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pizzalover posted 5/22/2014 07:39 AM

For the last 3 weeks on a Wednesday night, I have been hanging out with one of my guy friends to watch Survivor. I have known him for years and we work together. He is one of the few people outside of family and close friends that know about the affair and my suicide attempt. He is what I would consider an uppercase friend. He is a friend of the marriage, meaning he supports my BHs and my recovery. I have gone swimming in his pool in the summer. My BH has his pool league on Wednesday nights and I have always asked him if it was okay to go to my friend Ds house to watch the show he has said yes. I wanted to make sure that it was okay and he felt comfortable with it.

So last night when he got home from pool, I was recounting with him my evening and what D and I did and talked about. My BH has only met D one time. D suggested that my BH come over anytime to swim and hang out since he liked him the first time that he met him. I suggested the swimming to my BH and he said yes. Then BH said to me, There is nothing that I need to worry about with D is there? to which I replied no. He asked me why to which I replied, Hes my friend and there is nothing there. This enraged my BH. He said, So if there was something there you would cheat on me to which I replied no. He was saying that my answer should have been that I wont cheat because its wrong. I said I agreed with that and I told him that I never wanted to hurt him again and that I would never cheat on him again. My BH said that I needed to talk in therapy why I answered the way that I did.
I have IC tonight, but I think I have processed why I answered the way I did. I am trying to establish boundaries in all facets of my life. My reason for saying that there is nothing there is that if I ever felt that there WAS anything there, I would cut off the relationship. I want to be comfortable to have male relationships and I would NEVER do anything to affect my marriage or BH in any way. I apologized to my BH this morning for responding in the way that I did, but I hope that he understands now why I said what I said. My statement was not to imply that I would cheat on him again. It is that I am establishing healthy boundaries.

I know that there will be people here who will say cut off the relationship now, but I assure you that no one needs to worry about the relationship that I have with D.

MovingUpward posted 5/22/2014 07:54 AM

How are your communication skills? For I find his question indirect and he was expecting a response.

If he had asked "Would you ever cheat on me with him?" That is straight forward and one where "No, cheating is wrong" response would come more naturally. Now on that note, maybe you need to focus more on the question and make sure your answers aren't open to interpretation.

On the second front I think that building up the relationship of BH and D is needed and you should restrict your time with D until BH's security in it stabilizes. And this is not that I am worried about your relationship with D. It is because your BH has concerns and his question shows it. If giving up the relationship with D isn't possible then that is a data point as to how important you feel your relationship to your BH is.

[This message edited by MovingUpward at 7:54 AM, May 22nd (Thursday)]

Losconang15 posted 5/22/2014 07:56 AM

I didn't see a stop sign so I'll add my 2 cents. As a BS, I can see what he meant. I've had similar discussions with my WH about some of this responses. First of all, it pisses me off to no end hearing the "we are just friends" excuse. That is the last thing I want to hear especially after his A with a COW who was "just a friend". So yeah I can see where he would be annoyed to hear that your justification for not worrying is that he's just a friend and that nothing is there. I hope that makes sense. I don't know what your story is but I'm thinking your A might have started with just a friend.

I also wanted to add that from my view, "D" is not considered a friend of the marriage. He can support it as much as he likes but if he's not an actual friend of your BH, then no he's not a friend of the marriage. For me that means that both of you are actual friends with "d" not just you. D is still just your friend. I don't think you should be spending so much time alone with D. I personally as nice as I'd like to be with my WH, I wouldn't feel comfortable after what happened to see this happening even if he said you can go. But, that's just me. Hope things get better

splitintwo posted 5/22/2014 07:56 AM

Hes my friend and there is nothing there.

and

I know that there will be people here who will say cut off the relationship now, but I assure you that no one needs to worry about the relationship that I have with D.

I would've/could've said the same re: AP. There was zero passion between us. He was not my type, I'm not his. We'd known each other for 15+ years, always had a natural ease with each other...just joking banter, all that whatnot. Nothing serious. No deep emotional connection. EA's are tricky; they do develop unexpectedly. And in my case, the EA opened the door to a PA.

I already isolate re: friends in my world, which is not healthy, & I'm slowly working on it, but distance with my FOM female friends makes it difficult to build a stronger connection & finding new ones while working from home is tricky. But I doubt I'll ever have another male friend. AP was safe until he wasn't.

islesguy posted 5/22/2014 07:59 AM

pizzalover,

Would your BH rather you not hang out with D? I would say unless he is fully supportive of your relationship with D, you should volunteer to not go unless your BH goes with you. Although you may feel there is nothing there, your BH has no confidence in this because of your past. Your really need to have new boundaries now.

5454real posted 5/22/2014 08:17 AM

BH here. I've watched a lot of your story unfold. I would gently ask you to examine some things. I mean to raise questions within you, not swing a 2X$.

I would NEVER do anything to affect my marriage or BH in any way

Hes my friend and there is nothing there. This enraged my BH.

