Concerns About Husband’s Old College Buddies

I have some serious reservations about the friends my husband keeps in touch with from his college days. Some of these guys are married and some aren't. They plan frequent "boys' weekends," and they also organize a lot of parties for special occasions. What concerns me is what goes on at these events. On a trip last year, one of them invited a woman to spend the night with him in the hotel room they were all sharing. Another time, one friend got drunk and was arrested for unruly behavior. My husband argues that there's nothing wrong with married couples having separate getaways. But I'm not comfortable with this, and it has led to some serious trust issues in our marriage. What do you think?

We think you’re right to be concerned. Generally speaking, it is healthy for husbands and wives to spend time with good friends of the same sex. This might even involve a man going on a weekend golfing outing with his buddies or a woman heading off to an overnight woman’s retreat with her girlfriends. But that’s not the central issue here.

The “boys’ weekends” you’ve described appear to be characterized by some pretty blatant immoral behavior: drunkenness, sexual promiscuity, even run-ins with the police. How can this possibly be a good thing for your husband or your marriage?

The real problem here, as we see it, is your husband’s choice of friends. The Bible says that “bad company corrupts good character” and that “a companion of fools suffers harm.” We don’t know these men, of course, so we can’t make assumptions about their character. But it seems clear that they’re engaging in some pretty “foolish” activities.

You didn’t mention anything about your husband’s faith, but if he considers himself to be a Christian, he ought to be forming his closest friendships with other believers. Naturally, this doesn’t mean that he has to stop relating to his non-Christian friends altogether. But spending “boys’ weekends” with these guys is definitely not a good idea – not if he wants to be a serious disciple of Jesus Christ.

Since his past choices have already impacted the level of trust in your marriage, we’d suggest that the two of you make an appointment with your pastor or a qualified marriage counselor and discuss this issue in depth. A pastor or Christian therapist may be able to offer your husband some godly counsel regarding his circle of friends and the wisdom of spending weekends away with people who don’t share his beliefs and value system. Your husband may also want to consider signing up for a men’s retreat, where he can meet some spiritually mature men in the church who share some of his same interests.

Focus on the Family’s Counseling department can provide you with referrals to trained marriage counselors practicing in your area. Call us. The team would also be more than to discuss your situation with you personally over the phone.


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