Wife's infatuation with Facebook exposes issues festering within the marriage.
Facebook is ruining my marriage. My wife is “connecting” with all the people from her past, including past lovers. They want to meet up and have “reunions.” I’m against it, and it is causing friction. I see no reason why she should want to meet up now with old lovers and “friends” who she hasn’t seen in 20 years and seemed to do just fine without. She’s spending more money on clothes and beauty treatments to impress these nobody people. It’s like she’s mentally gone back to 16-years-old. I’m objecting to all of this and am being called “controlling.” I see this as a major issue. I feel neglected and I tell her so, but she doesn’t seem to get it. We have two kids who also feel neglected. I’m feeling angry and resentful, and I feel like I have a right to demand she not meet with ex-boyfriends and lovers. Is she the problem, or am I? I need to know.
— AC, Columbus, Ohio
Dear AC –
Facebook is not ruining your marriage. Try this instead: Facebook is illuminating and exposing issues that have existed in my marriage and have gone unresolved or have been lying dormant for quite some time. Blaming Facebook, or even blaming her or yourself, is not going to provide you with the answers you really want and need. It sounds as if you’re pretty triggered by her behavior. I can tell you right off the bat this is going nowhere good until you first work with what is so upsetting to you. I start from the basic premise that anything that upsets me is about me. That’s not saying that the behavior of someone else is OK; it’s just telling me that if I first work with my own upset, I will be able to come “to” my partner versus come “at” my partner. The first is a reaction; the second is a response. When you react, the other person is sure to react. Look at every major war, argument or disagreement for a reference if you don’t believe me.
Not knowing the specifics of your life, I can only give you some clues where you might look. Consider if there are any patterns of experiences in your life where you’ve perceived yourself as feeling excluded, getting the short end of the stick, not “getting yours,” having the rug pulled out from under you, and any resulting beliefs that you’re not good enough or deserving of. My sense is that your initial triggers and subsequent reaction to her choices may be rooted here. This is the part that is about you, the judgments that you’ve held against yourself and the beliefs that “good” happens to other people, not you. I would apply a serious dose -- rather, doses -- of self-forgiveness and get clear about who you are and what you truly deserve in life. Then and only then can you expect to respond to her behavior and share that the choices she’s making are not OK with you and, for the safety (emotional and otherwise) of you and your children are not going to be accepted. She may grasp that you mean business because your demeanor, tone and delivery are not emotional but practical. If this doesn’t pop some sense into her, you’ll need to suggest a third-party Coach or Therapist to offer an unbiased perspective. If her reality doesn’t alter and she remains committed to her behavior, this relationship has probably run its course. However, first things first. Work on you. Respond to her behavior from a loving place versus judging her, and if you can’t make any headway, consult a third party.
Dear Mitch is written by “The Relationship Coach”, also known as Mitch Newman, M.A.. Write Dear Mitch at DearMitch@hairloss.com or follow this link to fill out a form. Every letter is carefully reviewed but because of the large numbers of letters we receive, not every letter can be answered.
Please fill out the form below to be referred to a hair loss treatment expert in your area. You will be contacted by a hair loss treatment expert who will offer you a free consultation and offer you recommendations based on your own individual hair loss condition.
Dear Mitch Columns
- A Spouse's Duty To Stay Healthy
- Forgotten Anniversary Earns Wife's Ire
- Friends Joke About Man's Hair System
- Hair Loss Hinders Couple's Intimacy
- He's Not Buying Into Hair Club
- Her Husband and Family are Feuding
- Husband Dreads Wife's Bad Hair Days
- Son's Body Image Worries Parents
- Son's Head Shaving Causes Friction
- Who Says Hair Loss Isn't Attractive?
- Couple Grows Apart After 16 Years
- He Blames Wife For "Quitter" Son
- He Wishes for Hair Loss On His Body
- Locks of Love Donation Questioned
- Not Wearing Hair Disrupts Business
- She Ends Controlling Relationship
- Hair Loss Has Him Backed Into Corner
- He Looks and Acts Like His Bald Dad
- Her Religion Creates a "Deal Breaker"
- Husband With Toupee Not Being Fair