General Question

tinyfaery's avatar

(Follow up question to the contacting the ex question.) How much do I need to consider the feelings of his spouse in this situation?

Asked by tinyfaery (43089points) April 7th, 2009 from iPhone

This question was prompted by a question johnsblond asked in that thread. She asked me to consider the feelings of his wife. But why should I?

I knew this guy a decade before they even met. He was my 2nd closest friend for years before we even got together. She had major problems with him talking to me when they were first dating; they weren’t even in a relationship yet. I see this as petty, and I feel no reason to encourage it. This is why I feel he has not told his wife he has contacted me. But why should this be my concern?

I have a feeling this question might offend some, but please don’t bite my head off. I have always had problems understanding women, and I must admit that I can be selfish.

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30 Answers

cheebdragon's avatar

How would you feel if you were in her position?

elijah's avatar

Usually when a guy contacts an ex (and he’s in another relationship) it’s not because he suddenly realized how great you were and needs to have you in his life. It’s usually because he is having a hard time in his relationship, and needs someone to stroke his ego.
About considering his wife’s feelings- you have absolutely no responsability to her. If you want to be in contact with him, that’s your choice. As long as you are aware that you are just a crutch for him right now, and you don’t have a problem with that, continue. He married her, not you. He loves her, and most likely will always choose her over you. Are you ready to get dropped again once their relationship improves?

tinyfaery's avatar

@elijahsuicide There is no way for you to know what his intentions are. Plus, he would NEVER be calling me to stroke his ego. That was never part of our relationship. He’d be more likely to seek me out to take him down a notch or two; he needs no help with his ego.

Plus, I didn’t get dropped, he did, and he tried to get me back. I do not appreciate your assumptions. You don’t know me or him. Just stick to the question.

@cheeb I am not so petty as to have a problem with my partners being friends with their exes.

cheebdragon's avatar

Keep in mind that by pissing her off, she will be making his life a living hell. Is it worth it?

casheroo's avatar

@elijahsuicide I disagree as to why you think men contact their exes. Maybe some men, but we don’t know this situation personally at all.
I think it’s nice to consider her feelings, but you don’t actually have to do anything. It’s on him to inform his wife, it’s not like you have to call her up and tell her. And really, what’s there to worry about? You know you’re only talking, your wife knows about it…that’s really all that matters, and should be what you concern yourself with, in my opinin.

tinyfaery's avatar

@cheebdragon Isn’t that his choice? By the way, no need to whisper.

tigran's avatar

I think you answered your own question because it seems that you’ve made up your mind about her.

elijah's avatar

@tinyfaery of course I don’t know you or him, nobody here does. I’m just offering my opinion based on generalizations I have found to be true. I’m not trying to hurt your feelings.

Dog's avatar

Are children involved? If not you have no obligation to be anything more than civil to her.

If children are involved she is a package deal and it would behoove you to accomidate her a bit more for his sake and the kids sake.

Either way if you look at it from his point of view the last thing he wants is to have more stress. Whatever you can do to defuse the situation will make you not only a class act but will elevate you in his eyes.

tinyfaery's avatar

Shit, I have to start work. Be back on my break.

@tigran I made up my mind about her years ago. However, I am trying to consider her feelings. That is why I want others’ opinions. I admit to being callous at times, especially with behavior I cannot fathom.

cheebdragon's avatar

@Tinyfaery- I like to whisper; )

SuperMouse's avatar

If this guy contacted you I see it as up to him to deal with his wife. You are in a committed relationship and know for sure you are not interested in being anything more than friends with guys. I guess if kids are involved the situation gets a bit more murky, but again I see that as his responsibility not yours.

Aethelwine's avatar

@tinyfaery I’m only going to bite your head off because it was Blondesjon in the other thread, not me. :)

Nimis's avatar

I was actually thinking about this when I read your previous thread.
Didn’t reply though because I still haven’t entirely made up my mind about it.

Hmmmm…I would try to consider the other party’s feelings.

Even if I agree with you that pushing him to break off your friendship is uncool,
it is still within the realm of acceptable/understandable behavior.
It’s annoying, but I get that not everyone is that secure.

Though I also think how she pushed for it is important.
If she told him that your relationship made her insecure, that’s fine.
But if she talked shit about you or implied certain things about your character,
I think she no longer deserves your respect or consideration.

Another issue is whether you want to be opening up communication
with someone who is not being entirely upfront with their partner.
That says something about his character and possibly even his motives.

