It’s been several months since we have had a discussion on the blog about sex after an affair. We’d like to get your updated views on this subject as it relates to your own situation.

Dr. Robert Huizenga, author of “Break Free From the Affair” says

“…usually there is a very high level of sexual intensity between husband and wife.  The affair stirs up sexual intensity and sexual feelings. Often both have a strong desire to engage in sex, and some people say that sex is better now than it’s ever been.” 

He goes on to say:

“If you enjoy sex, it’s mutual and you’re having a great time, then there’s nothing wrong with sexual activity.”

We thought that it would be interesting and perhaps a good learning experience to get an idea of how our reader’s sex life has transformed during certain stages of your relationship from just prior to discovery of the affair, to well after.

Let’s first set the general stages from which to compare.  If you haven’t made it through all of these stages, that’s okay.   Just respond based on your own situation:

Stage 1:  The weeks prior to discovery of the affair (or when you suspected the affair started).  In other words, the time before there was no affair going on.

Stage 2:  The time when the affair was going on.

Stage 3:  After discovery of the affair and either the affair came to an end or it continued.

Stage 4:  The weeks immediately following the end of the affair.

See also  Sexual Intimacy After an Affair

Stage 5:  Long term after the end of the affair – perhaps several months to years after.

Obviously, we don’t need to necessarily know all of your intimate details.  (Though it could make things more interesting.)  You don’t even need to necessarily follow the stages above.  If you’d rather, just provide a general idea of how your sex life has transformed from prior to, during, and after the affair.

Factors to consider:

  • Frequency
  • Intensity
  • Desire
  • Initiating sex
  • Satisfaction
  • Performance issues
  • Having intrusive thoughts during sex
  • Thinking that you are/were undesirable
  • Changes in usual sexual patterns and/or techniques
  • Other factors I can’t think of…

Please remember to respond to each other in the comments.

Thanks for your input!

 Linda & Doug


    47 replies to "Discussion – Sex After an Affair"

    • justbecause

      Again, good timing. This is something I have been thinking about.

      Sex has been an issue in our relationship. Think I will concentrate on issues just before & now afer the EA.

      Just before EA, the issue – no sex. I certainly didn’t want it. I don’t want sex with someone I don’t like, don’t respect. He was a total poop at the time, and that is being kind. As for him, I don’t think he was really physically capable of it. His is Type I diabetic (28 years) and drinking alot. And he didn’t like me either.

      After D-day, ummm was maybe a month or a little longer we had sex. It was good. Kind of scary. I think I pushed the issue. I think maybe I was trying to make myself feel more secure, show him I was better then her – although he never met her – I guess.

      Sex has been ok since until recently. H is having shoulder problems, Maybe torn rotator cuff. But still, I wonder what is going on. No interest in me? No interest in sex? Preformance anxiety? Need to get this shoulder issue resolved. Then I think I will disuss some things with him. No, I will discuss them now as we resolve the shoulder thing. Low T? I think he should have a blood test for testosterone leve.

    • Natalia

      Stage 1: The sex we had was always good, before and after Dday. However, our marriage had been going downhill for a while before Dday. My H was always cold and distant except when we went to bed every night. This is the time he’d try to initiate sex and all I could think about was “Leave me alone!” Sometimes I’d just say, “Please go to sleep, I’m tired.” He would then get upset and sulk the next day. I don’t know exactly why I had no desire to engage in sex, but I think it was because of he nastiness during the day. It was a total turn-off.

      Stage 2: I had no idea an affair was going on, or affairs in my case. I just thought my husband was selfish and I was not going to satisfy him in bed while he was not satisfying me during the day when I needed his support.

      Stage 3: The night of Dday was the best sex we had in a very long time! I felt desired and loved. I guess it was because of his reaction when I confronted him with my suspicions. He immediately apologized and promised to delete his ex-gf from Facebook. However, I discovered later that he was quick to please me because the ex-gf on FB was just the tip of the iceberg. I assume he wanted to keep me happy and distract me from discovering the other women an other things he had been doing behind my back. But he should have known better. His eagerness to please me made me even more suspicious. You don’t turn into the most loving and understanding H overnight!

      Stage 4: The weeks following the end of all his EAs had its highs and lows. Sometimes the sex was great and other times it was satisfying but sad, like we were trying to tell each other that we still loved each other and we were both sorry for everything. However, we never stopped having sex. Even before Dday, when I was “too tired” to have sex, I always felt loved by my H whenever we made love. So after Dday, making love meant (to both of us) that we truly loved each other and we were going to fix this marriage.

      Stage 5: Love making, cuddling and “fine tuning” has become a routine in our lives. Conversations are always honest and we both communicate openly. I never had intrusive thoughts during our lovemaking because as far as I know there was never a PA, only EAs. At the beginning, there were intrusive thoughts whenever he would call me “beautiful” or would have nice gestures towards me because I had seen emails in which he had called an ex-gf “beautiful” and I knew he was very patient and charming with a particular co-worker. However, those triggers are almost gone because he does not have the same contact with any of these women that he had before, and if he has had to see them or talk to them, it’s all been at a professional level and he’s shared with me any emails or conversations he’s had with them. Every thing is very transparent now. I feel valued and he says he feels free and unburdened because there are no secrets or lies. Like they say: The truth will set you free.

      • rachel

        Natalia, Hello!!! Again we were living the same life!!
        My H would be all over me at night . It made me sick that he could and would treat me like a nobody. He would belittle me during the day. Treat me like a nobody and flirt right before my eyes with other women, then he wanted sex from me.
        I really never felt love from him. I felt that he used me as a tool whenever he needed to use me. There was no respect. No kindness. The nagging was endless. He was never pleased with me. I always did something wrong and he always let me know about it. He never physically abused me but the verbal abuse never has stopped.

      • Paula

        Natalia and Rachel. remember that men need sex to relax, and women need to feel relaxed to have sex! Women mostly need a lot of intimacy, ie, feelings of being loved, and safe, before they can feel very sexy. Of course, there is always the thrill of the illicit (one night stands, “new” sexual partner, affairs, groan…) but generally, the above holds true, especially in long term relationships

    • justbecause

      Glad to see I wasn’t the only one to respond to the “sex” questions!

      Just a thought. I have noticed that many on this site, although certainly not all, are around the same time frame in their marriage and about the smae age. Married 25 yrs, 32 years, 28 years, etc. Could a cheating spouse be having preformance anxiety and this be part of the attractiveness of the EA. Not only that they don’t have to preform but that they can be negative about their mate. Make it seem that it is the wifes fault that sex isn’t all that great. Degrade the wife further in their own mind. I guess I am speaking to the H being the cheating spouse.

      I did feel degraded. I was degraded.Ugh.

      • Natalia

        Justbecause, I agree with you. Even though my H never said anything negative about me to the other women (that I know of), just flirting with them and crossing boundaries sent a clear message that I wasn’t “pleasing” him and he needed the extra attention he got from those bitches. His behavior made them disrespect me when they played the flirting game so actively. Now that he doesn’t “play” they have no desire to look for him. So… now I know who was the one pursuing EAs. By the way we had been married for 26 years when Dday happened. But he had been crossing boundaries for a long time before that, especially when things started getting tough in our marriage: I got pregnant, we moved to another state, low paying job, debt, etc. Anxiety? You bet!

    • chiffchaff

      I can recall answering this question before but it’s a good time to review how things have developed.

      Before my H’s PA/EA – it was about 3/4 times a year if that. we were supposed to be trying to get pregnant so the likelihood of that happening was at best very slim! we were in a rut and my H seemed disinterested for about 3 years prior to his PA starting. This coincided with his increasing use of porn as it turned out.

      During his PA/EA he seemed slightly keener than normal (which was easy!) but couldn’t perform reliably. 5 months into his PA/EA he really couldn’t perform and I was very worried he had a medical issue and couldn’t understand why he wouldn’t go to our GP for some basic tests. During this time I also said that I felt like I was going mad because he wasn’t mean to me, or violent, or anything that my friends would sympathise with but something was very wrong. That he sat there and just kept silent during that time as I went quickly downhill into depression still kills me.

      After discovery (first 8 months after or so) – bloody horrendous. I really needed intimacy to start to feel like we had a future, to feel better than ‘her’, as sex seemed to be a key area of concern for my H but my H couldn’t have been less interested and even told me he didn’t think he could with me ever again. He told his best friend that too. we managed to have sex probably twice during that period and I felt like a piece of meat. No kissing no nothing. Perfunctory. Shite. In hindsight this was because he was still in contact with the OW, still lying to me and still lying about the extent of his involvement with her, and still fantasising about leaving. He seemed to believe that he couldn’t perform because he only wanted to have sex with her but seems to recently have realised that he was just a seething bag of anxiety and guilt so, no wonder he couldn’t do anything. Intimacy only got better after I kicked him out and made going to a counsellor about his porn use a condition of returning.

      Currently things are alot better and still improving. He still doesn’t seem to like it if I initiate things or even if I mention it. It’s very much driven by his needs I feel, but he recently said the opposite so we have some communication issues to resolve there.

      I’m mainly resolved to the time it seems to take to recover from an affair in all aspects of the relationship. It’s been important to look back and review frequently at times when you feel despair creeping on and realise that there has been progress. It’s just bloody hard.

    • Paula

      I haven’t had time to read all, but will share my story! Sex was always wonderul for us, right through the 21 years before D-day, INCLUDING

    • Paula


      the 15 months of his sexual affair. We just “had it” — the magical X-factor that kept us (or me, at least!) in love. After Dday, it ramped up even further – we had been a 5-6 times a week (ie most days) couple, but now we were tearing each other apart, wherever, whenever. This phase (which we both knew couldn’t last) lasted around six months, then settled back down to “normal.” In the last 18 months, we were separated for five of those – I developed severe problems – mostly due to the intense and recurring nightmares I have had since Dday, lack of self worth, poor body image, and recurring issues that I had dealt with regarding a rape I had been subjected to as a 20 year old virgin – my partner is the only man I have slept with consentingly. The images and the “competition” with her, the OW, who is slimmer than myself, just stopped me in my tracks. This is despite my partner’s most gentle and patient treatment, and reassurances that she was completely hopeless in bed (which I already knew, as she was a promiscuous friend of mine, and I’d heard it before!We are currently seeing a sex therapist, as I just can’t bear to be touched at all, and sex is not a happening thing – so weird, and so frustrating. I feel completely sexually dead, like someone turned the tap off, after all these years. Even after difficult childbirth, we were back gently exploring each other’s bodies within days. This makes me feel unsexy, and undesirable, to anyone. I never thought this would happen, as the first two years were fine, absolutely fine – I even had my hormone levels, etc checked, to ensure it wasn’t just a natural phase (pre-menopausal) that needed addressing, but no, all fine! I feel robbed of my once very healthy attitude to sex, and sexuality, and robbed of an immensely pleasurable part of who I am as a woman.