Doesn't sound like he's not affected.

I want to be comfortable to have male relationships

Outside of the work environment, why?

I apologized to my BH this morning for responding in the way that I did, but I hope that he understands now why I said what I said

As a BH, the word but (to me anyway) would invalidate the entire apology and come across as justification.

It is that I am establishing healthy boundaries.

Boundaries that include friendships with men that bother your BH?

I know that there will be people here who will say cut off the relationship now, but I assure you that no one needs to worry about the relationship that I have with D.

I won't tell you to cut your relationship off, I don't worry about your relationship with "D". Your BH does. Will you continue to justify the relationship to BH? Where do his concerns come into play?

There may be absolutely no concerns about an A with "D". I *get* that. Obviously, right now, your BH, doesn't. What will you do?

Strength

redsox13 posted 5/22/2014 08:24 AM

As the BS, I would say he is showing a lot of trust in letting you go to a guy's house and swim.

What he wanted to hear was that you choose him over everyone else - or at least that is what I would want to hear. I would have not reacted well either. He probably thinks the fact that he feels comfortable with you going is a sign that your marriage is recovering. He may even be proud of the fact that you can go and he is not bothered by it. He was looking for re-assurance that he was right in thinking that way when he asked.

I absolutely see how your response would have wounded him. I would offer cutting off the friendship.

The toughest part of R is that we say things that are misinterpreted, and then the original point gets lost. I can see where you are coming from, but he was really asking for you to tell him you loved him above everyone else.

I now realize many of the questions I ask my wife are in fact attempts to get reassurance. Even 5 years later I am still looking for it. My guess he is doing the same thing.

No12turn2 posted 5/22/2014 08:51 AM

I tend to agree that it may be the situation that compounds what you said. I'm sure your reply was innocent in nature, but you have to remember what the big picture is.

The way I see it (as a BS) is this has potential to be one of those "It just happened" moments. Regardless of your intentions, we have been conditioned to be HYPER AWARE of these situations. If you want to 100% avoid that outcome, best not to put yourself in a situation where it is possible. JMHO

floridaredman posted 5/22/2014 09:04 AM

I'm confounded
Are you and "D" alone in his pool?

He is one of the few people outside of family and close friends that know about the affair and my suicide attempt. He is what I would consider an uppercase friend.

This is also dangerous because many "friends of the marriage" wind up being EA partners, then PA partners.

My BH has only met D one time.

Why?

If you are going swimming in this guy's pool.. in a bikini or bathing suit... I think your BH needs to know this guy more.

My personal opinion is you should not be alone with any man outside of the family for a while until you have fully sorted out the why's of your affair.

20WrongsVs1 posted 5/22/2014 09:08 AM

ICR because I too, on exceedingly rare occasion say the wrong thing.

You know what seems even more rare? Me saying *the right thing.* Sometimes, there is no right thing, and BH is going to feel how he feels, and think what he thinks, regardless of the words I use.

When you said

Hes my friend and there is nothing there

BH apparently heard, "No, you don't have to worry about D, but only because I'm not particularly attracted to him."

You didn't mean it that way, but even so, BH's interpretation of what you said was valid for him, because of the conditions that exist inside his head.

I'm going to offer a possible alternate interpretation of BH's original query. When he asked

There is nothing that I need to worry about with D is there?

What he may have been saying is, "Even though I said I was OK with it, I'm feeling a little worried about you going to D's house. I want to believe and trust you, but the past still haunts me."

Instead of validating BH's worries (granted he didn't overtly state his feelings) you defended yourself.

I want to be comfortable to have male relationships

K. What does BH want?

I assure you that no one needs to worry about the relationship that I have with D

What we worry about is irrelevant. Perhaps my interpretation was wrong, but I believe BH was telling you, indirectly that he is worried about it. Do you get why he might feel that way?

No12turn2 posted 5/22/2014 09:16 AM

and his worry doesn't really have to have a name. D isn't the only person in your life that will/can raise suspicion. Again, I think the overall situation is what bothers him. Comfort on your end can raise the flags with the BS. Put them on guard, if you will. I agree with the question "why hasn't H met D or been around him more?" If this person is really important to you, H should be comfortable with it.

Maybe sit down and talk to him about the underlying issue. Try and see if you both can assess his comfort level with the current boundaries.

somethingremorse posted 5/22/2014 09:31 AM

I considered my AP a little sister. Right up until the point..... Yuk.

This is my opinion and my approach, so take what you want and leave the rest. My past actions have consequences. One of those consequences is that I cannot be alone with a woman. Period. I mean, I cannot take female clients to lunch or for a round of golf. I will not talk to my other SIL without someone in the same room. I won't go out for a drink with someone unless they are FOM. If I email one of my friends' wives, I include my friend on the email, too.

