Men and their Guy Trips

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Wednesday’s Question:

Did he ever care at all?

Monday’s Question:

Four years and counting: What’s he thinking?

Last week’s questions:

Is cheating ex playing me?

High school dating: Am I hot or not?

Relationship Advice: Committed or not committed?

Four Years of Mixed Messages

Dear Guys,

I’ve been dating a guy exclusively for a year and 3 months. Within the first year he went on 3 “guy trips” to Miami twice and Vegas once. I was uncomfortable with each, and made that clear. However, I wanted to respect his manhood and allow him to go with complete trust. I am sure he danced here and there but I did not question him when he got back either of the times. I kept it to myself.

Well, except the Vegas trip. One of his friends posted the dreaded trip on his Facebook page. As you can imagine, pictures can tell a thousand words. I confronted him on how embarrassed I was about the way he behaved- as if he were a single man. He barely defended himself because he claims he was drunk and didn’t even know people were taking pictures. Clearly he was drunk posing with one of his “home girls” holding her hair back and pretending to bend her over. That was embarrassing to me. He claims it was 100% innocent. I feel he was innocent, but it shows me that he when inhibitions are down (he is 29 by the way), that his behavior is not respectful of me. I am out of sight out of mind. Or maybe, what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas?

I am forgiving, but this coming July, the trend is starting once again. My question is, how do I go about dealing with this notion in my head that in July 2011, he is going to Miami for the same reason others go in July? He says it is a guys trip, but on the past 2 trips, magically his “home girls” are there to meet up. Some of these girls he hasn’t seen in years. And now this is becoming an annual Miami reunion. As his girlfriend, is this in a normal long term relationship excusable? Should I be okay with this?

I want to understand my man, and be okay with his guy trips, but I am unsure if I am just being naive. It is hard to take advice from women, because most of my friends do not trust their men. I know he is a good guy, maybe he makes stupid decisions when he is drunk; but I know he means well when it comes to me. But in terms of the respect factor, I do not know how to bring the conversation up with him.

Do I ask him that this be his last guy trip, or do I ask him not to drink? Won’t he rebel? My girlfriend (one of them) claims that he is taking advantage of me and I am “too nice” for letting him go on all these trips. When he made it a goal of his in 2011 to move out of his mothers house (They are Indian) and get his own place for US I was happy. But so far, he is more interested in his Miami trip than this move. He has plenty of money, so money is not the issue. I think it’s his priorities. However I don’t want to force him to not do what makes him happy. This is where my friends think I am wrong. Apparently he is having his cake and eating it too. Any insight? I asked him numerous times would he rather be single and get this stuff out of his system, but he says the clubbing is out of his system, and this is just a guys’ trip-an annual trip. He LOVES to travel with his guys. Side note: his boys are all single. They always are, or they magically break up with their girls before they go. Mine doesn’t want to break up when he goes. He pretty much calls me on the regular. Would I be wrong to give him an ultimatum when he goes, and tell him to think about if these trips are more important then the relationship we have? And ask him to think about it an decide between the trips and/or me?


Dear Nicole,

Thanks for your question. We think you’ve hit upon something that a lot of women wonder about. So we’re going to explore the Guy Trip in general, and then address your specific question.

If a guy loves a woman they will pretty much do whatever it takes to keep her happy. But the emasculation factor is high here; so sometimes we need a break to strut our stuff, and prove to ourselves and our buddies, that we still have a drop of testosterone left in our bodies. Now typically, playing pool at a bar, or going to a baseball game, or frequenting the local “watering hole” is enough for us. For a few hours we preen and posture with our boys, reassert our manhood, and feel whole again. But sometimes these little medieval jaunts aren’t enough, and we need to put on full scale armor and do a little jousting. Enter the Guy Trip.

A Guy Trip is needed when our estrogen levels have risen to dangerous heights, and the levy is close to breaking; or when a shot of testosterone won’t do it, and a full fledged blood transfusion is needed. Guys will then plan some outlandish trip where they live in a semi-altered state for a weekend or longer, that allows them revert back to when they were single, living on pizza, drinking beer in the morning, gawking at women(hopefully not touching, but sometimes), and doing all the foolish things they remember as being fun. Typically after a few days, this behavior gets old, and they realize it’s not their manhood they were searching for, but their youth. And then they are happy to reinsert themselves back into their lives, content for the moment.

