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Friends can open eyes or close doors

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Meeting your significant other’s friends is an important step in any relationship.  But it is especially meaningful in a long-distance relationship because it’s an opportunity to size up the kind of people your lover chooses to keep in his or her life, and therefore how sharp their judgment is.

 

When you meet your sweetheart’s buddies, a lot of questions can be immediately answered before any words are exchanged.  If you’ve been wondering why your girlfriend is so quiet and shy, and you were worried that the spark wasn’t there, seeing her act the same way around her friends can illuminate the fact that her natural demeanor is to be low-key and blend in.  Or, if she becomes a fun-loving, louder, more open person, someone you almost don’t recognize, it can be a sign that you need to work harder to break down her walls and get her to open up and enjoy herself in that fashion when it’s just you two.  Or, if your exceedingly polite boyfriend all of a sudden turns into a vulgar comedy club act when he gets around his buddies, it can show that perhaps he’s not the perfect gentleman that he has presented himself to be when you’re having private moments.

Another use for meeting friends is to take the occasion to talk to one of them privately, if you’re able to take one aside, and get a glimpse into your honey’s personality, whether it’s by hearing a story about something that happened in the past or by getting a direct assessment of your significant other’s lifestyle.  For example, her flinching every time you kiss her neck may go unexplained because she’s not ready to go that far into her history.  But her girlfriend can explain to you that her high-school boyfriend drove her crazy nibbling her there, and perhaps she’s reminded of that when you come near her hotspot.

I remember when my fiancée came to brunch with me and two buds at Grandma Sally’s, 7301 North Avenue in River Forest, IL.  One of my friends had known me since first grade, so over delicious apple pancakes, he was able to fill her in on some of my personality quirks as well as some crazy stories about our adventures in elementary school.   He reflected well on me by being a gentleman and not telling dirty or bawdy tales.  She reflected well on me by picking up the check.  And we all came away happy with each other, as well as with the food.

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