My Husband Openly Talks About Other Attractive Women To Me

My Husband Openly Talks About Other Attractive Women To Me

Dear Evan,

I have been married for two years. I am 26 years old and my husband is 12 years older than me. He is very nice to me and always tells me how beautiful I am and how lucky he is to have me. He loves me. He seems to know what to say to me most of the times.

Now, here is the problem… We are both going to separate colleges.  The problem is that at the end of the day when he tells me about his daily class events, he goes on and on about this hot, extremely hot, f#$$g hot, sultry looking girl in one of his classes… His friends tell me how “he is married, but not dead” and “there is nothing wrong with noticing other women”!! He also tells me that he can fantasize about his cute 30 years old teacher… I asked him if he ever found me ‘sultry’? His response was just plain ‘NO’. He told me that I was beautiful and very sexual, but never sultry. 

What is your opinion about this whole mess? I AM a jealous person, but I try to control my jealousy. I try very hard to not show anger, but I really don’t feel loved. I don’t want to tell him that he can’t come talk to me about other females (well, I see other guys too in my school but I don’t go on and on about them when I get home. I desire my husband and no other man)

What do I do?  How do I talk to him about this?

Jazz

Dear Jazz,

Your husband’s biggest problem isn’t that he’s a loser who will most certainly cheat on you one of these days (although an argument can certainly be made). No, your husband’s big problem is that he has an extraordinarily big yap which lands him somewhere in that gray area between insensitive and stupid.

I’m going to take this moment to strike a hard line in defense of LYING. Yes, LYING. Because right now, ladies and gentlemen, you are hearing a first-hand account of the devastation wreaked by a man who can’t help but to TELL THE TRUTH. Because, to be perfectly blunt with you, Jazz, his friends are 100% right. He IS married but not dead. There IS nothing wrong with noticing other women. Where your husband comes up incredibly short – as if he were somewhat autistic – in his ability to HIDE his attraction to other women for your sake.

Where your husband comes up incredibly short – as if he were somewhat autistic – in his ability to HIDE his attraction to other women for your sake.

Now, we’ve tackled this before here. And my sentiments, controversial though they may seem, remain the same. Flirty people flirt. It’s a personality trait, not a choice. Still, there ARE societal boundaries to be maintained, and there are certainly sensitivities that have to be considered. And your husband is failing on every account. Factor in your innate jealousy and your husband going on and on about his f#$$g hot lab partner, well, you’ve got a recipe for disaster on your hands. And it ain’t going away all that soon.

Because what you might be surprised to learn, Jazz, is that your husband probably feels that he just can’t help himself.

Which is why comparing your attraction to other men is irrelevant. Leering is somewhat accepted among men, and, to a degree, even encouraged…. I recall a conversation I had with a close friend. He was raised in a Southern feminist household and was taught ultimate respect for women. (This is a GOOD thing, by the way. I ain’t arguing with it.) But what my friend failed to understand when we were drinking and woman-watching in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina was WHY we did it. “I don’t see why you would alert me to look at a woman’s body from across the room if I didn’t already see it. It’s disrespectful.” My defense: “It’s like a rainbow. If it’s beautiful, I feel it’s my job to point it out to my friends around me.” Hey, it was the best I could do after a dozen beers.

Again, Jazz, I’m not blindly defending lecherous men – nor encouraging this behavior in general. I’m pointing out that it happens, it’s common, and it requires a lot of rewiring to get men to be sensitive to women when they’re accustomed to being boorish around other men.

While he should be letting off steam to his friends exclusively, he’s including you in on his act – possibly to absolve his guilt.

One other point: talking about other women is also your husband’s way of staying sane in a monogamous relationship (monogamy being a choice, but not a natural state). Unfortunately, while he should be letting off steam to his friends exclusively, he’s including you in on his act – possibly to absolve his guilt. It’s foolish, destructive and short-sighted, no doubt about it.

Thus you need to have a conversation with your husband before you boil over. As always, focus on how his words make you FEEL instead of telling him that he’s a psychotic pervert. It may be true, but it accomplishes nothing. If he loves you – and as your husband, I believe he does – he doesn’t want to hurt you, and is open to learning how his visceral reactions to women are actually damaging your relationship.