    • exercisegrace

      A little background. My husband and I were high school sweethearts. Prior to his EA/PA we had never been with anyone else, nor had we wanted to. We dated through high school and married after college graduation. We have been married now for twenty five years.
      Stage one prior to the affair. There was a lot going on in our lives, we had each lost a parent, suffered real estate losses and built a home that was now harder to afford because of it, his business of nearly two decades was in serious danger of failing, he had a serious (but fully recovered from illness) we adopted two children, and we moved. I may have missed a few life stressors! So sex HAD slowed somewhat. I never turned him down, he never (at least at that point) turned me down. We were both just very stressed. Still, I would say once a week at best once every other week at worst.
      Stage 2, during the time of the affair. His depression went from bad to worse during this time, and I expected a decrease in our sex life due to the depression and the anti-depressant medication he was on. However, there was no real difference. It may be because sex with his AP was not as frequent as one would think. About once every two weeks. He was starting to realize that the depression was worsening due to his guilt over the affair, and miss slutty pants was not the answer to the stress in his life that she sold herself to be, LOL.
      Stage 3 after the discovery of the affair. I was devastated. I had had my suspicions, but they centered more around him having an EA. I never thought it had turned physical or worst case scenario, it had happened once and he came to his senses. I was wrong. Although the sex was infrequent, it went on for nearly a year. I went into a kind of shock. I remember looking at his hands in horror, picturing them on another woman’s body. I couldn’t kiss him, wondering where his mouth had been. I refused to undress or shower in front of him. I was somehow ashamed of my own body (failure to keep his attracted or some such nonsense) ridiculous when you realize that his AP outweighed me by a good hundred pounds. I could barely stand for him to even touch me, although sometimes I longed for him to hold me in his arms. Our situation was a little different in that he had ended the affair about a year prior to me discovering it. They owned a business together and continued to work together. It took her a year to realize he was serious and nothing was going to happen and she left. That’s when he felt he could tell me.
      Stage 4: as the next weeks went by, I realized I needed to have sex with him to try and erase the thoughts in my head. I asked him many, many questions and the truth wasn’t and horrifying as my imagination, but it was bad enough. The sex was awkward, I had to fight mental images and movies continually. I envied people on the blogs that were talking about “hysterical bonding”. The only thing hysterical in this house was my crying in the bathroom or shower or garage or wherever I could hide from the kids.
      Stage 5. We are now eight months out from d-day. It is still difficult for me, and honestly I don’t see sex the same way. Right now with the hurt and betrayal, I just see it as sex. He says it still means everything it ever did, it was never the same with her, with me it is real love, etc. The emotional connection is missing in action for me right now. I think it is the trust, the inability to open myself up and be vulnerable to him. I am really struggling with this, as I believe that a good sexual relationship is vital in building a good marital connection. It is how we bond and connect. What once meant so very much to me, now does not. I am desperate to recapture that.
      Sorry so long everyone, but so many here have helped me in my journey with their brutal honesty. I can only hope to pay that back in any small way.

    • Recovering

      Before the cheating… our sex life had become almost bothersome to me… We rarely saw each other because of our schedules, so there was basically no flirtiness or lead in to sex, so I started to feel like that is all he wanted from me. It had become mundane and always the same, and little to no foreplay. He would go right for it, if you know what I mean. It wasn’t satisfying for me, but I loved him and wanted to make him happy. I took care of him other ways as well… ANYWAY… I thought that I was keeping him happy… Honestly, since it has been almost 3.5 years since his cheating started, I can’t tell you what it was like BEFORE he started cheating… life was just as busy, and still we never saw each other, but during the cheating, the snuggling afterwards totally went away. There was little to no snuggling on the couch when we would see each other, and kisses became more like pecks… he just seemed angry at me all of the time. We were still fairly regular for our schedule, so I just missed the closeness and the emotional part. Chalked it up to being so tired all the time and stress… at least until I started being suspicious, which was about 6 months after he actually had sex with it, which was a year into the cheating. I flat out asked him if he was cheating. He pretty much laughed at me and asked ME if I was cheating… I would get up in the middle of the night and go through his wallet and check his phone and pants pockets… I thought I was being paranoid… I wanted to trust the man I’d already been married to for over 14 years… a man I thought wasn’t capable of such sickness and cruelty… Anyway, after I finally had PROOF of his cheating, we were like bunnies! Multiple times a day… lasted for 2 weeks, and then I just couldn’t keep my hands off of him for about a month, so almost daily then… I was looking for love in all the wrong places apparently!! LOL! Then my denial abated and my fury took over so then it dropped to like once a month, when one of the fights might end in some sort of solace from him. Is when I REALLY understood what “making love” meant. Id always thought that was a stupid romantic cliche… I mean, I had great sex with my husband before, but it was always fun and an a way to connect… I had never needed him in that way emotionally before, so… we actually made love for the first time for real about 2 months after discovery. Then we just decided that we needed to take a break because the imagery of them together, and his face, and ugh! I couldn’t handle it for a while… I would say around 6 months we started trying to be together again… when we started to REALLY committ to the marriage again. I cried almost every time for the first 2 months… now we are more regular… weekends, once or twice, because again the schedule is crazy with kids sports and whatnot, but it is good. We are enjoying each other in ways we didn’t for a long time because of the wall we built between us, and it is longer, and just plain better! I do have my moments where “they” still enter my head, which dampens me, but I try soooo hard to push those images and thoughts away now. He swears he NEVER thinks of her when he is with me… and he says he never did before I even found out, so Idunno. I guess I never think of exs either… and that is something I never worried about before. I always was confident in that area… plus he can’t stand her now (which was all her own doing and not my pushing, for that I am thankful for because it is easier to believe the distaste for her is real). I know they didn’t have long drawn out sessions, so when it is a ‘quickie’ or what have you, is when it is still the hardest for me. She is a whore, and I equate that to a whore now… sucks for me cause quickies used to be fun… now they feel dirty… I am hoping that that feeling will fade with time. She has already taken so much from me… and us! He is and always was going to be MY HUSBAND. He never would’ve left me for her, but it grosses me out that he was with us both…. ew!!!!! But never again will he be with anyone else… I find that I am actually starting to believe that… which is kind of a shock as I type.. I guess I am kinda starting to believe he IS sorry and that he hates himself and is really ashamed… I hope that is true… I hope it is and that I’m not just believing what I WANT to be true…

    • Decimated

      Stage 1 and 2
      At this point, we had been married for 12 years with 3 children. Historically, our frequency was about 3 times a week. During the last few years it had started to wane but not from a loss of desire on my part. It was now about once a week and only if I initiated. I was no longer satisfied with the frequency or the intensity. I was getting frustrated. I had tried to discuss or marriage and sex life with her so many times but she would brush it off and say we were fine. After losing both of her parents 6 months apart she became even more distant. Within a year of losing them she started having an EA…old school friend…Facebook. Our sex life stayed consistently flat. I did not know about the EA at this point. She started to avoid kissing and intimacy.

      Stage 3.
      D day #1. I discovered her EA…she denied saying it was just a friendship. I told her “if you talk to him again I will divorce you”. She agreed not to. We refocused on us and I thought things were going in the right direction. Our sex life picked up and the intensity and frequency was getting better but still was lacking in the intimacy and closeness. She would still not initiate and I still felt a distance or apprehension on her part.

      Stage 2 (again)
      During the next year or sex life dwindled to a point where I was frustrated and suspicious again. The frequency was now down to less then once a week. She was disconnected and sex was mechanical at best. She acted like it was a chore. She was no longer putting any effort in to it…or us. She was avoiding kissing and intimacy again.

      Stage 3 (again)
      After a year I discovered her EA was still going on and now I strongly suspected it was also a PA. Upon this discovery and confrontation all sex stopped completely. She wouldn’t look at me or touch me anymore. There was no intimacy at all. With in a couple months I did find all the proof I needed…it was an EA/PA and had never stopped. It had been going on for over a year. I told her I was divorcing her at this point. She was ambivalent for a couple weeks but finally said she said she didn’t want a divorce, wanted to save our marriage and would not see him again. I decided, naively to give her a third chance. She had trouble breaking it off with him. It took a couple months of hiding it…if she ever did stop.

      Stage 4
      Our marriage was sexless for a few months after this. She had no interest in intimacy with me. I was trying to work through our new issues. Strangely enough, I still desired her physically. I needed to bond with her.

      Stage 5
      We started to have sex but it was very infrequent. It seemed like the only times she was interested was when we were on vacations or trips. She was disconnected and the intensity was not there for her. No real kissing or even eye contact. She now seemed to prefer the less intimate sexual positions as well. She would put in no real effort and certainly no reciprocity. It was becoming obvious that her mind was with someone else. I was having triggers and mind movies from time to time. I was also suffering from all of my new self esteem issues. I did want her to see me naked and felt inadequate. She did little to comfort me during this time.

      After a year of what I consider a false R, I filled for divorce. I do believe she may have still been in contact with him…I don’t really know. I decided I couldn’t live like this anymore.

      She was never really remorseful about what she did…never even said “I’m sorry” She never opened up with honesty and told me the whole truth about her affair. She would not remove passwords from her computer and cell phone. She was not really truthful about her whereabouts during the day. She would refuse to answer questions about her affair.

      • Doug

        Thanks for sharing Decimated. So sorry that your marriage didn’t make it. Best of luck to you as you move on.

      • Natalia

        Decimated, I’m sorry things didn’t turn out and your W chose to stay in the EA fog. Too bad she didn’t think about the children either. Stay strong.

