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Woman asks sister 'what did you expect' when her husband leaves her for a younger woman. AITA?

Woman asks sister 'what did you expect' when her husband leaves her for a younger woman. AITA?


"AITA for asking my sister 'what did you expect' after her husband left her for a younger woman?"

My (48F) sister Caroline (45F) has spent the past 20 years bragging that because she is 10 years younger than her husband Ethan (55M), that by the time she hits 40+ Ethan's sex drive will have plummeted too low to pursue others, and the 20 somethings won't want to date men past 35.

Ethan was 34 and my sister a week from turning 24 when they first got together officially. At the time 34 year old Ethan was a newly minted Senior VP with a 35 year old wife "Emma" and 4 year old daughter.

Ethan told her that Emma became a sanctimonious "mommy type" after she gave birth, stopped waking up at 5am to exercise, withheld intimacy, and became a negative nagging shrew.

Ethan physically left Emma for Caroline, but it was Emma who filed for divorce. Caroline was angry because she claims Emma was the one who filed for divorce yet she's the one who became bitter and hostile after the divorce happened.

For a while I sympathized with Caroline because everybody criticized her relationship. However, it felt like Caroline and Ethan made the fact that Ethan was "punching above his weight" in terms of having a younger woman, their entire personality as a couple and individuals.

I think it's because Ethan was poor into his early 20s and said he thought the best he could ever do was, "the sort of attractive, after a few beers, truck stop waitress." Back then it was much easier for somebody with no connections to rise and Ethan did.

Then after his divorce and before marrying Caroline, Ethan started his own firm and began making even more money. Caroline signed a prenup but maintained that it would never be used.

Caroline used to laugh when Emma told her there's always younger women out there and Caroline replied that she asked Ethan and he said a 10 year age gap is gigantic to him and that Caroline was the combination of somebody who he'd always see as much younger, while also being able to relate to her.

Caroline would also say, in a place where her stepdaughter could hear her saying it, that Emma has aged so much faster than Ethan and that she's likely regularly mistakenly referred to as her daughter's grandmother.

Well all this about "he will always see me as much younger" disappeared a few years ago. Caroline started becoming very withdrawn and miserable. She'd act out in ways but Ethan would not even bat an eye at her antics. Then suddenly just before the holidays Ethan picked a fight by telling her her hand mannerisms are annoying and left the house.

She found out he was living with a 24 year old assistant he hired with no experience. Now despite texts saying their 3 kids miss him and she doesn't deserve this when she's never denied him intimacy, he's filed for divorce.

Caroline came to me crying and would go on rants about how Ethan will realize the 24 yo sees him as grandpa. I rolled my eyes and said " what did you expect?" and that I had no sympathy when for years I've had to listen to her saying age gap detractors are bitter losers and that Ethan will always see her as a prize.

I also told her that 10 years is barely the starting point when it comes to trophy wife relationships. She got angry and screamed " ARE YOU CALLING ME OLD WHEN ETHAN's PUSHING 60?" and left. AITA?

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

bdayqueen said:

NTA - NEVER date an older man who is married. He will always look for a younger version. It's a bummer your sister didn't learn this. But now she knows. Once a cheater, always a cheater.

GroundbreakingTwo201 said:

NTA. Ethan is an a%s and your sister is dumb. I'm sure you're leaving out lots, but I'd infer that their marriage has been going downhill for a while.

RNGinx3 said:

NTA. She played stupid games and won stupid prizes; she knowingly dated a married man (if he'll cheat with you, he'll cheat on you). And to brag about being a younger woman than his ex?

What did she really think was going to happen once she started showing her age? Women who base their whole identity on being a "trophy wife" should be prepared to be put on the shelf after a few years.

noncomposmentis_123 said:

Your sister is self-centered and shallow. Both she and Ethan are superficial people. She sounds like she doesn't have the capacity to learn or self reflect, so she'll just become an eternally bitter, lonely divorcee. Tough. NTA.

ResponsibilityAny358 said:

NTA men like him always see women as things to be bought and they always want a new model, your sister was (is) innocent, stupid and reckless.

Jerseygirl2468 said:

NTA tale as old as time… OP your sister showed cruelty towards his ex, and was too foolish to realize she’d be Emma someday. I don’t blame you one bit for your response.

Everyone was on OP's side for this one. What's your advice for this family?

Sources: Reddit
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