Advice for a woman who wrote to tell me, “My ex and my best friend are dating:”
As I just passed the one-year anniversary of my divorce, I’ve learned that
what many had suggested at the time of my separation is most likely true:
there is “something” between my ex and my former BFF. I have come to
accept my divorce but I am struggling with accepting her betrayal. The
signs were there that there was at least an emotional connection between
them, but I denied it, telling everyone “she would never do anything
She began to end her marriage when my husband moved out. She had dumped me
by this point. At the one year mark, she kicked her husband out. I
supported their marriage, encouraging Retrouvaille (a Catholic weekend
program for troubled marriages) and by encouraging her husband to move back
in and fight for his marriage. I fasted and prayed for them, another
Catholic tradition. Despite my efforts (as if I could save their
marriage), they divorced.
Now, it appears she is involved with him. I don’t want this back-stabbing
witch around my children. I think the kids feel the same way. My teenage
told me that my daughter was scolded by her father for not speaking to
my former BFF. When I asked my son how he feels about it, he said that
when his dad tells him that there is a relationship, he will walk out of
his house for good. Their reactions make me feel good, like they are not
accepting what she has done.
In the meantime, how can I get past this? It’s so clichéd: the best friend
ends up with the former husband. It is hurtful and frustrating. Any
I can’t even begin to tell you how badly I feel about your situation. It is so very difficult, and honestly, what your friend did to you is absolutely disgusting. I’m so sorry you have to deal with this.
I noticed that you said, “I’ve come to accept my divorce but I am struggling to accept her betrayal.” I disagree that you accept your divorce. It’s only been a year and I don’t believe that anyone is healed and completely accepting after a year. I think it takes many years to fully accept and heal. That’s OK, by the way.
Now, onto your former friend. It sounds to me like subconsciously you knew there was something going on with her and your ex for a long, long time. Otherwise, you wouldn’t have tried so hard to save her marriage. I’m not saying you aren’t a good person or a good friend, but you knew. Deep in your core, you knew. But, you protected yourself because you couldn’t bear the thought. And then you tried to fix her marriage so that it wouldn’t happen. It’s understandable and I’m sure anyone would have done the same thing.
But onto what is happening now. They are together. She dumped you because she chose him over you. That is immensely hurtful, devastating and frustrating, but if you think about it, what have you really lost? NOTHING. The bottom line: she was not your friend.
When it comes to girlfriends, I feel pretty strongly about the importance of having truly loyal friends who are there for you when you need them most: the ones who are giving and selfless and really come through in a time of need. This girl shows really unethical and bad character. I’m sorry. I would never do that to my best friend. I don’t care how attracted I was to her husband, I would realize that he isn’t the only man on earth and I would move the hell on.
Let’s talk about the future. What if they stay together and get married? I would say, (and I know this is really really hard to hear) but you’re going to have to learn to live with it and be civil to her. Do it for your kids. Because don’t you want them to have a relationship with their dad no matter what? Just think about it. I know it will hurt like hell to be nice, but you can do it.
But let’s be more realistic. Think it will really work out? I don’t. Sounds like she left her husband for him, and I never have faith in relationships that begin with cheating and lies. Their relationship right now is sexy because it’s hidden. It’s a secret. But deep in their minds, it’s shameful and they both know it.
Something similar happened to me when I was first separated. The girl wasn’t as good of a friend as yours sounds, but it seriously drove me insane. I later realized what a waste it was making myself nuts over it.
My advice to you is, try not to focus on THEM, but instead on YOU and your kids. There are a million men out there and you will fall in love again someday and then they won’t really matter, whether they are together or not.
Lastly, I would tell your son that even if they announce they are a couple, he shouldn’t shut out his own father. Trust me on this. Your kids still need him.