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Friend is OW

(180 Posts)
giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 01:23:29

I'm so beyond frustrated with my friend, she's been having an affair for over a year with a married man. Man has a wife and 2 kids (young adult & late teens) who he says he can't leave as he doesn't want to upset the kids. I've made it very very clear to friend I don't approve of the situation. She says she is not the one who is cheating, she's single etc. Lacks any general guilt. This person is a nurse, empathetic and caring normally but in this situation she seems to have set that all aside for his family as she feels she was won a "prize" and can't believe someone like him would "choose her"

Today she bumped into the wife (knows her from online stalking) and seemed to find this quiet thrilling when regaling the story. How the wife wasn't much to look at etc. I'm beyond frustrated how can you gleam any joy from this situation?

I'm actually thinking of cutting this friend out of my life. I can't handle her talking about this anymore. It's driving me mental. What would you guys do?

polarpig Sat 30-Mar-19 01:26:50

I'd be distancing myself if they were my friend.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Sat 30-Mar-19 01:28:29

I'd mind my own business and not project my morals/standards/whatever you choose to call them onto someone else. Other peoples relationships are invariably boring. She will get burned, when she does be her friend, pick up the pieces and dust her off. Until then, if you really don't want to talk about her love life, distance yourself from it.

Sunshine1239 Sat 30-Mar-19 01:29:51

It would annoy me -I’m not sure I could tolerate being around her. That said he’s the one cheating so I guess it’d try to avoid discussing it and cut contact if she didn’t respect my opinion

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 01:32:17

I'd be feeling a bit sick tbh.

I certainly wouldn't want to hear her sick excitement at her power over this poor woman who has no idea who she is. It's vile.

I agree, the guilt is totally on him for breaking his marriage vows,but she's being pretty naïve to believe his reasons for staying etc, and also a bit bonkers to want to be with someone who's already with someone!

So on many levels would struggle with a friend of mine doing this.

On the sad side, I don't think she rates herself terribly highly to be doing this. Poor self-esteem.

I guess it does depend what lines this guy is feeding that she's swallowing though.

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 01:32:20

I can't seem to avoid talking about it as she will pop over unannounced to tell me snippets of said relationship.

@PlainSpeakingStraightTalking I know I shouldn't project my morals but I just can't condone someone getting joy out someone else possibly getting hurt. I can't emotionally connect with that on any level.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Sat 30-Mar-19 01:33:41

Which is why I say to distance yourself.

Other peoples relationships are tedious.

FissionChips Sat 30-Mar-19 01:36:07

Tell her you don’t want to hear about it. Then when it all falls apart laugh in her face.

homethenababy Sat 30-Mar-19 01:37:18

I could probably tolerate it up to the point until she starts slating the wife. Is it not bad enough she's shagging her husband that she has to be nasty about her too? Smacks of insecurity to me.

I had a colleague once who suddenly split with her fiancée and got together with their mutual friend (they were couple friends with her ex-fiancée and his ex-gf) she spent a lot of time at work FB stalking his ex and slagging her off. Felt sorry for the ex-gf as she had already "stolen" her bf. She also supported/suggested she had an abortion a few months previously. She herself was pregnant with her new bf 3 months after they got together. The mind boggles.

It's all well and good saying "I'm not the one cheating" but where are her morals. Still, what goes around comes around as they say.

KellyW88 Sat 30-Mar-19 01:42:05

Wow - just wow... I’m with you on the situation having experiencing something similar when my friend started sleeping with our manager knowing full well that he was married had two young children with his wife and they were expecting their third!

This Manager was also a known adulterer and only started approaching my friend because he had failed with several other women in the department, myself included... it eventually came out that he read through the personal files looking for women who had been documented as suffering from mental illness (mainly if they had suffered from depression at any point during employment) - so he could use the information provided in “return to work” meetings to attempt to seduce them, with me he knew I had recently ended an abusive relationship so would often tell me how he’d protect me if I were with him, how he wished he could meet my ex so he could beat the crap out of him etc. - so a total scumbag, thankfully as I’d just left a total scumbag I didn’t fall for his routine. I lost that job after turning him down despite reporting his behaviour to HR... ah well.

Back to the point, she has struggled for years with severe body image issues, she is really fit after years of hard work to lose a lot of weight, because of her obsession with not going back to the weight she had been she developed a serious food aversion and he used this to get to her, she had the rose tinted glasses, was convinced she could get him to leave his wife/family as she was “younger and thinner”... I tried to tell her how he was using information she hadn’t told him to manipulate her and she wouldn’t listen - I decided after she said that, that this friend was not the person I knew anymore and yeah, after that I cut her out of my life, making it clear I just couldn’t consider her a person I liked or could get on with at this point. But I didn’t close the door completely - I said if she ever finds herself in the situation where the affair ends and she needs to talk, to give me a call and I’ll be there - sadly haven’t heard anything from her yet, but hope one day I will.

I don’t know if this will help, it’s just the circumstance I found myself in :/

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 01:42:51

@FissionChips I couldn't laugh

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 01:47:24

The reason I haven't distanced myself so far is that she is incredibly insecure and vulnerable. Which is why she can't believe her luck that's she's bagged such a 'great guy'

But he's not great, he's a cheater, he's a liar, he's also sleeping with men as he is bi which she knows about. She constantly analyzes why he's cheating, why he's with her, why he behaves the way he does but doesn't look at the reasons for her own behaviour in all of this?

I've sat on the fence and listened and made it clear I don't support both their behaviour but she still offloads on me

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 01:50:30

@KellyW88 Jesus he sounds like a nasty piece of work! And isn't that against data protection? Surely that's emotionally abusive behaviour right there!

