A married person cannot be friends with an LO

A common and understandable desire, can it work?
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Angelikapisadika
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Joined: Sat Mar 04, 2017 12:20 am
Age: 44

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Angelikapisadika »

Exactly! All those things you mentioned, things that actual friends can do...THATS what I mean when I say "friends" too. I am a married woman and have been the LO for about 5 years. Just realizing this now, though. The strain of trying to be kind while constantly explaining that has worn me to a frazzle. The person I am talking about has this maddening fantasy that we ARE friends. Regular good friends that are always available and ready to give 100%. I already give 100% to my husband and children and there's a person who tries to demonize me for not reciprocating his BFF feelings. He's "always been there" for me. But I can't do the same for him. Please don't turn your LO into some kind of asshole in your mind. We are most likely regular, caring people with not an ounce of hate or ill will. I've been manipulated and blackmailed and threatened to be this persons "friend". Now those are things I know for sure a true friend would NEVER do.

Heart_Open
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Joined: Mon Nov 28, 2016 3:52 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Heart_Open »

Once upon a time that is exactly what I wanted - I kind of saw him as a male BFF and wanted to spend time with him but (a) both being attached to others meant this was not possible and (b) my mind soon went its own way and spoiled things by fantasising about him instead. Frustrating.

I would still like to be his friend - but that boat has definitely sailed on.

CybelRising
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Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2017 11:48 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by CybelRising »



At the moment it feels like LO is at the centre of my world-the bullseye- where she really shouldn't be. I don't want her off the board completely, but there's probably a vacant slot somewhere on one of the outer circles where she belongs. That's where she should have always been, really- she just took a wrong turn somewhere!
This is one of the best thoughts I've read today!

Limfriend1
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United States of America

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by Limfriend1 »

Angelikapisadika wrote:
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:47 pm
Please don't turn your LO into some kind of asshole in your mind. We are most likely regular, caring people with not an ounce of hate or ill will.
:clap: :clap: :clap:

Sadly LO is just an object to project crap onto.

It's the limerent who has the #?&^# mindset :crazy: :wtf:

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

STR wrote:
Wed Dec 24, 2014 6:56 pm
You may have read that I bumped into my LO on Dec. 10, after not having spoken with her in 3 months. (We live in the same building, and bumped into each other in the building foyer). She suggested that we should get together soon to catch up, and she said she would email me.

On Dec. 21, after not having heard from her, I decided to send her an email to initiate a meeting. I did this because I realized that I was harboring quite a bit of animosity toward her that had built up over the past year, and I wanted to free myself of that burden by initiating contact and treating her with kindness rather than continuing to hold a grudge. One of the things that was bothering me was a comment she made back in May of this year to the effect that she did not consider us to be “friends”. This was hurtful and confusing to me, and I’ve been stewing over it ever since.

We got together two days ago and chatted very pleasantly for a few hours. My animosity is gone and I feel much better now without carrying that burden around.

I had a very important realization today that I wanted to share, because it might be helpful for some of you.

I have known LO for more than 5 years. We get along well and enjoy each other’s company. We can chat effortlessly for long periods of time, while maintaining interest and energy in the conversation. For the past 5 years I have wanted and tried to be friends with LO. It hasn’t worked, which has been very frustrating and confusing for me.

But here is what I just realized today: LO and I cannot be friends. We can be friendly; we can get along well; we can have stimulating conversations over lunch/coffee; we can care about each other and support each other; we can like each other as much as or more than we like other people in our lives that we consider to be “friends”; we could even (theoretically) “be interested in each other if circumstances were different”; but even if all of that were true, we nevertheless cannot possibly be friends.

Friends are people who can see and spend time with each other without any constraints or concerns about how other people might be affected. Friends can invite each other to concerts or on bike rides or to “hang out” in each other’s homes. Friends can call each other at night or on weekends when one is bored and has nothing to do, and wants to see if the other person wants to chat or get together to do something fun.

My LO and I cannot do any of these things, because I am married and have a wife. Perhaps I could do some of those “friend” things with a male, but it has taken me a long time to realize that as a married man I simply cannot have female friends. I can have female acquaintances that I am friendly with and that I see once in a while, but such women can never really be considered to be “friends” in the same sense that I might have been friends with them before my marriage or in the sense that I might have male friends now as a married man.

I spent a lot of time and emotional energy feeling hurt over LO’s comment that she does not think of us as friends, and it has taken me 6 months to finally realize that she was correct all along and that she did nothing wrong or hurtful in saying what she said. She didn’t mean that she dislikes me, or that she doesn’t enjoy my company. She simply meant that circumstances are such that she cannot have the same type of relationship with me that she has with the people that she thinks of as her friends. She can do anything she wants with those people, but there are significant constraints on what she can do with me.

My Limerence for LO has been fueled over the past 6 months by my obsession over her “we are not friends” comment, and by my decision to cut off contact with her because of that comment. I feel like some chains have been broken now that I will finally be able to let that comment go, and I don’t think I will need to obsess over her as much as I have been.
All of this really resonates with me, as I guess I am in a similar position - married with a single LO whom I would now consider a good friend.

