We talk a lot about healing from an affair on this site.  After all, that is the ultimate goal for us, as I’m sure it is for most of you as well – whether you are the cheater of the betrayed.  But what is healing? Recently someone asked what that meant to me.

The Merriam-Webster online dictionary offers the following definition components for healing:

  • to make sound or whole
  • to restore to health
  • to cause an undesirable condition to be overcome
  • to restore to original purity or integrity

Synonyms for healing include: cure, fix, mend, rehab, rehabilitate.

Healing may mean something completely different for each of us and while going through your own process of healing from an affair, you need to determine exactly what it means for you.

For me, healing allows me to feel fortunate that I’m still walking this earth with Linda as my wife and my family intact.  It allows me to carry on each day more loving, stronger, wiser, kinder and more humble as a result of what happened in the past.   It’s the ability to live without constantly feeling the guilt and shame but knowing that I have to continue to help Linda with her own healing process.

Healing From an Affair – An Analogy

healing from an affair
The process for healing from an affair can be very similar to healing from a knee injury.

Several years ago I blew out my knee playing ball and as I write this I started to think about the healing process from that injury.  As you read my story, try and think about a past injury or some other painful experience that you have been able to heal from and how it might relate to healing from an affair.

When the injury occurred there was the pain that I experienced from the tendons tearing.  The loud pop of them ripping was certainly a scary thing.  At first I remember being able to get right back up and walk it off somewhat, but then the next day when I got out of bed, my knee buckled and I fell to the floor in shear agony and was unable to put any weight on it.

Suddenly I felt a myriad of emotions and had the feeling that I may never be able to play ball again, or for that matter, perhaps I would not be able to run or perform any athletic activity as I once was able to do.  After all, I had several friends who had the long scars on their knees from surgery who were never the same again on the playing fields and even had troubles simply walking.

The next step was to gain knowledge and seek counsel.  I went to the doctor who proceeded to manipulate my knee in various ways that created even more pain, but as a result of my pain responses he was able to make an initial diagnosis.  I asked questions.  I talked to others who had the same injury.  I did some further research on the injury that I sustained.  I eventually got an MRI that confirmed the doctor’s diagnosis.  He suggested an operation to repair the torn tendons and ligaments and gave me pain medicine to help reduce my discomfort so that I could sleep and for the most part carry on with my everyday life.

The next step was to decide whether or not to go through with the operation.  I didn’t like the idea of getting operated on and thought that perhaps I was stronger than that and didn’t need it.  Could I just get by without getting it done and simply stay off of my feet for awhile and hope that over time my knee would feel better?  No.  In order to completely recover from my injury I needed to get the operation done and have the doctor reconnect everything that was torn up.  So that’s what I did.

After the operation came more pain and a few days of recuperation while in a drug induced state of restfulness, followed by weeks of physical therapy.  Now if any of you have ever had an operation or injury of any sort that required physical therapy, then you know that this can be the most difficult and often the most painful part of recovering and healing.  It’s often more painful than the original injury itself.

The words “physical therapy” are often shortened to just “PT.”  A friend of mine who is a physical therapist jokes that “PT” really stands for pain and torture – because that is what is seems like.  But if not for this pain and torture, the true healing and strengthening of the injured knee could not be successful.

I found it interesting at the time that much of the physical therapy for knee injuries is not actually focused on the knee at all.  Rather it is focused on the other areas of the leg that surround and support the knee itself.  The leg in almost its entirety needs to be strengthened in order for the knee to be healed and to be protected from possible future injury.

After weeks of “PT” I was deemed fit and ready to resume my athletic endeavors but there was still some hesitancy on my part.  Will my knee hold up?  Will I reinjure it and have to go through all of this again? Not until I actually got back on the field and gave it a try would I know for sure.

The first time I got back on the field I was nervous.  I could run straight ahead just fine, but I was concerned about my lateral movement.  Sure, I had a supportive brace on, but was it enough to keep my knee from buckling?  Once the game started, the thoughts of reinjuring my knee went away as the adrenalin of competition took over.  As luck would have it, I had no problems and have not reinjured my knee since.

I continued to exercise and work out to strengthen my knees and legs – and still do so to this day.  Sure there are times when I squat or put my weight on my knees in an unusual manner that there is some pain or discomfort, but I certainly consider my knee fully healed at this point.  I still have to keep it strong though, so that I can enjoy the physical activities that we like to do.

I have a friend and fellow athlete who had a torn rotator cuff that he eventually had operated on.  At the time, this was a very difficult injury to recover from.  The therapy was long and intense.  He followed through for a while, but for whatever reason, felt he didn’t need to go to “PT” any longer.  The result was that he could never throw a baseball over hand again.  In fact he can barely raise his right arm above his head.  He didn’t follow through with the process and he never fully healed from the injury.

So from this boring story of my knee injury, can you see that in many ways healing from an affair can be very much the same as the process of healing from any injury or operation?

Some of you may argue that healing from an affair is nothing like the process in my story and that in fact, it may be impossible to heal from an affair.  I guess that depends on your definition of healing, your knowledge and your willingness (and your spouse’s) to put forth the effort.  Absolutely, the pain as a result of an affair is different and more intense and complex on many different levels, but the process for healing is similar.

In many respects, healing is a willingness to take a chance on life and living it to its fullest. Yes, there are risks and there is the chance of failure and of being hurt again, but without taking those risks you don’t have a chance.

We’re working on the final touches of our higher healing membership area.  If you don’t know what I’m talking about or if you have interest in being a part of our efforts to achieve greater healing from an affair, click here for a post that explains what we’re doing.

    46 replies to "Healing From an Affair and My Blown Knee"

    • battleborn

      Doug, As you well know I do not write much here but this analogy is just wonderful! I also believe it touches on the healing that both parties go through. When one has a major injury and needs to rehabiliate both parties go through the pain and rebuidling process. After my breast surgeries, I was the one who had the physical pain and healing but it also took a toll on my husband as he was the one who I had to lean on.

      I think this analogy has made me take a step back and reexamine my present journey. Yes, it was my husband who inflicted my pain through his affair but I can now see that through all of this he and I have made the decision to help each other get better through therapy, just as WE did through my mastectomies.

      As I sit here I think of the two incidents and they are oh so similar. No one asks for either one to happening yet they came to me on silver platters. What can one do? You stop take stock in what the options are and make a decision. Either you do the surgery or you don’t. Same with the affair, you make the decision to stay or go.

      Again, thank you Doug. What a wonderful eye opening analogy.

