Proper Behavior For Married Man

Postby witcheypoo » Mon Jun 09, 2008 5:55 pm

Hello All
A little background: Married many many years, grown children. We are separated currently - but have agreed to counseling/therapy to try to patch things up. And for the most part things have been pretty amicable.

Situation: He is going on a "Date" to a daytime baseball game with another "couple". 2 men/2 women. He claims they are all 4 just friends. I say it is inappropriate behavior..(side note: this isn't the first time I"ve heard the "just friends story" - but no proof of infidelity)

I have turned down many invitations from male 'friends' for drinks and or just hanging out - because I believe that if you are going to try to make a marriage work & repair what has been broken - you need to try in every aspect. Not just the parts that are convenient for you.

Am on the wrong track to believe that he shouldn't be doing this if he were truly trying. In my opinion married men of his age do not behave this way? Most wives would give their man the boot for this. Am I a fool to continue trying?...or should I face my fears (of being alone & other things that come along with a single life) & move on?
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#1

Postby PoppyGoodWill » Mon Jun 09, 2008 7:06 pm

I can see why this is making you nervous. YOu do not know what to believe of his intentions. And if infidelity was one of the problems in your marriage, even more so. But I think you need to look at the big picture here. What evidence do yo have that this is not just a perfectly harmless outing with friends. Evidence beyond your own fears, I mean. You might have chosen not to hang out wiht male friends during this period of uncertainty, but does that mean that if you did happen to go to a movie with one of them that you were sleeping with him....or had any intention to cheat. I doubt it. What you seem most to be upset about is appearances. He is not appearing to abide by the rules of this separation.

So are you sure the rules are clear enough. Are they negotiated between you, so you both feel like you got your say in how things should go.

If the rules are clear and he is, for all intents and purposes, abiding by the letter of the rules, then the rest is just trusting him that he has a pure heart. That exercise might be very beneficial to this period of separation. If you can trust him to go out, and find out that nothing bad happens, then perhaps your trust will grow and grow out of this. consider it an exercise in trust building.

I mean hell, if in the end you find out he has been a bad boy, you can dump him anyhow. all you have spent in the meantime is time and faith. so let him go out to his ball game. Talk to him afterward to find out how it went. try not to get up his nose about it.

And, I think, accept a few invitations yourself to a few harmless outings. Might make you feel a bit more in control and no doubt you could use wiht some benign male attention too. :-)
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#2

Postby thefool » Tue Jun 10, 2008 8:46 am

Sounds to me like you are more worried about being alone (single) than you are about losing your husband... I think that says a lot about the chances of mending your marriage...

Also, your ethics are your own, basically. You are free to present whatever etiquette you feel is appropriate, and others are free to disagree with them and adhere to their own. This is where a little compatibility comes into play... and no, having your idea of proper etiquette be supported by others doesn't make them any more or less "correct".
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#3

Postby Pookie » Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:58 am

Hi witcheypoo,

If he intended to be unfaithful, why on earth would he have provided you with so much detail regarding this 'date'.

Clearly, it is not a 'date', but an outing with friends.

In order to repair your marriage, you will both need good friends of you own, to talk things through with, and sometimes just to de-stress.

I think that you should try to change your Rule Number 1, from 'If in doubt, assume the worst', to 'If in doubt, assume the best'.

I hope that these ideas are helpful.

Best Wishes,
John
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#4

Postby Jonny Boy » Tue Jun 10, 2008 4:16 pm

Perhaps one thing that may help your marriage is to learn that you are separate people and just because you wouldn't do something it doesn't mean that another person feels the same way. Finding out what you both feel is acceptable is perhaps a way of finding new understanding of each other?
Try to remember that feelings are not right or wrong and that we all react differently to a situation.
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#5

Postby witcheypoo » Tue Jun 10, 2008 6:46 pm

Well, I suppose that I am off base.........But I would love to hear from
any other married woman that wants to chime in here & say that it's ok for their husbands to be on 'dates' while they are married - I'd love to hear from them. (this isn't the first time that he has pulled a stunt like this & claims that there is nothing wrong with it - yet I don't see any of his "married friends" participating - always single friends)

Because I could poll 20 married men & every one would say that if they even attempted to go to any function with another woman other than their wives - their lower region would be amputated. (figuratively speaking)

And, He did not offer any information about this date. I found out it solely on accident. And, that was when he back peddled. He had no intention of telling me about it.

The fool: As for being alone - No I am not afraid to be alone - this is not the issue.
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#6

Postby satanstoystore » Tue Jun 10, 2008 7:18 pm

I think its a test. And you probably failed.
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#7

Postby Lakotagirl » Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:17 pm

Age has no limit on how you are suppose to act in marriage. It's not the age it's the person. Sometimes we like to think the grass in greener on the otherside but you will be surprised how many married men do things alone with women or invite them to do things alone. So far twice this year I have been invited by two different married men to go out and do things with but either of them have no intention of leaving their wives (so they say).

