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Posted by: Confused | 2019/09/11

Should-I-be-Worried

Hi, Just to explain in a nutshell, My wife has a female work colleague at work who she became close to. The colleague dated a guy from the same place and he also became "friends" with my wife... after a while the female colleague broke up with the guy leaving him feeling depressed so my wife became the shoulder to lean on during his down time. The female colleague asked my wife to help him move on because she was done with him. this went on for a while when my wife had to encourage him to move on and that he will find someone else... she even started to go to his house after work to talk with him as she says he was an emotional wreck and had no one else to talk to. Now every now and then he will drop her off at home at work because they work for the same firm. I did meet him already. now my concern is, yes she gives advice to him on trying to move forward but you see each other everyday at work, why go to his house where he stays alone and go talk about his issues, why not go somewhere public... why does he have to drop her off at home now and then when she has made arrangements for transport with someone else. Am I being to insecure? Things can happen in a heart beat and the fact that my wife and I spend so little time with each other, can it be she finds his company more appealing because she got to involved already and vise-versa for him? he is now single and knows we are married with kids, but can he develop feelings for my wife without even noticing it because the love being around each other?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink
- 2019/09/12

Pshew !  A complex situation.  Of course it's possible there's something emotional going on between them, and it's also possible that there's not.  Both of them may be getting unfortunately too close emotionally without really realizing it.  Some people, perhaps your wife is one, are nice, kind, folks who basically want to help other people. Some have a sort of rescue fantasy that they can sort out other people's problems if they try really hard and spend a lot of time with them : and this usually is not anywhere near as helpful or useful as they hope.
Often, for instance, the unhappy person really needs to take responsibility for their own situation, and this can be delayed or prevented by someone too kind blundering in and trying to do for them what they must do for themselves.   This is one of the things a proper professional counsellor learns early on. 
From what you say, this is a guy who grew fond of another woman, who then dumped him, whether for good or bad reasons.  That's upsetting, but not a major tragedy. It should not cause lasting emotional turmoil or misery unless the person was already off balance, vulnerable and miserable : in which case they probably deserve the assistance of a professional counsellor or psychologist. 
That is what your wife should have suggested at the start, and what she should be suggesting right now.
Apart from being an amateur struggling where a professional is needed, she's also too close personally, and too much a part of the original problem, to be able to be independently and neutrally helpful.
If he developed appendicitis, of course she'd be sympathetic, but she'd make sure he went to see a surgeon, rather than trying to remove the source of the problem on the kitchen table with a steak knife.
She's a friend, not a bandage. Yes, of course, it is probably not helpful for either of them to spend so much time together alone talking about how bad he feels. Yes, both are probably emotionally vulnerable at a time like this, and could become more emotionally involved with each other than would be wise for either of them.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Confused | 2019/09/17

Hi again. Just to give feedback. I spoke to my wife and she does understand but she mentioned that she does like him as a friend and enjoys his company hence the fact that they "hangout" also she said that because I know she gets along more with guy friends than lady friends It shouldn't be an issue for me and because our life is so routine these days she needs to broaden her friends circle. But for some reason I still feel a bit uneasy with this and the fact that she spends already time at work where she sees him and also now more time after work and we now get less time together as a married couple. I feel like my wife having him as a friend isn't a problem but I need to be involved more because I know if roles were reversed she would have put a stop to it a long time ago. She invited him this past weekend to our pace for a BBQ & she is now trying to "hook" him up with her cousin. Am I to harsh or am I right in wanting to be involved if it comes to the two of them...

Reply to Confused
Posted by: Anonymous | 2019/09/16

Wajelwa klaar

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Should-I-be-Worried | 2019/09/13

Thank you so much. This is exactly how I was feeling but I didn't know how to approach my wife without making her feel that I'm insecure or anything that might lead to an argument. Now I can have an open discussion with her and express my views as currently I am feeling neglected as she will always be worried about how he feels and not me and what its doing to our marriage. Thank you yet again for the feedback. Have a great day :)

Reply to Should-I-be-Worried

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