I recently moved to be closer to my boyfriend, and it's been really hard on me. All I have is work and him, and haven't been making any real friends. My boyfriend on the other hand gets to have me and his friends close to him, and it's just not fair. I don't like to hang out with him and his friends because all they do is drink and get wasted. They're totally immature and not the kind of people I want to spend time with.
When I want to do things on my own we end up in a lengthy discussion because he gets upset that I want to do things without him. It made me realize that he's really insecure. We're completely compatible when we're alone, but since I don't want to hang out with him and his friends, it causes problems with our social life. How much does that factor and is staying with him holding me back from being fully satisfied as a person — with both a social life and a romantic life?
—Can't Stand His Friends Fran
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Dear Can't Stand His Friends Fran,
Although you are dating your boyfriend, in a way you are also dating his friends because they come with the whole boyfriend package. There's nothing wrong with not liking them, but you shouldn't feel like you have to hang out with them or that you're not allowed to make your own friends.
Your boyfriend has to understand that your feelings for his drinking buddies have nothing to do with how you feel about him. You should be able to hang out with other people, and do the things you love and want to do without him getting upset. He wants you to be happy right? How fair is it that he gets to do what he wants with his friends, but that he gives you the guilt trip when you want to do the same?
Talk to him about how you're feeling and work out a compromise. When he hangs out with his friends, then you can spend time making your own. The only way this relationship will be holding you back is if your boyfriend's words or actions prevent you from doing what you choose to do. If he is constantly convincing you not to live your life the way you want, then that's a controlling behavior and a form of emotional abuse. If that's the case, then you're never going to be happy, and I'd get out of this relationship ASAP. Good luck.