Chad Allen

Emotional Affair with a Bishop

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On 7/17/2018 at 8:21 AM, Lost Boy said:

To me marriage was always about the wife and not the kids.  I don't believe in staying together for the kids.  The kids will know that you and your wife are not in love and they will know.  And it will affect them.  Do not stay together for them.  You stay together for her.  Anything less is a lie.

 

I VEHEMENTLY disagree.  "I don't believe in staying together for the kids." is the same thing as I don't hold responsibility for my children.  Yes, the kids will know that you and your wife are having trouble ("not in love" - it really bugs me when people say this... especially thinking that their kids will know what love means when they themselves don't know what it is!).  What they will learn from it is that when the going gets rough, the family stick together and work it all out to come closer to Christ.  THAT IS WHAT LOVE MEANS!

Edited by anatess2

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On 7/20/2018 at 12:54 PM, anatess2 said:

I VEHEMENTLY disagree.  "I don't believe in staying together for the kids." is the same thing as I don't hold responsibility for my children.  Yes, the kids will know that you and your wife are having trouble ("not in love" - it really bugs me when people say this... especially thinking that their kids will know what love means when they themselves don't know what it is!).  What they will learn from it is that when the going gets rough, the family stick together and work it all out to come closer to Christ.  THAT IS WHAT LOVE MEANS!

The message isn't to stay together for the kids...  It is to stay together for the your wife.  She is the one you are married to.  She is the one you pledged your life to.

What the kids learn from parents that stay together that don't love each other is that marriage = unhappy life.  If you saw your parents always fighting, never loving...  would that not be a strong reason for you not want to get married in the future?

I am not trying to push this guy into a divorce.  The primary objective of marriage is to have a loving partner for the rest of your life.  And that is what the focus should be on is the loving partner.  If you or your spouse no longer want to have that loving relationship and all avenues have failed, then it is time to move on.

After years of a loveless marriage and an emotional affair on her part, I was about ready to call it quits.  Why would I want to stay married to someone who loves another?  not a lot of incentive is there?

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23 minutes ago, Lost Boy said:

What the kids learn from parents that stay together that don't love each other is that marriage = unhappy life.  If you saw your parents always fighting, never loving...  would that not be a strong reason for you not want to get married in the future?

Hi there - I'm a former kid from a home like that.   That situation was not a strong reason for me to not want to get married.  Watching my parents had me committed to finding ways to do better.  I remember being offended to high heaven when my mother's siblings voiced respect for my dad, because he stuck with her while they wouldn't have.

I can't even imagine what it would have been like, if I thought there was a chance that my dad would abandon my mother just because he was unhappy and unloved by her.  I'm a better husband because I watched my father do what was right, even though he got the short end of the stick.

I mean yeah, if x had happened, I would have thought differently.  But there was never any abuse, addiction, adultery.  Just a plain old every day bunch of contention and lack of love.  

LostBoy, I don't know how many kids fall into a perspective you describe.  But if you think there aren't those like me out there, you err.

Edited by NeuroTypical

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8 minutes ago, NeuroTypical said:

Hi there - I'm a former kid from a home like that.   That situation was not a strong reason for me to not want to get married.  Watching my parents had me committed to finding ways to do better.  I remember being offended to high heaven when my mother's siblings voiced respect for my dad, because he stuck with her while they wouldn't have.

I can't even imagine what it would have been like, if I thought there was a chance that my dad would abandon my mother just because he was unhappy and unloved by her.  I'm a better husband because I watched my father do what was right, even though he got the short end of the stick.

I mean yeah, if x had happened, I would have thought differently.  But there was never any abuse, addiction, adultery.  Just a plain old every day bunch of contention and lack of love.  

LostBoy, I don't know how many kids fall into a perspective you describe.  But if you think there aren't those like me out there, you err.

How do you know life wouldn't have been better for you had your dad moved on and found someone that loved him?  I personally would hate to see my parents miserable all the time.

