Tag Archives: work

A stumbling block or a systemic problem?

As you all know MC’s work involves travel and the majority of his cheating occurred when either he was away or the kids and I were away. Not all, but the majority! So, travel is a particularly big trigger for me. One in which I have come a long way, so that I no longer freak-out every time he is away. However, that doesn’t mean he gets to slack off in his diligence, especially in regard to actions in the moment and in regard to informing me of such actions.

Mindless was away for a week. He was seated next to a woman on his flight. She struck up a conversation. She apparently has the ability to issue our family an invite to something we have been wanting to do, but needing an invite in order to do (sorry this is so cryptic, but again with the trying to maintain anonymity).   So, she gave Mindless her business card. He was out of business cards to exchange, so when he returned to work he sent her his work contact information.

Do you know how I found out about this all? I have not looked at his work e-mail in a very long time, I think only two other times since our move here over a year ago. But, kids were at school and Mindless had a day off, so I decided I would look. And, I found the e-mail where he was sending his contact info to a woman he had never told me about. He explained the event and the reason for exchanging information.

He, then, attempted to tell me he was certain he had told me about it. He hadn’t. Then he tells me, he must have mentioned it to a co-worker because he remembers telling somebody about it. I, then, asked him why he would share that he was exchanging information with a woman he met on the airplane to his co-worker and not to me? Was he wanting to brag about meeting some woman? He quickly changed his tack, saying “no, maybe I didn’t tell my co-worker.”

He tells me he panicked and he couldn’t remember exactly what happened and who he told, he was struggling with remembering the truth. I explained (AGAIN), that’s the thing about truth, it is easy to remember when not trying to “make shit up.” We proceeded to have a discussion about “making shit up.” I need a husband who does NOT EVER make-up shit for any reason!!!! That is the coward’s way out. If he wants to truly be a “man,” in my view, it means not being a coward and NEVER “making shit up.” For G-d’s sakes, just be honest with me, just be honest. His “truth” now is that he intended to tell me, but forgot.

He remembered to e-mail her, so basically he “forgot” twice, once right after it happened and again when he sent the e-mail. Now, he is telling me, “sorry” and “I know it was wrong.” “There was no malicious intent.” “I wish I had told you as it happened, I really intended to do so.” “I should have cc’d you on the e-mail, I just didn’t think of it.”

All of you know how I struggle with wanting all the pre d-day details and MC assuring me he has told me everything he can remember. At the minimum, this just further points out to me how little effort he puts in to “remembering” details that he may think of as trivial, but I would find not so trivial. It, also, reaffirms to me that transparency is only as good as he decides to make it. And, at the worst, there was nefarious intent and he is gas-lighting me again.

And, again, I find myself asking is this “a stumbling block” in his “work” from which he can learn and improve, or a systemic problem that he is unable or unwilling to change?

His solution, to bcc me on every damn work e-mail that involves a woman. Sorry, the last thing I want is my in-box flooded with his work e-mails. Why is this so fucking hard? Clearly he can see the difference between the woman on the airplane e-mail and back-and-forth e-mails about clearly work-related issues?!

I find myself wondering, maybe he really does not want me to find peace, maybe he doesn’t really care if I feel safe. After all, this would have been such an easy “win” for him, to tell me about the woman on the plane and cc me on the e-mail. What an opportunity to build trust! Why are such opportunities so trivial to him, unless there is more to this story he is not sharing?

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Sending the message?

With the way we move here, there and everywhere, you guys are the closest thing we have to a “couples support network.” We were talking last night how much we hope we can grow that aspect of this site. We really need it and figure maybe others might want something similar. In that vein, we decided to ask you guys for your help here. We would love to hear from BS, WS and/or both with thoughts, opinions, etc.

Here’s the deal. MC is the “go-to” person at his work for certain areas of his expertise. His office is largely male. The female co-worker (CW), the one he ran into at the airport as described in his “travel travails” and “follow-up to travel travails” posts, is one of many coworkers who seek MC’s guidance within these certain areas from time-to-time.

