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Possible affair, certainly something fishy(56 Posts)
I'm a 40yo man and would like an opinion from a ladies point of view because I think if I posted this on a man's forum the advice would be an overwhelming "get rid".
Sorry if it gets a bit too long.
Some background: married 15 years. DW and I have always been best friends. Neither of us have other close friends. I've never been one for "the lads" and she's never been one for "the girls". We are hardly in each others pockets though. Some ups and downs but generally happy.
A couple of years ago it seemed like her PMT was getting worse. She was being aggressive and abusive with me and the kids especially at time of the month.
Anyway, we had a bad argument and things were not good for a few months. Eventually she was diagnosed with depression, on citalopram and things were awful really. Sex once a month only when she could tell I was at my wits end from it.
About this time she started behaving oddly with a guy who goes to a sports club we go to. Things like:
Talking to him in preference to me when we are there (not major I know)
Insisting on going on a certain day she knows he goes, and going mad if I have something else on
Wanting to go on a particular day and when I talk her into going another day, next time we see this guy she says "I wasn't allowed to come the other day" then looking at me
Deleting her sent emails, her inbox emails and her deleted folder
Taking her phone everywhere with her when previously she never turned it on, and moaning about having no credit after topping up only 2 weeks previous
As a result this, she asked me to a recover a deleted email. While I was doing this, an email from the guy popped up where she had asked if he wanted her to come round and "keep him company". As it happened he'd said he was busy.
Things just went along till last January when I went on a night out to another town with friends. She was leaving the kids with parents because she had work the next day and going to the club - a whole evening by herself.
That evening I couldn't reach her by phone at home or mobile till nearly midnight.
We had it out after that I said I thought she was with him. She asked if I thought she was having an affair with him, I said yes. Her response "well I'm not".
A few chats after that:
He's just a friend
I'm not that type of person, etc.
Then I started seeing emails (her account was set up on my log in) which were ambigious but said things like:
You're in all aspects of my life
I wanted to come home with you and make you feel better
And arranging to go see him at his flat.
After this I told her I knew she had been to his flat. She said well I had to lie because you'd have gone mad if I'd told you but he's just a friend, etc.
This was in February/ Recently things have been pretty good. It's almost like they've got over each other. She doesn't try to go when he's there, never mentions him.
Until yesterday when I saw an email where she'd said:
I miss you, I've been trying not to bump into you, you are too tempting and the killer "if you need me I'm stuck here in the holding grid".
On the other hand, she's been happy recently, more like her old self.
We have been considering a move to a different country and she's very enthusiastic about it, looking at new homes all day.
I think she want to have her cake and eat it.
"Sex once a month only when she could tell I was at my wits end about it."
You lost me there I am afraid. How exactly did you display your displeasure at not getting the sex you wanted?
I think she's had her cake and eaten it. The question is how do you feel about that if that is the case?
Oh and i would definitely NOT be moving abroad with this person!
I think she's probably staying with you 'for the sake of the family' but her affections are desires are elsewhere. She might or might not have had sex with gym guy. Whether you stay together or not, a healthier attitude to both of you having friends and spending time with other people might help?
I think that if this was a woman postin about we DH, there would be a resounding 'Leave the bastard'.
It's just not acceptable at all. Especially it carrying on when she knows that you can see these messages as it's your login. Complete lack of respect.
It's an emotional affair even if it hasn't become physical, yet.
I think, whatever the truth of the situation, when the trust is gone, it's gone. There is no excuse for aggressive abusive behaviour and it is not unknown for cheating partners to deliberately create antagonism at home as a way to justify their actions. Her behaviour around this man is very suspicious, not particularly well-hidden (openly flirting at the sports club), possibly designed to punish you or make you jealous, and you're right to be worried. More worrying is that you are always going to be looking over your shoulder from now on.
The sex once a month comment is not on, I agree.
Otherwise, I would say there likely was an affair, it has ended now but sounds like that was not her choice, she is actively trying to avoid seeing him. No wonder she is enthusiastic about moving!
