Q: My husband and I were recently married. We’re very happy and have a great relationship, except for one thing: I don’t get along with his friends. This has led to arguments and tension between us. Is there a way to solve this problem?
A: Many newlyweds find themselves faced with challenges of this nature soon after the wedding, and their ability to work through them together is an important measure of the strength of their relationship. This issue can provide you and your husband with a great opportunity to learn what it means to compromise and be flexible.
You didn’t mention what it is about your husband’s friends that bothers you. Are they engaging in behaviour that is immature, irresponsible or immoral? If so, we’d suggest that your husband has a responsibility to confront this issue. He needs to ask himself whether these friendships are truly good for him and for your marriage.
However, if the issue is simply that you have different tastes and interests than your husbands’ friends, we would challenge you to do the hard work of finding common ground with these folks. For example, let’s say this group loves football and kart racing —things that don’t interest you in the slightest. Would you consider biting the bullet and learning a little bit about the Premier League and shifter karts —if only for the sake of your marriage? To do so would certainly represent a compromise on your part, but it would also send a signal to your husband that you’re willing to set your interests aside once in a while for the sake of his.
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