I wonder how many marriages end because of infidelity with the cheating spouse living with regret about their decisions.  I wonder that once they make that decision, how difficult it is to turn around and admit how wrong they were.

cheating spouse

By Linda

This weekend we met up with some of our old college friends and Doug’s fraternity brothers for an enjoyable night out.  Some of these guys we haven’t seen in over twenty years.  It was fun catching up on everyone’s lives, reliving old antics and feeling twenty again.

For me it was especially enjoyable because I was the only woman there who could completely appreciate all the old college stories – because I lived them as well.  Doug and I met when we were freshman and I was definitely a permanent figure at the fraternity house.

I had a feeling of comfort knowing that Doug and I have come so far and lived so much of our lives together.  It was truly a confirmation that having a history together bonds a couple like no other.

Featured Download: “The Top 10 Reasons to Leave Your Affair Partner Now”

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

It was very disturbing to find out several of the men who were with us are (or have been) divorced, with one friend being on his third marriage.  I listened intently to all the complications that have developed as a result of divorce.  There’s the switching back and forth of children, trying to move closer to the ex-wife to be closer to the kids, etc.   It was overwhelming to hear how difficult divorce is, and I wonder if they could have looked into the future, would they have tried harder to save the marriage.

See also  How to Save Your Marriage

I met one woman who was the “friend” of one of Doug’s frat brothers who also is divorced.  As we began talking, I found out that coincidentally,  her daughter attends the same high school and plays on the same soccer team as our daughters do. 

We had a lot in common and talked for quite a long time.  She was telling me about how difficult it is being divorced and sharing custody of her children.  She said there isn’t a minute that passes when there isn’t some complication or disturbance as a result of her divorce. 

She then began to tell me how she got into this mess, and sadly it was because of her husband’s affair with a co-worker.  She said that it took her by complete surprise and that she never saw it coming. 

They were going through a difficult time and were very busy working full time, taking care of the kids and tending to her husband’s sick parents.   Her husband found someone who gave him the attention that was lacking at home.  That right there made me want to scream!

Should I Stay or Should I Go: Is Gray Divorce for You?

It seems to me that it’s a common thread that for some reason, the cheating spouse thinks that the other person cares more for them than his/her own spouse does.  I firmly believe that this is usually not the case.  It’s just that there isn’t enough time, opportunity or energy to give the spouse as much attention as in the past due to all the stuff that life throws at us.  But the poor little deprived spouse isn’t getting enough attention, so they wander into the arms of another person.

See also  A Reader Shares Her Pain and Hope After Infidelity

OK, sorry about that, I had to vent a little.  Getting back to this woman…

It has been six years since this marital affair took place and I could still see the pain and anguish in her eyes.  Her story made me so angry because it represents how selfish affairs are.  I wonder if her husband ever looked past the moment to see the future and what a mess he was creating. His children will never again experience a life that is secure and normal.  There will always be some kind of drama because of the affair.

This woman told me that she is not even sure he is still with his affair partner, as the OW is still married and it is a subject that they do not bring up.  The only thing they talk about is the logistics of raising their kids.

How sad to be so close to someone and spend a majority of your life together and this is the end result. They probably share more feelings and emotions with a complete stranger than they do with their ex-spouse.

I wonder how many marriages end because of infidelity with the cheating spouse regretting their decisions.  I wonder if once they make that decision, how difficult it is to turn around and admit how wrong they were. 

I have to think that rarely is the other person worth giving everything up for.  The cheating spouse is giving up their family, friends, home, their past, their assets, and almost everything in their life for this other person, who in many cases they hardly even know.  Can that one person fill all those spaces in their life and make them happy?  That is a large responsibility to put on one person.

See also  After the Affair: The No Contact Rule

It is different when a person is eighteen and has their whole life ahead of them.  When they are fifty and have so much history behind them, it is difficult for the cheating spouse to start again from scratch after the affair.  We have a lot of baggage to carry along with us as we grow older and to give everything up like it didn’t exist would be virtually impossible.

Opt In Image
Survive and Thrive after Infidelity
You deserve to have a marriage that doesn’t just survive - it thrives!

We’re here to show you the right way to survive infidelity so that your marriage doesn’t become some sort of statistic.

We’ve been in your shoes and are in a unique position to put all of our experiences – both good and bad, successes and failures – and use them to help lead you out of the pain and into a better place.


    179 replies to "Is The Cheating Spouse Living With Regret?"

    • Jennifer

      This topic pulls at my heartstrings. It scares me because I have seen my husband in tears about how he worries that our kids don’t realize how much he loves them. I worry that he is only staying with me for “appearances” towards the kids. (They are 6 and 7.) I worry that this is the way it will be forever and he will continue to go out with his buddies and have affairs and then come home and “play house” in front of the kids. The only one that hurts is me.
      Today is our 8th anniversary and I’m not sure how to handle it. I did buy him something. Not sure if I should have. I don’t even know how to act towards him today. Do I tell him I love him or do I back off and not make him uncomfortable? Maybe I should celebrate the 8 years of my own accomplishment in keeping this marriage working, 8 years of loving him no matter the cost. Ugh. I hope today passes quickly.

      • Attraversiamo

        Is your relationship with your husband better today?

      • Annie

        This is terrible! Did you ever get a divorce?

      • Carol

        My ex husband destroyed our BEAUTFUL family two years ago to fuck a Meth addict, lovely it destroyed our family like a volcanoe erupting we have never been the same and now a second affair, a woman he barely knows off a dating site he even abandoned the dog!????

        • Dave

          You picked him.

          • Shifting Impressions

            That’s not a helpful thing to say….no one chooses to be betrayed.

            What’s your story??

      • Carol

        Your a strong woman I couldn’t do it the betrayal was too much for me and in our family home, GROSSE! That bastard destroyed our family, marriage and all the neighbours are grossed out! Any women that can stay with a cheater and try to make it work I give you CREDIT! I had to walk away with the dog my kids are in so much pain. For what some cheap tramp off a dating site!????

    • ppl

      i hope not. although it may give satisfaction to feel “guilty party” is forever regretting decisions, i would sincerely hope all can get to a better place. nobody would condone “war of roses” and destructive behavior. jealousy would seem to be worst reason to stay together. thougjt of spouse with someone else makes it seem like a “game” that one doesnt want to lose. the one i would like to see without regret is the “wronged spouse”. we all need to make decisions. whether time or finality of situation, many dont regret decision. the old joke of :
      why is divoirce so expensive… because its worth it.
      sometimes must be true

    • NotBroken

      I think the cheating spouse will only regret their decision if they lose something because of it. I don’t think the cheating spouse regrets cheating if the wife/husband decides to stay and work on the marriage. Because if they don’t divorce…. then what did they really lose? Nothing. Sure they created a problem and will have arguments, but in the end they win. They cheat and have fun… and as a result end up with a better marriage than they had before. For them it’s a win win situation, and for us betrayed spouses we suffer and lose everything. I’ve lost my sanity and my sense of security. I’ve lost everything I thought I had. My H lost nothing. I’m here the kids are here. What did he lose?

      • Jennifer

        Good point, NotBroken. However, I feel like I have GAINED in this situation. Gained a better sense of myself and what I need and also what I’m putting out there. I’ve spent a lot of lonely hours crying and moping, but after I got all of that out of me, I started reading up and finding sites like this one and DEFINING MYSELF. It has been a growing experience for me whether we divorce or not. And for that tiny little fact, I can be thankful. I improved ME.

      • jackie

        If it was an affair of the heart, the other woman loses as well. She loses the man of her dreams, who stays in his marriage (better or worse), and ends up alone.

        And imagine a man who makes his marriage better at the other woman’s expense?

        Betrayed spouses always give a lot of heat to the other woman. But it was the husband who betrayed her, not the other woman. No one thinks about the other woman’s point of view. We all want to be loved and everyone makes unwise choices when they are in love. I don’t think any other woman intends to hurt the wife. I think it is more about HIM. But betrayed spouses are so angry (rightfully so) that they take out all their anger on the other woman.

        • Jackie

          Hmm, another jackie,

          You said:

          “Betrayed spouses always give a lot of heat to the other woman. But it was the husband who betrayed her, not the other woman. No one thinks about the other woman’s point of view. We all want to be loved and everyone makes unwise choices when they are in love. I don’t think any other woman intends to hurt the wife.”

          I agree with you that everyone hurts due to affairs, but I don’t agree that the other woman doesn’t intend to hurt the wife. Just by joining the H in the affair, the OW is hurting the wife and the family. Maybe the H made advances to the OW, which was also wrong, but the OW made the “unwise” choice to have the affair. In this way, the OW too has betrayed the wife and kids. Two wrongs don’t make a right. Once you realize your unwise choice, it is time to make the right choices, make amends, and learn from your mistake.

          Perhaps you did not intend to hurt the wife. Perhaps you were not thinking. That “in love” feeling is a powerful force of Mother nature. But we humans aren’t animals. We have a rational brain that tells us something is right and something is wrong. People in affairs know something is wrong, which is why they to try to keep it secret. People in affairs also choose to ignore their rational side, they succumb to the positive drug-like feeling that the affair gives them.

          Put yourself in the wife’s place for just a moment. Imagine you are married, working hard, supporting your husband and kids in every way you can. You love your H, but life has gotten a bit dull and routine, filled with endless chores…groceries, maintaining the house, driving the kids to school and activities…hectic. Then out of the blue, your husband starts to act distant. Then he tells you, “I love you, but I’m” in love” with another woman.” How does that make you feel? To me it felt just how I felt when my Mom died. My world crumbled around me.

          If you were to put yourself in the wife’s shoe, maybe you might try to understand what you have done wrong. Most people involved in affairs are usually not bad people. They are naïve at best, weak in will power, generally selfish, and cruel and heartless at worst. It is not my intent to insult you. I have no ill will towards the OW in my H emotional affair. In my H’s case, she did the right thing. She told my H , “ What you are doing is wrong.” The OW refused to participate further, even though my H wanted more. This is what you needed to do. That is ended it before it got started. Kept a distance.

          Unfortunately, many people only see their own needs first…it doesn’t matter who they hurt, as long as they get what they want. This is called “selfish.”

          Getting involved with someone who is married is “WRONG”. It is just as wrong as the H is for getting emotionally involved with the OP, instead of working out the issues with his wife. He is running away from the issues, has given up trying. He owes it to his wife, marriage, and kids to try to work on the issues at home. The CS promised to his spouse in his marriage vow, in front of many family and friends that he would, “Promise to love, honor and cherish…till death do us part.” Having an affair is none of these things.

          Many people get involved in affairs during times of stress, crisis, because of fear…so many reasons. The proper way to deal with a unhappy marriage, is to do everything to resolve the problems of the marriage, with time spent, counseling, talking, working out issues…not escaping in a fantasy affair. Affairs hurt everyone, including the OP. That is why no one should get involved in affair, including the OM/OW. If the marriage is truly over, end it properly. Then go ahead and find another relationship. Having two relationships at once is a recipe for disaster, pain, and hurt.

          Yes, we all want to be loved. Love with two unattached single people is a beautiful thing. Getting emotionally involved with a person already in a committed relationship is a destructive thing, causing much confusion and pain to everyone involved. When you get involved with a married person, you are helping to destroy his spouse and his family.

          Sorry this is so long, but recovery from an affair is even more of a long drawn, out painful process.

          • Jackie

            Not all betrayed spouses are by their husband’s sides, supporting their husbands needs, taking care of the family doing endless chores. Some wives are sitting back and letting their husband’s fill both the wife/mother role, and husband/father role.

            At this point, the man should step up and express his discontent. That is the proper way to handle any relationship because it is honest. But sometimes, being honest isn’t easy due to the temperaments of the people involved. If a person is difficult to talk to, and histrionic, it is a deterrent to communication. Some men are afraid of their wives.

            I agree that it is a selfish act between the affair partners. But, to diminish the idea that perhaps the betrayed spouse also contributed to the situation is naive. Many betrayed spouses sense their marriage is going off course long before an affair starts but chose to do nothing about it. I KNOW when something is going off course when I’m in a relationship and I work to fix it. I don’t wait for something to happen before I wake up.

            The OW may have participated in a selfish act, but it most cases is wasn’t a willful act to hurt the wife. If it were, they would go out of their way to make sure the wife found out, they would rub it in her face.

            In my case, I went out of my way to make sure she didn’t find out. He said he was going to leave and gave me a lot of supporting evidence to be credible that this is what he intended to do and was serious about it. I gave him many exits which he didn’t take.

            I didn’t want her EVER to find out about us, because their marriage was broken long before I got there, and as far as I was concerned, the demise of it, had nothing to do with me. I wanted him to leave because it was abusive to him, because he was miserable, not because of ME. (He and I were friends for many years before we got involved. I had some first hand knowledge of what the truth of the situation was. He knew my former husband also, before I divorced him. I had the strength to leave an abusive situation.) He didn’t come to me because he was bored. He came to me because I was easy to talk to, and because I allowed him to be free to be himself. While the sex was stellar, it wasn’t about sex for us. It was about friendship.

            And when she found out about us, all the issues that were on the table suddenly became about me, rather than the real issues. She cursed me out and said some nasty things to me. I took it because I didn’t want to cause her any more pain and figured I would give her her day. I understood her hurt.

            And then out of nowhere, he stayed to try to work it out with her, after he said things could not be worked out because she would have to change too much of her innate temperment to make it work. I left him alone hoping he would see the error in his ways. Her response, was to harass me. She continues to harass me, after more than three years, even though I’m NOT involved with him at all, and have no contact with him. It seems like every time they have an argument, it must be my fault.

            It was a really devastating situation for me, and she won’t let it go. It hardly seems right that I am the focus of their ongoing maritial battle. The mistake is trying to put lipstick on a pig, to try to make an abusive situation work, which is what he is trying to do.

            While I agree with almost everything you said about honesty and integrity and how the betrayed spouse must feel, you gotta understand something.

            Not everyone is emotionally sound. You have three people in the equation. What oughta be is largely about how emotionally stable a person is. People have wounds, they have emotional codependencies. Having willpower isn’t just about saying no. It can go much deeper. All three people in the triad have to be emotionally stable in order to not get entangled in the first place. People discount how emotionally screwed up people can be. And the reality is, people who are very high functioning in other parts of their life can be extremely screwed up in other areas. You would never know it unless you get close to them. They put on a show off perfect lives in front of strangers. What goes on behind closed doors is something else.

            For my part, my ex-OM was one of those guys. He continues to work at a relationship I KNOW makes him miserable. On the few occasions I run into him at Walmart, I can see it in his eyes. (I know him very well.) He continues to be afraid of his wife, and having been the subject her non-stop harassment for years, I understand why he feels that way. Of course, bullies don’t get put down until people stop enabling bad behavior.

            PS: I have been the betrayed spouse too. I can honestly say, this betrayal, by the OM hurt me worse than my husband’s philandering. You can’t really know this unless you have been on both sides. And you certainly can’t stroke a broad brush over every situuation. Life can be complicated and messy.

            • Jackie

              “What oughta be is largely about how emotionally stable a person is. ”

              Again I agree with you in many areas. As I said before, every relationship is different, and people go into affairs for different reasons.

              Emotions are the cause of all the volatility involved in relationships in general. Affairs are definitely lacking in the individual’s emotional stability…that is not being in touch with one’s emotions, understanding them, and not letting emotions take control of what you believe in.