Please write back and let us know how it goes. We’re pulling for you…

 

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Comments:

  1. 121
    Li-Ann

    Jen, hang in there. I feel for you. Things will work out in the end. You seem so nice. You have your good heart, and that means a lot more that what just ONE man thinks or tells you.

    A lot of people, men and women, have an inflated sense of entitlement. I feel if a man or woman think they can do better, they should leave their partner alone. What is the point of making their partner feel terrible because they are resentful that they are “stuck with them” and not with the random hot person who strides into view.

    It is so hard to make the leap when you feel you will be alone after. Age for women makes a difference. I could lose this type of guy when I was in my twenties, but I already knew that through my late twenties, the possibilities slowed way down. There was a great selection in college, and I didn’t really anticipate the future. Also, who realistically wants to settle down then? Yet, suddenly, in the work force, the choices dried up. I met Mr. Charming after several years of nothing at all. The places I worked seemed to have nothing but married guys, or guys who were dating

    Sometimes I think – when a woman dreams of her future relationship, does she ever dream of anything like what I experienced? Of course not. Would you wish this on your daughter if you had one? No.

    You only have one lifetime to experience. What kind of life will it be? Joy or misery? Better alone than going through every single day constantly being reminded by someone that you fall short of his physical ideal? You know how great sometime a compliment can make you feel? It can make your day. All I was doing was having someone bring down my mood on a daily basis. I could have stayed with it for years more – but what was I achieving? Since his insults were based on physical appearance, they could only get worse.

    You also have to think of the beating you are suffering inside listening to a man lusting after others, or insulting you. You may think you are handling it okay, and I definitely kept myself busy with my volunteer work and other hobbies, so I really did keep my mind off it. However, years really quickly went by, and though I could block it, and he would periodically apologize when the mood struck him, the behaviour always came back. It was part of his core personality. He was appreciative that I was cooking for him, cleaning for him, and sometimes he would be nice. But it did not last. He made it clear that he’d prefer a better looking person who would cook/clean, and many times he acted like being with me was putting him out and keeping him from all the women he lusted after.

    I remember the great collective sigh of relief when I was finally alone. It was somewhat unexpected. I really didn’t realize the stress the situation was creating for me as I kept myself busy with distractions. I must say that the day I drove back from the airport and he had finally gone, I felt the strangest most joyful feeling suddenly come over me. It was as if I was back in school, possibilities were opening up, and that I was an okay person. I stress this point as that sudden feeling of relief was a huge surprise to me. I mean we couldn’t even watch TV – I would cringe if any woman came on because the first thing he’d say is “why can’t you look/dress/be like her”. Now all this utter CRAP was gone.

  2. 122
    Eda

    Jen,

    I was talking about physical appearance. To be honest, I never really think about not being able to attract the type of personality I like. Like Li-Ann said, you seem like a really nice lady, so I curious as to what type of personality attracts you and why don’t you feel men with that personality would find you attractive?

  3. 123
    Eda

    Thank you, Evan. I can’t tell you how much you’ve helped me.

  4. 124
    hunter

    To Li-Ann,

    Seems as if you have come a long way. Congratulations, on getting to where you want to be…..

  5. 125
    Jen

    Li-Ann:

    Thanks for the response.

    I am trying so hard not to blame him that I pretty much convince myself that I am unreasonably jealous and insecure. Which I am!!!
    I am feeding off what he is dishing out.

    I guess it doesn’t really matter WHY he says the things he does-thoughtlessness, etc….- but how it makes me feel (like holy CRAP!)
    I am bogged down in the WHY. A familiar place.

    More and more I want him to just go. The bad part, which I haven’t been able to share, is that he quit his job and has been unemployed for over a month. Fine with that for a while. I want him to find work that does not make him so miserable, and I respect his principles.
    But, it’s going on longer than I expected. He assured me at first that he would take any lousy job if he couldn’t find something decent.
    Not happening!

    I am suddenly seeing the benefit of a long courtship! The more I get to know him the more unfortunately I do not like.

    THanks for sharing.

