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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Just curious what most people's opinions are on this.

If you had friends of the opposite sex going into the marriage... did your spouse ever put restrictions on your friendship with that person, due to them being of the opposite sex?
 

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I don't have any male friends, but DH has lots of female friends, mostly co-workers. Women just naturally love him, he's such a great guy. He knows how I feel, and that I tend to get jealous, and he respects that. But, I will not let him hang out with them after work. That's our time together, and our family's time together.
 

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Nope. In fact, several of my closest friends are exes. Same with dh when we got married. Between the two of us, there were at least five friends at our wedding who we'd had relationships with at some point.

Neither of us is stupid. We both know that at the right (wrong) time, under the right (wrong) stresses and circumstances, pretty much anyone is capable of cheating. But we nurture our relationship in a positive, healthy way, we're open with each other, and we're committed to each other. Neither of us is willing to put artificial, controlling restraints on each other about who we see and spend time with. If we felt the need to do that, that would be a flashing sign that there's something going wrong in our relationship that needed to be dealt with. I'd rather deal with the real issue than create a whole structure of rules and restrictions that avoid dealing with the real problem.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by JSMa View Post
did your spouse ever put restrictions on your friendship with that person, due to them being of the opposite sex?
No.

Dh's friends tend to become my friends, and vice versa. Not that we force it to be that way, but it tends to work out that way. Buy one, get one free
 

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I'm not married but I'm in a long term relationship. I have mostly male friends and DP has many female friends and neither of us put restrictions on each other. That is a big deal breaker for me, you do not tell me who my friends can, or cannot, be.

Obviously if there's something inappropriate going on, or if there was infidelity in the past, etc, there may be reasons to want restrictions. But if you have a loving, trusting, relationship then there really shouldn't be a problem with having friends of the opposite sex. IMO.
 

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No, and if he had i would be very concerned and not want to be with him.

All of my male friends have partners or spouses, and we have been friends for a long time. I don't expect i can be everything for my DH, i can be his wife, the mother of his children, the maker of his home, his friend, his confidante, his lover. I cannot necessarily be someone he can discuss the latest industry changes with (software), nor do i share memories of his 20's like some of his (female and male) friends do. I am pregnant and cannot snowboard with him and even NOT pregnant i have no interest in spinning, which he enjoys, so although in the long outdoor cycle rides i will be right there with him, when it comes to spinning in the studio, the ladies in his class are his buddies!

So no, he never put limits on friendships with the opposite sex (bearing in mind 2 of my closest male friends are exes, one from 13 years ago when we were kids, and one from far more recently who i have a kid with!) and i don't limit him either. I don't feel jealousy has a healthy part in my life, and i don't welcome it in my relationship, and for US i think jealousy would be a major factor in that sort of request.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks Barbie.
We are doing okay... well enough that I'm confident enough to try tackling some other issues, like this one.

My best friend for the past nine years is male, and also happens to be someone I dated at the begining of the nine years, briefly.

DH has known from day one that 'M' is my best friend. He was even a groomsman in my first wedding. He had no issue with me talking to 'M' once in awhile on the phone, and we stayed at 'M's' house on the way home from our honeymoon.

I didn't realize I'd be put on restrictions when 'M' moved back into our area. DH doesn't want us doing anything alone and even got mad at 'M' when he invited me to go somewhere with him and his BF ('M' is bi) because he said that it was messed up for a guy to even think about asking someone's wife somewhere without clearing if it's okay with their DH first.

He claims he asked around his buddies at work and they all agreed with him that they would never let their wife hang out with a male friend.

We have been having a lot of conversations about this and I have told him I feel controlled and that I am not owned and it does not fly with me that anyone would ever have to ask him permission for me to go somewhere.

He has finally seen that, that request was probably unreasonable. But he still does not want me hanging out with 'M' alone ever. Not even okay if 'M's BF is there... DH has to be invited along too...

The issue is that 'M' and his BF have been uncomfortable around DH since our troubles this year and DH accused me of cheating on him with 'M' and that is why I wanted a divorce. It couldn't possibly have had anything to do with him being an irrational UAV.

Anyway... I've been trying to communicate that I feel restricted and can't really be myself and that I don't think it's right that he should get to dictate a relationship that I have had for nine years, whereas him and I have only been together for 2.5. Seems very odd to me...
 

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Quote:
I didn't realize I'd be put on restrictions when 'M' moved back into our area. DH doesn't want us doing anything alone and even got mad at 'M' when he invited me to go somewhere with him and his BF ('M' is bi) because he said that it was messed up for a guy to even think about asking someone's wife somewhere without clearing if it's okay with their DH first.
Red flag! It is out of order to walk another man's dog, ride another man's horse or borrow another man's car without asking - those are possessions. His wife is a separate person with her own rights, opinions and abilities to make choices. No-one's permission need be sought but hers as to whether SHE wants to hang out. It is your DH's thinking which is messed up! If my DH made a statement like that i would be SO SO gone.
mama what a tough thing to deal with.
 

