OK this is what happened: There is this girl that I have been friends with for about a year. Recently I realised that I was crazy about her. I asked her out and made a pass at her (like you do). I was successful and we ‘had something’ (as they say in the classics) on two occasions. Nothing really serious but alot more than just kissing.
Unfortunately the relationship wasn’t working and we decided to go back to being just friends. Just four days later she started going out with my best friend.
Now he knew that I was very keen on the girl and she knew that pouncing on him would hurt me but they went ahead anyway. She didn’t even give me a week to get over her, just 96 hours (most of them spent sleeping!).
On the other hand since the two of them started going out they have both been happier than I have ever seen them and I think that they might be falling in love. Also since the girl in question realised hoe badly she had hurt me she has been really great in cheering me up. A true friend in every way.
My question is this: It has been two weeks do I have a right to still feel betrayed? Do I still have a right to feel my stomache clench when I see them together? Am I being unfair or are they?
Hmm…well unfair is a rather subjective word. Insensitive might fit the bill. Yes, it was rather insensitive of your friends to publicly claim their affection for one another so soon after your “break up”. And it might be considered insensitive to expect you to get over it and do things with them as a couple right now.
But if they are truly in love, as you say, and you have never seen either of them happier than they are right now, then it would be extremely self-centered and petulant to expect them to forget their feelings for one another out of consideration for you.
Friends should want the best for one another. If they are so good together, you have a duty as a friend to wish them well. But you also have the right to expect them to be sensitive to YOUR feelings, and to understand if you don’t want to hang around them right now, or hear all about their love affair. Maybe a cooling off period, wherby you hang with some different friends, is a good idea, until you are able to truly feel happy for these two.
There’s an unwritten rule that going out with your friend’s ex is verboten if you want to keep the core relationship, however, in this case…
You’d only “fooled around” with her twice, you were friends beforehand, and you’d both decided to go back to being friends prior to her hooking up with your friend. Sounds like the relationship hadn’t crossed over into the true “girlfriend” category to me.
Yes, of course you have a perfectly good reason to feel upset and jealous. That’s perfectly natural. However, I don’t think that them going out is horrendous on the morality scale. A bit insensitive to you, yes, considering they both knew you have feelings for her, but not horrendous.
If I were you, I’d try avoiding them for awhile. Nothing like having their new relationship shoved in your face to make you like crap. Good luck to you.
Oh, and as to your question about whether you have the right to feel betrayed…you have the right to feel whatever you feel. Feelings are always valid, even if they are not grounded in logic.
But from the outside, I don’t see a betrayal. You and the girl had mutually decided that a relationship beyond friendship was not in the cards for the two of you. So if your friend picked up where you left off, then to deny him the right to date her would be akin to the proverbial Dog in the Manger.
Your feelings are your own, and they rarely if ever have to be justified.
But, you also never really had the “right” to feel betrayed because in all reality you weren’t. If the end of the “friends with bennies” was a mutual decision, you no longer had a hold on her relationships with others, if you ever did.
She’s not a possesion, not yours, not his.
However, on yet another flip side, your feelings are still your own and it sucks to feel less than loved. Its good to know that you do have two friends who are not only happy and wonderful people themselves but are being sweet about your hurt feelings.
So, in answer to your question of fairness…no one is being unfair to anyone, there’s just a few rough edges that the group of you will work out fine.
No one is being unfair here. Fairness is irrelevant anyway. You have feelings, they have feelings and it sounds like you’ve all been trying hard to be considerate of each other.
Try this: get together with the two of them, together or separately, and ask them to just listen to you without responding in any way. Then express your feelings. Tell them about the stomach clench when you see them together. Raise your voice. Get angry, cry, pound the table, tell them exactly how you hurt. Be vulnerable, exposed, undefended.
The point is, have your feelings. Fully. These two are your friends, they sound like they will understand and by putting your feelings out there they won’t be staying stuffed inside you where they will keep doing damage to you and to your relationship with these two friends and others in the future.
I’ll bet if you do this you’ll feel a whole lot better, and it will increase the love amongst the three of you.