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Desperate - advice needed pls.

(50 Posts)
talie Wed 25-May-05 08:16:24

To cut a long story short, dh left me with 2 small children just before Xmas. We rowed continuously for months but I clung on and asked him to come back to me and the dds. Threatened to move away and that seemed to hit home he wouldn't see dd's very often so decided he would make a go of it. Things were going great and he then hit me with another bombshell that he had been keeping in touch with an ex for the last 8 yrs of our marriage!(I had no idea whatsoever!) but says they are only friends! Found a text message saying "he missed her xx" and I went mad! Again said they were only friends! I wanted him back so I said I would trust him on the proviso he made no effort to contact her. A few weeks down the line he decided to move back in and things were great.

Things seem to have dwindled and he seemed to be hiding his phone from me (something he never did previously). So sent his ex a text telling her to have him or leave him alone - which she forwarded straight to him and I got hold of first! Phoned her to have the phone put down on me twice when I asked what was going on and then had a blazing row with him and told him to leave. He told me not to touch his phone and refused to delete her number from it telling me not to rule his life!

I really want to make a go of the marriage but she is eating at my insides and its driving me potty! I suppose its the fact that he has kept a secret from me for 8 years when he knew how I would feel about it, but he chose to carry on anyway! I phoned her partner, who basically said his relationship was rock solid and he wasn't going to tell her who she could and couldn't speak to!

I have since found texts saying that she would always be there for him, that he has to do whats best for him and the dd's, shall she tell me what I want to hear etc. and asking him for his works tel. no. I also noticed that he has deleted her nos from his phone (perhaps to stop me contacting her????) I get the impression that they are going to tell me that they are not speaking to each other but will continue to do it behind my back via his work which I will know nothing about! So I will continue the rest of my marriage with her in the background! I do not want a third party in my marriage - friend or not because I find their texts unacceptable! She seems to have some sort of hold over him - coming across as this wonderful caring friend when his wife is a miserable bitch at home! How do I get rid of her?

Do you think I am being paranoid about nothing and just blowing everything out of proportion here? Or am I justified in thinking there is more to this than they are both letting on?

I have asked him to come back for the last time because my dd's are really suffering and have left him to mull it over for a few days and then make his decision. But, I'm so scared that if he comes back this time that I will not be able to let go of the thought that he will still be hiding his relationship/friendship with her again for the rest of my marriage. How do I begin to try and trust what he says to me and how do I push her out of my mind to make a real go of the marriage?

Any advice please?

Satine Wed 25-May-05 08:24:42

I don't think you are being paranoid about this other woman, Talie. I think often partners cover up their infidelities (emotional as well as sexual) by convincing their partners that they are paranoid and unreasonable. If your instincts tell you that this other relationship is trouble, I'd trust them. If it is only friendship, then your dh has to understand that he should be talking about things with you, not her. But I'm sorry to say that even if it's only friendship the secrecy involved suggests that one of the people involved wants it to become something more. Awful for you and your children. I hope at least you feel that mn is on your side!

mytwopenceworth Wed 25-May-05 09:09:38

the point is you are unhappy about his contact with this person. you are his wife, your happiness matters. if she is just a friend, then he would be happy to put your feelings first for the sake of your mariage. you are supposed to be wife, lover, soulmate, best friend. you should be more important than a 'mate'. if i were in this situation i would ask dh if keeping in touch with a mate meant more to him than his wifes happiness - but i would be prepared that the answer i got would not be what i needed.
but this is just the opinion of someone not in the situation. I think you have to decide can you live with this situation? if push came to shove and he would not give up her 'friendship', what are you prepared to do? and tell him what you are prepared to do if your needs are not met. and be prepared to actually do it.

Bugsy2 Wed 25-May-05 12:08:51

Oh Talie, you poor thing. You are not paranoid at all. What is wrong with these bloody men? My ex-H was exactly the same. Refused to put the marriage before the friendship (?!!!!!) with the other woman.
IMO, the only way he can regain your trust is by having NOTHING more to do with this woman - EVER. If he can't do that for you and your daughters, then he isn't serious about making the marriage work.
Sorry if that sounds harsh - but I've been there.

moondog Wed 25-May-05 12:22:21

talie,what you want is completely reasonable. He's being a selfish arse. tell him it's one or the other. The furtiveness and secrecy are enough to tell you that it's not right (and more to the point, he obviously knows its not right.)

You can't live with this hanging over you.

8 years ffs! Whar a betrayal,what a childish vain man!

SecondhandRose Wed 25-May-05 12:40:53

Agree with what has been said, why should he feel the need to keep in touch with an ex? Is she local? Could he be meeting up with her?

He needs to get his priorities in order.

talie Wed 25-May-05 19:03:43

Thanks for all the comments - didn't think it was me!

