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User Topic: I hopped off the bus at the yellow flag stop
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Shutup  Posted: 3:26 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

<<sigh>>

Where to start. I guess this is going to be long and ramble a bit and maybe TMI.... sorry for the length SIers but you know sometimes you just gotta write it out.

I'm S for two years. D is moving forward. NC firm I only discuss D related topics and only if it benefits me. I got robust boundaries with STBXWHPANPDFTG that protect me from his crap. Basically I've moved on. The D is lagging a bit behind where I'm at emotionally, but I am trying to get it done. My therapist has been awesome, I've worked really hard on myself and I've done a HUGE amount of healing. We have moved beyond M and into FOO territory. I've recently been HAPPY. Single and happy. I posted an update a bit ago in D/S

My body has been generally quiet with riding the bus the last couple of years. I wasn't pining for the good ol' days of morning boners. I didn't experience hot dreams of lusty sex. Basically, didn't miss it. I missed companionship. I missed being part of a couple, a united duo, a team. I missed the "We" but not the sex so much.

And then, Firehouse Guy, the topic of today's post. Oh dear. I've known him for a long time - over 10 years - as a friend, and with my new work situation being sorta in the same department as his we reconnected. He's always been sincere and he expressed concern for me and my situation. So I shared what was going on and he lent a very nice ear listening as we did some work projects together.

Anyway, after a bit, Firehouse Guy's friendship warmed up and he started flirting with me. He invited me out to dinner for my birthday. It took me completely off guard initially and I told him I wasn't dating, but I would share a meal with him. It was really nice and sweet and 99% platonic and light.

So, the next dinner invite was for me to come over for dinner at his house.

There's an issue with his housemate the Dog Lady. A woman with whom he had a romantic live-in domestic partnership for years. I met her 5 or 6 years years ago. Had some nice convos with her. They seemed like a nice couple at the time although in a convo just between us she let on that he wasn't really a long-term fit for her (he was still legally married but S for something like 8 years from his wife and son's mother - and she rolled her eyes about him "not really being available for commitment", and I'm sure I mumbled something sympathetic).

Anyway, a few years later he bought a house with her, go figure. They still live together in this house they co-own. But this is California and we do culturally strange things here (eat sushi, invent facebook, wear pink dreadlocks, legalize pot, gay marry) and I know a lot of households with mixed gender but non-romantic arrangements (with the cost of housing few can afford to live here alone so there are lots of shared housing situations) so who am I to judge?

Remember I told Firehouse Guy I wasn't dating? Well, before agreeing to go over to his house for a second "date" I started asking some really pointed questions. I wanted to know more about Dog Lady. I'm not going to be anybody's OW, no F'n way. I'm NOT GOING THERE.

I thought Dog Lady was your girlfriend? [No, she's not.] What happened? When? Are you serious that you no longer have a romantic relationship with her? Really? You don't sleep with her? [We aren't really suited for each other, she's really negative, it's been years since we were a couple, we live in separate parts of the house, have our own separate food and schedules] Why did you buy a house with her? [Our living arrangement seemed to work OK, the house is set up for a roommate situation, it was supposed to be a great investment, seemed like a great idea financially at the time] Does she know you have invited me over? Is this going to be an issue for her? Does SHE think you are still a couple? [No, she's going to be out of town, No, but I don't want to rub it in her face, No however we did make an agreement that neither of us would bring anyone else into the house for overnight so we didn't stir up things in the house]

<<sigh>>

I told him that given everything I'd been through, under no circumstances would I allow myself to be the source of another woman's pain. If he wanted to invite me over to his house for dinner, I needed to know that Dog Lady knew and was OK with that. After a day or two, he assured me he had talked to her and that because she was going to be out of town it was fine for me to come over.

OK, do I believe this? I got trust issues here, yaknow? Geeselouise just wave a whole flagpole full of yellow flags at me will ya?

I looked him straight in the eye and told him that I'm not gonna put up with anyone lying to me. He assured me this was the whole truth. So here I am, a BW, trying to trust. I hadn't even kissed him yet but this housemate thing was making me really uneasy. Damn this is awkward as HELL.

OK, you with me so far? I went to dinner at his house. It was nice. I got a gentle peck on the cheek when he walked me to my car. But the flirting in the weeks following... hmmm... let me just say that I didn't put up boundaries and kinda went with it.

With him being in Govt, there are rules against dating in your own department. Technically I'm not a Govt employee but a contractor, but he had some oversight of my work. We kept it pretty clean for a while but I got a little drunk off the attention. Meanwhile he had applied some months before for a promotion and a transfer. We flirted some more...

We started crossing the line from flirting to outright mutual pursuit. He brought me some mistletoe from a tree he found while working on a forest fire. Damn. That stuff was POTENT! I got ALL hot and bothered!

Anyway, we kept our attraction for each other and nascent romance quiet and just between the two of us. I made it clear I did not want to jeopardize his job in any way....

And then he got word that he got the promotion. He was going to be packing up and moving out of the firehouse where my contract position was located and into another unit. In other words there would be no rules imposed on us to prevent our dating or having an open relationship.

Since then our relationship seems to be moving along. He's been to my place a few times, I've been back to his once. A few hours here, dinner and such. I would say we make good F-buddies and really good friends but we're not really much more than that at this point. My body is awakening and I like it and the hop off the bus has been nice for my self esteem.

