Do You Trust Your Husband to Have Female Friends?

wedding ringsA recent conversation in a CafeMom discussion group got me thinking: Would I feel comfortable with my husband having a straight, female friend? One who wasn't attached to a guy friend? Hmm. I feel that it's very, VERY rare that two straight people of the opposite gender are truly, 100 percent "just friends." There's more often than not some sort of complicated feelings harbored by at least one of them, during at least some part of the friendship. I have not just personal experience, but science on my side in the matter of whether platonic relationships truly exist

Yet, yet, and yet again -- in anticipation of all the comments I can imagine this post getting about what great guy friends you have and how you LOVE your husband's best friend who happens to look like Cameron Diaz ...

I do concede that there are always exceptions to the rule. For example, I'm not talking about when you and your husband, as a couple, make friends with another couple; or you make friends with your husband's guy friends; or he makes friends with your girlfriends. That's a horse of a different color, to quote that guy at the gate of the Emerald City.

I now count two men among my dearest friends, both of whom are among my husband's best friends. I spend a lot of time with these guys; we've all been through some major life stuff together, and my husband and daughter and I consider them family. I also adore my best friend's husband -- he's someone I could call on under any circumstances if I ever needed anything. But still, the relationship I have with these men isn't really independent of my coupledom, or my best friend herself; it's not like I'd ever hang out with these guys without our respective mates.

Then there are the friendships that get "grandfathered" in. It's one thing to meet and make a NEW friend of the opposite sex while in a relationship; it's another if you and your mate already had true opposite-sex friends when you met. When I met my now-husband, he had one pretty good, unattached female friend, and I couldn't have cared less. I grew up in a very liberal part of Northern California, where this sort of things is very common (too common). Ergo, on my part, I had a handful of guy "friends" -- but most of them were ex-boyfriends. (See previous note about liberal Northern California!)

My hubby, an old-fashioned guy from New Jersey in some respects, was understandably more than a little uncomfortable with this. I've come to agree: exes really don't make good friends (though of course there ARE EXCEPTIONS to this rule!), and over the years, I've stayed in close contact with the one guy who was really, always just a friend, and lost touch on purpose with the others. Or rather, would have lost touch completely, if not for Facebook, which brings us to a really gray area ...

What about online "friends"? My husband and I both have Facebook friends of the opposite sex; some are, indeed, exes, some are old high school pals, and still others are people we've met along the way through work or what have you. Probably most of them are not people it would be appropriate for us to spend time with in person (alone, anyway), but somehow it's okay that it's a connection through Facebook, probably because we trust each other.

Ultimately -- whether talking about Facebook pals or friends in real life -- I think it does come down to trust, and to making decisions based on circumstances. Sure, it's possible that my husband could meet a woman through, say, a work project, and find that she's a real kindred spirit. Platonically. But for me to feel okay with that, I'd have to meet her, spend time with her and my husband together, and feel totally comfortable with her intentions. Also, let's face it: it would help if she were about 75 and not as pretty as me!

Do you think it's acceptable for married people to have friends of the opposite sex?


Image via promise_tangeman/Flickr

commitment, exes, love, marriage, facebook

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sssdnm sssdnm

Personally in our relationship its a no no for my husband only because he had no pre-existiong friendships with the opposite sex so out he tried to make a friendship after we got together that would be weird.



I on the other hand had 3 close friendships with the opposite sex. ...BUT one is gay....one is borderline gay/metrosexual....and one Ive known my whole life. I don't see them often and when I do its always with another female mutual friend or my husband.

nonmember avatar Kiwimum

If my husband has a female friend, generally I get to know her and try to establish a better relationship with her than he would have in his place of work. We did have this happen early in our marriage and I did just that. I was not threatened by her because we were friends as well. So in answer to your question, no, we wouldn't have friends independantly- mostly because we know that people fall into temptation all too often, so we try to avoid those situations as much as possible. It's kept our marriage sweet, and I also do my best to keep him happy at home! *wink wink*

tbruc... tbrucemom

Every situation is different.  I don't really have any good male friends that aren't also friends of my fiance's.  I did have a couple, but once I became serious with my now fiance, they seem to have gone their own ways.  I know one of them wanted to be more than friends and I'm pretty sure that's why I haven't heard from him. The other I'm not sure, but for some reason he and I don't get together any more either.  I tried a couple times to reconnect and he said he wanted to but it didn't pan out.  At this point, between work, my children, my fiance, taking care of my home, my female friends, etc. I don't really have the time anyway.  Now, my fiance has a couple female friends and for the most part I'm OK with it as he's never expressed any interest in them, doesn't flirt with them, etc.. and I trust him.  However, I keep my eyes open because even though I trust him I know some women don't have a problem going after an attached man.

miche... micheledo

I trust my husband, but neither one of us sees the need for friends of the opposite sex (excluding when you are both friends with them). We also don't have a problem with online friends - though we have discussed it and if either of us is uncomfortable with a friend we can delete them fro mthe friends list. No explanation needed.



It isn't really a matter of trust. It is more about respect. We love and respect each other enough ,that if someone makes you the slightest bit uncomfortable - the spouse is always mor eimportant then the other relationship. So, 'buh bye!'

da_mi... da_miranda

Simply no! Had very BAAADDDDD experience with that...


 

Melan... MelanieJK

Of course,  but only if she's butt ugly inside and out :)


I wouldn't object or anything but it would have to be a situation where I could/would periodically observe their interactions.    Relationships aren't stagnant.   My relationship with him evolves and his with her would evolve so I'd want to stay alert.    I would trust him not to cheat but I wouldn't trust that it might impact the way our relationship evolves.      


 

nonmember avatar Anowscara

92% of the people I work with are men. That's not a typo. I have LOTS of friends who are men. The closest ones are usually when I'm also friends with their wives, but I only meet their wives because I work with the men. My husband works in the same field, and his ratio is similar. If I didn't allow my husband to befriend the women at his work, I would be hypocritical for not letting other women have the same opportunities as I do, and I would've also missed out on friendship with some totally awesome women. It's absolutely possible.

Rose12j Rose12j

I have one close guy friend.. So did my husband just my boyfriend that the time had a friend.. Difference was that my guy friend and I didn't send each other pictures saying I love you and miss you do much, or telling them how lucky they are to have them.... Unlike my husband he did that that with his do called friend.. We argued and got where I was coming from.. He stopped talking to her now I think I'm more accepting when he told me they were just friends because he let her go so quickly after I complained. We are both allowed to look into each others phones but I stopped because I trust him and I don't doubt our relationship like I did before.. We are expecting twins in october.. I have one of the rare guys that will go above and beyond to make me happy..

lalab... lalaboosh

I wouldn't care. Btw that faceted ring on top is my husband's wedding band. :)

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