Advice... thoughts


So I’ve been on the boards a long time now and I don’t think I’ve ever posted anything like this but I would like some advice to see if you guys think I’m overreacting.

First of all let me say that my wife and I are very happy, we have 4 wonderful sons etc… like most couple’s right now money is really tight but we both have good jobs close to the house etc… our life, Praise the Lord, is pretty nice most of the time.

So we are both on Facebook, I have a large number of friends as I was President of the Student Council at a large high school and have always been one of those outgoing and political people persons. My wife is somewhat but always had a closer circle of friends.

We have been dating or married now for 18 years and except for a few months about 9 years ago, pretty happy even through the struggles.

So recently an old boyfriend of my wife’s, the person she dated most seriously before we started dating added her to facebook. Their 20 year reunion was coming up and she added a bunch of old friends. However this person seemed to be sending her more personal information and messages rather than wall posts. He had recently lost his job with a large bank and was moving back with this family (wife and 3 daughters). The msgs were sporadical and he missed the actual reunion but about a month ago they started up again.

I feel for the most part my wife has been super honest about this, I have her password to her facebook account and could look anytime and usually play cards on her iphone or use it to pray the rosary (there is a great app for that) while putting the boys to sleep at night. So I could snoop if I wanted… but I don’t want to.

However I don’t know this person. Her most serious BF of all time before me and I worked out together before and when I first started dating her. It wasn’t until I saw a old picture though that I realized we had been friends already. He has stayed a good friend of the family thoughout the years and I would never think twice about anything. I have old girlfriends on FB as well but none I was super close with and those that I do I have added their husbands if there is any chance of us running into each other… just so that I don’t send the wrong message to anyone.

Apparently he has sent her multiple messages that “we all” need to get together sometime, our family and his. Yet I haven’t seen these messages. I believe in some ways wife just dosen’t have time to deal with it (we both work full time and have 4 sons right?). I was telling her a few weeks ago though that it’s “so difficult” to get 2 families together don’t be surprised if eventually he says “since we are having such a hard time getting us all together, why don’t we have lunch or something” She thought that was just silly…

However this morning my wife msged me from work, we work at the same place but my mom normally takes care of the boys recently had surgery so I’m working from home - that she got a call from the security desk this morning that someone was there to visit her. When she got there is was this guy. Apparently he had been at a job fair / interview this morning and wanted to come see here since he was in town. She said that they talked for a few minutes, it’s a busy office, and he said again he wanted us “all” to get together and happy to see her again etc…

Now being a former counselor and a guy, and here is where I may be reading too much into this - we have a person who has been married about 15 years (happy or not we don’t know), he has lost his job about 7 months ago and can’t find work so his ego is bruised (he mentioned to her this morning how it was making him depressed) he finds his old GF, who he was happy with, and starts contacting her - always making the gesture that he wants to meet her husband and family etc… but never following through on that… then he shows up at our office. My take is that he is remembering a better time and that if he could give my wife to notice him again it would help build back his self esteem. Who know is his family is happy either, he has been out of work for a while, so his wife could already be pushing him away…

My wife tells me not to worry and to think nothing of it she is happy what would it matter even if he did have something up his sleve? My issue is don’t let yourself get put in that situation. I use to travel a lot more than I do now and there was always the option of going out with other people from work of the opposite sex, getting a little tipsy etc… I didn’t simple because I didn’t want to put myself in a situation where I could fail easily.

So what do you guys think? Am I overreacting? Should I ask my wife not to talk to this person, something neither of us have ever asked of the other before, or just play a waiting game and see if he has honorable intentions or not? I guess my last word would be that my gut instinct tells me he just isn’t being honest… I don’t know why since I haven’t met him but in the past my gut is rarely wrong… I would seriously like to hear your thoughts though.



I think your right…he may be looking for more. However, I don’t think your wife seems to realize or want to acknowledge that.

I’d make a good effort invite him over and let things play out. Your wife may not see the folly in this becuase he’s just an old hs boyfriend and probably still innocent and sweet in her mind. She probably wouldn’t fall into temptation, but don’t make her feel like an idiot when she realizes this guy is after her.

Don’t let her go out with him alone if at all possiblity, but don’t come across as jelous. Come across as accommodating…offer to cover lunch for the three of you, for instance.

And on another note, if you’re a very busy couple I’d defiantly suggest you start doing romantic things regularly.