Part of those limits are for BW's benefit. Part are for me. Yeah, it sucks. I have lost some important personal connections, and I spend less time with people I like. This is the price I will happily pay to make my BW feel safe, to secure my M, and to help myself from backsliding.

No12turn2 posted 5/22/2014 09:36 AM

I applaud you, somethingremorse! Really enjoyed reading that you do this for you as well. Couldn't agree more

Badhurt posted 5/22/2014 10:09 AM

PizzaLover

Sorry, but I am not sure if you should have been going to another mans house that BH only met once for an evening without telling him first. If you did tell him you were going, i apologize.

To you he may be friend of marriage, but BH may regard all men as possible enemies of marriage, even if he does not say that.

absolut posted 5/22/2014 10:46 AM

Well first I don't think you or him or any married person needs to be going swimming with someone of the opposite sex alone. I really can't believe your husband is ok with that. If I was dating a guy and he told me he had a super close "just a friend" he had to go swimming with I would dump him flat.

We all reallllly overestimate ourselves. I include myself in that. Nobody thinks, at the beginning of a relationship, hey, when things get stressful, I'll probably have a little something on the side. But it happens all the time and it's because of these grey areas, like happy hour with co-workers, and facebook instant message, and major problem is time spent alone with opposite sex friends. Tons of affairs right on this site were with friends of the marriage.

My question for you is, why are you doing this? Who cares if your husband "approves" and take out the whole previous affair. You are a married woman. Do you really think it's cool for you to go hang out with a male friend, watch tv, go swimming? Really?

I don't think it's ok for your husband to basically question you and then explode at you for giving him the "wrong" answer, but that's a separate issue. Your marriage seems to have a few problems.

Ultimately it's obvious he doesn't like it, I have no idea why he agrees to it. Stop going swimming with male friends.

HowToLiveWithIt posted 5/22/2014 11:58 AM

well said absolut !!
I agree that at first the BH comlaints about how you said it seemed shallow and overly sensitive, but I guess it was just a way of him saying that he feels uncomfortable with your level of closeness with your friend and the fact that boundaries can be easily crossed in situations like this. It may be OK though risky in a stable trusting marriage but in during R period.

Trying2LoveAgain posted 5/22/2014 12:54 PM

I would just like to give you some "food for thought" here...When my H had his A 25 years ago, we were having marital issues along with other problems(financial, etc.) and my husbands AP was my brother's wife. (They were also having marital issues). She also babysat our boys while I worked and sometimes my H would be the one to pick them up. My H and (former) sister in law, began to talk about problems in both marriages and one day when my H was not working, he went over there to fix something at their home (My sister in law and brother asked him to do this..so I believe she had this planned all along anyway)but that was the day that they crossed the line. So, my point here is this...SHE was (supposedly) family (who you THINK you can trust) and it still happened!So, even though "D" is your friend, that doesn't always keep things from happening. And IMHO, only one meeting doesn't make someone a family friend. As a BS I can see where your H could have been upset with your reply to his question. This has happened more than once with my H and I and I usually stop him right then and we clear up exactly what he means. Probably 9 out of 10 times, I have misinterpreted what he meant, but your defenses are already up anyway, so sometimes this happens. Gentle hugs to you and I hope this has at least opened up some "food to think about".

Aubrie posted 5/22/2014 13:36 PM

Why are male relationships such a huge deal for you to have? (Asking as a former "I'm only friends with men cause women are all drama and make me uncomfortable" person.)

Is this guy worth losing your marriage over? Is his friendship more important than your husband's healing and comfort?

Swimming alone and watching a show with a guy. I don't get it. "FOM" or otherwise. I refuse to be completely alone with another man in a social setting. Not because I don't trust myself. But because I have more respect for my husband than that. I refuse to give him a reason to doubt, to worry, to trigger, or whatever.

Do I/we have male friends. A couple. However, I'm not 101 with them.

[This message edited by Aubrie at 1:46 PM, May 22nd (Thursday)]

annb posted 5/22/2014 16:56 PM

Hi, pizzalover, I just wanted to chime in....I agree with most of what was said, you should not be going to another man's home to watch TV, swim, or any other activity. You are a married woman, even prior to the A, I would have freaked had my husband even thought about doing something like that.

How would you feel if your BH had a female friend and wanted to hang out alone with her and watch a movie, swim, etc, etc, etc. I don't think you would be comfortable with it.

Right now you shouldn't be doing anything that would make your BH feel uncomfortable. I understand that this guy has been your friend for years, but unless he has a girlfriend and you and BH can socialize together, it's really not a good idea to be alone with ANY man.

Alyssamd24 posted 5/22/2014 17:11 PM

Im not usually blunt but am going to be...no matter what your feelings towards D are you should not be spending any time alone with a man other than your BH. If I asked my BH if I could go to another mans house to swim and watch a show together I would most definitely not be living at home right now.

Like split in two, my XAP could be considered a FOM too...he offered me support and advice on how to work through things with my BH...for 9 months after my BH found out I had sex with him.

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