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#1

I would like some input here.

My wife is pretty active on Facebook and enjoys keeping up with friends, reconnecting with old ones, sharing pics of kids....blah, blah, blah. Social networking is not really my thing, so I have pretty much avoided it. I gave her grief about a year ago when I was watching her carrying on a conversation with a guy we both new from college (good guy)--nothing terribly seriously, just a half-joking discussion about not being super comfortable with old random guy friends jumping back in her life.

Didn't really give it much more thought after that. I trust her and have no reason to ever suspect any sort of infidelity--not even close.

Fast forward to a year later and my wife told me she got a friend request from an old flame (15 years ago). Now this old flame was more of a long distance relationship and didn't last all that long..but I know of him and their relationship. My wife asked my about it and asked if I cared what she did? I really didn't give it considerable amount of thought and sort of just dismissed saying I didn't care. I trust my wife and don't typically expend much energy worring about these sort of things.

A week later, I see she accepted his friend request. And I feel....irritated. I realize I said I didn't care, but I find that...apparently I do--and I think that she really should have just ignored the request. Should I say something? Do I have a right to be irritated since I said I didn't care? Did she do anything wrong?

I realize this is super trivial compared to the serious issues raised on this forum, but I thought I would get some feedback from you.

--Rico


#2

I think it's perfectly natural for a husband to feel protective about his wife when it comes to the subject of previous relationships. I've had similar problems to do with electronic communications regarding members of my family. It's that gnawing sensation that can really hurt your relationship. If it were me, I would bring the subject up, and talk about how it affected me without passing any sort of judgement.

I'm only 18, so don't take this as advice, more like "what I would do".


#3

I don't think there's anything wrong with you feeling uncomfortable about it nor is there anything wrong with telling your wife "hey, I know I said I didn't care, but it turns out I do. This is making me uncomfortable. Would you mind unfriending so and so?"

It's better than letting it get to you. I know that if my dh said that to me, I'd be happy to oblige.


#4

I agree with Jennifer, just let her know it makes you more uncomfortable than you thought it would. The fact that she asked first seems to say she does respect your feelings on the matter.


#5

I don't think you should feel your wife did anything wrong. She did ask you about it and you told her you didn't care. She was just taking you at your word (don't you hate it when that happens! :p). She could have not even mentioned it at all. Nonetheless, as other posters have suggested, you can certainly mention that you are uncomfortable with it and talk through it. She can always "unfriend" him.

My wife and I are both on FB. We are both friends with our ex's and friends with each other's ex's. :p There's no question about intentions, though, as they have all found their vocation already. If one of those ex's had unclear and/or questionable intentions, I would be very uncomfortable with it.


#6

Thanks for the replies. I feel a bit better that I am not some nutty jealous husband for feeling this way. I know she won't have a problem unfriending him if I ask.. and yes, she did talk to me first, so I know that she is being truthful and considerate--as always.

But to be honest, what is bothering me is I just don't understand why she would think to herself..."sure, this is a good idea to go ahead and let this ex-flame into my world." I mean I see no upside to letting this guy in. I am probably just making a mountain out of a molehill...but for some reason, the decision just did not sit well with me at all.

I'm sure we'll get it squared away after talking to her.


#7

Exflames, high school chums of years past, some relatives do not make good Facebook friends. Best to avoid them in general unless they are already in your life on a current basis. Just my 2 cents.


#8

[quote="Rico_S, post:6, topic:207572"]
Thanks for the replies. I feel a bit better that I am not some nutty jealous husband for feeling this way. I know she won't have a problem unfriending him if I ask.. and yes, she did talk to me first, so I know that she is being truthful and considerate--as always.

But to be honest, what is bothering me is I just don't understand why she would think to herself..."sure, this is a good idea to go ahead and let this ex-flame into my world."

[/quote]

If she's anything like me, she probably just wanted to see what happened to him after they broke up, or else she is thinking, yes, we used to date, but now we can be friends. Maybe she just enjoys his sense of humour. :shrug:

But yes, if it's making you uncomfortable, mention it to her, and ask her to "unfriend" him.


