We’ve all had to deal with this. You have a friend who is over the moon about their new relationship and they can’t wait to tell you about it. And why wouldn’t you be happy for them right? Well, that is until you meet their new boyfriend or girlfriend, only to find out that the new person in your friend’s life could very well be the biggest loser you have ever met. And by big loser, I mean isn’t a good person, is cheating on them, isn’t going to be around long, or things like that. Simply not liking who your friend is dating is not reason enough to say anything.
Despite your friend’s overwhelming optimism, you know you have to tell them the truth, yet you find yourself saying, “Yeah, I know, such a great catch!” So, what do you do in this case? Well, here are my top three tips for how to properly tell someone the person they are dating is not right for them.
Tip #1: Tell It Like It Is
The shortest distance between two points is a straight line, but sometimes taking the most direct route can be the hardest. The truth hurts, but then again so does seeing your friend go down the wrong path. So, how do you properly break it to your friend easy?
First you need to set the scene. Remember Jerry Maguire, where Jerry gets fired and his boss does it in public because he knows Jerry won’t make a scene–well, that’s a good start. Don’t let your friend know the truth at a time when they aren’t ready to hear it, like at work, over a quick call, or through a text. Make this one a personal trip to their house and sit them down like an adult. Bring it up casually after asking how things are going. Their excitement may throw you for a loop, but don’t be fazed. Break it to them fast and get right to the point.
Start off by saying something like, “He seems very nice but do you really think this is going to last? I mean, he lives in Australia and is only in town for two weeks.” Now, that may not be the most likely scenario but you need to point out the key factor as to why the person isn’t right. Is it distance? Is it that they are a liar and you’ve seen them with other people? Or is the person not treating your friend they way they should be? Don’t go down the laundry list of reasons off the bat, let it sink in. However, then again don’t hold back if they start to argue. Keep calm, start with the biggest reason, see if that works, and then start with other facts.
Tip #2: Point Out Faults When They Occur
I had a friend who was dating a guy who liked to flirt with other girls while we were all out. He would openly flirt and would disappear for 30 minutes at a time–and then we’d see him at the other end of the room chatting it up with another girl. When you see your friend’s boyfriend actively flirting with other girls and being a disrespectful loser, that’s the perfect time to tell her the guy has to go.
You don’t have to be mean about it. Instead, just inquire. Say something like, “Does Kenny know that girl? Why is he getting so close to her?” Or try something like this, “You know, you always seem to pay when we go out? You’re such a good girlfriend–I hope he spoils you too.” Knowing he does not, hopefully she’ll catch on
Tip #3: Find Out How Serious They Are
If there’s one thing a rude boyfriend or girlfriend does, it’s disappear without a trace. Most bad boyfriends and girlfriends tend to head out of town at their earliest convenience without a word, leaving–in this case–your dear friend drowning in a pool of tears. Highly, highly unmannerly. But if there’s one thing I’ve learned in life (kudos to my years as a professional wrestler), you have to bully a bully.
So, if you suspect the person your friend is dating is one of those types of people, ask them– in front of your friend–how serious the relationship is. Trust me, your friend will be beaming with excitement and their “special person” will be very uncomfortable, stumbling for an answer. Always hit with a question about “time”. Try something like, “Emily can’t stop talking about you so I assume we’ll be seeing you at the beach house in two months?” When you discuss a future event, it’s like kryptonite for a bad dater and they’ll begin to crumble.
It’s then that you need to point out to your friend, in a combination of tips one and two, that if that person was really serious, they would have answered right away and with enthusiasm.
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