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Camalus posted 8/6/2014 10:25 AM

Boundaries, it is all about boundaries.

We were at a church function yesterday evening. One of the men wandered over to talk to fWW and me. Throughout the conversation, he addressed fWW as Sweetie, Darlin’, and Honey. After he wandered off to assault someone else, I remarked to fWW I felt using terms of endearment to address another man’s spouse was inappropriate and disrespectful.

Her reply: “That’s just the way he talks.”

I thought about that for a minute or two before responding. Was I being overly critical, overly sensitive? I tend to see things as right or wrong, black or white, true or false. Maybe I need to make room for some gray in my judgment of people. Naw…………

When I did finally respond, I explained her inability to see his casual use of endearments as wrong then justifying it as ‘just the way he talks’ was exactly why she ended up in an affair and why I simply could not trust her judgment.

Sometimes, I just don't think she gets it.

Pass posted 8/6/2014 10:58 AM

She doesn't get it. I'm sure she'd be totally fine with a woman talking to you like that?

HurtingandLost posted 8/6/2014 11:04 AM

You hit the nail on the head. My STBX started her recent A saying "we're just freinds, I'm entitled to have friends you know!". When I asked to see her phone to read the 100's of text messages that were flying back and forth she refused, saying "I deleted them because you have no right to snoop, I'm entitled to some privacy"

My response was, jeez, if I did the same thing and was hanging out with some single woman on the weekends and texting 100's of times a week I'm sure that would be just fine too.

"NO I wouldn't like it, but you can do whatever you want!"

She doesn't get it either.

Jomarion posted 8/7/2014 05:26 AM

In your position, I would be extremely uncomfortable too. I have had men talk to me like that, and it is flirting. It is clearly sending a message that the man 'likes' me, in my opinion. if this talk is just a habit with the man, then it is clearly saying the man is a jerk with boundary issues: STAY AWAY! When it happened when I was attached, it was a red flag, and I would back off.

I think your partner is not being respectful of your feelings saying he just talks like that. She cheated, she needs to think of you and the stress such crap talk is doing.

I suspect she enjoyed the flattery of such talk. Even though I hate men who flirt, I also hate to admit, but such talk can 'flatter' me when I feel like crap. My internal dialogue can be (and this is very hard to admit) 'Oh wow, he said sweetie! Maybe he likes me! Maybe I am not such a shit after all!'

And then I realize I am being 'charmed', see the red flag, and get distance fast.

Kajem posted 8/7/2014 07:17 AM

When I moved to the south from the northeast 25 years ago, the terms darlin, honey, and sweetie were rampant. It took awhile to get used to it. Then enter the sexual harassment instruction and revolution. The words pretty much disappeared in everyday conversation.

Does this man address EVERY woman with those terms? If so, I wouldn't worry so much about him. My dad addresses most women as dear WHEN he can't remember their names. Since his stroke, he has short term memory options. I tend to give him and people of a certain age (women also do this) a pass in remembering my name.

THAT ^^^^ being said. Did your wife do anything to correct him? I have started to state "I'm sorry your name has slipped my mind. I'm Kajem in case mine has slipped yours. " It lets them know my name, AND that I would like them to use it.

Some people use those words for various reasons, we can't control them. They may breach the first small boundary, that means the second set of boundaries has to be stronger and non negotiable. Example: I may put up with being addressed by honey and sweetie, but him put a hand on my arm or any physical breech of my personal space, and it's up to me to set them straight about my boundaries.

When my second boundary gets involved, I have a decision to make: let them in or not.

The fact that he did it in front of you bothers me. Even my dad admits he finds it uncomfortable addressing a woman as "dear" in front of her H/SO.


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