Everyone is guilty of it. You’ve probably done it before, too. No one really talks about it with you but everyone knows it. They’ve probably done it themselves. You’ve been a jerk to your friends when you got a new boyfriend. Yep. Told ya. You are over the moon in love with a new guy and all of a sudden, it seems, you forget all about your friends. You might be thinking about it now and saying to yourself: “No, that’s not me. I’ve never been a bad friend ever!” And you might be right. But probably not. Instead, it’s likely that you were unaware of how your new relationship was affecting not one, not two, but many of your friendships. And it’s not like your friends will hate you or anything (probably) but no one wants to be that person… Just think of how you would feel if one of your nearest and dearest did it to you!
15 You’re MIA all the time
It’s quite common that when you find a new partner in crime, the amount of time you see your friends decreases a little bit. It’s the trade off you have to make in order to get to know that special person one on one. You probably can’t go out all weekend, every weekend with the girls to the local pub or club and shake your tail feather until the sun comes up. Your new man probably is going to want you at least one, if not two, of your fully open weekend nights. But what you sometimes miss is that when those occasional weekends spent together in dream land turn into fully-fledged-you’re-entirely-inaccessible-even-by-phone-and-no-one-knows-where-you-are-except-for-your-Facebook-updates. Your friends text you to come out… they know you are with the boy-toy so you are probably going to say no but they invite you anyway to cast out their fishing line and try to initiate contact… and they get no response. You have officially ditched your friends and disappeared. Congrats.
14 You choose your s/o’s friends over yours
In a perfect world, your boyfriend's friends would get along with your friends and all of the friends would come together peacefully and hang out all the time and it would be a happy little friends zone for all. But generally life doesn’t go that way. And there will be times when you go to his best friend's birthday with him and there will be times where you drag him to your friend's birthday party and it’s all good. Until it’s not. Until there are two conflicting events and you know he really, really, really, REALLY wants to go to his and you want to make him happy so you ignore your friend, Lucy, who you’ve been friends with since you were both in diapers and you text her to break the news and she’s devastated. Chances are, you could make it up to her with drinks or dinner, but that would take away from your snuggle time with the boyfriend… so it probably won’t happen.
13 You put your mutual friends in the middle of your fights
There’s this boy that you’ve been crushing on since you were ten years old. And you grew up together; played hockey together, and saw movies you were too young to see together, along with your friend group. Many a time you will end up together with a longtime friend, and it will be perfect because you already share friends and no one has to choose anything. But then you have your first fight, and then your second, and then your third. And you talk to your best girlfriend about it because she’s always there for you and you just really need to hear someone nag with you about what a jerk he’s being. The problem with that? She’s his friend, too. And you’ve gone and put her in an awkward spot because she’s not giving you what you need and now you’ve told her things that she never wanted to know about her male friend. Making her, or even asking her to choose sides is a big no-no.
12 You are “not allowed” to hang out with a specific friend without them
It’s possible that your partner doesn’t “hate” your friend as much as you were afraid, but he does have some issues with them. Maybe it’s that girlfriend that really doesn’t like him and is suspicious of him, for whatever reason, and he just doesn’t want you spending all your free time having your mind polluted by her “lies”. More often than not though, he doesn’t like your friend Bobby. Even though you and Bobby used to play hide and seek in diapers and you shared a room at sleepovers and a cubby in Kindergarten. He doesn’t like the way that Bobby looks at you. Maybe he has major trust issues or maybe Bobby does have some feelings brewing. Either way, he decides, and enforces, that you are not allowed to see Bobby unless you bring him along. It’s not even that he doesn’t want you alone with him. He just needs to be there… which makes the surprise party for Bobby really tough because you guys can only have a group of 8 and now you have to decide if you aren’t going to go, or if you are going to ask another friend to ditch so you can bring along your date. Lousy friend alert.
