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Mom Purloins the Diary Dear Margo: I found out last week that our 17-year-old high school junior is having sex with her boyfriend! First of all, I found out the wrong way: I snooped in her room and read her diary. Second, she would never admit to it, so my husband …Read more. The Bad Seed Dear Margo: I never thought I would write to an advice columnist, but here goes. I've been dating someone for about a year now, and we talk of marriage occasionally. He's ready for commitment and very gung-ho about us getting married, which is …Read more. Oh, and, Uh, By the Way... Dear Margo: I am soon to be 27 years old, and my only serious relationship ended a few years ago. In hopes of avoiding the standard meat market of dating, I'm considering registration with eHarmony.com. I've also had my share of casual relationships.…Read more. It Is in the Bible, but Not in the Stars Dear Margo: I have been dating a wonderful man for four months now. He is very kind and sweet in every way. We are much in love and happy together. There is only one problem: We are different religions. I am a Christian; he is agnostic. I have …Read more.
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Cheating and the Computer

Comment

Dear Margo: A reader of yours recommended installing monitoring software on a spouse's computer. I am a computer tech, and I can tell you that installing monitoring software or key loggers on another person's computer without their knowledge or consent violates federal law and possibly state laws, as well. The federal government has enacted laws that make it illegal to covertly intercept electronic information. The United States Code, title 18, states that interception of wire and electronic communications is illegal. This means that using a key logger in order to spy on one's spouse is a violation of federal law. Furthermore, state regulations may carry additional penalties for those who use key loggers on unsuspecting people.

In order to install a monitoring application, you must be the owner of the computer, or obtain the consent of all the users of the monitored machine. Parents can legally install the software on their minor child's computer. (Covert computer monitoring of a child over the age of 18 is illegal.) When installed on a computer that does not meet the above criteria, monitoring software technically becomes spyware. Spyware is illegal. — Ken

Dear Ken: Thanks for the info. I do not mean to be a scofflaw, but if a woman catches her husband (or vice versa) getting up to no good on the computer (a not infrequent occurrence), my guess is that the spouse who's caught is not going to respond to this situation by bringing charges for employing spyware. Just sayin'. — Margo, intuitively

Judgmental Family Members

Dear Margo: I'm the oldest of three, all of us in our early to mid-30s. My brothers and I went through varying degrees of closeness growing up, but as adults, we didn't really stay friends. When I got married at 20, my husband enjoyed my brothers' company, and in fact, the three of them often ganged up on me, leaving me alone with our young kids.

Fast-forward 15 years: My husband and I were struggling in our marriage. There were plenty of issues, but the catalyst was when I had an affair. Finally, my husband decided he wanted to fix our marriage, but by this time I was emotionally done. We divorced, and although things were difficult at first, we developed an amicable relationship and are co-parenting our kids and doing fine. We're each dating someone else. (I am seeing the man I had the affair with, who also divorced).

My brothers stopped talking to me upon learning of my infidelity. Since then, one of them eased up a bit at Christmas, but refused to allow me in his home at Easter. My other brother responded to a written apology with a scathing response that made it clear that family doesn't come first. Even my ex is frustrated with them. He says he doesn't understand what exactly I did to them, and he's glad he has his family, who stand behind a member no matter what.

My parents are upset and trying to stay out of it, but I feel awful for them. I understand that what I did was wrong — believe me — and have dealt with the consequences. I didn't have enough of a relationship with the brothers before to make me really miss them now, but I want things to at least be civil at family gatherings. Suggestions? — RB

Dear R: Are your bothers Puritans, or Afghans? You really have done nothing to harm them, and their self-righteousness is deplorable. There is nothing for you to do except be a lady. At the next family gathering, be cordial, and if they make it uncomfortable for you, do consider seeing your parents at other times. I see no reason for you to wear the scarlet "A" in this day and age, and I think the brothers sound odd. If your parents can't shape them up, then make your friends your family. — Margo, forwardly

Dear Margo is written by Margo Howard, Ann Landers' daughter. All letters must be sent via the online form at www.creators.com/dearmargo. Due to a high volume of e-mail, not all letters will be answered.

