Nothing is worse for a relationship than third party communication. You know how it goes, you like a person of the appropriate gender(s), but you're too shy to talk to that person. So you go on about it to your best friend until s/he gets so sick of hearing about it that s/he decides to take action. Set you up. Or say someting to the object of your affection.

Relationships that start this way rarely work out. They never seem to get to the stage where the people actually involved can talk to each other without a mediator.

Conversely, it could be that you are already involved with the object of your desire, and you both talk about the relationship with your mutual friends. This is great so long as the relationship is great. When things are good, you get to hear you friends telling you about how your SO was gushing and saying the sweetest things about you. Yay! But when things go bad, third party communication only makes it worse. Remember that game, telephone? Know how garbled the message gets? Well, the principle is magnified when the subject matter is your heart. People tend to overreact when they hear from a third party that something is wrong.

Don't pretend that you don't know about this phenomina. It insults both your intelligence and the intelligence of your lover. Realize that when you talk about your love with his/her best friend, what you say will be passed on, along with a commentary on your body language and facial expressions.

Above all, do not atempt to soften the blow of a difficult conversation by mentioning the need for a 'talk' to a friend first. This is manipulative. No one likes the words "we have to talk" but at least when they're said in person there is some immediacy, some closure. Nothing is worse then hearing that your SO wants to talk, but later. This leads to very unpleasant conclusions being drawn. There is nothing so awful as enduring a seven hour flight home with a talk hanging over your head. It leads to paranoia, and makes the resulting talk even more difficult.

The he says she says is not an entirley bad thing. It can help to break the ice when two people are starting to date. But when it is used to manipulate, it is pure evil.

But in the he says she say
sometimes there's some poetry
if you turn your back on it
and let it happen naturally

(Ani Difranco, Hell yeah)

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