Welcome to the
Marriage Builders® Discussion Forum

This is a community where people come in search of marriage related support, answers, or encouragement. Also, information about the Marriage Builders principles can be found in the books available for sale in the Marriage Builders® Bookstore.
If you would like to join our discussion forum, please read the Announcement Forum for instructions, rules, & guidelines.
The members of this community are peers and not professionals. Professional coaching is available by clicking on the link titled Coaching Center at the top of this page.
We trust that you will find the Marriage Builders® Discussion Forum to be a helpful resource for you. We look forward to your participation.
Once you have reviewed all the FAQ, tech support and announcement information, if you still have problems that are not addressed, please e-mail the administrators at mbrestored@gmail.com
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
I’m 50 years old and been married for 27 years. My wife and I married at 23/21, respectively. I didn’t have much experience dating prior to getting together with my wife. As our relationship started, my wife fell into the habit of disclosing very intimate details about her prior relationships down to sexual practices/experiences with which I was very uncomfortable. In fact, I often felt like I was being gutted like a fish to hear these things. In my lack of relationship experience I just assumed this is the way relationships work. This information was a killer for me from the start. Often I would find myself lost in the thoughts of the over-disclosed information.

For much of our marriage, years 10-22 our sex life floundered and we existed in what would be consider a sexless marriage. It came to a head about three years ago when I was convinced she was cheating (she wasn’t). I confronted her on her lack of interest in sex and my feeling of neglect. I also finally opened up about the hurt associated with having been told all the stories of her past. Things dramatically improved and were going MUCH better. Jump forward to a year ago. I was looking at my wife’s FB to confirm a format question (non-issue, we’ve always had access to each other’s devices) and I found a friend request from a ONS she had prior to us dating. This brought back all the same old feelings again. I confronted her on it and she had no explanation. As far as I’m concerned I should not have known the name or recognized any significance. Now yesterday I get a fiend suggestion for the same guy from FB making the feelings that much more difficult to deal with.

Any input/advice on dealing with this is welcome. Not sure how much more I can take of this.

Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3
Welcome to MB.

Did she accept the Facebook request?


FWW/BW (me)
WH
2nd M for both
Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3
Have you read Dr. Harley’s Policy of Radical Honesty?


FWW/BW (me)
WH
2nd M for both
Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
She did not.

Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
I will now.

Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
My wife of 27 years just disclosed that her number of previous sex partners was 5 and not 4 as she told me before we married. What makes it worse for me is that the 5th was an anonymous hookup at a college party not too long before we started dating. She doesn’t even know what his name was. I know it has nothing to do with me but as one of the other men she slept with was a 1NS and another a casual partner (on again off again) I feel like her history was grossly misrepresented. I feel absolutely sick and am in physical distress over it. Should this not be a big deal like she says?

Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 9,457
Likes: 9
S
Member
Offline
Member
S
Joined: Sep 2008
Posts: 9,457
Likes: 9
Indeed, she should not have married you having lied about her past. You should both have been honest about this, at the point where you realised that you might marry. Have you been honest with her about your past?

But the problem is, she did lie, and now she has told you more. As you seem to recognise, both the event and the lie are in the past, and nothing can be done about changing the past.

When you ask "should this not be a big deal?", what are you hoping that she will do about this? How would she be able to show you to your satisfaction that it is a big deal? And what do you hope for once she has shown you that?


BW
Married 1989
His PA 2003-2006
2 kids.
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 62
I
Moderator
Member
Offline
Moderator
Member
I
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 62
Your threads have been merged. Please post to one thread, so posters can follow.


MBMod IrishGreen
MBIrishGreen@gmail.com
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
Obviously there is nothing she can do to change the past. As I said above, I feel as though her history was significantly misrepresented and our relationship started on a significant lie. My wife is of the opinion that the omission/misrepresentation was unimportant and a trivial omission. Honestly, what I was hoping for was for responses to say, “not a big deal, this is common and inconsequential”. The truth has dramatically changed my opinion of my wife. I have to find a way to get over this to stay in the relationship. I love my wife and she loves me, I don’t question that. I just need a way to cope with the truth and the lie.

Last edited by elpollonegro; 06/30/21 05:22 AM.
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
Originally Posted by elpollonegro
Obviously there is nothing she can do to change the past. As I said above, I feel as though her history was significantly misrepresented and our relationship started on a significant lie. My wife is of the opinion that the omission/misrepresentation was unimportant and a trivial omission. Honestly, what I was hoping for was for responses to say, “not a big deal, this is common and inconsequential”. The truth has dramatically changed my opinion of my wife. I have to find a way to get over this to stay in the relationship. I love my wife and she loves me, I don’t question that. I just need a way to cope with the truth and the lie.

