Daily Mail

Tiny mistake ruined 24 years together



TWO years ago a man I’d known years ago got in touch with me via Facebook. I have been married 24 years, and to be honest I couldn’t help being flattered by the fact that he paid me compliment­s.

But then the exchanges continued to the point when he asked me if we could meet up.

I wrote back and declined but made a draft of my reply in my notes.

My husband saw this and obviously asked what had happened. I panicked and made up a story but eventually felt I should tell him the truth.

We fell out over the whole thing (a non-issue. really) and he told me he only wanted to know me as a friend and not a wife.

I talked to him about it a couple of months later to see if he would change his mind but he said he needed time. Now more than two years later there’s been no progress at all.

We’ve never talked about it again because I’m scared of hearing what I don’t want to hear.

So we just bumble on as friends and get on well but he won’t share the same bed and he won’t touch me. With these actions I don’t feel I need to talk to him about it again.

The actions speak louder than words. He has drawn a line and won’t cross it. What do I do?

I feel very lonely and unwanted but blame myself for not just telling him the truth in the first place, because it’s just blown a small thing into a very big thing and ruined our marriage.

Please help.


This is truly a non-issue: a tiny blip in the cacophony of noise from the relationsh­ip problems that make people so unhappy. There are big affairs and serial philanderi­ng, permafrost fallings- out, mental and physical violence, vicious conflict over the custody of children, shocking deceit over finance, silent loathing and cruel derision.

And here we have a woman flattered by attention (as most of us are, men and women alike), found out through a daft mistake, faffs around and then tells a silly fib which is the second mistake. Then her husband blows it out of all proportion and seems to call time on the marriage as it was.

honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if there was the odd minute when you think you might as well have met up with the guy from the past and had some nooky! Unless your message turning down a meet-up with the other guy was full of naughty sexual longing and disloyal dissatisfa­ction with your marriage (both of which would have provided some cause for hurt and rage on his part) then I don’t know what sensible reason your husband has to ‘draw a line’.

There will be husbands reading this who already feel indignant on his behalf.

Yes, you exchanged a couple of secret messages then told a foolish fib. shock horror! I have no more time for his pious intransige­nce than I have when wives subscribe to the ‘one strike and you’re out’ approach to human frailty.

If such people are hard-line in their views, then believe me, I am even tougher in mine. Which means I think it downright daft to chuck away 24 years for the sake of a blip.

Both you and your husband use the idea of friendship with a careless lack of understand­ing. he wanted you as ‘a friend and not a wife’ and you tell me sadly that you ‘bumble on as friends’.

But the situation in your house doesn’t sound very friendly to me, not with the total lack of conversati­on about what happened two years ago. You don’t talk because you’re afraid of what he’ll say, he treats you with coldness so you feel ‘lonely and unwanted’. This must not continue. You have to raise the subject again, tell him how miserable you are, and insist on revisiting the issue step by step. Which surely won’t take long.

he must be honest about exactly how it made him feel. Then you tell him you understand but he’s not acting like a true friend at all, so what next? I’m afraid you started this sad debacle, so I urge you to be brave and revisit it now.

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