Ian Kerner, a popular psychiatrist and sexologist, in a much recent Cosmo issue revisited why one should not have their S.O. [significant other] as their BFF. You heard that right!
My shelves used to generally be stacked with popular relationship advice blogs, magazines, and articles which support so many theories for general learning. One such awesome theory that had consumed a large chunk of both, my magazine pages and my mind was, “Why your partner should be your BFF”. And much likely than always, I went on to believe this.
But your life comes crashing down if one day you suddenly come to a realisation that your entire life has been a lie and that your belief system about the need to having a BFF partner is a fad. A mere fad!
It is natural to have consideration towards your best friend and looking a partner in him or her – somebody who knows you through and through, someone with similar interests, someone who isn’t judgmental, someone who is likeminded and someone with whom you can share everything, with whom you have this basic mutual understanding.
Several arguments and perceptions support why a partner should be your best friend; it explains how you are more aware of each other’s relationship history that you see each other in their true form, and those fights and disagreements are less damaging.
Debunking the myths, Dr Nahid Dave, a well-known psychiatrist from Mumbai states how a person’s relationship history isn’t of much importance to their present or their future. She further goes on to explain that in our society, we have a very negative approach towards pre-marital sex.
How can you possibly be loyal to a person who hasn’t arrived in your life yet, she says.
She strongly adds that expecting to share or agreeing on everything with your partner is impractical.
Shedding light on the reasons why you must abstain from looking for a partner in your best friend:
A mix between friendship and physical intimacy is an awkward mess
There is a sense of ownership in relationships. You have physical intimacy and attraction, you spend your life with your partner and you can start a family with them. With your BFF, it’s entirely a mess.
It does differentiate a partner from a best friend. In the end, a best friend always remains an outsider whom you just spend your time with and discuss trivial matters and most likely, important ones as well but he is someone who doesn’t play an active role in your life meaning that your personal decision will not directly affect them.
Let people play their role. Like every person in our life has a different role to play like mother, father, friend, husband, wife, son, etc, a partner and a best friend are two different roles and expecting them both in one person is quite unrealistic.
Too much pressure of juggling between the role of a partner and a BFF
Backing Mr Kerner’s theory, Dr Dave suggests, “It puts too much pressure on one relationship. You expect companionship, support, intimacy, physical attraction, similar interests. These are irrational expectations to have.” You can still feel comfortable with your partner even without being his or her BFF, she clarifies.
The reason to most relationship failures is lack of communication. In case your partner is your BFF, you expect them to understand your problems. You expect a sense of telepathy between the two of you. You may expect them to know the things that bother you. These are irrational expectations and there is a need for such things to be communicated within a relationship.
Fights happen. We need outsiders as BFFs then
Dr Dave advises that couples fight with each other having a selfish motive of proving themselves right despite their “best friends” tag. They may fail to realise that they may be wrong and at that place and time, they need to be explained so by a third person, an outsider to their relationship.
In such cases, a best friend can provide an honest, non-judgmental view on the argument. A selfless opinion. But a partner may manipulate his advice in a way that is advantageous to him.
If your partner happens to be your best friend, you basically tend to know everything about them even before you were a couple. There is a lack of the element of surprise and you miss out on discovering new details about a person.
On a closing note, I’d like to fuel my game up with a quote affirmed by Dr Dave:
“Your best friends advice is always free of motive as you don’t share lives, only time, but with your partner, it’s beyond time and emotions that you’re sharing.
It’s your entire life!”
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