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Married man wants to 'be friends'

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#1 Sep 9 - 4PM
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

Married man wants to 'be friends'

Not necessarily anything to do w/NPD, but just a question and in need of some advice. Recently, I became friends with a guy at my gym. Nothing big. Just casual chatting. We exchanged email addresses, and I thought he was single. Many ppl at the gym do not wear wedding rings, even if married, but, for some reason I assumed he was single. Ok. We talk on instant messenger last night, and I ask about his diet. He replies…’’well, I tend to eat whatever my wife cooks.’’ Meanwhile, this man has commented that he finds me ‘’beautiful,’’ and that he is ‘’smitten.’’ These were words he used prior to mentioning his wife, so…when I found out he was married, I was taken aback. I didn’t comment though, just took it all in. This morning, I sent him an email…telling him we probably shouldn’t talk anymore. He’s married, and I didn’t mean to be flirty. He replied this afternoon, that he is the one who owes me an apology, and he went on and on…saying he was sorry if he made me uncomfortable, but he hopes that this doesn’t cause me to go away, and that I will still be open to having a friendship with him. My gut tells me, to not reply. But, then I feel rude. I dunno…what do you all think? I don’t want a friendship anymore. It just feels like we’re doing something behind his wife’s back, and a husband shouldn’t be telling another woman she’s beautiful and he’s smitten… He’s a christian man, we’ve talked about our faith. Seems like a nice person, but this cannot lead anywhere…and if I were the wife, I wouldn’t be happy about my husband talking like this…what do you all suggest? Reply or not reply to the email?

Sep 10 - 8PM
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

I replied...

Please don't be mad at me...but, I replied. Nothing major, just a thank you for your note, and I wish you a good weekend. No reply from him...and I don't want one. Just saying, no reply from him. Why oh why do I do this. I think there is something inside me that feels 'bad' and 'rude' for lack of better words, when someone apologizes, to ignore him/her. Anyways, that's that. What's done is done. But, that's it...no more. I'm not writing anymore. I feel rather dumb right now. You all give me advice, I take it...and then I don't take it. :=(
Sep 11 - 9PM (Reply to #83)
enpsychopedia r... (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Be careful out there. This is

Be careful out there. This is just classic. My idiot told me he was married, too, just wanted a nice back and forth. He asked me for photo and then then went berserk about how gorgeous I was yadayadayada when he received it. The compliments always came with the the caveat that he was married...However, strangely, after he got my photo his status changed to "unhappily married" Interesting isn't it? I feel like a real dimbulb now, but had no previous experience with anyone like this, so was completely unaware of all of the signals. Once he had his hooks in me, he pretty much tried to control me from a distance with softness, gentleness, humour, and love. Deidre--the guy should NEVER have commented on your appearance, unless you asked him, "So do you think I'm gorgeous?!!" He's so fishing for a fast f***. You're a good person, like we all are. We have to start being less kind and open. My guard is up now....forever.
Sep 11 - 9PM (Reply to #82)
enpsychopedia r... (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Be careful out there. This is

Be careful out there. This is just classic. My idiot told me he was married, too, just wanted a nice back and forth. He asked me for photo and then then went berserk about how gorgeous I was yadayadayada when he received it. The compliments always came with the the caveat that he was married...However, strangely, after he got my photo his status changed to "unhappily married" Interesting isn't it? I feel like a real dimbulb now, but had no previous experience with anyone like this, so was completely unaware of all of the signals. Once he had his hooks in me, he pretty much tried to control me from a distance with softness, gentleness, humour, and love. Deidre--the guy should NEVER have commented on your appearance, unless you asked him, "So do you think I'm gorgeous?!!" He's so fishing for a fast f***. You're a good person, like we all are. We have to start being less kind and open. My guard is up now....forever.
Sep 11 - 9PM (Reply to #81)
enpsychopedia r... (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Be careful out there. This is

Be careful out there. This is just classic. My idiot told me he was married, too, just wanted a nice back and forth. He asked me for photo and then then went berserk about how gorgeous I was yadayadayada when he received it. The compliments always came with the the caveat that he was married...However, strangely, after he got my photo his status changed to "unhappily married" Interesting isn't it? I feel like a real dimbulb now, but had no previous experience with anyone like this, so was completely unaware of all of the signals. Once he had his hooks in me, he pretty much tried to control me from a distance with softness, gentleness, humour, and love. Deidre--the guy should NEVER have commented on your appearance, unless you asked him, "So do you think I'm gorgeous?!!" He's so fishing for a fast f***. You're a good person, like we all are. We have to start being less kind and open. My guard is up now....forever.
Sep 11 - 10AM (Reply to #78)
Smitten Kitten (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Deidre40,

