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Musing about something with attractive work partners


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I don't know how I feel about this because I have always worked in a male dominated field. Especially when I was younger, while I was not attractive or gorgeous I was different, so people noticed me much more. I also did not have much experience job wise so I could not always depend on women to show me the ropes of American corporate life. I always depended on male colleagues mostly especially in my first 'real" job. Many of them took me home too for a meal and I've met their wives at office Christmas parties. I never thought anything much of it. 

I dressed in baggy suits.  I was friendly, but kept to myself but still many people knew me more than I knew them. I was raised in such a way that I would not have had a clue if anyone hit on me unless they directly asked me out. I would have been horrified if their wives considered me a threat because I was young or they considered me pretty or I worked in a male dominated field. 

DH works in the same field now. Lot more women now, I do not feel threatened even though I do not work FT now. I trust in our relationship, the family we built, the life we have and that we have always prioritized our relationship above all. I also pray and trust that the Lord is the third person in our marriage, not any human. I chose not to date even though I was asked out many times so too DH. I did find many men attractive, but I always knew I could never date anyone without it leading to marriage. A few were people I could even see myself potentially marrying. But I always stood firm to what I wanted. If I could do that in my 20s and so could DH as unmarried people, I expect and hope we can do that our entire marriage with the Lord's help. 

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I would be bothered. I'm not gorgeous by any stretch of the imagination, but it's more than that. Dh and I have a great relationship and have been married a very long time. However, I recognize my own

Why the woman? Why should not the man who feels he needs to put up those rules reconsider the type of work he is in?

I have not read the responses yet bc I'm in a rush, but I'll tell you really quickly the conclusions I came to... My husband works in a job that has A LOT A LOT of infidelity associated with it,

35 minutes ago, EmseB said:

I don't really understand the people saying they are sure they or their partners would never cheat or are incapable of cheating. I wonder, do you (general) think people who were cheated on were in marriages where they were thinking their spouse *would* do such a thing? Because I know for a fact that isn't the case for a lot of people.

I'm not trying to cast aspersions on anyone's spouse or relationship, but I bet the percentage of people who thought their spouse would never cheat and yet were cheated on is not small.

Well, I think in terms of "the percentage of people who thought their spouse would never cheat...." it's important to know that lots of folks lie to themselves.  What I mean is that no one wants to think the worse of the person they are in love with.  And even if there are a million red flags flying all over the place, people still tell themselves "well he would never do that."  I once listened to a call from the Dave Ramsey Show where a lady called in and starting talking about her DH sleeping over at his ex-wife's house "for the kids."  So yes, I would expect that most people in loving relationships think and/or want to think that their spouses could never do that.

 

For me, I can say my belief is based on much more than trust.  It's based on knowledge of my DH as a person.  If he were married to someone else and I was a close friend, I would say the same thing.  There is a loyalty and "true to word" sort of factor in my DH that wouldn't allow him to cheat.  It's not that I am confident he would never cheat on me..........it's that I am confident that he would never cheat on anyone.  

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7 minutes ago, Quill said:

 But they don’t guard against situations that make it more likely and then, at least some of the time, something develops. 

I guess this is why I feel pretty confident that my husband will not cheat on me, and completely confident that I won't on him. We don't put ourselves in positions where it's going to happen. We also place a great deal of importance on personal integrity, and staying true to our vows is part of that. And, both of us had bad experiences either with infidelity or the threat of it in our previous marriages, so we know how that feels.  We've also seen the destruction it has caused to other families.

And then there's what Jean said just a little upthread which I could not improve upon.

I don't mean to sound arrogant like "oh I KNOW it could never happen" but I am completely confident in myself and as confident in my husband as I can ever be about another person. 

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Sounds like they run in gorgeous business-minded circles. Who knows what her personality is like.I would think that if dh were to go into business with someone, I'd be already familiar with them. While I'm not the jealous type and dh only ever says exactly what he thinks, I do believe that inviting outside elements is risky.

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7 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Well, I think in terms of "the percentage of people who thought their spouse would never cheat...." it's important to know that lots of folks lie to themselves.  What I mean is that no one wants to think the worse of the person they are in love with.  And even if there are a million red flags flying all over the place, people still tell themselves "well he would never do that."  I once listened to a call from the Dave Ramsey Show where a lady called in and starting talking about her DH sleeping over at his ex-wife's house "for the kids."  So yes, I would expect that most people in loving relationships think and/or want to think that their spouses could never do that.

 

For me, I can say my belief is based on much more than trust.  It's based on knowledge of my DH as a person.  If he were married to someone else and I was a close friend, I would say the same thing.  There is a loyalty and "true to word" sort of factor in my DH that wouldn't allow him to cheat.  It's not that I am confident he would never cheat on me..........it's that I am confident that he would never cheat on anyone.  

The is exactly how I feel about dh as well. Just couldn’t put it into words as clear as you!

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I’m always intrigued by this type of question. In my line of work, I’ve had male  partners more than female partners. I didn’t plan it that way; it’s just how the cookie has crumbled in my career. I’ve worked at stand-alone stations (just my partner and me) and at fire stations (me, my partner, and 4-6 firemen {yes, men; they’ve all been male}).

My partner and I spend one-third of our lives together. We eat together, work together, curse, sweat, etc together. Just the two of us.  We do have separate bedrooms in my current station, but there are 3 stations where the EMS crew sleeps together in the same room. When I was stationed in a firehouse, I was almost always the only female there. So, I ate, worked, etc with 5-7 other males.