      • Doug

        Thanks battleborn. My mother had a mastectomy and I know that is a tough operation to recover from. In addition to the physical pain, there can be some tremendous emotional pain as well. It’s wonderful that you both have worked through your operations to heal and are also doing that with the affair. Best of luck!

    • Greg

      Interesting analogy Doug, it is sort of appropriate for me at the point. In our weekly talks I inadvetantly asked my wife a question that was a major trigger for her, when she though she would be able to sleep in the guest room without closing the door, which ended up in us arguing and going silent for the night and the next day, basically our old routine. I didn’t want to fall back to that since it had caused many of our problem leading up to her EA so I emailed her to explain that I had only asked her about sleeping with her door open instead of closed to get a gauge on how she was feeling not to pressure her into, ‘getting over it.’ That night we talked and it seems I had opened the flood gates in her, she ranted and raved about everything that had bothered and hurt her during our marriage. Unfortunately for me I have now opened up enough and am receptive enough that I actually listened to her words and realise that I have been so much worse to her in our marriage than I ever thought. I am ashamed of who I have been and how I have treated her, both intentionally and unintentionally. The pain from this makes the pain of the affair pale by comparison!
      The analogy of recovery from an injury has me thinking. I’ve had to recover from a leg injury I received during a motorcycle accident years ago. I broke all the major bones in my left leg, clean break of the femur, compound fracture of the fibula, and crushed 2″ of the tibula, I counted 20+ pieces before I stopped looking at the X-ray. I also broke my left clavical in my shoulder. My repair work was extensive, I had a rod put in the femur to keep it in place for healing and had four external locator pins drilled in to the lower leg bones to a rod to keep them in place while they regrew. The broken clavical was left alone as it was not a major injury and if they had to imobilise it I would not have had any movement for quite a while since both my upper and lower body would have not been able to move. I had to do months of PT once the bones had set to keep up strength in the leg and promote quicker healing of the bones. In the beginning I thought that all the steel was cool and that it would take up the weight of walking while the bones healed. One step. Cured me of that thought, I colapsed in pain from trying to put any pressure on the leg at all. Eventually I was able to have the external pins removed and let me tell you it hurt more to have them removed than it did to have them put in. Turns out they get unscrewed from your bones and body without any anasthetics, unlike when they put them in in the operating room. A year after the accident I went in for a check up and everything was healed up pretty well and the doctor tyold me I was old enough that I didn’t need to remove the pin in my upper leg as the bone was done growing. The only reason to remove it would be if I wanted to ride motorcycles again since in an accident it could be bent and cause worse damage. At this point I held up my new helmut and told him to schedule surgery as I had ridden my new bike to the appointment. Turns out the I healed a little too well and during the procedure to remove the rod they had to chip away a lot bone that had grown over the top of the rod to get to it. I came out of surgery with my whole left side of my hip bruised and tender for weeks. Even though I am healed from the accident I still have reminders of it, my leg has permanent scars from where the bones broke through the skin and when the pins where drilled into my body, I have some nerve damage that makes touching one place feel like another on the leg, I have a bump on my shoulder from where the clavicle healed crookedly, and I have to not over exert my knee.
      I think of this in terms of the healing from the affair in that the EA is like my clavicle, yeah it hurt but it was a minor inconvinience compared to all the other work I have to do just like I had much more, and painful, work to do on the leg as I do on the marriage. I expect there will be permanent scars from the damage done to my marriage that will always be there. It’s going to be a lot of work to heal myself and my wife from this and there will always be something there to remind us of what he happened. I don’t know if it is even possible to deal with all of it, but I at least owe her to put the effort in and try. She deserved to get healed from what has happened over all these years.
      Sorry for fthe long downer of a post I’m just feeling like I have been a monster and am now having deal with it. Turns out I really don’t like who I have been but don’t know who I’m going to become and I’m afraid of that.

      • Doug

        Great comment, Greg. I too have learned through all of this that I was a less than stellar husband at times throughout the years and have vowed to make amends for all that. Another lesson that can be learned from your comment is that even though you had a bad wreck and crashed your motorcycle, you had the determination, strength and courage to get back on your bike and ride again, knowing the risks and through all the pain that you endured.

      • battleborn

        Greg, I find your message refreshing. Not many spouses (male or female) would have the cajones to admit what you did. We all have our crosses to bear, you have realized yours and are willing to make the changes and at least try to make things better going forth. That is one of the first steps of recovery. Understanding your error(s) and owning them.

        You are correct that it is scary, but it is for both spouses. This is uncharted territory with no smooth sailing going forth. I would not consider you a monster as you have seen what you have done in the past. A “monster” in my mind would someone who knows what he has done and continues to do it. As the old Naval saying goes, I wish you fair winds, followings seas. I am rooting for you and your wife.

        • Paula

          Battleborn, I agree fully with you about Greg’s self-awareness here, and I feel for you, Greg. My now ex-OH said something similar to me during our nearly three year journey to try to recover from his affair, he took me for granted, and was a bit of a shit to me at times. I always mopped up after him, in business, and in everyday life, fixing the details, the “small” stuff, like money, lol! For example, he said he felt terrible about the fact that he often went out alone, especially when our three children were small (as happens in life, for most people, I guess) and sometimes wouldn’t return to our house until the wee, small hours, when I might have been expecting him for dinner, and I NEVER once complained, I loved him unconditionally. This is of course, pre-mobile phone days. He knows this was shitty, and selfish, and that I worried, but I never made any kind of a big deal out of it. This kind of stuff happened a lot with us, and I guess he just took my patience for granted.

          Great post Doug, the thing that stood out for me was the dictionary definition including restoring the purity. We can’t restore the purity, it is gone, and I think that has been a major roadblock for me to stay with my ex, I could, and do, forgive him, but I couldn’t restore the purity of what we had, and I couldn’t accept that, unfortunately. I loved (and still do, unfortunately!) him unconditionally, with my everything, and he told me he loves me more now, I don’t really know why he didn’t love me as much as I loved him, I know what I wrote earlier makes me sound like a doormat, I am anything but, quite the fiery redhead! I just picked the battles that were worth fighting, and him going out and enjoying himself didn’t seem such a big deal, why should we both be stuck at home all the time with needy babies and children? A lot of healing has been done, however, and it is really nice to hear from those here “in recovery.” I realise that there is another way that this is like an addicition, in that you never fully recover, you are just “in recovery” – for life 🙂

          • Paula

            Whoops, re-read, and realised I wrote that I still love him unconditionally, I don’t. I still love him, but it is no longer unconditional.