COPYRIGHT 2012 MARGO HOWARD

DISTRIBUTED BY CREATORS.COM



Comments

26 Comments | Post Comment
I'm sure that by, "Afghans," Margo actually meant "Taliban." Not all Afghan people agree with the extreme philosophy of the Taliban, any more than all Americans are Puritans.
Comment: #1
Posted by: Jeanne
Sat Dec 1, 2012 1:54 AM
LW1--I essentially said exactly the same thing when the original letter was posted. I would also like to add that it is now possible to surreptitiously attach tiny GPS devices to automobiles or even hide them inside briefcases or handbags. Software can then monitor the victims every move in real-time on Google maps and create detailed logs. This too is illegal!!! If you suspect your spouse is cheating, either confront him or her directly or gather the evidence legally. I disagree with Margo that a particularly vindictive spouse or partner wouldn't leverage the fact that he or she was monitored illegally to bring serious Federal charges against the offending spouse or partner.

LW2--First of all, it's important to understand that your marriage is not a public forum. It's easy for your brothers and other family members to lob stones at you for having an affair or ending your marriage when their marriages are apparently picture perfect. (Which is a load of bullshit, I can assure you!) You did what was best for yourself, your husband and your children. End of discussion. Don't apologize for your choices. Blood, is not always thicker than water and shared DNA doesn't necessarily guarantee a loving or supportive family. My advice is to spend holidays with friends or stay home with your boyfriend and children.
Comment: #2
Posted by: Chris
Sat Dec 1, 2012 3:43 AM
I think the key phrase in the second letter is in the first paragraph: the brothers were buddies with the husband. They identify with him in the same way any other friend would and blame her for the end of the relationship, the loss of a family member and the missing camaraderie they'd had with him.

That being said, they need to chill out.
Comment: #3
Posted by: Wordsworth
Sat Dec 1, 2012 4:37 AM
LW1:Agree with Margo here, I don't think a cheating spouse is going to call the cops if the evidence is presented to them. But I think that if a marriage even gets to the point where you are "spying" on them, or are having them tailed, or are going through their pockets/briefcase/computer/purse, that in and of itself says the relationship is pretty sick and is probably about ready to flatline.

LW2: Chris really put it best here. Just don't spend time with these people. Hang out with friends.
Comment: #4
Posted by: nanchan
Sat Dec 1, 2012 4:59 AM
I don't always agree with Chris, but I do today re: LW1. If you're at the point where key-loggers and GPS tracking for your spouse seems like a good idea, your relationship is already in deep doo-doo. Either this person has completely disregarded your vows, or you have gone off the deep end. The LW also refers to using key-loggers, etc., on minor children. I very much disagree with this idea. I definitely think that computers should be in public areas of the house, and parents can reserve the right to check browser histories, walk into the room whenever, etc. They can even set it up so certain websites are blocked. That's all cool for parents. Key-logging and other monitoring software just seems...over the top. Again, it strikes me as deep distrust, not a good thing to foster with your kids.

LW2: Your brothers see your ex as one of their buddies, but weren't close to you. They're doing the classic frat boy thing of making the ex-gf "the bitch"-- made easier by your cheating. It's an easy way to make you into the "bad guy" so they don't have to think your ex/their buddy may have messed things up too. Not that you owe them an explanation or apologies, and I'm glad your ex thinks they're ridiculous. Well, it's in their court. Either it'll blow over or it won't. See your parents separately from them if it makes life easier, though perhaps some third party (parents, the ex himself, other relative) can intervene and ask the brothers to cool it so your parents can at least get you all in a room together at the holidays? They may not listen, but worth a shot?
Comment: #5
Posted by: Jers
Sat Dec 1, 2012 5:43 AM
I cannot believe Margo's comment about Afghans. Cringe. Talk about wearing your ignorance on your sleeve.

On the other hand, I don't get how Margo contradicts herself from one letter to the next. In the first letter, an adulterous man wouldn't bring about spyware charges because....because why not? He's done something wrong, seems to be implication? Yet in the next letter, anyone judging the adulterous woman is...self-righteous, odd and needs to be "shaped up"? So which is it? Is adultery something that's bad, or something that is no big deal? If it's no big deal, why wouldn't an adulterous spouse bring about spyware charges?

