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Wife of almost ten years is emotionally cheating on me

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This0is0Fine posted 1/9/2020 12:58 PM

[This message edited by This0is0Fine at 1:04 PM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

Stevesn posted 1/9/2020 13:19 PM


I didnít think that was going to be a ďDivorceable OffenseĒ once the PostNup is signed and sealed.

Iím still not sure I can wrap my head around it. I guess I understand that your D terms are better with the PostNup than just Divorcing her now because she wonít go full NC.

If thatís the case, I get it.

Dont be too hard on us, we are old and slow

We just donít want you condemned to a lifetime of wondering what they are saying and doing together at work.


Westway posted 1/9/2020 13:38 PM

I think you guys are taking me less seriously than my wife.

Wrong. I think we are concerned you will damn yourself to a long period of limbo.

farsidejunky posted 1/9/2020 13:43 PM

Deleted, wrong thread.

[This message edited by farsidejunky at 1:54 PM, January 9th (Thursday)]

PassThis posted 1/9/2020 13:56 PM


It seems that your immediate critical issues boil down to two things:

1. Is it true that "The highest escalation of physical contact my wife said happened was holding hands."?

2. Must she quit her job immediately?

Issue 1 will, hopefully, be resolved with the poly. It appears that if she fails on issue 1, issue 2 is irrelevant.

On Issue 2, Beyond Rage wrote wrt his situation "She has offered to quit her job. I told her do not dare. We will be Ok financially even if she did but she has to work somewhere and there will be men everywhere." His logic was that if she was going to cheat, she could just as well cheat at the new job. Also, if contact with OM is the real concern, she could maintain contact with OM even if she quits her current job. So, I would rephrase Issue 2 to be "Is she over OM so that he is no longer a threat to your marriage?" You blew up the affair when you informed OBS. OM seems not to have been the aggressor, but instead showed reluctance to accept her advances. So, has OM been neutralized? I assume that you still are confident of this:

She said she never fell in love with him or said she loved him. She has told me she loves me and is in love with me. We have had many affirmations of love and she has said she is very sorry for what she has done and all the pain she has cause to me and the OBS. She never decided for the OM, who was married and not even available. The choice was between me and nothing. She has said, "It's you, it's always been you, I never wanted another man." Ok sure, but you had at least an EA. For her next crisis I have promised to try to be more emotionally open, which it has really been much easier to be with all the cards on the table. She will come to me for support or to her IC if necessary. She is implementing the Mike Pence rule at work.

Is she over her limerence with OM? If she signs the post-nuptial agreement, she is putting her "skin in the game" for that to be true. Is that sufficient to allow her to continue at her current job until the current project that she is so invested in is completed? I do believe that she needs to find a new job after the current project is done (if not sooner). Can you and she establish boundaries that can be monitored so that she can minimize potential exposure to OM and, if necessary, to prove that NC is still in effect?

I am not excusing her culpability in her prior actions. It is best that she leave that job immediately. But, her prior issues with her "self" complicate the resolution of this issue. Is there a possibility that, with ongoing IC and discussions, that she will "see the light" sooner, rather than later, (enough for you)?

She should definitely not put herself in a situation where she would be away from home (business travel, conferences, parties, etc.) where OM could be there as well. I think that if she balks at that condition, she is not ready for reconciliation.

Only you can tell how narrow any remaining differences between you and your wife must be so that you are able to continue your path towards R. If she can not narrow those differences sufficiently, then you should proceed with the D process. Maybe she can find a new job before the clock runs out on D.

Unfortunately, she is irrational wrt Issue 2. You are more of a rational thinker. I can tell from your posts that it is frustratingly painful for you to have to deal with this. For the time being, you might consider just moving forward to the poly, along with putting in place the pre-nuptial agreement. She might "see the light" in the meantime and make Issue 2 go away.

Issue 1 is a straight-forward binary situation. The result will be yes or no. The answer will not be vague or ambiguous. (I concede that there may be a non-zero risk that the results of the test might be inconclusive, but I am assuming that this risk is not significant, and can be resolved with follow-up poly questions as necessary.)

Issue 2 is not a binary situation. It is at least a yes, no, or maybe result at this time. What is involved is not past actions, but future actions. You know that no one can predict/guarantee the future.

I know that you understand the difference. Issue 2 will require your JUDGMENT. I do not think any poster can provide an appropriate answer to issue 2 that takes the place of your judgment.

Continuing to send hope, strength and support.

PassThis posted 1/9/2020 14:11 PM

I just read Westway's most recent post.