    • Dave

      Excellent analogy. We are too early in our process for me to think about putting any weight on our injured leg / marriage. It scares me to even think about trusting it again. A really big trigger is coming up soon, and I’m terrified because I don’t know if I will be “healed” enough by then to stand.

      June is our anniversary month, which is also the month in which she had her PA/EA with him. The last time the OM came up, I only suspected something had happened. We were planning to renew our vows, so I begged for the truth on my knees. She swore to me nothing happened. Now the betrayal of vows and my trust, as well has knowing he had her days before and after our anniversary and that she had continued to lie about it for all this time and through our renewal makes it too painful to even think about right now.

      This all came up because yesterday our therapist asked me about our anniversary plans and if we thought about how we were going to handle that month. I didn’t expect the question or my reaction. I’m emotional, but I don’t normally cry a lot (except recently). I broke down. I wish we could be healed now and that I could make those triggers disappear.

      To continue the analogy, how long does it take before you can get off the crutches and take baby steps?

      • Doug

        Thanks for the comment Dave. As you say, to continue the analogy, after knee surgery you’re in PT pretty much right away. I’m no doctor, so I really am not sure of the reasons, but I imagine it’s because you can’t let the knee get stiff, or have the leg itself atrophy. You also have to work out that scar tissue. It’s painful, but necessary. Now obviously there is going to be a tremendous amount of pain to work through and you may need to start slowly, but you have to start soon. For some the pain might be too great and they will need to take small baby steps on a regular basis, but the key is to start and be consistent and progressive with it.

    • Greg

      Thank you both, battleborn and Paula, for your kind words. Today was exhausting as I had counseling and I told everything to the counseler now that I am able to look back at it with clear sight. She gave me similar thoughts as both of you but right now I’m not in much of a mood to forgive myself, maybe some day but right now I really hate myself. My wife and I talked about it tonight and I can’t believe that she is willing to work through it with me. I can also now finally fully understand why she can’t be intimate with me and needs to sleep in a seperate closed room, I wouldn’t want to be near me either, only problem I have is that I’m stuck in this skin and can’t get away. Again sorry for being so negative but I’ll probably be like this for a while until I can processes it and start moving forward.

    • ppl

      the analogy is true in another fashion. the knee is never the same after surgery as before injury. no matter how much therapy or how good a surgery. frequent arthritis in it at later times in life and more risk of recurrent injury. ask anyone who has had surgery. also see how many pro athletes have subsequent injury. look at namath bearly able to walk. too many other examples to go through. this holds for relationships too. would be interested in stats for maybe ten yrs out as to how many relationships survive infidelity. how many are happy they stayed. frequently hear how things will never be the same and i believe that. some say they can be better but i believe they are the minority. if it were true we should all go out to have affairs to ultimately strengthen our relationships.

      • Healing Mark

        Ppl. Better suggestion. When we meet someone who is providing us with attention and support that makes us feel good, and we begin to feel attracted to that other person. Instead of investing time and energy with this other person, communicate to your spouse what things are making you feel good from the outside relationship and attempt to bring them into your marital relationship. Also, recognize that interactions with a potential affair partner, and the feelings that you are able to get from them, are going to be different than those that you are likely having with your spouse (no financial or child-rearing stresses, no familiarity like with spouse so more novelty and likely more interesting conversations, so the “attraction” is fueled by a sort of fantasy life built by the persons as lead up to and into an affair). Hey, I can be unbelievably charming and attentive and caring and flattering for short periods of time with women I don’t have to live with or raise children with or support. Replace my wife with one of these women and have her live 24/7 in my house with my children and our interactions together will no doubt change and good luck with maintaining all of that charm, attentiveness, caring and flattery!

    • Kate

      My DH had an affair with a high school GF in late 2009 and early 2010 during an extremely challenging time for us (cross country move, 8 months where he stayed behind fixing up our house to sell and we were only together sporadically, new high stress job for me that turned out to be a mistake, etc.). He hasn’t seen OW since March 2010 but continued contact for several months after 1st D-Day in April 2010. Unlike many who post on here, he fell deeply in love with her and never completely came “out of the fog.” We have made progress in recovering from the A, and I have forgiven him because I know that it was a “perfect storm” situation and totally out of character for him, but right now the whole situation feels more like terminal cancer than a knee injury. I have always assumed that I would heal and that the pain would fade over time, but now I am not so sure. He loves me very deeply, I have no doubt about that and he shows it often and in many ways. He has been NC since 1/11, but here’s the thing – he can’t seem to let go of his feelings for old GF. The situation is exacerbated by my healing process because every time I am triggered or sad he is reminded of that time and her and feelings come up again. He likens it to PTSD, because he gets intrusive thoughts, feelings, and images in his head. He says he knows he is happiest with me and would be lost without me, but after feeling somewhat better for several months, I have dropped into the depths of despair over the last few weeks and don’t know if I can make it with him after all. Knowing he still has feelings (he won’t admit that he is still “in love”) has incapacitated me and I feel like giving up, even though I love him deeply and know not being with him would be exchanging one hell for another. Paula, I have related to your posts so much because, other than the background of rape, your relationship (and the personalities of you and your exH) seemed to have a lot of parallels with mine (I’m even a redhead too!), so my heart sunk when I read that you had separated from your H. I, like you it seems, may never be able to get beyond the A. I am starting to think that maybe it hurt me too deeply to recover from and that as much as I want and pray for healing, it may not be possible. And that breaks my heart even more! I think if my DH did not love the OW it would have been possible to pick up the pieces and move on, but I am not sure I can live with him knowing that another woman is in his heart too. I never knew it was possible to feel this much sadness, and I want it to go away, but right now I can’t see a way out of it!