The good news too is that there would never, ever be a case where someone being spyed on would be innocent of adultery. That has never happened in the history of mankind, not even in Afghanistan.
Comment: #6
Posted by: Jane
Sat Dec 1, 2012 6:37 AM
I disagree with Margo that a particularly vindictive spouse or partner wouldn't leverage the fact that he or she was monitored illegally to bring serious Federal charges against the offending spouse or partner
******************

Agree, Chris. MOST couples probably won't. But some spouses/partners almost certainly will.

And I think, too, that there's some value in pointing out to spouses what the law considers "going too far."

Comment: #7
Posted by: hedgehog
Sat Dec 1, 2012 6:42 AM
Jane, I'm confused by your whole response. First of all, last time I checked, the dominant religion in Afghanistan was Islam which, Taliban or not, has some very strict ideas about how women should behave. And villagers don't have to be terrorists to see nothing wrong with stoning an adulterous - or even flirtatious - daughter or sister to death.

Second, the two letters and Margo's responses are very different. I, too, believe that a spouse is VERY likely to object to the illegality of having been caught with spyware because that's what guilty people do. They grasp at whatever straws they can find to make the other person look bad. In the case of the sister, her affair was not her brothers' business, but apparently her husband made it their business and now they're acting as though they have been personally affronted. I don't get what she "apologized" to any of them for - she certainly didn't owe her brothers an apology and, in fact, just put herself in a weaker position.
Comment: #8
Posted by: Maggie Lawrence
Sat Dec 1, 2012 7:08 AM
I think Jane is mistaken in saying that no one who is being spied on will be innocent of adultery.
An amusing story supporting this is provided by my godmother. She is a delightful woman and a former nun. She has over 50 godchildren and she loves us all. I have never met a more giving. Loving, selfless person.
One day there was a knock on her door. There were two men in suits there. They introduced themselves and showed their IDs. They were from the FBI and had been monitoring her for over a month. Someone had thought that her behavior was suspicious I guess. After listening in on her phone calls for so long, they felt guilty for suspecting her and invading her privacy. They apologized to her face for their mistake and told her she was a ver nice lady.
While I don't have a copy of their report, I'm sure they didn't find adultery there. :)
The point is that suspicion does not equal guilt. I'm sure many paranoid people have spied on their innocent partners.
However, I agree that if it has come to that the relationship is likely doomed.
Comment: #9
Posted by: MT
Sat Dec 1, 2012 9:32 AM
I'm with Maggie Lawrence in being confused about Jane's response, but as for this paragraph:

***The good news too is that there would never, ever be a case where someone being spyed on would be innocent of adultery. That has never happened in the history of mankind, not even in Afghanistan.***

It was such sweeping statement, and made by someone who has almost certainly read letters from abuse victims wrongly accused of cheating, that I took it as sarcasm.
Comment: #10
Posted by: hedgehog
Sat Dec 1, 2012 10:23 AM
LW1: Margo is being an idiot. There is no reason to think that a cheater isn't going to fight back. Thanks for the info.

LW2: The first step towards civility is you acting like you have a back bone and some self-esteem. You wrote an apology letter to your brother? What? No wonder they kick you around. You let them. You're not the victim. You are part of the problem. It is your job to teach people how to treat you. So far you're doing a crappy job.
Comment: #11
Posted by: Diana
Sat Dec 1, 2012 2:25 PM
LW1 -
Margo, you cannot be sure what a louse spouse, mad as a hatter because s/he was caught pants down, will do in order to fight for the right to be wrong, and out of sheer vindictiveness. Humanity is ever capable of going yet deeper into the muck.

LW2 -
Where did your brothers get the idea that they hold the final word on your morality? Thank God you're not in Taliban-controlled territories, they'd be the first ones to stone you. There isn't much you can do - what Margo said.

I always say that the mentality leading to Taliban-like excesses exist right here in America and right now in 2012, and that the only real difference between here and the tribal zones of Afghanistan is that, here, there are laws protecting women and freedom. Case in point...