If he’s finally realized after all these years that your friendship is worth it,
he should have the balls/character to tell his wife he’s going to talk to you again.

He didn’t respect your relationship the first time around
because he didn’t stand up to his wife. He didn’t fight for it.

Keeping it a secret the second time around is the same thing.
He’s still not standing up for your friendship.

I think it comes down to which one is more important to you.
Simply having him in your life again? (Regardless of the circumstances.)
Or is it important to you to know that your relationship
means enough to him that he would finally fight for it?

emilia_eclaire's avatar

Whether you care about the wife or not, (and why would you?) you should consider her feelings. No matter how great your friendship was, you and her husband have a sexual history together. It’s perfectly normal for a wife to be wary of someone such as yourself, even though now you are married to a woman. What I find strange about this question is your need to ask it. Clearly there are still some harsh feelings there. If anywhere in the back of your mind you view rekindling a friendship with her husband as some kind retribution against her, I’d really just avoid this whole scenario.

And also, I know you disagree, but I think a man’s relationship with any woman, and vice versa, always has something to do with ego.

tinyfaery's avatar

@emila This has little to do with her. It’s mostly about me wanting my friend back. Did you read the original question?

basp's avatar

Tinyfaery
I don’t know you or the others involved, but my life experience tells me this whole situation can only have negative results.
First of all, your attention, questions, dithering about the prospect of seeing him is a red flag. Your actions would indicate a continued emotional investment.
Second, the fact that he contacted you is a red flag. My guess is that something in his life is making him remember, wish for the past which (over time) may seem preferable to what is going on now.
As for his wife… You owe her nothing. But, for his sake, if you respect him and your past friendship, you need to respect her and her place in his life.
Unless your intention is to get back together with him, don’t plan to meet as a two some. Bring your current spouses along and make it a nuetral activity in nuetral territory.
Again, I don’t presume to k ow anything about the players here…. Just offering my humble words of wisdom. I hope the best for all concerned.

BBSDTfamily's avatar

Out of respect for his marriage, if for no other reason. It’s not your business what he tells her or doesn’t tell her about you, and he chooses to be married to her and you should respect that. If I were him I would ditch you as a friend immediately if you disrespected my marriage at all.

emilia_eclaire's avatar

Yes I did read it, but whether you like the wife or not, you will have to involve her and you have to respect her and her role/ importance in his life if you want to be friends with her spouse. Disregarding her feelings completely IS selfish. Sure her actions years ago were petty but how will you avoid establishing the same dynamic this time?

tinyfaery's avatar

@BBSDTfamily He is trying to be my friend. Did you even read the questions?

@emilia She didn’t regard my feeling.

emilia_eclaire's avatar

@tinyfaery

right, but you clearly still resent her for that. which makes stepping back into that same situation not a great idea. now not only are you “THE EX/BFF” but you’re the ex/bff who would be taking his time away from his wife and 2 kids. that’s even more ammunition for her.

tinyfaery's avatar

To All: I have decided that I am going to reply. It is up to him to do what he will. I am not the morality police.

I know what my intentions are and I have to be satisfied with that.

fundevogel's avatar

I think that the wife is his concern. You’re his friend but You don’t have a responsibility to the wife. She’s his business, it should be up to him to take care of how much or how little he thinks she should know about your friendship and it’s explanation/justification to her. And if he doesn’t handle it well…it’s still his business and not yours.

Blondesjon's avatar

uh, i never said anything about his spouse.

CMaz's avatar

Men contact their Ex wives out of concern (sort of). They miss them, they are lonely, they are trying to make fantasy come alive.
It is not an issue of you do not know his intention. It is human nature.

He is looking for something he is not having at home but had with the ex. Trying to make a connection that is workable.

bean's avatar

um…. obviously she is his wife and he should not do anything that makes her feel uncomfortable, and to keep contact behind her back is clearly an act of dishonesty… he should at least talk about it with her… and it’s rude if you are not considerate towards her feelings… obviously something going on between you and him… or just you if you feel like it’s such an issue…

looks like it will all end in trouble when both of your ‘real’ intentions surface and things get more out of hand…

tinyfaery's avatar

@bean Yeah. It’s 9 months later and no problems. I’ll make sure to never pay heed to any of your judging advice.

bean's avatar

sorry, I didn’t check what date you posted this… :S it was an opinion… I wasn’t being rude… O_O

tinyfaery's avatar

Opinion are not stated like looks like “it will all end in trouble when both of your ‘real’ intentions surface and things get more out of hand…”

Don’t back track, just take your lumps.

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