April 12, 2019 at 1:47 pm #840838
If all I thought was happening was some financial fraud I wouldn’t think twice about looking. There is a reason to have each other’s passwords. Protecting your financial security seems like a good reason to look. Especially if you are the person in the family who normally pays the bills and keeps track of things like the credit rating. It would be your job to check it out. If he does the financial stuff I think it would be natural to try to figure out what kind of bill was heading to collections and if it was real or fraud.April 12, 2019 at 2:13 pm #840840
I would ask first. There is no way I would go combing through my husband’s email account (even an old one) to try to find an answer when a really quick way to check off the “is this purchase even legit” question would be to take 5 seconds to ask, call, or text him. Maybe he started using that address again and I didn’t realize. Maybe he bought something from a website he’s had an account with forever and he was too lazy to update the address on file.
This couple has a long history, both of them, of being controlling and jealous. A partner who jumps immediately to “let me comb through my so’s private communications” is a red flag to me, either that there is something wrong with that person, something wrong with the relationship, or both.April 12, 2019 at 2:31 pm #840841
Yeah, I would definitely ask first before going through his old emails. Way faster to just say, “hey babe, what’s this??” And also indicative of a trusting relationship.
Even if I saw a questionable message, I’d most likely ask him what that was, and then maybe if he’d mind showing me his texts, before picking up his phone and looking.April 12, 2019 at 2:33 pm #840842
And I’m not saying he’s a bad guy for doing so, just that I think something has to be pretty wrong for that to be your first step.April 12, 2019 at 2:35 pm #840843
I don’t think what LW did was that unreasonable. If a married couple has their finances thoroughly intermingled, as many do, why wouldn’t he follow up on a strange transaction? Sure, he could have asked her about it, but if it’s “their” money, not “her” money, and they both manage the shared accounts, why not look for himself? From then on, it was just a matter of following bread crumbs. One odd finding lead to another.
Yeah, maybe he should have stopped at some point, but let’s be honest – if anyone here found a second FB account under their spouse’s maiden name, wouldn’t you at least look? And once you find the first clue that something’s wrong, you keep looking.
But whether he should have looked or not is almost irrelevant at this point. She’s communicating with her ex behind his back, and going to some lengths to conceal it. A separate e-mail account, a separate FB account. And it’s not the first time she’s done stuff like this. There’s an almost reflexive, casual dishonesty in her relationship with her husband that’s really disturbing.
Especially considering she had a hissy fit when he was communicating openly and transparently with his son’s mother – which he *should* be doing.
It’s time for counseling, LW. The dishonesty and hypocrisy in this marriage is going to kill it, whether she’s cheating or not.April 12, 2019 at 2:41 pm #840844
We have a spreadsheet of all of our emails, finances, account names/passwords except fb,Instagram apps etc like that. The only email my husband doesnt have access to is my work email. I totally trust my husband but I could see myself doing just what this guy did – straight to the source just to handle this, esp since I am the one who manages our finances. I bet she thought her old email would never be looked at again and decided to use it again without thinking about it. Thats why I feel its innocent. I mean he would want the paper trail to dispute the collection rather then her stating it. It could have been a transaction she lied to him about or didnt have the okay to purchase, which might be why its in collection.April 12, 2019 at 2:42 pm #840845
But again, why not ask first?April 12, 2019 at 3:03 pm #840846
We have joint accounts so we don’t ask. We just do what needs done. We do have our own email accounts but again, all our finances are joint and whoever was dealing with a problem would start dealing with it. I think this reflects that we’ve been married for over 30 years and have had joint accounts the entire time. We didn’t come into our marriage with everything separate.
I think the entire discussion about whether he should have looked at the email account is distracting all of us from discussing how he should handle his wife sneaking around. I don’t personally see how they can recover from this. The dishonesty is huge. She has massive lies of omission. I don’t see how he could possibly trust her again. The fact that this took him by surprise shows that he hasn’t been searching through her accounts or he would already know all of this.April 12, 2019 at 6:38 pm #840853
I am not going to respond to the snooping because personally I fell like it was justified, and a lot of other comments focus solely on that. For me, this would be a deal breaker and I would be separating. There is a scary level of distrust between both of you and I think that’s poison in a relationship. Both of you seem to have weird controlling behavior and let’s face it, she was having an affair. It might not have gotten to the level of physical yet, but it’s definitely emotional. And she WANTED to deceive you, she has an old email address attached to a secret FB account used solely for communicating with her EX. This isn’t an accidental encounter that went on too long.April 12, 2019 at 8:28 pm #840855
He was looking for a charge that was going into collections, supposedly. I am actually shocked if the first thing anyone would do is to dig deeply into their respective partner’s personal accounts -INSTEAD- of simply asking their partner. It’s not like she was at work. It’s not like no one is available almost 24/7 with their smartphone.
I actually think his backstory to justify snooping sounds bogus, but I am trying to give him the benefit of the doubt about that. He snooped. It’s what happened and the big reveal is… no real smoking gun. I mean, he never wrote that their messages were sexual or romantic.
Bottom line is, they’ve probably never trusted each other, their relationship is built on distrust and lies and so, regardless of who did what wrong, they aren’t functional together.April 12, 2019 at 9:00 pm #840856
If you want to stay married, your only shot is counseling. If she won’t go then speak with a lawyer. The investment she was supposed to give your relationship she gave to someone else. It is a betrayal and it is difficult to get through. You need both people to be committed to fix the marriage. You can’t do it alone.
Going through someone’s emails etc. for no reason is one thing. You had a reason and this is what you found out. I would take screen shots of the conversation so you have proof. Then sit her down and tell her what PayPal told you and what you found. If she tries to throw it back on you then tell her “we can talk about privacy after. Right now I need to talk about your commitment to this marriage and where we go from here.” Repeat as needed. No one can move you off a topic unless you allow it. Frankly if she isn’t abject sorry and full of regret when confronted then I’m afraid your next conversation is with a lawyer.April 12, 2019 at 9:07 pm #840857
No real smoking gun!?!? Wondering if we read the same letter. She tells her ex, “I called you six times.” She tried to hide contact with the ex years earlier and lied about it. (“I was hacked.” Ridiculous.)
Anyway, LW, I don’t see you as controlling, for what that’s worth, and I wouldn’t even call this snooping at all. She’s lying to you. Just don’t believe her when she tries to make it your fault.