“Our Beautiful Neighbor is Getting Too Close with My Husband”

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My neighbor is a beautiful 27-year-old woman who is forward. She lived with the father of her newborn for several months, kicked him out, and moved the father of her older child in. She is a stay-at-home mom, and my husband recently retired so he is home all day, too. Anytime he is outside she appears. She never comes when I am home.

In the past eight possible days without a spouse home, she has come to see my husband four days. He decided to be transparent because he didn’t feel it was right. He slipped and said a neighbor saw them in the garden and it just didn’t look good for her to be there. I then knew why he decided to be transparent. He said she told him she would like to start helping him in the garden, when I’m not there I’m sure.

By the way, it’s my garden — something I love and work hard in. She has come to the door to ask to borrow a blender, bring “us” an invitation to her daughter’s birthday party, and two other times in the last eight days. My husband now is outside twice as much. It now makes me think that is why he decided to be transparent.

He told me the day of her first visit. I believe he is afraid someone will mention her being at the house. He has been soo happy lately and sweet. He has also been talking about going to the gym and needing to buy new clothes, and he has cut his food consumption in half to lose weight.

I don’t THINK she is interested in him that way, but what is now becoming an issue for me is that he doesn’t want to hurt her feelings by telling her she doesn’t need to come over while I’m not home. I told him to at least tell her it doesn’t look right. He said he would consider that, but he only said that after a horrible argument, which is exactly what I didn’t want to have happen over this issue. He hinted divorce in our argument.

I don’t appreciate all this unnecessary drama. He will tell her that it is I who doesn’t want her there instead of taking responsibility. It all needs to come from him. It is so murky and doesn’t feel right at all. He needs to get a job and get busy. Something about all of this is really hurting me. — My Beautiful Neighbor Needs to Get Out of My Garden

Listen, you sound like a jealous wife who is making a way bigger deal out of this situation than it really is. Sure, your husband probably does enjoy looking at a beautiful 27-year-old woman and might even be flattered that she’s interested in his company. But her presence isn’t necessarily the reason he’s “soo happy lately and sweet,” “talking about going to the gym and needing to buy new clothes,” and cutting “his food consumption in half to lose weight.”

Maybe, you know, retiring and embarking on a whole new life have prompted some of these changes. I’d be happy, too, if I suddenly went from working full-time to not having to work again for the rest of my life. And, as people age, it’s natural that they would become interested in their health and caring for their bodies (hence, the diet and the talk of going to the gym). Also, he has time now to pursue physical fitness in a way he probably didn’t when he was working full-time.

As for the beautiful neighbor lady: Maybe she avoids coming over when you’re around because she knows you don’t like her. You talk about your husband’s transparency, but I have a feeling your impression of your neighbor is pretty transparent, too. You think she’s “forward,” and you’ve taken note of how she has two different baby daddies, both of whom have lived with her in recent months. But how much do you really know about her? What do you know about her struggles as a single mother or the challenges she’s faced? What details do you even know about her relationships with the father of her two children? You’re making a lot of assumptions based on appearances — based on the little bit you’ve seen — and you likely haven’t gotten to know — and don’t care to get to know — her at all.

Well, that’s fair enough if you don’t want to know her. But it’s not really fair to take out your dislike for her on your husband. And it’s not fair to expect HIM to be the one to tell this neighbor to stop coming over and to stop inviting you guys to her kids’ parties and to stop asking to borrow your blender and offering to help in the garden — when YOU are the one who doesn’t want her there because you feel threatened by her. If YOU have a problem with the neighbor lady coming over, YOU need to be the one to talk to her.

What I do NOT recommend is telling her you don’t want her talking to your husband or coming over when you aren’t home. I’d recommend being friendly and, you know, neighborly to her. Let her know that you aren’t someone to be avoided or feared and that, if she needs to borrow something, it would be perfectly fine for her to knock on your door at a time when you might be home (as opposed to only coming over when she knows you’ll be at work). Consider bringing over a small gift for her daughter’s birthday (or, better yet, GO to the party she invited you both to) and maybe some seeds for her to plant this spring in her own garden/outdoor space.

You could include a card saying: “[name of your husband] mentioned you are interested in gardening. I am, too! I love working in my own garden in my free time and take a lot of pride and joy in seeing the results of my hard labor every year. I thought you might enjoy planting some of my favorite seeds in your own garden. Maybe [name of her daughter] would even like to help you plant them.” This is a very diplomatic way of saying “hands off my garden” without being a bitch.

Finally, I’d suggest taking some of the focus you’re putting on this neighbor lady and re-directing it toward your husband. Retirement is a HUGE life step and he needs to know you support him — you support his interest in getting healthy and in pursuing some new hobbies. And if he’s throwing around the D-word, even casually, and you are getting in big arguments, that should be a wake-up call for you about the state of your marriage.

This really isn’t about some neighbor woman with a live-in baby daddy and two young kids; this is about you and your husband and the way you are relating to each other, communicating, and treating one another. You want him to “take responsibility” for something that really isn’t his responsibility — telling the neighbor you don’t want her to come over when you’re not home — when, really, YOU are the one who needs to start taking some responsibility . . . for your marriage and for your own well-being (including managing your relationships with the people who live around you and affect your well-being).

P.S. At least your beautiful neighbor lady wears pants…


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


  1. Sunshine Brite says:

    Damnit Ramona! Hahahaha

    WWS, you sound super jealous and seem to be reading into a lot. Maybe she stops in during the day because she’s a SAHM and your husband’s home and not later because her boyfriend’s home.

    1. My husband an me moved in this apt ..my husband works for the land lord.the granddaughter of the landlord lives across from us..her friend lives their to ..she’s 32 an she sometimes work for the landlord to …my husband worked with her about 3different times ..I think he’s messing around with her a couple of times …cause I had a really bad gut feeling one day….my man got off work one day an time passed an he was drunk an he said I’m riding the moped to the store for cig an beer …at the same time the friend went in her car to the store my man was right behind her …I told my son that my man would not come back with nothing an said he lost the money ..an she would come back with nothing to …sure enough he came back home with nothing an she was right behind him an had nothing to ..he said he lost the 10 dollars …he said I must of drop it so we look every were ..he walk over to the moped leaned down an then said I can’t find the money no we’re ..well I told my son I go look down at the moped an the money be laying there an then he will say he’s to drunk to go back to the store ..even though he went at the same time as her an was drunk ..anyways sure enough the money was right were I said an he said exactly what I said he would ..every time he goes out side she comes out ….every time he leaves she does …if he goes to the store she does or vice versa..every time he leave for work she leaves ..an when he’s home for lunch she comes home an as soon as he leaves she does ..if he gets home at she does to …if he goes to the store at midnight she shows up there …I’m fed up with it we argue all the time …he swears he never touch her but sometimes I Wonder an still wonder you tell me

  2. Avatar photo Raccoon eyes says:

    OMG I just had to say that “My Beautiful Neighbor Needs to Get Out of My Garden” is perhaps the best signoff ever!!! HaHAHaaaa! Ok, now to read the actual response…

  3. Pantsless Ramona!!! I keep hearing people referencing her but somehow I missed it when it happened. Now Wendy finally dug her up so I can understand what the deal is! I feel so much more connected to the community now haha 🙂
    Re: this letter writer, I wouldn’t push your husband to tell her to stop being around unless she does something inappropriate (like kiss him or stop wearing pants!). Wendy gives some good alternative suggestions, another is to help get your husband out of the house more often. Help him find volunteer opportunities, make other retiree friends, pick up some sports leagues (golf or tennis maybe?) or some other hobby. At least get him a dog to walk and take to the dog park if you don’t have one already. I’m guessing he used to have coworkers to talk to at work, and now he is lonely and not minding the conversation with the neighbor, because otherwise he’d just be in solitude all the time.

