Why You Shouldn't Make Your Boyfriend Your Entire Life

Since Valentine’s Day has just passed, I’ve been thinking about the special relationship between me and my boyfriend. You know, the guy who I always choose my friends over? The guy who I always make sure is my number one priority? The guy who I let take up all my time so I can’t do anything else that I love? Spoiler alert! I’m joking.

But seriously, the main point that I’m trying to get at is that while your boyfriend might be an important part of your life, they shouldn’t be your entire life. I get it: relationships are always fun at the beginning, especially when they’re new. It’s exciting when you’re in the honeymoon phase and you and your new beau can’t keep your hands off each other. But while this new experience may unexpectedly sweep you off your feet, it’s important not to forget about everything else going on in your life. You have to be able to make time for your friends, your family, and any other aspirations you might have.

When I was in high school, I was one of the first girls in my friend group to get a boyfriend. In fact, I was really one of the only kids in school who was in a serious relationship. During the first six months of my relationship, it was a big deal for me. Although as more time wore on, the new infatuation began to fade, and suddenly my boyfriend wasn’t all that I was thinking about anymore. He was still one of the best parts of my life, but I became focused again on other things besides him. My relationship never changed me in a way that made me lose sight of everything else going on. I was also never one of those girls who always needed to be with their boyfriend twenty-four seven, and I’m still not.

While my relationship isn’t new anymore, over the years my friends’ relationship statuses have changed. Almost all of my girl friends are in relationships now, and it’s a new adjustment for me. For so long I was the only person out of my friends in a relationship. I had the luxury of being able to call them up and say, “Hey, you want to hang out?” which would immediately be followed by, “Yeah, what do you want to do?”

Now, a majority of my friends are getting into their first serious relationships.

Now when I want to hang out, it’s usually, “Hey, are you free to hang out this weekend?” followed by, “Oh sorry, I already have plans with my boyfriend then.”

Which is fine, but here’s where I get annoyed: if I repeatedly ask one of my friends to get together, and they keep blowing me off every time to spend their free time with their boyfriend, it gets old really fast. I’ve been with my boyfriend for a little over four and a half years now and I don’t ever recall a time when I chose to hang out with him over one of my friends. 

Here’s an example: I work two jobs over the summer, six days a week. I’m usually done sometime after five, so I’ll typically hang out with my boyfriend after work. I never make plans with any friends during the week since most of my friends either work early in the morning or late at night. Plus, it’s just not a good time to get my squad together since schedules don’t match up. The one full day off I have over the weekend is when I usually set aside time for my friends, since we’ll have the entire day to hang out. Yet, when the person who I’m trying to make plans with has seen their boyfriend for a few consecutive days in a row, and they should be able to break away from them and hang out with me for one measly day, they still choose their boyfriend over me. After a while, I get blown off enough where I feel like, Okay, you already saw your boyfriend three days in a row this week and tomorrow is the only day I’m free to hang out. You can survive not seeing him for twenty-four hours.

Another reason why my friends who are clingy with their boyfriends bother me is because I don’t know how to console them when they haven’t seen their boyfriend in a short amount of time. I’m in a long distance relationship and right now I’m lucky if I get to see my boyfriend once a month. The longest we usually go without seeing each other is almost two months. So when my friends come to me complaining about how they haven’t seen their boyfriend all week because they’ve been super busy with school work, or how they haven’t seen their boyfriend in two weeks or so, it makes my skin bristle a tiny bit. I know that they don’t realize what they’re saying and that they’re just seeking comfort in me, but in my head I’m internally screaming I would gladly take two weeks over six weeks!! 

Nevertheless, I think that the worst part about a friend who does everything with their boyfriend is when you and your friend are hanging out alone, and then they ask you if their boyfriend can tag along. Is there a polite way to tell your friend, “You see him way more than you see me, and I specifically set aside this time for us, so how about no?”

It’s a different story if the boyfriend was invited to tag along, but come on. No one likes a girl who brings their boyfriend everywhere. In order to have a healthy, nontoxic relationship, both parties need to live individual lives and have time away from each other. Otherwise, it’s a codependent relationship and that isn’t healthy. I learned the hard way that you need to love yourself without relying on someone else in order to truly be happy. I used to depend on my boyfriend to make me feel better when I was sad, and he always tried his best, but when he wouldn’t say the thing that I wanted to hear I’d get even more upset. Which wasn’t fair to him at all.

Boyfriends are amazing, but you can’t forget about your friends. At the end of the day, friends are forever and if you push them out of your life to always hang out with your boyfriend, then no one is going to be there for you when you guys break up and you’re crying on your bedroom floor with no one to console you.