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40 minutes ago, Lost Boy said:

The message isn't to stay together for the kids...  It is to stay together for the your wife.  She is the one you are married to.  She is the one you pledged your life to.

What the kids learn from parents that stay together that don't love each other is that marriage = unhappy life.  If you saw your parents always fighting, never loving...  would that not be a strong reason for you not want to get married in the future?

I am not trying to push this guy into a divorce.  The primary objective of marriage is to have a loving partner for the rest of your life.  And that is what the focus should be on is the loving partner.  If you or your spouse no longer want to have that loving relationship and all avenues have failed, then it is time to move on.

After years of a loveless marriage and an emotional affair on her part, I was about ready to call it quits.  Why would I want to stay married to someone who loves another?  not a lot of incentive is there?

Define Love.

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OP I know how you are feeling, of all people in the world the Bishop is the last to be an enabler to a vulnerable married woman. If he is guilty as charged You have every right to confront him and call him out on his BS, there is this culture of keeping things quiet in our church and to calmly sweep things that dont seem to be major under the rug. NOPE! Make a big deal of it or else he and others wont realize the severity of his actions, and yes, others need to know, as in his wife, the counselors etc..

 

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57 minutes ago, priesthoodpower said:

 NOPE! Make a big deal of it or else he and others wont realize the severity of his actions,

Remember that sentiment the next time you have any personal short coming or sin during this life.
Discretion, respect and due diligence for others are often labeled as, "sweeping it under the rug". Sometimes that behind the scene silent discretion is for the benefit of the victim and not so much for the perpetrator. 
Use a blow horn to sling each other's sins around and see how quickly the pool of those contemplating the repentance process dries up.

Even Bishops are human. Due process is the way the Lord has set out his system.

Edited by NeedleinA

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1 hour ago, NeedleinA said:

Remember that sentiment the next time you have any personal short coming or sin during this life.
Discretion, respect and due diligence for others are often labeled as, "sweeping it under the rug". Sometimes that behind the scene silent discretion is for the benefit of the victim and not so much for the perpetrator. 
Use a blow horn to sling each other's sins around and see how quickly the pool of those contemplating the repentance process dries up.

Even Bishops are human. Due process is the way the Lord has set out his system.

Your response is not a one size fits all recommendation. A man that is brave enough to cross the boundaries (emotionally) with his friends wife is a coward. I do not protect nor have the tolerance for cowards. The fact that he is in a position of power as the Bishop aka Spiritual leader and he allowed this to happen for months and is a family friend makes him an even bigger one.

My suggestion was for the OP to confront the bishop face to face at the OP's earliest opportunity, even if it means Thursday night after work at the bishops house while the Bishop  is having dinner with his family, a man that messes with another mans wife should expect repercussions, not violently of course but just words, whats wrong with words.

Story #1

My 15yr old daughter was at summer fun last week and one of the adult leaders, who is a goof ball but sometimes takes things too far, got annoyed that my daughter wouldnt stop speaking in a british accent. So he sprayed her with a spray bottle and told her it was toilet water. She repeatedly asked him if it really was toilet water and he would not respond yes or no. So my daughter called me crying that she got sprayed by toilet water. I rushed down there and walked in the middle of the room where they were having closing ceremonys and ask Who is Mr. XXXX? He raised his hand, I pulled him to the side and we conversed in a normal tone which I dont think everyone overheard but just the fact that I was there meant something was up. He swore that it wasnt toilet water and it was just a big misunderstanding so he offered an apology to my daughter, we shook hands and I left. He did not respect the feelings of my daughter by admitting to her that it wasnt toilet water, instead he left her wondering in fear. My first reaction was to tell her to let it slide, just take a shower when you come home and then Ill call his manager but no, his actions do not deserve a respectful and discrete response. The Lord has no problem with the way I handled the situation.

Story #2

10 yrs ago a father in our ward went on a business trip over seas, he had an affair during his trip. He came home and the wife found out so she started to make plans to leave him. One Sunday as they (him, her and the kids) were walking toward the entrance of the Chapel I had no idea what was going on with them so I asked, "are you guys coming to the ward activity next week?" She said, "No he cheated on me, were getting a divorce and im moving back home tmrw!". Im sure the Lord has no problem that she wasnt discrete and respectful of his character.