But having said all that, we agree with your girlfriends for the most part. Just because guys need these types of trips occasionally, doesn’t mean Vegas or Miami should always be the destination. A Vegas trip might be okay once-say for a special bachelor party, or for a big high school reunion or something like that-but not for a yearly jaunt. We’re not saying your man is actually doing something that undermines your relationship-although we’re not saying he isn’t either-but just that trips to Vegas are providing him more than a much needed injection of manhood. He loves going, and in this respect he is getting his cake and eating it too.

If your guy wants to bond with his “boys” why couldn’t he go camping for a few days, or go on a golf outing, or do something on a less grand scale? We’re just a bit curious why he feels the need to do a week long jaunt to the City of Sin to feel whole again? If you know what we’re saying.

We also wonder why his “home girls” always seem to be part of the picture. Doesn’t that seem a bit odd to you? We don’t know him as well as you do, but that certainly begs an explanation. Remember Nicole, if something looks and feels suspicious, it probably is. We had another question a few months ago where a woman’s man was also taking regular trips to Vegas with work friends. (We answered it on our podcast.) A  picture was taken of her man and two women work “friends” sleeping in the same bed. He told her they just fell asleep and nothing happened, and she took him at his word. Well, let’s just say that was a bit suspicious don’t you think?

So we have a question for you. Does your man realize how much his trips to Miami and Vegas bother you? You say you’ve told him, but does he really know the depth of how you feel?

All relationships require some sort of give and take. And this comes with trust. Without trust, no relationship can survive the long term. It’s sad that none of your girlfriends trust their men. We believe there are men out there that can be trusted, so none of you should be settling for less.

We realize you don’t want to give him an ultimatum, and you shouldn’t. (This is where we disagree with your friends.) He has to come to the realization himself, after you tell him how you feel; otherwise your ultimatum will just lead to resentment on his part and your part, and possibly lead to the end or your relationship. But please tell him specifically how these guy trips make you feel; and tell him how you feel when you see pictures of him humping these so called friends. Deliver this information to him as calmly as you can. If he hears you and still chooses to do what he wants, then you need to take a hard look at the relationship and ask yourself a few questions. Are you getting what you need out of the relationship? And does he care enough about the relationship to change some of his behavior?

Sure, guy trips are wonderful and often necessary. They are similar to  when women get together for a girls night out. (Well not exactly)  But no trip should undermine an existing relationship, and cause more stress and strife.

This is a delicate balance, and an issue many couples struggle with. How much independence is okay within a committed relationship? Every couple has to come up with a solution that works for them. Too much of anything is trouble. So the balance between jealousy and freedom is something all couples have to work out. You two have a lot to work on it sounds like.

And for the record we wouldn’t be okay with our girlfriends, wives, or partners exhibiting the kind of behavior your boyfriend is exhibiting. Maybe he’s just not ready to be in the kind of relationship you want-a long term, committed, and respectful relationship.

Good luck.


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24 Comments on Men and their Guy Trips

  1. michelle amper // August 27, 2018 at 12:37 pm //

    It lasted 6 years. I waited for him to change but he never did. What made me ride along was that twice he hinted we get married through text messages. I guess i waited for him to tell it to me in person but he never did. In 6 years i have never met any of his friends and i have only seen his son twice. I stayed because i thought things will change.

  2. @Michelle….Thank you for sharing. Your story will hopefully help others in a similar situation. Take care of yourself. ps. Check out our ebook on Amazon. Click the link/banner on our site.

  3. Hi!My bf of 1 year has a group of friends he met around the time we did and started going on trips with them – 3 trips over the past year. All these include being drunk 24/7 and just overall excessive behavior. I know that some of the guys cheat on their gf and some have never been in relationships. I love and trust my bf, but I’m afraid of the influence these guys plus the alcohol might have. I had already noticed my bf being less responsive and overall different when being out with them compared to when he’s out with other friends.He’s also hiding their group chat from me because he thinks some of the stuff some guys write and shard is too nasty for a girl to see. I expressed my concerns and he said he understands and that he’d cancel his upcoming trip and stop going with them because making me feel happy is more important.He said that he needs these trips because he can just relax and have fun and he doesn’t understand other friends that stopped going out and partying as much. So of course I told him to still go on trips because I don’t want to be a nagging gf, but I’ve been feeling really sad and insecure and don’t know what to do.He just went away with them for a weekend and he’s been texting and calling often.He also told me to let him know if I am feeling uneasy and he’d call asap.So overall he’s putting in a lot of effort!So why am I still so insecure?