      • Paula

        Kate, hang in there, keep doing the work. I hear you, and I’m sorry if my story has left you a little despondent. I have only left my partner, the love of my life, because I got stuck, and couldn’t move, and I had to DO something to shift off the rock! My OH says he never loved his exGF (and AP) but he did have very real and caring feelings for her. The happy (?) part of my story is that we still have a lot of mutual respect, we still love each other (I wish we didn’t, or not in a romantic way!) and we are still close and co-parenting successfully. I tried to make it at least until our youngest turned 18, but she’s just 13, and I have already had a few pretty miserable years, and felt I was making him miserable, too, and that wasn’t fair. I’m pretty sure the kids are okay, we only have two still at home. I don’t think they know how sad I’ve been, or for how long. I hoped that with time, things would improve, but we are almost three years from Dday, and I feel worse now than I did for the first year, despite his work, and love, and despite my work and love. He says he wasn’t miserable, he understood my extreme sadness, he’d grown from the whole ordeal, and I believe he has, but I haven’t, I’ve shrunk, into my shell, with few friends or social distractions, just trying to get through every day without falling apart completely. I didn’t want to split, but I couldn’t see a way forward without making other people as miserable as me. As you alluded to, I’m no happier, but I expected that. He is more miserable now than ever, but stoic in carrying on. We’ll get there, we have no choice, and I am still hoping to achieve some kind of peace with the whole thing. I forgive him, and have tried to fully forgive her (my so-called friend who just thinks I’m nuts because I “can’t get over it, just move on”) and am not angry with her any longer, probably more along the lines of extremely hurt and disappointed that she was no kind of friend to me whatsoever. I wish I could let any feelings about her go, altogether, I know having any is counter-productive. In my worst moments, I wish bad things would happen to her, as she waded into our lives, caused chaos, and skipped merrily out again, with no adverse effects to her. I try not to think this way, it doesn’t help, and is not the way I operate, I don’t think I’m an overly vengeful person. Our last counsellor did say something at one point, in an email to me that I can draw on now, in that when I questioned him if it was worth continuing to see him, he of course said he believed he could help us, but that he hoped I could continue to push on, and that he hoped neither one of us was just too hurt to make it work. I hoped that wasn’t me, but, I think I kind of knew that I probably was. When we concluded our (very expensive!) course with him, he was doing some research to find someone to try to help me with my trauma problems, and when he eventually found someone, and emailed the details to me, I replied with a thank you, but no longer required, as we had separated, and he (I thought a little smugly) replied, he wasn’t surprised. I was disappointed in that, if that is how he felt, why did he continue to get us to drive the three hours up to him, for fortnightly four hour sessions (including an hour lunch break) at great cost, when we’d asked him if it was worth it, and he said yes, I can help you? Sorry, a little off the point.

        I wish you well with your recovery, Kate, remember, many cancers are beaten!!! I’m sending you all of my most positive thoughts and am in your corner, all the way…

      • beeleave

        Kate, I read this blog most days, and I would have gone mad without it. I am nearly at 7 months from d Day and I also cannot believe that it is possible to feel so much sadness. Like you I related to Paula’s posts and I became very low when I realised that after all the effort she put in it did not work out. I know that every couples situation is different but some have similarities, and sometimes Paula -when you are posting, you write as I would like to write.
        I identified with you and your situation, so when I read that yours had not worked out it threw me into a despairing, ‘what’s the point’ mood for days. If you, with your wisdom and grace cannot make it work , then how will I?

        My husband has posted on here too (poppet) and he is doing all he can to make me try and understand why he made so many terrible mistakes. I am devastated that he had not one but two PA’S, why should anyone have to put up with such disrespectful behaviour ? One of the affairs was 8 months and one was two weeks. This is the one that I found out about first. I feel that I would have been able to cope better if it had just been an emotional affair, as now I am haunted hundreds of times a day with horrid images of him with these women.
        He assures me many, many times a day that he loves me, and is doing thousands of jobs around the house, looking after the children and taking care of me, but still after nearly seven months I still feel tortured and I am not healing from this horrid operation which has ripped out my heart. I still love him so much, but know I am not moving forward, perhaps I need medication? I feel like this seventh month has been the hardest of all.

    • Worn Out Pursuer

      To Healing Mark.
      Thank you very much for your comments. I often think of my husband’s infidelity and how it was a fantasy world. His OW never met any of his siblings, his mother, his nieces and nephews. He never had to buy a car with the OW or take care of a sick child with her. Our real world life of work, bills, mortgage, yard work, day care etc. was not exciting enough. He decided to look outside for excitement rather than talk to me about how we might do more fun things as a couple. We stopped “dating” and looking back if we “dated” regularly perhaps he wouldn’t have turned to the OW.

    • Joe

      Please get well brother. You have been an inspiration to me and others, you are not a monster and are a good person. I too am finding behaviors that I need to adjust when/if I get a second chance with my marriage. I am so excited about the challenge. Embrace your faults, know they are behavioral and not a reflection of your character. The scars will only be damaging if they’re buried, keep them in your daily therapy and they will become tools.

      • Greg

        Thanks Joe. I know what I want to do and who I want to be mentally but emotionally I’m not in a good place right now about what and who I have been. I am amazed that my wife wants to still be around me and work on us, for that I am forever grateful to her.

    • Disappointed

      Greg – Everyone makes mistakes. It is what we do next that is important. You are looking at yourself, attempting to change and able to see the pain you have caused and accept responsibility. If you do the work there is hope for you and your marriage. I would give anything for my H to be saying the same things. He blames me for his EA and walked out on me after D-day. We are reconnecting but he will not accept responsibility and says while sorry he hurt and betrayed me, he is not sorry it happened or for how it made him feel. And I do not know how to move past that.

      • Greg

        Disappointed, funny enough my wife says the same thing about her EA but I can accept it. I hope that someday in the future she will feel sorry for the pain she caused me but right now she can’t, she does accept responsibility for the fact that it was her choice to do it. The weird part is I’m almost in the position of the CS right now, not completely since I didn’t d the cheating, but I am the one making ammends for my past mistakes. This looks like it’ll be a long road back and lots of work but we’re both up for it.

      • Healing Mark

        Disappointed, My 2 cents here is you don’t mind, understanding that my is not sorry for how her EA made her feel (it did open her eyes to certain things that she did not know that she wanted in a relationship and, now that she and I know these things, I provide these to her and her AP no longer does) and is not sorry that her EA happened other than for the negative effects it had on me and our relationship and family. Accept the fact that your husband feels this way and that this is not going to change. Accept the fact, if true, that you will never understand how he can feel this way since apparently, if you were the CS, you would be sorry that it happened and for how it made you feel. Next, agree to disagree with your husband on this aspect of the aftermath of your husband’s affair, and hopefully like many other things that you and your husband agree to disagree, you will be able to stop revisiting this issue as there is no longer anything to revisit (i.e,, you have “agreed” to the same thing hence no more “disagreement”). Finally, focus on the present and how you and your husband are feeling and treating each other as opposed to spending any furher time or energy on things that you can never change.

