Anyone who says men and women can’t be friends has just never had the good fortune to experience a genuinely platonic relationship with a member of the opposite sex. As someone with a close guy friend, let me be the one to tell you, it is possible. That means there’s hope that your boyfriend and his female bestie aren’t necessarily harboring serious feelings for each other. They might just enjoy each other’s company, and therefore there’s no reason for you to automatically default to suspicion of her intentions. Besides, this is the perfect example of a time when you need to keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer.
Ask him about their history.
He should be able to tell you how long they’ve been friends, if they’ve ever hooked up, and how/why it never worked out for them as more than friends. Make it clear that you’ll be more comfortable with her if you know the facts. He should be able to give you that.
Find out if you have anything in common with her.
It will be a lot easier to strike up a conversation with her if you know she’s just as addicted to Master Chef and red lipstick as you are. Your boyfriend should want you two to get along, so he should be able to suggest a conversation starter or two.
Make an effort to talk to her during group hangs.
It’s easy to ignore some people when you’re hanging out in a group, but if you make a conscious effort to touch base with her, she’ll remember that. She’s probably experienced plenty of girls who are threatened by her presence before, so try to break the mold.
Enlist her help.
Ask her if she’ll help you get the next round of drinks. Mention you’re kind of stuck on what to get your guy for his birthday. Acknowledge that she might actually know him better than you do at this point, but you’re totally fine with that. If she’s genuine in her attempts to help you get to know your guy better, you’ll know she’s not secretly plotting to steal him away from you.
Don’t bad mouth her to your friends.
There’s a pretty good chance your friends and his friends will cross paths at some point, and you don’t want your friends glaring at her like she’s an evil temptress. Your friends will take their cues on dealing with her from you, so don’t give them a reason to hate her.
Invite her to hang out one on one.
You don’t want to base your entire opinion of her on what your guy tells you. Getting to know someone for real is all about spending quality time one on one. See if she’s up for brunch, or just a coffee, every once in awhile. Just keep it casual, and spur of the moment so it feels as natural as possible.
Be yourself around her.
Don’t try to be someone you aren’t just to impress her. You aren’t obligated to be best friends, so if you don’t end up clicking, that’s okay. The only way you’ll know if you could be friends is if you’re honest. Maybe the only thing you have in common is your binge TV watching tendencies. Netflix preferences can bring together even the most opposite of opposites.
Don’t let your paranoia show.
It’s only natural for jealousy to rear its ugly head every once in a while. But remember to stay logical. Don’t ever accuse either one of them of anything, because if you’re wrong, the only one that will end up looking bad is you.
Hold your boyfriend accountable.
You may be fine with him hanging out with her, but that doesn’t mean he should spend all his free time with her. He has your trust, and it’s his responsibility to keep it. Make sure he’s still putting you first, and ensuring you’re comfortable with his relationship with her. It doesn’t have to be a problem, unless he makes it one.
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