Haunting Images: What Happens When You Know Too Many Details of Your Partner’s Affair

When You Know Too Many Details of Your Partner's Affair

By Sarah P.

There are many events and feelings that are universal to infidelity and all of these events can be equally difficult. But, today, I wanted to talk about when you know too many details of your partner’s affair  – his or her experience and intimate life with the other person – and how it probably continues to affect you.

While I do not have the power to make those images and thoughts completely go away, I do have some helpful ideas for you to get through it and take back control of your mind.

I wanted to state up front that parts of this post might trigger you since sex will be mentioned. Being aware of triggers is especially true if the affair is still fresh in your mind. I will try to say as much as possible about how to heal without causing too many triggers throughout this post. My apologies in advance, if this post triggers you in any way.

But, before we start, I wanted to give a shout out to an author named Amanda Chatel. She wrote an extremely poignant piece for Bustle about her husband’s affair, what is was like on D-Day and the struggle she went through in the weeks after his affair. Her piece is easy to relate to because it basically mirrors the things that are spoken and the feelings that are experienced by betrayed spouses because of infidelity. Here is a shortened version:

“Before I had left Paris in July, I had given him one more ultimatum to turn his life around, so when he called to say we should end it, he wasn’t just declaring an end to us, but essentially saying that he was giving up on trying to get his life in order, too… As the rage brewed inside me, I decided to do some snooping…which is always a bad idea. What I found on the very public page of a 20-year-old who was supposed to be helping him with his “career,” were photos of them away together in Avignon, a few hours from Paris, and my husband not wearing his wedding band. 

Further research (thanks, Facebook!), led me to other things between he and she that just seemed a little too friendly. This 20-year-old was tagging him in everything she posted, just as I imagine I would have done at 20 and was in love, and her cover photo was that of a street with the same name as my husband. The first emotion that hit me was rage. Total rage. I was shaking and pacing; crying and screaming. I could not get control. I got on both his and her Facebook pages, writing “home-wrecker” on hers and “cheater” on his, and repeated that behavior for a whole five minutes until they both blocked me.

I sat with that rage, intermittent with tears, for a week, and then I heard from him and he confirmed what I already knew: He had cheated, they were in love, they were soulmates, and he seemed to be hinting that she would be moving in soon. I wanted answers, as I screamed and cried. How were they soulmates? Well, they both have the same birthday and love The Beatles. When did they first fall in love? She had been in love with him since June when she first saw him sing and he had been in love with her since that weekend they were away in Avignon and she thought that the perfect time to tell him that she loved him…and of course he loved her back immediately.

My rage slipped away, and what came next were the tears and sickness. I got off the phone and just barely made it to the bathroom. Before that day would be over, his 20-year-old girlfriend would email me a poem she wrote about me, in which I was somehow destroying my husband’s soul while all she did was love him. And, if that weren’t enough, it was riddled with personal things about me that only he could have told her.

Every day is a struggle to get out of bed. I’m not sure if I dread the nights or the days more. All day long, as I write about blow jobs and hand jobs for work, all I do is picture them doing those things. All night long, if I am able to sleep, I only dream about them, nightmares really, and I wake in violent jolts throughout the night, shaking and being forced to realize that this is what happened, this is how it is, and this is how it’s going to be.” (1)

 

Aside from Amanda’s poignant description of what all of us experience when we first find out about our partner’s infidelity, I chose her story because she mentions those haunting images. Whether she is awake or asleep, she imagines them locked in a passionate embrace (of sorts?) It’s those images that can really kill your self-esteem since the human imagination knows no bounds.

Almost all of these images have to do with the intimate connection your wayward spouse had with the other person. The more you know about the details of the sex act, the details of the other person’s body, and the details of when and where, and how they professed their love for each other, the more you will be haunted.

The feeling that you are not good enough might always lurk just around the corner, waiting to prove you right. Your mind will constantly assault you with ideas such as: you are not attractive enough, fit enough, young enough, sexy enough, or interesting enough. Or, perhaps your mind assaults you with different ideas: you do not make enough money or you are an inadequate provider.

If you let your mind go into over-drive, your mind will say: it was you. You, you, and still you.  You are the problem. You were always the problem. You did this to yourself. Your mind might conclude that you are not even deserving of love from your spouse or anyone else.

Sometimes You Look to Your Wayward Spouse for a Sign of Relief

In this world, there are the wayward spouses who want to share nothing at all. Then other times there are the wayward spouses who want to tell you every detail so that they can selfishly re-live it. But, most wayward spouses fall somewhere in between.

I am not sure which type of wayward spouse is more dangerous to the psyche: the one who is as quiet as a church mouse and walks around with a smug smile, or the one who muses about his or her soulmate (who is not you) all day long.

I say neither is worst since there is another scenario thanks to modern technology.

The worst kind of wayward spouse is the one who carelessly leaves around hundreds of photos of himself (or herself) having sex with the other person, or the other people.

Unfortunately, there is a very sad story where a woman experienced scenario. Here she describes her ordeal on Truth About Deception message boards:

“I feel like an idiot. I recently found detailed pictures of my husband having sex with other women which he took with their phone and possibly an unknown camera… I have known him since we were 15, we were best friends, we have been together for 15 years and married for 5 of those years and lived together for 10 of those years. We always had a great time together, so much fun and love and care and affection and romance.

He has always told me I am the only one who understands him and I am a communicative person who is adventurous in and out of the bedroom. I have NEVER denied him sex because I wanted it more than him at times. He has always told me I am his fantasy and that he had found the perfect woman for him in every way. We have spoken about every topic from the color of the sky to what would happen if one of us did or wanted to cheat and we both agreed that if this were to happen, then it would be a reason to end the relationship. He has always exclaimed how disgusted he is with men who cheat and that he does not understand why they would do that. He knows my opinions about it and how much it would devastate me if he did…

We essentially had no secrets, he even extended invitations to his email accounts, online storage space, etc. just in case we took pictures for me to access or if I needed to find a message pertaining to our financial accounts, etc. I was searching for some pictures on his Dropbox of us, which he had recently uploaded and somehow I came across hundreds of pictures of him having sex with 3 other women (not at the same time-different occasions) as well as naked and clothed pictures of more women without him in the pictures (some were selfies).

Very detailed sex pictures which have left me traumatized and with severe anxiety. I cannot believe this is the same person who has loved me so deeply for so long. My life is devastated because I believed he was my soul mate. I believed he loved me.”

 

What is there to say except: OUCH.

What excruciating pain this unfortunate woman must feel and my heart goes out to her. I am pretty sure that seeing such pictures has affected every aspect of her life with her husband, but especially her self-esteem and their sex life.

If I were in her shoes, I would get divorced. Her husband is living out the same pattern as someone with sex addiction. I can guarantee that someone like that might behave for a while, but he will always return to his secretive lifestyle. So, in this woman’s case, she should not remain in the marriage. I can guarantee that as soon as she thought she had worked through an affair with her husband, she would find more pictures detailing others. In this case, you cannot stay and keep your sanity at the same time.

What Can You Do? Remember these things…

#1. You are not alone.

You are never alone. There are millions of people who are going through this very thing right now or who have gone through it in the past. There are millions of couples that have gotten through it together.

#2. Her (or his) body is not better than yours.

It is time for real talk.

Who decides whose body is better than anyone else’s body anyways? Well, these days, it is the media. Whether the ideal body is displayed on a magazine shelf, in a commercial, in a movie, or on your favorite TV show, this ideal seems to change frequently and arbitrarily.

Perhaps the other woman or the other man has a body that looked exactly like the body type that is idealized in the media while the affair was occurring.

There is one thing I love: that is when someone comes along who does not allegedly fit the beauty standard of the time and puts herself out there.

Recently, Tabria Majors, a “plus-sized” model – I hate the word plus-sized model – recreated images from a current Victoria’s Secret catalogue. She picked out her favorite pieces of lingerie from the catalogue and then had a photographer take her picture as she posed and smiled the same way as the Victoria’s Secret models from the catalogue.

Bad move on Tabria’s part? She got many hateful comments about her size and body type. Some people on the internet acted as if she had committed a crime. Her crime? Going head-to-head with the beauty standard that Victoria’s Secret had deemed as the ideal.

I say great move on Tabria’s part. Personally, after I saw the photo montage of Tabria standing next to the actual Victoria’s Secret model wearing the same outfit, my vote went to Tabria. Why? Well, if you look at the images and throw away whatever it is you have been told is “the beauty ideal,” you can see more clearly.

Tabria has a woman’s body; Tabria has a body type that is relatable. After all, the average American woman is said to be 5’4’ and wear clothing around a size 14. While only 10 women in the world look like Victoria’s Secret Angel’s, many women look like Tabria. Even though Tabria is taller than 5’4’, but her body still reflects that of many women, both in the United States and in other countries.

By the way, I am not “thin shaming.” I am saying there must be room for all kinds of beauty to be portrayed in the media. Personally, I am an advocate for each person finding their healthy weight, whatever it may be. Some people have bodies with “set points” that are on the low side of the BMI while others have “set points” that are naturally on the high side of the BMI range. I read recently that people with a BMI of 26 seem to live the longest.

The concept of a beautiful body is arbitrary and fickle and women are still judged according to that form. The current ideal form is extremely thin compared to the forms of the past.

Consider this example: the oldest religions in the world worshipped Goddesses, not Gods. The earliest statues of Goddesses (and hence the ideal female form) reflected a 350-pound woman with all of her weight carried in her stomach and breasts.

Humanity prayed to such statues hoping for creation of and sustenance for their tribes. The stomach/womb of the Goddess symbolized creation itself. The breasts of the Goddess symbolized abundant sustenance for the life that the womb had held and created. This female body type, in real life, would have been the type that survived many famines and even fed and sustained infants such through famines.

