How to Stop an Affair by Exposing It

how to stop an affair

If you’ve been agonizing over how to stop an affair, exposing it might just be the solution.

There are a ton of articles circulating around the net about how to stop an affair.  I obviously can’t say that my research has led me to read all of them, but I feel that I found a very powerful tactic that might be something to consider for those of you who are facing this issue.  The tactic is…Exposure.

I came across this tactic through Dr. Willard Harley’s site, Marriage Builders.  Harley is the author of “Surviving an Affair” and “His Needs Her Needs” and typically recommends some fairly strong tactics when it comes to ending an affair and affair recovery.

The more Linda and I read the stories from betrayed spouses of how difficult a time they are having while their cheating spouses continue to carry on their affairs, the more we lean toward ‘tough love’ type tactics.  And the tactics that Harley recommends are probably the toughest we’ve seen. 

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If you’re the unfaithful, get it, read it and carefully consider the advice. If you’re the betrayed, give it to your unfaithful spouse.

 

Please note:  Exposure is a very powerful tactic and should be considered very carefully before acting upon it.  It is not going to be appropriate in all situations and there could be consequences that need to be thought through in advance.

Since affairs thrive on secrecy, Harley believes that exposure is your most powerful weapon against them. Exposure is certainly no guarantee, but Harley believes it is your best bet at killing the affair and making it possible to save your marriage.

Harley adds that exposure will make your spouse furious, but the ultimate goal is to save your marriage and not to avoid your cheating spouse’s anger at all cost. Harley believes your marriage can survive the cheater’s temporary anger, though it cannot survive an ongoing affair.

“Exposure is very likely to end the affair, lifting the fog that has overcome the unfaithful spouse, helping him or her become truly repentant and willing to put energy and effort into a full marital recovery.In my experience with thousands of couples who struggle with the fallout of infidelity, exposure has been the single most important first step toward recovery. It not only helps end the affair, but it also provides support to the betrayed spouse, giving him or her stamina to hold out for ultimate recovery.”

How to Stop an Affair by Exposing It

Here is an excerpt written by Dr. Harley that explains the exposure process:

The reason for the wide exposure is not to hurt the unfaithful spouse, but rather to end the fantasy. Your spouse’s secret second life made his affair possible, and the more you can do to make it public, the easier it is for him to see the damage he’s doing. Keeping it secret does damage, but few know about it. Making it public helps everyone, including the unfaithful spouse and lover, see the affair for what it really is.

Exposure Targets

You should target the parents of all concerned, family, close friends, children of the affair partner, workplace (if a workplace affair), spouse of the affair partner, pastor, Facebook friends of the affair partner.

Exposure Timing

Exposure should be done immediately. The longer you wait, the more entrenched the affair becomes. There is never any “perfect” time to expose, so don’t delay while looking for an imaginary perfect time.

Expose on the SAME DAY – or as close as possible – in order to achieve a tsunami effect. The “affairees” should be completely taken by surprise. Doing this creates a powerful hit on the affair and prevents the “affairees” from pre-empting you.

Exposure Tactics

Spouse of affair partner– Give your full name, phone # and email address. Tell the other betrayed spouse (BS) all about the affair and offer to share all evidence with him/her. Offer to follow up to ensure that contact is truly ended and ask the other BS to do the same. The other BS will be shocked when you tell him, so be sure and give your email address and phone # for follow up questions. ALWAYS GIVE THE OTHER BS YOUR WAYWARD SPOUSE’S PHONE # IN CASE HE/SHE WANTS TO CALL.

Parents, close family, friends – Tell them about the affair, giving them names, general timelines, etc. Explain you are attempting to save your marriage and would be willing to forgive your spouse if he/she ended the affair. Ask them to use their influence to persuade the wayward spouse (WS) to end her affair. A way to save time is to call both sets of parents and send an email to the other close family and friends. (Template letter posted below.)

Parents of affair partner. Give your full name and explain why you are calling. Ask them to use their influence with their son/daughter to persuade them to leave your spouse alone. It might also help if the PARENT of the WS calls them too.

Workplace exposure: Expose to Director of Human Resources, a key VP and both of the “affairee’s” supervisors using the template letter posted below.

Facebook exposure: Should be done to the affair partner’s Facebook friends via private message. This is a very, very effective exposure because it is a collection of the affair partner’s closest friends and family. SPACE THE PM’S OUT 60 SECONDS APART SO FACEBOOK DOES NOT SHUT YOU DOWN FOR FLOODING. Before you begin, copy and paste all the contacts into a WORD doc. Change your Facebook picture to a picture of you and your spouse and children. (Template letters posted below.)

The Fallout

Expect your spouse to be FURIOUS and to make all manner of threats, “I was going to work on the marriage, now I am not!!” “I cannot trust you” “You have to pack and leave!!” “You have ruined any chance you had!!” Do not let this bother you!! Just imagine that you have taken the crack pipe away from the crack head. Of course they are angry. But it will blow over. Don’t laugh, don’t fight, don’t attempt to reason with them, and most of all, don’t be SCARED! Your marriage can survive some temporary anger but it cannot survive an ongoing affair! The madder your WS, the harder you hit the target!

The goal is to save your marriage, NOT to avoid your wayward spouse’s anger at all costs.

Just say, “I am so sorry you are upset.. Can I get you a potato chip?”

Common Exposure Mistakes

Not owning it. A common mistake is telling the WS that you got the idea to expose on the internet or some other place rather than taking ownership of your actions. Then the discussion becomes “Who???” When the WS is told where you got it, the WS is forever jaundiced against the source, which harms future recovery chances. You need to OWN IT. Saying somebody told you to do it does not work for 5 year olds and it won’t work for you!

Keeping exposure a secret. Yes, you read right. But we have had exposure targets say “Okay, I will keep this a secret!!” And they never tell the WS they know. That defeats the entire purpose. If that person won’t help you by speaking to your WS, at least TELL the WS that person knows.

Doing trickle exposures. Meaning exposing to just a few people but not to everyone that could have an influence. Trickle exposures are a disaster because they are not enough to kill the affair but just enough to infuriate the WS enough to come after the BS. So the exposure essentially only served to beat down the already beaten BS for no benefit.

Eliminating exposure targets. You may think that a person “has no influence over my WS” even though this is a person with long history over the WS. Such as a mother or father. Such targets cannot be dismissed on such a subjective basis because the BS CANNOT PREDICT WHO WILL OR WON’T HAVE AN INFLUENCE OVER THE WS. Sorry, but unless you are psychic and your name is Madame Cleo, you don’t know. Many WS are estranged from a parent, sibling, pastor but that is not a knock out factor.

Threatening to expose. Using exposure as a threat only serves to forewarn the “affairees” and cause them to go further underground. All you have achieved is to give the enemy your battle plan so they can come back and kick your rear tomorrow. It also gives them an opportunity to pre-empt you and tell others you are “crazy jealous”. Then when you do expose no one will take you seriously. Threatening to expose is the equivalent of giving your battle plan to the enemy. Don’t do that!

Deleting or throwing away evidence after the affair is killed. DO NOT DO THIS! You will need this in case the affair starts up again or if you get divorced. Yes, we know you don’t want to be triggered. Fine. Then bag up the evidence and put it somewhere for safekeeping. Do not throw it away!

 

This is some seriously powerful and potentially explosive stuff!  I know that if Linda would have done such a thing, I would have been pissed off to no end – probably due to shame and embarrassment more than anything.  At the same time, I’m certain it would have blown up my emotional affair very quickly.

I suppose that there is always the chance that a tactic such as this could only propel the affair partners closer together, but Dr. Harley claims to have a high success rate when exposing an affair using the above guidelines.

 

Sample Exposure Letter Templates

I also wanted to give you some sample letter templates that might be helpful.  Use them as a guide and tailor them to your individual circumstance.

Exposure letter to friends and family:

Dear friends and family,

I am writing you this message because you are an important person in the lives of _____ and I. As some of you know, _____ has recently asked me for a separation, which has shattered my heart. To my shock, I am saddened to have discovered that the reason is because she has been carrying on an affair with a old boyfriend named __________ who resides in ______. He is also married and has young children. The purpose of the separation is so that she can carry on her affair without my interference.

She refuses to end the affair however, I want our marriage to recover from this affair. If you have any influence on her, please do what you can to get her to stop this dangerous affair. I want to stay married, but the affair must end.

As our friends and family, I am asking that you use your influence with ______ to persuade her to end her affair and try to work on our marriage. Our marriage can be salvaged if she would only end the affair. Please support her in doing the right thing. Please support our marriage.

I would so appreciate your support and prayers.

Warmest regards,

 

Facebook exposure letters to affair partner’s contacts:

Dear friend of JoeScumbag:

It grieves me to write this letter but I believe all of his friends should know the kind of person he really is. Joe had an affair with my wife, Sally, from Aug until September. I believe that his friends should know this so you can protect your marriage from him. My wife and I have 2 small daughters and this affair has almost wrecked our marriage.

I would be happy to provide the evidence to anyone who asks.

I would appreciate it if someone would notify his parents and ask them to call me at xxx-www-xxxx.

Thank you,

 

Dear friend of Skankyhola,

It grieves me to write this letter but I believe all of her friends should be aware that _____ is having an affair with my husband, Joe. We have been married for 5 years. They have been having this affair since October according to the evidence.

I would be happy to provide the evidence to anyone who asks.

I would ask that you use your influence with _____ to persuade her to leave my husband alone. You should also watch your own husbands around her because she is no friend to marriage.

I would appreciate it if someone would notify her parents and ask them to call me at xxx-www-xxxx.

Thank you,

 

Workplace exposure letter :

Note – be sure and send to 3 key people and CC each on the letter. Good targets would be the Director of Human Resources, a key VP and both affairee’s supervisor. This can be sent via registered letter or even via email.

(This letter was allegedly developed by a corporate attorney)

To Whom It May Concern:

This letter is to bring a matter to your attention that may be a violation of your Company’s Code of Conduct and/or other policies, procedures and business ethics.

_____ and _____ are involved in an extramarital affair that is taking place, primarily, in the workplace. Aside from the potential sexual harassment claims this situation presents, it also involves the inappropriate use of company resources and assets. _____ and _____ are using company time and company resources to further their affair. If you check the call histories on their office and cell phones along with their workstation computers, you will find the two of them are spending an inordinate amount of what should be productive work time to further their sexual relationship.

If you have any questions, please call me at xxx-xxxx. Otherwise, I will anticipate a response from you once you have investigated these concerns and taken appropriate corrective action.

Regards,

 

Ending the affair letter:

_______, I want you to know that out of respect and love for my wife and children, I have come to realize that I must never see or talk to you again. My relationship with you was a cruel indulgence that _____ did not deserve.

While I cannot completely repay _____ (BS) for the pain I caused her, I will do my best to become the husband she has been missing. I care a great deal for my family and I would not want to do anything to risk their happiness.

I will not make any further contact with you and I do not want you to make any contact with me. Please respect my desire to end our relationship.

Sincerely,

 

OK, so what do you guys think?  If you’ve been agonizing over how to stop an affair, does this seem like something you would try?  We would also be curious to hear from any of you who have done this – or at least something similar – and what your experiences were.

 

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209 Responses to How to Stop an Affair by Exposing It

  1. chiffchaff March 26, 2012 at 7:02 am #

    I wish I’d done all of this at the very start. Esp. the workplace one, seeing as my H used company time, company resources and got them to pay for a spurious visit to the OW’s place so that he could spend a whole week with her. He would have lost his job if they knew, and then, 8 months later, we might not still be in the situation where he fantasizes about his fantasy future with her. he would see it for the nightmare future it would have been to try and do it without a job or any family sympathy.

    • Silvia February 15, 2017 at 12:19 pm #

      This is where I am – the affair has been going on for almost 3 years now.
      The other woman is in the process of trying to divorce her husband and leave her 2 kids with him for 6 months.
      She is trying to get my husband to talk to divorce attorneys.
      They are dreaming of some future together.
      He did used University funds to have her travel with him to many, many conferences.
      Actually that is where they are today – at a “conference” together in a hotel room.
      He used his position to bring her to work for/with him 3 times, he’s responsible for her salary and for the $4000 raise he gave her in September 2016.
      I should have exposed him at work.
      I tried talking to one of his colleagues and mutual friend and he went through my computer and found the message and blew his top.
      “You have NO RIGHT!” etc
      I don’t think exposing him to his parents and sisters will help – they will side with him I think.

      • Chris March 20, 2017 at 9:57 pm #

        You need to tell him to get out and go be with her. Tell him that you give him your blessing. Two wrongs aren’t going to make a right. That’s a match made in heaven. God will never bless 2 people who are committing adultry. They both will have to answer for there actions someday. And when he gets to see the real person she is . A heartless women who is cheating on her husband and doesn’t care what she does to another women and her family and her marriage. He will get exactly what he deserves. Tell him to take a hike. And go live with the selfish heartless women she is.

        • Chris March 20, 2017 at 10:04 pm #

          I to just resented caught my husband in an a 3 year affair it’s a co worker. I new it was going on I couldn’t prove it. I finally did he got caught. I contacted her husband. Gave him info and he had info as well. He doesn’t want her he wants me boohoo !!!! I started seeing change when I started using my back bone. I told him everything I just sent you. Stop all contact or else. The gates of hell will open up for both of them. He knows I’m done messing around. I’m a much stronger person and if I have to make it on my own I will. He can have her. She too is married. After getting caught. Now all of a sudden they love there spouses. Not sure if I want to stay with him but I’m working on it. We will be married 35 years I have 3 adult children and 3 grandchildren.

          • Jacqui September 6, 2017 at 8:25 pm #

            Chris – may I ask, why do you want to stay, other than love and the time you poured into your marriage? Just wondering- I haven’t been married, as nearly, as long, as you have. I caught my husband cheating and the side chick, works in his building as a security officer. I am so angry and beyond pissed. He said he doesn’t want our marriage any longer.

  2. chiffchaff March 26, 2012 at 7:32 am #

    Also – sending a similar workplace letetr to the OW’s workplace would have been good too, seeing as she slept with my H after interviewing him at a conference that her company had organised. It was her job to interview him, not sure her company would’ve asked her to go as far as sleeping with him as well to get her ‘story’. Very unprofessional. No doubt connected to her losing her job before christmas, for which I have no sympathy at all. If you’re so unprofessional as to sleep with your company’s clients then you should expect it to be a potentially dangerous pastime.

  3. Lynsey March 26, 2012 at 9:33 am #

    Luckily I haven’t had to resort to those tactics, but the letter to the AP will be very useful. Tonight or tomorrow, my H and I are writing a letter to the OW to end the affair! My H and I had a major breakthrough last night. I caught him in another lie, and this time got the truth that he was again texting her when I left the room. He finally showed me the text, which in the past has never happened. I remained calm and we were finally able to discuss his “fantasy affair”. in these texts, the OW responded to his inappropriate words that he should be saying these to his wife. It turns out that she isn’t all that interested in him as anything more than friends. (And I do know that this wasn’t a false front for my benefit, judging from my H’s reaction.) He and I discussed that it is a fantasy, and all contact must end. Last night, he said he now realizes this. He is grieving considerably. Any advice from you Doug, or anyone out there as to how I can support him and get him/us through this. I do have considerable strength that I didn’t even know was possible in me. I know that there will still be bumps in the road ahead, but finally feel that there is a chance.

    • Doug March 26, 2012 at 9:46 am #

      Lynsey, I’m sure that the text was rough for you to see. However, it seems as though his realization that his fantasy feelings of his emotional affair were one-sided might make him snap out of his fog and realize what he has done and the pain he has caused you. If you haven’t already, try to get to the root of the issue as to why he had these feelings for the OW in the first place. Communicate to him from a standpoint of understanding and not from placing blame and he will open up to you and hopefully he will also begin to look within to find the answers himself. Sounds like you indeed had a major breakthrough. Best of luck!

  4. Greg March 26, 2012 at 9:40 am #

    I guess I got somewhat lucky in that all the letters were done for me by one of his former physical affair partners. She was feeling jilted so she sent letters to his wife, their works HR department, and both of their bosses. I didn’t get a letter until a month later when she found our home address. I can attest to the fact that exposure works great in that she was then forced to look at him under the light of being called into her bosses office and asked about it and dealing with the fact that when we figured out who had sent the letter that he had done this before with other women at work. She was literally snapped out of her fog and had to look at what was happening under the harsh light of reality. It doesn’t mean that we have had an easy journey working through it or our other issues but at least I haven’t had to deal with her still wanting him as well.

    • Doug March 26, 2012 at 9:49 am #

      Hey Greg, thanks for the information. So do you think that the exposure was directly responsible for the affair ending, and did it end right away?

      • Greg March 26, 2012 at 9:55 am #

        Absolutely! It wasn’t an immeadiate ending of the affair, it probably took about one week from there. Really helped that his wife called and confronted her at work, she felt betrayed that he didn’t protect her from his wife and started to see that he was a coward as he still wanted to hide any communication between them from his wife even after being caught. It went so against everything that she had thought about herself that it shocked her straight out of the affair. Not telling the truth has always been one of her biggest peeves and when she saw that she hadn’t been doing it, both to herself and me, she was done with him. Doesn’t mean she talked to me about it, it took the letter getting to me and me confronting her about it to do that. I can say that the letters were a dead stop for the affair in our case. Now we get to deal with all of the issues that lead up to it.

        • Doug March 26, 2012 at 10:43 am #

          Thanks for offering those additional aspects. I could see how that could shock a person out of the fog.

  5. Jane March 26, 2012 at 11:24 am #

    I don’t know and I certainly can’t dispute the results a marriage counselor apparently got with this tactic but I think it sounds incredibly immature, revengeful and destructive. I’ve been dealing my husband’s emotional connection to another woman at work since Thanksgiving. We’ve had a less than perfect marriage for about 6 years. My husband is 53 and in the throes of a midlife crisis. When I discovered what was going on I did all the typical ranting and raving and name calling but it only served to push him further away. He asked for ‘space’ – which I’ve learned is typical in an MLC (midlife crisis) – and I gave it to him. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But it also gave me the time to look at our relationship objectively and it’s been a time of incredible growth for me. I’ve done a ton of soul searching and come to realize that I’ve spent an awful lot of time over the years pointing my finger in his direction for every problem our marriage has ever had. I’ve been self-righteous, self centered and unappreciative much of the time. The prospect of losing all that we’ve invested into each other and our family caused me to take a good hard look in the mirror. I had an epiphany of sorts and, although it’s painful to admit the truth, it allowed me to forgive the things he’s done in the past that brought us to this point (which had nothing to do with infidelity). I’m absolutely NOT condoning or excusing that he’s allowed himself to be taken in but I understand the emotions and unmet needs he had that made him vulnerable. I also am NOT blaming myself but AM owning up to some of the awful, unloving behavior I’ve shown him for so long. As a result, I’ve come to a place of compassion for this man that I’ve been married to for almost 25 years. Tapping into that compassion – sincere compassion – along with an infinite amount of painful patience and a husband who is also willing to trust me again is what brought my husband back to me this weekend. We mad a connection, opened up communication and are starting to emerge from the ashes. I don’t know what the future brings but I think a second chance that was arrived at in this fashion is a lot more loving and going to grow better with the connection already made than humiliating all parties concerned – especially any kids involved. Sounds too ‘Jerry Springer’ and gives me chills just thinking about it.

    • Lynne March 26, 2012 at 12:11 pm #

      Jane, many wise words here. Your willingness to truly look at your part in your marriage, and to be able to muster such compassion for your H, says you are a pretty remarkable woman.

      Myself, I do not in any way agree with this kind of public outing of an affair, whether EA or PA. And my take on this might be a bit different. First, I do not believe that public shaming and humiliation of others is an approach that should be used to deal with an undesirable behavior or action–like Jane, this strikes me as immature and bent on destruction. I see this as a matter that should be dealt with inside the marriage–the betrayal is between these two people, and to bring others attitudes into the pain and drama of it will severely lengthen the healing process. Secondly, I am not a believer that a BS should force someone out of an affair. That relationship will only end because you made it end, rather than the CS digging deep within themselves to see the destruction they have caused and deciding to make a right choice to end it. Outing it does not guarantee their growth, it only shows that you are attempting to exercise control over them. I am a believer in setting boundaries with the cheater that say, if you continue this behavior, you are choosing an end to our marriage. NC is a very fair request, but the CS has to decide that they are choosing their spouse, not the spouse deciding for them. If the CS refuses to make a choice between the two, then they actually have made a choice–the marriage is over!

      If I were to have ended my H’s EA, I would have forever wondered if he was with me because I gave him no choice, or because he truly chose us.