Sorry, probably not what you wanted to hear.
Something definitely going on or has been going on, and her affections / desires are with another man. She still desires him and I expect it would take very little prompting from the other chap for her to resume the relationship (if it's not currently active)
What does your heart say?
What do you want from the relationship and do you want to stay with her?
Either way, she's been deceiving you and certainly lying to you.
I think she found herself tempted when she met somebody she connected with at a time in her life when she was suffering with depression and everything in life wasn't rosy. However, I don't think it sounds like she took it any further than that, indeed I think it sounds like she has recognised the risk and valued your marriage enough to put a stop to the friendship rather than let it develop into anything more. Sounds like she may be having a wobble with her recent email, she is bound to miss a friendship that meant something to her. You need to talk about this honestly together. Not accusations, recognise that this friendship obviously gave her something she needed and respect that she has given it up for you. Find a way together for her to replace that friendship with something else. If she's enthusiastic about the move it sounds like she wants to make things work with you.
Sorry, what's not on about the sex once a month comment?
Previously our sex life was good - not excessive, maybe 6 times a month but it basically stopped.
She never initiated it as in the past, I was always rejected when I did.
It made me feel like a sex pest just to try.
I never pressured her though.
Now things are back more like normal and have been for about 6 months.
Forgot to say we have an ASD/PDA child who makes our lives very tough and stressful too.
I don't want to be the controlling type, never have, so I was never going to say "stop talking to this guy".
momnipotent I think you have it exactly right.
PS. She doesn't know I see the emails, we had two accounts set up on one profile, then created a new profile for her but I never got round to deleting the email account. She deletes messages after reading them so I only see them if they arrive when she is not there usually.
Friendship??? I wanted to come home with you and make you feel better... What do you think she meant? Make him a nice casserole? She was throwing herself at him!!! If it came to a halt I'm guessing it's not because she was wracked with guilt but because he eventually rejected her. Hence why she doesn't want to go to the sports club when he's there.
MeDented: I feel you may be right too. I felt she needed support and cutting some slack while she was having mental health problems.
As for me, I certainly want to stay together I just wish we could make this whole thing go away (or him preferably!).
Although we have been best friends, she doesn't really do talking things out, she likes to avoid confrontation and how do I bring it up when things are relatively rosy apart from this email?
Just be honest and tell her you saw the email when helping her with the pc and it has worried you. Make it clear that you are not making any accusations and that you want to be supportive. She should understand that you would be worried after reading something like that.
If you are intimidated by her because she has a MH problem then you're on a hiding to nothing. You have to say in very plain terms that you know what's been going on, you're unhappy about it and that, even though you're considering making allowances, it's going to take a while before you can trust her again. The first step in that will be full disclosure & no more bullshit.
Avoiding confrontation in this situation is simply being passive and effectively giving carte blanche for a repeat episode at a future date.
I don't think there was anything wrong with your sex once a month comment, for what it's worth.
From what you have told us it does seem that at the very least she has had an Emotional Affair with this guy. I also suspect it might be more on her part. You said in your first post that in one email she offered to go round and he said he was busy. Bit odd that really, it's a stereotype but men don't usually turn down sex when its offered, which leads me to believe that there was something else or different going on - at least at that stage. I wonder if she was more keen on him then he was on her.
If I'd come across the email you mention where she said "I miss you, your too tempting etc" from my husband to a women, I would be pretty hurt and I personally would not be satisfied until I'd got an honest and full explanation. You might be able to live with it however, it's horses for courses.
Even though you want to avoid divorce if I were you I would be making back up plans, a plan B and get some legal advice about where you will stand financially and in terms of the custody of your children if you did divorce. DO NOT LET YOUR WIFE FIND OUT THAT YOU ARE DOING THIS. Don't get any letters sent home, give them your home phone number etc. You don't have to follow through with it but it will be good for you to have your ducks in a row. This will be more complicated once you have moved abroad where laws about custody and divorce are different so keep that in mind too and see what the outcome might be there.
