Steph & Dom solve your sex, love & life troubles: My partner’s been seeing an old flame! 

TV’S Steph and Dom Parker, 52 and 54, draw on their 21 years of marriage to solve your relationship problems . . . 

Q: Every year we get invited to the same couple’s house for Christmas drinks. They are my husband’s university friends. It’s always a big party. We are all in our early 40s and it’s the one time we get to catch up. Or that was what I thought.

One of the guests is an ex of my husband. They met at college and lived together for several years. She left him for someone else. He was heartbroken, but we met and married at 32. She is still single and is very glamorous. I have a busy teaching job, so can’t compete with her.

An anonymous reader asked Steph and Dom Parker for advice on her husband meeting annually for a boozy lunch with his ex partner without her knowledge (file image)

I thought they only saw each other once a year at this party. But it turns out she takes him for a boozy lunch for his birthday every year. We’ve been married nine years and he never told me.

I feel betrayed and am sleeping in the spare room. I really love him, but I feel terrible. Should I leave him?

STEPH SAYS: I have to say, my heart started to sink as I read this — and then it carried on sinking. This really is a dagger to the soul and I am so sorry for you. Any woman would be suspicious of the way your husband has behaved.

I am quite sure he would have told you he didn’t let you know about these lunches because there’s nothing to it — and that he knew you would overreact in the way he will claim you are doing now.

No, I am not buying that. Not a bit of it! None of this is your fault. You both know that — and, frankly, it is offensive to you to use such a poor excuse.

Nothing he says is going to make you feel any better. Your husband is solely responsible for this situation, and no man or woman should ever make you feel this way.

Steph (pictured left with Dom) advised the reader to ask her husband for space over Christmas, so they can both get a clearer view of where they want to be

Steph (pictured left with Dom) advised the reader to ask her husband for space over Christmas, so they can both get a clearer view of where they want to be

For the record, I don’t think he was having an affair. I think if this woman wanted him, she could have him. She is not the problem here. Every woman knows it’s verboten to have clandestine meetings with another woman’s husband, so she’s not someone I’d invite for dinner, but I don’t think you’ve got a real predator on your patch. Rather, I think you’ve got a narcissist who enjoys the fact that your husband is still hung up on her.

And, sadly, that is the heart of the problem. If he didn’t still secretly hanker after her, and if they were just friends, there would be no reason to keep it from you. But he did.

This is a major betrayal and I’m afraid it will only get worse. Your husband should be trying to move mountains to win your heart back, but I fear he doesn’t even know how catastrophic this situation is for you.

You have shown such courage to write to us, and you are going to have to hold on to that strength for a little longer. It is likely your husband still has deep feelings for this woman, feelings he has harboured for a long time. There is nothing you could have done to avoid this, but you do deserve better.

Kick him out until the New Year! 

So what to do? I think you need to ask him to give you some space over Christmas. Ask him to move out. (On no account must you leave your home.)

Tell him you don’t want to talk to him or see him until the New Year, by which time you’ll both have a much clearer view of where you both want to be — I truly hope that’s together.

Please be brutally honest. Your husband has to be sure he doesn’t wish he were elsewhere, and you have to make sure you are rooting for yourself and not your marriage.

There is a huge difference.

DOM SAYS: Well, I must say, I’m terribly disappointed in your husband. I always try to see both sides of things, but I do think it’s a poor show from him.

Whether one can or cannot be friends with one’s ex is not the issue here (and it’s never a clear-cut thing), the issue is honesty. To discover, as you have, that your husband has withheld this from you for years is a blow indeed.

I totally understand you’d be discombulated by this. How could you not be? Your husband has been lying to you for nine years. For almost a decade, he has been having secret assignations with another woman.

Dom (pictured) admits he finds the lack of honesty hard to forgive, he told the reader to speak to her husband about the hurt he's caused

Dom (pictured) admits he finds the lack of honesty hard to forgive, he told the reader to speak to her husband about the hurt he’s caused 

Has he been having an affair? Well, I’m afraid I can’t know the answer to that one, but I suspect that deep down you do.

Think back and ask yourself, did he behave oddly every year around his birthday? These boozy lunches always took place then. It’s entirely possible that they were never intimate, but that doesn’t mean nothing untoward took place. It did!

The fact remains that he went off and had a jolly afternoon with an old flame, then came home and said nothing. That means he lied to you at the very least by ommission.

Let’s face it, unless he remained in stony silence for days afterwards, he will have chatted to you about his day and he will have lied; nine times (probably more, as surely this happened before you were married, too).

I find this lack of honesty hard to forgive. Your husband has put another woman first. This is not a marriage. Marriage is a commitment to one person — they are not just the most important person, they are the only important person. For the record, it should matter not one jot how glamorous this woman is. The reality is that when you love someone, after a while you simply stop seeing the outside of that person.

He’s lied to you for almost a decade 

I assure you that’s true, but I do understand any woman might feel dowdy by comparison if a supermodel wafted past and flirted with her husband.

You say you feel terrible: well, you shouldn’t. You have done nothing wrong. Your husband, however, should be feeling pretty shabby.

So what should you do? I don’t think you should leave him, no, but I do think you should let him go if he wants. Tell him his dishonesty has hurt you deeply.

Tell him that if he wishes to be with this other woman, he is free to go. Then wait. Give him the freedom to choose, and respect his decision. If he loves you, he’ll stay and rebuild the trust — and his old flame will be history!

If you have a question you’d like Steph and Dom to tackle, write to: stephanddom@