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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been with my husband for only 6 months and prior to that 6 months so a year in total. It was a whirlwind romance and marriage. I knew before we were married he had a friend of 7 years and another girl interested in him. The one girl I caught her sending him messages when we were dating and he told me nothing was serious and he would tell her to stop sending messages.

My husband is of a different culture and we needed to get approval for the marriage. I found out on the day of our marriage as i saw messages on his phone from both of these girls that they were both in love with him. The girl he told me which was his good friend of 7 years. The other girl as well who he told me he no longer had contact with. I believe in his mind he thinks as long as he is not touching a girl its okay as he did not cheat on me physically with them. But it was emotional cheating.

It gets worse. 2 months after we marry the one girl flew to the country we live in and our place of resdience to try and destroy our marriage. We've asked her to leave us alone but she keeps doing stuff. Every few months she still sends messages and this is very hurtful and painful to me.

His friend of 7 years are facebook friends but no longer talk. I found out from snooping which isn't right but my now i have trust issues that while we were dating they were sending each other love messages. I won't get into specfics but very painful.

I have to say though in the 6 months we have been together he has been honest and faithful to me. Its me that is hurt because of his past that he wasn't completely honest with me. If I had known all of these conversations were going on i wouldn't have married in. But now we are married and I don't want to divorce. I want to work things out but i'm hurt.

He is from a different culture where lying is more viewed as acceptable to not hurt feelings. He said he lied to them later to not hurt their feelings so they wouldn't fall in love with him.

What do i do and how do i forgive?
 

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Ugh! This brings up so many things I've lived with. "FACE" (said as a curse)

My wife is from another culture and lying is pretty much expected. Unfortunately, male infidelity is ALSO pretty much expected as well, at least in a lot of cultures. Not allowed but...held to a different standard.

I also recall the...discontent my parents had with my marriage. So much so that a girl I dated ONCE called me on the day before my wedding wanting to go dating. WTF?!? I laughed it off at the time, but those things happen! One wonders at how much goading these girls are getting from other family members. He might be seen as 'letting his culture down'.

So let him know exactly what you expect. Since he is using HIS culture as a shield to his activities, use YOUR culture the same way.

"Men don't keep ex girlfriends around after they are married. It's disrespectful and a HUGE loss of face. It's grounds for divorce in my culture."

Because you come from two different places, boundaries and communication is KEY! I've been married 17 years and am STILL learning that.

Too often these 'lying' cultures would prefer to ignore the problems and sweep them under the rug. So you need to be direct and push! But I would suggest using letters to avoid confrontation at least for the initial explanation and than discuss it rationally and respectfully without anger but WITH passion.
 
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Dear JCD,

Your reply made me smile :) Its good to know that someone has similar experience as I have no one i can share this with not my family not his and even my husband is a problem to share with because he doesn't understand he did anything wrong and gets defensive.

I agree i hate these lying cultures! And this is the problem. I believe relationships should be based on honesty and trust where they care more for not hurting the other persons feelings. However, to me that creates problems for creating and establishing TRUST.

I wanted to say a little bit more. After marriage he has been completely to my knowledge faithful and honest. He did say no to both of the girls before marriage and finally ended it. They were completely devastated by our marriage i found out after. Which is why the one girl flew to confront us. I think both girls thought they were going to marry him and instead he married me. And in truthfulness he had no physical contact with them perhaps one of them he did but that was before we met and living in a different country it was long distance but he did share emotional emails and phone calls with them.

And in truthfulness we were living together and had a proper relationship i came into his life when he was single though his family wasn't aware. If he wanted to be with them he would have chosen them. But he chose to be with me. He didn't know how to end things so he continued to lie until the very end.

His culture does not believe in girlfriend and boyfriend as we do. only marriage and before that you can have as much fun as you want it doesn't matter. And talking on the phone and sending love messages for him didn't count as cheating. So in his mind he was totally faithful to me before and after marriage. However, I know if i was chatting with a man for months sending love messages before marriage he wouldn't take kindly to it.

So why this is coming up is because a couple weeks ago a message came from the girl again. Its not his fault she sends him messages still but it hurts me. i know now he is completely honest and has no communication with them. The one friend he still has on FB though but he's known her for over 7 years part of me wants him to completely cut his ties with her.

A part of me thinks his lies hurt all of us. However, I am now married to him. I really love his family they are kind and have embraced and accepted me. And there are beautiful things about my husband as well. He really has stepped up and taken good care of me during our marriage. He is committed to this marriage and wants to be with me the whole life.

I wish we were married for years when I found this stuff out then it wouldn't bother me so much. Part of it is we are so newly married and for all of the past to come crashing down so quickly is hard. Also, he feels its been so long ago i should get over it but 6 months ago is not so long ago. But truthfully for us to be happy and have a chance i have to get over it. I just haven't figured how yet.
 

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Look, even in a 'normal' American marriage, there are a number of adjustments you make. You find that stack of love letters or racy pictures sent by prior GF's. Or you find out his box of pictures has lots of photos of THAT WOMAN who must not be named.

Guys can be quite clueless about those things...so foreign guys will be too!

Personally I believe in EA's...but not to the extent that women want to use it as a control mechanism to keep ANY opposite sex friends out of a guy's life...though I am rethinking that.

Ask him if it would be okay for you to spend several hours alone in a hotel room with a prior boyfriend just talking. After he triggers from that, ask him how chatting alone with a strange woman online is appreciably different. He is 'alone in a cyber room' with her. It isn't JUST getting sweaty with her that you are concerned about. You don't want her to try to seduce HIM (this feeds his ego and makes it seem like you trust him. But it sounds like he has a few boundary issues so keep an eye out).

