Wise Guys: Do Girlfriends Need Friends' Approval?

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Advice from three of our guy friends. This week a straight woman asks, “How important is it to guys that his friends like/approve of the woman he’s dating?

wiseguy_benStraight Married Guy (Ben): It really depends on how serious the relationship is and how good your friends are. If it’s a fling, or something without the potential for serious, then who cares if you get along with his friends? You’re not going to be seeing them very much anyway (unless you REALLY get along with them, in which case that’s a whole different question). But if it’s a long term thing, then, yeah, I’m going to be hanging with you and them, together, for potentially years to come. So it matters a lot that everyone like each other – and not just tolerate each other but actually enjoy one another’s company. Of course, at a certain point, my wife became more important to me than any of my friends and so I just stopped hanging out with the ones that chose not to like her. And those friends we REALLY got along with at the beginning? Well that just got complicated as the years went on so we don’t see them very much any more either.

Gay Single Guy (Bradford Shellhammer): I think for young guys, very, and for older guys, not so much. And by older I mean 30+. But nice people, men or women, are genuinely liked. Guys and girls these days have more in common. They work, school, play together. I think with each generation men and women platonic friendships seem more prevalent. So cool guys and cool girls should get along. This is whether they’re dating a friend or not. If a woman is cool and genuine then there is no issue. If she’s a total bitch, then, um, yes the friends should state their grievance, but ultimately support their friend’s choice.

anonymous_suitStraight Single Guy (Max): At the risk of sounding like a frat boy, let me raise my fist high and proclaim “Bros before Hos!” Look, a girlFRIEND should be just what it sounds like; a lady that you love spending time with not just because of the sex, but because you
share the same passions. This is the basis of any healthy relationship, be it platonic or otherwise. Thus, I say that if your bros are telling you that your girlfriend is a crazy bitch, you might want to listen to them. I’m not saying that I expect girls to tolerate some of the dumber male behavior patterns (like getting wasted and playing Risk all night while listening to metal) but you need to have a healthy balance between friends and lovers. If you spend too much time with your girlfriend, you won’t have any bros to vent to when things get rough, or anyone to drink beer with when she goes out for girl’s night. Conversely, if you spend all your time with your homies, you’re never going to experience the awesomeness of
waking up next to a super sexy goddess every morning and thanking God that you got this lucky. There MUST be a healthy balance between you, your friends, and your lady.

Our “wise guys” are a rotating group of contributors, some of whom wish to remain anonymous and some of whom like the attention. This week’s Straight Married Guy is Ben, a writer and artist living in Los Angeles who runs AdultParlorGames.com; our Gay Guy is fellow SUN blogger Bradford Shellhammer, the creative director of fabulis and a New York Times featured decorator; and our Single Straight Guy, Max, is a recent college grad in New England. To ask the guys your own question, click here.


  1. I have experienced first hand that a man choosed his friends over me, even he said that I was the best that ever happend to him…

  2. Ann, I agree that there’s a huge difference between male and female friends. In my case, I do have a lot of guy friends who have girlfriends and wives, but rather than be jealous when I meet them (I’m nestled into my own very happy little relationship with my boyfriend), I’m more protective than anything.

    I care deeply about my guy friends and I’ve had to drink a couple of them through broken hearts before, and I think that’s the difference between female friends and male friends. Some, like me, want to be the “mother hen” and make sure the new girl or guy has the best intentions for their friend. However, yes, jealousy is rampant in the female world, so there are those women who get territorial with their guy friends. Speaking as a woman, females are hard to please to begin with! 😛

  3. I’m in a slightly odd position in that I’m not in an official relationship, but it’d definitely more than fwb with my guy. That being said he has a bunch of female friends and I get the feeling that they, well, hate me.

    Now I would love to be wrong, and if this doesn’t go any further than it doesn’t matter anyway, but I’m pretty sure a lot of it is jealousy. And by that I mean when nothing was going on they were perfectly friendly to me, but now that they know I got the cold shoulder.

    Not sure what will happen with my situation but I wanted to highlight the gender disparity among male and female friends. And while we like to assume that all friends have our best interests at heart its not always the case.

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