Since being married, I have never been alone with them, never had any moments that were private, never deleted a text message or anything, never had a conversation I was not comfortable having in front of my wife, and if a conversation ever headed in a "bad" direction, I have always been quick to say how nothing comes before my family and if the friendship was to continue respect to my family must come first.
All that said, my WW is now overly jealous of these women and is telling me they have to end. I am at a loss. I have done nothing wrong. I have protected my family. But, because SHE did something wrong, now I have to eliminate some very old friends? Not sure if I am asking anything or just venting...but this sucks! I have so much to get over and then something like this tops it off.
Anyone else been in this situation? Is it normal for her to now question MY fidelity? UGH
As far as I'm concerned - tough. I'm not giving up friendships that ARE supportive of our M and R simply because they are with members of the opposite sex - who have been my friends for nearly 30 years. Not going to do it - because I know my boundaries are firm. I did cut contact with one man because he started flirting, texting inappropriately etc. when the A came to light.
The others have been complete gentlemen, and I deserve all my friendships right now because they are my support system to help me survive what he did to me and to our family.
We have a policy of no friendships with old boyfriends/girlfriends and no opposite sex friendships who are not friends of the other also. That said, I do have a few friends on my facebook account that were old male high school friends who were friends of mine before his affairs. He has not asked me to remove them based on the new rules. If he did, I would first ask him what exactly his concerns are. But, ultimately, if it were important to my husband, I would delete the friends. They just aren't more important than my marriage.
Sometimes people who have lied or cheated project their behavior onto others. They assume if they are doing it, everyone must be or, at the least, their spouse must be. Ask her exactly what her concern is and why. If the concern is not unfounded (too familiar messages even if they aren't flirty, behaviors from the other person that indicate availability or desire if you weren't married, reminiscing about past love or adoration, etc.), delete the friends. If there is nothing like that and the friendships are superficial, you will have to weigh out the importance of the friendship against the importance of your marriage. I realize that, on principal, it's unfair for you to have to live up to the same standards as your wife. But this is a marriage which is far more important than principals. Even though one of you cheated, you both have to put the other one first from here on out if you expect to reconcile successfully.
You might also read the book "Not Just Friends" together. Here is a link to the questionnaire that the two of you could look over to see if any of the current friendships your wife is concerned about are slippery slope friendships. The answers to these questions might ease her mind about the friendships or they might enlighten you as to the exact nature of them:
Unfortunately your WW does not get to pull the we are equal and what's good for you is good for me card. This is equivalent to your WW having diabetes and not being able to eat candy so she now requires you to never eat candy again because she can't. Sure you could choose to comply but your situations are not equal. In this scenario she can do the heavy lifting of eating right, excercising, and leading a healthy life style and she can get to the point where she may be able to have some candy every now and then but she will always need to be wary of the disease if she slips into her old ways. You can not eat the candy or eat the candy and at the end of the day it didn't cause her to develop diabetes or make her do what's needed to control it.
Your WW cheated NOT you. She has shown that she has poor boundaries NOT you. By all means, offer to let her call and talk to them or go out with you with them. Give her access to your phone, email, facebook, or social media whenever she wants. You have nothing to hide. She fucked up not you so IMO she is the one with the boundary issues. So no you do NOT have to give up your friends unless you choose too. Sure she has the option to decide that's a dealbreaker for her but honestly if that is enough to send her packing she was likely going to leave anyway.
Just my 2 cents. My stbxww accused me of all kinds of shit as well. EVERY time she did she was in the middle of or starting up another A. Unremorseful spouses often assume everyone is like them.
ETA: If your WW is truly remorseful then giving up your friends is okay if you choose. However if this is a tit for tat power struggle thing then your WW doesn't get it yet and I would say is still foggy or just flat out unremoresful. If you have never given her any reason to believe you have done anything inappropriate in the past and she is still requesting you drop your friends then she is projecting. The problem becomes where does this stop. This becomes a "I will do this if you do this" game and at that point the end goal of her becoming healthy has been lost. It's now about control instead of her willingly doing these things without putting stipulations on you of any sort prior to doing them.
[This message edited by 7yrsflushed at 2:48 PM, April 10th (Thursday)]
But there is no way in hell that I would give up my long-term, friends of the marriage, male friends because my FWH had an A. My boundaries are firmly in place. There isn't a conversation that I've had with any of them that could not be repeated in front of my FWH and as a matter of fact, he's welcome to join in.
When we first went on ADs, he couldn't drink. Nothing. I didn't stop drinking. I didn't offer him drinks, I didn't lush it up in front of him, I didn't make him feel like I was taunting him, but the fact that he couldn't drink had nothing to do with the fact that I could. Sort of like the diabetes example given above. I sure would modify my recipes so my FWH could eat with me, but I wouldn't give up all sugar, etc, just because he couldn't have it.
Frankly, her questioning YOUR fidelity is a Big Red Flag to me.
D-Day, June 10, 2012
Bluntly, I would tell her to go to hell.
My WW and I talked a little about this over the weekend. Her fear is that I am now "primed" for an affair. She said she can't blame me if I wanted to cheat; but, believed it was not a good idea for our marriage. She is just scared.
I fully understand that. I tried to allay any fears. I have had ample opportunities in the past to cheat and never have. That I have a set of beliefs and a moral compass; that I wouldn't do this to myself. To her, this only scares her more; because, now she feels less worthy of my fidelity and believes I don't hold the same value to our marriage I once did. Add in the fact that she is the only woman I have been with and it makes her even more worried.
My final comments seem to have just made it all worse. I said that couldn't cheat even IF I wanted to (and I don't). We now have genital herpes as a result of your affairs; and, I couldn't comprehend giving this to someone else just to satisfy my desires. What she heard was that she ruined my life.
