My BFF has been in a lesbian relationship (her first) for about 11 months now. Her GF (let’s call her M) was in a five-year domestic partnership with another woman before cheating on her ex with my bff. The very day after she officially broke up with her long-term partner, M was sleeping in my friend’s bed and saying she was the love of her life.
I am worried about their relationship and think they moved way too fast. About two weeks after dumping her ex, M and my friend were making plans for M to fly across the world to meet my friend’s family (which she did about a month later). They can’t be apart for even a few days without crying and complaining and having hours of Skype chats and long emails about how tortuous the time apart is. My bff has since brought her home to her family’s house on every vacation they’ve had since and expects her family and friends to spend time with them together instead of wanting (naturally) to spend time with her alone.
My friend moved in with M (after only two months together) and is completely emotionally and financially codependent on her. They have already talked about marriage. They not only live together, but also work together, so they literally spend 24 hours a day together. They have no non-mutual friends or hobbies that they pursue on a regular basis without each other. They are both obsessive about the relationship and my friend seems to have forgotten how to be herself. I want to tell my friend to slow down, because I think M has proven to be an emotional cheater, a liar, and a coward, and I don’t want my friend to end up in the same boat as M’s ex. I want my best friend — as an individual — back. PLEASE HELP!
Anna says: Oh girl. Let’s get the bad news out of the way first: This is your friend’s life and relationship. Ergo, there’s not a darn thing you can do about the decisions she makes and who she chooses to spend her time with. People in love do all kinds of crazy things — they move in after two months; they take extravagant cross-country trips; they ignore their besties and then complain about the “dreadful hours” spent apart from their beloveds. Your words and concerns aren’t going to convince your friend that her partner is an “emotional cheater, a liar, and a coward.” In fact, such an intervention will probably have the opposite effect and only alienate your friend from you further. So, don’t try. If M proves to be any of these less-than-flattering attributes, then your friend will figure that out on her own. I know it can be insanely difficult to watch a friend catapult herself into a relationship with someone you’re not wild about, but in the end, people are gonna do what they wanna do. Sometimes getting out of the way and hoping like hell for the best is the only option.
The good news is she’s been with M for 11 months now, which is a pretty long honeymoon phase by most people’s standards, meaning she’ll probably be snapping back to reality soon. You will get your friend back, slowly, in pieces and snip-snatches most likely, when she gets tired of spending every waking minute with her girlfriend, or when they have a fight and she needs advice, or some such thing.
The other good news is that you can and should talk to her about your friendship (the one between you and her that leaves M out of it). Tell her that you miss having one-on-one time with her and schedule an outing with just the two of you. As her friend, you are also allowed to express your concerns (and suggest she go to Surf Camp or some other hobby that doesn’t involve M), but once you’ve done so, you’ll have to let whatever happens happens, even if it’s not what you would do in her situation.
You want your friend to be happy, I imagine? If M makes her happy, then wish her the best. If M turns out to be a jerkmonster, then be there for your friend if it happens. If it’s making you batty to be around your friend and M right now, then take some time apart from them. Take a honeymoon with yourself — it’s fruitless and exhausting to get so worked up over a situation that doesn’t involve you. Might I suggest Surf Camp?
Hailing from the rough-and-tumble deserts of southern Arizona, where one doesn’t have to bother with such trivialities as “coats” or “daylight savings time,” Anna Pulley is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. Find her at annapulley.com and on Twitter @annapulley. Send her your Hook Up questions at email@example.com.