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I'm a Surety for my friend and I became physically involved

I'm a Surety for my...
I'm a Surety for my friend Mike and I became physically involved with him immediately after he got released from jail. I have known Mike and his wife Beth for ten years. Mike and I had a mutual crush from the first day we met. Most of the time his marriage has been under constant strain and endless marriage counselling. Beth was heavily flirting with men throughout the marriage that was evident to all their friends. He never cheated on her. Beth ended up cheating on Mike and filed for divorce a year ago. She was married before and cheated on her first husband many times. They have no kids. She didn't want them. Mike and I have been corresponding for a few years and once he suggested we "hook up", I refused because I did not believe in adultery. As soon as his wife filed for a divorce he was left devastated and we started to spend a lot of time together. Unfortunately, I made the mistake and we had sex, which I quickly ended, as I did not want to become the rebound woman. I liked him a LOT and we continued to correspond on a daily basis. His wife then made accusations towards him that put him in jail. In Canada a mere accusation made by the wife can place the man in jail until the trial. I knew for a FACT that these accusations were fabricated. While in jail he asked me for help. I obtained a lawyer and became his Surety. The conditions were that he had to reside at my house, but was not under house arrest. So all of a sudden Mike and I were living together under court order. We immediately threw ourselves into a relationship. His parents are from another country and had known me from the past. They were thrilled he was getting a divorce and adored me. Mike asked us to be exclusive and promised me a trip to Europe, and the moon. His parents were excited and were practically pushing him into this new relationship. As much as I really liked Mike, I was apprehensive about the speed and intensity everything was developing, - I felt I was still the rebound woman. On top of that I was his Surety, which is essentially his jailor. He then started talking constantly about his soon to be ex-wife. I started to feel uncomfortable and told him to consult his psychiatrist about our situation, thinking we should cool it until he could properly mourn the loss of his marriage. The psychiatrist agreed. Mike and I decided to put our sexual relationship on pause. Since we were living together, he did occasionally come to by bedroom in the middle of the night for sex. I like him a lot, but I reminded him of our agreement. Then everything started to go downhill. He was loosing interest in me quickly and was constantly talking about his wife. He started to drink a lot. We were started arguing more and more. He started avoiding me, and staying in his room. It just got worse. He started resenting me and we fought loudly every night. I tried to be as nice as I could but I couldn't stand the non stop discussions about his wife. He talked about her in glowing terms and never expressed any anger towards her, even after all the rotten things she did to him. I felt that he started to project all his anger towards me. The first chance he had to go out of town with his buddies he hooked up with the first woman that same night. She is married with 4 kids. They are now involved in a secret adulterous affair, which he denies. I'm positive they are having an affair. She lives in another city and Mike and her are glued on the internet affair between their weekend get togethers. Ever since their hook up Mike and I haven't spoken a word with each other. He's staying at his buddies place, occasionally coming by my place to pick up mail. He denies the affair and tells me I'm his best friend in the whole world. I told him bluntly that I know about his affair, which he denies naturally. We will not talk to me on the phone or return my e-mails. In the past he used to always tell me how much he disrespects anyone in an extramarital affair. Now it seems that he is actually falling in love with this married woman. I'm still his Surety and I'm making sure that we comply with court order. With one phone call I can say I no longer want to be his Surety and he would go back to jail. No matter how hurt and jealous I am, I would never do that and I think he knows it. He can't get another Surety and in that sense we are trapped for many months. He'll be back living with me next week, but it will be periodically out of necessity. I was falling in love with this man for a long time, and now I'm his 'Jailer'. He resents me. How do I live with him and endure being the witness to him falling in love with his new affair,-a married woman. Which one of us is the rebound relationship? As much as I love him, I don't want to resume anything with him. He hurt me too much, with more hurt to come. How do I deal with this very unique situation? Help.
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Answered in 20 minutes by:
4/24/2012
TherapistMarryAnn
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5,898
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Hello, I'd like to help you with your question.

It sounds like Mike tries to manipulate the situation to get what he needs. He told you early on when he was still with this wife that he would not cheat, possibly to get your sympathy because his wife was cheating on him. Then he changes gears and wants to be with you before his marriage is over, which you mentioned you felt was cheating. Now after telling you he loves you and having a relationship with you to the point you became his Surety, he gets involved with someone else, leaving you stuck watching over him so he doesn't go to jail.

