My Friends Are Not Your Enemies

RSG Logo with AAGC
Hey Folks,

This is our first online installment of the RSG or Relationship Strategy Guide – Ask A Gaming Couple.  Here, we are going to take questions from followers and comments and answer them TOGETHER! H= H00k and L= luvusagi

Our first question comes from a Facebook feed that had several good responses but we figured for all the bad ones it was important to provide a dual perspective that works in unison, you know like how a relationship should be.

 

Q: As a guy, if you had a girlfriend you live with, would you “allow” her to have ANY platonic guy friends of her own?

Why or why not?

H: Now obviously, this question is directed at men, but we are both going to share our thoughts on this loaded question.

L: My first response is, of course. You may be in a relationship but you have no control over who your significant other (SO) is friends with, nor should you. What’s more bothersome is that it’s not clarified to if this is something that both parties are supposed to abide by. Can a man/boyfriend have friends of the opposite sex, but not a woman/girlfriend.  So, I’m going to use my view point for both parties of the relationship.

H: YES, to answer the first part of this. luvusagi you can have any and as many friends you want, whatever sex, gender, species, you can have all the friends.

But, there are issues with this question as it is posed, and the need to pose it makes me assume some people have a poor interpretation of how a healthy relationship works (or they don’t actually want to be in one).

L: If you are looking for a monogamous relationship and your partner is not, this needs to be addressed from the start and you should not involve yourself with some that’s not going to value a relationship the way you do, it’s only going to bring about hurt, frustration, and in the end separation.  If that’s just the way you want your relationship as a man or as the significant other, you have some insecurities or are just straight up possessive and that’s something you need to work out and you don’t need to be in a relationship right now.

L: Now the most common place responses that I’ve seen is because they feel like it’s just not right for people to have friends of the opposite sex when they’re dating. But how does that make any sense, sure most women or men probably have more friends of the same sex but really most people have both. Most of the time the SO has been friends with their opposite sex friends for longer that they’ve even known you. How can you start a relationship with someone and then tell them to disregard their friends; people that have probably been there for them in good times and bad, since childhood or work etc.

H: You and I are together and obviously you will probably befriend/ run into, happen upon new  people in some ways similar to me, then I will probably like this person, so why not add more great people to the mix. There are not many people as awesome as me so looks forward  to comparing and complaining about new people; makes me look better.Also, you had friends of my same sex that you knew, had bonds with, enjoyed their company, way before I stumbled into your life. I want to be with you, a portion of you is the way it is because of those people. I am still the one that you have chosen to be with.

L: Speaking from my own personal experience one of my best friends is a guy and to have H00k say that he doesn’t want/ or I can’t be friends with him anymore would pretty much end our relationship and I’m sure it would be the same case vice versa. Yes, you now have a significant effect over who your SO tends to spend their time with but to demand they don’t have friends with the opposite sex also limits your own circle of friends and how you experience new things and people.

H: You can’t impose restrictions on meeting people because it is impossible it just seems like the fear of loss. You cannot lose your partner, because you did not find them, you both in the infinite chaos of the cosmos stumbled upon each other and began to play the game of life in couch co-op instead of as a single player adventure.  With that, freedom is also the option to pass the sticks to someone else.

L: You’re going to get different jobs, you’re going to meet various people as you work and often times those people become valuable friends. People that spend a majority of your day with and depending on the job you or they will occasionally have to interact with others on a personal level; ie traveling, company retreats, workshops, business conferences etc. Putting up a wall to the people you interact with at work will cause the stressed status effect.  Work will become harder you will get a debuff in team settings and that ‘stressed’ condition will be brought home with you and reduce the experience gained in your relationship.

H: How would I feel if my dream job hinged on a networking opportunity that only was made available by befriending people at work, and that networking opportunity was made impossible because I was in this verbal female-friend-embargo?

H: luvusagi and I have not been looking for replacements on our relationship draft but if she wanted to be a free agent I would be grateful for the time we had together and be happy for her if she was more content elsewhere. I would rather you pursue that, go be happy and let me do the same rather than just going through the motions with me.That is not to say that I wouldn’t be sad, and I wouldn’t feel hurt especially considering the confidence bolstered about in previous paragraphs.  After the emotional reaction is gone I can recognize that but yea as a process it is sucktacular.But the heart would eventually reload. That outlook was not bred of our relationship, quite the opposite, it was developed far before I was prepared to be in one, cultivated by being loved and accepted such that I would like and love myself, and knowing how to do that I can love and accept other people.

Insecurity leads to being guarded in relationships so you are only partially invested in the other person. You are sidetracked with that insecurity or those fears and can’t be fully engaging or fully in the moment because of it.  

L: Other harmful effects include the paranoia debuff.  Being afraid of your SO becoming too friendly with someone of the opposite will be constantly on your mind, you’ll want to know where they go, who they’re talking to, why they’re dressing a certain way, and other irrelevant things that will just come off and invasive to your SO. It’ll cause a rift between you. I’ve seen people end up resenting their SO on both sides by setting up such a restriction…

H: Trying to somehow avoid heartache by putting stipulations on a person who has already agreed that their titles will only be launched on your system is like only playing the same level to avoid dying in the next.  You are missing out on the totality and beauty of the game (or experience of the relationship if the game talk is losing you).

L: I can see if you’re concerned with the type of friends your significant other (SO) is around, maybe they’re not actually good people, have violent tendencies, or are evil doers that may corrupt your SO into doing something they will regret or could have them in trouble with the law (But again, your SO is also their own person, they have to be able to make decisions for themselves).  <Palpatine and Anakin> IF that’s not the case and you simply think that your SO shouldn’t have friends of the opposite sex because you think they will cheat, you either have trust issues or valid concerns, if your concerns are valid, then you don’t need to be with that person, period.

L: Either way most important thing to do is to talk about it. Like I said before no one should be able to control another. That’s not what a relationship is about, You’re two people one a quest called life (was that too corny??) and you’re going to level up together. Both of you will learn and gain experience together and apart.  Learn about their friends, maybe even become friends with them yourself. It’s also the responsibility of your SO to talk to their friends about their relationship and boundaries that shouldn’t be cross while they are in it, especially if it’s one you want to be for the long term.

 

I don’t think this needs to be stated, but I’ll go ahead and do it. Though this advice is given from a “straight” couple, relationships all have the same fundamental core two people who want to be with each other in a stable, lasting way. This advice is for any and all people.

If you have anything you want to discuss further, questions or additional points be sure to let us know in the comments! Also, you can submit questions here just write “Ask a Gaming Couple” in the Subject line or Tweet us @GeekSideTweets with the hashtag #GamingCouple

–H00k & Luvusagi 0ut

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