      • Jane March 26, 2012 at 1:44 pm #

        That’s my thinking too. He had to come to the conclusion himself and, I told him, I only wanted to move forward if he was doing it because he loved me and wanted to stay married – not for any other reason. I honestly don’t think my husband is in the depths of a full bown EA but I think it’s got huge potential. More than anything he’s vulnerable for a variety of reasons right now. The events that occurred over Thanksgiving proved that she’s not the “friend” he imagines she is because she exploited that vulnerability to an inexcusable degree. He just didn’t see it – and maybe still isn’t totally convinced. But I made a very well worded point to him this weekend that helped put things in perspective and I think he sees that, on a true relational level, she doesn’t have his best interests in mind. I’m not fooling myself into thinking all will be perfect from this point forward – at all. We’ve got lots of things to discuss and a lot of work ahead of us and in the end, it may not work. But we’ve got a fighting chance based on mutual committment and BOTH of us wanting to try, rather than one of us holding a gun to the other’s head. If it ends, I’ll be torn up but I’ll know I took the high road.

    • Anne March 26, 2012 at 12:18 pm #

      I agree with you, Jane. I think an exposure of the scale described above would have made a bad situation worse in my case. I’ve had fantasies about confronting the OW, but haven’t done it. I think there is little to be gained by a confrontation. If she cared about my feelings or my family, she wouldn’t have gotten involved with a married man. I have found that we have made HUGE progress by engaging in the kind of reflection you are describing. He came out of the fog when he started seeing a personal therapist. My therapy has enabled me to have a greater understanding of what happened, my role in it, and how to move forward. Both of us have more compassion for the other. That seems to be the key to our recovery.

  6. Dee March 26, 2012 at 11:39 am #

    My husband refused to tell me who it was he had been having an EA with….but between my daughter and I, we guessed. When he found out that I knew, he pleaded with me not to confront her about it (She was a work colleague). I respected this at first as we had decided to make a go of our marriage and then i decided that she needed to know that I knew it was her (as I had met her months before) I found it hard to live with the knowledge that she had got off ‘scot-free’ with no consequences. So I sent her a dignified and non-abusive e-mail asking her if she was proud of what she had done……..I made no abusive remarks nor called her any offensive names…It was short and to the point………My husband was FURIOUS with me….I was frightened by his anger and thought our marriage was over…..I realise now, after reading this, that he was furious with me for ruining his ‘fantasy’, for injecting the cold, hard reality into his secret life. This was a long time ago now,,,,and he still doesn’t understand why I did it, But I would do it again, as the feelings she had for him ended there as she was so mad at him for exposing her identity to me and being forced to feel shame for what she had done – she took it out on him and wanted nothing to do with him after that..

    Just wanted to say that sometimes you need only to ‘expose’ to a few people to achieve the same effect…After having her shouting and screaming at him about the e-mail I had sent to her…..he began to realise that his ‘fantasy’ was over.

    • Carol March 27, 2012 at 11:37 am #

      I think there can be some benefits to a limited exposure. In my case, as soon as I found out I called my mother, in tears – she and I are close and I so needed her advice and support. My H was really ashamed that I had told her, as he’s always thought she had a high opinion of him. She has actually thought that he was neglectful and let me bear far too much of the burden for our family (everything from financial to children to yardwork, etc.). And after she found out about the affair, she let him know it. That was an awakening for him. My sisters also found out from my mother, and my H has lost (temporarily or permanently — I do not yet know) their good opinions as well as the friendship of my brother-in-law, which he has always valued. All of this, together with my obvious pain, snapped him out of la-la land pretty quickly. I also wrote to the OW telling her to leave my family alone and telling her how much pain she had caused my children. This elicited a response in which she tried to get me to pity her for her bad marriage (!) and in which she said, very dramatically, that *she* would do the best she could to get on with *her* life. A real narcissist, that one.

      The bad side of exposure: I would not have told my H’s boss. He used his employer’s time and resources to try to arrange a trip to see OW again, and texted and called her incessantly while at work. He would have gotten fired. And when my H told his parents what was going on, there was another shock of sorts. I had always suspected that my in-laws didn’t approve of me, largely because I work outside the home. As soon as they heard what he’d done, they excused it: they said similar affairs had happened to lots of people they’d known, that what he did wasn’t so bad, that I hadn’t made it easy on him, that I had probably done the same thing for all he knew since, in their words, I’m ‘attractive’ and I ‘travel a lot.’ Not one word of sympathy or concern or support for me, their DIL of 16 years and mother of their only grandchildren. My H was shocked. I realized in an instant where his self-indulgent, I-can-do-no-wrong attitude came from. The only good thing to come out of that: my H recognized at long last that some factors in *his* upbringing — his parents’ endless indulgences, their conviction that he burps rainbows and unicorns, that he does no wrong — may, just may, have made him think that (in his words) he ‘deserved’ to have a little ‘fun’ on the side.

      I do think the CS has to take some responsibility in facing up to the reality of what he/she has done. In our case, the exposure to close family helped, though not always in the way one might predict. The fact is that cheating WILL come to light, it WILL hurt lots of people — especially but not only the BS — and maybe some CSs need that kick in the head (my husband’s phrase) before they can get out of the prison of their own selfishness. But I’d think that a radical exposure like the one advocated in this post might backfire and hurt the BS even more. Maybe only to be used in the worst cases, where there’s little left to lose? Hmm.

      • Doug March 27, 2012 at 11:46 am #

        Carol, Thanks for your insightful comment. To be clear, we are not recommending that the tactics offered by Dr. Harley should be used in every case. Linda and I both feel that some of what he says is quite extreme. A person needs to carefully weigh the pros and cons when considering whether to expose the affair or not – or any other type of strategy for that matter. Can it work? Yes. Can it blow up in your face? Absolutely. Harley tends to recommend some tough tactics when it comes to dealing with a cheater who won’t stop their affair and this is just an example. Thanks again.

        • chely November 23, 2014 at 10:50 am #

          Yeah maybe not the workplace as I don’t want hjim to loose his job. He needs to be able to pay me my alimony support.

  7. Healing Mark March 26, 2012 at 11:43 am #

    Never.

    Actually, I made it very clear to the AP that continued inappropriate contact with my wife (initially, it was any contact but that later changed due to unusual dynamics – in part to avoid having to expose the EA – but apparently the risk of any contact being deemed inappropriate has effectively led to no contact that I am aware of between my wife and the AP) would lead to disclosure of affair to his wife, certain family members, and certain mutual friends notwithstanding any harm/pain this might cause all concerned. My wife understood this to be the case in the event she crossed agreed upon boundary lines or tried to hide continued contact. Because (as both the AP and my wife have acknowledged) they believed me to be very, very serious about this such that this was not even remotely considered to be a potentially idle threat, what was left of a relationship between my wife and the AP whithered and died.

    I must add that my wife was not in too much of a “fog” at the time of the threatened exposure as the EA had been ended for 5 or 6 months and my wife and the AP had ramped down their relationship to one that was then within our agreed upon boundaries. But I certainly did not want the EA to start back up, and there is no growing closer to a person that you never communicate with.

    To each his own, but no matter how hurt a BS might be, there should be some careful thought to how life changing letting so many people know about a CS’s actions will no doubt be. I realize that we are way past the Scarlett Letter days, but it seems to me that a repentant CS has a hard enough time getting past and getting forgiven for an affair without adding to the mix the additional “problems” to no doubt arise as a result of so many people learning of the CS’s mistakes (really, work supervisors?). That said, if the affair has been discovered and such global exposure is set out as a consequence of the CS’s decision to continue the affair, any CS that decides to continue their affair at that point has little to complain about if such exposure occurs, though I get the fact that threatened exposure does give a CS a chance to take preemptive actions to lessen the effects of ultimate exposure.

    • chely November 25, 2014 at 6:31 pm #

      The key word is repentant. Anyone that continues the affair after discovery is NOT repentant. If they tell you they want to stay together but never show any remorse, then they’re simply will take it further underground, working to become masters at the game. If actions don’t match the words you must realize that something is not right.

  8. Pippi March 26, 2012 at 2:19 pm #

    My husband’s affair was ended when co-workers suspected and questioned it. The exposure ended the fantasy and the affair. My husband and his AP were both forced to resign. Both lost their jobs over the affair. While this was wonderful for me — getting my husband away from his AP and ending the affair — I think it was very detrimental to husband’s self-esteem and I wonder if that will come back to haunt us in some other way.

    I also have to add that when my husband was losing his job (I did not know about any of it at the time) he was suicidal. When I finally found out about the affair, I was suicidal. I felt there was no way out of the pain ever and it was a coping mechanism.

    So, I have experienced both benefits and detriments of this type of exposure. I see many benefits but also would caution people to be very careful. Would you be ok if the AP or your spouse or the AP’s spouse committed suicide? These are big, HUGE feelings and trauma is involved for all parties. Tread with caution would be my advice.

    • stillbroken March 31, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

      I know i dont have the heart to do something like that, but it feels good imagining the OW being tortured like that. In my imagination, i wouldnt care if she committed suicide, its her decision to had affair, its her decision to kill herself..
      Thats a cold thing to say i know, i cant help myself, i have so much anger in me these days and dont know how to manage them..

      • shocked February 16, 2014 at 10:20 pm #

        I’m sorry, you are pure evil – to wish that a person takes his or her own life is to demonstrate a complete lack of humanity.

        • Repulsed September 14, 2015 at 12:55 pm #

          I’m sorry that you’re so disgusting a human being that you would sympathize with the home wrecker and be so heartless towards the person whose life was destroyed.

        • Justine June 24, 2016 at 10:09 pm #

          Dying stops the suffering. Breaking marriages and couples makes many people suffer, man, woman, family, kids till the rest of their lives.

  9. chiffchaff March 26, 2012 at 2:42 pm #

    I must add, I never sent letters to any workplace, the OW or anyone about my H’s affair. My comments are very much given with the perfect vision of hindsight and in the light of 4 further months of my H maintaining contact with the OW through his work email after Dday#1 because he was too weak to really end it.
    I don’t think there are shortcuts away from the pain and anguish, you just do what you feel is right at the time. I don’t think I could’ve done anything differently due to the immense shock of the discovery and self-doubt that ensued on Dday#1 and that was perpetuated by the constant dribbling out of further revelations over a long period of time. Enough to drive anyone mad.

  10. mona lisa March 26, 2012 at 3:00 pm #

    The day after I found out about my husband’s EA I contacted the other woman’s husband and told him what I had uncovered. I gave him my H cell phone number in the event that he wanted to discuss anything with him, but he never made contact. He even made the comment that he was not surprised by the actions of his wife. I then proceeded to contact the OW and let her know that she had better not make contact with my H ever again. Later in the day I called her place of employment and spoke with the president to let him know how she was spending her work time, as she would mostly text and call my H during her workday in order to keep the secret from her husband.
    The next day I insisted that my H call all four of our grown children and tell them what he had done.
    I say put the truth out there and let the pieces fall where they may.

  11. Roller coaster rider March 26, 2012 at 3:51 pm #

    I also insisted that my H tell our four grown children the day after D-day 1 because I knew I couldn’t hide my devastation and pain from them. He told his own siblings, I told mine. After D-day 2, which was the day I walked, my H ended things and came out of the fog. That week he went to work and disclosed everything to his supervisor and to anyone else he felt needed to know what was going on and why we weren’t together anymore. The OW has had very little to deal with in this regard because she is divorced and her ex has custody of their daughter, but I have to think that it would be impossible to do what she did and have no consequences.

  12. Paula March 26, 2012 at 5:26 pm #

    I think it is important to distinguish that the author here is only suggesting this tactic for those who have not been able to end the affair, or contact (in my case, the affair ended, but there was still sporadic contact, from her, which he would answer, grrr, so I was never SURE the affair ended, although, I now believe it did, only they know.) It would be childish to do all of this when the cheater has ceased contact, and is working on the marriage, but I think it is a useful tool to consider should the cheater not end contact, as it shows that you mean business, and you will end your marriage if they are unable, or unwilling to stop contact with the AP. It does require calmness and eloquence, to get the message across in as dignified a manner as is at all possible.

    • Ifeelsodumb March 27, 2012 at 2:16 am #

      Totally agree Paula!! I wouldn’t use this tactic AT FIRST…but if I found out that there was STILL contact after Dday…you betcha!! The gloves would be off, nothing could stop me from exposing them!
      BTW, reading this posting made me LOL…just the thought of emailing all of the OW’s friends and family….Oh yes….sweet justice!!! 😀

  13. changedforever March 26, 2012 at 6:10 pm #

    I considered some of these things….but not all. Even though my H did not consider his standing as a public official while running around for about 10 weeks with a tramp HALF his age who was also his subordinate. I considered contacting her parents ( as they are my H’s age…about 10 yrs older than me,) I considered his standing…and what that would’ve done to our 3 children (then 15, 17 & 20.) But I will share this post with my H though…as a roadmap of what ‘could’ have happened. Like chiffchaff, I, too, suffered immense shock as of DDay#1 and, in retrospect, I never could’ve thought of all these things at that horrible time in ‘my’ life.
    I am almost 18 mths past DD#1
    Almost 10 mths past DD#2
    Following my H’s EA/PA

  14. Patsy50 March 26, 2012 at 9:52 pm #

    After my husband told me about his EA our two grown married children were told. Best thing ever in my case as the secret only fuels the fire in an EA. Husband felt very shameful, especially that his children knew. But he stopped it immediately with the coworker . New that he wanted to work on our marriage and that’s what we have done in this past year.

  15. Jessica March 26, 2012 at 11:13 pm #

    “This is some seriously powerful and potentially explosive stuff! I know that if Linda would have done such a thing, I would have been pissed off to no end – probably due to shame and embarrassment more than anything. At the same time, I’m certain it would have blown up my emotional affair very quickly.”

    Wow Doug, so it wasn’t enough that Linda was hurt and devastated by your affair and this wasn’t enough to end it, now your saying if she had taken some of the actions above it would have ended your affair very quickly. It sounds like putting the blame on her and more excuses as to why you couldn’t / didn’t end your affair on your own. Its too bad it took action from Linda for you to end your affair but its like pouring salt on a wound to say if she had taken the actions above your affair would have ended sooner.

    • Doug March 27, 2012 at 6:26 am #

      Jessica, I was simply just making an emphasis of the potential power of the tactic. Where in the world are you getting that I’m blaming Linda and making excuses? Give me an F-ing break! Geesh!

      • Notoverit March 27, 2012 at 10:00 am #

        Yeah, lay off of Doug. He was just making a point as to how it would have affected him. He did the right thing without it. Kudos Doug.

        As for work place letters, it could have legal ramifications by getting your H or W fired and sued. BUT that is still there, even if the CS isn’t outed, because these two have already overstepped the boundaries at WORK – the tort has been committed. If it is discovered because the two idiots are conducting a work-place romance they have already disregarded the rules. As usual, I am sure the two cheaters don’t think about their actions. Being a BS I did think about the legal ramifications but everyone at work already knew. Most of the time that is the case and, as the other commenter said, the fellow workers don’t care (sad but true). So, as I told my H, you should have thought of that before you took up with some Whore at work who was only looking to get ahead. It’s just a weighing of your options.

        • Notoverit March 27, 2012 at 10:03 am #

          And by weighing your options, I meant the BS has to weigh all points and options before doing anything. As for me, if the staff hadn’t already known (and watched the EA for months), I would have gotten on my soap box and exposed it. At that point I didn’t really care about collateral damage.

  16. Jessica March 26, 2012 at 11:19 pm #

    To anyone thinking about writing and sending the workplace letter contact a lawyer first. The exact wording in this letter is one used to terminate employment and sue the ex-employee for damages to the company. Some employees are also personally liable for damages. In today’s job market once you have been fired and sued for damages not only is it hard to get references but word of mouth travels in many industries and its hard to get a job, so on top of all the emotional devastation now its economic.

    • Notoverit March 27, 2012 at 10:10 am #

      Damages – for what? Being a lawyer, all I can think of is a breach of employment contract. Perhaps it is a tort – maybe – in some states or countries but I don’t know of any. If there is a breach of contract, i.e. you are prohibited from affairs at work, you’ve already committed the breach. AND the two affair partners didn’t consider that when they set their course. A breach is a breach and they could be outed at any time by anybody and lose their jobs for that. It doesn’t necessarily require the BS’s letter. I guess you are saying that by keeping quiet the BS doesn’t rock the already-damaged boat at work. One more consequence CAUSED by the CS by not thinking.

      • Pippi March 27, 2012 at 10:53 am #

        It’s arrogance pure and simple to it’s highest degree. Pure narcissism. They NEVER think THEY will get caught. They think they are too smart /special/in love/(fill in the blank) to ever get caught.

        My husband’s OW is an employment attorney and she still had a workplace affair with a married man. Then she lost her job over it. Karma.

      • Jessica March 27, 2012 at 11:14 am #

        Emotional distress, Mis coding of company time and resources spent to carry on the affair, co workers passed over for raises or promotions.

        • Notoverit March 28, 2012 at 9:25 am #

          Emotional Distress? Does that mean we all get to sue the company when we BS have emotional distress from all the co-workers who NEVER stepped in and said anything? I have suffered time and time again, lost weight, lost sleep – the list goes on and on. The company’s employees knew and did nothing and caused me distress. Seriously, that would be an awfully hard tort to prove over an emotional affair or even a PA depending on who is claiming it, especially other co-workers (those you said that don’t care).

          • Jessica March 28, 2012 at 10:02 am #

            My annoyance is directed at the cheater themselves and their ability to make excuses and put blame on their spouse, to say if only spouse did XYZ then this affair wouldn’t have happened or I would have ended it.
            The witnesses to the affair like witnesses to a crime sometimes do jump into the situation and sometimes don’t for whatever reason perhaps out of fear or perhaps because the BS has also talked to them about how the wife has issues and doesn’t care about them. Or the OW has gone and blabbed to everyone what the marital problems in their marriage are, the witnesses to the affair may also like the OW or have been told the spouse was also having/had an affair.

            • EPaulson February 17, 2016 at 4:11 pm #

              Its mind boggling to me that wives always point their fingers at the OW or their cheating spouse for that matter. So if the wife think that she does nothing wrong to have cause a ripped in her marriage hence created a void in her husband hence pushing him to seek out companionship in the OW, then why is she still hanging around begging pleading for her husband to “stay”. The truth is wives whose husband cheated are women with zero self respect, zero self esteem, very little if any real contribution to the husband’s happiness. Always desperate and don’t have a life of their own. Just because you got that piece of paper called a marriage license does not mean you can lay back be lazy be mean and nasty in your marriage and expect the husband to somehow still feel attracted to you and stick around and accepting miseries until the day he dies. Spouse (male or female) who got cheated on deserve every minute of it. Yes, the truth hurt doesn’t it. But hey, feel free to live in your own delusion and finds comforts in those who always in your shoes. Miseries needs companions too.

              • Trixxy March 25, 2016 at 8:43 pm #

                If the spouse feels so unhappy, he should do the right thing and get divorced instead of cheating.

                That’s the right and moral thing to do , instead of running around cheating on your spouse.

                If you do this, then prepare to be exposed.

                I also have to say that not every person who cheats doe so because they are in an unhappy marriage. Manu cheaters later say they just wanted a bit of extra fun, or a release from the stress of the marriage. if it’s stressful for one, then it would be the same for the other, but they keep their vows.

                Marriage is not a joke. if you can’t be faithful, then bail out and don’t be so low down and dirty. END OF STORY.

              • Kim H August 22, 2017 at 5:47 pm #

                It’s a common trait of the the simple mind to blame someone else for your own character flaws. Someone tripped me. The dog ate my homework. Clearly, I’m perfect, therefore the fault for my despicable actions must lie with the person I betrayed. She deserved it. If you run over a pedestrian in your car is it their fault for being in the road? Doing the wrong thing is simply that. If you are married to the wrong person, be they mean, doing very little to make you happy, or just someone you can’t live with for any number of reasons, the ONLY solution is to be honest with them about how you feel and either dissolve the marriage or find some other alternative you can both live with. Looking for some fault in them that somehow cancels out or excuses the fault in yourself is rationalizing, at best. At worst, outright lying to yourself and your affair partner that your wife/spouse is a despicable person who deserves being betrayed. In reality, if you feel so strongly about your perspective on your spouse, if they are indeed “lazy, mean & nasty” why not have the courage to stand behind your convictions, take all that righteous indignation and walk out the door? The only reason I can think of is that you know deep down the nasty, evil spouse story is just a story – your “spin” (lie) you tell yourself and your AP (and whoever else knows what you’re up to) to make yourself not look like the lying, skulking coward you really are.

