We have a group of close friends, all boys. One of our friend’s girlfriend tries to manipulate and control him. She has brought about a lot of changes in his behaviour. He often disrespects or causes hurt to our sentiments. The girl often tries to defame us in our friend’s view. Day by day our friend is getting away from us.
Omkar & friends / Ahmednagar
You’re hurt and angry with your friend’s behaviour and fear losing him. Yet, the reality is that ‘other halves’ will enter all your lives sometime. Whether they become the ‘better’ or ‘bitter’ half is up to you.
So, come to the same side as your friend: Tell him you are happy that he has someone special in his life; that you know that he is torn between friends and her. Express your hurt when he disrespects you. Share that as a group your goal is to balance your personal lives and still keep the bond you share as a group. Discuss three scenarios: how/when you will a) spend time alone as a group; b) spend time away from the group (alone with a girlfriend) and c) include girlfriends in group activities. The end goal: your friendship remains intact.
Finally, get to know his girlfriend. Acknowledge her importance in his life. Reassure her that while he is free to spend time with her, it would be nice if he spent some time with his friends too, and that you all will include her in the group sometimes.
To balance group bonds with personal ones, it is necessary to be accepting and have open communication. Only then can there be harmony.
Nasreen Hashambhoy is a Counsellor, Life Coach and a Facilitator of training programmes for schools and corporates. Through a combination of coaching, counselling and facilitation techniques based on cognitive science and positive psychology, she helps clients achieve their true potential. She is the author of the series Values In Action published by Better Yourself Books.