OK, good. Right? Right? We can do this? We can date each other? Share some romance? Well... except no sleep over? WhuH? Now I really miss the skin time. Sex is good and all, but now, now I'm craving the cuddle and spooning and warmth. Dammit. I was happy without any of that, remember?

Firehouse Guy is concerned about upsetting Dog Lady. According to him he agreed not to have overnight guests, and he needs to do as he said he would. OK, that's honorable. It's integrity, right? So I've invited him to my place for an overnight... and he has... a dog, and Dog Lady's dogs. Even when Dog Lady is out of town he has to go home to feed and care for them.... anyway we have plans for him to bring the dogs over this weekend for dinner and a sleep over (and I also have a dog so this sorta works).

We've talked a bit about his marriage. You know the one that kept Dog Lady at arms length. He is finally wrapping it up legally, his son is an adult, and it seems like we both might end up with D papers in the next 6 months. His D is more complicated than mine, with his STBX also co-owning a house with him and wanting ongoing spousal support (she lives several hundred miles away, and he's been gone 13 years)

I asked what happened? [We grew apart. I was complacent. I didn't work on our M enough. We fought about money. I was miserable at 40 and didn't want to spend the rest of my life that way. I met someone who made me feel better about myself and I decided I had to get out] OH CRAP! A Wayward?!!! I asked did your wife find out about your girlfriend or did you tell her? [She wasn't a girlfriend, so nothing to find out but I did tell my wife the M wasn't working and I moved out]... GAH!

SI Peeps, I don't know what I'm doing with this info. I don't know if I'm hearing spin or honesty. I don't know if he really dealt with his issues or just buried them or ran away from them. So now, Firehouse Guy is on my mind a lot and I don't know how to process it. I'm a very mental person and he's a puzzle so my brain is constantly working on the puzzle. He's got my body's attention too. I'm liking having an F-buddy. I am really liking the attention and affection.

How do I proceed? I feel like I have healed from the wounds of my M to STBXWHPANPDFTG, but I'm still working on FOO in therapy. Am I attracted to someone who is "wrong" for me? Can I do this? Is this "safe"? Am I strong enough to have an F-buddy relationship with someone who has all these complicated and still connected not-really-past relationships? Clearly I am wanting more than that. Am I headed for heartbreak again? I've never been one to do things light. Serial monogamy, with me diving in head first into each new relationship FAST and not really taking time to let things unfold slowly.

I realize I really really miss being bonded, being part of a couple. I want that, BAD. I am trying to not glue myself to this guy but it is really creating quite the internal struggle.

I wonder if there is a lesson here for me in my healing and it's going to be OK, or if I'm just making a really stupid mistake. Tomorrow I see my therapist after almost a month off due to the holidays. I am hoping I can sort some of this out. Thanks for reading and listening!


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
k94ever
Member
Member # 11176
Default  Posted: 4:09 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Get back on the bus. They are saving your seat for you.

He's a mess and a player.

k9


BS: 56
WS: 53
Betrayed: 23 years
Affairs: 14 (2 lasted 3 months. Rest were ONS)
WS died: 16 May 2011
Do not stay in your hurt forever. Choose to move out of it.

Posts: 6453 | Registered: Jul 2006 | From: Wisconsin
abbycadabby
Member
Member # 27428
Default  Posted: 4:14 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Firehouse Guy is concerned about upsetting Dog Lady.

Oh, I SO hope that I'm wrong but I'm thinking you might be an OW. If I'm wrong, at the very least, why is it more important for him to appease Dog Lady in this rather than appeasing you? Why are her feelings, as a roommate, more important than yours?

I think a frank discussion between you and Firehouse Guy is in order. The agreement was made, yes, but if they are truly just roommates then Dog Lady should understand circumstances have changed for Firehouse Guy.


Posts: 1210 | Registered: Feb 2010
cayc
Member
Member # 21964
Default  Posted: 4:47 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

They can co-own a house together but can''t dog sit for one another?

Your spidey senses are tingling because you know something isn''t right. This is one of those things where it may not be what you think (you''re an OW) but does it matter? He''s up to something. He''s made you uncomfortable enough that you were compelled to post paragraphs about it here. Because you know. You need to cut ties with this guy.

(And btw, the fact that he coerced you into breaking the rules of "dating" while being co-workers of a sort shows you the type of guy that he is. To me, that''s the biggest red flag of all, willingly shitting where you eat.)


"The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved, the pig is committed." -Martina Navratilova
"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

Posts: 3003 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: Mexico
Crescita
Member
Member # 32616
Default  Posted: 5:10 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Whatever he has done or is doing, it seems like you want more than he currently offers. Reasons don't matter, he is not available. I'd call it a bad fit and move on.

Posts: 3256 | Registered: Jun 2011 | From: The Valley of the Sun
tryingagain74
Member
Member # 33698
Default  Posted: 5:15 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

He sounds WAY too complicated. I can't begin to figure out his bizarre personal life... still not divorced after how many years? Somehow caught up in something with Dog Lady?

Ugh, there are too many layers of dysfunction here that I wouldn't bother to peel back.

