Page 1 of 1 [ 12 posts ] 

aleclair
Velociraptor
Velociraptor

User avatar

Joined: 18 Oct 2006
Age: 30
Gender: Male
Posts: 457
Location: Brooklyn NY

07 Mar 2010, 11:27 pm

As all of my friends enter relationships, I am thrust upon hanging out with not just them, but their girlfriends or boyfriends.

As an example, say I've got plans with friend "x" tomorrow, made well in advance, so as not to collide with any spontaneous schedule changes. Closer to the date of when we're planned to hang out, I am asked if my friend's girlfriend comes along. Of course, I don't want to ruin the friendship, so I let her.

This specific example hasn't happened - more often, they just show up unannounced, or in some cases, it's merely expected that they show up.

During the whole time, I can only think, "why didn't the two of you just go on a date without me? That would have been a million times more productive for all of us!" In fact, today, I explicitly told my friend this after nine hours of chauffeuring him and his girlfriend, who both sat in the back seat, leaving me alone in the front. Typically, I expect "sympathy" responses along the lines of "Believe me, you were welcome" or "That needed to happen" - but this time, he bluntly agreed that I may have been right. In fact, several times during the course of today, I simply got up and left, and the two of them seemed to have the best times while I left for thirty-minute intervals.

I can only contrast to when I actually had a girlfriend and one of my friends had to play third wheel, we did everything we could so my friend or friends wouldn't feel awkward, which one time even entailed separating from my girlfriend for several hours (that is a different story entirely, and ended up being quite funny. But digressions!)

The glaring irony is that when I had a girlfriend, I had only played "third wheel" once in my life, and that one time is still rather atypical in a now full history. So it wasn't from any "I've felt this before" sympathy that I tried, but it was from that I merely thought the idea was to hang out with friends, not to have my friends worship me and my girlfriend.

But this is just frustrating. We're well aware, as educated and mature humans, that life isn't all about relationships, but when people have them, they can't help but flaunt them in your face - even if it certainly isn't the intention (it's none of my friends' intentions for certain. I can't speak of yours). The classic argument is that relationships take a full-time commitment, exhausting effort, money, and (perhaps most important?) dumb luck. Thus, if you're - I don't know - taking six college classes, or if you're working all the time, or whatever!, where's the time and motivation for a relationship? Why does it matter exactly? And then seeing all my friends in relationships just makes it more and more difficult to keep the face of Logic. It's a classic game of "which of these people is most unlike the others?"

I'm currently down to having exactly one friend I know to be single. Perhaps two, but that's a different story. And watch as somehow, he manages to get into a relationship and disappear (okay, not exactly) as well.

Any comments, or additions to the (so far one-sided) discussion on the idea of third wheels?



SamwiseGamgee
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 18 Jan 2009
Age: 33
Gender: Female
Posts: 1,387
Location: Canada

08 Mar 2010, 12:43 am

I've only had two friends who were in a relationship while we were friends. The one guy would bring along his boyfriend when we were meant to hang out and it really bothered me because I hate unexpected people, and especially people I don't know. It was always awkward hanging out with just the two of them because they were all touchy-feely and a lot of the time I felt they would prefer if I weren't there (even when we were at my house! They managed to make me feel uncomfortable in my own home!). The other friend I had who was in a relationship kind of ditched all her friends for her new boyfriend, so I never had to deal with being the 3rd wheel in that situation, just the ditched best friend :(

I'm always the awkward outsider though, whenever there's a group of 3 I never feel like I belong there. Even if the other two are just friends, I feel they're better friends than me and whichever person I know, and that I just shouldn't be intruding on their space. And of course this feeling is magnified for every person added to the group, unless a person is added who I know. If I know 2 people in a group I am usually a lot more comfortable. But now I've gone off topic, although I'm not too sure I was ever on topic to begin with.


_________________
My dream is to one day know what my dream is.
~Michael Novotny


hale_bopp
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 2 Nov 2004
Gender: Female
Posts: 17,054
Location: None

08 Mar 2010, 12:43 am

I'm no stranger to the whole third wheel thing, my best friend has had continuous boyfriends for the past 10 years.

Its pretty selfish of them draging along their GF or BF, can't they just do stuff on their own? Everyone knows that no-one wants your stupid girlfriend there. If I was the girlfriend I would NOT do that because it just ruins a friends fun time together.

I'm sorry, let them live their "young love" and dont be there for them when it all falls apart, if they're going to be selfish all the time.



Hector
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 10 Mar 2008
Age: 33
Gender: Male
Posts: 2,493

08 Mar 2010, 12:53 am

I guess I was lucky; many of my close friends in college had girlfriends all the way through, but unless you were looking out for it at a late-night party you couldn't see them making out with a girl. I hardly did, anyway. They were really quite discreet about it.



Bataar
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 18 Sep 2008
Age: 41
Gender: Male
Posts: 1,770
Location: Seattle, WA

08 Mar 2010, 2:21 am

Usually, when I have a friend who starts seriously dating someone, the friendship between us ends. It's not anything bitter, it's just that they don't have time to be what I consider a friend.