        If the fact that the way my wife felt about her EA bothered me so much that it prevented me from being able to forgive her for it (perhaps if my wife saw nothing, absolutely nothing, wrong with her EA, this would have become a “deal-breaker” for me), then at some point I or my wife or both would have ended our marriage. I seriously doubt that anything I or anybody else could do or say would be able to change such feelings (trust me, I tried, and failed, to get my wife to change her feelings about the EA such that they were the same as mine – wasted time and effort!). So I stopped trying to get her to change her feelings in this regard, agreed to disagree with her in this regard, became comfortable with the fact that this disagreement alone was not going to be a “deal-breaker” and then reminded myself anytime that this aspect of the EA reared it’s ugly head in my mind that my goal was to not let this affect whether or not I was happy being married to my wife. I found it of great comfort that, notwithstanding my wife’s inablitiy to feel sorry 100% that the EA happened and to not feel sorry at all for how it made her feel, she was very adament that she had no desire to ever again develop an EA with another person, and promised to me that she would not only do everything in her power to not let an EA develop (I just have to trust that she really means this), but she also felt strongly that the fact that she had now slip, slip slided down an EA slope meant that it would be much easier for her to avoid having another than if she had never had one before and an opportunity presented itself to become more than “just good friends” with somebody. I’d much rather have a spouse that does not feel that their EA was 100% “wrong” but is 100% committed to never again having an EA or PA than a spouse that feels that their EA was a 100% wrong but is not, or that I did not feel for whatever reason was, 100% committed to never again having an EA or PA.

        Hopefully your spouse is, and you feel that he is, 100% committed to never again having an EA or PA. Much more important, in my opinion, than whether you and your spouse are in complete agreement as to how he is to feel about the affair that happened and cannot be changed just as it is likely that his feelings about it are nerver going to change. And this inability to change should not, in my opinion, be construed as something “bad” or something meant to hurt you. These are his feelings and he is entitled to them, just as he is also responsible for how they might make you feel, and just as you bear some responsiblity for the degree to which you do or do not let them bother or otherwise negatively affect you.

    • Kate

      Kate and Beeleave, thanks for your kind words – it does help to be able to share these feelings (have shared them with DH but don’t want to be a downer all the time!), and even though I haven’t met any of the posters here in RL, you all have been wonderful and I care about all of you finding peace and happiness. There may be a silver lining in my despair the last few weeks…in some ways it has been a catharsis, and I feel closer than ever to my DH even though I am in pain, and I think he may be turning a corner of sorts, realizing that his “love” for AP wasn’t in the same league with his love for me. Healing Mark, thank you so much for your discussion about how to deal with the fact a CS may not regret the A other than the hurt it caused. I think this has been an issue for me – somehow I have felt that he shouldn’t have any positive association with the A or it would mean that he doesn’t truly love me (because part of the commitment in marriage is making your partner’s happiness as important as your own). I will have to try on the idea of “agreeing to disagree” on that. One difference may be that your W had EA only whereas mine also had a PA for a short time before moving across country for good. That haunts me and for him to feel good about it makes me sick…and I find myself feeling compared to her (even though he says that is not the case). So if he doesn’t regret his feelings during the A, I worry that it could rear its ugly head again someday and also that somehow I must not be enough for him in some way. I wish I could just let all of it go and be happy with where we are now. He, like your W, says he would NEVER have an affair again, so why can’t I move on?

      • Healing Mark

        Kate. You are very welcome and I think that I understand how dealing with a PA is much harder than just dealing with an EA. Actually, it’s possible that if your H’s emotional attachment was not that strong (by this I mean he may have become attracted to/infatuated with the OW, and extended it to a PA, but the length of the affair was so short, or their interactions infrequent enough, that they never really became that “close”), the fact that he ramped his affair up to physical may be less impactful on him than if he only had an EA but the EA was such that he really grew “close” to the OW. Don’t know how this would ever be measured other than potentially based on the extent, if any, that your H “grieved” the ending of the affair. And for what it is worth, adding sex to the mix may (a BIG “may”) have actually improved things for you since it’s quite possible that the sex wasn’t that good, or wasn’t up to expectations (I would venture to say that this was likely the case, and this was, according to my wife, a factor in her not adding sex to her EA as she and her AP felt as though fantasizing about potentially having sex together would always be better than actually “doing it” – Grrrr, but it would have been the same for me), and wasn’t nearly as good as with you given all the experiences you have had together (yeah, it had “novelty” on its side, but “uncertainty” inevitably also present likely cancels out the novelty).

        Do you find yourself feeling compared to any of your H’s prior sexual partners? I know, I know, prior sexual partners are a different breed than a sexual partner encountered during the marriage. For what it’s worth, after moving on from relationships with sex as a component, I can’t recall ever comparing my subsequent sexual partners with prior partners. So I would believe him when he says that he is not comparing you to the OW, and tell yourself that your H is like a lot of men in that their best lovers are their most recent ones provided that the most recent one is most likely going to be the next one!

        Why can’t you move on? Why couldn’t I move on for so long? Perhaps because IT IS SO DAMN HARD?!? I don’t know, and I never got an answer to this question. I just know that at some point in time (never could really pin point a day or week that this occurred) I thought about it, realized that I hadn’t been thinking about affair-related things much at all lately, and realized that my wife’s EA was no longer having much, if any, impact on how I was then living my life, interacting with my wife, and on whether or not I felt happy or sad at any given point at time. I took this to mean that the EA “was behind me” or that I had “moved on”.

        Finally, it seems to me that the fact that your H had a PA instead of just an EA would not make it more likely that he would have another affair than if he had just had an EA, this notwithstanding his statements to the contrary today. What makes my wife so certain that she is less likely now to have another EA is the fact that she has experienced first-hand how horrible things are post-affair discovery and how damaging the EA is while occurring to the marriage, and she doesn’t even want to risk this happening again. Also, before developing this relationship and then while she allowed it to continue, she couldn’t be certain whether its discovery would actually put an end to our marriage. She now knows that it will end the marriage, and that people that know her and learn of the reason for the ending of the marriage will realize that she is the kind of person who, instead of doing the right thing and ending her marriage before starting a new relationship, chose to do something that she knew would result in a divorce and that she had previously done so there could be no reasonable belief that her second affair was some kind of a “mistake”.

        Hang in there! I dont know if time really heals all wounds, but for me the passage of time was a pretty good “medicine” for my affair-related “ills”.

    • Kate

      I meant Paula, not Kate, sorry! Also, Paula, I was wondering if your inability to move forward is tied to the trauma you experienced before as much as the A your husband had? The A could have acted as a catalyst for the buried unresolved feelings from that experience and maybe if you can come to some peace with that (easier said than done, I know!), you will be able to learn to give your heart over completely with your DH again. Sorry if I am out of line in mentioning that, but I want you to be able to move on, hopefully back with your DH since it is clear how much you love each other and many people NEVER get to experience that.

