Partner play dates - is it important for you and your bestie's baes to get along and spend time together?
It may not be a popular term but you and your bestie may have been guilty of setting up each others partners to hang out because the thought of your SO and hers being besties seems like the perfect dream.
Play dates are usually set up for children so does a partner play date sound like a good idea? Well, according to relationship and family registered counsellor Mimi Hewett you may want to let go of the idea because it could be disastrous for a number of reasons.
Mimi says, "It is very nice if couples can double date and have fun together and enjoy each other’s company, but when people don’t like each other and do not have anything in common, it can be very difficult to sit through an evening, just to keep your partner happy," she explains.
In some cases, she explains that you may not notice that they don't like each other because they would have concealed their discomfort for your sake and happiness.
Mimi also says that in some cases it may even cause a rift between you and your best friend if your boyfriend play date does not go as planned. "It could also cause the [partners] to not want to engage in another date with the other couple and that could possibly result in the [besties] to decide to side with their [partners] and see each other less often," she says.
And if you think about it, you setting up a partner play date could essentially be seen as you picking their friends - more like a parent would and that is not what a relationship is about.
Mimi explains that we need to remember that relationships are about respecting each other's differences and "and each other’s right to choose their own friends." Choosing who your partner hangs out with, even if it comes from an innocent place could lead to resentment and the relationship ultimately coming to an end.
So are these play dates a complete no no?
Mimi says they can only work if both partners agree to it. "What’s most important, is to remember that both partners are supposed to be seen as equal in the relationship, so both should have the right to say if they feel uncomfortable in the company of someone and the couple should be able to discuss it as equals and reach an agreement that will work for both," she explains.
So you can start by asking your partner how they feel about the idea and if they are not into it, let it go and stick to double dates or hanging out with your bestie separately.
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