 

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I’ve found myself in a similar situation. My wife is the RS president and does have a lot to communicate with the bishop about. We had talked and I knew a lot of their talking has been more than church business. To some extent that is to be expected. I’ve felt uncomfortable about the frequency of their texting, calls, and “meetings” but I mostly thought I was being unreasonable and jealous for no reason. Yesterday, I decided to look at her text messages with the bishop. I had expected to see church conversation I’d have to skip by quickly to avoid seeing others personal details. I didn’t however run into that problem at all. What I found was:

- frequent messaging throughout every day. 11pm-12am + and first thing in the morning. 

- messages that referred to me and his wife as “people” listening etc. 

- comments like “that was really secial to me” and “me too”

- lots of scripture talk - spiritual insights as I’d expect but more that she’s ever shared with me even when I try to talk about them. 

- reference to “our temple session” as my wife has been going every Saturday morning and turns out he’s her “temple buddy”

- a comment about her favorite thing about him is when he hugs her. 

- discussing how he’s “sharing” his location with her on his phone and how they hope they never feel the need to stop sharing that. 

- the phrase “i love you my friend” and “I love you too” as if the friend part would make me feel better

- things she and I had talked about in private repeated for discussion. Including indication that they had discussed our intimacy and even past sins in detail (yeah, this one is questionable since he’s the bishop but telling my sins too?)

- Reports on what we’re doing (watching TV) or that she’s going to take a shower and “how was your shower?”

I could go on.. I wanted to throw up after reading for a few minutes. I had to leave the house for a while so I could figure out how to handle this right and not say something stupid. Longer story made long, she says they’re just friends. Called him her best friend. He sees nothing wrong with their relationship. His wife has expressed frustration too. My wife said her heart would be broken if she couldn’t talk to him anymore. I’ve talked to both of them. I have been calm at times and angry at times. She is now making this a trust issue and says she’s right with the Lord. She doesn’t agree that this is a problem and since yesterday, it hasn’t let up at all. I even learned from her admission that she was tempted to do more than hug him. But both of them say that was a temptation not a desire so it’s ok??? Now she says I’m driving her away. I don’t know what to do. This has been going on a long time. They went to lunch together one time (I insisted that’s called a date), she randomly goes over to their house. He shows up here at our house when I didn’t know and they’re talking on the driveway or front porch. She’s gone for hours sometimes. 

I honestly believe there is no physical thing happening here. But my wife is seriously emotionally connected with him and our marriage is suffering. There are a lot of reasons for that and I know I’m a big part of it. She says she loves me. We’ve cried together. She wants to figure it all out, but she won’t admit this is a problem and making me feel stupid like it’s all in my head. Help!

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1 hour ago, RT2280CO said:

I’ve found myself in a similar situation. My wife is the RS president and does have a lot to communicate with the bishop about. We had talked and I knew a lot of their talking has been more than church business. To some extent that is to be expected. I’ve felt uncomfortable about the frequency of their texting, calls, and “meetings” but I mostly thought I was being unreasonable and jealous for no reason. Yesterday, I decided to look at her text messages with the bishop. I had expected to see church conversation I’d have to skip by quickly to avoid seeing others personal details. I didn’t however run into that problem at all. What I found was:

- frequent messaging throughout every day. 11pm-12am + and first thing in the morning. 

- messages that referred to me and his wife as “people” listening etc. 

- comments like “that was really secial to me” and “me too”

- lots of scripture talk - spiritual insights as I’d expect but more that she’s ever shared with me even when I try to talk about them. 

- reference to “our temple session” as my wife has been going every Saturday morning and turns out he’s her “temple buddy”

- a comment about her favorite thing about him is when he hugs her. 

- discussing how he’s “sharing” his location with her on his phone and how they hope they never feel the need to stop sharing that. 

