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why do I always pick men with a 'female friend'!

(74 Posts)
timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 18:42:17

I know its acceptable these days to have friends of the opposite sex, but it always seems to cause problems in my relationships. My ex husband had a 'female friend' at first I was fine with it, he was honest about her, it didn't bother me in the slightest, however later on in the relationship it started causing problems as she clearly didn't want anything to do with me and would invite him to things and not me till in the end he was out socializing with just her leaving me on my own. I hated it but kept it to myself for years then various things happened I just couldn't keep quiet anymore, it caused alot of problems.

My last ex who was actually abusive as well, had a 'friend' who was female, at first I was laid back about it, but then simular things happened she didn't want to meet me, she would buy him really unappropiate gifts, I had to leave his house sometimes when she was coming as she didn't want me to be around, anyway that caused alot of problems.

Now however I have met someone else, very happy a single dad who has his 2 children 50% of the time, does a fantastic job does his share of school runs etc so has got to know the other mums especially through his kids friends. He's mentioned one of them having twins and his kids were really good friends with them. They have since moved schools and it seems they stay in touch anyway today they met up with the dogs and the kids went for a canal walk and a drink at the pub. I think its innocent he has said she's not his type but has also hinted that maybe she quite liked him and is single. Am I being a little too suspicious and worrying about nothing due to past issues or would this ring alarm bells with you. I want honest opinions thanks

SanctiMOMious Mon 01-Apr-13 18:58:53

I think it depends. If they were both single at the same time and he left it there and is now going out with you, I would trust him, but I wonder if she has given up? If he's a sahd, he's bound to have a few 'mum friends'.

It is not as bad as an x i had who had a friend he was in love with. He would drop her name into the conversation, and when I finally called him out on it, he tried to make me feel that I was the jealous type blah blah blah. But even then he was enjoying having a reason to talk about her. Eventually I had to say to him look buddy it's obvious that you fancy her and that she doesn't feel the same way and that you're only with me cos she won't have you, and you humiliate both of us advertising that" funny, after I'd said it out loud I'd finished with him in about 48 hours. I said 'good luck with *&^%^". She didn't rush into his arms. Stupid man!

VoiceofUnreason Mon 01-Apr-13 19:03:04

I have a female best friend. In fact, most of my closest friends are female. Has always been so. The first people I introduced my last ex to were two of my closest female friends. She was fine. At first. But she basically felt I should NEVER socialise with any of them unless she was also present. As time passed, she made it even more clear that she had problems with me having female friends and particularly took against my best friend. Never been anything between us, never will. My friend made a lot of effort with my ex but my ex just didn't like the fact we were close. Did things all 3 of us but my ex was never terribly friendly to my friend.

Got to the point where I would omit telling my ex I had met up with my best friend - not so much an outright lie but a lie by omission - because it just saved grief. Realised that wasn't on - to anyone. So I told my ex that my female friends were around before she was and I was not prepared to cut any of them out of my life just because she was insecure (as she had made comment about two other female friends, I also knew that it was the whole "bloke having other female friends" that was the issue, not just my best friend).

Suffice it to say, she is now my ex, I still have all my female friends and I have still never slept or kissed my best friend (or any of them).

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 19:06:44

Oh they're such idiots aren't they these men, my ex used to love the attention he got off this woman, he didn't fancy her I'm sure of that but he used to just lap up the attention it was ridiculous really, both relationships were there was a female 'friend' involved were doomed, which is why this is making me nervous but it coud be nothing! grrrrr

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 19:15:20

Voiceofunreason, I think in the past if they had introduced me to them and they were friendly towards me it may have been a bit different yes, but there was obviously some jealousy there in my situation for them not wanting to meet me and both exs putting their feelings first used to annoy me. They didn't like it if I had a male friend infact I actually dropped mine because of it. I know it works within some relationships but there has to be a line I think and trust and a tad of understanding by all parties about how the other feels. It has now made me wary with this new guy even when he's been quite honest about what he's doing ohhhh relationships!!!!!!!!!!!!! I probably am a little insecure too!

SanctiMOMious Mon 01-Apr-13 19:27:01

VoiceofUnreasons friendships might have been innocent in a sexual way but I can understand why his girlfriends would be upset that he continued to be very close to other women. Also, for a man to have a female friend who is his 'best friend' and for there to be nothing sexual, I would wonder if he compartmentalises. One type of woman for shagging and one type of talking to. What I mean is, I can understand not wanting that in a relationship. It doeesn't mean you're "jealous" or "paranoid" or whatver. I just thought to myself for fuxache, good bye and good luck with *rachel. Being made feel less interesting, less deserving of confidences, or that your own boyfriend is better able to let his guard down and relax more with other women, well, it might be innocent from "his side of the fence" to coin a new mn phrase, but if the woman doesn't want to put up with that then I don't think she's being unreasonable or paranoid or jealous . If the relationship is making you feel second best then that's not good.