  4. @Helen…How you’re feeling is quite natural. Most people would feel just as you do. He probably would feel the same if it was you going out with your female friends and flirting with guys, etc. So how solid is your relationship? Are things good? Is your physical relationship strong? You know Helen, what you may be reacting too is the fact that he still feels the need to hang out with these guys and party, etc. It’s great that he’s asking you how you feel, and checking in with you, but the fact that he needs to go on these trips shows his immaturity. Maybe that’s what bothers you? How old is he?

  5. Thank you for the reply! Our relationship is fine otherwise. As far as I know he doesn’t flirt with other people. He’s the one that told me some of the guys do, but that he just wants to have fun and doesn’t care about girls. Physically our relationship is good. And we also spend most of our spare time together. I know he’s a nice guy, but as you said he might still be a bit immature which worries me. Especially since we are supposed to move in together in a couple of months.
    He is 28 years old, and this is his first real relationship as in the past he had to move around a lot due to work and studies.

  6. Oh and he’s just been on a weekend trip with them and already planning a longer trip in the summer. I feel like it’s too much. Would it be unreasonable of me to ask for maybe a limit of two guy trips per year?

  7. @Helen….Thanks for filling us in. Honestly, he seems like a good guy, but yes, a bit immature. Maybe what you need to do is have a heart-to-heart conversation with him about your relationship. What do you think? If he’s really serious about you, it might be time for him to transition away from these outings. Or at least limit them to one a year. ps. Have you read our book? You might find it interesting and informative. “Inside your Guy’s Mind.”

  8. @Helen…..Question: How many big trips do the two of you take together?

  9. Thanks for the advice! I’ll check out the book!
    The longest trip was a week and there’s only been one of those. Then one for 4 days and two weekend trips. He’s been on 2 week-long trips and 2 weekend trips with his friends in the same timeframe (approx. 1 year).

  10. @Helen…Seems a bit out of proportion in our eyes. Sure, it’s all a bit arbitrary and every relationship is different, but to us, the trips you two take together should be the majority by a lot!!!! (1 Guy trip per year, maybe two if one is short.) But just to give you some perspective……most of us are a little bit older than your guy and there are almost ZERO guy trips going on. We see each other for a day at a time—pickup basketball, golf, show/concert, watch a game, that sort of thing— unless we visit a friend out of town, and then then it might be for one night. Every once in a while a weekend camping trip or ski trip. Most guy trips ended as soon as we started dating our girlfriends, now wives, seriously. Hope this helps.

  11. It helps a lot. It’s nice to get some perspective and not feel like I’m just being crazy. I’ll talk to him and see how it goes. Thanks again!

  12. @Helen….You’re welcome. We hope it goes well. Try to be positive. Meaning, tell him all things you love about him before you get into it. ps. If you do pick up our book we hope you enjoy it. FYI: Anyone that gives us a five star review we’re giving a free Private Question via email. (Two emails from us about anything you’d like to discuss.)

  13. My boyfriend of 9 months (he is 42yo) goes on a annual guys trip to Vegas- 15 guys. Most of the guys are married except 4. This will be the first Vegas trip since we’ve been dating. He told me they do the strip club thing and a lot of the guys there don’t just look but touch and their SO’s have no clue. He says he would never doing anything because I provide everything and more for him and strip clubs do nothing for him but that is one of the ways the guys all bond. I trust him but I also don’t understand the need for it to always be in Vegas aside from the fact that all the other guys live out have your cake and eat it too.

  14. @Lauren……Sounds like your boyfriend is trying to be honest with you. That’s a good sign for your relationship. Our advice: We’d try to trust your boyfriend and not make a big deal about it this year, especially since you’ve only been dating 9 months. That said, sometime down the road, you might bring up the topic. (Not right away. Maybe bring it up casually over the summer so it seems as if you’re not that fazed by it.) Then see what he says. What do you think? (FYI: We can understand your concern. Seems some of the guys are crossing the line and that’s just not okay. And if that’s the case, we doubt the destination of their annual trip will change.) How many years has this been going on? Where do you live?

  15. My boyfriend met some wealthy guys and now he’s going on “guys” trips with them pretty much every month. Exotic destinations, cool experiences etc, but I can’t go. I feel like I shouldn’t hold him back because he is coming up in the world and he needs to network, but we aren’t married or anything and I feel like I’m being relegated to lame wife status.

