“My Friend’s New Husband Keeps Sending Me Creepy Texts. Should I Tell Her?”

I have a very close friend who is older than I am and who has been married for just over a year. I spend a lot of time with her—-and subsequently with her husband. He has always been jokey/flirty with me, and I have seen this same behavior between him and other people (being jokey/suggestive with her other best friend as well, who openly laughs it off), so I had dismissed it as part of his character and had thought I was being uptight or oversensitive to feel bothered.

However, he has recently been messaging me – things like “night night” or “wish I were having dinner with you right now,” which I have usually ignored or laughed off, and I have tried to hint I wasn’t happy to receive such messages. But the final straw came when he actually sent a picture of his shirtless back and the top of his naked butt as I was leaving for vacation along with a “bon voyage!” text. I totally flipped and told him I was very uncomfortable and that it had to stop. I feel guilty for yelling at him even though I had done all I could to politely discourage messages before it got to this! I am quite a quiet person and easily made to feel awkward, and I feel he finds this entertaining and takes advantage.

He did apologize, but he still asked if I’d be interested “if he were unattached,” at which point I said he was still being inappropriate, and I stopped replying. As I felt so guilty (for no real reason???), I immediately deleted all messages and pictures, but I am now concerned about whether I should tell my friend. And if I did tell her, I now have no proof! Worse, what if she sees all this on his phone and wonders why I didn’t come to her? (Though at least then she would see I was telling him to stop.) She would not take kindly to this sort of thing and I’m sure would not forgive him, and our close friendship would be ruined.

I will have to continue to spend time around them frequently soon, and it has gotten to the stage where I find him so irritating and uncomfortable to be around that I do not want to be alone with him. I don’t know whether to give him one chance, and try and see a bit less of them in the meantime, until I am certain it won’t happen again. Please help. — Harrassed By Friend’s New Husband

I think one way or another, your friendship with your friend is going to shift. If you say nothing to her about her husband’s creepy behavior, she’s going to wonder why you’re suddenly distancing yourself from her. If you do say something, she may not believe you. Or she may believe you but, rather than punish her husband, she may punish the messenger and drop you as a friend. If it were I, I’d tell. I’d simply feel too uncomfortable with the husband to continue putting myself near his company. Plus, I’d want my friend to know what her husband’s up to. I’d accept that our friendship might be over, but it’s a risk I’d take if it meant not having to deal with the creep, especially considering that even not telling her means risking the friendship.

My fiancé and I have had a wonderful, loving relationship. He still gives me butterflies every time he walks in the room. We recently had a baby and everything has been great – he was doting on me and being the most supportive loving man. Then I found text messages from a woman. I confronted him as I was blindsided by this. He admitted to cheating a few times and that he is a sex addict. Since then, he has broken it off with this woman in front of me. But I have gone through old emails from while I was pregnant and discovered he went online looking for friends with benefits, stating he was a happily taken man and just looking for a little on the side.

This whole thing has been devastating especially because there was never any indication of his being unhappy. We also have a very active sex life and he works a lot, so I have no idea when he would even fit in friends with benefits. These emails are from months ago and there haven’t been any since. I need to know if I should confront him about those or let it go. I truly love him and I’m at a loss. — Blindsided By His Sex Addiction

 
I don’t see how you move on without some therapy for both of you. He says he’s a sex addict. Well, what is he doing to treat it? Is there anything he can do to earn back your trust? Are you always going to be worried that he’s cheating on you? These are questions you would do well to explore with a therapist. There’s a pattern of betrayal and it’s not just a one-time thing. That urge he has doesn’t just go away. You need to feel confident that he’s getting help and that the help is working. Without that confidence, I don’t see how you continue a happy relationship with him.

I met this guy recently who asked me out a few weeks ago. I’ve left him hanging. Thing is, I enjoy being around him, I’m free to be myself around him, and I miss him so much when he isn’t around or I haven’t talked to him at least twice that day. But he isn’t financially buoyant although he has potential and is hard-working. He works for my mom who, upon noticing the intimacy with him, warned me seriously and said she doesn’t like him. But I’ve done my research and he’s a great guy. He has had a rough past, but he’s changed. Now we are keeping everything about us secret. I’m confused. Should I let him go? — Leaving Him Hanging

 
Yes, I think you should let him go so that he may find someone who doesn’t leave him hanging, who values his character, and who isn’t persuaded enough by snobby family members to question whether liking a person a lot makes up for his not making much money.

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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at wendy(AT)dearwendy.com.

5 Comments

  1. Great advice rom Wendy on all this issues. I particularly like the answer to number #3. Exactly!

  2. LW1, if you want those texts and photos back as proof when you talk to your friend, they should still be in your trash and/or backed up in the cloud. Google how to recover deleted messages from your particular device.

  3. No1 Eww how horrible for you. I would tell her, it may cause distance between you initially but when she leaves the creeper she’ll remember you had her back and hopefully your friendship will become even stronger. No2 He has to go to therapy for his addiction (and you both need couples therapy) and if he won’t , sad as it is, I’d cut and run. No3 leave him he deserves more respect than you or your family will give him.

  4. Hi Wendy, nice to read you again!
    LW1, I would take things differently. Just forget about this loser. Block him: done. Don’t say anything to your friend, don’t try to recover your deleted messages. All energy and time consumed obsessing about this creep are a loss and a risk. Just refuse to hang out with him. See her only. Why do you have to meet them both? Are you all glued together? Why would you meet a guy who repeatedly makes unwanted advances? Just decline the appointments with the couple and see your friend alone. If she asks why, say that her husband is annoying you.If confronted by her, he will probably tell her that he is just teasing you and you simply took it too seriously (creeps are always joking, you know…). Don’t get ennemeshed in her marriage: a recipe for disaster. By the way, take for granted that he does that all the time to everybody. And don’t ever deal with creeps, don’t send messages. Just block.
    LW2: I am very sorry for you. It is difficult to find something as low as cheating on one’s pregnant wife. I would walk, personally. If you really want to reconsider later your marriage, once a certain time has passed, let him pick up the pieces. I wouldn’t just let it go and pretend that you are supposed to move on. And definitely require that he sees a therapist for his “sex addiction” (a nice euphemism, I don’t believe it for a second), if he is a self-diagnosed “addict”: where is his 12 steps program? You are way too fascinated by him. He must sense that you can do without him. And you can.
    LW3: I am not so thrilled about the “rough past”. What might that be? And why does the mother employs a guy she dislikes? I don’t think you should date a guy you consider beneath you. And you very much sound like that.

  5. Anonymousse says:

    Perfect advice.

    Also…LW2: yes, you need to not at all let that go. You need 100% transparency and sessions booked at your couples counselor etc because this is serious, I’m surprised you’re just staying by his side and thinking about confronting him. I admire that type of time biding and patience but that also seems like you also don’t trust him enough to bring things up when you find them. This doesn’t have to be your life, you know.

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