Don’t you find it frustrating how friends change when they get into a relationship? I certainly do.
As much as I can understand why they change, it’s still disheartening. Your friends and you were once inseparable but now, they’re hardly in the picture anymore or a shadow of their old selves. This leaves you with one burning question, why do friends change when they get into a relationship?
Most of the time, the answer is in the question itself. The relationship has influenced and changed your friend.
They say that the average person is the sum total of the 5 closest people in his or her life.
Being in a romantic relationship dictates being as close to someone as one can be.
It’s only natural for your friend to be influenced by their relationship and partner. Whether the result of that change is good or bad is dependent on a number of factors.
With that being said, let’s take a look at some of the reasons why friends change when they get into a relationship.
1. They are easily influenced
Unfortunately, friends who are easily influenced often can’t differentiate properly between good and bad influencers.
They’re possibly too gullible or just naive. Given that they love their partner, it’s not uncommon to find your friends placing their girlfriends or boyfriends on pedestals.
By doing so, anything they say or do is not subjected to basic scrutiny in situations that call for it.
Even if their partner encourages them to do morally or ethically questionable things, they won’t necessarily stop to evaluate whether it’s a good or bad thing.
That’s when you begin to notice a friend doing things that are seemingly out of character.
They haven’t necessarily become bad people, they’re just wearing rose-tinted glasses that inhibit their ability to identify situations when their partner is having a negative influence on them.
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2. They lose their identity and individuality
Getting consumed by an all demanding and intense relationship comes with a heavy price – your identity and individuality.
Rather than maintain the character and identity you once honed, you become a product of your relationship.
The way you think, speak and act is suddenly controlled by that very relationship.
This, in turn, ruins your ability to lead a balanced life. Your enjoyment of things you once valued and cherished takes a hit as well.
What makes this truly concerning is that without the relationship, what are you? Who are you?
Your friend may not realize the dangers of surrendering his or her identity to the relationship.
By doing so, their entire purpose and happiness in life are dependent on that relationship.
Unfortunately, this will only influence your friend to be more consumed by that relationship. And the vicious cycle commences. I’ve literally witnessed people destroy decade-old friendship because they lose sight of what’s important and become obsessive about their relationship.
The problem is that no single person should ever be responsible for your happiness. Until your friends realize this, there’s really nothing anyone can do to restore balance to their lives.
3. The friendship was built on convenience
Sometimes, a friend changes not because of their relationship but because they were never a real friend.
This actually happens more often than I’d like to admit.
Friendships of convenience are tough to see coming.
They usually start off when someone has been through a breakup. Being single forces them to seek out comfort and who better than from friends who are understanding and distracting.
When a friendship is built on that foundation, it’s not surprising to me when it crumbles the minute a friend finds a new partner.
I’m sorry to say this but their friendship was merely temporary. They needed friends to temporarily fill the void in their life until they could find someone who can give them non-platonic love.
Thus, the change in behavior simply stems from a lack of genuine care for the friendship.
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4. They develop new interests
Not all change is bad. Relationships are meant to help us grow as people. And your friends could be growing with their partners and discovering new interests that they find joy in.
These new interests may take up more of their time.
And that’s okay. At the end of the day, if your friends are becoming better human beings and they discover new interests that make them truly happy, it’s a good thing.
You should always be rooting for them to find happiness, joy and success. Even if that means that their lives take a different direction than before.
So long as it’s good for them, be supportive of this change.
5. They don’t have enough time and have more responsibilities
As much as relationships can be wonderful and fun, they are equally as demanding and time-consuming.
It takes a lot of energy and commitment to be nurturing a good relationship.
As it develops, your friends take on new responsibilities that may consume more chunks of their time and focus.
This is just a natural part of life and relationships.
The older we get, the more responsibilities we take on.
And these responsibilities often mold us into different people. They bring about change. Often, they make us more mature, compassionate, focused and realistic about our lives.
Wait and watch until your friends start to get married. They’ll change even more and take on a host of new responsibilities.
You’ll experience the same thing once you enter a new relationship that consistently grows and becomes more serious.
Related post: How to tell if someone is your friend
Can you get your friend back?
Honestly, you have two options at your disposal:
- Accept your friend for who they have become.
- Walk away or keep your distance.
You really have to be honest with yourself and your friend. This is the only way in which you can avoid developing feelings of resentment for each other.
People change and so will you too.
It can either be for the better or for the worse.
I would advise you to remain patient with your friend. If he or she is in a new relationship, the honeymoon phase could be having an effect on them. Once things normalize, you’ll start to see more of your friend and you’ll get back into a familiar zone.
If not, well then you can adapt to the change or you can choose to let things fizzle out. One thing is for certain, communication is the key to fixing most friendship problems.
The choice is completely up to you. If the friendship is still worth it, try your best to remain patient and supportive.
With that being said, I hope you found this article to be insightful and helpful. If you have any more questions on why do friends change when they get into a relationship, feel free to leave them in the comment section below.