Never once in almost a quarter century have I been tempted to cheat on my husband. Never once has any male I’ve worked with — partner or firefighter — been inappropriate with me. Never once has there been any insinuation of inappropriateness against me or my partners.

I’ve also attended various medical conferences with both male and female colleagues. We’ve gone out for drinks/meals, sometimes in mixed company, sometimes not. Again, no hint of impropriety by anyone.

 

 

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I am appalled that so many think some women are too pretty to work with their husbands. Even closely, yes. 

My marriage has been through the wringer, like most people's who stay together long enough. When I mess something up that is MY fault. When my husband messes something up, that is HIS fault. The idea of blaming it on someone else is gross. 

Y'all aren't saying "this woman deliberately set out to undermine our heretofore secure relationship." You're saying "some women are tooooo tempting with their hot bods and quick wit and symmetrical faces for my husband to be around." Gross.

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4 hours ago, Scarlett said:

But you don’t believe that the right circumstances can lead good people on a disastrous path?  Just basically if he ever did it then I don’t want to be married to him any way.?

Basically yes. If he ever did that, I don't want to be married to him in any way shape or form.

I feel that way while still agreeing that yes, bad circumstances can lead good people to cheat on their spouses...it's just (a) I wouldn't want to be married to that particular good person -- I'd wish him well in his new life and hope he continued to be a good father to our children, and (b) I would consider a divorce under those circumstances to be a brutal season, but not a "disastrous path" -- life goes on.

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2 hours ago, EmseB said:

I know people who were surprised by their own infidelity...as in it was never ever something they would think of themselves as capable of

 

Well then they're stupid. So I guess there's the difference. 

I know that I am capable of much, and extrapolate that my husband is as well. 

So if, knowing that, I can hold myself to some low ethical standard, I fell confident my husband can too OR, barring his willingness to do that, then he'll have to handle the fallout. So will I, of course, but that's the risk one takes in such an intimate relationship. 

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35 minutes ago, happysmileylady said:

Well, I think in terms of "the percentage of people who thought their spouse would never cheat...." it's important to know that lots of folks lie to themselves.  What I mean is that no one wants to think the worse of the person they are in love with.  And even if there are a million red flags flying all over the place, people still tell themselves "well he would never do that."  I once listened to a call from the Dave Ramsey Show where a lady called in and starting talking about her DH sleeping over at his ex-wife's house "for the kids."  So yes, I would expect that most people in loving relationships think and/or want to think that their spouses could never do that.

 

For me, I can say my belief is based on much more than trust.  It's based on knowledge of my DH as a person.  If he were married to someone else and I was a close friend, I would say the same thing.  There is a loyalty and "true to word" sort of factor in my DH that wouldn't allow him to cheat.  It's not that I am confident he would never cheat on me..........it's that I am confident that he would never cheat on anyone.  

 

This states my reasons better than I could. Loyalty is a key component.  Dh is loyal to everyone close to him and  would never wrong any of them.  It is who he is.  So, when I say he has proved it to me it isn't that he's had to do anything other than show me who he is time and time again.

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51 minutes ago, marbel said:

I guess this is why I feel pretty confident that my husband will not cheat on me, and completely confident that I won't on him. We don't put ourselves in positions where it's going to happen. We also place a great deal of importance on personal integrity, and staying true to our vows is part of that. And, both of us had bad experiences either with infidelity or the threat of it in our previous marriages, so we know how that feels.  We've also seen the destruction it has caused to other families.

And then there's what Jean said just a little upthread which I could not improve upon.

I don't mean to sound arrogant like "oh I KNOW it could never happen" but I am completely confident in myself and as confident in my husband as I can ever be about another person. 

For me and my husband (which I know because he has told me) the “not putting ourselves in the position “ has to do with our thought life and nothing to do with what I consider the artificial constraints of not being alone with someone. I am on super shaky ground if the only thing keeping me true to my vows is not giving myself the opportunity to cheat. 

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35 minutes ago, OKBud said:

 

Well then they're stupid. So I guess there's the difference. 

I know that I am capable of much, and extrapolate that my husband is as well. 

So if, knowing that, I can hold myself to some low ethical standard, I fell confident my husband can too OR, barring his willingness to do that, then he'll have to handle the fallout. So will I, of course, but that's the risk one takes in such an intimate relationship. 

Right, I agree with all of this. I guess I just got the sense that people in this thread were saying they were at no risk of this happening to them. Like millions and millions of people haven't thought that before about their own partners. Those people were ignoring red flags, and those people were delusional, and those people, well, their partners were always slimy and we all knew it, obviously that's true because they cheated. Like upstanding-looking people who have all their ducks in a row and love their families have never compromised their values and shocked everyone.

I know this is kind of niche, but did anyone else here ever read The Common Room blog?

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53 minutes ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

For me and my husband (which I know because he has told me) the “not putting ourselves in the position “ has to do with our thought life and nothing to do with what I consider the artificial constraints of not being alone with someone. I am on super shaky ground if the only thing keeping me true to my vows is not giving myself the opportunity to cheat. 

Yeah, I worded that badly. Yes, it has more to do with the way we think about marriage in general and our marriage specifically.  Certainly I did not mean to imply that the only thing keeping me from cheating on my husband is not being alone with other men ever. But also, I think there is nothing wrong with living in a way that does not cause our spouse to feel insecure.  That will look different for everyone of course and I don't necessarily see it as an artificial constraint in all cases. 

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49 minutes ago, EmseB said:

<snip>

I know this is kind of niche, but did anyone else here ever read The Common Room blog?

I used to read it,  years ago, when I was homeschooling.  The Headmistress, right?  Or am I thinking of the wrong blog?

ETA: I went and poked around. Same blog. I'm stunned.

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Just wanted to jump back in and say that I'm not sure the gorgeousness of either woman has a lot to do with it. It might make me feel more self-conscious or insecure about my own lack thereof, but it's the intimacy of the close working relationship, and the closeness that accomplishing things together can bring, that would make me more concerned, whether it were myself or him. 

I do agree on the loyalty statements others have made; dh is loyal in every area of his life, a very strong trait of his.

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2 hours ago, EmseB said:

I don't really understand the people saying they are sure they or their partners would never cheat or are incapable of cheating. I wonder, do you (general) think people who were cheated on were in marriages where they were thinking their spouse *would* do such a thing? Because I know for a fact that isn't the case for a lot of people.

I'm not trying to cast aspersions on anyone's spouse or relationship, but I bet the percentage of people who thought their spouse would never cheat and yet were cheated on is not small.

 

I can't speak for DH, although I'm certain he was offended that I thought he could ever cheat when I accused him of it (different situation that upthread).  FTR, I don't think he did, and I would leave him if I had proof he was cheating on me.  Life is too short to go through that again.  We've both been cheated on in the past, and both of us had parents who were cheated on when we were kids.

I know I could never cheat because of a specific experience I had.  When I was young (still in college) I had very strong opinions about cheating, that it was never the woman's fault if a man cheated with her because she wasn't the one who made the commitment. Then I started dating someone I worked with, I had NO idea he was married until after our first date, when another woman warned me.  Apparently he was open about his wife, newborn daughter, and living with his mother in law to everyone but me, but took his ring off whenever I was around and never mentioned them. I was also too naive to know to look for indentations on fingers, most people my age weren't married yet.  A coworker noticed he hid his wedding ring every time I came in the room and warned me about him.  I confronted him about it and I found the entire experience emotionally and spiritually repulsive in a way I never could have anticipated. And that's when I knew that not only could I never cheat, I could never be with someone who was cheating or had a history of cheating either.  

I honestly think I'd have an easier time committing murder than I would cheating, and I'm the same person that couldn't shoot an animal when my dad tried to teach me to hunt. There have been times when I've been glad someone I thought was evil died, and then I felt guilty for feeling that way later.

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6 minutes ago, marbel said:

Yeah, I worded that badly. Yes, it has more to do with the way we think about marriage in general and our marriage specifically.  Certainly I did not mean to imply that the only thing keeping me from cheating on my husband is not being alone with other men ever. But also, I think there is nothing wrong with living in a way that does not cause our spouse to feel insecure.  That will look different for everyone of course and I don't necessarily see it as an artificial constraint in all cases. 

Well, even back when I was working with mostly men I didn’t go on date-like dates with them. I would go to the food court with whoever was available- sometimes that was just one person- but it was a food court. I had one visiting coworker who insisted on going to a sit down restaurant. I got super uncomfortable because I got “date” vibes from him that I never got from anyone else ever. I made a big deal about talking about my marriage and he never tried that again. In fact he avoided me after that and that confirmed to me that he had ulterior motives. If we had had to work on a project one on one it would have been awkward but I would have made sure that no line was crossed. 

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1 hour ago, OKBud said:

I am appalled that so many think some women are too pretty to work with their husbands. Even closely, yes. 

My marriage has been through the wringer, like most people's who stay together long enough. When I mess something up that is MY fault. When my husband messes something up, that is HIS fault. The idea of blaming it on someone else is gross. 

Y'all aren't saying "this woman deliberately set out to undermine our heretofore secure relationship." You're saying "some women are tooooo tempting with their hot bods and quick wit and symmetrical faces for my husband to be around." Gross.

I don’t think that the ‘pretty’ issue is really a factor in most of the answers, despite being in the OP.  

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21 hours ago, Joker said:

 

My dh wouldn’t have his job if he avoided ever being alone with women. It seems like it could end up being really unfair but maybe you don’t truly mean they completely avoid being alone with the opposite sex. 

For me and my husband, it was in HR recommendations in companies that we worked at and is referring to being one to one. There has been accusations from all genders about sexual harassment and some have been found to be groundless after long investigations. Some have been found to be half truths. So it’s to protect all genders.

Glass walled conference rooms where everyone can see even if they can’t hear. Carpooling from office to an event, get more than two people in a car, preferably carpool seven adults in a minivan. 

An ex-colleague and I were the only ones working in the office on a weekend. He was working in full view of the security camera while I was in my cubicle in full view of another security camera. Even a low resolution security camera can verify that we were never touching each other. Verbal sexual harassment is harder to verify by security cameras of course. 

Edited by Arcadia
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I've seen how much work goes into starting a business, so I would consider it a family affair if dh were starting one because otherwise I'd never see him. Not that I'd be his business partner, but I'd be around, so I'd know his business partner. He or she would know us and our kids, would be invited to family things, etc. In that kind of situation, I wouldn't care about his partner's gender. If I suspected that the partner would encourage my husband to be unfaithful, I would suspect he or she wouldn't be a trustworthy business partner either.

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So, do I understand this correctly? Some of you think very pretty women can only work with other women or their own husbands or maybe a single man or gay man, not with married men as it is too tempting ? 

Edited by Pen
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I think it would bother me if my dh started a business with another similar-aged woman, but not because I didn't trust him.  My dh and I have talked about everything over the years and probably know each other nearly as well as we know ourselves.  So, it really doesn't have anything to do with trust.  We both know that temptations exist, and both understand that it's up to us to handle it wisely.  But spending all that time with another woman as his business partner would still bug me a little bit, nevertheless.  (It wouldn't have to do with looks though.)  On the other hand, it wouldn't bother my dh at all if I started a business with a similar-aged man, even a very handsome one!  He'd be happy for me to be starting a business and would hope that it worked out well.

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12 minutes ago, Pen said:

So, do I understand this correctly? Some of you think very pretty women can only work with other women or their own husbands or maybe a single man or gay man, not with married men as it is too tempting ? 

 Not me. Not how I feel at all.

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7 hours ago, BusyMom5 said:

My gut says it would bother me, but it would depend on the type of partnership.   For example if my DH was an attorney or accountant,  and the partner was a new attorney or accountant that expected to have her own clients, but share a building, secretary,  ect that probably wouldn't bother me. 

I've got a family member who has cheated multiple times with various wives- hes been married many times.  His current wife was a co worker- both of them cheated in their spouses with each other on business trips, then divorcedand got married when she got PG with his kid.  I have no idea how they trust the other.  

I have a friend like this. She says part of what makes their marriage work is that they are both there, eyes wide open, knowing that affairs do happen.  They are more open about their feelings, big and small, because they were the person that each other confided in when things when awry in the first place.  Their relationship was build around the hard stuff.....the marriage is the easy part. LOL 

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I will say, by way of explanation....I was once a very attractive young woman.  I lived through things.  Near misses..  All the feels.  I am 55 now.   I have a very attractive husband......I literally have heard women giggle in conversations with him.....so I am not naive....I am not suspicious in the slightest...literally, I have zero suspicion of my husband.  And yet, he and I have  a way of handling our life that leaves no room for concern,  

He and I both came out of long term marriages where we were cheated on. We have faith in people.  Hope in people. 
 

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1 hour ago, Pen said:

So, do I understand this correctly? Some of you think very pretty women can only work with other women or their own husbands or maybe a single man or gay man, not with married men as it is too tempting ? 

I know that was the question in the OP, but my answer wasn't really about the relative attractiveness of the people involved. I am a middle aged woman who has birthed 5 kids, I have no illusions about my attractiveness, but I still have a good relationship with my DH. So it's not purely about that. It's more the specific situation of starting a business and all that entails... long hours, working toward a common goal, riding out failures, rejoicing in successes, maybe having a drink or two together, alllll one-on-one. And I know that it would be a hugely different dynamic if the person my DH was doing this with was his best bud from childhood or if it was a woman who was a family friend. It just would be a different thing. I'm not saying no one can do it or I would never, ever consider it, but I'm not egalitarian about these things either.

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My reaction to the OP's initial description depends upon the kind of business being set up; it has nothing whatever to do with anyone's looks....  

If this is a "let's dream big, we can do this together, grow this baby idea to fruition" kind of business, I give it a hard no.  This scenario is not at all like co-working with other employees, male or female, and I think comparing them is a bit naive, tbh.  What I describe above would be both a huge commitment and incredibly bonding, as @Carol in Cal.rightly described earlier.  

However, if the proposed partnership is more akin to "I've got my client base, you've got yours, let's set up one business to share resources", that definitely feels different, especially as the commitment is much less.....

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11 hours ago, happysmileylady said:

I think anyone can make some mistakes, but I don't think all people are capable of all mistakes.  I genuinely believe there are people who are not capable of cheater.   Meaning, there are no circumstances that would lead that person down that disastrous path.  

There's a line at the end of the movie Ratatouille  that goes something like "not everyone can be a good cook, but a good cook can come from anywhere."  I think that concept applies in a lot of cases including cheaters.  I think that a cheater can be any type of person-young, old, rich, poor, happy marriage, unhappy marriage, etc etc.  But I think that there are plenty of people who would just simply never cheat, regardless of the circumstances.  

You are completely right- it is 1/3 of all men.  Another 1/3 are serial cheaters.  The remaining group are the situational cheater,  I don't have the cite but I remember the results of the study very well.

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1 hour ago, TravelingChris said:

You are completely right- it is 1/3 of all men.  Another 1/3 are serial cheaters.  The remaining group are the situational cheater,  I don't have the cite but I remember the results of the study very well.

I wonder if those stats would hold for women. 

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It takes two people to cheat.  (Not to sexually harass or to assault but we're not talking about that here.)  If I were to shut things down at the first sign of any "stirrings" on either of our part, then it wouldn't go any farther.  And if I found it becoming a problem because I couldn't shut down my feelings or the man were not backing off, then I would amend the business arrangement.  (Though honestly, I can turn off my "I'm available and looking" feelings to begin with.  I mean, no matter how attractive a BIL might be I'm not going to see that person as a possible mate.  Neither am I going to see a underage person that way.  Nor, in the case where I am married, any other man.) 

