Why do people seem to lose their friends after marriage?

Written by Dr. Ginger Gabriel, Ph.D., M.F.T

losefriends-imgI want to get married, but I am afraid of losing my friends. I know of many people who have lost their friends after being married. Please explain to me why people, especially women, lose their friends after marriage?

Advice: All of us have just 24 hours a day. If we are also working, going to school, etc., we find that after spending time with our husband, cleaning, cooking etc. there just isn’t as much time to spend with our friends. Most of us just schedule a lunch per week with a best friend, one night a week to spend with an old friend or a Bible study/ prayer group and just make sure that we aren’t so overscheduled with other things that we don’t shortchange time with our spouse and a few best friends. It is a matter of prioritizing our life to the things that are really important.

Of course, to plan one thing into our life, usually means that we won’t have time for other things. Make sure that the things on your schedule are really important for your life goals.

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46 Responses to “Why do people seem to lose their friends after marriage?”

  • Shelley Shelley says:

    Dear Father God.

    Lord I lift up anyone who is feeling this way in there lives that You will heal them. In Jesus Name Amen

  • Good friend will never leave nor forsake.For me any friend who decide to part away let him go.

  • Sharon Sharon says:

    I am sorry you feel like that, being married does have its ups and downs. I love having another peson around when I am home. Angela, I am married and my husband and I have lost friends but we did keep some even though we were married. We just have them on another level. My husband has his friends and he talks to them still. Maybe if you have friends in one place and you move you may lose contact; but if you marry and you stay in one place it is possible to keep your friends.

    Tophogg, I worry too about losing friends. We do have my husband’s friends still and I don’t mind.

    I am praying for you all.

  • ToppHogg says:

    Women don’t need to worry about losing friends after marriage. Men do. Women don’t like any competition for his attention and time, so they do everything they can to squelch any hobbies or friends he has that don’t include her. He ends up trying to be friendly to the husbands of her friends when they go out as a couple.

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    Hi BBox, It must be frustrating to feel like your partner is not listening to you when it comes to setting up the rules for the home you share. There is an excellent book by Townsend and Cloud called Boundaries in Marriage that talks about this very issue. I wonder if reading the book together could be a good place to start?

  • Shelley Shelley says:

    Dear Father God.

    Lord I lift up my friend to you that you will comfort them and guide them in relationships, even when one dose not have the time in there lives. Lord You are the God of comfort and I pray that any who are going through stress in there homes, that they know that you are with them. In Jesus Mighty name amen

  • BBox says:

    My partner and I have trouble around his friends. He feels he owes them alot after they helped him through a rough time. However, his best friend has, on one occasion, invited people to our place after I asked my partner that we not have them over. Now he has called my son names after he asked for his help and then made out he was trying to help him!!! My partner won’t put any boundaries in place or stick up for us.

  • Hazelle Schenk Hazelle Schenk says:

    Perl, I’m really glad to hear that your relationship with your best friend is going strong. That’s really encouraging. I know from experience about how a new marriage can strain a friendship, so I am glad that that is not your experience. :)

    To everyone else, I would just like to remind you of our site’s Terms of Use (http://powertochange.com/general-information/terms-of-use/#discuss). Please be respectful of everyone and refrain from calling people names otherwise your comments will be moderated out and removed. Thank you.

  • Perl says:

    My best friend got married three years ago and today she is still my best friend. I was happy, excited, sad and scared that I was going to lose my best friend when she told me she was getting married. Also, our friendship struggled with me being single, lonely, dealing with my own failed relationships and at one point being away for two years made it very hard for us to stay close. However before she was engaged we had made a promise to each other to stay friends to the end. Now, to stay true to that promise there were certain things that had to be done and/or realize from the both of us to make this promise stick.
    On my part, I have to be honest with myself and my feelings on being single and not feel rejected or jealous of my best friends marriage. I have to understand that my best friend has new priorities and a new lifestyle that is incompatible with my single lifestyle. And although I may not always understand it, I sure as hell respect it because I would want the same. I make the effort to hang out with my best friend and her husband to form a relationship with THEM because now they are one. I don’t see it as losing my best friend but gaining a another friend.
    My best friend also makes the effort to make time for just the two of us with out husband. We may not hang out as often or stay out late getting drunk and being stupid but we do find time for us. Running errands together, having lunch together, even just sitting on her couch and watching TV together. She also doesn’t belittle me for my single lifestyle. She says, ” Girl enjoy it!!!! Cuz once you’re married you’re married and you could never be single again, technically, so enjoy.”
    I do believe that it depends on the individuals. How much the married person want to keep the friendship and how well the single person communicates the importance of keeping the friendship with the understanding that marriage comes first.
    In a way my friendship with my best friend is almost like a marriage. We have to compromise, communicate, and understand that life brings challenges and changes that we have to adjust to in order to keep the friendship.