This also tends to be what sometimes happens to the post-menopausal female body, despite each woman’s best effort. No matter what a woman does, both hormones and individual genetics inform a woman’s shape throughout life.

How does this tie into comparing oneself to the other person?

Well, it does not matter how the other person looked. It does not matter if the other person had a body type that was closer to the “media ideal” than yours. This does not mean the other person was somehow better than you or even looked better than you.

I am trying to make the point that throughout time people have chosen one beauty standard and each one was radically different. Besides, the other person’s body had nothing to do about why your spouse cheated.

I have heard from many wayward spouses that it was not necessarily about the appearance of the other person. Mostly, it was the addictive factor that the other person brought out due to the way he or she related to a wayward spouse.

Still, it is understandable to compare yourself to this person, especially when you are sharing an intimate moment with your spouse. If you are still sharing intimate moments with your spouse after the affair and you are recovering together, your spouse has chosen you. Your spouse has chosen all of you despite the other person.

Obviously, the other person was not “all that” if your spouse has chosen you.

So, do not allow images of your spouse with someone else to ruin your intimate times together. Do not allow the other person to win and do not give those images time in your head. I am not asking you to stick your head in the sand and be in denial. I am asking you to consciously say “no” to those images and to remind yourself that your spouse is there with you. Your spouse has chosen you.

Ladies, I am also asking you to love your beautiful self, whether or not you are younger or older, trimmer or curvy, or anything else. You are beautiful and I do not ever want you to think yourself as less than because of your spouse’s affair. The other woman had nothing on you—do not allow her to have time in your head. That takes away her power.

#3. Ask for reassurance.

This is your wayward spouses cue to tell you that you are the most alluring, gorgeous, Goddess (or God) who has ever walked the earth. This is the wayward spouses cue to tell you that he or she was the biggest, most idiotic, stupid human being who ever walked the earth. Then, your wayward spouse needs to prove it by treating you like you are the only butter for his or her bread.

#4. If all else fails, ask yourself: “what would Amanda do?”

I did not tell you how Amanda’s story ended. She actually wrote a series of posts about her personal experience with infidelity for Bustle; I would recommend all of them. But, I will tell you that her story has quite a surprising ending. **Spoiler alert. Skip this section if you want to find out for yourself from Amanda’s posts on Bustle.** If not, here we go: Amanda’s husband, who was almost 50-years-old, just wouldn’t snap out of his obsession with the savage 20-year-old. Said 20-year-old kept doing generally underhanded and cruel things to Amanda to show her that she had won. (What is wrong with people?)

So, what did Amanda do? Well, she picked up herself off the floor of her Parisian apartment, walked past all of the boulangeries, and got herself down to some of Paris’s historical and beautiful churches. Then, she prayed like she never prayed before. Unfortunately, God could not persuade her wayward spouse to snap out of it either. (The affair fog is tough one to crack—even for God.)

So, Amanda started praying with all of her heart that her wayward spouse die. After all, he was not giving her a divorce, but he also wasn’t giving up his 20-year-old lover. (Those Frenchmen…)

One day, Amanda got a phone call, which she thought (at first) was a joke. Her husband’s daughter called Amanda to tell her that Amanda’s husband had died from a heart attack.

Poor Amanda was struck with grief because she did not actually want him to die. She just wanted her own excruciating pain to go away. Amanda was flung into more shock and grief and she wanted to attend her husband’s funeral to get some closure.

But, the worst part was, her husband’s mistress had convinced Amanda’s husband’s family that Amanda should be barred from attending the funeral. Why? Because according to the mistress, Amanda had “no right to grieve” since Amanda’s husband “belonged” to the mistress.

So, what did Amanda do? She wrote and published a multi-part blog series about her experience with infidelity for Bustle. She removed some of the burden of her personal pain by sharing it with the rest of us. She journaled out the contents of her soul and was kind enough to give us the gift of her writing so that we do not feel so alone.

While journaling has been proved to help people tremendously with stress and grief, the act of sharing can be very powerful. This is true both for the writer and for the reader. If all else fails, be like Amanda and tell your story to the whole world. Name names. Detail out events. Post pictures if you want to. No, you don’t have to be like Amanda by praying for your spouse to die—you just have to be like Amanda and journal it all out.

Why?

Because you are not the one who should be ashamed and hide. The only person who should be ashamed is a wayward spouse. People are allowed to do evil things and perpetuate evil when their actions are kept in the dark.

Look at all of the evil Harvey Weinstein was able to do all of those years because no one spoke up. Everyone stayed silent and he kept performing his evil acts without being questioned. The same goes for politicians and other men in power who have spent years harassing people they perceived to be weaker than them.

In Summary

Whether you are being bombarded with images of your spouse in bed with the other person or invasive thoughts about an emotional affair, here is my over-arching point: it is time to take your power back.

It is time to stop comparing yourself to one, big nothing. Anyone who would knowingly have an affair with a married person and keep pursuing them truly is one, big nothing.

You are the one who has stood by the marriage and has remained loyal. You must re-frame your thinking and you must step out of the shadows. Step into your power because you were always the moral one. You did the right thing.

Your spouse is the one who should be haunted by images of the past—not you. You should not have to suffer in any way for the actions of another. Never forget that it was not about you and never will be; a spouse’s actions say nothing of your worth.

Finally, if you let your mind go into over-drive, replace negative thoughts with these: it was NOT you or your fault.  Your wayward spouse is the problem. Your wayward spouse was always the problem. 

Thus, your mind must conclude that you are deserving of love from your spouse and from everyone else. You always have been. Most of all, you are deserving of unconditional love from yourself and sometimes you must radically love yourself before the unenlightened see your true worth.

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Regaining Control:
Dealing With Obsessive Thoughts, Triggers and Memories of the Affair

Arm yourself with a variety of techniques, practical strategies and  knowledge to help you to manage those intrusive thoughts, triggers and memories of your partner’s affair.

 

Sources

Chatel, Amanda. What It Feels Like to Be Cheated On. From https://www.bustle.com/articles/121136-what-it-feels-like-to-be-cheated-on

 

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66 Responses to Haunting Images: What Happens When You Know Too Many Details of Your Partner’s Affair

  1. Hopeful November 28, 2017 at 1:13 pm #

    There is no way to make it better or easier. Neither too few or too many details really helps. Both days have their pluses and minuses. In the end I keep going back this is all about him. He had told me it could have been any woman these two happened to be agressive. One he said he could not stand and the other one seemed like someone I would be friends with but could have been anyone. There was never enough of anything i could or can do to make him happy or not do it then or in the future. These type of decisions have to come from within. Just as he has said he has the luxury of knowing I would never cheat on him in any way. I might have other issues/challenges but not infidelity on any level.

    Saying all of that I still struggle. I can tell myself and understand intellectually that it has nothing to do with me. However now that the deep trust has been shattered I am unsure I can be okay with it. I know my husband is doing his best but is it enough after what he has done? Sure he has changed but is it too late? I know I can never compete with all the women out there but for me it goes way beyond that.

    • Shifting Impressions November 28, 2017 at 6:42 pm #

      Hopeful
      For me it goes way beyond that as well. Early on after d-day, I realized he was the one that behaved against his own moral code…NOT ME. I am far from perfect, but I am loyal and trustworthy. I always had his best interest at heart and loved him with all my heart.

      I was shattered beyond belief but took the high road (most days) in dealing with all the hurt and pain. Today, I feel good about who I am, and have no regrets, regarding my behavior. The only thing I regret is that I had the opportunity to see more of those details in the incriminating emails but went into shock instead. Of course the minute I turned my back, he destroyed the evidence.

      But as time has passed (four years) maybe I’m better off not having more details. Chances are they would haunt me. The few details I did have, haunted me for the first three years. I seem to be in a better place now. In the end, what does it matter…..he lied and betrayed me….that’s what matters.

      My husband also shows true remorse and we are working hard to rebuild. We are able to talk more freely about everything that happened but I truly believe there is still inner work that needs to be done. During the EA it became all about him…..I don’t believe he allowed himself to take into account the impact his actions would have on me, should he be discovered.

      I feel trust is slowly returning for me and YES, THAT SCARES THE HELL OUT OF ME!!! But it is what it is. I believe vulnerability is part of moving forward. Again….so scary.

      But I discovered a strength, I didn’t know I possessed as I am sure you discovered as well. Is it too late? Only you know the answer to that question. I was asking that same question not to long ago. But slowly, slowly love for him is trickling back….as I see him trying everyday.

      So I’m with you….there is no way to make it better….it happened and nothing can change that. Too many details….not enough details…perhaps that’s moot point.

      All that being said I had no graphic images to deal with but can imagine how traumatic that must be.

      Take care Hopeful….I wish you the best

      • Hopeful November 29, 2017 at 1:24 pm #

        SI – I agree with everything you say. I guess i am glad I have no images. Some days i think what I dream up is way more glamouse than it could have ever been. At a certain point I decided more details in any way would not help me. The hardest thing for me to get over is stuff he said to me that were his reasons for the affair. That sticks with me more than anything. I guess it is like an image I hear those words over and over. I find them defeating. I focus on the present and the good we have and all of his changes but that is what gets me down the most.

  2. For What It's Worth November 28, 2017 at 3:10 pm #

    Well, when my husband cheated I asked many many questions – but years later. Suppressed it when I was young and wanted to bury it – but then resurrected it a couple of years ago and asked for details. Wish I hadn’t. I dreaded on it for a year. Harassed him night and day to remember something from 17 years earlier. I can’t unknow the things I have since learned and ignorance was definitely bliss for a long time. Mid-life had me re-thinking decisions of my youth with him and sent me in a tailspin. It also may be the real reason that I ended up here on this site, which is now more about me and not him.

