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KatieG posted 6/29/2014 12:04 PM

So my WBF has always seen his ex wife and I've always had a problem with it. They have no kids. I've never met her.

When I raised this year's ago it went underground and I found put he had seen her but not told me.

He days nothing ever happened and I believe him but I had a problem with the secrecy.

Now we've been through the A and are in R, should I say he can't see her? Last time I did this it was an issue. They were married a long time and she is a friend of his family.

Merida posted 6/29/2014 12:12 PM

oh my NO STOP DO NOT keep letting yourself be put third, fourth ...dead last as a priority

you are NOT IN R if he is keeping that toxic kind of extra around... seriously? "friend of his family"??

I so fell into the trap of thinking I was being "generous" to adapt as the step-parent and 2nd wife

well here I am now with trauma-bond WH who because of his avoidant personality / messed upitude wayward crapiness gave our life the joy of an OC after an "underground" CL fuck because as he told me "well, she was pregnant...I didn't want to feel you would beat me up"

oh, so of course it's so logical for that kind of "child-selfish" type to just sneak around then, ain't it

DO NOT tolerate his shit


(believe me, I feel I am saying this to a mirror, so please understand I can just so relate and do not want you making similar choices trying to think what is best for your WBF and not for yourself...)

do at minimum a 180, but honestly, I would so agree you SHOULD have a problem with his secrecy - he's a WBF

if you are not married, you have been given HUGE WARNINGS at this point = DTMFA

I so regret all of the signs I ignored at this point and can only hope that better late than never is how I am to grow

please be prepared to walk... there is no R if he doesn't understand boundaries

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 12:26 PM

The current agreement is that he shows me all texts and tells if she calls and what was said. He says he's not bothered about seeing her but it would cause drama if he cut ties explicitly.

I think he is struggling what to do as well. So I left it that we would discuss it if she asked him to meet up.

We really are in R now and we are making joint decisions. The 180 is not for me right now as nothing had happened to disturb the R. But I know it will come up and she will suggest coffee or a walk, something like that.

Before the A this was a major cause of conflict for us. But he a people pleaser and didn't want to upset her (he knew he was upsetting me but thought I was being unreasonable).

So the question is for when it happens. Does he just say no or I don't think it's a good idea unless katieg comes too?

I get your reaction, I was crazy to tolerate this before the A. He has since apologised for his behaviour at that time. But she doesn't know anything's changed.

peoplepleaser posted 6/29/2014 12:34 PM

Yes, yes, yes! Have you read NOT Just Friends? He should have no social contact with anyone you do not know, who is not a friend of the relationship, and who makes you feel uncomfortable. That's the basic requirements for relationships BEFORE infidelity.

I have several questions about this, even before the A. If he has contact then why haven't you met her? If nothing was going on, why did he hide it? If it makes you uncomfortable, why is it important to him?


Especially if she's friends with his do you not know her?

He should be worried about anything that looks like a duck at this point. Have you brought it up recently? Has he had contact with her recently? What are your requirements for R? Are you comfortable with him having alone time with female friends you don't know or who aren't friends of the relationship?

So enough questions. He has proven that he cannot keep good boundaries with others. Because of that, he needs to prove to you that he can. This situation is not a good one for that, and it makes me question what he's getting out of it. I suspect at the minimum an EA where he is getting emotional support from her about things he's not sharing with you. Given his lack of boundaries any private contact with any woman is like sending a newly recovering alcoholic into a bar. If he refuses, then I agree about the 180. You deserve whatever he can give you to feel more secure right now. If he can't do that, then he's not where he needs to be in R.

During false R my WS insisted on keeping her interactions with a close friend of both of ours private. She said, "You don't get my soul." I stood my ground, and you know what? They were texting about how my reactions to the worst of what happened to me in my entire life were "crazy." My "friend" was making fun of me and stirring the pot while declaring "Switzerland" and being distant with emotional support for me. She was also sharing confidential information from our conversations with WS and complaining about her interactions with me (apparently she had been for years while being consoled by my WS without my knowledge). Was it an EA? Not totally, but WS was getting emotional support that was skewed with attention from a feminine woman in my absence and without my knowledge. She was sacrificing my emotional safety and security by consoling someone else about their problems with me behind my back. Worse, for a short time I was being betrayed by my "friend" on top of reeling from the EAs I just discovered. AND they had planned a trip to do something they share an interest in where they would be alone in a motel and couldn't understand my problem with it. It's a slippery slope.

