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Husband questions wife's friendship with flirty new coworker, 'the crush eyes.' AITA? UPDATED.

Husband questions wife's friendship with flirty new coworker, 'the crush eyes.' AITA? UPDATED.


"AITA for not liking my wife talking to one of her male coworkers?"

Alright, so this all started around the end of November. My wife (23) and I (23) have been married since May, and things have been going alright for the most part. My wife works at a pretty well known outdoor retailer in the clothing department, and is there at least 5 days a week.

She enjoys her job very much and is making strides towards some sort of leadership role. I work 5-6 days a week as a team lead at a wholesale tire warehouse, and as a result, unfortunately some weeks work some pretty long hours.

Around the end of November, my wife’s job hired a young man (18 I believe) to work the customer service desk, and naturally since their departments are so close to one another, they got to know each other and started talking as friends. Normally I do not care who she makes friends with, no matter what gender they are, because I trust my wife enough to know that she is loyal, but recently things have seemed off.

The guy they hired at customer service, OBVIOUSLY has a crush on her. Let me explain: we were doing some Christmas shopping one day together in the store, and out of nowhere this dude came up to her and started chatting, despite me standing right beside my wife.

I was once an 18 year old dude, and I know all the telltale signs of when a guy is even remotely interested in a girl. He was blatantly obvious about it, giving her the “crush eyes” and all his mannerisms clearly point towards it. I stood by staring him down making sure he knew who I was and to not act out of line.

On top of all of this, this dude KNOWS that we are married (my wife told him that when they met originally, practically the whole store knows we are married), so it’s not like he thought I was some random customer that just happened to be standing around. Some weeks passed and I noticed my wife was texting him more and more via Snapchat.

That set off a red flag in my mind, and after a few days I confronted her and told her that I didn’t like her talking to someone that obviously likes her. She said the obvious “you have nothing to worry about we are just friends” and just kinda brushed it off, disregarding how it was making me feel.

She has started to get more and more protective over her phone as of recent as well, not letting me hold it or anything. Just the other night I was about to get a shower when I heard her talking on the phone in the living room. I walked out and asked her who she was talking to, thinking it was maybe her parents or her best friend or something.

She responded with “a coworker of mine," and then he decided to chime in over speaker phone and made some dumb comment. I about lost my cool, and just looked at her in anger and disgust after their responses, and angrily left the room to get my shower.

When I was finished, I sat down and told her that I was pissed at her for continuously talking to this dude as much as she was, and said that “male and female coworkers don’t just call eachother at 11 at night."

I have told her MULTIPLE times that I don’t like him being so friendly and giving off the vibes that he is, when I know for a fact that he has some sort of feelings for her, and I feel totally disrespected by my wife for her continuing to NOT LISTEN TO ME when I tell her that I don’t like how frequently they talk to eachother.

I don’t know if she’s just oblivious to it or if she’s actively trying to defy my wishes, but it pisses me off because of the roles were reversed and if I were the one who was constantly talking to a female coworker, it would be the end of the world.

Just tonight we were supposed to be spending time together playing video games and she was texting him RIGHT NEXT TO ME. I don’t understand and it sucks. Please help me guys, idk what to do.

Here's what top commenters had to say about this one:

SilverLeaflet said:

NTA. From experience, my fiance cheated with a co-worker. One of his first signs was not letting me anywhere near his phone anymore. They get defensive and they lie. When you're in a relationship, there are boundaries like respecting your significant others feelings.

She's probably enjoying how special he is making her feel. She's clearly in denial of the guilt of what she's doing. My only thoughts are to have an open conversation...not accusatory...but open conversation. And see how it goes...but it's hard.

There's definitely some tell tale signs starting...don't be like me and ignore them all and be bind sided. I found all the messages on his phone. Although the kickoff was a coworker of mine seeing him out with her and being overly friendly.

BuzzyBeeDee said:

NTA. Your wife is completely disrespecting you. You need to sit down with her, explain how much this means to you, and put some VERY clear boundaries in place. What happens next is up to her. If she truly values your marriage, she won’t have an issue cutting off contact with this kid immediately.

