My poor friend!

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merryone

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A friend and her hubby have been happily married for 36 years - childhood sweethearts, he's 4 years younger than her and she's just turned 60. Last year they made the move over 50 miles away to be near their daughter and her family. She managed to get herself her dream job, and hubby decided that he wasn't quite ready to retire just yet so picked up a part time job. They had the marriage everybody dreamed of, a beautiful home, and a fabulous standard of living. They love their new home and their new life - Yesterday she phoned my friend who she's really close to to and told her that her husband came home from work one night and told her he that he doesn't love her any more and that he's been seeing a 25 year old woman he met at work for months. She told him to leave, but he refused saying it's his house too and if she tries any funny business he'll take legal action against her. She's had to go sick and work and she's coming up to stay with my friend for a while. Nobody knows what goes on behind closed doors of course, I guess nothing is ever what it seems. How awfully cruel. I can only hope that this is a moment of madness on his part and that they can work things out - It seems awfully sad that somebody could throw away a lifetime of love for the sake of an itch in the trouser department! and yes he did say it was the sexual attraction that lead him to stray .
 
My oldest brother and his wife were married almost 50 years, yes 50 years and as they both approached 70 his wife decided she wanted them to go their separate ways. He was 19 and she was 20 when they married and he was still a student so it was his wife who worked full time as a nurse whilst he carried on with his education. They didn`t have 2 halfpennies to rub together and when she became pregnant with their first child they moved out of their rented tiny terraced house and moved in with my parents so my Mum, my sister and myself could help with childcare. I was 8 when he married and 11 when they had their first child so the age difference between us meant we never really had a close relationship.
After he graduated he very quickly climbed the career ladder, he moved jobs many times and each job was better paid or better prospects than the previous one, the houses became bigger and more expensive and the distance between him and his working class background and his salt of the Earth parents and family became wider and wider. He worked all over the World, often for several months at a time, his wife never worked another day in her life and spending money on their lovely houses became her life`s work. She was quite content to spend her days looking for Antiques and supervising workmen or decorators etc making each house like something out of a magazine. The thing was their houses were never really homes. Their 2 daughters both left home quite young and neither of them seemed to have close relationships with either of their parents.
Eventually my brother retired in his early 60`s and their current house was a beautiful one in Cornwall and my brother joined the local Round Table, bowling club, golf club and did the odd bit of freelance work to keep his grey matter ticking over. He seemed quite happy enough but obviously his wife wasn`t. After years of having time and the money and the house to herself, she now had to actually live full time with her husband, something she hadn`t done since the early days of their marriage. She`d had years of him working away from home then returning for just a few weeks before travelling off again to another part of the World.
After just a few years of his retirement she dropped her bombshell. She wanted to sell the house and each of them move elsewhere alone. Nobody else was involved, my brother was in total shock and no matter how many times he tried to get a full explanation from her, the only thing she`d say was she was unhappy and didn`t want to live with him anymore. He dug his feet in for a while but things became so bad at home, he finally gave in and they sold the house. He moved to a bungalow in Devon with his share and she bought an apartment in Bournemouth with her share.
They`re both approaching 80 now and technically they are still married, they never divorced and neither of them took another partner. They talk to each other by phone mainly to chat about their daughters and grandchildren and once in a blue moon he`ll visit her but she never visits him probably because she no longer drives. Ironically both of their daughters emigrated abroad, one lives in Canada, the other married a man in a similar job to her Dad`s so has lived in America, Bangkok, South Africa and is now settled in Australia where they have been granted citizenship and have no intention of returning to the UK. My brother is alone and hundreds of miles from me and my younger brother, and thousands of miles from his children and grandchildren. His wife is in a similar situation and has no living siblings. My late sister used to worry about him and even more so when he suffered poor health and had to have a triple bypass. She was just 3 years younger than him so they grew up together then after a big gap I arrived and then my youngest brother.
It all seems such a waste, a lifetime of climbing the career ladder, of moving up and up the housing ladder but he`s turned out to be the loneliest of us all and so has his wife. Nobody near them, and even though I speak to him by phone and email him, and he has an open invitation to come here anytime, he doesn`t. I asked him bluntly one day, what if you die and nobody knows and who will let me know and how do you think I`ll feel knowing you were alone ? I`ve even suggested he sells up and moves nearer to me because he has nothing keeping him in Devon but he won`t. He just says he`s fine.
His wife got what she wanted ie to live alone but sometimes getting what you want isn`t a good thing and in my mind they have both ended up emotionally poorer. I guess I`ll never understand people.
 