    Read on:

    I have been married for 25 years (married too young) and regrettably I am the one who recently had an emotional affair that eventually became physical. I know, I know – you will all hate me for being one of “those women” but as I said I too have been the betrayed spouse. My husband slept with a co-worker much earlier in the marriage, so I do know that perspective quite well too. I actually never thought I would be the one being the offender; I was very hurt by his betrayal. And my character is normally loyal to a fault. But wonder if in my deluded mind and affair fog euphoria it didn’t make my infidelity more justifiable to me in light of that fact that I resurrected it recently.

    My EA is different in that I wasn’t caught. My husband is unaware that he is a betrayed spouse; the AP’s spouse is also unaware. We have only destroyed ourselves and each other here. It was a year long.

    We met playing an online game and he was pretty flirty almost from the get-go and I thwarted all his advances for a long time. Told him I had a great hubs etc and a great life and I wasn’t looking for that. But as time moved on he got consistent with good morning and good night messages, that I became accustomed to and enjoyed and of course the textbook EA stuff like being told I am amazing, perfect and beautiful. I didn’t give him my phone number until 5 months in. And we only communicated via the game or texting. It eventually became flirty and suggestive (from him first then I eventually gave in) in addition to a great friendship. In May he told me he loved me and wanted to know how I felt etc. Then he progressed it into us being together after his kids were older etc. The total EA fantasy as I can clearly see now. Neither of us talked of leaving spouses now or moving out or anything like that. We both have kids, his are quite young and he made it very clear that his kids are his priority. I get that.

    We live in neighboring states about 7 hours apart and he lives near where my main office for work is. I finagled a work trip to see him over the summer. Dinner, drinks and then ultimately sex. He had a work trip earlier this month in my state and we saw each other again.

    About a week after we saw each other recently he had a bday party for his child and later in the evening a friend stayed around and they had too much to drink and foolishly decided to drive to go get food late at night. He got a DUI and it crushed him. Oddly, cheating on his wife had no consequence until this point but the DUI made him feel like a failure to his family and when added that to the other things he had been doing (me!) he felt like a loser. I asked him what he needed from me that I would go if that is what he needed and he said at the end of the day he still loves me so he doesn’t know what to do. That was a Monday. Then nothing – he went silent for a couple of days. Thursday I finally texted him and told him what we did was undoubtedly wrong, but everything I did was out of love for him and not to hurt him. I told him I knew he wouldn’t reply (I’ve learned he shuts down during tough times – very hard in a “texting” relationship) but I wasn’t taking it personally as I knew he was feeling really down and but I needed the closure of a goodbye so was sending it for myself. He finally replied the next morning (Friday) and just basically said he needed to focus on things there for the moment (the moment?) but that he has no regrets about us and will always love me. I thanked him for at least replying, told him I loved him and wished him well. We have had no communication in the 11 days since. I don’t feel used like I have read others saying. I did what I wanted to do, I was a willing participant and thus I wasn’t used. I enjoyed the time with him when I was in the midst of it. And I miss him. Terribly. The friendship mostly. There is a void. I am not sleeping well or eating much. I know it’s the addiction. I fight everything in me to not contact him. Mostly because he likely won’t reply and because of my pride, I won’t chase him. And also because I know this is what needs to happen….no contact. I get it in my head, my heart on the other hand doesn’t think rationally unfortunately. I have FB stalked, but we were not “friends” on any social media at any point.
    I actually tried breaking it off 2 months ago; he got quiet then too but said he would do it for me if it’s what I wanted. I knew he would be coming here for work and I wanted to see him and told him we would end it after that. The thought of that happening was awful and I just didn’t find the strength to go thru with it at that time.

    Has been difficult to deal with my depression and loss at home because my husband is not aware, so he doesn’t know what is wrong with me. Someday I may tell him, but decided it won’t be now. It would serve to ease my conscience and get it off my chest (I have told no one), but would hurt him to know I loved another man and frankly what would be the point of hurting him? It’s over and not something I am willing to go thru again. I have learned a lesson and this will never happen with another person. However, I wish I had the confidence to say if the OM contacted me I would ignore/block him. I feel such a loss in my life that I would likely be weak. (I hated even typing that). That’s why I am here…I do want to do the right thing and I hate this position of vulnerability I am left in.

    Go ahead….hit me with your best shot. I deserve it.

    • Shifting Impressions November 28, 2017 at 7:12 pm #

      For What It’s Worth
      No worries….not going to take a shot at you. I appreciate that you are willing to share what you have been going through.

      I hope you find someone you can talk to…..perhaps a counselor or trusted friend. You have decided not to tell your husband and that is of course your decision. I myself, wish my husband would have confessed rather than having me find out purely by accident. You say there is no purpose but during my husband’s EA (both of them fifteen years apart) If felt I was going crazy even though I did not know what was going on. Much damage was caused as a result. I’m in the full disclosure camp….but that’s just me.

      But please take care of you and get the help you need going through this.

      • For What It’s Worth November 28, 2017 at 10:06 pm #

        Thanks for the reply! I will seek help. Telling my hubs at this time will cause him to retaliate against OM. He doesn’t do well with someone even looking at me, I’m almost afraid of his reaction if he knew THIS.
        I’m holding it together because I have no choice, honestly I think he’s pretty clueless. I’m not saying I won’t tell him, I just think I don’t have the strength right now. I’m emotionally defeated. Maybe that’s something a counselor can help me work towards.
        Thanks again.

        • Working on Forgiveness December 1, 2017 at 5:36 pm #

          This is my first time commenting on this blog even though I have been reading it for 7 or 8 years. It has been very helpful in my journey. I also had an emotional and then physical affair, and I could not have written your story any better. It sounds just like my affair story almost to the tee, except my AP was a family friend.

          My best advice is to not communicate with the OM no matter how hard it is. You think that he is your soul mate, but he really isn’t (trust me on this). I wish I could have seen that much earlier than I did.

          My husband discovered my affair 4 years ago and it has been very painful to rebuild our marriage, but we are making it. I don’t think I will ever get over how much I hurt my husband. I can’t tell you whether you should keep it to yourself or not or whether to tell him, but trust me when I tell you if can ever just step away from it all and look at it from the outside, you will see the OM really isn’t your soul mate and there really was nothing there.

          And, yes, a therapist is a great recommendation. I couldn’t have made it without mine.

          Again, I have been through this. It isn’t easy, but you have to stay away from the OM and deal with your marriage–decide you are in it for real or get a divorce from your husband.

          Good luck!

          • For What It's Worth December 4, 2017 at 2:35 pm #

            Thank you for stepping out and commenting and for your understanding. In my head I absolutely know that this OM is NOT my soul mate, it is def all a fantasy. In the midst of it the brain keeps saying its wrong and putting up all the red flags but the heart and ego don’t want to hear rationalization and before you know it, you’re in “the fog” hooked on the lie. It is all self-centered and indulgent and hurtful to everyone involved.
            I have not contacted OM nor will I attempt to do so. I am definitely committed to my marriage and getting therapy for myself.

            Good luck to you in your continued healing!

    • Exercisegrace November 28, 2017 at 7:23 pm #

      Please get the help you need to heal. You deserve better than to be some man’s side piece. Your husband doesn’t deserve this just because he cheated on YOU. It sounds like you have issues unresolved from that affair, and are seeking validation from another man. His WIFE deserves better and if there are children involved, they certainly deserve to live in a healthy home environment. If you are looking for a public flogging to lessen the guilt, I doubt you will find it here. These are some of the kindest people around. They would never intentionally inflict hurt on someone, because we all carry our own pain as such a heavy burden.

      • For What It’s Worth November 28, 2017 at 9:53 pm #

        Thank you Exercisegrace. I appreciate your words. No, not looking for a public flogging to ease guilt, if only it was that easy. I’ve been the wife who was cheated on and know the range of emotions that go with that scenario so I just felt I would be in the minority here having walked in both pairs of shoes.
        To clarify, I did have unresolved issues from my husband’s affair – but I wasn’t attempting to get revenge and he definitely doesn’t deserve it. Sounds cliche, but it wasn’t supposed to happen, didn’t look for it, attempted initially to sternly thwart it. This isn’t who I am or what I do. Prior to this I have only ever slept with my husband. OM has a very charming personality and great written communication skills and I got sucked in before I knew what was happening. Once I realized how deep I was in I was hooked, I didn’t want to let go. No excuse. I am an educated woman and I certainly know better, at least I thought I did a year ago. I will seek some help. Thanks for taking the time to respond. Wishing you well in your healing also.

        • Exercisegrace November 29, 2017 at 8:22 am #

          Except it is who you are and it is what you are currently doing. Run don’t walk to therapy. Figure out why you are making these choices. He isn’t special, your relationship isn’t special. He’s a smooth talker and writer? Just a sign he’s almost certainly a serial cheater and practiced at pulling vulnerable women into a triangle. There is no trying to end or stop an affair. I had the chance to cheat when my husband was putting us through hell with his affair. I ran from the situation. It’s a simple moral choice. Work through you. Understand you. Focus on your (healthy) wants and needs. Only then can you make a decision as to whether to stay in your marriage or not. My husband exposed me to STD’s. Any time we bring another person into our marital bed, we are risking our spouses health and they have a right to know that. My husband’s affair partner lied to him initially and he was dumb enough to believe a fellow cheater. His relationships with our older two kids are impacted to this day (5 years after d day). There is so much at stake in your life, don’t risk it. Praying for you!

    • Sarah P. November 29, 2017 at 12:29 am #

      Hi For What It’s Worth,

      You bring up a complex scenario, since you were cheated on by your H before you cheated on him.

      I will tell you something about myself and this is coming from the “human Sarah” who puts loyalty above all else.

      Since my husband works in a profession where he gets hit on all the time (and I am not getting any younger) I have often thought about how I would react if I found out he had an affair. I have thought about it many times, especially when I can tell someone is gunning for him and she is so arrogant she doesn’t even try to hide it.