    My best friend and I have been friends for years and marriage doesn’t seem to have really changed the bond of our friendship. Good luck to everyone

  • CL Reusch says:

    Wow, RA, wow. Clearly you have never met my parents or anyone like them. My mom is definitely not cowed by my father in the least. She also manages all the money and does not work, my dad works. Beyond that, my parents raised us to be independent and to take care of each other. Both of them still find plenty of time to do the things they want to do, as well as participate with the family. In addition to that, my husband’s mother ALSO controls the family finances and buys things for herself and her family on her husband’s wages. They agree mutually on big purchases and still find time, between the kids, to go independently and together to various events, church charities, and other things that they enjoy doing. The only woman in my acquaintance who is unhappy with her marriage is a woman who gave birth to a mentally retarded child and in order to support the child her husband works twice as much, they never see each other, and she never gets to go out or do anything because she must stay home and look after the child.

    If anything, I would say your perception of women is off and you are a chauvinistic jerk or feminist. Some people are never meant to marry, and that is fair. Don’t impress your opinions and ideals on those who are married or in relationships. That just sounds like petty jealousy. Maybe it’s because of your dim view of their marriages that your friends don’t want to see YOU.

  • Kate Kate says:

    Hi Lauren,

    Perhaps it is not that people are shy or can’t accept reality, but that each friend is unique and therefore irreplaceable. Perhaps it is not that one cannot make new or more friends, but that it hurts to lose someone you care about and who has demonstrated that they care for you. As you said, you are sticking by your spouse and enjoying the longevity and continuity of your relationship, similarly I think most of us desire enduring friendships!

    At the end, having, making and/or finding a friend is not like replacing a tire on your car (yes, there are plenty more tires and, depending on your resources, location, determination, only a little effort is required to go and get a new one) because we are built for relationship and desire unfailing love and faithfulness from our friends.

    It seems that if friends have stuck by us and we are blessed to have several best friends, then it will cost us nothing to be sensitive to those whose lives are marked with a hardship we don’t experience. What do you think?

    Grace and peace,
    Kate

  • Lauren says:

    Trust me folks, the saying “there are more fish in the sea” can easily apply to friends as much as spouses. Why cant people just accept the reality that you are as much of a temporary place holder as a friend as your friend is to you. Ill admit it! I dont NEED any particular friend, because I can always go and make more. It is not like thetr is a scarcity of people going on in this world. The one person I hold allegiance as they hold for me is my spouse. I am married and never have been divorced. 10 years going strong. If I dont like you or you or I are not fitting into each others lives, so long and best wishes. Yes, I have 3 best friends and they get along with my spouse. I have known them for ages. I have also cut ties with best friends who did not get along with my spouse for the better. Geeze, people sound really codependant on this board. Are some of you really that empty that you NEED to maintain a friendship at the expense of their feelings, their partners feeling, yout feelings. Are you that shy that you cant just go and make new friends?

  • susie says:

    I have to agree with Patty. “Reason 4: The one who is getting married begins to have different priorities and feels that the single friend(s) does not or cannot understand.
    Reason 5: The one who gets married OR the one who stays single CHANGES.

    ALL relationships require maintenance to stay alive. If this isn’t happening, plan to move on. First take the time to mourn the loss of a friendship. Then make new friends that suit your lifestyle and treat you reciprocally.” I just got hit with a lecture that I basically will call the you think I’m “a future other woman” or ur wife does. So I got kicked to the curb. I’m insulted not only by that but also the fact that apparently I will never marry. rme. Single people are not the devil, they have feelings, and can understand the friendship changes, but geez I do expect a christmas card, my kids when i have them to have playdates w/ urs, invite you to group parties, been there for both of you in time of need, but I’m to much of a risk. Though I’ve never flirted, touch, or anything to imply more than friends on any level.

  • Jamie Jamie says:

    That’s a pretty dim view of marriage RA. Is there no one that you know of who finds joy in marriage?

  • R A Williams says:

    Most of the married women I know are miserable. Every time I get to spend time with one of my married female friends (which isn’t as often now that they’re coupled) I hear nothing but carp, carp, carp about how awful he is or how irresponsibly he behaves… but she LOOOOVES him and couldn’t be happier. Or so she says, but the bags under her eyes tell a different story.

    Married women become fearful. Some of them are fearful in the absence of their husbands, because they lose the initiative or the ability to do things on their own. They won’t go to a restaurant or movie theater alone, much less go for a hike or sign up for a new sport or activity such as country line dancing or a martial arts class. Although they can and will run errands, you very seldom see one signing up for a university course or opening a small business. You very definitely won’t see one volunteering for not-for-profit activities for her sports team or civic organization, unless her husband is also involved, and both of them disappear pretty quickly once they have kids. (Single parents, however, seem to be able to find the time to continue with volunteer activities despite the fact they have twice as much work to do.) So, the married woman basically disappears off the radar. She drops out of church activities that don’t involve her husband, and is seldom out of his sight. In a lot of cases, he decides to not go to church anymore and doesn’t let her go either. Or he’ll unilaterally decide to change what church they go to. Or he’ll stop going, but will insist she comes back immediately after services are over, and she’s not allowed to talk to friends afterwards.