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 19:34:46

thats how both of these exs made me feel ...second best! They prefared to do things with them, the last one used to tell me regularly his friend was better at things than I was, it was an awful situation one I'm glad to be out of, but I don't know how to handle this one, do I say something so he knows what I will or won't put up with or will that just come across that I'm a psycho jealous control freak ??

SanctiMOMious Mon 01-Apr-13 19:44:39

Well, don't tie yourself up in knots like a court case, trying to establish if you have a right to feel second best or not. The point is that that is how the relationship with this man is making you feel.

Another woman might be fine with it. She might compartmentalise in the same way. See the bf very much as a sexual relationship only and have male friends for companionship. I'd really rather the two overlap. That's not an unreasonable thing to want. And I'm not the jealous type. I'm the type not to bother with relationships that make me feel bad.

Lavenderhoney Mon 01-Apr-13 19:47:10

If he hasn't done anything other than meet an old friend then there's not much to worry about.

Maybe she wanted to meet him because she is now single ( don't know the backstory) and liked him. Assume he said no, I'm in a relationship? And didn't discuss it?

Women friends fit round the relationship, just like male ones. If she is newly single, she is probably lonely as your married friends think ( and its a cliche) you are after their dh. Just carry on as normal, but if she begins to rely on him emotionally or lots of meet ups to which you aren't invited I would be quite upfront about it.

My dh has female friends. He always invites me along and they don't go in for long personal chats etc. more acquaintances really I think. He hasn't got time anyway, I keep him busysmile

Scrazy Mon 01-Apr-13 19:47:58

I don't know what to advise, maybe see how it goes and relax for now, unless it really is a deal breaker for you.

The last guy I was seeing had a few female friends and in the end I finished it. I suspected that there was something going on with them, why wouldn't I? He isn't in a relationship with them now but still it was a head fuck.

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 19:52:29

thanks sanc , this relationship isn't really a serious one yet and I do have a tendancy to worry about things before they even happen lol, but you see I haven't met his kids yet or him mine so we couldn't go for a walk altogether anyway, so I don't feel second best YET I'm just worrying I guess hate myself sometimes, but I do feel with this man I can talk to him so maybe when I see him and the time is right I could to have a chat with him, just needed somewhere to sound off. Past relationships do have such an effect on things

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 19:55:52

scrazy lol I know what you mean exactly. Both times I thought I could handle it both times I just ended up miserable. I won't stay with him if this sort of thing continues as I know I can't handle it wrongly or rightly that and moody men I can't deal with! but its early days yet.

Scrazy Mon 01-Apr-13 20:06:08

It was the lying by omission that got to me. I always found out about their meetings, after the event, guess he didn't want to jeopardize the here and now by actually telling me of his plans. It was the attention he needed from a variety of women and I felt like I wasn't appreciated.

Rachel184 Mon 01-Apr-13 20:06:24

No, you're not being unreasonable. Probably will go down like a lead balloon with some, but men and women can be friendly but not the kind of mates that go out together, alone and on a regular basis.

I say this because, women and men who are straight are normally friends by a common denominator. This could mean they are exes, maybe hung around in a group together which once lead to a little snog and didn't quite make it to the next level, so there's still some attraction there.

Unless your childhood friends and have remained close with no physical contact, said friends may end up in a sticky situation. One could develop feelings and get pissed and lunge (has happened to a friend of mine). Or don't quite want one another enough to get it on, so to speak, but do not want anyone else to have them either. Hence your ex with the girl friend who cut you out completely.

I think it's fine, if they include you and your all friendly together. But if he has a female friend, who he spends alone time with (and of course if she's easy on the eye and single) and he refuses to quit his alone time with her, you will understandably not trust him 100%.

Move on and find a bloke who enjoys male company! Lol. wink

Scrazy Mon 01-Apr-13 20:13:06

I agree with Rachel184. There is usually attraction on one side in these situations.

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 20:13:17

I think I will see if it happens agai and take a chill pill for now, time will tell I guess x

SanctiMOMious Mon 01-Apr-13 20:25:16

They do timetofaceit I was in an abusive relationship. Not the last one, but the one before. It has made me incapable of tolerating any bullshit. I know some women who've been abused once bounce from one class of dickhead to the next, but I went the other way and I just can't deal with with any disrespect whatsoEVER. I make a good girlfriend though. I am respectful, kind, good humoured blah blah blah so I'm only expecting what I offer myself. Saying that, I've been single for five out of the six years since I left the abusive x. So I'm not saying it's easy to get these relationships that make you feel only good, and never bad.

