I had never seen him so angry in the 36 years I had known him. I set a date with my husband weeks in advance of my friend’s charity event. I was ready to go on the date, but when my husband got home from work, he looked at me with a venomous look and said, “I’m not going with you.”
“I think you know.”
I suspected he might have been angry because I texted his girlfriend. He had introduced me to her before they became romantically involved as his “friend”. We exchanged numbers on this friendly weekend together.
Eight months after I met “Elaine”, my husband told me we were going to have an open marriage because he thought it might help him improve things between us. We had been drifting apart very seriously for years. This was supposed to be a last ditch effort. I told him I didn’t agree with his plan. His response was “I’m going to do it anyway.” I knew it didn’t matter if I opposed his idea.
Within a week he was in bed with this “friend” two thousand miles away in another state. He believed he had my permission based on the way he coerced me into agreeing to it. I was very angry that he seemed to have had a plan in mind with this woman before he proposed the open marriage while vehemently denying that he “had anyone in mind.”. I suspect there had been an emotional affair going on for months. It seemed hard to believe that things had progressed from “friends” to lovers with Elaine within a week considering she lived so far away.
When my husband returned from staying with her I took it upon myself to try to let her know my feelings about the arrangement. The internet is full of men who claim they have their wives’ permission to fool around when in fact they do not.
I texted her a photo of me and my husband together at our lake house and said, “I don’t know what Dirk has told you, but I want to keep this together.” I believed a single woman who was getting involved with a married man would appreciate hearing both sides in order to make an informed decision about what she was getting herself into. I was committed to making my marriage last, but was not given much choice about opening up the marriage.
When Dirk heard from Elaine about my message, he lost a temper I never knew he had. When he got home that night, he arrived in a fury. He stormed around the house. He said he knew what I had said to Elaine. I apologized for telling her the truth. I defended my position.
I couldn’t believe Dirk was not going to the charity event with me. He had never done anything like this before. In 36 years, I had never seen this temper. I went to the party alone.
Elaine didn’t care what I said. She didn’t respond to me, and carried on a long distance affair with my husband for almost two years. They flew back and forth to stay with each other for a week or two at a time. I realized that if it wasn’t Elaine, it would be someone else, but I judged her for ignoring a man’s wife and her point of view.
The open marriage arrangement lasted for six months at which point I gave him an ultimatum: either I was going to be his primary relationship, or we were done. I wouldn’t settle for a partial marriage. He was either all in or all out. He wanted out.
He stuck around trying to figure out where to go until I got fed up with waiting for him to find the best arrangement for his girlfriend. I calmly asked him to GTFO of the house.
He went to our lake house. Somewhere I thought we might still be able to work something out. We had two sons together and had been married for 28 years. We ultimately decided to stay married and just separate. I had a painful lesson in the realization that I should never want to be with someone who doesn’t want to be with me.
Thank you for reading:)