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So I just found my husband's online dating profile.

(76 Posts)
captainchaos Thu 18-Jul-13 17:08:44

Apparently we've been "very separated for a few years now but not looking to upset the status quo at home yet due to children"

He set the profile up while I was on a work's night out last month, my first in years. This is all such a mess, and I don't want to dripfeed, so I'll try to bullet point it.

* I've suffered with depression for years. Last year my period returned for the first time since having DD (3yo). When that happened, my SSRI's lost their effectiveness and I started suffering from debilitating PMT

*Last year I started a new PT job and became friends with a male colleague who I see for maybe 10 minutes each week. We have a similar sense of humor and started to exchange memes via email.

*About 4 months ago I went to the GP for help with my mood swings. Her solution was to slowly wean me off the last meds and start me on something new. My mood has been increasingly low and irritable throughout, which does make me difficult to live with.

*3 months ago, my "email friend" had a depressive episode, and so I increased email contact to help cheer him up.

*Last month I started my new meds and also attended my first work's night out in years. That same evening, my husband set up his online dating profile.

*During the work's night out, it was the first time I'd actually had any real time to chat with this colleague. I realized I was pretty strongly attracted to him, and kind of freaked out about it.

*The new meds triggered 10 days of insomnia and coupled with my strange feelings for colleague I've pretty much had a breakdown. Feeling like both colleague and I were vulnerable, I told him I was feeling too strongly in his presence and wasn't comfortable seeing him in person.

*Husband read my email, and was not pleased. I responded that the silly emails were helping me stay afloat and that I didn't intend to stop the friendship.

*I made colleague aware that emails were being read by my husband, and carried on emailing/texting jokes and support.

*Last night I felt awful and irritable and was cross with my husband, which made him really unhappy. He said something cryptic that made me think. So today, I figured turn about was fair play and logged into his email. There I discovered he's created profiles on POF and Friends With Benefits. I told him I knew, and he says it's my fault because I was texting my colleague, and said I had feelings for him.

I don't even know why I'm waffling on here. It's over, isn't it? Neither of us trust the other, and we're both making each other so unhappy. What do I do now?

*Continued

captainchaos Sat 20-Jul-13 19:45:29

Well, on the bright side, the discussion about his dating profile(s) was calm. I let him know that I was aware of it in a kind of lighthearted way while he was still at work, so that he could take enough time to digest the information before coming home. So by the time he got home we were able to talk reasonably about it.

Although I was initially shocked, We both quickly realized that I wasn't really that upset about the idea of him seeing someone else. Probably a pretty good indicator that the relationship is nearing it's end, but it also weirdly eased some of the tension. We didn't talk about splitting up directly, just that the future may look different than we had both planned.

Someone asked why I posted about this now, when some of the things I've mentioned happened years ago-- Although I do post regularly under a different username, I've always hesitated to post about incidents with my husband because I'm scared of the answers would be. It's not always easy to talk about what's happened, and I'm never sure if it is my fault. "I must be a real bitch or he wouldn't be so angry", and "It's true, I should have been doing housework instead of whatever I was doing"

So missbebop, in answer to your question, I honestly don't know how much of the responsibility for our relationship's downfall is mine. I know I entered into the marriage loving my husband and intending to build a life together forever. But there's a lot of shit that's happened that I never saw coming. Obviously getting a crush on a colleague was an epic failure on my part, but if I'm honest the problems were there before that happened.

For now, I'm going to keep taking my meds and try to get myself on an even keel, before tackling any life changing decisions.

comingintomyown Fri 19-Jul-13 17:49:34

OP I think in your place I would split up

Even taking into account the "theres two sides to every story" element the things you have described are off the scale. I daresay your relationship is contributing hugely to your depression etc.

meiisme Fri 19-Jul-13 17:47:35

And the same goes for you < works hard to not add 'dear', behind that sentence wink >.

We are talking about the situation of the OP and as someone pointed out before, it is not like the case of your friends where both are abusive. OP is not screaming. OP is not joining dating sites and then saying something 'cryptic' that makes OP concerned enough to check his e-mails. Yes, she found an emotional connection with someone who 'did not make her feel like shit', but wouldn't you enjoy positive attention if you lived with somebody who clearly does make you feel like shit? Ffs, she stepped back because she saw see was crossing boundaries. Clearly she has some respect for her relationship and her spouse, while he obviously hasn't!

Counselling depends on both being open and vulnerable. If one person genuinly wants to do that while the other one has shown in the past to be perfectly willing to exploit her vulnerability (labour...), they should not start counselling together. Not until there is a level playing field, no power imbalance, not one person vulnerable and another person a bully. Sure, some counsellors will spot the dynamic, but others won't and that is a dangerous gamble to take for OP and women like her (me, previously). And as I said, when Relate counsellors see this, they refuse joint sessions.

Missbopeep no decent or experienced counsellor will see a couple where there is ongoing abuse. The dynamics described above are well researched and documented.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 17:15:16

With respect, that's irrelevant because if you read my post I said that in the example I quoted there was abusive behaviour from each of them- mainly verbal. And if it is replicated during counselling the counsellor picks up on it and works through it. And each of the people I know is having counselling independently too. I'm sorry for your experiences but I don't think that puts you in a position to say what is right for every couple, and which goes against the advice of very highly qualified therapists in my example.

meiisme Fri 19-Jul-13 16:34:25

And I know this guy fits the bill because no amount of stress or resentment will make a non-abusive person rage abuse at their partner while she is in labour.

meiisme Fri 19-Jul-13 16:31:35

Because I have set in that chair and was abused in front of two experienced therapists. The one from Relate refused to take us on because of his abuse and referred him to a perpetrator program (organisational policy), and the family therapist who saw us a year later told me afterwards that joint counselling in an abusive situation is always inappropriate and she would have refused to continue to see us if she had know what was really going on/how scared I was.

