A study has found that love comes at a price. The going rate? Two close friends.
On average, a person who finds themselves in a relationship will suddenly realise two of their nearest and dearest will suddenly become not so close and probably even disappear from their lives altogether.
The researchers looking into the study theorise that it’s a matter of having enough time to spend with your friends.
Your new partner takes the place of one close friend, the other disappears as a casualty of not having enough quality time to go around.
But what if it’s because your friends don’t like your partner? Or your partner hates your friends?
My man and I recently lost a few friends because of their new partners. Disappointing, really.
At some point a person has to make a choice – the person they love or the people they’ve shared years of friendship and loyalty with.
It’s never a hard choice because love is blind and will win out every time when stumped up against a few good mates.
Usually, you wouldn’t say anything to a friend about not liking their new love interest.
Occasionally, though, your friends may have a hiatus with their partner.
I don’t like to say “break up” because that would be permanent. And as a friend, you need to keep in mind that it may not be all that permanent.
“Oh thank God!” you might exclaim to your friend. “I never liked her anyway.”
You get down and dirty in a good old bitch session about the ex with your friend.
You think you’re supporting them, helping them feel better about the break up. They spill all the most horrible aspects of their ex’s behaviour from over the years. You nod in all the right places, offer your advice and back them up 100%.
They get back together. Awkward much? It’s no wonder friends like that get cut loose.
A person in love can forget all the awful parts about their partner, about what may have happened over the course of the break up, so long as there’s not someone there to remind them.
A group of guys I know well went out one night and embarked on the abhorrent practice of grading girls out of 10 upon first sight.
When one of them hooked up with a girl, his best mate instantly wrote her off as “a three” and told his mate not to go home with her that night.
Of course, he’s married to the “three” now. I bet that makes for awesome dinner parties.
What to do, then, if your partner and your friends just don’t get along?
Remember that if your friends are the ones being haters, they’re probably just looking out for you. It’s amazing how our besties can be more loyal to us than we are to ourselves.
If your partner is the disapproving one, it usually stems from some sort of jealousy or insecurity, or perhaps your friends are behaving badly towards them.
A power struggle of sorts for your attention. Smooth it over as best you can and see if everyone will put aside their differences. Unlikely.
You can keep them apart, but that’s no fun.
Or – as most people seem to (sadly) opt for – you can let your friends go.
Had a friendship bust up over love? Hate your mate’s partner? Go on, vent in the comments. You know you want to.
This ‘How Was It For You?’ column was originally published on the Flirt Page of mX Newspaper on 8 October 2010. Emma writes a weekly column for the paper. You can see the back-catalogue here.