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Married man having platonic relationship with a married woman?

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Question - (23 April 2010) 8 Answers - (Newest, 29 April 2010)
A female United States age 51-59, anonymous writes:

Is it o.k for married man to have a platonic relationship with a married woman?

My husband recently reconnected with a friend whose a girl in high shcool. They've never had any kind of romantic relationship, although my husband had admitted in the past that he had a crush on her then.

After reconnecting with her and a few of his other friends of whom most are female, he instantly developed a closer relationship with this particular person. When I asked him about this, why he was the only female in the group he gets in touch with, he tells me that besides one other guy in the group, he was closest to her. Now it seems like they have picked up the past and have started talking and communicating with each other on a regular basis, over the phone and through facebook. They also had a couple of lunches together, once by themselves then the second time meeting another female friend after they had lunch, for cocktails. He had been wanting to introduce them to me ever since they reconnected but both parties schedules would not accomodate it.I have secretly seen some of the messages that they have sent each other through facebook and so far I have not seen anything increminating. When I ask him about how he feels about this girl, he tells me that she's just a friend and that everytime they get together or talk, they talk about the past and their families. He reassures me that there is nothing sexual or romantic about their friendship . He also told me that they are both married and that they have no intention of ruining both families lives for an affair.

Should I believe him, I have not seen anything that had changed in our relationship. Is it possible that they are just friends? Could this kind of friendship remain platonic? Please help...

View related questions: affair, crush, facebook, married man, married woman

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (29 April 2010):

there are platonic relations and then there are platonic relationships

seems as though your hubby is slowly replacing you emotionally. if he is dscussing his dreams, his life, his marriage, his career, his everything be concerned - be very concerned. it means that he will start prefering her to you to share his life with. watch and observe and try to limit their alone time. its only a matter of time before that friendship feeling turns into that loving feeling.

i think you are old enough to know when you are feeling some discomfort. something, that little something is telling you to be careful. listen to that little voice. it is a warning.

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A female reader, Laura1318 Malaysia +, writes (24 April 2010):

Laura1318 agony auntAll affairs start from platonic friendship. Whether your case will become one will depend on some factors and how well you control and monitor them.

If they are meeting often without your involvement always, there is a greater risk of escalating from a platonic to a full time affair.

After all, we are only human and have emotions. It does not matter if they are married or not. Affairs can begin when the conditions are right.

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A female reader, raiders United States +, writes (24 April 2010):

raiders agony auntYes married man and married women can be friends, unless your husband gives you reason to suspect something differently, and he hasn't. Don't start doubting him he said he wants you gals to meet which you probably will because he has nothing to hide. Don't get paranoid relaxes and let your husband have girl-friends.

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A male reader, The Realist Canada +, writes (23 April 2010):

The Realist agony auntOf course they can just be friends. Just because you are married or dating someone does not mean you have to give up all your opposite sex friends. She is nothing more than an old friend from high school who is nice to talk to again after all those years. He should be allowed to be friends with who ever he wants and the same for you. If you have a problem with this new friend then I think that there are trust issues and insecurities.

There is no doubt in my mind that it will be nothing more than a friendship.

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A female reader, YouWish United States + , writes (23 April 2010):

YouWish agony auntI think that they are just friends now, and that nothing has happened. But there is the possibility that curiosity can re-spark a non-platonic one in the future. You have to trust that it won't.

From what you've said, there's nothing being hidden. You can check on the conversations and they are non-incrominating. You'll know that something is amiss if the element of secrecy enters in, and he starts changing his email password, hiding things from you, and staying out later.

It's up to you. If you absolutely aren't comfortable with this, tell him. If he's a good man, he'll respect you. But having a platonic friendship with a member of the opposite sex is possible if certain rules are followed. If you're secure in your relationship with your husband, give trust a chance. You'll know in your gut if something changes.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (23 April 2010):

It looks like you asked the same question a couple days ago:

I get the impression you don't want to face your suspicion that what he's doing is wrong.

Maybe you should ask yourself the question, "Is it possible, even just a little bit possible, that my husband IS secretly attracted to this girl?"

I think that now you've let this issue gnaw away at your conscience and you've quietly suffered and reached out to others to define your own experience, it is a sure sign there is something wrong. Take a quiet moment and decide what the truth is, and face it, and let yourself go through it. I bet you're up to it - You're going to be okay -

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A female reader, hpoco Switzerland +, writes (23 April 2010):

hpoco agony auntIts possible that they are just friends. You absolutely should meet this woman though, and tell your husband that if he wants to continue meeting up with her for lunch and what not, you HAVE to meet her to feel comfortable about it. Its the least he can do. These situations can be very tricky, and in my opinion a bit dangerous.

But, who knows? Maybe she is really an upstanding lady, who gives sound advice and is nice to talk to. You need to decide that after meeting her, whether you think she is a good influence/a bad one. It can be good to encourage trust by allowing this friendship, if you feel comfortable with it.

Best of luck.

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A female reader, Kassi (Nova) Canada +, writes (23 April 2010):

Kassi (Nova) agony auntI totally understand. I went through something like this last year, only the correspondences I found were totally incriminating, and it nearly tore apart my relationship. Follow your gut, tell your husband that you feel threatened and uncomfortable, and that you'd like some boundaries drawn.

You are going to have to be fair- if their friendship is just platonic, you'll seem like a jealous tyrant, and you may actually end up driving them closer to each other. Tell him you'd like to be included. Ask to join in on some (not all) of their social engagements together.

I don't know I could ever stop monitoring the facebooking and emails, so if you need that safety net to feel confident there's nothing going on, I won't lecture you about it.

Good luck!

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