11 You drop your friends altogether
Sometimes, it’s not all fun and games in the friend zone. Sometimes, your friends don’t like your boyfriend, because he rubs them the wrong way, and sometimes, your man candy just can’t stand your friend Janet. And yes, some friendships do suffer a bit while people try to sort out spending time with all involved parties. But at times, decisions need to be made (you are convinced they need to be made; they do not actually have to be made) and you find yourself messaging Janet and telling her that you can’t be friends with her anymore because the love of your life has a big problem with her. Your partner should never dictate your friends. They are allowed to not like them and they are allowed to tell you that they do not want to come out if said friend is there… But they are not allowed to tell you to drop your friends. More importantly, you are a bad friend because you listened and made that call.
10 You Refuse to go somewhere if you can’t bring your bf
When in relationships, there is a bit of an unspoken code of ethics. If y’all are going out in a group, the invitation is automatically extended to your significant other. No problem, right? But then there will be times where your friends who don’t necessarily get along with him will ask you for some you time without him. And if they go about it the right way, it should be perfectly fine. He definitely has friends he can go play catch up with. But it makes you mad. It doesn’t make sense that he would come to a thing, for a friend he doesn’t know, that is mostly girls, or even a Bachelorette party… But you want him there… and it makes you mad when they tell you no. Sometimes, you are probably the one being unreasonable. Call it being blinded by love or call it obsession, you are both more than entitled to your own personal space and free time.
9 You Ditch your friends for your s/o
You’ve had these plans to go away for girls weekend for like 6 months. Everyone is super excited for your annual trip and your friends have started to coordinate with you online to ensure everything is good. But then your boyfriend springs on you that he has tickets to a show that you kind of want to see that weekend. So you message the girls and tell them you might not be able to go, just to feel out the waters. Of course, everything goes crazy. They remind you about how you ditched Halloween plans last minute because he wasn’t feeling well and how you didn’t go to the annual Christmas potluck, because he needed a date to his work party. The funny thing is: you aren’t dying to go to this show but now that they’ve gone off on you a bit, you decide that they are out of line and you are just going to go to the show after all. That brand new bikini and fun summer drinking game can wait for another time.
8 You Bring your partner EVERYWHERE
Code or no code, there will be times that it’s cool to bring along a date, and times where it’s unspoken and preferred that your date gets benched for this event. And it has nothing to do with how your friends feel about your boyfriend. Think of the film, Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants… the four of them had a special bond, and no amount of boyfriends, hook-ups, or bad life experiences came between them, as it shouldn’t. You get invited out for girls night to have martinis? Probably not ideal for you to beg them to let you bring him along. Think about it this way: his dude-bros probably wouldn’t appreciate if you came to every boys night out for wings and hockey, regardless of how cool they think you are. Sometimes members of the opposite sex screw up the vibe or conversation dynamic. Better to accept it and leave him at home sometimes or you risk being that obsessed clingy girlfriend who can’t have friends without him. Not worth it.
7 You ask to bring them everywhere (and give attitude if the answer is no)
Most of the time, asking doesn’t make you a crappy friend. It’s when you get the answer you don’t want. It’s that one time they do tell you no and you flip your lid and go off on them. Just because they are single and lonely doesn’t mean that you should have to be too. They’re just jealous, right? Wrong! You have officially boarded the crazy train heading for looneyville. Ask, knowing you’ll hear a yes in 85% of cases and accept the 15% where it’s just not acceptable to have him glued to your arm. And just explain it to him that way, if he gives you grief. There’s a time and a place for everything, except being a crappy friend.
6 You Have “a curfew”
You moved out of your parents place a long time ago. You love your independence, you love making what you want to eat, not wearing a bra, and you love not having to answer to anyone. And then things get serious. You and your boyfriend decide to move in together, and you couldn’t be more excited. For one, rent just got a whole lot cheaper, but it also indicates that your relationship is heading in the direction that you want it to be heading in. But then his inner control freak steps in, or maybe yours did first. So now, you are both allowed to go out and do your own things with your own friends, but you have to be back at home by 2:15am SHARP on the weekend and midnight during the week. And explaining that to your friends can be a pain in the butt. It’s hard to tell your friend Shannon who is having a rough time with her recent break-up that you can’t go back and talk to her after the bar because you have a strict curfew to abide to.
