I Don’t Mind My Guy’s Female Friends, But There Have To Be Boundaries

Being with a guy who has close female friends can get really tricky. I want to be able to trust him and his friends, but the dynamic between them needs to change now that he’s in a relationship. I’d never try to control who my boyfriend is friends with, but I’ll absolutely set boundaries—without them, everything is a gray area and someone always gets hurt.

IT’S NOTHING PERSONAL. I want them to know that me putting up boundaries has nothing to do with them. It doesn’t matter who they are, I would do the same thing with anyone. It’s not about pushing them out, it’s about protecting everyone and trying to make expectations clear. Just because I lay out a few rules doesn’t mean that I don’t like or trust them.

I TOTALLY UNDERSTAND THEY CARE ABOUT HIM. These friends were obviously in his life before I came along and I respect that. Those memories together are special and I would never try to erase the past just because he’s moving into a new chapter in his life. I’m actually happy that he has female friends who have stuck by him and probably had influence in the kind of man he became.

I WANT TO BE FRIENDS WITH THEM TOO. I feel like staying away from your boyfriend’s friends is totally uncool. I want all of us to hang out together and have fun. There’s no point in avoiding getting to know these girls—if they aren’t shady, there’s no reason we can’t all get along and even become friends outside of our relationship.

I DON’T WANT TO CUT OFF THEIR FRIENDSHIP. It’s not my place to tell my man who he’s allowed to like and keep around as friends. I trust him enough to make good judgement about circle of friends, especially the girls. If there’s nothing suspicious or shady going on, I’m never going to tell him he needs to delete their numbers—I respect their friendship and don’t want to be overpowering.

BUT BOUNDARIES ARE STILL SUPER IMPORTANT. Even though I’m totally okay with him having these girls in his life, boundaries are absolutely key in keeping our relationship healthy. It’s just naive to think that someone won’t get their feelings hurt when they cross a line that was never actually drawn in the sand. I just want them to understand where I’m coming from and how I feel about the situation.

NOT RESPECTING BOUNDARIES ONLY MAKES THINGS LOOK SUSPICIOUS. If for some reason they think I’m being unfair in laying down some boundaries, I’m going to have to assume there’s something shady going on. What’s the point in getting upset about guidelines that simply keep the “just friends” stage from going to “I totally have feelings for you” stage? It’s just basic respect for our relationship, it shouldn’t be a big deal.

OUR TIME TOGETHER COMES FIRST. I want them to understand that our time together comes before hanging out with friends. This wouldn’t change if the friends were guys, it’s just a general respect that we make sure to take care of our relationship first. It’s totally fine if they want to make plans but he’s definitely going to check with me first, just like I would do with him.

ONE-ON-ONE DATES ARE RESERVED FOR ME. I don’t see any reason a guy and girl who aren’t together need to spend one-on-one time together. Not having other people around changes the mood and leaves room for secrecy and developing feelings. Just because they’ve never had feelings before doesn’t mean it won’t happen in the right circumstances.

HANGING OUT WITH HIM SHOULDN’T BE A SECRET. It’s just easier to keep everything out in the open and communicate—if everyone knows what’s going on, the chances of having something look suspicious is so much smaller. Just like if I was planning to hang out with some of my guy friends, I would put it out there and make sure it wasn’t a secret. Nothing going on between him and his female friends should be so secret that I can’t know about it.

THEY DON’T NEED TO KNOW ALL OUR BUSINESS. Our relationship is personal to us. His girl friends don’t need to know every detail about our disagreements or things we’re doing. Even though they’re close friends, they aren’t equal parts in our relationship and don’t need to weigh in their opinions and thoughts. It’s okay for him to have multiple girls in his life but I should absolutely be number one and not a juicy topic of conversation among friends.

THEY NEED TO RESPECT OUR RELATIONSHIP TOO. No matter how much I bend around to include his female friends in our lives, our relationship is still the most important. Even if it doesn’t make me the “cool” girlfriend, it’s just a fact. If he’s serious about me, they should respect the fact that things will definitely change and they won’t be the only opinion in the room anymore. I honestly just want the respect to go both ways so we can all be in his life.

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