#9

I don't think it's such a hot idea. I guess I heard too many stories about 'old flames' rekindling.


#10

[quote="Rico_S, post:6, topic:207572"]
Thanks for the replies. I feel a bit better that I am not some nutty jealous husband for feeling this way. I know she won't have a problem unfriending him if I ask.. and yes, she did talk to me first, so I know that she is being truthful and considerate--as always.

But to be honest, what is bothering me is I just don't understand why she would think to herself..."sure, this is a good idea to go ahead and let this ex-flame into my world." I mean I see no upside to letting this guy in. I am probably just making a mountain out of a molehill...but for some reason, the decision just did not sit well with me at all.

I'm sure we'll get it squared away after talking to her.

[/quote]

It wouldn't sit well with me either, it can open a window that doesn't need to be open, but there is a good chance that even if she may have thought it wasn't the best idea, she was just curious (as someone else mentioned) and kind of left it up to you, and when you gave her the green light, she went ahead and did it. Regardless, I agree with Jennifer, just talk with her, and tell her you realized it does bother you after all :).


#11

I would chalk it up to mere curiosity, her accepting his friend request. You weren't sure about the right thing to do at the time, and it sounds like she wasn't either. It's kind of awkward when someone "friends" you and you deny the request. You might know it's the right thing to do, but it still feels awkward. It's a "boundary" thing more than anything else, and not all of those are instinctive.

In any case, as everyone else has said, best just to let her know it bothers you more than you thought it would. If my husband told me that, I'd think it was sweet and I'd un-friend the dude straightaway! ;)

FWIW, my husband and I are both on FB and each have "friends" who used to be high school sweethearts. That was so very long ago, it's hard to think of them as anything but strangers now. Sometimes we look at them and say to each other, "Thank GOD I married you instead of so-and-so!" :rotfl: And conversations with "so-and-so" usually break down after a few attempts, because there's really nothing to talk about, as is the case with most people from our pasts, isn't it? You have a couple of chuckles and move on.


#12

Honestly, if I were married (as a college student I'm far from that), I think I would just tell my wife what was on my mind. Not in a confrontational... something to the effect of:
Hey, thanks for letting me know that your ex decided to friend you. I have complete trust in you, but that doesn't mean that I don't feel uncomfortable about the situation. I didn't really give it much thought when you first asked me, but when I noticed that you accepted his friend request I had a weird feeling--insecurity maybe?--I just never want anything to come between us. Don't get me wrong, I know that your intentions are pure, and I'm not asking you to do anything. I just wanted to let you know what's been on my mind.


#13

[quote="musicality, post:12, topic:207572"]

Hey, thanks for letting me know that your ex decided to friend you. I have complete trust in you, but that doesn't mean that I don't feel uncomfortable about the situation. I didn't really give it much thought when you first asked me, but when I noticed that you accepted his friend request I had a weird feeling--insecurity maybe?--I just never want anything to come between us. Don't get me wrong, I know that your intentions are pure, and I'm not asking you to do anything. I just wanted to let you know what's been on my mind.

[/quote]

This is a very well worded and honest assessment of the situation. :thumbsup:

I do not understand the whole Facebook thing myself. If any of these people from my past were actual friends, I would have still been in touch with them. But since I am not, what do I really care? I don't " wonder" as some people say, what became of them. They are strangers now. Life goes on and as someone said, they are your ex for a reason... :shrug:


#14

[quote="Irishmom2, post:13, topic:207572"]
This is a very well worded and honest assessment of the situation. :thumbsup:

I do not understand the whole Facebook thing myself. If any of these people from my past were actual friends, I would have still been in touch with them. But since I am not, what do I really care? I don't " wonder" as some people say, what became of them. They are strangers now. Life goes on and as someone said, they are your ex for a reason... :shrug:

[/quote]

I really enjoy Facebook. We live far from our hometowns and family. I had many highschool and college friends that I was close to, but lost contact as we all moved around for our educations and jobs. It was tough to stay in contact. Just because we lost that regular contact doesn't mean they aren't friends. It's been a joy to reconnect with these long lost friends. It's also a great way for us to keep up with family members. The one ex I'm friends with I was friends with before Facebook, and I'm friends with his whole family and wife.