      I have come to the conclusion that if I found out my husband cheated, I would tell him that my fidelity was no longer a guarantee. Why? Because affairs break whatever marriage contract was in place. People have to start over and rebuild a new marriage after infidelity. They have to go through affair recovery. If this is not done, things like your situation can come up.

      I wonder if you would have fallen into an affair if your husband was always faithful. Yes, you chose to have an affair. But, I wonder if you would have fallen so easily had your husband kept his vows. What do you think?

      Also, I would encourage you to tell your husband and also tell the OM’s wife. If I were in the wife’s situation I would absolutely want to know. I believe everyone deserves to know who they are married to. For all you know, he could have been a bad husband to her for all these years and this could be the piece of information she needs to figure out if she will get marriage counseling or not.

      I tend to think that if husbands or wives are cheating, they are stealing time away from their family. It is impossible to be a good husband or wife and cheat.

      Of course, you will do what feels best for you in your situation, but it might be good to talk to your husband so that both of you can have marriage counseling and perhaps individual counseling. I believe you fell into an affair because earlier problems were never addressed professionally. I can tell you never got a chance to really work through his affair in the first place.

      Also, please go cold turkey from the OM. I know that you feel wounded, but it is the affair fog speaking. Please find a way to water and feed the “marriage garden” at your own home so that your marriage can bloom once again.

      You will never find what you are looking for in an affair, unless you are looking for a whole heap of trouble. It is never, never, never worth it, no matter how strong the connection seemed to be.

      It’s time to reinvest in your own marriage and family, even if it seems like the hardest thing to do.

      Blessings to you,
      Sarah

      • Hopeful November 29, 2017 at 2:25 am #

        One thing i would say is that it was critical for my husband to tell me about his affairs. He stopped both of them 15 months before dday since he said he knew it was wrong and could not keep doing it. So even though it was over and there was no contact it was still a huge wedge between us. I also agree it came between us as a family. Carrying that burden/secret was not only an issue for our marriage but also our kids without knowing that was what it was. And honestly the biggest surprise for me was seeing how it changed him to be honest. We did have to start over but we had a lot to rebuild on. Only you know what is right for you. In the end my husband has benefited the most. Things have been good for all of us. We never wish he had made those horrible decisions but each day we are thankful he came clean. He said he has never been happier and sleeps better than ever.

      • TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 6:43 am #

        Sara. Interesting post. So if I read this correctly then – and looking to clarify – IF your H cheated then you would consider possibly cheating on him?

        Would you consider that a revenge affair?

        I would not consider that as an option no mattter what b/c then I am just like him. A cheater. And I would like to think I am not a cheater and would deal with the issues in a different way.

        I think the guilt would get to me.

        But I also felt that cheating was a deal breaker but yet we are still together. I made a choice to forgive him BUT he made changes. If he had not we would not be together.

        So you just never know what you will do until you are in those shoes.

        But I know I would not do tit for tat. If I felt the need to cheat I would end the M first. Because I hold myself accountable- and I could not do to anyone the devastation I know an A causes. But that’s just me.

        • Sarah P. November 29, 2017 at 7:41 pm #

          Hi TFW,

          Thanks for asking the clarifying question. I am 100% against adultery. I have never cheated on anyone and never will. I would put my husband “on notice” by telling him my fidelity was no longer a guarantee.

          Why?

          Because my husband has said to me many times, “I can tell you are the kind of woman who would never cheat even if I did.” He takes great comfort in that.

          So, if he cheated, I would tell him that my fidelity to him is no longer a guarantee. That the changed the rules and that our commitment to each other is off until he does the honest work of recovery. Would I cheat? NO.

          My husband’s worst fear is being cheated on and it would force him to think about how painful it would be if I cheated on him. (Which I would NOT do.)

          I would be saying this so that he could think about the pain of the affair and perhaps feel the pain by imagining me with others. He might get some insight into how me made me feel.

          So no, even if he cheated, I would never cheat. Ever. I would get a divorce and have it completely finalized before I started seeing other people.

          Saying my loyalty is not a guarantee is simply a statement, but it is not an action I would carry out.

          • TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 9:26 pm #

            Thank you for the clarification. Seeing all you have posted I had the impression you would never cheat. But your fidelity statement appeared contradictory.

            And like you my D would be final before I even dated another person. If I even decided to do that. Pretty much I would be happy on my own doing my own thing.

            • Sarah P. November 29, 2017 at 9:41 pm #

              Yes, I can see how you thought the statement was contradictory since I did not explain it within context. Nope, I would never have an affair.

              If nothing else, I refuse to treat my body like a public toilet. And when people have physical affairs, they are kind of treating their bodies like public toilets.

              Even when I was single, I was extremely conservative. I went on many platonic, coffee dates with people to understand more of what I was looking for. But, there were never even hand shakes exchanged.

              If I was not in a very longterm, monogamous relationship, I did not casually date and I never had a one-night stand. All of my friends called me a prude.

              I have always seen my body as a sacred temple in all ways. I try to treat it well physically and spiritually. And the temple that is my body is only accessed by the one person who proved himself worthy enough to marry. He has the one pair of keys to the temple.

              I think because of who I was before I got married prepared me to be completely loyal even within the context of a relationship that could last another 40 years.

              Sometimes I will say sassy things, especially when I am upset, but I never actually do them!

      • Exercisegrace November 29, 2017 at 8:15 am #

        Sarah, I’m very surprised you would tell your husband that your own fidelity would be in question. For me, my fidelity isn’t about a piece of paper. It’s about my moral compass. I will never cheat because it’s not who I am. My husband crawled down into the gutter of adultery, but I will never let that choice pull me down there too.

        • Sarah P. November 29, 2017 at 7:47 pm #

          Hi Exercise Grace,

          My moral compass and integrity is never negotiable, no matter what.

          As I told TFW, I would say that my fidelity is not a guarantee to force my H to think about what it would be like to be cheated on. But, I would never in a million years cheat.

          If we could not work it out, I would get divorced and have it finalized. Plus, if I were ever cheated on, I think I would probably swear off men for a long while because of what I experienced.

          My morality and my integrity has infinite value to me so I would never actually do such a thing. It would be one of those things to say to put him on notice to show him things just got very real– and very ugly.

          Sometimes I feel like my husband doesn’t take me seriously because he knows with every fiber in his being that I am loyal and there is nothing that could make me un-loyal. Sometimes I think he is too comfortable.

          • Exercisegrace November 30, 2017 at 2:31 pm #

            Sarah, that makes more sense because I read you as someone who is completely loyal and very firmly of strong moral character. I will admit in my anger shortly after d-day, I told him that maybe I should have an affair since we were no longer each other’s first and only (that was something we held precious). But I regretted the words as they left my mouth. I don’t like empty threats, and as you said he knows me well enough to know I would never stoop that low.

      • For What It's Worth November 29, 2017 at 9:53 am #

        Yes, Sarah you are correct on many points. While my affair was definitely NOT for revenge in any way shape or form (read: I did not search for this and have turned down men before without a problem!), I absolutely did ease my conscience on some level because of his affair. And knew he would have to forgive me if he found out because I had forgiven him.

        The history if anyone is interested is this: my H affair happened years ago, before cell phones/texting, social media and even the internet wasn’t in every house yet. This was late 90s, we were young. I never knew about it because it all happened at the workplace. We were invited to this church (very controlling, cult like – bad decision) and in order to become members you had to “get right with God” so they convinced him to come clean with me about what he had done and he did. It was the affair, drugs, secret bank accounts to pay for credit cards he had taken out. But the church people said it wasn’t emotional affair it was just sex and so I needed to not dwell on it, but to forgive and move on quickly and not ask any details. That’s what I did. I was young, embarrassed and forgave and moved on too quickly. Talk about unresolved!!!
        Fast forward to a couple of years ago he started working for the company that bought the company he worked for years ago where he had sex with the OW and it put him having to go that location sometimes where they carried on (in the bathroom – talk about images!!!). I guess it opened up Pandora’s box for me. I knew who she was bc they worked together but never what she looked like. So I fixated on her and she has been married multiple times so I could never find her, but with the internet I was able to track down her maiden name and find her on social media. And she was nothing to look at which made me madder and certainly can’t even compare to me in the looks department. ( I would later during my own affair learn that looks have little to do with anything – it’s all in how they make you feel). I tormented myself and him for a year straight, I couldn’t get over it. I went through all the stages of grieving that affair that I didn’t get to go thru years ago. He apologized so much and he has always said it was never worth it and he would never do it again and hasn’t. I told him then we should get counseling and he didn’t want to, he said I just needed to get past it, it’s old news.

        As I am dealing with this and trying to get past it, the OM enters my life. I tell him sternly I have been cheated on its terrible and I am not interested and I am pro-wife and stuck to that mantra for a while. He is a charming and very patient man. I didn’t give him a phone number or any way to see how I looked or contact me for 5 months. And even then I only did it bc the game app we were chatting on was getting weird and not working a lot of the time. Funny thing is that in real life had I seen what he looked like first I would have passed immediately based on looks. There’s no polite way to say I am out of his league without it sounding terribly conceited, but even he said I was his most beautiful gf ever. But the longer I was sucked in to his personality and his charm, his looks and his personality sort of became him in a strange way and he somehow became attractive to me. It’s all a mess what “the fog” can do to you!!! And that helped me understand my husbands affair better, that it wasn’t because she was prettier. All that is to say it took the focus off of what I was dealing with from the past with H and it felt so good to be free of that, that I actually thought it was fate healing me because I was understanding how he felt years ago, something I couldn’t wrap my head around.

        Affairs aside, my H has always had an issue with honesty about other things as well. Little stupid things, like habits – tobacco, drinking. so trust has always been a factor there. So while I was entering this affair we had an argument about something he wasn’t honest about and I said “well, I guess we can do what we want and things are on a “need to know” basis. Just know it goes both ways so that you don’t get hurt.” This was another justification for me to continue to doing something I knew was wrong. I have always been the honest good girl in our marriage and I work from home, so he thought nothing of my comment.

