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'A year after I left my marriage my best friend married my ex, with my blessing'

9Honey logo 9Honey 7/9/2018 9Honey I As told to Libby Jane Charleston
a pair of glasses on a table © Getty

Marisa had been married to Ben for nearly 10 years when they both decided to go their separate ways. The split was amicable and the couple remained friends but what happened when Marisa’s best friend let her know she was developing feelings for her ex?

The marriage was great in the beginning but we were one of those couples that grew apart as time went on. We spent a lot of time with friends, rarely did anything as a couple and when I lost my job and was unemployed for five months I realized Ben wasn’t being emotionally supportive.

I felt like his love for me had really changed and he no longer loved me as a wife but more as a friend.

To tell the truth, I started feeling less for him, although I still cared about him a lot.

We tried marriage counseling and after five sessions we had ‘the talk’ where we both decided there was no point moving forward and we should go our separate ways.

a person standing in front of a wedding cake © Getty

It was very amicable and it was really just a great sense of sadness.

Our friends and family were more upset than we were. But that’s because, to anybody else, we looked like we were a perfect couple. My best friend Jenny was the only one that wasn’t shocked as I’d confided in her many times that I wasn’t happy and that Ben wasn’t happy either.

But to the rest of our family and other friends, they had no idea that our marriage was mostly quite lonely.

So the split was pretty smooth and I was proud to say that Ben and I were still friends, which I know is a big cliché but it was really true for us. We still chatted on the phone every other day and caught up for drinks or dinner every now and then.  

Then I started dating and met my boyfriend Matt. Out of courtesy I let Ben know I was seeing someone and he was a bit funny that I’d met someone so quickly, but apart from that, he seemed fine about it.

But then one night Jenny asked me to meet her for a drink and said she has something important to tell me.

She said, ‘I wanted you to know that Ben and I have caught up a few times, as friends, but now we’ve developed feelings for each other.’  

I will admit I had a split second of jealousy, or just a strange feeling that my best friend and my ex-husband are starting a relationship.

a person in a dress © Getty

Jen also said that if I had any problem with it, she wouldn’t take the relationship any further as she didn’t want to lose my friendship. I thought that was so big of her. I told her I just needed a bit of time to get used to the idea and I called Ben to talk about it.

He said the same as Jen, that he wasn’t willing to break up a friendship but what sort of person would I be if I told them to end things?  A couple of weeks later the three of us caught up and, this might sound weird, but seeing them holding hands and being so into each other felt like natural, as though they’d always been together.

Of course I gave them my blessing.

Part of it was to do with the fact that I’d happily re-partnered, so there was no way I was going to make a fuss about Jenny and Ben.

If I’ve found love and happiness, then I want them to find the same. They were married recently and I was invited to the wedding – I wasn’t matron of honor thank goodness, as that would have felt very awkward, but it was good to be there and see them so happy.

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