I was going to say this was just him being friendly until you mentioned him showing up at her place of work. Super red flag. The only exception to this being a red flag is if she works in a similar line of work as her and he was perhaps thinking her business connection could land him a job at her office…but that is a stretch. I think this guy is acting out of line. It is so nice that you and your wife are so open with each other… it does not sound like she has done anything to provoke him into being so forward with her so I am not sure what she can do without this becoming a little awkward. As far as him saying we should “all” get together… he probably isn’t stupid enough to say hey baby lets have a date one on one, so he is testing the waters little by little. 20 years after graduation is prime time for mid-life crisis…just because you aren’t a pig who would do this, don’t underestimate other men. Maybe your wife, out of being precautious and not tempting giving him the wrong idea (even though I am sure she has done nothing to give the wrong idea yet), can tell him that she is not comfortable socializing with ex’s, period.


Thanks guys, I agree, this morning is a huge red flag.

Yea we are busy and don’t get near enough time for “date” things with 4 kids but try to do little things for each other from time to time. We are both hoping to get some time soon.

Anyone else?


He just showed up, thats creepy, have you talked to your wife to make sure she feels safe? (You seam like you care very deeply for her, but you all seam very busy which is why I ask :D) Okay so it just happened this morning, you need to talk tonight if you can - she may not want to talk to this person any more, but how do you tell someone you don’t even like them enough to be facebook friends!




This sounds odd. You are not over-reacting to be bothered by his behavior.

What to do gets is less clear. Is your wife bothered by his behavior? Or flattered? Somewhere in-between? Something else? What does your wife say about his showing up at her office?

I don’t know if you should ask her to stop all contact–she might already be inclined to do that. Or she may be one of those polite people who doesn’t want to offend someone even if his behavior is out of line. Or she may not think the behavior out of line. I’d be more worried if she thought it okay for him to stop by like he did and contact his old girlfriend.

Maybe try to get her to look at this from what may be* his *wife’s viewpoint, rather than just sounding like a jealous husband. If I were this man’s wife, I’d be ticked.


Hmmm… I think everyone would act a little differently depending on what type of personality they have. If I were you or your wife, I’d make it clear as nicely as I could that socializing with exes or people who I only knew decades ago is not something that I’m interested in doing. My reasoning is along the lines of 1) you/she don’t really know this person anymore. Lots of things could have changed since you last knew them (bad things). 2) you/she do not have an obligation to strike up a new friendship with this person just because you used to be friends years ago. and 3) the risks are not worth the benefits. I would have stopped it at the very first encounter, but that’s just me. Some people aren’t comfortable being so blunt.

ETA: Also, my husband and I do not view ourselves as two separate individuals allowed to have connections outside the other person. We do not have friends the other is not friends with as well, and we don’t leave topics/situations like the one you’re describing up for one party to decide what to do. We decide together, for the good of our relationship, because that will always come first. Again, some people don’t like that, but I’ve seen many problems that result from that kind of mindset… Again, just me.


Old bf’s are not showing up at my work. Old bf’s are not asking to get together with my husband and me. I don’t think that there is anything wrong with catching up on FB…hey, how are you, bla bla…but it seems to be getting a little too personal. Whatever his intentions are, your wife should nip it. Better to be on the safe side. But, I don’t think you’re overreacting…showing up at her work is kind of intrusive, on his part. Hopefully, your wife sees this, and will end the back and forths so the guy gets a CLEAR message that she is not interested in hanging out with him. I hope it works out, Joe.


I sent my wife an email today telling her I wanted to discuss tonight because I felt him showing up was highly inappropriate.

She wrote back shortly after saying she was quite taken aback as well and already had excuses made if he made a suggestion for lunch whatever. From the sounds of things it really freaked her out.

As WG said, it’s ok to catch up on FB, blah blah etc… but random old BF you haven’t seen in 20 years showing up at your office is something else. She has been concerned because the last time he sent her a message, wall post I believe, she noticed his wife wasn’t on FB anymore which sent up a red flag for her. That was apparently a couple of weeks ago and she hadn’t heard from him since until this morning and hadn’t thought twice about it. One her first comments was how she would be upset if I did this (which I wouldn’t) and had to wonder what his wife would think because if it was her, she would be upset.

She said she felt like it was obvious from her behavior that she wasn’t happy he showed up and pretty much made it clear that this was weird. She doubts he will be around again but will make it clear any contact need to include her husband then cut the conversation short by saying she had to go feed our youngest (which she did but that was a good way to close the conversation).

She’s pretty smart, I should probably give her more credit and not have even worried about this until I spoke with her. I don’t think she thought thing conversations were odd until today… like most of us, this morning was a huge red flag.

Thanks so much for all the responses, it sound like all of us, including my wife and I are on the same page.



