Just thinking about romance, it’s easy to envision long strolls, flirtatious phone calls and all the couples’ sorts of things. Deciding how a romantic partner impacts your other relationships is easily overlooked until it’s too late.
Emily and Rebecca had been friends since they met in elementary school. They played together as girls, experimented with makeup and various hobbies as pre-teens and enjoyed a friendly competition in school, seeing who could score highest on tests. They were part of a larger group of girl friends, and lived down the street from each other. Most days you could find them at one or the other’s house. Their friends knew them as “the dynamic duo” – always planning something as a twosome or for the group.
One is a Lonely Number
When Emily started dating Jeff, suddenly, everything changed. Emily spent most of her time with Jeff, leaving little time to be with Rebecca or the rest of the group. When she did manage to squeeze them into her schedule, Emily constantly talked about her boyfriend. Emily isolated herself from the group, leaving a huge void in Rebecca’s life. Rebecca understood that when you become a couple it leaves less time for other friends, but she felt abandoned by Emily.
As Emily went from one boyfriend to another, the pattern continued. It didn’t take long for Rebecca and the group to grow tired of being second choice friends. Emily was so in love with being in love, she didn’t seem to notice that she was no longer part of the group.
Romantic relationships are special. Putting your romantic partner first is fine, but if it means abandoning your friends, you should think hard about whether this is what you really want to happen. It’s a balancing act, for sure. The key is to be intentional. Think about it – we all make time for the people and things we want in our lives.