  6. 126
    mariah

    for the acouple of wks. my husband of 4 yrs.now is attuide as been totally different hes been talking about other women that he knows or says to me ohh shes hott etc… the usual words that come out of guys mouth, which makes me feel like crap and that im not good enough, im just scared that he might be doing something behind my back, he recently got a tattoo and i asked how much did u pay for it he told me that someone else paid little things like that . i dont know i just have a gut feeling something is not rite or maybe im wrong . my sexual drive is down the toilet cause of all the thinking ive been doing latly and just thoughts of him being with someone else please someone help and give me some point of views thanks

  7. 127
    Li-Ann

    Dear Jen,

    You wrote that you are now thinking you are “unreasonably jealous and insecure”. I wouldn’t look at it that way. After my ex would insult me repeatedly about my appearance, he would always say (when he was in his making up phase) that I was just too insecure. That way it got him off the hook – it was really my fault! I don’t know if your boyfriend is trying to convince you that you are the one with the problem, but I do know that verbal abusers do not want to feel badly about themselves. They do not want to think of themselves as a bad person. They want to think of themselves as nice people. So if and when they do apologize, they will often try to manipulate it into being the other person’s fault. It might be subtle, but it is usually there.

    It is easy to find excuses for him, but if he’s been told once that some kind of treatment bothers you, it should be enough. That is, if he cares about your feelings. Certain types of personalities are unable to really empathize with others and feel nothing at hurting them.

    My ex quite his job about 3 weeks after we moved in together. He said he was too good to take the jobs he was offered. Although I understood, and wanted him to have a job he enjoyed, I had always taken jobs below my qualifications when money was necessary. If I had a room mate, I would not tell him/her that they have to support me till I find the perfect job. He DID take crappy jobs while he had other room mates. I thought he could work even 2 days a week, just a token amount of money for food, but he refused, saying things like “if I loved him I wouldn’t make him work”. Turning the blame on me. That phase lasted about 4 years. He did finally get a job, but by then my nerves were shot. I just got 4 years older. If he had been even a bit sweeter, loving to me, etc., I could have dealt with helping him succeed career wise. One thing I noted that the longer someone doesn’t work, the harder to get back into the swing of it. It just gets to be easier to stay where you are.

    I can’t say what will happen with your situation, and I’m sure he would want to work, but you can never know how long it will take, and if you can hold out waiting.

    As for settling, and also going back to the original question posed, I think the most realistic thing to do is to weigh out the positives and negatives. She wrote that she’s been married 2 years and that he mostly treats her well otherwise. She has to decide whether she can settle for his comments about other women in exchange for the fact that on other occasions he treats her well. Of course, 2 years is still early. They often can get worse with the years.

  8. 128
    hunter

    to Li-Ann

    I dream of catching one of you working women……….man you are with must be a cutie/good lover…..I hear they get a lot of business…

  9. 129
    Lisa

    Hi to all

    I have a wonderful mariage i must say. However the prolem i have with my husband is one that is really getting to me and i spoke to him about it over and over.

    My husband has this thing about him calling his girlfriends babes, sweetheart etc. I ask him to stop doing that since I think that those are more on an itimate line and should reserve those for me his wife. Every time i tell him that he gets very upset and pissed off and tells me how am jealous and a control freak and how he cannot take it anymore because I know him calling her that he deosn’t mean anything to it. After all he will tell me if i don’t like it i must shove it and i will have to live with it since he is not going to stop calling them som. To top it all off when they sends each other mails he tends to call them by that with a big exclamation mark just to hurt me.

    Can someone please tell me if am over reacting?

  10. 130
    Selena

    I don’t think you are over reacting. I also wouldn’t call having someone tell me to “shove it” a wonderful marriage either.

  11. 131
    Rachael

    I agree wholeheartedly with Selena; that sounds like anything BUT a “wonderful marriage”. You’ve got a major red flag, and it’s not the fact that he calls his women friends “babe” or “sweetheart”. I have a close girlfriend, one of my bridesmaids, in fact, whose husband calls me “sweetheart” and similar things. The big difference is that his wife doesn’t mind.

    Your big red flag is the lack of respect you’re being shown. He doesn’t stop doing this, even though it hurts you – instead, he calls you a jealous control freak. It’s a relatively minor change you’re asking him to make, for your peace of mind, and rather than try to understand why you feel the way you do, he insults and belittles you.

