How do I deal with the aftermath of this weird lie?
January 11, 2013 2:29 PM Subscribe
My husband lied to me in a multi-part, well crafted way, about something stupid. I'm not sure if I'm being unreasonable, and I don't know where to go from here.
posted by anonymous to Human Relations (48 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
To get this out of the way up front, this isn't about infidelity.
Backstory: Joe and I have been married for 20 years & have a child. We have a great relationship, with the occasional difference of opinion and even a rare fight, but never bicker. We treat each other with kindness. We love each other.
When we met we were both very casual pot smokers but I quit many years ago. Joe kept smoking about 1x weekly. About two years, after I successfully quit cigarettes, he told me he'd like to quit smoking pot. I expressed my support. He did quit.
We have some good friends (Will & Kat) who recently moved almost an hour away. We helped them move, and their new house had a problem that Joe offered to help fix. One Saturday Joe got a call & took the call into our office. He came out & said it was Will and he really needed help with the aforementioned problem. Joe seemed slightly annoyed & told me he didn't really want to drive all the way over there right then, but he reluctantly left to help.
He texted me barely over an hour later to say he was leaving. I responded, "wow, you're fast!" He called & told me how he fixed the problem, with a good amount of detail.
About a week later, I was paying bills online out of our joint account and I noticed a $100 cash withdrawal from a city about 45 minutes away, that neither of us has been to recently. I freaked because we recently experienced identity theft & had finally gotten everything cleared up. Joe explained that he had been working in that city & had to purchase some items at a place that doesn't take credit cards (he has a company card). He said he forgot to tell me, but he had receipts and would get reimbursed.
The next weekend, Kat invited me for pedicures & she & I stopped by their house. The problem was not fixed. I mentioned it, and thank god I didn't humiliate myself further by saying "Joe told me he fixed that!" Kat said, "Oh, Will's been meaning to call Joe but hasn't gotten around to it!"
I drove home in a daze and confronted him, thinking the worst (affair, hookers.) Well, he told me everything. Instead of helping Will, he was buying pot. He showed me the pot, some texts, & other stuff as proof, since I thought he was cheating. Everything makes sense, except the fact that he lied in the first place! I do not care whatsoever if he smokes! Really! I do care about all those lies, though, & he can't explain to me why he lied. He keeps saying "I don't know."
He seems very dispassionate and robotic when he apologizes. He lied so easily. I'm shocked. I 100% believed in his "reluctance" to "go to Will's". He looked in my eyes, smiled, and lied about the cash withdrawal with total conviction. I never would have believed he was capable of this, and I'm crushed.
Where do I go from here? Divorce seems insane. Therapy seems like overkill for this one-time thing. I waver between thinking that I'm overreacting and thinking that it's a relationship deal breaker. I feel so utterly disrespected, betrayed, and disgusted. It's been a month and I'm as confused as ever. I just don't think, "I'm sorry, I don't know" is enough to fix this betrayal.
Am I overreacting? What should I do? What's the next step?