When Your Boyfriend Doesn't Like You Spending Time With Friends

Readers question to StricklyDating:

I trust him, but he doesn't trust me. This has been an ongoing problem and I want it to stop. My boyfriend and I have been together over a year now and he still has trust issues. I have always been 100% honest with him about everything that is going on with me or us and always tell him how I'm feeling. I have never done anything to make him not trust me so I don't know why this is a problem. Every time I go out with my friends and come home late he gives me the silent treatment and acts like I cheated on him. I go out once every 2 months and he knows where I am and who I'm with. This is causing me problems, he thinks its OK to act like this, I don't know what to do or how to feel now.

Response from StricktlyDating:

Thanks for your question. It's always a good idea to stay in touch with your friends and spend some time alone with them when you're in a relationship, so I think your plan of going out with them every two months is a healthy one. It's very unfair that he doesn't support you with this. Giving you the silent treatment and acting like you've cheated on him when he knows where you are and who you're with. It's almost as though he's trying to make you feel guilty for maintaining your friendships.

You do not want to get to the point in your life where you feel it's not worth the hassle of the repercussions for spending time socialising without him. You don't want him to rob you of all of your other relationships. The way he's treating you, twelve months into your relationship is a 'red flag'. Potentially he could end up making you feel bad for any fun times you have without him. It's not just about his 'trust issues' it's also very controlling behaviour, and the silent treatment is a form of emotional abuse. I'm glad you realise that it causes you problems when he treats you like this and that you need the way he is behaving to stop. You are trying to address the matter for what it is, before it could get worse.

Firstly, whatever reasons he gives you for treating you bad after you've been out with your friends, they are HIS issues (That he is inventing for no reason that you've given him). He could feel worried that you may meet someone else better than him, he may feel jealous that you're having fun without him. It could be that he has trouble with trust but he may just not like that you've gone out and left him alone, it might really just peev him off! Whatever his reasons are, he's an adult and it's unreasonable to make you feel bad for spending time without him (Even if it was once or twice a week!). Do not buy into these selfish reasons as there is no excuse for treating you bad. I have no idea how he tries to 'justify' this behaviour as being "OK" like you said. He's the one person in your life who should be making you feel special. Everyone wants to be in a reasonably hasstle free relationship where they feel proud of their partner.

When you are making plans to meet your friends, you could check that he's making plans to do something too, or make suggestions in advance as to what he might be able to do while you're out, so that he is not moping around at home or worrying about you. Don't go as far as organising it for him though (That shouldn't be your job either), just suggest he catches up with someone too - friends or family. You could also make an agreement with him to call him at some point when you're out to let him know you're thinking of him, if you think that would make him feel better. Another suggestion is occassionaly having your catch up with friends at home.

The most important thing you can do to resolve this matter is to talk to him about it when you're both calm and when you can sit down properly with him and explain your feelings. You could say something along the lines of how you need to spend time with your friends because it's important in your life to keep in touch with friends and tell him how much it hurts you when after you've done this he gives you the silent treatment and makes you feel bad. Tell him that he needs to really understand how bad it makes you feel so that he doesn't make you feel awful the next time you do this. Tell him that you feel if he continues to make you feel like he doesn't trust you can see that it will damage your otherwise good relationship. Tell him you love him and you just need to sort this out because it's been upsetting you. Don't argue with him, just reaffirm what is and isn't acceptable behaviour (in your eyes) and tell him you're trying to find a way to resolve this problem, because you don't want to have problems with him any time you spend time with your friends. Then it's just a matter of giving him a chance to think about what you've said on his own, so hopefully he can make the decsion to improve on his behaviour in the future.

After you've had this conversation with him, don't hold the past behaviour against him the next time you plan to go out, give him the benefit of the doubt, a chance to improve the way he treats you when you come home. If he does, tell him how you appreciate his change in attitude. However, if there is some part of his being that just can't decide to make the change dispite knowing he's treating you bad, it may be a case of the more serious you get with him, the more you learn about him as you get to know him, the more you realise he's not able to treat you the way you deserve. Remember that you cannot FORCE someone to change who they are, they have to decide to do it themselves. Hopefully, he does!

Best Wishes,

SriicktlyDating

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Comments: 3 comments

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stricktlydating 4 years ago from Australia Author

Thankyou kindly for your comment Acaetnna, it's always great to have your feedback.

You made some great points Enigmatic Me, thanks for adding to this topic!


acaetnna profile image

acaetnna 4 years ago from Guildford

Communication is the absolute key in my opinion, one must be open and discuss issues. Trust is so important in a relationship and without complete trust it is doomed to failure. Great hub and food for thought, thank you for sharing your expertise as always.


Enigmatic Me profile image

Enigmatic Me 4 years ago from East Coast Canada

I'd like to comment on this situation. As muchas StrictlyDating has pointed out some very good points related to relationships in general, I believe the biggest one is communication... as strictly pointed out, there is nothing worth more in a relationship than a commitment to making things better.. that can't happen if everyone shuts the door. The realities are endless in something like this, maybe he feels threatened by one of the friends you have? Maybe you speak kindly and very positively about a friend so much that he begins to wonder why you are with him? Maybe in the past, a friend also mentioned having feelings for you, and despite his being with you he wonders if/when that person is going to make their feelings known?

YEs the male ego is fragile, and yes we all carry a boatload of stuff from our past, and if we don't look to that as a possible reason for current behavior we are missing out on a ton of possibilities. But they will never be known if you both don't take the time to figure it out. One thing I would advise against is suggesting to him "you are this way because...." Pointing out things isn't necessarily the best way to get a guy to admit feelings he hasn't admitted to himself yet. (Be it jealousy, fear of abandonment etc).

Wish ya luck with this, but sometimes the pebble in the dam is big enough that when you remove it all the reasons and explanations flood out with it and make the situation less tense than it really needs to be.

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