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Navy Wife Thinks an Open Relationship Is the Way to Go

Ms. Vicki

Dear Ms. Vicki,

I have been married to my husband who is in the Navy for almost three and a half years. When we met, I was hesitant to date him because I was going through a divorce and because of him being in the military.

I was used to seeing people go through heartaches after meeting other people who are in the military. I have this mentality that "they come and go after six months ... why should I bother?"

I told him that my previous marriage was filled with deception, emptiness and lots of heartache. It completely turned my point of view in life, particularly in relationships.

I told him that if we got married I wanted him to just be honest with me if he wanted something outside of our marriage, that I'd rather him tell me than do it behind my back. We made everything official during the summer of the same year and got married a month after my divorce was final.

Everything was great until we got to his new command. My husband and I didn't have any intimate connection for a year and a half. It felt like he just didn't want to look at me anymore.

For the longest time, I tried mending what could be invisible small cracks, spicing everything up between us, but to no avail. I eventually gave up and started talking to him about having fun, traveling and meeting people when he leaves for deployment. I told him that I wanted to be intimate with other people.

From the moment I brought it up, I was entirely honest with  him. I told him that I started a Tinder account and was talking to people on Tinder and other places online. I also told him that if he feels like meeting other people during his deployment, then he should go for it. I honestly don't have any qualms about it. Despite all of my honesty, he still felt the need to invade my privacy. I felt betrayed.

At this very moment, things between us have gone to ashes. He didn't realize until now that it was that bad. I felt like an afterthought. He wants to save our marriage and I said OK, but I still want to do what I want to do. I'm just that type of person. He apologized and I did too, but I know for a fact that it's not going to be the same between us with just the snap of our fingers. It will take time. 

I love my husband and I appreciate him doing his best to save the marriage, but he is just in my face now, forcing everything with all his might. I told him he cannot force everything on me now or else he will just tear everything out completely. I told him that I am at war with myself at the moment and that I just don't know what I want right now.

I reassured him that regardless of what's going on that I will always love him, will not leave him, and that if time permits us to grow old together, then we will. Was I wrong, Ms. Vicki? I tried to be honest and still ended up losing my marriage.
 
Sincerely,
The Tiny Chef

Dear Tiny Chef,

Yes, I think you were wrong to marry this man when you know you are the type of woman who doesn't mind being a hook-up girl on Tinder. As you know, Tinder is an app that allows you to search your immediate area for hook-ups. You like a photo, they like yours and you meet up.

It's really dangerous, too, because you really don't know who you are meeting. However, you are right about one thing: Honesty is the best policy.

But that's neither here nor there. It sounds like you both were "playas" before you decided to get married. What your husband didn't realize is that you are a woman who can outplay him.

Let me be honest, you are not the only person who is willing to be in an open relationship. It's more popular than a lot of people realize. Please know that I am not being judgmental. I don't think you have to hide behind a marriage when you don't want to. There are many people who know they don't have the personality type to be married. Nothing is wrong with being honest about that.

I do think your marriage happened too fast, and probably shouldn't have happened at all. Perhaps your husband thought he could change you, maybe he wanted a challenge. Now he realizes he doesn't have enough time in the day to watch you. I totally understand that he invaded your privacy, but now what happens next?

I do think this marriage is beyond over, but that's just my two cents. Thanks for writing me and for reading the column.

Sincerely,
Ms. Vicki

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Contributor

Ms. Vicki is a native of Dallas, has been the Dear Abby for the military community since her column began in 2005. A licensed therapist and licensed clinical social worker, Ms. Vicki holds a Master of Science in social work and a Master of Arts in clinical psychology.

Ms. Vicki appears regularly on Military.com and in the Fort Campbell Courier. Her column has also appeared in the Washington (D.C.) Times and in the Heidelberg (Germany) Post Herald. She has been featured on CNN, CBS, ABC and NBC.

Looking for advice about your military life? Email Ms. Vicki here. Find Ms. Vicki on Facebook here.  Find Ms. Vicki on Twitter here.

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