              I have no doubt that your OM was suffering, but it isn’t always because of the wife, even though he says it is. Many people in affairs rationalize the affair by blaming the BS, it lessens the guilt and shame, and provides an easy scapegoat and defense for the CS bizarre behavior. Once the feeling of being, “in love” takes over, it becomes more like an addiction, and the CS and OP both must deal with how to stop the addiction to each other.

              You can’t always believe what a CS says to you. Remember he is cheating on his spouse. He is breaking a promise he made to himself and his spouse. It isn’t necessarily that he is lying to you, but more that he is lying to himself, rationalizing, escaping. I’m not sure if your ex H did this to you also.

              I love my H with all my heart and would have done almost anything for him. Before the affair, H was depressed and unhappy, and the affair gave him a wonderful high. I’m sure my H was saying to the OW that I didn’t understand him, or that I was verbally abusive, cause that was what he was suddenly telling me. In all our life together, over 20 years, he had never said such words. I had no idea why he was saying them suddenly. I’m not sure if your ex H did this to you also.

              The OW definitely understood his work better, cause she worked with him in his field. As for verbally abusive, H gets upset when I ask him to clean up dishes instead of leaving them around. Any small criticism I made during the affair was considered as me being verbally abusive. And I have to say I rarely criticized. Yes, my H was sick, depressed, and not thinking straight “in love”.

              Many CS have been going through crisis such as overwork, depression, family illness, loss of work, etc…causing major pain and breakdown between spouses. I suppose many OP also have their own emotional problems also. So basically and affair is a relationship between two people who both have emotional problems. I suppose this is why so many affairs fail.

              You said, “All three people in the triad have to be emotionally stable in order to not get entangled in the first place. People discount how emotionally screwed up people can be. And the reality is, people who are very high functioning in other parts of their life can be extremely screwed up in other areas. ”

              I believe you are so right in this area, and that this is one of the main reasons people get involved in affairs. These people really need help with their emotional issues, but instead choose to escape in an affair, rather than work out their real issues the way they should. So if you know you are emotionally screwed up…get help!

              I know this is easier said than done. My H who knows he has emotional issues, won’t seek outside help and won’t talk about it. He might read an occasional book though. Mostly he insist on figure it out himself. He is better, but it is a much longer drawn out process. He improved so much faster when he was going to counseling for a short while.

              I am really sorry for you also. I know you hurt too, and didn’t mean to help cause all this damage. But it is the BS who really gets hurt the most though, because he/she never chose to cheat and has to figure out how to deal with the mess that the CS has created. You must have felt that way when your ex cheated on you.

              Even if the BS was an abuser, cheater, gambler, it is up to the CS to work on fixing the marriage or leaving it the proper way, divorce. Having an affair doesn’t solve the marriage problem. It makes things worst. It adds a new problem to solve in addition to all the other problems. An affair is the cowards way out, if the purpose was to end the marriage.

              For most CS though , it seems the affair was caused by the CS allowing his emotions control his actions, instead of his rational mind keeping things under control. I suppose that is why affairs are a fantasy. All reality and rational thinking is pushed aside to allow the affair to continue.

              One thing I have learned from all this pain and sorrow is, “Never get emotionally involved with a married or unavailable person. And if you are married, you have no business getting emotionally involved with another person who isn’t your spouse.” It is not worth the time or emotional pain, caused to everyone involved, including the OP.

              I wish you well in your healing and learning from this experience. I know you are not a bad person. I also know you, as well as I, will continue to grow and learn from this painful experience. Because when you thing of it, the best gift from all this pain is the lessons we can learn from it.

              Heal from this pain, grow from the lessons you have learned, and find a love who is available who can love you fully in return.

              From personal experience, one of the most important lessons I have learned since childhood was always take care of your health both physically and mentally because if you don’t, you will have to live with the consequences of the illness for the rest of your life. And that your illness will cause pain and suffering to you and all who love you and care about you.

              Sorry this is long again. I find that sharing our insights and perspectives to be very good healing process.

            • B

              Ever think that this man was lying to you about who and how his wife was. That’s how it works sometimes. He has already shown you he is a dishonest and deceptive person by having an affair behind his wife’s back. These men lie to their wives and they lie to you too. Many times they tell you things to gain your sympathy as that creates a very powerful connection and emotions. This strokes their fragile egos and they just lap it up. You don’t live with them and see the true person they are. Of course they are charming for the few hours you see each other, anyone can be charming when they are lying and pumping themselves up, and spending money on you and trying to impress you. You do NOT know his wife, all you know are the lies he tells you, and believe me HE IS LYING TO YOU TOO! Wake up and get that if you don’t get anything else. She obviously was not as horrible as he told you since he finally woke up and realized what he could possibly lose. That tells you something. These guys lie to get what they want, they want their cake and to eat it too. They lie all the way around, period!

            • Tryinghard

              The only thing you “know” is what he told you. You want to believe he is miserable. Sorry to say I doubt it. Since there’s been no contact sounds to me like his misery came from his relationship he had with you.

            • Diane

              You sound dillusional. You first off, sound like y ou believe everything the cheating man told you. Trust me, if she was that abusive and he was getting nothing out of it, he wouldn’t be there. You seem to ignore he is right where he wants to be. You seem to ignore the fact you NEVER had any business having a relationship with a married man. She should not be harassing you that’s for sure. She needs to go ahead and try to fix her marriage, but you are not accept reality that he did not choose you. You seem to have though what you two had was so great. Men do whatever it takes when they love a woman. When a man does not leave his wife, its for a reason and rarely has nothing to do with the other woman. Now there are exceptions where a man will be a man and handle the situation properly by divorcing one before he starts with another. Some women demand that, and don’t allow a man to double dip. He’s probably not worth it anyway.

            • Rhonda

              hey jackie it the husband and ow fault she should never put out so fast should gotten to know the person your dating we got internet now no damn excuse

            • Louise

              After all the lies he clearly told you? How do you figure that he’s in an unhappy marriage? I’d say it’s the wife who is the unhappy one but she can’t let go. He’s a pathological liar and cheaters will say anything to get what they want and to both parties. His marriage was stronger than his relationship with you and you can’t accept that as fact. You fell for his BS and that’s all. He isn’t crying behind closed doors about you and he’s shown you exactly who he is. You dodged a bullet while his wife will more than likely have to go through all that heartache again.

          • Gizfield

            I love the way that Other Women believe everything some one else’s husband tells them. Really? He is a known liar. Lol At least his wife can admit it. they tell you all about how horrible their life is, yet they stay. And the reason??? Because they want to.

            • Carol

              Agreed and they stay because they know the woman will continue to cook, clean and be the responsible one especially where the kids are concerned! So many men are just chumps

          • Kelly

            That was the most awesome respone the an OW I have ever read. Thank you. Wow!

          • Karen

            Wow well said my friend ???? I am the wife who has just discovered my husband was having a affair, devastating to the whole family????????????. Thank you for the read

            • BDC

              The date of your post was four days after my DDay with my wife. I’m very very sorry to hear about what’s happened. Realize it has nothing to do with you and don’t allow yourself to run down that rabbit hole.

        • Jackie

          “And imagine a man who makes his marriage better at the other woman’s expense?”

          Yes, I also agree to this too! As I said, the H was wrong to make advances in the first place! But two wrongs don’t make a right. The pain you feel is because you got involved with a man you knew was (unavailable) married. Your response to his advances, no matter how wonderful it made you feel, should be, “I don’t get involved with married men.”

          • Tryinghard

            I doubt he was the only one making the advances! I’m sure she made sure he knew she was a willing participant. It takes two and she played her role in the deception. The wife knows about his deception and she is placing the other half of the blame where it rightfully belongs. She bought into his justifications for his bad behavior. I feel sorry for these pathetic OW. They buy I to the stories lies and fantasies these selfish boys tell them. Too bad. In the end they are the ones who have to look at their own sad dumped pathetic faces in the mirrors and know they too were taken for a foo used and tossed aside when these men were finished with them.

            • The OW Who Empathizes With Wifey

              I was the OW and the wife reacted exactly as you stated which is insane. I had no clue this man was married. Why? Because some women have busy lives. I worked full time and was pursuing my Master’s degree. I saw a comment that said nowadays we have the Internet, the OW should check. His wife told me, and J quote “ I should dig deeper before sleeping with a married men or next time I could be digging my own grave”. REALLY?? The reason I didn’t research him was because he was truly below my standards. I was not looking for more than a FWB situation. I made significantly more money than him. He portrayed himself as a single father, raising one of his sons, working a warehouse job. He was handsome, funny, and well endowed. So now looking back, I regret making an exception for him but again, I never wanted anything long-term or serious. He said he lived with a relative so I never wanted to go to his place and again, not wanting a relationship with him, I avoided any attachments. He on the other hand started talking about marriage and moving in with me within the first few months. That was a huge red flag and turn off so regardless of how good the sex was I felt the need to cut ties. I could go on and on about things he did but it would turn into a book. But I will say despite being blocking him multiple times and asking him to leave me, he would not. I would always give in because he would get with his humor & charm and I would justify dealing with him because it was only 3-4 times a week. It wasn’t like I was living with him and had to put up with him all the time. Fast forward a year and half later, I’ve graduated school and ready to pursue more in my life. He was demanding a lot of my time and becoming a distraction. I blocked him one final time in August. He continues to email me, begging me to unblock him. Telling me he loves me. Calling me his wife. So one day I was setting up a FB page for my business and some guy with the same last name as him showed up as a suggested friend. I hadn’t been on FB Ruth while I was in school if you’re wondering why I never looked him up on there. Anyway, I look at the guys page and I see him in a picture with a woman. I go to the woman’s page and that’s how I found out she was his wife. I emailed him a screenshot of the picture and asked ‘now will you leave me alone? I also told his wife because that was the only way I could ensure that he would leave me alone. I was close to going to the police. The wife goes off on me about how I should have “dug deeper”. As a single woman, who is she to tell me what I should have done? I haven’t wronged anyone intentionally and it’s because of her husband that she even knows me! It’s a guy punch when you’re a stand up women who honors marriage and would never agree to be someone’s side chick. That’s all I have to say. Like I said, her husband did A LOT. And my closest friends knew he was just a booth call to me because they didn’t even know his name gif the first year. We called him # 2 because he was the 2nd person I started dating after my last relationship ended.

          • Carol

            Agreed 200% you stupid women that go after married men are PATHETIC! Don’t you realize that if he’s willing to cheat on his wife, your next sweetheart! Be a lady and do the right think stay away from married people they are unavailable!

        • Jackie

          “But betrayed spouses are so angry (rightfully so) that they take out all their anger on the other woman.”

          You are also right about this line. It is so much easier to blame the OP. It is hard to blame the one you love for hurting you. It is so much easier to blame someone else, when actually the blame falls equally on both cheater and other person. Each has the control to end the affair directly, the spouse can only end the affair indirectly.

          • Marybeth

            Not only was the AP married too but she went nuts and stalked both me and my husband for YEARS after the affair. I finally had to kick her @$# to get her out of my life. I don’t know why I’m still with him….

            • Why you stay

              I’ve been both the wife and the other woman. You’re with him because to divorce him makes you feel as though the other woman has won. Even though you know you will never fully trust him again you have chosen to put your heart out there and risk it getting hurt again versus letting the other woman think she won.

              Because your husband potentially leaving for the other woman is a thought you can’t wrap your mind around. How do I know? Because I was married to a serial cheater who eventually left me for another woman and married her after 15 years together …. ten of which we were married.

              He will In Time cheat on you again and you know that. So be prepared for the roller coaster ride until you get tired of it or until he find someone else he wants to leave you for.

            • Nancy

              There is absolutely truth in your comment. The wife of my exMM literally told me that we should let her husband chose which one of us he wanted to be with, like it was some type of competition! I loved him very much but I wasn’t about to see it as a competition. He ended it with me immediately but I never saw it as a lose or that his wife won. If anything, like you mentioned, she won herself a cheating husband who will do anything to help her believe he loves her and that she won but give it time and at least with the exMM I was involved with, he will cheat again. He was cheating on me with other woman online and was constantly flirting and trolling around buYing complete strangers (good looking women) lunches at restaurants and would go to hotel lounges while on business trips and buy women drinks (again, trolling). It never stopped but I didn’t stop loving him until six months after our relationship ended. Sometimes I think I still love him but then I rationalize it all and realize how he used me. He told me I had a purpose in his life when I asked while in years why he ever pursued me in the first place. What a jerk! Who says cold hearted responses like that? I think God saved me from future heart ache by removing him from my life.

          • Carol

            Jackie any married woman has the right to be angry her husband is OFF limits to you! How pathetic your so desperate you cannot get a man of your own so your willing to destroy a family! Well let me tell you that what goes around comes around! KARMA is a BITCH!

        • Tryinghard

          I hope you get married. I hope you trust implicitly. I hope you love unconditionally. I hope he betrays you with someone else. I hope you learn what empathy means.

        • Holdingon

          It’s called integrity, if I was single there is NO CHANCE that I would ever touch a married woman, even if she begged me, not even a separated woman. They have to be single with no attachments, I want no husband coming to kill me, and that could happen easy.

          • Carol

            Agreed I thank God everyday my mother raised my sister and I to be ladies you keep your legs closed and only get involved with unattached men! How dare you hurt anybody’s wife or children keep your filthy paws off their husbands! My dad used to say do unto others the way you would choose to be done unto!????

        • Susan

          The OW or OM to me can be the ones to stop this senseless pain that wreaks havoc on families and children for a life time often later repeating what happened in their family sort of like PTSD because the trauma and pain of it all was so intense. People forget there is heaven and hell. Stay with the OM and OW and you will go to hell despite getting a divorce. It is a sin and infidelity. Society forgets God unless they are in trouble then they pray fervently. My spouse’s OW and her Italian family in Delaware codoned the Adultery. His dad did this to his mom so he was repeating it exactly like it was done to his family. Funny…the OW family state they are christians. Deceived yes. He who commits adultery destroys himself.

          • Rosa


          • Carol

            Amen Susan I’m going through it right now the cost of the divorce is ENORMOUS, we are not wealthy. My kids are so angry and he even abandoned the dog for some dating site woman he barely knows!

        • Dee

          I think the other woman is just as wrong as the husband. If they had any self respect they wouldn’t get involved with a married man and THEY SHOULD FEEL HORROBLE for the pain to the children not to mention the wife. Why feel bad for her, she had a choice and went willingly down that road. Don’t tell me she isn’t just as much to blame!!

          • Cindy

            Amen!!!! The other Woman is as much to blame!! She is a coward, disrespectful, taking the easy way out because she can’t find a descent person who isn’t married and preys on men who are weak and cowards and short term feel good feelings at everybody’s expense selfish people. Just as selfish as the cheater because they can’t find anyone else except someone’s husband. Cheaters are weak, selfish cowards looking for a short term thrill because nothing and no one will ever fill that void in their weak little heart. The other woman will never fill that void. The other woman is also a stupid woman thinking that everything the cheater tells them is true and believable. Sure a man with his wife for 44 years all of a sudden leaves his wife because she is this horrible person not because I have a chance with a Home Wrecking Whore to get a little strange because I’m going through a midlife crisis. The Other Woman thinks she can save but in all of this all he is doing is filling his selfish needs and she fell for it because she is soooo weak and would take anyone. The other woman and the cheating spouse never think twice about all the lives they are hurting for their own short term needs. I can only live with the happiness that the other woman has to live her life and fear of all that happening to her one day and worry your life away. It will happen just never know when. They live their life’s in fear. No one deserves it more. The saying once a cheater always a cheater isn’t just words.
            Short term fun equals long term pain!!! No two people deserve it more!!!!!