          • Jessica March 28, 2012 at 10:52 am #

            True Story: I work in HR for large hospital case came to me 2 years before my H EA.
            Manager married to a nurse admin hourly non exempt married to outside employee with 1 daughter pg with second child. PG employee goes out on leave manager donates over 100 hours vacation time to her he’s good friends of family no kids themselves. Employee returns from leave, manager post job for a higher level support person, he selects her for the job. Another qualified employee starts noticing and keeping track of irregular time… Both leaving for two hour lunches, meetings all day. This went on for over a year the rumor mill was rampant, upset employee was given a large project to do that involved payroll information on all SR executives and VP. The data was given to her by manager and double checked by OW. Payroll ran, data was wrong, major calls were made. Upset employee sent email detailing everything she knew to all upper management then went out on stress leave, manager put on leave then terminated. Employee sued two years later settled out of court. Why didn’t the other employees tell? Some believed his story wife didn’t want kids, some thought the baby could be his, some didn’t like the wife, some liked the OW and some just didn’t want to get involved. Former manager has gone from 6 figures to a job paying 2 figures.
            OW transferred to another facility.

  17. Patsy March 27, 2012 at 7:28 am #

    As someone who received an email from the BS (i am colleague of the OW), such tactics do not work. Not a friend of the OW but the exposure did nothing to stop the PA. The OW replied to defend herself and the CS also replied to defend the OW. Frankly all it did was clog up our inbox and annoyed us. Great office gossip but consensus was BS was embarassing herself – private affairs should be kept private. Nobody else cares as nobody really knows what goes on in a marriage. Particularly work people – OW was chastised for involving office colleagues but wasnt fired. The CS left the BS and dont know whether he and OW are still together. Nobody cares!!!

    • Notoverit March 27, 2012 at 10:15 am #

      Are you a cheater or a BS yourself? Just wondering why you were on this site. Your comment that private affairs should be kept quiet is the exact reason no one is afraid of committing them – fear is a wonderful deterrent. I told my H’s fellow workers (whom I had known for nearly 20 years) I feel violated by your indifference. Maybe that is the state of the world today – indifference about wrongs being committed. If the two at your office wanted to have a PA then they should have not subjected their spouses to being cheated on – end the marriage and then do what you want. And yes, nobody cares until it happens to you.

      • Pippi March 27, 2012 at 11:01 am #

        My feeling is that many companies follow a don’t ask, don’t tell sort of rule. If there are simply rumors of an affair they try to ignore it. But, once someone makes a formal complaint (i.e., OW gave me a bad review because she is having an affair with CS and CS doesn’t like me) then it must be addressed.

        So, I can see where an email from a BS might been seen and/or treated like rumor unless an employee of the company makes a complaint or a sexual harassment issue is raised.

        The indifference by coworkers is horrific . . . especially once it happens to you. The indifference by coworkers IMHO adds to the trauma experienced by the BS. There’s nothing quite like being betrayed by your CS, the OW and an entire company.

        Yep, nobody cares until it happens to you. Words to live by, NotOverIt.

        • Carol March 27, 2012 at 12:04 pm #

          I agree about the awfulness of workplace indifference. My H actually told a colleague and (I thought) friend of MINE about his stupid EA — and she not only never told me, she and her stupid husband basically advised him to see the OW again so he could find out how he felt about her (they conducted their affair via text, mostly, and phone). Advice he followed pretty much immediately by trying to arrange a work trip to her city. GIVE ME A BREAK! I have now decided that if I’m ever in a similar situation, I’ll play hardball. That is: anybody who figures out or is told an affair is going on should tell the CS to STOP LYING to his/her spouse — period — or risk immediate exposure. Sheesh. In our case our colleague/friend moaned about not wanting to be ‘judgmental.’ Really? When a man is lying to his wife of 16 years, pursuing a course of action guaranteed to devastate her and their three innocent children, you find it hard to be judgmental??? That’s the sort of person who would find it hard to ‘judge’ whether the sun comes up in the east. Or the ocean is wet. Or the pope Catholic.

          • Disappointed March 27, 2012 at 3:56 pm #

            Having been a BS, I will tell other BSs if I know their spouse is cheating. I will always wonder what would have happened if I had followed my gut sooner. Maybe the in love bull crap would not have happened if I had known sooner and exposed them earlier. It would not be easy to be the bearer of that news, but it is definitely something I would do for another person soon to walk in my shoes.

      • Patsy April 2, 2012 at 11:39 pm #

        Neither but am married. My girlfriends and I read this blog as we think it gives helpful ideas on how to prevent detachment / marriage malaise which seems to EA or PA – that I think is the greatest contribution of this blog. Never commented before as not qualified but this is somethg that happened. A workplace is not somewhere to discuss personal matters – it is unfair to expect other people to weigh in on a personal situation as there is always two sides to each coin.

    • EPaulson February 17, 2016 at 4:24 pm #

      Completely in agreement with you Patsy.

      Dr. Harley’s advices are not only unproductive but very destructive to everyone involves and will have a very negative long lasting effect. If I’m the cheating spouse and my vindictive partner follow such advice, I would NEVER for a second re-consider working things out on my marriage. I’d pack and leave in a heart beat and they only time the vindictive spouse would ever going see or interact with me would be in court or via my divorce lawyer, children or not. Regardless what most people say, by the time I decided to get involve into an affair when my heart/soul/emotion are already half way out the marriage door – and upon discovery, for the partner to use such threatening tactics to scare me back into the marriage is a big joke and will absolutely pushed me further out the door and not feel like the marriage is worth a fighting chance. Better to leave and give myself another chance at true happiness no point in staying and being even more miserable. Not a life worth living with a spouse so vindictive as to want vengeful and go out their way to try to shame me into ending my affair and forcing my hand to stay in the marriage. Love can not be force or threaten. Using these tactics on me and I’ll surely backfire you ten folds.

  18. Disappointed March 27, 2012 at 9:11 am #

    I think these tactics are way over the top. I am a BS and even though it saddens me beyond belief, no one does care. There are only a couple people who know what happened and neither of them have cut off ties to my H. It has been very painful to know that no one cares what he has done to me. They are also friends with the OW. One has said how sorry she is and that I deserved better from both. The other dismissed it as something that just happened even though my H left me after D day. She may not realize it, but she is no longer my friend. The world is too accepting in my opinion. Had the roles been reversed, I would no longer associate with her husband. NC with OW since right after D day.

    • EPaulson February 17, 2016 at 4:39 pm #

      Disappointed – don’t be bitter, having your heard “change is inevitable”? If your husband leaves, it only meant that your journey with each other has ended. Be happy because your future man is out there waiting for the right time to cross your path you are destine to be happier with someone else. Be grateful for the time and space you have shared with your husband, but that chapter has ended, its meant to be this way how else you are going to continue the path you are meant to travel. Its a very hard thing to do, let go, and wishing well, but don’t hate because once upon a time, you and your ex shared time and space and love this should not have to turn into something ugly and hateful just because the “relationship” is no longer. Wish him well on his journey just was you would with a beloved who is departed. Most importantly, don’t be so hateful toward the OW, its her destiny also to be in the position she is and she certainly endure her shares of pain – she is someone’s daughter, wife, mother, grand daughter. Could be your daughter who may fall into such predicament. Purely by chance. You yourself may be the OW one day but with God’s will, pray that you will not but if it happens you might be able to learn something … humility and compassion toward your enemy. But she is not an enemy, just another victim/traveler of life.

      Let it go … forgive yourself, your ex spouse, the other OW. I guaranteed much happiness will come your way soon if you do.

  19. Greg March 27, 2012 at 11:16 am #

    Being one of the few who have had this happen I feel I should weigh back in on this as it seems to be a very emotional subject for a lot of people.

    I do firmly believe that my wife being outed at work did stop the EA in it’s tracks and I am grateful that it happened. Since I didn’t send the letters I didn’t have to make the choice about it though.

    A big question for me is, would I have sent the letters my self? I can honestly say that I wouldn’t have been able to send the letters if faced with the option. I am a very private person and one of the hardest things I’ve had to deal with in the EA is the fact that this was outed at work and her co-workers know about it, many of whom I know, and it is very embarassing to me that they know I wasn’t enough for her. Some of the either knew or suspected the EA well before the outing of it at work though and not one contacted me. Only one of them even mentioned anything about it to my wife, which of course made my wife push away from her for a few months because she didn’t like being told it was wrong. The flip side is that a few of her friends asked her why as they think I’m very handsome, never hurts to hear that.:)

    I also believe that if I had been the one who had outed her at work that she wouldn’t have wanted to work on our marriage. She had an inordinate amount of rage toward the woman who did send the letters and to this day has a level of hate toward her even though we both realise that what she did has helped us.

    I think that this method is a pretty strong one for stopping an affair and I’m not sure it would be successful in a lot of situations. In cases where either both people in the marriage still care enough about each other or where the affair has pretty much run it’s course I think this method would work. In other cases where it is early in the affair or the marriage has completely broken down and one of the partners wants out I think it will drive a fatal wedge in the marriage. I would not use this method unless you are ready to face the very real possibility that outing them will permanently destroy any chance of fixing the marriage.

    That said I am very grateful that it did happen to us as it got us out of the affair very quickly and in to working on ourselves and us.

    • Pippi March 27, 2012 at 11:39 am #

      Greg —

      I can completely relate to what you wrote. The fact that so many people at my husband’s office knew of his PA before I did is almost as hard on me as the affair itself. I, too, am very private and have had such a hard time dealing with the public nature of what should be a VERY PRIVATE matter.

      Now, when I run into those people out in the community I relive the trauma. I’m humiliated and embarrassed beyond anything I could have ever imagined. Even though I did nothing wrong and I know that I don’t need to own my husband’s mistakes, it is still unbelievably difficult to see ‘those people.’

      I also don’t think I would have been able to send outing emails after Dday. I was barely functioning and in such a bad place. I don’t think many BS would be capable of putting themselves “out there” in that manner when they are in such a vulnerable spot after Dday.

    • roller coaster rider March 27, 2012 at 5:44 pm #

      Greg, I have to make this remark, that perhaps you already know at some level, but it gets us anyway…”it is very embarrassing to me that they know I wasn’t enough for her.” The truth is that she wasn’t enough of a woman to trust you with whatever her issues were, and defaulted to someone who is much less of a man, has poor character, —-(fill in the blank). I know I’ve struggled with the exact same thing, and said it aloud, only to be corrected…and now, as a fellow BS want to be the one to remind you of that truth.

      Sure, it’s embarrassing to have had your wife be a cheater with anyone and especially to have mutual friends or coworkers know it. In my situation, the healing both I and my H want is closely tied to our willingness to endure embarrassment with a view toward a much healthier and more satisfying relationship.

      I could not be the one to tell those my H works with, though. My goal was not to humiliate him, and that would have been very humiliating to him. I wanted our family members to know, and some close friends. Because the initial No Contact wasn’t maintained, my H put himself in a position of needing to tell many people he could have avoided telling…but I think some of that has to do with what others have also said: until the fog lifts, and the cheater sees the light for him or herself, much of what the betrayed spouse is somewhat irrelevant. Being cheated on (at least for me) was one of the defining moments in my life; it gave me the chance to be wounded to the core and see what I was really made of. It showed me what real love means, and forgiveness without enabling. It helped me to focus on my own needs and those of my grown kids. It made me realize what true grief is all about, and what life would be like if I lost my marriage, because I did. And as weird as it probably seems to many, I now have the opportunity to start over and to decide what the future with this same man could have been if I had been a healthy, mature individual when I fell in love with him so many years ago.

      • Greg March 27, 2012 at 8:38 pm #

        Oh I agree with you roller coaster, I can look back now and see that for all my faults in the marriage, and I had plenty of them, that I didn’t take the weak route into someone else’s arms. You’re also right that the rebuilding is like starting over, just with the added problems of knowing what we each did previously.

    • Greg April 1, 2012 at 6:02 am #

      I wanted to revisit this topic as my wife and I were talking tonight and I asked her about the letter’s effect . She agrees that it was the main component that did cause her to see her AP in a true light and she started to recognize all the faults in his character that she over looked during their affair. She also agreed that if I had been the one to send the letter that in the state of mind she was in then it probably would have been the end of our marriage right then and there.

  20. Lynne March 27, 2012 at 12:46 pm #

    I once told an acquaintance (the mother of a teenage school friend of my daughter) that her H was having an affair. I felt it important to do what others weren’t willing to do–IMO, she shouldn’t have been the last to know, but should have been the first. I was particularly pained by it because her teenage daughter knew about, but didn’t know how to tell her mother. This is not something a 13 year old should have to carry around.

    The womans H was very angry with me (so what!), but as I see it, someone had to do the right thing (he clearly wasn’t). They are now divorced as a result of the affair, and the ultimate discovery that there had been several other affairs over the years.

    I’m a big believer that people need to speak up and call these things out, especially for the sake of the BS. As a society, there are things that we need to stop turning a blind eye to. If done respectfully (whatever the topic), this leaves it to the parties involved to decide how they want to proceed with the information.

    I agree with the comments above about people NOT wanting to get involved–if it happened to them, they would look at it quite differently.

  21. battleborn March 27, 2012 at 12:52 pm #

    I am not sure if I would have sent the letters or not however, I find that the idea of everything being private is just as hard to handle as having it out in the open.

    In my case, I have a very hard time handling it privately since everyone I know thinks my husband walks on water. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard “you are lucky to have a loving husband such as yours.” Loving my ass! Loving someone else is more like it! To have ones parents and in-laws believing that your marriage is made in heaven all the while you are trying to hold yourself together in their presence is more than I can handle at times. I just want to scream from the rooftop that he is not perfect… he is a man who made a horrible error in judgement and his wife is deep in despair.

    As far as Doug and Linda are concerned, they handled it the best they could and it is obvious that they went through hell and back but made the committment to stay together. I am not sure I would have the strength they had but it worked for them. As such I would not question either one’s comments here. They have put themselves out front in order to help us find our way… let them continue to do so. Whether or not we use their suggestions is up to the individual, but please don’t make accusations/assumptions based solely on comments.

    Each one of us has our own way of handling the affair and it is not fair for any one of us to chastise each other for doing so.

    • Lynne March 27, 2012 at 1:24 pm #

      Here, here Battleborn! Who knows where we would all be in this mess it it weren’t for the support we get here, and particularly the wisdom and guidance from Doug and Linda. They walked in these shoes long before many of us arrived at this unfortunate destination.

      We’re all different people (that’s what makes us really special!), with situations that are both similiar and different, but given that most of us don’t read about this stuff pre- affair, this site has been sent from heaven!

      I say, take what fits you and your situation, and disregard that which doesn’t–there is no one size fits all in affair land.

      And Doug, I think you rock!!! So does Linda!

      • Doug March 27, 2012 at 1:37 pm #

        Thanks so much, Lynne! 😉

        • EPaulson February 17, 2016 at 5:04 pm #

          Doug & Linda, my prediction is that your marriage will end, will not last forever. Not destine to last forever one way or another will end. You are delusional and living a big fat lie! Whatever it is, but not Love. When you think you win, you actually lose.

          • Blue February 18, 2016 at 8:16 am #

            EPaulson: I feel so sorry for you, you are one mean spirited person. It sounds like you don’t know what love or family is and that you didn’t get what you want in life and trying to destroy others. Like SNL said to Sinead O’Connor years back ‘We want you to love, not hate’

          • Doug February 18, 2016 at 5:38 pm #

            EPaulson, WTF is your problem? You have got a lot of anger or you just like to mess with people. I don’t really care if you flame us, but you’ve trashed a lot of other good people so I’ve deleted most all your comments. Oh and congratulations, consider yourself blocked!

    • Greg March 27, 2012 at 4:07 pm #

      Battleborn,
      I think it being out in the open or private is just as hard on the BS either way, we’re still dealing with the betrayal of someone we trusted the most. While everything came out at work for my wife and she has told her friends and parents I haven’t been able to tell my parents anything at all. The only thing they know is that we are having some problems and are trying to work through it and they were only told that last week. I don’t want or need my parents trying to help and don’t feel they need to be involved in our problems.

      I believe the greatest advantage to outing the CS is that it forces them to be uncomfortable in what they are doing, if they are so inclined, and to have to face some public censure about what they are doing.

  22. CA March 27, 2012 at 3:04 pm #

    I also agree that it depends on the situation…how deeply involved the affair is and how the WS acts when it is discovered. My H immediately stopped all contact and showed great remorse for his actions during the 4 month EA. They work in the same building, but not together and really could not see each other for months if they didn’t want to. 4 months after NC began, she called his desk phone and started rambling to him like they were still best buds. He told her “I told my wife I would not talk to you, and I’m not going to” Of course I wasn’t crazy about the wording he used…to me it doesn’t really sound like it was his idea. Then he told me about it. That is when I sent her an e-mail. I told her everything I knew about the EA…which is much more than I’m sure she thought I knew and that if she ever had ANY further contact with my H, I would contact her husband (I used his name, because I researched her and knew it) and share my complete knowledge and documentation with him. My husband has not heard a word from her and says he has only seen her twice in the building and they passed without her speaking. He already told me he would not even say hello to her. I feel all the letters would be a bit much for me but I also know the affair was not the worst case scenario. I might feel differently if I was getting no cooperation from my H.

  23. Getting Better March 27, 2012 at 3:15 pm #

    I only told one very good friend as I too am a very private person. And, I didn’t tell her everything, just that he got a little close to a coworker. I was also trying to protect my husband’s reputation because everyone in our circle of friends and family think he is such a wonderful person. Wonderful my a$&. But, anyway since my husband was in the military, and this happens frequently on deployments the only ones who would have been hurt is me and my children. I chose to keep my mouth shut and have my husband and myself work it through as a couple. Don’t know if this was the right course to take but so far we are moving along, slowly but surely.

  24. rachel March 27, 2012 at 5:47 pm #

    My H’s therapist said that he is ambivalent. HELP!!!! Does anybody understand this other then he’s giving me another excuse that we can’t try at our marriage.

    • Healing Mark March 28, 2012 at 1:40 pm #

      Rachel. At perhaps our lowest point, my wife also told me that she felt ambivalent about staying married. More importantly, she also said that she really, really did not want to feel this way, and we identified a few things that I was or was not doing that were perhaps making her feel that way (for example, I was still very angry about her EA, and had not yet then been able to genuinely forgive her, so at times I treated her disrespectfully, not to mention that I also treated her as someone I could not trust, and not being trusted by me was driving her toward feelings of ambivalence). I didn’t make a big deal out of her feeling that way (after all, this was HER feeling), and instead focused on being a husband/friend that no reasonable wife would remain ambivalent about staying married to. Shoot, there have been many times that I felt worse than ambivalent about remaining married to my wife, but time passes and things have changed for the better. I must say, however, that if my wife had remained the horrible partner she became during her EA, I would not be married to her today. I would have hated ending our marriage and all that would entail, but I have too much self-respect to stay married to someone that does not treat me the way I should be treated and otherwise does not make me happy. Shoot, if I met that “person” my wife became during her EA prior to being married, I would not have even considered going out on a date with her, much less live with her.

    • EPaulson February 17, 2016 at 5:09 pm #

      The message is clear as crystal. Rachel, your husband is never going to be truly happy in your marriage ever again. Please stop working on something that is already broken. Wasting more of each other’s time/resource and end up with living a lie. Do you really want to live the rest of your life pretending and in this game of false marriage. Please let him go. Love is unconditional right. Love is not possessive. Its kind and sacrifice. Let someone you love go so that he can find love and happiness to his desire is that ultimate sacrifice and unconditional love. Free Will remember?!

      • Blue February 18, 2016 at 8:07 am #

        EPaulson: FYI: Rachel divorced her husband a couple of years ago after she couldn’t bare how emotionally cruel he was being, especially since his affair. He showed no empathy or respect at the pain he had caused by his seamy, sleazy actions which cheating is. She tried to keep her family together but finally moved on, although deeply hurt at the way he treated her. He used his ‘free will’ to try and destroy her soul. Now he keeps trying to creep back into her life even though and she does everything to distance herself from his narcissism.

  25. Better March 27, 2012 at 5:55 pm #

    I only told my two closest friends at work. One of which helped me greatly and gave me a lot of good advise in the begining on how to catch my H lying and how to talk to him to get him to tell the truth.

    When my H and I got to the point where we were trying to make it work these friends were not for it and not supportive so I quit talking to them about it.

    The best contact (for my situation) was the OW. I told her my side of the story and our marriage. She had no idea and was just trying to be a listening ear for my H. (Still dont know how she thought it was ok to have a married friend that tells you he loves you and buys you gifts) but it resulted in her “giving him up” she told me about his secret phone and told him that he was killing his wife and she couldnt talke to him anymore!
    I literally had no one to confide in..this site was the only thing giving me percpective.

