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My husband spends more time with his female co worker than he does with me.

Tagged as: Big Questions, Breaking up, Cheating, Faded love, Marriage problems, Three is a crowd, Troubled relationships, Trust issues<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (12 February 2018) 12 Answers - (Newest, 20 February 2018)
A female United States age 36-40, *fargo78 writes:

My husband has a female coworker that he has been friends with for a while. They go out to lunch together and text each other here and there. I’ve never had a problem with this, I have male coworkers that I am friends with as well. My problem is that lately he is spending far more time with her than with me. And he is spending a lot of alone time with her. During the holidays, he refused to come to the Christmas party at our house that I throw every year because he “already told Nancy he would go to their company holiday party”. He has never gone to or had any interest in going to his company holiday party any previous years and has always told me that it is up to me if we go or not. So when he told me that his party was on x date, which was the same night as my party (which I had already sent out invites for) I told him that was our party night and that’s when he basically told me that he was not going to come to my party and go to his party instead, because he already told his coworker he would. I was extremely upset at this, feeling like he was choosing to go to a party with her instead of me. We fought about this for over a month and finally agreed that he would only go to his party for an hour, then he would come home and join me and our family/friends for the rest of the party at our house. Well, he ended up staying at his party then going out afterward with her and another friend and didn’t even make it to my party at all. I was so upset by this and he did not understand why at all. He would see me crying and not even seem to care. He eventually half ass apologized and I decided to just move past it and let it go. Well now for the past 3 weekends he goes out with her every Saturday night after work to the skate park. And 2 weekend nights last month as well. Him and I literally never do anything, it is nearly impossible for me to get him to leave the house for any sort of date, but he seems to have no issue going out with her every week. He knows this upsets me and last week I got upset about it because I told him that I had gotten a movie that I wanted I watch with him. So this week on Friday I asked him if he wanted to have a movie night with me on Saturday and he told me no because he “might” go to the skate park with her. I immediately started crying again because like I said, him and I never do anything. He just carried on like nothing was wrong and went out with her again. Although I’m not worried that he is cheating on me, I do feel it is inappropriate for a married man to be going on what to me, seems like a date every Saturday night. Especially when he never goes out with me. I don’t think I would be as upset if him and I spent more time doing things together, but every time I ask him to do something there is always some reason he can’t go. It’s always work or his side job. For once I want to come before his work or his friends. Is that too much to ask? Am I wrong for feeling this way? I have also asked if he can just invite me to the skate park with them, maybe her and I can become friends, but he never does that either. I just feel like he spends way more time with her than me. They already work together, go to lunch together, and now go out on the weekends together. I told him last night that I have never felt more alone before while I was crying my eyes out and I got no response from him. I feel like he doesn’t even care how this makes me feel. He thinks I am just being a crazy jealous person. Am I? Or am I justified in how I feel? Any sort of advice would be appreciated. I can’t keep going through this every weekend.

View related questions: christmas, co-worker, jealous, married man, text

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (20 February 2018):

I applaud your bravery! Walking out of the house when you have 3 kids and have been with him all your life is not an easy thing to do, but it was the right thing to do. You are a strong woman to be able to do that. Perhaps it can be sorted out in the future but with the way he is acting right now it seems as if it isn't up for discussion. If you got together at 14 perhaps some of this is coming from a place where he doesn't feel he has had any other experiences outside the marriage. That doesn't make it right in the least, but at least it helps to understand that some of this completely inappropriate and awful behavior may be partially due to the fact of feeling committed soooo young in life...

Is there anyone else at his work you are friends with? Can you talk to maybe any mutual couple friends about your problems and get their perspective? Maybe they have seen your husband with this woman and have some perspective.

Best of luck, let us know how things continue to go.

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A female reader, aunt honesty Ireland +, writes (15 February 2018):

aunt honesty agony auntHonestly if he loved you he would put you first. He is being very selfish and from the sounds of it he has fallen for this co-worker. I mean yes it is okay to have friends ( I have male co-worker friends) and I am also married. However I would always put my husband first, it would pain me to see him hurt.

This is going to be a tough journey for you and yes it is scary and new but you have your two children and yes it is the best example for them, you don't want them growing up thinking this is okay, because it is really not. Please keep us updated on how you get on, and know you always have someone here to talk to.

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (14 February 2018):

Honeypie agony auntI'm so sorry you have to even go through this.

But you HAVE to put yourself AND the kids first. Because he isn't. you are not even a second or third.