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I have a very similar friendship (been friends since HS, which is... 14 years now or so) and if my husband ever tried to tell me not to be alone with my friend, I'd be looking at my husband like he had two heads. As you say, my husband doesn't own me and he doesn't decide who I hang out with. He doesn't have the power to "let" me do anything, thanks.

That said, if he told me that he felt insecure/concerned for some reason, we'd talk about it. But if he thought he could dictate to me who I was allowed to see....
 

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The only friends of the opposite sex we have in our marriage are friends that BOTH of us are friends with. I dont hang out with other guys without him present, and vise versa. (Generally speaking anyway. its not death by hanging if this rule is breached) We try to make friends with other couples instead. I think that is one of the sacrifices we make when we are in a committed relationship. Its just really not appropriate to be close friends with the opposite sex. Even if our intentions are pure and innocent, we are only human. We accidently fall for people when we arent trying, or they fall for us. Sometimes things happen that we don't mean to have happen. Men and woman are designed to become attracted to one another when in close quarters. Thats why its just smart to protect what we have going by limiting exclusive friendships with the opposite sex. With all the other girls out there, there's no excuse for why I can't start hanging out with some of them.

We struggled with this in the beginning of our marriage but now we've both made peace with it and are much better off as a couple. Its not that we just cut our old friends out of lives completely (well accept for the ones that clearly had other things in mind than friendship) but we really just prioritized our marriage and they just naturally fell to the back burner. If Im talking to an old guy friend, I include my husband in the conversation. Its not completely necessary, I just like to do it. There are exceptions to the rules and its not a hard fast line, but in general these are the guidelines we go by in our marriage.

I think that my husband should come first in my marriage, friends second. no matter how long I've known them. Even if you don't completely agree with how he feels, the fact of the matter is he's upset and you shouldn't let this come between you as much as it is. There are lots of others girls out there you could be friends with, and the fact that you are fighting so hard to maintain this males friendship probably is what is sending the red flag to your husband. He might be feeling like your friendship with this guy is more important to you than your marriage with him, so of course he's feeling upset. We are supposed to make sacrifices for one another, we are supposed to make our spouses more important than our friends.

Im actually surprised I'm the only person with this opinion. Throw tomatoes if you must but I just thought I'd get it out there. I hope everything works out well.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by GoBecGo View Post
Red flag! It is out of order to walk another man's dog, ride another man's horse or borrow another man's car without asking - those are possessions. His wife is a separate person with her own rights, opinions and abilities to make choices. No-one's permission need be sought but hers as to whether SHE wants to hang out. It is your DH's thinking which is messed up! If my DH made a statement like that i would be SO SO gone.
mama what a tough thing to deal with.

This.
 

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Originally Posted by mariekitt24 View Post
The only friends of the opposite sex we have in our marriage are friends that BOTH of us are friends with. I dont hang out with other guys without him present, and vise versa. We try to make friends with other couples instead. I think that is one of the sacrifices we make when we are in a committed relationship. Its just really not appropriate to be close friends with the opposite sex. Even if our intentions are pure and innocent, we are only human. We accidently fall for people when we arent trying, or they fall for us. Sometimes things happen that we don't mean to have happen. Men and woman are designed to become attracted to one another when in close quarters. Thats why its just smart to protect what we have going by limiting exclusive friendships with the opposite sex.

We struggled with this in the beginning of our marriage but now we've both made peace with it and are much better off as a couple. Its not that we just cut our old friends out of lives completely (well accept for the ones that clearly had other things in mind than friendship) but we really just prioritized our marriage and they just naturally fell to the back burner. If Im talking to an old guy friend, I include my husband in the conversation. Its not completely necessary, I just like to do it. There are exceptions to the rules and its not a hard fast line, but in general these are the guidlines we go by in our marriage.
Isn't that just like putting blinkers on a horse though? Like it doesn't strengthen the marriage, rather it "protects" it from comparison? For me that would mean i wasn't honestly loving and devoting myself to my DH every day, i would be loving and devoting myself to the only available man, which is a whole other (for me unsatisfying, not for everyone though!) kettle of fish.
 

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Neither of us would put restrictions on what the other person did with the opposiste sex, but like a PP mentioned we were part of the same social circle before dating seriously so there are few people that neither of us knows. But - we are also both employed full-time, and he works with a lot of women and I work with a lot of men, so lunches and happy hours don't usually involve the other spouse.

I disagree that men and women will become attracted to each other in close quarters. I think it's equally likely that they develop feelings of "sibling-ship" when they are in close quarters - as in - it would like dating my brother! I think Stanford University did some studies around this and their mixed-sex housing situation.