    I asked my H who knew about it and he told me “everyone but you” So now, when I am around the people he knows I am very uncomfortable…
    Its getting easier.
    If I knew of a CS and I knew the BS i would definatley tell them so they could start the healing process sooner and expose the secret before it gets too far for recovery.

  26. battleborn March 27, 2012 at 6:36 pm #

    Greg, I agree with you regarding no easy way to get through this regardless of privacy or not. I am not going to out my husband to his parents and I definitely won;t to my mother. I am just frustrated and still angry at him for the rotten timing when I found out. My father was dying and I was flying back and forth trying to take care of him when all of a sudden what do you know the dreaded,” he is having an affair” announcement.

    Perhaps my frustration is misplaced because I feel as though I had two men in my life “die,” but damn it the pain of them happening at the same time is more than I can bear sometimes. Maybe my thoughts of outing him to his parents is for revenge. Would it make me feel better? Perhaps, but I doubt I will ever find out.

  27. Benny March 27, 2012 at 6:41 pm #

    Shortly after I discovered what was happening behind my back with my wife I wrote and re-wrote several similar letters. Sometimes I still catch myself writing and editing them over and over in my mind. However, I never mailed or sent any of them for several reasons. At the time everything seemed pretty messed up already and I wondered if the letters would really help the situation at hand other than giving me a sense of somehow getting back at her and her partner(s). Maybe I was so shocked at first that I didn’t believe what I was hearing and seeing. However, I think I realized the implications of what it all meant and where it was leading and I had a innate sense of the pain and suffering that was headed my way.

    I remember thinking that I felt badly enough already and that it might actually cause me to feel worse if I sent them. In some strange way, I felt like I was giving more power, respect, and importance to the other men than I felt they deserved. I also didn’t want to say anything about the level and involvement at her workplace or other areas, including some illegal activities with her partners and others. I love her and as her husband I still felt I had to protect her. I didn’t want to bring to the surface things that could cause more harm and I didn’t want to see her suffer from the humiliation at work or possible legal charges. I had a strong sense that exposing her in such a way was a violation of the vows that I made to her on our wedding day, even though she certainly had not show the same consideration or thoughts for me or the vows she had made.

    I think I was helped by the fact that after my first challenging questions to her about an affair, where she was certain that I suspected or knew something and she had no way of getting out of it, she did tell me that she was going to stop doing the things she was doing with the other men. At that time I suspected a full blown physical affair with all the emotions and attachments and I wasn’t actually sure that she meant what she said or not but she did make some major changes immediately and she also disclosed some things that she didn’t have to and about which I would have probably never known, although she kept insisting that they were “just friends” and no physical encounters had happened. I’m not sure if I believe everything or even now and at that time I did not realize the depth or extent of the EA (s) or her other dishonestly and what I’ve come to believe was a lack of respect and feeling for me all together. A few days later we had a true day of discovery and I read aloud to her many text messages on her cell phone that humiliated and hurt me a lot, but surely confirmed many of my suspicions and thoughts.

    I’ve since learned that she had out right lied to me for many months about the affair, plus talked badly about me to her cohorts and friends during this time. She’s also told me that she’s lied to me for many years about other things in our marriage and life. Except for the therapist at one counseling session, I haven’t told anyone in person about any of this. And even though I’ve been reading the blogs here for a while since I learned of her affair I’ve just recently found the composure to post any messages about this personal hell and how it has affected me and our marriage.

    In thinking of this now, I realize that my own integrity and the way I choose to live was on the line as well so I didn’t mail those letters I wrote because it would have been for the wrong reasons. I did start keeping a close eye on more things and asking more questions than ever before. I am still torn about exposing some of the things that were happening, due to my sense of personal obligation of doing the “right thing” from an ethical point of view, but at this point in time, I think the best part of writing the letters for me was to face what had happened and to think through what I felt was the best way for me to respond to it at the time.

    I believe that the CS has to have or has to find a desire and want to stop what they are doing. If such letters help in that regard then they could be a valuable thing to think about using. It is a very personal and individual decision and like most of these burdens we’ve been forced to bear as a faithful spouse what may be right for one could be difficult or wrong for another. Writing the letters was a completely different thing for me than mailing them would have been.

    • chiffchaff March 28, 2012 at 6:33 am #

      Benny – a very powerful comment. I can agree with the things you say about it involving choices about your own integrity going forward. It’s sad that as BSs we very carefully consider our own integrity and the effect of our actions on the CS and everyone else around us, whereas our CSs don’t at all.

      Your words about ‘ had a innate sense of the pain and suffering that was headed my way’ – I recall having that feeling at many points on my journey. I made decisions to stay knowing that there was a strong possibility pain was just being delayed by doing so, but it was all I could do at the time.

      • Benny March 28, 2012 at 1:26 pm #

        chiffchaff -Thanks, and I appreciate your comments about the pain that will be coming by staying.

        I’ll have to think about and be ready for that possibility of more pain as well. There are many physical things that will remind me daily of what happened and I am aware of them, but I suppose there is much delayed pain waiting for me as well.

        I am already committed to staying and trying to work things out because I don’t want to look back and wish I had given our marriage another chance. Hopefully we will get past this trouble but some days all I can think of is to be done with it and get divorced.

  28. roller coaster rider March 28, 2012 at 12:17 am #

    Benny, you are obviously a man of integrity which will be of incredible value to you moving forward. I certainly wish you the best. It’s really hard to do what you have done: weighing the options and choosing to do what will be best in the long run and actually best for the marriage despite what may seem right to do under the pressure or pain of the moment.

    • Benny March 28, 2012 at 1:36 pm #

      Thank you, roller coaster. The decision to not write and send any letters was hard. It took me a while to come to my thinking on it and it definitely wasn’t what I wanted to do at first. I can’t say I’ve made as good of a choice in many other areas involved with this mess. At times my anger, hurt, and depression gets the best of me and I don’t seem to care about much

      • roller coaster rider March 28, 2012 at 3:26 pm #

        It is depressing when your spouse does things that are so devastating. I had to just let it all go. Now that we are hoping to build a new relationship minus the old baggage, it is a real challenge to talk through the emotional issues. For us, expressions of emotion were most of the time simply taboo, because neither of us had any experience or healthy modeling. What I’m learning most recently is that my H NEEDS to hear, see and validate my emotions, and I need to do the same for him. It’s hard but worth it. And honestly, I have to do this if I’m going to be in any relationship with anyone now. I just can’t go back.

  29. Disappointed March 28, 2012 at 1:55 am #

    The OW is still with her H and two kids. My H has his own apartment. Almost 5 months from Dday. No contact. If we divorce I will finally send a letter to her so I can have closure. I also will no longer keep their secret. I wont send a mass email, but I will be sure others know. I should not be the only one paying for their 1500 texts over the course of one month. They said they were in love. She told him her family was unsupportive. Her mother knows and dismissed it all as an infatuation. Wonder if she ever had a thought for how I feel. Only thing keeping my mouth shut is the hope that he will come to his senses.

  30. chiffchaff March 28, 2012 at 5:50 am #

    Have just found this link http://www.psytalk.info/articles/narcissist.html regarding dealing with narcisissts.
    As so many BSs on this site refers to their CS as being selfish, self-centred and narcisisstic I thought I’d have a look at how to deal with them.
    Made for scary reading, for me anyway. My H has the intelligence hubris with some beauty obsession thrown in. He has told me he wants to be famous and considers himself more intelligent than everyone else.

  31. ppl March 29, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

    i believe part of this very bad advice.
    1. workplace. add unemployment to the list of problems. maybe satisfying at first but if divorced will lower your support or if you reconcile will lower your standard of living. it may not mean much to you now but will later. how about your childrens support as well
    2. as a child i do not remember anything more traumatic than being asked to choose which parent you wanted to go with if divorce. dragging children in middle of your issues very selfish, almost a nuclear attitude to lay waste to everything for revenge.
    3. spouse of other is not your issue. it is not your duty to inform him or her. what satisfaction is it to you to know that they will be going through what you are? Your spouse is the issue, not the others spouse. as a practical matter once other spouse is aware, than the cheaters are free to be more open with nothing left to loose. i believe the threat of exposure to your cheating spouses affair partner is a more powerful weapon that will be lost once you pull the trigger on that.
    4. this strategy is immediate shot gun approach that most people may come to regret later. need to gather evidence first is a better tactic.
    be wary, not all advice is good you all need to filter

  32. Lynne March 29, 2012 at 1:57 pm #

    I tend to agree with PPL on this. While I can imagine there might be an extreme work scenario where this is warranted, outside of that, this comes across to me as acting out in anger. In some work place situations it may be necessary if it compromises peoples health or safety, and needs to be reported to a higher authority, but not to all in the organization. In spite of an EA or PA in the workplace, it is still a personal matter. When it comes to letters, emails or conversations with family and friends, choosing wisely would be in order. It is already such an excruciating experience to discover a partners affair, but this type of “reveal” can make it far more painful, as all parties will then have to deal with the aftermath of all these other people, as well as their pain levels and opinions. I can see how easy it would be to get caught up in all the peripheral drama, while losing sight of squarely putting the focus on the abhorrent behaviors of the CS. I generally feel this same way about contacting the AP–yes, they made a really bad choice to get involved, but you did not have a commitment with them, so they matter very little in the work that now needs to be done to repair the marriage. Contacting the AP for resolution or facts of the affair will likely end badly. Like they are going to suddenly start telling you the truth when they have been lying to themselves and their own H or W. NOT!

  33. Tryingtounderstand March 30, 2012 at 9:46 am #

    I agree with the tactic of exposure because it worked for me. At some point i realised that my husband was torn between making a decision between me and the OW. I was so furious because this kept my emotions on a terrible rollercoster. The OW was someone i knew very well..i couldn’t trace her at the time, so i informed all her friends about it and i also informed her parents. My husband was furious because of the exposure but i didn’t care anyhow. A few months down the line when i realised the fog was lifting i insisted that my husband should write an email terminating the relationship similar to the sample provided above. It worked wonders, i believe the OW trully stopped contacting my husband, she changed her phone lines, emails addresses and basically went underground.
    Immediately my husbands focus turned towards building our Marriage. He started doing and saying things he didn’t do before ..like i Love you, I was so stupid to get involved with that Lady, etc. I on the other hand have become very reluctant for fear of being hurt again, talk of the pursuerer becoming the pursued.

  34. STILL STRUGGLING March 30, 2012 at 4:13 pm #

    Exposure does work. The OW’s husband did just that. He contacted me, and then contacted some of my H’s employees. It ended the affair rather quickly before it became much more serious. With all the information that Doug and Linda have provided, and with all the books I have read regarding affairs, exposure has to be done for a marriage to survive.

  35. helenback March 31, 2012 at 7:07 am #

    In my experience exposure was THE ONLY THING that had any affect what-so-ever.

    My H had been having an affair on & off for almost 2 years. We’d been apart – together- apart – together etc etc and in the end I’d decided to move on. I really wanted to save my marriage but couldn’t go on any longer being 2nd choice to someone else and being lied to again & again. My self respect was more important in the end.

    So because I had nothing left to lose I decided to expose the affair – Just to put a crimp in their day! I think in the past, similarly to DISAPPOINTED I’d been hoping he’d come out of the fog and choose me. Now it didn’t matter to me anyway if he was angry or not because I was going to file for divorce and move on, brokenhearted though I was.

    Our family and friends already knew about the affair as it has gone on for so long but none of them knew OW as she was his coworker and not from our town. The only place left for me to ‘expose’ was their workplace so I sent facebook messages to eleven of her facebook friends whose names I recognised as colleagues of my H. I only wrote the facts ie, length of affair, length of marriage, family circumstances, one of our sons being autistic etc and definitely nothing defamatory. I included that I wished to save my marriage and if there was anything they could do to encourage her to stay away from my H and respect my marriage I’d be grateful. I also sent an email to HR dept at the college where they work along the same lines and asking that they didn’t disclose that I’d sent it.

    It turns out that this was absolutely the right thing to have done. HR dept called them each in for a ‘talk’ and H resigned on the spot (too embarassed and ashamed to work there any longer) his words not mine. OW thought he’d now start behaving ‘like a couple’ and that he’d appreciate her advice on his life, job etc. Had she known him at all she’d have realised that nobody tells H what to do. When H saw the ‘real’ her it turns out he wasn’t that impressed after all. REALLY!!!!?

    Anyway long story short, H & I are now working things out. No contact with OW for 2 months now He’s out of the fog and I see more and more of the person I met 30 years ago when we were teenagers. Hallalujia! Long way to go I know & I’m well aware that we’ve been at this point before but in the past he still worked with her and was defensive if I needed answers or understanding. This time he’s different, answering all my questions, understanding that he needs to help me, putting in a real effort to make our everyday lives good and happy and many many more little things which were missing before. I’ve asked him what’s different this time and he says he had a ‘moment of clarity’ when he realised I was moving on, that the thought of me with someone else terrified him and he suddenly thought ‘what the hell am I doing’

    So in my case it worked when nothing else had. If you’re at the end of your tether I’d say ‘what’s to lose’

    Good Luck!

  36. Anna April 10, 2012 at 3:05 pm #

    I did that. I exposed both of them to the company CEO, their co-workers, her soon to be ex husband, her mother, our church, our friends..you name it. They were forced to admit their affair to all of their co-workers. (many of whom are still in shock to this day). But it didn’t make a difference. My husband said that he was willing to work on our marriage until I exposed him to his office. Yeah, right. He flip-flopped so many times it became a challenge for me to keep track of all his excuses! The exposure just ran them underground for a while. I think they both thought that with time, and their subsequent divorces, it would all blow over, and nobody would really care. The more anyone wanted to keep them apart, the more attached to each other they became. And their demonization of me was Oscar worthy. She hardly knows me, yet parroted my STBX’s justifications for why he “could no longer tolerate” our marriage. It’s been three years since I discovered their affair, and two years since we started divorce proceedings. I am very happy without him. It took a lot of processing, but I got there. I only wish that he would man-up and admit a truth or two every so often. Whatever becomes of them is their business. As long as their actions do not bring harm to my children or to me, they can continue to lie, cheat and steal for love. I could never justify bringing pain and destruction to my family, friends and loved ones…for a selfish need to find my happiness. Happiness comes from within us. He will continue his quest for that elusive Happiness elixir he is convinced exists. Hopefully, one day, before he loses what is left of his soul, he will recognize that he has had it all along, he just did not know how to tap it from within.

    • alex May 26, 2015 at 5:20 am #

      hi, when you tell everyone about their affair, how did they took it? did they just took your word for it? or did they ask for evidence fr you? thx.

  37. Susan April 14, 2012 at 9:06 am #

    What about voluntary exposure of an EA? Anyone have advice for someone in, or on the verge of starting an EA and how to tell your spouse? Or should you tell your spouse at all.. or just try to cut it out?

    I am in my 20s… married for a couple of years with no kids, and got transfered to a different city for my job. Being away from my husband has been really difficult.. especially not knowing anyone in a new city. I’ve started going to lunch a lot with a coworker who is really great to talk to, and we have a lot of common. I can feel that I’m developing a crush on him… It’s not a full-fledged EA, but I feel that it could become one.

    I’ve already told my husband about this guy and that he’s become a friend. But should I tell him about my feelings? Or maybe I could be more general and just tell him that the distance is really hard for me, and my mind is starting to wander…

    The thing is… my husband and I get along great. Everything is fine in our relationship… but I’m starting to think maybe I got married too young, maybe I’m missing out on “that loving feeling” … is it just the distance making me crazy?!

    • Greg April 14, 2012 at 10:44 am #

      Susan, you have an important choice to make right now. Do you love you husband and want to stay with him? If you do then you need to stay away from this other person. Yes you are probably lonely from being in different places but if this progresses you will be hurting yourself, your husband , and this other guy. You need to decide what you want and who you want to be. If you truely don’t want to be with your husband then go about it the respectful way and tell him and get a divorce, then you can pursue other people. Do not go down the affair route as it is hurtful and dis-respectful of everyone involved.

      • Susan April 21, 2012 at 3:30 am #

        Greg, thanks a lot for your comment. I have been thinking quite hard lately about whether I am happy in my marriage. Right now, I feel really disconnected from my husband.. and I am starting to feel that I am happier on my own than when we were together. But.. on the other hand, maybe my perspective is off right now. Living so far apart, I am forgetting about the good things about being together, and only remembering the bad! On the other hand.. maybe that means something. We have very little conflict in our marriage and I know my husband would completely shocked if I told him I wanted out. But… I am 27, with no kids… I feel like if I am going to do it, now is the time to get out… otherwise I will spend the rest of my life peddling along in a so-so marriage. However, my husband is 7 years older than me.. so I guess he might have different feelings. Anyway.. these things are not easy. But I totally agree.. having an affair will not help anything. I think this crush is just a distraction.. and you´re right that I need to focus on resolving things with my husband, one way or another, before I think about anything or anybody else!

    • Joan May 1, 2014 at 5:13 pm #

      Get to a counselor immediately. This is starting down a road you do not want to be on. If you are lonely despite being married to a “great” guy with whom you “get along,” then it isn’t that great. The problem is….you are not giving him the opportunity to know….and if he does not know that he isn’t meeting your needs, then he cannot improve. You need to have the talk with him about having problems – and that you need to have him go with you to a counselor. Or go yourself first – find out what you are missing in your life – maybe the problem is you are depressed, or you need to meet a need that is not from someone else – could be self-esteem (you want this guy to tell you how great you are and your spouse doesn’t do that – or that you are embarrassed to need it but you feel flattered by this guy. Please please don’t do this – it is not worth it. Get thee to a counselor and also to a marriage counselor

  38. Susan April 14, 2012 at 9:17 am #

    On a seperate note, I think the mass emailing to friends/coworkers/bosses seems like an act of revenge, and doesn’t seem like a very effective thing to do if you really want to repair the marriage.

    A friend of mine sent a message about his longtime girlfriend’s affair to a bunch of their mutual friends on Facebook.. Of course, they broke up and never got back together. I think it came off as sour grapes… and it only served to hurt and embarass her.

    The betrayal is between you and your spouse… what’s important is that you let him or her know that you know about the affair. The secret is being kept from YOU not from the general public. I don’t see how making a public announcement would ever help anything. Getting your husband or wife fired does not seem like a good idea for the marriage, assuming you would like to stay in it!

  39. Elizabeth October 15, 2013 at 7:08 pm #

    I think my affairs wife read this advice and followed the plan as stated. The result my husband committed suicide. Less then 24 hours later.

  40. Strengthrequired October 16, 2013 at 2:32 am #

    That’s the problem with affairs Elizabeth, people especially the betrayed spouse get very hurt, and some just want to end the pain. Im so sorry for the loss of your husband. That is very sad, I really am sorry for your loss.

    • Elizabeth October 16, 2013 at 9:22 am #

      I understand that. The BS ( my husband) was a severely ill bipolar, under the supervision of two doctors. Me and my children could have been killed. My point is there was more then enough hurt to go around. And to keep up the campain after his suicide was unnecessary .

      • Strengthrequired October 16, 2013 at 2:35 pm #

        Of course it was unnecessary. Again I’m sorry for your loss, yet very glad as well that you and your children are safe.

  41. Pippi October 16, 2013 at 9:53 am #

    Elizabeth — I, too, am so sorry for your loss. I think if people knew how painful affairs really are they would never start them — or at least that is my hope. My husband cheated on me and his affair was exposed at work (not by me). It was very public. Basically my entire community knows my husband cheated on me and was fired for it. The humiliation is unbearable. I am two and a half years past my Dday and I’m still at times suicidal.

    The up-side to exposure is that it often forces the affair partners to look at what they are doing and evaluate what they really want in their lives. My husband ended his affair immediately once it was outed. But, the outing has forced me under a shame cloud so thick I may never escape.

    I’m sorry again for your loss. The pain is at times unbearable for the BS and I can understand why your husband felt that was his only option. May he rest in peace.

    • Rachel October 16, 2013 at 9:05 pm #

      Pippi,
      Just remember you did nothing wrong. Do not feel shame. Hold your head high. You have so much to offer. Remember you are special and people depend on you.
      Deep peaceful breathes my friend. Carry on.

      • Pippi October 17, 2013 at 8:04 am #

        Thanks, Rachel, I’m trying.

  42. Susan October 16, 2013 at 2:56 pm #

    Hi Elizabeth. It’s bizarre that your post is the next one after mine. My husband also committed suicide very shortly after my last post. It seemed, in part, related to problems in our relationship. He wasn’t able to handle the possibility that I might leave him. I don’t think he had any idea I had feelings for someone else. If you’d like to contact me I can make some new email address so I can post it here. Let me know.

