Originally created 10/24/06

Girl doesn't have to spend all her time with boyfriend

THIS WEEK'S PROBLEM: I've been dating my boyfriend for four months.

My friend gets jealous because I hang out with him instead of hanging out with her all the time.

She says I spend too much time with him and though he's not complaining, he thinks so, too.

His friends don't like seeing me with him. ... He says he doesn't care whether I spend a lot of time with him. What should I do?

XTREME REPORTER KAMILLE BOSTiCK SAYS: It's great to have a boyfriend, but you shouldn't ignore the people who made space for you in their life before you had a steady date.

If your boyfriend is saying you're spending too much time with him, even though he's not complaining, then you need to consider your friend's concerns.

There's no reason to spend time with only him. He's not possessive (thank goodness) and he has friends he'd probably like to see, too, so keep things varied.

Not only will it help you to not feel empty if you two break up but you'll also have some other experiences to tell your boyfriend about besides how much you like him or whatever it is the two of you spend so much time discussing.

The best relationships exist and flourish without couples having to be constantly with each other. You need to give yourself room to have a life apart from all the people that you know.

There should be balance between where you spend your time and how you expend your energies.

Make an ice cream or movie date with your friend and nurture that relationship, too.

You lose nothing in the process, and it will give you a chance to catch up with someone who wants to catch up with you.

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