If it is important to you, it is not 'common and inconsequential'. Makes no difference how others might feel. But I'm curious; is it the lie that matters or is it the anonymous hookups? If the two of you have very different moral standards, that is a problem.

If it is just the fact that she was not truthful about this one thing but is otherwise an honest and transparent person, it would be perfectly possible to repair your love bank so that events of 27 years ago no longer feel so significant for you. You can use the resources available here to do that. People can drift apart. Spending your leisure time doing things together that you both enjoy is very important.




3 adult children
Divorced - he was a serial adulterer
Now remarried, thank you MB
(formerly lied_to_again)
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
I have a problem with both the lie and the nature of the encounters. It just seems that her past was grossly misrepresented. I feel that all the explanation she makes now, I should have had 27 years ago when we were (allegedly) disclosing this information years ago. why bother having that discussion at the beginning of the relationship (or before it gets serious) if you are going to lie. I myself became sexually active at a much older than average age and waited until it was with someone I really cared for (in fairness, she did the same) passing on prior opportunities to not "cheapen" it.

Differing moral standards are also a concern. We have a 14 y/o daughter and we did discuss how matters of sexuality and conduct would be discussed with her. The way my wife has described her opinions and how our daughter should be raised are not inconsistent with mine but are inconsistent with her past behavior.

From what I am told this is the only thing about which she has been untruthful.

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,956
Likes: 1
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,956
Likes: 1
After 27 years of marriage, I think it's natural that your wife would have grown a great deal and her views on sexuality would change. It sounds like your wife would like for your daughter to avoid the same mistakes she herself made all those years ago. That your wife's current views are not consistent with those she held and acted out on when she was a very young woman making what she considers now to be very foolish and short-sighted decisions doesn't disqualify her from sharing her current views on how she hopes your daughter will behave sexually.

As your relationship was starting, your wife disclosed a lot of details of her sexual behavior, including intimate details that made you feel terrible, but you proceeded with the relationship anyway? Did you seek guidance from a trusted person on your decision to marry? Have you both filled out the Personal History Questionnaire to get all the truth out in the open? If you get upset with your wife, though, she will probably not want to complete it honestly. You may have to decide to let the past stay in the past and not bring up mistakes from those years ago.

Since Facebook brought this issue to the forefront, perhaps your wife should consider changing her settings to make it more private. I think it can be set to screen out certain FB friend requests. Do you both follow Extraordinary Precautions so you can both keep the marriage safe from outside threats?


Married 1980
DDay Nov 2010

Recovered thanks to Marriage Builders
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
Part of my issue is that she maintains, at least to some extent that what she did prior to the start of our relationship had nothing to do with me and therefore of no consequence. Additionally she states she does not live in a state of regret as there is nothing she can do to change it. So your assumption of "what she considers now to be very foolish and short-sighted decisions" may not be totally correct.

The disclosures were made during the early years of our marriage. Even though not comfortable with them. I did not speak up. As I said above, my lack of experience had me believe that such disclosures were part of a normal relationship. The only pre-marital guidance received was from a pastor from her parent's church and was at best worthless. We did complete the Personal History Information Q. When she initially gave it to me the "number of partners" and other questions were left blank. When asked, she completed it.

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
Originally Posted by elpollonegro
Part of my issue is that she maintains, at least to some extent that what she did prior to the start of our relationship had nothing to do with me and therefore of no consequence. Additionally she states she does not live in a state of regret as there is nothing she can do to change it. So your assumption of "what she considers now to be very foolish and short-sighted decisions" may not be totally correct.

The important thing here is that she wants to let this stay in the past and you want to find a way to resolve it. Neither of you is right or wrong, each of you feels what he feels. It also sounds as if both of you want to stay married. We want to help you do that.

We are therefore trying to understand why something from 27 years ago is so deeply troubling to you now. It sounds as if there was a triggering event three years ago. LongWay is asking whether you are monitoring one another's electronic communications. That means each of you has full access to the other's devices at all times. It would be good if you can answer that.

There is another possibility; our love banks are filled when we spend our best (recreational) time together. There are many couples who have drifted apart because one (say) plays golf and the other (say) has joined a choir. It is really important that your recreational time be spent together. What do you do in your recreational time and do you do this together?



3 adult children
Divorced - he was a serial adulterer
Now remarried, thank you MB
(formerly lied_to_again)
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
The fact that she lied to me is what is so deeply hurtful. During recent conversations I remembered that when we initially had the conversation, a few days before we married, I was embarrassed by my lack of experience and inflated my number of past sexual partners. An hour later I revisited the conversation with her and told the truth because I felt it inappropriate to start our marriage having left that conversation having lied.