    Other married women become fearful OF their husbands. All of a sudden, she changes how she dresses, how she walks, how she acts, her political opinions, and everything that made her into an individual, just to align more closely with what he wants. Married women get controlled and pushed around a lot. Everything revolves around whether he’s happy or satisfied, and not in what you’d expect to be the normal situation, with both halves of a marriage putting the other first. She’s walking on eggshells. She can’t talk on the phone. She can’t come see you, or else she’ll make plans and cancel at the last minute. Or she’ll simply stand you up, leaving you with your freshly baked coffee cake wondering when or if she’s going to show. Why? Because hubby said no, and she’s terrified of what he may do when he’s angry. The odd part is that women in this situation seem to like it. They even make sure to have lots of kids. If she lets him control the money, first there’s unlikely to BE any money because he would rather spend it on electronics, gambling, booze, or drugs, and even if there is money, he’s very unlikely to allow her to have any at all for herself. So the young woman who used to be able to afford to go to coffee or to buy and read the latest Twilight book can no longer do so, because she’s married and somebody else controls the purse strings.

    Still other married women aren’t necessarily afraid OF their husbands, but they’re stressed out and afraid BECAUSE of them. A married woman has the same work load she had before: work, housework, etc., but now she’s got all the extra laundry, cooking, and expenses created by another adult. If he brought children into the marriage she’s got to care for those, and then there are all of his expenses and debts which must be paid. The wedding most likely put her into debt, in order to accommodate the needs and desires of both sides of the family, so most likely her finances are exhausted after they tie the knot. She needs to work more hours, and do without more things, in order to pay his divorce or school debts, and it’s unrealistic to expect much in the way of help financially or around the house. If anything, he becomes an extra kid to take care of. The formerly independent man now has a mommy to take care of him, so there’s no longer a need for him to take care of himself. So the extra financial stress rightly causes her to fear for her health and her future.

    This, I think, is why I don’t see my married friends as much.

  • Alfred Alfred says:

    My response is to agree with what Dr. Ginger Gabrie has said. That is roughly what Yuri is also saying. My suggestion is to make Jesus your best friend, which in turn will put people into a new perspective. We, hopefully will criticize less, and just see someone as different or difficult to understand but not to be looked down on. What makes this world interesting is that we all have different abilities, different gifting and unique tastes, thereby complement one-another. The points that our first commitment is to our spouse & family, and that therefore interests change is well taken. What I feel I need to work on is to ask questions that show a friend that I’m interested in him / her.

  • Yuri says:

    I am not married nor do I have a girlfriend but I can share some of my observations. Married couples seem to distance themselves from other people simply because how relationships work. You go on a trip to visit friends at a party and on the way back both of you complain about people that you saw there. Comments range from calling someone a snob to calling someone a lot worse. Next thing you know you may refuse an invitation because you may not like someone who might attend and one thing leads to another and only time you actually get to see your friends is when they come over to your house. At some point both you and your friends move and or get jobs elsewhere and your relationship with your friends becomes a phone based relationship. At some point it grows into once in a blue moon phone call.

    I saw such trend with my parents and their friends and all of my friends.

    As a guy I would not object to my would be wife and or girlfriend hanging out with her friends. If anything I think it is healthy assuming that her friends are not a negative influence and that is what many men are afraid of. I can’t comment on how girls perceive same thing because I am not a girl and have no experience on their perspective on this argument.

    What I consider a negative influence constitutes:

    One or more of her girlfriends start suggesting that I could be improved.
    One or more of her girlfriends engage in financial or material competition which results in subsequent purchases to be like “Johnses”.
    One or more of her girlfriends starts disapproving of my habits or hobbies and plant seed which will grow into a rotten tree of constant doubt and disapproval.

    Circle of friends is bound to change because most friends do not stay close to each other proximity wise and most people do not have same hobbies that would encourage spirit of togetherness. If anything I think friendships develop with immediate neighbors where communication gaps need to be filled. Neighbor can feed a pet when you are away or babysit when you are out of town or invite you to use their pool or pick up kids from sports practice etc etc.

    My mom’s circle of friends went from 1 to 20 families to 1. Most of my buddies stay in touch via texting but rarely call.

    In my life I found ways to fill voids by joining hobby clubs that allow me to socialize. If and when I get married it will be a “together” activity.

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    Sonya, You wrote, “if people get married or have children they think theres something wrong with you if your not happy for them”. I’m curious why you wouldn’t be happy for them? Marriage is a wonderful thing and children are a cause for celebration. What was it about the situation that you weren’t able to celebrate? You mentioned that, “a lot of my friends go on about how wonderful the guy is or whatever but i dont see it”. Do you feel like your friends are marrying men you are unsuitable?

    Usually when you’re friends with someone you want the best for them. You celebrate with their joys, weep with them in sadness. That’s a big part of what friendship is. I think it’s a bit unfair to label all married people as “man crazy”. There’s always going to be a season at the beginning of a marriage or of new love when the new partner is all the person can focus on, and that’s natural. It’s not man crazy.