        • Decimated

          Thank You. Sadly, She only thinks about herself. She seems to have lost the ability to feel empathy for others.

    • Mandy

      Stage 1 and 2: Before and during the affair – Little or no sex. We had fallen into the bad habit of neglecting our sex life and neither one of us had the courage to take the initiative to change that.

      Stage 3 and 4: I discovered the EA after it had been over for a couple of months. We began rebuilding our marriage and started having sex on a weekly basis. Things seemed to be going well.

      Stage 3 again: After 18 months of working on the marriage I learned that he had deceived me as to the nature of the affair. It was not just an EA, and it had not been as brief (just a few months) as he claimed, but had actually gone on for 1 1/2 years, some of which was EA only, but at least half of that time it was sexual. It ended when I thought it ended, but it wasn’t even close to what he had led me to believe it was. I learned about this only four days ago – my new D-Day. For him the affair is now old news, but to me it is a new and terrible pain. I have absolutely no desire for sex with him, and don’t know if I ever will again.

      • Amanda

        I believe the reason cheating spouses withholds this type of information is because how destructive it is.
        There is a big difference between a E/A affair and E/A that has turned sexual.
        My heart goes out to you.

      • Exercise grace

        Mandy I feel your pain. My husband had originally admitted that his friendship with his business partner had gone too far, but he swore repeatedly that nothing happened. They still had a business to run (it was in our house) I trusted him, believed him, we set very specific boundaries (which he abided to pretty well) and we refocused on our marriage. It was good, I was relieved and felt we had dodged a bullet. Stupid me even thought it might have been a needed wake up call. This went on for a year until she left (pissed because I guess she expected him to change his mind and return) and blew my world up. They had a PA that lasted for close to a year, and the EA had started before I had any clue whatsoever.

        So for him the affair is also old news. It ended two years ago, and nothing happened that last year (verified by her). She has pulled a ton of crazy crap and made life stink. But for me I have only known the truth for about eight months. It feels like a fresh raw wound but to him it’s a scar. He is exasperated that I feel all the rebuilding we did last year is GONE. He is extremely hurt as I have told him I don’t feel the same way about him anymore. I love him but the deep connection we had is gone. Praying for its return! I really do understand what you are going through!

        • Monalisa

          Exercise grace, the same thing happened with my marriage. My H always contended that it was only an EA. For 2 long years I begged him to tell me the truth about the affair. He would literally stand in my face and lie, lie, lie!!!!! Only after chiding his road whore via email did I piss her off enough to tell me the “rest of the story”, bevause she had made a pact with my H that she would keep their dirty little secret. After the evidence was presented, he had no resort but to agree that the facts were correct. This created another D day for me!! As far as having sex with him, not only NO but HELL NO!! The cover up ends up being worse than the crime. I have warned others who have gone through this …. For every 1 thing you know about… There are 3 more that you haven’t yet discovered!

          • exercisegrace

            Yes, I agree. The cover ups are far worse. I have told my husband MANY times now…I would rather hear a painful, ugly truth, than a pretty lie. The truth usually comes out eventually and I would rather deal with it right up front, and get it out of the way. Face it and move on. At one point, I initiated a “grace period” where he could tell me anything else. From any time in the past, related to the affair or even something else prior. Luckily nothing much came out of that. But I take that seriously.

    • chiffchaff

      Erm help.
      Had quite a difficult weekend in part and it’s led me right back to the beginning.
      Everything has been going well as I’ve been contributing on here from time to time. Then on Friday evening we were sharing a phone game he was having with his sister, I had his phone. After quitting the game with his sister I clicked on his online scrabble game as it was underneath and he instantly tried to snatch his phone back from me and became agitated. Red flag. He then let me look and I didn’t say anything else but as I scrolled down his 17 games exclusively with women he became visibly more relaxed and I gave him his phone back. For those who don’t play scrabble on mobiles you can chat on the side with players and a little speech bubble shows on games where people have chatted to you. There were no speech bubbles and as his response to me even opening his game was so odd I realised he became relaxed because there was no chat evident.
      Needless to say I didn’t sleep that night so got up and went down to see what was going on in chat.
      I discovered that he chatted to almost half of the women he plays with. Some of them were very detailed conversations and usually flirty but one in particular revealed that he was having some sexual chat with her and that they had each other’s emails and were in contact by email.
      I threw up.
      A few months prior I had said I was concerned about him chatting through scrabble as it was hidden and secret so he agreed to tell me and have the woman he was then in constant contact with register as a friend on FB.
      After much heated discussion on Saturday morning he said he felt so low about what he’s done that having sexual chat with strangers makes him feel better, even though at the same time he knows it doesn’t because he’s doing the same, very bad thing again. He was very upset and crying. He started email this new woman directly shortly after I had agreed to the FB connection with the other but didn’t tell me because he knew I wouldn’t like it.

      my H thinks that this discovery isn’t a serious problem, he knows he’s hurt me, again, but thinks I’m rubbing it in and the implication is that the length of my recovery from his PA/EA is making him miserable and prone to doing things like this.

      I’m angry, upset and considering leaving him. I can’t deal with someone who does things knowing they will hurt me and destroy our recovery. I told him that I had thought that if we had fun and were loving and had sex then he wouldn’t need to do this sort of thing again, but that’s patently wrong. It’s how he deals with low self-esteem, like someone who hates being fat but who eats cakes to feel better. He’s admitted to being depressed before his affair. I think he’s still depressed.
      I have no real idea what to do about this.

      • Monalisa

        Chiffchaff…. Yes, you do know what to do! When a person proves they are a piece of shit….believe them!

      • Natalia

        I read your post to my H this morning. It’s been a subject we’vre discussed many times. He plays scrabble on his phone also but only with people we both know. There are no strangers because he knows better now. His first remark after hearing it was: “Chiffchaff should kick him out of the house. He obviously knows what he is doing and if knowing he’s hurting her doesn’t make him stop, then he shouldn’t get another chance.” (This coming from a man who had EAs for many years until I found out and put a stop to it). I agreed 100% with him. If this were my husband, doing the same stupid things that got us into this mess, I’d file for divorce. NO second chances. He’s not a kid and I’m not his mother. This time he’d pay the price for his stupidity and for hurting me again.

        • chiffchaff

          Thanks Natalia (and everyone).
          My H has explained that he has been getting ‘support’ from these flirty women and it has made him reconsider how he views our marriage. he considers that they are effectively a support group for him. He has told them he’s had an affair and that we are still together despite that. He says that being flirty with them and dirty chat with them has made him realise he doesn’t need it anymore, but if that’s the case why is he still doing it with this ‘support group’ – something he couldn’t answer and I can’t reconcile with what he’s doing.
          He says he’s started reading the self-help books again that he read this time last year as a result of this ‘support group’ and he’s aware that he’s reading them differently to how he did when he was still with his head up his ass last year. he says he wants to work on our marriage constructively. he’s talked about our sex life with them. he says that if I asked them what he thought of me they would tell me that he loves me very much, but if that’s the case why do these women still have sexy chat with him?
          I cannot reconcile any of this behaviour with a normal or reasonable way of behaving. he has been lying to me again and conducting secret ‘relationships’ with women. none of his ‘support group’ is male and he has not tried to spark up a ‘support group’ with any men.
          I am feeling devastated again, afetr all we have developed and improved since I allowed him to come home to work on our marriage in April he goes and does this to us, and now claims he’s doing it ‘for us’.
          This is a familiar script, from what I’ve seen from some articles on here.

          • Exercise grace

            No he has not been getting support from these women. This is addictive behavior and he is wrapping it up in language he thinks you are (sorry, blunt) gullible enough to believe. I don’t need to go out and snort cocaine to know its wrong, unhealthy for me personally, and would ultimately destroy my marriage. I am smart enough to figure that out on my own. So is your husband, but he sounds desperate to justify continuing his atrocious behavior and minimilize the impact on you. Hey he’s actually doing you a favor! It’s healthy for you marriage. NO. Chatting with and taking “advice” from these women (discussing your sex life??!…..ewwwww) is like an alcoholic hanging out at the local bar and expecting a cure.

            NO. In my opinion, he needs some boundaries set and quick. Counseling comes from a licensed therapist, who is qualified to make a proper diagnosis. As a nurse, I can tell you he sounds very much like an addict. He needs to cut off all contact with these women and read only what the therapist gives him. These would be the deal breakers for me. I have lived in pain of betrayal for three years, and I am done enabling that baloney in my life. So I apologize if this sounds too blunt. I wish you peace but sometimes you have to take charge of that yourself!

            • chiffchaff

              I agree with you. it’s very very sad. very sad indeed.

      • exercisegrace

        I am always hesitant to suggest to someone how they should handle their particular situation. You need to think long and hard about what boundaries you have in place, and what boundaries you SHOULD have in place.
        This incidence tells you two things. One, he CAN NOT handle online interaction with women. Period. None. It is a temptation for him. I play those online word games and I NEVER talk to anyone. I ignore any messages that are sent my way. It’s my boundary. Usually people respect it, occasionally they never play you again. That’s fine. I am not there to build a relationship. Sounds like your husband is using that as an avenue for hooking up. I would demand that all online activity cease, facebook account gets deleted, etc. Secondly, this tells you he needs counseling. Personally, my boundary would be (for now) end ALL online activity. Email and necessary stuff done ONLY on a shared, key stroke logger computer. Unless it’s required for work, I would likely request a change in phones so he doesn’t have the temptation to do these things on his phone. Next I would require individual and couples counseling with full disclosure. If he is dealing with sex addiction, I would require immediate attendance to a good program with an accountability partner.
        I know what my husband’s affair has done to me, and I know I don’t have the strength to go through this again. We have talked about acceptable behaviors and boundaries, endlessly. Actions have consequences. I disagree with him, this is a SERIOUS problem. His EA/PA should not be an excuse for this, and again I would insist that he be evaluated for sex addiction.

        I hope I am not coming off as too harsh, but I can hear that you are hurting. I hurt for you. This is all so hard. You need to protect yourself first, and then get him the help he needs. If he is in denial as to the seriousness of this, it is likely to happen again.