And thanks for the tip, leaving her know I'll be there for her down the line is a really good point. She is a good person deep down, it makes me sad that she is settling for this situation

LilQueenie Sat 30-Mar-19 01:55:29

Tell her you found out the wife is related to you in some way you just found out about.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Sat 30-Mar-19 01:56:18

@Kelly888 - what have HR done about this person? he's exploitative, grooming vulnerable women, undermining the work force.

Interesting that you accept he grooms and manipulates people yet you chose to isolate out your friend. That's how abusers work, they make sure their victim is isolated, you did his work for him there.

WeBuiltThisBuffetOnSausageRoll Sat 30-Mar-19 02:03:59

Technically, she isn't the one who's cheating. In the same way that the getaway car driver isn't the one who's robbing the post office with a gun....

I couldn't stay friends with somebody like this. She clearly couldn't care less about the man's poor wife, but she's also willing to devastate the children's lives (even though they are older).

Even if she only cares about herself and her own happiness, she does realise, doesn't she, that if she is hoping for any kind of committed longer-term relationship with him, she's deliberately choosing somebody who has gone out of his way to explicitly demonstrate that he is NOT interested in, or to be trusted to keep to, that kind of relationship? It's a bit like seeing somebody who's beating a puppy and then choosing them to ask them to babysit for you.

KellyW88 Sat 30-Mar-19 02:04:10


Oh he was, sadly I was the first forward and so to avoid the company facing a messy investigation they opted to sack me instead. It came out a few years later after several other women came forward and the company couldn’t ignore it anymore. He was promptly fired at that point (along with a few other managers who had also been sleeping with employees) but when I tried to take my case back to them I had no real response and couldn’t afford any legal help.

But yeah, I know my friend was one of those who came forward afterwards and that she is no longer seeing him (mutual friends update me occasionally) but I haven’t heard anything from her as of yet. She has a good heart and given what I know of how he operated and her low self esteem at the time they were seeing each other, I think she just clung to the persona he presented. So I’m currently debating whether to take action first and message her to see if we can’t forge a new friendship, now that we’ve both grown up a fair bit, she is now in a stable healthy relationship and whilst she still has body image issues, he balances her and she balances him and I became a Mummy - complete life overhaul :’)

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 02:14:10

@WeBuiltThisBuffetOnSausageRoll see this is my problem, she has chosen this. But she has also come from a life whereby her father had regular affairs on her mother. She has a terrible relationship with her father now. But part of me wonders if this history is steering her somewhat. That's why I've been patient so far but I've just reached a point where I can't listen to the bullshit anymore

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 02:14:46

She wants me to come over tomorrow, what should I text? Should I tell her how frustrated I am with the situation etc?

Sparklesocks Sat 30-Mar-19 02:15:58

Deep down she knows this man doesn’t love her, if he did he would leave for her. This way he gets to tap her up for sex whenever she likes and still come home to his wife and family. She feeds off the drama and excitement because that’s all she has. She is second best, she always will be.

Confident, happy and secure people don’t engage in affairs because they don’t need validation in that way. She’s clearly very insecure.

It might be best to distance yourself so she can understand that people aren’t ever going to be supportive of this type of relationship. If you can’t do that, very firmly tell her you don’t want to hear about it anymore - you’re not interested and aren’t supportive of cheating. Shut her down every time she brings it up.

But really she is not a happy person if this is how she finds validation. It’s a very miserable existence.

AceOfSpades123 Sat 30-Mar-19 02:21:53

I dumped a friend for this exact thing. She kept sleeping with married men and then doing the “well it’s not my problem, I’m single” thing. Put me off her massively.

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 02:28:50

Agree to meet up, bit if she starts simply say 'just stop', 'I don't know if you realise how deeply upsetting I find a this'

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 02:31:55

She needs a friend as is clearly insecure,but goodness only knows what he says to her about his feelings for her and his wife!

She needs a friend bit she can't assume you are ok with this. That you don't find it fun y or in any way exciting but sad, and quite cruel.

I think her cruelty towards his wife would show me a side of a friend I wouldn't like and probably wouldn't be comfortable to stick with

SleepingBeautyonwheels Sat 30-Mar-19 02:48:44

I would be tempted to ask your friend whether she has at any point considered the sexual health of herself and this mans wife! Or whether she really believes that she has won a prize, when he is not only still sleeping with his wife, but shagging other men and women on the side. That means he has zero care for her or anyone, he is purely using her for sex and is a dangerous, manipulative and cruel man to risk the sexual health of his wife like that.

I am honestly gobsmacked that a nurse would willingly endanger her own sexual health and allow this man to endanger his wives sexual health when she knows he is engaging in multiple sexual relationships with both sexes.

Let me guess, this man is a doctor/ consultant/ surgeon...

JAPAB Sat 30-Mar-19 03:48:08

"echnically, she isn't the one who's cheating. In the same way that the getaway car driver isn't the one who's robbing the post office with a gun...."

There's all sorts of examples to show up the oddness of this thinking. The person who buys a fur coat or cosmetics tested on animals isn't the one killing animals and performing animal cruelty. Let a drunk friend borrow your car and if someone gets hurt well it wasn't you that was drink driving.

I suppose it comes down to whether you think providing tools amd assistence to someone else in their harmful endeavours is itself morally neutral.

Anyway, Knowing the harm adultery can cause I would struggle if a friend was doing it. And them acting like providing the tools/assistance for it doesn't elevate them from the status of 'innocent bystander' would also grate.

at the bare minimum I would make clear that I just don't want to hear about it.

