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Old 11-30-2012, 12:50 AM
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naturalblue naturalblue is offline
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Location: Long Beach, CA
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Default I think my husband wants to leave me

I just discovered this and my head is spinning, so forgive me if I'm all over the place.

My husband and I have been together for over 6 years, married since March. We have been open for a little over a year. He has a girlfriend that he has been with pretty much since we opened, and I have one primary fuck buddy and occasionally hook up with others as time/situations warrant.

There has been a history of him concealing how he feels about her from me. We had a big blowout several months ago because when we first opened, we agreed that it would just be sex and no other relationships. He was seeing her exclusively though and my warning bells were going off so I asked to be able to read the texts between them. There was a lot in there that he never told me so I was upset. I also realized that it was partially my fault as I had never spoken with her about our expectations, I left him to do it and trusted him when he said that he had and she understood. Well, he hadn't or at least not in the way that I understood them and she had fallen in love with him. It was a giant fight but in the end, I asked myself whether I felt that their relationship was a threat to our marriage and the answer was no, so I let it go and understood that there would be emotion involved in their relationship.

I have been feeling like we're disconnected lately though and have been concerned about it. I've asked him if he's in love with her and he avoids the question or says something like "well I do feel a love for her, but I wouldn't say I'm IN LOVE". This totally counters my gut instinct and his actions though. We're at the point where he almost spends more time with her than he does with me (Thurs - Sun almost every week). They call and text all the time. To be clear, I don't have a problem with them having a relationship or even loving each other. It's the hiding it that concerns me and my fear that he will decide that he only wants to be with her.

So, here's the crux of it. I snooped. I know, I know, it's terrible and I got exactly what I deserved by doing it. My worst fear has apparently come true. He sent her a message a month ago that said that he had been thinking about their relationship and he was so in love with her and he has been secretly hoping that I'll develop feelings for one of the guys that I'm seeing so that he can be with her. He said he wants to be her one and only forever and that he wants to be her husband.

I don't know what to do with this knowledge. I don't know what her reaction to that message was. I'm a jumble and am having trouble sorting out how I feel about this. I honestly think that if I say nothing he would just stay married to me forever no matter how he felt, he's bad at confrontation. On one hand, I don't want to be married to someone that doesn't want to be married to me. I also don't want to just give up on my marriage 8 months in. If I bring this up, do I make them break up? Make him swear that he won't divorce me? Close the relationship? I don't really want to do that but I also don't really know how I should respond to this.

I'm honestly less devastated than I thought I would be, but maybe that's just shock. Like I said, I have been feeling less connected to him and to be frank, our sex life has taken a nose dive in the last month or so. I chalked that up to bad timing, plus he was having some health issues for a bit. Also, we have historically gone through periodic dry spells, so I figured it was that. Now I'm wondering if it's due to him preferring her.

I really don't know what to think here and could use some perspective. I know this is a novel, I'm sorry.
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Old 11-30-2012, 09:31 AM
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SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Saskatchewan
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First off, I'm really sorry to hear that things turned out this way. It's not what you agreed to, and that super sucks.

I have a couple questions that might help assess the situation.

Was opening up your idea or his? What about the boundary of emotional exclusivity? You say she's been there pretty much since you opened up. To me, that sounds like he'd already met her and was using this opening up stuff as a pretence to validate his relationship with her.

Did you get married before or after you opened up the relationship? You say he dislikes confrontation. Could it be that he was too scared to tell you what he felt, so he did the unthinkable and married you when he wasn't 100% committed?

The texts you uncovered are pretty conclusive. If he's the type who can't maintain multiple romantic relationships, then he's just being a big chicken-shit by dragging you along. How you choose to handle that depends on your personality. I'm confrontational, so I would probably tell him upfront that I read his text, and that I expect some answers.

In my opinion, you shouldn't feel guilty or shamed for snooping in his phone. The fact that your fears were validated reinforces my opinion. Frankly, you should never have been put in a position where you felt the need to do that. I don't think partners should keep secrets from each other.

And then I would probably leave him. I wouldn't give him the chance to explain, I wouldn't offer him the opportunity to break-up with her and come back to me, I would just pack my bags and go. 8 months is really nothing when it comes to a marriage. This situation isn't likely to improve. Are you going to feel any better about leaving when it's 8 years and not 8 months, and if he's not still with her then he's doing this with someone else?
I don't need labels to define me. They're sticky and I hate the glue they leave behind.
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Old 11-30-2012, 10:28 AM
bella123456 bella123456 is offline
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I second
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Old 11-30-2012, 03:47 PM
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rory rory is offline
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Location: Europe
Posts: 497

I'm sorry for what you're going through...

