How many of you have been on a date setup by friends? You know, the ones that typically start with your friend saying, “I know someone I think you will like, you two should go out!” Probably a lot of people (me included), but how many people have gone on one of those dates and had it actually work out leading to more dates or even a relationship? (Also, 🙋). I truly hope for everyone who has experienced this success they are now in wonderful relationships! For those of you in the less successful crowd (do not worry, I also join you there, more than once actually.. 😳🤦♀️😂), what do you do when you have been setup by friends and it does not turn out successful?
For this, there are a few scenarios… If it was just one date and you do not hit it off, it is a pretty easy situation to handle (see my suggestion in an earlier post) and when handled correctly, everything should be fine! BUT what if the date went great and you actually started seeing each other, doing things with the friends who introduced you, introducing him/her to your other friends, etc. and then things go south? Well…
- How do you tell the friends who introduced you? It is more than likely one of you knows the friend(s) better than the other. If this is the case, the individual who knows the friend(s) better should be the one to let them know. And yes, you should let them know. It may not be easy to talk about a breakup, and you can even say you prefer not to get into the details, but it is better for your friend to hear it from you rather than word of mouth, social media, etc.
- Who “gets custody” of the friends? (let’s be real, having humor is the only way to get through these things) This can become a bit of a sticky situation, but my thoughts on this are in line with who should tell your friends about the relationship ending… Whoever came into the relationship with the friendships gets to keep them on the exit. This can be hard to come to terms with because you may have developed friendships on your own aside from the person who introduced you, but the last thing you want to do is put a friend in the middle. If you have formed a good friendship with your ex’s friend(s), I suggest letting the friend(s) reach out to you. If the friend initiates continuing the friendship, then I think it is fair game. One caveat to this – leave your ex out of it, in all ways. Bad mouthing your ex, or even going into personal details of him/her/the relationship, to your mutual friend(s) only leaves you in a poor light and potentially puts the friend(s) in the middle. If you do not think you can handle being friends with the same people without talking about your ex, you may want to reconsider.
- What about future plans already made? This is where it really gets tough. If you had plans to attend a friend’s (one your ex “won custody of”) gathering together, I highly recommend gracefully backing out. Depending on how close you became with this person, you can send a card with your well wishes but I suggest leaving it at that. Similarly, if you had invited your ex to an upcoming family function, wedding, etc., it is perfectly acceptable to reach out and change your R.s.v.p. You do not have to give details about what happened, you can simply say “_____ is no longer able to attend. I apologize for the inconvenience, but appreciate you making the change.”
So, there you have it. This is never fun, but it happens so it is best to handle things with grace. Keep your head up and definitely keep dating.