I totally get wanting companionship, and it would be lovely to have a sex life with a hot guy. I've been on the bus for more than two years now. But I also want straightforward and direct. I want clarity. He's single. I'm single. He doesn't have strange relationships with maybe ex-girlfriend roommates. I can date him without feeling like he's under a cloud of suspicion.

I say you next him. You deserve better than to wonder if you might possibly be the OW in this relationship.


BS (Me) 39
Happily liberated!
Two DS and One DD
It matters not how strait the gate,/How charged with punishments the scroll./I am the master of my fate:/I am the captain of my soul.--"Invictus," William Ernest Henley

Posts: 3537 | Registered: Oct 2011
Catwoman
Member
Member # 1330
Default  Posted: 5:44 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Couple of things that have me scratching my head.

First, he owns a house with his Ex AND one with Dog Lady? In California? Does he own a gold mine or stock in Microsoft? Seriously, most people cannot afford to get a loan for two houses. So either he makes a lot of coin, the story isn't true (red flag) or Dog Lady owns the house and he is a tenant, not a co-owner (actually, this makes a lot of sense, seeing that Dog Lady makes all the rules, including the no overnight rule even when she is not there).

Second is his reluctance to have you interact with Dog Lady. If they are such marvelous pals, wouldn't he want the two of you to meet? Most people enjoy introducing their new SOs to their circle of friends. Why is this different? Good question to ask.

You have only been to his house twice and never spent the night. Not a good thing.

I also don't care for the two of you breaking company policies to date. Policies exist for a reason.

Cat


FBS: Married 20 years, 2 daughters 25 and 22. Divorced by the grace of GOD.
D-Days: 2/23/93; 10/11/97; 3/5/03
Ex & OW Broke up 12-10
"An erection does not count as personal growth."

Posts: 29540 | Registered: Apr 2003 | From: Massachusetts
jemimapd
Member
Member # 37895
Default  Posted: 7:10 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

I realize I really really miss being bonded, being part of a couple. I want that, BAD

I had a few of the thoughts that Catwoman did, firstly how did this guy afford two houses.

Have you done any background checks on him? For example, have you checked the county auditor's records to see who owns the house. In my state you can do this online but I am not in CA. I would also check the local court records for civil cases, especially debts, and for criminal. But the main issue I'm focusing on here is money. You can then search the records as to his wife and that house.

What steps has he actually taken to get divorced? You. An check civil filings for that in my state.

You cannot be in a couple with this guy because he is (a) married and (b) living with another woman whom he has no reason to be living with IF it is purely platonic. Has he introduced you to her recently? Why can't you go for dinner while she is at the house IF it is all over between them?

Unfortunately he sounds a lot like my ex who spun the OW all the right lines. I heard him on a VAR. but the reality was he was married and wanted fun on the side. He threw her under the bus on D Day.

Judge him by his actions, not his promises.


Jemima Puddleduck is a trusting soul....
DD 1 Dec 2012; Divorced 11/13; 2 children
Me: BS (47) Him: WH (52) Her: 3 PA's
Ex bought a house, The Money Pit With Mold That Will Never Be Finished. He's living in the basement.

Posts: 726 | Registered: Dec 2012
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 9:12 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Thanks for the feedback everyone!

I want to respond to some of the questions and comments about rules and breaking rules.

Personally, I'm not a real "law and order" type. I have broken a lot of rules in my life and "Question Authority" is, well, not exactly a mantra, but I follow rules I agree with or which breaking have serious consequences, and I have been known to bend or break rules I think are stupid, arbitrary, unfair, excessive, etc.

My analysis of the "no interoffice dating" rules, was that I was neither a co-worker nor a subordinate. Several layers of authority were between us (my boss @ the NGO, his boss @ the Govt) and so I didn't think the rule applied to us. But he was a little worried that because he had some peripheral input on my work others might be able to claim it did apply. We discussed the issue because it was something that he brought up. So out of respect for his concern I made sure our behavior in the office was beyond reproach.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 9:17 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

Anyway, about some other comments you all made, I just got done with a long phone call with Firehouse Guy and it was one of those awkward difficult ones where you force yourself to talk about things that are hard...

We talked about his current household. He described his house co-ownership with Dog Lady as a huge mistake. She's 60% he's 40% owner. Real estate took a huge hit in the recession here and they lost a ton of equity shortly after purchase. He says their relationship now is "sometimes we hate each other and sometimes we are good friends." I asked him when that change in their relationship happened and he said it was shortly after they bought the house (which was about 5 years ago). So he's been "stuck in a rut" living there with her because to get out would have meant losing everything he put in. I told him I was having trouble trusting that he was being honest. He said "I can see how after all you've been through it would be hard to be trusting, but that's the truth."

About the "no overnights" rule, I told him I felt like he was giving her too much power to dictate his social life if they in fact were not a couple. He said he's been so busy with work and trying to make improvements to the house to try to bring up its value over the last few years that he hasn't even bothered trying to date other women and the rule hasn't been an issue until I came along - most unexpectedly. He told me he's been on the bus for over three years too.

Dog Lady is out of town now on vacation, so it's not a matter of appeasing her, she wouldn't even know if I spent the night.... it's that he is sticking to his word. To tell her that he's met someone new and he wants to change the rules, well frankly I can see how that would be hard for her to hear since she isn't dating anyone either. I can just imagine, it's pretty much the death knell for their situation. The market has come up and they have already been talking about selling to get out from under it and away from each other...