  4. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

    Haven’t read the letter or Wendy’s advice but I’m really hoping this is about Ramona the Pant-less Wino, Part Deux!! Ok, off to read…

    1. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

      Ok read it. She’s like Ramona’s not-as-cool, but-still-cool cousin. This just goes to show that we beautiful women cannot get a break in life! There should be a law that protects beautiful women from discrimination by other jealous women. … I’m only kidding, geez. I have nothing profound to add except WWS.

  5. If he’s throwing around divorce in an argument, you two have a lot more problems than just your neighbor.
    You said “he needs to get a job and get busy.” Why? He’s retired, he doesn’t need to get a job. Unless you’re worrying about financial issues. Are you? Or is that he has way more free time than you do and maybe you’re a little jealous of that? If that’s the case, can you retire too? And if one of you needs to be the breadwinner, how did you both come to the decision it would be you or was it not a discussion and you’re feeling resentful? I’m certainly not faulting you, LW, because these are all perfectly reasonable and understandable reactions to a life altering decision.
    Bottom line – this isn’t *just* about your neighbor. You two have other issues here that need to be discussed pronto, because if not…this will only get worse.

    1. Avatar photo Raccoon eyes says:

      Yes!!!! The divorce thing really stuck out to me too.
      Now, Im a bit fuzzy on the timeline here (is it just 8 days since LW was made aware of this? or 8 days since….I dont know…when was the kid’s bday invite extended?), but 2 big things jump out at me – your husband is recently retired and she has a newborn. Sooooo…. two people “stuck at home,” be it as it may, during the day. Now, Im no expert on either being the parent of a newborn or being retired, but from my understanding, both mean that you 1)not have ppl around to talk to much and 2) time to yourself that you may not have had before. I mean, it isnt like the neighbor is inviting herself inside, right? They are just hanging out/making small talk in the (yours, LW- which you make a point of remarking upon) garden? Until she is blatantly making a play for your husband, or he is blatantly trying to impress her or something, you need to address your jealousy yourself. (As in, with a therapist or something.)

      1. Avatar photo Skyblossom says:

        Newborns actually take a lot of time so it is odd that she can get out and hang out so frequently with her neighbor. When you have a newborn lots of things don’t get done so the things that you do manage to do get done because you prioritize them.

      2. Avatar photo Raccoon eyes says:

        Yeah, I realize I kind slapped together this response- I meant more like, that with a newborn, the little “free time” she may have, she may seek out friendly contact with anyone not in diapers, or somesuch. I know babies are very time-consuming- I just meant like that they both want/need/are seeking out actual contact with others since they are more tied to home now, or something. Gah, now Im not even sure what *I* am talking about. 😉

    2. It doesn’t sound like he threw around divorce though…. she said he “hinted” at it, so its totally her interpretation.

  6. Laura Hope says:

    Really, Wendy? You really think his sudden interest in his appearance isn’t connected to the young, beautiful neighbor showering him with attention? Hmmm. I suspect his ego is flying. But I do agree that banning the neighbor or forcing him to do it is not the answer. I think she should focus on her relationship with her husband and then she just has to trust him.

    1. Avatar photo Guy Friday says:

      I mean, it’s probably a combination of both the attention and the retirement. He wouldn’t be the first guy to focus on getting in shape once he retires because it gives him a purpose and structure to his day that he doesn’t have anymore.

    2. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

      I think she’s hardly “showering” him with attention. It sounds like she’s being a nice, friendly neighbor. If she were old or ugly, the wife would have no issues.
      The LW’s lack of confidence must be a real turn off for her husband, though. And the confidence of the young neighbor is probably a turn on. LW should be friendly right back to the neighbor. Geez, she’s only 27. The LW has so much life on her – she is (hopefully) wiser and more relaxed and – and, well, she could really be a mentor to the young neighbor. I bet if LW would show some confidence and not jealously in this situation, then that would be a real turn ON to her husband.

      1. Agree with AP. This LW – at least based on what info she told us – sounds like a classic jealous woman who is reading way too much into everything. I won’t go so far as to say his interest in his appearance has NOTHING to do with the neighbor, but I have to agree that it’s more likely a combination of his recent life change and other “environmental” factors 🙂

    3. Two questions to ask when jumping to conclusions: Is it true? How do you know it’s true? The LW doesn’t know the reasons and if she wants to know, she would need to ask her husband and ask herself if she trusts whatever answer he gives.

  7. Jeez LW, you’re acting like a jealous co-ed. She’s 27 with 2 kids, and I’m assuming your husband is 50+ (at the youngest) old enough to be her father. Have you ever thought that she just ENJOYS being around a nice older gentleman? Your husband sounds sweet, and honestly, if I were your neighbor, I’d think their platonic relationship was cute.

    WWS everywhere all over everything. He JUST retired and you want him to keep busy by getting a new job? He is keeping busy, by doing his hobbies!

    1. I also think it might be that they are the only ones on the street home during the day. It is nice to chat and then she sees her boyfriend in the evening when he gets home from work.

    2. Wait a minute. This happened to my marriage your 19 year old neighbor came after my 47year old hubby right after we moved n. Yes they had sex several times. I didn’t find out till 7;years later. We worked it out but it was a mess

  8. Avatar photo Guy Friday says:

    I’d add this to what Wendy said: either you trust your husband, or you don’t. If he is going to cheat on you, he’s going to cheat on you regardless of what the neighbor looks like, because it’s about filling some void in your relationship together. If you trust him, even if he IS hitting the gym, eating healthier, buying new clothes, etc. because of the attention she’s giving him, why does that matter? She spurs it, but you benefit from it, right? It’s not like any of those things are negative, so who cares what made him do it as long as he comes home to you after the gym?
    And, hey, look, suppose he IS flirting with her a little. Maybe it’s just because I’m a guy, but I’ve never really understood how flirtation — assuming we’re not talking explicit or sexual stuff — in a strong and healthy relationship is somehow evil or a betrayal. Sometimes a flirty comment is just a flirty comment and there’s no deeper meaning behind it. Sometimes it’s just designed to make the other person smile or laugh or show gratitude to them for doing you a favor. I mean, I love my wife; I’m spending the rest of my life with her. So why would it be bad for me to know I’m attractive to a pretty girl if I’m never going to act on it? It gives me confidence and puts me in a good mood, and then I go home to my wife and joke about it (i.e., “You better watch out, because your husband’s got some game!”), and she rolls her eyes at me as I’m setting the table for dinner. Am I wrong about this?

    1. No, not in my opinion. I think it’s all about trust and your second paragraph really speaks to that. If my husband came home and told me he was hit on or flirted with, I would laugh and roll my eyes, like your wife did. Why? Because I trust him and know he wouldn’t cheat on me. If I ever lacked that trust, it would be a different conversation and I would likely be looking for things NOT THERE because, ya know, no trust.

      P.S. I love your avatar image…my kitty is named after Atticus 🙂

      1. I did the eye-rolling and kidded my EX along whenever he let me know how hot he was. And I did it because I trusted him…I thought. Gradually, other red flags became more visible. He really was embroiled in an affair.

    2. I would hope my relationship looked something like this one day. And vice versa. I mean, come on, it’s a huge ego boost when other people find you attractive. And I can totally see myself joking about it with my future partner.

    3. RedroverRedrover says:

      It depends on the guy though. For example, my husband doesn’t flirt. I’ve known him almost 10 years, and in that time, I’ve never seen him flirt with anyone, not even me! He’s more of the strong, silent type. So if I ever saw him flirt with a woman, or he told me he flirted with a woman, I would be crushed. It would have to be serious to make him change his behaviour so drastically. Without knowing whether being flirtatious is a new thing for the LW’s husband, we can’t write off her concern about it so easily.

