[Two Pronged] Unloving husband and misled by online dating
Jeremy has a master's degree in law from Oxford University. A banker of 37 years who worked in 3 continents, he has been training with Dr Holmes for the last 10 years as co-lecturer and, occasionally, as co-therapist, especially with clients whose financial concerns intrude into their daily lives
Together, they have written two books: Love Triangles: Understanding the Macho-Mistress Mentality and Imported Love: Filipino-Foreign Liaisons.
Dear Dra. Margie and Mr Baer,
I am 40, no kids, married 10 years now. My husband is 45. My life is okay: Decent job, and my husband has small business.
Five years ago, I wanted to have kids so badly I did everything – hilot, work up – except for IVF. Too expensive.
My husband was not very participative. We barely had sex. He has so many alibis. If we do it once in a quarter, I'm lucky. He also has very bad temper; lashing out at me frequently.
I was his emotional punching bag. I wanted to live on my own but I can’t afford to. I endured staying with him even when I am not happy anymore.
Out of boredom, I downloaded a dating app, created my account and hooked up with many, until boy #5. He lives and works abroad.
I was pushing him away and told him to find single girls instead. But he was persistent, thoughtful, kind and really smart.
We were like in LDR; saying "I love you" to each other. I feel sick when I don't see his text. He's everything that my husband is not.
He came to Manila but said he's fully booked with his family. He only texted after over a week since his arrival. He asked me to go to his place. I did.
There's physical attraction and we slept together. I stayed there for 2 hours. He said we'll see each other again before he leaves, but it didn't happen.
I got emotional, saying he really doesn't love me. His reply: "If that's what you think, bahala ka."
Was I fooled? I hate myself why I fell into his trap. I thought he was my true love. I even thought of eloping with him; leaving everything behind. He no longer communicates with me. I feel sick; I miss him so badly.
I love him more than my husband! Am I just being blinded?
One of the biggest problems with the internet is the ease with which people can create a personality that is attractive to others but unfortunately totally false. Furthermore, you have no idea whether you are the sole beneficiary of this or simply one of many with whom he is communicating
Boy #5 seemed persistent, thoughtful, kind and smart, filling the void in your life that your husband couldn’t or wouldn’t. The result was that you began to view him as your potential savior from an unsatisfactory marriage.
Then came the time to meet in person. A week after he arrived you finally went to his place, slept with him, left after 2 hours and never saw him again.
From his point of view, this was possibly the ideal outcome. In exchange for a few hours on the internet, he got to have sex without even leaving his house, much less spending any money wining and dining you. Mission accomplished, he then dropped you and went back overseas.
You are now left with shattered dreams. Given how much hope you had placed in this relationship, the temptation to ignore the reality and continue to hope is understandable. However, as boy #5 has proven to be just an illusion, the time has come to mark him up to experience and move on.
Best of luck,
Thank you very much for your letter. I feel Mr Baer answered your questions – "Was I fooled? Am I just being blinded?" – with a resounding yes and I agree with him.
What I would like to do is share my clinical experience, especially regarding one reason men (a**holes?) like him behave as they do. “Easy come, easy go” Is the phrase which best describes mabawbaw (superficial) attitude.
If something enters your life with ease and with no trouble, doesn't cause any problems, etc. then, that "something" can leave your life with the same ease with which it entered.
True, you pushed him away at first. But because he came across to you as persistent (which gets us women most of the time) and kind (which is easy to be if all you have to do is talk/write), you relented.
To him, it may have seemed that getting you to say I love you, come to his house, etc. was not all that much work and trouble, so why value it so much?
I think he may have sensed that, in large part, you were mainly running away from your unsatisfactory marriage, rather than running towards a specific relationship. He may have felt that anyone (and not necessarily him) with a healthy bank balance and a patina of intelligence, kindness and love for you would do, so his sense of responsibility towards, and the amount invested in you was not that high.
Dearest Tess, I spent a lot of time trying to decide whether to share the above with you. I realize a lot of it is hurtful and this painful to read, BUT it might help you in your next relationship so I hope you will agree with me that any pain at present is worth the joy you will get in the future.
In closing, I would like to share something I read but, alas, do not remember where from: “Sometimes closure arrives years later. Long after you stopped searching for it. You’re just sitting there, laughing this laugh that is unapologetically yours. S it trails out, the corners of your mouth turn up as it suddenly hits you “I’m happy.” It’s just like that, with n fanfare or epiphany. Suddenly, you are grateful for goodbyes that carried you to this moment; to the space you are now holding.”
All the best,
Need advice from our Two Pronged duo? Email firstname.lastname@example.org with subject heading TWO PRONGED. Unfortunately, the volume of correspondence precludes a personal response.