        • Natalia

          This is an excellent advice. You are correct in everything you’ve said. In my case I made it very clear to my H in the beginning what was acceptable behavior with other women and what the boundaries were. I deleted several emails accounts, all the chats, social network, and game accounts he had. Today he only has one email account we both share, I have total access to his work email account, Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter (work related) accounts and his phone is not locked and I can see it whenever I want. A total of 5 accounts instead of the 70+ accounts I deleted. Everything is transparent and as far as I can tell no secrets. He knows that I will never go through what I went before. I cannot take another Dday. Should it ever happen again (I sincerely doubt it) I’m out. He knows I will not give him another chance so he better do the right thing. He also knows that this is a very serious thing and not a game and there will be consequences for failing to be honest.

          • Monalisa

            Why should we have to be the “Moral Police” for a grown man?! If we have to constantly check up on them so they will behave, then that is just wrong in so many ways……

            • Exercise grace

              The distinction (in my opinion) is when the cheater’s issue is sex addiction. Then it’s not so much moral policing as it is supporting recovery. SA is a difficult journey, and I am thankful its one I have not had to walk. My heart breaks for those living that.
              My husbands was a garden variety affair. I don’t police him, but we have set better boundaries. I know that if someone wants to cheat, they will. It’s as simple as that. Prepaid cell phone or hidden account and you’re in business. I could set up a dozen fake email accounts in the time it will take me to post this. I have basically told him that he has this one chance to rebuild with me. Trust and healing are coming along slowly. Cheat again, in any way (first was EA/PA) and I am out. It’s that simple.

            • Natalia

              Exercise grace: Agree 100%.

      • rachel

        I feel so bad for you after reading your blog. You are too good to be going through this.
        I knew deep down that this would be my life as well.
        I went through a really really rough year and according to my therapist i am at the aceptance stage. I’ve come full circle. I finally feel at peace. Although he is STILL living here.
        My son and I cleaned out the attic of all of his positions. The only thing that he thru away was an old piece of carpet from his mothers house. My therapist thinks it’s funny how he holds on to stuffed animals, model cars college notebooks and books and got rid of his family.
        I did hold on to his big black book. This is a large notebook with dividers of Blondes, brunettes, redheads and a page of their descriptions and approvals or disapprovals. I held onto this. I didn’t want my son to see how much of a loser his father really is.
        Things are coming to me now about some things that he use to say to me. He even complained about the way I urinated. If I went two times in a row within 30 minutes he would tell me that I don’t do it right. “you need to squeeze”. I thank God that I don’t need to listen to that nonsence. It is such a relief.
        I know I would never have been able to trust him and It would have driven me crazy if he was late coming home or working late. I would never been able to survive. It took a really long time for me to get here, but looking at the big picture , I’m at a much better place. The stress is fianally leaving .

    • justbecause

      He is trying to make you feel guilty, trying to make you feel as if you are the problem. You are NOT! He thinks your discovery of chatting with other women not a problem . . yeh right. He knows it is. Just trying to convince you both that he’s not an ass.

      He needs to confront his demons. Sounds like one of which is depression. Like you wrote, his behavior is contributing to his depression and low self-worth. He needs to work on his depression. This can be difficult. I believe medication can be part of recovery. Careful, not a quick or easy process. I wonder, can he be honest with counselors, mental health professionals?

      He must be willing to work on this. Meanwhile, work on yourself. Be good to yourself. Be proud, be strong. Hopefully his seeing this will wake him up and make him realize the path of destruction he is going down.

    • Carol

      Chiffchaff, I’m so sorry. Obviously he has broken your trust yet again. Can he not see that? Surely he must know by now that these flirty relationships have a price, paid almost exclusively by you? I can only say that for me, if my H were to do this sort of thing again behind my back (the flirty and sexual banter with other women, hidden from me; the EAs), I would file for divorce. I am pretty touchy where trust is concerned due to my own past and I know pretty well what I will and will not deal with. He has to know he’s hurting you, after all this time. His demons are clearly so big and powerful that he cannot truly think of you and the effect his actions have on you. Again, I’m so sorry.

    • JLH19

      We infrequently had sex before the EA (perhaps once or twice a month, max). Certainly not because of me, although I did quit trying to initiate after a while. It’s humiliating, expecially as a woman, to be rejected over and over. He was always too tired or had heartburn, or too stressed. He does not have ED. Usually when we did have sex, it was him waking me in the middle of the night when he woke up “in the mood” or rarely after a night of drinking too much. It has always hurt my feelings, but I accepted his explanations that he has always had a low sex drive and that it has caused problems with all his relationships. He was born with one undescended testicle and blames that. He is self-conscious about it although you certainly can’t tell (he had an implant as a teenager).

      During the EA his sex drive suddenly increased. I can only imagine that he was thinking of her while sleeping with me. After the EA was discovered, his bitch girlfriend (who was engaged to another man, BTW) sent a hateful text that I cannot even repeat the foul language of here, but the gist was that he couldn’t have sex with me because of my weight. He swears it’s not true, he loves me and thinks I’m beautiful. I weigh less now than I did when we were married. Even our therapist believes him that he is attracted to me, especially since I am smaller now than when he married me. But now every time we have sex it feels like pity. Like he’s obligated to do it, to prove that he loves me. I will not turn down the opportunity for sex ever because it is so infrequent, but it will never be the same for me again. It’s been over a year and a half since the EA ended. I know he loves me, but I will always feel that touching me is a marital obligation to him.

      • Exercise grace

        Has he had his testosterone levels checked? Several years back, following a bad bout of mono, my husband had to go on testosterone replacement therapy. Helped quite a few things!

        And I’m gonna call bullcrap on the mean slut that criticized your weight. My husbands ditch witch outweighed ME by a hundred pounds. It’s really all about emotional needs that are being met or are being perceived to be met. It’s taking me a lot of counseling to loosen my grip on the idea that there is/was something lacking in me that caused this mess. Hold your head high, let him know that YOU have needs and he’d better meet them!

    • Redemption

      I am relatively new to this site. With respect to sex I would enjoy it every day if I could (at least in my head I believe this) but my H and I have only been reconciled for 6 months now. We had problems in our marriage prior to his PA because he would not communicate with me. He eventually shut me and the kids (then adults living at home) out of his life and moved onto his affair. The affair lasted 2 years. It was my daughter who found the emails on her dad’s cell ph. 18 months into the affair. My daughter did not tell me but drove to the city where this woman lived and confronted her. My daughter called her dad, who was away in another city on a business triip, and everything blew up. Her dad told her she shouldn’t interfere in his private business, ie: she had over stepped her boundaries. My daughter told her dad he was to come home and tell me about the affair or she would do so herself. My H did come home and tell me. I don’t need to describe the pain – you are all aware of it. After he told me I asked him to leave so I could think. He went to a hotel that night. He came by the house the next day to pick up some items and while I was talking to a house contractor, said good-byd, he was late, and walked out the door. I waited for 5 days for some form of contact from him, believing that we would have an opportunity to discuss our marriage. But when I had not heard from him in 5 days I called his cell. He was at the AP’s house in the other city. When I asked him to leave there he said “No”. He justified this because he had business in another city close by that following Tuesday and didn’t want to waste money on a hotel. (This was a year ago on the Thanksgiving long weekend.) So while I was crying my heart out, my H was playing golf and having sex with his AP. (I didn’t mean to go off on this tangent but its so easy . . .) (Oh, and by the way, my H. told me his AP had been cheated on by her husband before they eventually divorced. I was outraged that this OW would know the pain this created for her and her daughter and yet would perpetrate this same destruction on another’s family. People like this do an injustice to women all over the world with this type of thinking. I just don’t understand how someone, anyone, could knowingly do this to another human being.)
      But back to the sex. There wasn’t any for a year prior to his affair. There wasn’t any during his affair. We did continue to sleep in the same bed though. So 3 long years without any. (I am in my mid 50’s and still look favourably at sexual activity with my H.) After d-day it took another 6 months to get him out of his affair fog. He then said he was willing to go to counselling with me to try and repair the marriage. More correctly he said he was “willing to commit to the process” but that we may find things out about each other that would stand in our way. I was not aware at the time that after telling me he had broken things off with her, they continued to email each other. He was telling her he needed to find out what was important in his life and she was content to stand by and wait for him. My husband was not living at home during the 6 months after d-day. (His decision.) After d-day my husband went back for sex and whatever approx. 4 times during that 6 month period. When he decided he still loved me and wanted to try and heal our marriage he eventually moved back home. That first night we had sex again. He has changed though since his PA. He used to always be suggestive to me about having sex in fun, flirty ways, but now he takes his little pill and the times in between are too long for my liking. The roles have reversed and I am now more open to having sex than he is. I don’t believe it is the lack of desire for him, more likely he may be feeling performance issues because he never had to take his little pill prior to his A.
      He is spending his time with me now and we do most everything together when he is not away on business. While he is away on business, he does call home daily, or nightly, to keep in touch, as he is aware our telephone bills will log where he is calling from. We have also been on a recent holiday together and he was very attentive to my emotional well being. Other than he still doesn’t communicate enough to my liking, I know he is trying. I know he believes his future is with me and our family and he makes plans for that future. For this I am grateful to see after he single handedly tried to destroy our 28 year marriage with his AP. He did tell our pyschologist that up until a year prior to his affair he felt contented and in love with me and that “we had a pretty good marriage”. One in fact that many other people looked up to, prior to the A.
      My biggest hurdle with my H. is trying to get him to look at his own short comings in life. He is great at somethings but he has never wanted to look at the reasons as to why he became involved in an A in the 1st place. My sickness? Bored with our relationship? Am still trying to discuss this with him. It is not easy when one does not want to look. Although he did listen to a couple of recordings from this site last night. He didn’t open up much afterwards but did say we would continue the conversations this evening when I pressed him on the point. I am always hopeful for a break-through in his understanding of himself.
      To conclude, I would love sex more frequently. I miss the little touches he would give me in the past but these are returning bit by bit also. He can still be a bit insensitive ie: telling me his AP is a good person but can’t give me one reason as to why they are a valueable human being. You can guess my opinion, particularly when there is nothing he can substantiate the belief with (other than the fact she made him feel good.) Again, I am hopeful that in the future he will see how wrong and unbelievable and hurtful that statement is to not only me, but by extentsion, our children as well (especially for our daughter).
      I look forward to any feed back. Thanks for sharing.

