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Hello all, this is my first post here, so I hope it's met with kindness and understanding.

Last year, my girlfriend of 8 years and I were married. Almost immediately afterward, we relocated to a different part of the state so that I could attend graduate school. She was resistant at first, but seemed to warm up to the idea over time.

I won't lie. Adapting has been really tough. I've been preoccupied with grad school, but I've taken great pain to include my wife in social events with my new friends from the Ph.D. program I'm in. However, my wife had been feeling a bit empty--sort of a bystander in "my" group--so she branched out and started going to meetups staged by a Facebook group dedicated to a pretty popular website. I had encouraged her to do this, and whatever else made her feel comfortable in her new environment.

Flash forward a month or two, and she has befriended a core group of people. One person whose name kept popping up, I shall refer to as "P". I'd met P at a concert that my wife had platonically invited him to. He seemed a bit standoffish, and his behavior immediately put him on my radar. It turns out that my wife was chatting with P quite a bit on Facebook--far moreso than any of her other friends. My wife, in our 9 year long relationship, has never seen the need to exercise privacy in the form of locking her computer or changing her passwords, and I had never had the interest in snooping. However, something made me implacably curious about her relationship with P.

After checking out the chat logs, I noticed that she was initiating contact with P quite a bit. Always while I'm out at school, too. I confronted her gently about the issue, and she told me that they were just friends; closed the door on the matter, and that was that. That made me even more curious, so I continued to monitor her chats with him, and I noted that P was getting increasingly more suggestive with his statements. I knew he wanted my wife, but apparently she was clueless. At least, that's what she told me after a second confrontation about the matter.

I told my wife that I felt that her contact with P was inappropriate, even if she felt that she'd done nothing wrong. My line in the sand was this: you can remain friends with him online, because I don't want to create an awkward situation, but please do not initiate contact with him. Simple enough, right?

A couple of months go by, while I'm consumed with work. The holidays pass, and I decide it's time to alleviate my fears that P and my wife have been chatting. I find evidence of her initiating contact, and I blew up--we had an explosive argument where I basically told her that their "friendship" was over, for the sake of the marriage. I felt incredible dolor at the thought that I would have to continue spying on my wife to maintain my sanity, so I put it out of my mind for the next 4 months. What made me feel a whole lot better is that P had moved away--far away, to a state completely across the U.S. At least the threat of a physical affair was gone.

In April, I found evidence that my wife and P were chatting on Facebook and Skype, playing online games together, and had joined a google group subtitled "Still awesome, even though we're apart". There was evidence that they had been sending "<3" emoticons to each other, which may seem like a ridiculously silly indicator to pick up on, but it rended me in two.

We had it out.

A huge argument ensued. I laid everything out there--the chat logs, the google group, the hearts. Everything. I was shouting like my father, which makes me want to cry when I think about how it made me feel. We didn't talk for a week, except through text and e-mail. I slept on the futon in the guest bedroom because I didn't have any viable alternative. She changed her passwords to everything and put a lock on her computer, which she took off the next day--presumably so as not to seem suspicious.

I was visibly broken when I went into class after the confrontation. My friends pried, but I refused to disclose the information to them, because they all love my wife. They think she's the greatest. I only told three people, because they would have found out anyway, or because they were responsible for most of the inviting to social gatherings and I didn't want my wife to be invited to places I might be going to. My cousin, who was my best man at the wedding, also knew the whole story from day 1. He offered me advice and support on this matter in an impartial manner, and refused to level judgment at my wife until this most recent incident. My wife and I have since reconciled. She's been going to counseling meetings with me almost weekly, and I've been struggling to regain trust in her. She seemed, and still seems, sincerely sorry for the strain this put on our marriage.

Two months go by, and I become anxious again, because she has been spending an unusual amount of time on her computer. It's her summer break, and she's got nothing to do; I think "Idle hands, right?" so I start snooping again. Almost nothing incriminating shows up in her browser history except for one suspect website: a gmail address with a memorable name that I made a mental note of.

I don't know why, but I had an anxiety attack. I think it was because I was sick of all this mistrust in our relationship, and I didn't know how to fix things. I sat down with my wife and told her that I was feeling strange, and that I really wanted her reassurance that she was no longer speaking to P. This was implicit from our counseling meetings, but I wanted to hear it from the source. She emphatically confirmed that P was no longer in her life. It was not believable in the least.

On goes the keylogger. I spent an afternoon placing the software on her Mac and adjusting configurations while she was out with her sister. I've been monitoring her every keystroke for 2 days now. Based on my observations, she is logging into this undisclosed gmail address to chat with P. I cannot tell whether or not it's him she's talking with, but she is using the same semi-flirtatious approach towards the chats with this person as she did with P. Essentially, the chats are mundane, but there is quite a bit of "oh, come see me when you visit!" or "we should do this sometime" talk. There is one line that said "I will think about that when I am in the sh--" it was cut off, but I'm assuming from context that she was saying "shower". A very recent message ended with "bye <3". She does not send these hearts to any of her other friends, and she does not send them to me either.