      • Paula

        Thanks Kate, for your concern. The trauma is definitely a factor, no arguments here. He has said it on many occasions, which at times, annoyed the heck out of me, as I knew there was some truth to that, but felt he was passing the blame for my feeling worthless onto something else, not what he did. It was a catalyst, but he started the chaos in my head and heart. The annoying thing is he knew what had happened to me, he was the first and only person I ever told (other than the healthcare professionals who gently stitched me up and tested me for STIs at the time of the rape) we talked, and talked and talked about my fears, etc, over the years, and he (and she, the OW, but she didn’t know I’d been raped, and had some small hangovers from this) carried on anyway. He says it is because in the “fog” you think you’re never going to be found out, he was trying to work out what (who?) he wanted, and the selfishness just shields you from any pain you may inflict on the person you swore to protect and love. Sex is complicated for me. Trust is key, I guess it is for everyone, that’s what I always thought, but I understand some people have no hangups about it and can do it with anyone, I grew up in that society, sex is great fun, do it as much and with as many consenting partners as you can, safely. I was never like that, surrounded by it, all my friends did this (including the OW) and I had no judgements about this, but chose not to participate, as I knew that I needed to be loved, and feel love, great love, not infatuation, or lust, or anything similar. I had a chat with my ex yesterday about our “once in a lifetime” love. He agreed, it is a once in a lifetime thing, we have created and shared such a wonderful history together, but I don’t understand how you throw that away by being so bloody selfish, if you feel that way, too??? I know he felt like he had his back against the wheel, I understand that, and I forgive him for buckling under the pressure (but why didn’t I do this, too, I was living with the same pressures?) but it just doesn’t excuse the behaviour. I don’t want to keep rehashing this, that’s why I asked him to leave.

        Beeleave, I’m so sorry that my situation has made yours more unbearable, I’m really sorry I posted here if my problems have hurt others here, that has never been my intention, I want you all to heal, and it just takes time, and realisation that healing may not be quite the way you picture it, I am still healing, just in a different way to what I pictured healing would look like. I saw healing as a complete and final recovery, with us together, better than ever, us against the world again, the picture changed, for me. This does leave a scar, but scars don’t hurt all the time, they are just reminders of your strength in overcoming the pain they originally caused. You are in one of the hardest phases, after the honeymoon period, when the reality of the foreverness of what has happened really starts to hit home, stay strong, remind yourself of your love for each other, daily, remind yourself of your love for YOU, daily, just ride it out, TIME, again 🙂

        Mil, I wish I had some words of wisdom here, to support you in your private hell. All I can say, is I do understand, and I got to a similar point on several occasions, and I realised that if I didn’t DO something (make some changes, ACT) I was destined to live forever in the shadow of this hideous beast. No one can possibly empathise with these feelings without having experienced them. I thought I had it bad after nearly three years, with regular chat about the affair, not daily, but still very often. I don’t want to harm him, though, but self-harm has entered my mind, and I did act upon that some years ago, I know what it is like to want to cease to exist, the only way of extinguishing the excrutiating pain. Are you talking to anyone about these feelings? My ex and I have a pact, I tell him, NO MATTER WHAT, if I am feeling so unstable I’m not sure if I trust myself with myself. It happened the other night, and he was amazing, came to me and listened, and held me until it passed. He still wants to be with me, and I don’t get it, because I don’t like the person I am right now, so why would anyone else, lol?! I used to be bright, sparkly, funny, clever, extroverted, warm, loving, etc, etc. I am closed, drawn, introspective, pained, and I want to move out of this place, the landlord stinks, so I’ve made some changes, and am trying to follow through with forging ahead, in the words of Winston Churchill, “if you’re going through hell, keep going!” Life is meant to be challenging, but it is also what you make of it, and the happy must come if you do the work, and get some guidance along the way if you get lost, or stuck.

        • beeleave

          Dear Paula, you don’t need to apologise, nothing you have said has made it any more unbearable. Please continue to write here because I for one find your writing succinct and invaluable. Thank you for your clear analogy with scarring and your encouraging words at the end of your piece. Coincidentally, I have a physical scar on my shin from a minor injury which happened on d-day and it still is evident. I hope one day that it will disappear along with the emotional pain.
          I hope that you find peace and your sparkle returns.

    • Disappointed

      Healing Mark – thanks for the message. I know that I will need to do as you describe and accept that he feels how he feels. If he would actually recommit to us and that he would maintain boundaries in the future I would be ecstatic. I am in limbo where we are neither truly separate or together. He returned home for four days with a bad cold for me to take care of him. The first day he felt better he was back at the apartment and distant again. He blames me for the affair and I will never accept the blame. He does not care about me healing. Any time I try to share my feelings he does not want to hear what I have to say. He says he does not want to have to think about anything. I am still waiting to see ifwe get a chance to put things right. But even though he cheated and left, he says he has nothing to work on. If he was making a sincere effort I could let the other go. I just cant understand why it is such a hard decision after 20 years together. One month of texting but no real interaction face to face… It is just difficult for me to understand. They both thought they were in love and forgot everything and every one else. This is the worst pain I have ever experienced and in some ways I swear that hurting me makes him feel better.

    • Joe

      My wife has told me she has ended her relationship with the EA. Though this is a good step, I expected it would come with a little more clearing of the fog. She doesn’t show the remorse I thought she would. I expected her to still hold on to the feelings that pushed her to the affair and I am excited to address those once we are freed from her other relationship. It sounds like, from the experiences above, that I should lower my expectations of her remorse and possibly deal with her never really owning how bad the affair was. Is that a progression that will eventually come? Did those CS that have full remorse get there right away or did it take a while?
      I believe I can forgive the affair, but not until I am convinced it is over. My wife is a blamer, she has always blamed me, her parents, her boss, everyone for her discomforts. That she is not blaming the EA for her situation makes me believe she is not completely finished with those feelings.
      Meanwhile, I continue to make comments about my pain and the impacts of the affair on our family and it alienates her even more from me.

    • mil

      Hi All,
      Coming up to 4 years after D Day mark1. The most horrific 4 years of my life. We went to the theatre last night followed by a meal and I brought her up as I do every day. After a few drinks I was distraught and driving home (my H driving) I tried to grab the wheel and crash myself into oblivion. My H hit me in the face trying to restrain me and keep control of the car. He STILL says he adores me after everything but I am getting worse not better. Every weekend away or doing something ‘nice’ ends up like this now. I am scared of what will happen next, I just want to be dead.

