Wife is movie star struck

Originally Published: March 31, 2000 - Last Updated / Reviewed On: July 2, 2010
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Alice,

My wife of several years is stuck on a movie star. This really bothers me. All her friends are aware of her man (it ain't me). She keeps pictures of him at work to "get her through a bad day." Is this silly of me to be bothered by this? I have explained my concern but I do not think she can give him up. I feel like I am not the one she really loves.

Dear Reader,

Feelings are not silly; they are feelings after all. It's not unusual for people to feel hurt, jealous, troubled, angry, or confused if their spouses or partners pay special attention to someone else, even if that person were to pose no real threat to their marriage or relationship.

Perhaps you could try to give some reasons why the pictures bother you: because they're hurtful; they make you feel jealous, unimportant, etc.? You could ask your wife to think about how she would feel if you were to post sexy shots of (fill in the blank) all around your desk. Maybe if she understands the reasons why you feel upset, the chances will be greater that she'll take down some of her pics — and possibly put some more focus on you.

Also consider some other reasons for why this particular celeb's photos are blanketing your wife's office, other than for the purpose of "get[ting] her through a bad day." What does she like about him, or his acting? What do the pictures offer her or mean to her? Are there any celebrities whom you find attractive and adore that do not change the way you feel about your partner? These answers may help you to more fully understand her perspective along with your feelings and to help you better communicate your feelings with your partner.

If you're feeling neglected in your relationship in other ways, maybe it would help to have greater reassurance from your wife that she cares about you. Would you like her to spend more time with you, or pay more attention in ways that she currently isn't? Asking for what you want and need in a relationship can be difficult, but could be worth the risk.

Check out the Relationship section of Go Ask Alice! for more information on healthy relationships and communicating with your partner. Finally, if you still feel as though your partner is having a difficult time sticking her starry-struck eyes on you, consider a visit to a couples counselor or mediator to help you work through your concerns.
Alice