  43. Elizabeth October 16, 2013 at 4:28 pm #

    Susan I am so sorry for your loss. My husband committed suicide October 18th of last year. Tomorrow is Dday, followed by one year anniversary. I am also younger 31, my husband was 36. I hold a tremendous about of guilt and shame and responsibility. The BS and WS are in the most of an awful divorce. I understand the pain we have caused I live with it everyday when I look at my children. I never even had a chance to keep him safe from him self. It all happened so quick it was like a wild fire or atomic boom. The BS came at him and me from all sides as described above. She had her teenage daughter reading our text messages, posting on Facebook and took the call, when the WS tried committing suicide the day after my husband did, leaving his wife a note. Saying he “was going to do to her what she did to me.”. Thank god I kept calling him other wise he would be death too. Needless to say this whole thing is insane. Me and this man started a business worked together for two+ years, it was not just a fling. Yes we should have asked our spouses for divorces. But we made the wrong choice. But this is alll way to much to handle.

  44. Susan October 16, 2013 at 7:29 pm #

    Hi Elizabeth,
    If you want to talk more about it with someone who can empathize with what you’ve been through, you can reach me at this email address: notsusananderson(at)gmail.com. Of course replace the (at) with @.
    At any rate, it’s not fair to blame yourself. You weren’t responsible for his happiness. He not only gave up on you, he gave up on life. That is a big decision that had to have involved many factors other than you – mainly, his mental health. It’s not your fault.
    It is easy to play the “could have, would have, should have” game.. but in the end, there is no way to ever know what would have been the alternative outcome, and if it would have been better or worse. We just have to accept the cards we have been dealt, try to learn from what we’ve been through, improve ourselves, and appreciate what we still have.

  45. Joan May 1, 2014 at 5:09 pm #

    After spending a little over two years in couples therapy with my husband, I have thought about whether I should have done something like this immediately. If I would have had my wits about me, believe me, I would have done so. But being caught totally off guard that my husband of over 30 years was thoroughly besotted with a college-aged girl – and enmeshed in daily email correspondence with beautifully written letters (his) that were encouraging, flattering, complimentary, and making her seem very important – and they were having an effect of breaking down the barriers – because towards the end of the two or three months of correspondence (which is when I found out), she too was saying things like, “Do not worry about boundaries -I will let you know if you have crossed them,” and although they had not seen each other face to face in a couple of months since their correspondence started like this (previously she had been just a family friend who served on a committee with him), that very weekend following my discovery she and he were coordinating showing up at a party that we were attending at the same time. I withheld my reaction to the accidentally discovery of the emails, until I saw them together at the party. He sat next to her and didn’t leave her side for well over an hour (I might have well have been invisible), in close conversation with her (although I sat across the table hearing each word). Toward the end he said he should plan to drop by where she lived on a Saturday and take her out for coffee (about a 40 minute drive from our house). He was unemployed at the time – and we didn’t go out for coffee or anything else as we were on a strict budget. We got in the car and I told him I knew all about it and he had to end all of it. It was pure hell – he became cold as ice and said there was nothing wrong with having his own “friends”. I said I wondered what her parents would think and he said they would be fine with it (he even called her and she said they would be OK with her having older “friends”….seriously!) She had said (in the emails) that he was like a star – Polaris – and said all kinds of flattering things – and he told her how much more emotionally mature she was for her age than all the other girls in her class (doesn’t this sound like professor-student stuff?). That is when I should have exposed it – I should have called her parents, showed them the emails – and the pastor of the church as well (which my husband said she wouldn’t care either – they had been both appointed to this committee so she knew both of them). But I kept his “secret” and I didn’t even talk with her about it (she was one of my daughter’s acquaintances. I should have spoken to her in private -she was still a teenager and I needed to explain mid-life crises for men – and that she was subject to manipulation from anyone feeding her this stuff – plus I think that more would have come out of it. We had one big argument about two months after I discovered this – while I saw him at church “mourning” from afar – where he was feeling very sorry for himself, and he said that I didn’t know what it was like to “love someone when they didn’t love you back” – and that he was infatuated and smitten with her. Later on he said he was just upset and the words didn’t mean anything – and that “infatuated” meant “foolish passion” – and I should know that. My husband has also said what he was doing “didn’t work” so that I should just drop it – and that he stopped all correspondence. Yet he is just waiting for me to get over this and move on. I found out a year later he was still following her whereabouts on Facebook and other social media -and was still “curious” about her because she was so very “interesting” — intellectual, they liked the same books, etc. But he knows I have software now on the computer to watch that. But when she shows up at church I feel very very uncomfortable that she is there and he may be “watching” her . My problem is that I do not trust that he isn’t still “smitten” with her – I have no way of knowing, but I am bothered that he was so emotionally attached that he could not stop on his own and had no wish to – and I fully believe that more would have come of it (that is when he said that he didn’t have a physical affair so I should be over this by now). The therapists have tried to explain that by writing these lengthy daily emails – he took away from our relationship. He refuses to write me lengthy letters now – which is what I want because they were so beautiful – because he sees me every day. And he had given her a secret letter with a graduation gift from our family – and he had never ever in all our years given me a letter with a gift. He gave me a couple of brief notes with a couple of gifts since then – and he says he gets no “credit” for these. This is a very unstable time for us. I have gone through therapy and basically I have to decide whether to stay or go. But financially I can’t leave and neither can he – he doesn’t have full time employment and we have financial troubles. Our three young adult kids are living with us while they work and go to school and pay off loans. They are tired of our being upset – but it is because he refuses to talk with me about anything important that is a problem for me. He won’t write to me and he just wants to not talk about anything like feelings or emotions and he gets angry if I bring this thing up because he says I should not live int he past. But if I want our future to include letters to me – because, they mean a lot to me – he took away from me and gave to her (that is the way it feels) and I am not feeling “even”. She is the person to whom he wrote the longest letters in his life. I can’t let that stand – it hurts too much and he won’t do anything about it. One can’t force someone to write to you, but the length and frequency of the correspondence is what hurts so damned much – and he can’t….or won’t….understand that. He says he wants a peaceful and easy marriage – one where we are “comfortable” with one another, no arguing and just doing stuff together. We had that before – he didn’t talk that much then – but then he shows me he has the capability of doing much more – just not with me. Such pain – and it has been 2-1/2 years.

  46. Shifting Impressions July 6, 2014 at 10:12 pm #

    This seems like a fairly dangerous course of action…….So many things could go wrong.

  47. Joan July 7, 2014 at 2:28 pm #

    I think that direct contact by the betrayed spouse with the EA partner after there is good evidence of some kind or one or two-way relationship would at least confirm whether or not the relationship is all in one person’s head or not. And certainly if there is fantasy and secrecy involved it throws the cold water of reality on the situation. I think in my case it would have totally embarrassed my spouse because this girl really did not understand the situation and didn’t until she received his “breakup” email that told her he had to end all communication because he was getting “emotional fulfillment from their correspondence and close friendship that was more appropriately found with his wife,” so he was going to be focusing on his marriage. She never spoke to him and avoided him at gatherings at church. Which upset him to the point he made a point of going over to her and initiating a conversation and was thrilled that she talked with him (he had been mourning her from afar, staring at her across the room, trying to sit nearby to overhear conversations or sit where he could see her at our church. It was really awful. We are much better now that she has been gone out of town for several months. But part of me is still bothered a fair amount that he doesn’t want to talk about his feelings except trying to explain his behavior. All I want him to do is tell me that he understands that his behavior was wrong and is so sorry that I feel less desirable because he wanted this young woman. Now she is the girlfriend of our friends’ son, her age. They are very appropriately paired together. But he still cannot talk about her without becoming very uncomfortable. I wish he could because then it would mean his feelings are normalized again. Life is never easy and emotional infatuations are very difficult to get over no matter how old we are.

  48. reneeification August 20, 2014 at 8:40 am #

    I can’t even believe the courage I have right now, but I am doing this. I am going full blown exposure. I can say that I understand the reservations some have about this, and why there are so many comments about how immature it is etc. But, let me tell you why this is the best thing for me.
    My husbands affair will not stop. In fact, I bought all the books, read all the blogs, even followed this site religiously when this first began in 2011. My husband did through all my hard work end that current EA/PA however, he just replaced it with a former flirty relationship that had been going on at work, that has since in almost two years went full blown EA and would PA given the opportunity….according to him….wow this is so messed up right?
    There werent any results that lasted. He learned nothing. And I cant begin to explain why the hell I am even anything right now that is concerned about him. I guess I would have to describe who we are and I dont have time here. I want someone to read this and know that contrary to alot of opinions THIS CAN WORK.
    THE FIRST time I tried this, I made all of the above mistakes. I only exposed to a few, I allowed them time to recover, thinking that actually it was over, they got more deceptive. And no I dont care I know this marriage must end now. My whole point right now is jerking them out of the dream affair fog they have created, so that they can live in the world THEY created for everyone else as a result of their choices. In fact, I am only writing this post right now to slow myself down and send alllll of my messages through facebook and email just slow enough that I am not blocked by anyone.
    For once I feel empowered. I CAN do something about my own life. Yeah, my marriage is destroyed and 3 years later I barely have any thing left sanity included, my kids have suffered and I was on the verge of suicide more than once. I gave up everything, so YEAH I have every right to this. I dont care about keeping this a private matter anymore. I am done, and they have already told everyone all about themselves as if they are romeo and Juliet, two star crossed lovers.
    It is up to me to throw wrenches in all that. And I will. I want them to wake up and deal with the mess they created, and this is the only way to do it. They dont get to keep on living in their little dream world while my entire real life was ruined.
    This is an EA with a co-worker. I have contacted the husband again already, did that just before I started this. I have letters ready to send her closest family and friends, and I will contact human resources as well. The only thing I really had to modify was the part of the suggestion letter templates that referred to wanting to work out my marriage only if the affair would stop. I have no intent of doing that now. I cant say that it wouldnt happen because I have learned the hard way never say never.
    I just want to thank everyone for reading this, and letting me vent. I have been a member of this site for a few years, I think my previous screen name was renee, but I coudlnt get back into that account. So I created this one and finally got my higher healing membership that I had been wanting for so long. I got serious about taking charge of my life. I am going to make mistakes, and many, and I know I need help. I have been inside myself for probably 18 months. I need you all, as my last connection to the person I was 3 or so years ago that first came to this site looking for desperate help. I miss her.
    I apologize for my rant, I normally do not write this way but I have had all this pent up for so long. I am an educated person, I am almost finished with my registered nursing degree, I have been working so hard to change my life. But my husband will not leave me alone. I believe he is narcissistic. So, I will come back to this post and update it as soon as I have some results to share, and I will give you honest feedback, so maybe somebody out there can learn from my pain. Hope to talk to you all soon.
    Wish me luck, I need a thousand angels behind me right now. Thank you.

    • Doug August 20, 2014 at 9:23 am #

      reneeification, Thank you for sharing and I’m truly sorry for all that you’ve been through. I think in the cases where a person just doesn’t end the affair, the exposing tactic can be effective. I’d be interested in hearing how your situation turns out, so please keep us informed. That said, just be sure that you think things through to make sure that you do it correctly and for the right reasons. Good luck!

      • reneeification August 20, 2014 at 9:38 am #

        Doug, Hi, and thank you so much. I find myself sitting here fozen, fingers hoovering over the “send” button. I am trying in this last moment to be sure I am doing this right, and like you said for the right reasons. I can’t work out my reasons right now, it is possible that my heart is so hurt I can’t due to pride, just say that I hope this fixes my marriage. I have tried everything else. Literally. This is my last hope. And it is going to cause a landslide. I am from a very small town, relatively, and share many of the same friends that my husband does. He was worked with his company for 12 years, so I know many of them. This is not his first affair, there have been many, and that is where the pride comes from on my part. Maybe its easier to fake tough in order to prepare myself for the inevitable. The absolute truth is, I love my H very much, and very deeply. This is likely the hardest thing I have ever done. But I cant take any more either. I wish I knew what to do. Would you believe we just got back less than two weeks ago from a two week vacation in panama city florida? It just amazes me all that he can do, while he continues to rip my heart out. Any advice you could offer, would be greatly appreciated. I am so confused right now but I have taken strides toward overcoming this by logging on to this site. I need direction, because I have lost my bearings.

      • reneeification August 20, 2014 at 9:51 am #

        I also wanted to add, as a side note that I recently purchased your collection of audio MP3 and PDF therapy session recordings, with the pay as you like. It was really great, and truly served to precipitate strength. I am so amazed by the courage the two of you have, yourself and Linda. I hoped 3 or so years ago when I stumbled upon this blog that my life situation would turn out like yours, with healing and reconciliation. It has not, but I have still found answers I would not have had anywhere else.

        • Doug August 20, 2014 at 10:14 am #

          I’m glad that our site has provided you with some measure of strength and it saddens me that things have not worked out for you in your marriage to date. The exposure tactic is very powerful and can be a good thing or it can backfire. But sometimes you just need to do what you need to do in the hopes of finding happiness. Others may disagree, but if you are truly down to your final straw and nothing has worked and you are ready for the potential backlash, then pull the trigger and push the “send” button.

        • Teresa August 20, 2014 at 10:46 am #

          Reneeification…I haven’t posted here in awhile…maybe 2 yrs?? But sometimes I still get notifications that pop up in my email…and I’ll ignore them…but your email I couldn’t ignore….
          Do it, Reneeification….just send the info and let the chips…or the marriage fall where it may!
          I hope this is ok Doug, to post this here, but there is a blog that a friend told me about, and it’s mainly for women like you, Renee….women who’s H won’t stop the affair….it’s called the Chump Lady….google it…and I’ve read it, even though my H did stop his EA right away….because it’s humorous, but she also has great advice for women going through what you’ve endured!

          Renee, your H has put you through HELL…and lets face it, he doesn’t care!
          In my book, ANY man…or woman…who would cheat, and see the devastating consequences, and then turn around and do it again?
          Well…they deserve no sympathy or protection….and by you staying quiet all this time Renee….you’ve been protecting your H!

          Stop protecting him…AND the OW, because yes, you’re protecting her also!
          Expose them….and then walk away!
          Don’t play the “pick me” dance with your H anymore….read the Chump Lady…you’ll learn all about the “pick me” dance and also about “kibbles”.

          Your H is a screwed up individual…and you sound like a nice, loyal, hard working woman….you deserve MUCH better!! So go find it!!!

  49. Gizfield August 20, 2014 at 12:19 pm #

    Reneeification, if I could go back and change any one thing regarding my husband’s adultery it would be to expose it immediately. It would save me a lot of time bickering about whether it was “wrong” or not. Duh. Cheaters exposed get very little support. If we had split up at least I “would have saved a little trouble for the next girl “. Thanks Carrie Underwood !

  50. Gizfield August 20, 2014 at 12:27 pm #

    Teresa, I completely agree ! Gonna check Chump Lady out. The betrayed dont need to be hiding, the cheaters love it when you do. If they can’t stand their actions being seen, they should not he have done them.

  51. Gizfield August 20, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

    I checked out chump lady’s website. Dont have time to read articles right now, but I also looked at her facebook page. There was a hysterical article comparing cheaters to Timid Forest Creatures, or FTCs. She also has a recently published book I downloaded. It is $9.99 but free on Kindle Unlimited. I have a free trial right now but it is a great service and I plan to renew. I have already read so many books using it.

  52. Pippi August 20, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    reneeification —

    First let me say, I’m so, so sorry this is happening to you. So sorry. It sounds like you’ve been through hell for a very long time. Too long. Way too long.

    My husband’s affair did end by exposure. It was not done by me — someone at the workplace exposed them to everyone BUT me. Anyway, it worked in my situation and the affair ended.

    Whatever you decide to do, please look after yourself first and foremost. This has gone on for so long. You deserve to be happy and safe.

  53. reneeification August 21, 2014 at 1:03 pm #

    Everyone,
    I want so badly to respond to you all individually, I am so confused and shocked right now that I will apologize in blanketing this response, it is meant for you all.
    First, THANK YOU!
    I PULLED THE TRIGGER
    I can say that right now I am even more confused but that is okay, I am confident the fog will clear. This is what happened:
    The husband, due to his exposure letter, called me shortly after I posted here. Overall and through around an hour long conversation, he begged me not to send letters to work and expose them there, because he works there also. He is in denial, clearly, and I tried with all my experience to help him just get a kernel of enlightenment. That is the long and short of it.
    THE RESULTS ARE: IT WORKED.
    It took all day to sift and sort through all the happenings. My husband came home a little late, as I expected. We did not talk until the children went to bed and as expected, he was livid. He tried to blame me, initially, said that apparently she listened to my “pity party”, and I chuckled inside. He does/did not know the true extent of what I had done, and was furious that I would not enlighten him. “Would you like a potato chip”, I said that alot haha, in reference to the blog post.
    Once his anger burned out, and he realized he could not blame me, the real conversation started. He told me that everyone he ever cared about threw him away. He was referring to the fact that the OW did not respond in the fantasized way of running off into the sunset together. I knew it wasnt the time to say well I never did in fact I was trying to show you what you were doing all this time you idiot. That came later. Anyway, he sort of returned to himself after much talk, and I honestly cant remember all that was said since I havent been able to reflect on it much. I told him I was prepared to move out. And kind of left it at that.
    Today, he has asked me not to leave, as he knows I have the opportunity to lease an apartment that I once had. His words were that he needs time and he knows I need time, but that he thinks we need each other. He went on to say that if it were not for the responsibilities of our current home we own, that he thinks we should rent somewhere else for a while. Change of scenery and freshness, he has made suggestions already.
    As of right now that is where things are. I dont have any experience of what this means right now, I didnt even think it would happen this way.
    I am truly confused and speaking of all this in literal real time, as it develops. He is at work right now, texting me, trying to talk to me. One thing that sticks out in my mind right now, is that I shouldnt make immediate decisions. Anyone agree?

  54. Gizfield August 21, 2014 at 3:29 pm #

    Reneeification, I truly hope this works out for you. I will say do not trust him at this point. He is now in what I call Extreme Damage Control mode. Of course he wants to talk, text, pay you attention. His gf is dealing with her own fallout, for a change. Shes not available, and you have upset the cart,bigtime. And what exactly does he “need time for ? ” Stay strong, and watch what he does, not what he says.

  55. forcryin'outloud August 21, 2014 at 5:44 pm #

    Reneei. – You are doing the right thing.Unfortunately you get to the point where you have to play hardball and put their manhood in a vice. I remember my H in tears begging me not to send the letters I had written to his OW and mother about their disgusting actions regarding the affair. He laid faced down across the bed crying like a child, begging me not to do it. He said it would kill his mom if I let her know how disgusted I was with what she had done and the OW didn’t deserve it because she already had low self esteem and a terrible husband. TOO BAD! None of them cared a rat’s ass about my feelings…NONE!!!
    You have to look out for you and your family at this point. Stay your ground and don’t listen to all the bull he will sling your way. AND find a therapist or at the very least a third party (not family or friends) that can cut through the bull crap. Oh hell, my H even told our therapist that an old boyfriend of mine was a reason why he sought out his ex love. A man neither of us had seen or talk to in two decades. Believe me they will say anything to deflect the stink off of themselves.
    So sorry for your pain…but if you stay true to yourself YOU will prevail in time.

  56. Lynsey August 21, 2014 at 7:05 pm #

    Reneeification. Good for you for exposing the affair. My one big word of caution at this point is to not believe anything your H says yet. Many of these cheaters (mine included) go underground at this point and still have contact with their AP by means of a new email address, another phone, whatever it takes. It is my experience that they continue to lie and to justify their behavior. They don’t want to let go of the AP yet because that means they’d have to admit they were wrong, or they just aren’t ready to give up having “the best of both worlds.”Watch what he does, and don’t believe everything he says yet. Take care of you, don’t act needy. My hope for you is that things will turn around. You’re off to a good start.

  57. Strengthrequired August 21, 2014 at 7:57 pm #

    Reneeification, glad things look to be turning around for you, yet still as everyone says, do not believe everything your h tells you right now, let him prove himself before you even start to being prepared to give him the benefit of the doubt. Like anyone, give an inch and they will run a mile.
    I actually moved 2 hours away, at first trying to believe the dribble my h was spewing to me, only to keeping on finding out his ow was still seeing him. Although he moved with me, his head was still sitting cosily up his ass, for another 4 months, him not staying with me and his children every night due to the distance on where his work is, yet it also had him have more time to see the ow, without me around, see her pressuring him to leave us, him getting to witness even more of her craziness, and him seeing me getting more distant from him, and him worried that one day he would come home after days of him being away, finding that the children and I have left, he knew i was ready to do just that. He finally saw sunshine, after over a year smelling hers and his own ass, to come out and smell fresh air and reality.
    The problem us, it takes a while to regain trust once it is broken, and my h is finding that out the hard way.
    My h knows I love him, but also knows it won’t take much to push me out the door. He got us back living together everyday now, a see moved back to our home, after two years apart a lot, due to distance and work. He knows even now, it only takes one thing, that can have me leave while he is at work.

