Okay, I have a problem. What are the information sharing rules regarding friends of the opposite sex? I am married. Long term. My significant other has recently been contacted by an old high school aquaintence. Recently there have been communications (both email and phone) and even plans to get together for dinner. My SO has not voluteered any information about these communications. I have stumbled on some stuff and have asked but only get vague information and she then gives me the line that she is entitled to have her own friends. Should all of this be kept secret? What are the sharing rules? Help!
I personally find this a bit suspicious. Maybe not that she didn’t mention it to you before, but acted really evasive when you brought it up.
I’m sorry I don’t have any advice, but I definitely think this is a breach of the “sharing rules.”
One of the general rules for preferred sex friends is that they should be friends of the relationship - this person does not sound like a friend of the relationship, since your wife seems to be hiding him from you. Yes, she is entitled to her own friends, but she also needs to retain her boundaries with him and keep communication with you open, and she’s failed at half of that at least (which obviously has you wondering about the other half).
I typed the OP several times before I hit the submit. I trust my wife. I agree that opposite sex friends should be friends of the relationship. And one of my female co-workers is just that. We have gone to dinner as 2 couples. They have invited my daughter to dinner when she was in town for school. But not alone. And even when we go to lunch (with 2 other co-workers), I make sure to tell her. I don’t want any questions.
I don’t know your wife, so cannot tell you her intentions. How long have you been married? If I were married again, and ran into an old male high school friend, I would invite him over (as my husband did the cooking). Or would’ve at least said, hey this guy I went to school with got in touch with me. If anything I’d want him to meet my husband. Unless he were gay.
Married 30 years. I have suggested we all get together and she was not interested in that. This friend is engaged. I have suggested all 4 get together. Again, no good. THis friend is on Facebook and I saw several of his posts trying to get together with other female friends. Never mentioning his fiance. And never looking to get together with the guys.
Disney_Fan, I’m seeing two big red flags here - one is that your gut is telling you something is off here (and I do believe that you trust your wife), and the second one is that your wife isn’t trying to make those gut feelings go away.
I haven’t been married 30 years (just eight), but I can’t imagine having an old male friend get in touch with me and me making plans with him that excluded my husband. One of my first responses to him would be, “You have to meet my husband! I think you guys will get along really well.”
A good rule of thumb, I think, is if you find that you want to keep a relationship secret, that means you think you’re doing something wrong. I would be very concerned something was going wrong with the communication in my marriage if this happened and I were either party.
Giant red flags. I’m all for people having friends, regardless of gender. But once there is hiding and deception – for whatever reason – then it becomes inappropriate.
Of course she is entitled to her own friends, but there is a reason she isn’t being forthright with you. You need to find out what those reasons are.
I don’t like the sound of this. Even if there’s nothing going on between your wife and her friend, there is a respect and communication issue in your marriage that really needs addressing.
I fall very much to the liberal side of preferred-sex friends in a serious relationship. When I was married, both my wife and I always got along better with people of the opposite sex, and I think the ratio of people that I’m close to in my life is something like 8:1 in favor of women. I’m not even someone who is going to tell you that the two shouldn’t spend any time alone together. Yeah, I’m that liberal about relationships and trust.
That being said, I do think there’s something wrong with your wife not being willing to share and talk to you about her friend or their get-togethers. She’s allowed to have a life outside of you. But why does it need to be secret and isolated from you?
The guy she’s talking to sounds like he’s trying to pick up ‘girls’ he went to school with so that sounds like a problem. In general I wouldn’t see an issue with having preferred sex friends that have nothing to do with your relationship, but this situation sounds odd.
My partner of going on 10 years has several friends that are of his preferred gender that I’m not friends with and it works fine for us.
As said earlier, we have been married 30 years. But before I say something wrong, what do you mean when you say ‘preferred sex friends’?
Yeah, this doesn’t sound right to me. Personally, I’d contact his fiancee on facebook and say something about how lovely it would be for all four of you to meet up. (I’m not saying that is the best approach - just what I’d do)
Someone who is of the gender you would normally be sexually attracted to. Like a male friend for a straight female or gay male, female friend for a straight male or gay female, etc. We usually say preferred sex instead of opposite sex because it’s more inclusive of possible attractions.
In your case, it means opposite-sex friends. But if you we were talking about a gay male, than having an opposite-sex friend doesn’t carry the same connotation. “Preferred-sex” covers a broader range of situations and encompasses what you’re dealing with.
ETA: Dammit, Antinor! Slow down!
Okay. Thank you. I have no problem with preferred sex friends as I have a couple. But I make sure that I communicate everything I do to avoid any potential issues. I have asked her to drop the relatioship as she has not heard from this person in 40 years and as above, I think he is just trying to pick up former classmates. I don’t have any respect for him. But the decision is still hers.
Only if you ask nicely, my preferred sex friend.
Sounds like giant red flags. My best friends is a female, and both of us are up front and honest about it with people we date.
Yeah, I’m going to echo what most others have been saying. There is nothing inherently wrong with being friends with a member of the opposite sex, or even spending alone time with them. There is something wrong with hiding that interaction. Relationships need to have trust and openness in order to last, and you must find out what’s going on here in order to keep those two crucial necessities going.
I’d guess there’s a problem of some sort, though not necessarily the problem you think. There may be something inappropriate going on between them, or if you’re as “share every single irrelevant detail” about everything as you sound here, she may just be fighting for a little mental and emotional space. There’s trouble either way, but you can’t try to fix the trouble till you find out which sort it is.