Post # 1
Back ground story, I’ve been best friends with this guy since I was 7 years old. We were childhood sweethearts and our families were very close. When we were around 14 or so we were going to start dating but had a falling out and didn’t speak for almost a year. He then started dating an older girl and has been with her ever since. They have been together for 9 years now and I’m worried as to where it’s headed. Like I said we are best friends and I’m very close with his family. His mother and I go to lunch about once every two months just to chat and catch up and he and I do dinner about once every two weeks just to stay up to date on each other’s big events.
Last year when my engagement ended his family sought out my dad telling him to tell me to get this guy away from his gf. They said he just wasn’t happy and that he deserved better. They also said that they wanted me and him to be together but that’s not really how I wanted to enter into a relationship. Now don’t get me wrong I really like the gf! She’s sweet and cute as can be but I can really see what the family sees too. Every time we have dinner I ask him if he’s happy and he says he is however I can see in his face that he isn’t. We are both from the South so outdoorsy stuff is in our blood and one night at dinner I asked him the usual about the gf and he said everything was good then I got him on the subject of hunting and a certain property and his face just lit up! He was so passionate about this land and everything about it. His enthusiasm just oozed from his body. I stopped him right there and said this is how you should talk about gf! I want you to find someone that you are that passionate about and who lights up your face like that!
Now his families worry is that he will end up marrying the girl just because he’s been with her for so long and feels obligated to do it now. I don’t want that for him and I’ve told him, it’s okay to end it even though it’s been a long relationship. I also told him that by staying in it’s not only unfair to him, but it’s also not fair to her. She deserves to be with someone that loves her and wants to marry her. He has told her, me, his family that he doesn’t want to get married till he’s at least 30 and settled. (Also sidebar: He and I made a deal last year after my rough summer that if neither of us are married by 30 we will marry each other, coincidence? Haha! Beside the point but still funny.) She’s even offered to move back to the city we all are from to be with him but he tells her that she would be crazy to leave her current job. He was also offered a job up where she is and didn’t take it because he doesn’t want to leave where we’re from. I told him that I will support him no matter what he decides to do although it would be hard. I care for him more than anything and I just want him to be happy.
Soooo my question is, should I tell him that his family doesn’t want to see him marry her just because he feels obligated to or should I just continue my friendly nudges and hope he makes the right decision?
This almost feels like a Pam and Jim from The Office situation but in reverse rolls…
Post # 3
I would talk to him and tell him YOU are worried about him marrying her over obligation. You guys have been friends forever, I doubt he woudl be less than honest with you. Just have a very frank discussion with him, tell him your feelings and worries, but leave his family out of it. Hopefully he will then talk with his family after his talk with you, and they can then tell him that they agree.
The only reason i say it that way is because he might feel like his family asked you to talk to him, not that this is where you are coming from as well.
Post # 4
It will NEVER end well when you tell a close friend that they shouldn’t be with the person they are with. Honestly. It won’t. It’s something you need to suck up and let them figure out on their own, IMO. Unless the other person is cheating, etc., there isn’t much you can say.
Post # 5
- Wedding: September 2013 - Old Stone House in Brookyn
In response to the title question: ONLY if there is a serious problem (their SO is abusive, cheating, drug problem, etc.)
Do you want to be with him? That is a totally different issue than whether or not his gf is “right” for him.
Post # 6
I’ve kind of learned from experience that people are going to do what they want to do. My sister has been in an unhappy relationship for 3 years and no matter how much i support her or try and persuade her to leave she won’t until she is ready. The difference between these two is that my sister constantly calls and vents about her issues in her relationship – it’s no secret she isn’t happy.
I think you should tell him how YOU feel and let the family speak for themselves. It doesnt hurt to tell him what you think but don’t expect him to make the moves to change it. I started out sympathizing with my sister and trying to make her feel better about her situation and to find happiness in it but its gotten to the point where i have to be blunt about it and tell her whats up and she STILL doesnt make any changes.
i may be completely wrong here but I get the feeling that you kind of like him? if he were to leave this relationship do you have intentions of starting something with him?
Post # 7
@jeangenie: NO way! He and I are strictly friends! I’m currently talking to someone that he encouraged I get to know so no, best friend is just a best friend.
Post # 8
I think my general philosophy is, who am I to say my friend is with the wrong person? You can never really know someone’s relationship from the outside. Now, it would be different if I felt my friend was deeply unhappy, and/or their SO was treating them very badly.
From my read of this situation, it doesn’t sound like there’s anything like this here. Maybe he’s a little “eh” about her, like the spark isn’t quite there as much, but it’s been 9 years! ALL relationships are bound to move to the “comfortable” stage by that point.
Post # 9
@totheislnds: Oh I love him to death but he and I aren’t really on the same page relationship wise. I don’t know that we would ever work out in the real world. Back when we were 7 and 8 yeah I would have married him in a heart beat but now that we’re adults I just see him as a friend. My family and his both wish it was different but we aren’t really each others types. Sucks for me because he’s a great guy though!
Post # 10
I would only intervene in the case of abuse or another threatening situation, and even then I’d know it’d be unlikely to be well recieved.
I agree with previous posters saying that you need to let his family speak for themselves, and only speak if you personally feel the need. As close friends, you might be able to do it in a way that wouldn’t cause too much trouble. The family honestly shouldn’t be trying to get you to fix this situation. If they have serious concerns about the girl or the relationship, they should address them.
It also seems like you have an actual dog in this fight, as in you’d like to be with him. If that’s the case, and you still want to talk to him about this, you may as well come clean about that as well – because that could be influencing your perception of his current relationship.
Post # 11
@pec1216: That makes sense. i was going to say life is too short and if you like him tell him! haha
Post # 12
If he asks your opinion of the girl you can be honest and tactfully mention certain concerns but I dont think you can just come out and say you dont think she is right for him.. he will only get defensive and push you away unless you have some very concrete reason
Post # 13
He’s been with the girl for 9 years…I think he can make the decision of whether or not she’s right for him. I would butt out.
Post # 14
You should stay out of it. Be there if he wants to talk, but stop butting in his relationship.
My best friend did this a few years ago, and her and I haven’t spoken since.
Post # 15
I don’t think you should get involved in his relationship. It sounds like there are some romantic feelings here on either side, and I think saying something to him will make it seem as if you’re trying to break them up so that you can get together with him. I see all sorts of bad with this. If his family wants to say something to him, let them do it themselves.
Post # 16
This never ends well.
I had a really close friend that I loved very much. We met when we were 13 and had been friends for 10 years. Her husband was a jerk who cheated on her every chance he got. I told her what I thought and she hasn’t spoken to me since. That was 4 years ago and I miss her terribly.
I’m not saying that wil be his reaction, but you never know. Plus telling him that his family doesn’t want them to get married, well it makes his family look like they are talking behind his back.
If he tells his gf all these things, she will probably hate you and might even try to get him to cut off communication with you.
I would really just stay out of it if I were you.