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Forums / Multicultural experiences / Recently married but in love with my friend

Topic: Recently married but in love with my friend

8 posts, 0 answered
  1. Whattodonext
    Whattodonext avatar
    1 posts
    8 December 2017

    I have recently married my partner of nearly 8 years and love her. We have had great times together however my relationship hasn’t been what it once was and I feel that I’m only still in it because it’s what I know and feel comfortable at this point.

    I met a co-worker (female) a year ago and we have become really close friends inside and outside of work. We talk often and she has helped me when I had issues and felt anxious about work.

    In recent months we have both admitted to liking each other more than friends however we both agreed that I have a commitment and need to stick with it as I’ve only been married a few months and if we don’t end up working out then I would have left my wife and also lost a great friend.

    I can’t stop thinking about what life would be like with my friend and how happy we are when we are together, we have discussed what it would be like as well. She is a different culture (Muslim) to me and I would have to change somethings but I would make them changes to be with her. We have also tried to spend less time together outside of work, however this makes me feel upset and worried. I feel that I will lose a great friendship. She is single however her family are eager for her to find someone and settle down.

    We have tried to spend less time together to help fight urges and also to allow my friend to live her life and not worry about me and not to think about being with me.

    I know this doesn’t really make sense but I’m finding it hard to write down.

    Thank you for your help.

    1 person found this helpful
  2. OctoberStar
    OctoberStar avatar
    2 posts
    8 December 2017 in reply to Whattodonext
    I was in a long term relationship for a long time and incidentally fell into the same position that you find yourself in.

    I was not married but we lived together, shared everything, and despite my love for my partner - I was comfortable and developed feelings for a colleague. 

    I would like to be completely honest in letting you know that the grass isn't always greener on the other side.
    Your colleague may seem appealing because it is new, it is different and because it is something you can't have.
    It heightens the temptation to act and causes the fantasy to be overly desirable. Basically your feelings are heightened and feel stronger because it ultimately is wrong and providing you with the excitement your current relationship may be lacking.

    All relationships go through rough patches. Remember why you married your wife, everything that you share and why you pledged yourself to her in the first place.

    If there is truly nothing there then it is not fair for you to only remain with your wife in case you're 'left with nothing' if a relationship with your colleague is to fail. If your feelings have gone, then you have some big decisions to make. Relationships are not easy, they do take work. However at the end of the day, could you imagine your life without your current partner.

    Keep in mind your colleague will to, reveal habits and tendencies that you may have missed having not spent time living in each others pockets. Not everything is as it seems, I don't want you to make the same mistakes I did. I know that our situations are different. I just resonate with this and know the thought patterns and feelings you will go through. 

    You need to do what is right for you. Just consider why you are currently obsessing over your current situation with your colleague and if leaving your wife is the answer.
     
    5 people found this helpful
  3. Croix
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    Croix avatar
    10955 posts
    8 December 2017 in reply to Whattodonext

    Dear Whattodonext~

    The situation you are in is not that unusual. Having been together for a number of years - you said around 8 - you reach a stage in a relationship where it has changed from exciting to everyday. This does not mean it is of any less value, just more mature and different.

    I think OctoberStar has given you some pretty good advice, and I suspect it may have been hard won. Grass (or novelty if you like) does look greener and like holiday romances this situation do not show every side of the other person. Similarly you are not showing all of you.

    I think you are both very sensible to call a halt and recognize you have a commitment and need to stick with it.

    Dealing with this sort of situation is very much a learning experience. If you did leave your wife for this woman who seems attractive at the moment what will happen when you then meet someone else later on - would you move again? Going from one relationship to another does not strike me as good for your partners - or you.

    If you find your marriage has things you would like to improve then I'd suggest dealing with them together with your partner.

    Croix

    5 people found this helpful
  4. Quercus
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    Quercus avatar
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    9 December 2017 in reply to Whattodonext

    Hi Whattodonext,

    I'm going to be devil's advocate. Offer a different perspective.

    If you are looking elsewhere and are not content at home do you think maybe your wife is equally as unhappy? I would be if my husband was spending lots of time with a female 'colleague'.

    No matter how well we think we hide our feelings I'm sure your wife at least notices how highly you regard this friend. Why should she put in effort to please you or go out of her way to be fun when you're not paying attention to her and looking elsewhere for friendship and attention?

    My husband and I made eachother a promise. That if we ever start to feel like you are now THAT is the time to speak up.

    To recognise that the person we loved and chose to marry deserves to be given the basic respect of being told "I am unhappy/bored/unsatisfied and am attracted to someone else" BEFORE anything happens that will compromise a future together.

    This includes forming an emotional attatchment with another such as what you have now.

    In my view what is happening now is disrespectful of your wife as a person who loves you.

    Does she not get a say to try and change your mind? To talk in therapy? To rekindle a spark?Or maybe to stand up and say oh thank goodness you said something I'm miserable too and have been keen on the postie for a while (which frees you to move on).

    Just a thought. You have recognised you have a commitment and that is admirable. But if that was my husband and he was staying with me because of duty I would be pretty angry. Your wife deserves a man who loves her. If that man is not you then speak up and let her go meet someone who adores her and will treat her better.

    Good on you for speaking up. I hope you don't mind my honest opinion. It is not a criticism or a judgement. Just the expectation within my marriage.