I *think* you don't want him to feel badly about you or have a bad opinion of you. I think that is why you feel the need to look like the nice, caring person that you are, even for people who don't deserve it. I think it would bother you for him to think you were a cold-hearted bitch or something. So you show him how kind-hearted you are, but ultimately he will use that as an opening to try to gain entrance again. So just be aware and block him when it comes. You are a kind-hearted soul, D. But you have to start reserving it for those who deserve it. This man does not. But I think I understand how you don't want him thinking of you as being unkind. None of us want people to think that about us, and I also think some of use have our self-esteem tied up with that. I know part of what keeps me from "unleashing" my venom on my ex, besides giving him supply, is that it would confirm his opinion that I'm just like his bitchy, "crazy" ex-wife. I don't want him to remember me as the crazy ex he got rid of. I would rather him remember me as the special one he let get away. I know I shouldn't care what he thinks, because it's like worrying about the perspective of a cockroach. But I know where you're coming from. Don't ever hate yourself for being human. Just don't ignore the red flags and your gut feelings. And while you may choose to ignore advice on HOW to handle things to where you're comfortable, don't ignore the advice that you need to avoid this narc.
Sep 11 - 2PM (Reply to #80)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

smitten kitten

You're right on this. That's it, exactly. Feeling like an idiot today. Should never have replied. Oh well...I'm ok, though. lol @ perspective of a cockroach. lol ain't that the truth. ;) thanks sk for your insight.
Sep 11 - 11AM (Reply to #79)
WakingUP (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

YES!! What Smitten Kitten said!

Word. I cannot stress this enough. 100,000% right on!
Sep 10 - 8PM (Reply to #74)
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

D, I can't say I'm not disappointed, as I don't think

he deserved a word. I mean, the guy didn't say up front he was married. He was trolling. He's oozing slimeball! I hope at least you kept it brief, like "Don't sweat it." (period, end of story.) Deidre, please do not take this harshly, as I say this with all kindness and concern...you are a sweetheart, a very compassionate soul, but this is what you may have to get in touch with. Don't show this warmth to just anyone who does not deserve it or hasn't earned it. Otherwise, you will be an open mark to these creeps. Sometimes, it's ok to be rude. He didn't earn crap. He mislead you, and a couple of nice compliments doesn't mean he was a friend even. He didn't deserve that IMO, but it was your call to make! Thanks for sharing and being honest. Hugs! xoxo
Sep 10 - 9PM (Reply to #75)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

caligirl

I wish we lived closer, caligirl. :=) You're right, and I need to hear this. I agree. I'm getting better...I am. Sometimes, I have my come off as a tough girl days, other days...not so much. But, getting there. This is still part of my healing process. I'm over the ex, but still have some to learn in how to read people better, and not be swept away. Or worried about what they think. I am getting better with it, but there was still this part of me that felt concerned with what this man thought of me. Ugh...anyways, onward upward! thank you, dear friend.
Sep 10 - 9PM (Reply to #76)
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

D, you're welcome! Sometimes we have to

experience something for ourselves to learn. I understand bc this is something I had to learn, being too nice to people who we don't really know or haven't earned our kindness and trust (yep, we think alike). If only we lived closer. :( It doesn't matter what he thought bc he was a nobody (to you). Personally, I think he deserves to have his ass kicked! Haha! But you're right, onward and upward, chalk it up as a lesson learned, let it go, and don't give this another thought. Ok? xoxo
Sep 10 - 10PM (Reply to #77)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

caligirl

okay. :=) ((hugs and thank you)) seriously.
Sep 10 - 1PM
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

Just to share-have NOT heard

Just to share-have NOT heard back from him. But, why do I somehow feel badly about this? :=( Like *I* did something wrong? Sigh.
Sep 10 - 2PM (Reply to #69)
WakingUP (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

You feel bad because you play

You feel bad because you play by the same rules as the rest of the "normals." (which is a good thing!) Narcs don't play by those rules, and so to effectively "deal with" them, you have to play by a different set of rules. The rules that govern dealing with a narc fall outside the lines of "polite behavior" that most of us, especially women, were socialized to accept. Don't EVER feel bad about protecting yourself.
Sep 10 - 8PM (Reply to #71)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

waking up

I like how you say this...'don't ever feel bad about protecting yourself.' Somewhere along the lines, I learned that others were more important than me. I have since broken that cycle of thinking, but it creeps back into my head at times. Thanks for this, waking up.
Sep 11 - 9AM (Reply to #72)
WakingUP (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Thanks Deidre - I would

Thanks Deidre - I would guess that a lot of people on the forums are empaths - People who tend to put others before themselves. Which normally, is a lovely trait. I think I'm learning though, that people need to earn my trust and respect, its valuable enough that it shouldn't be given away for free. That's a hard thing to do when I've lived my whole life believing that there is good in everyone. I'm still really struggling with this right now. :(
Sep 10 - 5PM (Reply to #70)
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

D, what WakingUp said!

