It's a very complicated question...is there a way to speak by phone???
Hi, I'm Dr. Jackie. I can chat with you if you would like.
We are not allowed to chat by phone unfortunately.
I'm a relationship expert if you have a relationship question.
O.k. I'll try to make it as simple as possible. I am married( 2 years) & just found an airline ticket that my husband purchased to go to Vegas. He told me he was going to L.A. for business (which he is), however he conveniently failed to mention that he is taking a side trip to Vegas (as I discovered from the ticket details). I am seriously contemplating flying there as well to spy. I want to stop anything before it happens, opposed to learning something happened & then trying to figure out what to do. He has always told me that people cheat according to their access. He's always a good boy at home (never home late...perfect behavior), but there is plenty of access in Vegas & he has the personality to give in especially if no one is watching. In addition he's traveling there with his long-time friend who is a horrible influence when it comes to being faithful. Help. Jackie ;)
Oh, I am so sorry you are in this predicament!
Are you asking if you should confront him versus flying out to spy?
And I agree that stopping something before it happens is better than the alternative, as you described.
Do you think he is meeting someone there or that his buddy talked him into flying to Vegas first?
I don't know how I would confront him before the trip, because I don't want him to know that I found his ticket. They may very well be meeting some girls there, although that may be like taking sand to the beach with all of the options that are in Vegas. I'm sure his buddy talked him into flying to Vegas after their business meetings in L.A. His buddy was just in Vegas with his wife & son, and probably noticed how much fun he could have there with a friend, opposed to his wife. Even if they go "innocently" without taking girls with them...I have a strong feeling in some way infidelity will take place over the weekend. I want him to think that I just happened to be in Vegas at the same time. Ironically he knows that I have an upcoming convention in Vegas, so it wouldn't be that unusual. Do you think it would be enough of a deterrent for him if he knows that he could bump into me in Vegas?
I wish I could answer your question--your last sentence question--but I only know what you have told me about him. So I just don't know about deterrent. You have been married for two years, so you would know better if you think that is a deterrent.
I think I am a bit confused--if you knew he cheated, do you think you would forgive him? I ask that because it's evident you don't trust him. If this is true, then every time he takes a business trip, you are going to be worked up/thinking he will cheat.
To me this does not seem like a fun or healthy way to live.
If he has told you people "cheat according to their access," this does not sound like it is coming from a faithful person.
I definitely don't trust him. He had a lengthy history of cheating prior to our getting married (I know, I know...for some reason I still married him). I truly believe he's been a saint since we've been married (I've done my own investigating & have never found anything). You're absolutely right though. This part is not healthy or fun and it's the first time since we've been married that a red flag has come up. I would not forgive him if he cheated though. I think he'll tell me at the very last minute that he's headed to Vegas so that I wouldn't be able to do anything about it. If I don't go, I'll drive myself crazy the whole weekend wondering what he's doing...if I do go, I'll drive myself crazy trying to keep tabs on him in Vegas
Oh, that is not a good place to be. You will be unhappy if you go or if you stay--either way! And I am afraid your career will suffer. Your conference is not for a little while, right? Can you even legitimately take the time off work to go?
I guess to me hearing this, the bigger picture is that even if you go/he does not cheat this time, it sounds like he likely will cheat again. And you can't follow him on every trip--you WILL drive your (self crazy plus your career will likely suffer. If he is prone to cheat (behaviors are very difficult to change without some type of intervention like therapy or counseling). this trip would only be one occasion out out of many temptations to him.
Luckily, I'm in a bazaar work situation. I'm not working, but still paid for the next year. As a result, I have the time & the resources to go. This trip would not coincide with my conference, but I could easily come up with another excuse to be there (attending a seminar). I'm thinking that if he knows I'm there (I know what hotel he's in too) he will be scared to death to try anything.
Oh, I see about your work. That is great that you have the flexibility. My question is, do you want to do this next time you find a ticket that he has not told you about?
I know. That could get very expensive, not to mention the emotional drain. What would you do?
Like I said before, even if you stop him this time and are happy for a bit longer, it sounds like you are going to have to continue in the same "spy business." Is this what you want? Yes, extremely expensive and draining and not healthy!
I think being open and honest is the way to go in just about every situation I can think of.
One last question...do you think I should check with his buddy's wife to see if she knows that they're headed to Vegas??? I don't know her well, but I could reach out to her. If she doesn't know either, maybe she can stop the trip before it happens?