For me, it's a valuable tool to keep in touch with family and friends :)


#15

[quote="Jennifer_J, post:14, topic:207572"]
The one ex I'm friends with I was friends with before Facebook, and I'm friends with his whole family and wife.

For me, it's a valuable tool to keep in touch with family and friends :)

[/quote]

I am not saying I see anything wrong with using it to stay in touch with people you are actually still friends with. And of course family is included too. I am not even saying I think there is anything "wrong" with Facebook either. Just that I don't get it. I call people that are far away, I see the ones that aren't. :)


#16

[quote="Irishmom2, post:15, topic:207572"]
I am not saying I see anything wrong with using it to stay in touch with people you are actually still friends with. And of course family is included too. I am not even saying I think there is anything "wrong" with Facebook either. Just that I don't get it. I call people that are far away, I see the ones that aren't. :)

[/quote]

I use FaceBook primarily to advertise my events to people I know in person. It's easier than getting on the phone and phoning them all, one at a time, and they are more likely to check their FaceBook messages than their e-mail. :shrug:

(They can also see who else has responded, on FaceBook, and decide if they want to come based on who else is coming. This has both upsides and downsides, of course.)


#17

My wife is fb friends with several of her exes. I am friends with one of mine. The nature of face book friends in our house is that we become friends and then rarely communicate except for the occasional mafia wars or farmville assist,


#18

[quote="cthulhubryan, post:17, topic:207572"]
My wife is fb friends with several of her exes. I am friends with one of mine. The nature of face book friends in our house is that we become friends and then rarely communicate except for the occasional mafia wars or farmville assist,

[/quote]

Hahaha -- you put it better than I did. Matter of fact, I'm "FrontierVille Friends" with one of my husband's old female high school friends. Talk about odd connections. :p


#19

[quote="Rico_S, post:6, topic:207572"]
Thanks for the replies. I feel a bit better that I am not some nutty jealous husband for feeling this way. I know she won't have a problem unfriending him if I ask.. and yes, she did talk to me first, so I know that she is being truthful and considerate--as always.

But to be honest, what is bothering me is I just don't understand why she would think to herself..."sure, this is a good idea to go ahead and let this ex-flame into my world." I mean I see no upside to letting this guy in. I am probably just making a mountain out of a molehill...but for some reason, the decision just did not sit well with me at all.

I'm sure we'll get it squared away after talking to her.

[/quote]

I try to avoid ex-flames on FB. I had one try to friend me twice... we dated in college for 2 years. Um, we haven't talked since college... why would we need to keep in touch now?

I avoid being friends even with ones who were sort of "romantic friendships." It's not just my decision... theirs too. One really close (best) friend of mine from college has never sent a Friend request, and I know it's due to the fact that there were romantic overtones throughout our friendship, and now he is married.

It's not that we would cheat. It's just... I don't know. I can't quite articulate it. There is just a sense of boundaries that goes with finding your vocation and no longer being so "open" to every friendship that comes your way. And even if one would never physically cheat it is SO easy to have an emotional "affair" these days, thanks to the internet.

Bear in mind, I work in a profession where I get letters from distraught couples all the time. It has made me more aware of human weakness and leery of making these connections.


#20

I have personal experience here that is not good. So I personally don't think friending an old flame a good or even neutral idea. I can also say that my brother, a cop of many years who knows just about everybody around town, also thinks it's a bad idea. He recently told me he hates Facebook because he's seen it cause too much hurt due to stuff like this leading to trouble. I agree with him. I also agree with the notion that it's hard to see any good come from it. That being the case, why do it?


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