Honey, I understand why you feel bad, but you held a boundary that was absolutely correct and appropriate in the world of "normals." When and if you run into this guy at the gym, you'll be your polite self, and don't doubt yourself! Ns can smell self-doubt or guilt. You did the right thing, and saved yourself a lot of headache at the very least. xoxo
Sep 10 - 11AM
Smitten Kitten (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Run Away!

And don't look back! What he is doing is sooooo inappropriate as a married man and reminds me of what my exN did with me on FB. I had no idea he was married until I was already emotionally hooked, and of course it was a "terrible marriage" where they were talking divorce but only staying together at that point for their son. Oh yeah, and he was a "Christian man" also. Barf. This guy is looking to hook up with someone on the side, not a "friend." And my guess would be it isn't his first time, and my Narc detector is going off big time. He may not be, but any time a married man is making "friends" with women, you can bet at the very least he's a philanderer. And the flattery? That's another trick of the Narc trade. Ouch. So sorry, Deidre, this one is no good either.
Sep 10 - 1PM (Reply to #67)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

smitten kitten

Yea, I hear you. I try to give the benefit of the doubt when/where I can, in life. With this guy, the flattery and so on didn't start right away. We had normal dialogue...about work outs, faith, etc. His wife never came up. I knew he had kids, so I wondered...but, when he brought it up on IM the other night, it took me aback. But, maybe I should have known, and so I'm feeling badly that I didn't ask outright. I wasn't interested in the guy...hard to explain. I guess if he pursued me, I would have thought about it, but it felt like a friendship, until he said he was smitten. Oh brother, just another thing to put in my 'lessons learned' box. Thx for your feedback with this, SK. Hope you are doing well.
Sep 10 - 4AM
Kitty02 (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Run

What a creep. Why would you be rude not replying? I think he is rude to his wife and his faith. There is nothing nice about him, Christian men do not tell women they are smitten and e~mail them when they are married. I'd be really put out if a married man done this to me, funny he didn't tell you he was married before acquiring your e~mail address..... his poor wife. Block him asap.
Sep 10 - 1PM (Reply to #64)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

kitty

The good thing is...he did finally mention his wife. And it was in such a random round about way. When I asked what his diet's like, as it related to working out...and he mentioned about his wife's cooking. It was just a strange way to bring her up, but grateful he did! Thanks for replying, kitty. I have a feeling MANY married men's wives don't have a clue when it comes to stuff. There's another guy at the gym...very flirty. I know he's married. I would not flirt back, just be polite, whatever. I'd always be trying to walk away, during many midsentences, with him. lol Well, one day his wife showed up at the gym, and this guy acted like he didn't know me. It was sad. I didn't say hi, just observed from a distance...and his head was down, and how he interacted with his wife was so weird. There's an old saying...'you can tell a lot about a person by who he/she is married to.' Yep, you can.
Sep 10 - 4PM (Reply to #65)
Kitty02 (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Deidre40

I'm so glad he did tell you, and you have your clued up head on, he was testing the waters to find out if he could bust up your boundaries. The amount of married/attached guys you get out there trying it on is mind blowing, it puts you off going out socializing sometimes. I went out for a drink with my friend and her new boyfriend( they have been together 7 weeks and are attached at the hip but that's another story) The boyfriends friend called him and ended coming along for a drink too. Not a bad looking guy and very fit, apparently he does some sort of fighting sport outside of work. Turns out he has been in a relationship for 11 years, she was 17 when he met her and he was 27. He was very open that he was unfaithful to his long term partner. He said 'it's what men do', if it is handed to him on a plate he is up for it. Classy bloke(not). If I didn't feel so sorry for his long term partner it would be funny the way he was behaving. He was in our company all night and was all over me like a rash it was very embarrassing for him, because I thought he was a complete knob. While he was out his phone kept ringing but he ignored it and it turns out, according to my friends boyfriend, it was his long term partner calling to find out where he was and what's the betting that wasn't the first time he'd put her through that....what a piece of work...poor woman. I sometimes wonder if I'll ever want another man in my life.
Sep 10 - 12AM
freaked
freaked's picture

change your gym. stay

change your gym. stay away. Big red flag.
Sep 9 - 7PM
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