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10 hours ago, Carol in Cal. said:

I don’t think that the ‘pretty’ issue is really a factor in most of the answers, despite being in the OP.  

Well, yeah this thread is absolutely about pretty women. No one is worried about their husbands having intimate working arrangements with men, or sexless gargoyle women.

And even if you want to remove that aspect of it...which, again, you can not as it is inherent in the situation... my answers remain the same. To think otherwise is to think any combination of the following things, and I would not respect a man about whom I was forced to think any of them:

  • My husband is too stupid to realize ahead of time that he might enjoy having his ego or his *&^% stroked by a woman other than me
  • My husband is not a fully grown adult, with full agency over himself
  • My husband is not capable of self-policing*
  • My husband is a low-key sexual predator just WAITING for a signal from another woman- any woman at all- that she's DTF
  • Any woman is a potential threat to my family and myself and our entire mode of living if she's just AROUND my husband for long enough...or if they work together in a certain way

 

Look, I *know* what I am talking about here, experientally.  There's huge, huge risk of infidelity. It happens allllllll the time. I've been in some messed up situations.  But...circles of control paired with personal integrity demands that I not view women as a threat to me bc they're prettier (or whatever) and that I *do* approach my husband as fully responsible for his own choices. I can not think of why anyone would tacitly agree to live with a man in any other way!

 

*if a spouse specifically asks for help in a one-off situation, I would consider that acceptable. I fully believe there are ppl out there that my husband could be both attracted to AND could make him spectacularly happy, long-term. Too bad, so sad: we're doing something here. If he needed support in avoiding going down a deleterious road and said so, I'd help. But see how the onus remains firmly on him? It has to.

If he chooses to explode everything we've built, so be it. But I won't live like that in the meantime. And he would feel the full weight of his terrible choices if he did it. I won't take on one single iota, either ahead of time or after the fact, and I certainly will not insist that some random other woman do so!!

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1 hour ago, Jean in Newcastle said:

If I were to shut things down at the first sign of any "stirrings" on either of our part, then it wouldn't go any farther. 

Yes, like any cognizant adult who voluntarily promised (upon marriage) to do so must do. 

Be serious here, women. If men could not do this, you'd never worry about it in the first place bc they'd just be extraordinarily strong and hairy children who are not fully culpable for their misdeeds.  So just take that thought to it's logical conclusion: if he can do it, he must do it. If he must do it, it is out of your hands from the start. 

 

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31 minutes ago, OKBud said:

Well, yeah this thread is absolutely about pretty women. No one is worried about their husbands having intimate working arrangements with men, or sexless gargoyle women.

And even if you want to remove that aspect of it...which, again, you can not as it is inherent in the situation... my answers remain the same. To think otherwise is to think any combination of the following things, and I would not respect a man about whom I was forced to think any of them:

  • My husband is too stupid to realize ahead of time that he might enjoy having his ego or his *&^% stroked by a woman other than me
  • My husband is not a fully grown adult, with full agency over himself
  • My husband is not capable of self-policing*
  • My husband is a low-key sexual predator just WAITING for a signal from another woman- any woman at all- that she's DTF
  • Any woman is a potential threat to my family and myself and our entire mode of living if she's just AROUND my husband for long enough...or if they work together in a certain way

 

Look, I *know* what I am talking about here, experientally.  There's huge, huge risk of infidelity. It happens allllllll the time. I've been in some messed up situations.  But...circles of control paired with personal integrity demands that I not view women as a threat to me bc they're prettier (or whatever) and that I *do* approach my husband as fully responsible for his own choices. I can not think of why anyone would tacitly agree to live with a man in any other way!

 

*if a spouse specifically asks for help in a one-off situation, I would consider that acceptable. I fully believe there are ppl out there that my husband could be both attracted to AND could make him spectacularly happy, long-term. Too bad, so sad: we're doing something here. If he needed support in avoiding going down a deleterious road and said so, I'd help. But see how the onus remains firmly on him? It has to.

If he chooses to explode everything we've built, so be it. But I won't live like that in the meantime. And he would feel the full weight of his terrible choices if he did it. I won't take on one single iota, either ahead of time or after the fact, and I certainly will not insist that some random other woman do so!!

That is a good list. I agree with it.  I do not view any woman as a threat to me, even the ones more attractive than me, which is most these days.  And I am not suspicious at all of my husband.  I am fully aware though that certain combinations of circumstances can be a threat.  And so Dh and I set up our lives to avoid those.  Again though we are not hard nosed about it and we aren’t trying to appear morally superior to anyone.  And we don’t talk about it to other people.  Except here on this board of course.  Lol...

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2 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

That is a good list. I agree with it.  I do not view any woman as a threat to me, even the ones more attractive than me, which is most these days.  And I am not suspicious at all of my husband.  I am fully aware though that certain combinations of circumstances can be a threat.  And so Dh and I set up our lives to avoid those.  Again though we are not hard nosed about it and we aren’t trying to appear morally superior to anyone.  And we don’t talk about it to other people.  Except here on this board of course.  Lol...

 

Yes, I believe that you and I are saying much the same thing, with the emphasis on different aspects of the issue. Mine is on personal accountability and yours is on the specific steps you and your husband elect to take to enact that accountability. 

