I’m in a serious relationship with a man who treats me great. We are currently long distance, seeing each other about once a month. At first I did not think much about his friends and the fact that a lot of them are girls. I have met quite a few of them and they are all beautiful and flirty. I don’t think they see him as more than a friend and he has never dated any of them as far as I know. However, he once in a while has one visit him at home to chat. He also has a lot of female friends on facebook. I feel that he is crossing a boundary with having girls at his place where he wants me to even move into. I don’t think he’s doing anything and he does tell me after, but sometimes he’s with them for a while and I feel like if he wants to socialize with women it should be in public, or involve me or someone else as well. I’m starting to get really nervous especially since he does women favors sometimes… I know he’s a nice person but why is he doing things for other women? I’m not sure where boundaries should be but I’m starting to get nervous. I don’t think be would cheat, but I also think there should be boundaries on closeness to prevent emotional cheating. Am I over thinking all of this? I struggle with my self esteem and I am not as pretty as these girls, also I need to be his main priority in life and the first person he shares things with etc. I don’t want to feel like the things he does for me he would also do for another woman. Or that another woman could have his attention as often as me. I feel that there should be a major difference in our relationship than how he is with other women, a difference more than the fact that we are intimate and that he is loving and mushy. Do I want too much?
Thank you very much for letting us read your email here at PsychCentral. I think there are various levels and ways in which to approach this, but they all include having an honest and direct conversation with him. The first way is to explain how important this is to you and the kind of feelings that are activated and that it feels like he crosses a boundary when he does it. Secondly, I would then explain that if he wants to continue, then this should be agreeable for you to do as well. In other words let him know that if he thinks it is okay for him, then it will have to be ok for you, too. If he feels it’s the right thing for him and he’s not willing to change — then he will have to be okay with you having male friends on Facebook, visiting their homes and doing favors for them as well.
This is not a tit-for-tat but rather a reality check. You want to be in a mature relationship with an individual who thinks there’s reciprocity in your partnership, then he needs to know that what is good for him is good for you. This may be the beginning of an awakening in him, a change in how you choose to be in the relationship or a time for reevaluation.
Dan Tomasulo Ph.D., TEP, MFA, MAPP teaches Positive Psychology in the graduate program of Counseling and Clinical Psychology at Columbia University, Teachers College and works with Martin Seligman, the Father of Positive Psychology in the Masters of Applied Positive Psychology (MAPP) program at the University of Pennsylvania. He is Director of the New York Certification in Positive Psychology for the Open Center in New York City and on faculty at New Jersey City University. Sharecare has honored him as one of the top 10 online influencers on the topic of depression. For more information go to: http://www.dare2behappy.com/. He also writes for Psych Central's Ask the Therapist column and the Proof Positive blog.
Tomasulo, D. (2018). Obsessed With BF Female Friends. Psych Central.
Retrieved on November 26, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2014/05/03/obsessed-with-bf-female-friends/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 3 May 2014)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.