Now that I have this information, this is what I plan to do:
- I will continue to monitor her for a couple of days, just to see where these chats go, and determine with decisive proof that she is indeed chatting with P.
- If I find conclusive evidence that there has been an ongoing emotional affair with P, I will purchase my wife a plane ticket back to the city where her sister lives.
- I will pack her bags with enough clothes for a couple of weeks, and greet her with the news that I am aware of her emotional affair.
- I will look into getting a separation, if not a divorce. If I cannot trust her, I cannot stay married to her.

My mind may be clouded with emotion right now, and I'm looking for objective advice. Has my wife truly been having an emotional affair, or am I just Don Quixote the Second? Have I outlined a rational approach to my situation? I'm trying my hardest to be reasonable, but there's just this urge inside me to shout at the top of my lungs.

For disclosure's sake, both I and my wife are 33 years old. She's only been in one other relationship before ours, and is just beginning to discover her libido.

Thanks, guys. I'm going to attempt to sleep next to my wife like nothing's wrong and I haven't a care in the world...
 

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This "only friends" stuff is just infuriating...
Best wishes for you goodbyebagel. There are a lot of people with similar experiences here in the forum and i'm sure they'll help you out with all you're going through. Stay strong.
 

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Your wife is in the "fog" of the affair. You cannot trust one word she says. You did all you could. Don't doubt yourself once the separation process starts.

Your wife might use the chance at her sister's place to go meet with the OM.(Or him coming to meet her). Even now, you don't have proof that it did not go physical. people in affairs somehow find a way. Don't shout or get angry this time. Just calmly talk about separation and divorce. Start reading about the 180. Tell friends respectfully why you are separating but tell them the truth so that she cannot make you the abuser.

Luckily, you don't have kids.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Your wife is in the "fog" of the affair. You cannot trust one word she says. You did all you could. Don't doubt yourself once the separation process starts.

Your wife might use the chance at her sister's place to go meet with the OM.(Or him coming to meet her). Even now, you don't have proof that it did not go physical. people in affairs somehow find a way. Don't shout or get angry this time. Just calmly talk about separation and divorce. Start reading about the 180. Tell friends respectfully why you are separating but tell them the truth so that she cannot make you the abuser.

Luckily, you don't have kids.
Thank you, Warlock. I could not sleep last night, and I confronted her this morning. I'm terrible at hiding my feelings.

I was calm and stern, and told her to make plans to stay with her sister up North. Unfortunately, she's about to leave for a short vacation with her family, so she's stuck at the apartment until she leaves on Monday. I've made arrangements to sit and talk with her tonight about her plans, and to make sure she has her affairs in order (pardon the pun).

I'm going to class, and I'm going to work on this final like I don't have a care in the world, but really I'm about as frightened as I've ever been.
 

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I wouldn't confront her just yet. You have something but nothing concrete and the stuff you have can easily be explained away. Remember, cheaters are incredibly good liars.

I would step it up and buy some voice activated recorders (VAR's) and plant one in the house (bedroom or wherever she normally talks on the phone) and get some heavy duty velcro and secure a VAR under her drivers seat. She may have a burner phone and most cheaters usually communicate while driving.
 

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Better plan-----go on line---to the state you are in---read up, on their family codes, as if you were consulting a D. atty.----then print out the complete and entire Divorce packet, in re: D., and property settlement---place it on the table where she has to see it---and say to her----YOU EITHER STOP ALL CONTACT, in all ways, shapes, or forms, or I start filing this out, and filing it

If that doesn't break her out of Disneyland, than you just may be in for D.

You need to take immediate action, and you have very few weapons to use, this is one of them, use it.----Actually it will work both ways for you, force her to stop, her EA, or go thru with the actual D.
 

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You have this right. Don't doubt yourself. And, yes, she will lie and tell folks yu are jealous and controlling.
I agree with the advice to dissolve this marriage. She is cheating and that is the kiss of death for the vast majority of relationships.
Good luck on the final. Sucks that she brought this pain at such a critical time.
 

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If you have been married less than a calendar year then get an anullment. Faster and cheaper than divorce. This chick is a lemon. Take her back to the dealer and get your money back.
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Fair enough. This bomb dropped about 2 weeks after our 1 year anniversary, though. Although, I guess I should have seen it coming.
 

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I wouldn't confront her just yet. You have something but nothing concrete and the stuff you have can easily be explained away. Remember, cheaters are incredibly good liars.

I would step it up and buy some voice activated recorders (VAR's) and plant one in the house (bedroom or wherever she normally talks on the phone) and get some heavy duty velcro and secure a VAR under her drivers seat. She may have a burner phone and most cheaters usually communicate while driving.
While I absolutely understand how you might think the recorders would be a necessity, I know my wife well enough to know that she would never carry a burner. She's too sloppy, she'd accidentally leave it lying on the kitchen counter. And regardless, I have more than enough information to know that she's been sneaking around behind my back. I don't need to see under the blanket to know that it's a crime scene.

