OK. I think I’ve gone over almost every iteration of this problem: What to do if you hate your husband’s friends, what to do if you hate your friend’s husband (or boyfriend), what to do if you love your guy-friend’s girlfriend and then they break up, etc.
Except this one: What if you cannot stand your guy-friend’s girlfriend, but she wants to be friends with you?
Someone I know recently encountered this problem. Her husband’s BFF has started dating a girl that my pal doesn’t particularly like. They’ve gone on some couple dates, because that’s what you do when you’re married. But now the unpleasant girlfriend in question wants to start hanging out with my friend, solo. Just the two of them. And my friend, who shall remain nameless (but isn’t me, I swear), doesn’t know what to do.
Well, here’s what she did do: She accepted the invitation because she’s a nice person and how do you say “No thanks, I don’t want to hang out with you” anyway? It’s not easy.
Now my friend is understandably conflicted. This is not an independent friendship she wants to pursue. But it’s not like she can just quietly fade away, letting the next batch of phone calls and emails go unanswered. Besides the fact that perhaps it’s rude to passive-aggressively stop responding, this is someone my pal is going to continue to encounter. The men will be in each others’ lives forever.
I’ve been thinking about what I’d do in this situation, and I think I’d probably continue accepting the invitations when they are offered, but not extend any invites of my own. If it was my husband’s best friend, I know it would be important to him that I not screw up the relationship.
This brings up the bigger question of what to do when someone is pursuing a friendship and you are just not that into her. There have definitely been some potential BFFs—or should I say, people I thought were potential BFFs—who straight-up disappeared on me. And I was ok with that. We weren’t friends, so there was no big breakup speech necessary. I know some of you might think it was rude of them, but I preferred that to a big production email, or even a small one. I think hearing “I’m too busy for new friends” would have been tougher on the ego than radio silence.
As for the other way around, when people I’ve just met pursue a friendship I’m not interested in… Well, I usually just go with it. Women, I have found, are pretty good at recognizing when a friendship isn’t meant to be. Most of the time, if I’m not into it, neither is she.
Input, please? What should my pal do about the friend’s girlfriend she doesn’t want to befriend? And what do you do when you’re not into a new friendship? Not someone you’d need to break up with, just someone you’ve recently met?