*I think that is good, Joe:)…sounds like things will just naturally work out. Your wife sounds like a great lady, and you have a great marriage. I wouldn’t worry…but, absolutely that would creep me out a bit, someone I dated a million years ago, shows up at my work?

I am not fond of Facebook for this very reason. I have a few college roomies (females) who friended me, and we talk offline now, and they are like…why don’t you friend so and so, he was wondering how you are. Why are guys I dated when I was 19/20 wondering how I am? Who cares? I said, I’m not friending them, stop asking me to. :rolleyes:

Meanwhile, one of these women is now married (I was her maid of honor at her first wedding), and has her once very serious ex- bf as a friend, I noticed. I’m not judging, really, I’m not. :o But, she had a serious, sexual relationship with that guy, he’s single from the looks of it, and she has him on her page? Why?

Friends, fine. Nothing wrong with having friends of the opposite sex. But–She slept with this guy for years though, they dated and were planning to get married at one point. She broke his heart over and over. I met my husband through his best friend. lol So, it’s just odd to see that she still has him in her life.

Whatever. :shrug: What did we all do before FB? Oh, we had memory banks, that’s right…and people from our pasts STAYED in our pasts. I almost forgot. lol :p*


The ex is acting weird, but I don’t think you should be worried since you and your wife have a good relationship.

Even if your wife talks to him, what’s she going to do, suddenly fall in love with some unemployed and married ex from 20 years ago?


*True, but how I look at that is not so much about Joe and his wife…but I have been in situations where men have had “other” ideas. I am not as naive anymore, thinking all men want nothing more than another ‘friend.’ So, while Joe and his wife are innocent, the bf might not be…and thus, it gives the other person false hope, possibly, by carrying on conversations with him/her. I mean, the guy could be innocent as the day is long, but to me, showing up at her work, just seems a little pushy. *


It’s very pushy and strange. I would be cautious to avoid him if I were her. Your wife does sound very sensible.


It sounds like you would have to worry only if the ex was wealthy and good looking. No women likes an unemployed man. :smiley:


I think that was the other thing. As I believe I noted I have old GF on my FB and from time to time, if I have time which isn’t often they have asked for advice in their relationship and I’m happy to share with them my Catholic view of marriage, not what they probably wanted to hear but oh well right?

They were good friends in Jr high and dated a little in College so there was a friendship there for years apparently and I believe he seemed down on his luck so she wanted to be nice… sometimes being nice sends the wrong signals… and sometimes guys are just plan dumb and can’t interpret signals to save their life, which one it was I don’t know.

I not really worried and my guess is that she, and actually I as well, may watch a little more what old friends we are open too on FB. Even calling a home phone is one thing that you get from a phone book, I had an old GF do that last year when she needed help but showing up at someone’s work… as we all noted, that was just a little too creepy.


Am not a fan of Facebook for the kind of awkward situations that you describe here. Started a personal page since it was advised I start a fan page for business reasons. Naively, I started friending any and every name from the past I happened to recognize. Now I wish I could unfriend some of them and that I hadn’t contacted some in the first place … our lives are just too different now, we have little or nothing in common, … But I guess it looks really bad to unfriend people you’ve just friended based on past good memories, huh?

And I guess Twitter’s supposed to be even worse?

Glad the situation that the OP Joe started this thread about seems to be getting resolved … One thing I would do is pray, pray, pray for safety and protection. Unemployed guys who show up unannounced at an ex-whoever’s place of work may be dangerous these days.

~~ the phoenix


Hi Joe,

glad to hear that things are getting resolved. I swear, FB can cause so much trouble.

God bless!:thumbsup:


I think she should watch the movie “Obsessed!” With Beyonce and some other good actors…It says a lot on “don’t put yourself in that position!”

I have had to attend meetings where there’s drinking involved, and even though everyone was tempting and the temptation was there, all I could think about was going home to my kids and hearing my fiance’s voice before going to sleep…I felt horrible I was there but it was a “commitment” thing, you know, boss and all… But uhm, yeah, unless you know ylu will be able to handle any situations and steer away from the opposite sex don’t go… I stuck around my boss-female- and when she was on her 4th drink I left…I drank 2 beers and was out the door as soon as we were allowed to leave…Where most stayed till after dark…really late…

I don’t think there is anything wrong with old friends getting together, but old flames that were strong die slowly…And I wouldn’t trust that man either…As innocent as it would seem, it’s kind of interesting to hear/see that he can’t make it when it’s a “lets all get together” thing, that’s pretty weird and kind of suspicious…But then again maybe he is being honest and can’t make it during those times, emergencies do happen, but still, I would rather meet with my wife and that person than have my wife meet him alone…No matter how innocent it is…


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit