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I'm separated and my friend of years is making subtle moves on me. What do I do?

Tagged as: Friends, Marriage problems<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (15 January 2019) 9 Answers - (Newest, 1 February 2019)
A female United States age 51-59, anonymous writes:

im falling out of love with my husband do to his emotional and verbal abuse.Been married for 15 years but together for 25 there is no intimacy for the last year or so.Occassional hug here or there .However he is great with our daughter relationship wise.My daughter sees the way he treats me and says mom you dont Need this your better than that know your worth.I know shes right he has filed for a legal seperation and it was approved. He ask me to give him time to move its already been six months.However i have a best friend a male that ive known since 4th grade.He doesnt call all the time and visits once in a while when we are together i have a great time with him.ive had an inkling that he may have feelings for me.But holds back do to me being married he knos my husband and vice versa.Mothers day last year he brought me a dozen of beautiful roses and invited us over for lunch.He does everything wonderful for me that my husband doesnt do including accept me for me.He has been making suttle moves here and there i dont know what to do.i do have feelings for him but hold back because im afraid that im wrong about seeing what im seeing with him HELP please.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (1 February 2019):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thank you to everyone who helped with commenting.I appreciate All that was said here.God bless all of you

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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious United Kingdom + , writes (23 January 2019):

Youcannotbeserious agony auntSweetheart, after so many years, your husband knows all too well what buttons to press to make you feel like shit, and that is exactly what he is doing. My response to such an idiotic comment would have been something along the lines of "Well, that makes two of us".

You already KNOW he is abusive. He is losing his hold over you so of course he is going to say nasty things and lash out. That is just his character.

Please remember, you cannot control what he does or says but you CAN control how you react (or refuse to react) to it. He is deliberately trying to make you feel worthless. However, he cannot do this without your express agreement. Be strong and refuse to be ground down by him.

My best advice to you: get out of this abusive situation as quickly as possible and move on. Mix with people who love you for the lovely person you are. Life's too short to brood about nasty things said by nasty people.

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (22 January 2019):

Angry things will be said. He is also taking cheap-shots; because you're finally standing-up for yourself.

He will hit below the belt with the intent to throw you off-balance. People rarely say nice things to each other before and during a divorce.

If he never really wanted to marry you, why did he go so far doing something he never wanted to do? He went through a courtship, engagement, and a wedding. He had plenty of time to change his mind.

Now is not the time to be oversensitive and collapse every-time he hurls an insult. He's always putting you down, it's par for the course. You're an adult, don't make your daughter the mother.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (22 January 2019):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thank you to everyone whom replied.I really appreciate the feedback.Your comments Help me tremendously.Im going to update all of you on what has happend.Im looking into counseling for myself.Trying to get my hubby to move after him telling me recently that he NEVER wanted to marry in the first place and he didnt want to marry me.This made me angry i asked him why, he shrugged his shoulders as if to not know why.I am very upset at this point and have spent ALL these years with someone who never wanted a committment in the first place .What a waste hes trying to be better to me but it doesnt change the fact im very hurt and dont think i want to continue this whatever it is we have.Please help

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (15 January 2019):

I really meant to say:

"It may seem like hubby doesn't care what you do; but it could be a facade."

He filed for the separation. Yet he feel he's the one calling the shots; until he realizes who's got your back.

I commend your daughter for her wisdom; and being such a solid pillar of support. I think she'll keep you centered. You've been a care-giver so long; you've forgotten how to take care of yourself. You raised her well.

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (15 January 2019):

It's best to wait until you get through the divorce. Your gent and your husband know each other; so your husband might try to sabotage things out of spite.

It may not seem like hubby doesn't care what you do; but it could be a facade. The male-ego and our pride can be easily triggered; when confronted by other male-competition. Besides, you wouldn't want to drag your friend through the emotional-upheaval you could be facing. This is the calm before the storm.

You also have to be careful about "rebound-feelings." He's being nice to you, and appealing to your needs; but not necessarily connecting emotionally. If you've been neglected for a long time; you're needy and vulnerable.

You may unintentionally use him to console your feelings of rejection; and to overcome any sense of abandonment by your husband. Like an emotional-band-aid. Take your time to make sure you know what you're feeling towards him; not just feeding on his good energy. Also make sure he's not just a Romeo; or an opportunist taking advantage of your vulnerability. Stay level-headed.

You only "think" he cares romantically; but it could be that he is sympathetic to your situation. Like your daughter, he's taking care of you; knowing you don't deserve how you've been treated. He sees the signs of neglect.

I think it's good to explore the possibilities; but you need to deal with the divorce first. Considering the emotional and mental-challenges that come with it. You want to be your best-self when you make romantic-pursuits. Starting-out on a clean-slate, with little or no baggage.

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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious United Kingdom + , writes (15 January 2019):

Youcannotbeserious agony auntP.S. As you and our daughter sound close, why not discuss it with her when the time is right. She sounds like she just wants you to be happy so, hopefully, she will make a good sounding board.

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A female reader, Youcannotbeserious United Kingdom + , writes (15 January 2019):

Youcannotbeserious agony auntYour first priority needs to be to split properly from your husband. You need to have a chat with him and see what you can do to help him move out. Despite your relationship effectively being over, he sounds reluctant/too lazy to move out. Offer to help him look for a place of his own. Go with him to view places if he wants you to. Whatever it takes to finish your marriage properly instead of living in this half finished state.

Are you attracted to this man? Are his attentions welcome, or would you rather he remained in the friend zone? After such a long relationship, it would (in my opinion) be a huge mistake to move on too quickly. By all means, remain friends with the new man but don't jump into a relationship until YOU feel ready. Take it slowly and see where it leads. If you do NOT want to get into a relationship with him, you need to make it clear as soon as he steps over the line between friendship and romance. It would not be fair to let him think he has a chance if this is not the case.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (15 January 2019):

Honeypie agony auntI'd say WAIT until the divorce is final and YOU have given yourself some time to not only deal with the divorce but the last 25 years.

WHAT is the hurry to jump into something new?

Sure, you have KNOWN the "new guy" for a long time but you have no idea what kind of partner he would make. So I'd really wait for the divorce to be final, the EX-husband to be OUT of the house before you dip your toes in a new relationship. You need to go really slow here.

And NO MOVING IN the "new man" either.

I'd have another talk with your husband and see if you two can move up the divorce and him moving out. Giving him more time needs a "time table" NOT so you can make plans for a new relationship but so that you both can work on the future.

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