Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
ZOMBIE THREAD ALERT: This thread hasn't been posted on for a while.
Is he having an emotional affair?(169 Posts)
DH takes his phone with him just about everywhere and is always checking for messages when I'm not around. He even takes it straight to the bathroom first thing in the morning (if he hasn't already checked it under the duvet before getting out of bed).
He is on Facebook every night messaging whilst looking at other stuff on the internet. I started to worry about him being so secretive and have been trying to see who he's messaging on FB and it's always the same person. He has exchanged messages with her every day since I started paying attention to it all but it's been going on for months. I can't see what they are typing and he hides it if I get too close.
I asked him who she was and he said just a friend. I told him I wasn't happy with the amount of time he was devoting to her and he got very defensive saying that she was the best friend he had had in years. Since then he is still messaging her except the message box is now minimised to the tiniest size on the furthest side of the screen from where I sit.
I've read on here about emotional affairs but at what point does a friendship cross the line and become an emotional affair. I've no idea what the content of the messages is and no way of checking due to passwords. I briefly see her commenting on his FB posts and these can include a heart or xx at the end but then I sometimes do that with my friends. Any opinions?
Don't know if it's an affair but would he be like this with a male best friend? Constant messaging, checking phone as soon as he opens eyes.. Don't think so. There is definitely too much invested on his side. The fact that he is defensive suggests guilt too I think. Female friends can be totally harmless, but this doesn't sound right.
I crosses the line when one spouse is keeping secrets from the other and/or lying about the extent and the nature of the contact.
Very weird. I text and FB my friends a lot, male and female, but I would not feel the need to hide it from OH and even though I am addicted to my crackberry I don't feel the need to be constantly attached to it
Saying she is the best friend he's had in years is cause for concern.
How long have you been married?
We've been married for 14 years and his exact comment was "she's the best friend I've had in 14 years".
I'd be extremely concerned, to the extent that if it were me I'd be asking him to let me look. If it's all above board then there's nothing to hide and he'll let you look. If he again gets defensive, makes negative comments such as before, then I'd ask him what he's hiding and if he'd like to go and stay elsewhere while he considers his feelings and if this "friendship" is more important to him than your marriage.
Actually, not just for him to think about his feelings, but to give you time to consider yours too.
Could you not have an educate guess at what his password might be?
I'd be really concerned about this too. That was a horrible thing to say re the best friend he's had in 14 years. Does he log out of FB every time? Is his phone password protected too?
He is being secretive and very unfair here. He can't seem to see that his behaviour is very hurtful because he's getting himself a right old ego boost from this 'friend'. Who is she? How did they meet? Do they meet up in RL or is it just on-line?
I'd be tempted to keep schtum for now until I could get some further info. If you alert him to your concerns, he'll just delete everything.
Even if it's entirely innocent, it's having an impact on your relationship now and he should listen to your concerns.
I would sit him down and tell him how you feel, ask him to let you see the messages. Gauge his reaction and take it from there.
He is being very hurtful telling you she is the best friend he's ever had. I would be devastated if I was in the position you're in.
The level of contact frequency even if limited to FB is probably ever increasing. All time and effort that could be put to other use. The friend may not be local but at this rate a face to face encounter must be on the cards? Is she a colleague or old girlfriend?
It should be a household rule that phones and laptops get left in another room during meals or sitting around between evening meal and bedtime. Sorry OP but have read on threads here regarding affairs more than once, some spouse or partner actually sits a few feet away or delays bedtime blatantly texting or FBing a 3rd party. To contort an old saying, if it looks like an ea and sounds like an ea, you'd do well to try get his attention.
I am sorry, but he has crossed the line. If he is exchanging messages with a woman, that he doesn't want you to see, then he is having an Emotional Affair. This is my story...
XH didn't like his best mates wife, didn't have her mobile number. Gave her a couple of lifts to Uni, spent some time with her, started talking about her all the time. Felt sorry for her. She cried all over him about the loss of her baby in 2007.
XH walked out on me with no warning Feb 2012, came back, walked out again at Easter.
I then discovered facebook flirty chat, daily emails and thousands of texts a month to this woman. Everything with a xx at the end of it, which he never did to anybody. Sending her motivational emails telling her that everything will work out OK in the end. Claiming that they were just supporting each other emotionally, because her H couldnt support her. He bought her lovely birthday presents, spent the day with her on her birthday. All while I thought that we were working things out.
When a man is texting OW from 8am til midnight all day every day, when its the first thing that he does in the morning and the last thing he does at night, when he spends all night in the office on the computer on facebook, you know its not right.
While my XH was supposed to be working on our marriage, he was texting her all day every day, therefore his head was full of her, it wasnt full of me and our then 3yo DD. He even emailed her right through our family holiday, texted her throughout family days out, family events, he could not live without the contact.
My XH kept his phone on him at all times, he slept with it beside the bed. He wouldnt let me near it. He deleted all texts and emails so that I couldnt read them, it was only by chance that I found the things that I did. he took it into the toilet with him, to the utility room, if he popped to the shop, he took it every where that he went.
I divorced him in November 2012 because he was adamant that it was over, that he would not come back. and he was still texting that woman. A woman who is married to his best friend and who married her first husband while cheating on him with the man who would become her second.
People always recommend this link
I am really sorry for you, but your H has crossed the line, he IS cheating on you and you need to put a stop to it. you need to see if you can find any evidence and then the best thing that you could do is tell him that it is not acceptable and ask him to leave while you both consider your options.
But you do need to prepare yourself, that it may be more than just emotional. But don't let yourself be taken for a fool like I was.
you are his wife, you are supposed to be his best friend.
It's the fact that he's hiding this communication from you. I get a bit irritated if my husband looks over my shoulder when I'm typing to myriad friends (both sexes) - but I'm happy to hand over my laptop at any time for him to look at what we were talking about. He never asks, but he knows he can.
So sorry, OP, this looks very bad. How much time does he spend with his other friends and, when you add it up, how much time does he spend talking to YOU?
<waves to Sky \o/...>
Your comment about a husband/wife being your best friend made me smile. I reminded me of when I was about 8 and I asked my mum who her best friend was, and she said my dad - I remember saying, "No, your PROPER best friend, who has to be a lady cos you're a lady...". I just wouldn't be told.
Sorry... as you were.
Secretive, obsessive and defensive when challenged....
... if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck....
Thanks for all your replies. I think I've been trying to kid myself that it isn't really happening and I'm just reading too much into it.
I've tried accessing his various accounts but he is very good with passwords and they will be completely random letters, numbers and symbols so i really don't stand any chance there.
All I've found out about her is that she's not married and is 10 years younger than me. She is a French singer/songwriter although not very successful from what I can see. I've just found a few pages about her songs so will go and have a look at those in a minute.
She isn't local but they have met once for the day and dh knew I wasn't happy about it. I think she'll be coming here again in a couple of months and there is no way they are meeting up again.
Why not turn it around? Say how lovely it is that he has a new friend and why doesn't she come over for lunch or something... You'll quickly find out how he regards Mademoiselle Chanteuse that way.
He's met up with her knowing you were pissed off, cheeky bastard!
I don't believe it. Her latest song which she published a week after they met is all about someone who is asking for forgiveness because they are in love with a person who they are not supposed to be in love with. It includes the line "if loves a crime then we're guilty". DH has commented on the bottom with a heart. Fuck...
Oh dear Fern, sorry to read that.
Fern - i have been there. Read some of my earlier threads. It's a shame that the very first one I posted was deleted, because I was saying that XH was texting this woman hundreds of times a day, but there was nothing going on because she was married to his best mate and that there was no way he would do that and she needed emotional support blah blah blah. It took a good kick up the arse from MN to make me see it for what it really was, which was extremely inappropriate behaviour.
i was desperate for my XH to come back because I was in shock and I just couldnt see it for what it was.
You have the advantage now. You need to trust your instinct. You need to have this conversation with your H. The contact needs to stop. you need to know exactly what messages they have been exchanging. If he wont show you then that speaks for itself. Dont take any crap from him about invading his pricacy or snooping or anything like that. He is in the wrong and he will defend himself in any way he can by lying and trying to make it look like you are in the wrong.
If there is any way of stopping this - and if you want to save your marriage - then you need to have that conversation with him, then ask him to leave while YOU consider what you want. He may go to her, if he does, then that is up to him. You do not want to be with a man who is now treating you like second best.
You need to be strong now. It's not easy, but we are all here to support you. Get some real life support too, tell friends and family.
I was with my XH for ten years, married for six. I have been to hell and back this past year trying to get through it, but I started on the back foot because my XH just walked out with no warning. Don't let that be you. This is your marriage, your life. Decide what you want to do.
She's the best friend I've had in 14 years - that must have felt like such a kick in the teeth. It sounds like an EA. He is investing in her and them, rather than you and the two of you as a couple.
Where did he meet her, and how? How long ago? I wonder if it is a mutual thing, a proper EA, or if he is just completely smitten with her from afar and she is flattered and keeping him dangling?
What is your life like together? Do you do stuff together, go out, have hobbies, have a laugh together?
Fern and For all we know she has lots of correspondents panting over her, she doesn't owe you anything but he does, and there he is, moping after her. It's a big leap from daydreaming about someone and hanging on their every word to actually doing something about it. Even so he is p*ssing me off and I don't even know him. I'm sure he is every woman's dream but while Fern is loyally washing his kecks and getting dinner ready, Mademoiselle Chanteuse is magically his 'best friend'.
Do you and he have children together?
it doesn't really matter how far it's gone or whether it's one sided does it? the bottom line is that he has something in his life that he prefers to hide from you than share, and is focussed on feeding it to the detriment of finding out how you feel about it, and how he can make you feel better about it.
the only question is what is the best next step for you. how far down the rabbit hole is he - would he respond to the idea of joint counselling, would a scheduled, serious talk about how you are both feeling hit the nerve, or would he simply deny, smooth over in either instance?
DH and i have personal obsessions with hobbies that cause us to be reading iphones late into the night (mine is MN, his various twitter accounts or websites), and we also have various celebs we fancy, but we can chat about all of these, politely humour each other's interests and laugh about our own ridiculousness as necessary, without having to shield our words from view.
Join the discussion
Please login first.