What To Do When Your Friend Is Dating A Loser

Well, here it is. It happened to your amazing friend who is that perfect combination of charming, smart, funny, and attractive — essentially every Katherine Heigl character, if Katherine Heigl were even remotely likable. She somehow found herself, despite all of the options before her and wonderful things she deserves, with the anthropomorphic version of a cold sore. You’ve tried over and over to like this dude, but you’re not a wizard and frankly, fake conversations with friends’ significant others are the stuff of nightmares. There’s only so much you can do, and you’ve just about expended all your stored up “let’s get along” energy. You’re about ready to just tell her, straight up, that this guy should be excised from her life with a scalpel or, if possible, a blowtorch.

But not so fast! Because as we all know, a serious talk with even the most reasonable of friends about why their suitor should be dumped into the nearest river covered in bricks — in so many words — will only end in offense and miscommunication. She looooooves him, and there is no fault or indiscretion too severe to excuse.

“Oh, when he didn’t show up to that double date, he was really sick! Taco Bell was discontinuing the Cheesy Gordita Crunch again and he needed to stock up on them that afternoon.”

“Sure, he didn’t go to my birthday, but it was the playoffs and he’s the only one of his friends with a decent face painting kit. Remember what happened when they tried to use spray paint?”

“Yeah, I know he can be kind of flaky, but he’s had mono, like, six times this year.”

Et cetera, et cetera.

So the “adult conversation” route is one to avoid. But how are you supposed to accept that you’ll just never see this friend for the foreseeable future, and on the rare occasions you do, have to share her with a guy who once discovered there were ashes in his beer and continued to drink the entire thing? You can’t. The friendship would suffer severely, and it’s clearly going to be at least eight more months until his cheating becomes too obvious to ignore, or he accidentally sets her apartment on fire. So much could happen in eight months — you must act now, and quickly.

So what to do?

The next time you’re left awkwardly in the corner of a party having to socialize with the monstrosity, pull him aside and say, with all the sincerity and hushed excitement you can muster:

“Wow, things are working so well between you guys. It’s so incredible how close you have gotten — she’s really in love with you. Actually, don’t tell her I said this, but the other day she was talking about how excited she was to finally be able to start planning her future with someone. You should see some of the destination weddings she’s been talking about.”

And then scurry off into the night. Floundering, inconsistent, commitment-phobe douchebag will have met his only kryptonite — the prospect of a girl who really loves him and wants to make things serious. He will suddenly reveal his true colors, he will be that insane-dancing-electric-blue-smiley-face-bird-from-Planet-Earth, except instead of the rainforest, he lives in a dirty one-bedroom with two other enormous tools.

Sure, your friend might be temporarily mad at you — but as we all know, given a little time and space, we all eventually see the huge losers for what they really were, post-relationship. There will eventually come a moment where, over a glass of champagne (because you are both extremely classy), she’ll tell you how you totally saved her from what could have been the biggest waste of time of her life. She’ll also probably mention how terrible he was in bed at this point. In any case, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing you did something truly worthwhile and prevented Toolbro the Lionhearted from taking up any more of her precious youth. But be humble about your achievements; no one likes a gloater.

Satisfaction Guaranteed.TC mark

image – Shutterstock

Chelsea Fagan

Chelsea Fagan founded the blog The Financial Diet. She is on Twitter.


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  • http://twitter.com/rionharmon rion harmon

    was hoping the only thing this article would say is “post this on their facebook wall”

  • Erin Rowley

    Unless your friend’s loser boyfriend is not a commitmentphobe – this is the truly dangerous kind, because he won’t highjack her for a mere 8 months, he’ll actually stick around.

    • http://twitter.com/emilcDC Emil

      I am having that problem. My friend’s douche boyfriend actually wants her to move in. He’s super into her but the guy has no range AT ALL. It’s tricky.

      • Guest

        How about this – trust your friend to do the right thing for HER. Her life, her decisions. You can talk to her about it then leave it (unless it’s abusive), but that’s about it. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1580441990 Kim Brobeck Hill

    If only that really worked.  You should see what happens when she marries said loser and they reproduce.  Years down the road you’ll barely recognize her and its sad because you know she knows deep down that her life BLOWS!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • AnnieGirl

    this is the worst advice ever.

    • RG

      It was tagged with “j/k”… she’s not serious. But thanks for giving us the heads up!

      • FatherSun666

        it was tagged with ‘j/k’ cause she probably realized how stupid, self centered, and bitchy she was coming off as and needed a fail-safe in case anyone(everyone) called her out on it

  • MegaTigers

    This only works if the guy is a flake. If the guy is a needy loser that spends every waking moment grabbling over your friend then this advice will surely backfire. My addvice is to let it pan out – wait it out – friends know best and it most likely won’t last. There’s nothing anyone can do. Wait – there’s one thing…introduce her to a really awesome, eligible, guy (if they’re out there), and wala! 

  • engleprunt

    How narcissistically manipulative. I’d love to be your friend, Chelsea.

  • Ashley P

    But what if my friend is engaged to this loser?  Which she is…

  • Britney

    If a friend of mine did this to me, I think I’d end the friendship immediately. It’s blatantly manipulative and cruel, regardless of imagined justification.

    • Guest

      Yeah I know, what the hell, why would she think that she has the right to lie and to destroy some else’s happiness (albeit possibly blind) just so she can be happy. Selfish and pathetic are two words which spring to mind.

  • xra

    where’s the what to do if your friend is dating a fat chick

    • Fat chick


    • Feminism2012

      hahaha, didn’t read article, was skimming the comments for something like this, and here it is, and i’m done with it

  • http://twitter.com/iamsubmerged Jordana Bevan

    last week my best fraaand was working at her boyfriend’s desk (with permission) while he was at work. while clearing space for her supplies, she found the pre-nup from his marriage that ended in summer 2011. he forgot to mention that little factoid about himself when they started dating in fall 2011 or the subsequent months of their relationship. i’m like, what the FUCK, but she “really loves him!!!!!!” (fine, emotions make people do stupid things). i’m sending her this and she better be single by monday, though.

    • http://twitter.com/iamsubmerged Jordana Bevan

      *sending this to her as a hint hint hint get your shit together or i’ma get myself involved. and since he lives in NYC with me while she’s back home, i’ma win this war.

      • http://twitter.com/iamsubmerged Jordana Bevan

        kryst i just realized how bitchy this is. oh well!!!

  • beenthere

    you have to just let the friend make their own mistakes and learn that lesson the hard way.  You can’t control people, even if you have the kindest of intentions.

  • http://fashionography.net FASHIONOGRAPHY

    If you have a problem with your friend’s choice of friends or significant others, find a new friend.  That’s what you do.  

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