It is only my take on his posts, but he seems to see things as more binary than I sometimes do. I think his positions are very understandable from his perspective.

His concern about staying in limbo is valid. I would never suggest that you put yourself in a position of extended limbo. On any issue for which the answer is ambiguous at the time, I would make a decision, if I need to avoid extended limbo, but reserve the right to change my mind at a later date if new information is revealed. For example, absent new information, you could file for D, then stop the D process if/when justified by new information.

M1965 posted 1/9/2020 15:05 PM

I think you guys are taking me less seriously than my wife.


Apologies if that is how it came across. When I wrote my post, the question of your seriousness or intent did not cross my mind.

What I did, and do, take seriously is the lengths that a wayward spouse will go to to remain in contact with their affair partner, and the convoluted logic they will apply to justify that continuation of contact. There are sadly way too many stories here of what that can lead to, so when people here see that happening, they ring alarm bells, raise red flags, fire distress flares, and call 911.

It is not about taking you seriously; it is about taking your wife seriously, based on her past actions.

I told her she is choosing her job over our marriage. She doesn't see it that way. She sees it as giving up her individuality and value to save a relationship.

I am not expecting you to answer this - and I apologise if any of this sounds like I am getting on your case, because it is not meant that way - but why does your wife find no individuality and value in being a person who makes their marriage their number one priority?

All she is at work is a number. An easily replaced cog in a corporate machine, who is - according to what both you and she have said - undervalued.

In the marriage, she is the most important human being in the universe to another individual who will sit by her bed every day for six months if she is hospitalised, who would give her his kidney if you are a match, and who until recently was probably keen to look after her and protect her until the day that she dies. I would say that is treating her as the ultimate individual, and the most valuable person on the planet (to you).

And yet she perceives herself to have less value, worth, and individuality in that scenario than in being an anonymous, replaceable, underpaid corporate drone, rolling along a conveyor belt with all the other anonymous, replaceable, underpaid corporate drones, all of whom will be 'downsized' in a nanosecond if an accountant identifies that a cheaper option is available elsewhere.

Maybe it is worth asking her why she believes she has no value or individuality in the marriage. If she put the same amount of effort into her marriage as she puts into her job, she would get the benefits back in spades, and the whole - created by both of you - would be more than the sum of its parts.

Maybe her IC needs to focus on why she believes her job is so critical to her existence and sense of self-worth. It is not healthy psychologically for a person to give one particular job such existential significance in their life, because if they lose their job, they may feel like they have lost their value as an individual.

I am saying this gently, but her mother pinned her reason for living on her marriage. Your wife should not go down the same road with her job.

I touched on this same theme earlier in your thread, but is your wife scared of the same thing happening to her as happened with her mother if she makes the marriage the most important thing in her life, so she is fixated on having some kind of identity and value (at least in her own mind, if not in the corporate accountancy department) not involved with the marriage?

Only she can answer that, but she seemed to withdraw, implode, and almost attack the marriage after her mother's post-divorce suicide. That is another rich seam to be mined in IC, because your wife, in her trauma, may have drawn some strange conclusions about marriage, and be somewhat ambivalent about it now.

[This message edited by M1965 at 3:16 PM, January 9th (Thursday)]

This0is0Fine posted 1/9/2020 15:25 PM

[This message edited by This0is0Fine at 1:04 PM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

Thumos posted 1/9/2020 15:34 PM

She essentially recognizes this a stubborn irrational attachment to her current job because of the ownership she feels in what she has built there.

Dude, it's called limerence for her affair partner. No need to read the tea leaves here. Pretty straightforward.

BeyondRage posted 1/9/2020 15:35 PM

This Is Fine

As Pass This said, you still have no idea if she is telling the truth about how far physically with OM. So how do you get comfortable with her still in that job not knowing the truth.

If she is telling the truth, you can move on to #2 on this list after that. If she is lying, you still interested in number 2?????

You can calculate here the odds of a polygraph being wrong if you want to. i think most here will believe the odds of your wife giving you the full truth are much fucking worse.

M1965 posted 1/9/2020 15:49 PM

Yes this is the fixation.

Well, it would be worth having a discussion to cover the subject of whether she sees marriage as nothing more than a destructive machine that erases individuality and then spits out whatever is left, or whether it can be far more positive than that, if she chooses to engage with it and let it protect her.