Gremmie
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 3 Aug 2008
Age: 33
Gender: Female
Posts: 914
Location: England

08 Mar 2010, 3:59 am

Completely sympathise here. Having friends who suddenly turn into couples and have no life outside eachother is frankly rubbish. I have a boyfriend but we're very independent compared to my friends and their boyfriends/girlfriends so I often seem to end up being the 3rd (5th, 7th) wheel anyway. It's not that they're not nice people either. I'd be happy going out with couples if they tried not sitting next to eachother and not slipping into couply murmuring (i.e. treated eachother just as friends for a bit).

Maybe if your friend actually agreed it might have been better to just go on a date with his girlfriend rather than the two of them plus you he might be able to see your viewpoint and go without her next time? Possibly make plans with them for just a couple of hours so they can actually survive being apart for that long? Maybe try organising something no girls allowed? Occasionally we manage to organise actual girly nights so no boyfriends can come to those.



MichelleRM78
Deinonychus
Deinonychus

User avatar

Joined: 1 Mar 2010
Age: 41
Gender: Female
Posts: 303
Location: Wisconsin

08 Mar 2010, 9:22 am

I was single for a long time after my divorce. I dated a lot, but never found the "right guy." My friends are all married or involved. They invited me out as the "3rd wheel" a lot- not because they couldn't spend time without each other, but because they wanted me to be a part of their life-- and that meant being involved with their partner. It was also a way of saying "we have plans, but we really do want you around, even if you don't have a date."

I suppose, for some, its important to have time with *just* your friend, but remember that your friends' lives are changing and growing-- and they want you to be a part of that growth. I would have a problem if my boyfriend had friends that would only go out with him and wanted nothing to do with us as a couple. To me, that would almost seem like the friend is trying to undermine the relationship.



musicboxforever
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 21 Dec 2009
Age: 56
Gender: Female
Posts: 518

08 Mar 2010, 10:41 am

I feel like a third wheel alot of the time. Most of my friends have got married now and even my little sister is engaged. Although, my sister and her fiance are even driving our other friends who are couples mad because they are just so into each other to the exclusion of everyone else.

I was dreading going to a wedding at the weekend just passed, because I never have anyone to dance with. But I didn't realise that one of our other friends was going too, he is single and seems to have stopped spending time with our wee group because he is a bit of a third wheel too, poor guy doesn't really like dancing, so at least I had someone to sit with this time, but we totally understand this third wheel stuff.



Gremmie
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 3 Aug 2008
Age: 33
Gender: Female
Posts: 914
Location: England

08 Mar 2010, 10:55 am

MichelleRM78 wrote:
I was single for a long time after my divorce. I dated a lot, but never found the "right guy." My friends are all married or involved. They invited me out as the "3rd wheel" a lot- not because they couldn't spend time without each other, but because they wanted me to be a part of their life-- and that meant being involved with their partner. It was also a way of saying "we have plans, but we really do want you around, even if you don't have a date."

I suppose, for some, its important to have time with *just* your friend, but remember that your friends' lives are changing and growing-- and they want you to be a part of that growth. I would have a problem if my boyfriend had friends that would only go out with him and wanted nothing to do with us as a couple. To me, that would almost seem like the friend is trying to undermine the relationship.


You do make a good point, although I guess it's something that changes with age and maturity to some extent. It probably is a lot to do with the particular couple and how they behave. At the moment I find that with some couples I can be perfectly happy spending time with just the two of them, and with others I'm made to feel like an unwanted extra.



musicboxforever
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 21 Dec 2009
Age: 56
Gender: Female
Posts: 518

08 Mar 2010, 11:20 am

It's not so much that they deliberately make me feel unwanted though, it's more that when we are out they can drift off together at times (like danding together) and I feel lonely. I want to be part of their lives even though they are couples, they are my friends, but it feels like everyone else has moved on with their life and I haven't.



CockneyRebel
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 17 Jul 2004
Age: 45
Gender: Male
Posts: 102,078
Location: Hanging out with my fellow Sweet Peas at Stalag 13

13 Mar 2010, 3:19 pm

I remember being the third wheel in a relationship. I had two favourite people from my clubhouse, that I used to hang out with, when I first started going there. The three of us went to Dairy Queen, every time that we went to a local outing to a beach, with a group from the clubhouse. I've found out a year later, that they were married. The guy was kissing me on the cheek the whole time, too. 8O


_________________
Schultz

Kanye West 2020

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=26&start=645


RightGalaxy
Veteran
Veteran

User avatar

Joined: 21 Dec 2008
Age: 60
Gender: Female
Posts: 2,617

15 Mar 2010, 9:14 am

The one thing I didn't appreciate about constantly being a third wheel is when they make out in front of you...I didn't just drop in on them, they'd call me and invite me over or have you drive them to the park at night and you sit behind the wheel while they jump in the back seat and have sex. That's when I realized I needed new friends. But if a close friend respects you like this, there's no better revenge than to see their lover with someone else. Not only that, but to see their lover almost crap their pants when they see you. I extorted a guy for close to 200 dollars just to keep my mouth shut. I did keep it shut. I felt my friend really wasn't my friend for disrespecting me like she did. As for the guy, I viewed him as a punk. This was back in the early eighties.