        I don’t know when I will tell H the story. I know it needs to happen and feel it will. I am not going to tell the OM wife. That is his cross to bear. We never did the spouse bashing that others speak of in an EA. We rarely talked about them. Occasionally we would say something they were bitching about, but didn’t dwell on it or bash the others spouse. OM is on his 2nd marriage (has a child with first one he is trying to get custody of) and he has only been married a year and half. Yup, he was pursing me 6 months into his marriage!! I don’t think he is happy, she is very young in her 20s probably nothing in common with him being in his mid-thirties. There’s a huge maturity gap IMO between 20s & 30s. 30s & 40s no so much. Basically they have been together for 5 years and their son together is about to turn 5 – so that explains their relationship I guess – had an unplanned kid. He loves his kids and wants a family, I guess he didn’t want another baby mama and child support payment (I am speculating – we didn’t talk about spouses much) so he married her. I can’t throw stones, it is the reason I married my husband while I was in college, but different because we dated through high school – we hadn’t just met. Doubtful I would have married him had I not gotten pregnant, we likely would have gone separate ways since I was in college.

        I am def trying cold turkey with OM. I have not and will not initiate contact with him. But sometimes when I am weak (during the times we would normally be chatting) I cant say I don’t secretly wish he would reach out. I am not there yet, but I want to be…..I never want to feel like this again. Nor do I ever want to be the reason others are hurting.

        • TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 10:58 am #

          So in the interest of this post you believe what he is telling you?

          His wife is young and immature (si he says). Maybe she is young-Er and pretty and he enjoys that attention. Maybe she is young-ER and not “as experienced” as him BUT they have plenty in common and she is a nice person. A good person who loves him.

          Possibly he pulled the oldest line “my wife doesn’t understand me” on you to rope you in.

          He appears to be very skilled at this and was enjoying the thrill of the hunt. I’m sorry you were sucked into his web of lying and cheating.

          It appears to be a game to him.

          • For What It's Worth November 29, 2017 at 11:10 am #

            Honestly, no – he never said anything about her very much. He never bashed her. And never said she didn’t understand him and he never called her immature. Rarely was negative about her at all. He certainly didn’t use anything about her to rope me in. As I stated above we didn’t do any spouse bashing. Not of our own spouses or about each others. It really was just about us – we talked about our kids way more than the spouses ever.

            But it seemed like he was always having to take care of everything. Administrative tasks that at my house I always handle he was taking off of work to do when she was home. And one day something just made ME ASK HIM if she was younger than him and he said she was. And we left it at that.

        • Hopeful November 29, 2017 at 1:43 pm #

          Honestly all the stories sound the same. And to me whatever the reasons they are all excuses. One of the ow my husband had an affair with tracked him down for 3-4 years. He refused to give her his number but would find out where he was and just show up. Major persistence. In the end you either have it in you or not morally. I agree with everyone else you need to get help. And i am of the opinion if you want to attempt to stay in your marriage you need to tell him. My guess he is not feeling great about things. And that is not fair to do to someone else all to satisfy your needs and issues. I knew something was off but never could figure it out. I had a plan to commit suicide which was detailed including letters to my kids. Through my husbands affairs and behaviors he made me feel horrible. It ever mattered what I brought up, did for him or our family, how much money I made, how thin and fit I was etc he was so guilty and focused on himself. And he ended both affairs 15 months before dday so it was not like I caught him or anything. Just like you think he has no idea about you it is possible you have no idea what he is feeling and going through.

          • For What It's Worth November 29, 2017 at 3:19 pm #

            I think the reason my husband doesn’t have any odd feelings about things at the moment is because I was already a mess having re-hashed his infidelity the whole year prior. When I stopped talking about it (bc I had my new focus) he didn’t question why bc he certainly didn’t want to discuss his affair anymore, he was just glad it was over and I was in a better place. And like any other addiction when I had my “fix” from communicating with the OM I was happy and jovial at home. Keeping in mind my A was mostly emotional, only met OM in person 2 times in a year. So I wasn’t out of the house meeting anyone and we ended our chats at 9pm so I wasn’t getting the typical late night text messages, hubs and I went to bed together every night and OM went to bed too at his house. We weren’t communicating all day & night, we had families and jobs.
            I was never mean to my H that I recall, short and abrupt at times and I found myself pulling away from him emotionally and physically, but just pushed through it and kept things as normal as possible.

            Yes, all the stories sound the same because at the end of the day it boils down to selfishness and feeding ones own ego at the cost of everyone else. It is just selfishness, plain & simple. There is no justification only excuses, you’re right.
            I feel for what you went through, it is terrible and torturous and I am glad you are both healing and moving forward.

            • Hopeful November 29, 2017 at 6:26 pm #

              Yes sounds familiar. My husband had two affairs both were sporadic sometimes not having contact for a year at a time. He said they never talked about me. Neither ow were married. I would not say my husband was mean but there was a dynamic and it was different. I could never put my finger on it. And finding out things were sporadic makes more sense. There was no regular contact or meeting up. Even if I had gone through the phone bills I would have had to piece together numbers over the course of months or an entire year. Now I know when things seemed off was most likely when he had contact with one of them. And at least in our house I took on the burden of everything. That was for a variety of reasons. That was my biggest source of frustration since he pushed to get married and have kids. Maybe my husband is unique but if I bring something up he almost always says me too or I was thinking that too even about sensitive topics. He might never bring it up which is an issue but once I bring it up he totally relates. In the end I feel most sorry for my husband. He is the one that has to live with this his entire life. He has said it is and will always be his biggest regret. His biggest fear was that he would die and one of the ow would tell me. He is the happiest he has ever been and loves going to sleep every night knowing I know everything. Good luck!

    • Too Weak December 3, 2017 at 5:21 am #

      YOU ARE A SELFISH AND EVEN IN YOUR CONFESSION YOU ARE UNREMORSEFUL AND ALMOST BOASTFUL! YOU MAKE IT SOUND LIKE WE SHOULD SOMEHOW BE SORRY FOR YOU!
      I am 2 months in on D- day from finding my wife in an affair and now she has left me, taken the kids, filed for divorce, still seeing that dirtbag asshole.
      It is nothing but selfishness to the core and I hate you, I hate him, I hate her, and I hate me for still loving her.

    • Too Weak December 3, 2017 at 5:48 am #

      For What It’s Worth

      Married too young – ha! Piss poor excuse! Married is married! Plus, you are not “too young” now and you know you know better. You got convinced that you “deserved better”, and were enticed by the idew that someone took an interest in your aging, wrinkled ass. But you know who has ALWAYS taken an interest in your – husband that has stuck it out with you day in and day out.

      What triggered me was the texting morning and night. My CS deleted EVERYTHING except a few random texts. I found “good morning” messages and realized that this prick was envading my very bed via text while I lay next to my wife unaware… That cuts to the core.
      You knew damn well what you were doing but selfishly did it anyway. You still have your head up your ass because his motivation was twisted and wrong from the get-go but you ate it up anyway. You formed an image and person from YOUR wishes and YOUR fantasy. I guarantee you still don’t know who he REALLY is although you swear you do. You don’t know because you aren’t waking up next to him for years. You are not steuggling with him in finances, child-rearing, baggage from his past (and hers), bad habits, attitudes, etc. Tou both out y9u best self forward (and even alot of false bests) and that is who you and he saw. That is the fake, false, insincere and dishonest personage that you formed and willingly allowed to sweep you away. Your lover is a myth and and a farce and so are you. You allowed yourself to get played and you played him.
      You say you love him – please stop with the romatic bullshit! Truth is you NEVER KNEW HIM and you never will! You only know who you made him out to be and only what he allowed you to see. Its easy to pretend and play Romeo and Juliette when it’s not 24/7/365.
      So spare me and us with the “I love you” tripe. You dont love him and you never did. You love the image you THINK he is and he you. You played each other while believing each the others lies. Your I love you is not sentimental, it’s sad, empty, false and disgusting.

      Again, FUCK YOU!

  3. Exercisegrace November 28, 2017 at 7:16 pm #

    Here is my two cents! I have many details and I am glad I do. My imagination was conjuring up far worse. Affairs don’t usually start as sexual attraction. My husband’s whore was physically less attractive than me. She outweighed me by an easy one hundred pounds. I’m not trying to body shame, just pointing out that quite often these women are not lingerie models. What DID attract him was the constant attention she gave him. As a single, childless woman she had plenty of time for that. She pumped up his ego, and there was no accountability in the relationship as they didn’t share a household and four young children. She made him feel like he was perfect and everything was someone else’s (usually my) fault.

    His guilt led to serious performance issues and both of our therapists said this is quite common. So the sex wasn’t the steamy, made for TV movie sex that I was envisioning. Either way, I have spent years dealing with the damage. At the end of the day, I will never understand how someone can whore herself out for a few crumbs dropped from someone else’s marital table. While I have made enormous strides in regaining my power, this is something I am fully aware that I will battle for years to come. How you can willingly inflict that on someone is beyond me.

  4. TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 6:51 am #

    I would rather know the truth 100%.

    Because, as an example- he let me believe she pursued him. Two months sfter DDAY2 when the OW sent me their emails I saw HE pursued her.

    Devastation all over again. I realized he was still lying to cover his butt. I was furious with him yet again! Two months of hard work down the drain.

    And then I started thinking about leaving him!! Because he lied or hid the truth yet again. He just couldn’t see the damage he was doing.

    I begged for the truth to any question I asked. Just be honest – and then we can move on. But no – he chose to try to take the cowardly way out and lie about things (not everything but enough).

    Coward!!