    4. Skyblossom says:

      I think the difference between you and the man in the letter is that you then go home and tell your wife and joke about it. Men flirt with me at work and I go home and tell my husband and joke about it. The man in the letter only mentioned it to the wife because he realized the neighbors saw something that they would feel looked bad enough that they would come and tell his wife about it. I think your wife would see it differently if you were suddenly hiding what happened unless she might find out through other people and that was combined with you eating half as much food every day and with wanting to work out and wanting new clothes. He’s a man who wants to change himself completely and at the same time throwing out the idea of divorce. Each of those things by themselves might not amount to much but all of combined adds up to something. He wants to change himself and he wants that change to be rapid. Maybe he does want to shed the wife along with the old clothes and the weight.

      1. Realistic says:

        We all have to be realistic. Don’t respond for selfish reasons. The lady feels insecured because the husband is choosing to be nice over the wife feeling comfortable. If the woman talks of her neighbors lovers’ history is because she feels the neighbour has no moral Standard. Not to mock her. Most marriages crash these days because spouses can’t define boundaries. I once knew a single lady who said because of her disappointments in life by single men, she will rather settle with a married man now. Most women go for married men for security and confidence in them that at least they know where they stand, no deception. Let’s all stop calling the woman superjealous because we women are of jealous nature one way or the other. Stop acting righteous and without jealousy just because you all love the company of opposite sex too irrespective of your spouse’s feelings.

      2. I agree with SkyBlossum. I have seen this before and the fact that Wendy fails to put these things together tells me there is a lack of experience in this area. It is blatantly obvious to me about what is going on and like SkyBlossum said, these things by themselves might not mean much but put together it does. Its like a billboard for HELLO SOMETHING ISN’T RIGHT HERE! I would be suspicious and very careful if I was the woman in the letter. A man loves to be flattered no matter his age. This 27 yr old comes along giving him attention and suddenly his head inflates and he thinks he needs to get into shape etc. Then gets into a fight and mentions divorce?!?! This is a warning sign. Heed it or pay the price. I think perhaps she needs to have a more constructive conversation with her husband about his behaviour. Maybe dig a little deeper. Spend more time with him and get to know him again. Retirement can do a lot to a couple. Good and bad. I wish her all the luck.

    5. Avatar photo Raccoon eyes says:

      Guy Friday, I agree with you on this. I think that a lot of ppl have issues about this stuff when they havent really hashed out where the “line” is. For instance, here (although Im a bit murky on the timeline here due to the letter’s general jealousy-staining-all-and-kinda-loose-on-time) she says he was transparent but then says that he told her about it because another neighbor saw them in the garden to husband told LW about it. So, to LW the “line” sounds like nothing past a neighborly ‘hello’ in passing, while husband’s line is more fluid.

    6. I’m with you. Bassanio has lots of female friends and his conversational style can be flirty with men and women. He doesn’t mention it often (especially not nowadays because we’re hermits and his job has some long hours), but if he went out to a bar with friends, he’ll tell me about flirting and girls/guys hitting on him. He doesn’t tell me about every single time because we’ve got better things to talk about and it doesn’t really matter, but it’s a funny story telling thing.

  9. I find it odd that you want your husband to “take responsibility” for telling the neighbor he doesn’t want to hang out with her when, in fact, it isn’t his idea at all. Maybe it’s time for you to take responsibility for YOUR feelings first, here.
    Aside from that, WWS. She can probably tell you hate her and is avoiding you. So why not try to be nice. I feel like the worst intentions this girl can have is thinking that if she gets in good with you guys, she might get some babysitting out of it, like substitute grandparents or something.

      1. My mom grew up in a high rise condo on Ft Lauderdale beach. Hers was really the only family with children that lived there full time; there were a bunch of old people who lived there year round and then families with children that would come for the summer. All of her grandparents passed away before she was born, but she had a whole condo full of substitute grandparents.
        All of that to say that my/my husbands parents all live 1000 miles away, and I feel kind of sad for my (future) children that they won’t have regular interactions with their grandparents. If I live next to a kindly old man when I have young children, I would probably do the same stuff this neighbor is doing.
        … Also, you know, it’s nice to know your neighbors. Just in general, we can watch out for each other, notice if something isn’t right.

      2. Okay, that video made me tear up a bit. It is so sweet!

    1. RedroverRedrover says:

      If she’s the kind of person who uses her looks to take advantage of men, then I could totally see her working on the retired neighbour next door. She doesn’t seem to have a steady guy in her life, and it would be handy to have someone right next door who might be convinced to do things around the house (lifting heavy things, cleaning eavestroughs, etc). I’m not saying she’s that kind of person, we don’t know anything about her. But it’s possible. It’s also possible she’s just friendly and outgoing.

    2. Avatar photo Skyblossom says:

      It’s his responsibility to put up boundaries that protect the marriage. She feels that he isn’t protecting the marriage and that he should do so. If he values his marriage he should put up boundaries that allow him to be a neighbor who isn’t mistaken for being inappropriate in the garden.

      1. Avatar photo Stonegypsy says:

        It’s not his responsibility to cater to crazy. If you’re married to someone who says they aren’t comfortable with you being friendly with anyone of the opposite sex, and in order to protect your marriage you have to stop doing that, then going ahead and doing that is just going to validate that crazy controlling demand. That’s not going to fix anything.
        In this instance, her husband isn’t doing anything inappropriate. He’s simply spending more time outside, deciding to take better care of himself, and having conversations with an attractive lady neighbor.
        They have issues they need to work on, but his casual friendship with a 27 year old single mother isn’t one of them.

      2. If the husband loves and respects his wife, AND he is aware that his interactions with the young, beautiful neighbor is causing strife with his wife, he needs to STOP being selfish and cease contact with this neighbor, unless his wife is not present. All men love beautiful young women PERIOD. This young lady knows the effect she has on her older married neighbor. If she means well, she would attempt to make friends with the wife and stay away from her married neighbor. Sheitz can happen in a moment of weakness. Husband needs to find himself a hobby away from his enticing neighbor.

  10. Ugh. I hate jealousy. So much. I just can’t understand why – when, by your account, your husband has literally done NOTHING to incense it, – you think you have any reason to be jealous! Just chill the F out and take a look at the situation from a different perspective. Like Wendy says, you don’t know anything about this woman, except very surface stuff. Be a decent human being and try making a connection – maybe she really needs a friend. If you don’t want that friend to be your husband (which, again, RIDICULOUS), then make it you!

  11. Skyblossom says:

    I don’t think that the LW is that crazy. Sudden desire to lose weight, get in shape and buy new clothes are classic signs of a man getting into an affair. In our friend group, the now ex-friend who got into weight loss and exercise was also getting into an affair. The weight loss and exercise were the sign that we could all see but didn’t realize was significant. If her husband is confessing up because he’s afraid the neighbors saw something that they will think looks bad then maybe that is exactly what the neighbors saw. That is the husband’s own judgment of the situation. Does everyone think he is exaggerating? It’s also the husband throwing around the idea of divorce. He sounds like someone whose thinking of playing the field. I think the LW and her husband should get into marriage therapy and talk about how the husband’s retirement affects both of them. Also try reading “His Needs, Her Needs: Building an Affair-Proof Marriage,” by Willard F. Harley. http://www.amazon.com/His-Needs-Her-Building-Affair-Proof/dp/0800719387/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1427809870&sr=1-1&keywords=his+needs+her+needs

    Even if you don’t see a counselor the book will give you the groundwork to talk about what you are each needing from the other and from the marriage. Your husband is going through a lot of change right now and it might help him to think about what he is needing now that his life is different.

    1. RedroverRedrover says:

      I agree. The problem isn’t the neighbour, it’s that he’s mentioning divorce. It’s a pretty common trope that once the man retires, he ditches his wife. Now he doesn’t need anyone to support him at home, so he frees himself up and goes and enjoys life. Maybe he’s just been hanging in there for the past five years, not wanting to shake things up while he was still working, and now he’s ready to start a new phase of life without her. They should get into marriage counselling immediately.

