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To feel really icky about this? DP and female colleague

(78 Posts)
feelsallicky Wed 06-May-15 12:43:07

I'm really hoping for some perspective on this.

I'm not usually a jealous person at all so I don't know if I'm just being weird.

A few weeks ago DP was telling me about his boss thinking there was something going on between him and a new woman in his job because he had seem them walking towards the bus stop together but DP was going a different way and she playfully touched his arm/shoved him as he wasn't walking with her as he normally would. DP told me this in a "this is how strange the boss is" in of way but admittedly it made me curious about her and he was saying that on the bus she's always asking him those "get to know you" questions like if you were stranded on a desert island, where would you most like to visit etc. The only other references I recall about her is when she was asking him what he was getting me for Valentines day and she told him his idea was terrible (it wasn't) and a time he bought me perfume and she smelt it and said it wasn't nice. All irrelevant but I'm trying to build the only picture I have.

I don't know why but the picture he was innocently building made it seem like she fancied him and I asked if they had swapped numbers and he said yeah actually just the other day she asked for his so she could check when the boss is on his way back.

You're probably all going to think I'm so paranoid but ordinarily I'm not at all, there's just something about this.

Anyway I said I bet she'll start finding excuses to text you and he said well yeah she did already text asking what something meant (a slang word she heard someone using as English isn't her first langauge) but she really came across quite flirty. The other night I asked if he had heard from her and he said no but in bed that night he was showing me something on whatsapp and I saw loads of new messages she'd sent him,he let me see (please don't flame me! I was upset and shocked that he had lied to me) they were completely innocent, for every two or three messages she sent him he replied maybe once being polite, nice but not at overly chatty whereas she really did seem to find any excuse to text.

The fact he lied to me really upset me and we had a big row, I hate lies, I see no reason for them. I'm not controlling or jealous so i see no reason why he'd hide it from me.

Then last night he came home and he said she wont be texting him again that she thinks he's a total weirdo now, i asked why and he said she asked about his weekend and he said it wasn't great, that he'd had a fight with me because he had lied about her texts etc. He claims he did it to nip it in the bud but I'm so hurt he would discuss our private life with the one person we had argued about.

AIBU, I really don't know if I am but this all feels scarily similar to how so many relationship threads start!

Shakey1500 Wed 06-May-15 12:51:04

Hmm. I don't know. Him telling you the boss "story" seems to me like he may be getting in their first before someone else mentions it to you/ heading you off at the pass. He may have shown you the texts etc but is that his way of pre-empting a "but I showed you the texts didn't I so of course there's nothing going on. The lying and speaking about it is completely out of order.

Think you're right to follow the gut instinct. How is he otherwise? Is he one of those who can sometimes be a bit dim about the attention from others?

feelsallicky Wed 06-May-15 12:57:17

That would have been my first thought too Shakey but he works very far away, a long commute and I don't know any of his collegues so I can't see how it would have gotten to me. But it did make me feel uneasy for the exact reasons you suggest.
Normally we're great and I used to be so proud of our relationship but that's really changed in a couple of days. He was a SAHD for the first two years of DD's life so I've never encountered these issues before though he has worked with and got on with women in work before but i never batted an eyelid!

Jackie0 Wed 06-May-15 13:02:00

He told you two were fighting because he lied about texts?
I'd go ape over that alone.
What is he doing telling her personal things?
That would kill me.

Yarp Wed 06-May-15 13:02:25

I also think you are right to trust your instincts

I also think the story he told you about the way he dealt with it is intended to put you in the wrong. And you are right to think it's not OK that he discusses you with her

Shakey1500 Wed 06-May-15 13:05:33

But did he have the sort of relationship with ex colleagues that he seems to have with this one?

It's really not on to speak to a colleague about marital discord unless you're long term, close. But this is a new colleague hmm

I'd be on my guard sadly. It may be nothing and maybe he is missing the common sense gene and genuinely can't see how wrong it is.

RB68 Wed 06-May-15 13:05:45

You are upset - but at the end of the day he wasn't having an affair he did (finally) share everything with you, he knew you would be upset (hence not sharing) but dealt with it. He then took action to tell the other person it was casuing problems. Start building some bridges and take a good hard look at your relationship and make it stronger - you only know what needs to happen. You both need to be bigger person, apologise for the way you have behaved to each other (you jealousy, lack of trust and him lying and lack of trust), acknowledge the temptation that wasn't taken up and learn to trust each other again. It does sound like generally you have a good relationship, you have to work at keeping that.

