How did I get here?
Hello! I'm "C" - 29, married to "W" for 10 years. We have three children ages 8, 6 and 4.
W and I were married young (23 and 20) and we've had a lot of bumps along the road in our marriage. I have always had sexual hangups due to sexual abuse in my childhood and that has led to a lot of intimacy issues. I was self-conscious about sex and very hesitant to let go of control, which made W feel rejected and perhaps emasculated. W has sought out attention from other women in the past, flirting with female coworkers, etc. This happened in cycles, with me finding out and confronting W, and W promising never to let it happen again. I have been very suspicious and found it difficult to trust W over the years...I became less and less interested in being intimate with him and found myself snooping in his email and going through his text messages because I was sure he was doing it again. The snooping made me feel guilty and ashamed, but I justified it to myself because I knew he wouldn't tell me the truth if I asked him.
About a year and a half ago I noticed that our cell phone bill was higher than usual, so I went online to figure out what was causing the extra charges. I saw that W had hundreds of texts when he usually didn't text much at all. I looked up the one number he seemed to be texting the most and tried to figure out who the number belonged to. When W came home from work I managed to grab his phone and look through some emails and texts, and I found out that the number he'd been texting so much belonged to a woman named "H" who worked with him.
I asked W about H...who she was, why they were texting, etc. He said they just worked together, that she was married and nothing was going on. She lived a couple of hours away but traveled here to work some weekends, and sometimes for a couple of weeks at a time. I remembered he'd mentioned her before, that she sold nutritional supplements and had given him samples of energy drink powder.
A while later I realized he was still texting a lot and I looked through his emails and texts once again. I saw a lot of flirting between them, but also a lot of sex talk. They weren't talking about having sex with each other, but telling each other the details of the sex they were having with their spouses. I confronted W and he told me that they did email and text quite a bit, but that it was mostly just venting to each other about their marriage issues, which led to giving each other updates on how things were going (especially with regard to the intimacy issues between W and I).
I felt hurt, betrayed and violated. I wanted to know what kinds of things W was venting about to H...was he telling her I was a crappy wife, a crappy housekeeper, that I was frigid or bad in bed? I asked him if they were discussing sex because it was thrilling and exciting. He said it was sort of fun/exciting but that it had never progressed further than that.
I told him it was inappropriate to be talking to another woman in that way, that their discussions had violated my privacy and trust. I told him I didn't want him talking to H anymore and he agreed. He apologized and we talked for a long time, opening up a little more than we had in the past.
Fast forward to this past July. I've been seeing my hairstylist for a few years and I've referred a couple of people to her, and she's always thanked me and given me 25% off my next service. She messaged me on Facebook to tell me thank you for the referral and I had no idea what she was talking about. I went in for my next cut/color and asked her who had said I referred them to her. She said it was a woman named H who worked with my husband. I knew immediately it was the same H. I asked W about it and he said that they hadn't been talking except for a quick hello in meetings, but that she asked him where his wife got her hair done and he told her, and that was all.
I had recently gone out with my hairstylist (J) and another girlfriend for a girl's night out and we all had a blast. J told me that H had asked her if we would all like to go out for another girl's night out with her, since she hadn't lived in the area long and didn't have many girlfriends. Now, up to this point I believed she still lived a few hours away and was only in town a couple of times a month. Apparently she'd been offered a position working here full-time and had been living in the area since February.
I told J I'd check to see if I was free but I was a mess inside. I told W about it and he said he thought she was honestly wanting to meet some nice women but he'd understand if I didn't want to go. I was feeling pissed off because I wanted to keep going out for girl's nights with my friends but I didn't want H inserting herself into it.
I was really curious to meet her, sort of a "checking out the competition" sort of thing, but I had a feeling that W had not been completely honest with me about their relationship. I told Wyatt I wanted to go but I didn't want to look like a fool by walking into the restaurant thinking one thing (that they'd talked inappropriately but that was it) if there was more to it than that. I also felt more than a little embarrassed knowing he'd shared such intimate details with her, and complained about my shortcomings.
He opened up a little about what they had talked about - his feelings of rejection, how he resented coming home from work and having to jump in right away to help with housework and taking care of the kids, etc. He also admitted that they would talk to each other in explicit detail about the sex W and I were having. He said he would tell her those things because he used to vent to her about feeling rejected sexually, but W and I had been much more intimate in the last several months. I was happy he'd opened up to me but I asked him to please tell me if there was anything more I should know, and he promised that there wasn't.
Despite my reservations, I went out that night to meet J and H for sushi. I was extremely nervous and felt awkward walking in there to meet her for the first time. I was relieved that H and J were already there when I arrived because I didn't want it to be just H and me staring at each other in awkward silence.
I think H and I both felt awkward at first, but after a cocktail or two we were chatting away and laughing. H and I seemed to have similar senses of humor and a lot in common. I was surprised to realize that I actually really liked her.
Continued in my next post...