  5. TryingHard November 29, 2017 at 9:01 am #

    FWIW— gosh it sounds like your marriage has more issues than a New York Times archive!!

    I get hit on all the time. I constantly get “friend” requests from strange men on there. I don’t know why because if you saw my account all you see is family stuff including my husband. My profile pic is me and i must say i do look pretty cute in it 😊. I laugh and delete the requests. I know what they are doing, phishing, and I’m not biting. I have more respect for myself than that. And there’s lots of phishing going on out there on The web. He’s hoping I’m as desperate and sad as he. I’m not.

    You fell for his bait I’m sorry to say. You were his fantasy and I’m sorry to say once you met up in real life well it burst his fantasy and he’s become less infatuated with you. I’ll bet his moved in to a new fantasy game player. I dint believe his NC with you has anything to do with him being noble and has decided to be a better person. Why would he? He likes fantasyland. You did too and you sold your soul for a cheap thrill. Not trying to be cruel just stating what i know.

    I’m going to say do not tell your h or his wife. You’ve done enough damage. What i am going to advise is get therapy to deal with your issues and your poor coping skills. You may or may not decide to stay married and that’s going to be your decision. Confessing is going to make things exponentially more difficult for you and him and your kids with you telling him what you did.

    Mean time leave ALL men alone. Especially strangers until you can figure your self out. It sounds like you are desperate for love and attention. You are hungry for that. You can choose junk to eat when you’re hungry or healthy food. You choose junk food with this game player I’m sorry to say and now you have to bear that weight.

    Just my opinion and i wish you luck.

    • For What It's Worth November 29, 2017 at 10:58 am #

      Thanks TryingHard – I do appreciate your honestly and perspective. Yup, I am a hot mess with lots of marital baggage! I replied to Sarah above with more details about my history, if interested.

      I too am a decent looking woman and get a lot of male attention, always have. I also get it from hubs, so I am not desperate. He is at this point in our lives extremely proud to have me as his wife and has pic of me everywhere.

      In my delusion this man was different. Like no one I have ever encountered. And I was his fantasy, as that is how this all works I am learning. But we have met twice, after we met in person the first time he immediately scheduled a class in my state so he could see me again. He had to stay an extra day (at his expense) and drive 2 extra hours to see me. So he def didn’t lose interest after the first meeting. Doing all of this when you don’t live local to each other is a lot of work and not something you do if not interested. When his DUI happened he was actually thinking of how we could see each other again in January. The DUI actually did happen because I looked up the arrest record as well, was legit. I am sure with that, his increased drinking that lead to that and the fact that he had been carrying on with me (which changes the dynamic in the household) I am sure everything came to a head. Wife probably flipped her lid and he thought better about some of what he had been doing. All of it a blessing in disguise. But my fear is he will contact me when “the smoke clears” and he stops beating himself up over the DUI. Because as you say, he likes fantasyland.
      I agree with you on not telling spouses, I am suffering. He may or may not be suffering, I don’t know. I see no need to make them suffer. At some point I may tell my H, but right now I need to work on me. That is priority.

    • Robin December 2, 2017 at 9:31 am #

      Wow that’s amazing TryingHard – what a straight talker 🙂 What a complete dose of common sense. Upbeat, no nonsense constructive advice. People take note. well done.

      • TryingHard December 2, 2017 at 1:40 pm #

        Thanks Robin. I’m a big believer in straight talk. Even if it hurts and i do it to myself quite often. When i hear trite excuses for cheating i can’t stand by and let that false narrative continue. Someone has to call bullshit. I don’t want to argue with anyone because really these cheaters are so into justifying their behavior why waste my breath? Complaining and having pity parties is not productive. Something or someone doesn’t work for you make the change necessary. No one is holding a gun to your head demanding you stay. We are free. So are the cheaters to go whenever they choose.

        Glad my words resounded with you. Take care.

    • Too Weak December 3, 2017 at 6:19 am #

      WTF? Dont tell? Are you kidding me? Even among the betrayed there is deceit.
      You need to tell him to take responsibility and suffer the consequences. Not telling is a chickenshit move and shows you are still trying to have you cake and eat it too.
      Of course it will devistate him but that’s YOUR cross to bear. You had the false courage to follow your temptation now have the courage to take your medicine.
      He may see the shoe is on the other foot and he may not get too judgemental due to his earlier affair. But he still has a right to get mad and hurt and everyhing else and even kick you to the curb because you forgave him and there’s no “takesies backsies”.

  6. Joey November 29, 2017 at 12:29 pm #

    This is going to sound very weird, and hopefully you don’t judge me too much, but catching my ex and her AP in the act (in my bed no less) was almost a relief. Don’t get me wrong, those images and the words they were saying before they realized I was there are scarring and brutal, but up until that point, my ex was putting me through constant DDays and fasle reconciliations. The AP was doing the same thing to his wife. And it was driving me nuts. I had suspicions and doubts, but more than anything, I wanted to reconcile and believe that the girl I loved before the affair was still in there. Finally catching them in the act gave me the leverage I needed – no longer could she explain away something or say that I misunderstood. Nope – I saw it with my own two eyes. The crazy part of it all – they literally freaked out – she was crying and saying “it’s not what you think.” He was freaking out, pleading me not tell his wife. I just stood there, slient, calm and collected. Told her I want her out. I am done. Please never contact me again, and walked out. I sat in my family room and he had to walk past me to leave. This big time, hotshot executive looked pretty pathetic walking out in his boxers and mumbling his apologies. All I said was – “I really hope your children don’t hold you up as what a man should be. A man doesn’t do this to his wife and kids. I don’t care how rich you are. You are pretty poor in my eyes.” He was stunned and the affair ended that night (and so did my relationship). He is with his wife (they had another baby), and I am so thankful that she didn’t see what I saw.

    I still have to see my ex ( same group of friends) from time to time. But it gets less painful as time goes by. I have realized how selfish she really is, and I almost feel sorry for her that she needed to do something (the affair) so cruel and heartless to feel alive.

    • TryingHard November 29, 2017 at 12:46 pm #

      Joey don’t hate me if I say I had a laugh over this. OMG I can’t believe this happened to you. You always see this stuff in movies but never in person. I can only imagine the whole “it’s not what you think” attempt at gaslighting. I am also glad you got to put mr. big shot in his place. And I think you did. Can you imagine another man saying this to you? He deserved everything you said.

      I think this is why my h finally told me about his affair. He knew I’d catch him eventually. I almost did, he said, a couple of times. I don’t know what I would have done if this had happened to me. So did you burn the bed?

      I get your relief at catching them. You literally caught them with their pants down!! You finally figure out you were being gaslighted by her and your relief is totally normal. It’s funny how we have “feelings” about something but because we sooooo want to believe them we talk ourselves into believing their bull sh*^.

      I always enjoy hearing your comments Joey and you know what? Save your energy, don’t feel sorry for her. I hope you get to meh real soon.

    • TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 2:18 pm #

      I’m sorry because that must have been brutal to witness.

      I think it is interesting (not funny haha but somewhat) how the cheater acts upon discovery. Caught red handed and SUDDENLY it’s not what it looks lIke (I’m pretty sure it IS what it like looks like but that’s just me!) or it doesn’t mean anything (I know you have treated me like a piece of crap b/c your A doesn’t mean anything – but I can only imagine if it did!) and all the other lies the cheater tells.

      How sad it has to come to that. I always told my H if you really decide you don’t want to be married PLEASE DO NOT CHEAT! just tell me and I will be hurt but I will still have respect for you. I told him that about a maybe 1 month before I learned of his A (DDay1).

      But I even though it didn’t mean anything he still asked for a D 4-5 times during his A. It didn’t mean anything and he didn’t love her but I was getting kicked to the curb after 25 years of M.

      He finally learned his lesson b/c at DDAY2 I told him I was Divorcing him. His head spun so fast I thought he was auditioning for The Exorcist haha

    • Sarah P. November 29, 2017 at 9:15 pm #

      Hello Joey,

      That is quite the story and I love how you confronted the other man and said the things that you did. That hot shot executive who thought he was invincible got caught with his pants down literally and metaphorically.

      I am also glad that you ended your relationship with your wife. There is no rebuilding with someone who keeps game playing, gaslighting, and lying. You got the proof you needed to figure out which way to go.

      I know one other person who caught their partner in bed. When I lived in France, I had a friend and she had broken off her engagement soon before I met her. Anyhow, here story was this:

      Instead of spending the day at the library like she told her fiance, she decided to get champagne and strawberries and surprise him. Instead, he surprised her because when she walked in, he was having sex with a Russian girl. She threw the bottle of champagne so hard against the wall that it burst and also broke the wall. It was sad what happened after that. She cut all of her hair off, gained weight, and never dated again (at least during the three years I knew her.) She took everything so personally and instead of seeing her ex as broken, she saw herself as broken and unworthy of love.

      It is always mind-boggling to me the terrible impact that affairs have on innocents. In some cases, innocents suffer more than wayward spouses.

      Anyways, glad you got out of your marriage. No one deserves what you went through.

      • Too Weak December 3, 2017 at 6:28 am #

        In some cases….

        IN ALL CASES!

    • Exercisegrace November 30, 2017 at 2:34 pm #

      Joey, I don’t think it’s weird at all. When my husband finally admitted to the affair my first reaction was this enormous sense of relief! Like a weight was off me. I kept thinking “I knew I wasn’t crazy!!”.

    • Too Weak December 3, 2017 at 6:59 am #

      Joey
      You are my hero to have the self-control to remain spookily calm.