5 You Can't go on girls' nights anymore
You may have bailed on a nights out and birthday parties. You may have chosen his friends or family over your own, but you are maintaining your independence and doing your best to meet friends for drinks, dinner, or coffee now and then. The one problem? You’ve entirely stopped going to girls' night. You know that one Friday a month, sometimes every two, where you and the girls get dolled up and paint the town red. Everyone needs to blow off steam, feel pretty and have an amazing night out, not to mention a little time to b*tch about your significant other, because no one’s perfect. That one Friday a month is just so inconvenient and you really wanted to spend it with him and now you’ve missed three in a row and have this silly, false idea that you just can’t go now, ever. So you don’t go… you’ve officially ostracized yourself from your friend group, all because a few Fridays didn’t work out.
4 You Have to ask permission before you do anything
Remember “the good old days”? The days when you were young and wild and free. You ate what you wanted, and you ran around and scraped up your knees and never got tired, and you never gained any weight. You didn’t have a job, or bills, or any complicated relationships other than saying “I love you” to your parents, and occasionally, your sister, Beth, who you sort of dislike, but blood is thicker than water so… Now you’re all grown up and in the real world with a real job… and you’ve found love. You are crazy about him. But instead of just going out with your girlfriends whenever you want to grab food or go for a road trip or just a long drive, now you have to make sure it’s okay. You don’t want him to get mad at you over something silly, do you? So you call and check in from time to time. And instead of being spontaneous, you now have to ask before every YOLO moment happens. Sort of kills the mood doesn’t it? And it makes you a bit of a lousy friend.
3 Your loyalties change
It’s important to stick together with your girls, because they got your back. Though all the bad relationships, awful fashion decisions, mediocre haircuts and horrible jobs, they have been there. And now that you’ve found someone you are crazy about, they are so very happy for you. But life isn’t perfect and sometimes things do happen. It might be drunken nonsense and it might be an accident, but things happen. Maybe your boyfriend said something a little insensitive to your bff and now she wants to crucify him. You know it was stupid and you understand why she’s upset, but you don’t want to call him out. You want Mr. Perfect to still be Mr. Perfect so you leave with him, without an explanation to your friend and you never make a point to tell him he was out of line. You don’t have to choose her over him, but it is your job to make sure your boyfriend knows when he’s said something that has personally hurt your friend. This is one battle you shouldn’t have taken his side in.
2 You can’t do specific things because of “obligations”
Obligations are a tough thing to handle in some relationships. Like, if you won a trip to Cuba and really wanted to bring your best friend because you always talked about going together, and it makes the most sense, but then you think about your boyfriend, and figure you HAVE to bring him. Or when your friends text you excited because the new installment of your favorite movie franchise hit the theaters and you have seen literally every other film with them, but you tell them you can’t keep the tradition alive because he really wants to see the film, too. And you don’t even bother messaging him to ask because you are positive that you are doing the right thing. Obligation, in most cases, trumps tradition and that’s sad. Traditions, as silly as they are, should be upheld, especially when you enjoy doing them. Your obligation means you bring him to your sisters wedding as your date. Your choice is what makes you a crappy friend.
1 You don't believe your friends when they tell you not to trust him
Everyone is looking for Mr. Right. And sometimes, on the way to finding him, you date a lot of Mr. Wrongs. Sometimes, your knight in shining armour is just a d-bag wrapped in tin foil. Sometimes, it’s too good to be true and your friends tell you something’s up and you just ignore them. Or worse. You go off at them. You call them jealous, bad friends, you accuse them of not wanting you to be happy. And then they do what a good friend should do: they give you proof. They have a Tinder conversation between your boyfriend and this girl… they show you. You tell them it’s fake. They show you a photo of him pushing a girl’s hair back out of her face at the bar… You tell them it’s doctored… they show you a video of him dancing with and kissing someone and you storm off deciding that there is no way the man of your dreams is doing this to you. These friends you’ve had your whole life must be out to get you… Nope, you’re just crazy, and a crappy friend.