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Dr. Mark
Dr. Mark, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 5231
Experience:  Dr. Mark is a PhD in psychology helping with relationships
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Please help me, I dont know what to do. My best friend (who

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Please help me, I don't know what to do. My best friend (who is also my roommate) is having sex with a man who is engaged. To make the problem more complicated, I also work with my best friend, and I work with this man.... and I also work with the woman he is engaged to. We all work very close together in a team, I can't even talk to this guy at work anymore...I can barely look at him. I feel like I am part of the whole thing because I know exactly what is going on, she brings him home and goes on trips with him, and when they go 'missing' at work...I know what they're up to... I don't know the other woman too well, but I work with her and talk to her at work... and I don't think any person deserves to be treated this way. I love my best friend, but I can't take it anymore. I have experienced loss of close friendships due. For me it takes forever to gain my trust, but nothing to break it. I can't stand it to see people being lied to, people being used... I know that feeling, and it's not a good one. Maybe that's why I am so sensitive to the whole situation, but even so.... this is so wrong! It's also ruining my friendship with my friend, I am someone who values trust and honesty very much, and to see her not give a damn about it in this situation makes it question our friendship... I also have my own struggles with anxiety and depression and this is just not helping... it's causing me a lot of stress...even though it shouldn't...
In the end they're both adults and make their own choices. But if this blows up one day... they will take me down with them because I knew about this all along...
I have told her I think it's wrong... but she doesn't seem to care...

Dr. Mark :

Hi! I'll be glad to help you with this issue.

Dr. Mark :

This is a very, very difficult situation indeed!

Dr. Mark :

I'm so sorry you're going through this; it must feel awful. It's hard to know what to do.

Dr. Mark :

What's your leaning at this time?

Dr. Mark :

What are you thinking the best thing to do is?

Customer:

Well, I can't ignore it... I have tried, but it's there..every day, at home, at work... I can't really avoid it. I have been thinking of writing my friend a letter...I am just better with words when I can write things down... and try my best to explain how this is affecting other people. but I dunno if it will work...

Dr. Mark :

In my experience, I haven't seen a letter from a third person working. That's because

Dr. Mark :

I've found that if she is having sex with him,

Dr. Mark :

part of the attraction for her is that there's like a "forbidden fruit" part to it

Dr. Mark :

or else it's because she imagines herself taking him away from the other woman.

Dr. Mark :

That type of desire and not caring about others' feelings

Dr. Mark :

doesn't usually translate to caring about how you might feel in a letter. What do you think?

Customer:

Probably... then what am I supposed to do...

Dr. Mark :

I only said that to make sure you recognize that if you DO write a letter, it's not to get her to stop, okay?

Dr. Mark :

I'm also assuming you can't change the living arrangements; you need to stay there and need to have a roommate.

Dr. Mark :

So, I think you do need to write a letter, but the letter needs to be for yourself.

Dr. Mark :

You will give it to her, but not with the hope that it will change her behavior.

Dr. Mark :

But you want to let her know that you feel very badly for what's happening to this other woman. Because you've been hurt yourself.

Dr. Mark :

And that it makes you feel uncomfortable to have her doing this in your home.

Dr. Mark :

Then, you want a second goal in the letter:

Dr. Mark :

if she is willing to talk with you about it, then you'd be happy to discuss why you think it's wrong, why it hurts the other woman so much, and why it's not fair.

Dr. Mark :

What do you think?

Customer:

but she's still gonna continue doing it though if she doesnt care how other people feel

Dr. Mark :

That's right.

Dr. Mark :

Again, remember: I was very careful to have us both agree that a letter wouldn't get her to stop, because I stated I also don't think she is acting like she cares how others feel.

Dr. Mark :

So, you're not trying to change her.

Dr. Mark :

You're trying to not be silent.

Dr. Mark :

Agreed?

Customer:

okay

Dr. Mark :

Because while she's being so uncaring, you on the other hand, are a caring person.

Dr. Mark :

You feel how wrong this is.

Dr. Mark :

And my concern is that you not lose that goodness that you have.

Dr. Mark :

Because you recognize that being around her is not great for your own values.

Dr. Mark :

But you can't leave the living situation, so you have to stay.

Dr. Mark :

Therefore, my concern here is for you to not be silent. And so the letter is for you to strengthen your own values, not to try to change her, okay?

Customer:

okay

Dr. Mark :

Just okay? Or do you think this is the right thing to do?

Customer:

It's the only thing I can do

Dr. Mark :

Yes. In life we often don't have the ability to do the best thing, we have the ability only to do what we CAN do.

Dr. Mark :

And this is what you can do. So feel good about yourself, okay?

Customer:

Okay, I'll try

Dr. Mark :

Good for you!


Okay, I wish you the very best!


 


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Customer:

thank you

Dr. Mark :

You are most welcome. If you could give a rating before you leave, I'd be grateful. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX

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