How To Tell Your Friend Her Boyfriend Is A Douche

It seems like I have so many friends right now who have other friends who have boyfriends that are complete douche canoes. Some of these guys keep promising marriage proposals and then putting them off until the next year, or until they graduate from underwater basket weaving school, or until their brothers/sisters get married first, or until Jesus comes back (because Heaven is really the best place to have a wedding). Other guys berate and turn otherwise strong intelligent women into weeping masses of “He didn’t mean it.” and “I know he loves me despite that fact he just called me a stupid cow.” Others are just controlling, manipulative, charming, smooth talkers who can finesse their way out of any lie and make their girlfriends apologize for catching them lying. What has happened to these women? These beautiful, wise, witty, brave, compassionate, brilliant women who we became friends with years ago because they were so unarguably fabulous? Where are our friends of yesteryear? I don’t know. I truly don’t. But I can’t tell you how much I wish I did.

I know we as the friends are getting more and more tired of the drama and tears. We all want to be good friends but their tumultuous relationships are emotionally draining to us as well. We are exhausted from giving really quality advice and then having it ignored and then the same problem happening over and over again. We are heartbroken and frustrated to see these formerly amazing women reduced to being someone’s pathetic girlfriend. And they are pathetic- and that kills me to say. Why aren’t they listening? What can they possibly be gaining from this toxic relationship?

I also know that we must absolutely stick by them through this. Even if we are throughly sick of it. If we are their friends, their best friends, we have to be there for them no matter what as long as they let us. No matter how much we loathe their boyfriends very existence and want to take a time machine back to the day of his conception and make sure his Mother remembers to take her birth control- we have to support her. Even though I’m sure we would feel a lot better if we could just take a sledgehammer to his crotch, we have to refrain (and if you do end up doing that please don’t say you got the idea from me). We don’t have to keep our mouths shut though. We just have to be delicate about the way we approach the subject of her boyfriend being a douche. Although, we probably shouldn’t call him a douche in front of her. We can, however, mention the changes we have seen in her and the way we worry because she doesn’t seem as happy as she did before. These are valid feelings. She needs to know we have them. We shouldn’t feel like we have a gag order on us just because she is dating an awful person. We also shouldn’t let our friend treat us poorly just because she gets treated poorly. If she isn’t there for you when you need her, or she forgets plans you made, or she hasn’t called you in ages because she is so wrapped up  in the soap opera that is her love life, then she isn’t being a good friend to you. You have to call her out on it. Nicely. In a calm way that doesn’t immediately put her on the defense. And she might hate you. And she might not want to be friends anymore, and she might turn the entire thing around on you and make it all your fault. She might do those things and that sucks. Actually, she probably will do all those things and again, that sucks.

I also think it’s important to (delicately) let her know how you feel because she is an adult and no matter how much we want to blame him for who she has become, it wouldn’t be fair because she has always had a choice. She chose to let him treat her that way, and she chose to wait around for him to change and while they may be poor choices, we can’t ignore the fact that they were choices nonetheless. It’s his fault he is a douche but it’s her fault for letting a douche in her life. It’s not an accusation or condemnation (seriously, we have all made bad choices before) it’s just an acknowledgment. She needs to acknowledge her boyfriends (or hopefully ex-boyfriends) douchebaggery and she needs to acknowledge that she tolerated that douchebaggery.

And maybe this is all terrible advice but I just couldn’t/can’t not say something when I see this happening to a friend. Realize, please, that if you take this advice there is a chance that she may hate you for a while or forever. Don’t say anything if you don’t want to take that chance- but it’s going to be hard not to say anything. This is a very precarious place to be in a friendship and what happens next will show you how close you truly are. I just have to say something, I tell my friends who are asking my advice on this to say something, but I don’t know if that’s the perfect answer for you and your friend. You know, you know what’s right for you and your friendship. I just wrote about this today because it seems to be a very prevalent topic of conversation amongst my friends and I these days. The moral of this post is if your friend is in a relationship with a douche then tell her that, nicely and also maybe don’t say douche (even though he is one).

13 thoughts on “How To Tell Your Friend Her Boyfriend Is A Douche

  1. Raaar says:

    Wow, this really hit home with me. My best friend and I were inseperable, we were considered to be practically the same person. We told each other everything and had so much fun together. For the past year and a half she has been in a relationship with one of these ‘douches’ though the word I chose to describe him with is much harsher ha. She has completely changed, I barely see her, she bails on our plans constantly because something terrible has happened to her boyfriend but she’s not allowed to say what is it. He’s a manipulative liar who controls her and treats her shockingly. She is a shadow of the girl she used to be. She has also become controlling and jealous and I cannot get any objective advice from her, so I now choose not to tell her any of my problems. Myself and all her friends have been telling her our concerns from early on, but she chooses to stay with him because she thinks she can change him. She deleted every male out of her phonebook to keep him happy. People who have been in her life for over a decade just cast aside. I’ve tried to explain that i’m hurt at the loss of my best friend effectively but it seems to wash over her.

    The worst part is that when I was 18/19 I was in an abusive relationship and this friend was awful to me, called me a bad friend etc for a long time but ultimately it was her who told me I had to leave him and I did. But she maintains her situation is different because their love is special. It’s ludacris. My boyfriend is sick of hearing me moan. I’m honestly at my wits end with her. I barely consider her a friend these days and that devastes me.

