Real Talk w/Terry

Just Friends?

By Paul Roman

Have you ever had thoughts of intimate acts with a friend, an acquaintance or even a stranger?

One study* has shown that the average number of sexual thoughts per day – most of them surely come without any intention of acting on them – is 34 for men and 19 for women. This indicates that even platonic friendship between individuals of the opposite sex involve some sexual thoughts and desires, and can be defined as a cross-sex relationship where sexual desires always remain in imagination only.


If both spouses give each other a lot of attention the probability of forming an extramarital cross-sex friendship is minimized.  If one spouse does form an extramarital platonic friendship, it is possible that the attention given to the friend might deprive the second spouse at least of some attention he or she would get otherwise.

Most marriages originate by a period of intense love, sometimes called infatuation, which is easily reduced by ordinary everydayness of a long marriage life. This doesn’t apply to extramarital platonic friendships. That is why it is likely that friends are seen in idealized light that makes friends compare the spouse’s weaknesses to the friend’s strengths. This unfair comparison can hurt the marriage even more than the lack of attention.

Broken Heart

In marriages where fidelity is taken seriously, it seems obvious that extramarital cross-sex friendships must be conducted carefully, if at all. It is up to platonic friends to create and maintain an atmosphere of absolute confidence, to assure their spouses that nothing inappropriate will ever happen in the friendship. Platonic friends should never have any secret hidden from their spouses. Ideally, when one spouse has a platonic friend, the second spouse should become a part of the friends’ relationship and form a friendship triangle.  The atmosphere of absolute confidence might not be possible if the extra-marriage friend is not liked by the second spouse.

*  The study by Dr. Terri D. Fisher, professor of Psychology at The Ohio State University at Mansfield, of 283 students between the ages of 18 and 25.


Paul Roman is a retired architect.  Now he teaches downhill skiing and writes books on subjects of natural science and society development for adolescent youth (his grandkids, really) and interested lay adults. He escaped the communist terror of then Czechoslovakia in 1968 and lives in Canada ever since.

Why Buy the Cow When You Get the Milk Free?!

A couple of months ago I was watching a reality show where one of the cast mates revealed that after being in a long term relationship for over 10 years that she and her companion finally married only to get a divorce and go their separate ways after 2 years of marriage. One of the friends asked, “why did they wait so long to get married.” I don’t remember how she responded, because at that point the thought that flooded my mind was something my grandmother told me years ago about men, “why buy the cow, when you get the milk FREE?” Meaning, why would a man marry you if he is getting what he wants from you without any type of marriage commitment. Wow! I didn’t fully understand what she was saying until I was much older and found myself in one of those on again, then off again type of relationships with a man who had major problems committing.

Unhappy couple-2

I would often hear statements like, “I know I want to be with you, I’m just not ready for marriage” or “what’s wrong with what we have, why rush into marriage?” Sounds familiar? I’m sure I wasn’t the only single female who heard lines like this from a commitment phobic man. At some point like me, you get fed up with all the empty lines and are faced with a major decision, 1) do I stay the course and see if this man will marry me? Or 2) do I cut my losses now and move on with my life? For me, I chose the latter.

Time is precious and we can never regain wasted years where we stayed in a relationship far longer than we should have. A man knows early on if he has long or short term plans for you – he just may not communicate his intentions to you. Don’t be somebody’s in-between time and in the mean-time girlfriend that they are simply passing time with. You may just find that you wasted precious years giving away your goods to a man who is all of a sudden READY to marry, just not to you.

Happy Couple-3

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