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How do I learn to deal with his female friends?


jenm
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My boyfriend and I have been together for awhile, and things are generally great (it's a long-distance relationship). But there's this one problem. He's one of those guys whose friends are almost all girls. He does have some male friends, but definitely mainly female. Which would be fine with me, if they were all people he's only ever had a brother-sisterly relationship with, or if they were all incredibly unattractive (ha ha). But the fact is that many of his friends are very attractive women, and he's had some sort of sexual involvement with a lot of them in the past.

 

I want to be ok with this. He can't change his past, and these people are legitimately his friends. We've already had the "boundaries" talk, so I have no reason to believe that he is crossing any lines (unless you'd consider him hanging out with them in the first place as crossing a line, which I don't). The problem is that I keep getting comfortable with the idea in my head -- in the abstract -- but then I'll be talking to him and he'll say "Oh, I met up with so and so at the end of the night", and my heart will start pounding and immediately my imagination goes into overdrive.

 

Last night, for example, he called to say good night at 2:30am (I'd just gotten home). He was still out. He told me he'd gone to this party, then met up with a mutual guy friend, then "met up with Jess" (who presumably he was still with). Jess is someone he had sort of a brief fling was a couple years ago, but now they're "friends". She is INSANELY BEAUTIFUL. like...seriously hot. I'm attractive, but she looks like a model. I guess I just don't see how he could be spending time drinking at 3 in the morning with someone that attractive --who he has slept with -- and for it to be completely innocent and platonic. i noticed today that he changed his facebook status at 4:30 in the morning, which suggests that he stayed out really late with her (i think alone, although not totally sure about that).

 

how can i just trust? SHOULD i just trust? I feel like a lot of people will say he's being sketchy, but the truth is that he really does get along well with girls. His best friend is his high school girlfriend (who i know, and who's great and totally non-threatening).

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I don't know here, it seems like a bit of a red flag here. How often do you see each other? LDRs are hard because the less time you see them the more you don't know about what they are really doing. I hate to put anyone in a certain boat, but if he was really spending time with this one particular chick until all hours of the night...it just doesn't look good.

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I can advocate for him, BUT, that late night with the hot girl, no, my ex woulda never let that go. When things happen like that you gotta just let him know strait up, "Hey it makes me uncomfortable when you stay out late with girls you've slept with." he will explain and explain, but thats not the issue. It makes you uncomfortable and its a part of his job to make sure you are feeling like the most important lady in his life.

 

Also be reasonable. I too have more girl friends than male. So he could be innocent. Ive been in pretty bad situations that looked PRE-TTY darn bad, but I knew what was up, and she always trusted me. I think the main issue is that hes had a past with them. Ask him how he'd feel if you started hangin out late with the guy you lost your virginity to? Do it in a nice way as to not cause an argument. He could try to argue his way out of it, and try to make you feel wrong, just stick to your guns and tell him how you feel. You deserve to feel secure especially in a LDR.

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I would definitely have a talk with him. I have a guy friend who I still speak to sometimes that I had a brief fling with before I met my boyfriend, but I will not hang out with him alone out of respect for my boyfriend (didn't tell b/f we slept together and the sleazy details, but just that we'd dated). I just feel like it's inappropriate given the circumstances.

 

My boyfriend too has a ton of female friends, but he's not had a sexual relationship with any of them. I still feel pangs of jealousy at times, as they are all fairly attractive, but then I have to remind myself I'm just being silly. It's natural to feel that way.

 

Definitely open up to your b/f about how you feel. Emphasize the fact that you do not mind him having female friends, you're glad he does, but it makes you extremely uncomfortable that he is out getting drunk in the wee hours of the morning with women he's had a sexual relationship with in the past.

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There's an awfully lot of "presumably" here; I think firstly you should establish what the actual facts are before assuming anything.

 

More generally, though, if his lifestyle makes you uncomfortable, but neither you nor he can reasonably fault this lifestyle or say that he shouldn't do these things, and you're in a LDR, then I think you're having to question whether it's really worth it in the end. You've said there's no way this can change, and in spite of your best efforts there's no way you can become comfortable with it (and I don't think I'd be entirely comfortable in your position either, so I'm not faulting you for that), so effectively you're knowlingly signing-up for continued discomfort. I'd think twice before doing that if I were you.

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If this was just some random guy and we hadn't been dating for long, I'd definitely agree with you karvala. But it's not. We've been friends for years, and we've been together for almost 6 months. We're in our late 20s, and he's the first person I've ever dated who I can really see myself with. We get along so insanely well, and have so much in common, and so much chemistry on every level. He's the most interesting person I've ever met, and also kind, and brilliant, and weird in all the right ways. And if I'm honest, the fact that he relates so well to women and sees them as real friends and not just potential girlfriends/sex objects is one of the things I love about him.

 

I was wondering if I should just try to have a really open conversation with him about it. Not criticizing him, or suggesting that he's untrustworthy or doing anything wrong, but just putting it out there that, for whatever reason, his emotional intimacy with other women makes me feel weird and crazy sometimes. And that I'm really trying to be ok with it, but I need him to be ok with the fact that it makes me uncomfortable, and to acknowledge that it's understandable that it makes me uncomfortable. And not that he should stop having these friendships, but just be sensitive to my feelings about it and extra open and transparent and conscious of keeping things above-board. does that sound ok?

 

If any guy's reading this, what would your reaction be if your girlfriend said that to you? I guess I'm afraid of really showing my weakness & jealousy. I want him to think that I'm strong and unshakeable. But...well, I'm not. So maybe he should know that.

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