This situation has hurt you deeply. Getting Mike out of your life is ideal, but since you cannot, you will need to find ways to cope with how he treats you and his behavior around this new woman.

The first thing you can do is set boundaries. As much as possible, keep Mike's things in certain areas of your home, areas that you do not use often. When he is not in your home, take his things and lock them in the room or storage space. That way, you do not see reminders of him all around you and it won't feel as if he is living there.

Also, set boundaries with his behavior. I'm not sure how much control you do have over what he does, but if you can, tell him what you expect from him while he is with you. Limits on internet time, chores, errands or things like that can keep him busy, help you, and keep your relationship on the surface rather than intimate. It changes your role as well.

Try emotionally removing yourself from his life. See him as a temporary inconvenience. Try to block out any thing about his personal life. If he tries to bring up his new relationship, change the subject. Stick to topics having to do with his situation only.

This may have been a rebound relationship for Mike. But it is more likely that Mike has personality issues and uses others. If that is the case, then no relationship he has is going to last long. He will probably not be able to settle with one person.

On the other hand, your feelings were genuine and you were hurt badly by Mike's actions. It may take you some time to heal. That will be difficult when you have to be involved in his life for the next few months. You may want to try maintaining a distance from him emotionally and as much as you can physically until he is out of your life and you can let go and mourn the relationship. Be sure to take care of yourself and allow yourself time to recover. Try removing all reminders of him so it is easier. Talk to friends and family for support and if you feel it's needed, talk to a counselor as well. It will help you let go and move on.

I hope this has helped you,
Kate

TherapistMarryAnn
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5,898
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
Kate"
Mike and I have not seen each other or spoken one word since his affair started with the married woman
a month ago. He has sent a few texts about how I'm the only true friend he has and what I did for him will bond us for life.
He started drinking a lot a few weeks after he got out of Jail as a reaction to the horrible allegations that his wife made. His personal belongings along with his computer were taken by her and she there's doctored photos of him with a gun, which has already been proven to be fake. The worst trouble Mike was ever in was a speeding ticket, so he was traumatized while spending two weeks in jail. He's now made plans with his doctor to stop the drinking.
For years Mike has always been so supportive of me and had a massive crush on me since the first day we met. We both had high moral values, which is why we never messed around. He comes from a very good family.
It seems to me that he went from one emotionally unavailable woman to this new woman who is very similar to his ex-wife. Jealousy seems to really work on him like magic. I've never used that tactic and I think that perhaps I never gave him the opportunity to "chase" me.
Mike is also very attracted to me, and was so proud to show me off as I'm considerably more attractive then the two game playing women. I'm sorry to sound so superficial, but I'm only mentioning it to see if it may shed any new light to this situation. Mike and I also shared many deep personal things that I know he never shared with another person. He told me that so many times, and I do know he was telling the truth.
Could this episode he's going through be "acting out" because he feels trapped by me being his Surety, his "Jailor" ? And also the overzealous reaction from his parents about the two of us ? I hate to even entertain the idea of having hope for Mike, but I must ask.
I'm going to see him in a couple of days for the first time since his affair begun. He's petrified at having to face me. My last e-mail to him was that I consider any future relationship between us over for good.
But, darn it, I can't help thinking he's "the one" for me. I can't think straight. Any words of wisdom?

It could be that he is acting out from the stress he has been under. It depends a lot on how he has acted when he was under stress before. If he tends to try to avoid his problems and seek out comfort through drinking or something similar, then it may show a pattern to his behavior. That would mean that his actions now are about stress.

Another consideration is that he feels his relationship with you is special. Sometimes men will see one woman as different than other women and they will consider that person the "ideal". They will act out with other women but always idealize the one woman who they put on a pedestal, always seeing her as the one person they feel most loved by. Being that you are his Surety, this adds weight to this possibility. Because of the nature of your relationship (you in an almost parental role over him) he may idealize you even further. If he is doing this with you, then he needs to realize it, seek counseling to help him deal with his feelings and start over with you.

It seems obvious that he has feelings for you. Whether or not you can reconnect at a healthy level based on his feelings is up in the air. You may need to wait until he is through this situation with the courts and his ex to see how he reacts. If he settles down and keeps expressing interest in you, then you may want to consider trying again. I would recommend counseling, however, before you try to start the relationship again. Mike needs to be sure he has no issues that would interfere with your relationship and end up hurting you again.

Kate

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