  58. reneeification August 21, 2014 at 11:56 pm #

    Thank you all so much, I looked forward to logging in all day, and reading your comments. I truly believe you all are the only thing aiding my sanity right now.
    The truth is I dont know if I want to be married to him anymore. I know that is how I feel deep down, but at the same time I have not had the fog lift fully yet. I wish it would hurry up and clear out so I can think again. I have lost so much of my life already and so much time too.
    Tonight I tried to ask him a question and he went into full out defense mode. He took my question the wrong way, and with seething pity spurted out…no we didnt talk alllll day okay?! Which is not what I meant at all, I just asked how things went, and in those exact words. And his response pissed me off, so I let him know right then that the only reason he was speaking to me at all (i was supposed to move today) was because he was not involved anymore. I feel like such a little girl right now, its nearly comical. Because I know how ridiculous I sound. I have to sound like a school girl, and I despise the weakness I feel. I could tell he was being honest when he went on to say that he spent all day having to look at it, and think about it at his mindless job, and he just wanted to come home and get a break, not having to deal with it anymore. I understood that was the truth but I was NOT able to sympathize. Does that make me a bad person?
    So, anyway he went on to throw his arm over his eyes like a little boy and say how he felt I was just trying to get him to….long pause….”you say you need time and you know I need time but its like you are trying to force me to do something instead of letting me do it myself..” Boo fricken hoo right?
    I will admit, that threw me for a loop, because I know what that means. That if it were up to him he wouldnt have ended it, but he felt forced, and he wasnt ready. Again, boo fricken hoo. Now I am just mad at myself for giving a crap at all. So, I foolishly felt like I just “had” to strike back. I clearly and I am so proud of myself for maintaining complete composure, anyway I went on to say listen you have lived this for 18 months now and years before that, and I have been in the dark wondering every single day if it was over, you dont make decisions, you dont do anything about it. The truth is, that was me bearing a part of myself with complete honesty. He turned the light out on me, literally, and I walked away. PISSED.
    It is my urgency to finally be done with all this, that drives me. I am sick to death of it and I dont want to deal with it anymore. I am fed up. I dont feel that it is unreasonable to make demands for my sanity at this point. I dont care that he is “hurt” or loved her or any of that. I do not care at all. I have no place inside me what so ever that feels any amount of sympathy for him. I just dont. Does that mean that I dont love him? I dont know, I love something, just not what he is now. Perhaps it is the potential, or something from the past somewhere. I am monitoring myself and even my own answers change depending on what he says or does. I am STILL basing my decisions off him. I am so angry with myself right now.

  59. reneeification August 22, 2014 at 12:00 am #

    Adding to that, Renee means reborn. I want more than anything to be exactly that. Reborn. Thank you all, so very much. I have been so alone with all of this for so very long. Ashamed of myself for allowing it to go on, ashamed that I didnt have the guts to just end it. Ashamed of him, and our life. I shut myself out and down because I cant face the world living so disgustedly.
    I am going to take your advice and find someone to talk to. I hope I can fit it into my schedule with my nursing and children and the mess that consumes me. I will at the very least start enjoying what is left of summer. It is my favorite time of year and I havent been. Maybe go to the gym. Do something that gets me out and away from this.

    • Doug August 22, 2014 at 10:26 am #

      Renee, For what it’s worth…Do not be ashamed of anything. You had no control over your husband’s behavior in the past and it is a very hard thing for most anyone to handle and cope with. You did what you thought was right at the time. That’s all in the past. Now…look at the strength you had to expose the affair! That is not an easy thing to do and in some respects I imagine you feel as though a giant weight has been taken off of you. Use that as momentum and focus now on what you envision your life and your relationships to be. If it means divorcing your husband and freeing yourself from the hell you’ve been living in, then so be it. Go for it. (Just be sure to seek good legal counsel first) Obviously you need to do what you need to do, but it sure appears that he isn’t going to change his ways anytime soon if he’s had that many affairs over the years. He needs help. You, on the other hand, are a strong woman who needs and deserves to be happy. Don’t let him take that away from you.

      • reneeification August 22, 2014 at 10:56 am #

        Doug,
        Thanks. Right now that is kinda all I can say. I am numb. I hate it, because the numbness feeds the ability to stay. But, the disconnect is necessary. Thanks for taking the time to read my posts, and for caring. That always amazed me about this site, you all really actually care.
        I couldnt believe the courage I had to expose the affair, and it still amazes me even now. I get a little chuckle at myself how I probably tilted my chin on my soap box haha.
        I used to think I had been in this situation so long that it had damaged me too much for normal. But if that were true, I wouldnt be fighting, right?

  60. reneeification August 22, 2014 at 1:23 am #

    I have come to a decision. I know that this “fog” I feel right now is self induced. It is generated by ME to allow myself to get sucked back into the hope of a marriage renewed. I know in my heart of hearts that is not going to happen. This is what will happen:
    I will skirt the tough questions to keep the “pressure” off him, thereby giving him just enough opportunity to see what else he can do in all this “time” he claims to need. The routine will fall back into place, and before I know it number 16 will be “the one”. Yes, I said 16, EA, PA/EA, one night stands, etc…..15 total in 15 years. What a mess. In the meantime, I will love and recommit myself to him and our life, and live totally unaware of what is really going on at the first opportunity………he is gone.
    So, tomorrow I am going to call the owner of the townhouse that I avoided today, and beg forgiveness, and make the deposits if she will still allow me to live there since I ignored her call all day today. I guess it is time to be as ruthless as he has been, and look out for me. My children. NOT him. He is the problem, not us.

  61. Strengthrequired August 22, 2014 at 3:10 am #

    Reneeificatiin, it is so hard isn’t it, sometimes these men just need to open their eyes to truly see what they are losing. While we were not near my h, he actually started missing us, I think that is when his head started to clear. While I was away too, I was able to live life as if on my own, and if he did chose the ow, although it would have hurt like crazy, I was away frim it all, and knew I would be able to move on. I was far enough away, where I was not around them, I was nowhere near them to see them together, if that happened, and just having that, made it a lot easier to stop all the anxiety and feel stronger than the person I was before I moved away. I think we both needed that time apart, for us to be able to get our life back together.
    Good luck, we are here for you.

    • reneeification August 22, 2014 at 10:59 am #

      Strength Required,
      How true your words are. I wish my H had a heart that could actually feel this nightmare he has created. I really just need to break free. It has defined me long enough?
      I would love to move far enough away that I would never run into them. Not to say that I would anyway because the AP broke contact when I exposed. They would go underground should it ever resume.
      Thanks for your reply, I slept like a baby last night. Finally
      Have a great day,
      Renee

  62. reneeification August 23, 2014 at 10:24 pm #

    Wow. How these things develop. Through exposure, my H has finally shown his truest colors. His AP has broken all contact and has refused to answer his attempts, has went as far as to deactivate the means by which they used to communicate. And, the kicker is, he blames me. Of course, and I expected that. I am fine with that. I just wish I had a safe place to land and take care of myself. I wish to heaven that there was someone in my life that I could depend on just a little while to get through the worst of this. But, I have pushed everyone away these last few years. Out of my own shame of the mess I was in, and not wanting to burden anyone. I really wish he would just leave.
    Does anyone know anything regarding whether I can just change the locks? Or do I have to allow him to live here because we are married? I know I need to see an attorney. I will, I just would like to have some peace of mind or feel like I am doing something toward the end goal.
    Those of you who pray, please pray for me. Right now I do not believe in God, but maybe one day I will find that again. Thanks in advance. Tonight, I really just needed somewhere to be heard, to see some small mark in the world that I made. Thanks

    • Strengthrequired August 24, 2014 at 7:48 pm #

      Reneeification, I’m hoping you are ok, I did the same turned everyone away, but you know what, I found here, just like you did, and I found people like giz, th, and fcol, Doug, Linda, overwhelmed, Betrayedchump, Rachel, and so many others, who have been in many ways a lifeline for me, they are all people that understand because they know exactly how you feel, how confusing this time is as well, because all we want is to just wake up from the lingering nightmare. We all know how you feel, we are all here to listen, even though we are not close by, you are not alone.
      Your h, of course is going to blame you, that’s a reaction to his fantasy crumbling down around him, like a child that had a new toy taken away from them, because they were misbehaving. Don’t forget too, the ow has stopped contact with him, and now his ego boosting has come to an end. Now he has to look at himself, and I am sure if he had to truly look at himself in the mirror, he wouldn’t like what was staring back at him. So don’t take any of this as your fault, he made his bed, now he needs to lay in it. Lick his wounds and hopefully wake up to himself.
      So remember get some legal advise, do what you think you need to do. Also remember you aren’t alone, we are here….

      • Gizfield August 24, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

        Thank you, Strength. You’re very sweet. I think the people on here are a pretty special group. Not everyone could do what is necessary to even begin to work on their marriage after infidelity. I sure as hell didn’tthink I would be one of them. Won’t ever happen again, lol. I dont think the average cheater appreciates the second chance they are given, usually until after it’s too late.

        • Strengthrequired August 25, 2014 at 5:41 am #

          Your welcome giz, everyone here are a wonderful caring bunch.

  63. Rachel August 24, 2014 at 6:49 am #

    Reneeification,
    If you have any type of accounts try to withdraw as much money as possible. If you have accounts in just your name, withdraw the money.
    No you cannot change the locks in the home.
    You are the victim. I was told also that I should stop acting like one.
    You have put up with too much of his nonsense.
    Find an attorney that will give you a free consultation. Or if you have the funds, make an appointment and get some advise.
    If you have any life ins. Change the beneficiary now!!!
    This is not your fault. Blaming us is so much easier than blaming them selves,
    Stay strong. You won’t believe how strong you are.
    You deseve better.
    Peace!

  64. Gizfield August 24, 2014 at 10:20 am #

    Reneeification, what Rachel says is totally the truth. Nothing about this shitshow your husband has been running is your fault! He’s upset about you exposing crap HE DID. Like that old show Baretta said “if you can’t do the time, don’t do the crime.” It’s very telling that his concern is that he can’t contact his AP. Really??? She’s not really the issue though, cause guys that are pathological cheaters will just replace her with someone else.

    I’m going to recommend two books that may help you. Psychopath Free by Peace. 2.99 on kindle. Also, Chump Lady guide to infidelity. Not sure of the exact title. Just search chump lady and it will pop up. $9.99 but this is stuff that will help in your situation. If you don’t have have a Kindle download the app on your phone or computer for free. Also, you can do a 30 day free trial of kindle unlimited and read CL for free. It’s only my opinion but from what you have said, your husband really does not DESERVE any part in your life. And it is completely his own fault. Hope things get better for you!!

  65. Gizfield August 24, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    I read the Chump Lady book earlier this week, and it is powerful stuff. The goal is not reconciliation, but the betrayed spouse protecting themself. There is some language that is pretty strong, but she has the cheaters “number” dead to rights. I can say this with a fair amount of certainty because I have been there, as a cheater. Not pretty but true. Especially in the case of serial cheaters (which I’m NOT, btw).

  66. Gizfield August 24, 2014 at 10:05 pm #

    One thing I’ve noticed is that I’m just much less interested in “shallow” people since my husband’s adultery. I like other people, but you’ re just gonna have to find someone else to share those tedious details of your weekend long drunk or your latest sushifest wit. That type of thing reminds me entirely too much of the dim witted twit my husband decided to hold up to me as the female “ideal”. What a joke, I’m surrounded by these people. I’m still amazed he could be so impressed by some one so common and ordinary.

  67. Gizfield August 24, 2014 at 10:07 pm #

    Oooops, sb with , not wit.

  68. Rachel August 25, 2014 at 7:56 am #

    I like that giz.
    I pick and choose who I want to associate with as well.
    Unfortunately the ex’ only friend is married to my friend.
    I can’t stand the site of him because he truly is nothing but an ass.
    He cheated on his wife 3 times. He discusts me.
    He still goes to hooters and has his pic taken with the waitresses.
    Seriously low self esteem or what?
    That’s what it’s all about!

  69. Gizfield August 25, 2014 at 9:48 am #

    Lol, Rachel, birds of a feather flock together.

  70. chely November 25, 2014 at 7:09 pm #

    I’ve kept his secret for over a year. No longer, his actions don’t really jive with his actions. Pretty sure he’s still messing around, but I can’t get the proof. So I decided to tell my Mom because I need her help. I am hiring a private investigator because I MUST know the truth before my 20th anniversary in Jan. I feel like I know what he will find but with solid evidence I can confront with power. I’m preparing for the worst and if that happens i’m outing him to them all. Here’s the poem I wrote that i will send.

    HIS BIRTHDAY CAKE

    My heart it is so empty, as I pen this sad good-bye
    Our marriage it is over , no longer will I try

    Never did I think, how horrible it would end
    Thought our love was strong enough, to survive both storm and wind

    So blissfully we started out, two babies we did raise
    Amazing that they even survived, growing up in narcissism’s haze

    Try? Oh yes I try so hard, my fingers bleed and break
    I smile and he kisses me, as I bake his birthday cake

    Never would he trust, or maybe lean on me
    “tsk tsk you crazy woman, you know nothing can’t you see”

    So off he goes in search of her, commit a moral sin
    being but mere mortal man, I willingly forgive him

    Guess he never realized, my hero it was he
    Never could he see my side, forest has too many trees

    Because of course man knows best, as woman I have no say
    My ideas oh no not worthy, always had to be his way

    Wicked words they are his arsenal, in my daily torture such pleasure he does take
    But I smile as he kisses me, as I bale his birthday cake

    How long has this been going on?, to count we must use years
    Our marriage he has torn apart, no longer I shed tears

    Took everything promised to me, and gave it all to her
    He thought I would stand so silently, NO MORE will I endure

    Breaks my heart to mention, alone he will grow old
    I always tried to warn him, “shall reap just what you sow”

    No longer can I stomach, the food that he doth feed
    Tried to run much sooner, but back He always did lead

    Cried out to someone “save me”, but no one ever came
    Help me off this prison floor, end this pointless game

    Played his stupid mind games, raise his hand He never did
    But his words are made of venom, used on only me & the kids

    Without us to sustain him, new victims he will seek
    Be careful if He looks at you, that hole is very deep

    You could say I’ve had my fill, of him and all his crap
    Pleasure that’s forbidden, as she squirms upon his lap

    His mouth when it is open, speaks no truth-just lies
    Only bent I am not broken, for him I will not die.

    Thinks that he has done no wrong, as sure as I sit in this chair
    Certain that if you did ask him, he thinks he did not affair

    Perfect little family, part of his facade and his delusion
    this certainly not mine, i’d of preferred a different conclusion

    Thought I’d always love him, everyday for the rest of my life
    Become so painfully obvious, he no longer wants me as his wife

    Friends and family please know I love you, and I always will
    His love is just too toxic, can’t swallow that nasty pill

    Tremble as I write this, no longer will I fake
    Sad it is, it really is, but I’ve baked his last birthday cake

    By chely

  71. Liam January 22, 2015 at 4:15 pm #

    So this is where it is going. I’m done with trying to please her. As stated earlier in this blog “I realize that my own integrity and the way I choose to live are on the line. I want to live up to my wedding vows to love honor and respect. This has to end and to work she must engage in the family and marriage. Any thoughts? I plan to send out Monday to her place of employment if things go bad this weekend.

    Ms. Jane HR;
    This letter is to bring a matter to your attention that may be a violation of your Company’s Code of Conduct and/or other policies, procedures and business ethics.
    John Doe and Mrs. Wife are involved in an extramarital affair that is taking place in the workplace and at Mr. Doe’s residence. Aside from the potential sexual harassment claims this situation presents, it also involves the inappropriate use of company resources and assets. It appears as if Mr. Doe’s and Mrs. Wife are using company time and resources to further their affair. As Mrs. Wife has been married twelve years and has two beautiful children and a loving husband, you can imagine the devastation this has caused her family.
    Considering Mr. Doe’s position as Mrs. Wife direct supervisor, his participation in her hiring, and his participation in her recent promotion makes the following activities most abhorrent.
    • Summer of 2014 – Mrs. Wife reported an incident of sexually inappropriate conversation with a VP Financial Advisor to Mr. Doe.
    o Mr. Doe handled himself (read as “hero”)… not reporting to H.R.
    • Regular lunches alone with Mrs. Wife.
    • Gift exchanges.
    • Mr. Doe has Mrs. Wife come to work on Sundays and is often isolated with him.
    o She was hired with the understanding of a 40 hour work week Monday through Friday.
    • November 14th, 2014 – after a company sponsored wine tasting. Mr. Doe took Mrs. Wife out for drinks and dinner to a restaurant within 5 blocks of his residence.
    • January 18th, 2015 – while working at the facility on a Sunday, Mrs. Wife left to rendezvous with Mr. Doe’s at his residence.
    If you have any questions, please contact me at ( ) XXX-XXXX. Otherwise, I will anticipate a response from you once you have investigates these concerns and taken appropriate corrective action.
    Regards,

    • Blue January 22, 2015 at 6:07 pm #

      I wish I could have sent a letter to my CH workplace. He would have been fired and he was the major bread winner, and his direct report AP probably wouldn’t have been.

      Good Luck in what you decide to do. Make sure the HR person isn’t Mrs. Wife or Mr. Doehead’s best friend.

      I’d like to hear how this turns out if you go the route of exposing their unprofessional behavior.

    • OHC January 22, 2015 at 6:36 pm #

      I realize why it’s tempting to tell the workplace, but make sure you know why you are doing it because there could be unintended consequences. Having been involved with sexual harassment issues, I can tell you that companies have no interest in doing the “right” thing, the only thing that will happen is they will circle the wagons. You also don’t want to look like you are threatening them. It could quite seriously come back and bite you in the butt. Not to mention the fact that your wife may never forgive you

      Now, if you have no intention of trying to save the marriage at this point, maybe that’s ok with you. But if that’s the case, then I’m not sure taking action for revenge or to punish them is the right course

      If you are trying to get her attention, why not tell her of your intention to send the letter? If that doesn’t wake her up, then ask for a separation. Again, if that doesn’t have an effect, then I’m not sure that ruining her career or forcing her through public humiliation will

      Just a thought. Know why you are doing this. It’s a big step and might not turn out the way you want

  72. Gizfield January 22, 2015 at 7:01 pm #

    Where I work, and previous employers too, all parties are responsible for their own actions and are subject to the same disciplinary measures. They are both stealing time. No innocent victims allowed.

    Most hr people I’ve dealt with are useless. I would cc the Compliwsance /Ethics department and appropriate managers as well.

  73. Gizfield January 22, 2015 at 7:04 pm #

    She might not forgive him?? Seriously, it’s the other way around, doncha thin

    • OHC January 22, 2015 at 7:30 pm #

      But that’s why I said he should know what the purpose of the action is. If he genuinely wants his wife back and to save the marriage, he has to take into account that this sort of public action might not achieve the results he wants to achieve. He has already made it clear he is willing to consider forgiving her for her actions, that’s no longer the big question.

      As for reporting it, he doesn’t work there, so unless there is really hard proof (nothing he has listed is proof of an affair) I’m not sure they can do anything, especially if his wife and the AP deny it. It is very different from another employee reporting something

      Look, he is free to do what he wants, but they will lawyer up and could turn it into him harassing the company. My point is be prepared for this to maybe not go the way you want. Once you do this, you give up control of the situation

      In my view, if you are willing to go this far, you should just say you are leaving her. And take actions to separate. And I would understand exposing her AP to his wife. I just can’t see what good comes from exposing her at work, you have little control once that many people, lawyers, and a company get involved

  74. Gizfield January 22, 2015 at 7:32 pm #

    Here’s a useful concept I was taught taught as a child : When you CHOOSE the behavior, you you CHOOSE the consequences. Simple enough, right.? If you dont want it known you screwed your boss, DON’T screw your boss.

  75. OHC January 22, 2015 at 7:43 pm #

    I agree. But isn’t this about Liam and what he wants? I’m focusing on him and his goals.

    This may be what his wife and her AP “deserve.” However, punishing them, even justly, may not save his marriage and may lead to financial hardship for his family. If, on the other hand, he’s decided he is done with the marriage and wants to see them punished/exposed then this will definitely do the trick

    You can’t deny this a risky move. I don’t blame him for considering it. But he shouldn’t do it out of anger or emotion, he should only do it in a controlled way with full acceptance of all the possible ways it might go

  76. Liam January 22, 2015 at 8:15 pm #

    Truthfully, I have been going above and beyond in taking care of my children… Picking up and dropping off at school, making meals, enjoying Sunday’s with them while their Mother my wife is at “work”. I’m certain this is just an emotional affair.