Jackie0 Wed 06-May-15 13:05:57

Told her, not you obv

shewept Wed 06-May-15 13:07:33

Personally the boss story rings alarm bells. Sorry. I worked in an office where I was one of the only people who hadn't slept with someone else from the office. I have seen people try and divert attention by making you aware of the rumour before it starts.

Personally, assuming he isn't having an affair, I think he did the right thing telling her. You want it to stop. He was honest with her. What would have preferred he told her.

I would be concerned, I would also be concerned that he hasn't actually told her to stop texting. I would be worried he had told her you suspect something so not to text for a while.

The lying is also a problem. He lied because he knew it would upset you? So you haven't been casual in your questioning. He obviously knows what you think. Lying isn't ok, but if you have made big issues out of little things I can see how it happens.

I can't say whether he is cheating or not. Some of this could be hiding an affair. Some could be innocent.

abigamarone Wed 06-May-15 13:07:57

You're not being unreasonable to feel there's something 'off' here, sometimes our instincts are spot on. There may be nothing more to worry about if it really has been nipped in the bud. I'd possibly become concerned if he started to guard his phone.

DrankSangriaInThePark Wed 06-May-15 13:09:42

Sounds a bit like mentionitis to me.

Why did he lie to you about the texts? That's the first thing I'd be getting to the bottom of.

Yarp Wed 06-May-15 13:10:07

I think I would say:

Tell me about your relationship with x? (long pause)
You have lied to me
You have discussed me with her in such a way as to undermine me. If she isn't a friend of our relationship then she should not be your friend. Your first loyalty should be to me.

Yarp Wed 06-May-15 13:10:57


I love that phrase 'mentionitis'. Spot on

feelsallicky Wed 06-May-15 13:18:20

The story about the boss thing came up kind or organically, his boss really is very eccentric and has strange ideas about women so he was really just using that as another example of how odd he is. But it did plant a seed in my head and no I can't say I was particularly subtle when asking about her. I was curious from a social point, we do talk a lot about both our work worlds and the strange characters we encounter, but also there was a niggle after hearing all the questions she asks him etc. It just reminds me so much of the sort of things you ask someone you're interested in, have started dating.

I feel sick to my stomach that he lied to me, but hearing he'd spoken about our relationship has just made me feel numb and I really don't know if it's a massive ill thought out mistake on his part or something more.

AyMamita Wed 06-May-15 13:31:34

YANBU but do keep it in proportion - trust your instincts but give him the benefit of the doubt. Definitely sounds like she's after him (the getting to know you questions made me think of this) but doesn't sound like he's done anything wrong other than lie about the texts, which was maybe more to avoid you getting upset?

I bet she will be texting him again, by the way. Think he should block her on whatsapp.

SevTSnape Wed 06-May-15 13:33:38

In all honesty, I think his intentions are good. He has told you about her, he has freely talked about her with you.
He may have sensed your feelings on the matter (seeing as you've not felt this way before, you may have come across differently to how you normally would) and tried to protect you by lying. I know it seems weird, why would he lie when there's nothing going on? But people do it to protect their loved ones' feelings, as there is literally nothing to worry about.
I did it with my ex - she was the jealous type and quite EA, so I wasn't really allowed friends that she didn't know or was jealous of, so I would often lie to her so as to spare her feelings.
The fact that he told her shows me that he found that to be the easiest way to get her to tone down the texts, to stop it from hurting you. He probably thought at this point that honesty all round would be the best course of action.
If your relationship is good, I'd just tell him (once) how it made you felt - make sure he understands before the conversation ends so that you don't have to have it again, put it behind you and move on.

ConnieBaby Wed 06-May-15 14:22:45

I think he's attracted to her and thus us his way of ensuring it goes no further-by involving you. But, trust your instincts because it could be that he wants it to go further but and is covering himself by telling you all this so that any suspicions you may have can be swept away by him saying he'd already told you at the start.

RoboticSealpup Wed 06-May-15 14:59:53

So, he lied to you, but then went ahead and told her the truth? He needs to get his priorities straight.