    2. bostonpupgal says:

      I agree with Slyblossom on this. I can see what Wendy is saying here too, but weight loss, mood changes, New clothes, more time outside, threatening divorce, and not listening to the LW’s concerns all coinciding with this woman coming over all the time seems like…more than coincidence. Now it’s very possible that the husband simply enjoys the attention, but it’s also possible there are much deeper or darker issues pointing to him wanting to have an affair or get divorced. Not to mention, the neighbor isn’t doing herself any favors avoiding the LW and visiting the husband all the time. If she senses that the LW dislikes her, that should be her cue to back off, not sneak around visiting the husband while the LW is not home.

      I’m not saying the LW handled this perfectly, but I can honestly understand her concern. Couples counseling and a lot more communication with the husband, and forming at least a cordial relationship with the neighbor should hopefully start to take care of this.

    3. I agree with you- I was actually kind of surprised at Wendy’s advice! Over 40% of married couples have an affair so it’s not like it’s completely unheard of like this wife thinks something TOTALLY UNTHINKABLE could be possibly happening. And the husband losing weight and working out combined with the fact he only told her they were hanging out because the neighbour has seen them a number of times- there’s a lot of red flags. I actually don’t think he is having an affair with the neighbour but I think the attention from a young woman maybe has made him think about the possibilities of being with someone else and that’s why he mentioned divorce. I would definitely think about getting into counselling.

  12. Avatar photo Crochet.Ninja says:

    yea i’m not gonna lie, i’d have issues with this myself. however, my husband listens to my concerns and we talk it out. and no one mentions divorce. that right there is a red flag.

    is it at all possible he’s having a bit of depression with retiring?

  13. Avatar photo muchachaenlaventana says:

    So not to come off like a total biatch but I am a fairly attractive young 20-something and quite frankly would consider an older retired dude neighbor home during the day who was nice to me and treated me respect, kind of like a safe space. I think you are being whack attack jealous here. Maybe your husband is flattered by the attention and enjoys her company but I really doubt anything nefarious is going on here. If your husband is a nice guy and not creepy, your neighbor probably just welcomes the adult conversation she may miss out on by being a stay at home mom to two young children, one who is still a baby. LW YOU are the one causing all of the stress in this situation and in your relationship. Take a chill pill- I get you not wanting a stranger to work in your garden, personally this is what would tick me off more-not the fact your husband occasionally talks to the neighbor. You are not going to come off looking good in a conversation where you forbid her to come over or say hi to him during the day-when they are both home and now that its getting nicer out, I am sure will be spending more time outside.

    1. Thumbs up just for “whack attack.” Made me lol.

  14. Avatar photo Stonegypsy says:

    Yeah, you have major problems here and your neighbor is not one of them. Your husband threw out the D word in an argument about this? That’s not generally something people throw around casually, it’s something that they think about.
    So yeah, you need to get into couple’s counseling and start focusing more on your marriage and waaay less on a 27 year old single mother who has befriended your husband.

  15. My sister in law is a 26 year old stay at home mom. And she is on really good terms with the older men who live on either side of her. They’re both named Mike. My niece’s grandparents live far away, and has taken both Mikes on as pseudo-grandpas (to the point that when my dad does visit, she calls him Grandpa Mike, even though he’s not a Mike). Their wives love that their husbands have a kid to dote on while they’re off working. My SIL loves it because she’s building more community in her neighborhood. They all watch out for each other, have big neighborhood BBQs, and make an otherwise poorer neighborhood rich from the human interaction.

  16. I agree that LW is misdirecting some of her feelings at the neighbor, who sounds kind of harmless, but I would say that she may be right that something fishy is going on with her husband. He mentioned divorce when they had a fight (what??) and he also seems a little bit overly intent to be ‘transparent’ about his interactions with the neighbor. It’s almost like he’s trying to be so upfront that what might have looked odd will seem harmless simply because he announced that he was being transparent. For me it looks like he might be interested in the neighbor, even if she isn’t. The problem then is that he could also try to approach other women. And he might be thinking about divorce, which is a lot more serious than any of this.

    1. tbrucemom says:

      I agree. This could very well go either way. The neighbor is just being nice or she’s looking for someone to supplement her lifestyle. If she’s a SAHM but doesn’t have a SO, does that mean she’s living solely on child support from the 2 dads? Either way, the husband is obviously flattered by the attention and it could simply stroke his ego or lead to something more. If it wasn’t for the fact that he mentioned divorce I’d say it was probably innocent but that makes me think there could be more going on. The LW needs to work on her marriage for sure. She also needs to address some possible resentment I’m sensing that she has to continue to work while her husband is able to retire.

  17. Juliecatharine says:

    Ok LW is super jealous and that’s generally a bad thing but her alarm bells are ringing and I don’t think she’s off base. Maybe the neighbor is just being friendly but her husband is pretty clearly aware that things appear to be off because he’s concerned about other neighbors blabbing to his wife. His sudden desire to spiff up his appearance is a pretty big red flag. Yes, he’s likely old enough to be her father but men often don’t see that as an obstacle and I don’t think the age difference matters. He’s spending quality time with another woman and that can be a slippery slope. This couple needs to build some trust stat.

  18. Oh, my god. LW, your problem isn’t that your 27-year old neighbor is going to “steal” your husband. Good lord. Your problem is that you’ve allowed your marriage to deteriorate to a place where your husband is realizing that he enjoys the pleasant interaction and attention and feed back that he gets from your neighbor and that he doesn’t get that from you. If I were a betting woman, I’d say he told you about their interaction not because what will the neighbors think (gasp!), but because he would like to get to a place where he has friendly, fun, pleasant and positive interactions with you, too, since you’re married and all. Particularly since he’s being all sweet and attentive. He’s trying to reignite his relationship with you, LW, and you’re missing it.
    From what you describe LW, in your relationship, you have fallen into a pattern of being alienating, suspicious, critical, jealous and controlling and that – not your neighbor – is what is going to destroy your marriage. Forget the neighbor. Introduce yourself to the neighbor and stop being that old bitch next door. (Seriously, you don’t come off as subtle and your judgmental and self-righteous attitude is why she doesn’t talk to you.) And then, start rebuilding your relationship. Get a hobby together. Take a vacation, even just a weekend one. Talk. Listen. Laugh. Flirt. And, for god’s sake, stop insisting that your husband “take responsibility” for your insecurities and being all pouty and “hurt” because you’re causing drama and he’s not reacting the way you wanted him to react. Also, please understand that your husband communicating to you that he needs pleasant companionship is NOT some silly bored old man business and that he just needs to “get busy.” That attitude is what will destroy your marriage, not the “in a live-in relationship” mother of two next door.

    1. Some people are ok with their significant other(s) having emotional and/or sexual relationships with others. Not everyone interprets it as being a sign that their partner is not very close with them. Morality is in the mind of the beholder. There is such a thing as open marriages or full-blown polyamory even. It’s possible to be in love with your spouse and be reasonably happy and still have chemistry with other people. Not everyone thinks that it’s possible to have only one close, intimate, romantic relationship at one time. I knew of a couple back in Reno, NV who had an open marriage; they loved each other deeply, but also had other romantic partners. Morality is in the mind of the beholder. Maybe this wife is afraid that her husband might fall in love (or, at the very least, develop a strong intimacy) with the neighbor, even if he still loved her? And she doesn’t want to have a poly amorous marriage it appears.