I think he can relate to that idea. Tell him that it will be helping you get over being in a strange place and dealing with post wedding jitters as well. Don't be afraid to use the 'weak woman' thing to jack him up about this. They are weak because they will relentlessly chase him. You have your insecurities and only strong man can right them by being above all this.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Dear jcd,

I want to move forward but have anger and resentment. He is also angry as he's trying to do everything for us but I'm hung up on this. I feel the right person will be patient in how I feel. An I right?
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I have no experience in cultural blended marriages but I would like to step in and suggest that you sit down and define for him what cheating is in your perspective and ask him not to cross those boundaries so that you can feel safe, secure, and loved in your relationship with him.

Most couples never talk about their perspectives on what is and is not cheating and truthfully I bet most have no idea exactly what they do feel is cheating until it happens. So many of my friends and even my H and I have experienced this difference in opinions about what acts are considered cheating.

It is nice that you are aware and own your feeling towards the matter. Your feelings are not just going to go away so ask him for time so you can feel them and untangle your self from them. Even though these things happened in the past you are finding out about them now and are experiencing the emotional response to them at the moment. Tell him that too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have no experience in cultural blended marriages but I would like to step in and suggest that you sit down and define for him what cheating is in your perspective and ask him not to cross those boundaries so that you can feel safe, secure, and loved in your relationship with him.

Most couples never talk about their perspectives on what is and is not cheating and truthfully I bet most have no idea exactly what they do feel is cheating until it happens. So many of my friends and even my H and I have experienced this difference in opinions about what acts are considered cheating.

It is nice that you are aware and own your feeling towards the matter. Your feelings are not just going to go away so ask him for time so you can feel them and untangle your self from them. Even though these things happened in the past you are finding out about them now and are experiencing the emotional response to them at the moment. Tell him that too.
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I have no experience in cultural blended marriages but I would like to step in and suggest that you sit down and define for him what cheating is in your perspective and ask him not to cross those boundaries so that you can feel safe, secure, and loved in your relationship with him.

Most couples never talk about their perspectives on what is and is not cheating and truthfully I bet most have no idea exactly what they do feel is cheating until it happens. So many of my friends and even my H and I have experienced this difference in opinions about what acts are considered cheating.
This is Quoted For Truth.

I was having a conversation with my wife about cheating and she said that kissing is cheating, but having a professional blow me is 'no big deal'.

:scratchhead:


We explored that issue more and she said since I felt it was cheating, it's now off the table.

People are strange.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Wonderful response. What I'm feeling is natural and he should be supportive. I don't want to punish him but I'm angry. It's really challenging as currently we are separate as a result of visa problems and are communicating via phone and email. The issue is I knew 6months ago a little bit but finally I now know the extent of it. The worst part I think he wants me to get over it now and I can't as you said. I truthfully think its cultural and also sexism. If i did to him the same thing he would not forgive me. In his culture infidelities do exist for men often and it is turned a blind eye though he reassures me he won't cheat. And as you say we clearly have different definitions of what is cheating. The fact of the matter is he had two other girl relationships at the same time as me before marriage. Also after marriage when he was angry he wrote a message to a girl on Facebook I also found out. We currently got into a major fight and are not speaking. I've decided I need a couple days for things to cool down is best and talk rationally. He told me he didn't like my attitude and it ended quite poorly. I hope we can resolve things but currently I am not feeling optimistic.
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Wonderful response. What I'm feeling is natural and he should be supportive. I don't want to punish him but I'm angry. It's really challenging as currently we are separate as a result of visa problems and are communicating via phone and email. The issue is I knew 6months ago a little bit but finally I now know the extent of it. The worst part I think he wants me to get over it now and I can't as you said. I truthfully think its cultural and also sexism. If i did to him the same thing he would not forgive me. In his culture infidelities do exist for men often and it is turned a blind eye though he reassures me he won't cheat. And as you say we clearly have different definitions of what is cheating. The fact of the matter is he had two other girl relationships at the same time as me before marriage. Also after marriage when he was angry he wrote a message to a girl on Facebook I also found out. We currently got into a major fight and are not speaking. I've decided I need a couple days for things to cool down is best and talk rationally. He told me he didn't like my attitude and it ended quite poorly. I hope we can resolve things but currently I am not feeling optimistic.
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Wanted to backtrack. Yes I want to forgive and forget but need time and the problem more with me he is not patient wants instant forgiveness. He takes little responsibility for his actions. He will say I'm sorry I did wrong but look at you and your past. I certainly am not perfect but my past relationships have no impact on our relationship. In his culture there is no dating only marriage and I was previously married and had past relationships which I honestly shared and gave him the choice to accept or not. So to me that has no bearing. To me it's more of trying to not owe up and place blame. To his defense though he has really tried and the last few months had been absolutely dedicated to ou marriage. But you made a good point I am just reacting to new information. Thanks to both of yoj for your posts.
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
This is Quoted For Truth.

I was having a conversation with my wife about cheating and she said that kissing is cheating, but having a professional blow me is 'no big deal'.

:scratchhead:


We explored that issue more and she said since I felt it was cheating, it's now off the table.

People are strange.
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Wow that's really good you had that conversation. I think that's wonderful for you to be open and honest. I guess everyone has different levels and tolerances.
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Wow that's really good you had that conversation. I think that's wonderful for you to be open and honest. I guess everyone has different levels and tolerances.
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I think it's more the expectation of male infidelity in that culture. It's common. A man being away from his wife is allowed to 'rub one out' but it's not acceptable for any emotional bonding to occur.
 
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