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Dear Wendy

my friend has been in love with my boyfriend for a year now

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  • #962102 Reply
    avatarEleanor
    Guest

    Alright. So this has been going on for a year now, and I’m kind of going crazy. I know I shouldn’t be the one that feels bad, but I just need some help and I can’t talk about this anywhere else. This is going to be long, sorry in advance.

    Basically, one of my very close friends is, indeed, in love with my boyfriend. I started getting hints of it about 3 or 4 months into my relationship with him.

    To begin with, the three of us share a pretty small friend group. We’re very close and we talk every single night. My friend and my boyfriend have also been friends as long as I have been with them. I got the hint of what was happening when she informed us all of a dream she had starring her and my boyfriend where he told her he knew she was in love with him. Of course I wanted to believe that it was just a dream, but things progressed and I noticed other small hints (such as her telling us to ‘shut the **** up’ when we were holding hands and getting uncomfortable whenever she saw us doing anything remotely romantic) I wanted to chalk it up to being a third wheel, and I kept making excuses even after the most ridiculous things would happen, and when I finally asked her if she liked my boyfriend when I had been trying to avoid the question for a long time, she said she was. We had a longer conversation then, about how she fell in love with him and how she feels about the whole situation. (she was never blatantly hitting on my boyfriend by the way!! she isn’t a terrible person.)

    After this, I didn’t know what to do. The obvious thing would be to not interfere and let her deal with it herself, but my immature teenage brain began doubting and over analyzing every interaction they had. I’m not a very confident person, so I began to doubt myself and wondered if I was really good enough. It doesn’t help that even before this, I‘ve had a complex about me and my friend’s similar personality’s, thinking that I was just a watered down and inferior version of her.

    Things sucked before I was confident in my relationship again. We weren’t able to go anywhere because of covid, and I was too busy with schoolwork to focus on our relationship.

    After a sad period of low confidence and apprehension to talk to them, my relationship with my boyfriend improved significantly. We had a lot of conversations about our feelings and trauma and doubts I had, and things were ok again. Better than before, even.

    and back to now. The main thing that’s troubling me is that whenever my boyfriend and I share a conversation or do anything even the slightest bit in reference to our relationship, it’s like I can feel my friend’s heart break. Her mood worsens, and she gets passive aggressive, and it hurts me too. Just yesterday me and my boyfriend were talking about a hobby we share, and she told us repeatedly to shut up and stop talking about it, not giving us a reason why. This is probably really immature, but I was upset and angry and I wanted to get mad at her and I felt fed up with her but I couldn’t. I’ve been feeling horrible because of it, and then I feel worse because I shouldn’t feel bad because someone else deserves that right more than me. Someone else’s heart hurts more than mine, so I should just be happy. It’s difficult though, because it feels like every time my friend is in a bad mood, it’s because of me. I feel really selfish. The reason I’m writing this now is because I know I shouldn’t feel bad for loving someone, and I’m of tired of it. I’m not sure what to do.

    tldr; my friend is in love with my boyfriend and I feel super guilty about it, especially since whenever the fact that we’re together is brought up or shown her mood significantly worsens. and it has been going on for months now.

    #962104 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    This all sounds pretty unhealthy, like all of you should expand your friend circle and hang out with more/different people. If the three of you only ever hang out together, it’s like you’re all dating. It’s a throuple. You should make sure you and your boyfriend have couple time and you and your friend have friend time. Or if you want to be a throuple, be a throuple. Be ok with it, and stop thinking of him as “your” boyfriend. Otherwise, you really need to take a step back and start setting some boundaries.

    #962105 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    Like:

    “ Just yesterday me and my boyfriend were talking about a hobby we share, and she told us repeatedly to shut up and stop talking about it, not giving us a reason why.”

    This should not be happening. If you and your boyfriend want to talk at such length about your shared hobby, do that when it’s just the two of you. Get together and talk about the hobby. If the three of you are hanging out, you should be talking about things that interest all of you. More boundaries. Less blurring the lines of friendship and couple time.