      • Natalia

        Redemption, having been there (when H says that the OW is a good person) all I can say is that it’s bullshit. My H used to say that about all his women friends until I pointed out that as long as he kept in touch with them they’d be perfect. But once he stopped or at least lessened contact with them they dissappeared. How wonderful are they now? He’s come to realize that his EAs were happening because he crossing boundaries and allowing these bitches to do the same. Once these women stopped getting something from him they ignored him because they were never really “friends” and only interested in him because he was always there to help them (work related stuff). However the fact that your H is willing to listen to some of the recordings of this site is a good sign. Look for books on EA and have him read them. I did that with my H and things have improved tremendously. Good luck.

      • exercisegrace

        Redemption, I think a lot of what is going on here is good old Affair Fog. Some people have a bigger dose than others. My husband certainly did right after d-day. He and his affair partner had essentially “re-written” large parts of our marriage to suit themselves. To justify what they were doing. I countered every point I could with proof that things were not as he was “remembering” them to be. I dug out old photos, wrote him emails talking about memories of our good times together, it was almost like doing shock therapy on someone. I could almost see the confusion lifting. Almost nine months out from d day now, he says he can’t believe some of the things he said and did while in the middle of it all. He also thought his ditch witch was a nice person, who deserved sympathy, blah blah….until, in a supreme vindictive fit because she was “dumped”, she decided to make things ugly. Enter attorneys, and nasty allegations, and he wised up pretty quick. I was actually thankful in a way, because he FINALLY saw her as I had been seeing her for some time. Even her own attorney dropped her, and said she was over the top crazy. It still hasn’t stopped.
        As far as performance issues go, I would guess a part of it would be guilt. He knows what he did was wrong and he feels uncomfortable.
        I am so sorry for what you are going through. One thing I can tell you for sure, and you are sure not to believe me……stop searching for the whys. You are chasing an illusion. There will never be ANY “why” that will bring you peace, that will make this OK. Been there, done that. This was NOT your fault, and it had NOTHING to do with you. Not with anything you did or didn’t do. We too had a marriage that most envied. He says now he was happy, he was content, he was satisfied. About a year before the affair we had a lot happen in our world. Lost two parents, nearly lost our business, financial and real estate losses. It was hideous. It led to some vulnerabilities both for him personally and our marriage. This combined with someone who by her own admission was chasing him, and it was the recipe for our own personal disaster. Work on what you need to do to heal YOU. Work on what you need to do to improve your marriage. Better communication is always the best place to start. Be open, be honest, be kind but firm and truthful. You won’t go wrong there!

    • Gizfield

      Chiff chaff, this is not anywhere near normal behavior in an adult man. I believe it will continue until he realizes that you mean business. My husband felt like I would not do anything drastic, like divorce him, because my views are against. Your husband thinks you will tolerate his behavior because you have a lot to lose as well. I really think he needs to be evicted from your life and exposed for what he is doing/has done. He sends to have some pretty severe psychological problems, in my opinion. He needs an Intervention! He will make you crazy too if you aren’t careful.

    • Redemption

      Thanks Natalia and Exercise Grace for your thoughtful comments. As to the OW being a good person I would agree that it is bull crap but I am trying to understand why my H would think this even after stating how sorry he was to have not stopped the affair sooner beause he now recognizes how much pain he has created through his actions. But his defending of the OW is to me like defending her honour. And I see no honour in a woman I consider predatory and deceitful. (I say this because even after my daughter confronted her, the OW continued to wait for my husband to join her and continue their affair.. No recognition that she would not want her own daughter (who is roughly the same age) to be subjected to the fall out of her own father’s affair. And further to this my H doesn’t believe the OW ever manipulated him. Unbelievable!! I may have been naive in my continued trust of my H but I am still a woman who knows the depths some women will go to to get what they believe they want.)
      Anyhow, going off again but it does remind me that when my H and I were initially discussing the affair that I heard words and sentences that I immediately recognized were not his, but that of some other womans. Even now he doesn’t believe the OW had control of any type over him. Because he is always travelling on business he did have complete control of his comings and goings but that was about all he really had control of in my opinion. No excuses are being made for him other than I am trying to get him to open up his mind to other possibilities as to what may have truly happened.
      He is not the knight in shining armour protecting the OW but I believe she played the damsel in distress role. My H told me his AP also told him that situations like their affair rarely worked out nicely. True to my H’s form he apparantly did not respond to this commentary. My belief is my H ended up being the bastard she predicted he would end up being and as a result my H feels guilty because he doesn’t like looking at himself in those terms. He likes to believe he is “the nice guy”. The nice guy who had goodbye sex with her because “she expected it”. She had to be let down easily. “She had put up with me for a long time.” (No sense that she may have been the one to manipulate him into bed to try and change his mind about leaving.) That is the role he plays in life. He just doesn’t understand the delusional qualities that can lay behind that “label”.
      I just found out my H forwarded an email to his AP the other day and to say the least, I am terribly upset by his non-thinking and selfish mistake. Yet another one. This has now set me back again. Even if there was no dialogue in his forwarded message to her, it was still unbelievably arrogant and selfish. He has apologized and said he didn’t think about what he was really doing. I don’t really buy this as I am sure you have picked up on. And just when I was beginning to believe I might start trying to trust him again.
      This now has led to other discussions in that my H is concerned that I am still going through his cell phone. He even seemed a little outraged at me for this. It was subtle but it was there. This is a pretty basic concept that I thought he understood. It was as you said Natalia, still “crossing boundaries” that I continued looking.
      And Exercise Grace thank you also for your insights on the affair fog. That was the topic in fact of the 2 recordings that my H listened to with me. He did bring the subject up after dinner last night and said what he had heard on those tapes completely obliterated his thoughts and feelings about his affair. He didn’t know what to think of it all. I believe my H is having difficulty believing that none of the thoughts and feelings of his A were really real. He was leaving on another business trip this morning and said last evening that he was going to take the opportunity to use the travelling time for some reflection. Said he could believe some of the things said in the recordings but not all. This is a new challenge for him that there is someone else saying what I have said earlier in conversations. It may magically have more validity now that someone else is also stating those partiular effects of the affair fog are real. My H said he was also probably going to have to listen to the recordings again to try and make more sense of it all.
      My wish of course is that he will do so earlier rather than later. I desperately want him to start educating himself on these relationship matters. I have told him often enough that he needs to provide for his marriage just as he provides the time, organization, and effort into his job. He has the right tools to be successful at his job but not in these last few years with his marriage. The one important fact that he did pick up on and agreed to when listening to the recordings was the fact that he did push both myself and the kids away from him. I do not believe though that he has figured out the why of his actions.
      I have also been thinking hard about your words Exercise Grace. I have been looking at the why’s and if they could be answered then they could provide me some peace. This may be difficult for me to let go of right now. I keep thinking that I don’t want to invest ie: 10 more yrs into this marriage if he can’t figure out what led him down the affair road, what is to stop him again? No, I don’t belive he is going to run out and have another affair on me now but I do question the future. I deparately want to be happy again and need to believe he has the backbone to look at what he has done to myself and our family and be able to make the concious decision to never go down that dark and long road again. And yes, I want my H to be able to see his AP as I do.. The OW is not even a reasonable facsimile of a nice person. I am positive that if her mother and daughter knew of her actions they would feel ashamed for her also.
      As to communicating, I have been trying to do this for years prior to the affair. I was always the one asking my H to talk with me. I could see and feel his detaching from us. And I always told our kids not to worry, that mom and dad would muddle our way through it all and be ok in the end.
      I do understand the A was never my fault, but happened because of something lacking in my husband. I understand his AP could have been Susie, Jane, Mary, etc. I don’t usually dignify the OW with too much thought. Correction – I will in the sense that if it helps me understand my H more these days then I will go there. In other words, not to just blow off steam but to garner some further understanding of where his head is at and where it has recently come from. I do agree with you on communicating with kindness and honesty. Sometimes it is done with difficulty but I am learning.
      Thanks to you both for taking the time out to respond to me. I am grateful for any and all insights.

    • exercisegrace

      Wow, so much of what you have written I have been through! It really is amazing that while the details of an affair may vary, the basic anatomy of an affair is the same.
      Nobody likes to admit they were manipulated, especially men. It makes them sound weak. In the early days of recovery (and I pretty much had a meltdown over this in a counseling session!!) my husband admitted that he did feel sorry for the OW. That he felt bad for hurting her. The counselor looked at me and said “would you want to be married to someone that didn’t feel bad for doing something that hurt someone?” I replied “I want to be married to someone that understands that the most important person NOT to hurt is ME, and that I am THE most important person in his world, as he is in mine” I totally understand how you feel about him protecting her honor. These sleazes have NONE. Deserve NONE. They walked into this knowingly. However, I can also tell you two things on this subject. One, I bet you this attitude will change in the coming weeks. Once the magnitude of what he did, how he hurt you AND his family, how far-reaching the consequences will be, what he sees you going through, etc.. he will see her and his “obligation” to her differently. Second, my husband was able to verbalize that (in the beginning) if he trashed her for the affair, he felt like he was trashing himself as well. If she was a “whore” for what she did, then what was he? If she was a bad person for what happened, then what was he? It is really more about them defending themselves and their self-image (and this is normal, we all do it) than it is about them having any particular feelings for, or protection of, the OW.

