So what if meeting the friends doesn’t go especially well? [The same questions could be asked of meeting the parents or meeting the kids.] In the final analysis, the relationship is yours and it is your life to lead. Everyone has agendas, and those of your parents, your kids, and your friends, might not be as pure as we would like. For example, some from those circle may not be operating from a perspective of not having your best interests at heart. So you have to weigh those opinions for what they are worth.

However, let’s not be too hasty in dismissing their opinions outright just because we may not like their conclusions. Sometimes friends, because they aren’t so personally invested, can see things that you can’t. People in love develop blind spots, especially when they are too close to a situation. They can’t always see themselves, their significant others, or their relationship objectively.

Some blind spots you think would be obvious to anyone with eyes:

-if the guy has an alcohol problem
-if the guy is abusive or disrespectful
-if the guy has no interest in the things fundamental to you (such as your faith)
-if you are so desperate to be in a relationship, to be loved, that you’ll settle for whoever pays you attention

Sadly, that last item is what usually leads to the blind spots. Which means you want to have ears open enough to hear what your friends are saying if things along these lines are being said. If you are that friend, however, there are certain responsibilities that fall on you:

-Talk to your friend who is in that dating relationship and let them know how you feel. At least do them that courtesy rather than have “war councils” with the rest of the circle of friends that don’t amount to anything more than gossip times.

-Support your friend. Mistakes are theirs to make and we can’t live other people’s lives for them. We all have regrets, mistakes we can hopefully learn from.

It is tough seeing those you love about to make what you are sure will be huge mistakes. You don’t want to burn the bridge of friendship in the name of being heard (read: being right) or doing “whatever it takes” to sabotage the relationship in the “best interests” of your friend. A friend offers council and support, when asked and sometimes when not asked. But there comes a point after that when you need to step back and be prepared to catch your friend should they fall.

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