Comment: #12
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Sat Dec 1, 2012 7:15 PM
Re: Chris
Ah, Chris, you wrote:
"You did what was best for yourself, your husband and your children"
... this, to a woman who had had an affair?
How was the affair best for her husband or children?
Just wondering, I don't follow your logic at all here.
Comment: #13
Posted by: sarah morrow
Sat Dec 1, 2012 8:27 PM
@ sarah morrow

Okay, well then lets think about it. The LW was unhappy enough in her marriage that she had an affair (I'm not saying it was right, just stating the fact); presumably her husband was frustrated and miserable trying to both cope with the affair and loss of trust and also trying to win back his wife. Children aren't stupid; they understand perfectly well when mommy and daddy don't love each other and are miserable together. Ending the marriage, therefore, allowed the LW to move on with someone who makes her happy; presumably her husband has (or will) moved on and the children are no longer being modelled a dysfunctional marriage as normal even if their parents are no longer together. I don't ever think it's a good idea for a couple to force themselves to stay together for the sake of the children. Does that clear things up, or do you have some thoughts to add?
Comment: #14
Posted by: Chris
Sun Dec 2, 2012 3:46 AM
Oh, for heaven's sakes, people. When I said no one who is innocent of adultery is ever suspected of such, I was being sarcastic. My point is that Margo makes it sound like breaking a federal law is okey-dokey because your "guilty" spouse will not press spyware charges against you - but what if your spouse is INNOCENT? Lots of people suspect adultery where none exists, so using spyware is not the risk-free venture Margo proposes.

And Maggie, Islam is the dominant religion of MANY countries, not just Afghanistan, and just because you are of Afghan descent does NOT mean you are a radical Islamist who agrees with the beliefs of the Taliban. New flash: counltess Afghan refugees now live all over the world because they LEFT Afghanistan to get away from the Taliban. Such a statement as Margo made is no more correct than saying all Americans are anti-gay and anti-abortion because the dominant religion in the U.S. is Christian. I'm confused by your whole response.

And sorry, the fact that the responses to the two letters are very different was my point - but the problem is basically the same. In both cases, it is about a spouse straying. But in the first letter, Margo says cheating is such a stigma that a spouse would not press spyware charges, presumably because they would feel so guilty. Yet in the second letter, anyone "judging" someone for cheating is compared to the Taliban or Puritans. So which is it? Is cheating bad, or really no big deal?
Second, the two letters and Margo's responses are very different. I, too, believe that a spouse is VERY likely to object to the illegality of having been caught with spyware because that's what guilty people do. They grasp at whatever straws they can find to make the other person look bad. In the case of the sister, her affair was not her brothers' business, but apparently her husband made it their business and now they're acting as though they have been personally affronted. I don't get what she "apologized" to any of them for - she certainly didn't owe her brothers an apology and, in fact, just put herself in a weaker position.Comment: #8
Posted by: Maggie Lawrence
Comment: #15
Posted by: Jane
Sun Dec 2, 2012 5:39 AM
I should add, Maggie, that in this case it IS the brothers' business because their sister hurt their friend, no doubt hurt their nieces and nephews, and broke up two families. Margo is always the first to say that blood relatives are simply an accident of DNA. Since that's the case, the brothers may feel closer and a greater sense of loyalty towards their friend, while Margo seems to think they should feel a greater sense of loyalty towards their sister. That may not be the case, and no one should be assuming that the brothers' friendship with the ex is over simply because the marriage to their sister ended. Heck, my husband is still friends with his high school sweetheart's brother, and he was not only the best man at our wedding, but is our child's godfather.

But bottom line, why is the idea of cheating so stigmatized in the first letter that you would feel justified in breaking federal law to confirm your suspicions, but such a non-issue in the second letter that coldness regarding cheating, divorce, broken families and hurt friends is met with "you must be part of the Taliban"? I'm not giving an opinion on either issue one way or the other - I'm just making an observation that Margo's attitude flips pretty dramatically from one letter to the next.
Comment: #16
Posted by: Jane
Sun Dec 2, 2012 7:06 AM
LW2- I'd argue that your brothers view your ex as their *brother* instead of just a friend or family by marriage. You married young and that is common in those situations from my experience... And they don't necessarily view you as their sister, just some ho that broke their brother's heart and hurt his children. You said it yourself- they weren't close to you as adults, they were close to your ex. They'd probably rather invite HIM to family gatherings.
Comment: #17
Posted by: Eliza167
Sun Dec 2, 2012 8:33 AM
Jane, I have no idea what kind of filter you were wearing when you read those two letters, but they are NOT the same with opposite responses. The first letter is about the illegality of spyware - the LW points it out to Margo as if she didn't know it was illegal and she says she's not advocating it, but didn't think a person guilty of cheating would protest too much. I disagree. Guilty or not, I think most people would make a huge stink about being tracked illegally on their computers by a spouse.

