25 August 2009

Meeting the friends

By: Jessica B.

When I was in college, I was dating a guy I thought was SO dreamy and when it came time, I introduced him to my friends, knowing they would love him too. Yeah, that didn’t happen. The guy and my friends didn’t get a long AT ALL. They thought he was arrogant and taking advantage of me and he thought they were rude.

It’s uncomfortable when your friends don’t like the guy you do because it puts you right in the middle. And it makes any situation where you’re all together insanely awkward.

And since I moved to Chicago, I haven’t introduced a guy to my friends here at all.

This is mostly because I haven’t found a guy I liked enough to introduce them to or he didn’t stay around long enough to get to that point.

Introducing a guy to your friends makes that relationship more “real” because you’re letting him meet people who know you SO well and are the closest to you, before family.

And on Saturday night after my birthday party, a small group of us went to a bar near my house and JohnBoy and a friend of his met up with us. And I had a moment walking into the bar when I was like, “holy crap I hope this goes well.” I mean, birthday weekend, lots of friends and we’ve consumed alcohol before meeting up? That could be a recipe for trouble.

And it went well! After a semi-whirlwind entrance (me and my friendly entourage) and a kiss hello, he was nice and shook everyone’s hand, listening to me tell him how I knew them and things they might have in common. Sure, late night at a bar is not the best place for this introduction but everyone was a great sport.

After introductions though, I had a moment where I had no idea how to act around him. I haven’t seen him in over two weeks due to vacation schedules and then while getting reacquainted a group of my friends are standing behind us, I felt a little uncomfortable, but that quickly passed.

I probably was an awful hostess, talking mostly to him and being a little awkward including him in conversations with my friends, but he seemed to hold his own and I think having his friend there definitely helped. And I didn’t get any post-bar calls saying “head for the hills!” so that’s a good sign.

Of course I also had nightmares of friends teasing me endlessly about it, bringing up painfully embarrassing stories (especially one from Halloween a few years ago) because I tortured them in front of guys/girls they liked too.

Fortunately, I was spared that (for now) but karma could be a real b*tch on that.

When do you usually introduce a guy to your friends? Or have you ever been in a situation where your friends don’t like your boyfriend/girlfriend and how have you handled it? It can be awkward.


  1. I had a dream to make my own commerce, nevertheless I didn’t earn enough amount of money to do it. Thank God my mate advised to utilize the loans. Hence I received the small business loan and made real my dream.

  2. how sad is it that due to my lack of dating history, I have nothing of value to add to this topic? VERY.

    oh well, but the best I got is do what makes you feel comfortable.

  3. I don’t think I ever had a boyfriend that I didn’t include right from the beginning.

    It’s easier that way. No awkward intros later.

  4. Lollygagger says:

    gah! i wish i could’ve met him. next time! :)

  5. Congrats on it going well. Not sure when I will be ready to make that step again. But I already knows the boy who is kind of in my life these days! =)

  6. katelin says:

    oh that’s exciting. yay for johnboy making it to the meet the friends stage. woo woo.

  7. Miss Grace says:

    I hate the friend intro. I have no answers, just thought I would chime in.

  8. Kate says:

    Oh god. The guy I dated prior to my husband I absolutely loved … and every friend who met him disliked him. Luckily I moved to Chicago before I really had to deal with the situation. ;)

  9. MinD says:

    I never thought of introducing a guy to my friends as a big deal – but it’s also helped that every guy I’ve dated as been a part of one of my social circles already. But over drinks, like you did it, makes for a more comfortable situation. When you’re more formally introduced, such as at dinner, there’s more chance of failure, I’d say. That environment, one set up specifically for introductions, makes things a bit heavy.

  10. Rebecca_C says:

    Yeah, yeah, yeah…but have you told him about the blog yet?!

  11. blaez says:

    sounds like JohnBoy is sticking around a bit! Good deal, lady!! That is awesome :)

    Ya know, the 1st time is always the most awkward, it gets better each time, I promise!!!

  12. Rebekah says:

    Meeting the friends was usually an indicator of how things would roll with the guy further down the road, and I actually looked forward to getting that input… probably because after so many rotten experiences with men I feel like I’m a crappy judge of character.

