I want to tell you guys a story, mostly because it’s Friday and that’s my lowest hit day, so this will probably go largely unnoticed by the masses. It has to do with a relationship I was in, and how it applies to your future (or current) relationships.
The best trick a guy can play in a relationship is to turn you against your friends. For the majority of my life, I had never dealt with this fact of relationships. Most of the boyfriends I had were magnanimous when it came to me hanging out with my friends, they never made me choose, and often times, they became friends with my friends and everything was peachy keen. Even in a break up, everything was peachy keen. Then – I dated “Mo”. Mo was the master of slowly but surely picking off my friends and making me choose between them and him. By the time the relationship was over, I only had three friends – April, Mary and Jen. (Well, and my boyfriend now and Priya – but those were work friends I made after the relationship ended.)
Some of the ways he did this were subtle, for instance, with Paige and Brooke – I’m not even sure now looking back half the shit he told me they said or did was true. But when you’re faced with choosing between two people and one of them is the guy you think you love, it seemed easier to drop the friends. (And looking back, I’m fairly certain he knew that at the time, that if he made me pick, I’d always pick him.) The roommate situation with Faith was another example – left to my own devices I never would have gotten as angry as I did over it because I’m just not that kind of person. Without him, Faith and I wouldn’t be roommates – but there wouldn’t have been the animosity Katina and I went through a phase were we didn’t talk because of him too – and after we broke up, Katina came back and was like, “Thank God the old Stephanie back.”
Some of the ways he did it were not so subtle – for instance Cory. Anyone who was at the wedding and talking to me can vouch for the fact that he basically guilted me into leaving the wedding, but what they don’t know was the fight that came after when we got to the house because I promised to meet Cory at her after party. What ended up happening was it came down to him or her – if I went to the after party he was leaving and if I stayed, he stayed. I ended up picking him, and holding the guilt for all the horrible things he said about her inside. I eventually ended up losing her as a friend (and she is still friends with him – because he’s a pretty awesome manipulator and liar) and looking back I wonder how that ever happened.
How could I have let him pull me away from each and every friend I had? How did I not notice this was going on?
It’s trickery of the worst form. Guys like this can make you not trust what you see with your own eyes, they can make your friends not want to be with you and change your entire being. You go from someone who has values and morals and knows their mind – to someone who relies only on the relationship for your self-worth. If you find yourself in a relationship where the guy is in any way, making you choose between your friends and him? Run for the hills. If you find yourself in a relationship where you’re contradicting earlier statements you made about people? Run for the hills! If you find yourself in a relationship where the people you thought were always going to be there are running for the hills? You run for the damn hills with them.
That’s one of the reasons I love my current boyfriend. He doesn’t make me choose. (Which is why, this Friday night, it’s me, Mary, spaghetti and meatballs while we play Lego Batman and drink – because girl time without the boy is important.)