    #962107 Reply
    avatarron
    Guest

    The three of you should stop hanging out together. Both you and your friend find it stifling and upsetting. Somehow, from what you write, the situation doesn’t seem to trouble your bf at all. Likely he is getting an ego boost from her interest. Why are you spending so much time with someone who would be thrilled if your bf broke up with you? Her perpetual wounded bird act may be intended to accomplish exactly that. No way you should be feeling guilty about this, although significant PDA in her presence may be seen as cruel taunting, so don’t do that. Brief hints that you and bf are a couple, however, like briefly holding hands, is her problem, not yours. It’s the three of you hanging together, which makes this extremely awkward.

    #962108 Reply
    avataranonymousse
    Participant

    You’re allowed to feel angry and upset when someone tells you to shut the fuck up repeatedly. You shouldn’t feel bad or guilty that she has feelings for your bf, or that her bad moods are your fault. They are not your fault. That’s not your responsibility. She has all the power to not hang out with both of you, or to find a way to get over this.

    I do think spending time away from her when you’re with your bf is probably a good idea.

    #962116 Reply
    avatarKate
    Keymaster

    I would also add that your friend maybe doesn’t have a lot of respect for you. In a way it’s good that she admitted she’s in love with your boyfriend, because now you know… BUT that’s not something you’d expect from a real true friend who cares about your happiness. Right? Like if we’re into our friend’s boyfriend, we tend to keep that to ourselves and kind of repress it and not act it out. Telling you to shut up all the time too, is not a great look. I really think it’d be good for you two to have more of a break from each other. When you do hang out, make it quality time, and talk about things you both care about.

    #962117 Reply
    avatarbloodymediocrity
    Participant

    I was your friend when I was 17. I was so in love with a girl in my friend group, and every time she would begin to date a mutual friend (or anyone for that matter) it would break my heart and I’d pout. One day the girl I was in love with decided to completely cut me out without a word spoken about it, and it broke my heart.

    Yes, it sucked for me, but it was absolutely the right thing for her to do. I was immature, confused, possessive, and jealous. I was cowardly and could not admit my feelings to her and instead just whined. Now, with an additional 22 years of time had passed, I only wish she had done so sooner.

    Please, be honest with your friend, and cut her out if you have to. It’s the only humane thing to do. Until you do, she’s going keep this behavior going, and every day that passes is going to be harder and harder.

    #962127 Reply
    avatarFYI
    Guest

    Thus LW is a teenager. That alters the answer a bit.

    It’s not unusual for teens to be almost clingy to their friend group. The fact that this particular friend group is made up of three people, two of whom are dating, makes things awkward, yes. Someone is going to naturally and eventually drift away, or a fourth will be added, or something. That’s not something you have to control or worry about, LW.

    HOWEVER, the most important thing here to me is your incredible compulsion to blame yourself for stuff that has nothing to do with you. You say you’re “selfish,” that someone else “deserves more than you,” that you “feel guilty,” etc. Other people’s feelings are not your responsibility. You have seriously got to understand that — really understand it — because it’s going to cause you a LOT of confusion and pain in life if you don’t. There are people who WANT to make you the scapegoat for their feelings, and you sound like an easy mark.

    Take some assertive training, see a counselor, read a book on boundaries or co-dependence (Codependent No More is a good one.) Really — you are young enough that you can avoid a lot of pain. It’s important that you understand what is your responsibility and what isn’t. You are wildly over-functioning (emotionally) for your friend.

    #962129 Reply
    AkeathAkeath
    Participant

    You need to start hanging out with them separately. Hang out with your best friend just you and her. Hang out with your boyfriend mostly one on one as well. You can’t be mixing couple and friend time under these circumstances. You may have less time with each as a result, but it will prevent everyone from suffering while you are together, so it would be worth it. Yes, it will change the dynamic, but if you keep putting yourselves in this situation you are going to lose at least one of them. I understand you won’t be able to do this constantly- like at school, but outside of school you need to hang out one on one to protect everyone’s feelings, including your own.

    #962132 Reply
    avatarbrise
    Guest

    She is not your Doppelgänger, so stop the drama. See them separately. She will get over it and find her own love. The less she is with you both, your BF and you, the more chance she has to meet someone. Just see her less but for quality time one-on-one and don’t make of it your problem. She is too close to you.

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