I absolutely HATE how mired she gets in self loathing and guilt.
I absolutely HATE how mired she gets in self loathing and guilt.
Self-loathing and guilt or self-pity? The two are not interchangeable. Sounds more like self-pity to me and if that's so, she STILL doesn't get it.
"I could have missed the pain, but I would have had to miss the dance." Garth Brooks
I don't think you need to give up your friendships, but that you guys are communicating about this stuff and have identified the real issue is a good thing. Working out a solution that doesn't penalize you for her behavior, while helping her to feel safer, is IMO the better way to go here if you guys are doing well with the transparency thing and working on R.
So, I thought that this issue had been resolved. I was very clear that I had not done anything wrong. I never met with any of these girl friends (there are only 2 or 3) alone, never spoke about my personal business (especially not about my marriage difficulties), and NEVER spoke with them during my "family" time. Basically, the "conversations" are all related to a mutually enjoyed television shows, enjoyed books, old high school friends, etc. My wife knows all my passwords and is fully encouraged to look at all these conversations.
Two weeks ago, I went to a comic-con and bumped into a friend and her boyfriend. I was there with a mutual male friend (all of us grew up together). The mutual male friend invited the girl and her boyfriend to dinner afterward... The 4 of us grab a bite to eat, discuss cool costumes, games we saw, typical things like that. There is ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to this friendship.
I returned home and relayed the day to my wife and all hell breaks loose. My wife is upset because she believes that by maintaining this friendship I am choosing this woman over her. I have tried to logically talk to her and get her to open up to me about what her concerns are. All I am getting are cryptic comments about how much this hurts and how horrible things are going etc. If I want a divorce, if I am just "trying to get even", if I just want her to "accept this", etc.
I guess I am both venting and looking for guidance/advice. Is what I am doing that wrong? I mean, if I have to choose between a few friends and my marriage/family; it is not a real choice to me...but, I shouldn't have to choose, right?
UGH her damn affair has just bit me yet again!!!
There are studies that show that opposite-sex friendships are almost always sexually charged, in some way, or at some point, if both are attractive people or similar on the looks scale.
If a relationship is vulnerable, an opposite sex friend can sometimes endeavor to take advantage of that.
My wayward's, own best friend, who is also part of a mutual couples friend came on to me after learning of the affair.
I knew him for a long time, and he always prior acted respectfully.
He Cornered me at a party and told me he was always attracted to me and he thought my husband was a jerk for cheating and he tried to kiss me.
I warded it off, and stayed far away from him the rest of the evening.
They are no longer considered friends of the marriage.
I am the BS. Still, I do not go on girl's nights out and I do not maintain any male friendships.
I think they are slippery slopes, particularly to a vulnerable BS.
While, I agree it feels as if you are being punished, for her affair, If you reframe it as a way to keep your marriage healthy, it may help you understand the need to detach from these friends.
Look, I have always been better friends with men. But, I do not have independent friendships with men. It isn't safe, or at least they are, until they aren't. Sorry, but that is reality.
My H had an affair with a mutual friend.. someone he thought of as a little sister, until he hit a crisis, and then he didn't. If I had asked him a year before he did it if it was even a remote possibility, he would have laughed. In fact, when she told her husband about who the affair was with, he DID laugh, the idea was so outrageous.
I am sorry, but I feel like your wife is right, and you are playing with fire. Lots of double betrayal stories on here demonstrate my point.
Let's recap the scenario. You and your MALE friend (good boundaries), attending a comic-con together, ran into a established female friend and HER BOYFRIEND, and chatted. Later your MALE friend invited the TWO of them to go to dinner with the two of you.
You did nothing wrong. Your WW cannot even give you a reason as to why she is upset with this scenario. In which you did nothing wrong, violated no boundaries, nor even made the invitations.
My personal opinion is that your WW is setting off red flags all over the place and I'd be taking a long, hard look at exactly what she's doing right now. IF, you were out making new female friends, I'd agree with her. IF, you were meeting your old female friends alone, I would tend to agree with your WW. IF, you were spending hours facebooking them privately, I would agree with your WW. But you have not crossed any reasonable boundaries.
You know, you commit a felony, your right to own a gun is taken away from you. Insisting that everyone in your family get rid of all of their guns because you cannot own one is being a dog in the manger. IMO, of course.
MC said I should drop this friend in order to R. I was livid because of all the reasons you state in your original post. It was another casualty of his cheating. Ultimately R didn't work so I'm left trying to clean up the mess that I didn't create and didn't deserve. This friend was hurt because he lost, too. All because my ws couldn't keep his own pants zipped.
We are tentatively trying to recreate a friendship but now he will probably never trust me! I wish I'd have told ws to go to hell when he told me he didn't trust that friendship.
Why are you still with this woman?
Are you in MC? I think this would be a good issue to work through in a session.
Our whole culture is sexually charged. I think sexual impulses are very closely related to creative impulses, and if you turn one off, you'll turn the other off, too.
I may be an outlier, but I can feel sexual without needing to engage in sexual activity ... I think it's called sublimation. Just sayin'....
[This message edited by sisoon at 6:24 PM, June 11th (Wednesday)]
I also agree with Skan that her reactions to your friendships are red flags. That's what happened in my case during the last false R. Ex gave me all kinds of crap and had me groveling. Even after I had decided I was going to forfeit the friendship to make the relationship work, it was still an issue. In the end, I caught him redhanded again.
Maybe she doesn't have any correspondence with previous APs, but keep a lookout for any new ones.
As is often said on here, where there is smoke, there is fire. In my case, the fire wasn't in my backyard. It was in my ex's backyard.
Your hurtful experience is bad enough as it is. Now she wants you to give up friends and isolate yourself . You should not let her do this to you.