I have mastered the art of third wheeling.
I am in this weird, happy, content stage in my life where I am not actively looking for a relationship and just truly enjoying this part of the journey. I say “weird” because that is weird for me and something I don’t think anyone thought would ever happen. I’m just content.
As happy as I am Ridin’ Solo, the reality is, the majority of my friends are married or in serious relationships. For most people, this severely limits the amount of time and types of things you can do with your friends, because they obviously need couple time and have to nurture their relationship frequently by doing boring married things like stay at home together. But if you follow these 6 strategies, you won’t have to only meet your friend for after work coffee or a quick-rushed dinner.
1. Choose your couples carefully
This is perhaps the most important piece of advice. There are simply some couples you will not have third wheel chemistry with. Let them go. You have no future with them. Move on. You can still be friends with half of the couple, but sometimes that other person just grinds your gears. There are tons of other couple pairs that are a perfect match for you. There is an exact science to third wheeling, but that science cannot be explained. You feel it. If there is no chemistry, then move on.
2. Get the perks of the relationship, without the drama
I just finished drinking a Sonic Milkshake with Oreos that my roommate’s boyfriend brought us. I shot him a text and said “Hey can you bring us ice cream?” Last weekend, I had dinner with my best friend Sami and her husband, Josh. The couples will usually feel like total jerks if they buy their own dinner and make you pick up yours on your own, so I typically get my meals financed by the couple. I also bring my car to Belle Tire about once every 3 weeks for Josh to fix. He loves this and so do I. I only have to clean up after one, have all the benefits of being single and independent, but also get taken care of as if I am in a relationship. I actually think my friends’ husbands are probably more ready for me to meet someone than I am. I’ve got pretty sweet deal currently.
3. Shake things up
If possible, make one of the people in the relationship feel as if THEY are in fact, the third wheel. Sami and I do this really well by talking about things that her husband doesn’t know about or have any interest in. Many times, it feels as if Sami and I are the couple, and he is the outsider. I know for a fact, other significant others of my best friends have felt this way, as well. (Sorry Eric…love you!) This secures your spot with them, because then you have that position of power and suddenly they might start thinking that you are, in fact, a part of their relationship.
4. Find a common interest
There will be some couples you feel so at ease with, you are able to lounge around and do nothing and have fun. Other times, you will need a common interest to break the ice and keep things lively. Baseball? Boats? Food? A genre of music or movies? Find something you all can share together that will unite you as a wonderful trifecta.
5. Keep them entertained
Sometimes I think my married friends only keep me around for the stories. They remember the days of being single, and they THRIVE on the stories of dating and complex love triangles. It is not just the wives, either. Plenty of the husbands enjoy being involved in the ups and downs of my dating life, knowing the key players by name and giving their two cents and advice. If you stop being entertaining, they might not want to keep you around anymore, so keep the stories coming.
6. Know the limits
You must master the art of knowing when you have JUST ABOUT overstayed your welcome in their relationship, and leave right before they realize it. That is key. You don’t ever want them to get to the point where they realize it is time for you to go home. Beat them to it.
In all seriousness, thank you to my AMAZING friends and their INCREDIBLE, LOVING husbands and boyfriends that treat me with love and respect and put up with me crashing their houses, telling unreal stories and eating their food. Me and my future husband will babysit for you, all the time, for free.
Look on the bright side 😉
Blessings not chins