  19. Bittergaymark says:

    Eh, please. Your husband is throwing around the D word — not because he is secretly in love/lust with the 27 year old hottie… But rather because he’s finally realizing that you are an insecure and, yes, rather deranged, controlling bitch, LW. Not sure why he is just figuring this out now after all these years… Hell, I was wise to it after only one paragraph…

    PS — if you truly LOVE your “garden” oh so very much — find the time to actually, you know, work on it. And YES! This IS a metaphor…

    1. He’s just now realizing it because he recently retired and now instead of being focused on work, he has the time and energy to really look at his marriage.
      When people get divorced after they retire, a lot of the time, it’s not because all of the sudden there was a problem. The problems that lead to those divorces – and the LW’s issues here – have been building for years, but they were ignored by the couple due to work, kids, and more pressing matters getting in the way. After retirement, it all comes home to roost. At least the LW’s husband hasn’t already checked out and appears to be trying to make his marriage work.

      1. Avatar photo Pamplemousse Rose says:

        Yes! This happened with my FIL. 3 months after he was pushed into early retirement, he left my husband’s stepmom. Based on some conversations we’ve had with him, I’m pretty sure he was planning to leave once my SIL finished university, but the retirement package (and not having work to go to every day) moved up the timeline. I think he had checked out of the marriage for a while and wasn’t particularly happy – not to upset you LW, but he is so much happier now. LW I think you and your husband need to have some serious conversations about the state of your marriage and figure out the root cause of any issues (hint: it’s not your neighbour).

  20. findingtheearth says:

    I used to bartend in a bar with mainly older men. I got to know them fairly well. When I found out I was pregnant, they all offered to help me in many ways. One came over and helped me move some stuff, one paid their grandson to shovel my sidewalk the first two winters after my daughter was born. All normal grandpa stuff. I am very fond of all of them. As a 28 year old, single mom, I am very thankful for any help I can get and often bring them cookies and invite them to things for my daughter, like her birthday. It’s called building connections and a community.

  21. Sometimes younger women think an older married man is just a totally non-threatening person with whom they can interact. I always think of married men as unavailable and therefore assume they know I’m not interested in them in any way beyond a friendship. This could certainly be the case with the neighbor.

  22. WWS and in full agreement that LW is making a fuss over nothing. Do neighbors really go tattling when they see one neighbor at another’s house? I’ve never lived in that kind of neighborhood and only imagine busybodies telling Neighbor Wife that Attractive Neighbor visited Neighbor Husband on Wisteria Lane. Maybe he was transparent because it wasn’t a big deal and in his newfound retirement, it was a notable event in his day for benign reasons. (I do miss Desperate Housewives, though.)

    1. Did you ever watch Bewitched? We had a neighbor we referred to as Mrs. Kravitz because she was a busybody and knew everything, and would always know when we were home. Most of the time she meant well, but so gossipy!

  23. LW, your attention toward your hottie neighbor is misplaced. Maybe she gets a kick out of banging retired men twice her age and is on the prowl, but maybe she’s bored and lonely during the day as a SAHM and wants to have a normal conversation with another person whose vocabulary extends past the words ‘No!’ and ‘Mine!’. Maybe she’s trying to develop a friendship to get some babysitters out of the deal. Maybe she is just a friendly person, and was trying to be neighborly. Maybe she just really needed a blender that day. There are a myriad of possibilities. And honestly, she really doesn’t even matter in this situation. Don’t let her be a red herring for your real troubles.
    What you really need to focus on is improving your marriage to your husband. Here are the facts as they lay: Your husband suddenly wants to change his appearance/get fit. That could definitely be because he’s now retired and has the time, or it could be a less innocent reason. He has ‘hinted at’ divorce. Without knowing the details of what exactly was said, that doesn’t sound good. But, most importantly, you don’t trust your husband, even though he’s done nothing wrong. The neighbor is not the issue; your relationship with your husband is. People who are in happy, healthy, fulfilling relationships generally don’t have affairs. People who are in happy, healthy, fulfilling relationships generally trust their SO’s. It may be time to get you both to a marriage counselor for a marriage tune-up.

  24. This letter reminds me of women who are worried that the sexy 19 y.o. au pair is after their husband. Darlin, that woman can do much, much bettter than your tired old husband.

    1. RedRoverRedRover says:

      Although sometimes the au pair does end up with the husband! Don’t understand it myself, but there you go.

      1. Avatar photo Addie Pray says:

        You know, you’re right. But I feel like when the old husbands end up hooking up with the young au pairs, by then a whole lot of shadiness has likely taken place. Maybe LW has reason to be suspect. Nothing she’s given us would support that. But, LW, is your husband kind of creepy? Is there a lifetime of creepiness you can point to to justify your crazy jealousy?

      2. Because: $$$

        Dude who can afford an au pair can also afford a lot of things the 19 year old’s friends cannot.

  25. Must live in an alternate universe. This man wants sex with that woman. Ask any man with a sex drive and he will tell you,if he is heterosexual, he will look at every woman as a possible sex partner. Whether he acts on it or not is not the issue. This man has thrown up enough red flags and for all of you to put her down is ridiculous. I think she needs to have an extremely serious conversation about what he wants. For him to throw the word divorce out is scary. I feel for this woman she is gone all day. She has no idea what these two are talking about, or doing. I had an incident very much like this happen to me when I was in my early 30s. A neighbor spent way too much time with me while my husband was out of town and the man’s wife worked. I was not interested in him but he certainly was in me. I finally stopped going outside with my children until he got the message. He needs a hobby that takes him away from the house during the day. That is her garden so all of a sudden he is the one interested in it because there’s more than flowers and vegetables there. All of you need to get real.

    1. But even if he does want to sleep with the neighbour is it the neighbour’s fault? There’s nothing indicating she actually wants to sleep with him, just that they talk. The OP is casting the blame in the wrong direction if there is any forbidden lust there.

    2. I am going to do a poll.

      1. Ha, I like the last one – ’tis what I answered! 🙂

      2. The results are in!
        19% said No, I do not look at every woman as a possible sex partner.
        0% said Yes, I do look at every woman as a possible sex partner.
        12% said This poll is ridiculously hetero-normative.
        And, leading by a landslide, 69% said I am not a man, but I would like to contribute to this poll.

    3. I agree with your comment Let go 100%. I read many of the comments and was taken back that SO many blame the wife (LW)…So true, ask any man with a sex drive and he will tell you, if he is heterosexual, he will look at every woman as a possible sex partner. Whether he acts on it or not is not the issue. This young, beautiful neighbor is no exception. So what she gets bored being at home with 2 small kids all day, she needs to socialize with single moms, someone she has something in common with and leave her neighbor’s husband alone. I think she has SOME issues, 2 kids by 2 different dads, YET no one if few bothered to mention her callous actions. The wife has every right to be concerned; her husband is obviously flattered that this young woman has taken interest in him and now he’s talking divorce. Go figure.

  26. I think that Dear Wendy’s advice made sense.

  27. Martha White says:

    I think as a wife you have every reason to be concerned about what’s going on. Neighbor lady could be friendly but imo she is disrespectful. She is a woman in the company of a man by herself and if there is an attraction things may happen. I may sound old fashioned but trust me honey ask yourself “How would she like it if you came by and talked with her husband frequently without her there. It could be innocent but there are people out there that like to wreck homes it’s like a conquest to them. I would play it cool with Hubby and be confident but if it gets out of hand I’d set my foot down.

  28. Hi ..
    I feel for you as it is natural to feel hurt by their interest in each other which excludes you. I second this advice. It becomes difficult to be genuine when you feel hurt. Life is not always fair. The best thing to do is let it go. Let it run its course. Let them be together. Let them fulfill their fantasies. Allow. I bet she will back out before it gets to close. She enjoys the attention. Men need to feel free to be themselves. Stay out of the way. Empower yourself by being strong and be the best wife you can be. Find ways to figure out how! Find other men to flirt with and enjoy this short life!! GOOD LUCK.