            • Dawn

              Wow. I like the home wrecking whore part. True words have been spoken. Amen for the families that will need support and healing. Lots of antibiotics for the other two skum bags

          • Kim


          • Carol

            Agreed Dee 300% but a decent spouse would just ask for a divorce.

        • Kim

          The other woman is so at fault. She knows he’s married, she should back off. Sorry the other women have issues if they need another woman’s husband.

          • Josie

            So true the other womans standards for herself are low just like her self esteme ! All the men out there and they fixate on a married man .Poachers are what they are,of course the compitition isnt fair.my 36 yr marraige couldnt withstand the high of what the other woman was offering. Shes a shiny new pump i am a old worn in loafer. But some day she will be a loafer as well. AND see my husband for who he really is ….a selfish ,greedy person who had a good life and didnt realize what he had !

          • Carol

            Agreed Kim and the children involved it makes me VOMIT mine was screwing around right inside our family home in our first marital bed! My caught him only aged: 9 he was the man and told me!

        • Carol

          Not me I told the him exactly what I thought of him and I’m taking him for everything!

          • Carol

            Good for you I agree I will NOT ever tolerate staying with a man whose not even faithful! Why even bother getting married if your just going to cheat?

        • Cody

          Jackie you said “Betrayed spouses always give a lot of heat to the other woman. But it was the husband who betrayed her, not the other woman. No one thinks about the other woman’s point of view. We all want to be loved and everyone makes unwise choices when they are in love. I don’t think any other woman intends to hurt the wife. I think it is more about HIM. But betrayed spouses are so angry (rightfully so) that they take out all their anger on the other woman.”
          A friend of mine tried to cheat on his wife a few years back and told the other woman that he is married and it was her choice to help him cheat (basically) to continue talking to him and plan to get together for sex later or if she wants to call it quit (who cares about the wife, she have no choice in this)… the other woman told him she wanted to continue it not caring about his wife… his wife found out before it happened and called BOTH of them out about it (the two woman don’t know eachother btw) and the other woman told him that she doesn’t want to say good bye because she wanted him.. it took his wife to try to leave that he realized that he had to stop and tell the other woman that he needs to work it out with his wife. So my point is.. most of these other woman know what they are getting themselves into.. if i was a woman.. i would hate that other woman.. but i know that there are some woman who do not know the men are married.. i have female friends telling me that they found out that their bf are married and they are piss to know that they are the other woman…

          • Carol

            LOL, Cody your funny any woman that is bedding a married man is a TRAMP! Even though the man is a complete asshole also that tramp deserves to take a lot of heat! Think about the kids when they find out it tears their hearts out I’m living it right now!????

            • Loyalty

              Amen! The other woman deserves to share the heat. It takes both parties to cheat. I don’t understand or agree with individuals who say “it’s your spouse that made the vows to you, not the other woman.” While this may be true, my husband didn’t fuck himself. Excuse my language. It took the other woman KNOWING he was married and making that choice to continue to screw around despite the fact he was married and she was too. She knew about me. I went to her work and she saw my child too. Her decision to carry on was for herself. Women and men who cheat are selfish like that. That’s why with me there is a firm belief that you can make a choice freely, but you will answer the consequences. If your woman enough to knowingly screw another woman’s husband, be woman enough to take the heat.

        • Dahlia

          I don’t think she did. My friend always talked about blame percentages. I think now I understand what she meant. The cheating spouse is 100% at fault. But .. . The person they cheat with is also equally 100% to blame for reciprocating wrong behavior with a married person

      • Liz

        Im here asking myself exactly the same thing, he will marry her they havr a baby together now and im still broken trying to see the light at the end of the tunnel:(

      • Carol

        They lose the respect of family, friends and neighbours! My ex husband cannot even face me he’s so ashamed, the house is for sale and he’s even losing 1/2 his retirement!

        • Carol

          Really? I know when I had to call my former I laws they were sickened! Old school they have been married nearly 60 years and were shocked!

      • Carol

        He lost everything deep down inside of him every night it eats away at them like a cancer trust me! I saw my ex husband nearly a week ago at a drug store and he looked AWFUL! He had aged so much in only 9 months!

    • ppl

      your respect. hopefully you havent lost your own self respect.

      • Carol

        Not at all I have to be strong for my kids I love them he will get his, ye who laughs LAST, laughs loudest!

      • Carol

        Not me as hard as the divorce has been I’m determined to move forward as a newly single woman and I’m now back to work after years of being stay at home and I’m just starting to date again! SINGLE men that is, lol I so respect married women I wouldn’t dream of touching your man!????

    • Jeffrey Murrah


      Let me see if I understand your questions: “How many marriages end because of infidelity with the cheating spouse regretting their decisions?”

      This is an unanswerable question. Although you can find the numbers for divorce where infidelity is given for the reason, that does not indicate how many regret that choice. What I can tell you is that at least 15% of the people who divorce their spouse after an affair don’t regret their actions in terms of thinking they did anything wrong. That is about the number of people who function with little or no conscience. Another group are those who are using the affair as a passive way out of the marriage. For them, they only consider their immediate emotional state. They do not consider how their actions impact others. Beyond that is all a matter of speculation.

      You other question, “Once a cheating spouse makes that decision (I am not sure if this is the decision to cheat or the decision to stay together?) , how difficult it is to turn around and admit how wrong they were?” It all depends on how much pride they have and how strong their moral convictions are.

      A question in my mind is “What is the purpose of marriage?” How people answer this question determines a lot. It identifies what they see as their options. It determines what they will and won’t feel guilty about.

      If their answer is that it is about enjoying a life together. When they cease enjoying that life, then marriage has outlived its usefulness for them.

      If they say marriage as a way to indulge in sexual relations without conviction, then when the opportunity comes up for them to get their jollies and not get caught, they jump at the the chance.

      If they see the purpose of the marriage to raise good children and strong families, they will view their options differently.

      • Carol

        Thousands and my lawyer said infedelity is dramatically on the rise in Canada due to No fault divorce which is a joke and online dating!????????????

    • NotBroken

      Jennifer… your right I did improve myself, and my outlook on life is more mature now. I’m not like a child living some fantasy.
      Ppl… He did lose my respect.

      • Carol

        Excellent I’m so happy and proud of you like myself we will come out on top and stronger than ever!i turn 50 in Feb and I’m determined to find a New special man, unattached of course and I will treat him like gold!????

    • michael's wife

      I live with regrets everyday, every minute, I have been trying to ask myself how I could have done this to my loving husband to my family. I thank god everyday that my husband has continued to stay with me. He has also tried to help in so many ways. I don’t believe that I deserve him, sometimes I think that is the reason for the EA. I really don’t know the why, but I’m trying to work through that.

      • Doug

        Michael’s wife, Often times the betrayer suffers in silence, afraid to talk about their feelings because they feel they have to be the strong one. I know that if Doug would have told me how much he regretted the affair and how terrible he felt and the feelings he was experiencing it would have helped me move on. Often times the spouse sees the pain and silence as a sign they are still thinking about their affair partner, little do we know that they may be feeling shameful, guilty or undeserving. I believe the most important thing you can do for your marriage is be honest with your feelings and trust that your husband will listen. He has proven that he wants your marriage to work, try to trust him and open up yourself to him. Linda

      • Carol

        Your lucky because I divorced my cheating husband immediately

      • Carol

        You have a special man very forgiving because it wouldn’t be me, you cheat your done

      • Carol

        I wish you all the best and agreed he deserves better but it’s his choice

    • neko

      I’m young, not close to 50 but not a teen.
      I’ve ‘still got my whole life ahead’ of me, but the pain caused by an abusive spouse isn’t any less. Of course it doesn’t start off abusive – the honeymoon phase does came to a halt, however he gave up completely – and without telling me (the affair). I made it crystal clear that if he were unhappy or wanted us to part – i’d respect that, he didn’t want me to carry on with my life aka have closure hence doing the dirty behind my back, whilst i was at home cooking his meals.
      My other half deceived me for a whole year, sure we didn’t have kids, however his ‘reasons’ or rather excuses were the same to the ones mentioned above. He was spoilt rotten, selfish and abusive(emotionally, psychologically and eventually physically) . He was a narcissist. I couldn’t see the abuse for what it was at the time – who ever really does?
      By that time he’d managed to isolate me from friends and family – was in a foreign country, hardly spoke the language.
      I couldn’t have been more reasonable, then again it takes two to make a relationship work. Trust is the basis of any relationship, at the time i trusted him to be a decent human being. It was a game to him of power and control.
      No love. I eventually found the strength to leave him, once i realised he was abusing me. This realisation came once i had secretly reconnected with my family and friends online.
      To this day he tries to torment me indirectly- in new ways (for narcissists are master manipulators) in an attempt to reel me back into his destructive world.
      Is he trying to reel me back in due to regret? hell no. He’s still with that other sorry excuse for a human being (they deserve one another) it’s just for his sick sadistic satisfaction.
      To regret, to apologise would mean him admitting that he was wrong. That will never happen. He blamed me till the very day i moved. I’ve never looked back. Never broke my word of never speaking to him ever again. We’ll have to see one another at a certain institution due to circumstance and although it may be tough, it’ll be bearable and part of the mending process.
      He gave up on us, but i’ll never give up on myself.

      • Carol

        Agree Neko and you are strong like me and you will preserve through this hell into something beautiful. I truly believe that God only gives us what we can handle and that through everything bad comes something wonderful!????

    • Dawn

      Just for a second the other day I was thankful that I was cheated on and not the cheater. I was trying to think how I could live in my relationship if I had done what was done to me and I do not think I could live with it. Then I thought, no, being cheated on sucks, but it was just a thought.

      • Doug

        Dawn, interesting stance on that. As the cheater, I believe that the regret and guilt is tough to bare, but nothing compared to the hurt that the victim feels.

      • Carol

        You are so right Dawn and the other day I gave myself permission for s pat on the back that I stay faithful to my wedding vows 21 years I never strayed. My former MIL used to put me down constantly because she felt I wasn’t wealthy enough for her precious son and yet I was the one with the MORALS!????

    • Jackie

      The cheater must live with the fact that he cheated on his spouse, and kids if he had any. The betrayed must live with the idea that this can happen again if the cheater doesn’t learn anything from the affair and cheating. The cheater betrayed him/herself, and what he used to believe in, to give himself the good feeling of having a fantasy affair.

      We all get hurt from the betrayal. The best we can do is learn and grow from it.

      • Carol

        Exactly Jackie and that took me forever to learn I had to take counseling I was so angry and that’s exactly what my counselor taught me! The best revenge is looking HOT and having a great life without that LOSER!????

    • Elemen

      As a spouse that cheated and chose to separate, I can tell you definitely there isn’t a day now for 2 yrs I don’t regret my actions. Mine is a double-edged sword in that my husband also cheated on me. That came out later though, when we confessed to eachother. He had already filed for divorce by the time we told eachother. And we tried to reconcile but ultimately he wanted to divorce and said there was too much damage/not much to salvage. I was still open to reconciling w/ him.
      So I can tell everyone here: yes, some spouses that cheated regret it horribly. It is by far my worst regret in life. It’s #1. And eventhough I couldn’t save my marriage I learned some major life lessons and one is that I will never ever cheat again. It was NOT worth it. Please note: I did not leave my husband to be with the OM. In fact, I barely spoke to OM after separating from my husband and soon after cut off all contact.
      Affairs are ugly and devastating & although my H wanted to divorce, I will always regret the way we cheated on eachother in the end…we were so close to separating and should have just separated before involving third parties…

      • Carol

        Excellent very well written yes cheating is NOT worth destroying your family no way!

    • StealthGenie

      I wonder the other person really worth a try to give a second chance or it is just a fake excuse to relax your heart apparently and temporarily. Decisions must be made keeping in view their consequences, emotional and sentimental people often end their lives with guilt overpowering their lives. To avoid such hazardous times, I think precautions are better and one such could be installation of a spying software in their mobile phones to remove the evils the moment they start appearing.

    • Gayle

      I am the cheater and regret deeply that I have done so. My then husband was miserable and said his life was “sucky” all the time. I took it as since I was a part of that life..well I must suck too. In reality..he was miserable because he thought I wasn’t happy and was trying everything he could to make me happy..so he sacrified his own happines. I couldn’t talk to him..didnt’ want to go to him for comfort..because all I heard was life was sucky. I called him once and asked if we could start to have date nights..I felt like I was starting to faulter in our relationship..he said he didn’t think it was necessary. I thought he was done..so I shut down myself. I was contacted on facebook by an old classmate. Talking with him he tugged at my emotional strings. I quickly started to lie, sneak around, send this old classmate money to help him out and then eventually made up a story on why I had to drive 5 hours away to go see him and have sex with him. At first I didnt’ feel guilty..cause it was a temporary high. When my ex figured out what was going on..he wanted to die. I can still hear nights of him wailing and crying out to me that he can’t move..he can’t breathe..he wants to die. I couldnt’ reach out to him. I was frozen.
      Here it is 2 years later and just now I am starting to see the effects of my actions on my family, my ex husband and the fact that I only have 1/2 of my childrens lives to me since we have 50/50. I am devasted I gave up so much. A man that would have done anything if I would have just opened up more and said I think we are in trouble and need help. I suffered in my own hell then..and I am still suffering now.

    • Dawn

      Dear Jackie the OW who posted September 20th. Looks like you were fed the line every OW has been fed, the wife is horrible. Then the Husband realizes that he actually loves the woman he married and has a life with and that the pig he was putting lipstick on was you.

      • Tryinghard

        Dawn. Lol. Good point on the pig to whom lipstick was being put on!

    • jackie

      @Dawn The husband never said he didn’t love his wife. He said that the situation was a lost cause, and that they were too different, too incompatible to bridge the gap. That’s a very different thing.

      I loved my ex-h. I also knew that he was too broken to continue to be part of my life, so I divorced him. It was the healthy thing to do. Love simply isn’t enough to have a healthy relationship.

      @responsetoJackie(me) [Something weird in the way this board works]

      I stated before. We were friends for many years before our affair started. So I can only assume what he had to say was me was truth, and not a “setup” to get me in his bed.

      A lot of what he described in his marriage was described in a matter of fact way. He didn’t describe it as abuse. But when I heard it, clearly it was abusive. Subtle tactics such as: isolating him from outside influences, dominating all of his free time with honey-do lists (when I know he spent the majority of his weekends doing stuff around the house or doing stuff for her endless number of extended family. I saw the proof in these things because he used to post photos of his project on facebook and post tons of facebook statuses about that over the many years.) Those lists would keep him from doing any of the personal things he wanted to do for himself. He NEVER had any alone time.

      She would tell him what to wear, disallow whole families of food in their household (because she didn’t like the taste of them, no one else was allowed to have it). When she got angry with him, she would spend days ignoring him. She would make really snide degrading comments about him on facebook.

      He would say terrible things about himself and I would ask him why he thought those things and he would say, “no reason”. Then I would dig deeper and he would admit “someone” said that about him, but never would say who it was.