I think it's scary when you discover you don't know your significant other as well as you thought you did. And beyond hurtful to be lied to and exchanged for a shiny new relationship (even if it's purely horizontal) after years of hard work and dedication to your relationship.
All you can do is be there for this friend... and jyst listen. Best not to let rip on the betraying, straying partner as if they do reconcile you'll have lost your friend.
 
I think it's scary when you discover you don't know your significant other as well as you thought you did. And beyond hurtful to be lied to and exchanged for a shiny new relationship (even if it's purely horizontal) after years of hard work and dedication to your relationship.
All you can do is be there for this friend... and jyst listen. Best not to let rip on the betraying, straying partner as if they do reconcile you'll have lost your friend.
I couldn't agree more - especially in marriages/partnerships like this. Even though I said that you don't know what goes on behind closed doors, most people will have a little moan about their oh to a friend, even if it's about something trivial, in this case in the 20 odd years that I've know her - never. If we ever got an invite to her house, the place exuded love. They regularly hosted foreign students some who have become lifelong friends - not something one would be able to do if the relationship was rocky, volatile or even just downright cold. He was friendly and convivial, but never flirty, was polite and respectful and seemed like an all round good egg. This is a complete bolt from the blue!
On your second point, absolutely! As friends we shall offer a listening ear, a shoulder to cry on, and a place to stay if she needs it. Yes of course we'll call him a few choice names but that is as far as it will go because any decisions she makes, whether it be reconciliation or otherwise has got to be her decision and her decision only. We're most certainly not going to imply that she'd be a mug to take him back, puts up with his infidelity or whatever the situation ends up being. We also won't tell anyone else that she knows, it's up to her who she tells and when she tells them too.
I just feel so sorry for her being stuck in a new town where she doesn't really know anyone other than her daughter and a few work colleagues - such an awful shame.
 
I read this story so often, it is sad and cruel.

The law does say he has the right to stay in the home, and she cannot throw him out.

No fool like an old fool. Older man, younger woman she gets friendly and he gets dazzled.
I agree, but everything about this story goes against the norm. They're both regular church goers, in fact they met at a church youth club, also she's not the typical housewife who has lost herself in the drudgery of housework and looking after her family that her own appearance and well being has been forgotten, the opposite in fact, she goes to the gym, takes trouble over her appearance, she's a tiny and pretty little woman and looks a good few years younger than her age, and he's not a bad looking guy who's always smart and well presented so on aesthetics alone they look perfect together. I'm not trying to say that it's somehow more acceptable to cheat on a partner because their looks aren't what they used to be, but it is shocks me less if that makes sense as it's more typical of the stories we read, or hear of. This is totally bizarre, which leads to the second highlighted point. I'm presuming (maybe I'm wrong) that it was the woman who first put out the flirty vibes, stirred up some kind of passion within him that he quite possibly didn't even realise he was missing and instead of feeling flattered and leaving it at that, he jumped in with both feet (not forgetting the one in the middle!) It's all a conundrum. His religious beliefs might've been what compelled him to tell his wife, but he didn't come home and tell her that he'd been unfaithful and begged her for forgiveness, he coldly blurted out that he'd been sleeping with a woman who was 34 years younger than her (OUCH) and that he doesn't love her any more! WTF was that all about? True? Unlikely I'd think. Could it be a case of self loathing for what he's done that he didn't believe that he deserved forgiveness and a second chance, so much so that he needed to make sure that any chance of redemption was off the table? I truly believe it was a moment of madness on his part and he will regret it for the rest of his life. The shiny new relationship is unlikely to last, possible, but unlikely I'd think. He needs to give his head a good wobble and re-evaluate what's important in life before the damage becomes irretrievable. In the meantime my poor friend is in limbo land let alone complete and utter turmoil - a lose/lose situation😢
 
The sex drive is an extremely strong emotion (if emotion is the right word, I can't think of a better
word at the moment).
That's the thing, I have no idea whether or not they had a sexless marriage. One would hope that if that was the case and one of the partners wanted to re-kindle so to speak that they'd discuss it rather than just find it somewhere else. If they were "ok" in that department then going elsewhere is just greedy lol! If on the other hand he wasn't happy that sex was no longer a part of their relationship, then he kept quiet about it because my friend like I said, said that his revelation was a complete bolt from the blue. If it had been a bone (sorry) of contention between them, then she might have been a little on her guard, they might've been able to work something out between them. Maybe it was a combination of mis-matched sex drives (that she was oblivious to) and the chance to get some in with a younger, more nubile individual. It seems so sad that a couple who have been together since they were kids can't even tell each other how they're feeling.
 
