There has been an unresolved debate regarding the sitcom Friends for many years now. It all began in episode fifteen of season three, titled “The One Where Ross And Rachel Take A Break.” Due to the fact that she got cut up at work, Rachel was unable to celebrate her and Rosse’s anniversary in this episode. Ross decides to bring a picnic basket to her work to celebrate with her, oblivious to the fact that she still has work to do. This causes a major fight between the couple, since Rachel feels as if Ross is undervaluing her work, and Ross feels as if Rachel prioritizes her work over their relationship. More arguing occurs, and one thing leads to another, leading Rachel to suggest they should take a break. Heartbroken, that night, Ross goes to a bar and got with the girl that worked at the copy machine, Chloe. Later on, Rachel finds out, and they have a fight that lasted for hours and hours.
This storyline is discussed by everyone who is a fan of Friends or has seen Friends, but it has never been resolved. Were they on a break, and Ross was within his rights to act as he did? Or, Was Rachel justified to get mad? In this little piece, I will summarize how I perceived what happened.
In a literal sense, I feel Ross had the right to do anything he wanted because Rachel had plainly stated “let’s take a break.” That indicates they’re not seeing each other, and if Rachel intended that they should spend time apart but still follow the “rules” that their relationship followed, she should have been more precise. However, when it comes to the emotional aspect of what Ross did, I believe it was uncalled for. He was visibly upset, but he also realized that what he was doing was going to make Rachel even more upset, and I believe that is precisely what he intended. He’d just been “dumped” (according to Ross) by the woman he’d loved for over a decade, and he wanted her to experience the same pain, betrayal, and loneliness he felt.
The worst part of all, was that Ross intended to get back together with her and didn’t think about how sleeping with another person would absolutely eliminate any chance of that occurring.
So, even though they were on a break, Rachel had every right to feel betrayed by Ross since they had been in such a strong relationship, and it must have hurt her a lot to know that the same night they had spent apart, he had spent that time not thinking about her, but with another woman. When a couple decides to follow their own path, it’s natural to assume the other person would think about you, presuming you were important to him or her. This is where I believe Rachel came from when she got furious after being told what Ross did. I think Rachel was right and Ross was wrong.