    But here is the rub… She does not want to work on our marriage anymore… But she won’t move out. And here is why, I told her that there was a high probability that I would go black — completely disconnect — pack up my bags and head out west.

    Let’s talk fantasy for a bit… She fantasizes about leaving and getting on with her life and new man. Which i see as a new father to my children while I am the built in babysitter for half the time. I believe that it is in me to just leave — escape.

    I’m no innocent in the cause of her searching and finding someone new. Every marriage has problems and Lord knows I have caused many but I have made amends and asked forgiveness. I am and have always been there for her and my children…. Group activities, camping, church and school. I am not an absentee father… I provided sole income for three years great years. And could have asked her to stay at home longer but I thought that this job could have afforded us more luxury.

    I am a weak man so enmeshed in my covenant of marriage that if the flame of our love is extinguished I do not believe that I could survive the pain of being apart from our children and being an a weekend father while she seeks a new father for my children.

    Therapists don’t understand and maybe I’m crazy, manipulative and immature. But I do not see how people (lawyers and therapists) can be so anticeptic about divorce. Not I!

    Her anger and resentment toward me is so upfront…. I am helpful and nice every step of the way. The mid-life crisis statements of I am not in love with you anymore and I need space are exhausting.

    Let me add more kindling to the fire… She was sexually abused by her grandfather as a child and her father let him back in the house. She has compared my touch to that of her grandfather’s and my broken promises to that of her fathers. When she is sensitive my mouth noises and breathing remind her of her grandfather. It sickens me but I love her.

    Don’t get me wrong she is not weak… She is strong and smart but she will not recognize that all of this influences her decision making process.

    She said to me the other day when screaming for space that every man she has ever been involved with has made her miserable. Truthfully, she has carried some misery from the day I met her — the hands of her grandfather I suspect.

    I am done with my rant. Please call me out… Tell me that I am wrong… I love this woman and my family with all my soul and will do anything to keep them together.

  77. Liam January 22, 2015 at 8:23 pm #

    OHC — you are correct that I want to save this marriage. My traditional efforts have gone without success… This is my endgame if need be.

  78. gizfield January 22, 2015 at 8:46 pm #

    I’m not in Liam’s situation and can’t advise him in any way. Wasn’t even trying.

    I will say this: I have NEVER seen one single instance where a Cheater agreed an affair should be exposed. Not one, maybe someone else has. They are like unicorns or Big Foot or some mythical creature, hinted at but never seen. Why is that?

    I do see a lot of the “gathering of the wagons” by cheaters when faced with consequences. People will think Badly of them. They won’t be able to Forgive the betrayed spouse. The employer will sue them. It goes on and on.

    Which tells me that they know it will curtail their fun, by having to deal with Consequences. I think this kind of lack of accountability for their actions gives the cheaters free reign to keep on doing what they’re doing. It certainly doesn’t give them any incentive for change.

    • OHC January 22, 2015 at 8:53 pm #

      Of course they don’t want to be exposed. But that wasn’t really the question posed, which is whether or not exposing his wife and AP to their employer was a way to save his marriage. I’m not the only one who feels it is risky, if you read all the comments before mine, including Doug’s.

      I know I’m a former OW, but that doesn’t mean that nothing I say has value

      • gizfield January 22, 2015 at 9:35 pm #

        I didn’t say that nothing you say has value. Nobody is a fortune teller, so nobody knows what will happen. That includes you and me both.

        • OHC January 22, 2015 at 10:00 pm #

          Honestly, I think you let her go, as long as you don’t think she’s a threat to herself. It sounds like she is close to a breakthrough of some type. That being said, you can insist on conditions for her being able to return. Remember, that’s not you giving up on her or the marriage, it’s you being the strong, responsible person in this situation

          Wishing you the best

        • OHC January 22, 2015 at 10:04 pm #

          Giz, you didn’t say that outright but you implied it with the talk of cheaters circling the wagons.

          But enough. My whole point is what you say–we aren’t fortune tellers, you never know what will happen. So always best to think through all the potential scenarios before taking action that can’t be taken back

  79. OHC January 22, 2015 at 8:48 pm #

    I’m sorry, Liam, that’s a lot to handle.

    I will tell you that if its an emotional affair, this tactic may be even harder. Very difficult for a company to do something, even if they want to, if there is no physical affair and no obvious proof in the form of emails saying I love you, etc.

    Not to sound ignorant, but can’t you kick her out? No reason for you to move out and not have your children, that’s what she needs to go through. She says she wants space? Then give her space, but it comes down to her leaving

    I should be clear that when I suggested you ask for a separation, it wasn’t because I take divorce lightly or think you should either. It’s because I personally think that doing that and then making moves to make it happen will be more effective in saving your marriage than an attempt to expose her. Just my opinion though.

    Also, she clearly needs to go to therapy. I think that needs to be grounds for any reconciliation. I’m not talking just marriage counseling, I think she needs individual therapy to deal with her childhood

    You aren’t weak, you are strong. So be strong and stand up for you and your children

    I should tell you I was the OW in an emotional affair. His wife never found out about me, but their marriage was suffering. She threatened to leave him twice to no effect, then finally kicked him out. That woke him up pretty quickly. Woke me up as well, I ended up walking away. That is just my experience though, everyone is different

  80. Liam January 22, 2015 at 9:50 pm #

    The emotional swings she goes through are unbelieveable. The rage in her eyes and the stiffening of her jaws, the baring of teeth while speaking in anger differs so opposite to the times she speaks of how we can work on it although I’m torn if i should stay or go moments. Now mind you, these are at a minimum week long periods of time.

    I suffer through it and grin and bare it and so do my children. In fact, my wife said aloud that she thought that my youngest had enough of her for the night. My eldest said haven’t we all… I nearly fell out of the chair laughing.
    It is obvious, that she is trying to push me out of the house and our marriage. But she wants it her way. I want it no way. I by no means want to be a martyr for this cause… I want seek happiness as much as the next person. But I believe that the most satisfying thing in my life has been my family.
    Someone mentioned revenge as a motive. So I spent some time in the Corps… I wrestled in college… I had a propensity towards violence in my younger days… I left those days long ago. But I do fantasize about taking a pound of flesh out of this guy. I mean how unprofessional, how immoral. Yes I know it takes two to tango. With that said: my only motive is shock and awe. Wake her up… Heavy handed – yes. Last resort — yes. Does it work – I hope that I will not have to find out.

    So she wants to get a hotel room this Saturday to have some space. Well I asked some questions about what she was going to do and who she was going to see. She flared up in anger… She just wants to be alone… She said she will probably cry for three hours… And she will be alone, alone, alone. I let her stew for a couple of days and told her I did not want her to go. She said she had already booked a room. I then told her I don’t want you to go… No response. Is it rational for me to stay with my kids while she goes off? Is it rational of her to expect that of me? I’m thinking of getting up first thing and heading into the office for about 18 hours. Damn I’m frustrated.

    Damn she is damaged — and I want her to heal.

  81. OHC January 22, 2015 at 10:01 pm #

    Weird, my response to you posted up above Liam, look a few up

  82. Liam January 22, 2015 at 10:23 pm #

    Let her go… Hmm… I have told her to get out but not to expect me to be a part time parent. She won’t go (yet) she is too afraid of parenting alone or being seen as abandoning her children…and I believe she recognizes somewhere inside that she belongs where she is…she just needs to find out how to be happy.

    I have already spoken to my attorney (who likes the idea of a clean easily litigated disillusionment of a contract as opposed to a covenant) regarding a alienation of affection suit against her boss — enforceable in my state. I will run the letter by her.

    • gizfield January 22, 2015 at 10:56 pm #

      So is the boss married? Because if he is, wouldn’t his wife be able to countersue for Alienation of Affection against your wife?

  83. Liam January 22, 2015 at 10:46 pm #

    Last post… End on a good note. My wife and I argued a bit tonight. She was in one of her shut down phases: no eye contact, no initiation of conversation, snippy replies.

    I told her that her feelings of wanting to escape and be “in” love, regretting all the past — were all text book Mid-life crisis. Mind you she has been through years of therapy… Her reply was snippy, sarcastically accepting all the blame and then turning on me for past drinking. FYI — done with it.

    Well as I have become somewhat of a sleuth these days. I decided to look at her browsing history expecting to see divorce 101 show up.

    To my surprise, searches on mid-life crisis and saving a marriage.

    Buckle up — the rides not over.

    Pray for me to be strong and make the right choices.

  84. Liam January 22, 2015 at 11:18 pm #

    Negative… 43 year old not married.

  85. gizfield January 23, 2015 at 12:01 am #

    Unmarried 43 year old. I bet he really is a Playa. They love married women so they can have the benefits of a relationship without the responsibility.

    I have a theory that most affairs (ugh, hate that word) have a Master and an Apprentice. By that I mean, one of the partners will be a serial cheater, and the other will be a first time cheater. The serial knows just what to say and do to convince the other that it’s love, special, not wrong, etc in order to get the cheating relationship going.

    • OHC January 23, 2015 at 8:00 am #

      I’m not sure that is true, in my EA neither of us had ever been involved in an affair before. But there can be big power imbalances if one person is married and the other is single, if one is the other person’s boss, if one is willing to walk away from a marriage and the other isn’t. And I think that turns someone into a “master” whether they have ever been in an affair before or not

      In Liam’s case, the fact that its his wife’s boss means there is an obvious power imbalance. But with him being single, he may have genuine feelings for her while she may be just looking for attention, making her more in control. In either case I’m not sure that helps Liam very much

      Liam, how do you know about the EA? Just suspicion at this point or have you had confirmation?

      • gizfield January 24, 2015 at 12:16 pm #

        O.k. back to this. I’m not talking about “power” here but since you brought it up my personal opinion is that in affairs, the “power” lies with the person who has the least to lose. Or the person who is craziest and doesn’t care what the consequences are. Married people have more to lose than single people. Those with children have the most to lose. The same with money and jobs. The person higher up has more to lose.

        Regarding the Master/Apprentice Theory, a lot of people specifically seek out affairs and scout for suitable partners. The Master has had them before and knows what to look for . It’s called “grooming”. Their previous experience lets them know how to control the situation. And they usually are willing to say or do whatever is necessary to keep it going. They may be a pathological liar. One thing for certain, they won’t admit past adultery to you, lol.

        • OHC January 25, 2015 at 10:59 pm #

          I can only speak to my own experience, but I don’t agree with this at all. First of all, we were both professionals and both could have lost our career. Yes, he was more senior, but the woman is usually viewed more harshly in these circumstances, even if legally he was responsible. Second, when you are in an affair and single you do have something to lose–the person you love. In fact, they are more important to you because you don’t have some other family you are hiding on the side

          As my boss and the one married, my AP had all the power. He could decide when to switch my schedule around to be with him, I couldn’t do the same with him. He could change my assignments, pushing me away or pulling me closer. That was entirely in his control. He was so senior to me I wouldn’t have even dreamed of emailing him about stuff outside of work, he started doing it with me and inviting me to events above my pay grade

          And as the married one, he gaslighted me for many years. We would spend a great week together, have shared a ton emotionally, then he would pull back suddenly and say, you aren’t getting attached to me, are you? You know I’m married. He did that for years. He knew I stopped dating and was basically only invested in him, but he had the power to go back and forth. The only time I had more power was when we ended it, because then I had nothing more to lose and could have exposed him to his wife

          Your view is based on a very cynical approach to affairs, I think. A world where people are only in it for the game, hop from affair to affair and are basically psychopaths. I believe those people exist, but I don’t think they are the majority of affairs. I can only speak from my experience, as you can only speak from yours, but I can that as the single one and the one lower on the totem pole, I never felt like I had any power or control in the relationship until the end, when he admitted his feelings for me and we shifted into more of a relationship mode. But that only lasted a few months

          To be clear, I’m not blaming him, nor do I think he went out looking for an affair and settled on me or got any joy out of the power he had. I think we were both pretty screwed up and he struggled quite a bit with his feelings for me

          • gizfield January 25, 2015 at 11:13 pm #

            You are exactly right that my view of affairs is “cynical” because they are WRONG. And married people don’t have families they are “hiding on the side.” They have families. They are right out in the open, exactly where they belong. Not hidden, not on the side. The affair partner is the one on the side.

            • OHC January 26, 2015 at 8:12 am #

              I agree they are wrong. But I don’t agree that the participants view them as a game or fun or take them nearly as lightly as you seem to think they do. Nor do I believe that the majority of affairs involve predators, particularly EAs

          • Rachel January 26, 2015 at 2:51 am #

            OHC,
            What is a” relationship” mode” as you claim there was no physical contact?
            Why not move on with your life and leave this man alone with his wife and family?
            Perhaps go on a dating website like match.com look for a single man with your interests.
            Just a suggestion.

            • gizfield January 26, 2015 at 7:47 am #

              I don’t know about anyone else, but I think ohc’s affair partner sounds like a jerk. The more you hear about him the worse it gets. He’s a cheater, he’s underemployed, he abuses power over subordinates, he had no interest in his kids or his wife until it suits his needs.

              I don’t think the affair partners realize that most wives do not want a cheater. And he’s still contacting her secretly. So he’s still a cheater.

              • OHC January 26, 2015 at 8:30 am #

                Emotionally immature and a lost soul. But not a jerk. He remains lost, unfortunately, but honestly that’s his wife’s problem alone now. Whether she knew it or not, I helped carry the burden for a few years but I haven’t for over a year now. He is not a simple, easy man, he is a lot of work

                • Gizfield January 26, 2015 at 10:34 am #

                  Believe me, I would have been absolutely stunned if you had agreed with what I said about your affair partner being a jerk.

                  • OHC January 26, 2015 at 10:45 am #

                    I dont think I fit into the classic stereotype of the OW. No, I don’t think he’s a jerk, but I think he is a seriously flawed human being. I don’t think he’s been a good husband or father for years, independent of the EA, which just made it worse. I have seen how poorly he handles situations in his own life, I don’t idealize him.

                    But I have also seen a change in him over the past 2 years or so and I think he’s trying to do a better job, including being a really committed father and husband. Yes, he is still keeping up contact with me, but it’s minor compared to the massive effort and sacrifices he has made for his family. Sacrifices he needed to make

                    Believe me, many of my friends who know of our relationship think he’s a jerk. It’s not the first time I’ve heard it. I love him, though, so of course I see a different side of it. Maybe that makes me an idiot, but it’s how I feel, I’m very protective of him, even if I’m not in love with him anymore

                    • Gizfield January 26, 2015 at 11:02 am #

                      Well, it’s definitely a plus that you are moving forward , independent of each other. Please know that anything I say to you is in hopes ofbeing to your benefit. Although you may not necessarily see it that way. It’s a process to recover from infidelity and takes a while.

                    • OHC January 26, 2015 at 11:55 am #

                      I understand and appreciate it. It took a long time for us to unhook from each other but we are definitely on independent paths now, both from a career standpoint and personally. As much as I miss him sometimes, I can’t tell you what a relief it is. We made a really big mess on many levels that became almost like a prison for me. I have felt happy and free of all that for about 6 months now.

            • OHC January 26, 2015 at 8:19 am #

              The affair is long over and has been for almost 18 months. And I am dating, just not anything serious

              You are very hung up on the physical aspect. No, it never got physical but in the last several months we were finally out in the open about our feelings for each other and had frequent long discussions about our relationship, what it meant, what we were going to do about it. It shifted to more of a relationship feel, especially as his wife had kicked him out of the house for part of the time. They were barely on speaking terms, so he would spend even more time with me than usual

              Ultimately, though, we both agreed we needed to end things so he could try to save his marriage. We already knew we would no longer be working together, though, otherwise I’m not sure we would have been able to do it. We needed a forced physical separation

      • Vanessa March 3, 2016 at 7:41 am #

        OH MY! OW is his boss…. though she denies it and claims he’s in a relationship with her cousin ( a stripper, who only dates married men)… ( I found him at her house and this is the story I got.)

        It started between them over a year and a half ago. He told me it was over, but it wasn’t. He was still messaging her on Facebook and sending her texts (inappropriate ones at that, and saying “She’s a friend.”… this is partly my own fault, the first time, I confronted her and she told me that there was nothing going on, and I tried to make us all ‘friends’- the old ‘keep your friends close and your enemies closer’ idea.)

        Anyway, I found him living at her house and this is the story I got when I confronted her once again…”I admit, I like the attention, I was a single woman”… then she proceeded to tell me all about the stripper cousin, who only dates married men, and that the stripper would probably kick my husband to the curb in 2-3 months, and on and on and on…

        *The first time, a year and a half ago, she came onto him like a drunken prom queen, telling him, “I don’t fool around with married men,” but she kept flirting and opining in his ear, “Oh, you poor man, all the guys at work say you have such an unhappy home life…”

        A year later I found more of the inappropriate messages between them, and confronted her about why she wasn’t telling him to stop… she told me she was ‘ignoring junk behavior’ (she’s a little pscyh student and they work in the behavioral health field)… I told her, “He’s not your psych patient, he’s your subordinate and if you don’t understand the difference, you have no place in management or psychology”

        Anyway, I made my husband send her a text that said “My wife is right. These messages are inappropriate and I won’t be sending them anymore.”

        She said “This drama causing behavior is going to affect my decision in any future promotions.”

        Textbook sexual harassment right there! God this girl is dumb as a box of rocks. That must be what he likes about her. She’ll be too stupid to catch him in his lies.

        Anyway, couple months later, she offers him a promotion (she said she never ‘offered’ it, that he applied and was the most qualified), but what he told me was that she told him to apply because he’d ‘earned it.’

        Meanwhile, the year before, he’d been turned down for that same promotion, allegedly because of his ‘availability’ (which later was ‘me’, but the truth was, he’d been offered another job with much better hours, but his other boss begged him to stay, promising to work with his schedule- which turned into ME not letting him work overtime, also not true, I just didn’t want him working 70-90 hours a week anymore)… and then it was because of ME, because I blogged about what a terrible company they were to work for ($8.50 an hour for 3.5 years, no raise, terrible hours, too many hours, often not knowing from one day to the next what his schedule was on the very next day…)

        But suddenly, NONE of that was a problem NOW…

        Because he had his little ‘ally’ .”Miss Homewrecker.”

        She was ‘oh soooo supportive of his ‘career'”… (He went from $8.50 to a whopping $11.00 an hour and right back to the horrendous hours, but now he had to spend 12-16 hours a day with HER….

        And within 1 month of working with the tramp, he was telling me that he loved me but wasn’t in love with me, that the marriage was over for him 2.5 years ago, he just ‘hadn’t accepted it yet,’ Then he said he just wanted a separation. Time to get his head on straight. Then he started going out, staying out all night. Telling me he met some woman named Erica (boss’s name is Liz) and that Erica is a black girl and that he doesn’t date black girls. And “Erica” is ‘interested’ in him… and on and on, until he left, right after Christmas, and three weeks later, I drove by the boss’s house and found him there… I confronted her again and she LIED to me and told me that he wasn’t there, that ‘the staff’ told her he has a girlfriend named “Erica”… then later that night, I got a call from her phone number, from a woman claiming to be ‘their’ aunt… “Liz and Erica are cousins” they all live in the trailer in the trailer park (The ‘white trash’ area of town trailer park)… and he is living there and dating “Erica”, who is now ‘white.’

        Few weeks later, he told me he is in a new relationship, with “Erica” and now she’s black again…

        I’m still struggling with whether or not to expose. I know that “Liz” NEEDS to be exposed to her job, and my husband probably should too… I know that they should have to live in the world that they created.

        But I also know that I have no allies in my corner. I know that he’s going to see it as me trying to manipulate and control him. I know it’s going to crush him. And I’m fairly certain that if I do it, I will be putting the final nail in the coffin on our marriage, and that’s not what I want. And there is no one there who will talk to him for me and tell him ‘my’ side of ‘why’ I did it. He’s surrounded by people who are no friends of marriage. They are the ‘entitlement’ mindset… ‘entitled to be happy, the Hell with the family…” types. (His own mother is exactly like that.)

        I’m not blameless in the demise of our marriage, and I know that.

        I made a lot of selfish demands, and lacked a lot of appreciation for his care, we both made a lot of harsh judgments…

        I am very angry that instead of telling me “I think our marriage is in trouble, we need counseling,” he just decided to have an affair and then told me that it ‘should have been my wake up call.”