    Further, you say he e-mails these women, emphasizing the “babe” or “sweetheart”, just to hurt you.

    If my husband was doing anything “just to hurt me”, I’d be having serious thoughts about whether the marriage was even salvageable, and not remotely considering it “wonderful”.

  12. 132
    JuJu

    Moreover, Lisa, you yourself do not consider your marriage wonderful. You know how I know? You wrote here.

  13. 133
    Cilla

    Li-Ann, I put up with similar behavior from my ex-BF for over 4 years. At first, it was just irritating, and I wrote it off as “normal” male behavior. You know, you hear a lot of that out there: “I should be dating supermodels.” “I don’t need to look good, but she does.” Etc. My ex-husband was such an angry man, I was just happy to be with someone who didn’t scream at me all the time.

    Well, I should have said something, instead of just eating his comments. I also should have seen it as a BIG red flag for what it turned out to be: a classic high functioning borderline personality disorder (Google it, if you’re not familiar). By the time he dumped me, he had me coming and going to the point where I thought I was the crazy one. I’m not saying your spouse has this disorder, just that ignoring it was not good in my case.

    He did me a big favor by ultimately leaving the relationship. I,too, immediately had that sense of weight lifted off my shoulders. It may take me a while to get past the damage to my self-esteem, and it may make me a little leery of men, but I will never enable that kind of behavior again.

    I don’t know what to tell you, other than you don’t have to take it. Look deep within yourself and know you are better than that. If he can’t knock it off, you may need to make a difficult decision.

  14. 134
    Sahaja

    You know how in business they always say “Location, Location, Location?” It seems like in relationships the tagline should be “Communication, Communication, Communication” And I dont mean with your partner, though thats a part of it, but I do believe that one must have an honest dialogue with yourself too. If you are aware that something really bothers and irks you it has to be said to that person, otherwise it will eat you up inside. Thank god for my friends who have taught me to deal with things straight instead of rehashing it with my friends over and over until they go nuts. If people said what they really felt a lot of arguments could be avoided.

  15. 135
    laurie

    My husband recently told me that he found someone attractive and he works in heating and cooling in low income single womens homes I have always had an issue with this I am not comfortable with him going to these womens homes esecially after 5 pm and I tell him all the time he will come to me 2 times a week and tell me that he needs to go to someones home to fix something on the heater I tell him that I am not comfortable we get into a big fight and then he doesn’t go — last week I told him that I had many many things I need to get done for Christmas instead of helping he he wanted to go to this ladys house and fix something I think?? It seems like now telling me that he found one of the women attractive that I feel I am lacking beauty I feel scared that he is preparing me for the future of him possible cheating.
    Both his dad and stepdad are cheaters he says he is not like that. Prior to my meeting to my husband he stalked another women and spent 6 month sleeping with another man–I know that is really wierd and I think that he maybe off alittle so when he finds another women attractive it scares me wouldn’t it scare you.

  16. 136
    Sayanta

    To Mike’s Post:
    ” As I see it, when a man and woman get married, there is no social contact with the opposite sex. None. Zero. Business only and then minimize it. I don’t hold conversations with women, except to return a polite courtesy. Likewise my wife with men. Polite and respectful and that’s it. We also make sure we are not secluded with another man or woman, innocent or not. He has no business looking at other women much less hurting his wifes feelings about it. A little self control, please. Let him look at his wife. Let him tell her how attractive she is. Every day. She won’t mind.”

    I just read this- sorry, but this sounds waaaay too extreme. It sounds like someone who has to have ‘little social contact’ with the opposite sex after marriage has serious trust/self-control issues.

  17. 137
    lisa07

    My husband makes sometimes comments about other women but he never loses his cool in public.. I mean he never does anything to show his attraction to them… In the present problem I don’t see anything mentioned about the husband saying anything to them!
    About what Mike comment I think he is right. I had a friend that had a male best friend and she was always talking about how nice and smart that friend was. Also because that guy was not living with her he had a lot less time to hurt her or make mistakes ..in a time when her marriage had small problems (like who washes the dishes for example) the friend became the ideal man and the problems became big. She eventually cheated her husband with a 17 year old boy… So, me and my husband have friends men and women with whom we get out and have a drink but I wouldn’t agree with a opposite sex “best friend”.
    An other thing.. are we sure that the husband in the article above was “going on and on and on”? I mean is it sure it’s not just her opinion based on her jealous dependencies? Maybe the guy just mentioned it once!
    Yesterday my husband said “I have seen some very interesting, good looking, model like men in the subway. Out of curiosity, do you think you would check me out if you would see me on the street?” What I heard was “I have seen…. women…. ” and because of it I am on this forum.. I can’t believe how dump I was!
    I think that men should keep their mouth shut more and women should be less sensitive … but at the end if he and she have their values right this kind of comments should not be a big problem.