If she refuses, I think you have your answer for how she actually feels about you and your marriage. This is more on the level of an emotional affair at this point. She has no business as a married woman in her early 20s being “friends” with someone who is barely a legal adult (and is likely still in high school). Yikes.

Stand firm on your boundaries. That also means taking action on your boundaries being disrespected, and not just letting things slide or allowing her to treat you like a doormat. This isn’t a healthy marriage if boundaries are already being blatantly disrespected this early on into married life, with a complete refusal to change behavior. If she truly loves you, she’ll end this immediately.

Even if she does end things with him and you stay together, it wouldn’t hurt to get some couples therapy so you can really get to the bottom of your issues, because this type of thing should have never happened in the first place. ESPECIALLY not even a year into marriage.

Sorry, OP. This really sucks, and you definitely aren’t the one in the wrong. You have to set the standard for how you want to be treated. She can either agree, or choose a different relationship. You deserve to have your boundaries respected.

Serge-Rodnunsky said:

NTA. Your wife is sabotaging your marriage. Might want to try to find out why that is, I don’t think this guy suddenly made her into someone who would so blatantly disregard you and treat you with contempt like this. To be perfectly frank, I suspect from your description that your marriage is already over, your wife is just looking for a catalyst to end it.

Admirable-Bit-8478 said:

NTA. Knowing how you feel about this and your wife continuing this, is her choosing the other guy over you and the marriage. You have discussed this with her previously and she continues to disregard your feelings. You have some decisions to make as this isn’t going away.

She is at the very least having an emotional affair. At this point she needs to go zero contact with the other guy, and the only way to do this is for her to leave her job that she loves. Remember she created this situation by violating basic boundaries that every relationship has.

coquigirl07 said:

NTA. My first marriage fell apart because of something similar. I was extremely young (about your age) and I had a long time friendship with someone I had dated on and off. He obviously still had feelings for me and purposely disrespected my then husband.

I liked the attention I got from him, even though I loved my husband. I finally got an ultimatum from my husband saying that it was either him or my friend. I didn’t like having an ultimatum and thought he was bluffing anyway so I said the friend. Biggest mistake, my ex divorced me. Eight years later I’m happily married to a wonderful man so maybe this was a good thing in the end but i definitely learned my lesson. You aren’t being an AH by having boundaries that are being crossed.

jajpara82 said:

Red flag after red flag towards emotional affair. Also, there is no respect for you as her husband.


My wife (23) works at a very popular outdoor retail store, and one of her coworkers there who works in customer service (18) has a crush on her. Having that knowledge, I told her multiple times that I didn’t like her talking to him, yet she refuses to listen to me. She started getting secretive with her phone and started texting him more and more, often when we would be trying to spend time together.

New Year’s Eve was really rough for me. We spent the day at her parents house, watching football and playing board games, and then went out to my dinner with my dad at an Italian place (my mother and bother where in another state at the time taking care of my grandfather who has dementia), so he wouldn’t be alone on New Year’s Eve.

While we were driving, I glanced over to her on her phone, and sure enough she was texting him. I had enough, and after telling her multiple times the past few days, spilling all of my feelings out and telling her how disrespected I felt, I snapped finally.

I took the phone right out of her hand and set it in the door pocket of my truck, and she instantly got angry with me over it, and proceeded to yell at me how her “phone is my property” and how I was “being disrespectful to her by taking it”. Ironic isn’t it? We argued for some time over it and ultimately, I didn't have the energy to continue the argument, and shelved it for after dinner, and just as before, didn't get very far.

The following Friday, after I got done at work, my wife and I decided to go shopping at her work, I had to pick up some gun accessories and wanted to get my fishing license for the year.

We ended up splitting up as she wanted to see one of her friends that works in her department (not him thankfully), and while I was browsing some of the new clothing, one of her other girl friends (who we'll call J) that also works in the department and I started chatting it up. I asked her if she had been noticing anything going on between my wife and this other coworker, to which she started laying it ALL out for me.