Feel like I'm in a no win situation - if he does come back, he kept it secret from me for 8 years before so surely he can keep it secret from me again?!!

I'm not sure it's sexual as I usually know his exact whereabouts, but he now has a new job which will take him away from home, staying in hotels - one area I know for a fact will be an hour away from her!

If I think rationally I tell myself that they have been in contact for 8 years and he was still with me, with children involved only for last 3 years, so if he wanted her he could have left easily?! But it annoys me that she got in touch with him knowing full well that he was married and he chose to keep it a secret because he knew how upset I would be. They have obviously built up a strong bond over these 8 years and he is reluctant to let go now - I don't know what she is playing at! My dh did make a comment/joke! that he wasn't rich enough for her?!! which also makes me wonder why he is now working all hours in a new better paid job and wanting to get promotion quickly????!!!!!!!

Would you warn her off or will that make things worse? although she wouldn't speak to me last time and gave him some story about being out of the country and it was a bad reception - my reply how did she know it was me then??!!

Is there any way I can find out where she lives? I really feel like punching her and telling her that she is ruining my dd's lives - my eldest dd cries every day when I tell her daddy is not coming home today.

She is a mother herself - you'd think she'd understand wouldn't you and back off, but then bitches dont see the harm do they! Don't even think she really wants him or she would have taken him away before now surely? Must get a buzz out of keeping someone on the side in case anything goes wrong with her relationship!

I'll end now before I totally lose my rag - getting very annoyed just thinking about it!

Please keep giving me your advice and thoughts - I need lots of strength to pull me through this. Can I get through it - will I ever really trust him again or is it better that I walk away now?

mummycan Wed 25-May-05 19:11:09

Talie - my heart is breaking for you - what an awful situation to be in - don't really know what advice to offer but if you wantto find out where she lives could you hire a private investigator? Do you know her name? There are some services on the internet that can find you an address for about £25.

Good luck to you - I hope that you are able to come through this in some way. Give your DDs a hug - I cannot imagine how it must be for you to see them crying.

Lots of love

aloha Wed 25-May-05 19:23:35

Gosh, I never thought being married meant you weren't allowed other friends. I don't want to sound critical as you seem extremely upset, but is the reason your dh didn't tell you about his friend that he knew you would be angry if he had a female friend? If so, what about letting this go a bit? Invite her and her husband to your house? I think he's right btw and said exactly what I'd say - he does NOT have the right to tell her who she can speak to. He seems confident they arent' having an affair, doesn't he?
WHen you say you saw a text saying he 'missed her XX' what did it mean?
I would also absolutely go ballistic if my husband read my messages or my emails.
Just an alternative point of view for you.

aloha Wed 25-May-05 19:24:24

Have you considered Relate counselling?

mytwopenceworth Wed 25-May-05 20:50:37

aloha, i certainly see your point, but i think that when you are married you place that person above any other. and sometimes that means 'sacrificing' if something is desperatly important to them. talie is very distressed about her dh's relationship with this woman and while being married does not mean you should have no friends, maintaining a secret relationship with an ex-lover and placing the continuation of this relationship before the emotional well-being of your wife is, in my opinion, unreasonable. if something i was doing was so very distressing to my dh i would stop, because NOBODY means more to me in this world than he does, and if that meant letting go of a 'mate', then bye bye mate! i would not EVER knowingly do or continue to do something that caused my darling hubby pain. and i simply dont understand how a married person (meaning talies dh) can not have that attitude

aloha Wed 25-May-05 22:27:58

But if my husband told me I was never to speak to my oldest friend again, I wouldn't just say yes. I would in fact, say no. Obviously there is some background here as Talie and her dh were separated before this came out and he left so I don't blame her at all for feeling insecure and worried, but losing a friend is a big deal IMO. And I don't agree that when you get married your partner has to be your one and only - best friend, soulmate etc and you don't need anyone else.
I also still think that reading someone else's emails and phone messages is just not on. Would you steam open someone's letters? There is no evidence here of an affair and I think counselling might help both Talie and her dh work out what is going on here. I think the fact that this friend is an ex is obviously emotionally loaded, but she has moved on.
Recently a MNetter posted that a long-ago ex who had become a friend was forbidden to speak to her ever again by his wife, and she was really, really upset by it and lots of people posted to say that it was unreasonable.
I'm not friends with my exes personally, but I have been out with men who were and I thought it was OK.

talie Wed 25-May-05 22:31:04

Aloha - thanks for your comments!

I am not so awful that I wont accept him having friends - we have a lot of friends that I am perfectly happy to have in our relationship but I do draw the line at all the secret unacceptable texts and dishonesty that is going on - if there is nothing to hide, then why all the secrecy? Yes, he does know that I wouldn't be happy him keeping in touch with his ex, but he still chose to continue his relationship with her without a care about my feelings and the harm it is now causing me and the children. He wanted to be honest with me about her as a fresh start when he returned to have another go at the marriage but then decided to hide the fact that he still contacts her - he can't have it both ways!