I'm so sorry you are dealing with this right now. It sucks. My heart goes out to you. Honor yourself and what you need in R. If he wants R, he will too. If you don't, neither will he.

peoplepleaser posted 6/29/2014 12:39 PM

Ha! We posted at the same time.

He says, no. He stops contact even if it "creates drama." He should be concerned about pleasing you, not her. Who cares what her response is...or his family's? If they truly care about him, then they will support his decision.

When my WS confronted our friend (the one mentioned above), she did so of her own accord. She openly expressed how the boundaries in our relationships have changed and that what they did was very hurtful to me, and to WS now. When she asked if she could do this, she said she felt the need to. She wanted to protect our relationship, her relationship. It was not a gesture for me, but something she felt she needed to do to assert her new understanding of herself and the relationship she wants and desires. She is also a people pleaser, which was why she had horrible boundaries with this person in the past. But she discovered that when she confronted the friend, she did not care what the response would be. It was something she had to do regardless.

If your WS is working hard on himself, then he will get there, too and you will find yourself having to exert less rules around boundaries over time.

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 12:50 PM

Thanks. My preference is NC. In fact before, I suggested we meet. But it never happened, something would come up at the last minute. Parties we were both invited to she wouldn't show up.

She just wanted to see WBF. Turned out her new partner didn't know they saw each other either. Big issue obviously.

I would love WBF to come to the right conclusion himself but that feels like a game.

peoplepleaser posted 6/29/2014 13:00 PM

Oh gosh. It wasn't a game, but after rereading I can see how that might appear that way. I'm not suggesting you sit back and wait for his realization, I was simply illustrating that it might happen on its own. He may not be at a place where he can actually sit down and have a conversation with her, and it may not be necessary in your case. The fact that her partner was unaware is another red flag, though.

Because he's not there, yet, and because it seems you need NC to feel secure, then it is a situation in which he should honor your request. I was never (I think I'm incapable of keeping things to myself, actually) holding back on things with WS. At some points it would have helped me to do so, actually.

But this is far from a game. What are your dealbreakers? What will keep you from healing IN the relationships? Those are the things he needs to hear from you now. That way he knows the expectations, and you set up both of you to win. Are you able to heal IN the relationship if he maintains contact with her? If you are comfortable with the way it is set up now, then the answer is, "yes," and you have no need to take action. If it is, "no," then you aren't being honest with him or yourself.

I wish you strength in this, as it is so very hard. He is at least sharing his contact with her for now, so that is good. These things take time. I expect that he will make progress and reach a point similar to my WS. Hang in there.

ETA: When we decided to truly R after the blow up about the privacy, WS agreed to no private contact with the friend and canceled the trip. I had one conversation with the friend about how I was hurt, but it was not very successful as she minimized and defended what she did. It is strained now, though we all still hang out as a group from time to time. It was months later that WS came to the conclusion that she wanted to speak with the friend and her partner about the boundaries. I had no part in that decision. It was a pleasant display of growth on her part that I did not expect, and it went a long way toward helping our relationship grow.

[This message edited by peoplepleaser at 1:05 PM, June 29th (Sunday)]

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 13:39 PM

Thanks for helping. I would say your WS made a LOT of progress. That's great.

WBF hasn't seen her for a few months. He says their conversations are always superficial and positive. But they have texted recently. He reads them to me. Chit chat crap. But I feel she likes the secrecy.

The difficulty is her close friendship with his mother and the rest of the family. I feel it's a shared problem for us to fix now. We are both finding it difficult.

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 13:41 PM

To answer your question I think I would feel much better if he didn't see her. Secrecy is a deal breaker for me.

I think it will slow my healing because I think he needs to me show me loyalty.

[This message edited by KatieG at 1:42 PM, June 29th (Sunday)]

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 14:00 PM

If I say NC I look like the controlling GF, she actually said to WBF once "why is katieg so insecure"?

