How many chances should you give?

I don’t even know where to begin so I suppose I will start with this. Last week my husbands co-workers husband sent me a video of what was pretty incriminating evidence of them cheating on me and him. Since then the four of us have been talking and working things out and figuring out what to do about all of this. Polyamory came up. I have a very steadfast view on monogamy, I don’t know why it’s a hardwired into me the way it is but it is.
So anyways the woman he cheated on me with and her husband this is her first affair. While with my husband and I this isn’t the first, it’s the first time in quite a while though….well unless you count sexting which I had pretty much come to terms with. I have so many fears and reservations that I have voiced with my husband and the other couple. But I’m so tired of the same song and dance too that it seems almost unfair to not try.
But I’m such a guarded person I don’t know that I can bring down those walls like I have for my husband I don’t know I can be unselfish for my husband, I don’t knowing I have enough love to give, and I don’t know that it’s fair to me to not try to repair our core relationship first before diving into a polyamorous relationship and let alone with the woman he cheated on me with even if I like her husband and her on a tentative level.
I’m just beside myself….I wanna please my husband but my heart….and brain don’t want the same things? Maybe they do I don’t know anymore…..

The most honest and straightforward advice I can give you is that you need to stop worrying so much about pleasing your husband and start worrying about pleasing yourself.

Without beating around the bush, your husband is a complete and total jerk and the people he wants you to go into a relationship with are not looking too great either. This isn’t at all about polyamory or a problem with your boundaries. Whether or not polyamory is for you and even if you had no issues with polyamory and were actually enthusiastic about trying it — I would still say your husband is absolutely a jerk and you fundamentally deserve better.

Let’s review the treatment your husband has toward you before we delve into what are supposed to be your metamours. You clearly have a problem with your husband sexting other people and he doesn’t care at all. This is cheating to you and it’s not okay — which is 100% fair. Sometimes people have boundaries of what encompasses “cheating” that I think can be a bit unrealistic such as considering it an insult if a partner looks at someone else or finds someone else attractive. But it is completely understandable to consider your husband sexting others as cheating and it’s not acceptable for him to completely disregard it.

You said this was not the first affair he has had, which further indicates that he doesn’t have any respect for you or your boundaries but — for some reason you think it’s unfair to *not* try polyamory when clearly your husband doesn’t give a toss about trying to respect your boundaries? This is absolutely unacceptable. You’re so worried about being unselfish for your husband that you don’t realise that he has been nothing but selfish.

And let’s get to the people involved with. I’m unsure of the specifics of the logistics of what was involved — whether your husband just cheating on the woman in this couple or whether your husband cheated with the couple together. I’m unsure of whether it was the woman or just your husband’s co-workers who showed you the video but none of these scenarios bode well.

It’s one thing for your husband to approach you after having a long term monogamous relationship wherein he respected your boundaries and didn’t have an affair on you, confess his attraction to someone else, and then request polyamory but it’s quite another — and your husband wins an award for the absolute audacity of it all — to cheat, be caught (not confess), and then expect your partner to basically go along with it and potentially be involved in some type of love triangle as well. I’m quite frankly astounded by your husband and this woman’s gross entitlement and sheer fucking gall. And apologies for the cursing but this is absolutely unbelievable.

Not to mention, I always point out on the column that you have to sit back and think of the overall ethics of a person who willingly participates in cheating. She is already demonstrating a fundamental lack of respect for your boundaries. Why on earth would things change in the future? You’re just going to have two partners who don’t respect you.

The answer is no. A million times no. And not just because you’re clearly monogamous but because this man has done nothing but run roughshod over every boundary you have. Your monogamous relationship is already a disaster and a polyamorous relationship is doubly so. The last thing you want to do is get yourself involved with two people who clearly don’t have your best interests at heart. Say no to polyamory AND to monogamy in this case.

Leave this man and never look back. You deserve so much better than this. With all due respect, your husband is an absolute dumpster fire of a person. If you want to help something grow, buy a potted plant. Focus on you. Please yourself. Reconnect with yourself. Treat yourself. Listen to ‘Soulmate’ by Lizzo on repeat. If therapy is an option for you, please go for it to improve yourself, not for the sake of this man.

Repeat this mantra until you no longer stay in relationships with people who cheat on you:

I. Deserve. Better.

And you do deserve better. I hope this helps and good luck.

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