CarryOnCramping Wed 06-May-15 15:12:47

I'd be really upset that he'd discussed it with her. If she IS interested in him she'll get huge satisfaction from thinking she's made you feel threatened.

From the stuff you say it's hard to know if there's something off or not. But you know him, and I often find that gut instinct doesn't lie. Do you trust him?

feelsallicky Wed 06-May-15 15:30:55

I know carryon I thought about how she smug she must feel knowing she's created problems (however indirectly) if she does have a thing for him.

I can't trust him now he's blatantly lied to my face and I can't trust him not to discuss our private life with someone he claims is only a work acquaintance so I'm not really sure what to do now.
DD would be devastated if we split and I'd feel like I was ripping her family apart but I don't think I can be in a relationship with someone I can't trust.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 06-May-15 15:36:35

I think the "You'll never guess how the boss got the wrong end of the stick" conversation was a way of introducing the woman into everyday chat with you and seeing what your response would be. He was already feeling guilty so reassured himself he could air the topic and not feel like he was hiding anything from you.

Subconsciously or not it was a way of testing the water with you. If you had flown off the handle he might have defended himself saying how unreasonable and why jump to conclusions. As it was, you guessed they'd swapped numbers and correctly predicted she might start texting and oh look, yes and yes. Did he "accidentally" let you see those messages? If so why trouble to lie beforehand? So now everything is in plain sight and whatever happens, he gave you advance warning, and what's a guy to do.

Now he has told you virtuously how he explained to this woman you and he were rowing over her having his text number. That's telling her in six foot high neon letters he took the trouble to lie about messages, hints that you are seeing her as a potential threat to you two as a couple and as a result your relationship is de-stabilised.

I do not think this necesssarily means he is acting with intent but he is being very clumsy and while we can't help being attracted to new interesting people, we can try and keep our distance.

Eg Time to practise his 'poker face' for this colleague. No need to avoid her, just don't notice what she's up to. Any attention she pays him isn't special or noteworthy. Strictly professional at work, and no calls outside the office, and total indifference in social settings.

ScorpioMermaid Wed 06-May-15 15:40:13

I could've written this myself last summer except my DH and the 'girl' from work were ringing each other aswell, he went from calling me on the way home to calling her and vice versa. It killed me. she would ring him before 7am when he was at work before her DP came home from his night shift. why would she if she didnt fancy him? he assured me nothing was going on but it had me in a rage. I started having panic attacks. he doesn't work there anymore and is NC with her. (she turned out to be a fruitloop ... wanting to know everything about me that she could) i know exactly how you feel and it is not nice at all. thanks

ScorpioMermaid Wed 06-May-15 15:42:24

My DH had mentionitis aswell and lied about contact 'so I didn't get upset about it' shock hmm angry

PHANTOMnamechanger Wed 06-May-15 15:52:19

why is your DP taking the advice of a relative stranger, over what to buy you (when she has never even met you and knows nowt about you)?
why is he "opening up" to her about the fact that you rowed at all - never mind that the row was about her! Classic "my wife doesn't understand me" territory. She may be all cool and "gosh but we're just friends, she has nothing to worry about"....but then it can grow, he may well fall for the "we're just friends/I'm just a tactile person/I just get on well with blokes" line that she spins him.

sorry but I would tread very carefully if I were you OP as something smells fishy,

time for a really frank heart to heart with him about trust and respect and boundaries - a relationship has no room for a 3rd member

feelsallicky Wed 06-May-15 16:03:12

I really appreciate all the replies.

It was definitely accidental that I saw the messages and he even tried to scroll up to only the ones I knew about, but I don't know why because they were all so innocent especially on his end. The fact he didn't makes me think subconsciously he feels there's something more to this friendship. I don't know, I'm only guessing really.

It's a gut instinct I've never felt before and the weird thing is just before I drove home from work on Thursday (he was off work), he was online on whatsapp and I got the strangest feeling in the pit of my stomach that he was talking to her and it was the day and time he was.
How much does gut instinct alone count for though? It was such innocent talk, I saw it with my own eyes but why were two people he claims are mere acquaintances, chatting away together when she was in work and he was off? Surely that's much more what you do with actual friends.

Then on top of all this is the fact he lied, confided in her etc. Ugh I feel sick

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