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'AITA for telling my stepdaughter her friend’s mom is the reason we're divorcing?' UPDATED 2X

'AITA for telling my stepdaughter her friend’s mom is the reason we're divorcing?' UPDATED 2X


"AITA for telling my stepdaughter her friend’s mum is the reason her dad and I are divorcing?"

My husband, Jack, has been spending a lot of time with our neighbour, Sophie. It is worth noting that Jack and Sophie had an affair when she was 19 – he was with his ex and she was with an ex-boyfriend at the time. Sophie is a widow as her husband died in 2021. Jack and I also married in 2021.

Jack and Sophie remained friendly after their affair, partly because their daughters were and still are friends – they’ve been best friends since primary school.

Jack and I have been having some issues in our marriage and we have been going to counselling for the past 6 months. I brought up in counselling that his friendship with Sophie makes in uncomfortable because he had previously had an affair with her.

Jack argued that she is just a friend and that neither of them have those feelings anymore, nor is Sophie interested in having a romantic relationship because no one compares to her late husband – that is apparently something she has said to him after he suggested setting her up on a date with a younger co-worker who had expressed an interest in her.

There’s a lot of cross over between her job and his which is part of the reason they remained close. In our last session, Jack admitted that he had been going to Sophie for her advice. He’s been going to her to get advice on our relationship as well as an issue with his daughter.

The issue with his daughter, I understand because it is something that Sophie has experience with and she had an unique perspective that really did help him. The fact they have been discussing our relationship, I don’t feel comfortable with. Jack has been really dismissive about it, arguing that its the same as me going to my sister for advice. It’s not the same, he had an affair with this woman!

I recently saw Sophie in the local coffee shop and she was friendly with me, asking how I was doing and if my step daughter was doing better. I asked her if something was going on between her and Jack. She denied that anything was going on between her and Jack. I asked her to stop giving Jack advice because it’s damaging our relationship.

Sophie said that she wasn’t going to stop giving her friend advice, and that it wasn’t her fault that I was insecure in my relationship but that she doesn’t see Jack as anything as a friend despite what I think. Sophie reiterated several times that she was just friends with Jack and that she isn’t that troubled teenager who had an affair with a married man anymore, and that she didn't want to implode her life again.

When I got home, I told Jack that I didn’t want him to see Sophie anymore. Jack argued with me, saying he wasn’t going to stop seeing Sophie when nothing is going on between them. He offered to show me his texts with Sophie, but I told him that I didn’t trust him not to delete any texts that he knew would upset me. Jack got frustrated and told me I was being ridiculous by accusing him of being deceitful.

When his daughter came home, she was upset because Sophie had text her daughter after our conversation and told her to come straight home as she didn’t want her daughter to get pulled into whatever is going on between Jack and I like she had been. His daughter was angry and accused me of ruining her friendship before storming up to her bedroom, so Jack is also angry with me about that.

I’m just not sure what else to do. Is there anything I can do? The fact he is constantly going to a woman he had an affair with for advice is just making me feel uncomfortable and nothing he does feels reassuring.

TLDR: Husband is seeking advice from his ex affair partner and it makes me feel uncomfortable. Both see nothing wrong with it and deny an affair.

She then added this update:

We were meant to go to a counselling session this morning, however Jack had cancelled the session and any further sessions. Jack does not want to continue counselling as he has filed for divorce, he said it was something he had been considering for a while.

Apparently when he had gone to talk to Sophie the first time, it was to get her recommendation for a divorce lawyer but she had tried to convince him that we just needed to work out our issues. Jack said that he told her that he had lost trust in me and nothing we did was fixing it, the way I've been acting over him and Sophie also cemented that to him.

She gave him the name of a friend who is a divorce lawyer but told him that he was making a mistake. It turns out that when Sophie's daughter didn't come to our house as planned after school, it was because Jack had told Sophie he had planned to tell me about the divorce that evening.

He backed out on telling me after his daughter came home upset, not wanting to rock the boat with her. My conversation with Sophie was just the excuse she used.

If I'm honest I still don't trust that nothing has been going on between them. The whole thing between them is weird. But my marriage is over, so what they do isn't my problem. I'm not going to fight to be with someone who lies to my face and states they don't trust me.

And then, three days after her original post, she shared this update:

Jack, and I are getting divorced after 2 years of marriage. Jack has two children, but this concerns his daughter – Ella (15F). The day Jack told me he wanted a divorce, we told the children after school.

Ella was upset when she found out we are divorcing and went to her room. She came down after tea when it was just me and her in the house – Jack and his son had gone out. She asked me why her dad and I were getting divorce and wanted to know if it was because of her. Ella has struggled with an ED, and while it had caused some strain because we couldn’t agree on how to help Ella it is not the reason.

