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Was this a love actually scenario?
60

Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:32

Inspired by another thread, just wondering what impression others get of this.
Several Christmases ago when I had two DCs under 2, I found a kindle in DHs car. I thought it was for me so said nothing. But lo and behold it never showed up on Christmas Day. Turned out it was for his junior (married) female colleague who he said had deserved it because she was brilliant and they got on really well. He vehemently denied it was anything more than friendship and said he would never cheat.
He’s never bought such a gift - or any gift - for any other colleague, before or since.
I met her and her family. Seemed ok. They no longer work together but I know are still in touch as friends…occasional coffees and chats and know what’s going on in each other’s lives.
We’ve had our ups and downs but currently we seem to be getting on well. He can go a bit distant at times, maybe once a year for a few weeks, just seems distracted and a bit irritable, then snaps out of it. I can be like that too occasionally but I also snap out of it. I’ve never suspected him of cheating with anyone else.
What would people make of the kindle?

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

AryaStarkWolf · 17/01/2022 15:36

Impossible to tell from the information given really. It isn't an "intimate" gift and it's perfectly acceptable if he genuinely just wanted to show appreciation to how good she was in work etc but only you know what your intuition is telling you as well

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AryaStarkWolf · 17/01/2022 15:37

It's obviously still niggling away at you for some reason years later

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HollowTalk · 17/01/2022 15:38

This happened to me.

The thing is that a non-intimate gift can escape detection in the woman's house. He could hardly buy her underwear if she's married.

The fact he didn't mention it to you prior to giving it to her speaks volumes.

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Anotherviewtoyou · 17/01/2022 15:38

I do always find it interesting that these men never seem to go out of their way to buy a gift/ help out a brilliant male work colleague. Always seems to be a younger female employee…

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HollowTalk · 17/01/2022 15:40

Yes, when do they ever buy something for a much older woman, too?

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AryaStarkWolf · 17/01/2022 15:42

@Anotherviewtoyou

I do always find it interesting that these men never seem to go out of their way to buy a gift/ help out a brilliant male work colleague. Always seems to be a younger female employee…

Yeah that's true too, although I guess women on mumsnet aren't going to start threads about their husband buying a male colleague a gift either so maybe they do...... :p My husband is a manager and he buys tubs of Chocolates for his colleagues at Christmas and they're all men (not exactly the same I know)
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ANameChangeAgain · 17/01/2022 15:45

I was the 20 something pa and my bosses used to buy me nice gifts for Christmas and birthdays. There was never anything untoward going on. I've seen more than my fair share of office affairs though from my colleagues. I think if they are the type to cheat they will, if they aren't they won't.

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Anotherviewtoyou · 17/01/2022 15:46

@AryaStarkWolf Buying everyone chocolate is not even remotely the same. It’s completely normal to do that as a manager, if you go on holidays, when it’s someone’s birthday, for Easter etc etc

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Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:46

Yes it’s the secrecy that bothered me and still does - just occasionally. Every now and then, maybe once every 2 years, he’ll say “Oh X was there on holiday and said it was lovely”…meaning they’re still in touch and have chats. Which would be fine on its own.

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Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:47

@ANameChangeAgain

I was the 20 something pa and my bosses used to buy me nice gifts for Christmas and birthdays. There was never anything untoward going on. I've seen more than my fair share of office affairs though from my colleagues. I think if they are the type to cheat they will, if they aren't they won't.

She is only a year or two younger than I am. DC similar ages.
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Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:48

@HollowTalk

This happened to me.

The thing is that a non-intimate gift can escape detection in the woman's house. He could hardly buy her underwear if she's married.

The fact he didn't mention it to you prior to giving it to her speaks volumes.

@HollowTalk
What happened in your case if you don’t mind me asking?
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sadpapercourtesan · 17/01/2022 15:49

I think a Kindle is quite an intimate gift for a man to give a woman actually. He would have to know her quite well.

It's still bothering you, so I'd wonder whether there are other little things that have kept you alert to suspicion.