    Nat

    4 people found this helpful
  5. bindi-QLD
    bindi-QLD avatar
    211 posts
    9 December 2017 in reply to Quercus

    I work in make dominated profession (as a woman) so I do believe boundaries are an important skill to learn. Coworkers can be very exciting, attractive people, but at some point you have to learn the skill of having some boundaries with them, if you hope to have a family and quality marriage with anyone at all.

    I think you did pretty well putting some space between you your coworker and yourself, and I do agree with you that its right approach in this situation, even if you feel very torn about it sometimes. You just may need to give it more time, and try focus on your marriage and the woman you really know. Like Nat mentioned, you have most likely detached from your wife in various ways, and this will have impacted your relationship. There's some repair work to do there if you want that relationship to improve.

    I know you're thinking along the lines of `should is stay or go', so here are some pros and cons to consider:

    Pros: Exciting buzzy feeling of new love (it will fade after courtship, it always does)

    Cons: Buzzy feeling is over and you are left with:

    -A very hurt ex wife who invested 8 years of her life, love, energy into You. She will not be your friend.

    -You will probably lose a lot of things you worked hard to earn over the years after divorce.

    -There are many unknowns regarding the coworker, as she has not invested anything into you except to interfere with your marriage. As guilty as you feel, she has not behaved appropriately either. She knows you are married. Her role in your friendship, if she were a truly good woman, would have been supportive of your marriage, not divisive or coercive.

    -She and her family are religious and cultural very different to you. You may not experience the deep level of acceptance from her that your wife gives you.

    -You would have to start a relationship from scratch that may not work out. All the things you and your wife already figured out to make each feel happy, accepted, secure, and loved, are unknown with someone new.

    -You will continue to work with attractive women at various times in your life. Unless you want the agony of multiple divorces and to put children through divorce and loss of their Dad, you will have to learn to have boundaries with attractive coworkers. Why not choose to learn your lesson now? Its a valuable, necessary lesson, and you have wisely made the first moves already. All you need to do is give it more space and time, and focus on your marriage.

    6 people found this helpful
  6. Quercus
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    Quercus avatar
    3557 posts
    11 December 2017 in reply to bindi-QLD

    Your post is spot on solid advice Bindy-QLD! Was nodding as I read along.

    Hi Whattodonext,

    Hope we haven't overwhelmed you. If you feel like it we'd love to know how you are managing.

    All the best to you whatever you decide to do.

    Nat

    2 people found this helpful
  7. geoff
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    geoff avatar
    16254 posts
    11 December 2017 in reply to Whattodonext
    hi Whattodonext, firstly can I welcome you and secondly there have been some great comments by those above me.
    My wife was going out with my best friend well before we got attached to each other, I was the threesome in the group until eventually she and I secretly got attached while still being a threesome because she had fallen out of love with my best friend.
    That's when I had to write to my best friend, a letter and tell him not to come around anymore, I wasn't strong enough to confront him, I was only young and she was my first g/friend.
    For you to continue this r/ship with this other girl you have met, is exciting, but it doesn't mean that the two of you will still love eachother in 10 years, you're in the 'honeymoon phase' which always happens when you meet someone you really like, but remember there are lots of hidden secrets that aren't told or known about until you stay together for a long time.
    You may think that you know everything but unfortunately that's something you will have to find out, and this can only be done or known about when you live together for a few years, then all the secrets start to emerge.
    How I see it is that you are fascinated by this new person and deciding whether to throw away a marriage just because of her, well what happens when another girl appears, will the same thing happen, probably so, don't leave your marriage, you can still be friends as long as you keep it as a friendship only. Geoff.
    2 people found this helpful
  8. Donte'
    Multicultural Correspondent
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    845 posts
    24 December 2017 in reply to Whattodonext

    Dearest Whattodonext, My heart goes out to you. What a difficult situation and tormenting predicament to be in! A relationship is all about communication and inclusion of each others’ needs, desires, plans etc. you gotta be on the same team in order to make it work. There are a few points that stand out in your description: You’re recently married (think to yourself and try to answer honestly why did you get married). Ask and discuss with your wife too the reasons she decided to marry you. (I believe this is something you have to do together as she’s directly involved and in a relationship with you through marriage). Once you both honestly explore the ‘why’ you got married and how you feel about it, look at why you both stayed together for 8 years. Then look at why and how your relationship is different now and explore how you both feel about that. Comfort is a big part and a very important one in every relationship and so is passion. Think of what is it that attracts you to your coworker. Could you perhaps invest in your wife more and your coworker less and see what happens overtime? You could find new ways to talk with your wife about things that are important to you and she could do the same so you can help each other when you are faced with issues and feel anxious. You and your friend agreed that you have a commitment and need to stick with it. Your friend should help you keep it. As for ‘what if’ it doesn’t work out, there’s always the possibility of failure. In the end, the longest and best relationship we have is the one with ourselves. In regards to obsessing about what life would be like with your friend and how happy you are when you are together, there would always be other possibilities as you meet other people throughout your life. You can choose to honor your commitment of marriage for life, or break it and walk away, and so does your wife. Renewing your vows is a daily thing. No matter what you choose, stay or leave, there will be consequences. Is a matter of weighing these and making a decision. And once you make that decision, you have to stick with it and don’t look back. It seems that trying to spend less time with your colleague and more with your wife is a sensible thing to do at least until you sort out your feelings and make your choice. Family Counselling may provide support and assist you in making that decision independently and as a couple. May be good to talk to a professional and seek some guidance.

    Hope you take that step. :)

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