      A lot of time he would talk about things, vacations, activities, and I would say, “you don’t sound like you had fun” or “you don’t sound like you want to do that”. His response was always, “she had fun” or “this is what she wants to do”. So he would never complain and say, “I don’t want to do this”. In fact, he never said he was unhappy, until we actually got deeply involved in an emotional affair. He simply stated things as if this is how things are, with a cold detachment as if he wasn’t part of the whole thing, but an observer.

      Only a few things he would complain about, usually things about the kids where he wanted to engage them in more enriching activities and she would dismiss his suggestions as being unnecessary.

      And over time, being his friend, I dug and realized that he likes keeping the peace over all else and I encouraged him to speak up more about what he wants and needs and stop being so wishy washy.

      So I do believe he was honest about the situation. I haven’t detailed all the other behaviors. None of the behaviors seem so bad on the surface. But when you detail them all together, there is clearly a pattern of controlling and manipulative behaviors. To this day, he has never admitted that they were abuse when clearly, a description of the behaviors (which I haven’t provided in enough details to make the case) IS an abusive situation.

      This is what happens to people who are accustomed to having their needs steam-rolled for many years. They are not able to even see how much they are being abused.

      But when I see him, he looks different. There is no twinkle in his eye. His posture has changed. He looks beaten down. Our mutual friends say that he no longer speaks to anyone and has withdrawn from all of his friendships.

      As far as I am concerned, I got out of a marriage that was very bad for me, but this experience was far worse because the betrayal of what was promised, and even the betrayal of our emotional connection, the mutual respect, the mutual trust was epic. No one has ever hurt me this badly, not EVEN my philandering husband.

      While I was definitely not in my right mind by getting involved with an unavailable man and have learned a great deal of myself afterward, I did not ever dream that someone that was closer than family would betray me like this. It isn’t just the trying to work things out at home, but the complete lack of acknowledgement of the damage he did to me by bringing me into this on such a deep level. (Promises of growing old together etc.)

      In a marriage where there is a betrayal, when the spouse chooses to work on it, there is a lot of mending to be done, and it takes time. But at least the cheater admits to their errors and tries to make amends. To the OW, dropping her like a hot potato. It’s like divorcing your spouse without even having a conversation and then simply disappearing. Just try to imagine that. It really doesn’t matter if the person was unavailable to begin with, the simple fact was a serious emotional bond was formed and every human being, no matter how flawed and how erroneous their decision was, deserves respect and validation, especially when they were i a serious relationship.

      • Jackie

        I had to also address this line of yours:
        “It really doesn’t matter if the person was unavailable to begin with, the simple fact was a serious emotional bond was formed and every human being, no matter how flawed and how erroneous their decision was, deserves respect and validation, especially when they were i a serious relationship.”

        You are right in this, and this should say something of the kind of person you are dealing with. Like many here, the CS has some character flaws. First he is cheating on his wife and family, getting involved with someone outside his marriage. He is clearly not working on his issues. You are right you deserve more as any decent human does deserve. What he should say to you is, “I’m sorry I hurt you. I didn’t mean to. I never should have let it go this far. I wasn’t thinking straight.”

        Did you notice how these are the same words he needs to say to his spouse and he may never be able to say even to someone he has been with for decades? This is why he also can’t say it to you. Be lucky if you ever hear anything that resembles, “I’m sorry for hurting you.”

        I’m sure he is sorry…he just has trouble admitting his mistakes and faults. This is the type of man the wife has been living with and accepting for years.

        If it is any comfort, please take my quotes of apologies as if they were truly said to you by the CS. Believe them. I’m sure they are as true as he would have said them. He just has trouble saying these words to anyone…including himself.

        Heal, learn and grow stronger.

      • B

        You being dropped like a hot potato is what you deserved. You now have to feel the heartbreak you caused his wife. There is something called KARMA.

        • Jackie

          It’s been years since we’ve been together but I do run into him on occasion. He is still married, and still unhappy. He looks like a different person. He has aged in an unflattering way. He looks worn out and defeated, has no bounce in his step, no twinkle in his eye.

          We spoke and I asked him if he was happy in his life. He admitted his isn’t. I asked if he was in love. He admitted that he only stayed for the kids. The expression on my face was enough for him to fall over himself and strongly state that it is his life and his choices to make. (It is, and he is a coward.)

          I am sad for him because he has chosen to play make believe for his kids. It’s not good for anyone involved including the kids. He thinks they won’t know, but they will eventually and he condemns them to do the same with their lives giving them a good role model about loyalty but a terrible role model about self-love.

          I feel sorry for his wife. I wouldn’t want a man to stay with me simply because I am the mother of his kids. It might feel good to have someone go through the motions, pretending to love me, but on some level, I would know in my heart that it is fake. And I would forever feel insecure, and look over my shoulder, walk on egg shells. That’s no way to live.

          He told me he was never in love with her, never attracted to her. (She doesn’t have a sexy bone in her body, even though she has a very pretty face.) She chose him and he feels obliged to stay for the kids. What a horrible way to keep a man in ones life? I can think of no reason why he would lie at this point. He has nothing to gain because he knows he has lost me and my respect forever. I can’t love a person who doesn’t have enough courage to follow his heart, if not with me, at least not to live a pretend life.

          Yes, his character flaws surprised me and out of the three of us, I am the luckiest of all. I lost the guy, but gained a new sense of self-worth. I won’t be making mistakes like that again. Perhaps he wasn’t worth keeping to begin with. He remains with her, and the two of them remain in a pretend marriage, both, not truly happy. I get to live the rest of my life in pursuit of true happiness, and they spend theirs on a treadmill looking good to the neighbors but fooling no one. (People do talk behind their back and anyone paying attention to the details sees that nothing has changed.) Truly sad.

          • Surviving

            It’s possible he isn’t truthful to you as much as you may think he’s being honest he prob isn’t.
            As for staying for the kids I gather you don’t have any. Once they are born and your holding this life you made and feel that unconditional love you know at that moment you would give your life up for them.
            If he wanted to leave he would.

          • justbecause

            Jackie, It seems to me that you are trying to rationalize your affair with a married man. I think it would be hard to be objective in your situation. Seeing things as you do may be a way of self-preservation, of allaying guilt, of not fully admitting to a tragic, horrible deed.

            I agree with Surviving. Jackie, you don’t know everything. You know or perceive what the CS wants you to.

            I have had limited contact with the OW since my D-day. The part that bothers me the most about the cow is her inability to admit she was wrong, that she engaged in the EA in part due to her emotional issues. She did not know my H or our situation at all – despite 20 months of conversing online.

            When at first your practice to deceive . . .

          • Ken

            Don’t’ pity the wife. Just like the wife we have reasons to stay temporarily, I really really want to separate with him. I caught my H cheating too. I offered him a divorce but he wants to stay. We agreed that he will stay, but i won’t care for him or i’ll ignore him. I dont love him anymore since he hurt my feelings. I wish to be happy and planned my life in the future without him. I ignores him whenever he’s in the house. I don’t care about him anymore. The only thing i stayed with him is just to prepare myself in the future and get a license in my chosen profession. After that, we will leave him. I don’t want a cheater, liar, betrayer in my life. he’ll just poison my good dispositions in life.

          • Holdingon

            My wife told her AP the same things, not a word of it was true, she told him that not only did I emotionally abuse her but physically as well, anyone that knows me would know that it was all a lie, she just wanted him to feel sorry for her, we never even argued, and we always had sex no less then 3 times a week and I know I didn’t leave her unsatisfied, ever, always her first from the beginning of our marriage. So yeah, he was lying his ass off to you.

            • Sierra

              Cheaters lie, period. It’s a lot easier to pretend you’re a victim to justify your actions than it is to take responsibility for being a horrible person. Holdingon is right. He was lying.

      • Carly

        You are making me feel waves of nausea again, I want to vomit, Yes, you are making me sick, AGAIN.

        The truth is you know NOTHING about his marriage.

        And comparing your pain to a dumped, faithful, long term, cheated on wife with young children….disgusting.

        You asked for your pain. Read Anna Karenina.

      • becky716

        Jackie @ 10 am,
        Yes, I can imagine that because that’s exactly how my husband treated his OW/AP. My husband had an affair with a married, mother of 2 coworker who ended up leaving her family (yes, husband and kids) for him. I had filed for divorce before that happened when he wouldn’t end his “friendship” with her and it was causing problems for us. All the things I heard from others that were said about me were JUSTIFICATION for his behavior.
        Their relationship began as work friends for years and they started talking about their marriages and supporting one another. Well, it doesn’t take a genius to see that that’s a recipe for disaster. NOBODY has a marriage without conflict or difficulty. At some point, I spoke with her husband and he told me that she even accused him of abuse (even told their priest) for yelling at her over the affair (ultimately she denied everything and he believed it and they are back together).
        Anyway, our divorce was almost final and he begged me to come back and dropped her like a hot potato. It’s part of the deal of coming back into the marriage: NO CONTACT with the woman who almost ended it. As a former BS, you should understand the necessity of that.
        There’s a painful lesson for you to learn here: stay out of another woman’s marriage.

    • Jackie

      Hi again other jackie,
      I see and feel your pain. Interesting, I could see my loving H say all these things to you and how you may have grown to think that his wife was abusive. I agree with you that in a sense, he was a broken man when he met the OW. But he wasn’t necessarily broken because of the marriage or wife, more so it was how his life had become unbalanced and unfulfilling. In my case, my H was depressed and over worked. Yes, he has been unhappy lately, and being with the OW gave him a kind of high, giving him an ego boost, when life seemed to be all work, no play. But it was a fantasy. He was living in fantasy, running away from all his troubles, cause he didn’t know how to fix them.

      The feeling of an infatuation, affair, or being “in love”…is highly addictive. It gives one a high, drug like feeling. It is not a rational feeling but pure emotional (chemical).Yes it feels good, but at what cost. He has dropped you as he has, because he realizes what damage he has done to his marriage, family and everyone who believed and trusted him. He likely realizes that he made a mistake, and can’t believe what he has done. Now he is angry at himself, ashamed that he could have done such a horrible thing to his family, marriage and all of those who loved him. He let everyone down including himself, for a fantasy. He has lied, cheated, and has become someone he never imagined he could become.

      Understand, my H doesn’t often give his opinion on what he wants to do or where he wants to go. He chooses to defer to me or the kids, saying it doesn’t matter. I believe him when he says this, because I believe he will tell me if he doesn’t like something or would rather do something else. As in any adult, it is his responsibility to communicate his wishes, otherwise I will have no clue he doesn’t like something. To me his opinion matters very much and I respond as much as I can to his needs and desires. He knows this, and says sometimes that is why he doesn’t ask, because he knows I would likely make an effort to please him.

      I can see how you may have interpreted his unhappiness as his wife being abusive, when it really was him not voicing or communicating his wants. Like many men in relationships, many H choose a passive role in the workings of the relationship. H think that it is the wife’s job to make him happy, not his own. It takes two to make a relationship work. You must have seen this in your previous marriage.

      My H said this early on in the EA, “I don’t know why I am doing this. I have everything I could ask for here!”

      So what about you, the OW? Yes, you too got hurt by the affair. Now you feel abandoned after all he had said and done with you. That is why one should never get involved with a married person. They are NOT AVALIABLE! They have promised their spouse to love, honor them, until death do they part. If the CS were so unhappy in the relationship in the first place, they need to end it, before starting another relationship. Unfortunately, the CS unintentionally hurt you too, to make himself feel better, just like he hurt himself, his wife, the kids, and his family and friends. The CS has let everyone down, and now has to try to pick up the pieces from the destruction that he has caused.

      Your job is to learn from your mistakes and pain, grow from it, become a better person. I feel you haven’t learned the mistake from your first marriage, when your H cheated on you. Somehow you allowed yourself to be the OW. After all the pain and anguish from your first marriage, why didn’t you vow never to get involved in an affair? That puzzles me. Like all of us here, you must look deeper into yourself to learn from your life and mistakes. The pain you feel here is the process of learning the hard way, because you didn’t learn it the first time. You have also played a role in his destruction. You got physically and emotionally involved with a vulnerable married man. You tried to fulfill your needs, with someone who had a wife and family. You joined the fantasy, encouraged it with your assumptions in the guise of being understanding. You were a major role in the destruction of someone else’s marriage.

      Do everyone a favor. Leave him and his family alone. Allow them to try to repair and heal from the damage that the affair caused. Vow never again to get involved with a unavailable man…that is both married, attached, or emotionally unavailable for that matter.

      You are like the alcohol bottle, to the alcoholic. The temptation and destruction of life as the CS once knew and loved. Yes, loved. He realizes what he will lose if he continues down this path with you. Not that you are a bad person, disillusioned maybe, but not bad. Just like alcohol isn’t necessarily bad, it is how alcohol is abused that causes problems in a person’s life.

      I know you hurt and I don’t mean to lecture you. But at this stage of struggle and learning in our life, every action and word comes under scrutiny. Don’t become bitter. Learn from your mistakes. We are all human and we all make mistakes. The best you can do is to move on and learn from them.

      Like all of us, we could all use some therapeutic counseling to help us understand why we do destructive things in our lives. Live to better the world. Do what you can to not hurt others. Life is not only about you and your feelings. Look beyond yourself.

      As I say often, “Affairs are wrong because they hurt EVERYONE involved.”

      • Dawn

        Hi Jackie, not the OW Jackie, the other Jackie 🙂
        I love your posts. Everything you have said is so true and so parallel to my experience.
        To the OW Jackie, I guess I am so upset by your statements because even though my husband had an emotional affair 2 years ago, the thing I carry with me the most is that the OW is walking around thinking that my husband is in a bad relationship, that I am crazy, and that he would rather be with her. Even though I know for certain that could not be further from the truth. It pains me to think that she may think that, and be discussing this in her world, as our worlds do overlap to a certain extent. I usually get past it by thinking she cannot possibly be that delusional, but then I read your posts and realize that she quite possibly could be.

    • jackie

      @Jackie (round green face)

      Yes clearly he wasn’t working on his issues. And it isn’t as if I didn’t encourage him for years to work on them. Most of his issues, which I identified early on, he refused to admit existed. Near the end of our final breakup, he admitted he didn’t believe they were as big of a problem as he now knows they are. But it isn’t as if I didn’t try. And this was well before we had any sort of improper relationship.

      There was much more to our relationship than him saying I’m sorry, I wasn’t thinking straight. If it were that simple. I put him over the coals more than once during every stage of our relationship, drawing lines of what I wanted and expected. I was very clear that I did not want to be placed in the position that I am now. And had he taken my lead, we would still be friends, having never crossed the line at all. Instead, he gave me over-the-top gestures that were quite convincing that he meant what he said. In the end, we were pretty close to being also married. People who saw us together thought we were living together and he had already left his marriage due to a lot of reasons that I don’t want to say here. I did go to therapy after this and my therapist, who is experienced in these matters was very surprised HOW FAR he went to assure me that he was serious. He owes me far more than a “I’m sorry”. I’m not saying I want him back or even in my life, but a conversation that really gets to the root of things would be valuable to me.

      I know he was broken from things in his own past. Your situation may be very different than the situation with my OM. Not all situations are the same. His past reflects ALL the choices he has made in his life. From what he told me, he told me that he has NEVER been attracted sexually to any of the woman he has been with, that I was the first. He told me he aimed down because he knew they were insecure enough with themselves that they wouldn’t leave him, and he didn’t want to get hurt again. (I did the same in my own marriage because of the place I was in my life at the time I met my former spouse.) But if it were appearance that would be simple. He didn’t have a normal upbringing and therefore does not know what a normal relationship feels like. He chose long-term partners that reflected the same personality types he grew up with which were not healthy ones.

