There are times that I feel like an absolutely awful friend. I know I'm heaping unnecessary pressure on myself to be the perfect friend when that's never going to happen, but I still deal with very real "mom/friend guilt" feelings.

Take for instance my friend Dianne. Dianne and I used to meet up for coffee at least once a month, but I haven't seen her face since last November. And she's one of my closest friends.

Life has happened. Work has happened. Sickness has happened. Extended family medical emergencies have happened. Oh yeah, and the holidays happened. It's not that I'm ignoring my friend or that I don't care about her anymore. It's that I've been tugged every which way and have to prioritize my time to take care of those who need me the most. Although I deal with guilt over not giving my friend the face-to-face friendship time that she deserves, I know that she'll be there when the dust settles. I'm secure in our friendship, as is she.

Men and women have very different ways of keeping friendships alive. While I can go months without seeing my friend's face in person and still be tight with her, the same probably wouldn't be true for my husband and one of his guy friends.

As a matter of fact, according to The Guardian, scientists at the University of Oxford say that women are great with long phone calls, but men need to have face-to-face time with their pals. Women can bond over the phone, but in order for men to bond, they need to do things with their friends-0 things like watching or playing sports.

Women tend to be able to pick up where they left off with friends, but the same isn't true with men. Research shows that men need to constantly do things with their friends to keep the friendship alive because once their friends aren't around, they're also out of mind.

So, the next time your man says he's set something up with his guy friends, cut him a little slack. He needs to spend time with his buds to keep the friendship alive.

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