I'm trying to think of an explanation to the message, but all the alternatives do really suck. It could be true, and he just hasn't told you (yet). Or it could be he's saying that to please her, i.e. that is what she is expecting to hear from him. But then, even if that were true, would you want to be with somebody who had so little respect for you that he would do that kind of thing... Seems like he is lying to at least one of you.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:01 PM
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gomugirl1656 gomugirl1656 is offline
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Arkansas
Posts: 78

I am sorry to hear this is happening to you. Here at our house, if it isn't honest and upfront there had better be a good reason for it. Even if he hasn't outright lied, even if he's just "waiting for the right time to tell you" even if he really loves you both and wants you to be happy without him. Secretly harboring feelings that you will, sort of, find someone else so he can sneak off with her is cowardly behavior and does not come off as ethical or responsible to me. You Deserve Better! I say leave him, he has already broken your contract and hasn't bothered to negotiate another one. Quietly make your plans and do what you must do to move on. And again, I am sorry I know this is painful.

Self honesty, communication, respect trifecta of a good start.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:37 PM
GalaGirl GalaGirl is online now
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I am sorry you are going through this.
I don't really want to do that but I also don't really know how I should respond to this.
Well... You need feedback from him at this point. You could ASK HIM. Where's his head at here? But come clean and with an attitude of "let's sort this out" and not with an attitude of "you rat fink! GRRR!"

The initial agreement had evidence of not being well written.
We had a big blowout several months ago because when we first opened, we agreed that it would just be sex and no other relationships.
That bold part just NOT a realistic, reasonable thing. People cannot control feelings. They bubble up and ensue after behavior. They CAN control how they behave in response to those feelings though.

You guys made an agreement that was not realistic. (First Behavior)

He become this woman's lover. (Next Behavior).
He had feelings ensue and bubble up for her. (New Feelings.)

But the agreement left him NO place to go to air that out. He was just supposed to NOT have the feelings at all.
So he kept them to himself then and chose silence. (New Behavior)
So when you noticed changes in him (observation behavior) and you felt weird. (New feelings) the agreement left you no space to talk to him in. If he's supposed to NOT HAVE the feelings at all, why would you ever have need to talk about it? You don't ever need to deal with it, right? So you guys never planned ahead to cover that potential need -- your need to be able to talk to him about feelings of his that "just do not exist." It could just as easily have been the other way around with YOU struggling with feelings for a new lover.

You chose to snoop rather than ask him straight up or ask to change the agreement to address the need for space to air things out. (New behavior) Because this agreement you made was limiting for you both.
Now you feel confused and ugh from unwelcome knowledge. (New Feeling)

Now you get to pick a NEW behavior to see if better feelings will ensue.

I don't think you are bad people -- but this agreement you made was just not a good well designed agreement to begin with. The agreement did not help you to be your best selves and be in right relationship to each other or help you to choose good behavior toward the partner.

So new behavior choices at THIS crossroads to aid in better emotional management:
1) We can fuss about the poorly designed agreement that was broken and "assign blame" and "who was worse". Spend time sidelined on blue feeling things and go round in circles some to see who is the bluest.

2) We can accept we made a poorly designed agreeement that failed us both. We both accept we both feel blue. We address the original behavior that wasn't working. And take the opportunity to move things forward and change this agreement.
I'd go with move it forward and CHANGE FOR THE BETTER. How you guys change is up to you.

If you choose that behavior #2 you could own your part of it and apologize for snooping and open the discussion. Maybe it could be something like...
1) Yes, I peeked. I am sorry.

2) I found unwelcome knowledge. So let's talk.

3) Where is your head now? Since this message is a month old? Are we done with the poly experiment?
  • Have you come to find that you are monoamorous in your wiring and wish to part ways? If so, let's talk about a sensible, sane, quick divorce so we both get to the Healing Place as soon as possible.
  • Have you come to find that you are monoamorous in your wiring and wish to be with just me and we need to talk about CLOSING the marriage? If so, let's talk and sort how that might look for us.
  • Have you come to find that you are polyamorous but need things adjusted? Because this open model is NOT the model? If so, let's talk and sort out how that might look. Learn about other models.

4) Again, I apologize for peeking. I own my part in creating this agreement that was just not a good fit for either of us. I own my part in not great communication as things arose and changed. I should have spoken up rather than peek and ask you for clear communication.

I prefer up front, honest communication from this point forward. I'm willing to grow those skills. So let's talk and set an appointment for a good long talk on this. Thank you.
It's not fun to feel all this right now, but BREATHE. Take it one thing at a time. And move it forward. Sometimes taking sensible, solid action to move things forward is better than what iffing and staying stuck.

Hang in there. It's rough.


Last edited by GalaGirl; 11-30-2012 at 05:15 PM.
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