Having said all this, I did recently go to the movies with my friends husband as I thought we would both enjoy "Zombieland" and TOTALLY needed a night out (pregnant and stressed). But I kind of checked with her first. I knew she would be out of town and asked if husband would be going with her or is she thought he'd be interested in said movie with me. She was like - totally - get him out of the house when I'm gone! I did feel it was fair to talk to her about it. I felt it gave her an opportunity to say something like - "You want to go out alone with my DH to a movie?" Funny thing though is that I didn't really talk to MY DH about it - hey, someone needed to babysit.
 

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If your dh is insecure about this very important friendship, he should reach out and get to know the friend. I understand that he's already freaked the friend out by accusing you of having an affair with him, but that just means he has to work a bit harder.

Think about this: whose judgment do you trust more? Your dh's or your friend's? Your friend is uncomfortable around your dh. What does that say about your partner's character, or your friend's character? Something is off, and I'm guessing it is your dp in this case.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by earthmama369 View Post
Nope. In fact, several of my closest friends are exes. Same with dh when we got married. Between the two of us, there were at least five friends at our wedding who we'd had relationships with at some point.

Neither of us is stupid. We both know that at the right (wrong) time, under the right (wrong) stresses and circumstances, pretty much anyone is capable of cheating. But we nurture our relationship in a positive, healthy way, we're open with each other, and we're committed to each other. Neither of us is willing to put artificial, controlling restraints on each other about who we see and spend time with. If we felt the need to do that, that would be a flashing sign that there's something going wrong in our relationship that needed to be dealt with. I'd rather deal with the real issue than create a whole structure of rules and restrictions that avoid dealing with the real problem.
Ditto this, although not the same number of exes at the wedding.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Quote:

Originally Posted by mariekitt24 View Post
The only friends of the opposite sex we have in our marriage are friends that BOTH of us are friends with. I dont hang out with other guys without him present, and vise versa. (Generally speaking anyway. its not death by hanging if this rule is breached) We try to make friends with other couples instead. I think that is one of the sacrifices we make when we are in a committed relationship. Its just really not appropriate to be close friends with the opposite sex. Even if our intentions are pure and innocent, we are only human. We accidently fall for people when we arent trying, or they fall for us. Sometimes things happen that we don't mean to have happen. Men and woman are designed to become attracted to one another when in close quarters. Thats why its just smart to protect what we have going by limiting exclusive friendships with the opposite sex.

We struggled with this in the beginning of our marriage but now we've both made peace with it and are much better off as a couple. Its not that we just cut our old friends out of lives completely (well accept for the ones that clearly had other things in mind than friendship) but we really just prioritized our marriage and they just naturally fell to the back burner. If Im talking to an old guy friend, I include my husband in the conversation. Its not completely necessary, I just like to do it. There are exceptions to the rules and its not a hard fast line, but in general these are the guidlines we go by in our marriage.
But I don't want my friendship of NINE years to just fizzle out.
He has been a very important part of my life. It feels utterly wrong to me to restrict our friendship or make it less just because I got married?

Quote:

Originally Posted by sunnmama View Post
If your dh is insecure about this very important friendship, he should reach out and get to know the friend. I understand that he's already freaked the friend out by accusing you of having an affair with him, but that just means he has to work a bit harder.

Think about this: whose judgment do you trust more? Your dh's or your friend's? Your friend is uncomfortable around your dh. What does that say about your partner's character, or your friend's character? Something is off, and I'm guessing it is your dp in this case.
Yeah... DH has agreed to put that all behind him and be okay around 'M' when he comes around... but 'M' still feels a little put off with the whole thing because DH acted irrationally and threatened physical harm to 'M' when he looked through my phone and saw that I had been talking to 'M' a lot more while things were really bad between him and I...

Nothing was ever going on with 'M'. He is really my only friend in this area outside of DH and things were so terrible, I needed a support network. 'M' has always been there for me through so many rough patches in my life. I never thought twice about calling him.


DH saw it as a huge betrayal in trust from me and a betrayal of some man code from 'M'.

I made it clear to DH that 'M' isn't going anywhere and will always be my best friend. That I'm not getting rid of a friendship of the last nine years just because it makes him insecure. Maybe that isn't very "wife-like" of me...


But it's how I feel.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by mariekitt24 View Post
We accidently fall for people when we arent trying, or they fall for us. Sometimes things happen that we don't mean to have happen. Men and woman are designed to become attracted to one another when in close quarters. Thats why its just smart to protect what we have going by limiting exclusive friendships with the opposite sex. With all the other girls out there, there's no excuse for why I can't start hanging out with some of them.
I understand this works for you and that is great, really.

But I did want to say that if my husband's fidelity was solely based on his not being AROUND temptation (or mine!) I wouldn't consider it worth squat.

In our 15 year marriage we've both had moments of attraction to other people; what makes the difference is whether we act on them or not. Clothes do not come off accidentally! Flirty text messages do not happen on their own.
 
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