  2. Isabella P. says:

    I use to HATE a girl in my class’s boyfriend. their “on-off” relationship made her misrable. i told her once that she could do way better and she became my worst enemy. one of my closer friend’s were still her friend so we would still be civil with one another, but thats all we ever were. i never kept up with their relationship status after that and soon after, i had a small fling with the boy in question. but one day at school i heard they were still “on”. after a week i cut our line because i had such a guilty conscience. the guy is a jerk! and i was totally wrong to go with him. but now my (younger) friend likes him! i had a panic attack! i dont want her to get hurt, but i dont want to hurt her already fragil selfestem. he keeps acting sweet and sensitive one day then cold and aloof the next! i don’t know how to tell her without hurting her.

    1. There really isn’t a way. If you tell her, it will hurt her feelings. If you’re not willing to risk that, she will have to learn on her own the way you did and you should just be there for her through it. It’s an awful situation to be in for sure.

  3. All I have to say is that it’s been 2 years since I finally tossed my douche out of my life and I am SO MUCH happier! Thanks to all my awesome friends who’s support I really needed at the time!

    It seems scary at first to picture your life as an independent person after being in any relationship, but the risk is so worth it if you commit to being happy. I say TOSS THE DOUCHE PEOPLE! They don’t deserve you and you’re better off without them 😀

  4. KITTY says:

    I really enjoyed reading this. I could really relate with you because my bestfriend has a douche for a boyfriend. I was laughing when you wrote about wishing the guy’s mom just took birth control pills and not allow this abomination to exist at all.

    I have made it known to my bestfriend how I and the rest of her girlfriends feel about her bf. She “considered” our views and still continues her relationship with him. It is frustrating really but I would just have to wait till she fully realizes her boyfriend’s bad news.

    Thank you for this. It is refreshing to know that there are people who go through this and could write about it in a very amusing way.

  5. Anna says:

    Thanks for writing this piece. I feel so relief that I am not the only person feeling this way. My best friend since 4th grade just finished from a 3 year toxic relationship where her bf abuse her. Now, she met a guy online, known him for only a few weeks, he asks her to marry him twice already.
    Oh, that is not the best part. My best friend is in other country now meanwhile the bf is in Indiana. He got kids from previous marriage, dead broke (although don’t want to admit or realize this part) and wants her to come here using her own money (plane ticket, visa, getting permanent residency, etc). My friend is not a gold digger. However, it is normal for the guy to provide these stuff (a part of USCIS requirements too that the person sponsoring foreign individual coming here, gotta be able to demonstrate financial abilities to support that person, especially in this case “fiance”).

    He wants her to come here to work to pay for her paperwork, etc. well, guess what, she does not have money to pay for all this. I can’t seem to get her head straight with the fact that this guy can’t even afford dial up internet. He also possibly living in his parents basement. What kind of life is he going to provide for her?

    Love is love, I am also realistic, the potential groom needn’t be someone rich, but at least have a clear source of income or a stable job, don’t care if it is a factory worker or an office staff. What bothers me is the fact he don’t get custody of the kids, don’t want to disclose what he do for a living (only vague answer like I work for abc company), don’t want to disclose how much child support he gotta pay up, don’t wanna disclose where he live (except the name of the town/area), don’t wanna come over to the country to meet my best friend before married, don’t wanna help her to get the fiance visa either. A complete douchebag that only need her to come over here to help pay his bills by working at any job she may get when she gets here. From what I know too, it is almost impossible for her to get a decent job here unless she actually have some sort of college degree (which she doesn’t).

    I’m so sick of this guy already. When I finally tell my best friend the complete truth of the fact (the cost of the paperwork to get her here legally and get married what not, I even show her the website address just so she can read it her self for honest truth), my best friend don’t even talk to me.

    What I care is that she will be happy when she gets here. I know for sure that getting a job to pay for her paperwork is not what she wanted to do. However, she is heads over heels on this guy. Sucks!

  6. johanna says:

    Great post. Helped me a lot. One of my friend’s boyfriends is a jerk and loser who has changed her completely. (He’s a college grad who is living off of her parents b/c he can’t keep a job for more than two weeks!) Our friendship has definitely been damaged by it. He’s made her shut out her friends almost entirely. She makes a point to never complain to me about him and always portrays everything to be perfect but her actions show how unhappy she is. I’ve never said anything about it and probably won’t b/c I’m sure she’d shut me out completely.

    1. I know. I’m in a very similar situation with a friend right now. It totally sucks and it just kills me to see her so unhappy but I also don’t want to add to her unhappiness by upsetting our friendship. It’s an incredibly awful situation. Just be her friend as best you can and hope she sees the truth about her relationship sooner rather than later.

  7. Sometimes when you try to make it clear to a friend, they’re so wrapped up and beaten down already that nothing works. I wish I could just come out and say it. Good blog.

    1. I know. It’s a helpless feeling to see a friend that defeated and it is not easy to say what you want to say about their relationship. I just find it much harder to keep quiet. But you’re right, sometimes nothing you say makes a difference, but I’ve found it’s easier to handle when I know I’ve said my piece just in case it might have made a difference. Thank you so much for reading and commenting!I appreciate it!!!

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