      1. I thought Eva made sense. I can see why she’s a little jealous. And she didn’t mention that they agreed to an open marriage. She might be afraid that an emotional or sexual attraction is brewing. I know I have chemistry with other men. I’m also flattered when they seem to feel it too, but my husband and I have a closed marriage. It’s best closed because, I’d go crazy thinking that my husband was out there connecting in a highly emotional, intimate way with another woman. Even if he assured me that he still loved me and felt a deep connection with me. I need to be someone’s one and only, personally.

  29. This woman knows her man and every woman knows a women and if it looks like an square then it’s more then likely a square. Any man should honor his wife feelings and just stay away it’s that simple if not then he is inviting turmoil in his marriage just to be a kind neighbor bull crap. Jealousy is one thing but an intrusion is another.

  30. Do not doubt your women’s intuition, that is very odd for your husband to want to upgrade his wardrobe and getting serious about losing weight suddenly, seem sleek he wants to impress someone. She needs to back off, he needs to be more considerate of how you feel. hinted at divorce? Even more proof he’s looking toward “greener pastures”.

  31. My ex would be “transparent” all the time when he was cheating. It was his way of addressing the issue before someone else could. That way, when a concerned friend or neighbor would share their suspicions, he could tell me he warned me that it looked bad. Me ex did all those things when he was cheating on me. A loving husband would take their spouses feelings into consideration.

  32. It is not appropriate for “any” female neighbor to go over to your home when she knows your not home to talk to your husband. Or doesnt like talking to you , only your husband. Creating a bond with him. Don’t listen to those comments”Your jeolous”. They are ignorate. It’s just not right. That woman needs to learn boundaries. And I know very well how some trashy woman are. And very flirtatious, especially when the wife is not around. And love attention from men. It is sickening how some woman are. Even if they are not interested, they like attention. And wife’s love attention from their husbands too. And actually loves her husband. And not happy if her husband is showing another woman attention especially if she is not getting it as often as she use to. She is wrong. Not you!

  33. Been in original posters shoes. Not ugly or jealous. Just stupid, trusting and naive. Was happily married. Am I still married? Nope.

    My beautiful young unemployed neighbour also liked to visit my underemployed but not broke or feeble husband who was 30 years older. I had no issue with their friendship although other people in our lives did. At the time I never picked up any hint of sexuality off either of them. But here was the problem. She gradually became the woman of the house while I worked long hours. He started using drugs with her. He picked up new hobbies he knew I wouldn’t enjoy so that left her to join him in new past-times. We started fighting over huge violations of boundaries and issues of propriety such as them going to concerts in other cities without me. I found receipts for lingerie in our car. On date night he would be on the phone with her and ignore me. He began abusing the kids and I emotionally. He threw me out of the house because I bought a $99.00 cabinet for our kitchen because we had food piling up on the floor. Purchases for our home had become her privilege, not mine and I was forbidden to do anything but clean. He was buying lottery tickets so he could buy her a house if he won. My husband wasn’t the only chump on our street she had wrapped around her little finger. Two other men whose wives also had no jealousy issues ended up with massive damage to their marriages which caused broken families simply for being accepting of a lonely young woman.

    Do you know what red flags are? Unemployment is a big one. Two kids with two men and time to wander the neighbourhood knocking on doors is another one.
    I don’t recall spending time with male neighbours when I had young children. I was at a moms group or La Leche League meeting when I was off work. Or out for a walk with another mom with young kids. I have never gone to another woman’s home while I knew she was absent from it. Out of respect. I managed my own garden without help.

    The woman who wrote the letter was hurting and confused, not jealous. Jealous people tend to act out, not seek written advice on how to manage a foolish jerk of a husband. I ceased to exist after time went by. My loyalty, kindness and years of hard work ended up not mattering a bit. The promise of any kind of attention from a younger, available woman, lacking in work ethics and common sense did. My husband turned on not only me but our kids. He was savage at the end and is a shell of the person he once was. The kids and I have moved on and feel pity for him.
    If a man has a life long platonic female friend it is a wonderful thing. But when a man befriends a young, frivolous woman later on it is a keg of dynamite. In retrospect, my husband would have been appalled if I behaved as he did to me. But the point is I would never have caused him the hurt and embarrassment he caused our family. Jealousy would have nipped this nightmare in the bud.

    I hope the woman who wrote in to you will some day read my letter. If she does I hope she will let us know how everything turned out.

    God bless.

    1. God bless you and thank you for being a true good soul and for having a true good sense. Thsi article was a terrible one, I feel ashamed to read it even. So judgmental, so not on point and so out of context… Ofc it’s not appropriate for the neighbor to always show when the wife isn’t there and the obvious sudden change of the hubby.

  34. You dismiss this wife’s concern as jealousy but I don’t think she is jealous. I think she has legitimate reasons to be concerned. She knows her husband…we don’t. He is acting differently now that this neighbor is visiting while the wife is away. If the neighbor is only being neighborly, why does she only come by when the wife is away? The husband is being disrespectful, ignoring his wife’s feelings in favor of this other woman! He is essentially saying that his time spent with the other woman is more important than his wife’s feelings or his marriage. He even hinted at divorce over this neighbor! The wife is right to be concerned. Her husband is putting the neighbor first. So…dont accuse the wife of being petty or jealous. This is how affairs begin.

  35. I disagree both with this article AND the majority of the comments!

    OF COURSE it is NOT APPROPRIATE for this neighbor to always show up when the WIFE isn’t there!

    OMG you were SO JUDGING of this woman who’s in distress, and you point ar her, when she’s got a valid point. She didn’t say her husband just retired, she said he’s retired. Now since this lady has started showing off daily, the hubby starts taking care of himself etc? NO. THIS. IS. NOT. NORMAL. NOR. IS. IT. APPROPRIATE.

    And with two young kids, you don’t have time to do the neighbor’s garden, which I know from experience.

    This is NOT innocent and you’re all BLIND.
    Women should respect other women. I don’t think this neighbor lady would love that another good looking woman spends so much time NOT IN HER PRESENCE, with her man!

    We gotta respect the lady’s code if we wanna be respected. I really hope she gets this treatment as well and ends understanding how inappropriate this is. This ALWAYS leads to drama. She’s right to ask of her hubby to have a talk with the lady. She shouldn’t have had to.

    My man had this convo by himself, didn’t have to ask. And the thing is that she tried to force herself onto him when he told her she had to stop, and he had to kick her out.

    Neighbors are rarely innocent if you never see them but they’re always around when YOU are not there.

    1. anonymousse says:

      “and my husband recently retired”

  36. Free Spirit says:

    This article is classic Narcissistic Victim Bashing and Shaming. I agree 100% with Freebird, San26 and Yo. Most of the other commentors are also narcissistic hive minds ganging up on the true victim while defending the (CLEARLY) wrong doers and putting darkness for light and light for darkness (Isaiah 5:20). Classic and typical of the cluster b mindset and this mindset is everywhere unfortunately. Shame on YOU …author of this ridiculous article.

  37. Follow your intuition about this woman, and how you think your husband feels about her. A married man shouldn’t be spending a lot of time with another woman, especially if his wife says she isn’t comfortable with it. The fact that he seems defensive and not sympathetic to your feelings says that he wants to keep this friendly relationship with her. I’m not saying that he is cheating for sure, but I think it is understandable for you to be cautious. If the shoe were on the other foot, your husband wouldn’t be comfortable with you spending time alone with a young handsome man.

  38. Wendy, this is EXACTLY how extra-marital affairs begin! Are YOU the stay-at-home mom next door? This woman has obviously NO MORALS and frankly, neither do YOU!!

      1. That would be really bad luck if Wendy were the lady next door.

    1. Morality is in the mind of the beholder. They don’t have an open marriage, and the wife doesn’t seem to want one. If they had an open marriage, then maybe she wouldn’t mind. But they didn’t agree it’s ok to share each other in any way. The wife feels there’s a certain intimacy growing that she feels should only be shared with her.