      I do understand that people need to voice their needs in order to have them met. But there is another side of that. What happens if voicing your needs results in a drawn out argument? Or having your feelings squashed, or invalidated. He described stuff like that to me, and having been through that myself, I know exactly what happens. You decide to keep things to yourself becuase you get tired of the fight about EVERYTHING. Communication is not simply voicing your opinions, but giving your partner the space to voice their needs and desires in an emotionally safe way. From everything he has said, he shut down because of the lack of emotional safety. And her behavior towards me, after ALL this time doesn’t give me a whole lot of confidence that she has changed her temperment at all. Otherwise, her energy would be on him, not me.

      I have had time to reflect on a lot of things, OM and my marriage. I got emotionally entangled with my OM when I was in the midst of a divorce, having a very dark, dark time in my life. I was scared, hurt, afraid that I would be alone for the rest of my life. And here was a man that really “got” me, understood how I ticked, and represented everything that I wanted in a future relationship. It was hard not to get caught up in that. That doesn’t mean I never learned anything from my marriage. My marriage did not end because of infidelity but because of other issues far more destructive. Infidelity was PEANUTS compared to the other issues.

      There was nothing I could have done to save my marriage. The issues with that squarely fell on him. I worked for a long time to fix it. The big mistake was marrying the wrong person in the first place. The other big mistake was spending years trying to fix something that NEVER WORKED TO BEGIN WITH. You can’t fix something that never worked.

      @Dawn You may be right in your situation about the OW and your H and you. But that may not be the truth in my situation. I do know people who admit to be miserable in their marriages and stay in it anyway. (Yet they continue to tell me about it.) I have counselled them to go to counseling and really work to fix it, BUT, the big BUT, to give themselves a timeline of what they expect to be corrected. I told them to not remain in limbo but to make a decision. If XYZ isn’t fulfilled by this date, then they need to move on and not keep hitting the reset button. (I did this for too long and nothing really improved.)

      I know others who stayed for the kids in marriages for more than 20 years and then left their spouses. They said they knew when their kids were young that they wanted out, but stayed anyway, much to the regret of their squandered life. (Their elder counsel told me not to do the same with my life.)

      The worst thing is to keep extending those boundaries of acceptable and unacceptable, never making a choice to move on when it isn’t working, but to keep living in fantasy land that the future will be better if you just hold out a little long. Miracles of miracles something that has never worked with just change, if you try a little longer and a little harder.

      I did that for the majority of my marriage. I realized now that the person is only who they are NOW, not what I want them to be in the future. And relationships should be regarded the same. That is why I say to set a firm set of criteria and goals, with a definitive deadline. If that deadline is breached without SUBSTANTIAL improvement, then it’s time to move on. This is my take away from both relationships. I have learned a lot about what I need to do to live in the present, and that goes far beyond love relationships. I have never done this before. I was much like your husband, deferring my needs to everyone else. The difference though was I knew what my needs and wants were, unlike my OM who deferred so much, for so long, he didn’t even know what he wanted for himself, even when asked. I have also learned how NOT to settle for less than I want. I have learned quite a lot in this experience. The only thing I haven’t gotten past is the hurt of such a deep betrayal. This was far worse than anything my ex-h and I experienced, believe me. As far as leaving him alone, I don’t contact him in any way at all. His wife doesn’t leave me alone and if she truly wanted me out of their marraige, than it is up to her to extract me out of her marriage by leaving me alone.

      For the record, I do think she is nuts. I think he is nuts. I think I am nuts. But of the three of us, I’m probably the most emotionally stable and the most introspective and self-seeking. (I’m more introspective than most people.) I also know this because I don’t believe their marriage would have gotten to the point of his multiple affairs if the two of them were more introspective, more transparent, more honest with themselves and each other. Those problems, were big and self-evident, long before I got there. They both chose to ignore them. Now they are aware of them, thanks to me.

      Being disguarded the way I was forced me to fast-track a lot of my personal growth. I think it can be extremely difficult to fix yourself (which the three of us need to do for YEARS to come), while trying to fix a relationship. The two things cancel each other out. What I mean is he has spent his whole life allowing his needs to pushed aside for the needs of others. He needs to figure out how to love himself for who he is, not for how others define him and not for what he does for others. Trying to discover ‘oneself’ while trying to also fix a relationship (which always requires compromise) is a bit counterproductive. Dawn, I hope you can make things work with your hubbie. You shouldn’t care what the OW thinks about you at all. If it bothers you, perhaps you should ask yourself why it bothers you so you can find a way to have it stop bothering you. She’s gonna do what she’s gonna do.

      I know what the wife thinks of me. She doesn’t know or understand how I tick at all and in her harrassment of me, has tried to upset me with things that don’t bother me. I’m more upset about the desire to hurt me then the actual things she says, especially since she won’t drop it. The things she says and does are so far removed from the truth about me, it’s impossible to be upset by the content. If the OW has something to say to your mutual friends, just know one thing, your mutual friends will have an interpretation that is different from both your side, and the OW side and form their own opinion. And to that end, who really cares? Your friends really don’t care, I can assure you of that. It’s just gossip to them.

    • Jackie

      Hi Jackie (green gear face),
      Your quote:
      “For the record, I do think she is nuts. I think he is nuts. I think I am nuts. ” pushed some buttons for me.

      Funny, how I really thought my H had gone nuts. He really was acting irritable, illogical, and angry weeks before he told me about being “in love” with someone else. Then after telling me, all hell broke loose. He was acting literally out of his mind. H was blaming one minute, loving the next, raising his voice towards me and the kids, not telling us where he was going or when he would be back, not saying hello or goodbye. It felt as H had lost his mind. Marriage counseling helped him open up, but when he talked he was completely irrational, saying one thing one moment and the complete opposite the next. We couldn’t agree on anything, and as far as I was concern he couldn’t care less if I were dead or alive. All I knew was he was continuing to pursue the OW, and she made him feel wonderful, and I was the enemy for some reason.

      As weeks like this went by, I too was going through a sort of craziness. Trying to understand why he was doing this, what was wrong with him. Was he mentally ill? Has he truly been unhappy for so many years without me knowing? Why didn’t he make more effort in the past to let me know how important these issues of his were so we could work it out?

      He only wanted to be left alone to enjoy his fantasy, even though he admitted it was a fantasy. This was a man who in all the years I had known him was the most honest, sincere, loyal, caring, sensitive person I knew. Now he was completely the opposite, arrogant, blaming, uncaring, dishonest, keeping secrets which were important to us and our marriage. H was acting just like a selfish adolescent. I was doing everything in my power not to go crazy myself. I knew I had to keep my head, if not for me, but for the sake of the kids.

      I knew I had to do everything in my power to remain healthy both mentally and physically, when I felt I was losing it. I lost my appetite, couldn’t sleep, had intrusive thoughts, crying all the time, and was tip toeing around him not to set him off. He frightened me so much I started to understand how someone who once loved you could kill a loved one. This was a frightening thought, but the look of hatred in his eyes were frightening.

      Why am I telling you this? I guess because I realize my H crazy actions, were making me crazy. When you are so close to someone, what they do, influences you very deeply. This is what you experienced too.

      So basically the H affair causes craziness all around him. It makes the wife crazy. Because of the lying and dishonesty the CS has to play detective trying to get at the truth that the H is trying so hard to hide. She worries about the kids, her future, her H, the OW. Her whole life has gotten out of control.

      As the OW, I suppose the beginning offers the excitement of any new relationship. That is, dreams of a wonderful future, but when real life comes into the picture, it too comes crashing down with the same kind of craziness that the BS feels…the issues of lying and dishonesty…worry about the future…and the loneliness.

      In your case and in mine, and probably many others here, the CS has created this craziness for himself for what ever reason, and anyone who enters his world gets kind of crazy themselves. The spouse has less choices, he/she is married to this person…crazy or not.

      The only cure to the craziness, is to get out of the picture or never enter it in the first place. Of course, this is much easier said than done.

      So, yes, all of you are crazy…me too! But it is what we do now that determines whether we remain in that mode, or slowly dig our way out and create better richer lives for ourselves.

      As for my H, he still has trouble talking about it. He still uses escape as his method of coping with difficult emotions. He knows he has issues, and is trying to work on them in his own way. Will it work? Who knows.

      I love him even though he has all these problems. I try to improve our relationship by reading, understanding, and trying to reach him once again. I see improvements but who knows at this point where we are going or where we will end up. I have grown thru all this, learning to deal with my fears of the unknown, and appreciating each day that I am alive.

    • jackie

      @Dawn, I was thinking about what you said about not speaking up. A couple of things. He never had a problem speaking up for his needs to me. At first, yes. But I paid close attention to him, his words, his body language. When something seemed not right, I asked him to express what he was really feeling. And over time, he felt comfortable enough to be very specific with his feelings. Didn’t his wife pick up on that? If not, why not? From everything he told me, she didn’t want to pick up on it. She really seemed very self-oriented. And he, always was doing for others, even for strangers. So what was it about her, that made him NOT want to tell her what he needed. Obviously there was something that she did or didn’t do that made him feel like it was pointless. So no, it’s not entirely his fault. She has plenty of blame too.

      The second part that is the belief that she is crazy. The simple fact is this. For several years since the affair ended, she makes a point of leaving a typed note on my car on a regular basis. (I had it tested for finger prints and its clean.)

      She’s also slashed my tires, broke into my car and left a dead animal in it. She has even once went to my son’s school and told him that his mother was a whore. (I said something to him about it and he told me that I should turn the other cheek and that he would not do anything about these behaviors.)

      The notes continue. Never more than 8 weeks have gone by when I don’t get another one. It is always specific enough for me to know it is her, but never specific enough to indicate that it is definitely her. In other words, I can’t prove that she is doing it, but I know she is behind it. It only started when she found out about us, and the information is far too detailed for someone who wasn’t involved.

      As a result, I’m constantly looking over my shoulder, wondering when the next shoe will drop. It’s a terrifying experience.

      So after some years, why won’t she leave me alone? Isn’t it enough that he hasn’t left her and that he publicly humiliated me to appease her? (And when we talked in private about he, he said he had to do it so she would trust him and that he really didn’t mean what he said. That doesn’t make it right, and it is scary to think that he would throw away all of his scruples just to appease what she wants.)

      I would say this is proof that she is deeply disturbed and I that’s probably why he looks so beaten down and unhappy. He’s obviously afraid of what she will do to him if he breaks away from her control.

      • Holdingon

        It’s a lie that they checked a note for fingerprints. Sorry, but that’s a flat out lie.

    • jackie

      @Jackie (round green face),

      Your story really touched me. I’m sorry you went through that. I did the same thing to my Ex-H. The difference was though, is that I told him many times what I wanted. He didn’t listen. Or he did listen and changed for a few weeks, only to go back to his old ways. I said I had enough more than once. He always promised to change, and I gave him second chances, third chances. Finally, I drew the line and said ENOUGH. This time, ex-H didn’t believe me and refused to accept that my decision was final. So I had no choice but to treat him that way until he got the point.

      The feelings you described, I felt both when I was married and then in the after-math of our affair. OM strung me along for some time after the affair ended telling me that things had changed, that they got more complicated and things would still happen, only it would now take longer. In the meantime, he too had the behavior wiith me that you described from your H. Only I had never seen this behavior from him and he had never been so selfish toward me. (I had been there for him through many a personal crisis, and when it was his turn to be there for me, really be there, he wasn’t. He said things were too rough at home and he didn’t have enough for himself to give to me. That hurt more you can imagine considering how much I gave to him.)

      Yes, the feelings you described for yourself is the same feelings that I felt. With one exception.

      The spouse has less choices because they are married to the crazy person? One can say the spouse has the opportunity to fix the craziness or get out of the craziness. The OW isn’t given a choice. Instead she is left alone trying to answer questions that only he can answer. Do you think either position is enviable? At least the spouse has a fighting chance to straighten out the mess.

      I still recommend that you make a decision about what goals you want to achieve and how long they should take to acheive them.

      For myself, I am a constant work in progress. I am fine most of the time. It is only the times that I receive a note, or, when I see him at Walmart that the feeling of hurt comes back to me.

      I don’t believe I love him anymore. He isn’t the person I thought he was. He said he would never go back to such a destructive situation. But that is what he has done. Even if I had the chance, even if he came banging down my door, I just don’t know if I could truly ever trust him with my heart. We were closer than anyone can imagine and if you imagine. If a person that close to you betrays you, then there is no way to know that they can ever be trustworthy, since that sort of is the measurement of trustworthiness to begin with.

      Anyway, Jackie be strong. I assure you I will never be involved with another unavailable man again. In fact, I drop them like hot-potatoes the minute I smell something isn’t right. I don’t give them second chances. I take things at face value and don’t allow excuses and words to persuade me anymore. Perhaps it is too harsh, and I will end up alone the rest of my life. Or perhaps I am just holding out, for the first time in my life for the RIGHT guy, not just any guy who is interested in me, but the one that is right. In the meantime, I live a fulfilling life, I have friends, and I enjoy my family. The right man will be dessert on a already wonderful plate of food. (And maybe when I meet that right man, you think the wife will stop leaving me notes? I hope.)

      • Jackie

        Jackie (green gear shaped face),
        We are going to have to make a name change or something.

        I have to say I find our conversations enlightening.

        To your comment:
        “The spouse has less choices because they are married to the crazy person? One can say the spouse has the opportunity to fix the craziness or get out of the craziness. The OW isn’t given a choice. Instead she is left alone trying to answer questions that only he can answer. Do you think either position is enviable? At least the spouse has a fighting chance to straighten out the mess.”

        Do you notice the parallel here between the BS and the OP. The CS is doing the same thing to the OP that he did to the BS. It really is interesting. The CS is really selfish in many ways. Constantly hurting those he once claims to love. Both BS and OP have been left alone at one point, trying to answer questions that only he can answer. And the annoying part is the CS often refuses to answer. It is really sad.

        Really the choice of whether to stay in the marriage or end it, is between CS and BS. The choice the OP has is to try to continue the relationship with the CS or end it. Early in the affair, the CS chooses the OP, later CS often chose to stay with the marriage. But until the CS makes up their mind both the BS and the OP don’t really know where they stand, because the CS can’t make up their minds…this is the confusion, limbo stage of the marriage. The CS really wants to have the best of both worlds, but typically the BS and the OP don’t want that kind of relationship. This is the CS fantasy. He wants what he can’t have. He wants someone to help take away his unhappiness, because he doesn’t know how to create it himself.

        The BS may or may not have an opportunity to fix the craziness. So much depends on the CS willingness to admit they have a problem and their willingness to fix it. This is usually a life long problem, started in childhood. Many CS just are unable to look at themselves clearly. They are in so much pain and denial that they even have a problem…all they care about is what makes them feel good. In this state of mind the CS doesn’t seem to care who they hurt, as long as they feel good.

        It is that addiction thing again. It is so much easier for the CS blame others for the CS problem, and so easy to convince the CS self that everyone else is the problem.
        The BS always has the option to get out of the marriage…but at what cost? Considerations such as kids and finance are a huge factor in this matter.

        In your case, the OP as well as the BS have felt the same type of painful feelings, neither position is enviable. Both have been abandoned, betrayed, hurt, and blamed by the CS at some point in the affair. True, the BS usually gets the CS back in the end, but is still faced with the fact that the CS has lied, betrayed those he once loved, and abandoned his marriage. And as you say, can you really ever completely trust someone who has betrayed you so deeply? Will they do it again?

        As you said:
        “If a person that close to you betrays you, then there is no way to know that they can ever be trustworthy, since that sort of is the measurement of trustworthiness to begin with.”

        This exactly is the BS’s dilemma when the CS comes back to the marriage. It is not a pretty picture. Nobody wins. Everyone hurts.

      • B

        You talk about the destructive situation these men go back to—THEY MADE IT THAT WAY. When these guys are in affairs they act differently at home toward their spouse and family, angry, distant, mean, no time for them, and guess what, the spouse notices but not knowing what’s really going on it drives them crazy in a sense. When they try to talk to their cheating husband, these guys totally shut down or get mad. It eventually drives the poor wife crazy because she is at least trying, but he on the other hand is doing such damage and causing such destruction. GET REAL, he bears a lot of the blame for his home situation!!!

    • jacklyn

      @jackie But you do get a chance to TRY to fix it. I wasn’t given that choice. (And we were not having any problems between us. Now the rift, is irreconcilable because what has happened AFTER the break up.)

      It may be hard to build trust for the betrayed spouse, but that is what marriage counseling can do for you. It helps bridge the communication problems. Even if things don’t work out for you and your H, you will take comfort that you tried your best to fix it and make it work. You will get closure. If you decide to stay in the marriage, YOU MUST find a way to let your trust issues go, or else your marriage will be doomed to be an empty shell. And no one should live like that. Not your H, and not you. If you can’t find that place, then you should end it so the two of you can have the chance of finding real happiness again.

      For me, he never gave me a real chance. He didn’t separate and take some time alone. That is what he really should have done given the circumstances that I haven’t shared. Instead, he dropped me and started working on fixing things with her. I ASKED HIM to fix things before he ever got involved with me. He said he tried and tried and tried. I coached him and gave him advice on ways to make things better with her. I helped him buy gifts for her, I helped him create surprise romantic evenings. And it still didn’t help them.

      Then we got a little too close and we got involved. I backed away many times because I told him I would NOT be second fiddle and also, that our friendship meant more to me than a sexual relationship with him. I started dating others and he kept pulling me back in telling me that I was #1 and guaranteed that it would happen for us if I were only patient. Given all the information he had fed me, for years, I believe him to be sincere, and that he had my best interest at heart.

      The day she discovered us, he cried and cried. I asked where I stood and he told me that he never loved anyone like he did me, and he would never give me up. Two days later, he told me that he will work on his marriage and that I should move on, just like that. And I was left dumb-founded because I thought that he had already done this work and he was solid about his commitment and love for me. The question was never whether he loved her, but whether their lack of anything in common could reasonable be bridged into a marriage that wasn’t filled will constant compromises, where neither person gets their greatest wishes fulfilled, and whether their personalities meshed at all.

      After all the emotional work I have done, I know what a healthy foundation looks like and what isn’t a healthy foundation. I also know when there has been a lot of water under the bridge, it is almost impossible to not fall back into old learned habits without significant time apart (years). My ex-H and I still occasionally fall back into those skirmishes over our son. He said to me, “You and I are still the same people we always were. And we still fight the way we did. People don’t change.” And I believe that is really true when two people are very different in temperaments, and when those temperament differences are not complementary.

      He most definitely has a lot of work to do. But from everything I know, she isn’t emotionally healthy either. And it isn’t just because of him. The things she asked of him to do for her, (long before we were really involved) were completely unreasonable. And when she didn’t get her way, she made a big stink about it. And I told him so many times, why do you do something you don’t want to do? His answer, “Because you have to pick your battles and I don’t always want to fight about everything.” And there lies the problem. The only way they could agree on anything is if he let her have her way. A marriage should be a partnership, not a dictatorship. And from what he has said to me about her, EVERYONE lets her have her way, her sisters and brothers, her parents, because she is relentless and won’t stop until she gets it. People don’t want the drama and they give in. So they enable this, and as a result, she gets worse. No one has the courage to tell her to stop.

      Anyway, I could use a little of that couples counseling with him, even if the goal is to have a more civilized closure. Especially since we live in a smallish town and see each other in public often. Given how much time has elapsed, that will never happen.

      At least you have that opportunity to see it through and find out if it could work. I wish I had the opportunity to at least resolve my feelings.

      • Lynne

        It sounds that (from your many comments) you still have a lot of emotional/therapy work to do. You seem to have a lot of “transference”…….in other words, you seem to spend a lot of your dialogue on your AP’s wife, her behaviors and his reaction to them, instead of recognizing that there was always the risk that he would/could choose his marriage over you. You must have known this was always a possibility, yet you seem so jilted by it! It seems likely that he was in his “affair fog’ and probably meant the things he said to you at the time, but again, this is a fog of excitement and fantasy. Your comments also suggest that you are spending a great deal of time on what others say to back up your theory and impressions of “their marriage”…..this is extremely unhealthy for you and will prevent you from moving on if you choose to stay mired in what he should have done, what he said he would do, and what his wife is or is not doing to him. Stop feeling sorry for him and his lot in life–he chose a life with his wife! He doesn’t sound like a victim (as you make him out to be), but is someone who had two choices and made the one he felt was best for all concerned. End of story, done deal! Move on and build a beautiful life for yourself…..stop blaming others for the risky choices you made…..learn the lessons…..and only choose people that are really, truly and openly AVAILABLE!!!

    • jacklyn

      @jackie I have also been thinking about what you said about Alcohol and addictions. Obviously there was some element of that to our relationship or else we would have done things the right way.

      But what if the addiction is to being in destructive relationships rather than a healthy one? And being the OW may be party to a destructive relationship because it is destructive to wife and family. However, what if the relationship with the spouse truly was toxic and destructive to the CS, to the spouse, and possibly the entire family dynamic? Then it becomes more complicated. It’s not a matter of children and finances. Its far more complicated. It’s about sentencing oneself to a lifetime of misery, setting a bad example of relationships to the kids. Money is only money after all. It’s complicated but it can be worked out. I certainly worked it out, and I was a stay at home mom without a job when my marriage broke up.

      What’s worse? Breaking up a family and a marriage, or staying inside a toxic one? What if the destructive addiction is to the person they are married to?

      These are the things I have wrestled with ever since the end of the affair and in my marriage. In the end, I thought it was more important to be happy and set a good example of a how women should be treated to my son, then stay in a marriage that abusive.

      So you may be right. I may have been a fantasy to him. (It wasn’t a fantasy to me.) But what if I were merely the Zyban to his wife, who is full on nicotine. I really do believe this based on what has happened. Unfortunately, people don’t quit smoking, even when they know its bad for them, until they are ready.

      I regret I reunited with him at the time I did (when my marriage was ending). It was a bad time in my life. We grew up on the same cul-de-sac a long time ago. I have lost a life long friend.

      • Jackie

        People should not stay in relationships that are destructive to their self esteem or that of the family. Affairs create a toxic environment for a marriage. Does that mean one should end the marriage? Not necessarily.

        People get involved in affairs for so many different reasons. I’d guess most of the reasons aren’t even obvious to the CS. Affairs seem to give the CS a high on fantasy drug like feeling. This doesn’t last forever, as the “in love” feeling is always temporary, as opposed to true loves day to day kind of feeling. So generally the BS needs to wait it out to see how things progress and see which direction the CS decides to go.

        During this period the CS is not showing his true self to the OP. The CS is not only lying to the BS, but lying to himself, and the OP. The CS often will say the BS is the problem, simply to justify his cheating actions and take the focus off himself. This is a very effective method to disarm the BS and get the BS off the CS’s back. The CS may not think he is lying, because he is too busy rationalizing his irrational behaviors. The out of touch brain works in mysterious ways.

        When someone is willing to lie and cheat on his spouse, you can’t expect him to be honest with the OP. It is not very realistic to expect honesty from the CS who is being clearly dishonest to his BS and marriage. The CS has some unaddressed issues.

        So what is the real truth? It is what ever truth one chooses to believe, and that can change minute to minute, day to day, and will hopefully stabilize over time. I supposed this is the irrational rollercoaster behavior that the CS exhibits. Over time the CS figures out what he believes is his truth. The BS and OP also figure out their version of truths. But there really is no one “real truth”, just numerous different perspectives.

        Generally all beginning relationships beginning with the “in love” feeling, are a drug induced fantasy (ie. the fog). The couple imagines and creates what they hope will become a true loving relationship. But it is not until you really get to know someone over time, day in and day out, that their real true nature comes through. That is when real love takes over. Over time individuals try to learn to accept one other for who they are, warts and all. Often times they have to give and take, and work together for what each feels is best for each other and the relationship. This may include not voicing opinions strongly to keep the peace in the relationship. If something is important enough, it is should be brought up for discussion. Sometimes, people just disagree, or agree to disagree. Others argue over and over about the same things.

        Most CS realize over time, what they had really wasn’t as bad as they imagined, in fact, there is a lot of good in the marriage that they don’t want give up after all. Maybe the grass wasn’t really greener on the other side, just different and new. And different and new isn’t necessarily better. With different and new, comes different and new problems, along with the same old problems.

        • jacklyn

          > Affairs create a toxic environment for a marriage. 

          What I am saying is the toxic environment existed BEFORE the affair. The affair simply worsened it.

          >  “in love” feeling is always temporary, as opposed to true loves day to day kind of feeling. 

          All love starts that way, not just affairs.  What bothers me to no end is the notion that a love a CS can have for the OP couldn’t possibly be real, simply because it was an affair, or simply because he choses to stay with the BS. People don’t always stay together for the right reasons.  And simply being married to a person doesn’t automatically put some magic Pixie dust on the quality of that relationship.  

          Sure many affairs could be a fog.  But it is a little harder to justify it as a fog when it was a long-term relationship.   For myself and my partner, we served on the same civic board for over a decade.  We got to know each other under fire over a long stretch of time, in good times and bad times.  Our affair didn’t start for more than 5 years of us spending a non-trivial time amount of time together. Before we re-met each other as adults, we lived on the same cul-de-sac. So we knew each other very well, warts and all. They say that if love lasts more than 6-12 months, then it is more than simply infatuation. That would indicate far more than a fog. Loving one person doesn’t automatically mean that any other love you feel is less real.
          >Sometimes, people just disagree, or agree to disagree. Others argue over and over about the same things.

          The 1st could be a healthy situation depending on the nature and the quantity of the disagreements. The second, is unhealthy.  And even if one’s truth is that the second is ok, from a shrink perspective, it isn’t ok.  Justifying not-ok behavior may be one’s personal truth, but it isn’t a truth rooted in a healthy self-esteem.  That is why you see victims of familial molestation defending people who molested them. They love and hate the person who hurt them and cannot separate the two, because they are damaged.  It may be their truth, but it isn’t a truth that you or I would ever defend as a healthy choice.  I mentioned that I still get notes on my car, after three years. How much more time does she need to ‘wait it out’ and see? And everyone knows that she continues to do this.  But since her daddy owns the town, they simply ignore it.  Can you honestly defend those behaviors as justifiable after we have had no contact for all of this time? No wonder it’s difficult for me to get over it. It isn’t as if CS returned back to his civic life, or his regular activity or his friends either.  So did he realize the grass was greener at home.  I’m not sure if the situation can be broken down  as who’s grass is greener.  I think it is far more twisted than that.  Perhaps in your situation it is different. I can tell by your writing style that you have empathy and introspection. So in your situation all that you have said is likely to be true.  But that doesn’t mean it goes across the board to all affair situations.  The person I told you about who left their marriage after 20 years, regretting every day of it, ended it with an affair.  Even then, they said they would have stayed and endured it for longer for the sake of the kids. They tried for more than a year. But the BS made his life living hell and he decided he couldn’t stay.  But not everyone is that strong. Some people will stay, even if they aren’t happy and would rather not be with the BS.  And it may not be because they want to be with the OP, but simply that they want to be OUT of the marriage period.  The affair may have just been an exit. I stayed in my marriage for 22 years.  I knew I wanted out in year 5.  

          • Jackie

            My generalizations are just that, generalizations. Each situation is very different. I am only presenting my overall view of what I have learned during these last few years, in hopes of helping others find peace of mind due to an affair.

            The fantasy I talk about referred mainly to the CS. I never said there was no real connection between the affair partners. Nor did I say, what you personally felt was all a fantasy. We all are capable of loving many people. In fact, most if not all of our marriages and relationships started out that way. The fantasy is based on a connection that is real.

            The fantasy comes into play when the CS thinks he can have it all. To have a secret emotional relationship with the OP and honest emotional relationship with the BS in his marriage, is a fantasy. For it to be fair, the CS need to be honest with the BS as to what is going on, and allow the BS to make a choice as to whether she wants this kind of relationship or not. The CS’s sneaking around and lying are very destructive behaviors. Usually both OP and BS each want an exclusive relationship with the CS. The CS is often lying to both the OP and the BS to keep the fantasy going. As I said before, the CS is also rationalizing it all to himself, that this is an okay thing to do with other people’s emotions. This is cruel emotionally for the CS and OP, and very selfish on the CS’s part. This is all self serving crazy making.

            I suppose the OP has their own version of the fantasy too. Believing a married person wants an honest relationship outside his marriage, is in a sense a fantasy. The reality is that the CS is married, and if the CS is unhappy he should get divorce and be free to pursue his happiness. The OP can justify and rationalize all they want, but it is still a fact that the CS is married. (Please don’t take this as an attack! It is not meant to be one.)

            The reality is that, one has to choose how they want to live their life. That it is wrong to start another relationship before completely severing the first one. Affair triangles cause too much emotional hurt and betrayal for all the parties involved. I supposed it is because most CS abandon one person emotionally for another. It is a cruel treatment of people’s emotions, both the BS and the OP. Using an affair is a coward’s way out for some. For others, they fall into an affair, and have trouble getting back out because of the addictive qualities of the “in love” feelings. And for still others, an affair can happen for another one of many reasons sa health, time of life, stress etc… Each CS has their own reason for cheating. Some CS just don’t know why they cheat, nor do they want to know why. Other CS are trying to understand and fix their problems.

            It is for each of us to determine why we get involved in our unhealthy behaviors, whether it be drugs, alcohol, over work, affairs, or any other means of escape, rather than deal directly with our pained emotions. All these are part of our imperfect human condition.

            I just know for me, after all this pain, I will never choose to start an affair, and never choose to allow myself to get involved with someone who is not available, that is married, attached, or emotionally unavailable. I have seen and felt too much pain already in this life time. I don’t need to create more unhealthy drama in my life.

            I, as well as everyone here, am trying to find meaning to what went wrong, to learn and grow from mistakes I have made to contribute to this. We must all deal with the damage caused in our lives due to the affair. There are also many things that are not in my power to change, and those I must learn to deal with.

            Some people get stuck in blame, anger, bitterness, and pain. I suppose this is where many people get hung up. That may help to explain the BS’s behavior towards you. It is so much easier to blame others, than to look at one’s self and one’s own life, than to accept where you are and focus on where you are going. But being stuck isn’t learning and growing from the experience. Move on, learn and grow from your mistakes. That is the best we can each do, to better our life and that of others.

            • Jacklyn

              I think you have wrapped this thread up nicely.

          • Holdingon

            So you stole one man’s life and destroyed another man’s life, so far it seems you had some fine accomplishments.

    • Jackie

      Thanks Jacklyn. And thanks for adjusting your name, to ease confusion.

    • Gizfield

      If you think you know somebody “warts and all” cause you work together for years our live on the same street you are in a fog. When you live with someone for years, and have seen them in all situations, then you might begin to know them. Has your friend seen you when you are angry, hungry, up all night with a child, when you have had no make up or shower, when you have been sick for a week, when you are hurling your guts out? I didnt think so…

      • Holdingon

        Yes, dating someone for 10 years is totally different from living with someone for 10 years.

    • Gizfield

      Oh, I forgot the special events of pregnancy, like gaining 60 pounds due to edema and high blood pressure, and seeing a ten pound baby shoot out your ass, lol. I’m really surprised anybody stays married after that! Yet they do…maybe thats what love is about, not some retarded text messages and sappy love songs. Maturity is a bitch, isn’t it?

    • Cindy

      Jackie. Thank you for your perspective as the other woman. I don’t want to bash you however, just because the hubby says he was abused, or not in love with his wife etc or any of the other lies he told you doesn’t make it so. Do you really think he would tell you that he loves his wife and family but is confused or having a mid life crisis or whatever. Would you have put it all out there for him? It is comforting to you to think he is till unhappy and in a bad relationship because it makes you feel better when the truth of the matter is that he had choices. He could have stayed with you and would have stayed with you if you were the love of his life as the other woman often says and thinks. He chose to stay with his wife and family because he lives them above all else. To this day the OW in our relationship thinks my husband stayed with me for kids, money, respect etc. anything but love. For the other woman to accept that we are in love would mean that she wasted years of her life pining over a man that was already taken. I don’t believe he is miserable with his wife. You may see something in his eyes at Walmart but it is probably guilt, regret, shame and embarrassment. I don’t understand why OW take what isn’t theirs and then say ” he was the love of my life”. If he was, nothing would stop him from being with you. Period. He is with who he chooses to be with. That’s the bottom line and you can tell yourself that he is still pining for you and he made the wrong decision all you want. Trust me. He is happy with his wife and children. You are fooling yourself to ease your own guilt

    • Cindy

      Seriously Jackie OW – ” why didn’t the wife talk to him, ask him about his feeling etc… Well , while you were at a bar or hotel or parking lot watching his facial expressions and delving into his psyche and really listening to him and observing him, his wife was at home , working, laundry, kids, soccer, baseball, dance classes, etc. the wife didn’t have the luxury of sitting in a bar with no worries and not a care in the world OMG. Couples grow apart because of their busy lives while raising children but it ebbs and flows and when the children are out of the house a new adventure starts for the married couple. You met the OM during one of these ebbs. Having been married and cheated on yourself , you should have seen the signs. My husband who cheated on me told me it was fun, a distraction, the OW listened to him and understood him. HAH. Of course it’s fun going to a bar or a hotel and locking out the problems and day to day business. You weren’t at home taking care of your children , or bills, or sick parents or in laws. You were in a fantasy world. You had all the time in the world to really “listen to him” Duh.

      • Bombshell

        Yes exactly 💯I thought the same thing . Thank you. I

    • Cindy

      The OW in my marriage also thinks the same thing. Thinks my hubby stayed for kids and/ or money. She even told me this to my face. I think all OW actually believe this. To think you were just a distraction or piece of A$@ would be damaging to your self esteem. As for the wife still bothering you or leaving notes on your car. Too bad. Suck it up. Maybe that’s how she is healing. I am 2 years out from D Day and although there is no contact I think of her often and plot ways to piss her off. Not because she is a part of my life or even worth my time but because its fun. Your statements about other people thinking the same as you and how he would e better with you etc… Shows how emotionally unstable and emotionally immature you are. My OW said the same thing. She told me that even his own family thought they should be together. Everyone that sees is together knows I can make him happier. Etc etc etc. the truth is I don’t need anyone or anything to back me up when I say my husband is the love of my life. It’s just the way it is. I don’t need reinforcements or kudos from the outside world. When you meet someone (who is not married) and fall in love again, you will know its the real thing when you don’t need encouragement, kudos or reinforcement from outsiders to bolster your stance. It will be you and him alone. Period

    • Cindy

      It’s very nice to hear the OW perspective on things but its also very telling that they all say exactly the same thing. Like a line from a play book. To this day, I know for a fact the OW thinks my hubby still loves her and is just living his life out in misery. That really pissed me off but it’s comforting to know they all say the same thing.

      • Bombshell

        Yes , I was called a narcissist lol the one and only time we spoke as she messaged my h after he ghosted her but it was me . She was so jealous and couldn’t even see why I was being mean which I wasn’t . I was very calm and stern mature . I told her you hurt my children. Couldn’t have a single nice thing to say about that . It was all about her. Glad we are thousands of miles away now . Just burn her , said he was living his best life , thanks glad you picked up on that. We are stronger everyday and this site has helped me. Thank you everyone.

    • Jackie

      Well as a matter of fact, I overheard him talking to his sister. I was online at the checkout counter a few feet behind him. She asked him how things were at home, and he said they were horrible and that he is still unhappy. He did not know I was there. So I guess he must be lying to his sister too.

    • Jackie

      Puleze. That wife never took her kid to a soccer game, pediatrician, dance recital or did a load of laundry in her life. He did all of it, brought home the bacon, and fixed the washing machine. He was both mom and dad.

    • Jackie

      “I am 2 years out from D Day and although there is no contact I think of her often and plot ways to piss her off. Not because she is a part of my life or even worth my time but because its fun.”

      This is not behavior of a mature adult who “won”. This is adolescent and probably should be visited with a licenced counselor.

      • Holdingon

        Says the woman that tries to steal what’s not hers, I don’t believe that either, I’m still laughing over you saying they fingerprinted a note on your car.

        • Bombshell

          Lol right too funny

    • Cindy

      I didn’t “win”. It wasn’t a contest. I had him all along and still do. I even had him here supporting me and our kids, living together, sharing, etc while he was dallying with the other woman once a week. To be honest, I actually thought my OW found this site when I read your comments because it is exactly what she said. To win or lose there has to be a competition. To me, there was no competition. Puleeze. I was deeply hurt, traumatized, embarrassed, etc. but I knew that he would never leave. I wasn’t competing with the other woman. I didn’t even know she existed until dday. She was competing with me for my husband. In order to compete , one must be in the game. I was just living my life day to day and doing the usual. So apparently my “usual” was enough. Tell me, did the wife actually know the affair was going on when it started or did she find out later (dday)? You see, there is no competition when it’s just one woman trying to take something that doesn’t belong to her. The competition starts after dday, I would say. After I found out about the affair it had been going on for 18 months, so the OW had 18 months to convince my hubby she was the one. She had 18 months to really “listen to him” and make him feel like a king. That’s a long time. Yet when the affair becomes public knowledge it’s not as much fun anymore. There’s no sneaking around or clandestine meetings or adrenaline rush. When the bullet hit the bone , he chose his wife just like your CS. It comforts you to think he’s not happy, but he had choices and you did your very best to “win” him. You probably had your hair and nails done every time you saw him. You have him your full attention and hung on his every word and cared so deeply you had to convince him to open up to you. You game him mind blowing sex and understood him like no one else ever has. Yet hen the wife (me) found out, it wasn’t fun anymore. My OW insisted my hubby states with me for kids even though my kids are 19 and 21 and almost finished with college. You see, I didn’t WIN anything. I wasn’t in competition. I already had the prize

      • Bombshell

        Mind blowing but so darn right , wow you all are so insightful and helping see things from so many different perspectives.

    • Cindy

      I would be interested to know how long your affair lasted before his wife found out from a perspective point if you wouldn’t mind sharing

    • Surviving

      Really he didn’t notice you behind him at the checkout counter and was talking about his personal problems loud enough for you to hear?

      • becky716


    • Cindy

      Sorry. I have one more question to ask. I always wanted to ask her this so ill ask you if you don’t mind. I never understood why : if you or the OW was the love of the CS life and even other people said so , why the sneaking around? If my hubby wanted to be with the OW why sneak around behind my back? The OW actually got mad several times when she couldn’t see my hubby because he had plans with me or when we went on vacation. I always wondered what she thought when this happened. Did she think I hog tied him to my car or drugged him to get on an airplane? I’m talking when the plans were just me and him (no kids). We went to poco is and enjoyed 2 nd honeymoon and she was pissed. What was going thru her mind. Didn’t she realize tht if he was spending one on one time with me for no other reason than to just be with me alone that maybe, just maybe things weren’t as bad as made them out to be? She was mad all the time because she only saw him before work or when I was out with my friends. Didn’t it ever occur to her that he only saw her when I wasn’t around? It’s not like he skipped family dinners or vacations to be with her. I was just always curious as to what she thought. I even saw a text one time with her asking to go somewhere on a Friday night am he responded that we had plans together. How did she justify that in her mind. Did she think I was forcing him or blackmailing him to go out with me?

    • Cindy

      One time we were in New Orleans on vacation during their affair ( I was unaware of affair). We were having a blast. Just the 2 of us. Drinking, eating sightseeing flashing for beads etc. found out later that he texted her from New Orleans and they were in communication. Yes he was a schmuck and an ass however, did the Ow really believe in her pea brain that he was there against his will? That he was moping around and pining for her? Seriously, how desperate must she have been. How low was her self esteem that she took crumbs here and there when I wasn’t around. How could he possibly be in love with you or the love of your life when he was only willing to throw you crumbs when he was available. My hubby never once broke plans with me to be with her ever. The only time he actually saw her was when I was busy doing something else. If he truly wanted her and not me why didn’t he just tell me , hey, I want to go out with OW tonight? Because the sneaking around was part of the rush. That’s why. When DDAY came the rush was gone

      • Holdingon

        I couldn’t have said it better.

    • Cindy

      Sorry for the rants but these posts must have struck a chord with me tht I thought was long buried. Lol. It irritates me to no end when the OW states that she got jilted, or she has feelings, or she has pain , or needs counseling etc. you can’t lose something that was never yours! Did he see you in childbirth in all your glory, did he see you throwing up with the flu, did he see you in the morning with morning breath and crazy hair, did he see you with unshaven legs because your kid was sick for 3 days, did he see you when you were preoccupied, moody, overworked an tired? No. He only saw the best of you. He saw the OW coiffed, perfumed and dressed to the nines ( or what she thought was the nines). Lol. The OW wasn’t preoccupied with kids, work, chores, money etc because you had none of these things in common. He asked you to dinner or to a bar for a drink or a walk in the park. You had all the time in the world to primp and preen and when you met up with him he was the only thing on your mind because you had nothing else in your life. My hubby’s OW actually had 3 kids that she totally ignored when he called her. Hand to God, she was in a hotel with another loser when she got a call from police that her kids were having a party and underage drinking at her house. Her youngest was 12. She left the hotel, went home talked with cops, grounded her kids and went back to hotel. The only thing that mattered to her was herself. Her only interest was “winning” the man. Her own husband cheated on her yet she had all the excuses in the book as to why her affair with a married man was different. My kids were very hurt and mad and were disrespectful to my husband when they found out. She told me it was my fault and that my kids shouldn’t be involved! She was delusional. How can you have an affair with a married man with children and disregard the kids?

    • Cindy

      I agree Trying Hard. OW Jackie. You say Pulleeeze the wife never did laundry, or went to a pediatrician office. He allegedly worked full time and came home and did everything. What is he “superman”? This is what he told you. This is what you believed. You weren’t there. You weren’t living with them. Did the pediatrician come in on Sundays just for this poor hard working man? Never did laundry in her life? Wow. You bought it hook, line and sinker. A more believable tale would be ” my wife is behind on laundry or only does it once a week”. Not NEVER. The next time you meet a man be careful what you believe

    • Cindy

      Here’s another tip. There isn’t a married man alive that will tell you I am so happy with my wife an life I just want a piece of extra A$& because I’m bored. They will always tell you try are miserable. They won’t tell you they are in the throes of a mid life crisis and feeling old. And they will always tell you they have to do “everything around the house”. You see, they are putting their best foot forward to. Would you have slept with him if he told you his wife was terrific? Would you have slept with him if he told you his wife was a great mother? Of course not. Et life is so bad at home he chose her over you in the end. The OW has to believe he is miserable and has to believe his lies. Why else would the other woman accept crumbs

    • Cindy

      I missed the post whee you said the affair ended when the wife found out. Sorry. I posted a question asking you when the affair ended. Isn’t it interesting that the affair can be 5 minutes or years and years as you describe but the minute the wife finds out it ends? Jackie (OW) why would you have played second fiddle for years and years? If you thought he was the love of your life or you his why didn’t you tell the wife? Why didn’t he tell his wife? Surely, you must have thought he would choose you, so why the sneaking around?

    • Cindy

      The very 1st thing the OW said to me when I met up with her was ” how could you not have known your husband was having an affair with me?” Ummm seriously. Do you think I knew about it and just allowed it Dumb ass. Fact is, the minute I found out, the minute he decided to stay with me. Very similar to Jackie (ow) CS. Why oh why do these tramps think the man will stay with them for the duration when they won’t even tell their wives they are having an affair or want a divorce? Simply put, it’s a fantasy and fun while it lasts

    • Jackie

      To answer all the questions. It’s hard to put a date when the affair began since it started as an emotional affair many years before it was sexual. The sexual affair was under a year.

      The man did not overhear me on the line and has done every thing to convince me that he is happy. If he had seen me there, he would not have so freely shared information to the contrary.

      The man does a lot of charity work with the church and has double-timed his charity work. The town talks and believes it is to spend as LITTLE time at home as possible. They also think he made the wrong choice and is too embarrassed to admit it, and too devoted to his children (who are young) to do anything about it.

      I know the wife didn’t do anything at the home because I had been to their home, seen them together, and have seen WHO does the work around the house. Having known him for many years, it’s not hard to notice these dynamics.

      We never met in a bar or a hotel. We spent time at each other’s home.

      Lastly, why is it so hard to believe that men might actually stay for their KIDS. People do that all the time. It might make your darling little hearts to believe that, and I’m sure he fooled you into believing that. But bottom line is, if he were fulfilling you so bad, he wouldn’t have stepped out on you the first place. Staying with status quo is not evidence of loyalty. It could just as easily be evidence of cowardice, the same cowardice they displayed by not telling you they were unhappy in the relationship in the first place. If you feel you have to harass your OW after some years, then deep down inside, you know your marriage is compromised and perhaps your husband really doesn’t want to be there. He can also love you but not like you very much. (very common) A secure and happy wife wouldn’t give a crap about OW years later.

      • tryinghard

        Jackie tthe OW
        You know what you are right. It is a waste of time even giving that pathetic excuse any attention. My H sure didn’t have a problem tossing her to the curb. I laugh and so does he when he tells me all the lies he told her. FYI at my house I DID ALL THE HONEY DO CHORES! So what was his excuse?? He was bored. Well he was bored because he was boring and guess what come to find out so was the OW. Her constant complaining became very tedious for him. He saw right through her passive/aggressive behavior and wanted to get rid of her. Yep he was a coward about getting rid of her sooner because he was scared to death she would tell me everything. He did everything to keep it secret. Not to keep her on the line because he kept hoping she would find someone else. Heck she did when she was seeing him. She played both of them for money. But he finally found his courage and he beat her to the punch and told me everything.