I agree with the comments that he should have the conversation anyway, even if it is painful and awkward. But it's his life, his home, his former GF and I don't think I can do more than tell him how I feel and what I want and sit back and watch. She will return next week and they will have a chance to discuss in person then. I should be patient and just wait to see what action he takes.

Obviously for me to move forward with him there's really no way for our relationship to develop in a healthy way unless he has a heart-to-heart with her and reveals that he has found someone he wants to date and have a relationship with.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 9:31 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

I'm still legally M to STBXWHNPDPAFTG. I'm 4 years post D-day and 2 years in complete S with firm NC. D was filed 6 months ago and will be final possibly as early as 2 months from now. Emotionally I'm done.

Firehouse Guy is still legally M to his STBX. He is at least 13 years in complete S, stayed married for financial reasons and paid SS, CS, and mortgage voluntarily. I don't know when they filed for D but he said they almost have an agreement, have court next month and it sounds like it will be done maybe in a few months? Emotionally he's done.

As for Dog Lady, they've been what sounds like in-house S for 3 years, with boundaries. It "sounds like" emotionally he's done.

No shit it's complicated. We aren't young and our lives have been connected to other people and we are both taking steps to extricate ourselves from past ties.

We are both technically and legally unavailable in some ways. We are both emotionally unprepared, and maybe emotionally unavailable too.

Talk about a need to take things S. L. O. W.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
nomistakeaboutit
Member
Member # 36857
Default  Posted: 10:02 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

We are both emotionally unprepared, and maybe emotionally unavailable too.

What do you mean by this?


Me: BH 56.........Her: WW 43
DD: 6..........DS: 4
Married for six years.
DDay: 12-25-11 Divorced: 7-15-12
...................................
"It's like a nightmare within a nightmare, which in and of itself is a nightmare!"

Posts: 918 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: U.S.A.
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 10:34 PM, January 8th (Wednesday)

We are both emotionally unprepared, and maybe emotionally unavailable too.

What do you mean by this?

Well, neither of us were looking to date anyone. I was actually clear that I wasn't dating at the time when I accepted his first invitation out to dinner. But it was my 50th birthday, and I was alone. He was a long-time friend who I've really enjoyed knowing for over a decade.

And with each passing interaction, our fondness for each other seemed to grow and the flirting evolved and... well, you know.

I didn't intend to get involved with anyone. I'm still M and wanted to put the D behind me before trying to connect with someone new. So emotionally I hadn't prepared myself to be dating.

And if his storytelling is to be believed, he is in the exact same boat as me.

I will fully and freely admit that I am enjoying my time with Firehouse Guy. We have lots in common, mutual interests and personal style and so forth so it is easy to allow myself to be attracted to him.

In fact my pleasure is one of the yellow flags as I don't entirely trust myself to make good decisions when I'm feeling this way.

My gut isn't screaming RED FLAG! My head is actually the problem here. The spidey senses say I'm OK, I'm safe, he's honest. My head says he's got a mess of problems disconnecting from past women in his life and HELLO HEART! Pay attention!

I have talked to my therapist about him a couple times and I go in tomorrow for a head adjustment. Writing here is good for me to work things through so my session in more productive.

Thank you everyone for comments and questions!


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
nomistakeaboutit
Member
Member # 36857
Default  Posted: 4:28 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

Thanks for the explanation about the emotional availability, or lack thereof.

Good luck with your IC meeting today.


Me: BH 56.........Her: WW 43
DD: 6..........DS: 4
Married for six years.
DDay: 12-25-11 Divorced: 7-15-12
...................................
"It's like a nightmare within a nightmare, which in and of itself is a nightmare!"

Posts: 918 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: U.S.A.
cayc
Member
Member # 21964
Default  Posted: 7:29 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

Well I''m one of the first to say that midlife dating is messy because people come with problems and baggage that you cannot predict. It''s not like dating in your 20s when the biggest issue anyone has is that they hate their parents or just failed that midterm.

So given the no baggage scenario is likely a pipe dream, it makes it hard to evaluate what''s ok baggage and what isn''t. Between triggers, well meaning advice givers on SI who over react in their desire to protect each other (I''m not knocking it but we are definitely a careful bunch) it can be hard to determined if something is just odd or if it''s a deal breaker.

The weirdness of two people who have managed to be almost D but not D hooking up aside, not being able to stay at your man''''''''s house? And it''s not because of kids? How can that be okay? This dude *needs* to sort that. Because if he can''t, that to me is a red flag. Not a cheating red flag, an unwillingness to be in a relationship red flag because he''s using this barrier to protect himself and make if impossible to fully commit. And while you might think today that''s ok, the risk is really high that you''ll want more in the future and be in too deep emotionally and just get yourself hurt.

[This message edited by cayc at 7:32 AM, January 9th, 2014 (Thursday)]


"The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved, the pig is committed." -Martina Navratilova
"The question isn't who is going to let me; it's who is going to stop me." -Ayn Rand

Posts: 3003 | Registered: Dec 2008 | From: Mexico
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 8:20 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

Wow, what a mess... I'm curious how you've known him so well for ten years but you're just finding out all of this now.