The second letter is NOT about spyware, but about a woman who is upset that her brothers are treating her like Hester Prynne.

"But bottom line, why is the idea of cheating so stigmatized in the first letter that you would feel justified in breaking federal law to confirm your suspicions, but such a non-issue in the second letter that coldness regarding cheating, divorce, broken families and hurt friends is met with "you must be part of the Taliban"? I'm not giving an opinion on either issue one way or the other - I'm just making an observation "

If you're "just making an observation" then why did you choose to misquote Margo in order to serve your own purposes? She said, rather casually I thought, "are your brothers Puritans or Afghans" and then you went on a self-righteous tirade about not everybody in Afghanistan is part of the Taliban..." Huh? No where did she say "you must be part of the Taliban" which you made up and then put in quotes. And btw, it is NOT the brothers' business, although it sounds like the husband tried to make it their business in order to get the sympathy on his side. The LW doesn't explain the other problems in the marriage but says that they are now amicably divorced, both dating, and co-parenting the kids. So how is the brothers' response to her justified or even helpful?
Comment: #18
Posted by: Maggie Lawrence
Sun Dec 2, 2012 8:34 AM
Maggie, let me try to explain this again. (Although Eliza 167 already explained part of what I was thinking beautifully.) I used the word "Taliban" because although Margo used the term "Afghan" what she meant was radical Islam, and in Afghanistan in particular, the Taliban. But since you seem to be unable to make the distinction that not all Afghans mistreat women, that it is radical Islman which exists in countries all over the world, then fine, let's use the term "Afghan".
In the first letter, yes, it is about the illegality of spyware, which Margo agrees. I am not commenting about that part of the letter or 90% of Margo's response. My entire post is focused on the line when Margo THEN implies, nudge, nudge, wink, wink, that if you are using spyware to spy on your spouse whom you suspect of infidelity, then you probably won't have to worry because your "guilty" spouse will not press spyware charges. To that I made two points - one, the sarcastic comment that not all spouses who are suspected of infidelity are guilty of infidenlity, so that's quite a risk to think they will not press charges, and two, I asked the question WHY Margo would say even a spouse who HAD been cheating would not press spyware charges. And that was a question I ASKED, not a comment, because Margo doesn't really say why the spouse would not press charges. So I can only "guess" that she believes they would not because infidelity is (fill in the blank) wrong, unfair, unjust, bad, shameful? Not sure, but definitely she seems to feel infidelity is something you would feel so bad or ashamed about that you would even meekly submit to have been illegally tracked and spied upon. (Hold that thought, because Margo's attitude towards the infidelity is the sole topic of my post, not spyware. It's that she clearly sees infidelity as a "bad" thing.)
Then in LW2, Margo again seems to express an attitude towards infidelity. This time, a woman is upset because, after being involved in infidelity and presumably hurting her husband (her brothers' friend), her brothers are giving her the cold shoulder. Now Margo seems to have the opposite view about infidelity. Basically, she likens the brothers' attitude to men who abuse women, calls them odd and says they need to be shaped up. Margo does not seem to feel the woman's infidelity was a "bad" thing in this case - she seems to think it was no big deal, and the brothers have no right to be upset.
So in the first case infidelity is so bad a "guilty" person would submit to having illegal acts performed against them without protest, but in the second case infidelity is no big deal and a "guilty" person should not expect others to judge her, even if she has hurt people close to them.
The ironic thing is that in the end Margo, true to her "Family is an Accident of DNA", tells LW2 to make her friends her family if her brothers don't "shape up". What Margo seems to have missed is that the brothers have already done that with their sister - they have chosen their friend to be their family instead of her, just as Eliza said. It probably has nothing to do with wearing scarlet letters or having Puritan attitudes. They just like him better than her.
But regardless, the whole point of my post wasn't about the rightness or wrongness of infidelity (which I think is justified in some cases). It was simply how Margo seemed to imply it was a shameful thing in one letter and "not a big deal" thing in the next. That's all.
Comment: #19
Posted by: Jane
Sun Dec 2, 2012 9:25 AM
I think I understand what Jane is saying, in a round-about way. Margo has always seemed to be of the "no harm, no foul" attitude when it comes to leaving one's spouse for someone else. Whatever makes you happy, and it's no one else's business. I find the response to L2 to be pretty consistent with Margo's usual MO, although I agree that since Margo always advocates that you shouldn't stay in contact with someone simply because they're a blood relative, it's strange the brothers are criticized for choosing their friend over their sister.