Its interesting that in your case it was your LO who said that she did not consider you friends, despite the fact that - albeit with the caveats that come with you being married - you have done things that would reasonably described as things which make you friends.

In my case I think my LO would describe me as a friend, and its similar to how you have described in a subsequent post - on the times its just been the two of us I'm sure that's how we would reasonably be described. I don't see how you can hang out like that, and become that close without being friends.

The only thing is that the friendship might have caveats, or different boundaries, but it seems very harsh to dismiss it as not a friendship.

I've found it really interesting with my LO insomuch as I know other women, who I would describe as friends, but I have nowhere near as much contact with as I do with LO. I put that down to a combination of two things - her being single, and so that bit more available I guess (even though I am not), and I suppose my feelings towards her which means that I am more prone to initiate contact.

So here I am nearly a year after meeting her to her being the person whom, other than my wife, I have most contact with. Nothing flirty, nothing inappropriate, just regular, having rarely gone more than a week without any text communication in that time. I don't know how typical that is generally, but it is definitely atypical for me.

Throughout this she has always been friendly, tended to reply quickly, and we seem to enjoy sharing stuff we think the other will like. And on occasions where we have met up, usually in a small group, we have gotten on well, and included time just the two of us.

With all of that in mind, if she were to turn round and say she didn't consider us friends, it would definitely be a bit of a kick in the teeth.

I wonder if its maybe a cross sex friendship thing, rather than it being due to one being married. (Although the being married obviously adds another element.) My LO lives a long way away, but I get where you are coming from insomuch as the difference between a male friend and a female friend when married. You presumably could announce that you were off out for a drink or trip to the cinema with a male friend, but possibly less so with your LO.

Does your wife know your LO? Mine knows mine, so most of the time I see LO, she is present too. So if we all lived in the same town there would be little chance of seeing only LO. Although I think due to sharing taste with LO that I don't with SO, then something like a trip to the cinema to see something that only the two of us wanted to see would be acceptable.

Do you know the Prince song If I Was Your Girlfriend? Basically all about the things that even a boyfriend isn't privvy to with a girl compared to her girlfriends.

"If I was your one and only friend
Would you run to me if somebody hurt you even if that somebody was me"

Might be one of the greatest lines ever written.

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

Angelikapisadika wrote:
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:47 pm
Exactly! All those things you mentioned, things that actual friends can do...THATS what I mean when I say "friends" too. I am a married woman and have been the LO for about 5 years. Just realizing this now, though. The strain of trying to be kind while constantly explaining that has worn me to a frazzle. The person I am talking about has this maddening fantasy that we ARE friends. Regular good friends that are always available and ready to give 100%. I already give 100% to my husband and children and there's a person who tries to demonize me for not reciprocating his BFF feelings. He's "always been there" for me. But I can't do the same for him. Please don't turn your LO into some kind of asshole in your mind. We are most likely regular, caring people with not an ounce of hate or ill will. I've been manipulated and blackmailed and threatened to be this persons "friend". Now those are things I know for sure a true friend would NEVER do.
I think the point about not demonising the LO is absolutely true. I think I've been pretty good at that. I have no reason to think she's annoyed in any way, so if I don't hear from her for a bit I miss the contact, but don't let it get to me, and would never say anything. That would be a rookie teenage mistake.

I'm not sure about your 100% thing though - you say you give 100% to your family, but presumably you wouldn't say that you have no good, regualr friends, because you're already all spent with your family? I think its enough to say that we give what we can to our friends, rather than only having X amount of time / space / energy for friends.

If they are good friends, they will understand that. And if they don't understand that, then they're not worth having as friends.

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

JohnDeux wrote:
Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:20 pm
@STR: "....as a married man I simply cannot have female friends. I can have female acquaintances that I am friendly with and that I see once in a while, but such women can never really be considered to be “friends” in the same sense that I might have been friends with them before my marriage or in the sense that I might have male friends now as a married man."

STR, I've mentioned before how similar our respective emotional motivations seem to be and this statement is no exception....for *us* and those like us. But I do have to play devil's advocate and say that I know plenty of married men who have deep emotional relationships with other women that are not a threat to their marriage, and I suspect the same holds true for many women. Although there may be cases where what gets discussed in these relationships is not shared with the spouse, men that I've talked to say that they feel comfortable generally sharing all of this interaction with their spouse and the honesty all around helps maintain these different relationships. Call me a cad, but my extramarital female relationships pretty much gravitate towards those to whom I am physically attracted as well.....and thus would be quite dangerous to the marriage if they were to become anything but surface friendships. But just to throw out there that I think it is possible, and that is not even addressing the sector of society that practices polyamory.
I might be biased but I'd agree with that. It maybe depends on the people involved, and the circumstances.

In my case I think there are enough checks on things - LO does not live locally, plus my wife is friends with her too. If proximity is a big driver to a rocky road, then that's out straight away.