You agreed to go out for dinner with him even though you thought he was still in a relationship, right? What made that OK for you?

Anyway, he's fair game now because they're not together anymore. But wait, they are, sort of....because oh shit, he's not allowed to have sleepovers. So he has a mommy and you have to toe the line here, or you can just go ahead and break that rule, sleep over and see what she says over coffee in the morning. I'd love to be a fly on the wall for that one!

Thing is, you talk about FWB, but FWB technically is just screwing to scratch the itch.

There's no cuddling, spooning, luuurv talk, dinners, breakfasts, long romantic drives or sleeping over. You do the deed and he goes home. Ideally a drive-by, taking no more than half an hour.

I think he's one of those folks who has managed to arrange his life into a scenario that's tailor-made for avoidance of intimacy.

He was unhappy with wife #1, but instead of doing the right thing and confronting that and divorcing before getting involved with a new lurv, he went ahead and did that and let marriage #1 limp along to an almost-close.

Thirteen years is an awfully long time to be almost-divorced.

He sort of commits to Dog Lady but then that doesn't work out, but jeez, here he is stuck in a real estate situation he can't get out of and he's committed to being her Dog Minder until the house sells maybe never.

What incentive does she have to sell when she has a nice home, a guy who promises never to bring anyone to the house and looks after her pack when she travels?

There is so much unfinished business here it makes my head spin. I know we all have baggage, but real grown-up adults usually manage to tie up the loose ends before diving into exciting new adventures that require time, energy and cash investment.

But people who like to live on the edge and bend or break rules tend to live they way they want to, and he's living the life he wants.

So it's up to you to decide if that's the kind of life you want.

You haven't tied up your own loose ends yet, so yay! you get to do it together, and in that sense you're probably a perfect match.

If that's the life you want, then I say go for it. It's exciting isn't it?

I'll look forward to updates.

PS And I have to say the mental image of you two canoodling surrounded by a panting pack of canines makes me giggle...

[This message edited by FaithFool at 8:47 AM, January 9th (Thursday)]


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17147 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
Charity411
Member
Member # 41033
Default  Posted: 9:17 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

I'm with FaithFool. I hate to say this but I think you're being color blind. The flags are red. I think it's time to start checking out some of the things he's telling you.

Maybe because I'm not clouded by chemistry with this person, I really don't believe this whole integrity excuse for why you can't spend the night there or be there with Dog Lady is there. In my opinion he doesn't want Dog Lady to know about your relationship. He seems to have a perfect explanation for everything. Start checking out some of what he tells you. You can easily check on the ownership of the house.

The biggest red flag is that you know he cheated on his wife. Still is if you really think about it since he's still married. I think you're asking the right questions but not necessarily listening to the real answers.


Posts: 280 | Registered: Oct 2013 | From: Illinois
ajsmom
Member
Member # 17460
Default  Posted: 9:22 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

Wow...all that you're dealing with makes my hair hurt.

But people who like to live on the edge and bend or break rules tend to live they way they want to, and he's living the life he wants.

So it's up to you to decide if that's the kind of life you want.

Exactly.

For every concern of yours you throw his way, he has a smooth answer.

Maybe it's just me, but I really like romantic relationships where there are just two people in them.


AJ's MOM


Fidelity isn't a feeling...it's a choice.

"Truth has no special time of its own. Its hour is now - always." - Albert Schweitzer
____________________________________________
Me: BW - Him: 200+ # tumor removed 7/09
DS - 31 - Yikes!


Posts: 21032 | Registered: Dec 2007 | From: Been Through Hell...On My Way Back
Newlease
Member
Member # 7767
Default  Posted: 10:36 AM, January 9th (Thursday)

Dating after 50 does include baggage, no doubt about it. But this isn't baggage, this is a big fat mess. This guy has unfinished relationships with 2 women. You have an unfinished relationship with your STBX. Wouldn't it be best to step back until all this is resolved before you get in any further?

I also had a hot sexual relationship with a fireman that started 9 MONTHS after my D was final. He said all the right things - he pushed fast for overnights - even with his young daughter in the house. I ignored my best judgment because I thought it was going to be just FWB, but my emotions got the best of me. After I fell in deep, I found out that he was "seeing" another MOW of a fellow firefighter. But wait, they weren't physical, they were just friends.

I can't begin to tell you how damaging that relationship was to my fragile psyche. I didn't end it when I found out about OW. I was determined to make this man choose ME - because my XWH chose the OW. Somehow I made it a contest and he was the prize. It took me a year and a half and SO MUCH PAIN to realize he was no prize and I lost my dignity along the way.

Thankfully I recovered after I implemented scorched earth NC and some work on my self esteem. I feel pretty confident that I will never slide into anything like that again.

I know it feels good to feel wanted - it seems like such an ego boost, but in the end it can do the exact opposite if it isn't right.

Sending strength and peace.

NL


Even if you can't control the world around you, you are still the master of your own soul.

Posts: 7644 | Registered: Aug 2005
sparkysable
Member
Member # 3703
Default  Posted: 1:28 PM, January 9th (Thursday)

I would run if I were you, and don't let the breeze from all those madly waving flags distract you! Jeez!! How much you wanna bet Dog Lady is actually his Girlfriend?