      Also in the weeks following D-day, my husband would as well speak words that I KNEW weren’t not his own. He parroted opinions that drove me up the wall. It took a few sessions of counseling and reflecting for me to realize where this was coming from. He felt guilty about the affair from the very beginning. To assuage that guilt, he had to justify what he was doing and why. She played a key role in guiding him to reasons why he was “justified” in having the affair. At one point she wanted him to leave me and the kids for her. She mentioned having his baby. Seriously? So they both had to do a little historical rewriting of history. I was a neglectful wife. I had abandoned him. If I had “really” loved him, he wouldn’t be having an affair in the first place. On and on. He actually told me on d-day that half of our marriage has been “bad” and full of problems. We’ve been married 25 years and that was the FIRST time I had EVER heard him express ANY discontent. NOW he can’t believe he said that to me and has apologized profusely and often. (disclaimer: we weren’t perfect, had things we could and should have done better, but nothing anywhere near the level of justifying this. as if ANYthing does!!). So dear heart, this too shall pass. It’s straight out of the affair recovery playbook. Hang in there. Gently remind him of what the truth of your marriage is and was. It WILL get better.
      Yes, OW played somewhat of a damsel in distress as well. My husband told me how she was ignored, neglected, stingy husband, blah blah blah. I actually laughed at that point and said…..”and you BELIEVED her??” What were you telling her about ME? Was THAT the full truth? No. So do you reallly think YOU were getting the full truth? He actually stared open-mouthed at me. It had never occurred to him to look at it that way. DUH.

      In my opinion, you need to remind your husband that it is VITAL to your recovery and the healing of your marriage that he remain strictly NO CONTACT. If something needs to be sent in terms of a business paper or whatever, I would see if he could have someone else send it. I would not be comfortable with opening any channel for communication whatsoever. My husband willingly gave me free access to his phone and email after d-day. This too would have been a deal breaker, as during the affair one of the first red flags was the sudden and aggressive protection of his phone. It literally never left his control. While it is rare for me to pick it up now, eight months later, I did in the beginning. It gave me peace of mind, but in truth he could have been texting and deleting. So in reality it did not mean much. Balking at you looking however, would raise a trust issue for me.

      It is great that he is willing to learn and to reflect. It really does take awhile for them to “absorb” it all and put things into context. Have you seen the book called “Not Just Friends” by Shirley Glass? We read parts of that out loud together and discussed it. It was very helpful.
      I too, was the one for years asking my husband “what are you thinking? what’s on your mind?” He was never good at opening up emotionally. That has been changing for the better and I credit our counseling for that. It hurts me incredibly that he shared things with a woman he barely knew, when we have been together for thirty years.

      I also could have written your sentence about desperately wanting to be happy. Let me clarify a little about what I meant when I said don’t chase the WHY. While there is no one reason that will make this any less of a horror show, I DO believe it is important to understand fully (with the help of a well qualified counselor experienced in infidelity counseling) what the vulnerabilities were that LED HIM to make this choice. My husband is working with his individual counselor on very specific issues, learning to recognize specific needs and how to verbalize those instead of internalizing them. We are working together to make our marriage and our time together a priority instead of something that we “fit in” with the schedules and needs of our four children. Letting “life” get in the way of the marriage can be a creeping vulnerability. Also examining the boundaries that were missing in his life has helped us tremendously too. I am proud of you for recognizing that the OW is no one special and she could have been anyone. It took me LOTS of therapy hours to get to that point. Actually it took reading some work emails to women, that were totally benign but too personal for my taste (chatting about our kids, sending a funny video) to realize that he didn’t have good boundaries. So when too many vulnerabilities piled up, those loose boundaries let a predator with ill intentions come waltzing in. And no, I’m not excusing him in this. He made choices. I guess this long-winded, and quite boring story is simply to say that perhaps seeking WHY is looking BACK. And believe me, I have a PhD in coulda, woulda, shoulda!! Seeking HOW to prevent it from ever happening again is looking forward. You might find it helpful to actually write out boundaries. Things that you both agree you are not comfortable with. For us, I am not comfortable with him going to lunch alone with a woman. Even for business. Because that is how he built his relationship with the OW.
      I will stop now before your eyes roll back in your head. Just know there are so many good people here that you will wish you had never had to meet, but will be so thankful to hear from! I know it’s helped me tremendously to receive the support from this board.

    • Redemption

      ExerciseGrace: I like your response to the counsellor’s question with regard to feeling sorry for the OW. I wish I had thought to say something similiar. You make reference to the OW saying “They walked into this KNOWINGLY”. After my H telling me the OW’s husband had cheated on her I took on a totally different view point of her. While initially I thought she may be hurting from her involvement with my H, ie: maybe she was sucked in by ____________(fill in the blanks for whatever influences). After hearing she too had been betrayed I did a flip. I don’t believe they are much of a human being when the OW already KNOWS how devastating her affair actions will be to me and again, by extention our children. Why would anybody in their right mind believe this behaviour is acceptable to turn around and decimate someone else’s life. Unbelievably low class and not too much of a human being to boot. Talk about a lack of personal principles.
      I do believe my H when he has told me he has felt a lot of shame over his actions. But because he is not one to readily enter into conversations about his feelings, I don’t know that I will ever receive more than this small amount of acknowledgement. He is not big on words and says it’s his actions that will prove his worth. I keep maintaing that both are required.
      You have stated your H knew and verbalized from the beginning that trashing the OW was also trashing himself. I would also think my H should be able to see the same connection with his old AP. I believe deep down that he does “get this” but I still feel that some time in the future he should hopefully become aware enough to apologize for such a stupid and insensitive comment “She is a nice person”. It’s as stupid as saying to me that I would like her.
      My H does not believe he has ever parroted the words or sentences of his former AP when discussing the affair with me. He doesn’t believe the OW ever tried to control him
      or manipulate him. There was actually shock registering on his face after I relayed I felt she was a lot more powerful and manipulating that he gave her credit for. Yes, this blindness may possible be his own ego.
      I have never really asked all that many questions about the affair. I don’t know what my H ever said to his AP about me. Or why he felt ok to enter into the affair. He did tell me that she knew “up front” that he was married. I suspect my not asking all that many questions is because I have my own ego that I feel is quite grounded and serves me well. And I understand I have more princiiples in my life that I govern myself by.
      Because my H forwarded that email last week to the Ow I felt terribly upset. Even though he did not share any dialogue I did take some steps backwards over this. It hardly makes me feel safe again. It hardly makes me feel he has been listening. It hardly makes me feel comfortable when, to me, it is such a glaring act of disrespect and selfishness. The email did not have to be sent., he simply chose to. It as though it were the same thought patterns he believed while in the A, what I didn’t know wouldn’t hurt me. But we all know the truth about it always surfacing some where down the line.
      I have relayed to my H that I was so upset by this thoughtlessness that I actually woke up the next morning and in my head I said ” . . . if he ever initiates contact again or doesn’t immediately make me aware of any communication from the OW again, then I will divorce him.” Because if he does this again it will tell me he cannot see past his own selfishness and help me heal, or he is simply incapable of change. When I relayed this to him I also said “I have never said the divorce word to you before, this shows you the magnitude of my feelings over this.” That comment made his head come up and he agreed I had never used those words with him before. I can not and will not go through that door again.
      Thanks for the suggestion of the book by Shirley Glass, “Not just friends”. I will make a point of getting it.
      As to understanding my H’s vunerabilities, I would agree. It is more than just the business trips and alcohol. I have suggested to my H from the very beginning of this mess that he seek out his own psychologist. He has said many times that he just might do that, but it has never come to fruition. We have been seeing a couple’s psychologist since day 1 of our reconciliation. Unfortunately between the psychologist working only 2 days a week and my H’s out of town work schedule the appointments have tapered off lately. We need to get back there sooner rather than later.
      As to loose boundaries – this is something I need to pay more attention to. While I have spoken up the odd time in the past about his conduct (mostly after having had alcohol) there were no seriious infractions. And because I completely and fully trusted my H back then I simply believed he knew his own boundaries. Don’t laugh too hard! I remember when a member of my family approached me (about 1/2 way into my H’s affair) and said that I would be smart to look for evidence of an affair. I tossed the comment off as “pashawwww” my H would never hurt me like that. I firmly believed it. I can never be that vunerable again.
      You have a good suggestion to actually write out our expectations on boundaries. I have obviously believed erroneous assumptions before. To wind this up, because I have to go walk the dog,I wanted to let you know that I am thankful to hear from you. It helps to share the load. Thank you again for your time and input.

      • exercisegrace

        Redemption, OMG I had forgotten the part where she had been betrayed herself. She is a scumbag whore of the first order in my book. I would NEVER inflict this kind of pain on anyone, ESPECIALLY after having experienced it myself. I have said here and other blogs that my main opinion is this: I am a big girl and while hurt and devastated, I can “take it”. While I don’t “blame” myself for the affair, and don’t feel that it is my “fault”, I DO recognize that I had “some” contributions to the vulnerabilities in our marriage. (although show me someone who thinks their marriage has NO vulnerabilities and I will show you a naive fool) HOWEVER, my kids were well and truly blameless in this mess. They of all people, did not deserve to have their father detach from his family, his relationship with them, his relationship with the mother they love. They did not deserve to be crying and fearful that their family was going to be torn apart forever because of the selfish choices of two people, one of whom was a stranger to them. Anyone who is in an affair and thinks they aren’t hurting the kids (including their own!!!) is the stupidest person on the planet. And perhaps the most heartless. I have read blogs by OW that blather on about their rights and their choices and their love and their married man’s unhappiness. NOTHING is ever said about the kids involved. I have never read where someone steps up and says, I have feelings for you but you need to get your personal life together first. Divorce your wife in an honorable way, tend to your grieving children and then when you are FREE to pursue a relationship, we will talk. Nope. Never. They poach, and they steal and they destroy. It is nothing short of EVIL in my opinion.

        Ok. Jumping off that soap box now! Reading your words, I can see that your husband still has a heavy, heavy dose of denial and for me, that had to be dealt with before I could even begin the journey to heal and try to forgive. Counseling was key. Hearing a neutral third party person talk about affairs, and MOSTLY hearing that his was straight out of the cheater’s handbook (ie: nothing special!!) typical, ordinary, BTDT, sounds like every other person who walks in the door was very eye-opening. We all want to feel like WE are special. OUR situation is different. Heck, it was depressing for ME to read how much our situation was like most others. How easily the trap was walked into. My heart screamed every day…..BUT our marriage was good! People envied our relationship!! He told me he loved me! We were so good together, our family so strong!!
        Bitter medicine. I downed it quicker in many ways than he did. As time went on, and we had more discussions about what went on, what was said, I was able to point out glaring discrepancies. I was able to PROVE where she had manipulated or outright lied. Some of it was SUCH a surprise to him. I kept saying over and over… you are surprised that a woman that would have an affair with a married man, come in to his home and have sex with him there, often while his family was upstairs… think this person wouldn’t LIE? Wouldn’t CHEAT? Wouldn’t manipulate??? She proved her lack of morals! She gave you a living reference. Please!
        So it will take some time. And perhaps on certain issues, it’s going to just have to be enough to know that YOU know the truth. On some points, it was eye opening for my husband when I finally shrugged and said, you know what? I KNOW the truth. Just because you Can’t or Won’t see it, doesn’t make it any less true. I hope someday you CAN see it. It will be healthier for you, but in the meantime, I don’t care. You know the consequences of a repeat offense. Of any further contact. Over and Out buddy!!