Before you give him the ultimatum, I think you need to plan ahead a little. A sort of "worst case scenario battle plan". Which means you FIND a lawyer and get legal advice. You can even look for "free legal advice" online first. But DO get your ducks in a row. Mostly so he can't pull a fast one on you. While you may think "Oh, he wouldn't do that!" well, did you think he would do what he is doing now?

Having a PLAN before talking further with him might help you move forward no matter WHAT he decides to do or say. If that makes sense.

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A female reader, Aunty BimBim Australia + , writes (14 February 2018):

Aunty BimBim agony auntI am sorry, but not surprised. Your priority now are the three kids and making sure they are okay, this means protecting your resources, including financials and assets. Please seek legal advise today.

His friend has no respect for your marriage and children, and it appears neither does he, she wants your husband and will probably want money and assets as well.

If, after you tell him its you or her he decides you don't accept that a face value, you will need some help rebuilding your faith and trust in him and it sounds like he will need help seeing where he stepped way out of line and a professional counsellor is the way to go.

Personally I think he will dig his heels in so prepare for the worst.

Sending strength and positive thoughts to help you through this.

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A female reader, afargo78  United States +, writes (14 February 2018):

afargo78 is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thank you all for the advice. We talked last night and I said something about him not even apologizing for treating me like this and he basically told me he hasn’t done anything wrong, so why apologize? WTF??!!?? So I told him calmly, but firmly that I was not okay with them hanging out outside of work, especially alone. I told him if he valued our marriage more than their friendship/relationship/whatever it is, he wouldn’t have a problem stopping seeing her outside of work. He said he still didn’t get why or what he was doing wrong. I told him there is no way in hell that he would ever be okay with me doing that to him and he just shut up cause he knows it’s true. But in the end he still refused to stop seeing her since he doesn’t think he’s doing anything wrong. They are just friends he says. I told him if he’s refusing to budge at all on this, then there is nothing more to discuss, as that right there gives me my answer on who he’s choosing first in his life. I walked out and we haven’t talked since. We’ve been together for 25 years, since I was 14 years old. He’s the only guy/relationship I’ve ever known, I’ve never lived on my own, so it is scary as hell to think of walking away. But it’s even scarier to think about putting up with this for the rest of my life. We do have 3 kids together, but I know it is not a good example for them either. I don’t want them thinking it is okay to treat the person you love like this, or to be treated by someone you love like this. My heart aches, my stomach is in knots, but I’m going to tell him today that I want to split up if he’s not willing to change this behavior. Happy Valentines Day to me!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (14 February 2018):

Start going out on nights he is home .. say a friend / family needs cheeeing you and then go .. say bye darling and get in that taxi or your car

He is cheating . If not physically ..emotionally . You are worth more than this - so show him - he doesn’t give a flying duck about your feelings and if he does put on the charm and believe me . He may do . When he realises your not falling for it anymore . Do not fall for it . Have a journal list all his outing and times with said colleague .

See a solicitor/lawyer and find out your rights .

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (14 February 2018):

I am with the others, this sounds bad, really bad.

Worst part is he is gaslighting you, giving you no response when you cry about it to make it seem like you are the crazy/jealous one when to anyone else it would be clear that this relationship is completely inappropriate.

Do you have kids? If not I would seek a divorce asap. This is not a considerate man and he is headed for an affair if it is not already there. At the very least it is an emotional affair. Having coffee with a coworker on a lunch break is okay-- seeing her outside of work without inviting your wife or frankly ANYONE else is not necessary or appropriate for a married man.

In the future I would not choose the type of man who keeps around lots of female friends. It sounds like this was something you were accepting of at first, and while that is admirable of you, I think that the type of men who have female friends that are close are often the ones who do it to justify fun flirtations as "oh we are just friends, of course we need to talk / text/ hang out all the time". Those fun flirtations turn into affairs later in life when things get boring on the home front. A good man in my opinion has some old fashioned values and the only CLOSE female friendship he should have should be with you. Sure talk to women at work or at work parties but no not "hanging out" one on one. No. Not appropriate. There are many men who know the limits, this man is not one of them. He is a little boy.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 February 2018):

Even if it hasn't yet become physical, it still is an emotional affair they've been having. And that is far more dangerous and poses the greatest threat to your marriage. He has already chosen her over you. It's obvious by everything you have told us. The worst part is he watches you cry, suffer and breakdown before his very eyes, pleading with him to be the man that you once married. And he is cold and dismissive of your feelings and just doesn't give a shit. His total lack of remorse and kindness and decency is shocking and appalling!! And nobody should have to be on the receiving end of such cruel and inhumane treatment! He is breaking your heart apart over and over. He is torturing you over and over. He is one selfish, thoughtless, gutless excuse for a human being. And she isn't much better. She knows he's married and still she carries on like she's his girlfriend and you don't exist!

