I posted about a week about about my girlfriend of about six months calling me her 'friend' http://community.artofmanliness.com/forum/topics/girlfriend-called-... . Unfortunately, I have a tendency to dwell on things and blow things out of proportion, as happened with the situation in my previous post. That is why I want to handle the current situation carefully and in a mature manner.
I found out that my girlfriend's ex takes her out to dinner. I knew that she is friends with her ex (she said this in passing soon after we started seeing each other) but she didn't tell me someone that she had referred to her as her 'friend' is in fact her ex-boyfriend, therefore I didn't have an issue with this 'friend' taking her out for dinner from time to time. I should point-out, I have never met this guy.
However, yesterday I was at my girlfriend's and her brother told me in passing that this friend is in fact her ex (As an aside, my girlfriend and her brother, despite both being in their late 20's both live at home and have a kind of stormy relationship; it does seem like he enjoys stirring up trouble and at the very least has poor social skills, so I think he might have been trying to get a reaction from me, as apparently this is the sort of thing he enjoys doing).
Despite trying not to blow things out of proportion, I suppose I feel uncomfortable about this. I think objectively, most guys wouldn't like their girlfriend's ex taking her out to dinner (from what she's said in the past, I think it's just them); secondly, although she said she is friends with her ex, I don't think she's been totally up front with me.
Although I wasn't wouldn't 100% be comfortable with her simply being friends with her ex, that's something I accepted. However, him taking her to dinner, is (in my mind) a completely different matter.
She's working late shifts this week, so we won't have a chance to see each other but I would like to discuss this with her in a adult manner and calmly inform her that I know her 'friend' is also her ex and mention that I don't feel comfortable with her being taken out to dinner by this guy. I would also like to mention that I don't feel she has been totally frank with regard to their past but that I would not accept her to end a friendship. Does that seem fair? Given that I am a worrier and have been known to over-react to things, I am determined to handle this situation tactfully and in a fair manner.
I don't think it's necessarily fair to generalize all "ex friendships" as being outrageous. Obviously the majority of exes cannot work as just friends, but I can honestly say that my best female friend (other than my current girlfriend) is an ex. In fact, every now and then this ex and I will meet each other for lunch - we're both "foodies" to use the OP's term. My girlfriend is aware of this and is perfectly comfortable with that fact. I have no amorous feelings toward my ex, nor she toward me.
Again, I understand that this is a rare example, and I'm not saying that it mirrors the OP's. I'm just saying that there is the possibility of a viable ex friendship.
Louise, if this works for you and your girlfriend, then you're definitely the exception, and I'm going to stand by my advice. Any friends of the opposite sex should be group friends (one-of-the-gang) and any dinner dates should be out of the question if your girlfriend is not with you. It may seem like you're "just friends", but, after all, that's how all good romances get started. What happens when you and your girlfriend are at odds or your relationship hits a snag? Are you going to "confide" in your female friend over dinner? Because if you are, then you're setting yourself up. I'm not attacking you--just expressing my sincere concern.
No, it has become painfully and almost humorously obvious to us that we would never, ever work as romantic partners again. In fact, it shouldn't have happened in the first place - I've come to realize that she is much more of a sister to me than a potential girlfriend and it would just be way, way too awkward.
Of course, I understand your position and I must say that I agree with you. I mean, I haven't seen any other male-female friendships that work in the way that this one, mine, does. But I guess I'm just one to believe the cliché that there are exceptions to every rule.
If it ever becomes obvious to me that this friend has other intentions, I would not hesitate in distancing myself from her.
Plus, where I'm from, it's kind of hard not to hang out with anyone and everyone... It's a small pool, so to speak.
Also, I hope that misspelling of my name was a mistake.. haha.
I'm so sorry, Louis, that WAS an unintentional misspelling---I had no idea I had called you "Louise" until you mentioned it.
You aren't the exception. You simply overestimate your ability to judge the probability of something happening, as well as your ability to judge the way your future self would react to a hypothetical situation.
The story you tell is told a thousand times over, usually beginning with; "I never thought I would cheat on my..."
My favorite quote to illustrate the danger here is from Christopher Ryan, author of Sex at Dawn;
Just because you decide to become a vegetarian, doesn't mean barbecue stops smelling GOOD.
Perhaps I'm not the exception. No one can predict the future, admittedly. But I still don't accept as truth the notion that every single last ex friendship ever in the entire world is an illegitimate one.
I feel there are too many other women out there and if the relationship needs this much work and drama, get out while the gettin's good. You don't need it. Go out and have fun!
So she calls you her "friend" to others, and also goes to dinner with her ex - another "friend" - and does not tell you the extent of the relationship. I wouldn't stand for it. I'm not saying to break it off, but boundaries need to be set. I know this isn't the standard, but at a point deep into my relationship with my wife, I decided that I don't need any female friends. My wife reciprocates. Opposite sex friends are fine in a group setting, but I have no reason to just hang out with another woman, let alone an ex. When we moved back to the East Coast, an ex asked my wife if she wanted to grab a beer and catch up. The answer was "no."
Get rid of her.
Your lady love has every right to meet up with old friends including ex's. You need to be honest with her that it sparks some concerns logical or emotional and find a solution that works for the two of you.
When my girlfriend now wife went to see old boyfriends who where in the area, the rule was she was spending that night in my bed. Territorial yes, but we where living together anyway so it was not too much to ask. We have the same rules for each other. It addressed my concerns and fears without making it a big deal and she understood.
It is not a lack of trust it is being addressed it stupid, yet real emotional fears.
Well, since I see Danger hasn't weighed in on this yet, I'm going to take his answer:
Do her best friend.
Wait, she doesn't have a sister, does she?