  13. samantha says:

    I usually introduce guys to my friends pretty early, mostly because I’m just to busy to stress about compartmentalizing. And it’s usually a good warning sign if I start to try and avoid bringing a dude around my friends. I’d really rather date someone who fits into my life.

    They’ve never disliked anyone badly enough to mention it/avoid him before, as far as I know, but there have been a few that have resulted in a stern talking to after we broke up. Which I deserved.

  14. Cass says:

    I haven’t had my friends not like one of my boyfriends but I’ve definitely been on the other end. I have one friend who was dating her now husband but I didn’t approve. Not that he was a bad guy but I thought he wasn’t good enough for her.

    We didn’t talk for almost 2 years because of it but in the end I just figured he’s gonna be part of her life, I better accept it. Now years down the line we can all hang out no problem.

  15. A Super Girl says:

    Glad it went well! And yes, my friends have basically hated everyone I’ve dated seriously, outside of the current boyfriend.
    They really are a good judge of character, though, because those exes of mine? WERE bad news :-)

  16. Nelle says:

    It almost feels like introducing a guy to friends is more nerve wrecking then introducing them to family. Then again, I have a pretty small family.

    But it is a big deal, so I totally empathize with your hesitation. I have to feel a really feel good vibe in my dynamic with a guy to want to involve him in my close friendships. And more often than not, I usually end up meeting his friends first. Maybe that’s subliminally my way of keeping them at an arm’s length until I feel more comfortable.

    Either way, so glad it went well with your intros :)!!

  17. SoMi's Nilsa says:

    For most of my dating years, I introduced guys to my friends pretty early on. I wanted to be very casual about it and not make a big deal (and I never did). Until I started dating Sweets. And refused to bring him around my friends for much longer than normal. Not sure why. But, when I did introduce him to my mix, it went well. Good thing, given he’s become a mainstay in my life. =)

    Glad things went well for you. And happy belated birthday … I’m finally catching up from my week away (and clearly I missed a lot while I was gone!).

  18. Angela says:

    Well you remember that baseball date that the goofy kid from Match took me to. With his three friends. SO AWKWARD! HATED IT!

    Alex hasn’t met my friends yet. But he will at the end of September when he comes to Pittsburgh!!!!!! I’m a little scared, but I think he’ll do okay.

    With my Ex, I met him WITH his friends and mine, so that wasn’t awkward at all. That was actually kind of a stroke of luck.

  19. Abby says:

    My high school sweetheart and I went to college together. Every friend I made there HATED him. It was awful until we broke up and then it was great. I have to admit – they were right about him.

    My closest friends actually met my now husband the same night I did. He came along with a mutual friend on a night out so we all hung out and at the end of the night he asked for my number. The rest is history. Thankfully, I never had that awkward meet my BFFs moment.

    Glad to hear it went well!

  20. Shannon says:

    Ugggh I hate those first meetings where I would worry if I was spending too much time with him vs. my friends and over-analyzing how each are treating each other. It doesn’t make for a very fun evening. But it sounds like yours went pretty darn well!

    I completely lucked out in the friend/dude dept. My BFF (and the rest of them) love my hub and I love hers/theirs too. Not to say there haven’t been many a doozy in the past, but for right now, we’ve got it good.

  21. Jackie says:

    I’m glad everyone got along. My boyfriend and best friend have never gotten along. Ever. Before it was awkward and I wasn’t able to hang out with my bff because of it. Then I realized that they were both being stupid and I told them that they need to get along for my sake. They’ve been trying. It hasn’t been easy, but we’re getting there.

  22. Andhari says:

    Ohhh big step for you!:) I’m happy everything works out well. I’m usually pretty casual about introducing guys to my friends, I’m more cautious about introducing them to my family.

  23. E.P. says:

    Meeting the friends is a big step. I’ve never had friends who hated a boyfriend of mine, though some admitted they weren’t too keen on one after he and I broke up.

    I’m glad to hear things went so well!

  24. Maki says:

    You’re so right about introducing your new guy to friends take some patience and guts…

    It would crush me if my friends didn’t like my man because I know I would treasure their opinions more than my opinion – if you can call them as your best friends, chances are, they know you more than you think you know with best intentions.

    I’m glad your friends like JohnBoy – it sounds like this relationship is only getting better!