I thought my marriage was based on openness and honesty and if I want to look at his texts and emails (which I only did because he was hiding his phone from me and I was suspicious), then I should be free to do so. I have no secrets so would be happy for him to check everything I own.

As for the text "miss you xx" - what do you mean what does this mean? He doesn't even tell me that he misses me (or his children for that matter!) Am I not supposed to feel angry? He wouldn't send texts to any of our other "real" friends that he sends to her and therefore I think I'm justified in saying they are unacceptable. He's away quite often and he texts her more times than he speaks to his dd's! He can't even phone his dd's up and say goodnight or how are you! What a Bastard, and I'm not supposed to feel upset or angry about his contact with her?

PS - are you her????!!!!!!

Heathcliffscathy Wed 25-May-05 22:39:45

talie, i can totally assure you that aloha is not her!

aloha, you are my dh (he feels exactly like this about both friendships and privacy), and I don't feel the same way....but weirdly admire both of your stances...

i would drop a friend if having them would upset dh, but then i think that it is somewhat dysfunctional of me to be like that...i think....

aloha Wed 25-May-05 23:08:02

Talie, I was asking what it meant because I thought that the 'XX' was a word. Because you put the Xs in upper case they didn't look like kisses. I now understand.
You are clearly quite angry with me, but you did ask for opinions and they are mine. I wouldn't dream of ever being unfaithful to my husband but I would go loopy if he started reading my emails or listening to my mobile phone messages. I think being open and honest is great, but I also think we all need privacy too. I cherish mine.
Do you think he is having an affair with this woman? If not, then she is a friend and to some of us friendships are quite precious and important. It doesn't mean other things are not important.
I think the fact that he doesn't call his daughters is a different issue altogether to the number of texts he sends (God I hate texts - so silly and problematic) and, I agree, his not speaking to his children is a serious matter and one that I would also be angry/concerned about. But I see no evidence that if he didn't speak to his friend, he would call his daughters more often. I would personally separate these two things as I don't think they are related.
Doesn't he hide this friendship from you precisely BECAUSE he knew you would be angry about it? So you would never have 'allowed' it, even if he had been 'open and honest' about it from the start so isn't it possible that his 'hiding' the friendship is more about your reaction than his having something to hide, as you assume?
My grumpy old dh doesn't much care about friends but he often has lunches etc with female PRs and is on fairly affectionate terms with them. I don't assume he is about to embark on an affair with any of them.
I personally think you as a couple have two choices - he agrees to get rid of a close platonic friend to keep you happy (which IMO is not the simple decision that some people think it is. I would not agree to drop my friends because my dh said so). He may resent you for this.
He carries on secretly contacting her and you will find out and it will get worse.
You agree to his having her as a friend but in the open
You have some counselling!

aloha Wed 25-May-05 23:08:34

Oh, hello Sophable!! I emailed you!

mytwopenceworth Thu 26-May-05 09:49:50

i must be in an odd relationship, cos we open each others mail, email etc! whoever happens to be downstairs when the post comes, opens the mail, whoevers on the computer checks the email, we also only have the one bank account and draw freely with no his or hers funds! never a problem, never even thought about it!

I hope aloha is not right that you seem angry by her opinion, FWIW, I think that alohas opinion is very important - she is being very rational, and its important to think and to not let your feelings (incl paranoia) distort things. very much agree with aloha that you have to make a choice here (like i said in my other post).
must say, dont understand any need or desire to have 'privacy' from my husband (except on the loo!!). agree with aloha that (if he really is not having an affair - or at least, wishing he was) then he may have hidden his friendship because he knew what your reaction would be.
also agree with her that counselling sounds like a good option.

I dont think that maintaining a friendship is worth damaging your marriage. yes, its good to have mates, but if your dh/dw is not your 'one and only' - best friend, soulmate etc - why marry them? i maintain that your partners happiness comes before a friend.

youve had some very different perspectives here, so maybe you could have a think about whats been expressed here and give serious thought to counselling and also sitting down with dh and being very open about how you feel and why you feel it - if you dont feel you could express yourself properly, maybe write it all down and give it to him?

hope things work out for you. xx

aloha Thu 26-May-05 09:59:15

Must add, I did not post to offend or upset. I thought maybe a very different opinion might be useful in some way.
But if your dh is being an arse in many other ways, then I can see that this is just one more thing to drive you over the edge.

MADDI Thu 26-May-05 10:19:28

At the risk of being lynched...