I think once you have got plan B sorted you can think about focusing on plan A and attempt to save your marriage.
You can either ignore it, decide that whatever happened your wife seems to have left it in the past and move on with your life together. Talk to her about how she is feeling about things and ask her how she wants your marriage to work in future. Ask her if there are any changes you could make to be a more supportive husband.
Another possible Plan A is to tell her that you have seen the email and that you are hurt by it. Tell her you love and that you want to save the marriage but that you couldn't ignore this email as it could come between the two of you. Tell her you want to work on the marriage and ask if she would consider counselling.
Remember this is all just my 2 pennies worth and I'm no expert so follow my advice at your peril!
I wish you all the best, I hope you can save your marriage and have a really happy life as a family.
I don't see the issue with OP mentioning he was 'at the end of his tether' about the sudden lack of sex - surely if your partner suddenly goes from wanting regular sex to not, you're entitled to wonder why, and will probably feel frustrated about it! There was no indication that he was being controlling or abusive IMO
Anyway, I agree that it sounds as if some kind of affair has gone on, and it's probably ended now, possibly against DW's wishes, going on her behaviour. I would just say that whilst suffering with mental health issues is difficult and needs consideration from a partner, it is no excuse for having an affair and/or treating badly the people you're supposed to love. OP you need to be honest with your DW, tell her you love her and you want to have a future together, but that you need to know that truth about what happened so that you can deal with it and move on.
And maybe, on another note, it wouldn't be such a bad idea to make more effort to each have (separate) friends as well as just each other. That's good for both of you, together or not
I wonder if she wants you to think she's having an affair, when actually she's not. She went out of her way to make sure you saw her attention to this guy, which is not what you do if you are having an affair. She's not made much effort to hide what she's up to - that could be straightforward disrespect on her part - but it could also be that she's playing you off against him, trying to make you jealous. She asks you if you think she's having an affair with him. Who does that?
Having said that her behaviour is dishonest, disloyal and untrustworthy all the same, and could certainly be considered an emotional affair.
If she's been physically involved with him it wouldn't be surprising, but surely she'd have made more of an effort to cover it up...?
Thanks for your kind thoughts and not just saying "ditch her"
We have a family to think of, I love her despite this.
Iconfuseus, tbh the responses he's sent to her emails are all very cold. Very matter of fact. Just "it was nice to see you again" type stuff.
Maybe she's done the running and he's backing away. After all, she's married with kids, he's single and about 5 years younger.
When I've broached it in the past it hasn't gone down well and I've been told I'm not supportive, I'm not helping her MH situation, I'm paranoid, I'm pushing her away etc.
Apart from this email things are better than they have been for months and I risk ruining it all.
Also I feel guilty for reading her emails and if she knows I have done I guess she'll find another way to communicate if she wants to.
Twinkelstein, definitely emotional no doubt.
I put that to her she just said no.
Emotional affair is worse than a quick fling in my opinion.
Well maybe that's it - she wanted to have an affair with him and failed.
Or they started and he ended it.
Do you know if he recipocated her (probable) feelings? I'm not sure why I wondered if it was a Crush on her part & potentially a symptom of her depression or other illness. It is just that her behaviour seems very blatant for an affair & rather odd.
sorry xpost that was a reply to your previous post.
As to you last one: either she's minimising, or perhaps she even wanted an emotional affair with him and he didn't come up with that either.
Agree with goshhhh.
It all sounds quite desperate to be honest.
Depression and AD's can mean a loss of libido so you do need to be a bit patient with anybody in this situation.
If you really want to make your marriage work then you both have to be brutally honest and accept that this other guy has happened whether it be an affair, emotional or otherwise and attend couples' or marriage counselling to see if there is anything left of your marriage to salvage.
Whatever has happened you both need to address it to come out the other side
"When I've broached it in the past it hasn't gone down well and I've been told I'm not supportive"
That's a pretty standard come-back from someone that is well and truly in the wrong..... Being told to shut up is not the behaviour of a penitent person. Sorry that you think you deserve this level of disrespect.
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