He would borrow their cars all the time. He didn't have a car himself, living very close to campus he didn't need one. Every time we saw each other, he was driving one of his friend's cars. I thought that seemed extraordinarily generous. He also would borrow their cell phones, their leather jackets, and he even told me about some MAJOR money that had been leant to him in the past. He said his friends would do anything for him.
Except meet me, it seemed. We'd been dating for weeks and I still hadn't meant any of his friends save for that one guy on our first date. I hinted, I hemmed and hawed, I nudged - still no luck. Then I outright asked and it was his turn for hemming and hawing. What was the deal?
It seemed like he thought I was weird for wanting to meet his friends. When he talked about it, he made it seem like even his friends thought it was weird. I couldn't figure it out - what could be weird about meeting your boyfriend's friends after you'd been dating for many weeks?
I guess I finally talked about it enough. A date was planned. He and his passel of best friends and me and my friend Marie were going to go out. An activity. Together. Fine.
The agony. What should I wear, what are they going to be like? Why didn't they want to meet me in the first place? Thank god for Marie. I often think that if she hadn't been there to encourage me, I might not have ended up marrying M. (And in more ways that just that day!)
So, butterflies in my stomach, we all went out together. It was nice. It seemed like a job interview. But somehow of them, not me. I went around the room, talking to each one a little bit at them time. They seemed like they were trying to be on their best behavior. The guy who'd I'd already met was the most comfortable with me, but they all seemed pretty uncomfortable to be there.
I learned later that even though most of them had dated, they had never brought any of the various girls around their friends. And I guess none of the girls ever harped on it as much as I did. They were uncomfortable because nothing like this had ever happened before.
We made it through the night. Eventually, it would get better. Mostly because I was just around so often, I started getting included in plans M had with his friends. They still kept their distance for a while, but at some point it seemed like I was almost one of the guys. Well, not really that much, I guess - but something more than just 'tolerated'.
I know now that they didn't approve. They had been trying to get M out of his shell for a while, and it had finally worked, and he was sticking with this girl? They thought he could do better, but at the very least he should be doing MORE. They expected that he would move on from me, or even if he wanted to continue hanging out with me, he should be looking for other girls too.
Luckily he didn't tell me this until we were married. And after he'd broken ties with those friends entirely. Because they told him not to marry me.