Here we go again.

Okay, I’ve established that we need time with our boys/girls even after we hook up, and that the agreeable ratio is 2:5, where two days go to your girls/boys and 5 days go to your significant other, with some time inbetween for family commitments that you can drag your pals or partner to.

But now I have another question. How do you balance your platonics with your lover? And by lover I mean your missing/extra rib, not your bedmate.

Here’s the thing. Before you started dating/courting/whatever, you had this pal or pals of the opposite sex whom you could tell anything. He’s the guy you dragged shopping with you coz you needed a guy opinion about how that outfit really looks on you, and whether it will really knock your jamaa’s socks off. She’s the girl you tried out your cooking on before risking poison on your significant other, the one who helped you buy a girly gift for the new woman in your life.

This is the person you talked to about crushes, loves, heartbreaks, the works. They have a mental flowchart of proceedings between you and your lover from day one to the current. They have enough blackmail material to blow you out of the water, and you know they’ll never use it. You have done everything but sleep with them [and possibly you’ve done that too, but you are not ‘in’ them right now]

So now it’s official with you and your girl/boyfriend, what happens to this platonic confidante? Do they suddenly fade out of your life? Do you stop sharing intimate secrets with them? Do they back off now that there’s a new Number 1 in your life?

Or tuseme they have acquired a girl/boyfriend of their own. What happens now? I know there are some obvious do’s and don’ts. Like you can no longer call them at 2 am to console you, coz they’re in bed with someone else, and possibly preoccupied, pleasantly or otherwise. You can no longer invade their digs unannounced. You probably have to give back the spare key. And you can no longer drag them shopping for intimates, coz their S/O won’t like it very much.

But what exactly can you do? How do you handle this? Do you tell your S/O that you’re going for lunch with Jack/Jill, your tight pal, do you sneak around to avoid upsetting your lover, or do you stop the lunches altogether?

As the significant other, how do you respond to Jack/Jill? Do you make friends with them to avoid hostility and custody wars? Do you tag along on all their meetings with your S/O? Do you silently seethe with jealousy? Do you ban them from your radius?

You, as the platonic, how do you deal with the S/O? Do you give up all territorial rights to your pal? Do you back off unless or until your pal calls you? What do you do when you desperately need your girl/boy – do you call and let them decide where the line is by turning you down?

Let’s say it’s 3 am, I just had a big fight with my boyfriend, and I really need my boypal to hold me together. Or it’s Vals, and i need to test out my new little black dress. Do I call guy-pal? Or do I respect his girl’s feelings and sort myself?

There’s about a million nightmare scenarios.

1. The girlfriend is uncomfortable with our friendship and tells him to choose. I respectfully stop seeing or calling him. Six months later, it’s my birthday, and it won’t be the same without him, so I call the GFH [girfriend-from-hell] and ask to borrow my boy-pal for a night. She refuses. Do I ignore her and call my boy-pal up, coz I know he won’t say no to me, even though it will cause a major break-up level fight between them?

2. I need a date for a work thing, and he knows me so well, he’d be the perfect one. Do I ask his girl to let me borrow him, or go over her head and ask him myself, risking a major break-up level fight between them?

3. The S/O says I can’t spend any time with my boy-pal unless she chaperones. Do I play along and have her eavesdrop on tales of my latest backfired date, or do I see him behind her back – if he’ll let me – knowing it will cause a major fight of…

4. I am moving and I need him to help me shop for electronics and move my furniture. If I ask her, she’ll say no way. Do I ask him behind her back and…blah blah blah?

Mind you I have nothing against this girl, she’s a darling, and cute too. It’s just that she’s dating my boy, we’re both the jealous type, and I was here first so…

Common sense says don’t discuss your S/O troubles with your best platonic, coz you’ll probably end up in bed together. I mean you know each other really well, so when you start telling this human being (who knows you so well) about another human being (who doesn’t know you as well as they should), you’ll start comparing and things can get tricky.

Common sense also says to keep your S/O out of temptation’s way, which means don’t let them be alone with someone who knows them better than you do. But I imagine trust is something you can’t really fight – if someone wants to cheat, they will, no matter how tight or loose their leash is. People don’t cheat because they can, they cheat because they want to. So there goes your excuse for tagging along on your S/O’s dates with his/her pal for ‘security reasons’.

My longest Ex once told me that he wished I’d dated more before him, coz then I’d know how to do these things. He also told me to go out more and meet more people, coz I’m like the hermit of hermits. I haven’t really mingled much before the internet, and am only now starting to have friends and friends, so now that my friend, my go-to guy, is getting hitched, I’m wondering where the line is.

I mean this is the guy who guides me on everything from hotspots of the male anatomy to demystifying the sock drawer. The one who hugs me when I’m embarassed, and explains the rules of cricket so that I can impress my date. The one who cooks for me when I’m sick and drops everything to help me out. And no, he is not secretly in love with me [i asked, several times], though I am on-and-off-not-so-secretly in lo…I mean lust with him.

All ye of experience at handling these messes, help !

312 thoughts on “Platonic vs S/O – how does this stuff work?

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