    2. Morality is in the mind of the beholder. They don’t have an open marriage, and the wife doesn’t seem to want one. If they had an open marriage, then maybe she wouldn’t mind. But they didn’t agree it’s ok to share each other in any way. The wife feels there’s a certain intimacy growing that she feels should only be shared with her.

  39. Jane Coupe says:

    Your gut is telling you the right stuff; however, your handling of it is off. Keep an eye out like your neighbors are, but don’t nag your husband over it yet. I believe they are up to something. Why else would your husband show classic signs of straying outside of your marriage? The word “divorce” thrown around during arguments is bad, really bad. If you discuss your feelings with him openly many of your concerns (shown to him in the form of insecurity) should melt away. Tell him how you feel bc he’s not a mind reader… tell that woman next door to mind her own business, politely. That is all you have to do. Then, go tell your husband. that you don’t want anything to do with her and you want him to understand why. She has made 2 children’s lives messy and they’re young. Her life is messy and that is exactly why she’s an easy target for a lonely man. He’s a big boy and needs to figure out for himself what he can do to fill his free time without your going to work daily and worrying about what he’s up to while you’re working. He wouldn’t like it if the shoe were on the other foot. Your marriage is in trouble or divorce wouldn’t necessarily arise in a discussion–heated or not. Get your shit together and quit being jeolous of a vapid single woman with 2 baby daddies.

    1. anonymousse says:

      This post is four years old.

      1. Right, the husband is probably remarried to the neighbor by now.

  40. Bittergaymark says:

    The surprising amount of posters blaming the neighbor and all but branding her a whore does NOT reflect very well on the female of the species.

    1. Bittergaymark says:

      I suspect this is skewed as crazy jealous people keep resurrecting this letter and thus commenting on it in crazier and crazier ways… 😉

      1. What Mark said lmfao. Reading the comments on this is such a trip and I’m so saddened that so many women are quick to hate a woman just for being young and friendly. What evidence is there that she’s hungry for the husband? Zero.

        I’ve always helped elderly folks that live near me (both men and women) and thankfully have not experienced hostility. I never would have thought that I’d be labeled a hussy for DARING to borrow an appliance or going out of my own way to do a kind deed for an elderly gentleman so it’s disappointing that innocuous neighborly interaction can be labeled as sexually immoral.

      2. Right? I can’t believe how many people think a young woman would be going out of her way to seduce a married retiree. Surely she has better options! More likely she was nice and neighbourly to the old hound and he probably thinks he’s in like Flynn.

      3. Bittergaymark says:

        It’s bizarre. I am probably inflating here, but it felt like damn near half the comments were doing that… Just going after this hapless neighbor…

  41. istrice01 says:

    We don’t know what her options are or what type of guys she’s attracted to. I don’t really think that’s the point though. This wife is jealous over her husband’s attention to this younger woman. She knows her husband, personality, and habits while we don’t. Honestly, I don’t think it’s outside the realm of possibility that he’s looking after his appearance now because he’s flattered by this young woman’s attention. In my 20s, older guys would hit on me all of the time. Sometimes I was flattered, but other times it grossed me out.

  42. I do not agree with majority of the answers here. And I dislike how you all put the wife down as if all her feelings are nothing.

    Perhaps it’s cultural differences? I believe it doesn’t matter what the wife thinks, if I am the younger woman, I would refrain from interacting with the husband WITHOUT the wife, at all times, if possible. After all, it’s a couple that lives next door, not a retired man by himself. If the wife doesn’t like me, I probably will interact very little with the husband, if at all. A few friendly greetings are more than enough. No matter whether the wife is being overly sensitive, the behavior of the young woman neighbor is still inappropriate.

    I am a friendly person and more than once a man I am not romantically interested in thought I was coming on to him. I think the husband more or less has his ego stroked by the younger attractive neighbor, whether she meant to or not. Their daily interaction has directed him in a more… energetic direction after his retirement. He is more positive now than before. By positive, I mean for his own self-image, his own well-being. If you all believe at this point in his life, his goal should be himself and ONLY HIMSELF, then he is doing the right thing. But if he wants to keep his companionship that has endured over the years, he should work on himself TOGETHER WITH THE WIFE, not separately. I believe in a woman’s intuition. The wife may be insecure, but it’s not without cause. I hope they work the situation out.

    1. Yet again we see the woman being held responsible for the man’s potential behaviour. How about if the dude is feeling amorous HE pulls back? I’m going to go about my day being a normal person and interacting with whomever I damn well please, if the person I’m interacting with has an issue with me they can take ownership of their feelings and deal with it like an adult.

  43. I don’t agree with most of the comments. She has every right to be jealous. I let my husband become good friends with my young neighbor. She always needed his help with something. I welcomed her friendship until my husband started having sex dreams about her. This hurt me deeply, to know my husband was lusting after another woman. I started having anxiety attacks because I didn’t know what to do. I think they need to reconsider this friendship before something happens.

  44. I don’t agree with most of the comments. She has every right to be jealous. I let my husband become good friends with my young neighbor. She always needed his help with something. I welcomed her friendship until my husband started having sex dreams about her. This hurt me deeply, to know my husband was lusting after another woman. I started having anxiety attacks because I didn’t know what to do. I think they need to reconsider this friendship before something happens.

  45. Hisgirlhoward says:

    I am a women married 47 years and I find this to be poor advise. Jealousy is normal in any relationship and this certainly warrants it. However I would not be jealous but angry at both the woman and especially the husband. First there is a very fine line between the guy gal friendship. The lines get blurred and someone starts feeling more than friendship. It may not be love, but it could certainly be lust. This may not always be the case but I rarely see men and women in close friendships where it does not, except where the man is gay. Maybe this woman is needy and requires constant attention. Regardless there should always be boundaries. This is not a neighbor waving from the yard occasionally. If the husband values his marriage he should be putting the kabash on this, although I suspect he is encouraging it. That he has not is very disrespectful to his wife. The woman obviously has no boundaries but she really is of no consequence. In regard to her she either lacked manners or just doesn’t know or care about the rules. And there are rules in befriending someone else’s husband. It’s the husband that’s the issue.

  46. I am in the same situation. Every day he walks around the lake with her. She wears a string bikini at our pool. He likes her. So the lady that it is me instead him is wrong. Oh, she has a husband that don’t care. I am sick of thls and he will hurt when I take all his money. LOL

  47. Ms.Twocents says:

    I had this situation happen to me. A super low self esteemed wife thinks hubby is attracted to me. Husband comes to talk to me whenever he sees me in the yard. She’s been to my door several times for nonsense asking questions about my family, religion etc.. I’m new here. The one day I knocked on hers to ask when trash pick up was she said ” Don’t knock on my door, I don’t know anything about trash pick up !” She lost all manners and was rude because she thinks hubby wants me. Now to be 100% completely honest he is ugly as ever and has the face of a possum. Nobody wants her stay at home lifestyle because she married him for a meal ticket. I’m independent and see her ” princess” lifestyle as a self made prison. I don’t want to deal with her low self esteem or her extremely ugly husband! If she has a husband that would cheat he’s garbage, period! I have better morals than to cheat with some loser married man. I don’t have to play second fiddle or be someones dirty secret! I’m in shape and educated and don’t have to get sloppy seconds off some married loser. I was insulted she’d even think it. To me they’re both disgusting! Their marriage was a shambles long before I showed up! I hope they move and keep their toxic marriage away from me. Their “weird” situation got so bad i had to tell them both NOT to speak to me!