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

STR wrote:
Fri Jan 02, 2015 11:07 pm
Regarding my LO, I think she was correct in saying that "friends" is not the right word to describe us. When we were talking about that, I think I said something about trying to figure out where we are on a spectrum from "Just neighbors" up to "Spouse", where we are clearly not spouses, but also clearly (in my mind, at least) more than "Just neighbors". It was in this context that she didn't feel like "friend" was the right word.
This is the sort of conversation I've wondered how might play out if it ever happens. I don't see it as coming about by her stating that she doesn't consider us friends, but maybe one time when its just the two of us, some sort of reflection on how we're doing with the whole cross sex friendship thing. In my mind it be a foot in the door of some kind of disclosure, even though it would probably be A Very Bad Idea. Not in some grand gesture or declaration, but potentially in a more sheepish "I think we're doing pretty good.... although it is hard sometimes... because I do like you a lot...." kind of way. In my head just enough to get a feeling for what she thinks, but not so much that it couldn't be put straight back in its box with limited long term damage to the friendship.

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

STR wrote:
Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:13 pm
Rothko wrote: Even texting each other will be awkward on a number of levels. I'll be worried that her SO may give her a hard time if another man is texting his wife; she'll have the same concerns over my SO; result- neither of us will text each other. There's also the problem of not wanting to be the one who initiates and all the dancing around that goes on with that. There's always one person who does more of the running, and although I'm comfortable in the knowledge that LO does genuinely like me as a person, I'd still feel awkward if it was always me making the first move. She likes me but I like her more- that's the truth of the matter, I'm sure!

So, although my limerence is fairly under control at the moment, I'm inevitably going to have a rough patch while I adjust to these new circumstances. Hopefully, the reduced contact will see my limerence fade completely and I'll eventually be quite comfortable with very infrequent 'catch-up/ are you still alive?' type contact, but the thought of potentially losing this wonderful person from my life just fills me with sadness. I've come to terms with the fact that we will never have a romantic relationship, and I've made peace with that. But to probably be denied a friendship as well would be really hard to take.
Hi Rothko - This really resonates with me. I've experience a lot of angst over the years with my LO re: the issue of whether and how often to contact her. The contact between us has been very one-sided, with me making almost all of the effort. I don't contact her anywhere near as often as my limebrain wants me to, in large part because I am a married man. My increasingly negative feelings over her not contacting me finally came to a head in May 2014 when I initiated a conversation with her on the frequency of our contact, why I never hear from her, why she doesn't follow through on things, etc. She said that the does think of me sometimes and considers initiating contact, but isn't sure that she should. She said that she doesn't want to upset my wife or "impose". Hearing her say this helped me to feel better about myself and about her, as I had previously taken her lack of contact as a sign that she didn't care for me and didn't want to communicate with me.

The "catch-up/are you still alive" type of contact is really tough. Most of my experience with LO has been that way, and I've always found it to be very unsatisfying. When I hear about what's going on in her life and about the irons that she has in the fire, I find myself wanting to be in the loop and to receive timely updates, rather than having to wait multiple months to find out what happened. I mentioned this to her back in May and she said that she would try to keep my in the loop, but that didn't happen.

I know that the prospect of losing your friendship is painful. I'm sure your LO is a great person, just like mine is...

EDIT: To add one thing, it occurred to me only recently that the act of my LO contacting me is an act of a single woman contacting a married man. Even if I don't think of it that way, that is in fact what it is. When I do think of it that way, it helps me to realize that it's not fair for me to expect a single woman to contact me, because that puts her in an awkward position. Plus, I don't really want to be encouraging a single woman to contact me in the first place, because I don't want to be the kind of husband who prioritizes relationships with other women and I wouldn't want to give her the impression that I am interested in cheating on my wife...
This all resonates with me too, as LO doesn't live locally, but we are in contact via text quite a bit. Again, nothing flirty or inappropriate, just quite regular. It has crossed my mind that if my SO knew how regular, she might be surprised. But she does know I text. For my part I sometimes feel I should share something if its something my SO would be interested in. And sometimes choose not to, partly because I like it to be our thing, and partly because I'm highlighting that we're texting. Although usually I just get teased about being the first to know.

sydney0845
Posts: 320
Joined: Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:27 pm

Re: A married person cannot be friends with an LO

Post by sydney0845 »

STR wrote:
Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:46 pm
While I will never know for certain, I think it's worth forcing my limerbrain to consider the possibility that maybe my LO and I get along so well under current conditions because I am married. Maybe she doesn't view me as a threat, and maybe it doesn't occur to her that I would have any romantic thoughts about her or fantasize about being in a relationship with her. Maybe the fact that I am married makes her more comfortable around me and more willing to share parts of her life with me in a way that she wouldn't be as comfortable with if we were both single, because under those conditions she might have to worry about giving me the wrong idea or something along those lines.

All of which is to say that the fact that one gets along well with an LO under the conditions that prevent them from being together shouldn't be interpreted to mean that one would necessarily get along just as well with the LO under conditions that would allow them to be together...
I think this is the nail on the head. The constraints imposed by one party being married, combined with the other person being single creates a very specific circumstance which allows a degree of uninhibited closeness, combined with the check / self imposed boundary due to the other person being married.

Sometimes it really sucks, but thinking about it, it has the potential to be pretty great, just in a different way, so long as those checks and boundaries remain.

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