  16. @Maria…..How old is your boyfriend? Do you trust these guys? Do you trust him? Have you talked to him?

  17. Hey Guys, thanks for answering. I’m early 30s and he’s mid-late 30s. We’ve been dating 3 years, engagement probably not on the horizon any time soon. Some of the guys are single, some of the guys are cheaters. I haven’t had any reason to suspect my boyfriend of cheating, but I mean they are going to some events now that are famous for the wild parties… think Monaco, F1, Mykonos, etc. I tried to talk to him but he is kind of accusatory of me, I also don’t know what to ask him to do, because I’d be holding him back from these amazing networking opportunities, but the partying isn’t going to stop. I am not on his level financially, so many of these things I couldn’t go to unless I was invited. I definitely couldn’t do the old “go on a trip with your girls” thing every time he goes on one of these boys trips, so I don’t know what to do.

  18. @Maria…..Thanks for answering our questions. Basically what we’re hearing is that the two of you are NOT on the same page. The bigger question is really about your relationship rather than these trips. So what do you want from your relationship? Do you want a long-term relationship with this man? Have you talked about the future with him? Is he open to talking about it? What we see is a guy who is more focused on his career and partying. We could understand a bit more if he was in his 20s AND if he was a single guy. Then, sure, by all means, partying it up, network it up. But the fact that he’s been with you for three years and he’s creeping closer to 40 and he’s making these choices tells us that this might be bigger than just networking. And we don’t think we’re saying anything that you’re already not wondering about. Maybe it’s time for a real heart-to-heart with him? Seems that you’re at a crossroads at the moment. That said, only you can make that call. The conversation might not go so well because it sounds like he might not be so open to having a discussion. Of course, that is telling in and of itself. What do you think?

  19. I have been dating this guy for about 6 months. We are compatible in a lot of ways. We are both divorced – I have two teens, he has no kids.

    We had a talk a few weeks ago about planning more ( among other things, focused mostly on we need to have more vulnerable conversations to grow- we have a lot of fun overall). He has taken two guy trips this year – long weekends to Phx and Vegas. He told me he’s going to Europe for ax week in August with these same friends ( old college friends – they are close). I’m upset as we have planned nothing, taken nothing. He is writing down all the things he’s committed to in a spreadsheet ( which is a lot from my perspective – several are events like marathons). I am fully supportive of an annual guys trips , nights out etc.. I feel like at this point planning with me should be a priority – vs getting what’s left. Am I off base?

  20. @Dawna…..Were these guy trips planned BEFORE you started dating? Or at the beginning stages? That could be why it feels a bit unbalanced. That said, we agree with you. If you’re a priority in his life he needs to step up to the plate and walk the walk, not just talk the talk. In general, we have no issue with an occasional guy trip. Having friendships outside a primary relationship is healthy. That said, the balance needs to more like 80% primary, 20% secondary, which yours is definitely not. But be patient. If you love him you’ll work this out. Six months is not that long of a time, especially if he’s been single for a while since his divorce. NOTE: The numbers we gave were arbitrary. It could be 70/30, 60/40, depending on the situation but you get our point.

  21. Thanks. He had two early this year – which I was happy for him – these are close college friends. I think these types of trips are healthy generally. They are coming here for a weekend in June ( an annual thing they do) – which I have zero issue with.

    My concern really came up in the past few weeks after this chat and they decided to go to overseas for a week – so this wasn’t planned.

    He has been single for about 2 years, which not long in the grand scheme. I am 48, he is 44. Thanks for the response – have a great day.

  22. @Dawna….You’re welcome. We hope it helped a little.

  23. Shannon // May 13, 2019 at 7:41 pm //

    My boyfriend has been going on guys trips for several years and I have normally been okay with it. He recently told me about an upcoming “guys trip” however I just found out that other women are invited and also some of the guys are bringing their wives and girlfriends. Why would he lie to me? I cant help but feel hurt. I am unsure what to and I feel like the trust is gone.

  24. @Shannon…..The question is: Why are you not invited if other wives/girlfriends are going? Seems like there are bigger issues to deal with beyond the guy trips. Maybe it’s time for a heart-to-heart with him? You might want him to tell you directly where he sees your relationship going? Or not going? We are sorry. But we think it’s always better to know where you stand than to wonder. Good luck and keep us posted.

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