I told Ella that she and her brother are not the reason for the divorce, but that her best friend’s (Imogen 15F) mum (Sophie 34F) is. Sophie and Jack had an affair when she was 19, when the affair was exposed Sophie’s life basically imploded while Jack’s pretty much remained the same.

Just to state, Imogen is not Jack’s daughter. They are friends now, but after the affair they would just be polite in the street and became friendlier over the years as the girls became close friends at school. I told Ella that Jack’s continued friendship with Sophie and the running to her for advice is why we are getting divorced. Ella asked if Jack was having an affair with Sophie.

I told her that Jack was denying having an affair with Sophie again but I suspected it. She asked what I meant by again, so I told her that Sophie and Jack had an affair when Jack was married to her mum.

Ella has not been speaking to Jack since our conversation. She has also lashed out at Imogen, telling her that her mum is a whore and is the reason her family is falling apart. They got into a physical fight at school which resulted in both Jack and Sophie getting called in to talk about it. In the meeting, Ella told them everything I had told her the night before and blamed Sophie for ruining her family again.

Jack told her that Sophie isn’t the reason. Jack told Ella the reason for the divorce is because he no longer trusted me because of a mistake I had made which had sent us to therapy. Months of therapy weren’t able to repair his trust in me.

After Jack and Ella came home, she is now not talking to me either. Jack is furious that I said anything to Ella and that I ruined Ella’s friendship with Imogen. Jack snapped that it was not my place to say anything to Ella.

He was angry that I was still stuck on his friendship with Sophie, and continues to maintain nothing is going on. He told me that Imogen told Sophie in the meeting that she wants to move to a new school, where no one knows her mum is a whore and that was my fault. AITA? Ella asked me for a reason and I told her, I do believe Sophie is the true reason as the relationship between them is weird.

Do you think she's the ahole here? This is what top commenters had to say:

tan_sandoval said:

YTA. What did Ella, a 15 year old girl, do to you that you would blow up her relationship with her father AND her best friend during a difficult time in her life? The girl is going through enough with her ED. Why would you cut off two of her main support lifelines when she's already struggling as it is and likely to need more support in the future?

Your marriage issues are your problems. Keep them to yourself or tell your besties. It's not appropriate to overshare adult drama with a 15 year old child who is not your own over tea.

And it wasn't the truth, was it? You conveniently left out your own "mistake", which is the actual reason for the divorce. So what you did was distort the narrative into a damaging lie, feed it to a child who trusted you, and watch her world burn.

You blew that girl's life up for no reason other than your own bitterness. She got into a fight at school, and now her former best friend wants to leave the school completely. Those poor girls, both of them. To have their lives torn apart by you because you can't admit that YOU'RE the one who ended your own marriage. You're a real piece of work to go after kids like that.

sheramom4 said:

YTA. I assume the "mistake" you made was an affair of your own. Jack had an affair many many years ago and long before he married you. You refuse to be self-aware or own up to anything and used your version of events in an attempt to Ella, a young teenager with health issues, on your side.

And you ruined her relationship with her best friend. This sounds like revenge on your part, not caring for or loving a child. Jack needs to just cut all contact you have with his children as soon as possible.

jrm1102 said:

YTA - you clearly did this to be vindictive, thats it. Youre an AH for that.

And MillyB27 said:

To be honest with you I feel like you should’ve just told her that she wasn’t the reason for the divorce and left it at that, because now it’s tearing the children apart. Keep things short and simple. So YTA.

And a few days later, OP updated her last post:

Update: This blew up more than I thought it would. Both Ella and her brother were aware of the kiss. They were there when Jack was told. I referred to it as a mistake as that is what Jack refers to it as, he has said that he didn't consider the kiss to be cheating because I was drunk. I have moved out of the house since I made this post, and I am now staying with my sister until I find a place of my own.

At the weekend, Ella reached out to Imogen and apologised for lashing out at her at school. They look like they've made up as Ella stayed at Imogen's over the weekend. Before she left, I apologised to Ella and told her that I shouldn't have dragged her into this. Ella told me that she would never forgive me, especially for damaging her friendship with Imogen, and is glad that her dad is divorcing me.

I offered to pay for the girls to do something together but Ella refused saying she didn't want to take my 'dirty money'. I also apologised to Jack who told me that it was Sophie who needed the apology, not him as it was her life I had tried to ruin without a shred of evidence.

I tried telling him that I just didn't believe that he and Sophie weren't having an affair and he snapped telling me that there is nothing going on with Sophie, and she had actually just started seeing someone. He found out about this because she went to him for advice as he is the only person she knows who has also lost a spouse and dated again.

He then told me that he wanted me to move out as Ella had told him that she wasn't going to return home while I was still here. So yeah. I've destroyed my relationship with Jack and his children because I was insecure. It's my own doing. I am the AH.

The first step is admitting you're the a^#le!

Sources: Reddit
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