4 Ways to Deal If You Hate Your BFF’s S.O.
So your bestie met someone. Yay! Whether you’re the coordinate your outfits ala Tina Fey and Amy Poehler types or the reading BFF books together sort, you probably know just how important the BFF and S.O. relationship dynamic is. But what if hanging out with their new boo isn’t going as smoothly as you thought it would be? Maybe you find their habits annoying, or just think your friend can do way better. After all, you only want the absolute best for them, and anything less won’t quite cut it. Unfortunately, it’s not really up to you to decide who your BFF dates. In the majority of cases, there’s not a whole lot you can (read: should) do, although there are a few situations in which it’s okay to put your foot down. We chatted with Wendy L. Patrick, PhD and author of Red Flags: How to Spot Frenemies, Underminers and Ruthless People, to find out when you should share your opinion with your bestie.
1. Figure out why you don’t like the new guy or girl. Okay, so you’re not down with the new boo. But why? Before you take any action, you’ve got to make sure you’re not feelin’ them for the right reasons. “Consider whether your dislike of the S.O. stems from your discontent over the loss of the time your best friend used to spend with you,” suggests Wendy. It’s totally reasonable to miss your bestie, but, “Resenting the relationship because you’re envious that you don’t have more time with them is not a valid reason.” On the other hand, “Expressing your feelings out of concern for your friend’s safety, whether physical or emotional (or both), is always a valid reason to speak up.”
2. Weigh how important it is to say something. Just because you don’t love your bestie’s new beau doesn’t mean you have to say something. In fact, there might be times when it’s better not to say anything at all. If you don’t like the S.O.’s taste in movies, fashion or you simply find them annoying, it’s best to keep quiet and hope it blows over. Try to focus on setting aside specific times to hang out with your BFF alone, away from their new partner, so you can still spend some quality time together. However, if you think the new boo has a pattern of putting down your friend, it might be time to speak up.
3. Consider how much longer the new S.O. is going to be around. Wendy notes that “Your decision about whether or not to speak up depends in part on the projected longevity of the relationship.” As in, if you don’t think they’re going to go the distance, it might not be worth saying anything at all. “You might choose to skip the drama if the pairing appears to be a case of superficial, summer, social fun,” she says. “However, if the two are looking long-term or headed to the altar, you owe it to your best friend to be honest.“ Again, only if you have something serious to say. You definitely don’t want to be criticizing the groom’s bad celeb impressions a few days before they take their vows.
4. Proceed with caution. If you’re going to go for it, approach the conversation in a calm, non-aggressive way. Remember that this is their love life, not yours. “Ease in with questions,” Wendy recommends. “We love talking about our significant others. So you might slide into the topic with softball questions, perhaps raising issues that cause you concern in order to explore their feelings and gauge how they are going to respond to your critique. Who knows — you might discover that they share some of the same concerns about their partner that you do.”
If you do choose to say something, make sure you consider what your friend might be feeling in that moment. “Remember that your best friend is wearing rose-colored glasses, and you’re wearing reading glasses,” says Wendy. As an outside party, it’s very possible that you see the situation more clearly than they do. Ideally, “They will thank you in the long run for providing input through a lens of objectivity.”
Have you ever told a friend you weren’t into their S.O.? Was it a mistake or did it pay off? Tell us about it @BritandCo!
(Photos via Getty)
Welcome to Selfmade Finance School, our new money series with Block Advisors to help small business owners with their tax, bookkeeping, and payroll needs year-round. This week, we explore the tax implications of bringing family members into your business.
The question for today is this: Does hiring your family members make sense for your business? Let me be clear. This is not a piece about whether hiring your family members makes sense for your relationships with those family members. As someone who is part of a family business, I could fill up a lot more than 600 words on my opinions about that. For today's purposes, we focus on whether it makes sense from an overall "good business and tax implication" perspective. As it turns out, there is a decent amount of tax nuance when it comes to employing your family. Let's break it down based on relationship to the employee:
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Spouses Who Are In Business Together
Personally, if I had to be in business with my husband, it would not go well. However, many couples build viable, strong businesses together and I say, good for them! Depending on how you have your business entity structured, it will make a big difference on the tax treatment of you and your spouse working as partners. Because a business jointly owned and operated by a married couple is generally treated as a partnership for Federal tax purposes, the spouses must comply with filing and record keeping requirements imposed on partnerships and their partners. The election to file two Schedule C (Form 1040) forms, (one for each spouse) permits certain married co-owners to avoid filing partnership returns, provided that each spouse separately reports a share of all the businesses' items of income, gain, loss, deduction, and credit. Under the election, both spouses will be subject to self-employment tax and on net earnings from self-employment and receive credit for Social Security earnings.
One Spouse Employs Another
If you have a dynamic where your spouse is an employee of your business, then your spouse's wages are subject to income tax withholding, Social Security and Medicare taxes. If you are self-employed (not a corporation or a partnership), your spouse's pay does not have to be included in your federal unemployment tax account (FUTA) contributions and payments. However, if your business is a corporation or a partnership you must include that spouse's pay in your unemployment tax contribution calculation.
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You Employ Your Child
First, let's be clear. I work in my family business, but I am an adult, so I am treated just like a normal employee. However, if you, for example, run a family restaurant and want to hire your children under 18 to work for you, there are some tax benefits. But first, you should check with your state for rules on how many hours minors can work (in non-agricultural jobs) and reference the Fair Labor Standards Act for information on limitations on the kinds of work children can perform.
"This is an often overlooked or under-utilized strategy. Paying your children for true services they provide in your business can be a powerful tax-saving tool," says Cathi Reed, Block Advisors Regional Director. "If you are a sole-proprietorship or single member LLC, and the child is less than 18 years of age, the business is not required to withhold FICA or payroll taxes. The child can use his or her standard deduction against income you pay."
You Hire Your Parent
Oh dear. If you are brave enough to do this, know that you will need to pay Social Security and Medicare taxes on your parent's wages and make the appropriate withholdings, but you don't have to pay unemployment taxes. Now all you have to do is convince your parent that you are the boss. Have fun with that!
Is Hiring Family Members Worth It For The Tax Benefits?
"There are some positive tax advantages to hiring family members. It's important to treat a family member like any other employee. Hiring your children can result in substantial savings for businesses. Make sure your child has real, age-appropriate work to do and a reasonable pay rate, comparable to other employees. Consult with a Block Advisors small business certified tax pro to ensure that you are complying with all requirements," advises Reed. "Block Advisors, a team within H&R Block, is dedicated to meeting the tax, bookkeeping and payroll needs of small business owners year-round. To start working with the tax experts at Block Advisors, visit blockadvisors.com."
In my opinion, you should not hire a family member solely because of the tax benefits. You should always hire based on whether that person is right for the job and keep in mind how this hire could materially impact your relationship with that person and others in your family. Finally, as I mentioned, make sure you have a tax professional on your team when making these determinations. As you can see, things can get a little tricky!
*All details were sourced from IRS.gov and blockadvisors.com