    I did wish you a happy birthday on your birthday post – sorry for being so late…

  25. Ashley says:

    I think you handled the situation well. It probably really helped that JohnBoy got to bring a friend along. I honestly can’t remember how Colin met most of my friends, but he seems to get along with the majority of them really well so that’s nice for me.

    I’ve only met a few of Colin’s friends (only the ones that he sees on a semi-regular basis) but I like like them.

    We both get our own time with our friends as well so that helps. We can easily have his friends and my friends together and everyone gets along which is amazing.

  26. Caz says:

    Getting along with my friends has long been a key relationship requirement for me. I am an outgoing person with a HUGE social circle. You don’t need to love them and be besties within an hour, but you do need to be able to share a decent conversation, find common ground, and be willing to drink with them on farily regular occasions. Being ‘shy’ and me feeling like I have to drag someone into every conversation I have, or around the room with me when I flit from group to group has more than once been the undoing of potential relationships for me.

    This has lessened some post-college where I find myself hanging out with one or two groups of friends at a time, not a mass party with 500 people I need to talk to. AB and I have a healthy balance of us-friend time and individual-friend time. But I get along with his friends and he gets along with mine. Key requirement.

  27. April says:

    I don’t know, I think I did most intro’s like the one you did with JohnBoy – got the dude to meet us out at the bar. I mean, at least you have alcohol to facilitate the situation, eh?

    I’ve never had anyone actively dislike a serious boyfriend. They may have simply tolerated some Mr-Right-Now’s, but I knew those guys were just around for the time being so I didn’t really care. Plus, the times the guys were serious (ie, Hubs) I was just like “Hey I really like this guy. So I don’t care how you do it, get along.” and then basically said the same thing to the guy. So I put it on them instead of just hoping they got along. It’s just not that hard to get along with most people if you go into it knowing to behave yourself instead of being all judgey mcjudgerson.

  28. lbluca77 says:

    It’s hard when your friends don’t like the guy or you don’t like a friends guy. But I think if someone is a good friend and they have valid reasons to see something you might not see then, yes it sucks and is hard but at the end of the day a true friend will care more about you than the new person you are dating.

    I don’t think you will have this problem with JohnBoy. From the get-go he has seemed like a really nice guy. I’m happy things seem to working well with you both.

  29. Nora says:

    My friends didn’t tell me for the longest time if they didn’t like someone; if I was happy, they were happy. I finally told them to be honest with me if they issues/concerns. And they are, but fortunately my current boyfriend is liked/loved by all. On the other hand, one of his friends has made my life a living hell and as a result I don’t hang out with them if that person will be there. Sucks, but at least he can still see his friend.

    I’m glad they liked JohnBoy! I’m glad you still like Johnboy!

  30. mandy says:

    I hated one of my best friends boyfriends, who then became her fiance, the her husband. It was hard. Really, really hard. We just tolerated each other and I had to remind myself that I was there for her not for him. I also totally helped her use his toothbrush to clean the inside of the toilet bowl when he cheated on her. (Hey, thats what friends are for right?)

    I am glad that the meeting of the friends went well. Does he know that you blog or have you decided not tell him that?

  31. Sarah says:

    the guy i’ve been seeing on and off for about two years and my best friend highly dislike each other. haven’t figured out how to make them see the other’s good qualities, so i just try and keep them away from each other. he’s on tour most of the time so it hasn’t been too difficult.

  32. Erin says:

    Glad it seemed to go well! That must be a relief.

    My husband doesn’t like one of my friends but I can’t bring myself to tell her that. So, we just don’t hang out much as a group.

  33. Lil' Woman says:

    My friends hated one guy I dated and it made it really hard cause it seems like you constantly have ti justify things with each party, it’s exhausting.

    Luckily tho, my friends and family love Big Man.

  34. barbetti says:

    Oh, don’t even get me started on the friend introductions. Unfortunately, when Steve and I broke up, I blabbed some of the dirty deets to the internet. BAD IDEA. Because as soon as we got back together (um, just a day after he broke up with me!), I was inundated with emails saying “HEAD FOR THE HILLS” in bold capitalization. Whoops.

    But hey, look, we’re married now. So I don’t know. Ha.

  35. AuburnKat says:

    I wouldn’t even know when to introduce a guy to my friends…I prob would after we decided to date each other exclusively (sp) but who knows!