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 05:32:40

@SleepingBeautyonwheels editor in chief of a major national paper (not in the UK) so very high up, intelligent, well connected blah blah blah

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 05:37:11

I have told her multiple times I don't in anyway condone the relationship, I've encouraged her to get counselling to help with her insecurities. And encouraged hobbies, self care techniques etc

I was so hurt when she was smiling about telling me she had bumped into this mans wife. I couldn't even look at her when she was telling the story. It's like she got a thrill from it.

I'm useless with confrontation so I just stayed quiet while she was chatting. Eventually making an excuse as to how to leave.

What do I say to someone to say I don't condone it, but I'll here there for her when it all falls apart?

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 05:40:49

Aaagghhh I don't know what to write in the text this is so hard

HelloDarlin Sat 30-Mar-19 05:44:22

She’ll regret it when it’s all over.
Hopefully remorse for her actions & not feeling hurt / sorry for herself.
She’s caught up in the danger / romance / saga of the wife right now, but the scales will fall away...

Ilove31415926535 Sat 30-Mar-19 05:44:38

If I were you, the next time she started spouting about how ugly the wife is, I'd say, quietly and calmly, 'you don't have to put her down to feel better about yourself. You're sleeping with her husband, and that could ruin everything for her' then be quiet and let the chips fall where they may.
That's what she's doing. She may be vulnerable and insecure and all that, but she's also playing a part in potentially ruining another woman's self esteem. Yes, the husband is too, and I judge him just as harshly, but you can only talk to her.
Perhaps if she has to face up to the truth of making someone else feel as she feels she'll have a flash of conscience. Perhaps not. Only you know what type of person she is. But, and I do mean this, this shows you what type of person she is. And we are the people we hang out with. Everyone makes mistakes, but this one is a massive one, that affects other people.

MaverickSnoopy Sat 30-Mar-19 05:51:05

I would say to her that you don't want to hear about it anymore. She knows you don't condone it so back that up by saying you don't want to know.

I have been in this situation. Friend actively pursued married colleague whose wife (we also worked with) was on mat leave 2. She targeted him and slowly built up a friendship into am emotional and eventually physical affair. She was so proud of herself and showed no empathy at all. He was your run of the mill Mr nice guy - a bit geeky and clumsy and you would never think he would cheat, except he did. Yes I know she was single but I felt sick every time she'd come up with another manipulative plan to "win" him. In the end I distanced myself, largely because even though she knew I didn't condone it, she expected me to be on her "side" and support her. I just couldn't.

Bossinger Sat 30-Mar-19 05:51:28

Text her that until she sees sense you have to walk away.

crispysausagerolls Sat 30-Mar-19 05:57:03

Look, it’s a shit thing she is doing but she is your friend. Which in my book means being there for her through whatever ridiculous decisions she makes and trying not to judge. If she is an important friend to you just be there - you know it won’t end well. By all means be honest with her or tell her you don’t think it’s funny when she tells you stuff with glee, but it sounds like she’s a mess and making stupid decisions because of it. I’ve had 2 friends do similar and both of them were fairly emotionally damaged from different issues and grew out of it. It’s unpleasant but the reality is the man is the real arsehole and probably would’ve cheated with whoever.


Having said all this, your story has chilled me to the absolute core. Jesus fucking Christ what a horrible person!!!!!!

kateandme Sat 30-Mar-19 06:08:36

you see I don't get the "shes not cheating " thing.because morally I just wouldn't go with someone who was with someone else.i would leave/stayaway from someone even if id fallen in love with this person.i couldn't be someones 'cheat'.i don't think it would be in me even. that that stepping over the boundaries would happen because the attraction wouldn't occur because id no they were married if that makes sense so theres that automatic no go zone around those people.
only with circumstance abuse.emotional vulnerabilities can I begin to understand little

CarlGrimesMissingEye Sat 30-Mar-19 06:32:26

Just tell her the truth.

"You're my friend, I love you, but I do not want to hear anymore about your relationship for as long as you are with a married man and having an affair. It makes me uncomfortable. So we can talk about something else or we can just chat over message for a while"

TeddybearBaby Sat 30-Mar-19 06:33:45

Hi the thing is I don’t agree with the poster who said that you’re projecting your own morals........ so what? Say she was a racist, should you have to listen to that as well? I think your own mental health is important here as well as your friends and it sounds to me like you’ve had enough. A text from me to a friend would read something like this......

Dear X, I feel I need to write to you about our friendship lately because I’m no longer enjoying it tbh. Your love life is your business and I’d like to be able to support you but I’m not sure how I can do that when it means laughing at the ugliness of a woman who is being betrayed in the worst way. I have tried to speak to you about counselling and why you feel so low that this relationship is the best you can do and actually feel ‘lucky’ to be in it, but you don’t hear that or maybe you don’t want to? I’m not sure where to go from here?

Dimsumlosesum Sat 30-Mar-19 06:56:34

In the same way that the getaway car driver isn't the one who's robbing the post office with a gun....

The getaway driver still gets done though for the part they played in the "crime"...if adultery were punishable by jailtime (if only), the mistress would be punished too.

OP, my mothers best friend is also an OW, made worse by the fact she was cheated on by her own husband with her best friend, so she understands the bone crushing life altering pain being cheated on causes, but she chooses to do it anyway to another unsuspecting woman. Like you say too, she has so little self belief/self worth that she honestly thinks that by him "choosing" her it must mean she is worth something. I refuse to entertain any talk from her about "her man", I change the subject when she talks about it, her family refuse to let her talk about him, but still, she remains in a relationship with him, being fed all the usual lies men tell women and believing them all. It's not the first time she's been an OW either, she even got punched in the face by the wife when she found out once (whilst the husband watched). But she never learns.

