So here is the deal (and please excuse the length, as I am at my wit’s end of trying to come to a sane way of coming to terms with this). My wife, Kimmy, and I have been married for three years. Everything was just wonderful until we finally moved into our house last summer. The house is in an older, established neighborhood, and we very much believed it would be our dream home. Boy, was I wrong. Not that there is anything wrong with the house, mind you. It’s just that a really attractive guy just so happens to live directly next door to us. Of course our neighbor always has to walk around without his shirt on, so that everyone gets to ogle his big, rippling muscles and see his tattoos. That in all truth wouldn’t even hardly bother me—if it weren’t for the fact I have caught my wife from time to time looking on at our neighbor with a real interested look in her eyes. Worse still, the two of them seem to talk to each other whenever I’m not around, only to awkwardly stop talking the moment I arrive and then swiftly hustle away. To make matters even worse, my wife lost her job a few months ago and this handsome, super muscular guy works from home all day, so that I would have no idea if anything sexual was going on between them.
Needless to say, Kimmy thinks I’m just being jealous. For a while I thought she was right and promised myself not to worry about it. Then, one drunken, bleary Saturday night, just a few weeks ago, my wife and I had a heart-to-heart and she admitted that she had known our neighbor back in her free-roaming college days. Worse still, she had very much had a big crush on him. Kimmy swears that the two of them never had sex back in college, but still, you never know. Even then, she admits to once having harbored deep feelings for this guy who lives right beside us. So what in the hell should suddenly stop her, if our neighbor now decides to make a bold move on her?
In all truth, the worry lately has been making me sick. How am I supposed to concentrate at my job all day when I’m being inundated by near-constant visions of our neighbor going down on Kimmy or pulling her shorts down while she’s watering and doing her doggy-style? A sick image, I know—because I am incessantly being assaulted with it, no matter often I go to my very expensive therapist or Kimmy swears up and down, on the lives of both her parents and even the Holy Bible, that she would never in a million years ever cheat on me. The one solution that I have been able to come up with, short of killing our nice neighbor (which I would never do, considering I’m a good Christian), is to find another house and finally just move. The problem with that plan is that Kimmy still has yet to find a new job, which in turn means we may not meet the minimum income requirements to qualify for a new mortgage. But what motivation does Kimmy have to find a new job, right? At least not when she knows that finding a good-paying job means being in a position to finally move away from this god-awful neighborhood—as well as away from our well-hung, very muscular neighbor.
So that, in a nutshell, describes my present dilemma. If you have any advice to help keep me from going even more crazy, I would very much appreciate it. But, as I long before came to once and for all definitively realize:
—I’m Not Just Being Jealous, So Long as It’s Justified
Hi, Not Just Being Jealous.
Wow. You really have worked yourself into a frenzy. It’s a good thing you are seeing a therapist, as I have a strong feeling you are suffering from some pretty severe anxiety issues. Still, that doesn’t mean that you might not be onto something. It is suspicious that your wife and this neighbor talk to each other only when you’re not around, and it is also troubling that Kimmy didn’t tell you she had a history with this guy right from the very beginning. At the same time, I can’t help but see things from Kimmy’s perspective. What if you really are being paranoid, and what if the only reason she kept her past crush on the man and only speaks to him in private is to spare you the jealousy you are still so obviously suffering from? I also wouldn’t be surprised in the least if you purposely got Kimmy drunk on that “drunken, bleary Saturday night” you mentioned—just to finally interrogate her and try to get to the bottom of whether or not there was anything going on between your wife and your neighbor. You wouldn’t be the first jealous guy out there to take a real tacky, manipulative approach like that.
In the end, marriage comes down to trust. Do you trust your wife not to have an affair with your neighbor while you’re at work all day? If not, then you only have three available options: 1) you can move, even if that means going back to an apartment or moving into a house that’s not as nice or as large as your present one; 2) you can get a divorce; or 3) you can have your anxiety medication, which I’m assuming your therapist has already prescribed for you, measurably upped.
You also have a fourth option . . . but let me warn you, this may well be the most challenging option of all. As hard as it may be to fathom, you could always befriend this “well-hung, very muscular” neighbor of yours. Not only will you get to know the guy better (thereby being able to better judge whether there is in fact anything going on between him and your wife), but there are few guys out there who would still be willing to cheat with the wife of a man he considers to be a close friend. For all you know, this neighbor of yours may well be gay—which I can assure you will do a whole hell of a lot to assuage your worries and do away with a good many of your life-debilitating fears. Because until you take the time to actually get to know the guy, how then will you ever know?
Feel free to contact Anonymous Zaius and ask him dating/relationship questions at AnonymousZaius@gmail.com.
For the record, Anonymous Zaius (AKA Jason Famous) is not, nor has he ever been, a licensed counselor or psychologist. What advice he has to give was acquired the old-fashioned way, through the dual schools of both hard knocks and his own personal dating experience. It thus goes without saying the above dating advice is to be used for purposes of entertainment only.