  18. 138
    kelli

    After feeling secondary to every pretty woman on TV since my husband points them out to me continually, along with various sexual innuendos that continue to hurt my feelings, I decided to get him where it hurts – his pocketbook. I told him I have to keep up with all the pretty girls he continues to point out to me and that he ogles after, so I spend a fortune on clothes, collagen and I am scheduled for a breast enhancement procedure. And the bonus is that due to my own vanity, I don’t have to “grow old gracefully”. :) If big boobs turn his head in front of me and he has to stare at them, then I can only return the favor the rest of the men in the world. Cuz trust me ladies, some people on here have said to ogle over men and that will get him back – trust me, it won’t. They aren’t built like us. However, if he sees other men eyeballing you, that is a completely different story.

  19. 139
    Priyanka

    I have been so intrigued by eveyone’s insight on this topic so thank you. I am also dealing with a similar situation where my husband of 3 months has used the moments I am down as a great time to point out or ogle at attractive women on the tv and gracefully look behind us at an attractive woman/girl thinking I’m too pre-occupied to notice. I’ve come to the conclusion that he has some growing up to do. In the meantime, I don’t mind pointing out attractive men on TV and ogling myself, although I will not go beyond my own standards of respect for him. I know he feels this and will adjust his insensitive behaviour. When or if he does, then I will no longer have the need to teach him how to treat others the way he wants to be treated. I’ve also decided to look good for myself when I’m up for it by taking caring of myself, like I used to do when I was single. I’m a huge believer that people around us will love us as much as we love ourselves, for the most part. I will also “get a life” as focus on what he may or may not like are things I just don’t care about anymore. I think it is important to nip in the bud now and if talking doesn’t help me, which it doesn’t because he uses emotional manipulation to try to make me feel guilty so he can do as he pleases, I’ll use other means to stay happy. Thank God for beautiful girfriends to lift my spirits up. I think at the end of the day both women and men need to feel loved, appreciated, undertood (a big one for me) and empathized with. The higher we all raise our own standards as to how we will be treated by other people, the higher standards in action people end up displaying themselves. I also think that the reason there is such a high incidence of disrespect and hurt in relationships is because people in general give excuses for the poor behaviour of others
    There are so many great posts that I’d love to comment on. Mike’s comments were classic, though I am not of the same opinion nor do I believe he’s truly being honest with himself.
    Men who feel that one can only be friends with one sex are afraid of crossing the limits within their own relationship, whether it is their own or the boundaries defined between spouses. The thought that being around the opposite sex is trouble speaks volumes about the individuals perception of their own self control/willpower and limiting beliefs about the other sex. What happens in this world when individuals decide to cut themselves off from 50% of the world’s population is a disconnection and lack of full understanding of people in the world. It’s like having one friend from Europe and THAT’S IT. There is no reason one cannot be friends with more than one European and have a fulfilling, committed, happy life and primary relationship with the one European of choice, unless you get easily distracted. That being said, there is no reason why this cannot happen by having just the one European friend. There is, however, more to lose by not socializing with other Europeans.

  20. 140
    JerseyGirl

    I think it is important to nip in the bud now and if talking doesn’t help me, which it does’t because he uses emotional manipulation to try to make me feel guilty so he can do as he pleases, I’ll use other means to stay happy.
    I think that is most important Priyanka. To do what makes you happy and ignore the emotional manipulation. And to treat yourself like you deserve, however that is.
    I kind of feel like if a man is more interested in oggling other women or stealing glances then maybe he shouldn’t be in a relationship. It’s okay to not be in a relationship. If you are always looking after what you don’t have, then maybe you need to be by yourself.

