Girl Talk: Navigating the set up scene when it involves two of your friends
As I laid in bed watching reruns of “The Golden Girls” (don’t judge, you know you still laugh at their jokes too) the familiar theme song got stuck in my head. “Thank you for being a friend …” What does it take to be a good friend and how far will you go to help your friends find happiness?
It all started when I received a familiar text from a guy friend.
“Do you have any cute single friends that you can hook me up with?”
This is a simple question with a very complicated answer. If you set friends up, you are making a dangerous gamble. If things work out, fantastic! You will probably end up a bridesmaid in their upcoming nuptials, but if they don’t end up happily ever after, it could mean that you put yourself in the middle of a complicated situation.
What if a fight happens? Do you have to pick a side? Being the middle man is never easy. Depending on your level of friendship with each involved party, you may spend your night playing Dr. Phil to help them work through a problem. You will hear both sides of the story, try to help in any way that you can, but may end up looking like the bad guy if you say the wrong thing.
Even if you tell them you don’t want to get involved, you may discover that you are forced to eventually pick a side or else risk losing both friends. If a break up happens, you then have the awkward discussions with both parties and planning a night out could easily become complicated.
So how do you answer the set up question? I am certainly not a professional matchmaker by any stretch of the imagination, but in the past, I did have a set of friends from two different circles, with similar interests. I assumed my risk was minimal because if things didn’t work out then it was unlikely they’d run into each other. I took the gamble and set them up. That was three years ago and, over the summer, they got engaged.
Now how to handle this new friend who is requesting a set up? Because I still wanted to be a good friend, I went against my own advice and told him about a single, super-fabulous girlfriend of mine. I told her about him, exchanged pictures between the two and am in the process of setting up some sort of date.
I don’t know how it’s going to turn out, I can only hope for the best, but I’ll prepare for the worst. Maybe they will meet and sparks will fly and they can run away to Vegas together to get married. Or maybe they will meet and both look at me like I am crazy for setting them up, either way, I tried.
The lesson of today’s story: don’t set up your friends without first considering the potential outcomes. If you do set up the couple, be prepared to be a bridesmaid or a therapist. Ask yourself if the gamble is worth the risk and if helping people find true love is a good enough award. For me, I am always fighting in love’s corner and will continue to hope for the best.
Melissa Hughes is a 30-year-old single mother of one. Girl Talk started as a telltale horror story of the city’s most epic dating disasters and evolved into a column about love, life experiences and growing up. Melissa has a weekly TV segment on PA Live, WBRE, discussing activities in Weekender and a Girl Talk radio segment every Wednesday on 98.5 KRZ.