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This is a repost from a thread by TAM member TheMiddleMan a while back. I will be posting a question and I wanted to post my story here as a reference if anyone is interested in commenting. Feel free to comment on this if you like. Tell me what I did wrong, what I did right, or that I am a controlling d'bag. It's all good! Another forum member called me out for using too many guerilla tactics. I'll cop to that. I didn't know all of the things I have come to learn since becoming a member of TAM.

I have always hesitated sharing my experience here because compared to the horror stories I have read on TAM, it comes off like a fluff piece. But, since you asked and since your reaction to your wife’s behavior was so close to mine, here goes. This is long.

I want to preface it by saying a few things before I get into the meat of it. Just to give you some context. I heard a quote on a movie that went something like “I couldn’t tell you who I was without talking about her”. That is the kind of relationship we always had. Still have, more so today. We are both each others first “serious” relationships. There were girls I went out with but I never got close to them. She had minor flirtations with guys but not a real boyfriend as she was what the guys in her part of the country considered overweight.

In my case, I can see where I was making A LOT of bad moves. Not that I am making excuses for her mind you. I always asked her what I was doing wrong or what I could be doing better. She always said that things were fine. So I believed it. Around that time I was angry and depressed. I was under-employed for a few years. I injured myself pretty bad so I stopped working out for 6 months. I thought I still made time for her. She was going through some things also, but would always tell me that she was fine. And, I believed it!

Enter FACEBOOK!!! Months before she signed up, I noticed sex getting rarer and rarer between us. I made all kinds of excuses in my own mind as to why. Once she did sign up that’s when all of the trouble began. She did the usual catching up with friends and family including a “family friend” named “Tyler”. She became reacquainted with an old college chum, “Brent” from England, whom she used to chat with. She told me that these guys were just friends. She said she might have pursued something with either one if they’d have ever shown an interest. But, she figured because of her weight, they kept her in the friends only category.

She got hooked on gaming especially Mafia Wars which is like a pick up joint for FB nerds, but I didn’t know that at the time. She would make friends with guys she didn’t know for gaming purposes. These new names kept popping up day after day.

I notice she starts chatting A LOT on FB. At first just family, but more and more she was chatting with (you guessed it) Tyler and Brent!!! Some of her male gaming buddies also began to chat her up. I didn’t like it and told her as much. She said that she didn’t want to “be rude” and that was why she would always respond to there chat requests. She said that she would leave the chat function “off-line” most of the time to curb it, but that she could help it if guys “just liked to talk”. The rationalizing infuriated me, but I cooled off and let things go. Huge mistake. About once a week I would tell her that I suspected that these guys wanted more than just friendship. She would always say “no” and that they were “just being nice”.

Up until this time noone had openly hit on her, but as a man, I can sense when the predators are circling. It is easy to tell on FB. Just check out who comments on or clicks “Like” on all of her posts I decided to play Mafia Wars myself. Because 2 of her gaming friends in particular seemed to be chatting her up at least once every other day. And yes Brent and Tyler are still talking to her too. My wife is very easy to talk to. When I met her 16 years ago she was still over weight (not something I minded btw). Her charm, style, and pretty face made me wonder why guys hadn’t bothered to look past that. About 7 years ago she decided to get in shape. She is about 175 right now and is a total hottie (not that I didn’t think so before)! She wears it well because she is 5’6”. Think London Andrews with wider hips and you pretty much have her body type. So of course she gets guys looking at her more. Something she never had because of growing up heavy. The weight loss was another reason I became more distrustful of Brent and Tyler. They are both married to ball breakers and both seem very unhappy. I got the sense that they looked at her as more than a friend now. Keep in mind that I am still bringing this up often, but I keep getting told that I am imagining it.

So, I play detective and snoop in her FB and her e-mail. She gave me permission because she said she had nothing to hide. And in truth I found nothing…for awhile. Just when I let my guard down, and began doubting my own instincts the proverbial excrement hit the fan! Within the space of two weeks a lot of things happened. First, one of the mafia wars guys creates a group and send invites to about 40 of his lady “friends.” My wife told me about it sensing that I had a problem with this guy. “I got invited into this group”, she starts off. I am hoping she will shut him down because I know this is his little game. She then says to me “I think I should join”. I asked “Why?!” in a cold tone that would have made Clint Eastwood proud. She freezes up and says “I won’t then if you don’t want me to.” I said, “Do what you think is right”. It was a dare and she understood that. She never did join.

