Sunday, December 11, 2011

Friends With Boundaries

Even though I've always found males easier to connect with than females, I personally am not a fan of people in relationships having an onslaught of friends of the opposite gender. By "onslaught" I mean more than one. By "friends" I mean nosey people you've known awhile who mean you nor your relationship any good. I don't dispute that adults of the opposite gender are a very valuable asset. They help us to see things from our mates' perspectives. I can be ready to call it quits, swear that I'm completely right (which I always am), lay out the whole issue to my male friend, and see things in a whole different light. (I often contemplate firing him because of this). The thing about this friend is that he's objective. He'll wait until after he's helped me work the problem out before judging me and telling me why I was wrong. (Did I mention he's delusional?). He won't place judgement upon the man in question at all, because he doesn't know him. This works well, because his motives don't include tearing anyone down, assaulting anyone's character, or trying to end anyone's relationship. That is a true friend.

Unfortunately everyone you call your "friend" doesn't have these intentions .And sometimes there are people who have good intentions but don't know their boundaries. People like Yandy from "Love and Hip Hop" fit this description. Every week the drama on my guilty pleasure for this season is fueled by her not adhering to her role and shutting her mouth. Your friends have to know when it's appropriate to comment and when it's time to let the happy couple duke it out on their own. Your friends may think they have your best interest in mind when they step in the middle of certain situations. It's nice to have someone on your team who has your back at all times. You have to look at the bigger picture, though. What does letting other people interfere with or insist their input on your relationship say about your situation? It says that you aren't adult enough to confront your own issues. It says that your relationship isn't sacred. It suggests that the one person you're with isn't enough for you. It suggests that person isn't satisfying you, so you keep these people around out of either resentment or fear that your wrongs will come to light. What people who don't set boundaries fail to realize is that if a mature person truly loves you they won't want you to look bad to others. You are a reflection of them. Any and all issues will be handled where no one can see or hear what is happening between you and your significant other.

In a past relationship the biggest issue we had was his female friends overstepping their boundaries. I can always appreciate that they wanted to protect their friend. He was new to the wonderful world of dating. To them his naivete and innocence were fragile. What I will never, ever be able to accept is the way they attacked me any chance they got without knowing the whole story. I'll admit that I do have the tendency to overreact. There were times, though, when I felt like he knew I wasn't going to divulge the root of the problem to a public audience, so he put on an act of innocence so that his friends would come to his rescue.
When two people are in a relationship their friends are on the outside looking in. No matter how many details their friend has recounted to them, they're still on the outside of that bond. Somebody forgot to tell these chicks this when they attacked me for the way I spoke to him. Even though they never knew why I was upset with him they called me evil, told him to keep doing whatever it was he was doing. They even had the audacity to tell them he did nothing wrong. I never divulged the entire situation when one did arise; my feelings for him never wanted him to be seen in a bad light. Because he was content with having an entire orgy of opinions dictating our relationship I was attacked constantly. There were tweets on Twitter, Facebook comments and inbox messages telling me how to behave for my man, and there were even e-mails to my professional e-mail address giving me unsolicited opinions on how I could treat him better. I spent the majority of that relationship being the villain. At first I didn't care, but after awhile it came to the point where I wondered who were all these people, why were they in my relationship, and when did I get to be in a relationship with the person I signed up to be in one with?

Then there were the friends whose favorite word was "insecure." Those of you who have followed my writing this year know how much I hate the abuse the definition of this word has undergone since the hoodrats learned it. Being upset with a female for asking your mate about what he did to you in the bedroom doesn't make you insecure. It makes you a self-respecting human being. I don't care who you are or how long you've been friends with a person. There are certain things you should filter your mouth against saying/ fingers against typing when you know your friend is in a relationship. Things like "come eat me" should never, ever be said, even in a joke. The girlfriend is not evil for getting mad about this. Seeing things posted on Facebook about your sex life, what positions you and your partner tried, and anything that went on behind closed doors with the clothes off warrant anger. The anger reaction doesn't deserve an attack from the female friends. That's a big boundary that shouldn't be crossed: the sexual one. These people are your friends. They claim they've always been there and are always going to be there. Why, then, do they need to be messy and slutty?

In a different past relationship, I always found myself fighting his friends and family. He would do something to make me mad, and his whole family would attack me for being mad before I could even say anything to him about it. There was an incident where he left me in his house with his children, took my car, and took his children's mother somewhere for hours. He never even told me where he was going or who he was going with. Whether or not I had "the right" to get mad is up for debate. Before I could think about which aspect of this I was more upset about, his whole family attacked me. They called me a stuck up bitch. They told me how wrong I was and how nothing good was going to happen to me because I was so selfish. This attack, launched by his mother, was one of many. I remember feeling so lonely, standing with my back against the wall, wondering when the verbal attacks were going to turn physical. The feeling I felt when I looked over to the side and saw him watching me being dealt with so that he didn't have to feel my wrath is one of the lowest feelings I've ever experienced. The absence of boundaries caused our relationship to disintegrate.

Being with someone, spending time with them, and trying to see if you are the two that are supposed to become one is difficult enough with just two people involved. That is why there should be a wall up that separates these two from the rest of the world. It's cool to take advice. I've learned that letting everyone in only adds confusion. Keep your friends out of it. Intentions are always super-ceded by perceptions. It doesn't look good to have a flock of people hovering over your romantic rendezvous.  Save the intimate details of what goes on between you and your loved one for your memories, GOD, and blog posts, in the even your relationship fails.

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