Most of us have been there. We started seeing someone new, someone who makes everything seem more exciting and interesting, someone who gives us butterflies and makes us nervous and giddy. During this time, we tend to sleep less, either because we are so thrilled for this new thing, whatever it is, or because we are up all night talking to this person. Eventually, as we get to know the object of our affection better, these feelings may grow to love and, for a while, all we want to do is be with this person. All. The. Time.

But we know there is more to life than our significant others and don't want everything else, particularly our friendships, to fall by the wayside. We love our friends. They were with us before we fell in love, and (we hope!) they will stick by us *if* it ever ends.

So, with that in mind, here our a few tips on how to maintain those important friendships when you're in a serious relationship.

Integrate your special someone into your life, not just the other way around

Introduce him or her to your friends and hang out together. This could be good for multiple reasons. Your friends know you well and you want to make sure they approve of and get along with this new person. (If none of them do, this could be a sign that your new love isn't as great for you as you think.) Bringing your S.O. around your friends is a great way to include him or her in your life and to get to know each other better. And you get to enjoy both your friends' and your partner's company at once. Win, win!

Make sure you see your friends without your new honey, too

Few things are as annoying as when a friend brings her new partner to girls-only night. Don't be that girl. Sure, it's great that the new special someone is down to hang out with you and your friends, but not all the time. Your friends might enjoy your partner, but they are in the friendship for you, not the two of you. And they may have things they want to talk to you about without extra listening ears. It's OK to spend time apart. Hey, it's a good thing. You were a complete human being before you met the one and you still are. Show your friends they are important to you by spending time with them without always having a tagalong. If all the girls are out for drinks and he's consistently the only guy that shows up, i.e., you're the only one who invites her boyfriend to hang out even if the other friends are in relationships, too, it's time to stop.

Keep up with traditions

If you and your friends do Wine Wednesdays every week, meet for brunch on weekends, or participate in any other standing date, keep it. Extricate yourself from the arms of your beloved and show up. That's it. Be there. Chances are your friends will be dying to hear the latest on your love affair, anyway, and will be happy for you and with you.

Remember not to keep conversations one-sided

If not getting actual face time with your pals, call, text or message them some other way, and when you do, don't just talk about how into your bae you are. Ask your friends about their lives, too! How's work going? Did you get that promotion? Have you heard from so-and-so lately? What's going on with you and your relationship? How's the family? There are a lot of things going on in your friends' lives, and they will appreciate your continued commitment to them, even though you're head over heels in love.

Take a deep breath and enjoy it

Finally, have patience with your friends when they are newly in a serious relationship. They may not call as often or show up to as many friend dates, but you've been there. You know what it's like! Be excited for them, ask questions, meet their significant others and support your friends, just like they support you.

Maintaining friendships will not only keep your friends (and you!) happy, it will be a good thing for your romantic relationship, too. Staying true to yourself, the same you that your significant other fell for in the first place, includes staying true to your friends.

[Image courtesy Fox]