It's time to see your lawyer. You have stood your ground. You've told him you don't approve of his excessive time spent with her, told him to stop neglecting you. Nothing has changed. He basically just laughs in your face!

Also, remember this: that relationship will not last. He will have lost you and he will regret it. Once she starts to see his warts and the fantasy fog wears off, she won't want him anymore. She likes the fantasy of your husband. All the good parts. He does not show her the bad or the REAL him. He's wooing her. They are like teenagers dating with no real life problems. She will see the bad side alright if she stays long enough and he tosses her aside for the next girl that tickles his fancy!

If I were you, I'd stop chasing him. Stop the tears. Stop telling him how you feel. And start pulling away. Keep distancing yourself til you fully let go. Keeping in mind his cruel actions will make this easier. Knowing he does not love you anymore is enough. Because he doesn't.

I would throw him out on his ass. If you prefer to be more civil and wait, then start going out all the time too. Don't be home. Go out and don't tell him where you are. Go out with male friends. He deserves the same treatment back! See how that feels!

You are not his doormat! You are his wife! But he is not a real man. And he has no respect for you or your marriage.

Just be glad you don't have to spend the rest of your life with this garbage.

You will come out better and stronger but he will always be just an asshole!

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (13 February 2018):

If my fiancé was hanging out with a female coworker every weekend I’d flip my lid, he obviously doesn’t have any respect for you or your relationship.

I agree with the others stop crying sit down and have a serious conversation with him (men don’t deal well with crying women my fiancé gets annoyed when I cry) you need to express how you feel calmly and make it clear that this relationship with his coworker is very inappropriate if after the talk he carries on disregarding your feelings then consider your options

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A female reader, Honeypie United States + , writes (13 February 2018):

Honeypie agony auntI agree with Auntie BimBim

1. STOP crying. It's not going to help you or stop him from being a dick. And yes, HE IS being a dick.

2. Be ready for a separation/divorce. I think this is where it's heading.

3. DO NOT accept this treatment at all. If he is SO keen on her he can move out. NOW.

4. get your ducks in a row.

My guess is that he thinks he can do whatever he wants because YOU won't do anything about it (other than cry) so, DO decide if you want someone to treat you this way or not. If you don't then it's time for actions. And while you might hope to save your marriage - HE ISN'T giving a single F about you or the marriage. JUST look at his actions!

Enough is enough, OP.

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A female reader, 02DuszJ United Kingdom + , writes (13 February 2018):

02DuszJ agony auntBIG RED FLAG: he won't let you meet her.. hey if she's become this great *new friend* wouldn't he want to introduce her to you? So you can do stuff together from time to time?

YOU'RE the one that should be prioritized YOU should be the most special important lady in his life- you're only his WIFE..

I am sorry to say this really doesn't look good. The fact that he puts HER feelings, HER event before yours is shocking.. and when he sees it upsets you he KEEPS doing it.. you are a partnership and you made a vow to love and honour one another for life- she is all he's honouring right now.

I agree with Auntie BB- whether it's turned sexual or not is besides the point, because they are too close for things to be platonic and it's on the cards surely. The fact he puts her before you is bad enough and honestly? You wanted a life with him- you're entitled to HIS ATTENTION FIRST. But you're not getting it and he won't budge.. for this other woman

I wouldn't want to be around this guy for one more second.. the disrespect and disregard for you is not ok and you DON'T need to sit by while it happens. Auntie BB has given you some good financial advice. But make sure you get away from him for the time being, if you can't get him to move out fr legal reasons stay with relatives friends if possible. Let him see what he's losing because if he carries on like this he's asking to lose you.

His behaviour is unacceptable. Don't stand for another second of it.

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A female reader, Aunty BimBim Australia + , writes (13 February 2018):

Aunty BimBim agony auntDamn, this made me angry!

My advise: start getting your ducks all in a line, if you have shared bank accounts transfer funds to an account in your name only, if you share credit cards cancel them and have one in your name only ... gather together all your important paperwork and store it in a box at a friends house.

Seek legal advise and then pack his crap into some large black garbage bags and put them out on the sidewalk AFTER you have all the locks changes.

It all sounds highly suspicious and if nothing of a sexual nature has happened yet its only a matter of time.

Neither of these people have a skerrick of respect for you, don't put up with it ... if he want back in make him attend minimum three months couples counselling before you give him a key to the door ... he can share with his good friend and colleague in the meantime, or go home to his mother.

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