    I’d encourage you to take a close look at why you are not able to be happy for your friends. Are you jealous? Do you feel left out? Do you feel unheard? Are you lonely? Do you feel like they broke a promise? You’re going to have a hard time maintaining these friendships if you can’t find a way to support the marriage. Each of these people made a commitment to their spouse first. If you set yourself in opposition to that spouse you’re going to get left behind. You’re going to need to decide what you want more.

  • sonya says:

    im not married, and i have a hard time with married friends. a lot of my friends go on about how wonderful the guy is or whatever but i dont see it. a lot of them get mad if i want to see them without their husbands. im talking about just having lunch or taking in an afternoon movie. i dont like being the 3rd person. i dont like watching them being affectionate with each other. its very uncomfortable. im very happy with my single life and most married people want to suck you into their lives. if they have a problem they want to spill all their private intimate problems on me. again its uncomfortable. ive never been married so i cant relate to your problems. it actually makes me glad im single so i dont have to face all those things. if people get married or have children they think theres something wrong with you if your not happy for them. im not interested in it for myself or anyone else. i prefer single friends who arent man crazy and can be satisfied being single and have fun!

  • Andrew Andrew says:

    @ Jack & other comments. Jack in particular your comments appear to be pretty self centered as the majority of the comments on this blog are based on self. The common thread that I have read from many of the comments is that “woe is me I got married and all my friend buggered off so don’t get married” it appears that many people are extremely selfish and self centered. Jack you seem to forget that at one point in your life your mother was waking up at 2AM to clean up your baby poop! People change and circumstances change I myself have been single, married and then single again.

    Misery occurs when a person only thinks of self so when a person is single they are miserable and a married person is miserable because they are married. If your single and just living with someone the relationship will end as there is no commitment. The secret I have found is to friendship is to have a relationship with Christ and to always keep the relationship and walk with Christ. The peace and contentment that the Holy Spirit can give you is indescribable focus so I focus on that. Christ is God and when he was on earth he served others as he came down from a perfect universe to show us how to love each other by first accepting him. When we accept Christ and ask him to forgive our past sins and faults our old self slowly begins to change. Marriages fail for one reason it is called selfishness if you read all the reasons why the underling theme is self. Yes friends will leave when they get married because their lives change and to get angry because they no longer are drinking at the bars with you is not really right and I believe it is a little bit stupid to have that attitude. In life friends are like a river they will befriend you and then leave and drift down the river further. I don’t look at it as a woe is me poor me my friend left me but as that I was able to have a positive influence in their lives for a time. Most people can only have three or four close friends so if one leaves big deal God will bring me another friend that I can serve so when I enter heaven I will have built relationships with others that are eternal. Life is short and I believe instead of looking at it as a negative that someone is no longer your friend ask Christ to send you a new friend and he will. God Bless

  • Patty says:

    Why do we lose friends when we stay single while friends don’t OR lose friends when we get married and the friends don’t?

    Reason 1: Marrieds run the show and often single friends have to do what the marrieds want to do. Conversely, cavorting in bars with singles may no longer be high on the social agenda for a married person.
    Reason 2: One of the spouses does not like the other spouses’ friend and effectively ends the friendship if the couple allows it. Or there may even be sexual tensions or lingering romantic feelings between a spouse and former flame who is now a friend…a situation which is not tolerated by the spouse.
    Reason 3: There is unspoken envy for the friend who is getting married (or the friend who is staying single!).
    Reason 4: The one who is getting married begins to have different priorities and feels that the single friend(s) does not or cannot understand.
    Reason 5: The one who gets married OR the one who stays single CHANGES.

    ALL relationships require maintenance to stay alive. If this isn’t happening, plan to move on. First take the time to mourn the loss of a friendship. Then make new friends that suit your lifestyle and treat you reciprocally.

  • Jack says:

    John B, That’s an insult to single people. I’m not even single, I have a girlfriend.. but not married. And I’d argue that the SINGLE #1 CAUSE OF DIVORCE is MONEY. Not single friends. I’d also say that control freak insecure spouses cause divorce too. And your response exemplifies exactly what I’m talking about – that egotistical I’m better than you because I’m married and you are inferior and dirty and slutty because you are single attitude. The funny thing is? That friend I know who is now all “proper and married” used to be SINGLE and more wild and haphazard than anyone I knew, slept with dozens of women, and partied like there was no tomorrow. His now wife? She was into threesomes, partying it up, drugs, alcohol abuse. Now that shes married she is somehow “better” than everyone? YOU ALL WERE SINGLE AT ONE TIME. Most of my friends who are faking the perfect little life have this kind of history. It’s hypocrisy to the highest order. The friends I have that are still single are better ‘behaved’ than they ever were, and still have plenty of fun and interesting lives that don’t involve mortgages, lawn care, garden care, recipe sharing, board game night, TV night, and 401k discussions. Nope, their lives involve travel, adventure, more education, charity work, volunteer work – they are people of the world. Not people of the shielded selfish greedy suburban house existence. I’m saying this and I’m not even single. Thankfully my girlfriend isn’t a materialistic narcissistic shallow drone, and she doesn’t look down upon single people either.

