Is it cheating? It feels like it
I have been with my husband now for 8 years. Married for 3. We get along well. We hardly ever fight. I have always supported him and tried to encourage him in all his hobbies and life choices. I thought we were a happy and supportive couple. Over the years he has had a thing for social media. In particular specific women on social media. I understood him looking at pictures but it’s become more than that. He follows hundreds of these women. He comments on their pictures saying how beautiful they are and leaves them kisses and winks. He doesn’t do or say anything like that to me. I can see these comments as they are on public profiles. I know he has been doing other things with dating apps and chat apps which I can’t see as he has his phone attached to him 24/7. We had seen a counselor previously for this but my husband did not acknowledge this was an issue. I have asked him in the past if he is happy and if he felt like he wanted to chat to other women could be please talk to me first. He assured me he was happy and nothing was wrong. He made me feel bad for distrusting him. I really have no idea what to do. I feel if I confront him again he will not be truthful and get defensive about it. I cannot sleep and feel sick all the time. I feel like I am being cheated on and I don’t think he thinks this is an issue. Any advice would be very helpful. Thank you for listening. Mia
Hi Mia, welcome
If you asked 100 people their opinion you might get 100 answers. But what is important here is YOUR feelings. For example if he said repeatedly that it isnt a problem then he isnt addressing you having a problem, he is saying "as I dont think its a problem then you shouldn't either." (paraphrasing)
If you feel uncomfortable then it should be in his interest as a loving committed partner to ensure you are happy. By him not caring if you are is to not return the respect you deserve.
So- my opinion? I would not be happy with the flirting that is going on. I am the social media guru of the two of us in our home, my wife knows everything about my friends etc. I even have an interest in fashion and every night give and opinion on the dress worn by one of the weather girls on the news. My wife trusts me and knows my interest is genuine. In fact I often comment that a certain dress or colour would suit her and have purchased it for her.
However, there is a line not to be crossed and that line depends on the feelings of the person (you in this case) and how far he goes with the flirting. That all means that its your standards that is important here and you should not feel guilty for such feelings.
Finally, we often get here posts about secrecy of partners with their mobile phones. My wife and I sometimes swap phones for various reasons like she can print off mine or she gets better reception of mine etc. It doesnt worry me at all. Personally I dont get the possession thing, the secrecy etc. Its a red flag.
I think Tony has summed up the insensitivity of your husband's behaviour in spite of your feelings.
So, what do you suppose your husband's reaction will be to you scouring the social media sites 'just for fun'? You may even want to ask for a second opinion from him when you find something that tweaks your interest... always helpful to be shown the view from the other side once in a while.
I agree with you, there's little point engaging in an argument.
Hi Tony & t,
thank you both so much for taking the time to reply. I really wanted to get an opinion as i wanted to know if there was something I’m missing here. I have read that some people believe that as it’s non physical there is nothing wrong with online flirting. I’m going a bit stir crazy. I’m afraid. Not sure how many more times I can go through this.
I know the Internet and social media isn’t going anywhere and I can’t control what he looks at. I think he needs help but I don’t think he will ever admit it. I know he’s not a bad person but he is hurting me so much.
Tony I’m so happy to hear how respectful you are with your social media. I just wish there were more like you around.
He won't get help simply because he enjoys what he's doing. If his actions affect you that much then a review if your relationship is justified. I'm sorry to say that but his priorities are in reverse. You should be number one, not his lust for on line flirting.
When we are unhappy, we tend not to be decisive as the thoughts of breaking up haunt us. Be brave and strong whatever your decision.
I want to thank you for your honesty as tgere will be other people reading your posts who feel the same as you and know they are not alone.
Tony has given such sensible suggestion and he is a true gentleman.
Years ago I was in a similar situation in a previous relationship where I was made to think I was fussing over nothing.
As Tony has said it is nit so much the behaviour but how it makes you feel. Even if the tg3 other person can acknowledge your feelings and not dismiss them that will help.
sometimes peop,e may reason I can put up with this behaviour because of all the positive behaviours.
in the end if your health is being affected it is your decision what to do.
Hello MiaRose, I don't have much to say because it's already been said, but let's say you were looking at different chaps, how would he react, unfavourably and feel disturbed, possibly threatened, so it's not OK if he can do it, but not supposedly allow you if you were inclined, which we know is the situation.
I 100% understand how you feel. My partner of 21 years had his phone 24/7. It has a code on it which I dont know, and he doesnt like to show me anything in it. However I believe he is addicted to facebook and has engaged in an emotional affair via snapchat and messenger. I have proof of quotes he has sent. He downloaded photos on his phone to a USB which had saved screen shots. He can not see anything wrong with his behaviour.
Whereas I am the opposite and dont even know where my phone is half the time. it doesnt have a code and I dont have anything to hide. The phone and social media drives me mad. I even deactivated my facebook as it frustrated me to see all his likes and that he follows/likes the same groups that 'she' does.
So basically I decided that I dont have any control over what him or his phone and nor do I want to. So I have expressed how I feel. I dont talk or I stop talking if he picks up his phone. I dont contact him while we are at work unless important. I removed myself from things that upset me. So far it seems to be working. We have good conversations when we are both home. He isnt using his phone in front of me as much and leaves it in another room overnight. He told me his code (havent tried to see if he is being honest) but I said I have nothing to look at on his phone if he is being honest.
It took a long time, but having the 'I dont care' approach seems to be working. Looking back, it seems to be like an ego stroking thing. However he still hasnt admitted to anything and dont understand the hurt he has caused me.
But gee.. I totally understand your frustration!