      • rachel

        If you are not in therapy perhaps you should. I come to this site daily and read and sometime just ask for help from these very kind people. They calm me down. I too am filled with rage and anger. My dr. did put me on an anti-depressant which has calmed me down some. Trust me it doesn’t take away the pain I feel from my husbands e/a but it does take the edge off. Try to get some help.
        Your husband didn’t leave you and it sounds like he is trying to repair things. Take some time for yourself. This is really important. Good Luck!

      • Anita

        You need to go to the doctor and get help NOW!
        Just because he had an affair 4 years ago, YOU have
        NO right to endanger his life, because of your anger.
        If his past affair has you this upset maybe its time to

        • Anita

          I do not know if there was other traffic around your car at
          that time, I sure hope not. Mil, its time to think about others and not just yourself. It was an afffair, it happened 4 years
          ago, its time to put it in the past, and forgive.
          Your anger is getting the best of you and in your rage it
          could have ended in a horrible nightmare. Do yourself and
          others a favor and forgive.

      • Notoverit

        MIL, please listen to Rachel. You really need to get some therapy or if you are in therapy you might need to change therapists because it doesn’t sound like he/she is helping you. I am 17 months out from D-day and there are still good and bad days so I understand how the pain doesn’t go away. I love my H but he is NOT worth dying over and certainly his EA is not worth dying over. Life is a precious thing which should be treasured. I know about the feelings of hopelessness upon learning that the one person you love has “fallen in love” with someone else. My H did this after thirty years of marriage and being together for over thirty-three years. I do look at him differently without the rose-colored glasses and sometimes I don’t like what I see. I don’t like dealing with his confession about loving someone else but I am just stubborn enough to say I AM WORTH A HECK OF A LOT MORE so I won’t give up on life. You need to love yourself. Take care of yourself, get some help and keep trying. You are worth more than you know.

    • Kate

      Paula, hang in there, I can tell you are a strong person, and I have a lot of admiration for you! It’s good you separated for the time being if you think that will help you make progress in your recovery. It takes a lot of courage to do that, especially with a child still at home. I am happy you have posted on this site – your words have helped me more times than I can count…you have verbalized feelings that I share but did not know how to put into words!

      Healing Mark, thanks again…your followup comments to me helped as much as your earlier ones. It is invaluable to get a man’s perspective on all of this!

      I am also pleased to see more men sharing on this site lately – my heart goes out to all of you and I think the fact that you are seeking out information and understanding on sites like this says a lot about you and bodes well for your recovery and marriage. You are not sticking your head in the sand or just bolting…your wives are lucky and if they don’t realize it they have bigger problems than neediness and poor boundaries. Some people just don’t seem to be able to be satisfied with what they have even when it is good.

      I am not a super religious person, but I will hold all of you who post on and even those of you who lurk on this site in my heart and send healing energy to all of you! That includes all CS who post here and who are sincerely trying to understand how they could have betrayed their partner the way they did. I feel lucky and grateful that we are able to share here and help each other heal. Thanks, Doug and Linda, for making this possible!

    • mil

      Thank you everyone for your caring replies. No, I have never been to therapy. I am very sceptical about it and don’t see how anyone on earth can change my mindset about the affair (which was an EA not PA as far as I know). I am a completely black and white person so can’t accept our marriage has been tarnished for ever. He swears he never loved her (although I saw texts saying otherwise) but loved the attention and titillation of the sexual banter and we were going through a tough time ourselves but in my head I’ve blown it up as the love of his life. I know that’s ridiculous but I can’t accept what he has done but can’t bear to lose him either.
      We had known each other 37 years and married for 31 when it happened. I suppose he was bored and needed an ego boost which I wasn’t giving him. I so wonder if it would have happened otherwise and was she just in the right place at the right time not because it was HER he actually wanted.
      Thanks again.

      • Greg

        Mil, I can understand about being sceptical about therapy, I actually went twice before for different issues years before my wife’s EA and it was worthless because I wasn’t ready to accept any help. It took something as big as the affair to get me into a receptive mindset for therapy. Even if you don’t go for marriage counseling you need to go for individual therapy. As you’ve stated you are gettting worse over time and are atempting harm to yourself and others. You need to get help for yourself. What’s the worst that can happen? If it doesn’t work you are no worse off than you are now, if it does work you will be in a better state of mind.

      • Paula

        mil, I am also a little skeptical about counselling, but at the point you’re at, what have you got to lose, really (money?) I would try to open up to the possibility, it may help, it can’t hurt!!! I have tried a couple of different approaches (therapists) and whilst I can’t say I’m completely healed (I already had a lot of the information) I am no longer suicidal! My ex partner is really anti-therapy, but he went with me to two different relationship therapists, and also accompanied me to a psychologist, for me, when I did (foolishly) attempt suicide. He actually learnt an awful lot about himself, and it wasn’t easy to accept, but he took it all on board, and is an even better person for this information and self-awareness – his next partner is going to be so lucky, lol! PLEASE think outside the square, we can only help ourselves if we are willing to make ourselves vulnerable – yes, we were already vulnerable, and got hurt, but this is a different thing to the emotional vulnerability of a relationship/marriage. Give it a go…what is the worst that can happen, disappointment, okay, then try someone else, try again, GO FOR IT!

      • Notoverit

        MIL, I am also a very black and white person – it is either this or it’s that with no in-between. BUT therapy has helped me to see that I AM WORTH MORE THAN ALL THIS MESS! I am not talking about marriage counseling; I am talking about your own therapy. A behavioral psychologist will help you to learn about your actions, your feelings and how to deal with them in a constructive way. I know, it doesn’t sound like it will help with your marriage because I argued about that with myself. However, as I learned about why I am angry, why I am reacting to certain things, I also learned how to deflect that and use other things to help me through the bad days and the anger at my H. I am not saying there still won’t be bad days but you will have tools to help you make it through those days. The most important thing is that YOU have to decide to use the tools and help in making yourself better. Please think about it.