All we can do is never ever entertain even a moment of her talking about it, to tell her we don't want to hear about it, it hurts us to even hear her talking about it etc.

LL83 Sat 30-Mar-19 07:03:52

I would say "I have told you I dont want to hear about this." Every time. If it's all she wants to talk about she may distance herself from you, but no great loss.

SerenDippitty Sat 30-Mar-19 07:07:27

This person is a nurse, empathetic and caring normally but in this situation she seems to have set that all aside for his family as she feels she was won a "prize" and can't believe someone like him would "choose her"

But he hasn’t really chosen her, he is just choosing to have sex with her while remaining married to someone else. She obviously has low self esteem and this sort of man preys on that.

Serin Sat 30-Mar-19 07:10:32

I lost a good friend in very similair circumstances. Except both parties were married and her husband was also a good mate.
I chose to stand by him.

Whereisthegin1978 Sat 30-Mar-19 07:18:17

I’d tell the wife (anonymously if you want). My dad had affairs for years - others knew and never said anything. When he left my mum after 30 years of marriage and it came out she was distraught and has never got over it - especially the fact that the whole small town they lived in seem to know. She’s wishes someone had let her know.

Blahdeblahbahhhhh Sat 30-Mar-19 07:24:57

At the end of the day, regardless of anything else, her behaviour is really unkind. That is my standard for friends- that most of the time they are kind.
Personally I would say I care about her but can’t see her while this situations continues.
I’d feel sorry for her but more sorry for the people she shows no compassion for.

Amongstthetallgrass Sat 30-Mar-19 07:33:51

Tbh I think your getting a thrilll from the drama of it to...

ResistanceIsNecessary Sat 30-Mar-19 07:38:28

Text her and say: I'm not coming over because I don't want to talk about your affair with X. You are my friend and I care about you, but I'm shocked by your nasty comments about his wife.

thedisorganisedmum Sat 30-Mar-19 07:50:53

I've made it very very clear to friend I don't approve of the situation.

so what? you are not her mother, it's none of your business.
Your friend is stupid if she believes her boyfriend is staying with his wife because of the kids, but that's not your problem.
You can just tell her you don't agree, so you don't want to talk about it at all.

Janedoughnut Sat 30-Mar-19 07:56:12

Text her and say: I'm not coming over because I don't want to talk about your affair with X. You are my friend and I care about you, but I'm shocked by your nasty comments about his wife.

I'd do this.

Hwory Sat 30-Mar-19 08:00:35

Personally I would tell her straightly how you feel about and distance yourself.

Be prepared for this to go on for years if she’s that gullible to believe his lies of you choose to stick around to hear about it.

I’m a big believer in the people you choose to have around you are a reflection on yourself and your own morals. There are so many people in this world to be friends with why choose to spend time with someone that’s okay with hurting people with no guilt?

happymum12345 Sat 30-Mar-19 08:05:20

If the man is unfaithful to his wife, then I can’t imagine how insecure that would make your already vulnerable friend in the future as he would no doubt cheat on her too. If you’ve told her how wrong it is having an affair with a married man & how much hurt will be involved on all sides, all you can do is be there for her when it all goes wrong. My heart goes out to his wife.

SoupDragon Sat 30-Mar-19 08:08:18

I would have cut her out of my life as soon as I found out about the affair.

She says she is not the one who is cheating

I hate this sort of pathetic attempt to claim innocence of all wrong doing. It's like saying the get away driver isn't complicit in the bank robbery because they weren't in the bank. She knows he is married with children, she is just as guilty of despicable behaviour.

malificent7 Sat 30-Mar-19 08:08:19

Dump her. She's a bitch. How could you trust her again.

winbinin Sat 30-Mar-19 08:10:27

I would be troubled by this too. The thing that really tipped the balance for me was the gloating over the wife. I can accept that you can’t choose who you love so wouldn’t judge her for falling for a married man (although I totally judge him for cheating) but the gloating would be a step too far.

I would text her and say ‘I would love to see you but can we agree you won’t talk about X or his wife because I feel very sorry for her and it’s making me feel uncomfortable’. Then take it from there. If it does lead to a falling out you can make it clear that you will still be there for her if the situation changes in the future.

IDk if you are projecting your own morals on to your friend here. But if you are I don’t think that is necessarily a bad thing. If a belief or value really matters to you it isn’t wrong to stand by it.

TheStoic Sat 30-Mar-19 08:13:35

Aaagghhh I don't know what to write in the text this is so hard.

I’m sure you’ll come up with something. Be sure to keep us posted. 🙄

YourEggnogIsBetterThanMine Sat 30-Mar-19 08:15:57

I'd mind my own business and not project my morals/standards/whatever you choose to call them onto someone else

I'd absolutely project my morals in this case. Your friend is a terrible person.

UnPocoLoco2 Sat 30-Mar-19 08:16:22

She's made her choice. You cannot talk sense into crazy 😜

louisvootin Sat 30-Mar-19 08:17:27


acatcalledjohn Sat 30-Mar-19 08:21:43

I feel sorry for his wife, much like her mother. She is no better than all those women her own dad shagged.

Mememeplease Sat 30-Mar-19 08:29:13

Well if you are considering dumping her because of it, isn't a better option to be totally honest first?

Text if you can't do it face to face.

