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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,
I'm new-ish to this community. I found this place after a friend warned me I might be about to make a massive faux pas, and I started searching for ettiquette/opinions.

Basically, I've been married a long time and my husband and I have very relaxed attitudes to OSFs. My husband is still in touch with most of his ex-GFs, and almost all of my friends are men. My "best friend" is a man that I met several years after I married my husband. My friend is engaged. Technically, I've known him longer than his girlfriend has, but we didn't become true friends until long after they started dating.

His girlfriend likes me. We will never be "good friends" because we are as different as you could possibly be, but we know each other and we have a civil relationship. I don't want to ruin that. In fact I'm probably too paranoid about potentially ruining this since in the last five years I've lost a few male friends because their girlfriends didn't like them having OSFs.

My husband has met this OSF and his girlfriend. He doesn't like the OSF, for reasons that are complicated but nothing to do with us being friends (we're all athletes and there's some in-sport politics). He is fine with me being very close friends with him, and he's civil to my friend if he ever comes out when we hang out.

The thing is I'm thinking of giving my friend an expensive (to me) gift - it's worth about $300. I know my friend can't afford this item and he really wants it. The thing is, my friend will know that it's expensive in terms of my financial situation too. I can explain how I found the item and managed to pay for it in a way that he'll understand and think is cool, but I'm worried she won't understand.

We have very different attitudes in terms of money - I'm a "do rounds" or "take turns" kind of person when it comes to stuff like coffees or beers. She is uncomfortable with that. I'll lend people money freely and am casual about getting it back as long as it's a good friendship. She breaks out in a cold sweat if she needs to borrow $20 for a few minutes until she can get to an ATM. I'm worried she'll feel the need to reciprocate this gift - and there's no way she or he could afford to do that.

This gift would be a "I know you've been wanting this for years and years, and I finally found one on sale. Please take it, no strings attached, I just want to see the look on your face when you finally hold one of these in your hands for real" kind of gift.

If an OSF friend of your partner approached you and explained that, how would you feel? Am I worrying too much? I'd appreciate any comments.
 

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Don't buy him the gift. Your husband does not like him as you mentioned in your post. Expensive gifts are what you give to a spouse, your children, your parents, or siblings. This is definitely a faux pas. You'll appear as if you are pursuing him and you are a married woman.
 

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Sounds like you all are all friends, pretty much. I have OSFs like this. Talk to your husband, ask him what he thinks........unless your trying to be sneaky about it.

PS. I usually just do it, if it's not going to strap me, and go on with life.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks. I was afraid people would say that. Would the answer change if I said the gift was a limited edition item from several years ago, only a couple of hundred ever made?

I'm trying to be vague because of the slim possibility of someone ever recognizing the post. This isn't a "Hey, you always wanted an iPhone 6+, have one!", it's an item so rare it wouldn't be much of a stretch to call it a once in a lifetime opportunity.

My husband is comfortable with the idea - I found the item when I was looking for something similar (I collect other stuff made by the same company). His instant reaction was "As long as you're spending your own hobby money, do what you like, but I don't want to hear any complaints if [the super rare thing you want] appears tomorrow and you've blown your budget on that thing".

I asked him if he'd give it from the both of us (the most obvious way to make it a "safe" gift) but he basically said he'd feel like a hypocrite doing that because he doesn't like the guy. In his eyes (he's pretty clueless about "signals"), I'm the friend, I know he wants it, I found it, I give the gift.

I have a few days to decide. If there was some way to give this that was socially acceptable, I'd do it, but if there's not... :(
 

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I have a few days to decide. If there was some way to give this that was socially acceptable, I'd do it, but if there's not... :(
That kind of a gift is way too much for a friend and as Roselyn said sends the wrong message. It may also alter his feelings for you as a result in a way that is not marriage friendly. Better to leave this one ungiven.
 

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Hi all,
I'm new-ish to this community. I found this place after a friend warned me I might be about to make a massive faux pas, and I started searching for ettiquette/opinions.

Basically, I've been married a long time and my husband and I have very relaxed attitudes to OSFs. My husband is still in touch with most of his ex-GFs, and almost all of my friends are men. My "best friend" is a man that I met several years after I married my husband. My friend is engaged. Technically, I've known him longer than his girlfriend has, but we didn't become true friends until long after they started dating.

His girlfriend likes me. We will never be "good friends" because we are as different as you could possibly be, but we know each other and we have a civil relationship. I don't want to ruin that. In fact I'm probably too paranoid about potentially ruining this since in the last five years I've lost a few male friends because their girlfriends didn't like them having OSFs.

