Help! My Best Friend Is Dating a Loser

5 ways to get brave and help your friend ditch that loser.
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Help! My Best Friend Is Dating a Loser

5 ways to get brave and help your friend ditch that loser

-Jennifer Gauvain, MSW, LCSW

Loser Boyfriend

“Help! My best friend is dating a loser! What should I do?” As a therapist, that’s a question I hear again and again. Whether it’s friend to friend, mother to daughter, or a sister to sister — we’ve all been there. What do you do?

I recently got a phone call from a woman who was panicked about her sister’s upcoming wedding. “My sister Katie has lost her mind! She’s engaged to a total loser and is about the make the biggest mistake of her life. She’s a brilliant researcher, talented musician and a wonderful friend. Her fiance is out of work and has no ambition. Katie does everything for him. She cooks, she cleans, and she pays his bills while he sits around playing video games all day. I have shared my concerns but she says she loves him and that I simply don’t understand what a great guy he is.”

Unfortunately, Katie’s response is typical. Women put their blinders on when it comes to men and shut out their friend’s comments and concerns. Does that mean we should just keep our mouths shut? Absolutely not!

Do you think your friend is dating a loser? Here are five things you can do to help her see the light:

1. Speak up.
What do you have to lose? There is a good chance your friend will ignore you, but you owe it to her to say something. Yes, she might get defensive or it may damage your friendship. But think about it this way — if she does end up marrying the loser, your friendship will most likely be impacted anyway. Who wants to hang out with an unemployed video-game addict?

2. Validate, then activate.
It’s easier to see the truth from a position of strength rather than weakness. Start off by pointing out some of her best qualities. For example, “I have always admired your compassion for others; you deserve to be treated the same way.” Start with a compliment and she may be more receptive to what you are telling her.


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0 thoughts on “Help! My Best Friend Is Dating a Loser

  1. Strong and Quirky says:

    Great tips! I usually speak my 2 cents, and let my friends decide what to do next. If they stay, at least I can say “I told you he was a loser.” no regrets

  2. rose07 says:

    It’s so hard to speak up, truth hurts.

  3. kisskiss says:

    I had a best friend who dated a loser (MAJOR loser) for almost 3 years. I spoke up from the beginning, unlike our other friends who felt the same way as I did but were too nervous to say anything. It ended up having a really bad impact on our friendship and though in later years she talked about how awful he was our friendship was never the same. Would I do it again? I’m not sure.

  4. beckita says:

    Great advice. It’s so hard to be non-judgmental, though. I have a friend in a similar situation- only she’s married! http://toxicwastecloud.com/category/tags/advice

  5. firecracker80 says:

    Where was this article when I was in college? My best friend dated an insecure, possesive loser for 5 years. He hated all of her friends because he was afraid we would introduce her to other guys and she would leave him (I can’t say the thought never crossed my mind). I threw her a “welcome back” party when they broke up.

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