You said before that this buddy is a bad influence, right? Do you think his wife knows that? Do you know how long they have been together?
They've been married maybe 7 or 8 years...with a child. I think if she knows how bad he is, she likely has blinders on.
Oh, this is a very difficult situation--for everyone. Children complicate things. Yes, she may have blinders on.
Perhapst you could call her and just ask if her hubby is going to Las Vegas before the work trip. You could just tell her you found your husband's ticket.
And you could say that your husband didn't mention it--if you don't know her well, do you feel comfortable asking her?
They live in L.A...we live in Orlando. My husband's buddy came to visit a couple months ago. I saw them both out that night. My husband had his wedding ring on (I was pleasantly surprised) however the buddy's ring had conveniently disappeared. My husband had his ring on, but I think that could have been because he knew there was a chance he could bump into me.
You asked what I would do. I think confronting your husband is just the best because then if it goes ahead and cheats anyway, and you find out, which you will eventually if not sooner, then he knows he will lose you, plain and simple.
Oh, that must be really difficult being in your shoes. I am concerned that you will be a prisoner to keeping your husband in order s long as you are with him.
You're right. It's hard to change a tiger's stripes...especially when there's someone trying to coerce them. I don't know his wife well at all & don't know if I can trust her by confiding in her that I found the ticket. Maybe I just have a generic conversation with her and see if she brings it up? I would think she has to know since her husband lives in L.A. with her...and he would be gone for a couple of days. You've helped a lot. Thank you. I should have listened to my instinct when we were dating, but of course he promised that he would never do it again. So far I don't think he has...but it's not easy trying to play detective.
Yes for sure. Detectives get paid and they are not emotionally involved. Again, I'm sorry you seem to be in a not good situation now. Do you think he would ever go to counseling? I would suggest you start going, even if he won't. Go for yourself. I think talking face to face with a therapist/counselor would help empower you more to figure out if you really want to live this way.
We talked about counseling a long time ago (during the problems). When he thought he was going to lose me he agreed to go...but we never did. Great advice Jackie. I think I got married because of fear of being alone (38 and single)...never the right answer though.
I've learned through experience that you can still be with someone and very alone.
Well, what is in the past is just that. You need to figure out what is going to be healthy for you! :) And yes, your last sentence is very right on. You should not have to live in constant worry about if/when he is going to cheat. Do you think you could talk to him about your concerns? Or would he just not want to discuss that? Would he just say that is in his past?
He often says "Jackie, I'm home every night...I don't do anything. I'm always home right after work and my phone never rings! In the past, I admit...I did things I wasn't proud of...but you can't accuse me of anything anymore."
I really believe all of that is true...but I'm just afraid he'll go off the wagon with this trip. It's kind of like taking a former alcoholic into a bar. Some people just can't be exposed to certain things, it's too tempting for them. The whole "What Happens in Vegas Stays in Vegas" keeps running through my head too ;)
Yes, I agree with all of your statements. You are very wise. Yes, people with addictions (I don't know that your husband has an addiction but definitely a preference at the very least for a lot of sex) just can't be around that. Yes, I would confront him about the trip. I think you'll feel better sharing your concerns--because of the past and now because you know he's going to Vegas. If he seems shocked, you'll know he was trying to keep Vegas a secret.
O.k. I'll try that. Do you think I should see if he volunteers it first...bringing up L.A...asking about their agenda...what they plan on doing over the weekend first?If he doesn't give it up then, I know he's up to no good & really trying to keep it a secret?
Yes, I do think you can try that--let him tell you all about the trip if he is willing. But if he doesn't volunteer about Vegas, are you willing to confront him about the Vegas ticket you found?
I am willing to do that. The ticket was in his desk drawer...not really that hidden, but guys often aren't that bright about those things. I was innocently going in the drawer to get a pen...and voila! ;)
Yes! Good--I would bring up in conversation just like you indicated--just asking about the LA itinerary, etc. And then confront him if he doesn't volunteer Vegas on his own.
The only thing is if I'm honest about where I saw the ticket, he'll know to be very careful about putting anything there anymore. He'll just cover his tracks more efficiently. It's not healthy of me to think that way though I'm sure...
Yes. Again all true.
Thanks Dr. Jackie...you have a great name btw.
I have been doing research in relational/interpersonal communication since 1998. My Ph.D. is in interpersonal communication.