  • Claire Colvin Claire Colvin says:

    John B, Show me the stats that say that single people are to blame for the high divorce rate. People don’t get divorced because of friends, nights out or even influences, they get divorced because of their own choices, or choices made by their spouse. It’s unfair to claim that all single people want to screw around. It’s simply not true. If you have friends that making advances on your wife or tempting you personally then obviously you cannot spend time with them. But if that is your only experience with singles then I would challenge you to take a look at your own behaviour and see if anything in your actions, words or dress are giving off the impression that you would be interested in those sorts of activities.

    I think that for some singles it’s hard to be around people who are married, particularly newlyweds because you have the thing that they want. Some couples are very comfortable with public displays of affection and that can be uncomfortable for someone who does not have a partner. (Sometimes it’s uncomfortable even for those that do.) I think it’s important to spend some time away from your spouse in a healthy and supportive environment. What stories will you tell each other if all of your experiences are always that same? Couples need friends and it’s beneficial to have friends that are not all exactly the same.

  • John B says:

    I have been married for 4 years. all our single friends have just disappeared. our married friends still keep in touch. single people want to screw around and thats when married and single don’t go together. I see some married friends of mine believing in girls night out or boys night out, it never goes right theres always an oposite sex invovled in both nights out. why are you guys so worried about friends when your spouce is the only one you should worry about! fiends come and go. married couple is forever. high divorce rate is because of friends, nights outs, influences and etc… go spend some time with your spouse and be happy you have someone for life.

  • Jack says:

    “whatever”, you are 100% right. I’m close to 28 yrs old and am a guy, and I’ve been seeing this happen for the past few years of my life. They all become drones, fall off the face of the earth, become suddenly “proper” when before it used to be fun, relaxed and informal.. Now it’s like they hold their cards to protect them from you, their friend of 20+ years, as if they didn’t trust you anymore. I had my one friend’s psychopath baby mode wife actually swing at me, and she was MORE angry that I BLOCKED her attempt. She was on all kinds of meds and hormones in a mad dash to get pregnant before 30.. Drinking her face off, vodka, beer, etc all the time THE ENTIRE TIME she was mad about not being able to get pregnant. (completely irrational and self defeating right?) Talk about nutcase. She made my once best friend completely turn into a d-bag with his tail between his legs. Even my very own GIRLFRIEND is on my side on this one. She sees it happening even with her own life long friends, and it’s quite upsetting. Her and I have had bad experiences of our own, which is what brings us together I think, and causes us to not CARE about marriage, or fake image, or any other materialistic social status BS. Rushing things for the wrong reasons is what causes them to fail (see: divorce rate). We have a similar view on life, and see people for what their intentions truly are… Our eyes have been opened at a young age I guess you can say, and it frustrates us when our life long friends don’t see it, and fall out of our lives as a result. I’m sure they will come crawling back come divorce time, and I’ll just tell them to F-off at that point, since that’s pretty much what they did to me for the past 5 years. So the key is finding the RIGHT person that WON’T try to kill off your friends one at a time… And one that WON’T force you to act “fake” around. That’s why I love my girlfriend. B/c she still lets me be ME, and likes me for who I AM. I go to the bar after work all the time, and she never gives me a single hard time about it. I haven’t seen the friend I mentioned above out at the bar in years.. and he now only calls when he needs something. Married people become douches. THEY are the selfish ones. Oh well, I hope he has fun cleaning up baby poop and waking up at 2am to change a diaper, even though his controlling fat assed wife is on maternity leave and won’t lift a finger even though he is the one that’s working and she can sleep till noon. They can kiss my ass and be miserable.

  • Sharon Sharon says:

    good article thank you for posting it

  • Matt says:

    Angela says:
    I am not a young person and I will give you a possible explanation for your comment and I don’t agree with you saying that there is the problem with single people. If you read my earlier comment, you will see what I have experienced. The following has been my observation.

    I have tried to but do not like going out with most of my married friends because I have to be the one doing whatever they want to do as a couple. In my case, it is always the wife who is usually my friend and we have to do everything to please the husband and all of a sudden instead of we three trying to compromise, I have do be pleasing him. “He does not like this or that, he does not eat this or that and it goes on and on; we can’t do this or that”. So whenever I am around them, I have to become her and have no say in anything because that is not what he wants to do, eat, like, etc. I am an independent person and I know that when you are with other people you should do some compromising but I don’t think that it is my job to all of a sudden have no say in anything and do everything to please your husband to be your friend. Also, I am no longer dealing with a girlfriend who had so much in common with me. I am now dealing with a couple who have their own agenda and lives and that bond that we had together seems to be no longer there. Why should I be around you if it is becoming an unpleasant situation? There is also the case where most men seem to dislike their wife’s girlfriends and do not hesitate to show it. It could also be the woman who does not like her husband’s friends and starts acting up. So the friendship dies.