D, step away from the married man! jk, lol

Seriously though, been there, done that. The guy started out a little more covert though ("I'm separated. She's mean and crazy."), and then wishy washy, and then "Can we be friends? She's being nice." I nipped it in the bud though. Christian or no, don't go there. This is one of those avoid at all cost r/s's. As a Christian, even more reason he should not be chumming up to single women. Married men have no business pursuing friendships with single women, rare exception you see someone at golf lessons or social outtings, like church, but your wife is there often or mutual friends, etc. With the guy I dealt with, he was beginning to present with some N red flags. The experience set me back in my healing, and I was starting to like the guy. You already told him how you felt about it, so there is really no need to respond back. If you see him at the gym, smile, be your sweet self, but keep it just that.
Sep 9 - 8PM (Reply to #56)
Deidre40
Deidre40's picture

Caligirl

I couldn't agree more. It bugs me, because caligirl....he really seemed like a sweet man. I am not going to reply, but just reread his email, which I need to delete (I can hear hunter now lol)...and it just seemed so sincere. He wrote...''I hope this doesn't send you away.'' I can't help but think that's an odd statement. Ugh. I am glad I brought this to you all here, because while my gut told me what to do, I still needed some affirmation from you all. SO THANKS!
Sep 10 - 12PM (Reply to #59)
Smitten Kitten (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Mine Too

I also thought mine was a sweet man. That's his M.O. Everyone thinks he's just the sweetest, nicest guy. Until the mask comes off and then he's the meanest, most sadistic, monster I've ever encountered. Not physically, but mentally and emotionally cruel beyond belief. Mine also said something similar: ''I hope this doesn't send you away.'' Not the exact same words, but close enough and had the exact same meaning.
Sep 10 - 5PM (Reply to #61)
Sherbear
Sherbear's picture

Incredible....

Mine said...."I hope you don't get mad at me and I lose my best friend." over and over and over.....i was always like, huh? why would i get mad at you? and if i did call him on something, his defense was...."you're best off to think of me like a big, dumb labrador." wtf????? what a freaking idiot.
Sep 10 - 12PM (Reply to #60)
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

Smitten K, I think this belongs in the Narc Handbook!lol

Both guys said this in my idealization phase, WTF? It's like, "Hello, you barely KNOW me!" But yet, I was way up on that pedestal, the princess, miss perfect, right? So perhaps this is their deep-rooted insecurity calling out, that lil' boy saying, "Please don't ever leave me." And God, it's just so flattering and also so pitiful and vulnerable, it tears at the heartstrings; and also, seemingly so strong to be able to say this, how can it not be admired?! I know *I* could never say that. My exN was so cold and cruel, not a drop of real warmth inside. When I'd see his nice persona in public with strangers, it started to wear on me bc I would be thinking, "This is so fake. He's really a jerk." Another red flag is how sweet they come across, too good to be true, and I think this is an early warning sign we all need to heed, bc there is NICE, and then there is too perfect, sticky sweet, syrupy nice, that has you going, "OMG, I think I've found the man of my dreams, my prince, my knight..." or what have you.
Sep 9 - 8PM (Reply to #57)
Caligirl
Caligirl's picture

D, you're welcome:) I'm glad to see ya have this

under control! Btw, the married guy I was seeing said almost the same thing on like the 2nd date, after I told him my exN said, "I hope I never do something that would make you go away." So, let's see, once said by my exN; said by a suspected N; and now your married guy. That would be enough right there! I too had the same gut churning feeling when he mimicked it. That guy you met, he isn't right. Stepping away, good job, girl! I'm so proud of you! ;o)
Sep 10 - 12PM (Reply to #58)
Smitten Kitten (not verified)
Anonymous's picture

Caligirl

"I hope I never do something that would make you go away." Mine said something very similar. He said numerous times, and I don't remember when it started: "I have a feeling you're going to stop talking to me for good one day."
Sep 9 - 7PM
JRB123
JRB123's picture

No Contact!

Don't do it! Go no contact and if you see if him the gym just keep a professional but polite distance. The narc I met last year was a married man 'friend' and I am married too. He started online chats with me and each time he escalated the conversations to push boundaries and then out of the blue I was D&D'd. Luckily it didn't progress to a physical affair but I can see how easily it could've done. I went NC as soon as I realised what had happened but sadly I have to see him often. I ignore him but if I come face to face I will say hello. I now realise that I was not the only one and this man plays games with quite alot of other women and just seems to want to be a hero/ stud. So my advice would be avoid, avoid, avoid! Also in the early days narcs will try and hook you in by lots of flattery so although I am sure you are a very attractive woman don't be sucked in by his words. Steer well clear and if I was you I would not reply to any more emails from now on. You will get hurt by this man if it carries on - get out now before it gets any deeper. Wishing you well.