MC shared with me that he thinks that some of her questions are becoming perfunctory in nature. Yesterday, her questions, though certainly in MC’s purview, were easily searchable on the internet. Frankly, I know the answers to these questions and I don’t even work there. In addition, she tapped his shoulder and said, “hello” in the crowded lunch room when he went to get his lunch out of the refrigerator. He grabbed his lunch and went back to his office, not lingering or talking with her. In a normal world, where my husband had never cheated, I don’t think I would have thought anything of any of this. I hate having these thoughts and feelings, I just was never this type of person. GRRR!  But, our world is not “normal,” is it?

We are moving overseas again this summer, so I know our time here is finite. Still, even the remote possibility that she is signaling her availability is enough to raise my radar. And, MC tells me that prior to d-day this was exactly the kind of situation in which he would have taken advantage. He would have encouraged the small talk, looked her in the eyes when talking, stopped by her office from time-to-time, been more open and friendly, never talked about me or the kids and never would have displayed pictures of us in his office. He assures me it is the opposite now in every way.

He has pictures of us in his office. He tells me that he takes every opportunity to mention me in a loving and admiring way. When she came to his office, he answered the question with as few words as possible and then immediately turned to his computer to work, before any small talk could even be attempted, trying to send the message he is not interested in anything but what is necessary professionally. He never seeks her out in anyway. He avoids eating in the lunch room, instead eating his home-prepared lunch alone at his desk.

I do see MC telling me all and he will take another polygraph before we move, as was always the plan. He comes home and tells me without me asking. While I feel he is making great efforts to protect us, I just don’t like that this woman seems to be taking advantage of the fact that MC is the “go-to” person for certain issues and is expected to provide needed information to his coworkers on these issues.

So, while I am advising other women to make sure their husband’s “SLAM the door shut, Mr. Nice Guy be damned,” I feel a bit disingenuous with this going on. Thoughts, ideas on what else can be done to send the “not interested” message while still meeting the expectations of his job?

Thanks all!

TL: “Spiraling down”

Living for the next three years in America, but far from home, was ok. But, if we are going to be in America, I so prefer to be “home.” Still, we made some good friends. Oldest child (OC) started pre-K at a community center. During OC’s pre-K time, I became friends with a lot of the Moms that worked at the community center. When OC graduated and went to big kid school, I decided to restart my exercise regime. YC was able to participate in the child watch. I knew the Moms that ran it and it gave me 90 minutes/day to focus on doing something healthy for myself. Also, I could shower there, while someone else was watching YC. As YC got older he transitioned from child-watch to the part-time morning preschool program and it was a lovely little community between OC’s school and the community center.

MC was working a lot. His commute was horrendous. He was leaving before I took the kids to school and often not getting home until after the kids were in bed. I felt like a single Mom. But, he was home with us on the weekends and we spent some nice time with friends and as a family.

One day, I awoke to some horrible abdominal pains. MC payed no attention. Didn’t seem to care at all. I insisted that he had to drive kids to school and then come back and take me to the ER. He put up a huge fight about it, he was going to be late for work. I was in no condition to fight, but insisted. He ended-up taking the kids to school and then taking me to the ER. He dropped me at the front door, pulling away the minute I shut the door. Not even a word of “hope you are ok” nor making sure I made it into the ER. I checked myself into the ER. Turns out I had a kidney stone. There was blockage and infection. I was put on meds and checked-in to the hospital. The urologist would not be available for surgery for three days. I was admitted to the hospital while waiting for surgery. Luckily, my cousin had recently moved to town. I was drugged-up, in the hospital and arranged with my cousin to pick-up kids from school and stay with them until MC got home. I actually do not know what happened with kids and schedules while I was in the hospital. I know my cousin helped a lot, but MC did adjust his schedule to help as well.