The “triggering event” four years ago was when I had some medical issues and began to realize my age and the fact that my best year of sexual viability had been spent in a sexless marriage for the past 12-15 years. I began to suspect infidelity (there was none). As a result of the pursuant conversation/confrontation, I disclosed to her at that time all the hurt associated with having been told the detailed information of her past boyfriend during the first several years of our marriage, everything from what car he drove, what his father did for a living, his favorite move, “their song”, where they went to prom, places they had sex (several stories), even HIS sexual preferences.

As I had always felt threatened that she still yearned for her ex-boyfriend, I found being told these things very distressing and hurtful. Once, during our early days of dating, we were out with another couple. During conversation, she stated that “some part of you will always love your first love.” After that, I attempted to go home instead of staying together for some time to think (not our practice at the time) and she broke down crying, begging me to stay. After we married, the random mentions and seemingly constant reminders of her past with this ex we’re hurtful. As all of my issues where around her past, I found the keeping of the FB friend request particularly offensive. It took me many years to arrive at a very cathartic moment to disclose the hurt with which I lived for so long. If he was so insignificant as she claimed, why not delete it instead of keeping it where it could potentially be found.

So as to why something from 27 years ago would be so deeply troubling. When I was a young man I was very selective regarding the women I chose to spend my time with. I was largely surrounded by girls that were not people I would consider as a long-term partner or spouse and forwent dating them knowing that I would have no interest. Truthfully, had my wife been forthcoming she would have been among them. I believe I may have mentioned above, her history was presented as having had a high school boyfriend, a college boyfriend and a regrettable ONS with a boy she knew since grade school. In truth, she had a high school boyfriend, a long-term casual sex parter whom she would see a few weeks at a time when he wasn’t dating someone else, the regrettable ONS above and another partner she engaged in anonymous sex with at a party.

(Yet another story disclosed after marriage) I took her out for drinks on her 21st birthday. My car was towed from the bar so I rode home with her. She was very drunk and I was helping her get inside. While inside, a friend called her apartment. As my wife was in no shape to talk, the friend asked to speak to me. I was explaining that my car was towed and I was going to help get her settled in and figure out a way home. When I said this on the phone, my wife took the phone from me, pushed me out the door and locked it behind me leaving me to walk, and fortunately find a friend home to give me a ride. Sometime after we married, she told me that later that night she drove herself to the causal friends house mentioned above.

We did see a counselor after having this conversation. From those visits, part of conversation was to set boundaries. Mine was that I was no longer willing to have to live down her past. Most of which I should have had no knowledge of. Now here I am being hit with the lie she started our relationship with. One that I feel was pretty significant.

After having made this disclosure I asked, “Who was this person”? To which she responded indignantly, “Couldn’t tell ya!” I feel as though she is not the person she portrayed herself to be when we married. She says now that I look at her with disgust during the conversations we have had on the matter and I’m sure I do. Although she tries to diminish the significance of the occurrences, she has made references to herself as a “whore”.

We do have access to each other’s electronics devices and always have.

As to recreational activity. We do play golf and tennis together from time to time but most of our time is filled with the activities of our 12 and 14 year olds which often require us to be in separate places.

Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
Originally Posted by elpollonegro
In truth, she had a high school boyfriend, a long-term casual sex parter whom she would see a few weeks at a time when he wasn’t dating someone else, the regrettable ONS above and another partner she engaged in anonymous sex with at a party.

(Yet another story disclosed after marriage) I took her out for drinks on her 21st birthday. My car was towed from the bar so I rode home with her. She was very drunk and I was helping her get inside. While inside, a friend called her apartment. As my wife was in no shape to talk, the friend asked to speak to me. I was explaining that my car was towed and I was going to help get her settled in and figure out a way home. When I said this on the phone, my wife took the phone from me, pushed me out the door and locked it behind me leaving me to walk, and fortunately find a friend home to give me a ride. Sometime after we married, she told me that later that night she drove herself to the causal friends house mentioned above.

One piece of advice that Dr Harley gives those who wish to recover from the betrayal of adultery is that everything be put on the table, all questions answered honestly and then never discussed again. That is because we have no right to punish our spouses. This rule is applicable in your situation too. Either you both accept what has happened and put it in the past or you divorce, there is no in-between.

Originally Posted by elpollonegro
We did see a counselor after having this conversation. From those visits, part of conversation was to set boundaries. Mine was that I was no longer willing to have to live down her past. Most of which I should have had no knowledge of. Now here I am being hit with the lie she started our relationship with. One that I feel was pretty significant.

