Friends was a cultural icon and remains so to this day. During its impressive 10 year run, the show amassed a huge number of fans who loved to follow the adventures of Rachel, Monica, Phoebe, Chandler, Joey and of course, Ross.
Unlike many sitcoms, Friends somehow managed to never lose what made it so unique. This was all thanks to its amazingly talented cast, who created some truly unique characters who were the best of friends and who will never be forgotten. However, they were still capable of being jerks on occasion. While Ross was definitely a polarizing character, he didn’t deserve a lot of the things the gang did to him.
10 Rachel Led Him On While Dating Other Guys
The first couple of seasons of the show mainly focused on Ross and Rachel’s unspoken attraction for each other. Except, it wasn’t that unspoken. Very early on in Season 1, Ross confessed to Rachel that he had had feelings for her when they were both in high school together, and he also admitted that he might still have them now.
Rachel appeared to be flattered and didn’t seem too disgusted by this but then it wasn’t really mentioned again. The next thing we knew however was that Rachel was suddenly dating Paolo, who was clearly a jerk and Rachel deserved much better – like Ross! Although he didn’t handle jealousy very well, Ross was still the better guy here.
9 The Gang Listened To His Break Up
While Ross and Rachel were an item, they were so adorable and it was apparent to everyone that they cared for each other deeply. This is why their break up in the third season was so heartbreaking. Here were two people who loved each other but were unable to get over whether they were or were not on a break.
To make this situation worse, unbeknownst to Ross and Rachel, the rest of the gang were stuck in the apartment with them, listening to everything that was said. Break ups are hard enough at the best of times without your closest mates hearing first hand all the gory details.
8 Phoebe Mugged Him
In one episode, Ross revealed that he had been mugged as a child and that it had scarred him for a long time after. Obviously, mugging is a terrifying thing to have happen to anyone and we all felt sorry for Ross.
It later transpired though that Phoebe, who was living rough on the streets at the time, was the one who mugged him. Ross was stunned and hurt that one of his best friends had caused him that much distress. Admittedly, Phoebe and Ross didn’t know each other at the time, and she apologized profusely, but it was still a rubbish thing to do.
7 The Gang Went On A Trip Without Him
The break up of Ross and Rachel was a devastating affair, and the fall out was the center focus for many episodes after. However, the immediate following episode was one of the most uncomfortable episodes to watch.
In order to get some space and to spite Ross, Rachel organized a ski trip and asked everyone to go with her except for her ex. Naturally, this sort of thing was to be expected as post-break up events are always awkward. However, to go on holiday without one of your best friends is rubbing a little bit too much salt in the proverbial wound. Surprisingly, Ross took it fairly well, earning himself a whole bunch of maturity points.
6 Chandler and Monica Kept Their Relationship A Secret
As Monica’s big brother, Ross has a protective side when it comes to his little sister. Sometimes this can come across as adorable but at others, it’s borderline controlling. So, it was understandable that Chandler and Monica wanted to keep their relationship a secret during the first few months.
In their defense, they themselves were still trying to figure out what their tryst was, so it was reasonable that they should want some space. However, once they realized they loved each other, Ross should have been the first person they told, both as Monica’s brother and Chandler’s best friend.
5 Joey And Rachel Got Together
This was probably one of the least popular relationships that came out of Friends. Fans of the sitcom rejected it almost instantaneously and the show’s creators even admitted that they wanted to portray a relationship that should never have happened to mimic real life.
The person who was least okay with it though was Ross. To be fair, dating your best friend’s ex who he still has residual feelings for is definitely not okay. Joey and Rachel should have realized the hurt their relationship was inflicting on Ross and should have stopped it before it even began.
4 Rachel Wasn’t Supportive Of Julie
As the part-time ex of Ross, Rachel features quite heavily in this list. On this occasion though, this was before she and Ross even got together. Typically in the land of sitcoms, Rachel discovered she had feelings for Ross right after he left for a business trip. When he returned he brought with him a girlfriend: Julie.
Julie was a perfectly nice woman, and everyone liked her apart from Rachel. While this was understandable, she could have done a better job in hiding her jealousy, if not for Julie then for Ross. After all, he watched her date men for a whole season and resigned himself to quietly muttering in the background.
3 Rachel Refused To Take Any Responsibility For Their Break Up
Break ups are never easy and there is always generally fault on both sides. During a particularly brutal argument, in the heat of the moment Rachel suggests they should take a break from their relationship. A devastated Ross storms out, leaving Rachel full of regret about what she said.
Ross definitely had this coming as his behavior at the time was gross and manipulative, and he definitely shouldn’t have jumped into bed with the first woman he saw. However, Rachel’s work was taking over her life, forcing her to miss anniversary dinners. While this is no excuse for Ross’s actions, absolving herself of any blame for the split was quite naive.
2 The Gang Treated His Divorce From Carol As A Running Joke
From the very first episode, Ross’s love life was very clearly meant to be viewed as a running gag. This would have been totally fine, had it not been for the fact that Ross clearly loved Carol and was devastated at their split.
To make matters worse, it was revealed in later seasons that Carol was the first and only woman Ross had slept with. That makes the divorce altogether a bigger deal and his friends still mocked him for it, instead of offering sympathy and support. It also didn’t help that Carol was a lesbian, a concept introduced purely for the sake of a cheap laugh.
1 Rachel Accepted Joey’s ‘Proposal’
We’ve already established that Joey and Rachel’s whole relationship was a massive mistake. However, this moment here is just ridiculous. Ross was considering proposing to Rachel but Joey found the ring on the floor. He knelt down to pick it up, which was when Rachel saw him and accepted.
Firstly, Joey and Rachel were not in a relationship at the time. Secondly, and most importantly, Rachel had just had Ross’s baby. Like, 30 minutes ago. Literally. Admittedly emotions do run high during the birth of your first child, but not everyone ends up getting engaged to their baby daddy’s best friend…