"I love having you as a friend but to be honest I'm finding it really difficult to listen to you talk about x all the time. I know he's important to you but all I can think about is his poor wife and how I'd feel in her situation. It's getting to the point where I don't want to see you at all because of it. Obviously I don't want to lose you as you are a good friend so we need to stop discussing it when I see you. I know that will be hard but it's the only way I can think of, as I just don't want to be involved with it all any more."

LonelyTiredandLow Sat 30-Mar-19 08:29:22

I had a friend who did this - the level of self deception is insane. In her instance both of them were married and having an affair with each other. She stalked the wife, said very similar stuff and found it thrilling she was thinner/had a better degree/nicer hair etc. What she completely overlooked was that the man she was prancing about with like an irresponsible teen was a balding beardly hobbit-looking man who clearly had a lot of issues. They did eventually leave their respective partners after about a year of sneaking about, after lying about it to suspicious partners, then they kept it secret for about 3 months before officially "starting" their relationship. It's not going as well now that there's no secrecy and their partners have moved on without much fuss.

I've cut down on contact as I saw how easy it was for her to fool herself and make out how fine it was to lie to her husband and spin the situation to make her the hard done by victim. Yes she needed a boost at the time, but breaking up her own home as well as his (they both have kids) because she needed a confidence boost was highly irresponsible and selfish IMO. You can decide whether this woman has better qualities, but it does say a lot about someone if they can carry this on for more than a few months without feeling any guilt at all.

Caterinaballerina Sat 30-Mar-19 08:41:47

I can’t believe all these posts stating the man is the one cheating. Yes he is the one well and truly having his cake and eating it but is not the only one responsible for this relationship and for the pain that could be caused to his wife. I’d feel a little more sympathy for your friend if she hadn’t known he was married from the start but this seems like a simple ‘how would you feel if you were the wife?’ question needs to be asked of her. I’d also echo the advice to tell her you are cooking the friendship and won’t talk about her relationship but will be there when it ends.

October60 Sat 30-Mar-19 10:01:58

I have had friends in this situation.

The first friend I distanced myself from as I felt uncomfortable about the relationship and I worked with them both.

I regretted this later - I felt I shouldn't have judged her, she'd got herself into a difficult situation and she was my friend first and foremost. The affair ended and our friendship is lukewarm only.

The second drove me nuts with her obsessive talk about the married man. But whatever the ethics, she was in love and in pain and needed support. It ended badly - it generally does - and I was there for her then.

It was worse for her, being a single OW like your friend, than for the first friend, who was also married. I couldn't fully understand the turmoil but I remember she found some support on an online forum which perhaps you could suggest. And try and drag her out for something distracting - my second friend was so focussed on this man that her life diminished.

Slazengerbag Sat 30-Mar-19 10:10:10

I couldn’t be friends with her anymore. Yes he is the one cheating but she knows this. She is willingly in a relationship with a married man who has children. To knowingly hurt others for your own gain is awful.

It sounds like she is enjoying the thrill of it all. Seeing his wife and the excitement of telling you... if he does leave his family the excitement will be gone and replaced with the baggage that comes with a father and ex husband. It won’t be very thrilling then.

thethoughtfox Sat 30-Mar-19 10:14:18

She could target your partner next.

Vulpine Sat 30-Mar-19 10:18:50

I would absolutely 'project my morals' too. It's shitty behaviour

iloveyorkshirepuds Sat 30-Mar-19 10:28:16

I had a friend who was the other woman.
I couldn't stomach it and we drifted apart. I just slowly but surely distanced myself because I simply couldn't make peace with it.
She got married to him recently and I cried at the wedding, and on the way home, and the next day! I couldn't stop. It just felt so wrong... for me.
But who am I to judge? She's happy and they are planning a family.

EnoughLifeLessons Sat 30-Mar-19 10:32:18

I actually think I wouldn't distance myself from her. I know plenty of people who are good as friends/co-workers but make disastruous decisions about relationships. She sounds insecure and all that. It's the married man that is in the wrong here, 100%. But that's a controversial opinion.

Although I'm not sure I'd just sit there to listen to her talk about all of it. Don't indulge her.

malificent7 Sat 30-Mar-19 10:38:16

Friends should not be friends under any circumstances though. Friends should be friends only as long as you can resonate with their behaviour and beliefs.
Why should you be friends woth somwone who vlearly dosn't like otjer women and sees them as competition. Why should you support her in her shitty behaviour.
He made the vows bit she has no idea about girl code.

Dohangoversgetworseasyougetold Sat 30-Mar-19 10:42:35

My mother went through a long phase of behaving like your friend when I was in my teens and early twenties. At the time, I completely bought into her explanations about it being true love (and then it was true love with the next guy, etc). I was never comfortable with her nastiness about the wives, though. One of them was apparently a horrible undeserving wife because she was a bit overweight and had some unspecified chronic condition; the other was damned for "looking like a slapper" . I think the "moment of truth" for me was when my mother found out that Married Guy No. 2 was cheating on her and she was absolutely livid ("how dare he do this to ME?"). Obviously, I didn't ditch her as she's my mother, but I did say I didn't want to listen to the details anymore.

Purplejay Sat 30-Mar-19 10:44:11

I am encouraged by the negativity against the OW. Sometimes I feel I am going mad because I hold my H’s girlfriend responsible for the end of my marriage. I feel better to know it is normal to feel the way I do. They began an affair early 2018 and he left in May.

They both seemed the think we could all be friends but hell will freeze over first.