I'm not sure that I am understanding the advice you got from the counsellor. Does 'set boundaries' mean that she was no longer to bring up her sexual history and has that worked?

Originally Posted by elpollonegro
After having made this disclosure I asked, “Who was this person”? To which she responded indignantly, “Couldn’t tell ya!” I feel as though she is not the person she portrayed herself to be when we married. She says now that I look at her with disgust during the conversations we have had on the matter and I’m sure I do. Although she tries to diminish the significance of the occurrences, she has made references to herself as a “whore”.

From this, and other parts of her story it is clear that she had a problem with alcohol. Is that still the case?

Originally Posted by elpollonegro
As to recreational activity. We do play golf and tennis together from time to time but most of our time is filled with the activities of our 12 and 14 year olds which often require us to be in separate places.

You are going to need to do better than this. To create romantic love you need to spend 15 hours a week together 1:1. Your children will have to make do with fewer activities. Far more imporant for them to have married parents than to be on the school sports team. You need to start planning.


3 adult children
Divorced - he was a serial adulterer
Now remarried, thank you MB
(formerly lied_to_again)
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Nov 2010
Posts: 20,343
Likes: 3


FWW/BW (me)
WH
2nd M for both
Blended Family with 7 kids between us
Too much hurt and pain on both sides that my brain hurts just thinking about it all.



Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
E
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
E
Joined: Jun 2021
Posts: 9
When we saw the counselor the discussion was mostly focused on what we should do to remain close. Meeting the needs of the other. The discussion around boundaries arose from my insistence that no other instances of FB friend request or other reminders of her past be raised. The truth is, the level of discomfort and hurt these things cause for me is beyond emotional and I experience physical effects as well. As I told her then I would rather start over than have to “get over” again. The disclosure of the additional partner was part of completing the History Questionnaire. So at some level, maybe the disclosure was not I’ll intended but as I had zero expectation that I was lied to to begin with, it’s been very difficult to cope with. Aside from this she does seem to make efforts to avoid discussions that I would find objectionable.

She does admit to having or at least having had a problem with alcohol. Some of the information disclosed I can clearly remember was while drinking but others I clearly remember were not. She says that some conversations in which she has participated she has no recollection and can provide no reason as to why she would have told me these things. We have a 12 y/o son of whom she is very protective. It is only when I asked her the hypothetical of him approaching her for motherly advice in 9 years and presenting her with the circumstances which I faced and asking her what her advice to him would be that the significance of what took place in our relationship hits her. My question is then why she saw fit to treat me as she did. A question for which she offers no answer. It is my opinion h the at that question must be answered in order for me to have some assurance that this behavior will not continue in the future.


Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,786
Likes: 1
Originally Posted by elpollonegro
She does admit to having or at least having had a problem with alcohol. Some of the information disclosed I can clearly remember was while drinking but others I clearly remember were not. She says that some conversations in which she has participated she has no recollection and can provide no reason as to why she would have told me these things.

My question about the alcohol related to her earlier promiscuous behaviour but it appears to continue in the form of inappropriate reminders of her past relationships that she makes despite the fact that it causes you pain. That is completely unacceptable.

Originally Posted by elpollonegro
We have a 12 y/o son of whom she is very protective.

Your children are in danger.

Originally Posted by elpollonegro
IMy question is then why she saw fit to treat me as she did. A question for which she offers no answer. It is my opinion h the at that question must be answered in order for me to have some assurance that this behavior will not continue in the future.

The answer is very simple. Your wife has to stop drinking. Not cut back, she must stop completely. That is your only assurance that the behaviour will not continue. Tell her either she agrees to rehab or there will be a divorce and that you will seek custody of your children. Tell her that you will support only a complete and permanent end to alcohol use. You will need to stop drinking too so that it is not too hard for her. No alcohol in the house.



Last edited by living_well; 07/07/21 02:16 PM.

3 adult children
Divorced - he was a serial adulterer
Now remarried, thank you MB
(formerly lied_to_again)

Link Copied to Clipboard
Forum Search
Who's Online Now
1 members (Kingpin), 11 guests, and 49 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
MikaylaVaux, I.P., Alex82, Dezzeiemm, love spells
71,725 Registered Users
Forum Statistics
Forums67
Topics133,545
Posts2,322,787
Members71,726
Most Online3,185
Jan 27th, 2020
Building Marriages That Last A Lifetime
Copyright © 1995-2020, Marriage Builders®. All Rights Reserved.  |  Web Development by SunStar Media.
Site Navigation
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5