From the flip side- I bumped into my ex by accident a few months ago and we have been texting each other since. It was completely innocent but I didn't tell my husband because I knew he would go mental. But the relationship has now developed to such an extent that I am on the brink of leaving my husband for my ex. (there were big problems and abuse in the marriage anyway but this has brought things to a head)

I'm so sorry for you talie, I know this is not what you want to hear, but being the "bitch" myself I have come to realise that you don't have to physically unfaithful for it to be a betrayal, infidelity is just as possible as in thought as in deed. I'm not saying this is the case with your husband but I really think he needs a strong ultimatum.

I know you want it to be ok for the sake of the children, which is why I have kept giving my own marriage another shot, but how many "one last trys" can you give it. You obviously adore your children, and that is enough for you to be strong enough to get through this. My thoughts are with you,

bumptobabies Thu 26-May-05 10:41:29

difficult one i agree with both sides to some degree,i have male friends that ive got history with at first dh was a little insecure with it but i told him to get over it and he has as we all meet up and they get on really well.also my best friend for many years and i had a falling out and she said she thought dh was rude and that she didnt like him she was very abusive in sharing her opinion hence not speeking to her since,i discoverd dh didnt like her either but would never dream of asking me to choose between two people i love for different however i think im much more selfish as im used to dh having me as his female company so it would take some getting used to.
i think if your marrige is good apart from this i would trust him to choose his friends,socialise together or it may just backfire.i dont want to sound harsh as it must be tough its just a thought or two.
all the best please let us know how it goes.

MADDI Thu 26-May-05 10:48:48

Think you hit the nail on the head there "if your marriage is good apart from this". If it is, it's ok, if not, it's a ***** disaster.

talie Thu 26-May-05 19:24:09

Thanks Maddi for your honesty - this is what I'm scared of - that he builds up such a strong bond with her that he thinks she is better for him than we are and leaves us! The wife is always the moaning old bitch isn't she and the friend will always be the sympathetic caring one who is much more appealing!

I was tempted to get in touch with my ex when dh left the first time (he too is married) to see if anything could be rekindled but I came to my senses and didn't cross the line! With those thoughts in my head it has made me very suspicious why she got in touch with him all that time ago knowing he was married!! He was in touch with her when we first got married, but we jointly agreed not to keep in touch with our exes and that was accepted on both sides. I kept my end of the bargain. Four years down the line SHE decides to find him and start up this so called friendship with him knowing full well that he was married! Why do you seek out an ex - because you genuinely want to know how they are? I think not! Its not as if they had a fantastic relationship together when they were together (from what he told me at the beginning of our marriage), so why does she feel the need to come and find him and destroy mine?!!

I have asked to meet her, but he tries to fob me off with various excuses - so that tells me he doesn't want her as a joint friend??!! Not that that would make the situation better if there is something going on, but all our friends are joint even if one of us sees/speaks to them more than the other, if you know what I mean! If he has nothing to hide then I would have thought there would not be a problem us all being friends?

Anyway, haven't heard from him since Monday so maybe he's made his choice and gone to the woman of his dreams!! Let's hope if that's the case, she gets a taste of her own medicine a few years down the line when he decides he doesn't love her any more!

Best stop there before I say something I may regret!

Emily1980 Thu 26-May-05 19:59:25

What a pickle! I agree that a dp should not dictate who you can and can't speak to...unless there is good reason. IMO,causing a dw to feel awful and to allow it to be the cause of marriage breakdown is a good reason.I dont mind my dp remaining friends with exes, unless they causeme to feel uncomfortable. Not because i dont trust him, but because i find their behaviour disrespectful towards me. My dp's best friend is actually his ex, but there are other exes that i would feel extremley uncomfortable about him seeing again.
If your dh coped for yearswithout her before - he can do it again. also, if there has been an agreement made that was willingly entered into by both (no exes), then he should expect this kind of feeling and should have stuck to it in the 1st place.On one hand he is asking you to trust him, but he has given you no reason to, by breaking personal boundaries and being secretive.

Emily1980 Thu 26-May-05 20:01:19

What a pickle! I agree that a dp should not dictate who you can and can't speak to...unless there is good reason. IMO,causing a dw to feel awful and to allow it to be the cause of marriage breakdown is a good reason.I dont mind my dp remaining friends with exes, unless they causeme to feel uncomfortable. Not because i dont trust him, but because i find their behaviour disrespectful towards me. My dp's best friend is actually his ex, but there are other exes that i would feel extremley uncomfortable about him seeing again.
If your dh coped for yearswithout her before - he can do it again. also, if there has been an agreement made that was willingly entered into by both (no exes), then he should expect this kind of feeling and should have stuck to it in the 1st place.On one hand he is asking you to trust him, but he has given you no reason to, by breaking personal boundaries and being secretive.

aloha Thu 26-May-05 20:11:55

OK, if you have asked to meet her and he fobs you off, that would ring alarm bells with me too, and I take back what I said.
Would he agree to counselling? Would you want to go?
Sorry it's all so horrible.

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