  21. 141
    Judy

    I totally understand what you are saying. My husband has been openly talking openly to me about hot girls he sees on the street and on tv. It is not exactly to me, it is to himself but outloud and when I mention it hurts me he blows it off. He says I am too sensitive. I have been going through this for 10 years and it is hurting our marriage but he refuses to comprehend what I am saying. I have tried different approaches and it continues on today. Any advise? We are not young anymore .. both in our 40s.

  22. 142
    doublestandards

    All of the comments on here are really interesting! I strongly agree that we women do need to set our standards and keep to them. WE choose how we should be treated. though i know how hard that is! i am really struggling atm. with society etc telling us women ‘men cant help it. get over it.’ etc. in regards to ogling and making comments about otherr women and pulling their own partner down!
    One important thing that i try to remember (it helps me get a clearer head) is that while you may hav a partner (aka arrogant insecure pig) tell you that you need to lose weight, tone up, boobs arent big enough etc etc. doesnt mean his point of view is actually what he thinks (could be pure jealousy) OR it is absolutely NOT what other men/ women think about you! Prime example- for my first 3 bf’s (and random guys in the street) they thought my butt was the best thing on earth (quite protruding for my size). so even when i felt fat. i loved my butt. (i know i shouldnt take so much validation from them-am working on that!) but random ppl would stop me in teh street and comment on it/ my looks. my bf’s used to get men coming up saying ‘hold on to her mate!’, boys at work sould vote me as hottest girl etc etc…now i know thats extreme and so stupid but it helps make my point. (btw i am very secure- as you can tell by the fact i held onto these times!) BUT i then met my next bf. he would ogle other GIRLS (always around 16-18). cheated and bragged about how ‘beautiful’ she was, how my bum was too big and fatty and it turned him off. comment on other ‘beautiful’ girls. and say he doesnt look at me because he has ‘seen me already’. etc. trust me. i was insecure as it was…but this pulled me right down (plus had jst left physically abusive relationship). point is- he had different opinions to all those other guys i mentioned…so DO NOT! FOR ONE SECOND! THINK IS POV IS VALID!!! we are all beautiful and sexy in our own way and you can bet your bottom dollar other men think so too! dress yuorself up, wear heals, get your hair done, wear lippy! and watch the Ogling begin! No matter what your age there will be men ogling you!
    PLEASE love yourselves! i am 23 and find it so hard- i want to know that women of any age can love themselves and find men who do love them respectfully and think they are sexy as! don’t take the ‘i cant help it crap’…firstly, yes there may be studies showing men are visual…but so are women…and also, we can all help it!
    SECONDLY, dont take the ‘its evolution crap’ that men want to sow their wild oats with as many women as possible- there is no concrete evidence. it is THEORY. i am sick of women putting up with these excuses! at any age! MY mum is 53 and ABSOLUTELY STUNNING! ALL women can be! sometimes i cant stop looking at her- she is just beautiful! it comes from the outside and the inside- anyone worth having in your life (male or female) will see this!
    I am so sick of society and the media parring women up against each other! those ‘who’s hotter’ polls drive me nuts! and FAKE women at that! my gosh! this is what they want! this is what sells the makeup, surgery, diet products, magazines, self help books, clothes etc etc etc.

    I, am taking a vow. right now. to not put up with any of this behaviour from men. i would rather be single!

    Li-ann- i think it was you that mentioned that you dont fit your hubbies ‘ideal’ of beauty. just look at it this way- you would fit my exes it sounds like! so the point is- dont let it de value yourself to yourself…is that makes sense
    JUDY- im only 23 so im not really in an authoratative position to give advice…but i studied psychology for 5 years and i have seen my fair share of psychologists and i have had my fair share of BOYS. have you tried doing it back to your husband?! he could even be jealous of something you know? feeling insecure about himself! start dressing sexy (dont you dare tell me you are too old!) and go out like that- really feel good about yourself! you are worth it! you know, do what an above poster said- hit his wallet…hard! im not saying go for surgery…but go get a facial, massage, cellulite treatments, buy new makeup and clothes that flatter you, start talking to the cute guy at the shops…come home and talk about a gorgeous guy that came into work and the CONVERSATION you had with him. i can bet my life your husband would get a second look from those women let alone a convo. also, this is only if you’re willing to try that stuff- like i said…im not sure…but thats what i will do with the next guy that says those things to me. (of course there is a time and a place- if we are casually talking about attractive people then i dont care too much if he can handle it back- long as its not sexual innuendos). otherwise seriously- see a counsellor/ psychologist- not because your ‘crazy’ but they can help you to define for yourself what is and isnt acceptable and put those appropriate boundaries up so you are respected. as far as im concerned when things like that go to far it gets abusive

