OK ladies, we’ve all been there…you meet a guy; he’s tall, handsome, funny, and smart. He may even be described as “dreamy!” Everything about him is all you’ve ever wanted right? You spend every ounce of spare time with him in the beginning, just you and him taking long walks on the beach, picking wildflowers, and star-gazing…that sort of thing. Time stands still.
But wait! Then it hits you. Along with this amazingly-wonderful-dream-come-true boyfriend of yours comes a packaged deal. The dude’s got friends! Maybe even friends who double as roommates! All of a sudden you’ve been together 6 months and you’re spending time with them too! And let me just tell you what ladies, it’s important that you all get along because in the end, if Rico Suave is as incredible as you say he is, you may not only say “I do” to him, but you’re also saying it to those 4 or 5 goof-balls lined up behind him at the altar.
Here are some tips to win over the REAL loves of your man’s life:
Tip #1: Feed Them
I’m a girl with brothers…both biological and those that I guess I’ll claim as brothers because we’ve been friends for what seems like our entire lives. If there’s anything I know for certain about the opposite sex, it’s that feeding them (and feeding them WELL) will win you major bonus points. Fortunately for me, I learned this lesson at an early age from a mom who would practically force-feed all of my guy friends when they would come over to hang out! Needless to say, that’s probably why we’re still close!
This tip can be followed easily even if you aren’t exactly Betty Crocker. If you know they’re all hanging out together, order some pizza and have it delivered to their apartment. Bake some chocolate chip cookies and take them over the next time you visit. If you’re really awesome, you might even invite all of them over some night to your place while you and your man are hanging out and make dinner for them. I can tell you for sure this is going to make you a crowd favorite.
Tip #2: Think Of Them As Your Friends Too
If you’re spending a lot of time with your boyfriend and you expect him to be with you a lot, it’s going to make him happy if you can all hang out in a group. Chances are, if your boyfriend’s friends don’t like you or vice versa, the relationship probably isn’t going to last. Maybe you’re throwing a party and inviting other people. Inviting your boyfriend’s friends is a great way to let your boyfriend know that you want to include the people he likes hanging out with too. Who knows? This could be a great segue into the future when your friends merge with his friends into one big happy family friend group. Everybody’s happy!
Bonus Tip: PERSONALLY invite them! A text from you as an invite will let these guys know YOU actually want them there versus a text from the guy they pass in the hallway every morning.
Tip #3: Be A Wing-Girl
You’re a good-looking girl. He’s a good-looking guy. Odds are, you both have good-looking friends! It might be beneficial to see if any of them match up. This is going to make the double-dating experiences a lot more fun for both of you. How many times have you gone on double dates with your boyfriend, his friend, and that random, annoying sorority girl he met on Tinder? Talk about awkward.
All of these situations can be avoided if you talk up your boyfriend’s friends to your girlfriends. Just be careful when playing matchmaker - you don’t want to create awkwardness in the future if they break up. Weigh the pros and cons for sure, and make sure your boyfriend is OK with it first!
Tip #4: Invite His Friends To Hang Out With You
I know, I know, you can’t get enough of that mushy-gushy alone time with your perfect guy, HOWEVER, sometimes it can be a lot of fun to hang out with his entire crew. A third or fourth wheel isn’t always a bad thing! I’m sure you’ve all had times come up when you’re hanging out with your boy and his roommates are watching TV when you decide you’re hungry. Instead of making a quick exit to Wendy's by yourselves, why not see if the guys want to join? Some of the most hilarious experiences happen when the goofy and fun friends are in tow. Guys, unlike girls, probably won’t feel hurt or “left out” if you don’t invite them, but it will go a long way to let them know you don’t mind them being around every once in a while.
Tip #5: THE MOST IMPORTANT - Let Him Hang With His Boys WITHOUT You Sometimes
Girls, this is gold! As much as you like being with him, (and I’m sure he likes being with you too) it is extremely healthy for him to have Guy Time. Chances are, he does a lot to make an effort to be with you as much as he possibly can, but it will be refreshing for BOTH of you if he can go for wings, watch a fight at Rob’s house, or play a game of pick-up at the park. You know how much fun you have painting your toenails and watching Lifetime movies with your ladies, so let him have his fun too! If you’re cool about it when his buddies invite him to do things sans you, you will never be pegged as the “ball and chain,” and they’ll respect the times that he does bail on them to be with you.
Ultimately, making friends with your main squeeze’s buddies will only strengthen your relationship and make time hanging out infinitely more enjoyable! You don’t EVER want to be known as the girl who “took him away” from the pack, so take note and do your best to find the good qualities in the gentlemen whose company your guy keeps!
Remember, these are the men you may have at your wedding and you’ll be able to breathe easier on that day knowing they respect you enough not to bust your chops during the best man speech! Building solid relationships with them now will make for some really fun times in the future. Everybody wins!