The message she needs to absorb would be:

"I am not your Dad. You are not your Mom. Our marriage is not their marriage. I would never, ever, let you crash and burn like that. And that is why I am so disturbed by the way you isolated yourself from me and prevented me from helping you after your Mom passed. If you had given me that opportunity, you would have seen how different our marriage is to theirs, and perhaps you would have more positive feelings about the marriage as a result of that".

Edited to add: The point your wife needs to grasp is that if she casts 'marriage' as a malign entity, and does not engage with it more broadly, it can become a self-fulfilling prophecy, where all she sees of it is the negative stuff because she never gives it a chance to be positive.

[This message edited by M1965 at 4:05 PM, January 9th (Thursday)]

Thumos posted 1/9/2020 16:02 PM

Beyond Rage wrote wrt his situation "She has offered to quit her job. I told her do not dare. We will be Ok financially even if she did but she has to work somewhere and there will be men everywhere."

In Beyond Rage's situation, his WW's APs didn't work with her. A hot wife that helped facilitate his WW's "lifestyle" choice did and does work with her.

faithfulman posted 1/9/2020 16:43 PM

I have a good quote for you to use, and it can be applicable to a lot of situations: "I don't give a shit what your therapist says."

You can also change out the word "therapist" for any other person offering opinions about what your wife should do or be allowed to do.

[This message edited by faithfulman at 4:43 PM, January 9th (Thursday)]

fareast posted 1/9/2020 17:14 PM

M1965 is spot on I think especially on how your WW views M and having an identity through work. By your account your WW was the aggressor with the OM even though he spurned her advances often. After you blew it up with the OBS there is little to say the OM has a whit of interest. But hereís the deal, at work your WW apparently feels she has the strength and identity to do such things. But in her M she loses her identity in a malign entity. No matter where she works this attitude if uncorrected bodes for a recurrence with another man as she exerts her ďidentityĒ outside the home. I think you would be wise to do as M1965 suggests. Good luck.

PassThis posted 1/9/2020 17:30 PM


Perhaps further discussion with your wife over identity and self would be of help, perhaps in IC.

Per a Google search (for authenticity and precision), "Personal identity is the concept you develop about yourself that evolves over the course of your life. This may include aspects of your life that you have no control over, such as where you grew up or the color of your skin, as well as choices you make in life, such as how you spend your time and what you believe." Other aspects would be family, marriage, career, gender, geographical identity (American, Southern, Yankee, Californian), religious association, generation (Greatest, Baby Boomer, X, Millennial), etc.

I am not a psychologist or sociologist, so other posters may offer deeper insight. However, it seems reasonable to me that if aspects of one's identity are at odds with each other, your identity is in conflict. Thus, the aspects of marriage and career must support each other and not be contradictory. I would explore with her how you and she could eliminate the risk of contradiction and achieve/maintain a balance of all of her aspects, including marriage and career.

I hope that this suggestion might be helpful. If not, nevermind.

rambler posted 1/9/2020 20:58 PM

For the pre nup to possibly be enforceable she needs to have an attorney acting on behalf review it and advise her.

Given that she is signing the pre nup under duress due to treat of divorce, it is likely to be thrown out if she later contests.

This0is0Fine posted 1/9/2020 22:10 PM

[This message edited by This0is0Fine at 1:04 PM, September 16th (Wednesday)]

DoinBettr posted 1/10/2020 09:14 AM

She doesn't see it that way. She sees it as giving up her individuality and value to save a relationship. I told her this is a completely reasonable sacrifice. She said it's not.

You should tell her she is the one who forced this sacrifice to be necessary. Tell your wife you are going to start an affair and she gets to just watch it occur. She will slowly get that she is not special. This is slowly sinking I think. You should push it though if she argues this way. Talk about how you were perfectly satisfied with the situation before, she is the one who willingly without talking to you fucked it up. These are called CONSEQUENCES so her wanting to be an adult involves realizing, sometimes you screw up and lose things. Like how you lost the love and trust of your wife.

This0is0Fine posted 1/10/2020 13:23 PM

Had a fight this morning about her not doing enough. She went hysterical, yelling and crying. Making the whole thing about "society let's men cheat, but when a woman does it she should have known her place!", "I'll wear a red letter A if you want, but then I'll be done", "Nothing happened", "I'll bet OM's marriage is already back to normal". Bullshit and minimizing. Feels like going backwards.

[This message edited by This0is0Fine at 1:23 PM, January 10th (Friday)]

ShutterHappy posted 1/10/2020 13:43 PM

"Woe is me"

Consequences! Arrrgh Iím melting Iím melting !

Just let us know when she stops feeling sorry for herself and start worrying about the hurt she causes to others.

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