I was talking about this subject in general with DH last night and he was laughing. "I know where you stand babe!" irt how thoroughly HIS FAULT it is if he cheats on me LOL. 🤣 I am... less than delightful to live with hahaha. 💃

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37 minutes ago, OKBud said:

 

Yes, I believe that you and I are saying much the same thing, with the emphasis on different aspects of the issue. Mine is on personal accountability and yours is on the specific steps you and your husband elect to take to enact that accountability. 

I was talking about this subject in general with DH last night and he was laughing. "I know where you stand babe!" irt how thoroughly HIS FAULT it is if he cheats on me LOL. 🤣 I am... less than delightful to live with hahaha. 💃

I don’t think it’s dh’s job to police me, nor mine to police him - circle of concern and all that good stuff - however I DO think it is wise to, as a couple OR individually, decide on parameters for one’s own accountability. I know a few people who only have couples-joint Facebook accounts, like “BobSue McMillan”. That doesn’t appeal to me personally (in part because several groups I am in are totally irrelevant to dh and vice versa), but I don’t look down on couples who decide they want that accountability in place. 

I was mocked by a male friend years back when I refused to come to a party in his honor, which would have required me to give up my whole weekend and drive several hours each way. I said my view was that this would cause my dh angst and if the shoe were on the other foot, I would be very bothered if dh were going to such lengths for a female friend. My friendship with the guy ended due to this conversation. In retrospect, I think he probably *did* have ulterior motives and my refusal to go to his party made him realize I rank dh’s comfort far above his. In retrospect, I see a lot of this guy’s actions as snake-like and I think his true intentions were not good. 

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10 minutes ago, Quill said:

I don’t think it’s dh’s job to police me, nor mine to police him - circle of concern and all that good stuff - however I DO think it is wise to, as a couple OR individually, decide on parameters for one’s own accountability. I know a few people who only have couples-joint Facebook accounts, like “BobSue McMillan”. That doesn’t appeal to me personally (in part because several groups I am in are totally irrelevant to dh and vice versa), but I don’t look down on couples who decide they want that accountability in place. 

I was mocked by a male friend years back when I refused to come to a party in his honor, which would have required me to give up my whole weekend and drive several hours each way. I said my view was that this would cause my dh angst and if the shoe were on the other foot, I would be very bothered if dh were going to such lengths for a female friend. My friendship with the guy ended due to this conversation. In retrospect, I think he probably *did* have ulterior motives and my refusal to go to his party made him realize I rank dh’s comfort far above his. In retrospect, I see a lot of this guy’s actions as snake-like and I think his true intentions were not good. 

I remember that.  And I would say that illustrates that in the moment humans aren’t always fully aware of what might be going on.  So if we have our personal boundaries we just naturally avoid those people and possibilities. 

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20 hours ago, Joker said:

What do people mean when they say they avoid being alone with the opposite sex in regards to work?

My dh wouldn’t have his job if he avoided ever being alone with women. It seems like it could end up being really unfair but maybe you don’t truly mean they completely avoid being alone with the opposite sex. I have never had reason to worry about it with dh and he does have to travel here and there and often there are female employees traveling as well.  His boss for three years was female so he definitely couldn’t avoid ever being alone with her. I don’t know, just seems like a weird statement in regards to work and careers. He does opt out of after work/conference get togethers and happy hours  if it’s a trip where I didn’t tag along though. He doesn’t like the after work drinking/socializing if he’s alone.

When I say it I mean I avoid being alone one on one.

IF I go to a lunch with guys -- it's a group. There's never been a need for me to have a one on one lunch with anyone, actually.

IF we are working together -- doors are open. It's never private in a room together.

It has never been awkward or hard to arrange. Maybe because the guys I worked with had the same values or maybe I just give off an "air" that they don't question me.

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3 minutes ago, vonfirmath said:

When I say it I mean I avoid being alone one on one.

IF I go to a lunch with guys -- it's a group. There's never been a need for me to have a one on one lunch with anyone, actually.

IF we are working together -- doors are open. It's never private in a room together.

It has never been awkward or hard to arrange. Maybe because the guys I worked with had the same values or maybe I just give off an "air" that they don't question me.

I understand but it’s just not possible for everyone. I was talking about it with dh last night and he has many closed door private meetings with his female VP and female direct reports when he’s actually in the office (he’s worked from home the last 5 years). They can’t just leave the door open due to the nature of their business. There are privacy laws with what they discuss and they can’t chance people overhearing who shouldn’t. When he’s in the office, there are often lunches as there just isn’t enough time in the day. Sometimes it’s more than one person but, again, it depends on what needs to be discussed. It doesn’t mean their values are any different as there is nothing but work taking place. I was just curious what people meant but it’s not a big deal to me.

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56 minutes ago, Quill said:

I was mocked by a male friend years back when I refused to come to a party in his honor, which would have required me to give up my whole weekend and drive several hours each way. I said my view was that this would cause my dh angst and if the shoe were on the other foot, I would be very bothered if dh were going to such lengths for a female friend. My friendship with the guy ended due to this conversation. In retrospect, I think he probably *did* have ulterior motives and my refusal to go to his party made him realize I rank dh’s comfort far above his. In retrospect, I see a lot of this guy’s actions as snake-like and I think his true intentions were not good. 

Isn't it funny, how those kinds of things shake out. I once had a male friend who wanted me to read a certain book and I never did. He was upset about it, and upon questioning it was because I wouldn't fully understand him without understanding his relationship with that material. I said, "Oh well, I don't care about that; I'm not going to read that book." and he was visibly crushed. The jig was up.

