I’ve secretly been dating my brother’s friend and now he’s all mad.

I am dating my brother’s best friend. We are both in our late 20s, and he has a daughter. I have no kids. The problem is that we’ve been together for a year, but we just told him. They got into a huge fight and my brother is now pressuring me to break up with my boyfriend. What do I do in this situation?

Get a time machine, go back in time, and don’t sneak around behind your brother’s back for an entire year. (Did you know it’s the 25th anniversary of Back to the Future?) What? You have no time machine? Then you and your boyfriend just better be super, super sorry. Like, bake him pies and buy him a car and hire strippers for his birthday party. That kind of sorry.

Imagine how betrayed and sort of humiliated your brother must feel. You two, some of the closest people in his life, were canoodling in the closet while he thought you were just taking a really long time finding a sweatshirt for his friend to borrow. He probably wants you to break up with his friend because he feels awkward, uncomfortable, and weird around the two of you as a couple. Seriously, what guy wants to think of his friend sleeping with his sister? It kind of puts a damper on their manly conversations, you know? You don’t have to break up with your boyfriend, but the two of you need to seriously apologize (and mean it), and then take it easy when you’re around him until he gets used to the idea. Like, no going to the movies as a group and then sticking your tongues down each other’s throats while he’s trying to share a box of Junior Mints. After a while, I’m sure your brother will come around, and maybe even be happy that two of his favorite people love each other, too.

One more thing I want to just throw out there—is it possible that your brother doesn’t want you dating his best friend because he really, truly knows what kind of guy his best friend is? One time my brother threatened to murder one of his friends after we went out on only one date. Needless to say, I never went out with that guy again. At the time I thought he was just being possessive and jerky, but now that I’m a grown-up, I see that he probably just knew exactly what his friend was like: a good guy to hang out with, but not the kind of guy you want hanging around with your sister.

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