  23. 143
    CD

    To Mike,
    I agree with you 100% when it comes to married people having friends of the opposite sex. You can certainly be kind and courteous while dealing with co-workers of the opposite sex, but going out alone for intimate little lunches or palling around with that person is wrong and puts an unnecessary strain on the marriage. If a married woman really wants a lot of male friends, she should not marry! The same goes for a man, if you crave the company of many women then stay single, don’t get married! I know these values seem hopelessly out of step with the “modern” world, but with a divorce rate of 50%, perhaps “old fashioned” isn’t such a bad idea!

  24. 144
    Ventressa

    As I see it, when a man and woman get married, there is no social contact with the opposite sex. None. Zero. Business only and then minimize it. I don’t hold conversations with women, except to return a polite courtesy. Likewise my wife with men. Polite and respectful and that’s it. We also make sure we are not secluded with another man or woman, innocent or not. He has no business looking at other women much less hurting his wifes feelings about it. A little self control, please. Let him look at his wife. Let him tell her how attractive she is. Every day. She won’t mind.
     
    I want to marry Mike! :)  Great attitude.  Many will probably see it as being way too restrictive but personally I think you have a solid grip on the meaning of becoming husband and wife… When you are married your sexual energies should only be directed to your spouse and your personal interactions with the opposite sex are best kept minimized. Most will argue vehemently with this concept I am sure because we have been taught to do what we want and what makes us feel good and to hell with everything else but there is a certain quiet wisdom to devoting your attentions to the person you chose to become your life`s mate. After all, don`t we pledge to forsake all others (meaning primarily the opposite sex) when we join in marriage with our spouse…   ;)

  25. 145
    Megan

    I am an anthropology student who has studied mating patterns. While women opt for quality over quantity, for men it is just the opposite. That “hot” chick may be attractive only in his eyes because biologically he would like to spread his genes as much as possible. This is why men seem to find attractive females everywhere whereas women tend to be down right picky.
    The point is that women are more likely to cheat on their partners with a very attractive man whereas men will take what they can get, even if it is just an average looking female.
    Women have more to lose if they are caught cheating so they set the bar really high.

  26. 146
    Freedom

    I liked Mike. Thanks Mike.

  27. 147
    Goldie

    Personally, I wouldn’t last a day with Mike – either I’d run off because I’d feel trapped, or he’d kick me out for being a shameless hussy, or both :) That said, we are all very different and come  from very different cultural/religious/family backgrounds. I’d say if a person grew up surrounded by siblings/playmates of the opposite sex or both sexes, and really, honestly does not see every member of opposite sex as a sex object, then this person will have friends of both sexes and think nothing of it, and that would not jeopardize their marriage in any way. I always tell people that I don’t choose my friends based upon what’s below their waist – I couldn’t care less – I use completely different criteria when I decide who I want to be friends with!
     
    On the other hand, when someone never had any dealings with the opposite sex other than dating/relationships, doesn’t understand opposite sex, doesn’t know how to talk to them, has no opposite-sex friends, then this person probably wouldn’t be able to pull off a platonic friendship, so is probably safer not even trying.
     
    If a woman never had any male friends growing up, it’s not like she’ll be missing a lot not having any when she’s married. If she suddenly got one, she probably wouldn’t know what to do with him, anyway. Same goes for a man who never socialized with any women growing up, except for dating/relationships/sex. He does not know how to relate to them otherwise, anyway. It’s not like he’ll have to cut 90% of his close friends out of his life the instant he gets married, because they’re women. He doesn’t have any to begin with!
     
