Do I give him a second chance?Aug 31, 2023
My first response to this question was this.
You get to decide how you live your life, who you date, what you do, where you go and how you show up. As long as you’re not hurting anybody, your life is yours to live and it’s frankly, nobody else's business.
I’ve been both the friend who disliked her friend’s boyfriend and I’ve had a girlfriend that I know my friends disliked. So there’s more to excavate here.
Let’s dive in shall we.
I’m going to make a wild presumption that your friends are excellent humans who want the very best for you. They probably know you quite well and have seen you through your fair share of dating experiences. So we can’t discount their warnings and just carry on our merry way without a backward glance at their worried faces.
I had a girlfriend once whom none of my friends liked. On some level I knew it but when you’re tits deep in oxytocin it’s easy to ignore the low lying tension.
None of my friends told me directly “Hey, we hate her and think you’d be better off alone, leave her immediately, we can't stand her.”
Why did they not say anything you may ask? I have pondered this myself and even tentatively prodded my friends for an answer and where we’ve all landed is this.
Just because they didn’t love her, didn’t mean I couldn't.
She wasn’t a bad person. I wasn’t in any danger. There was no discernible change in my character. I wasn’t being played.
And either our relationship was going to last and my friends would have to learn to love her, or the “can’t quite put my finger on it but I just don’t gel with her” reason they didn’t like her, would eventually manifest into the relationship ending. Which it did.
Had my friends explicitly pulled me to one side and said “dump her immediately” I would’ve asked the finest of all questions, why? What did they see that my loved up eyeballs couldn’t?
As someone who has been single for close to four years, I understand the temptation to overlook the shortcomings of the people we date. A man could walk into a bar wearing nothing but a red flag and I’d think “Great! He’s into fashion!”
Sometimes we need a loving tap on the shoulder from our bestest mates to pull back the blinkers and see what’s really going on.
Having said that it could be that your friends are simply overstepping their mark.
I have indeed been this friend more than once and voicing my opinion loudly and dare I say it, obnoxiously about the suitability of a new boyfriend dented more than one friendship. One autumn day, before I learnt my lesson, I was strolling down Southbank with my friend Rachel, crepe in hand, listening to her marriage woes. Just before Crown Casino I told her in no uncertain terms that she should divorce her husband. Immediately.
Rachel and her husband continued to work on their relationship, turned a massive corner and low and behold they’re now what we would call #relationshipgoals
I was wrong about him. Very wrong.
But in my weak defence, friends are where we go for a good old bitch session about our partners. Friends are a safe space to let loose the domestic frustration and irritation. I have learnt that most people tend to save the good bits about their partners for themselves and leave their friends with the ghostly impression of a manchild who can’t even remember to pick up loo roll on his way home. If all you do is bitch about your boyfriend to your friends they’ll have a very distorted opinion of him.
However it must be said that if they know him well and they still think he’s a twat, it cannot be ignored.
At the end of the day only you can decide whether to give your boyfriend one last chance. Although I will say that “one last chance” insinuates that our boy f*cked up. More than once.
If that’s the case can you blame your friends for stepping in?
What’s a friend to do when her bestie shows up cupping the fragments of her broken heart, only to saunter over to the very man who broke them for rounds 2, 3 and 4?
Does this fella deserve another chance?
I’ve worked with hundreds of women who for a myriad of reasons, find themselves disconnected from their personal power. Self worth is not something to be neglected. We live in a world that would have us believe that ageing is a sin, being thin is aspirational and being single is to be pitied. None of those things are true but the societal voices are loud. So self worth needs to be an intentional daily practice.
Whether you give this guy another chance or not, do the work to reconnect to your personal power. He’ll either love you even more for it or he’ll run for the hills. You’ll either love him more for it or you’ll run for the hills. Either way, you’ll be left with a better relationship with yourself.
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