- Share Time—Schedule dinners or a fun night out with a group of all your friends! Hopefully everyone gets along (if he loves you, he really should love your friends), and it’s a perfect way to connect a couple of his eligible friends with your newly single roommate!
- Double Date—Go out with another couple. This is a great way for one of your friends to get to know your man on a much more personal level than she would at a party or a bar. This usually turns out great for everyone – You’ll find that your friend thinks your boyfriend is much cooler than she originally thought, and your boyfriend has a new appreciation for how hilarious your best friend is.
- Plan a Trip—Have a weekend getaway with a core group of girlfriends (more than four becomes a bit tough to manage). This is the perfect time to catch up with each other, go out like old times, and give your guy the opportunity to miss you (always a good thing).
- Play a Sport—Put together an intermural team (girlfriends and guy friends) for a sport everyone can participate in (I suggest kickball, or even inter-tube waterpolo). This is a casual way to hang out, and create solid friendships that can only come out of playing together as a team.
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