My ex became increasingly good at manipulating the professionals around us into thinking he was doing well and I was just high strung. And if he hadn't been too cocky to understand that my SOLO counselling was actually going very well and built me up enough to leave when he progreesed to physical abuse, he would have paced but continued pushing the abuse until there had been people in hospital. Been there, have the t-shirt.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 15:16:15

How do you know all of that?

meiisme Fri 19-Jul-13 13:17:04

And it is dangerous to have joint counsellor with an abuser, because he is likely to 1) use the sessions to spout abuse at you and 2) use the sessions to learn more about your vulnerabilities. Really, counsellors like those from Relate refuse to work in those kind of settings and refer abusers to a perpetrator program. This guy fits the bill.

Chubfuddler Fri 19-Jul-13 12:53:51

I don't want to have a dig. Counselling is not a magic cure all. If he was interested in changing he could suggest counselling after all. He hasn't. It's not a woman's responsibility to police and manage the relationship.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 12:42:31

I'm a bit puzzled why you seem to want to have a bit of a dig over this ???
It is relevant if counselling might help.

I don't think the Op has had a yay or nay from her DH on it yet.

Chubfuddler Fri 19-Jul-13 12:30:00

That's nice. And completely irrelevant to the op. her DH seems to have no interest or inclination in changing and sounds thoroughly unpleasant.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 12:23:30

Exactly- and after 25 years of marriage they are both very determined.

Twinklestein Fri 19-Jul-13 12:04:15

People can change their behaviour but it's very, very hard & they have to be absolutely determined. It's a lot of hard work.

The quality of the therapist is not really that relevant, ultimately it comes down to how much an individual wants to change & whether they're prepared to work at it 24/7 for life.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 11:56:41

Sorry but I don't understand your comment about 'being swept under the carpet.' My friend has had counselling at the Tavistock Centre - one of the best centres for therapy in the world. They are both abusive towards each other. Abuse is a type of behaviour. People can change their behaviour.

Chubfuddler Fri 19-Jul-13 11:51:48

Missbopeep one wonders whether your friends problems are actually solved or just swept under the carpet. Either way the op doesn't have to stay in a relationship like this and she shouldn't be made to feel she should.

Bollocks. Joint counselling is not appropriate where there is abuse ongoing.

missbopeep Fri 19-Jul-13 10:50:21

Sorry but you can fix this through counselling. My very best friend had similar issues with her DH although she was /is abusive back. She'd gone as far as issuing a divorce petition at him and at the last minute they pulled back. They are having couples counselling and individual counselling- he is learning anger management through CBT.

If you say these issues can't be fixed then that's not my experience

He sounds like a poisonous, abusive bastard to be honest. I wonder how much of your depression is linked to his awful treatment of you over the years.
Yes, you were having an inappropriate relationship with work colleague but that's a red herring really. The issue is that you are in an abusive relationship and he is abusing the children too. You can't fix that through counselling.

ageofgrandillusion Thu 18-Jul-13 23:05:34

Clusterfuck - great phrase OP, loving it. Btw, LTB, he sounds truly vile.

Chubfuddler Thu 18-Jul-13 21:01:43

I have no problem with being on the so called leave the bastard band wagon. It's not my default response to any problem, but some bastards deserve to be left. Calling you a bitch and saying you'd ruined his life whilst you were in labour is plenty enough reason. Screaming at a child over cereal is the icing on the cake.

Your entanglement with your colleague is far from beyond reproach but that's all the more reason to ship out. Neither of you are happy, are you?

ohfuckkk Thu 18-Jul-13 20:51:29

you are deffo having n EA with work colleague. It sounds like you are trying to justify your actions. They may well be justifiable, but just know - this is what is happening. He's no angel either by the sounds.

missbopeep Thu 18-Jul-13 20:45:43

I agree crazy.

Op my last post was unclear- missed a word out. What I meant to say was that although your DH has not behaved well, to put it mildly, you don't seen willing to acknowledge any wrong doing on your part, (other than your mental health issues which obviously are not your 'fault' in any way.)

crazyhead Thu 18-Jul-13 20:37:50

In your shoes, I'd go to counselling on my own and try to sort out the wood from the trees in my own mind and he ought to do the same. Frankly, given the complexity of the situation as it stands, adding a flirtation/dating experience sounds like the last thing either of you needs!

I think it is incredibly hard to judge whether someone else's relationship can survive or not but you both sound utterly miserable, and you need inidividuals to regain a sense of who you were before this awful period and what might make you happy.

Neither of you sounds as though you've behaved perfectly, but then not many people do when they are so depressed.

Take caremxx

missbopeep Thu 18-Jul-13 19:53:53

Husband read my email, and was not pleased. I responded that the silly emails were helping me stay afloat and that I didn't intend to stop the friendship

He asked you to stop the flirting- that's what is was- and you didn't.

Why, if you love and respect him?

I can't see any anywhere in all your posts that you are partly responsible for your marriage-other than your medical history- it's all your DH's fault.

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