Is it okay to get in touch with and communicate with (via Facebook, text or phone) an old college love (it's been over 25 years) and not share it with your spouse? What signal does this send to both the spouse and the old love, especially if you consider seeing your old love while you're on a business trip? If the spouse finds out, how do you get through it? The spouse has not met the old love and thinks this kind of behavior is cheating.
It is okay to get in touch with an old love if your intention is to be a friend, but it is not okay to keep that information from your spouse, and it is unacceptable to visit them on a business trip without first asking consent from your partner. If you choose to withhold this type of information from your partner, then you are exhibiting shady behavior, and this will undermine the trust in your relationship. You are going behind your partners back, disrespecting your relationship, and sending the message to your partner that you are not satisfied and now want to look elsewhere. Your partner gave you their heart to honor and cherish, and this behavior shows a blatant disregard for their feelings. As for your ex, you are sending them the signal that you want to rekindle the old flame, and you are exposing everyone involved in this love triangle to drama, heartache and pain. If the spouse finds out, you will have done severe damage to the relationship. Your partner will be unable to trust you, and this will drive them to catch the crazy. Every waking moment they will wonder if you are cheating, if you cheated in the past, how many others you have been with, and how long the infidelity's lasted. They will question their marriage, wonder if it was all a lie, and want to know if you ever really loved them. The emotional devastation that this type of choice wreaks upon a marriage will take years to heal, and you may end up needing a good lawyer. Sneaking around and withholding this information from your partner is cheating, and an incredibly selfish choice. It will end up damaging the relationship and may even lead to divorce.
I met my ex back in high school and we instantly became boyfriend and girlfriend. We dated (and fell in puppy love) for a little over a year, before he cheated on me with my best friend. That break up was really hard because I felt betrayed by the both of them. We lost contact after that, but I ran into him a year later. Upon seeing him, I forgot everything he had done and we began dating again. We dated for another year and fell in real love. He even proposed marriage. I was excited because I had let him go, and he came back. But I knew it wasn't going to last because I didn't approve of his lifestyle. However, I wanted to be that down girl for him. We ended up breaking up again. That was a year ago. I hadn't really forgot about him but that break up wasn't as hard as the first. Recently, I thought about him and decided to see if he had any social networking sites. I searched, not really wanting to get in contact, but just to see if he was still alive. After searching his name, I saw that not only is he alive, but is single and is "looking for a wife". He also has recently moved back in town. Now I really want to get in contact with him, however, I'm moving next month from the West Coast to Hawaii. The prospect of a relationship is slim to none. Knowing this, I wanted your advice on whether I should get in contact to say a final goodbye or just let the past be in the past and move on with this new chapter in my life?
It sounds like you keep holding onto a fantasy of what your life would be like with your ex, instead of facing the reality in front of you. It is clear that you tried to have a relationship with this man and both times it didn't work out because his values are not in line with your values. The first time he cheated, you broke it off because you wanted to be in a monogamous committed relationship with someone who respects you. The second time you broke it off because he lived a lifestyle that you didn't approve of. These are huge red flags smacking you in the face, and you need to heed the signs. Your desire to make contact with him stems from your 'want' to be a wife, not necessarily to be with him. You can stop wondering 'what if' and recognize that your fantasy of being a wife to this man will not match the reality. You will repeat the same mistakes and end up back where you were the first time. The best choice is to leave the past in the past and move forward with your new life in Hawaii. As you begin dating again, I would recommend that you work with a relationship coach to help you define the type of man that will be right for you, and learn the best way to weed out the duds and find yourself a stud.