Sorry about the disjointed posts, I'm on my phone and keep losing them.

musiclovingmom posted 6/29/2014 15:03 PM

I have an exH. We stayed friends for some time after our divorce. We have a child together and would shop for her, take her to events, have family dinners. He got into a serious relationship and the relationship he and I had bothered his new SO. SO, we quit. All communication now is about our daughter period. We do not get together at all unless a third party is present (either our spouse or our daughter's teacher) and both of our spouses know. I am friends with his family. I see them probably more often than he does. Sure I think his new wife is being a little over the top, but she in entitled to her feelings. I don't want there to be a single iota of possibility that I can be blamed if their relationship fails. He needs to let go.

KatieG posted 6/29/2014 15:55 PM

Great to hear from you thank you so much for you perspective. You have a very important reason to keep in touch and I think that is so healthy. However they don't have children and so any meeting is for them no - one else.

I have agreed to write down all my issues with their relationship and then discuss with WBF. He says he will respect my boundaries but I corrected him and said I was more interested in HIS boundaries.

I think I can posted 6/29/2014 20:30 PM

why is katieg so insecure

Well, to this he should say--it is my fault, I betrayed her trust. And it is my responsibility to do everything I can to regain her trust.

peoplepleaser posted 6/29/2014 22:52 PM

Yes. That's exactly what he should say. You aren't insecure. You are realistic.

KatieG posted 6/30/2014 02:41 AM

Yes, I was realistic and insecure - and I kick myself for putting up with it now. Since the A I have redefined my needs in the relationship and the deal breakers.

Looking back having read so much here since his PA with MOW, I know he was having an EA with XW (he would dispute that). It was also an indication that he was in danger of having an A as he was hiding his meetings with XW from me.

Now we are in the new phase I need to revisit their friendship and tell him what I need. I have read Not Just Friends and based on what he has told me she has no problem with me, is with someone else, is over their D etc. So why haven't I met her?

I am scared of meeting her after so long (7 years) but I think if she continues to have a presence in our lives I have to. Like you said musiclovingmum, you think its a bit over the top to restrict contact. I have struggled with this because I know there is nothing from his side but I feel she likes the 'special' relationship they have together.

I feel like I am overcomplicating this sometimes, but it really is an issue for me/us.

musiclovingmom posted 6/30/2014 07:30 AM

I should clarify. My exH's new wife and I were once friends. In fact, she is one of the people I confided in when I first started thinking of leaving. He was emotionally abusive toward me. He has serious anger issues. She knows exactly why I chose to leave. She also watched he and I go through hospitalization and emergency surgery for our daughter. She held his hand and comforted him when he realized that our marriage was completely over with no hope. It's not that I hate him, but I just refuse to live my life walking on eggshells. Her suggestion to him about our interaction was 'you need to just send her a check every month and be done with it'. That's why I think she is over the top, not simply because she is uncomfortable with us getting together, but that even with sharing a child she would prefer he not speak to me at all.

ETA - she obviously sees something I don't. It could be something she has imagined because of her own insecurities or it could be something he or I did that is of legitimate concern because of her experience with her 1st husband (who was a real piece of work). It could also be that she sees absolutely no contact for her or her kids with their father as something that works better than when they did have contact. Just because it strikes me as over the top doesn't mean it is for her.

[This message edited by musiclovingmom at 7:54 AM, June 30th (Monday)]

KatieG posted 7/6/2014 03:28 AM

We talked and it wasn't a difficult conversation at all. He gets the definition of an EA and said he didn't put me first before.

If he does see XW again it will be together. Finally I feel that a big issue in our lives is resolved and he gets it.

Schadenfreude posted 7/6/2014 06:03 AM

Male POV.

You are living with a ticking time bomb. Sooner or later it will explode.

Men don't "chit chat" with women except most superficially in group settings like parties and work and maybe saying good morning to the neighbor. There is always a reason when a man engages a woman he's not married to, dating, etc. he is showing her he's interested. Period

And his mom has a relation with ex DIL even though there's no kids? She probably still thinks D was a mistake.

And H has already had an A with some third person?

Call the bomb squad, KatieG. This is an emergency and you need to shut it down.

KatieG posted 7/6/2014 08:12 AM

Yes and I think I always knew that but felt powerless which sounds so stupid now. Being a BGF now it has given me the strength to recognise it as a HUGE issue that needs to be shut down. I feel we have done that now with him realising that his behaviour was wrong and that IF he does see her it will be with me.

I can't do anything about his mother seeing her. And she may well believe the D was a mistake. But
they'll both have to get over it because it's not their relationship.

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