I want to make it clear that she would never overtly flirt with any of these guys. I know b/c I would check the chat logs. What bothered me on her end was more her posture and facial expressions. She seemed to be enjoying it. TOO MUCH. Back when we played mafia wars one would periodically clear out some of the items you accumulated. Sometimes you would give them to the other players. During one of those clearing out periods she gave her excess items to one of her chat buddies. Which he promptly interpreted as her hitting on him! I am reading all of this on the upstairs computer. I am livid!!! She said when she heard me coming downstairs she almost she almost crapped herself. I remember starting off the conversation with “WTF”, but I don’t remember what I said after that. I didn’t have her delete the guy. Since he made the mistake of letting me add him to my friends list early on, I wanted to stalk him first. Everything he posted I clicked “like” on. You may think that this wouldn’t be effective, but he got the message and after a week of putting up with me he stopped playing mafia wars.

About a week later, my wife is chatting and I hear her giggle. That was it…just a giggle. But it was how she giggled on the phone with me when we were first going out. I asked who she is chatting with? It’s the guy who invited her to join the group. This was the incident where she says that some force or entity took over my body. That I “turned into someone else”. I remember saying the guys name…then again nothing but the rage. Again I didn’t insist she delete this guy. Instead I made a few posts in her account that gave some opinions about a sport I knew he followed. The opinions were spot on but they were contrary to his. If the d-bag would have stopped and thought about it he would have realized that it was probably a man who wrote those posts. He got all butt hurt over those posts and got kinda snarly with her. Over the next month he made a couple of smart remarks on some of her posts that exposed him as a woman hater. After that she deleted him herself. That was my plan to get her to delete these guys herself.

About a week after that, Brent (remember him) made a post on her wall. When they were friends during her college years they exchanged mixed tapes. He still had his. He scanned the jacket/play list and posted it on her wall. This time no rage from me. Since it was on her wall, I was able to comment on it. So I wrote “That’s an amazing play list babe. Glad to see your tastes in music AND MEN have improved since then”! He’s never spoken to her since. She was pretty embarrassed. As a side note, she still has the mixed tape he sent her. She once told me I could throw it away if I wanted to. I refused. I told her I want her to use it as currency someday. You see I know her, and I now someday she’ll ask me to do something big. I will say “I’ll trade ya”…and make her destroy it herself! With Tyler, he stopped trying to chat with her because he never knew if it was her online or me in her account. Twice it was me online and I said to him “This is her husband Latigo is there something I can help you with?” The last incident came when another mafia wars guy chatted with her and started making perverted comments. She couldn’t defend this and conceded that I was right all along! She deleted him right way!

Following all of these incidences we had several deep talks. I never gave consideration to boundaries because I didn’t think I had to. I set down what I thought was appropriate behavior, and she agreed with the terms. Her only condition was that it be understood that she wasn’t out there looking to hook up with anyone. And this is true. I think she got caught up in meeting new people and reconnecting with old one. She was in that fog that they talk about so much here, but not for one particular person. She just wasn’t used to the attention. And the chemical reaction that came with it. She still thought she was still that fat girl no one wanted. And as such didn’t think the rules applied to her. During one of our talks she told me that she didn’t think she was the kind of woman that a man would be jealous of, so she was surprised at my reaction to her FB activity. Oh yeah, and we now have sex 3-4 times a week : ) : ) : )

Did I imagine the danger? Did I over react at anytime? I don’t think so. I think I held it in too long. I should have gone Israeli Commando on the situation from the start! One day she deleted someone from my friends list. So I tell her that she has a bunch or guys on her list that annoy me, but I don’t resort to doing that. So she let me go through her list and let’s just say the testosterone level dropped significantly!!!!!

Our relationship is better than ever but the whole mess has changed me. I fear permanently for the worse. I get this automatic ptsd type of reaction when I hear her clicking the keys fast when she makes a post. Even though I know it’s her mom or a girl friend I am taken back to when it was one of the afore mentioned guys. I still snoop, but she takes it as a compliment. I have never been the same. I don’t think I will ever be. But, after reading what many people on here have gone through, I count my blessings!
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Cool, thats what I think too!!! Even though I still snoop.
 

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Latigo: I too thought I over reacted (as she and her sister told me time and again) but as time went on and the more I read stories on TAM, I am certain it was no over reaction on my part. You took solid preventative measures to protect your marriage and upped your alpha in your wife's eyes. Now if she is a decent human being, she learned (and you did too) from this experience.

My mind will always wonder what would have happened if I didn't intervene so quickly. I still check e-mails and cell phone records. The mind will always wonder. But like you ... So far so good, and the marriage is in a good place.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks man. I was just recalling (I think it was) Candiegirl's remark. If I'd have taken a direct approach earleir, coulda saved myself 6 weeks of headaches!!! All good though!!
 
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