But in L1, Margo says the spouse who is cheating likely wouldn't press charges for the illegal invasion of their privacy, (and I think she is naively wrong about that), but it's unclear why. I guess we can assume Margo believes they would be thinking, "I'm getting what I deserve" or "I'm so ashamed of having done something wrong, and I don't want the neighbors/family/friends to know about this." But that line of thinking goes against the grain of what Margo usually preaches. If only the wife/spouse has a "right" to be upset about the cheating, why would the caught-on-spyware spouse care about who else knew or feel guilty? For anyone else, it would be none of their business, or casting judgement would mean they were too Puritan, Afghan, judgemental or odd.


I can understand Jane's confusion. Perhaps the answer is that even Margo herself is not sure where she really stands on extramarital curricular activities.
Comment: #20
Posted by: AlienNation
Sun Dec 2, 2012 12:28 PM
So what are you saying, Margo? Installing spyware on someone is illegal, but if your target is unlikely to go to the cops, you should feel free to proceed? (Do you feel the same way about, say, shoplifting?) How is this not terrible advice?
Comment: #21
Posted by: Sheila
Mon Dec 3, 2012 4:10 AM
Re: Jane
"just because you are of Afghan descent does NOT mean you are a radical Islamist who agrees with the beliefs of the Taliban. New flash: counltess Afghan refugees now live all over the world because they LEFT Afghanistan to get away from the Taliban. "
I dunno, Jane. While my personaly experience with South Asians doesn't count as a Gallup poll, I met many of them through the ex-LOML and I've learned a few things.
First, let me state that the Taliban is not active only in Afghanistan and that there are Taliban-controlled areas in Pakistan also.
Second, the way women are considered in South Asia has nothing to do with religion, it has to do with culture and custom. Muslims are in a minority in India - and yet India is one of the two countries in the world with a severe demographical imbalance, due to systematic selective abortion and infanticide of girls.

No, not all South Asians are as extreme as the Taliban, but you should remember that the Taliban is merely going one step further than "moderate" South Asians, and that women are of no account to start with there. "Moderation" is very relative, and I wouldn't touch any of the South Asians I've met through Iffa with a barge pole - women to them are nothing but a house appliance, men are supreme masters and women only good for one thing. Iffa himself had huge problems with women and relationships, and his intellectual views were in contradiction with his emotional response. And HE was way better than all of his friends in that regard!

Yes, many Afghans left their country to get away from the Taliban, but in general, it is for political reasons, and not because of women's issues. And to tell you quite frankly... even the USA didn't give a damn about women being jailed in a burqa before they felt the need to go after Osama bin Laden.

Comment: #22
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Mon Dec 3, 2012 7:13 AM
Re: Jane
"I should add, Maggie, that in this case it IS the brothers' business because their sister hurt their friend, no doubt hurt their nieces and nephews, and broke up two families."
And *I* should add... one step further, Jane, just ONE step further and you'll start defending honour killings... (*Shudder*)

No, it DOESN'T become their business " because their sister hurt their friend". By this token, everything becomes everybody's business. And, while I agree that "not all Afghans mistreat women", again "mistreat" is a very relative concept, and I haven't seen one who treats women very well according to OUR standards. You have no idea what men consider "treating a woman well" in those parts.