That said, you're moving the goal posts within this thread. 

Quote

Still, even analyzing it objectively like this, I still think I would be bothered if this were my husband. Business partnerships put two people in constant contact for hours and hours a day. I think it would feel a bit threatening to me. But then, I also acknowledge that it only feels threatening because this is an attractive woman; I wouldn’t feel weird about it if he had a gorgeous male partner, or a woman thirty years older than him; probably not even if she was 

 

Many people responded in agreement with the above from the OP, and my responses were in reaction to that. I believe that we are conditioned to feel threatened by sexually attractive women and that this waters-down the level to which we hold our husbands responsible for their own actions. A woman is not threatening to me because she's beautiful. My HUSBAND would be threatening to me if he was keen to upend our family. 

 

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6 minutes ago, Joker said:

I understand but it’s just not possible for everyone. I was talking about it with dh last night and he has many closed door private meetings with his female VP and female direct reports when he’s actually in the office (he’s worked from home the last 5 years). They can’t just leave the door open due to the nature of their business. There are privacy laws with what they discuss and they can’t chance people overhearing who shouldn’t. When he’s in the office, there are often lunches as there just isn’t enough time in the day. Sometimes it’s more than one person but, again, it depends on what needs to be discussed. It doesn’t mean their values are any different as there is nothing but work taking place. I was just curious what people meant but it’s not a big deal to me.

I am unmoved by those assertions, as in the military, husbands will be living 24/7 with other women...going out together, etc. Other men too, obviously. But leading together, or getting the short end of the stick together, or working on special (and intense) projects together...etc all of it and more. Plenty closed doors.

And yanno? Infidelity is a "legal" offense in our branch. Not just in your own chain of command, which cleary comes with inherent power imbalances, but with civilians as well. 

If the military with its known hotbox for affairs can hold all these people responsible for their own actions, I can as well. 

As for the avoiding talk portion of the argument... good luck with that LOL. Sorry to be flip about it but it has been instructive for me to get out. Out-out, out in the world more. A person accustomed to behaving with internal consistency and outward integrity will still get talked about, but once you fully grasp how very large the world is, outside of the place where you and the mouth-flappers live, it does not matter. Flappers gonna flap. Eventually they get tired. 

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31 minutes ago, Scarlett said:

I remember that.  And I would say that illustrates that in the moment humans aren’t always fully aware of what might be going on.  So if we have our personal boundaries we just naturally avoid those people and possibilities. 

Yes. I'm not worried, and dh has no reason to worry either. However, when you have been married as long as we have, you have times when everything is not sunshine and roses. It helps to have boundaries (mentally and emotionally, as well as otherwise) that you have determined you won't cross. I haven't ever worried about dh having a physical affair. There has been a time or two when I was concerned he might be tempted (mildly) emotionally--not because he is weak or any such thing, because he is not, but because we were having some struggles we needed to work through. It helped me when I was feeling vulnerable to know that he was respectful of our relationship in ways that would give it priority and protection. He isn't a flirt, but he is certainly a good guy that would be easy for others to be attracted to.

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31 minutes ago, OKBud said:

Isn't it funny, how those kinds of things shake out. I once had a male friend who wanted me to read a certain book and I never did. He was upset about it, and upon questioning it was because I wouldn't fully understand him without understanding his relationship with that material. I said, "Oh well, I don't care about that; I'm not going to read that book." and he was visibly crushed. The jig was up.

That said, you're moving the goal posts within this thread. 

 

Many people responded in agreement with the above from the OP, and my responses were in reaction to that. I believe that we are conditioned to feel threatened by sexually attractive women and that this waters-down the level to which we hold our husbands responsible for their own actions. A woman is not threatening to me because she's beautiful. My HUSBAND would be threatening to me if he was keen to upend our family. 

 

Attractive women apparently have no personality or boundaries of their own. They are merely objects that cause men to eventually lose complete control of their faculties. I guess you didn’t you get the memo. 🙃

Dh and I are extremely picky about who we invite into our circle. Not because we don’t trust our spouse or the other person but because it upsets our well-established balance. After 2 decades of marriage, we have a flow that other people may not integrate themselves into very easily. It’s ok. It’s our thing. 
He’s told me when nurses flirt with him. He’s flattered.... as he should be. It makes him feel good about himself. That doesn’t take away from us, it might even add if you know what I mean. 😉❤️ What would take away from us as a couple and a family is if he acted on it. 

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54 minutes ago, OKBud said:

I am unmoved by those assertions, as in the military, husbands will be living 24/7 with other women...going out together, etc. Other men too, obviously. But leading together, or getting the short end of the stick together, or working on special (and intense) projects together...etc all of it and more. Plenty closed doors.

And yanno? Infidelity is a "legal" offense in our branch. Not just in your own chain of command, which cleary comes with inherent power imbalances, but with civilians as well. 

If the military with its known hotbox for affairs can hold all these people responsible for their own actions, I can as well. 

As for the avoiding talk portion of the argument... good luck with that LOL. Sorry to be flip about it but it has been instructive for me to get out. Out-out, out in the world more. A person accustomed to behaving with internal consistency and outward integrity will still get talked about, but once you fully grasp how very large the world is, outside of the place where you and the mouth-flappers live, it does not matter. Flappers gonna flap. Eventually they get tired. 