        Another sentence you wrote made complete sense to me too. “I simply believed he knew his own boundaries”. I totally trusted my husband too, and no you will NEVER hear me laughing at you. Remember, I’m the one that let my husband bring a woman into a business with him. I knew they had worked together over the phone thru his other business and never met face to face. I trusted him to the ends of the earth and here all along he had been building an EA with her!! I let her into MY HOME. That just accelerated their affair, turned it into a PA which mostly occurred IN MY HOME. I can’t believe my own stupidity. I can’t believe the blind trust I gave him. My therapist agrees that we DID have a good marriage, I did trust him fully (and says that as a good wife, I should have) and that’s what makes this ALL the HARDER. If the marriage had been bad or had huge problems she said this would have been easier to take, because I would have some blame, feel that I had some things to “fix”. Instead it feels like someone dropped a bomb on my head, and I wasn’t even engaged in the battle.
        Your voice sounds a bit stronger with each post. I am hoping things are going forward for you. But don’t get discouraged when you take a step or two back. It happens. I can have good days, then have a day where I turn into a shrew. demanding to know how, why he did this to us, on and on and on. It’s part of the process.

        I enjoy talking to you too. It helps to know someone else “gets it” and it helps very much to feel heard. Blessings!!

    • Dave

      Before and during the affair , my wife and I weren’t close. She would start fights any time I would try to get close to her. It was as if she was sabotaging our intimacy.

      After I caught her, there was no intimacy for about a year. She kept denying the affair, but I felt it in my bones. I couldn’t stand to touch her.

      Over the years, we became intimate again and had a good sex life and intimacy.

      After she finally confessed this past year, at first I couldn’t look at her or touch her for months. When I finally did, I’m sad to say it was angry sex, like I had to prove I was better than he was even though it was years in our past. There was no intimacy. It was purely physical, usually with it ending with me in tears.

      After that passed, we started to regain a little intimacy and some semblance of our former relationship, but then the bitterness and depression hit. Now we rarely touch each other or have intimate moments. There is a distance that neither of us knows how to bridge.

      When we start to have happy moments, all I can think is why couldn’t she see all the happy moments we had before or the moments we could have in the future. Instead, she was greedy and wanted to have moments with him. I hope those were good, because she isn’t going to get any more from me. …and yes, that is the bitterness talking. I’m hoping that will pass someday.

      We are in counselling, but things have steadily gotten worse for the past four or so months. After so long, I am starting to doubt that it will ever get better.

    • Kimbly

      After reading through all the messages above, you all seem to know one another quite well.

      Although I am talking off the general topic line from all of you above… I find myself in need of help… My husband, and I have been married for more than twenty-five years. We never had children of our own; but he helped to raise my two girls from the ages of three, and four. He has been their provider from their childhood, through their college years, and beyond. To date “we” have three grandchildren; none of whom are related to him by blood.

      We had a few miss-steps along the way, but he was mostly a wonderful husband, and step-dad through the years. He was a good hubby, and friend to me as well. Over the last twenty-five years he has provided the three of us girls a world we would never have known without his kindness, love, and support.

      He has always been a good guy to us. He helped to raise, and college educate my girls… A gift I will never be able to repay…

      None the less I came to know about three years ago that he had had an affair… Following two years of denial, about 9 months ago he admitted that he had had an affair with a woman I thought was one of my closest friends…

      To be clear: I became quite ill about three years ago. After seeing my doctor, I came to know that I was sick because of an STD…

      Believing that I had been in a committed marriage for twenty-five years there was only one answer to my illness.. I knew he had cheated…

      It took him two years to admit to me that not only had he had an affair, but that it was with a woman whom I thought was one of my dearest friends… He confessed the truth about nine months ago…

      To say that my heart is broken would give such little meaning to how badly I ache… Both she, and my husband have truly broken my heart…

      My husband tells me it has been over for quite some times… Several years in fact… And that they had “only met up” to have sex ten to twelve times… TEN TO TWELVE TIMES…

      TEN TO TWELVE TIMES!!!! That just keeps ringing in my ears…..

      You were my husband. She was my friend……. TEN TO TWELVE TIMES….

      I am so broken inside… My heart will never be the same…

      I have no contact with her… Thank you God…

      My husband says he is sorry… He says he knows what he did was wrong, and that he loves me. None the less I am filled with hurt.

      He and I have had no more than fifteen conversations about his affair over the last three years… Just five or so have been about his relationship with the woman I thought was my friend..

      How I need help…. Advice…. Guidance….

      I am still at home with my husband today…

      Today that woman/friend lives thousands of miles away… We have no reason to contact one another.

      Although I would dearly love to take out a FULL PAGE ad in her local news paper; calling her out as the whore I think she is. I have not…

      I am still here trying to figure out my own future…

      At fifty-two years old I realize that I am far too old to start over… I also know that I have lived an honest, and true life. I deserve more than I have today…

      Where do I go from here?

      How do I tell my husband I want, and need more from him? I may be middle aged, but my feeling, and expectations are much the same as they were years ago…

      I want, and need a partner/friend in my life I can trust…

      It may have been over for him quite some time ago, but it is all new, and news to me…

      He wants to avoid all talk… He simply says: “I am sorry. I was wrong”. ” I love, you, and want to be here”… ‘I ended it, and chose you long ago”…

      Is this truly enough??

      So broken, please help me….

    • callie

      I to am now in my fifty’s, my husbands problem was not that he cheated. it was his defiance and out right hate of the society we lived in and work needs of his coworker’s. .When he discharged from the navy in 1985. he was returning to the job he was on military leave from with a big three auto maker. under a UAW contract. He was coming off 3 and a half years mostly out of touch under water and seeing to the needs of the navy.

      When he returned under the contract he was coming home with more seniority than 4200 people on the seniority lists out of 7500, that list with everyone numbered by seniority, just gave people rights by their number on it to jobs, Shifts, Holidays, weekends and vacation times.

      In other words walking back onto the job after he came back he could have just about anything he wanted by the contract, His father and many others felt his return should be tempered with staying where he was put and keeping his mouth shut, and they would decide what he was going to have rights to.

      It started out the first two days he was home that against orders his brother smuggled him a copy of the contract book six months before his discharge. My husband had memorized the whole book the last Patrol he was on.

      The first three days home was the first indication of having a husband that wanted to work into things slowly feeling his way to attune himself. .First him and his father got into it about not going back and reinstating his first day home, Thanks to his brother giving him the book he knew he had 30 days to go back, I did not see my husband his first day home I heard it after he came in at 4 am that morning to a note, on the door to leave me alone. An hour after he comes in his father was yanking a very tired, upset that he did not get the same greeting he saw other husbands get 4 days earlier when wives and girl friends meet the husbands getting off the bus with affection shown by wives and girlfriends. all my husband recieved was his father yanking him off the sofa an hour after he comes in and starts screaming at him that he had been on a pleasure cruise the last three and a half years. He was to get his lazy rear up and get in and reinstate, I had been told to keep out of sight the first week he was home because it would cayuse problems in getting him to do as was wanted.

      I was there because I had a break down a year and a half before, in the first major Bi polar episode. I had only watched my husband get sent back to sea on other boats, in emergency replacement the two years before that. One time I saw him climb off the bus and his chief and XO bum rushed him to a waiting Seahawk. to the airport and load him into a fast fighter for Transport to the west coast. It was going to be another 202 days later, I left that bus meeting with a friend and her husband and she said just go to the off crew party with them the next evening. just because my husband was again being sent to sea, found out it was to replace a 24 year old that had be busted in a drug test, And my husbands qualifications were the only the navy could find on very short notice.

      I went to the party the next night expecting to see his brother there but he was assigned a school up in Newport and had already left, I sat with my friend and her husband and was introduced to her brother A copilot on transport aircraft in the airforce, I think it was a C141.

      Within the week he was in my apartment and bed. 207 days latter the ombudsman told me not to even meet the bus, my husband had been sent to a school on the west coast that was a Sequestered school he would not be even allowed of the grounds while he was in. He went to sea when he returned as an observer for another boats demonstration and shake down launch since he had already done a Daso launch and an operationat test launch of four birds as they called them.