      On D-day I got in his face, gave him a wicked left hook that sent his sunglasses flying and him 3 steps back –
      breaking my finger in the process.
      I then dented up his truck and broke his windshild before my cheating wife urged him to GTFO.
      I still want to bash his face in with a bat and listen to his breath gurgle through the blood. Sick, I know.
      Why I’m not as mad at her IDK… Prob because I know he knows she is beautiful and just wanted to get in her pants and boost his red-neck ego. She was broken and desparate, he took advantage of that and deceived her. I know he blew sunshine up her ass and she loved it.
      I would always tell her she was even more beautiful than the day I married her 23 years ago. Our real love couldnt hold a candle to the vacuum in her heart I suppose. It seems her baggage and drinking finally caught up to her and she took the cowards way. Now she’s angry and divorcing me. She blames me for everthing while still seeing this POS and both denying it. That pisses me off even more.
      I would make it my mission to take her down but I’m hoping she may come to her senses and return to me. I dont even know why. I know I still love her in many ways even though she is being heartlessly cruel in the divorce. After 23 yrs and me being 51 I’m scared shitless about being alone and not at all confident I will ever find love again or that I’m even lovable. I dont know which is worse. Trying to work it out and dealing with all that pain or being alone….
      People say marriage is always better than divorce when both are willing to work at it. It will be hard but it will be rewarding if you work at it. Some say they would never go back b/c they are so much stronger. I hope and pray for that but she is still hating on me and screwing him.
      His wife has taken a head in the sand approach and NOBODY believes it’s happening b/c nobody can ever see her doing such a low thing as to cheat in a marriage with 4 kids with another married man with 2 kids.
      Part of me wants to catch and expose them but that would further lessen the chances of her returning.
      Fuck me ultima!
      If it weren’t for the kids I would probably put a gun in my mouth. I have been so hurt and injured my whole life with being sexually, emotionally, physically abused by my father, sexually abused by my scout master, than my father being murdered, and now this… And this is by far the worst pain I have EVER experienced. It never goes away.
      I pray but there is no comfort, no movement, no signs of anything changing. I have always felt like a failure nad have always struggled with self-esteem. Ifeel like a failure in many ways for the ways I failed in the marriage and now for not believing in God enough to remain calm regardless. I am a fraud. I’m tired and losing my faith that there is another rainbow…
      I dont know how to be a survivor and I don’t have to mental fortitude to fight the overwhelming, negative and condemning thoughts.
      Sorry God….

      • TheFirstWife December 3, 2017 at 9:17 am #

        TooWeak

        I am heartbroken for you as we can all understand that pain and devastation.

        It sounds as though your W is being even more cruel by involving your children and taking them from you.

        I always believed that is is unfortunate that kids end up being impacted by adult issues. Often unfairly so.

        I hope you have a good counselor or therapist b/c infidelity stinks!!! It is the worst pain imaginable- we all know that.

        I hope you can see that it doesn’t have to be the end of the world and that you will survive. Hell my H was going to D me after 25 years of a good M. We had no real issues except I made his life so damn easy (all his friends were envious).

        We never said the word “divorce” until his A and then he must have told me 10x ILYBNILWY- I love you but not in love with you line. Seriously was kicking me to the curb.

        But I was going down fighting and I wasn’t giving up. And luckily in the last possible second he realized what he was doing and turned it around.

        Your W has taken drastic steps with RO and kids etc. but you don’t have to be a doormat. Get evidence of the A if you must. Hire a PI if needed.

        But please do not think this is the end of the world. So many here have survived it – as bad as it is. You may feel hopeless now but your kids need you. Every day.

        It is a tough emotionally charged fight. But get a lawyer and therapist and support team – maybe even new friends if necessary – and fight for your kids.

        Please keep posting here b/c you are not weak. We all loved our spouses in the face of devastation. Some D. Some R. Some lived 25+ years in crappy M and didn’t realize it until after the D. You will heal. Slowly. Agonizingly slowly.

        But it can get better. One day at a time.

      • TheFirstWife December 3, 2017 at 12:13 pm #

        Too Weak

        I think you will get excellent advice & support here.

        After finding out about my H’s A he told me one week later he wants a D!!

        I had no $ to my name and a house I cannot afford on my own, teenager children with college looming in the future etc etc.

        First I put together a 90 day plan. How to survive. One thing I did was one thing for me each day. In the beginning it was a lot of prayer. Read a book. Exercise and boost the energy levels.

        But pick one thing. Just one thing a day. Have an ice cream. Listen to a good song you enjoy that doesn’t remind you of the W.

        It will help you. Trust me it works.

      • Sarah P. December 4, 2017 at 9:30 pm #

        Hi Too Weak,

        I asked Doug if I could email you privately, so be on the look out for Doug’s email. I do know how to help you, but don’t necessarily want to discuss such triggering stuff on a public website. Don’t lose hope– I do have some answers for you.

        God bless,

        Sarah

  7. Joey November 29, 2017 at 3:42 pm #

    Tryinghard – it is crazy what we will believe even though our gut is telling us something different. I would have saved myself a lot DDays if I just would have said enough is enough instead of holding on to the relationship for dear life. It’s embarrassing how much I lost myself in trying to be the person she wanted and needed. I will always live by this phrase going forward – “when someone shows you who they are, believe them.” Kind of sucks in a way – will probably always have a guard up when I used to be the most outgoing person.

    TFW – my ex told me the same thing. That she was going to breakup with me so many times. So I would disconnect and go NC, and she would come crying and begging for another chance. I have always wondered why cheating spouses stay when they claim to have found their “soul mate” and “best friend” and the AP is the greatest thing since sliced bread. If the AP is so wonderful and the cheater is so in love, why don’t you just leave?!?! It’s because they want both lives – the stability and fantasy, and screw the BS for interfering with that. This reasoning has really helped me reconcile with the fact that her AP could have been anyone, the love they shared was so completely selfish, and I wasn’t this horrible monster that she cooked me up to be.

    With everything I have said, I respect all of you so much who are still in reconciliation and working to fight for a real, respectful, and strong relationship. I respect the BS for finding forgiveness and love in the worst of situations, and respect the unfaithful for truly getting it and helping make it right.

    • TheFirstWife November 29, 2017 at 6:26 pm #

      Thank you Joey. I think in many cases the BS suddenly realizes the A is nothing more than a fantasy. It’s like an addiction.

      And then reality sets in.

      In the aftermath of DDAY2 I made sure my H knew it was a privilege to be sitting st the the table eating dinner with me and our kids.

      He has tried to make up for it every day. It still hurts and always will.

  8. TryingHard November 29, 2017 at 5:13 pm #

    Hopeful–I’ve heard before how your husband was pursued by one OW for 3-4 years. I have a question for you? Do you consider that time that he was being pursued by her and that he continued to go to the same places he KNEW she’d be, that his “friends” were aware of her intentions for him, that there was an undoubtedly wink wink nod nod she likes you banter with those friends over that time, that he never bothered to tell you about her efforts to seduce him and her relentless pursuit, that he did nothing to dissuade and may have even perhaps encouraged her believing as long as it was playful flirtations and after all there was certainly no sex so it’s NOT an affair, and the fact that maybe he even looked forward to those contacts over those 3-4 years because maybe that was enough to feed his ego until it WASN’T enough and oh well what the hell I’ll sleep with her just this once, ok one more time….. Do you consider that he had a 3-4 year affair with that woman or do you look at it as a short term affair? Much like a one night stand with her?

    I’m not trying to make any judgments or accusations. I’ve gotten very curious how we betrayeds reconcile ourselves to the infidelity and end up staying with our cheaters. And trust me I am questioning myself the most 🙁

    • Hopeful November 29, 2017 at 6:43 pm #

      No worries at all or judgement felt. So both affairs were sporadic. I think they both started when there was any contact. He argued that at first the 3-4 years of pursuit did not count but I count it since it was all secretive. He started his first affair but only saw that person I think 3-4 times at most over 10 years and would go a year without contact. He claims she always contacted him. The second one started hanging around at the time the first affair started. He had one friend that introduced him to both women. How convenient! He is very fuzzy on years of when they met and when the second affair started. He honestly cannot remember which year it was. Drives me crazy but as he said he hated himself and wanted to forget it happened vs celebrate it. From what he has told me the second ap would communicate with the mutual friend. He said that none of his friends knew or said anything. I still question that. Even more recently a friend brought her up and asked about the creepy woman. It is hard to know honestly and I am not sure if he would remember it in a realistic perspective. I think that affair fog had set in. The affair began when she got dropped off at a bar that he knew she was at late at night and could not get a cab and he was the only one that could give her a ride. He says she had never done that before but after four years it worked. He said he was screaming in his head to stop but he also had already had one other affair so he was already down the slippery slope. In general this was all hard to comprehend and digest. He at first minimized the length of each affair. At that point he was not sure if we would make it and wanted to do damage control for both of us. So in the end both affairs lasted 10 years in my book. The one fizzled out and had little contact the other one I think was more in depth,slightly more frequent contact but still not constant. In the end he broke it off with both of them 15 months before dday since he said he could not take it anymore.

      What is interesting is I feel like he treated these affairs as one night stands. He totally disagrees that they were emotional but for anything to go on that long I think there was that component. He said he never discussed me, us or the kids ever. It was his escape to act young, reckless and carefree again. In a crazy way the fact that he had the affair overlapping and also communicated with strangers online makes me realize more than ever it was him. None of them were enough, someone he wanted to be with or had any real feelings for. I find it strange but that is what he created. He has told me for years when we were dating and married that he would have even snapped if a woman would have given him attention to leave him alone but his boundaries shifted. He was highly successful and seemed to have everything going for him. He was not middle age. The only explanation he has given me was that he was selfish and should not have gotten married so young since he did not get to play the field. Even though I think that is lame since he had many girlfriends and got lots of female attention. Who really knows. I will say in all aspects of his life he would give others the benefit of the doubt and hung out with people who pushed the limits. I also think alcohol played a major role. I do not think if he had not been drinking that he would have had any affairs. In the end some days I struggle with myself and why am I here. I think what is hardest is that I feel like if we did not have kids there is no way we would be together. He talks about our future and showers me with love and attention now. I have this nervous feeling of the rug being pulled out from under me or just that it is all fake. Even though he tells me that during the affair years that none of it was fake with me but that he was lost.