A friend and her hubby have been happily married for 36 years - childhood sweethearts, he's 4 years younger than her and she's just turned 60. Last year they made the move over 50 miles away to be near their daughter and her family. She managed to get herself her dream job, and hubby decided that he wasn't quite ready to retire just yet so picked up a part time job. They had the marriage everybody dreamed of, a beautiful home, and a fabulous standard of living. They love their new home and their new life - Yesterday she phoned my friend who she's really close to to and told her that her husband came home from work one night and told her he that he doesn't love her any more and that he's been seeing a 25 year old woman he met at work for months. She told him to leave, but he refused saying it's his house too and if she tries any funny business he'll take legal action against her. She's had to go sick and work and she's coming up to stay with my friend for a while. Nobody knows what goes on behind closed doors of course, I guess nothing is ever what it seems. How awfully cruel. I can only hope that this is a moment of madness on his part and that they can work things out - It seems awfully sad that somebody could throw away a lifetime of love for the sake of an itch in the trouser department! and yes he did say it was the sexual attraction that lead him to stray .
Some people. What I particularly dislike here is the 'threats of legal action' to his wife of 36 years. If you're going to stray with some trollop 31 years younger than you are, then at least have the decency to pack your bags and leave. He wants it all: the tart, the house, the pension... No consequences, no losses. Why do some people think they can act like that?
 
It's turning out to be "silly season"! An old school friend who I now only see occasionally 'cause she lives in another county has just announced that her darling husband has left her for somebody else and that they're in the process of getting a divorce. They've been happily married for years and again they're a good match, have a enviable home and lifestyle. 3 years ago they moved because of her hubby's job which meant she had to give up the business she'd started and start anew elsewhere, and they both appeared to be doing very well for themselves in the new place. Back in the summer she said they would be moving closer South again so that they could be near both of their aging parents and other friends and relatives, had a beautiful house lined up, him a job and good prospects for her too, well that's until he dropped the bombshell at the beginning of December she tells me. The upshot is that she's got to live in her parent's mobile home that's parked on their driveway until she gets a settlement that'll buy her a permanent place to live. She says she's a mess right now and on heavy medication for depression, like the other friend, she's just reached the age of 60, and whilst no time's ideal, it just seems so cruel that these callous so called husbands are prepared to throw everything away 'cause of their own selfish whims. I don't know anything about "the other woman" I'm guessing she's younger than my friend as the hubby is a bit of a toyboy by 8 years, so it's likely he's bagged a 30/40 something. I thought they were solid. Poor thing, thought she was so looking forward to this new chapter in her life and it's all gone to $hit!!!!
 
Blimey! It does seem to be the uncoupling season in your friend group, Merryone.
Unfortunately you cannot always see if there are warning signs in your relationships... and even if you can see warning signs it's not easy to see what will be for the best. And in a partnership if there are different values being put on the relationship, if on partner wants to leave how and why would you get them to stay?
It could be that he has been unhappy, just as much as it could be an opportunity was handed to him on a plate.
And while it's not true of all women, there are still some women who want what others have and do not scruple to make a play for a married man; especially an affluent man.
 
I left my ex husband many years ago, and we'd been together for 9 years, I wasn't particularly happy but I wasn't downright unhappy either I was sort of resigned to my fate, temptation came my way in the shape of my now husband and the rest is history. Yes, I know people split up all the time for all manner of reasons but it always surprises me when you hear of couples who have been together for ever and seem to have it all in the way of happiness, love and material goods, then one of them decides out of the blue to go their own way leaving the other one high and dry. Is it that they've seen it all, got it all and can't see anything to look forward to? Who knows. What I do know is that people of my grandparents generation stuck together. My maternal grandparents were married for 60 odd years!
 