WafflyVersatile Mon 01-Apr-13 20:30:12

In the second relationship I don't think your problem was the friend, it was your abusive ex. Maybe she didn't want to meet you because he told her shitty stuff about you. Maybe he lied. etc.

In the first relationship you're a bit vague about what the actual problem was. If it was a male mate would it be a problem that they were his mate not yours? When I'm single especially, I prefer to spend time with my mates without their partners some, or even all of the time if I'm not keen on the partner or if being with them both makes me uncomfortable. Most of my friends are women but the same holds true with men. I probably make more effort to spend time with the partner then so as not to be the invisible female friend.

I think it is hard sometimes to be completely comfortable with our partners having good friends of the other sex.

I guess you just have to be honest with your partner about your past experiences and how they make you feel and that it's about how you feel not a judgement on his friendship. Ask for some consideration on this and see how it goes.

timetofaceit Mon 01-Apr-13 21:16:52

I dunno I think with the previous relationships to be honest noone handled it well and I include myself in that. The female friends, the men and me, it just ended up doing my head in, made me miserable even when I thought I could handle it. I never want to be in that situation again. I do have other friends though that it doesn't bother in the slightest no jealousy but it has alot to do with how the partners deal with it. My friend doesn't feel threatened at all she feels the most important to her partner but when I used to describe my situation she thought it was ridiculous. Just can't handle that again!

handmedownqueen Mon 01-Apr-13 21:54:35

I have been with my DH 23 years and have an extremely close male friend that I work with and run with. We speak daily and see each other without reference to our OHs. Our OHs are welcome in our relationship and we all see each other at times but ultimately we have a love of training and the same work in common so that's what our relationship is centred on. We speak daily. There is NO attraction on either side, never has been, never will be. I have had a male friend in the past where I had to end the friendship as he was attracted to me and crossed a line. I don't accept that all M F friendships are fraught with danger nor that it means that your new partner should not be able to see his FF however it does require trust and openess and if he assures you there is no attraction why not trust him?

thezebrawearspurple Mon 01-Apr-13 22:07:51

Avoid feminised men. Go for men who have male interests and have lots of male friends.

VoiceofUnreason Mon 01-Apr-13 23:32:52

The reason I have so many female friends is that, for me, it is totally normal. I was at infants school in a large village. In my class of 21, there were only 5 boys - two of whom didn't live in that village and one who belonged to a religious group (Plymouth Brethren) that didn't mix. Therefore it was perfectly normal and natural to me to have female friends from the age of 4!

My ex was jealous of female friends who weren't single and happily married! Whom I had known for 20-odd years. Whom I had tried to involve her with from DAY ONE.

Of course it is perfectly possible to close friends of the opposite sex and there to be no attraction whatsoever. I actually find it offensive to basically say that if a man and a woman are friends one of them MUST have feelings for the other or will at some point, or that one must compartmentalise people into "shaggable" and "non shaggable"??? Please. To value someone only on that basis is pretty narrow minded.

My best friend is the sister I would have liked to have (I'm an only child). We've gone on holiday together when we have both been single. We've never got pissed and kissed the other. And I would have NO problem with a girlfriend of mine having a close male friend. I agree, if there is an issue over being made to feel second best or more time is spend with a friend than a partner, that's a different kettle of fish. And I will swear on my goddaughter's life that I have NEVER had romantic/physical attraction to ANY of my female friends.

I also think it is generational to some extent. It is much more common for opposite sex friends now than it was 20, 30, 40, 50 years ago.

WafflyVersatile Tue 02-Apr-13 00:20:22

tbh I'm struggling to think of any cross sex friendships I have where there wasn't an attraction on one side at one time or at the very least some idle wonderings...

Maybe a couple. Both had a lot of female friends and we were flatmates. Sharing a toilet and morning grumpiness with someone you weren't already in lust with doesn't foster romantic feelings I find.

Scrazy Wed 03-Apr-13 09:43:03

Hi Voice, sorry if you felt offended, I do believe you that you and your female friends are purely platonic with no feelings on either side. It's been different ime, that's all.

SanctiMOMious Wed 03-Apr-13 13:17:19

that's all very reasonable voice ofreason but fact is from a gf piv it still makes u a less atractibe bf. just knowing you all this time for other women, that u have ended relationships with a partner for your relationships with married women..... fair enough of course but women who say 'pass thanks' on the chance to be just one woman in your life arent jealous or unreasonable. it's just not what they want. if i go out with a man, i want to be the one he considers his best friend. i think that is a normal thing to want. it's not a sex/jealousy issue. how close can u be to somebody who is close to three or four other women, who know his history as well!? that would just be an offputting factor.

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