    • Exercisegrace November 30, 2017 at 2:42 pm #

      TH… you bring up some interesting points. My husband’s whore admits she pursued him aggressively and for quite awhile before he ever realized her intentions. They worked together, although it was long distance (her office was an hour away). I believe this fed into the flirtation and his sense of safety. I also fully believe he felt that as long as nothing physical was happening, he wasn’t cheating. Therefore he could enjoy the flirtation. He was her first rodeo and she was a master at reeling married men in. The distance also fed the fantasy of her being someone special as he could project qualities onto her that she did not have. He got pulled in emotionally first. Having said all that, he is equally if not more so to blame.

      • Ken December 2, 2017 at 3:00 pm #

        Not equally.
        He is 100% at fault. period

        • Exercisegrace December 3, 2017 at 12:37 am #

          I’m curious as to why you don’t think affair partners share any blame?

  9. TryingHard November 29, 2017 at 5:22 pm #

    To add–because short of experiencing what Joey experienced a first hand eyefull smack in-the face-naked-ass-wife-naked-ass-man in your own bed having sex or the after glow of sex!!!!! how do any of us reconcile this because this is exactly what our cheaters were dong over and over again and just because we didn’t personally see it like Joey did makes it no less real that it happened!!!

    • Exercisegrace November 30, 2017 at 2:46 pm #

      TH, so many of our experiences alphabet been the same. You are giving voice to some thoughts that I have been having. Even though we have done the counseling, even though he has shown himself to have made many changes, etc. this is still hard to reconcile. Five years down the road and it still turns my stomach when I think of him with her. There are still triggers. While it’s immensely improved, it’s still harder than I hoped it would be at this point.

      • Ken December 2, 2017 at 2:51 pm #

        After 6 years. Glad she’s gone.
        If you’re still at this point in year 5… best of luck.
        Average recovery time is 2-4 years.
        Her soulmate left her and she’s on her own……
        And I’ve taken advantage of something that I never expected in my life.

        • Exercisegrace December 2, 2017 at 3:00 pm #

          Yes it may seem like my recovery is taking longer than the norm, but the circumstances were fairly horrific. The whore went full bunny boiler. The first three of these five years We’re spent dealing with repeated, anonymous stalking and harassing. Not just of me but my two older kiddos. Lots of time and money spent on lawyers etc. It was like something out of a made for TV movie. Our therapists both said it would change our healing timeline because we couldn’t truly move forward when we were living in a defensive crouch wondering where and when the next attack was coming from.

    • Ken December 2, 2017 at 2:59 pm #

      I’ll never forget finding out where her soulmate lived. My gf at the time had a daughter living in the same townhouse complex.
      So one night I drive by, see what’s going on just sitting in my car outside as her car is on the driveway.
      I’m sitting there then I see him come downstairs, into the kitchen and back up stairs…. to be with my wife……………….
      Pleasant evening.
      And you know what I hope…… she had a wonderful evening and fucked her brains out.
      She’s alone now!!!!!!
      And I’m doing what I want with whom I want.
      SHE HAD TO GO, 27.5 years and I get a text message from the guys wife…. we need to talk……. we sure did.
      Life does get better, It takes focus and will and all the other things that are recommended.
      My ex blamed her affair on me, it was my fault. We’ll good luck to that.
      She said she was unhappy.
      Wonder how happy she’s going to be Dec 9 at my sons engagement party when I bring someone and she comes solo

  10. TryingHard November 29, 2017 at 7:43 pm #

    Hopeful— for what it’s worth i think your h is telling you the truth. I do not think he was emotionally invested in them. I think he got enough of an ego boost by their pre sex attention. I believe alcohol did play a big role in his decision making. I bet when they were done he ran out of there away from them as fast as he could. I bet he was paralyzed with fear and guilt. I’m certain he didn’t speak about you as there probably wasn’t enough time nor inclination for him. He didn’t want to justify it. And how pathetic were these women ?? Sheesh. He probably saw that too. Just a couple of cheap bar flys!

    One time in therapy i told my therapist something my h said about the OW. She perked up and told me given all the info she had from me he was not emotionally invested in her. So with your h being in this business and what dues he have to gain to deny an emotional involvement with them? I believe he’s telling you the truth.

    Where i believe he betrayed you is not with the OW because it could have been anyone because of his alcohol problems and need for ego kibbles from ANYONE is that he couldn’t see that he needed to tell you about these persistent flirtatious women. But I’m thinking he’s seeing that now.

    In the end only you truly know him. I’m just an observer here from what you’ve written about him.

    You do the same thing i do. We overthink and we judge other people as we judge ourselves. We know how we would react or how we would feel to give ourselves to another person. and it’s incredulous to us that others don’t do the same when faced with these situations. We’ve got to quit thinking our hs think the same as we. That they hold the same beliefs and values.

    Lol i tell my h every time some strange guy sends me a friend request in social media. Sometimes i think he wishes i would do what he did when shown ego building compliments from complete strangers with an agenda. If for just to take the heat off him. Well I’ll be damned if i do!!

    • Hopeful November 30, 2017 at 3:31 pm #

      Th – thanks for your words. It is so critical to have a place like this to go to. In the end with therapy i worked through what I needed to. I got to the point where my focus is today and how he proves himself every day. I agree completely the real betrayal was when he kept things a secret from me no matter how small. He has said when he left the house he acted as if he was not married. He sees what he did and is embarrassed by it. By him seeing it went a long way now I watch closely as he lives his life.

  11. TryingHard November 30, 2017 at 3:12 pm #

    EG–I agree and most days are good. I’ve learned so much and have pretty much reconciled myself but there are days when well not so much 🙁

    But as I accept my responsibility for myself and MY decisions it makes it easier and easier. I read an interesting note. There’s a saying “with great power comes responsibility”. When the subjects are reversed comes an even more powerful message and that it is “with responsibility comes great power” I need to own my own responsibility and not focus so much on what I believe HIS is. As I own my responsibility I feel more empowered.

    Also the whole emotional detachment thing is working pretty well for me too. I hope you are doing well my friend.

  12. TryingHard November 30, 2017 at 4:27 pm #

    Hopeful– I know it’s said that people don’t change. I believe that is very false. People DO change. Heck physically each and every cell is gone and turned over every seven years. I’m no biologist and maybe that’s not accurate but I’m choosing to believe it.

    I know I’m not the same person I was 25, 10 or even 5 years ago so I have to believe the same for our mates. LOL people can also change for the better or for the worse but normally when people change it’s because of some kind of life crisis or loss or both. I believe your h probably HAS changed. We do so many stupid things when we are young and immature. Especially when we get carried away with drugs or alcohol. I never had a problem with either of those substances but I’ve certainly had very bad habits. With age comes wisdom and wisdom to know those bad habits need to go.

    Pretty sure your h is very aware of his past shortcomings and is doing everything to rectify. And I don’t mean to simplify or normalize his past. It’s something he has to live with too.
    Sometimes it’s easy to slip back into those old ways as well. Especially if we are willing to accept those bad habits of theirs. I know I am making sure I don’t accept any thing less than an equal footing in this relationship complete with respect. Doesn’t mean he won’t totally piss me off from time to time but I am not afraid to call him on it either and that’s a whole different issue than choosing to cheat. haha pretty sure I piss him off as well.

    Hopeful I truly believe you and he are going to be ok. You need to start believing it as well.

    • Hopeful December 2, 2017 at 3:10 pm #

      Th, i so agree! I know I am partially holding myself back. Some to feel like I am protecting myself. Also I think with the passing of time i worry things will slip back into the old ways. I realize how things can change so gradually. Every day life even without major hardships can be busy and hard. I need to find the balance of vigilance, trust and happinesss.

      We had a really long talk last night and that always helps. Maybe that is part of it with time it feels trivial to bring up old affair stuff and not in an attacking way at all. For me I need to commicate not just show it through actions. My husband is someone who shows by his actions. I do know he means what he says and he is showing it so we need to work hard at the communication side.

  13. TryingHard December 2, 2017 at 4:01 pm #

    Ken— karmas a butch and it’s spelled haha!!! Glad you’re doing well. Life is good

  14. TryingHard December 2, 2017 at 4:05 pm #

    Well heck. Ruined my own meme!!! Karmas a bitch!! Haha guess it could be a butch too 😊

  15. TryingHard December 3, 2017 at 9:42 am #

    Too Weak—you’re angry and you have every right to be angry. I’m not going to tell you not to be angry. Anger is a useful emotion. It makes to realize the changes you need to make to feel safe.

    But take that righteous anger and use it as a motivation. Use that anger to find the best bad ass lawyer you can afford. Use that anger to hire a PI to get the evidence you need to make your case. Hi after sole custody of your children. There’s a lot of good with using your anger wisely. You are not a victim in this. Dint let them make you a victim.

    What you can’t let your anger do is motivate you to do stupid things that will hurt your case. No more throwing punches at anyone. That looks very bad in a divorce court. You act beyond reproach. Try to take the high road. Doesn’t mean you have to be a door mat. Quite the opposite. You turn your back in her and put you and your kids first. she is not worth going to jail and she sure as hell isnt wirth you taking your own life. No one is. We should never love someone more than we love ourselves. It took me quite a while to understand this. No one should have that much power in our lives. Eff her is right!!

    Please be gentle and kind to yourself. You have value. I’m certain you have many people who love you. She’s not worth it.

    I too hope you find a good therapist to help you through this awful time. Therapy has been a life saver for me. So has all these wonderful people here.

    Hang on and one day at a time. Hugs

  16. Grace for the Undeserving June 7, 2018 at 11:26 am #

    Please tell me that Amanda inherited all of her husband’s assets after his death.

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