Since he says that it is just a friendship outing have you asked to come along?
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#8

Postby gomen » Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:36 pm

hi witchey poo,

do you know anything about these other women? i mean, if the other woman was his friend's 90 year old mother, i would consider it OK. but if it was a woman he was likely to be attracted to, i'd say it was inappropriate. it's really not an easy question to answer. even if the woman is 'attractive', then he still might not be attracted to her, and find it annoying that he is not allowed to hang out. or she could be what you think is unattractive, but he finds her chin hair oddly appealing.

i guess the side that i am seeing, is that this other woman could be completely harmless. sure, his friends include a 'couple' but perhaps it is hard to find single guy friends at his age.

i guess it boils down to whether or not you think he is trustworthy, and has integrity. is he self aware, would he be honest? do you trust your ability to judge, or do you find any guy to be untrustworthy?
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#9

Postby PoppyGoodWill » Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:53 pm

I think that since you are separated, the rules might be slightly different here. I mean, yes, if your husband finished his dinner, got up from the table said, "see you later honey, I'm going to a ball game" and then you found out later it was in a foursome wiht another woman -friend or not - that would be bad bad bad. But you are separated. You can go out with people. He can go out with people. Part of what's happened to your marriage is that the ties have come undone and so the behaviour is different.

I'm sure you can find a hundred women to back up your feeling that he shouldn't be doing this. But unless it's written in the 'rules' of your negotiation, as you try to come together again, that neither of you pursue any other person then there's nothing to stop him from going out.

If you don't want him to do it, then sit him down - or with your counsellor - and say, "as an act of faith in our attempt to iron things out, I want both of us to promise not to see or pursue other people during this time." You'll find out quick enough what his real attitude in whether he's willing to give up the possibility of another woman or not.
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#10

Postby thefool » Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:37 am

witcheypoo wrote:Well, I suppose that I am off base.........But I would love to hear from
any other married woman that wants to chime in here & say that it's ok for their husbands to be on 'dates' while they are married


Yes but those are YOUR words. You say it's a date... is it?

In actuality, it doesn't really matter either way. You have your requests, and your husband has his request, and in this situation, it's all about compromise. It comes down to what you and your husband can agree on, because guess what, if your marriage is to work, then it's you two who have to get along and agree with each other on key principles. It doesn't really matter either way if other people think it's "ok" for him to go on "dates"... what matters is how you feel about it...

That being said, you did take the time to ask others how they felt, which to me sounds like you have doubts.
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#11

Postby witcheypoo » Wed Jun 11, 2008 2:35 pm

Thank you all for your responses.
My questions mostly come from the need for validation. (an issue on making decisions & sticking to them....something I do struggle with)

I believe in my heart that when 2 people are married to one another - that the "going out with the opposite sex" on what might appear or not appear as a date - is wrong. (I did mention that he has done this before - prior to our separation) Same as having affairs is wrong. (Yes, I know people do that everyday as well)

Our agreement since the counseling began was that neither of us will seek out someone else "dating wise" - I have kept up my end of the bargain.

If it was a "test" (satan ) what would the test be that "I failed?"

Lakotagirl - You say you have been invited out by married men. And, you also reference "So they say - they don't want to leave their wives" - That's exactly my point. What might begin as an innocent "dinner, cocktail, baseball game" can escelate - easily! I"ve seen it happen on many occasions.
Which is my point - Why put yourself in that situation?

I'm just curious of others opinions on topics that I struggle with. Getting a different point of view sometimes helps to sort things thru our minds.
Thank You. :D
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#12

Postby satanstoystore » Wed Jun 11, 2008 3:50 pm

The "s" is possessive, I'm the toy store.

witcheypoo wrote:If it was a "test" (satan ) what would the test be that "I failed?"


Trust. Can't really have a relationship without it.
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#13

Postby PoppyGoodWill » Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:08 pm

So based on what you've just said, he is not respecting the spirit of your agreed upon behaviour for this period of trying to work through your differences. He will say, "Hey, she's just a friend!" but that doesn't matter because it's the spirit of the thing that matters. The point is to trust each other. He's not behaving in a way that makes you trust him.

So I think you're entitled to tell him that. What will happen if you put your foot down and say, I don't want you to do this anymore. ?
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#14

Postby witcheypoo » Wed Jun 11, 2008 7:28 pm

Poppy - I almost chuckled at your last question.
What if I put my foot down? Well considering I found out about what was going on purely by accident - I think he would continue to do it. But just be more sly about it the next time.

How are married people supposed to behave towards each other? With love, respect, compassion. In truth & loyalty. So, when any of those go away.....then whats left?
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