    It also goes both ways, it could be the husband wanting his single male or female friends do everything to please his wife. I know that you can’t see all of your friends like you did before but if you want any of your single friends to stay around, when you choose to have them in your company, try to give them an ear and not let them feel so rejected. I think that most people would move away from this kind of situation.

    Your comment does not relate to my situation. Me nor my wife are controlling people. We love to do stuff with other people and do what they want. We even pay for our single friends to join us due them not having the money for certain things. We enjoy finding new things to do all the time. Just single people would rather stay clear of a married couples because they feel we cant give them the friendship and attention they need.

  • CH says:

    I don’t feel the issue is that complex. I had friends who married but I never walked away from what I thought were friendships. They married and found new lives and friends but didn’t think it was important to keep the old. Unfortunately their lives didn’t include staying in touch with a single friend who supported them even as they were being courted and stood by them at their ceremonies. So it’s not always the singles abandoning married friends – it’s easily the other way around. My advice to brides-to-be: if your friendships matter put in the work to maintain them even if it means finding new ways to communicate or hang out. After all if your marriage falls apart wouldn’t you like to know that the people who stood by you in the beginning would want to be there for you in a time of need? I can’t speak for others but nothing would bother me more than to have a person I once thought was my friend who didn’t bother to stay in touch with me over the years try to find me to reconnect if she had to return to singlehood. People laugh at the women portrayed in “Sex in the City.” But I think the theme of maintaining friendships regardless of life changes is what was the best aspect of the show. And unfortunately in life so many of us allow changes to separate us from people we should keep close to us. This is a tough world – true friends are hard to come by…why be willing to let go of the ones you know you have?

  • Sharon Sharon says:

    good article for us we moved away then you lose contact with the friends we had while we were single. we kept some but lost others when we moved away.

  • marriage says:

    What? Not everyone “desperately longs for marriage.” It’s not that your friends are jealous of your marriage, but maybe you’re not giving them a way to get involved in your life.

    Married people change. Their primary focus is now on their spouse. That’s a huge challenge to friendships.

    Single and married people have less in common. That’s a huge challenge to friendships.

  • B. Miller Brenda says:

    Thank you, Matt and Angela, for your comments on this story. From my experience, when I got married, my single friends have struggled with spending time with my husband as a couple not so much because they thought marriage was uncool, but because they found it painful in their personal loneliness to see their former single friend now have something they desperately longed for and wanted. However, those who found the relationship important enough willingly continued to spend time with me, just as I willingly sacrificed to make time for them. In addition to seeing each other individually, my friends have taken the time to get to know my husband, and vice versa, and we have enjoyed our friends as a couple as well. I do believe it is vital to take into consideration their feelings as singles, both the loneliness they may feel, and the things they enjoy in their leisure time so this is not ignored. To continue relationships after marriage with our friends is, in my opinion, very important, as both husbands and wives need an outlet besides one another, people they have relationships with together and individually, to share things that they do not have in common as a couple, and also to be able to talk “guy” talk and “women” talk ~ subjects that we each enjoy but that our spouses may not be interested in discussing. These need to be healthy and godly relationships built on solid trust and that promote healthy marriages when both partners in the relationship are willing to stretch themselves to allow the other to pursue their own interests, something I see as vital in a healthy marriage.

  • Angela says:

    Matt says: November 6, 2011 at 5:16 pm I dont think the problem is with married couples there is a problem with single people rejecting married people in general and not wanting to be apart of there living anymore because i have had tons of friends before me and my wife got married we both tryed to keed in contact but they wanted no part of us anymore. The world deams married as not being cool and the right thing to do.

    I am not a young person and I will give you a possible explanation for your comment and I don’t agree with you saying that there is the problem with single people. If you read my earlier comment, you will see what I have experienced. The following has been my observation.

    I have tried to but do not like going out with most of my married friends because I have to be the one doing whatever they want to do as a couple. In my case, it is always the wife who is usually my friend and we have to do everything to please the husband and all of a sudden instead of we three trying to compromise, I have do be pleasing him. “He does not like this or that, he does not eat this or that and it goes on and on; we can’t do this or that”. So whenever I am around them, I have to become her and have no say in anything because that is not what he wants to do, eat, like, etc. I am an independent person and I know that when you are with other people you should do some compromising but I don’t think that it is my job to all of a sudden have no say in anything and do everything to please your husband to be your friend. Also, I am no longer dealing with a girlfriend who had so much in common with me. I am now dealing with a couple who have their own agenda and lives and that bond that we had together seems to be no longer there. Why should I be around you if it is becoming an unpleasant situation? There is also the case where most men seem to dislike their wife’s girlfriends and do not hesitate to show it. It could also be the woman who does not like her husband’s friends and starts acting up. So the friendship dies.

    It also goes both ways, it could be the husband wanting his single male or female friends do everything to please his wife. I know that you can’t see all of your friends like you did before but if you want any of your single friends to stay around, when you choose to have them in your company, try to give them an ear and not let them feel so rejected. I think that most people would move away from this kind of situation.

