Good friends are hard to come by. Great friends are even harder. It takes so long to build that special bond we have with our friends; from those secret inside jokes to the comfort and security that they provide us.
But what happens when we change the dynamic of our relationship from friends to dating. Is it ever a good idea?
If you have ever watched the show "Friends" you will know that Chandler and Monica and Ross and Rachel were all friends before they got together. (Spoiler alert if you haven’t seen the show). They were the best friends who just so happened fall in love. And they made it work. Does this happen with every situation? Well, unless your relationship plays out in a studio in Burbank, California, then yes. Otherwise, not so much.
We know we already love our friends. We trust them. We care for them. But sometimes taking the "next step" and becoming a couple can hinder the relationship you took so long to build. Just like when people say, "Don’t move in with your best friend if you want to remain friends", this same message may be true when it comes to dating.
Take a look at your past relationships. Are you still friends with your ex? Still cordial even? I didn’t think so. When we break up with our partners, we have all these negative feelings towards them; bitterness, resentment, and even hatred. Once the relationship has ended, we cut them out of our lives, delete their numbers, and remove their friendship on Facebook. You met them, and then you dated them. You were never friends first, so there is no reason for you to be friends after.
So, when dating your friend, how do you go about making sure you will remain friends forever? Sure, you can tell them that things won’t get weird, and that you will always be friends, but a relationship can change anything. You know how they are as a friend, but you don’t know how they are as a boyfriend or girlfriend.
On the other hand, it could be amazing. People always say the best relationships come from friendships. But these are the people who it worked out for.
There is not a clear yes or no answer to the question if it is a good idea to date your friend. It depends on the relationship, and as you know, every friendship is different. You may take a chance, and risk losing the best friend you have ever had, but that risk could also lead you to the best relationship you will ever have.
I say trust your instincts and make sure, if at all possible, a friendship can be salvaged from a possible breakup. Go slowly with this new relationship. It will be hard because your first date will seem like your thirtieth, but don’t rush anything. Take the time to really get to know them, not as your friend, but as a partner.
I hope if you decide to take the chance and try and date your friend that it ends up just like Ross and Rachel. Just don’t say anything about going on a break!