It is possible for married people to have healthy opposite-sex friendships. However, special consideration must be given to a number of factors that, if ignored, can potentially serve to threaten your marriage and seriously compromise your relationship with God. If you desire to make or keep your marriage strong. Here’s our Top TEN List for managing opposite-sex friendships in your life*.

  1. Make your relationship with Jesus Christ your number one priority in life.
  2. Develop and consistently nurture a “best friend” relationship with your spouse.
  3. Develop and consistently nurture close same- sex friendships.
  4. Make sure your spouse knows your friend and is completely comfortable with the type and level of interaction you have with them.
  5. Honor your spouse’s wishes concerning your friendship – even if it means ending it.
  6. Avoid establishing close friendships with opposite sex singles.
  7. Avoid developing a close friendship with someone you are physically and/or emotionally attracted to.
  8. Avoid close opposite-sex friendships if you are struggling in your marriage relationship.
  9. Address unmet needs and unresolved anger in your marriage in an open, honest and timely fashion.
  10. Demonstrate a God-honoring character in all your relationships.

Related: 20 Questions to Test Your Opposite Sex Friendship


*This list originated with a dear friend of the Intentional Living Center, Dr. Todd Linaman, and appears also in the book, “Starved for Affection,” by Dr. Randy Carlson.

© 2014 by Randy Carlson

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