open marriage failure - Talk About Marriage
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post #1 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:33 PM Thread Starter
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open marriage failure

My wife has talked for ages about having an open marriage. This went on for years in fantasy, but one day, I returned from a trip and knew something was up.

It took me four days to finally drag it out of her, but she'd slept with my "best friend" while I was away. In fact, that night she finally told me, they were headed to a hotel for the evening (we normally go out that night with a group that includes him, but that night I couldn't go).

After a couple weeks, I told her I couldn't take it. He'd gone out of his way to rub my nose in their relationship, and it was proving to be a lot more hurtful than I expected.

Over the next couple months, I found that she was seeing him without telling me about it. They'd go out to lunch or coffee, and only other triggers would make me realize what had happened. When I confronted him about it, he said that nothing was up, and I told him to stop sneaking around behind my back trying to have a secret relationship with my wife.

She said nothing was going on as well, "it's just lunch".

We went through another cycle of this, with me meeting him for lunch one day a week, and them having a secret meeting another day. In fact, on one of those days I said I was open for lunch, but he said he "had other plans", which turned out, of course, to be lunch with my wife.

I suddenly realized that not only was it a secret, but I wasn't wanted there. I immediately cut off all contact with him, and told her I wanted her to do so as well. She basically said "no".

Now we're some 14 months later, with me discovering over and over things like:

- secret lunch and coffee meetings
- him calling the house when I wasn't there (he's never called when I was), including only situations when the only way he could know I wasn't there was from her
- gifts being given back and forth

Last week we had another fight about it, and in anger, she removed him as a friend on fb (which is where they normally chat), and telling him to stop calling. Meanwhile, she still hasn't told me about the times they've been meeting while I'm away at work that I know have happened.

Now there are a million little details I could add here, and our relationship has other issues that have led to trust issues from her side as well. I'm not deluded in any way that I'm anywhere close to perfect.

I so much want her to really end this, but feel like she doesn't want to, doesn't understand why this hurts me (she insists it's simply that I don't trust her to not have sex with him, and that I think she's a ****). I don't think they're having sex, but it's the fact that she knows this hurts me, and how he's treated me that makes me want him simply out of our lives entirely.

Meanwhile, we have three kids at home, and neither of us can afford to move out. I love her dearly, and want to fix this.

Advice appreciated, and details added if needed.
Luke

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post #2 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:42 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

If both of you were not in agreement with this 'open marriage' then I don't think it can really be classified as that. If you had known ahead of time that this was planned and you were on board with it that would have been a different matter. Personally, I don't consider your marriage as open. I consider it as your wife being a cheater. I'm sorry you are going through this but that is why most of us are here.
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post #3 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:44 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

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If both of you were not in agreement with this 'open marriage' then I don't think it can really be classified as that. If you had known ahead of time that this was planned and you were on board with it that would have been a different matter. Personally, I don't consider your marriage as open. I consider it as your wife being a cheater. I'm sorry you are going through this but that is why most of us are here.
Yep, that doesn't sound like an open marriage to me.
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post #4 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:46 PM Thread Starter
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Re: open marriage failure

Yes, that's how I've finally started treating it. I've been reading about what I should expect from her, including cutting off all contact with him, and her unwillingness to do that is part of what's hurting.

She feels like she asked me if it was OK with him. I remember no such conversation, and can't imagine that I would have ever said "yes". I've known him as a manipulative jerk for many years, but at arms length, dealt with it. I can't see myself agreeing to to have him anywhere near my marriage.

At this point, it's the sneaking around that's really causing the hurting. But then again, if I knew about each of their meetings in advance, I don't think I'd be happy about that either.
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post #5 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:47 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

Your title says you had an open marriage.

The content of your OP makes it sound as if this was a surprise to you when you returned home.

Which is it?
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post #6 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:49 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

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Originally Posted by legodog View Post

She feels like she asked me if it was OK with him. I remember no such conversation, and can't imagine that I would have ever said "yes". I've known him as a manipulative jerk for many years, but at arms length, dealt with it. I can't see myself agreeing to to have him anywhere near my marriage.
This is ridiculous.

This is not something you forget, you either agreed to this or you didn`t.
if you don`t remember agreeing then you didn`t.
Or are you running for office and simply "can`t recall"?

What do you mean she "feels" like she asked you?

WTF?
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post #7 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:50 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

As long as she is not willing to stop all contact then chances are that you won't be able to handle it. My husband refused to stop contact with his 'friend' that he claimed they hit it off the first time they met. I filed for a divorce because I refused to be in a 3 person relationship.
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post #8 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:50 PM Thread Starter
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Re: open marriage failure

The idea had been discussed. But it was a total surprise to me when I got home. She insists she asked me about it, but I remember no such conversation. If we had it, it was totally in passing, rather than an involved discussion I would have expected.

Then again, I can't believe I'd forget such a comment, even in passing.
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post #9 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: open marriage failure

To be more clear, she says she asked me. I have no recollection of any such conversation, nor imagine I would ever agree to anything like that.

Worse, our marriage has had other issues, and I don't think it is a time to be playing with such an explosive topic. Our marriage didn't need (and still doesn't need) more challenges.
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post #10 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:53 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

You didn't forget. Your wife is trying to blame you for what she did. She is rewriting history. People forget a lot of things but they don't forget giving or not giving their spouse permission to have sex with another person.

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post #11 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:55 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

Is the other man married? Does the wife know? You need to start downloading divorce papers for your state and make sure your wife knows it. I'll bet this whole idea came up as an idea between him and her. Put a keylogger on the computer now. VAR in her car and where she uses her phone. Check texts and phone records for how much cotact they have really been having.

I'm guessing she is going to pick him but I hope I am wrong.
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post #12 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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Re: open marriage failure

He's married, has two kids, and has spent a lot of time telling my wife how much he wants to divorce her, how he's sure to get the kids (I'm not so sure), how horrible of a wife she is, etc.

All of this has led me to believe he's trying to steal my wife to replace his.
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post #13 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 08:00 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

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Originally Posted by legodog View Post
He's married, has two kids, and has spent a lot of time telling my wife how much he wants to divorce her, how he's sure to get the kids (I'm not so sure), how horrible of a wife she is, etc.

All of this has led me to believe he's trying to steal my wife to replace his.
Expose it to his wife immediately. If you can gather evidence that they are still seeing each other expose it to family and friends as well. Affairs are like ****roaches. They don't thrive in the light of day.
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post #14 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 08:02 PM
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Re: open marriage failure

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Originally Posted by legodog View Post
He's married, has two kids, and has spent a lot of time telling my wife how much he wants to divorce her, how he's sure to get the kids (I'm not so sure), how horrible of a wife she is, etc.

All of this has led me to believe he's trying to steal my wife to replace his.
Your wife is clearly having an affair.

Tell her that she has two choices.

1) end all contact with him and work with you to repair your marriage.

2) move out.

Either way... Tell the OM's (other man) wife about the affair. Tell your wife's family about her affair.
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post #15 of 85 (permalink) Old 02-04-2012, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
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Re: open marriage failure

I guess I'm afraid that going scorched earth on her will only further damage our relationship. She has depression issues, and I think this will also cause her to have more serious problems.
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