Comment: #23
Posted by: Lise Brouillette
Mon Dec 3, 2012 7:28 AM
@Margo, LW1 -- I hope you or one of your editors read the BTL. Your response to LW1 -- which I believe was probably a flip attempt at humor on your part -- is ridiculously naive and stupid. Sure, SOME cheating spouses would not press charges, either because they are unaware of the law, aren't sure how the other spouse found out about the cheating or because they feel guilty/getting what they deserved. But a great many spouses -- especially those who make more money and are therefore concerned about alimony settlements, etc. -- would be only too happy to press charges if it might save them a buck. I'm pretty sure that, "but your honor, he was cheating on me!" is not going to work well as a defense. You really blew it on this one.

@Margo, LW2 -- Again, what I believe was a flip attempt at humor on your part just didn't go over. That first line about Puritans and Afghans is just dreck. The rest of your advice on this is sound.

LW1 -- Thank you for bringing this to our attention. I was not aware of the legal issues related to this. As I have no need or desire to use spyware at this time, I don't intend for this information to be particularly helpful to me, but I'm still glad to have it!

LW2 -- The only thing you can do is attend family events to which you are invited and behave civilly yourself. You cannot force your brothers to do the same. You could attempt to talk with them about being civil for the sake of your parents, but frankly I wouldn't hold my breath on that working. Sorry.
Comment: #24
Posted by: Lisa
Mon Dec 3, 2012 8:39 AM
one other thing on LW2 -- some at the BTL have said LW2 only weakened her position by apologizing to her brothers for her failed marriage. While I agree with the general idea that a marriage is between two people, and therefore the failure of it or other problems in it are just between those two people, the reality is that when a marriage ends, the repercussions are felt by a lot more than just those two people, especially when there are children involved. While I don't believe that LW2 "owed" her brothers an apology, it is naive to think that her brothers were unaffected by the divorce. Clearly, the brothers and the LW were never particularly close, and it would seem the brothers were, in fact, closer to her ex than to her. I'm not saying that's fair or right, and indeed, I find it a bit peculiar -- my brother likes my husband a lot, but if he had to "choose" between us for some reason, he'd pick me every time -- but my brother and I are close and have a loving relationship -- that obviously is not the case here.

But by the same token, if my brother cheated on his wife (whom I like a lot), I would be upset and disappointed with him -- not because it's any of my business and not because that would be "my right," -- but because I would be disappointed that he acted in an unethical manner, and I would be sad for his children. Mind you, I would still love my brother and wouldn't stop talking to him, exclude him from family events, etc. -- and I would get over being disappointed and upset, because I know that doesn't help anyone to move forward. I wouldn't forgive him, because it's not up to ME to forgive him -- that would be up to his wife and children. But marriages don't exist in a vacuum. Other people ARE affected by what happens to them.

Even though I am a big believer in the MYOB factor in general, I'm not so strict an adherent as to be able to delude myself into thinking my actions and choices in my marriage don't have an impact on anyone else.
Comment: #25
Posted by: Lisa
Tue Dec 4, 2012 8:35 AM
I never believed in love spells or magic until I met this spell caster once when i went to see my friend in Indian this year on a business summit. I meant a man who's name is Dr ATILA he is really powerful and could help cast spells to bring back one's gone, lost, misbehaving lover and magic money spell or spell for a good job or luck spell .I'm now happy & a living testimony cos the man i had wanted to marry left me 5 weeks before our wedding and my life was upside down cos our relationship has been on for 3years. I really loved him, but his mother was against us and he had no good paying job. So when i met this spell caster, i told him what happened and explained the situation of things to him. At first i was undecided,skeptical and doubtful, but i just gave it a try. And in 7 days when i returned to Canada, my boyfriend (now husband) called me by himself and came to me apologizing that everything had been settled with his mom and family and he got a new job interview so we should get married. I didn't believe it cos the spell caster only asked for my name and my boyfriends name and all i wanted him to do. Well we are happily married now and we are expecting our little kid, and my husband also got the new job and our lives became much better. His email is atilahealinghome@yahoo.com
Comment: #26
Posted by: StaceyBruno4
Sat Sep 21, 2013 7:00 AM
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