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Woman Seeks Advice On How To Tell Her Best Friend She's Falling For Her Boyfriend — 'Trying To Ignore Our Feelings Would Cause More Pain'

Photo: Shutterstock / conrado
A woman is holding a man's friend behind his partner's back.

Cheating is never okay, but sometimes feelings develop from it that can't be ignored. A 26-year-old woman found herself in this complicated situation when she developed feelings for her best friend's boyfriend. And he even felt the same!

She turned to Reddit's "r/relationship_advice," described as a place for "romance, friendship, family, co-workers, or basic human interaction," for guidance.

She is seeking advice on how to tell her best friend she's falling for her boyfriend.

She had been close friends with 'Amber' since they were nine years old. Amber has been in a relationship with Steven for five years — a man that the woman got along well with, but didn't spend much time around initially. After college, they all went their separate ways.

However, when Steven's job relocation landed him in the same city where she lived, and Amber stayed behind due to her own work commitments, things took an unexpected turn.

tell best friend she's falling for her boyfriend reddit postPhoto: Reddit

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"Six months ago Steve started a job in the city ... he moved here but she stayed because of her job," she wrote. 

As circumstances would have it, she began spending more time with Steve. Their friendship took on new dimensions and sparks began to fly between them. The chemistry was palpable, and both tried their best to ignore it out of respect for Amber, who was delighted that her best friend and boyfriend were getting along so well.

"It was actually encouraged by Amber who loved that we were getting along," she wrote. 

Unfortunately, things escalated one night, and they ended up sleeping together.

"We talked about what this means for us and Amber ... We are going to pursue things and see where this goes but first we are going to tell Amber," she wrote. 

The response to her post was overwhelmingly negative, condemning her actions.

Many pointed out that pursuing a relationship would only lead to more hurt for everyone involved. One person pointed out the woman's apparent lack of "remorse."

"You're not remorseful at all," they wrote. "On top of that you're going to pursue a relationship with him?? Are you kidding me??" 

friend slept with best friends boyfriend reddit post commentPhoto: Reddit

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In response, the woman defended herself. 

"I am remorseful, if I wasn't this wouldn't be so difficult for me. I didn't expect my feelings to grow as strong as they did," she wrote.

Another person suggested it's never too late to backtrack on their decision to start a relationship together. "It would help. It is not too late to undo the decision to pursue a relationship," they wrote.

However, she replied, seemingly not convinced. "If you can convince me that not pursuing a relationship would help anything, please tell me," she wrote.

Knowing how to act after your significant other cheats on you is difficult.

C. Mellie Smith is a "former betrayed spouse who was able to pick up the pieces and move on with her life after several affairs rocked her marriage." Smith told YourTango in May 2017 of things to do when your partner cheats. Firstly, she recommends not to "make any hasty decisions."

"You might want to leave him in hysterics or run back into his arms immediately. Slow down and let the dust start to settle before taking any decisive action," she wrote.

On top of that, she recommends "practic[ing] proper self-care" and "don't try to predict the future. "She cites the latter as a "crucial part of the healing process, partly because it keeps you open to possibilities for growth and partly because it keeps you from being paralyzed with anxiety." 

Of course, Amber's situation is much different because her boyfriend didn't cheat on a stranger, but her best friend! So, she has to know how to approach both her relationship with her boyfriend and friend.

According to a September 2023 article from Brides, 55 percent of relationships "[end] immediately after one partner admits to cheating."

Unfortunately, Amber's relationship will most likely not survive since her boyfriend readily admits to having feelings for her friend. Sadly, the friendship will likely suffer, as well. As Antoinette Beauchamp, a certified leadership coach specializing in communication and relationship management, explained to PsychCentral, “having an authentic friendship will be difficult — and the pain will likely resurface, causing another argument later.”

Hopefully, she can find her own happily ever after — and a new best friend.

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Ethan Cotler is a writer and frequent contributor to YourTango living in Boston. His writing covers entertainment, news, and human interest stories.