My husband has met this OSF and his girlfriend. He doesn't like the OSF, for reasons that are complicated but nothing to do with us being friends (we're all athletes and there's some in-sport politics). He is fine with me being very close friends with him, and he's civil to my friend if he ever comes out when we hang out.

The thing is I'm thinking of giving my friend an expensive (to me) gift - it's worth about $300. I know my friend can't afford this item and he really wants it. The thing is, my friend will know that it's expensive in terms of my financial situation too. I can explain how I found the item and managed to pay for it in a way that he'll understand and think is cool, but I'm worried she won't understand.

We have very different attitudes in terms of money - I'm a "do rounds" or "take turns" kind of person when it comes to stuff like coffees or beers. She is uncomfortable with that. I'll lend people money freely and am casual about getting it back as long as it's a good friendship. She breaks out in a cold sweat if she needs to borrow $20 for a few minutes until she can get to an ATM. I'm worried she'll feel the need to reciprocate this gift - and there's no way she or he could afford to do that.

This gift would be a "I know you've been wanting this for years and years, and I finally found one on sale. Please take it, no strings attached, I just want to see the look on your face when you finally hold one of these in your hands for real" kind of gift.

If an OSF friend of your partner approached you and explained that, how would you feel? Am I worrying too much? I'd appreciate any comments.
saubryn, you and your husband decide how to handle OSFs. So long as he has input and is okay then a gift isn't an issue. If he has an issue with it then it's an issue. Very simple.
 

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If an OSF friend of your partner approached you and explained that, how would you feel? Am I worrying too much? I'd appreciate any comments.
Yeah, it would bother me and I would make an effort for me and my husband to avoid that OSF in the future.

Ive been burned every which way by OSFs. Let's see:

1. Women friends who used me to get to my husband.
2. Women friends of my husband who dissed me.
3. Male friends who c0ckblocked other men that appeared interested in getting to know me.
4. Men who claimed to be just friends with me but then became angry and accused me of leading them on.

Even my husband during our courtship was accused by his special friend of leading her on. It was at the moment when he went in for an open mouth kiss... and she refused him. She went on to praise her ex boyfriend because even though he told that she was only good for a blowjob, well, at least he was honest.

Wow, the thresholds of decency seem to be pretty low these days.

As for you, Saubryn, you've presented us with a mixed bag. You've lost some male friends to their current girlfriends "because their girlfriends didn't like them having OSFs." Glad you kept that neutral.

Technically, I've known him longer than his girlfriend has, but we didn't become true friends until long after they started dating.
I was wondering what the point of the above statement is. But also now, what that friendship will look like after he receives a gift from you more expensive and personal than what his fiance will buy him.

This is one of the issues with havings OSFs, just like having an open marriage. You will be constantly renegotiating each relationships as new ripples take place. ..... which is ironic because that is just as controlling, IF NOT more controlling than just not having OSFs in the first place.

Let us know how things work out if go ahead give this expensive gift that you are referring to.
 

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Thanks. I was afraid people would say that. Would the answer change if I said the gift was a limited edition item from several years ago, only a couple of hundred ever made?

I'm trying to be vague because of the slim possibility of someone ever recognizing the post. This isn't a "Hey, you always wanted an iPhone 6+, have one!", it's an item so rare it wouldn't be much of a stretch to call it a once in a lifetime opportunity.

My husband is comfortable with the idea - I found the item when I was looking for something similar (I collect other stuff made by the same company). His instant reaction was "As long as you're spending your own hobby money, do what you like, but I don't want to hear any complaints if [the super rare thing you want] appears tomorrow and you've blown your budget on that thing".
(
Husband sounds like he's on board with it. Just do it & be happy/thankful you can.

That's what I did
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
As for you, Saubryn, you've presented us with a mixed bag. You've lost some male friends to their current girlfriends "because their girlfriends didn't like them having OSFs." Glad you kept that neutral.
The guys I'm thinking of gave up all of their OSFs pretty much immediately after they got married. There was no animosity on either part, it just sort of happened that not long after the wedding they slowed down on one on one contact, then started vanishing from group mixed gender outings too.

I'm not sure whether the guys felt the same way or woud have asked the same of their new wives. The girls in question weren't really the type to have OSFs - they're all "big girl's night out" types with stereotypically feminine interests who didn't really enjoy going out with their SO's and the mostly male friend group that I was/am still a part of.

I met these guys at university - I was one of only two girls on a computer science course.

I was wondering what the point of the above statement is. But also now, what that friendship will look like after he receives a gift from you more expensive and personal than what his fiance will buy him.
I hope that didn't sound negative/competitive or something! It was late at night when I wrote my post. I mentioned the length of the friendship because I know some people are more willing to accept existing OSF friends than they are ones that their SO meets after the relationship starts. A sort of "well, if he/she wanted to date them, then they already would be".