Apparently a lot of people in their department had been noticing them talking more and more, to the point where one of the older women in the department pulled my wife to the side and scolded her to "stop acting like a child, and to woman up, you have a husband, start acting like it."

That hurt me to hear, as now everyone that my wife works with suspects something is up, and as if that wasn't enough, J told me that my wife flat out told her that she "really enjoys the attention she is getting from him." I didn't even know what to say at that point. I wanted to go over to the customer service desk and lay him out on the ground, but ultimately it won't solve anything.

That same night, one of my wife's friends (we'll call A) hit me up on snapchat (presumably suspecting that I had known what was going on and wanting to check in). I explained the situation to A, that night into the next day, A eventually told me that my wife went to A sometime earlier that week and confessed that she has feelings for this coworker, and provided screenshots to show me. I'm absolutely heartbroken, as my worst fears are coming true, and contemplated going through my wife's phone to get as many receipts as possible.

Sunday was my birthday, and a lot of my really close friends came over to my parents house for a birthday party. My best friend and his gf also came over. While me and the guys all hung out and watched football, my wife, my best friend's girlfriend and a few other women all hung out on the other side of the house.

That night when the party ended, my wife also confessed to best friend's gf that there was "something there that she couldn't deny anymore". Both my best friend and his gf told me this the next day after I had sobered up, and provided more screen shots for me to read.

Today after work I am going to meet up with them both to read my wife's conversations with best friend's gf so I can collect everything and get as much evidence as possible for when I finally confront her about it. The only reason I haven't done it yet, is because I don't know what to even say.

A has also provided me with more screen shots. My wife told A that her and her coworker "want to wait for each other" and "want to be together, but need to wait until the time is right." My wife is waiting for us to divorce so that she can be with him, and while (as far as I know) nothing physical has happened so far, I'm not going to wait around in a marriage that isn't worth saving.

My heart is absolutely crushed. My wife, who this month I will have known for 6 years, is actively going behind my back to betray me, and doesn't care about disrespecting me or our "marriage." I still plan on going through her phone to collect more evidence to hopefully make the divorce proceedings smoother.

I'm heartbroken at this point, and while I know I'll have my family's backs, my friends, and even A to hep me get through this, it still hurts nonetheless that the person I swore my heart to wants our marriage to end and is infatuated with somebody else. Sorry for the rant, just wanted to update you guys.

Here's what top commenters had to say about the update:

Calm_Froyo_475 said:

NTA, that sucks man but don’t be anybody’s fool. Let her know she can have her divorce and go from there.

Wild-Pie-7041 said:

NTA, but you don’t need “evidence” to divorce anymore. Just get a lawyer and divorce. It sucks, but at least you don’t have children together and you found out early in your marriage. Sorry your wife is too immature for marriage.

ChakraMama318 said:

NTA- I know this hurts so deeply right now- but it will get better once you get through this. Your wife doesn’t sound like she was mature enough to be married. I don’t think that is your fault. You got together as teenagers.

Marrying young might be the right path for some folks, but it doesn’t seem like it was for her. Otherwise, she wouldn’t be distracted by someone barely out of high school.

Serge-Rodnunsky said:

Obviously NTA, and this sucks for you, but there is no more “proof” you need here guy. I think somewhere you’re still holding out hope you can salvage this, as if by finding some evidence you can get her to see the harm of what she’s done. She’s doing this intentionally, and you’re still playing along.

Stop playing her games and just tell her it’s over. Preferably with a plan for her to move out, maybe talk to her family tell them what she’s been doing and ask if they can let her stay there. Or some other plan. Do not go and snoop through her phone, that is her property.

You already have screen shots, you already have her conduct. You don’t need more. The sooner you end this toxic relationship, the sooner you can get on with the rest of your life.

Everyone was on OP's side here, before and after the update. What's your advice for these exes?

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