Direct Answers – Column for the week of June 28, 2004
Two days ago, purely by accident, I found out my husband was a member of an online sex and swinger service. I unintentionally opened his e-mail, thinking the computer was logged on to my name, not his. After a minute or two of deliberation, I used the password to log on to the site to see what he was doing. I almost threw up when I read his profile and found he was actively seeking women and couples for extramarital sex.
Yesterday, I became a member of the site, set up a fake profile, and contacted him. I think I was hoping he signed up as some kind of joke at work to see who would get the most replies or something. Today I got his reply. He wants to get to know me better and see pictures.
I am going to play this out and see how far he takes this, but I already feel betrayed and cheated on, even though it is with me! We’ve been together for eight years, married for six, and have two very young children. I never even thought of him cheating on me before this.
Olivia, contacting other people for sex is not a lark. Your husband is doing something covert which may end your marriage.
If you confront him with the thin evidence you have now, he will tell you this is the very first time he did this, he is sorry, and he doesn’t know why he did it. Our response is, perhaps he doesn’t know why he gets in the car and drives to work, either.
Now your husband is thinking about this “new” person. He is hoping she e-mails pictures. He is thinking about how he will conceal her from you. He is plotting it out in his mind.
Don’t expect to ever know the truth from him. The truth is of no advantage to him. In the many letters we receive, the betrayed party feels they never learned the entire truth.
If you pursue your quest for information, you will want to know several things. How long has he been doing this? How many partners has he had? What kind of precautions has he taken, if any? What does he tell others about you and your relationship?
At some point you will tell your husband what you know. The more you know, the fewer excuses he can offer. He may fall back on the betrayer’s standard excuse: it’s your fault.
We don’t allow for that. You don’t cheat. If you have problems, you talk to your spouse. If you are going to get involved with another person, you end your marriage first. Anything less permanently destroys trust in the marriage.
Wayne & Tamara
Jumping The Gun
My husband and I used to work for the same company, which is how we met. A group of us from work played on a dart league. I had no interest in him other than friendship. My relationship eventually ended, and his marriage was ending. I was not the cause of his divorce. A year before I came along, he told his wife all he was to her was a paycheck.
This woman tells their children I am the tart who broke up their marriage. Will she ever take responsibility for the problems in their marriage that caused the breakup? It takes two, and I wasn’t one of them.
Bianca, when the police fail to read a suspect his rights, the verdict may be thrown out on this technicality. Your husband got involved with you before his divorce was final. That allows his ex-wife to say, “It was the other woman.” Your husband committed a procedural error, and she’s decided to argue the technicality.
If you had waited until his divorce was final, things would be different for all involved. History can’t be undone. That’s the problem.