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Jen Helant
Jen Helant, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 1386
Experience:  I have a degree in psychology and worked with many couples. I am happily married and have been for 10 years.
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I have been married to my husband years. Last year

Resolved Question:

I have been married to my husband for 23 years. Last year in his own home town he bumped into an old female friend who he has continued to keep in touch with behind my back (texting and calling). He knows this is hurting me but he won't stop (also denies it). What can I do as I am going round in circles?? Get a solicitor to send them both letters (the times that I have got the phone she says her 'partner' knows, but I dont believe he does).
I am at my whits end!
thanks
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Jen Helant replied 2 years ago.
Hi, I am so sorry about what is happening. Do they hang out with each other and see one another behind your back? When you shout at them what is their reaction? Do you believe their is more going on then just a friendship? Does he encourage you to be friends with her as well?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi,

they live too far away for it to be a regular thing as in meeting up (plus she has her partner to consider). But I do believe that they do meet up on occasion for a coffee and a catch up. in my heart I dont believe they are having a sexual relationship but I have no guarantee. She swears they are just old friends, and so does he.

When I shout at him he says he doesnt know why I do it as they are just friends and nothing more. Someone to chat too. he basically shouts back. When I have confronted her, she tells me the same and adds her own stupid little insulting comments.

She has suggested the four of us meeting up and going out (I dont think a night out with alcohol would be a good idea and I dont believe a social day out would be suitable either). my husband mentioned the four of us meeting up and I have agreed but I doubt that would happen. I know he has asked her to stop contacting my husband but I dont believe that he knows how often it happens. This is what I want to clear up. I think they are both scared of this. What would stop me turning up at their house and asking him but I dont want to make things worse even if this is what I feel I need to do.

They both just say they are friends.... my husband is very loving with me, always has been. We have lots of plans for the future..holidays, renewing our vows in goa in November blah blah blah. And I do truly believe that it is a friendship BUT I dont understand why they cant see the upset it is causing and allow it to continue. This is why I now need help and advice. She is getting away with it basically and I know her partner wouldnt be happy if I told him exactly how often they are in contact. The times I have caught him on the phone. I have spoken to her and she has says 'Im his work's security'..lies! she even created a male facebook account so they could be in contact but I found them out. They are both just being so disrespectful to both me and her partner. Hope I have answered your questions and you see why I am so frustrated with it all!!

Expert:  Jen Helant replied 2 years ago.
Thanks for explaining. I do believe you have a right to be frustrated and upset. Regardless, of the type of relationship they have your husband should be respecting your feelings. You both have been together a very long time. I would not say you need to leave due to this since you said generally he is good to you. He may very well believe this is a friendship and since an old friend it is no problem. He also may be so comfortable with you that he is not realizing how much this truly is hurting you. I believe it probably makes him feel good to talk to someone else. After being married so long sometimes men or people in general no longer feel capable of having friendships with anyone and when they do it boosts their confidence level. I believe the reason he continues has a little to do with all of thsee points. Also, he may enjoy the communication. He did invite you, so I would take him up on his offer and have a couples date or day out and see how he interacts with her and treats you in front of her. You can arrange for it to be without alcohol. Also , at the time out you will see her husband's reaction to all of this and it may be possible to find out if he knows the extent of their relationship and how he feels about it. However, regardless of what he or she thinks or feels what is important here is your husband because he is the one that has an obligation to you and should respect your feelings. This is why I would not even worry about asking her to stop since your deal should be strictly with your husband.
I would also try discussing your feelings with your husband. Try not to shout, get angry, judge, or argue. All of that will only result in him defending and then both of you arguing. Anything can be said, but it is the way that it is said that makes all the difference. Therefore, I would sit with him and explain how much you love him and all the good things about him and your relationship. Then from there start discussing your feelings about his relationship with his friend and the reasons it frustrates you. Do this without blame, but rather just expressing your feelings and then ask him what he thinks and what he feels would be a good way to work through this to make the both of you happy. I would then see his reaction from that and then go from there to determine your next move.
I hope it all works out and please let me know if I can be of further help.
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