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AryaStarkWolf · 17/01/2022 15:49

[quote Anotherviewtoyou]@AryaStarkWolf Buying everyone chocolate is not even remotely the same. It’s completely normal to do that as a manager, if you go on holidays, when it’s someone’s birthday, for Easter etc etc[/quote]
I'm very sorry Grin

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Palavah · 17/01/2022 15:50

How much does he spend on presents for other colleagues/ friends/family compared with a kindle?

It's inappropriate for him to single out a younger female colleague like that.

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Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:52

@sadpapercourtesan
Yes exactly. He knew she’d like it, knew she didn’t have one, had put some thought into an expensive gift. In his line of work, chocolates and wine are often given but not gifts like this. It’s just not a thing.

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AryaStarkWolf · 17/01/2022 15:52

@sadpapercourtesan

I think a Kindle is quite an intimate gift for a man to give a woman actually. He would have to know her quite well.

It's still bothering you, so I'd wonder whether there are other little things that have kept you alert to suspicion.

Do you think so? All he'd really have to know is whether she was a reader or not surely? And the OP said they were friendly, meet for coffee's etc, knowing if she like reading is a pretty basic fact to know about someone and not really intimate i wouldn't think

But, yeah I agree that there must be a reason it's still playing on the OPs mind, her instinct is obviously flagging it for her
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Isthislikeloveactually · 17/01/2022 15:53

@palavah
At the time, about the same amount would have been spent on me as on her.

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LampLighter414 · 17/01/2022 15:54

If your DH is a big boss type and this lady worked directly for him or assisted him on projects or something regularly, I can see why he might have wanted to get her something fairly substantial as a reward for a year of good and helpful work.

PAs at my old place used to get very fancy gifts from the senior managers and directors they worked for. Have had other bosses ensure they buy lower level staff who don't get bonuses fancy gifts - champagne, hampers, alexa, £150 JL vouchers etc

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BatshitBanshee · 17/01/2022 15:54

I think if there was anything to it OP a) he would be doing it more often and B) would have come up with a more convincing lie. I'd probably raise an eyebrow too but if there's nothing else, then there's nothing else.

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ANameChangeAgain · 17/01/2022 15:55

The secrecy thing is different, I'm 99% sure that the wives would have been with my bosses when my gifts were purchased! There was never any need to keep it quiet.
A sub contractor once brought all of "the girls" in the office lacy thongs for Christmas as an intentially inappropriate joke. I very much doubt it his wife knew, but it was innocent.
I think its more telling if there are lots of working late, lots of business lunches, more working away?

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Gilly12345 · 17/01/2022 16:01

Do you have any male friends or acquaintances?

I find his relationship a bit odd, I’m sorry.

Do you get bought presents of this value?

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HollowTalk · 17/01/2022 16:02

What happened in my case? I found an eternity ring and realised I didn't want an eternity with him. I got a slave bracelet! (To be fair I doubt he knew that's what it was.)

The marriage ended at my bequest. He was a bugger to get out, though. He learned the hard way what "eternity" meant!

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sadpapercourtesan · 17/01/2022 16:03

No, I don't think most men would buy a woman a Kindle because he knew she liked reading. I think you'd have to know her reading habits, whether she would actually want or need a Kindle - maybe she travels a lot and it would be useful on journeys, or she finds a paper book unwieldy to read in bed, or whatever. It seems to me like a gift a man would only buy a woman if he knew she wanted it, iyswim.

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Lou98 · 17/01/2022 16:04

How did you find out who it was for? Did you tell him you seen it and then asked about it or did he tell you before he knew you'd seen it?

I think his reaction would have been telling. If he wasn't bothered that you found it or he told you without knowing you'd found it, I don't think it screams affair at all.
If he looked like a deer in headlights, I'd be a bit more concerned.

You said you've no other reason to think he's ever cheated and he seems to be open about their friendship in that you know they meet for coffees etc so I think I'd give him the benefit of the doubt here especially since it happened a while ago now but if you have any other reason to doubt that I'd bring it up with him

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HollowTalk · 17/01/2022 16:05

OP, do you have access to his Amazon account? You can see the different Kindle accounts there and you can see the purchases, too.

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