Ask Alma…My unfaithful brother-in-law

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Husband still hits the clubs—without me

Dear Alma, I recently got married to a man I dated for six years. We have a wonderful relationship—open and trusting—and I couldn’t ask for anything more. However, he likes to go quite often (about once a week) to the club. I’m never invited. He acts as if it would be a sin if I were to go with him. Sometimes he doesn’t get home until after midnight. I will trust him until he gives me a reason not to.

If I were to go out in the same way with my girlfriends, he would get irate, wondering what I’m doing, who we’re with, etc. When he tells me he’s going out, I never get mad (I definitely don’t want him going to a club mad at me!). I just don’t know if I should start “putting my foot down,” so to speak.

How can I get him to see things from my perspective? For all I know, he could be in another woman’s bed! All I have to go on is trust. What do you think?—Left at home, Washington, D.C.

Hey Now Lefty, I think is the same thing you think. You just want me to say it. You aren’t doing yourself or your husband any favors by not telling the truth about how you feel. If an issue doesn’t sit well with you, you should be straightforward. Honesty helps to build a genuine and trustworthy commitment. If simply loving somebody could make a person do or be better, we’d all be doing the right thing, ‘cause we all got somebody who loves us.

You asked if you should put your foot down? Hello-o-o, you’re still standing on your tippy toes right now, so you’re not in a position to put your foot down. You lead him to believe that his clubbing is fine with you. To make matter worse, you even send him off with a kiss on the cheek and a smile. Because, like you said, you don’t want to send him to the club mad.

Don’t be angry with him for doing what he’s doing when you’ve told him it’s alright to do it.  Don’t get me wrong; I understand what you’re saying, and I agree with you. I wouldn’t want my husband at the club either. But this should have been discussed and clarified early on.

First things first: Start telling the truth. I’d suggest you take the time to tell him how you really feel. There’s no need to be hostile. Part of this is your fault, so you need to come clean with patience in one hand and understanding in the other. An old Chaka Khan song comes to mind—Once you get started, snap, snap, Ooooh, it’s hard to stoppppp, yea, you just can’t stop now!!! (Sorry, I lost my train of thought.) Maybe he can go to the club every other week, or maybe you can go with him. The two of you need to decide what’s best. I don’t think he’ll stop right away, but I’m sure there’s a place in the middle that will satisfy both of you.—Alma

(Email questions to: alwaysaskalma@yahoo.com.  Follow her on Facebook at “Ask Alma” and twitter @almaaskalma.)

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