In light of the recent posts about not knowing if your man is the one etc.. I was hoping you could give some advice on what to do when you know that your best friend's man isn't the one.
My bff has been with her man for a little under two years. She's always taking about marrying him, and he's always saying how if he can't have her, he won't have anyone. They got together when she was only eighteen (he's mid-late 20s). She's very mature (I mean, we're best friends and I'm in my mid 20s), so ostensibly the age gap isn't that big of a deal. But, she's also the sweetest, most innocent girl I know. (She's also a Christian, and as such values abstinence / purity / etc pretty highly.) Before him she'd never even kissed a guy. Their first date he rams his tongue down her throat, to the point that she cried herself to sleep because she felt so yuck about it. Then, a few days after they're officially together, he tells her that whilst they were dating he slept with someone (on some lad's trip to europe), and then proceeded to put it on my bff to be okay with it and to forgive him. No "sorry I know it hurts you" Or "I'm sorry that I knew how much you respect purity and still did something like that." Then, he proceeded to try and sleep with her at almost every opportunity, and he would always say something like he feels loved by physical touch, making her feel like she needed to be intimate with him or she didn't love him. Now, I don't necessarily agree with her views on things, but I sure as hell respect them, and respect her. And he absolutely doesn't.
Anyway, this has been going on for the entire duration of their relationship. There are many other ways in which he is controlling and manipulative (won't let her see her guy friends, won't come to her friends' social events, but makes her go to all of his (she missed my birthday for one of his friends'), things like that). She tries to talk to him, and he says sorry, but the next opportunity he has, he goes back to his 'old ways.' We talk about it, and she realises how controlling and disrespectful he is, and how crap he is, and how she can do better... but then she sees him, and he does *something* and all of a sudden she's telling me that he finally 'gets it' and they had a good time, and she loves him, and she doesn't want to give up, and he has potential and blah blah blah. This lasts anywhere from 24 hours to two weeks, and then he drops the act, and we repeat the whole cycle. I have been as blunt with her as I can. I have quite literally said (after 12 months of subtlety didn't work) "He isn't going to change. you need to leave him if you want to be happy." But then she still stays with him. He's been so awful to her, she quite literally seems to think this is the best she can do (even though she's the type of girl the boys line up to be with).
I just don't know what to do. He is hurting her so much, but she's just so manipulated by him that even when she sees it, he somehow makes her forget. And I feel like I can't push it any further without her shutting me out.
Please help, if you can.
oh, and p.s. - she didn't tell me about all the crap at the beginning of their relationship for over a year because he said I would disapprove of them if I knew... that's the sort of 'wonderful' man he is.
She really needs to get out -- AWAY FROM HIM -- to be reminded that there are better, cooler, more fun guys in the world.
You say that he won't let her see her male friends, forces her to miss social events, etc. But if you can manage to drag her to a bar or a party or a football game* on occasion, the literal and/or metaphorical fresh air and sunlight will do her good.
Image: Dandi Maestre via Kylea Borges via Karyn Armour
*European football, obv. (Wait. Do women even go to football games in the UK? Are there, like, hipster leagues full of cute guys that play in the park, or is that just in Brooklyn? I'm actually not even sure if you live in the UK. I've got a lot riding on the British spelling of "realises." Which might in fact be a typo.)