I can't help but think that being blindsided must be an incredibly traumatic way for a relationship to end. The more so when you feel settled and happy in a long term couple.
You can't make someone who wants to leave stay... and you can't take all the blame on yourself if things go awry. Maybe there were signs you missed, but unfortunately human beings often lie to each other... and some are very good at it.
In the past there was far more social and economic pressure to soldier on. Now that's normally not the case.
 
I can't help but think that being blindsided must be an incredibly traumatic way for a relationship to end. The more so when you feel settled and happy in a long term couple.
You can't make someone who wants to leave stay... and you can't take all the blame on yourself if things go awry. Maybe there were signs you missed, but unfortunately human beings often lie to each other... and some are very good at it.
In the past there was far more social and economic pressure to soldier on. Now that's normally not the case.
I couldn't agree more and what an age to be given such a curveball in your life! It's a struggle enough to be "not as young as you were" so to speak. Thankfully neither of these ladies are likely to suffer financially as both were good earners and ploughed in as much money into their relationships as their partners. I can only hope that their divorces (not sure what's gonna happen with the first one) aren't too drawn out and messy, but in the meantime my friend has got to camp on her parents driveway. I'm not sure what arrangements "Mr A$$shole has got set up, maybe his new partner has a home for him to move into - Who knows? Who cares eh?!
 
I couldn't agree more and what an age to be given such a curveball in your life! It's a struggle enough to be "not as young as you were" so to speak. Thankfully neither of these ladies are likely to suffer financially as both were good earners and ploughed in as much money into their relationships as their partners. I can only hope that their divorces (not sure what's gonna happen with the first one) aren't too drawn out and messy, but in the meantime my friend has got to camp on her parents driveway. I'm not sure what arrangements "Mr A$$shole has got set up, maybe his new partner has a home for him to move into - Who knows? Who cares eh?!
Maybe I'm generalising too much, but men seem more likely to bail if they think they have their next partner already lined up. It doesn't always work out, but if they jump too early they've burned their bridges and have nowhere to go.
I hope the next ex isn't expecting to just move into the marital home. I'm afraid I'd insist it was sold or the partner hoping to hang onto it would have to pay the other partner the going market rate for their share.
It tends to be less messy if there are no dependent kids... and hopefully also less difficult if both spouses are earning equally.
There are threads on reddit and such like of scheming spouses expecting to take their partners to the cleaners. Some real horror stories out there.
So I hope for both your friends that they get a clean, quick and equitable break and can move onto a better phase in their lives. I hope they can split without bitterness, as that can be so corrosive on your mental and physical health.
 
I don't know why I'm adding this but it made me feel extra sad yesterday when I saw my friend flogging off a whole bunch of her furniture on the FB selling pages. Log burner, huge dining room table with 8 chairs, bookcases and other things. I'm presuming it's either stuff she'd paid for, or her husband who did the dirty told her that she could have the proceeds, maybe they're just splitting all the chattels between them. To me it just seemed extra sad to think all that lovely stuff (and boy is it lovely) should be winging its way to their lovely new home, not sold off 'cause she's got nowhere to put it - What a load of extra $hit to put up with 'cause your husband couldn't stay faithful. Of course it's gonna get worse before it'll get better, and I hope it does get better and soon!
 
I don't know why I'm adding this but it made me feel extra sad yesterday when I saw my friend flogging off a whole bunch of her furniture on the FB selling pages. Log burner, huge dining room table with 8 chairs, bookcases and other things. I'm presuming it's either stuff she'd paid for, or her husband who did the dirty told her that she could have the proceeds, maybe they're just splitting all the chattels between them. To me it just seemed extra sad to think all that lovely stuff (and boy is it lovely) should be winging its way to their lovely new home, not sold off 'cause she's got nowhere to put it - What a load of extra $hit to put up with 'cause your husband couldn't stay faithful. Of course it's gonna get worse before it'll get better, and I hope it does get better and soon!
Who knows, it may turn out to be the best thing. Being around things that remind you of what you had and lost isn’t a healthy place to be, I suspect.
Your friend has a chance to clear out negative associations and make a fresh start. If she can treat it as an opportunity and find positives in it, that is… and I am sure it won’t be easy.
I wish her every good luck striking out on a new path.
 

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