    As long as each side acknowledges the other, and doesn’t try to impose their own standard across the board, I’d say live and let live. Mike’s mistake, as I see it, was that he started his first post on this thread with a broad statement that he appeared to apply to everyone. While I have no doubt that cutting off all social contact with opposite sex works great for Mike and his wife, it probably won’t work for at least half the people on this blog, which is why he got this reaction, poor guy. I do find it ironic that Mike ended up talking with a lot of women on this thread, on pretty touchy subjects like sex and friendship, no less ;) Maybe he eventually realized it and maybe that’s why he left.
     
    Аnother thing that occurred to me, some people were raised in strict religions where men and women are not allowed any contact with each other, unless they’re related, and for these people, “no socializing with friends of opposite sex” is norm. Again, as long as they do not impose it on everyone, and it works for them – fine by me.
     
    Mental note to self – with any man I’m dating – find out where he stands on opposite-sex friendships, before things get serious. As I see now, it could create problems in a relationships if both sides do not see eye to eye on this.
     
    Would like to add my 2 cents on the original post – basically, I agree. It is okay to check out good-looking women (and guys, for that matter) if you’re a guy (or a woman, for that matter). It is NOT okay to constantly discuss it with your wife/SO the way the LW’s husband does – jealousy issues aside, it’s just not polite dinner conversation! It’s right up there with telling people what a huge, satisfying dump you had this morning. (sigh, can you tell I grew up around boys? :D) Borderline autistic was the perfect way to describe it, so, yeah, for reasons of common courtesy, he does need to stop.

  28. 148
    Karl R

    The best thing I can say about Mike’s beliefs (#31, 39, 45) is that they apply equally to himself and his wife. If they both agree to such restrictive behavior, that’s their right.

    The biggest flaw I see in his beliefs is that he thinks modern marriages fail because they don’t follow this restrictive behavior. As far as I can tell, he is basing “success” and “failure” on divorce rates, which have increased over the years.

    In the past, there was a huge stigma against divorce and divorcees, which kept divorce rates low. The problem with this social stigma, is that it trapped many people in marriages which were filled with domestic violence, a problem which was never socially acknowledged.
    “Over the Threshhold: Intimate Violence in Early America”

    If a marriage contains domestic violence, I would not consider it a success. Since this isn’t an issue in Mike’s marriage, he doesn’t seem to consider the possibility that many of the marriages in our grandparents’ time should have ended, even if they didn’t.

    I would equate Mike’s restrictive behavior with a preventative mastectomy or preventative prostatectomy (one that’s performed proactively to prevent breast cancer or prostate cancer before it occurs). In rare cases, the risk factors may be high enough to make it the healthy choice, but for the majority of people, it simply creates unnecessary consequences without a corresponding benefit.

    My girlfriend and I are both active in the local dance community. We socialize and dance with members of the opposite sex without creating any jealousy or distrust in our relationship. There are married couples in the dance community whom have been together for decades. This hasn’t created a problem for them, despite the constant interaction with members of the opposite sex.

    Jazz’s husband is being boorish and inconsiderate of Jazz’s feelings … and the latter is a problem. Some of my behavior toward my girlfriend (when we’re in private) could be considered boorish, except she enjoys it. By engaging in “boorish” behaviors which she enjoys, I’m being considerate of her feelings.

  29. 149
    Lana

    THIS is a perfect example of Y we women sometimes seriously question male intelligence and common sense….hello guys:) we (females) drool over and fantasize about other guys too we are just smart enough NOT to tell the guy we are with about it> Makes sense??

  30. 150
    Lana

    Jen,
    I have been reading your story and you and I have much in common. I am in my mid forties and dating a 62 year old very flirtatious man….as much as he is capable of anyway.lol  I totally feel your frustration, your doubt about the relationship and your disgust.
    It is NOT you. It is definitely HIM. I have thought about this situation over and over again…have gone over it in my head analyzing and trying to make sense out of why I too like you end up with the same type of guy. I have come to the decision that I refuse to blame myself for his ignorance and stupidity. I am the best thing that has and ever will happen to him and if he continues the way he has been…he will surely lose me for good. You see, I am leaving my options open and feel no guilt , no shame.
    You should do the same because in the end……what we all want and deserve is to be happy and to be loved.
     
     
    Best of luck to you my friend . You seem like a genuine intelligent, real person who deserves more.

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