Normal to Be Jealous?
Q: I'm 36 and have been married to a beautiful, loving, caring woman for 12 years. We have two kids. She has this lifelong friend, also married, who treats her like a sister. He made a pass at her and she was pissed at him, but he still wants her to go to movies with him, or on dinner dates. We have discussed this several times and I've told her that I am not okay with that, and that I feel threatened by him. If the tables were turned, would she feel this way? She says no. Is it me or...? -- Lance
Dr. Susan: Male/female friendships are priceless, but they're also often tricky to sustain. Your wife and this guy may be friends, truly, but he definitely has erotic feelings for her. In which case, they have no business going out to the movies or to dinner alone together. Too much like going on a date, and thus somewhat risky in the long run. Can his wife feel okay about all this? I would suggest you get together as two couples, or you and she and him could have a meal together now and then. Or she could have him over while you've home and in another room. It's not exactly that you don't trust her, but there's nothing nuts about feeling threatened by her spending alone time with someone who has already shown sexual interest in her. Meanwhile, see if you can brainstorm some fun alternatives to these outings with her old friend. It's likely that marriage and motherhood has lost a little of their charm for her lately, and you two could benefit by spicing things up a bit.
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Advice for Her
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.