      • rachel


        After reading your blog today we have very similar situations. My husband looked up his ex g.friend from 30 years ago and they met for 4 lunches, texted and e-mailed. He said there was no physical connection. He felt it was just catching up with an old friend. We also were going through a rough period and he needed that ego boost. My husband said that she was the love like no other. Soulmates blah, blah, blah. That’s when he was in the dreaded fog. I could have left him and filed for divorce and would have had a very comfortable life financially. I choose to work at our marriage and move on from his e/a. I new my anger and rage would not bring him closer to me. I hated the person that I was becomming. Constantly picturing them at their lunches laughing and having fun. I needed to pull myself out of that ugly hole and I have. We are both working on our marriage and ourselves. My h goes to his counselor and I go to mine. My first counselor wasn’t for me so I needed to find another one who I enjoy. I have finally learned to take care of myself first.
        My marriage has been tarnished too. I can become depressed and angry about this but I can’t do anything about it. It has happened and I/we need to move on. Difficult days come and thankfully go. Hopefully these will be few in our future.
        I often think that maybe this was the best thing that has happened to our marriage. My husband and I consciencely treat each other with respect and make it a point to spend quality time together. Something that we use to be too busy for.
        Think about the therapy/counselor and read the archives on this wonderful site. They were very helpful to me. Remember we are all here for you. Good luck and take care.

    • mil

      Thank you Greg, you make a lot of sense but my own mum and best friend have both tried to make me think straight and failed. They talk a lot of sense but I can’t overcome my feelings. What have you been through and how are you coping? x

      • aida


        with all due respect, darling, you have to WANT to get better. your own mum and best friend are trying to help, etc but if you don’t want to get better, there’s nothing anyone can do.

        i know this sounds harsh, and you may want to kill me for it. but i’m guessing that you are using this as a ‘shield’ because you are afraid to trust your husband again.

        you have lost a lot in this experience. your self esteem and self confidence have eroded and you are now questioning whether your husband has cheated and lied to you right from the start. you may tend to let your imagination run a little wild.

        been there. done that.

        in fact, you also sound like my cheating husband. he told the counselor that his ‘negative feelings’ for me have grown in him over the years – grown like a cancer – and also that he felt he was ‘neglected’ and so ‘coincidentally’ there was someone else who was willing to listen and to be there for him….so he uses that as a ‘reason’ to not get better. he uses it as a shield. she is his security blanket now, and she is making it her business to be the best and most comfortable security blanket he will ever have.

        the only thing is – i dunno if she realises that if he is willing to lie to one person to fulfill his own selfish desires – then what’s stopping him from lying to another?

        but i digress.

        mil, if you want to overcome your feelings, OVERCOME YOUR FEELINGS. don’t wait for it to be overcome. Don’t wait for paid therapists to do it for you….. you have to believe in yourself outside of his lying. outside of his cheating. BELIEVE in yourself.

        don’t have to dump him. just dump the scared you.

      • Greg

        Oh this will be a long reply mil. My first attempt at counseling was when I was a teenager and attempted suicide with rat poison. Fortunately for me it was well past it’s use date and I only ended uo with a massive stomach ache and vomiting for a day and a half. My parents sent me to a counselor who I saw once and refused to see again. Not through any fault of his, I just didn’t see the point and said I would deal with it on my own. Second time was twenty years later to appease my wife because she thought I had a porn addiction. This time I went for a few sessions and stopped again saying I would deal with it on my own. You can guess how well that worked by that fact that I am on here for my wife getting dissapointed with me and looking else where for comfort with her EA. It took that for me to finally get it through my head that maybe professional help would be useful. I am more than somewhat stubborn about handling things in my own way and also thought for a very long time that therapy was just for the weak of mind. Therapy has been a great help for me , both individual and couples, it has let me look at myself and see how I always bottle up how I feel about things and don’t deal with them. I would act out with anger or sarcasm to deflect having to deal with others feeling that bothered how I wanted to feel. I also have held most of the world in contempt through most of my life so that I wouldn’t have to care how they felt as they were beneath my notice. Doesn’t paint a pretty picture of me does it? With this current counseling I’m starting to learn who I was and that I don’t want to be that person. Who I was has caused me to do things to others that I am not proud of, especially to my wife. I won’t go into details as it is too painful for me to think about it except in small doses. Even though I know I have a long road of fixing me I am very grateful for my therapist in helping to see who I was and who I want to be.

    • mil

      Thank you all once again xx

      • SamIam

        mil~ please take this with all the love and caring you can imagine.

        There can come a point in all of our lives when we can become addicted to pain and emotional turmoil. Any one and everyone can become addicted. Being a victim is a very safe place to be for some (myself included at times) Anger is safe sometimes. Sometimes the truth just hurts too much. hugs

        I was so anti-therapist in my life, and certainly during this as it was my H’s “problem” ~ I did not do this to my marriage~ he did. But there came a day when he had to cancel his therapist’s appointment~ on a whim I took it! It was the best thing I did since D-day. I have let go of so much. I can’t tell you how or why. It just worked. I highly recommended it.

        • Healing Mark

          Samlam. Great comment. I, too, was anti-therapist/counselor, but felt compelled to try marriage counseling as a part of efforts to get to a point where my wife and I could say, if we ending up chosing to end our marriage, that we did everything reasonably possible to “save” it. It had worked wonders up to D-day, and then was so very helpful in those terrible days immediately following D-day and for getting my wife and I on track to potentially getting beyond the EA and to a point where I could genuinely forgive my wife for it.

          Like anything else, my wife and I didn’t simply accept everything our counselor said or suggested as the final word on the matter. What I thought was most beneficial about our counseling experience is that it made my wife and I think about and discuss issues that had been buried or only lightly touched on over the years. Even when we reached points of time where we simply agreed to disagree on things, the discussions leading up to that point were often eye-opening and almost always helpful to the healing process. Many times, what one or both of us thought something was unique to us, or an insurmountable hurdle, was shown to us to be neither unique nor insurmountable. If anything, it was comforting to know that what we felt was a marriage with a lot of problems was characterized by someone who ought to know as one that, while needing a bit of work (this was pre-D-day), was actually not that bad and a lot better than many others our counselor had worked on or was working on. And post-D-day, our counselor was able to assure us that my wife’s EA need not end our marriage, and was able to work with us to find ways to use it as a learning experience and to become confident that nothing like it would likely again occur while we remained married.

    • SamIam

      This is a great post and especially appropriate for me as I injured my knee (terribly) and discovered my H’s EA with in weeks of each other. His caring less about my knee and more about work and her still haunts me (if I let it). Truth is, 15 months out from both, I am doing great. The healing is going just fine. But if I am not careful, and when I am very tired, I get into an odd step and rock as I walk (not good for knees or hips) Much is the same with our marriage, if I am not careful I rock with emotions. With both, I need to catch myself and set my self back on the path of walking straight.
      “Webbles wobble but they don’t fall down” 🙂

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