DEAR KELLY: My boyfriend has a crazy long “Snapstreak” with his ex’s best friend, and I don’t think it’s OK. He says they’re just friends and I shouldn’t be upset because nothing has ever happened between them. I don’t think its OK for a guy to talk with his ex-girlfriend’s best friend, whom I bet still wants them to be together every day. Their streak is like 256 and he said they want to get to 300 or something like that. They had that goal since the beginning when they watched the movie “300” (or something like that) one of the first times they hung out.
She doesn’t like me and I don’t know if she says mean things about me to him. I’m guessing she does, so the whole thing makes me feel weird because I know she’s lied before and stirred things up with other people I know. We’ve only been going out for a month, so I feel kind of weird for telling him what to do, but I also feel like it’s the right thing to do if we are a couple. Help me with what to do.
DEAR GIRLFRIEND: At the heart of the issue is your fears. Fear he may still have feelings for his ex, fear his ex’s friend will talk him into breaking up with you or share untruths about you or say something to create drama between the two of you. And while they may seem like legitimate fears, they are yours to handle and figure out. Learning to manage or control these fears is not easy, but it an important part of being in a relationship.
Being a couple doesn’t give you the right to dictate who your boyfriend can and can’t talk to. The goal in a healthy relationship is never to tell your partner what to do, but to tell them how something makes you feel and why whatever they are doing has caused this feeling in you. For example, instead of saying, “You can’t do it,” a better approach would be to say, “It makes me feel uncomfortable and unsure of our relationship when you continue to talk with so-and-so because I worry she says thing that are not true or mean about me.” After that, it’s up to the other person to listen, then decide if they want to stop doing it or choose to continue and hopefully explain to you why they made the choice they did. Telling your partner what to do only creates resentment and makes the other person feel like you are trying to control them.
You’ve been going out for a month, right? Doesn’t that tell you he likes you? How does he treat you, Snapchat aside? Has he ever given you a reason to not trust him? Has he been honest, loyal and kind to you so far? If so, why cause a big fuss over a Snapchat? I hear your concerns but it’s just a streak. It’s not as if he’s ditching you to hang out with her or you think he’s cheating with her. Simply put, they have a streak and it represents a goal they set many months ago. She is his friend (yes, she is friends with his ex-girlfriend too) but he is allowed to have friends without you getting jealous because he is talking to another girl.
If you really like this guy, trust him enough to be OK with a Snapchat streak. A lot of people do simple Snaps every day between friends to keep their streaks going. Don’t assume she’s talking about you unless have heard it for him directly. Have you asked him if she does? Or what their Snaps look like? Are they long Snaps every day or just a quick check-in to keep the streak going?
Your relationship is new. Getting all worked up over this won’t serve you. If you go down the road of “You can’t talk to her,” your journey together may be short. Telling him who he can and can’t talk to will become an issue. Trust me on that one. Just because he is friends with his ex doesn’t mean she is out to get you. Be careful of all the assumptions you seem to be making. Remember, there is often a big difference between what you know and what you think you know. Never jump to conclusions because you never know where you might land.