Mine's blurry though because while I have been around a long time I was out of the sport for ages with an injury, and he started dating her during that time. It was only when I came back that we went from casual acquaintances to friends. The first time I met the girlfriend it was at the gym. She's come there a few times since then, and I've noticed she's always suspicious of new girls.

I feel for her in that it must be hard having a fiance who is athletic whose job includes close physical contact with young, athletic and invariably attractive women. I fit the athletic part but I'm married and butch in both personality and appearance and quite clearly "in it for the sport" so I think that's part of the reason she accepts me.

Let us know how things work out if go ahead give this expensive gift that you are referring to.
Thanks. So many people are saying don't do it that I'm really not sure what to do.

I'm 100% confident my friend would take the gift in the spirit it's meant, but his girlfriend reads a lot into things and I don't want to offend her. She's comfortable enough with me now, but it wasn't like that in the early days. She might accept it as "two friends bonding by being nerds over something that costs 3 - 5x what it should because it has a logo on it" or it might but us back to square one.

I'm sorry you've been burned so many times :(

A lot to think about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Husband sounds like he's on board with it. Just do it & be happy/thankful you can.

That's what I did
Thanks.

What happened in your case (assuming you're willing to share)? Was your friend's spouse / partner OK with it?
 

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I'm sorry, what is an OSF? I mean, I'm getting what it is because I can interpret, but what does it stand for?

ETA: Oh wait, just got it! Opposite Sex Friend??? :) My coffee finally kicked in!
 

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The guys I'm thinking of gave up all of their OSFs pretty much immediately after they got married. There was no animosity on either part, it just sort of happened that not long after the wedding they slowed down on one on one contact, then started vanishing from group mixed gender outings too.

I'm not sure whether the guys felt the same way or woud have asked the same of their new wives. The girls in question weren't really the type to have OSFs - they're all "big girl's night out" types with stereotypically feminine interests who didn't really enjoy going out with their SO's and the mostly male friend group that I was/am still a part of.

I met these guys at university - I was one of only two girls on a computer science course.
We should remember that men don't buy into the OSF thing at the same rate as women do. These guys may be the type who think OSFs are ok when you're single and not OK when you're not. And they don't have to report to you or me when they make that decision.

I had an ex bf like that. He admitted that he doesn't keep female friends around. So while he was very helpful after we broke up, I stopped hearing from him when he got into a new relationship. Fair enough.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
But your husband doesn't like this guy; yet this guy is your "best friend"... It seems very strange to me. But that's just me. If it's working for you as a couple, then I'm glad for you.
It's a complicated situation - we're all athletes taking part in the same sport but it's very political and he trains at a different gym. There's bad blood between the two gyms. We both take the stance that a lot of the drama is over-inflated, but there are definitely cultural differences. He respects the guy, and he's come to support him at a couple of major events if his team mates weren't competing, but he's got no interest in cultivating a friendship and it's better "appearance wise" if he keeps his distance.

It's not uncommon in the sport for families to train at different gyms (people tend to choose the gym that has the most competitors close to their size/weight/the one that has a kid's program if that's relevant). Close friendships within the sport are a bit more rare but my friend and I happened to discover that we share a couple of other obscure interests.

I'd like to clarify that my friend proposed to the girl recently - they are engaged, I'm just typing girlfriend partly out of habit and partly because I keep forgetting whether it's "fiance" or "fiancee"!

No problem.

To avoid hy-jack, I'll pm you.
Thanks!

Saubryn, ask yourself what would you do / how would you feel if your husband gave a female friend an expensive and meaningful gift.
Honestly, I'd say the same thing my husband said to me. As long as it's coming out of my husband's personal/hobby spending budget (so he's not making us late to pay bills or anything), I wouldn't mind.

If my husband received a gift from a female, it would depend on who it was. For example, my husband is still in passing contact with a few of his ex-girlfriends. If one of them sent him a gift like this completely out of the blue I would most definitely question their motives. He has another much closer only-ever-platonic female friend, and if she did something similar then given the context of their close friendship I'd think it was incredibly thoughtful and sweet of her, and I wouldn't take offense.

When your friend does marry, can it be a wedding gift from both of you, or is it not a gift that a couple would like?
That would have been a great idea. Unfortunately it's not a "couple gift". It's a tool for a sport, and something that can only be used by one person.
 

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Is there any way to get the fiancee in on it? Like contact her and tell her you found this for him, ask her for a (small) portion of the cost, and let her give it to him? I have been known to do things like that (not in this exact scenario.) I don't even take the "credit" half the time. Because it's not about who gives, it's about the giving. :)
 

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You wouldn't be posting here for advice if your gut wasn't telling you not to do it.

So don't do it.
 
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