A Man's Friend Can Be a Woman's Worst Enemy

Guys, friendsSomewhere, inside the minds of many guys, there’s a little part of their person that wants the fellas’ approval. What their friends think matters to them, despite all their machismo and puff-chested crowing about being their own man.

They want their homeboys to ooh and ahh over their car, their dunking skills, their ability to knock back a string of vodka shots without coming up for air. And they definitely want them to think the chick they’re dating is a hottie.

Now, if said romance should be so fortunate as to turn into a full-fledged relationship, that can be a problem. Because when The Friends wield a major amount of influence over your dude, it can be a mental tug-o-war between your wants, wishes, and desires and the voices of his buddies whispering conversely in his ear. Ostensibly, the one who holds his romantic — read: sexual — future in the palms of her hands should win out. But that’s alas not always the case. 

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I haven’t had this issue recently, but I do remember a time way back when I was a college freshman and I developed the biggest crush on this chocolate cutie pie from Philly. I swore up and down that I didn’t want anything to do with any male from that city: they were rude, they were crass, and they seemed to be in a contest to see who could show the least amount of respect for women as possible. So I avoided them like bad lighting, which makes me wonder how this one guy managed to smuggle his way into my good graces.

He was charming and charismatic, and a flash of his smile could make even an outside death threat or the possibility of nuclear warfare seem palatable. We had natural chemistry. Spending time together was a mixture of flirtation and mental challenge, something we were both drawn to. So with all of these sparks a-flyin’ and all of this potential romance looming over us like two big ol’ clouds of love, it seemed like a no-brainer that we would ultimately get together, right?

Might seem like it, but it sure enough never happened. Because his friends didn’t think I was cute. No matter that he thought I was easy on the eyes. Once we strolled into the cafeteria together and his flock of Philly friends laid eyes on me, I was instantly vetoed and wasn’t even aware of it. Perhaps, had I known I was going to be placed on a twirling, whirling auction pedestal, I could’ve spruced myself up a bit. You know in college, it’s a toss-up somedays whether you even part ways with your pajama bottoms for the day or not. But I doubt that was the issue. Something about my face just didn’t sit well with them. And normally, that would be their prerogative. But dangit, their opinion cost me a shot with my cute little love thing.

I kid, of course. Because any fella who doesn’t have the backbone to make his own decisions — then, now, or otherwise — isn’t my twist in the first place. I like stand-up, decision-making, that’s-my-final-answer, take-it-or-leave-it kind of guys. It seems quite little boyish to have to play Red Light, Green Light with a group of men because you need validation.

Now, that’s not to say that I can blame them to a degree. Do I want my friends to like my man? Sure. Do I want them to think he’s cute? Of course. If they don’t like him, will that stop the show? Never that.

I can only hope that dreamy college cutie has matured past that point in the years since we parted ways and became hi-bye friends on campus. We’ve stayed in contact since graduation via email and sometimes phone, and he always laughs off my remembrance of the reason why this romance never got off the tarmac. He insists it wasn’t the collective vote of his band of boys, but I know better. Maybe now, if he paraded me in front of them, they’d have a different opinion. Maybe not. Even so, it’s too late ‘cause I’m off the market. And that Beyonce song continues to ring in my ears. How does it go? Oh riiiiight. Best he never had.

Do you think guys’ friends have an influence on them? Is it a maturity issue? Or just something that comes with the male territory?



Image via Raymond Brown/Flickr

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