He initially said he would leave her and asked her to stop messaging but she didn’t and he didn’t stay away. In the summer he did stop seeing her for a time and told me lots of negative things about her. When I wouldn’t have him back, they are back together - I don’t think they split for more than a couple of weeks..

I do compare myself to her. She is slim, blonde, puts herself out as a free spirit. I saw a gloaty email from her during the affair saying ‘how can purple not realise?!’ Because he was a good lier thats how. I would be mortified to think she was slagging me off to her friends.

I doubt I will ever stop hating her for what she did to our family. She should have stayed away. When he asked her to go for a walk, she should have said no. Instead she began pushing him to see him in the evenings, sending long emails, texting all the time, wanting to do things so he would be out late. I soon began to suspect. It was her plan I would find out and I did. I don’t think it was his intention. He wanted to have his cake and eat it. I blame him too of course but I truly hope none of her dreams come true.

I couldn’t be friends with someone who would do that to another person.

contrary13 Sat 30-Mar-19 10:50:02

"...he has so little self belief/self worth that she honestly thinks that by him "choosing" her it must mean she is worth something..."


Many years ago, one of my friends was dumped on by a bloke whom we went to school with. She was so enamoured with this bloke that she even followed him into the same university - then couldn't understand why he wanted to date/sleep with other women whom he met there, rather than with her. She started dating one of his new friends, purely in an effort to make this bloke we went to school with jealous. In hindsight, I think he must have known how my friend felt, but simply continued - in a self-absorbed sort of 18/19 year old way - to ignore it. My friend's boyfriend fell very deeply in love with her, proposed, a giant wedding was planned. We must have been 20/21 at this stage. The boyfriend was, actually, quite lovely - he clearly adored my friend, he made an effort to fit in with the rest of us whenever we met up, he was good with small children, her family all loved him...

Within 6 months of their expensive giant wedding, my friend was cheating on her new husband - with a bloke who worked in her office. This man wasn't married (I don't think), and there were no children involved (thank God), but my friend? Totally obsessed with this new man. She'd finally worked out that the bloke she'd followed to university wasn't interested in her (actually, her "love" turned very quickly to hatred once she'd grasped the fact that he wasn't going to stand up and declare his undying adoration for her, in the church where she was marrying one of his new friends - because yes; he was a guest, he took his now-wife as his plus-one, and my friend kept eyeballing him hopefully), and she wasn't interested in her husband.

I don't actually know how her first marriage ended, because I said that I wasn't getting involved. I do know that within a few weeks of her divorce coming through, she and the man she'd been cheating with were married, in a very quiet/no guests other than her parents civil ceremony. And having seen the photographs? Her parents looked absolutely stricken. My friend gave up her career, went through IVF round after round in order to give her new husband the child he wanted (although I know how deeply she loves her son, I do wonder if he's only here in an effort she made to cling onto the man from her office)... and very quickly learned that even becoming a father didn't mean that her new husband was going to give up the single life.

They're still together, 10 years later. But my friend isn't happy. She suspects that her husband is having affairs, but... rather brutally perhaps, she doesn't get the sympathy she wants from any of us, because she did exactly the same thing that her husband's currently doing. And almost 25 years after leaving school? She will still turn the conversation around to the bloke she followed from sixth-form into university.

Her first husband, meanwhile, is blissfully remarried with a young family of his own. I bump into him every now and then, and although we pretend not to recognise one another, I cannot help but be glad that he's with a woman who clearly loves him as much as he does her. If he'd stayed with my friend? I think he might always have been second-best to the bloke she was obsessed with, who is still friends with him (and still seemingly oblivious to my friend's obsession with him). If he'd dated/had sex with my friend at university, then perhaps so many lives wouldn't have been tainted by her lack of self-worth. She'd have gotten over her obsession, moved on, been happy and able to return someone else's genuine love for her. Her current husband, I don't think, ever wanted to get married. I think (he's a lot older than we are) he was perfectly happy/suited to playing the field. Their child wouldn't be caught in the middle of sneering, disdainful parents.

Why doesn't my friend leave her second husband? I have, actually, asked her this once, when she was crying on my shoulder about his latest flirtation with someone "younger, prettier, thinner" than her. Because she knows that she almost broke her parents hearts when she abandoned her first marriage, and she doesn't want "to disappoint them again". It's all very sad, but it's of her own making. And yes; our circle is always going to catch her when/if she jumps... but not one of us condones her behaviour, even though we don't condemn her for it. She was young, very immature, and made a lot of mistakes that we couldn't talk her out of making.

Your friend sounds very alike to mine. All you can do is refuse to engage with her boasting, try to boost her self-esteem as much as you can, and catch her when this blows up in her face. Because, one way or the other, it will. She'll either end up trapped with resentful/angry stepchildren in her life, or alone, knowing that he always thought his wife and family were his priority, and not her. She's going to end up hurt, either way.


SandyY2K Sat 30-Mar-19 10:56:03

I'd back away from the friendship. I couldn't stand the gloating at his wife.

I backed off from a friend having an affair. She was the married one. The affair in itself was bad...but not the main issue.

She set up her OM with a mutual single friend right in front of her DH.

I think he was suspicious and it was done to throw him off the scent.

Mutual friend didn't know about the affair, but the OM told her (later on) that he was having an affair with my friend and was in love with her after years together.

I found the whole thing sickening tbh and have barely spoken to her since. I made up excuses not to meet up...the thing is she has no idea I know what she did.

My other friend quite liked the guy too. I thought she was making an utter fool of her DH and it was incredibly cruel.

Morals are one thing...the other actions made me feel disgusted.

