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Avoiding the other BS

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cdnmommy posted 6/6/2013 17:00 PM

Reading another thread got me thinking about this. How much space does a remorseful exAP and their family owe to the OBS?

In my situation, I have not seen the MOW since the first DDay. I saw her BH briefly to get a couple of things back about 2 months after DDay2, but that was it. We all work in the same industry, are approximately the same age, have young kids, and live in a mid-sized city (actually, both families in different, but nearby suburbs.) I run into people i know all.the.time. So why not her?

I asked my FWH about this. He occasionally works from an office that is 1/2 block from where OBS works. I am shocked that he has not run into OBS, but he told me he deliberately avoids going places he thinks he will be. He visits a different Starbucks (unless he is asked by someone to meet at the one close to OBS's work, in which case he tries to get in and out fast) and will walk out of his way to get lunch so that he does not cross his path. He says he imagines that OBS does not want to see him anywhere, and he doesn't want to invade his space. He is not afraid of OBS. He actually spoke to him once or twice after DDay2 and I don't think he is a violent person at all (and we knew them well beforehand.)

Although I have no evidence that MOW ever achieved remorse, I have to assume she avoids me, too. In her case, it might be fear. She told FWH that she was afraid of me, though why I have no idea. I have behaved with dignity throughout and if I had wanted to hurt her, physically or otherwise, I could have done so. She knew me well enough that she should have known that is not in my nature.

Anyway, I read another thread where there was a discussion of a WS being unwilling to alter their routine to avoid the BS of their AP. The sense was that one family was expected to make concessions, while the other wasn't.

I think it is pretty easy, as a BS, to say "Why should my family have to do anything differently?" but unless the AP was single, there is another BS to consider. I felt rather indignant about this at one point; I even wanted to register our DS in soccer in a community that I knew they *might* register their kids in because it was cheaper, but FWH insisted we not do it. I eventually agreed, but I was initally mad that I had to change my plans because of them.

So, do you think a WS has an obligation to make an effort to not put themselves in places they are likely to see their AP's BS? Does the BS have an obligation to alter their family's plans and routines to avoid the AP's family?

I am using the word obligation here deliberately, and obviously I am talking about BSs in reconciliation. If I had chosen to D instead, you can bet I would not be changing my habits, because I would not be risking putting FWH and OBS in the same place. I would still, however, expect MOW to keep her distance.

What does everyone think?

dameia posted 6/6/2013 18:48 PM

This is a tough one. I do think that an AP should go out of their way to avoid the BS.

Your WH going out of his way to avoid the OBS is appropriate. MOW going out of her way to avoid you is also appropriate.

However, it gets difficult when you start to involve the kids.

I'm with you....I would want to register my kids with the cheaper soccer league, and screw the other family's discomfort. But your WH was probably right, registering them for a different league.

I do think that in life people should try to do no harm. But when doing that you run the risk of becoming a doormat.

I think the entire responsibility lies with the WS to avoid contact with the OBS and OWS. Unfortunately, sometimes that effects the BS unfairly. If it really becomes a problem, then the two BS's should get together and figure out a solution. It should be an equal burden.

GingerAle posted 6/6/2013 18:48 PM

I think it's like with most things... you do what you know is right, regardless of what anyone else is doing. I think your husband's actions are very considerate of OBS, and hopefully OW is taking the same approach with you.

Do what is best for your family in this situation, to have a happy, healthy life!

ETA: As far as the soccer league goes, I'm sure the extra money you spent will be worth every penny. You will enjoy your child's practices and games so much more, without the anxiety of running into her.

[This message edited by GingerAle at 6:51 PM, June 6th (Thursday)]

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