It's one thing to dislike the guy your BFF brings home for the holidays — but it's another thing entirely to stand idly by when she says "I do" to the wrong dude. So if you have a serious fire burning inside you for your friend's beau, should you ever say anything?
Irene S. Levine, Ph.D., psychologist and creator of The Friendship Blog, says that in an ideal scenario, "you'll express any misgivings long before the wedding day." Ask your friend for an hour of her time, during which you can "be specific about your concerns rather than using a broad brush to smear the guy or saying you don't like him without an explanation," Levine advises.
But if you can't connect with your friend before she's chosen her wedding dress, you need to consider your timing before launching into a heart-to-heart talk, Levine warns. "What is motivating you now?" she asks. "Could you possibly be harboring jealousy? Do you feel like the forthcoming marriage will have negative repercussions for your friendship?"
If you find your motivations are true, says Christine Arylo, motivational speaker and author of Choosing Me Before We, it's often best to approach this conversation with questions. "Instead of sharing your feelings and your opinions, it can be most helpful to ask your friend questions like, 'are you happy?' or 'what do you imagine your life with this man will be like?' or 'how do you feel about [insert concerning situation here]," she suggests. If your friend won't take the bait, you get a pass to be less delicate — despite your less-than-ideal timing. "This is the one time and one time only you can tell you friend the flat-out truth the way you see it — no holding back," Arylo says. "You of course have to let her know you are playing this card out of love for her and you just needed to say what you see."
See More: How to Help Your Newly Engaged Friend
Levin also warns that even with the best intentions, having this kind of talk could harm your relationship with your friend. "It may damage your friendship if your friend feels like you are interfering or overstepping your bounds as a friend, you are misreading the relationship between her and the guy, or if she takes it as a personal attack," she explains. "Your friend may also feel like you are placing her in the middle — and that she has to choose sides between you and him." So tread through any talk with those consequences in mind.
Adds Arylo, "There is no doubt that this is not easy. But the most important thing is to remember you are not here to convince her. You are here to love her and to support her. If there is something wrong, chances are she already knows it deep inside. She just may not be able to admit it to herself."