  • Matt says:

    I dont think the problem is with married couples there is a problem with single people rejecting married people in general and not wanting to be apart of there living anymore because i have had tons of friends before me and my wife got married we both tryed to keed in contact but they wanted no part of us anymore. The world deams married as not being cool and the right thing to do.

  • Mary Mary says:

    Marriage is about joining 2 hearts and lives. (As well, many add God in the center) My experience has been, once you get married and you go out with your individual friends, it is as if you are taking that other spouse along with you. You are a different person now than when you were single. If you are in a healthy relationship with your spouse as well as with your friends, your spouse will see that this outside relationship is positive to the marriage. However, if a wife goes out with her girlfriends and comes home negative, accusing and nagging, well that might irritate the husband and he sees that it doesn’t bring anything positive into the relationship. And likewise if the buddy he hangs out with causes him to neglect his responsibilities at home, then chances are his wife will be resentful of that relationship. If the single friend has a negative view of marriage it can cause alarm to the spouse sitting at home as to what influence that person might be having on their marriage. Do you think it matters what activity they are doing with their single friend? – Are they going to a singles bar, just playing basketball, building houses for the homeless?(however this can happen with a married friend in a bad relationship too)
    I have been married 27 years and our friends have come and gone. People come and go depending on the job, having children, a special project, new extended family, etc. Our friends have moved on too and we need to give our friends permission to do that once we get married. Even our married friends have come and gone over the years. They are acquaintances from the past but that doesn’t make it bad. It’s important to ask yourself why you want to hang on to that single friend relationship in the same way after you are married. Now that you have another person to care about, it’s important to consider our spouse in all of our future relationships. If you keep it positive, chances are it will be a win/win for both of you.
    Something new doesn’t have to make the old way bad, it can just be new.

  • Angela says:

    I have read all the comments and there is truth in every one of them. It all depends on the individuals.

    “I want to get married, but I am afraid of losing my friends. I know of many people who have lost their friends after being married. Please explain to me why people, especially women, lose their friends after marriage?”

    First of all, I am single. When most of my friends got married, the friendships dwindled because they had new lives with their husbands who they had to please and eventually their children. In other words we seemed to no longer have anything in common (this seems to be the point of view from some married people). Most men do not like their wives’ girlfriends. I don’t know if it is jealousy or envy of their relationship. Also a man could like his wife because of who she really is, e.g., her personalities, submissiveness, love, etc., but don’t like the girlfriend’s. We are all different and that is why we chose different mates. Some of them hate to know that the wife is telling their girlfriend of their nasty, selfish controlling ways. So they do everything in their power to break-up the friendship. On the other hand, some women and men are just very selfish and feel that they must only live for themselves and forgot who were in their lives until this stage. You know the saying “forgetting where you came from.” This is where I disagree with Dr. G. There will be times in your life where you will need someone away from the situation to talk to. There will be different stages in your life where your current close friends will not be the ones there to understand and comfort you in your tragedies, illnesses, etc. This is when the new friends disappear, eh! Priority should include some of those old friends who really love, know and understand you. So, don’t be afraid to get married. Try to understand that if you do, you will lose some of your friends because of their mates or they themselves will withdraw because of their marriage relationship. I am single and if I see that my friend’s husband is rejecting me or being nasty to me, I would move away. Why should I stick around and accept what is going on. So these are some of the reasons why either the male or female loses their friends. Another thing, for economical reasons, and I have experienced this, when some of the married friends get the big house, etc., and move up in society and get involved with other couples, they don’t want their single friends around. It all boils down to intelligence, immatureness, people knowing who they really are, insecurity or self-confidence.

    As I said before, since my girlfriends and boyfriends got married, most of them have gone their merry ways. One or two of my friends have found me since the marriages have crumbled but really I am no longer interested in them because they will do it again to me. Let them find new shoulders to cry on.

    In general, there are insecurities and dislikes on both sides. The new husband doesn’t want the girlfriends around or in the case of males; the jealous, insecure controlling wife doesn’t want the husband’s old boyfriends or girlfriends around. I hope you got the message.

  • Grey says:

    This doesn’t seem to be a problem for me and my husband at all. I encourage him to go out with his guy friends, and he encourages me to hang out with my girlfriends, and at times we’ll have a party with everyone or go out as a group. Yes, there’s housework, and meals to cook, and hours to work, and while we do spend a lot of time together, we both need to have some independent time too. This isn’t a lot different than when we were engaged or just having a relationship. I’m not sure why marriage should change how a relationship works – it just confirms your ongoing commitment and a partnership. I think it’s all in our heads that marriage changes everything. Now, what really will change everything, is having kids – at least I think so. It won’t be about “you” anymore – that’s why we’re waiting… we’re enjoying a party of two for right now!

