If your wife tells you that she wants to start having sex with other people, there’s a reason and it definitely isn’t that she’s happy with your marriage “as is.”
My wife [37F] and I [39M] entered into an open marriage at her request. Now she wants to close it up again.
To recap. My wife told me that she wanted an open marriage, I didn’t but agreed when she told me she was prepared to file for divorce. She had an outside partner within 24 hours. It took me a few months. Her partner and her broke up. She stalked me and introduced herself to my partner to try to force me to end it. When that didn’t work she decided to demand that the marriage be closed again. I put conditions on it that she wasn’t willing to accept.
Now on to the last month. It’s been a very tough month. I confronted my wife about the stalking. She denied it at first and then I brought up her location history. She attempted to deflect, claiming I invaded her privacy, but I didn’t take the bait. Finally she admitted that she didn’t like that I had someone on the side when she didn’t and a mom at the school felt too close to home.
I agreed that I would end things with Amber if she would agree to counseling, close the marriage up permanently, and start looking for a job to help with household expenses. She replied that she’s a stay at home mom. I told her it was something we could revisit after coronavirus is over, but when things normalize, she can’t just stay home.
We did a few therapy sessions and things went well at first. The therapist challenged her on why she had followed me, asked why she felt she had to go outside the marriage, and had her address pretty much everything going through my mind.
Then things went south. She admitted her outside partner was someone from her past; a high school boyfriend. They’d broken up before anything happened, and had reconnected. She regretted not going all the way with him in high school and decided that she wanted to fulfill that desire.
I was pissed. I told her that if me choosing a mom from school was too close to home, then her choosing a married ex-boyfriend was completely unacceptable. I told her I didn’t even want to look at her. I checked into a hotel to go cool off because I didn’t want my kids to see me like that. I stayed there for a few days and then decided to go home and deal with what was left of my marriage.
When I got home, I found that my daughter was being unusually cold to me. Even for a 14 year old girl, she was very dismissive. When I asked her what was going on, she went off on me for cheating on Mom with a band mom. I asked her where she heard this. She wouldn’t tell me at first telling me it didn’t matter, but then finally admitted her mother told her that I was staying at my girlfriend’s house after I left. I counted to ten in my head, told her it wasn’t true, showed her the receipt on my phone for the hotel, and told her that her mother and I had a fight and I decided to take some time away so we could both calm down. She cried a lot and I promised her that I loved her and I’d always love her. I did my best to remain calm though I was burning up inside.
I didn’t even go to my wife. I went on Facebook and found the guy’s wife. I sent her a message letting her know that for a year and a half her husband had been having an affair with my wife and I’d be happy to send her any proof she’d like. She was very appreciative, and had suspected something was up.
A few hours later, my wife came to me in a rage screaming that I had violated the confidentiality of our therapy and ruined the guy’s life. I asked her what she meant to do by telling our daughter that I had a girlfriend? She denied doing it and still refuses to admit that she told her anything other than I was away for a few days.
This went down last Thursday. We haven’t spoken to each other since. We’re supposed to have another counseling session tomorrow, though I don’t know if it’s even worth going. I keep catching her in lies and I don’t think I’ll ever be able to trust her again.
I know that filing for divorce is the wise choice at this point, but I feel sick thinking about it. I feel like a failure because I couldn’t make my marriage work. I know that’s where it’s going to end up; I just feel like I’m going to throw up every time I try to call an attorney.
The best time to call an attorney was when she gave him a choice between open marriage and divorce because she was clearly ready to walk. Now they’re in a position where they’re going to end up getting divorced anyway, but BOTH OF THEM participated in the open marriage aspect of things and it’s extremely acrimonious with lots of hurt feelings on both sides.
We can go back and forth on whether she should have been dating an ex (no), whether was hypocritical about his “too close to home” partner (yes), whether she should have told their daughter that (no) or whether he should have told the other guy’s wife (no, if only to keep it for leverage in the divorce), but the reality is all of this happened AFTER he should have already been on his way out of the marriage. It’s not a good situation, it’s getting worse and there’s probably a 95% chance they’re getting divorced whether he likes it or not.