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Do You Trust Your Husband to Have Female Friends?

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Do You Trust Your Husband to Have Female Friends?

by April Daniels Hussar

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?

by on Apr. 23, 2013 at 12:51 PM
Replies (11-20):
by Platinum Member on Apr. 23, 2013 at 12:58 PM

Yep, I trust him.

by Ruby Member on Apr. 23, 2013 at 12:58 PM

i trust him completely.  he trusts me completely - we have been together for about 15 years - married 10 in may.   we have sadly found - in our lives - the Single people we WERE friends with - wanted more from each of us.    we learned it when it because obvious that they werent in it to be friends - we are talking about people from the past - and the present.      not everyone is that way.    we are both ALLOWED to have friend of any gender.    but we both choose to be cautious about who we hang out with because we are happy together and want to stay that way.   

by on Apr. 23, 2013 at 12:58 PM
Not a problem for DH and I. We both have friends of the opposite sex.
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by on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:00 PM

new friends I would probably have an issue with. Just like he would have an issue w/ me making a new guy friend.

When we first met we both told each other about our friends, so if was going to be an iisue it could be resolved immediately before we got serious.   It's been awhile since then and most of our friends have moved away or gone in different directions, but if they were to call neither of us would have an issue with it. 

by Platinum Member on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:00 PM

Yes. DH has female friends at work, as well as male friends. He runs into females he used to work with and will say hi and strike up a conversation. He also used to hang out with females when we were dating.

I can't go around expecting my DH to cheat with every female he comes across. I'm not that paranoid and if someone is, they probably shouldn't be with their DH since a relationship requires trust.

by Meanie Pants on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:01 PM

He has a female best friend and I have a male best friend. We aren't paranoid about each other's friends. 

by on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:01 PM

It really depends...but I think its doable to have opposite ex friends an healthy marriage!! 

by Anonymous 3 on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:02 PM
1 mom liked this

Most of my friends are guys and DF knows that. He also knows why. I don't trust other women. Never have, probably never will. 

by on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:03 PM

We don't have friends of the opposite sex.  It has nothing to do with trust.  It has to do with legally you cannot be alone with the opposite sex in Islam if they are not blood related to you.  This includes cousins of the opposite sex since we can marry cousins in Islam and BIL/SIL.  Now I can be around my FIL alone since I cannot marry my FIL and my husband be alone with my mother since he can't marry my mother. 

by Bronze Member on Apr. 23, 2013 at 1:03 PM
I trust my fiance to have female friends, but I wouldn't appreciate him hanging out with her one on one. Which is something I know he wouldn't do. Most of his female friends are gfs or wives of his friends, so I don't worry too much
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