The confrontation already happened this morning. I sat and watched her lie to me repeatedly about how she isn't hiding a single thing from me, and she doesn't have alternate e-mail accounts, etc. It was only after I told her that our relationship would not survive the conversation if she did not come clean, and that I would be walking out the door forever if she did not have the dignity to tell her husband what she's been up to, did her facade crack. She broke down and confessed everything.

I am staying in the apartment tonight, but I am leaving for my mom's place tomorrow. I expect her out by Wednesday, as I mentioned before. Thanks for your advice, though!
 

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Better plan-----go on line---to the state you are in---read up, on their family codes, as if you were consulting a D. atty.----then print out the complete and entire Divorce packet, in re: D., and property settlement---place it on the table where she has to see it---and say to her----YOU EITHER STOP ALL CONTACT, in all ways, shapes, or forms, or I start filing this out, and filing it

If that doesn't break her out of Disneyland, than you just may be in for D.

You need to take immediate action, and you have very few weapons to use, this is one of them, use it.----Actually it will work both ways for you, force her to stop, her EA, or go thru with the actual D.
Wow, those are some Sun Tzu level tactics right there. Harsh, and to the point. I guess my approach has been a little softer, but maybe that's why I've been getting abused like this.

I told her in no uncertain terms that the marriage is on indefinite hold, and that she needs to get her act together by the end of July if we are to discuss being anything beyond friends in the future.
 

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While I absolutely understand how you might think the recorders would be a necessity, I know my wife well enough to know that she would never carry a burner. She's too sloppy, she'd accidentally leave it lying on the kitchen counter. And regardless, I have more than enough information to know that she's been sneaking around behind my back. I don't need to see under the blanket to know that it's a crime scene.

The confrontation already happened this morning. I sat and watched her lie to me repeatedly about how she isn't hiding a single thing from me, and she doesn't have alternate e-mail accounts, etc. It was only after I told her that our relationship would not survive the conversation if she did not come clean, and that I would be walking out the door forever if she did not have the dignity to tell her husband what she's been up to, did her facade crack. She broke down and confessed everything.

I am staying in the apartment tonight, but I am leaving for my mom's place tomorrow. I expect her out by Wednesday, as I mentioned before. Thanks for your advice, though!
You handled this extremely well.
Much to my shame, when I confronted my XW with what I now consider irrefutable evidence, I backed down when she denied. I even apologized for doubting her(someone, shoot me, please((Ar are you listening)).
I admire your resolve and confidence.
 

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You handled this extremely well.
Much to my shame, when I confronted my XW with what I now consider irrefutable evidence, I backed down when she denied. I even apologized for doubting her(someone, shoot me, please((Ar are you listening)).
I admire your resolve and confidence.
Thank you. The evidence was on my side, and I was so tired of her shady behavior that I called her bluff. She blurted out her lies so effortlessly, it makes me wonder who this person I call my wife actually is.
 

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Way too much talking on your part. Way to much - if you will just please stop doing this we can stay married.

Do you have any idea where you would be right now if you had children with her? Massively screwed beyond comprehension. You keep saying: .....
She keeps hearing: He is willing to tolerate this - I just need to hide it better

You file. You end it. Having children with someone who doesn't respect you enough to stop after this long - is simply insane. Note to yourself: In the future, when you catch something like this, they go NC immediately with the understanding that any breach of that will result in you filing and forcing all communication through your lawyer.

You yelled and screamed the first few times - but she had no real consequence. Moving out - THAT is a consequence.



Thank you. The evidence was on my side, and I was so tired of her shady behavior that I called her bluff. She blurted out her lies so effortlessly, it makes me wonder who this person I call my wife actually is.
 

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Way too much talking on your part. Way to much - if you will just please stop doing this we can stay married.

Do you have any idea where you would be right now if you had children with her? Massively screwed beyond comprehension. You keep saying: .....
She keeps hearing: He is willing to tolerate this - I just need to hide it better

You file. You end it. Having children with someone who doesn't respect you enough to stop after this long - is simply insane. Note to yourself: In the future, when you catch something like this, they go NC immediately with the understanding that any breach of that will result in you filing and forcing all communication through your lawyer.

You yelled and screamed the first few times - but she had no real consequence. Moving out - THAT is a consequence.
Objectively, I can see you're right. It's just very hard for me to go from playing the role of the compassionate doormat to the role of the bitter, jilted ex-lover.

I'm glad I somewhat dodged the bullet by not having kids with her, though. I'm out of town until Wednesday, and she's going to be upstate by then.

I still have a feeling she thinks we're going to have a tearful reunion after this time apart.
 
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