My favorite phrase of the day. 

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1 hour ago, OKBud said:

I am unmoved by those assertions, as in the military, husbands will be living 24/7 with other women...going out together, etc. Other men too, obviously. But leading together, or getting the short end of the stick together, or working on special (and intense) projects together...etc all of it and more. Plenty closed doors.

<snip> 

If the military with its known hotbox for affairs...<snip>

 

1st para — EMS is slightly different in that I live with my partner for 24 hours every third day. But everything else is spot on. Plenty of closed doors between HIPAA and personnel matters.

”Hotbox of affairs...” — whoo boy! EMS as well (as a profession), though less so in my system. Or, at least, the people involved are much more discrete. Or I’m oblivious. 

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Many people responded in agreement with the above from the OP, and my responses were in reaction to that. I believe that we are conditioned to feel threatened by sexually attractive women and that this waters-down the level to which we hold our husbands responsible for their own actions. A woman is not threatening to me because she's beautiful. My HUSBAND would be threatening to me if he was keen to upend our family

I get this, but IMO, people who have affairs are not 100% people “keen to upend [their] family”. I guess that was my point in relating that little story. I wasn’t thinking, “If only I could find some new guy to get busy with,” I was just chatting with someone who seemed like good friendship material. But as Scarlett said, I wasn’t fully aware of some things until I reflected on them afterwards. But I did have this sort of rule in my head that you don’t do things that cause your mate distress. 

I do wonder, in the case of my nice-looking friend with the new business partner, did his wife find it uncomfortable? Because to me, it would say a lot about someone’s character whether they would behave defensively, i.e., “Yeah, she’s good-looking, but so what? She’s brilliant at this line of work and that’s all I care about!” vs. if he recognized that discomfort and sought to be reassuring. In the later case, for example, it doesn’t necessarily mean he simply could not do business with a supermodel, just maybe, certain parameters. Like, “There’s always the secretary still in the office if we have to work late; we don’t stay in the same hotel if we travel together, etc. “

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1 hour ago, Joker said:

I understand but it’s just not possible for everyone. I was talking about it with dh last night and he has many closed door private meetings with his female VP and female direct reports when he’s actually in the office (he’s worked from home the last 5 years). They can’t just leave the door open due to the nature of their business. There are privacy laws with what they discuss and they can’t chance people overhearing who shouldn’t. When he’s in the office, there are often lunches as there just isn’t enough time in the day. Sometimes it’s more than one person but, again, it depends on what needs to be discussed. It doesn’t mean their values are any different as there is nothing but work taking place. I was just curious what people meant but it’s not a big deal to me.

I wonder about this as I will be seeking paralegal work this fall. That would be one such job where, if I work for a male attorney, and we are discussing a case, it literally must be private. I do think most firms now have glass, but soundproof, barriers, more because of harassment claims than infidelity, but with the same outcome. 

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I don’t think that anyone is saying that generic you or your husband HAVE to work behind closed doors with a member of the opposite sex. And indeed in some situations it is easy to avoid. But there are equally other jobs where trying to avoid that would be difficult and would impede getting business done quickly and efficiently. 
 

I guess what I am saying is that predicting the demise of a marriage simply because of a female-male partnership is weird to me. And if expressed to the parties involved can incite feelings that weren’t there and didn’t need to be there. 
 

Also I might point out that there are a lot of barriers to women being able to climb to the position of leadership needed to be partner in a new (or old) business. These restrictions in people’s thoughts and attitudes are one of those barriers we face as women. And I think it’s a shame. 
 

Let’s judge individual women and men for their actual choices. Don’t limit people for what choices they “could “ make. Sure, we put up certain safeguards for all sorts of reasons and I am not suggesting that they hold meetings in a hotel room but most professionals are getting down to business not hanky panky. 

Edited by Jean in Newcastle
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24 minutes ago, Quill said:

I do wonder, in the case of my nice-looking friend with the new business partner, did his wife find it uncomfortable? Because to me, it would say a lot about someone’s character whether they would behave defensively, i.e., “Yeah, she’s good-looking, but so what? She’s brilliant at this line of work and that’s all I care about!” vs. if he recognized that discomfort and sought to be reassuring. In the later case, for example, it doesn’t necessarily mean he simply could not do business with a supermodel, just maybe, certain parameters. Like, “There’s always the secretary still in the office if we have to work late; we don’t stay in the same hotel if we travel together, etc. “

 

Yes, it's better to be a responsive and caring partner, than not. 

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It's never really occurred to me that DH might work with attractive women, lol.... Until more recently.  I've met several of his coworkers in his current position - men and women.  His assistant is older than me and frankly, shockingly attractive.  And she is involved with a community dance thing so I've seen pictures of her dressed in some pretty eyecatching attire. (She's a FB friend.) Now, she is happily married and she works with him too (big company) but I think it was the first time I was like, "Um..." (Pause.)   Now, the deeper darker me wonders if I'm more insecure due to my changing body (hypermetabolism, reduced activity, muscle atrophy) and my awareness of a growing list of weaknesses as a partner, kwim? But, still, I'm married to one of those guys that CANNOT tell a lie if his life depended on it , is devoted to the concept of loyalty & faithfulness, and every single thought/feeling crosses his face, for better or worse, so that is reassuring, but it is weird to feel this insecurity.

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