IWannaSeeHowItEnds Sat 30-Mar-19 11:05:50

I think we choose our friends based on shared values. If one of you changes and behaves in a way the other considers immoral, it's perfectly okay to end a friendship. You don't owe it to her to stay friends no matter what!
Yes, the h is primarily responsible, but this doesn't say anything good about her either. I would find the gloating about the wife pretty disgusting band I think that would be the death knell for me.

birdonawire1 Sat 30-Mar-19 11:08:30

Your friend may have all the insecurities you say, but she is not stupid, and I feel is getting a thrill from the cheating situation. She's not a little innocent tricked by a cheating man. She appears on one level to be revelling in the deceptions. As such I would explain to her why you can't see her any longer and invite her to contact you again when it finally goes tits up

Rumbletum2 Sat 30-Mar-19 11:12:59

Just tell her you want to hear nothing about it. Nasty woman she is.

Siameasy Sat 30-Mar-19 11:35:12

She will choose him over you if you threaten to end it
I’d make it clear I don’t want to hear about it.

Nurseornot Sat 30-Mar-19 11:36:07

Could you recommend she sees a therapist? There must be some underlying mental health issues for her to believe that she only deserves a part of a partner as a mistress, rather than a full (single/loyal) partner just for her. Why does she think so low of herself to not see that she deserves more than a guy who only devotes part of his time with her and cheats?

Alsohuman Sat 30-Mar-19 11:46:54

My line on this is black and white. I absolutely don’t buy the “OW isn’t cheating” line, he couldn’t do it by himself. If one of my friends told me she was knocking off a married man she’d forfeit my friendship. End of story.

CSIblonde Sat 30-Mar-19 11:51:04

She goes for unavailable men as she doesn't feel she deserves or is good enough to get anyone else. There's nothing you can do, that's a deep, very entrenched issue & she probably needs therapy. Married guys who are serial cheats have a built in radar for a woman like that, who they use for sex then dump.

flirtygirl Sat 30-Mar-19 11:54:46

The people who say none of your business and don't project your morals are wrong. I think those sentences are whats wrong with society. No one holds anyone to any standards anymore.

I had a friend and I distanced myself over time. I will never be friends with someone who knowingly and continually does this.

The ow and om are just as bad and complicit as the person in a relationship. They should both be held accountable and yes the person in the relationship is more culpable but there is blame with both people. The om and ow is not without blame and if they know or once they know someone is married or coupled up, then they should not get involved and if involved they should walk away.

I absolutely judge people who don't walk away.

flirtygirl Sat 30-Mar-19 11:55:42

I also think women and men who allow themselves to be uses like this, get what they deserve.

The wronged wife or husband deserves our help and compassion not them.

SoupDragon Sat 30-Mar-19 11:56:48

The getaway driver still gets done though for the part they played in the "crime"...if adultery were punishable by jailtime (if only), the mistress would be punished too.

Yeah, you totally missed my point there. 😂

Ellenborough Sat 30-Mar-19 12:02:05

Well in a way she’s right. She isn’t the one who is cheating. The responsibility for his family’s happiness or unhappiness lies with him, not her.

However, he’s clear he won’t leave them and he puts his happiness first, (by having it both ways) then his family’s happiness above hers (by refusing to leave them) and she comes last. So who is the real loser here? If she thinks this is something that is worth waiting for, she’s an idiot. A sad, deluded idiot.

SandyY2K Sat 30-Mar-19 12:21:43


I doubt I will ever stop hating her for what she did to our family. She should have stayed away.

I understand your's totally normal for a betrayed spouse.

It's easier to lay the blame on the other person.

When he asked her to go for a walk, she should have said no.

But he asked. He's the married one.

Instead she began pushing him to see him in the evenings, sending long emails, texting all the time, wanting to do things so he would be out late

Your H pursued and she reciporacted. He's 100% responsible for betraying you.

I take it your H is a fully functioning adult, with the ability to know right from wrong and understand what a vow of fidelity means.

Each party in an affair is wrong, but the married person is the only one committing adultery.

A lot of betrayed spouses do this, especially women, but I think that feeds into the narrative that men are unable to control absolves them of taking responsibility.

If my H had an affair...I would blame him 100%. The OW wouldn't deserve my headspace. Not for a second.

Robin2323 Sat 30-Mar-19 13:25:38

Sorry agree with Purple.

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 13:36:56

The man who seeks an affair often manipulates all the women in his life. He sets out to deceive, emotionally manipulate and completely delude both the women (or more)

These are his actions and they are victims of his deceit.

The cheating man will never tell you sex with his wife is amazing, she never 'understands' him, and clearly he can't stand her and is only there for the DC!
These conmen can be convincing in the extreme, whilst having absolutely no intention whatever to treat the affair as anything more than a posh wank.

They will say what they need to get what they want whilst using and abusing two women, breaking their marriage vows and risking hurting their DC.

For them, having additional sex is worth all that pain for others if discovered.

Your friend is being deluded. He's the one playing fast and loose with his marriage vows and DCs lives. What other reason can a cheating man have for staying that will be well received other than oh incare about my DC so much I couldn't leave (whilst actively seeking to hurt them with an affair).

It's.all bollox, and the OW always gets the shit for breaking up the family!! Just nuts!

Yabbers Sat 30-Mar-19 14:14:45



SandyY2K Sat 30-Mar-19 14:33:17


the OW always gets the shit for breaking up the family!! Just nuts!

I agree.

Women refuse to hold their cheating husbands fully responsible and accountable.

