I've been dating this guy for four years now. I currently live in the city in which he was born and raised; I moved here just prior to meeting him. He has a number of friends of which I have never met. I have always wanted to get to know them, but he's been very weird about it. He is continuing to make new friends, but sees no reason to tell me about them or introduce them to me. As it turns out, most of them are other females. I feel shut out and betrayed!
I don't think he's cheating on me, but I just don't understand why he doesn't talk about them with me. I have tried to talk to him about this on occasion, but it always ends up as an argument. At this point, I don't even bother bringing it up anymore, but it still hurts me. Do you have any advice for helping me deal with this?
— Left Out Lily
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Dear Left Out Lily,
After four years together, it's very strange that your boyfriend won't let you meet his friends, male or female. I don't blame you for being upset; I would be, too. Although I can't provide you with a logical explanation as to why your boyfriend keeps you so separate from his friends, I do think it's cause for concern — especially since it's obviously bothering you so much. First of all, determine what will truly make you feel better. Do you just need him to acknowledge your feelings? Do you need to meet one of his friends? Get the details of their visits together? Or is it some combination of all these things? Once you've figured this out, it will make it much easier to discuss it with him.
As with most relationship problems, communication is key. Talk to him again, but instead of asking why he's leaving you out, tell him how you're feeling. You're betrayed, sad, and confused and he needs to understand that, which he won't if he's too busy defending his reasoning. Once you've revealed your emotions surrounding this issue, tell him in no uncertain terms what it will take to make you feel more comfortable. If your boyfriend still won't oblige, I think it might be time to take a step back and examine your relationship very closely. Good luck!