D-day OW#1 2/2004; R for 6 years; D-day OW#2 5/2010

Marriages that start this way, stepping over the bodies of loved ones as the giddy couple walks down the aisle, are not likely to last.


Posts: 3171 | Registered: Mar 2004 | From: NY
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 10:00 PM, January 9th (Thursday)

Oh you all are making me laugh and think and go hmmmm... thank you all for the input.

Today I had a great session with my IC, she's been following the story with Firehouse Guy with interest and caution.

We talked about what am I getting out of it? Why even go there? Why am I minimizing or discounting the flags, be they yellow or red?

I'm craving the intimacy, the connection. And I'm getting it. It's not the sex act that's driving me crazy and keeping me coming back for more. So maybe calling him an F-buddy is a misnomer. It's the warm smiles, the belly laughs, the long firm embrace, the random mid-day texts, and the long conversations getting to know each other better, sharing and listening. You know, the early romance of dating and the quality time and attention of a partner.

So that's my why. I haven't messed up my healing (yet) going there. 2 years of S with some really firm NC is a pretty good break from my M and bullshit STBXWHNPDPAFTG. The legal stuff is slower than the emotional stuff at this point, so I don't feel like I'm completely stupid to be "going there" in dating before the ink is on the D.

My concerns and why I've been posting here is his entanglements, and my worry that I will be really disappointed wanting to make this more than it can be, and be hurt, heartbroken, and set back. My concerns are that he's got issues that I have no control over that make him unavailable for developing a healthy new relationship that is genuine, clean, committed, etc.

Her advice is that I do something that might seem really odd: compartmentalize. If I am getting intimacy and connection, and I can stay focused on what I have JUST RIGHT NOW and not try to carry this relationship forward into the future in my head or in my words or in my actions... if I can be present and soak up the positives... then I can put him in a little room and when it's time to play we open the door and go outside and play. And then when recess is over we go to our separate rooms again.

And I can wait and watch and see what happens with his housing situation and what he says to Dog Lady and whether he attempts to integrate me into his life or keep me in my own little room too.

If he makes no moves to have a talk with Dog Lady or to introduce me to his friends, wont engage in public displays of affection, wont have me over for dinner with her present, or decides he can't tell her "I no longer agree to the previously agreed upon house rules" then by his actions I know all I need to know.

not being able to stay at your man's house? And it''s not because of kids? How can that be okay? This dude *needs* to sort that. Because if he can''t, that to me is a red flag. Not a cheating red flag, an unwillingness to be in a relationship red flag because he''s using this barrier to protect himself and make if impossible to fully commit.

Thank you, Cayc, I agree totally.


I'm curious how you've known him so well for ten years but you're just finding out all of this now.

You agreed to go out for dinner with him even though you thought he was still in a relationship, right? What made that OK for you?

So he and I have been interacting with each other several times a year due to regular ongoing projects between my NGO and his Govt agency. We talk, we are friends. He learned I was S shortly after I moved out - that was 2 years ago. Since I was sharing a bit about me, I inquired of his life, as friends do. I am terrible with names so I forgot Dog Lady's name and asked "And how are things with your sweetie and house in Dog Town? And the first thing out of his mouth was "You mean "Dog Lady"? She's not my sweetie, but it's fine. We are doing X with house in Dog Town - I've been working on the well... yadda yadda"

So he revealed about 2 years ago that their relationship had changed. I think we had the same conversations again at the next project... he asked me how I was doing on my own at my new place, told me he was concerned for me. I did a lot of hiding of my depression but I told him where I was living was therapeutic for me, I again forgot her name asked about "his sweetie" and he again corrected me and grumbled about troubles he was having with some project and then we changed the subject. I didn't want to pry, or to open up too much at the time as I was pretty fragile and really keeping things light was best for me.

So the dinner "date" seemed... I dunno. OK? OK, but proceed with caution because I didn't really know details? I mean how much do you need to know about somebody before you go out for dinner? If he were a complete stranger that I had just met at the Govt. office would I need to know all the details of their personal life before grabbing a bite to eat after work? It was an invitation generated spontaneously... like around 2pm? Not planned.

I suppose I can rationalize that the story of them buying the house together made sense for them at the time. At the time, perhaps they were a couple working on their issues, probably, maybe, maybe not. His D has been stalled for years, maybe he made some progress on it back then and gave her hope? I don't want to speculate too much and just stick with what I know.

I think he's one of those folks who has managed to arrange his life into a scenario that's tailor-made for avoidance of intimacy. He was unhappy with wife #1, but instead of doing the right thing and confronting that and divorcing before getting involved with a new lurv, he went ahead and did that and let marriage #1 limp along to an almost-close.

Thirteen years is an awfully long time to be almost-divorced.

He sort of commits to Dog Lady but then that doesn't work out, but jeez, here he is stuck in a real estate situation he can't get out of and he's committed to being her Dog Minder until the house sells maybe never.

What incentive does she have to sell when she has a nice home, a guy who promises never to bring anyone to the house and looks after her pack when she travels?

There is so much unfinished business here it makes my head spin. I know we all have baggage, but real grown-up adults usually manage to tie up the loose ends before diving into exciting new adventures that require time, energy and cash investment.

You are making some great points FaithFool! Yes, I agree with all of them. The thing is that our relationship, whatever you want to call it, feels pretty intimate given all his Dog-awful baggage.