  • Prabhu says:

    I am 26, Male. My happiness all ends just a month back. Yes, one of my Best friend got engaged. he is goin to marry in just 3 months. Though, i m the first person to hear the news from my friend, i can’t be happy in my days. I am crying after a long time. Since, he was lovely person i ever met. he made me happy, nade me to smile, made me to love people & relations, made me to forgive people, learnt so many good qualities from him. Even, we had sex… I felt he is my soul, he is my breathe. I felt he is my world. I dont know why, i cant be happy with him now a days. I dont want to lose him in my life. i want to stay with him till my end. Please Help Me..

  • Me says:

    I just got married, and i believe that marriage is a two way thing as both wife and husband will have to compromise to make it work.

    I think sometime that my theory about marriage is wrong, but than i say no it seems reasonable.

    After marriage some friends should be dropped however it`s not related if they are married or single but its more related to the type of people they are and the way they are living there own life as it may affect the married couples even without intending too if they stay a part of it.

    Now the question is; what would be acceptable in term of social outings? I`m not giving a sure answer, but I’m stating what I think off knowing that it may be theoretical or not even right.

    Both wife and husband should start having limits in term of:

    - How much time do they spend out with friends?
    - Coming back home at a certain time and not staying out late if you are alone without the partner.
    - Making sure you go together with you partner if it’s a night out for drink and don’t just go each with his/her friends.
    - Choosing right places to go to with friends and right timing for such outings (coffee in early evening – lunch – breakfast mid day coffee).
    - Don’t over do the outings.

    Always be sure that the most important person is your partner and you life together and nothing else is worth it, and that is why its both of you either making it work or not.

  • Will says:

    My comment is on the following snippet from Dr. Gabriel:

    “we find that after spending time with our husband, cleaning, cooking etc. there just isn’t as much time to spend with our friends”

    I think problems are most likely to arise when a spouse wants to spend time with friends BEFORE all the home stuff gets done. In other words, the problem isn’t whether a guy trusts his wife to hang out with her girlfriends. The problem is when it takes priority over marriage itself.

    On a much broader topic, I think marriage should be avoided if possible.

  • Bob says:

    That’s why there are so many divorces in this country. Married people can’t seem to keep their friendships because they don’t make time for them, which is ridiculous because if you try you can always make time… certainly at least once a week. A lot of it of course has to do with their spouses insecurity. The result is that you and your spouse end up becoming your only friend which makes it very hard to make new friends because you don’t have the confidence/”time”/desire to make new friends (who are married of course). Married people don’t seem to understand that it’s very important to keep old friends because of the many memories and experiences that you can relate through. All I can say is that when my frindless married “friends” who ignore me finally get divorced and come crawling back to me I will be nowhere to be found because honestly I do not consider them my friends anymore.

  • Andrew says:

    It took me about 6 months to lose all of my friends after I’d got married. My wife developed a social anxiety disorder, and as such for us to go anywhere is a problem, and for me to have my own friends is impossible.

    My favourite times of the whole day are when I fall asleep on the train going to and from work.

  • whatever says:

    You’re just looking at things through your own tunnel vision, of it being “especially women”.

  • whatever says:

    What a load of crap…it isn’t “especially women” who lose their friends after marriage. I’m a male, and every single one of my [redacted] friends decided I wasn’t worth the effort to stay in contact with, once their [redacted] controlling, manipulative wives brainwashed them.

  • Iyanth says:

    Sometimes in an attempt to stay loyal, friends remain in close contact with the spouse they know. The friends you know will usually stick by you.
    When all of the couples go out, it’s uncomfortable for the now divorced friend to join them as a single person. And you may find yourself separating from them. You may often decline their invitations to outings you and your spouse once enjoyed with them.
    After a divorce, your life, even your desires change. You may find that life as a single person puts you in a different place with different priorities. You have the opportunity to meet people who you are more in common with.
    So yes you may lose some friends but you may definitely get some new ones!

  • Most women lose there friends for two reasons , friends are single or are other men , women who are married there HUSBANDS DON’T TRUST THEIR NEW WIFE TO JUST GO HANG OUT WITH THERE GIRLFRIENDS ,and that’s what really is the greatest cause of deforce . Mem see no harm for them to hang with the boys at night clubs , but it’s a double standard . 98% of all marrages the mem feel there wife are owned to them and they will do what they say or a fight breaks out, and it’s all over trust with their wifes . 82% of mem cheat on there wifes when they go out with the boys and 1% of married women cheat when allowed to go out with the girls . So before you do get married set down and you both write down why you love each other and answer the question over being able to see and go out with there friends to have a coffee or out for a dinner , because I do not beleave in drinking , and if you do want to go out dancing , then ask if it would be alright to bring your husband . Talking with your friends and your new husband are the down fall of losing your friends , I lost my only friend because I talked about me and not her happiness , it cost me my one and only friend I had in this world. I talked to my wife and she knows that she was my only true friend , and she is letting me try to find her so she could also have two friends we could go out for coffee, dinner, we can have friends older than our childrens or our own family. So what I say is talk to both sides friends and future husband.

  • Me says:

    Don’t get married – just…don’t!

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