Dating and Relationship Advice

Your friend meets someone new and starts talking about them all the time. You can sense their excitement and eventually, they ask whether you would be down to meet their new special someone. You unhesitatingly agree – after all, you’re curious to know more about the person who has snagged your friend’s heart.

But after the meet-up, you can’t help but feel uneasy about your friend’s partner. Worry begins to creep its way up your chest. Is this really the right person for your friend? Are the red flags tell-tale signs of an inevitable breakup? What does this mean for your friendship, especially if the three of you will be hanging out more often?

We’ve all been through a similar situation where we’ve found ourselves disapproving of our friend’s partner. Here are some tips that might be useful when navigating this sticky predicament.

Keep an open mind

Sometimes, it takes time for us to warm up to someone new. There are many occasions when our first impression of someone turns out to change drastically after getting to know them better. Rather than holding an immutable judgment towards your friend’s partner, keep an open mind and allow yourself to be convinced otherwise. Being able to acknowledge someone’s strengths is just as important as pinpointing their flaws.

In fact, there is no shame in admitting you were wrong if your impression of your friend’s partner ends up changing over time. After all, the most important thing should be looking out for your friend and their interests; whether or not you were “right” about their partner is irrelevant.

Acknowledge your feelings

There might be times when you feel like you’ve tried your best to be open-minded, but still wind up in the original position you were in — disapproving of your friend’s partner and questioning their intentions. But when your friend is enamored and constantly gushing about their partner, it’s easy to find yourself wondering if there was something you missed.

When this happens, it’s crucial to acknowledge your feelings especially after thinking through them. Your opinions are valid, even if they may differ from the person you care about. Your gut feeling exists for a reason, and it’s important to pay heed to it.

Give your opinion only when asked

When it comes to relationship woes, we often want our opinions to be heard. But just because you feel strongly about your friend’s partner, it doesn’t mean that you should make these thoughts known, especially if your friend doesn’t want — or isn’t ready — to hear them. Sharing your opinion without being asked could be perceived as imposing, which doesn’t bode well for anyone. Your friend will reach out naturally when they want your advice and when they do, being honest but sensitive towards them is the way to go.

Support your friend through the process

At the end of the day, you’re in this plight in the first place because you care about your friend and their long-term happiness, so focus on them and their feelings. Their happiness comes first, which means supporting their decisions even if this entails them being with someone you may not necessarily approve of. Remember to check in with your friend and support them in making the decision that is best for them, rather than what you think they should choose.