When it comes down to it, friendships are built off of having things in common. Whether it’s the same sense of humor, having shared interests, or going through similar life experiences, these are all things that can bring you closer together. This can come somewhat naturally when you are connecting with just one other person.
However, when you are building a friendship with another couple this can get complex. You now have four personalities to mesh, rather than just two. Not to mention the pace of life we all live is so complex and can be dramatically different from couple to couple, or family to family if you have children. Different schedules and different parenting styles can also play a role in how dynamics are.
So what are some ways you and your partner can build a mutually fond relationship with other couples? Let’s explore.
Connect with a group
Having a common backdrop and shared interest is a great place to strike up a conversation with another couple. Joining a local group will do just that. Search your area for groups you can participate in. Do you have a community college or recreation center that offers classes? Sign up for a class that interests you. Do you have young children? Sign up for a PEPS (Program for Early Parent Support) group.
Additionally, churches will usually offer Small Groups that place you and your partner with other couples in the same life stage as you. Sharing a common ground in faith is a great way to connect with other couples, especially those who are on the same page of life.
Don’t underestimate your power to start your own small interest group as well! By practicing openness with other couples in a small group, it will create an invitation they will want to respond to. Many lifelong friendships have been formed through small groups.
Sit down with your partner and make a list of other couples you both would like to get to know better. Be intentional about planning a time you can get together with these couples. A good starting point is to invite them to dinner, or a place where you can sit down and have a genuine conversation. Many new relationships will likely blossom from this, and if you have a good connection the other couple will usually reciprocate the hospitality.
Do you like to play games? Invite a couple over for board game night. Be open to having family nights as well so you can get to know other couple’s kids. Family dynamics are equally as important, and you will get to know who you mesh with best as you open up your hospitality and test the waters. You and your spouse will soon learn the families whose dynamics harmonize well with yours, and perhaps those that don’t.
By attending local events you will meet like-minded couples with similar interests. This can be anything from concerts to town-functions, attending sports games, or even hanging out at your local coffee shop.
If you have kids, keep a close eye on their school calendar of events. Most schools will host family friendly functions where you can get to know other parents who have kids close in age to yours. You will be surprised how many families you can meet through school events, and your kids’ sports events and games as well!
Be open minded
Not every friend your partner chooses will be your favorite choice, and on the contrary not every friend you choose will be your partner’s favorite. But try to be open minded – and open armed. Especially if this person has been a lifelong friend of your spouse.
If you don’t feel especially connected with someone your partner has been close with their whole life, then try to be honorable to your spouse and your sense of loyalty to them. Shared history is a big deal, and if a person in your spouse’s life is important and treats you well, then some give-and-take is reasonable. Spending time together as couples will go a long way in your relationship when you show you care enough to be open minded.
How did you meet some of your closest friends? We’d love to hear your stories in the comments below!