How do you protect your marriage from inappropriate, opposite-sex friendships? There are key differences in healthy and unhealthy ones.
An unhealthy opposite-sex friendship:
- Is exclusive – you’ve purposefully cut out your spouse from the relationship.
- Seeks privacy – alone time outside of normal interaction you originally had with this person.
- Gets too personal – you do or share things that are kept secret from your spouse.
- Becomes a state of mind – you think, even obsess, about your opposite-sex friend when you’re not together.
A healthy opposite-sex friendship:
- Includes your spouse – particularly important if you feel a need to encourage your friend. Always do this as a husband-and-wife team.
- Sets limits – if your friend wants to share about his/her marriage, you politely tell them to talk to a pastor or counselor, or include their spouse and yours in the conversation.
- Keeps no secrets – there is nothing your friend knows about you that’s not already common knowledge to your spouse.
Friendships with the opposite sex are as commonplace as convenience stores. If you’re married, don’t take them for granted. Know the limits and take necessary steps to guard against inappropriate relationships with the opposite sex.
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