Dear Ellie: My wife and I have been very happily married for seven years. We have a three-year-old daughter who gives us daily joy.
We recently were out for a date-night when we bumped into two other couples (we only knew one couple) who insisted we join them for dessert.
We did, and I noticed that the other guy who was from another city, flashed a couple of smiles at my wife. She just kept talking to the woman whom we knew well.
After dinner, we all decided to walk a while to wear off the alcohol we drank before driving home. The guy soon joined my side and slowed our pace. He then lowered his voice and said, “Your wife was always quite the girl!”
I had no idea what he was talking about. He laughed at my blank face and said, “We grew up in the same small town!”
He went on to say, “She was so eager for action away from that place, she convinced another girl to join some guys going to Las Vegas for a long weekend. The stories from there kept us all laughing for months!”
I was speechless! I caught up to my wife and went back for our car. I’ve tried to get the whole story from her but my wife refuses to talk about it.
She only says that she was 19 then, she didn’t meet me until four years later. She insists she did nothing wrong in Las Vegas and that it’s none of my business.
How am I to accept that, when I’ve been embarrassed by a stranger about my wife’s reputation, which I had no clue about?! What if our daughter ever hears that story?
Consider who matters, more than what. The guy is a jerk who went out of his way to wind you up. He does NOT matter. You’ll never see him again, never like him or respect him.
So, why accept his version of an event that happened long before you met and fell in love with your wife?
SHE matters. So does your daughter. And your marriage.
Whatever happened in Las Vegas also does NOT matter. Your wife wasn’t cheating on you. The two girls had a lot of laughs with some guys they knew.
Given they were all small-town friends who probably knew each other’s parents, I’d bet that she has nothing to apologize to you about.
Stop questioning her. Accept that the woman you love is trustworthy. Also, recognize that a worm who’d turn on an old neighbour and upset her husband, has his own agenda… e.g., perhaps as the most disliked guy from that town.
Imagine how you’d feel if some jealous idiot one day tries to defame your daughter and wreck her marriage!
Readers commentary: “I’ve read about families who have had arguments and stopped speaking to each other. They should consider that younger family members end up suffering because of their family’s choice of silence.
“My parents didn’t speak to my grandparents because of disagreements they had before I was born. I was their oldest grandchild and didn’t know them because of a stupid argument. My brother and I both suffered.
“Yes, people feel hurt sometimes. Yes, egos are bruised and you might want to step away. But think of the ramifications.
“I lost out on having my grandparents around, and they lost out on knowing their oldest grandson.
“Now, they’re gone. I’m so sad. Think first, it’s not just about you.”
I’m a 57-year-old childless woman. My common-law spouse is 75 with two step-daughters.
When we met 12 years ago, he was financially independent but lost his job. He’s only worked sporadically since. He has no savings or RRSP’s.
I’m terrified that I’ll be the sole breadwinner when he’s into his 80’s. We own a home and plan to downsize within five-to-ten years into a condo that’ll be paid-off from the house sale.
I’ll have a place to live. He’ll have me as nurse and purse as he ages.
I love him. He’s kind, we have fun together. But I see only money issues/being poor ahead. Should I leave him for financial security in my future or is this a very shallow way to think?
No one should purposefully leave someone they love and enjoy being with.
Instead of predicting the worst, sell the house sooner and refresh your vision of life together over the years ahead.
Ellie’s tip of the day
Never believe a stranger’s nasty comments about someone you love/trust.
Send relationship questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.