I’ll be the first to admit that I use to tell my friends EVERYTHING in my past relationships. I would have an argument with my boyfriend and literally call my friends as soon as I would hang up with him. And I didn’t just call one friend, I would call multiple friends and tell them the same story. One particular time I actually forgot that I had told my friend already, called her again, and her response was, “Mesa, you told me this already.” I felt foolish, but I could not stop. I realize now that I honestly didn’t vent to them for any other reason than for them to have my back and validate that I was right in the situation. I never called or told anyone about the fights we had where I was wrong or could be perceived as wrong, but I always vented when he was the culprit. I noticed that after the talk I would be even more upset and start spewing off really hurtful things because in my mind my friends had validated that I was right and sort of “pumped me up”.
I remember when my boyfriend and I started dating, we weren’t an official couple yet, but we had this really big argument and before I even told him what was wrong I called my friend to tell her. Looking back, that was a HUGE mistake. I hadn’t even given him time to explain or defend himself before I had taken it to outside counsel. As I was venting to my friend he walked in, we talked and after a while of going back and forth we made up. My friend texted me to see if everything was okay and I replied, “Yes, I will give you all the details tomorrow,” to which she replied, “No need, as long as you guys are okay I don’t need to know the details.” Huh? She didn’t want to know the juicy details of what he said and what he did? That was the beginning of my revelation that if I wanted my relationship to work that I would have to start keeping things “in-house” and just between us. Here are a few reasons/points why I think this is crucial to any healthy relationship:
- Let’s be honest, your friends really don’t want to hear it.
Yes, I said it! You friends do not want to hear every single time you and your significant other have a fight or disagreement ESPECIALLY when all you’re going to do is stay with them and continue the same behavior. If you and your partner are constantly arguing about the same things and you tell your friends, nine times out of ten they are rolling their eyes on the other side of the phone or text. They have given their advice many times and you still don’t get it. Don’t get me wrong, I think it’s perfectly okay to seek advice from friends who are in HEALTHY relationships or who can give you spiritual advice, but not everything needs to go to them. When you take all the bad things to your friends they develop a dislike for your partner and then you have the added problem of convincing them that your significant other “really is a good person”. Cut down on the bad talk about your partner and only take things to them that you’re a mature enough to handle when they tell you what you did wrong.
- Keeping things “in-house” strengthens your relationship.
In my opening paragraph I stated that I had run and told my friend why I was upset before I even told the person who I was dating. And let’s be honest, all of us have done this before. They say something in the car ride home and instead of talking about it you immediately whip out that phone and start texting like you are running a marathon. AND THEN, this is my favorite, when they ask you what’s wrong, your response is “nothing” or “I’m fine”. (My boyfriend is reading this and shaking his head because I am famous for the “I’m fine” responses.) There is nothing wrong with taking time to cool down and gather your thoughts, but don’t involve other people before you tell your partner what is bothering you and give them the opportunity to move forward. I have learned that when you only work it out with your partner then you guys develop a strength that is not very common in today’s society with social media being as prevalent as it is today. You become a lot closer because you aren’t bringing in the opinions of Tina, Ricky, and Dina.
- Know the difference between bragging and acknowledgement.
I read something on Facebook the other day that read, “People who brag in their relationships are really insecure.” I immediately took offense primarily because I am a huge proponent of giving people their flowers while they can smell them. I do not think you are bragging if you make a status about something nice your significant other did for you or someone else. In a world where we tear our significant others down via social media all the time, I find it refreshing to see someone post something nice about their partner, especially when it is not excessive. When you truly find someone who loves you and makes you better you really do want to scream it from the rooftop, but you have to learn the balance. Keeping it “in-house” refers to acknowledgments too. You don’t have to share every time he brings you flowers or the tickets she got you to your favorite sporting event. Keep some things between yourselves and you will appreciate you because the joy you feel when posting will instead transfer for your partner to feel.
In summary, I would be lying if I said I didn’t share things with my friends about my relationship, but I can say that I don’t share everything and I honestly don’t want to anymore. I want secrets and memories that I just have with my boyfriend and there is nothing wrong with that. It is a clear sign of maturity when you choose to talk it out with your significant other and not your friends. After all, you guys are a team. Teammates don’t solicit advice from the spectators when they are in a jam. Learn to keep things private and watch your relationship flourish.
Queen Mes ❤