The OW claims victim status.
After the affair OWs say my MM (he married man they're having an affair with) was "manipulative", "he wouldn't stop pursuing me" and "he future faked me" or "he groomed me" ...suddenly it becomes "I feel sorry for his wife" "she can have the cheater"

The OW refuses to take any responsibility and the MM is suddenly all kinds of evil.

During the affair...this man was their "soul mate"..."love of their life".. only with the wife because of the kids"

The cheating husband blames the OW for pursuing him.

His wife also blames the OW...suddenly, they have a common enemy.

When the fact is the only innocent person is the betrayed spouse .

The OW is not a victim and neither is the wayward husband.

It's easy to blame an outsider for wrecking your marriage and breaking up your family, but I personally would say... if my H of X years and father of my DC didn't care, why would I really expect the OW to?

If a woman is wiling to have an affair with a MM, morality and values aren't at the top of her list.

When the MM slags of his wife and puts the OW on a pedestal, she thinks... he must love me
Why else would he risk his marriage if I wasn't worth it.

He'll miss his child's school performance in favour of the OW... instead of her seeing hus a crap dad... she relishes in being his focus.

I will add that many of these MM prey on vulnerable women who lack confidence and are more likely to have an affair.

Affairs can be very complex. I've heard it from both sides with subtle differences.

RedHatsDoNotSuitMe Sat 30-Mar-19 14:43:58

I agree with every word crispysausagerolls says.

And some of the stories on here are jaw-dropping.

My best friend had an affair with a married man, and I was quite horrified, but I did make the decision not to judge and to support her. As PPs have said, it didn't end well for my friend, and I was glad I could be there for her when she was hurting.

But I agree with PPs on here, there are ways to tell her that you don't want to listen. Especially to her being nasty about his wife. Some of the texts suggested are very good.

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 14:44:14

Well lets not forget that the words 'I'm a happily married man' are not the first words out of his mouth - if ever at all... The deceit of the ow starts immediately.

Purplejay Sat 30-Mar-19 14:53:59

Thank you Robin.

SandyY2K I do blame both of them. She owes me nothing but pursuing/accepting the advances of a married man makes her not a very nice person in my book. A woman of low morals. She knew what she wanted and fuck everyone else.

I could say plenty of negative things about him too but my post focused on how I feel about OW seeing as the OP is about the posters friend as the OW.

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 15:02:04

@Whereisthegin1978 I couldn't break someone's heart by doing that.

To make this all worse my ex & I separated while was pregnant and he immediately began a relationship with an OW. This has all happened in the past year and best friend knows the devastation this causes first hand.

I think I'm going to have to think the text over for a few days. I'm so Pissed off that she called over to gloat about bumping into the mans wife

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 15:06:28

Oh lawdy! How devastating knickers grin

That's excruciatingly insensitive of her. I think perhaps her caring persona is only that,a persona.

She is being deluded by him, but she's also not challenging her own selfish desires, for her own benefit or yours!! At all!

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 15:08:20

Wtf!grin grrr... angry

These, for you, Knickers flowers

Alsohuman Sat 30-Mar-19 15:09:03

After your latest update, I'm afraid I think she's just an utter bitch, OP. I have no idea why you want her in your life.

SandyY2K Sat 30-Mar-19 15:11:25

To make this all worse my ex & I separated while was pregnant and he immediately began a relationship with an OW.

But if you were seperated she's not an OW in the cheating sense is she?

I do agree the gloating is despicable behaviour.

The problem is a lot of people in affairs lose all sense of logic. Your friend isn't thinking straight and because she has low self worth she'll accept these crumbs.

It's quite sad how an OW sits around waiting for MM to fill her in his spare time.

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 15:15:25

@Alsohuman bitch is such a strong word but you're right there seems to just be a massive disconnect with her understanding what she's doing and the actual impact and devastating that could be caused by her actions.

giantnannyknickers Sat 30-Mar-19 15:18:56

The comments she made about the wife were that she had a very pronounced underbite and looked like a lesbian ☹️ wife was jogging when she noticed her and reckoned she could keep pace with her etc hmm

I think I'm just going to back right off from friend and not engage until my frustration has worn off.

Smotheroffive Sat 30-Mar-19 15:20:52

If you mean a lot to her as a friend its worth you stating how upsetting her dialog is to you.

No, that's not an OW, but maybe you feel she was as the relationship 'started' so soon afterward?

I would speak very frankly with her about how upsetting this is, and how she is selling herself short by living off the crumbs of someone else's oh rather than having a one to one relationship with a decent man. She won't want to hear it,but at least she'll be very aware of where you stand on it. She will also see you have her best interests at heartheart, that she deserves so much better than a shadow of a relationship.

SoupDragon Sat 30-Mar-19 15:27:07

Having seen the comments she made about the wife, your friend is a bitch. A really nasty one at that.

Buddytheelf85 Sat 30-Mar-19 15:27:54

I was in a similar situation OP, and I ditched the friend. I just didn’t like being around her, I didn’t like the person she’d become, and the way she spoke about the affair made me feel sick. If I don’t like somebody I’m not going to be friends with them.

The morality of adultery is kind of a different issue. Yes, obviously the man is at fault too, but the man isn’t my friend!

SandyY2K Sat 30-Mar-19 16:11:46

Your friends comments about his wife are just jealousy.

I remember saying to an OW who spoke of the wife looking like Roseanne Barr and not as attractive as her,
nor as slim as her. So I said in spite of that and all his complaints about her he's staying put.

I certainly agree that their eventual pain is self inflicted.

Usually the minute the wife finds out...OW is tossed aside like a used hanky.

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