      when he left on the next patrol he did not even make t back he just went to his crews next deployment. I got to talk to him a half hour while he was releaved from His Security duties he was To go back out on patrol with a boat that had just lost crew member to appendacities. I had already been in a mental Institution and sent to my mothers, I was requested to try and get him to reenlist.. One of the things given to him by his brother besides the contract was a letter telling him he had two years to return to his company without his time being frozen His last patrol was basically a pre yards extended patrol with a short Refit and he was going to another boat the next day for a two month daso, So from that thanksgiving until June there were plans that had to be considered when he said he was going back to his civilian job. His last patrol he was under a new chief. Who really did not want to stand his watch to see his new wife. When my husband got to refit the chief handed him his in port watch. My husband was to stand nuclear weapons security and ships Maintenance. He got up at 6 Monday morning and when the OD called down to MCC at 8 that Saturday night he was answered by my husbands brother requesting a corpsman for a medical emergency. My husband had opened the door and was just standing in the crews lounge and when his brother asked what was wrong. My husband hit the floor and was not able to make any sense. He Had been awake for 100 hours plus on duty.
      After His command waivered and got permission to get him to make that patrol. We received the call from the base Pshyc officer saying he was not coming home in his right mind due to extreme exhaustion.
      nothing about his discharge happened right. first he was taking all the proficiency tests, that showed he was considered the second most knowlegable Weapons tech in the navy. Then the debriefings and the medical tests which he was found to be very high BP 180 over 130. The ombudsman handing a key to a storage shed and told to arrange the move home when he expected me to be at the bus waiting. I was at his fathers in the Midwest, He had No Idea of The affair with the air force officer and my breakdown, almost two years before> Then because of the time of year his he was bumped off his flight by ticket holder VIP to the Indy 500,. The airlines had to return his ticket price by 3x and pay for a rental car, Home because if they did not the military was going to sue for bumping a man from a flight traveling under official orders.
      By the time he saw that note he was already furious, The next morning his mother diffused things by begging him to just do as his father wanted or nobody would hear the end, He was Put straight to the floor that day on second shift His first 12 hour shift. He again came home to the same note when it sounded like WW3 broke out the next morning. his father again yanked him off the sofa at 5 am. yelling to get going and find a place to live, This time I had to go out and talk to my husband who just was not going to put up with his fathers badgering.
      His mother rushed in and begged e to help stop a murder, My husband had his father pined against the ceiling one handed yelling he was going to see me if he had to tear bulkheads out , We were going to look together for a place to live. he was going to get something solid to eat. since his last meal was on the boat 5 days before and he was getting off his last nerve or end his life at that point. I showed up and his father slammed into the floor, got up and ran out the door crying he had no time for this BS.
      We left and I did not know what to think about what had just happened, I wanted to start my life there with nobody angry, everyone feeling good. but I had this huge Muscle bound man, he was 70 pounds lighter than what I married him three and a half years before. Some body that would threaten his fathers death if he did not get out of his way. I was really scared of this iron willed person I did not really know any longer.

      We found a place and had to wait till the next day to get to the bank and get the money out for it . We stopped at FT Ben and arranged for delivery of the things in South Carolina my husband had sent for me,

      When we got back to his fathers house there was a mini van out front . His father was home from his job, and we went into sit down shut up and listen, I found out my husband had started to use seniority rights after he found out I was Bi polar going into work and being handed a guardianship on me the day before. I was planning for a quiet time to tell him.

      There was a very pretty pair of women there. one was a Doris day look alike. with silver blond hair about 40 years old. The other was a Pretty 19 year old blond crying her eyes out. She was the one my husband was bumping. His father said he was not back three days and causing trouble that had to be niped in the bud. He said she said you don’t care shes a girl my husband said the ERA made her the exact same as he was and so did the contract and if she was the one with six months seniority she was going to second and he was going to first.

      All hell broke loose with his father screaming he was going to be a man and leave that little girl on days, She had a social life that would be ruined if he went, The next thing I know I was standing for her telling my husband that sex for two years was not going to happen unless he could let things get stable with his return, Then he turned on me. slamming out to his fathers garage finding an old Bivwac kit from the army he had left there, Went past and I said cant we just let the dust settle for two years. And he looked at me and said I hope you like your cold bed. Slamming through the front door leaving every one scared he was going to tear everything apart on his way out. His mother was just about flattened on his way. Out the door calling me a mercenary b***** on his way out, His mother came in to three crying women and his very angry father. she heard what had happened and she told the two women they had about half a second to get out of her home. She tried to hold her temper telling me and his father what we did that day was wrong, His father had been wrong from the second my husband walked through the door. She told him he should have just let things for a returning sailor go as they should have and then she turned to me and said . I know this stupid idea of denying my husband a marriage the next two years was his fathers idea as a control. but if I backed of the first day then I would never have any say. the movers were coming the next day, His father left early that morning and I did not know he was going over to our house To wake my husband up again. His mother and I got there after his father and him came to blows. my husband had slept on a foam mat on the floor the night before. using his pack as a pillow. His father was in the front yard with a broken nose and ribs. and my husband standing over him yelling if he laid another hand on him he was going to have a headstone where he landed. He looked up and said my room mates here, He said he covered everything that month but by the next he expected my half of the rent and expences. Why wasn’t I out getting a job. turned on his heel and went back in to get fully dressed. his mother took his father to the hospital then she went on to work. I got busy when the movers arrived my husband put the QS bed together and he asked if he was going to join me in it that night after he came home. I told him for now he had to sleep somewhere else he left his mat army blanket and cpo cover rolled up in the room I made a library. The next two years I heard the same thing every week, when was I going to be a wife or earn my keep Then his mother asked him to use one of his union perks to arrange a Roman vacation at the beginning of June 1987.

      The large group rate my husbands union perk got us was just 40 percent of retail It at least got him to talk to me again, Then his father dropped an anvil. the same girl now 21 wanted that time off to go to Rome and get married, But my husbands seniority was again in her was in her way. He had the slot she wanted to go with her parents in our group. If my husband took his three week slot then she had to either quit or not go. By 1987 My husband had not had a leave or day off since before our wedding in 198. But I did as his father asked and went hat in hand to my husband and begged him just to cancel his vacation then and when I came back we could do something, First requirement was The money he had paid was paid back to him, second requirment was I had to swear on my bible any time, any place and any way he wanted I was to be a willing travel companion and start a sex life on the trip,. the third requirement was I sign what I swore to in front of a notary. I did not realize it was a trap. The delivery to the airport in our new full sized van was to say the least mean and Embarrassing. First he chewed the girl and her fiancé out, telling her if she ever swung her hips his way again to get him to do something , he would plant his size thirteen footprint on her rear, then he got us there and when he did not get out of the drivers seat while we got our paperwork in order. His father screamed at him to get our luggage into check in instead of leaving his dead a** in the drivers seat. My husband looked at us and got out, Taking a page out of Finnigans Gold or Gone with The Wind, he shuffled to the back of the van saying,” I’s be soory massas, dis po old house n*****, just looses myself, I’s gets rights to its massa’s, Yous alls can has yous fun where be yous goin, I’s be riech her for yous alls to beats when yous alls returns,’ I was so embarrassed at the display in front of so many others. I just wanted to pull a hole in and cry.

      We flew out however after we gathered our luggage off the street when he took off scattering it all over creation, with his middle finger out the window, We got to Rome> held the wedding where I was asked to be the matrn of honor since I was the one to have to beg my husband not to press his seniority and allow it when frankly he had a right to the time off. Over Dinner a few days latter His mother and I had bought a peace offering after the display in the airport of a very nice set of boots. I said when my husband and I went on a vacation latter that year he could wear them to travel then. His father asked me when and wear we were going after Christmas shut down. I said We had not decided any time yet, and his father said the only possible time he can go is after new years. He could wok through them then take a time when nobody else wanted it. I got the notarized agreement I made to get him to stay home and his mother was the one to see it for the trap it was.

      She said I had better be willing to keep my promise the second my foot hit the ground state side. His father said nonsense if he took a vacation then so many planes would have to be
      changed if he did that. He would just have to accept taking a time when nobody else wanted in six months and be satisfied with that,

      The day I stepped off the plane I had to put my foot down, He was going to do just as his father said ruin so many plans made because we ruined his. I said we could go someplace nice and warm for three weeks then why was he pushing for that instant. He opened his console and said When would we get a reservation then. He showed me even the backup reservations for someplace nice like Hawaii, The Mexican resorts St Croix or any thing like that had reservations waiting. I suggested places like Florida which I knew he was never impressed by. Texas. Or southern California and jus drive. He said If I wanted to ice skate across country I could take a driving vacation then he had no interest and don’t even mention Vegas. Everything said as we left the airport fell on deaf ears, Finally I said just go to work that day, We would figure something out after we discussed it, he said so I was breaking my word, again, it sent chills up every ones spine. The plans not able to be had, the people that would be left crying. I finally said just take me home if nothing else we could take the three weeks and stay home, He would have plenty to do shoveling snow, or something else we could work it out.

      He said no he was taking off after he took everyone home and we could drop dead, heading west. I said then I was not going he could leave me at home . He said either way I was not staying home. he said this was a test to see if he counted for any thing except being our slave. He pulled an envelope out then and said since I did not want to be a wife I was swearing I would never go on vacation without him again> he was white as a sheet and sweating in September. His steward said several times he was sent to the hospital but could not find out a reason for pain in his belly He told use the company had orders about my husband, He had been trying to get a disiplenary lay off. Even insulting the governor of the state directly.
      The night of October 24th they said He was in terrible pain getting to work, by 8 am his foreman had to come in and let the EMTS in to get him. Every move resulted in his screaming in pain My husband this time locked everything in a safe deposit box, HE recorded the whole incident and We ran thinking he was crazy when he dared them to be men and kill him. He set out with the vid intending to have us placed under arrest when he saw his sister pulling into a dinner> He came in following our server and she had just laid the last one down when his sister Screamed watch out and he used his cane to lay the faces of the two men that held him at bay on our porch opened to the jaw bone. Then he was going to shove his cane through his father. In 2015 His fathers neck was broken waiting to board when he showed up drunk at our room telling him to come out and get his comupins. He was going to beat his son into going home with a ball bat and instead ended up laying in the hall with a broken neck getting a fusion a little latter.
      I have been told if my husband has any thing to do with me on holidays and vacations friends wont even consider inviting me or come to my home. even crippled he to volitile now to trust that he would do as feelings dictate.

      When all this started in 1985 I had hopes of having a family in peace, one day. I feel if just once my husband went a whole year without getting into some bodies face about what was due him . Just wished me a nice time in Europe and was not angry he was again being blackmailed into working with another promise If he would have stayed on the same position for the entire time from 1985 to 2009, that somewhere in there we could have found a way to accommodate his wants without getting into others just because the contract said he had the right. I always hoped instead of resentment he saw the good his time provided others and accepted it.

      I don’t know how wrong I was, But I try and think of how it could have gone if like he wanted his first day home I ran to him and told him how much he was needed. Had The family we both wanted on his terms.

      I think I burned out any love he once felt He just takes me as a responsibility now, Feels I assisted his father and friends to steal his life, make him a slave, His father said even slaves found some joy in life. Why couldn’t he with his labor.

      I sit now hoping the result of his forcing me three yeas ago will not be taken from me if h figures away to divorce me. My 2 and a half year old> His mother was So happy to see him she did not want to let him go. This morning She just said me who loves you, as she drifted off. My husband waits by the phone for news.

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