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Q. Meredith, my future fiance, whom I met at work about five years ago, wants me to stop having lunch with my male co-workers. I had lunch with these men before we were a couple, and he didn’t have any problem with it then. He also knows and works with them.
We eat our lunches on the job site in public view. I always tell him when I eat lunch with these people. I’ve worked the same job with them for more than a decade. I can’t make my boyfriend understand that we are like a family, that they have wives and girlfriends. He wants to start having lunch with women so I’ll know what it feels like. It has become a constant fight because I refuse to stop. Am I wrong? What should I do?
A. You are not wrong. There is no reason to feel guilty about enjoying and maintaining great friendships. There is also no reason to stop yourself from making new friends as you get older.
You need to think about whether you can be married to someone who is this controlling and distrustful. He’s trying to limit your life — to make it small enough for him to watch over at all times — but that’s not how you want to live. If you agree to the “no lunching with men” rule, what’s next? What other boundaries will he set to serve his own needs?
He should want to marry you — the real you — a person who loves and enjoys her friends. If that doesn’t appeal to him, this is not a match.
No co-ed lunch. Who is this guy, Mike Pence?
I hope he has other redeeming qualities, because this would be a dealbreaker for me.
Your fiance met you at work, and is likely worried that you might meet a new guy at work. At the end of the day, he doesn’t trust you. I’d be wary of marrying someone with trust (or jealousy) issues. It likely won’t go the distance.
RUN! Seriously, call off the engagement now. Guys like this don’t show their true colors right away, but when they do, their insecurities and the associated demands on how you conduct your life will increase rapidly. It’s a dark and scary road to travel, and once you’re on it, it will take an extreme toll on your self-esteem.
“My future fiance.” So right now, he’s just your boyfriend. That makes this easier. Dump him.
I just realized that you are not engaged but are making up names for him to make this sound more serious. This makes me think you are quite insecure, so being with someone like this is an INSANELY bad idea. And if you’ve worked with these guys for 10 years — you aren’t a kid. Drop this guy and get into therapy.