Sometime during this time living in the US, we started getting some strange pop-up ads on our computer. I became concerned. I looked in our history file and saw that MC had visited porn sites, not only that morning, but it looked like many mornings in a row. I looked at other records on the computer and was able to tell not only what sites he visited, but the exact time of visiting those sites, he was doing this during his early morning exercise routine. MC had free weights in our basement and was devoted to his exercise regime. He was getting up very early to exercise, making him exceptionally tired when he returned home in the evening. He was taking anywhere from 10 – 20 minutes/day to visit porn sites before exercising while the rest of us slept. I told MC I wanted him to stop. First, he already was so tired when he got home insisting on his early morning workouts. Second, I don’t want OC using the computer and having one of these pop-ups show-up. Third, I really didn’t like him viewing porn though I told myself it was probably a pretty normal thing for a guy to do. I said my piece, and instead of continuing to ride his ass about it, I decided to install more secure anti-virus software that allowed me to block pop-ups. The porn viewing did not stop, but my concern of children seeing these pop-ups was addressed, at least.

We moved overseas again. OC was becoming more adept at using the computer. One day OC opened up the history file to find a site he had used the previous day (my G-d these kids are so tech savvy). There, in the history, was a bunch of xxx sites. Oh my G-d, this is too much. I was very upset with MC. I ended up making separate log-Ins for me, for MC, for OC and for guests. I put parental supervision software on all the log-Ins but mine (as the administrator). This software, unfortunately, was blocking sites that did not need to be blocked. Body-building.Com, and even some regular news websites were being blocked. I am not MC’s parent and never wanted to be. I ended up removing the parental controls from MC’s log-in. Of course, that gave him full access, but I could see everything he was doing and when he was doing it. I told myself, so it is 10 – 20 minutes per day, isn’t this just what guys do? I stupidly didn’t even consider that he was actually masturbating to this shit.

MC was working a lot. He was getting up earlier and earlier to extend his workouts, he would come home at or after kid bedtime many nights. We were fighting a lot about his hours. His boss and co-workers were not putting in those same hours. He would try to tell me they were, but because I was friends or acquaintances with their spouses, I knew better. If ever he made it home before bed time, he was exhausted.

YC once had a sleepover on a Friday night. I asked MC to read the kids a story, so I could help OC with some things. MC fell asleep while reading the story to the kids — mid-sentence! I was becoming very very angry with MC. His selfishness was becoming more and more apparent. I would buy a ton of produce for the family. Some for MC and some for snacks for the kids to take to school. MC was eating a lot as part of his exercise regime. No matter how much I bought, it was never enough, he would just eat more. It got to the point where I would see there was plenty of produce the night before, but when I was getting the kids snacks ready for school the next morning, there was NOTHING left. I told MC he needed to never take the last of anything. He didn’t listen. This became a huge argument. My resentment was building.

I was not happy with how much time was spent on MC’s pursuits and goals and how little was left for the family. He gave us the weekends. But, those weekends had to be filled with activities he saw as promoting athleticism in the kids. He treated them with disappointment if they did not participate in athletic endeavors. It wasn’t about having fun together, it was about becoming the type of child MC wished he had been. Our OC felt the disappointment from MC. MC insisted that wasn’t true because MC never told OC of the disappointment. I could feel it, OC could feel it and their relationship was deteriorating quickly. MC blamed me for that, unwilling and unable to see how pushing OC so much was hurting both of them.

This job was supposed to give us more time with him. He was never home for dinner, rarely home for bedtime. My days as a single Mom, for the majority of the time, were continuing. The tension in our home was very high. I started thinking about separation or divorce, going home with the kids to America for good.  I started asking MC, “why are the kids and I even here? Why do you want us here? I feel like you think we are just in your way?” On several occasions, I told MC that I thought we needed some counseling. He was not receptive.

I started involving myself in the kids’ schools and making friends and living my own life.