        Unfortunately, we did have 4 sessions with a marriage counselor and she was an absolute idiot. The first words out of her mouth were “I’m here to guide you to whatever it is you want to do, whether that’s to repair your marriage or have a successful divorce.” And as soon as he said “I don’t want to try. I don’t like her, I don’t like who she is,” this moron said “Well, that’s pretty clear.” When I mentioned how he said he didn’t want me to go sleep on the couch because he didn’t like sleeping in the bed without me” in response to his statement, she didn’t bother to say to him, “Well, you’re sending some conflicting signals there…” A couple of sessions in, he told her that all he wanted was a separation, time to get his head on straight… and she never addresses that he seemed to be conflicted and should take some time, without going out with other women and staying out all night with them, and think.” She didn’t suggest we do anything together.

        She was a horrible, awful marriage counselor. No perception, no insight. She was trying to treat two individuals and not a ‘marriage.’

        His own mother blamed ME for ‘not trusting him’ in this promotion, with that woman, said that when he told me there was nothing going on, I should have believed him.

        After he told me that the marriage was over 2.5 years ago, but he hadn’t ‘accepted it yet’, and was ‘lying to himself’…. he seems to think that lying to me was ‘acceptable’ because he didn’t ‘know’ he ‘was lying to himself’, and so far, everyone, including the counselor, has let him off the hook on that statement.

        But if he’d been ‘lying to me’ because he’d been ‘lying to himself,’ then how could I trust he wasn’t lying to himself or me again now? But Mommy didn’t like that response and she started getting combative with me…

        But I will say this.. this is not the man I married. The man I married was kind, loving, gentle and compassionate. And I know I did my part to create an environment that allowed this affair to happen in the first place, but I will fight for my husband and my marriage, I just don’t know if making him lose his job is going to be ‘fair fighting.’

  86. gizfield January 23, 2015 at 12:07 am #

    In Doug and Tanya’s affair, I believe Tanya was the Master. I definitely think it wasn’t her first rodeo.

    • Doug January 23, 2015 at 5:49 am #

      You are correct, Giz. Tanya had an affair a few years prior with her manager.

  87. Joan January 23, 2015 at 1:27 am #

    The hotel room sounds more like a ruse for a rendezvous. She needs therapy and you both need marriage counseling so you can learn to talk with each other and parent the children in a cooperative way as you go through this difficult situation.

  88. Liam January 23, 2015 at 8:48 am #

    OHC — I have no hard facts of any physical contact but she has admitted to somethings that have set off major alarms.

    1. After the company sponsored wine tasting she was supposed to have a girls night out… She instead went for dinner and drinks with her boss because she found it more appealing than going to a movie with the women in the office. She told me this when she returned home after midnight.

    2. He is a guitar player. She gave him one of our guitar books as a gift without asking me.

    3. She has admitted to me that she has gone to lunch alone with him often.

    4. She mentioned once that she would like to have him give her guitar lessons. I told her that was inappropriate. She went the following day to his place for a lesson after her work on Sunday.

    5. She is angry because If she goes out to lunch I ask who she went out with.

    Trust — it is difficult at this time.

  89. Liam January 23, 2015 at 8:58 am #

    So here is the situation this weekend.

    1. She wants to go to a hotel to get some space on Saturday. I parent my children while she is away.

    2. Sunday — some of the people she supports at work are coming in form out of state for a quarterly meeting. She wants to go out with one female for dinner. I stay and parent my children.

    3. Monday is a quarterly meeting at her office. She wants to attend the breakfast. Mind you, she is in an hourly position and will not be paid. I am left with the entire responsibility of preparing my children for school and dropping them off.

    My response to Saturday has been no. She will probably still go. My response to the other two will be no tonight.

    • Blue January 23, 2015 at 3:21 pm #

      A hotel room? Maybe she does just want to be by herself, OR maybe she’s going physical with her boss, maybe she already has.

      Do you really want to know whether it’s physical Liam? Maybe you could hire a detective to check the situation out the hotel room night? At least then you would know whether it’s physical. Cheaters lie. Liars cheat. You won’t get many honest answers if you ask her yourself. Her screwed up behavior is screwing you up- full stop! Maybe say as nicely as you can ‘Honey, are we in an open marriage? You know, the kind where we both can go out and have sex with others?’ If she says yes, then say you didn’t make vows to be in an open marriage and if this is what she wants, maybe we shouldn’t be together anymore. But, and here’s the clincher, you’ll have to accept that you may have to part ways and that will be one of the most painful things you will feel. You could also say, I wish we could go to a counselor to try and put our marriage back together, but right now, you don’t seem to want to and I realize there is nothing I can do. Good Luck!

  90. OHC January 23, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    Well, it certainly sounds suspicious that she is having an EA, but it may be just that she has a crush at this point and the feelings aren’t returned by him (although the fact that they went to dinner is a hint that he does.)

    I also thought the hotel request might be an excuse to become physical. But it might not. The fact of the matter is that if she is determined to become physical with him, she will, whether or not she has your permission.

    That is part of why I say let her go, but have conditions. If you let her go have her space, then the condition is she spends Sunday with the family, not going out to dinner. She agrees to counseling, etc. She seems much more concerned with having fun at work right now than she does with the fact that her marriage is falling apart. Either she agrees to those conditions are she doesn’t come home from the hotel when she leaves

    She needs to wake up, but I am more convinced than before that your plan of sending the letter won’t work because you don’t hae enough proof and chances are it’s still an emotional affair. I seriously doubt a company would know what to do with that, even if they believed you. So wake her up a different way–you lay ou your conditions and what the consequences will be if she doesn’t agree, and then you follow them. ITmay mean you are the main parent for a while, it may be uncomfortable and sad and difficult, but if there is a chance of saving this, you need to be strong

    Good luck, Liam, thinking of you

  91. Justin April 13, 2015 at 11:03 am #

    should the emotional affair be exposed before the divorce or after?? She is still in denial and I have collected the evidence!!

    • Doug April 13, 2015 at 11:48 am #

      Justin, I would say that most exposures would be done before and is really meant as a way to get the CS to end their affair.

      • Justin April 13, 2015 at 12:26 pm #

        I’m concern that she might use the divorce against me for exposure her or what?? I have a daughter and I love her… I don’t know… we have been separated for some time.. and it s a tough situation and I had talk with her and she still denial of everything.. I have copies of letter and texting.. so would she use it against me in divorce??

        • Doug April 13, 2015 at 3:42 pm #

          Well, I suppose that is always a possibility, though I’m not sure that it would hold up in court. That is, I doubt a judge would be very sympathetic. You should definitely consult with an attorney first though.

  92. Todd May 13, 2015 at 7:50 am #

    So D-Day for me was over a month ago. My relationship with my wife has been slowly deteriorating for a couple of years now. She has closed her self off to me and up to this point I have done little to encourage her to be open. That is something that I truly regret. I see the ways that we have both contributed to our current situation and I am struggling every day to get myself better, for me, even if we end up divorced.

    Last year my wife had a mini affair with a coworker, we were in a rut, and she had suggested that maybe we should have an open relationship. Thinking myself a liberal minded person who wants his wife to feel autonomous about her own life and body, I agreed. Less than two weeks later she was making out with a coworker in the front seat of our car while I stayed at home with our kids. She confessed everything to me, and though I felt awful for being mad about something I essentially agreed to, it ate me up inside. I told her I really wasn’t ok with it and she agreed that it would stop. The flirting continued for several months, much to my displeasure, but eventually we both stop thinking and talking about it.

    Now. Less than a year later, my wife has become embroiled in another emotional affair, with another coworker. The night she told me about it was the same night that she told me she didn’t want to be married to me anymore. And that she didn’t think that we could ever work. Since then I have been spending nearly every waking minute reading and trying to figure out everything I could do. Meanwhile she has been rolling in the affair fog. Continues to text the guy until all hours. Continues to go to lunch with him at work all the time. Lies to me about what she’s doing and what she’s saying to him constantly.

    I have been an emotional wreck about this. We have been going to counseling and the best I can get from her is that she doesn’t know if we can ever really be connected again. I had decided that I would try to let the affair play itself out. But it was killing me everyday, when she would text him all night, right in front of me. And continue to spend alone time with him and lie to me about it. I have told her that I can’t live like this, she has seem me become a complete wreck in the last few weeks. When we are alone and together there feels like there is hope but as soon as she’s gone she goes right back to him.

    The worst part is that I feel like she has treated me like a doormat for far to long and I’m sure to some degree I have been one. I don’t want to divorce her but I couldn’t take the lies and the affair any more. I have now made my stand. Tonight, I exposed the affair to her family, a few co workers, and I confronted the OP. Needless to say my wife is currently furious. She thinks that she will not be able to go back to work or that she will get fired (I don’t believe she will have to leave her job unless she chooses to) She said that she won’t be able to talk to her family anymore or her coworkers. She said that she is afraid that the whole office will be gossiping about her now.

    She is very hurt, but I told her that she is the one that brought this upon herself. I have given her every opportunity to end this, to put me and our family first, and given that this is not her first offense. I have had enough. She has never shown any remorse for the pain she has caused or any regret for her negative decisions. I chose to expose the affair because if she wasn’t going to end it I was going to leave her anyway.

    She may be so pissed at me from this that recovery is lost, and any hope of fixing our family may be gone. But I could not continue to live in limbo while she was having the time of her life, all while not caring about any of the consequences of her really poor decisions.

    I’m not going to leave her yet, and I don’t know if she will leave me. But I do know that if I didn’t do this, I couldn’t continue to go on. The sheer lack of compassion and the utter disrespect was more than I could take. I hope this will wake her up and we can keep going to counseling and working on the relationship and maybe some day recover. But I knew that if I didn’t do this the relationship was already dead.

    Whatever happens I am determined to be ok, and make the best of everything for my children. I guess time will tell.

    I don’t want her to lose her job, she is the primary bread winner in our family. So I am still unsure as to whether telling her coworkers was maybe too far. But I don’t think she will get fired, and choosing not to go to work is another decision she has to make.

    I don’t agree with telling all of a persons facebook friends, and I’m quite sure I don’t agree with shaming the other person to their friends and family. Even as a BS I have know idea what’s going on in the OP life and it is not my place. I hate the affair, but I’m not a vengeful or vindictive person. I’m concerned about my wife and my family.

    So I guess I’ve drawn the final line in the sand. There are only two roads now, end the affair and work on our relationship. Or divorce. I really don’t want divorce, but no one deserves to live what I’m going through, and know deserves to go through it not knowing how long it will last, and in my case not knowing that it won’t just eventually happen again.

    • Doug May 13, 2015 at 4:31 pm #

      Hi Todd, Thanks for sharing your experiences. I’m sure that many others can learn from it. Certainly her being pissed at you right now is a natural reaction and I’d be curious to hear updates as time passes. Best of luck to you!

  93. todd May 15, 2015 at 8:53 am #

    Well. Three days later she has hardly spoken to me. Still making a big deal about the trouble I have caused at work although she also says that I would have no way of knowing if she got in trouble or not. So I suspect she might not have gotten in trouble at all and she’s just trying to make me feel guilty.

    The good news is that the affair seems to be over. My actions shattered their fantasy world and now the are both seeing it for what it was. He told me he was going to tell her they couldn’t be friends until her and I were better. And she texted him last night clearly very pissed off. Saying the desire to not be friends anymore was mutual.

    Now it’s hard for me to tell what she is going through. I think she may be mostly pissed about me forcing the “friendship” to end. I know that breaking this of is going to be hard for her and now she will blame me but hopefully in time she will wake up from all of this.

    The bad news is that we were supposed to go to counseling last night and she skipped it to go out for dinner and drinks with other work people, including the guy she made out with last year. I was up all night a nervous wreck afraid she would do something crazy like try to seduce him and spend the night in his hotel room. She didn’t. she did stay later alone with him and they shared a cab to his hotel which brought her home after. I don’t know what if anything they dead. And I’m not sure I want to know. I suspect nothing, but she came home completely hammered at 2:00AM.

    She hadnt even gotten out of bed yet this morning when I left for work. Maybe she won’t go? But I suspect she will.

    I’m in a weird place now. Things between us are worse than ever but at least the affair is over and now maybe she will wake up eventually. Trying to keep my head. Be stable for her. But now I’m going to be reading posts on here about supporting her through the withdrawal from the affair.

    Thanks guys. It’s good to have people who know what this is like to vent to. Even though I don’t know who you are it helps to know you’re not along.

  94. clay February 22, 2016 at 1:04 am #

    This response is perfect. I could have avoided months of grief had I had the knowledge to do this.
    The other BS was in denial and was easily convinced that I was overreacting and they were just “old friends catching up a bit”

    I wrongly debated how much hurtful info to expose her to. I only made her aware of the inappropriate communications. I didn’t want to be guilty of petty revenge. I should have exposed everything.

    Now I struggle with the fact that the AP practically got away without any problems.

    • Doug February 22, 2016 at 4:23 pm #

      Hey Clay, Thanks for commenting. Just wondering how you think your wife would have responded had you exposed the affair?

  95. lola May 1, 2016 at 7:02 pm #

    exactly did this!!and keep all evidences just in case i would like to file a case. it really works though it really hurts we are trying to save our marriages.

  96. Carmen May 15, 2016 at 5:55 am #

    As far as I know, my husband’s EA did not involve very frequent communications (only when both I and her husband were not around) or explicit talk. It was ‘just friendship’, but was secret ‘just friendship’ on his side the entire time.

    She was the female in our best couple-friends. She and I were good friends, the husbands were good friends, the 4 of us were good friends. The part I didn’t know was that my husband and she had started up their own friendship at some point (I still don’t know when it started). However, whereas she seemed to treat it as just a normal friendship in all ways – telling her husband when they had talked, like she would any other friend – he never once indicated to me that he had any one-on-one communications with her. Never once called or texted her when I was around.

    After I returned from a trip abroad and found texts between them on his phone (again, nothing very explicit, although one of them was sent late at night and mentioned that he had been thinking of her and how alike they are), I first went for 3 months without saying anything. I wanted to follow up and see what kind of communication was going on. I didn’t find anything, although later I realized that most likely it was because it was summer. Her husband was home and they were together much of the time. As were my husband and I. Not much chance for communications on the sly.

    Finally in the fall I told him about what I’d found and that I saw her as a threat. This started a 2-year phase where he knew I was bothered, yet continued to contact her from time to time when the opportunity presented itself. I found out about several of them. I assume there were more that I never found out about. I tried in many ways to get him to talk about it and tell me what the heck was going on between them, but he never managed to talk to me openly. The cycle simply continued. We continued the couples-friendship, although I was often reluctant to go out with them.

    After I was away again and found out he had called her (which I was almost positive he would do, since the first few days I was away, I knew her husband was also away), I decided to finally confront her. I asked her for coffee and exposed the fact that their friendship had been bothering me for some time and that it had become a big problem in my and my husband’s marriage. Unfortunately by then I was so tied in knots that I ended up spewing out all my bad feelings on her. I did not make it clear enough that my husband had kept the whole thing secret the entire time. As I mentioned, she seems to have treated it all much more like a regular friendship. She went home and told her husband about it. End result: all 4 know knew what had been going on, I felt extremely guilty, and I looked like a psycho-jealous bitch.

    That was the end of the friendship of the 2 couples. The men remain friends and this other woman adamantly wants them to remain friends. I have written her a couple of mails trying to explain myself. She has never talked to me again. It’s been 2 years now.

    I go through cycles – sometimes I can’t believe these people I counted as friends could turn on me so quickly and thoroughly. No one ever questioned anything, never asked what could have caused me to become so desperate and act in a way I had never acted before, no one questioned or wondered what part my husband had in all this. I miss the friendship.

    At other times I’m quite sure that this is the only possible outcome of my husband’s behavior. If he was willing to risk our marriage for this ‘friendship’, it is clear to me that he has strong feelings for her. How, then, could we continue to spend time together with the couple and travel together? As blogs such as this repeat often, all contact between the affair partners must end. Even he said later that he realized that eventually I would have to talk to her.

    I don’t know much about her involvement in the friendship: it’s possible she was totally innocent and didn’t know he was keeping the friendship secret from me. It’s possible she sensed him trying to push the boundaries of their friendship but tried to keep everything on a merely-friendly level. It’s even possible she knew the whole time and was also active in knowingly not mentioning their communications to me.

    My experience does confirm what this blog post suggests – full exposure did end the ‘friendship’, immediately and effectively (as far as I know anyway). For 2 years I tried other tactics and nothing worked. Finally, simply telling the other woman what was going on was enough to blow it up.

  97. Justine June 24, 2016 at 9:14 pm #

    I asked my husband’s affair partner to stop contacting him or I will expose her to all her friends and colleagues. I gave her an ultimatum and she didn’t respond, instead she told my husband of what I said to her. Time’s up. What should I do now? Should I still expose her? How does she think she can get away with everything by trying to break our marriage.

  98. t September 8, 2016 at 9:38 am #

    Not sure this goes here but is a question…..
    Hi, Our (I’m the husband) relationship has been rocky for over 10 years but I have endured a lot and kept much bottled up over that time. Basically, we treated one another terribly.. as with most problems in relationships – both are to blame.

    She spent one night out and I discovered that she was going to meet an ex even before she went out for the evening – that’s another, very long story.

    She came home and lied perfectly about so much of the evening until she was confronted with the black and white truth.

    So fuming, I FB’d guy (from her F*KBook a/c) with quite a lot of very personal stuff that’s been going on between us and also her history of previous relationships. So the 3 of us could see all this – it was really more for me as I had never written this all down before, or told anyone, and very badly needed to get it out of my system.

    She went crazy and said that she could have worked at “us” if I hadn’t done that.

    So she told me she’d asked him to unfriend which he did. Things settled down a little. But then another 3 weeks went by and I found out about the whatsapping etc after she’s promised to cut contact. He lives in Australia and just visits 3 or 4 times a year so perfect for a little discreet affair for both of them. So then I went absolutety crazy. I found out his number and texted him more stuff and actually rang him and he promised me he would stay out of the “game”! His word, the “game” – not a word I would use.

    So I killed it dead – and that’s what’s now made her really, really, really mad!! “We are not a couple”, “you should never have sent those things to him”, “we are absolutely finished”, “I really hate you now”. The big “C” word was used more than once!

    My question is, would anyone else do what I did?? Even though she seems determined now to finish it with our family unit. I used any means at my disposal to try and save my family and keep us together and kill the affair – we have 2 young boys. She tells me that if I had not done that, then there would have been a chance to reconcile. She lays the blame for a now definite break up completely and utterly with me. (As she has done with all our troubles of the last 12 years)

    • A.Occident August 9, 2017 at 1:21 pm #

      You rock dude. That took some balls.
      I just did this yesterday, via facebook.
      Already, I’m the bad guy, with her friends and family proclaiming her innocence.
      Too bad I have four years worth of data.

      • Shifting Impressions August 9, 2017 at 5:08 pm #

        A.Occident
        Not sure if this is the best way to go it reconciliation is your goal. Such a public way to deal with such a private matter.

  99. Not crazy like the suggestions in this article May 7, 2017 at 5:51 pm #

    To follow these suggestions would be awful. How can someone ruin the work life of their spouse and a person they don’t know, not to mention their personal relationships too! And all because they weren’t sexually faithful. That qualifies as crazy, and I have been cheated on, but I would never hurt my spouse in this way. People need to get a grip on themselves, not everyone will love you forever, not everyone will stay faithful forever. Pull yourselves up by your boot straps, conduct yourself with dignity. That is your best move if you ever want to salvage your relationship in the future, and if the relationship falls away, at least you can walk away with your head held high.

    • Shifting Impressions August 23, 2017 at 4:02 pm #

      Not Crazy….
      I think your words “conduct yourself with dignity” says it all. I couldn’t agree more.

  100. Kim H August 23, 2017 at 12:49 pm #

    So here is the problem with Dr. Harley’s advice and there is just no getting around it. It is based on his work with – in his words – “thousands of couples who struggle with the fallout of infidelity.”. And that should be the statement giving you pause. In other words, the cases where this strategy has yielded positive results were all from a control group comprised of people who voluntarily sought marital counseling with the primary focus on coping with infidelity. Statistically speaking, marriages have a greater chance of surviving infidelity when both partners are willing to seek professional help, usually with the end goal of “saving the marriage”. Not all succeed. But, one thing the successful couples have in common is the willingness to at least try to communicate openly and seek help with understanding each other and how/why their marriage came to be in such a position in the first place. I think of exposure as the last ditch effort to dispel affair fog and it can be successful, but again where Dr. Harley himself reports observing that success is in cases where the wandering spouse has already demonstrated a willingness to put effort into saving the marriage. Just something to keep in mind.

    • Vanessa August 24, 2017 at 12:09 am #

      Actually, it seems that in most cases, the unfaithful doesn’t want the help, doesn’t want to work on the marriage… the exposure helps to get the unfaithful to being willing to work on the marriage by bringing an end to the affair via the exposure.

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  1. Expose the Affair | Suddenly Single - October 13, 2015

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