  48. Reina4life says:

    What a disgusting response to someone who only wanted some real, SOUND advice.
    How naive can one person be? The writer of this article is clueless and has no place offering advice to married folks, point blank period! What a bunch of poppycock! Yes let’s blame everything on the wife of the jerk husband and the ho bag new neighbor. GTFOH
    You are being attacked and your husband is enabling it! Where does his loyalty lie? Not w you honey, it seems. Oh how convenient he wants to get in shape and do better for “himself” the moment a younger woman looks his way! That’s horse s***!
    In no way is this the OPs fault, nor is she overreacting, jealous, or whatever other accusations y’all are trying to pin on her. How would you all feel?
    I would demand my man show loyalty and start acting like a husband that made VOwS under GOD instead of some schoolboy schmuck w a crush.! This is borderline infidelity. And it’s coming from the husband and his inability to stop all the unwanted behaviors, not to mention insensitivity to his partner’s feelings.
    Let me find out a female is interested in being a friend to my husband only when I’m not around, and that my husband condones it. Helllllll nah.
    Stand up for yourself and take back what is rightfully yours. This is your life, your marriage, your husband. Tell your husband he better think real hard about throwing around that D word. Life is too short to put up w that mess. R-E-S-P-E-C-T find out what it means to me. If he can’t start acting more accordingly then give him what he threatens.
    In all seriousness, start PRAYing in the name of Jesus bc the devil is trying to steal your union from you. Pray pray pray that your husband be delivered from the spirit of Jezebel and that he wakes up to see where the real problem lies, which is in him that allows this to go on.

      1. Avatar photo MaterialsGirl says:

        if you ever want to entertain yourself.. MAMATRIBE Chicago FB group is thisx100

    1. Anonymous says:

      I agree with this comment. The husband is the problem here. All he has to do is put up emotional and body language boundaries with the neighbor and the problem is solved. I am going through a similar trial in my marriage with my husband. I am separating from him since he is confused with loyalty. Wendy, you spoke too soon before gathering all the facts. I worry the lady who asked you the question is suffering from misleading advice.

  49. Anonymous says:

    Wendy, i think you made a lot of assumptions about the lady asking you the question. How can you give accurate advice when you make assumptions? I disagree with your advice. You need more info from the lady before you speak else you come off as a ridiculer rather than a wise person.

  50. Lisa Mathew says:

    To everyone (including the columnist) who is automatically dismissing the letter writer’s feelings, SHAME ON YOU. First, you don’t want the neighbor to get her feelings hurt, and you don’t want the husband to feel insulted by being doubted, but you really don’t care about how the letter writer feels, do you?

    Explain to me why the neighbor needs to come over when the letter writer isn’t home? Because the writer doesn’t like her? Damn skippy and the reason is that the neighbor ONLY COMES OVER WHEN THE WRITER ISN’T THERE. “Oh! You’re so mean for not liking me because I keep doing this thing that I know you don’t want me to do.”

    And why in the hell does the neighbor need to work in the letter writer’s garden? Anyone?

    Come on, this bitch knows exactly what she’s doing. She doesn’t want the husband, she loves the thrill of causing another woman to doubt herself. This neighbor is like a cat pissing on her territory. I’d tell my husband that I didn’t want her over there when I’m not home, too. Then we’ll see how much he respects himself and his wife.

    If you’ve never encountered a woman (or man) like this, sit down and be quiet.

    1. Usually, I agree with Wendy’s advice but not in this instance.

  51. Here's The Deal says:

    The neighbor may have nothing but neighborly intentions and the husband may be changing his habits and wardrobe in order to enjoy a longer retirement.

    OR the neighbor is one of those women who gets a thrill from getting a man’s attention…or the type that really gets off showing his wife that she’s the one pulling the strings. And they’re out there.

    Sorry to beautiful women who would never do that sick shit, but are treated suspiciously by all us unwashed average looking women, but you have your fellow beauties of the power hungry variety to blame. Also, before you get to feeling too sorry for yourself, make absolutely sure that you’ve never used your looks to your advantage with no intention of becoming meaningfully involved with the man giving you help/attention, etc.
    I’ll give you a moment for self reflection on that.

    There’s also the possibility that the neighbor has struck out twice with her choice of baby daddies and neighbor with a pension is looking good. She doesn’t work so she’s getting income from someone. Maybe she’s getting tired of having to live with a man she wouldn’t marry to keep from getting a job. And then she’s back with Daddy #1. Man, she REALLY doesn’t take responsibility for her own survival, does she?

    I’ll bet anyone $100 this woman is playing a game, what I can’t know is how far she’ll go with it. Meanwhile, Married Man is all aflutter and she knows it.

    But you know what? None of that matters. The wife doesn’t want her IN HER HOME when she’s not there. She doesn’t have to have a reason. She doesn’t want it. She doesn’t want this woman working in her garden and it doesn’t matter why. She doesn’t want it. Yes, it’s the husband’s home, too. , but he’s going against something his wife feels very strongly about for no reason other than he wants to. I’d love to ask him how he’d feel if his wife were having some guy over every day while he’s at work.

    People ignore something that bothers their spouse and then can’t figure out why the intimacy bleeds out of their marriage.

    Dude, if a woman thinks you’re physically cheating, she may throw sex at you, but if she thinks you’re emotionally cheating (with or without sex), she’ll lose respect for you and maybe herself. She’ll definitely lose her passion for you. Don’t play victim because you’re neglected. Your ego is obviously more important than your wife’s heart.

    And yes, the husband ABSOLUTELY should tell the neighbor not to come over when he’s alone. He’s the one that brought her into his marriage (by putting her need for company over his wife’s right to be worry free about what goes on in her home) and he needs to grow a sack and remove her from it.

    Lastly, the neighbor needs to get a job. She’s obviously bored and has too much time on her hands. But if she’s willing to bring back Loser #1 to pay the bills, I won’t hold my breath.

    1. I agree with you; I’ve seen this play out more than once. One guy got caught up with a gold digger. Looked like two miles of bad road. When the money was gone, so was she. The other guy married his hoochie, and last I heard, they were still together.

      1. Here's The Deal says:

        I know. Half these people are acting like affairs never happen.

      2. No woman should be alone with a married man period. Especially if the wife has an issue with it. It’s her house, her garden, and her husband not the neighbor’s. Some of you women are too trusting and naive. Affairs happen all the time and starting just like this. The neighbor is looking for someone to take care of her because she doesn’t want to work

      3. anonymousse says:

        It’s so funny to see the comments on this. You clearly have #neighborladyissues.

      4. I love how this article keeps bringing people in from searches to call the neighbor a husband stealer.

  52. Bittergaymark says:

    The sheer hatred of women in this thread from women is simply fascinating… Baffling. But fascinating.

  53. Slappy Squirrel says:

    Okay kumquats, you all know the LW would not be reaching out if it wasn’t for the slag next door, who really has zero business showing up when LW isn’t around. A stay at home mom who doesn’t stay home is obviously looking to start trouble. And for all of you defending her – building a better neighborhood, possible babysitter, needing adult conversation – all of this can be better achieved if she involved the LW. And if the LW doesn’t like her – it must be the vibe she’s giving off. At 27 years with two kids, she is realizing that it won’t be long before no one will pay attention to her (quelle horreur!) and she will get that attention by any means, even if she has to break up marriages. Attention is very addictive. LW should just go ahead and consult a divorce attorney, take all the assets, and laugh when her ex becomes the slag’s next roomie.

  54. No, she is not making too big of a deal of it. Her husband brought up divorce as a possible solution. It does sound as if he is interested in her , at least in her attention. He is on the proverbial slippery slope and needs to decide where it going. If he can’t or won’t confront her himself or decide to develop hobbies away from home, he is headed to be his neighbor’s next victim.

  55. Xmegatron10 says:

    As for me I love hearing stories about the single neighbor that one day losses it over a married couple it like the tale of [goosebumps] or [are you afraid of the dark] that’s why I also watch lmn

  56. Man and Wife are ONE FLESH says:

    I think some of these people who responded like to give excuses for people to be flirting with someone else’s spouse and it frankly makes me sick. As a husband who asked YOU to marry HIM, HE needs to remember WHO comes first… YOU. NOT her. She needs to back off and like a good neighbor STAY OVER THERE.

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