I don't understand why I'm OK with this. Basically, I'm OK with what we have FOR NOW. But I do know that I'm gonna have a really hard time if he chooses to maintain the status quo. If he decides that being enmeshed in all these other women's lives is the way he wants things to stay then he and I are going to have to part company.

I've got my own baggage and enmeshment to disentangle from. This stuff is hard. It's hard when you don't have anyone to help you, and it's hard when you have someone who GETS IT in a scary ugly too familiar way. Like Dude, we are so messed up can't we clean up our lives so we can move on?

Thanks everyone for the 2x4s. Swung and connected somewhere about the shoulders

I really need to protect myself, because I need to inch forward in life and finish my healing at a healthy pace. Maybe having so many barriers to complete intimacy is actually good for me? My history of relationships - diving in head first and being all in, all in, and committed - glued - to someone... I think I've had a total of 10 committed (at least in my head - I was never a player and always monogomous) relationships of some significant duration in my life and maybe 2 or 3 very short flings where I new it wasn't going to last. I've never really spent time just dating and jumping in the sack for some fun now and again.

Newlease if he chooses to stay enmeshed with Dog Lady and his D doesn't move forward.... it's not about me, is it? It's just him maintaining status quo. Maybe I'm just a passing fling for him, and he for me. So far that's what the evidence points to.

Patience, restraint, and self discipline are not strengths of mine. I'm not running away screaming in part because I feel I'm stretching and learning in a strange way.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
thyme2go
Member
Member # 12908
Default  Posted: 2:02 AM, January 10th (Friday)

So he and I have been interacting with each other several times a year due to regular ongoing projects between my NGO and his Govt agency. We talk, we are friends. He learned I was S shortly after I moved out - that was 2 years ago. Since I was sharing a bit about me, I inquired of his life, as friends do. I am terrible with names so I forgot Dog Lady's name and asked "And how are things with your sweetie and house in Dog Town? And the first thing out of his mouth was "You mean "Dog Lady"? She's not my sweetie, but it's fine. We are doing X with house in Dog Town - I've been working on the well... yadda yadda"

So he revealed about 2 years ago that their relationship had changed. I think we had the same conversations again at the next project... he asked me how I was doing on my own at my new place, told me he was concerned for me. I did a lot of hiding of my depression but I told him where I was living was therapeutic for me, I again forgot her name asked about "his sweetie" and he again corrected me and grumbled about troubles he was having with some project and then we changed the subject. I didn't want to pry, or to open up too much at the time as I was pretty fragile and really keeping things light was best for me.


He is still seeing Dog Lady...

-t2g


BH - no longer 48
3 DD's - (27, 24 and 17)
Divorced on 8/6/09

Posts: 9175 | Registered: Dec 2006 | From: Eastern Washington
hummingbird8
Member
Member # 25086
Default  Posted: 4:39 AM, January 10th (Friday)

I too think he is still with dog lady and is cheating. Unless and until you hear it from her that they are not together, I wouldn't trust him. Too much doesn't add up. I kind of disagree with your counselor. You can save yourself a lot of hurt by being cautious and finding out the truth sooner rather than later. Good luck.

Posts: 452 | Registered: Aug 2009
Newlease
Member
Member # 7767
Default  Posted: 8:35 AM, January 10th (Friday)

(((hb kk)))

Sorry about the 2x4s, those of us who have BTDT are just standing on the sidelines and trying to throw up caution barriers! We truly are just trying to save you from some hurt that we have been through already. If you can compartmentalize this, then more power to you. I can't do that. I tried to, but it just didn't work for me.

I was relating my history as a cautionary tale. I didn't even post about it at the time, because I knew somewhere deep down that I would get 2x4s telling me to cut him loose and I just didn't want to. Everyone offers advice based on their history and perceptions.

I wish you well in your healing journey.

NL

[This message edited by Newlease at 8:36 AM, January 10th (Friday)]


Even if you can't control the world around you, you are still the master of your own soul.

Posts: 7644 | Registered: Aug 2005
FaithFool
Member
Member # 20150
Default  Posted: 12:25 PM, January 10th (Friday)

I think men like him tend to sniff out vulnerable individuals like yourself and it can be thrilling for them to make that conquest.

Once the thrill of the chase subsides, it probably won't be so much fun anymore and he'll get bored with you like he did with the rest of them.

But you seem to have a great handle on rationalizing it in your head, and with an IC cheering you on and urging you to just stick it in a box, you're well on your way to whatever it is that's waiting for you.

I would go no further with this without a face to face conversation with Dog Woman. But that's just cautious old me.

Enjoy the ride.

[This message edited by FaithFool at 12:26 PM, January 10th (Friday)]


DDay: June 15, 2008
Mistakenly married Mr. Superfreak
20 years of OWs, WTF?
Divorced Dec 26, 2011
"Life is a shipwreck, but we must not forget
to sing in the lifeboats". -- Voltaire

Posts: 17147 | Registered: Jul 2008 | From: Canada
k94ever
Member
Member # 11176
Default  Posted: 12:59 PM, January 10th (Friday)

So....you are justifying being an OW.