- the phrase “i love you my friend” and “I love you too” as if the friend part would make me feel better

- things she and I had talked about in private repeated for discussion. Including indication that they had discussed our intimacy and even past sins in detail (yeah, this one is questionable since he’s the bishop but telling my sins too?)

- Reports on what we’re doing (watching TV) or that she’s going to take a shower and “how was your shower?”

I could go on.. I wanted to throw up after reading for a few minutes. I had to leave the house for a while so I could figure out how to handle this right and not say something stupid. Longer story made long, she says they’re just friends. Called him her best friend. He sees nothing wrong with their relationship. His wife has expressed frustration too. My wife said her heart would be broken if she couldn’t talk to him anymore. I’ve talked to both of them. I have been calm at times and angry at times. She is now making this a trust issue and says she’s right with the Lord. She doesn’t agree that this is a problem and since yesterday, it hasn’t let up at all. I even learned from her admission that she was tempted to do more than hug him. But both of them say that was a temptation not a desire so it’s ok??? Now she says I’m driving her away. I don’t know what to do. This has been going on a long time. They went to lunch together one time (I insisted that’s called a date), she randomly goes over to their house. He shows up here at our house when I didn’t know and they’re talking on the driveway or front porch. She’s gone for hours sometimes. 

I honestly believe there is no physical thing happening here. But my wife is seriously emotionally connected with him and our marriage is suffering. There are a lot of reasons for that and I know I’m a big part of it. She says she loves me. We’ve cried together. She wants to figure it all out, but she won’t admit this is a problem and making me feel stupid like it’s all in my head. Help!

You need to contact the stake president.  I know i am only hearing one side of the story but as a husband to a relief society president but having also served in a bishopric - if even 1/10th of what happened to you happened to me i would take it straight to the stake President. 

Oh and hugs - that’s a huge no no in our stake. We had he stake president do a training for bishoprics about 6 months ago and specifically said to stop hugging people i was there. It was 10 min of saying how not too offend but do everything possible to shake hands for guys or girls. 

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4 hours ago, e-eye said:

You need to contact the stake president.  I know i am only hearing one side of the story but as a husband to a relief society president but having also served in a bishopric - if even 1/10th of what happened to you happened to me i would take it straight to the stake President. 

Oh and hugs - that’s a huge no no in our stake. We had he stake president do a training for bishoprics about 6 months ago and specifically said to stop hugging people i was there. It was 10 min of saying how not too offend but do everything possible to shake hands for guys or girls. 

Have you noticed how the Brethern shake hands? One arm to the side. Other hand extended. Lots of space between the bodies. No using one hand to pull in. 

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Welcome, @RT2280CO.  So sorry for what you're going through.  Assuming all that is accurate and true, regardless of how they perceive their relationship, it is wrong.  I concur with going to the Stake President, since counseling with your bishop can't happen.  An outside party is needed, IMO, to provide perspective.

I reject the notion that the described behavior is remotely normal or necessary or even unavoidable between a bishop and RSP.  (I'm an RSP and am close with another RSP (different stake) - neither of us would do anything remotely like the things you describe.)

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I wish all this weren’t true. I know everything I’ve said is filtered through my perspective, but I’ve tried to be factually based rather than how I feel about each item. The background to all this is what they each say is key and why it can’t be called an emotional affair. Getting personal here, but I need to make sure this portion makes no difference to the situation. 

Before marriage, we had gotten too close, went through a long repentance process, and married worthily in the temple. My wife has still felt guilt about past transgressions and felt my advances were reminding her of the past (didn’t tell me this). She said she couldn’t tell me because she didn’t feel comfortable talking to me about it. I made things worse by falling into a pornography addiction a few years ago. I went to my bishop and I went to my wife and I worked things out with the Lord (different bishop). She forgave me and I felt our relationship has been so much better ever since. 

She then came to me with some of this about 3 weeks ago. I’ve been trying to do a better job understanding her and meeting her needs and she has acknowledged progress. 

