Dating, friendship

He Says He’s Just a Friend, But I Don’t Believe Him

Dear Tavion,

I started dating this guy about a month ago and everything was cool until I met his best friend who doesn’t live in the area. The friend came to town for his birthday, and the guy I’m seeing told me to meet them out one night so I did. At first I thought the best friend was cool. He was funny and real friendly. But as the night went on, my initial impression of the friend changed because he and the guy I like started acting like they were more than friends.

These two were flirting real heavy by the time we got to the club. Or at least that’s what it looked like to me. A few times that night they twerked on each other, and they kept whispering to each other. I tried not to trip. But then at some point in the night the friend kissed the guy I’m seeing on the lips. That’s when I got super uptight and bounced.

When I finally returned the guy’s phone call a day later, he tried to explain to me that the two are just friends and the kiss didn’t mean anything. I just don’t know if I believe him, and I don’t want to invest in a guy that already has a boyfriend but doesn’t know it. I don’t have time to be in some type of Brown Sugar situation, the movie not the song.

Those are the facts, now here’s the question. Do I take this guy at his word and believe him when he says he and his friend are just friends, or do I move on? The guy swears the two have never dated or had sex in the 7 years they’ve known each other, but my gut is my gut.

-Nobody’s Brown Sugar

Dear Nobody’s Brown Sugar,

Thanks for writing to me. I have to say, I’m not surprised you brought up the movie Brown Sugar given how you feel. It’s a film about two friends that one day realize they are soulmates. You’re just trying not to be a Kelby Dawson (Boris Kodjoe) in this real life situation, and be the boyfriend who trusts when bae says a guy is just a friend, only to be blindsided later down the road. I get it.


So here’s the thing. Sometimes best friends can get lost in their relationship and not be aware how they may come off to people outside their bond. I’m actually guilty of this. When my best friends and I link up, we hit a groove that some may interpret as romantic. Heck, just a few weeks ago my one best friend and I were asked if we were in a relationship. Trust and believe me when I say we have never been romantic and never thought about being such.

Now I know you saw the “flirting” and the kiss, but the behavior may not have been a display of chemistry. I can recall some years ago being drunk and with a group of buddies, and one of them out of nowhere kissed me. It was an instance where you could blame the liquor, because there was absolutely no sexual attraction between us. It was just an instance of “Wasted behavior.”

Not to continue inserting my life story into this response, but I have another bff and I can tell you with certainty we’ve done things someone from the outside looking in may misinterpret. We’ve twerked together, seen each other up close and personal, and after a night of partying, I’ve slept in his bed with nothing on but boxer briefs. The thing is, he is nothing more than my good brother for over ten years. We have never and would never be in that kind of Brown Sugar love.

Now I’m not trying to discount your gut-feeling completely. I’m simply trying to convince you that your potential boyfriend could be telling you the absolute truth about the nature of the relationship between he and his bestie. Is it possible that your instincts are right, and the two people have some unstated attraction to one another? Sure, that’s definitely possible. However, my gut is telling me you should give this guy the benefit of the doubt for now.

Suggestions going forward.

  1. While I thinking dancing with a friend is harmless, if that combined with the kissing makes you uncomfortable as this guy’s potential partner, it’s okay for you to be honest with him and say that. Delivered in the right tone, he will probably apologize and try to make sure that doesn’t happen again.


  1. Moving forward with this guy, try not to hold that one night and kiss against the best friend. I assume the bff was just out trying to have a good time for his birthday weekend, not purposefully attempting to piss you off. Besides, you’re not the boyfriend yet and you don’t want to create a hostile situation where this guy feels he needs to choose between you and a seven year bestie. That may not be in your favor if you catch my drift.


  1. Oh and before I forget, you may want to ask this guy about some of the past drunken escapades of his best friend. It may make you feel better if you discover the bestie has a habit of kissing other friends drunkenly.

As always nothing but love,

Tavion Scott


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