Girl...get back on the bus.

k9


BS: 56
WS: 53
Betrayed: 23 years
Affairs: 14 (2 lasted 3 months. Rest were ONS)
WS died: 16 May 2011
Do not stay in your hurt forever. Choose to move out of it.

Posts: 6453 | Registered: Jul 2006 | From: Wisconsin
abbycadabby
Member
Member # 27428
Default  Posted: 12:59 PM, January 10th (Friday)

Her advice is that I do something that might seem really odd: compartmentalize. If I am getting intimacy and connection, and I can stay focused on what I have JUST RIGHT NOW and not try to carry this relationship forward into the future in my head or in my words or in my actions... if I can be present and soak up the positives... then I can put him in a little room and when it's time to play we open the door and go outside and play. And then when recess is over we go to our separate rooms again.

This won't work, regardless of his status with Dog Lady. This is an FWB situation your IC is describing. Compartmentalizing. Putting things in separate boxes. Keeping yourself emotionally detached IN CASE it doesn't work out romantically. FWB situations rarely work without someone having feelings/wanting more, and you already admitted that you want MORE:

Clearly I am wanting more than that. Am I headed for heartbreak again? I've never been one to do things light. Serial monogamy, with me diving in head first into each new relationship FAST and not really taking time to let things unfold slowly.

Why would you settle for FWB (because face it- he's too enmeshed with Dog Lady AND wrapping things up with his D) when you want more?

An aside: I'm sorry, but the *mumble mumble* "we're not together" speil over the years then quickly changing the subject to a work project, coupled with their history (both romantic and platonic) AND his unwillingness to rock the boat by telling her he wants sleepovers with you just gives me pause. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think there's more to this story. I just agree with k9. I'm sorry. I'm not trying to be mean.

[This message edited by abbycadabby at 1:00 PM, January 10th (Friday)]


Posts: 1210 | Registered: Feb 2010
nomistakeaboutit
Member
Member # 36857
Default  Posted: 6:05 PM, January 10th (Friday)

I'm curious about STDs. The more I read and hear, it seems like it's becoming riskier out there. Is this something you and he talked about, particularly because you and he aren't exclusive at this point, right?

Also, fwiw, I don't like your ic's advice. I've thought about it several times today (I read your post this morning), and I keep coming back to this. It seems like advice that looks good on paper, so to speak, but doesn't play out so well IRL. The biggest reason it doesn't play IRL is because of what abbycadabby said above ^^^^. I guess you probably know that already, but might like to risk it anyway.

My sense of it is that he and you are developing something together (whatever that is) that brings with it a higher emotional risk than you are accounting for. There are just WAY too many issues at play here, such as:

Is he still sleeping with dog woman? (Truthfulness concern)
Is he hiding you from dogwoman? (Fidelity concern)
Is he sleeping with anyone else? (STD concern)
Do you and he want different things out of this? (Heartbreak concern). Here's what you are getting out of it, but what about him? I don't know. I'm just asking.

It's not the sex act that's driving me crazy and keeping me coming back for more. So maybe calling him an F-buddy is a misnomer. It's the warm smiles, the belly laughs, the long firm embrace, the random mid-day texts, and the long conversations getting to know each other better, sharing and listening. You know, the early romance of dating and the quality time and attention of a partner.


I'm also curious why you say that everyone here is making you laugh? I couldn't quite figure that out. Is it everyone just,being so hyper vigilant?

Oh you all are making me laugh and think and go hmmmm... thank you all for the input.


Me: BH 56.........Her: WW 43
DD: 6..........DS: 4
Married for six years.
DDay: 12-25-11 Divorced: 7-15-12
...................................
"It's like a nightmare within a nightmare, which in and of itself is a nightmare!"

Posts: 918 | Registered: Sep 2012 | From: U.S.A.
heartbroken_kk
Member
Member # 22722
Default  Posted: 6:23 PM, January 10th (Friday)

I am typing on my phone so this will be shorter...

We had a long talk last night about Dog Lady.

He is stuck financially with this house. He wants to sell as soon as the market allows.

He has slept with her once since they bought the house in 2008. They bought it after their romantic relationship ended and the sex was drunken and regretful and 3 years ago. He has not had sex with anyone since.

Two big changes have happened in his life in the last month. He is starting a new job and he had me arrive in his life unexpectedly.

He wasnt *ready* for a new relationship because of his housing witth Dog Lady and unfinished D. And he wasn't looking for trouble - he wasn't dating.

At this point I am planning to follow my IC's advice and forget about a future with him for now. One day at a time. I will wait to see what transpires when Dog Lady returns next week. If he has the guts to disclose that he has started to develop a new relationship with someone else then that might change my attitude. If he doesn't want her to find out about me then the FWB will have to end.


BW then 46, STBXWHNPDPAFTG the destroyer of my entire life.
D-Day 1 1999, D-Day 2,3,4,5,6... 2009 thru 2011.

Separated, divorcing, moving on.
I edit because I always make typos.


Posts: 1091 | Registered: Feb 2009 | From: California
LeopoldB
Member
Member # 40606
Default  Posted: 9:26 PM, January 10th (Friday)

Enjoy the day-to-day relationship for what it's worth. You never know how it might turn out and it's better than second-guessing what might have been.

The bus is filled with people dying to get off (literally).



Posts: 184 | Registered: Sep 2013
Topic Posts: 30