This morning my husband went golfing with two friends. He rarely goes, so I’m happy he found the time.
I haven’t always been as supportive of “guy time.” Only in the last year or so have I truly come to see the value of Adam taking time to do things with his friends.
As a stay-at-home wife and mother I used to think, “He sees friends at work and he works out with them over lunch at the gym. Not to mention that he has the opportunity to grab coffee with them and do lunch during the workweek. Adam doesn’t need to go out alone with friends ‘after hours.’ That’s my time with him and my time to spend with friends.”
It’s difficult to sacrifice that time so that he can be with friends, but it’s worth it. Studies have found that solid friendships are linked to longevity of life and better overall well being, and strong friendships can even help fight depression.
When Adam does go out with friends, he comes back refreshed, lighter, more eager to dive in and help out at home. While the two of us share the most intimate relationship possible, his male friends still give him something I can’t. They are able to relate as men and talk about the pressures they feel as men to provide for their families and other pressures in the workplace.
Even though I know it’s good for him, at times it’s still a struggle for me to be happy when he goes out. I still sometimes find myself wincing when he asks. But then I remember how generous he is in encouraging me to go out with my friends and how when I return I’m refreshed, more flirtatious, and more grateful for him.
His ability to go out with his friends does the same thing for him and it breathes new life into our relationship. Besides, if there’s ever a time I truly need him to stay home, he understands that and always respects my wishes and never complains about it, either.
Thankfully, I also like the friends he hangs out with. But there have been times in the past that I haven’t, and even though I didn’t understand what he saw in one guy or another, I also trusted Adam and trusted his judgment. If Adam believed a guy was worthy of friendship, then he must be. I’m happy to say that over the years I’ve come to see that Adam was right about some of his friendships and I’ve come to love those friends, too.
Giving Adam time for his friends benefits our marriage. I can’t be all things to him and he needs to cultivate good male friendships, too. They don’t detract from our relationship; they add to it.