Dear Life & Style,
My friend has been seeing their significant other for a while, and I don’t want to judge their relationship. However, my friend constantly complains to me about how their significant other does not treat them respectfully or lovingly. They are always ‘taking a break’ and getting back together. It is clear that they do not have a healthy relationship. How can I tell my friend that they are better off without their loser significant other?
– Concerned Friend
My advice for you is to be there for your friend when they really need it, to listen and give your input when they ask. You don’t want to bash your friend’s significant other or give advice when it isn’t wanted. Otherwise, your friendship could be in jeopardy.
Your friend is going to do what they want, and in the end, it is their decision on whether they break up with their significant other or stay in the relationship. Remind your friend that they are worthy of love and if they feel like their partner is not giving them the amount of love that they need, they should move on to someone better. Of course, this could take some time.
When your friend and their partner have a fight, tell them to try and talk through their problem. If they can communicate, the situation could be fixed and your friend will feel better because they expressed their feelings.
Unloving, selfish or even abusive partners rarely, if ever, change because they are unwilling. Most people often do not see they have a problem, and it’s easier to just deal with it, rather than drag on the relationship.
As someone who has dealt with this kind of relationship before, I am here to tell your friend that things are not going to get better, and the person is not going to change. It is up to your friend to either seek help with their partner to try and fix things, or get out while they still can.
Your friend may ask for your advice, but in reality, they don’t want it. They want a shoulder to cry on someone to vent to. Make sure that you are there for your friend, but set boundaries when asked for advice.
Your friend should realize that if their friends do not like their significant other, then there must be a reason for that.
In the end, you have to just be there for your friend and try to help them get through this relationship or move on, if that is what they truly want. You have to be their guide and not tell them what to do, but how. Criticism will only keep your friend closer to their significant other, and if that is not what you think is best for them, then that is not the way to go about the situation.
Do your best to be their friend, and not the middleman. Set your boundaries with them when the topic of their relationship comes up, and be that shoulder they need to cry on.
Don’t jeopardize your friendship just because of the opposite sex. Don’t get me wrong, you can give your opinion, but it might just be easier to stay out of the situation all together, and only state your believes when it is needed or wanted.
If all else fails, and you can no longer bare to stand by and watch your friend be involved in a unhealthy relationship, then distancing yourself might be the only alternative. This can be disheartening, but sometimes that harmful relationship can rub off on you, and cause unwanted stress that can become detrimental to your life and health.