Regrets about opening my relationship up

So this is a little complicated.

I’ve been very busy with education and pursuit of a career and during that time, I may have been more distant from my wife than I would have liked. She felt the distance and engaged in a couple of inappropriate relationships.

One was sexting, the other was an emotional relationship. We worked through those but my time and energy demands hadn’t changed so we explored opening up our relationship with another couple who we were close to.

Her relationship with the other man was getting to a place I was no longer comfortable with and the relationship between me and the other woman was not working out. I asked her to rein it back, not terminate the relationship but establish boundaries that I’d be comfortable with.

Both she and he told me that they would agree to that, but secretly continued their relationship and lied to me about it for months. I found out and said we had to end everything, I was told that I was overreacting and that I was taking something special away from her.

I tried to maintain a friendship with them but I was asked if those two could resume a romantic relationship and I would refuse, and they would attack and belittle me. My wife still talks to this man every day. I asked her to end it because that wound of betrayal is not healing and she now will not talk to me and refuses to see a counselor.

She said she already did everything she could to make things right between us. Was it wrong of me to ask her to end that relationship? This whole situation is a convoluted mess. I’m hurt and she resents me and I truly feel the only way to heal our marriage is for her to terminate that friendship.


No, you’re not wrong to set expectations about your wife’s behavior. Setting expectations is critical to having a healthy and successful relationship. It’s also important to have a partner who agrees to try to live up to your expectations.

You went through a period where you tried to open your relationship up, but found that it didn’t work for you. You told your wife how you felt and wanted her to established new boundaries with the other man. She agreed to your request, but she actually betrayed your trust by not changing her behavior and attempted to conceal her involvement from you.

Again, you have every right to feel hurt and upset. Your wife lied to you and betrayed your trust. And based on your question, it sounds like she’s putting her own desires ahead of what’s best for you and your relationship (see worth saving).

Our best advice is to talk about your concerns again and tell her exactly how you feel and what you need for your relationship to continue. Be specific about what you need in order to feel safe, loved and valued in your relationship (see talk about problems).

If she won’t go to counseling with you or honor your wishes, then it’s probably in your best interest to see a counselor on your own. You need someone to help guide you through the complicated process of deciding when it’s time to call it quits. A trained counselor will help you work through this option taking your best interest into account.

If you can approach the issues your dealing with head-on and with some professional guidance, your life will soon be a lot less complicated and convoluted.

We wish you the best.

 end of relationship | lying wife

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