Third wheels have a bad reputation.
But where would we be without tricycles? Or the Three Wise Men?
What about Destiny's Child?
Three is a great number.
Third-wheeling may seem like a bad thing, but as a 20-something single with tons of great coupled-up friends, I've learned to love it.
I've also learned how to work the system.
The reality is, the majority of my friends are married or in serious relationships, so lucky for them, I become their "plus one."
After a lot of practice, I have become the ultimate third wheel.
Friendships change when wedding bells sound.
So, for most people, this severely limits the amount of time and types of things you can do with your friends because they obviously need couple time.
They have to nurture their relationship frequently by doing boring married things, like staying at home together and being in love.
With these six strategies, you can become the master at third-wheeling.
Say goodbye to rushed coffee dates with your best friend because she has to get home to her husband for dinner.
Soon, you will be in their kitchen and making dinner with them.
Here are six ways you can be the best third wheel:
1. Choose your couples carefully.
This is perhaps the most important piece of advice.
There are simply some couples you will not have third-wheel chemistry with.
Let them go, and move on. You have no future with them.
You can still be friends with half of the couple, but sometimes that other person just grinds your gears.
There are tons of other couples that are a perfect match for you.
The science to third-wheeling cannot be explained.
You'll just feel it. If there is no chemistry, then move on.
2. Figure out how to get the perks of the relationship without the drama.
I just finished drinking a Sonic milkshake with Oreos that my roommate's boyfriend brought us.
I shot him a text and said, "Hey, can you bring us ice cream?"
Fifteen minutes later, I had a milkshake in my hand.
Last weekend, I had dinner with my best friend and her husband.
The couples will usually feel like total jerks if they buy their own dinners and make you pick up yours on your own, so I typically get my meals financed by the couple.
I also bring my car to Belle Tire about once every three weeks for my friend's husband to fix.
He loves this, and so do I.
I love enjoying my married friends' beautiful houses, full pantries and stable lives.
But as soon as one of their kids starts to lose it, I'm out to chill with Netflix.
I have all the benefits of being single and independent, but I also get taken care of as if I am in a relationship.
I actually think my friends' husbands are probably more ready for me to meet someone than I am.
I have a pretty sweet deal currently.
3. Confuse one of them.
If possible, make one of the people in the relationship feel as if he or she is, in fact, the third wheel.
My best friend and I do this really well.
We talk about things her husband doesn't know about or doesn't have any interest in right in front of him.
Many times, it feels as if she and I are the couple, and he is the outsider.
I know for a fact that other significant others of my best friends have felt this way as well.
This secures your spot with them because you have that position of power.
Suddenly, they might start thinking you are, in fact, a part of their relationship.
Shake things up and confuse the roles a little bit. You want them to feel as if you are necessary to their relationship.
4. Find a common interest.
There will be some couples you'll feel so at ease with that you'll be able to lounge around, do nothing and still have fun.
Other times, you will need a common interest to break the ice and keep things lively.
Baseball? Boats? Food? A genre of music or movies?
Find something you all can share together that will unite you as a wonderful trifecta.
Nothing can bond a group of people like a shared TV series.
Do some research. Find the perfect one for you three.
5. Keep them entertained.
Sometimes I think my married friends only keep me around for the stories.
They remember the days of being single, and they thrive on the stories of dating and complex love triangles.
It's not just the wives, either.
Plenty of the husbands enjoy being involved in the ups and downs of my dating life, knowing the key players by name and giving their advice.
If you stop being entertaining, they might not want to keep you around anymore.
So, keep the stories coming.
6. Know the limits.
You must master the art of knowing when you have just about overstayed your welcome in their relationship, and leave right before they realize it.
That is key.
You don't ever want them to get to the point where they realize it is time for you to go home; beat them to it.
With these easy steps, you are on your way to intruding and making your home in unlimited amounts of relationships, all on your own terms.
Who knows? After you have truly overstayed your time with them, they may be so ready for you to meet someone that they'll introduce you to all of their single friends.
Third-wheeling can be a wonderful experience.
In fact, I think it should be its own relationship status.
It would say, "Perfectly Content Master Third Wheel."
Who says three's a crowd?
Three is the best crowd.