During this time, I had this ongoing concern about my wife’s “friendship” with our bishop which did not exist prior to his call. I mentioned this to her. Her initial response was that she’d be more careful to not have long meetings one on one. Then it was that she’d stop texting him if that’s what I needed even though she didn’t want to. And now it is that stopping would “break her heart” which was expressed with great emotion and tears. 

We’ve talked a lot about all of this. She says that she had to talk to him about our past to be able to feel good again. That without doing that, she never would have told me. She said I was turning the situation around “like I always do.” But what she talked about was not said just in the bishops office. What I was hurt from reading wasn’t about those details. It wa the obvious closeness and the increased distance I feel now from my wife. 

Would any of that justify her frequent communication? Him coming over to eat on the front porch “is that ok? <daughter> will be here”. He said they are good friends and feel enriched by the friendship. They admittedly talk about spiritual experiences frequently. But after attending the temple with the ward council on Friday night, he said “it was hard to have him between us literally and figuratively” since I had sat next to her. She said she had wanted to say something in the celestial room but “<me> was there.”  

He came to my house to talk about all this after my wife texted him that I felt this was a problem. The conversation was horrible. It was focused on what I did and how I’ve made my wife feel. I gave a straightforward definition of emotional afffair (when one partner develops an emotional relationship with someone outside of the marriage and that creates tension in the marriage) and he said that was a good definition like he hadn’t expected me to know what I was taking about l, but the didn’t comment on the validity of the situation. He instead said we should talk about the inderlying issue of how I make my wife feel and how she’d feel if I made her stop talking to him. And that the “three of us” should get to decide what happens next. 

I am scheduling an appointment with a councilor who specializes in couples and members of the church. She has agreed to go but I think it’s more about working on our other issues which I’m all for. I’m hesitant to go to the stake president because I worry I’m just delusional like they both say I am (not those words), and I would just cause problems and further push my wife away. I feel crazy. I can’t take time off work because I’m a contractor and don’t get paid if I don’t work. 

Sorry for the novel, but I don’t know how else to say it so I get advise that is based on all I know. Thank you for your replies. It’s good to hear others see in this situation who really know the dynamics of the church and the gospel. 

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1 hour ago, RT2280CO said:

He instead said we should talk about the inderlying issue of how I make my wife feel and how she’d feel if I made her stop talking to him. And that the “three of us” should get to decide what happens next. 

And then you punched him in the nose, and threw him out of your home??

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Nope, I’d didn’t punch him... I think both he and my wife thought I might. But I did yell. It was hard to calm down again. I guess I’m too much of a softy. But my logical brain helped me understand that would do no good. 

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1 hour ago, RT2280CO said:

Nope, I’d didn’t punch him... I think both he and my wife thought I might. But I did yell. It was hard to calm down again. I guess I’m too much of a softy. But my logical brain helped me understand that would do no good. 

You need to call the stake president today. I'm giving everything said a 50% discount but even at that your bishop has crossed a line. The second you said something to him he should have rearranged his interactions with your wife. 

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Seriously / call the stake president. This is the last thing he needs getting out of hand and it needs to be nipped in the bus ASAP.  I served in a high council for years and trust me the stake president will listen and if not anything at least bring it up to the bishop which should put him on alert  

I would also set the rule if the Bishop is going to text your wife it’s a group text with you or a counselor included. All meetings your Bishop has with our wife can include you or a counselor as well. 

The Bishop should respect you and your relationship above all and if he can’t there are probably 20 other women who can be RP. 

When i was in leadership for years and years my wife would read all my texts to see what was going on / i had johig to hide and she trusted me but she would just check what was going on.  Now i read all her texts to see what is going on - no trust issues but we just keep tabs and it goes both ways. 

Wish you the best! 

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Reading this thread seriously made me sick. I am so sorry for what you are going through RT2280CO. This is not how the Bishop and your wife should be acting. Its quite frankly disgusting. The adjectives I have to describe your Bishop I had best not say. He and your wife make me feel wretched and I will leave it at that. May the Lord be with you brother

 

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