Corner of the Triangle
By Stephanie Lynn, age 25, Massachusetts
I really need help with a situation I've been having. Ok, so this new guy came to my school last year and my best friend and I hung out with him and showed him around. She told me she liked him, and I was happy for her until I began developing feelings for him. I didn't say anything to her because she liked him, but I told my other friend. She then told me two weeks later that she didn't like him, and then the friend I told about him told my best friend that I liked him. She said she was happy for me and I found out that he liked me too. We started dating and then my best friend kept flirting with him and he kept flirting back. They hung out all the time without me and I had to ask her to stop every week. She never really stopped and neither did he. She then told me that she still did like him. I kept acting really weird around him because I was pretty sure he liked her and when I brought it up to him he insisted that nothing was going on between them. My best friend also said nothing happened.
He broke up with me after nine months, but I still really liked him. A month later my best friend and my ex-boyfriend started dating. I was so upset that I transferred schools. She says she still wants to be friends with me and so did he. I forgave her because I didn't want to lose her as a friend. I haven't talked to him in a month.
She says she misses me and wants to hang out with me, but then admitted that she's hesitant to hang out because she thinks we have "unresolved issues." She sees him every day at school, but still calls him after school and hangs out with him outside of school every day, but she never calls me, sees me, or hangs out with me. She tells me that she doesn't have time for anything with homework, but I see them hanging out and I know she talks to him constantly on the phone. She is also changing as a person. She's becoming rude, taking things too personally, and she's just not nice or trustworthy at all anymore. I'm not sure if I should stay her friend or give it up. Please help!!!
There are a few facts we must all face about being teenagers. First, most friendships and relationships at our age will come and go. (A few will survive year after year - these are our best friends.) Friends from 8th grade may not be our friends in 11th grade. Boys will come and go even more often. Their feelings change. This week he likes you. Next week, maybe someone else. Same way with your feelings. You like someone, and then later maybe someone different. It's ok - it's all part of growing up. Just don't take any one friendship or relationship too seriously.
Second, people change. In fact, they change A LOT during this time. You're changing too. It's just a fact of life. Sometimes the changes are good, sometimes not so much. When people change, sometimes they don't fit together very well anymore.
Now, of course, everything I just said, while totally true, doesn't help you feel any better. Because people will come and go, and their feelings will change and change again, it's best not to get too upset about any of it. Life is too short. It's best to move on and make new friends and talk to other boys.
If your old friend still wants to be friends, and you want to be friends with her, then great. Just agree not to let whatever happens with a boy - any boy - come between you. You will each have MANY more relationships over the next few years. In 5 years you will look back and realize it was all no big deal.
As for the "unresolved issues", if you decide you still want to try to be friends with her, meet privately and try to resolve them. If it works out, then great. If not, maybe it's time for each of you to move on. Chances are, within 6 months, this boy will not be with either of you. Is it worth losing your friendship over that? That's something you and she must decide.
As for her rudeness, etc., talk with her about that too, but don't accuse her or be harsh. Tell her calmly and nicely about how you feel you've been hurt, and try not to let it escalate into a fight. It's best to take some time to prepare yourself mentally with a calm, positive attitude before you meet and prepare what you want to say and how you'll say it.