Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.

Can men and women ever be friends?

(16 Posts)
youvegotmail Fri 13-Sep-13 22:39:25

Just that really, or as they say in 'When Harry Met Sally' - does the 'sex stuff' always get in the way?

I have never had male friends that I didn't think of sexually, if they were attractive. My husband now has a female friend (work colleague) that is young, beautiful and they have a close bond. I am very uncomfortable with it but have nothing to pinpoint as their (numerous!) emails are only ever chatty, their lunches are friendly, there is never anything even a tiny bit personal said between them and so on, both married with kids, they mention their spouses, it's all just chat about other stuff, getting on well and so on. He just likes her so so so so so much and is open about that.

So I have no right to be jealous except that all this friendship + her attractiveness make me think that surely my husband thinks of her 'like that'. Do you think he does?

Chubfuddler Fri 13-Sep-13 22:41:24

Harry and Sally were friends and then stopped being friends because they fancied each other. Then they got together.

So yes men and women can be friends as long as neither fancies the other. I have make friends who really are just friends.

Chubfuddler Fri 13-Sep-13 22:42:18

Why do you think you are capable of platonic friendships but your husband isn't? That's a bit sexist really.

youvegotmail Fri 13-Sep-13 22:43:46

I don't think I am capable of platonic friends, which is why now that I am married I steer clear of getting close to attractive male friends. Not that Id cheat but I don't think its right or respectful to fancy others.

It's also not just about DOING IT which I am certain that they are not, but the possibility of the fantasy or EA which worries me.

TheYamiOfYawn Fri 13-Sep-13 22:44:24

I have lots of male friends, and DP has lots of female friends. Many of them are the same people. Many of my female friends are lesbian or bi, and we are sometimes a little bit flirty (as I might be with a male friend) , but absolutely every one of my friends, male or female, knows that I am completely monogomous and that I only flirt with people who know that I would never ever dream of going any further.

TheOrginalPoster Fri 13-Sep-13 22:48:38

Well I'm not the best person to answer as in my past either my male friends have been gay or actually did end trying it on!

These days I'm friends with my husbands male friends or female friends husbands - but not so much as stand alone friendship if you know what I mean (and I certainly don't fancy any of them!).

I will probably get flamed for saying this but the truth is if my husband is friends with another woman (or on friendly terms) who is significantly older or, well erm, unattractive I barely give it two thoughts.

However, the more attractive ones... well yes I can feel threatened. I think its natural to feel some jealousy, as on some level as you are anxious about a potential threat to your marriage.

TheOrginalPoster Fri 13-Sep-13 22:51:06

I cant see anywhere where the OP claims she is capable of platonic friendship exclusively confused

I definitely think that opposite sexes can be friends. 2 of my best friends are male. In your position I'd aim to get to know your DH's friend & her husband, if possible. As it happens I really like my male BFs' partners as well.

ErrolTheDragon Fri 13-Sep-13 22:58:12

Yes of course men and women can be friends. Even if they might find one another attractive, if they're in stable relationships and know that nothing is going to be happen then they can still just be friends.

If there was something going on with this woman, you'd probably know a lot less about it.

TheOrginalPoster Fri 13-Sep-13 22:59:56

How long has your DH been friends with this woman op?

Pobblewhohasnotoes Fri 13-Sep-13 23:02:26

Of course men and women can be friends. I have male friends I'm not attracted to and never have been.

DuelingFanjo Fri 13-Sep-13 23:04:04

Yes they can.

blueshoes Fri 13-Sep-13 23:26:27

It is possible for men and women to be friends but after marriage, it has to be on a low burn otherwise it is asking for trouble. OP, what you describe of your dh's 'friendship' with his colleague crosses a boundary IMO, whether or not he is aware of it.

BackforGood Fri 13-Sep-13 23:34:33

Of course they can.

meditrina Fri 13-Sep-13 23:35:23

Yes of course they can.

But they can also have friendships that slip onto undue intimacy, or downright pursuits that hide under the cover of friendship.

If you feel uncomfortable, then perhaps you need to check on where you and your DH's boundaries lie in terms of acceptable level of contact and with third parties (any, not just this one; and for both of you, not just him).

superstarheartbreaker Sat 14-Sep-13 00:21:01

This might be a case of keep your froends close andvyourvenemies closer. It is probanly innocent but very natural to feel a bit jealous. I would be. What to donis the question.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now