This has always been a baffling dilemma in my experience. I meet a guy that I semi-like and my friends are getting together. Do I invite him and bring him along? Are my friends going to be cool with it? Is he going to feel uncomfortable? The combination of answers to these questions is always uncertain, but here are things to consider when this situation arises. Taking notes from my dating history (a volume I like to call Sleeze, Shining Armor, and All the Sex Inbetween) here is a viable thought process for coming to the right conclusion:
Question 1: What are you roughly hoping to get out of this relationship? Is this guy someone you can seriously see being around for any respectable amount of time or is he just cool to hang around and fool around with for a short time? Any serious prospective beau should have the opportunity to be introduced to your friends and vice-versa because your friends will always be looking out for your best interest and they may see red flags that your rose-tinted glasses will shroud. Trust me.
If this is just a guy to pass some time and fool around with (i.e. a Boy Toy) don’t waste your time. It will in all likelihood be awkward all around and you could just have a better time being with your friends. If it’s just the ladies hanging out, you can shamelessly share all the juicy details of your fling.
Question 2: Will your friends be okay with him coming along? This question deals more with time than anything. How long have you guys been seeing each other? The best conclusion you can come to for this question is to a.) consider how comfortable you are introducing him (go with your gut!) and b.) ask your friends!
I have been in this situation very recently with a friend who went on a date with a guy and then immediately wanted to introduce him to us. Against our opinions she invited him anyway and while it wasn’t bad by any means and he seemed to be a very likeable guy, I would still say that it was a bit too early. You need to put a good deal of time into getting to know a person before throwing him into the lions’ den.
Question 3: Is he an introvert or an extrovert? This may be the most important question. My boyfriend of nine months is a hyper introvert and I had to learn very quickly how serious a factor this is. This question will determine a multitude of things: how long you should wait, how many and what sort of friends you should introduce him to initially, under what situations to include him, and how often you should invite him along.
In my case, it would have been the worst case scenario to immediately introduce him to all of my friends at once at a loud party. Unfortunately this is pretty close to what I did and while we laugh about it today, the poor guy was pretty overwhelmed the entire time. If he’s the type of guy that wants to mingle and be everyone’s best friends, this is the opportune time to debut your budding relationship.
Introducing your SO is almost always going to contain some sort of awkwardness, so you want to identify and eradicate as much opportunity there is for this as possible.
So, dear readers, I ask you: what are your horror stories about meeting or introducing? Or even being in the group of friends meeting your friend’s new SO? What factors do you think should be taken into consideration on this matter? Are there factors to consider or does it simply just depend on your gut and the opportunity?