        He freely admitted he told her disparaging things about me and our marriage to shut her up, keep her calm and make himself look better in her eyes. I don’t expect you to grasp or understand any of this. I understand your limitations. I do want to thank you for driving it home that you OW are truly not worth any of my thought, hatred or attention. Your are right, you had no responsibility for anything because you are bottom feeders. Bottom feeders eat other people’s crumbs. They never get to see sunlight because it’s too embarrassing to be seen with them. Besides they are never near as lovely in broad daylight.

        Really helping me to move on and accept all the love and attention and great sex I am getting from my husband.

        Every time one of you OW surfaces and post your arguments for fucking a married man, I understand more clearly why it was so easy for him to forget and dump the OW. Thanks 🙂

      • Holdingon

        Coming from a man let me tell you, all he wanted was sex, and sneaking to get it made it fun, he chose who he wanted.

    • tryinghard

      Also I didn’t even realize that this thread started two years ago. Looks like to me YOU, Jackie the OW, are having a hard time letting go too!!! I would have thought by now since you talk so big you would have moved on and not even responded!!!

      You talk the talk but you can’t walk the walk! PATHETIC

    • Cindy

      I agree that men stay in marriages for the kids all the time. However, my OW is insisting that my husband stayed for the kids and my kids are 19 and 21 and 1 is already on his own. There would be no child support or worry about splitting up time. My husband stepped out on me because he has a mid life crisis , something he admitted to and something our counselor agrees with as well. He stayed because he realized what he had with me and has told me often how he almost made the biggest mistake in his life

      As for me harassing the OW after all these years – it hasn’t happened. She is not worth the dirt on the bottom of my shoes. I couldn’t care less about her as my husband has realized his mistake.

      And while you may have entertained each other in your homes an have actually seen his wife at home, you did not live with them. You were not there on a daily basis. When we have guests over , my husband runs around like a chicken getting drinks, talking, cleaning up etc. it would be easy to misinterpret that as being the status quo.

      Actually , in my case the other woman was also a guest in my home during their affair ( I was unaware of affair) and he was like a whirlwind of activity cleaning glasses, getting drinks, loading dishwasher. It would be easy for a Visitor to think he did this all the time.

      Lastly, if you had a deep emotional bond and commitment to each other, why did he drop you like a hot potato 2 days after his wife found out? Even if he stayed for the kids or does charity work to get away from his wife, why did he dump you. You could have remained friends since you 2 were extremely close. He’s telling you he is happy with his wife and you are not believing him. And you are obviously gossiping with others if you know what they have to say about the situation.

      And you didn’t answer my question. I’m not bashing you or judging you. I would really like an answer as you were the OW. In my case and your case and everyone else on this site. If you had such a bond , or emotional attachment, or off the wall sex , why the secrecy? Why didn’t the other woman tell me (we were friends) what they were doing? If she thought she was the love of his life and they had a future why not tell me to get me out of the way? Why the secrecy? It’s my belief that she knew once the cat was out of the bag, the relationship would be over. The relationship was a lie, a sham and sloppy seconds and it couldn’t be sustained without the thrill and secrets

      • Holdingon

        The same with me, my kids are grown and out of the house, her EA went on for almost 3 years, but the second I found out he was dropped fast. And I still mess with him to piss him off, I tell him about the sweet sounds she makes while we’re making love, he is in love with her and says he’s the love of her life but I won’t let her go, damn right I won’t let her go, let him try to come and take her, I would laugh my ass off over that, she would think he was nuts, it’s only fun when they have to sneak, the APs are always so gullible, even men, it’s not just women, I can just imagine her telling him how great the sex is between us, that’s a good way to keep your AP around. All AP are totally stupid for some reason.

    • Cindy

      Oh wow. Trying hard, I also didn’t know this thread was 2 years old. Thought it was just posted.

      And another thing, if his wife truly didn’t do anything for her kids and he was totally devoted to them he could have sued for custody and you could have had a ready made family. Star crossed lovers with deep emotional bonds and ties shouldn’t have to be separated. Of he’s spending so much time away from home how is he seeing his kids anyway? Seems to me there is a crack in your belief.

      • Holdingon

        I just noticed it was old, wonder how many come back and read these.

    • Cindy

      And Jackie. My OW also told me she shared a deep bond with my husband and they were best friends and couldn’t live without each other. She also told me in detail (joyfully) of their sexcapades after I found out about affair. It was a last ditch effort to keep my husband and make me go away. Believe me, if I believed he had a deep bond with anyone else I wouldn’t be here.

    • Cindy

      To answer your question, it’s not hard or unimaginable to believe that some marriages stay together for the kids but on the other hand why is it so hard for the OW to believe that the husbands stay because they love their wives especially when that is what they are telling you

      • tryinghard

        Because Cindy then she would have to admit to herself that she was used and discarded. That she made a fool of herself. That she was stupid enough to believe all the bull he shoveled out to her. Not only did she buy it she savored it. Now she has to wonder what he’s saying to his wife about her ??? She was discarded and she just can’t accept it that he really does love his wife, his family, and his life. Mostly because she is still living in her fantasy world. PATHETIC.

    • Jackie

      No. I’m not hung up. I just get an email ding every time one of you sends an email.

      And I’m very amused by the stereotypes of OW that are so inaccurate. They are varied and different as your relationships are with your husbands.

      Some of you have better relationships because of your OW. Congratulations. It sucked to have it happen that way.

      Others of you are delusional. Your relationships are just as bad as they always were and he’s lying to you, just like he lied to you when he cheated on you, and just like he lied to the OW. A person who lies to their primary partner is someone who is capable of lying to anyone, about anything. That’s a deeper, deeper flaw than just participation.

      Have fun looking externally for all your problems. You’ll always solve your own problems by blaming someone else.

      • tryinghard

        Me thinks she does protest too much!!! LOLOLOL

        Yes they are big fat lairs and that is why we read, go to therapy, talk, probe, dig to make sure it NEVER happens again. I am no where near as naive as when I took him at his word. If he’s lying now he deserves an academy award!

        Nope, wrong again, I am too smart to look externally. I dug deep into my own issues and figured out how they impacted my husband. Made great changes and he has too.

        You if you want to read a blog that patronizes you pathetic existence I hear there are plenty of blogs you can read. With your shitty attitude toward right and wrong and reality you are not going to find ANY support here. There are plenty of OW on this site that have great attitudes and understand the impact and reality of their choices. We support those women as well. They were used by married men. They get a lot of information, support, and help here. Every once in a while some one like you shows up and spouts her ridiculousness and well sorry but you get what you deserve. You are here to see what the wives are saying because you are still daydreaming about your Prince Charming!

        Unclick the box genius so you don’t have to hear our abuse because that’s all you’re going to get!!!

        Oh yeah, WE WON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You lose!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Get over it.

      • Holdingon

        All marriage is unique, all affairs carry on in a predictable manner, you were used as a sperm collector, why can’t you understand that.

    • Disappointed

      No one wins with affairs. You may survive them but you don’t win.

      • tryinghard

        I hear what you are saying however compared to the OW that was in my H’s life, I WIN. She lost everything including him not to mention any sense of dignity. Her family even came down on her for having the affair. I have a good relationship with the man I love, I have the love and respect of my family, I have my business, I have a very nice blessed life. I want for nothing, well with the exception that I could make the affair go away and we are working on that. Yep, she definitely lost compared to me.

        I wish the same for you 🙂

    • tryinghard

      LOL I just realized I never answered your question. Yes undeniably so Doug and Linda my H lives with regret, shame and guilt. This keeps him humble and he knows he needs it. He knows what a false ego he had with the OW. Now he sees it an is ashamed. I feel bad for him sometimes but this was NO mistake, it was a choice and well I learned as a young woman that we are responsible for our own choices, good or bad, and we have to live with them—forever!

      Thanks for reposting. I got soooo much out of this.

    • Cindy

      Jackie – according to you, our husbands have a deep deep character flaw and are liars, and we are blaming others for our problems and you are just a participant. The poor, misunderstood and stereotyped mistress.
      First of all we are not stereotyping anyone on this board. All OW are exactly the same. They all try to take what’s not their and then try to justify their actions. It is what it is

      We don’t blame others for our problems either. We didn’t cheat , or lie or try to take something that didn’t belong to us. We didn’t create the problems as you so put it
      You act like you are lily white and take no blame for your part in the affair.
      If our husbands have deep deep character flaws that make them lie and cheat then the minute you crossed over the line you accepted that and wanted that kind of man yet you scoff at us survivors for continuing to love that man and forgive him.
      You weren’t just a participant. You were a liar and cheater as well . Hiding in the shadows am accepting the left over crumbs.
      Then you come on this site and blame the husband and the wife and paint yourself the victim. You are not the victim and not just a participant. Even after all these years you still can’t accept responsibility for what you have done. That’s the problem.

    • forcryin'outloud

      Jackie first posted in 9/2011 it’s now 21 months later and she’s still spewing the same vitriol. I think she’s stuck early on in the evolutionary chart of multi-cell organisms.

      Evolve…MOVE ON!

    • Tryinghard

      Fool and Cindy
      You both made great points. I agree. I guess we are all stuck to a certain degree however she was the one that participated in the “crime”. I’m amazed how she continues to buy into the old tale of poor me that he told her. I’m also amazed at the lameness of the tale, he cheated because the wife made him do things around the house and he couldn’t eat junk food! Boy if there were ever a reason to cheat that would be it! I have a hard time listening to fools and just can’t hold my 2 cents when the talk and act so stupid. She’s right up there with Jody the guilty one!

    • suziesuffers

      I think there is some truth to all of these points….and I’m the last to want to admit it…I was the BS….many many times. Did the CS lie to the other woman or just “expand” on the truth to make himself look good….don’t we all do that when we first meet someone to impress them…Does the CS eventually manipulate the situation in or to get “into the pants” of the other woman….absolutely!! My ex husband told me just what he would say to make a woman feel comfortable with him…he’s very charming narcissistic recovering alcoholic addict….So he’s really really good at lying…expert. So what makes me believe he wasn’t lying to me just as much about the OW to minimize the impact….Oh ya, he told me some awful things about her…her selfish, rude behavior…mixed in with the things that he liked about her….but as he saw how much that hurt I think he moved toward more of her negative traits…we all have them…So when talking to me…to minimize the hurt, it was eventually how stupid he was and all her negative traits to help boost my crushed self esteem that he had destroyed over the 35 years we were together struggling thru his addictions…well, his sober years were THE WORST….he cheated more than ever with every AA or Alanon woman that would have him…and if they didn’t he just lusted after them….Do I think he showed a persona that was just the stellar recovering addict!!! Absolutely!! And when I went to therapy and was talking to a therapist about how hurt I was…devastated to my very core after the 5 years of his “recovery” and constant sexual pursuits of ANYONE it seemed…I explained how much I was talking to my husband about how inferior I felt..comparing my self to all the women…but especially one in particular that he struggled letting go of…..and how much he was professing he loved me…but wouldn’t go to counseling and how crazy I was trying to heal myself..that he had all the words, but he resented being transparent (later to find his transparency was a front for his continued “escapes”)…I just became more and more viligant in trying to keep an eye on him…scared of what the next day would bring..never trusting…YES ..I had gone crazy with the crazy making of him telling me I was everything to him…he had never loved me like he loved me know…how grateful he was….but each and everyday I brought up the affair(they all rolled into one it seemed)…trying desperately to relieve the pain and get closure..I used Linda Glassman (I think that’s the name) book on how to help your spouse get over your cheating…over and over I read it and it spoke to exactly how I felt…I told him about this website…sent him emails about recovery….I was on him 24/7 pushing him to take any action …other than just wanting to “play” second honeymoon with lots of gooey talk and sex…that we needed something more and that I WAS SO STUCK….WELL…he was charming and for the most part was saying loving words…but discounting how I was feeling…telling me I was doing it just to punish him…”crucify” him as he spread his arms out…wanting me to have an affair to be even (guess he didn’t mind some images of some guy with me:)…all around telling me how little the other women meant….how awful they were…sex was terrible for the most part because she was a smoker and drunk AAer newcomer……BUT the therapist said one thing to me that crushed my bubble….me thinking that somehow his affirmations of all the negatives about HER (the most threatening and last PA)….HE said to me….WHY DO YOU THINK HE WAS TELLING YOU THE TRUTH?? EVERYTHING HE SAID COULD BE A LIE!!! Boy, why did I want to believe that all his wonderful words to me were truthful….He had lied to me and lied to the OW…Lying is what was saving his “A@S”…It’s what smoothed things over!! It’s what helped “temporarily” build my self esteem….because I could believe it wasn’t so much about what I lacked in comparison….WELL….They LIE!! How could we ever know the truth…I could catch him in a lie and it would be because of his memory lapse and he would correct himself and confirm the information…making me think he was being truthful!!! Truth is not a word in their vocabulary. THEY are selfish and will save their “A@S”…My part was that I was never getting any closure…He was still doing what I thought was being less than open and transparent….which just brewed my suspicions and my viligance to check up on him…he’d delete emails…hide messages…from women he’d met in AA…telling me later that I would just be upset because they were innocent and I would make a big deal about them…so better to hide them. NO I didn’t want him making friends with women in these groups…it was a social meat market…he had no business “connecting” with women in these groups…get well with the men…SINCE in the past you’ve had issues with the women…DUH…of course, I’m insecure about that……But there was always an excuse…He left me telling me it was all my fault because I had my “head so far up his a@s” that it was driving him crazy on my constant checking up (don’t know why it bothered him so much if he had nothing to hide)..that I was talking about it all the time making him crazy (admitted I was stuck in a downward spiral at times…especially when his behavior was unpredicatable and still selfish….so he told me everyday how much he loved me and how wonderful and terrific I was…and I went out of town and came back to an empty place….and he told me he would have told me anything so I didn’t know what he was planning…that he just wanted me to shut the “fk” up so he wouldn’t have to hear about the affairs for one more day…course he had refused to go to counseling together…said AA is all he needed …of course, I found out later he was secretively going to Alanon meeting (more codependent women needing comfort)…and “getting” to know them…telling them he wasn’t with his wife anymore and wanted a divorce…whilst telling me for months how much he loved me and couldn’t live without me!!! He’s always broke…finally go SS for retirement and as an architect is working parttime as a security guard and moved in with an Alanon lady to start his new life…luckily he was having to leave the place where he was living and she owns a home….big surprise…after all he said he looks for money and sex…that’s why he married me…as he told my son..and that he married me for all the wrong reasons….seems he’s still using that MO…but professes how much he has spiritually grown by looking at his emotional availability and that his problem all these years was that he was trying to make relationships with people that were emotionally unavail..we were together for 35 years…who’s he talking about…alll these people…All the women he was having affairs with that didn’t work out were emotionally unavail…but he realized it wasn’t him…it was them because he feels he was partially avail…although not always…they weren’t……CRAZY MAKING AT IT’S TOPS!! And yet….I miss the good guy I thought I feel in love with…must have been an illusion…..because he’s been lost for a very long time. Sorry for the long post…THEY LIE TO WHOMEVER THEY NEED TO IN ORDER TO SATISFY THE SITUATION….BS OR OW….WHATEVER IT TAKES TO KEEP THEIR EGO IN TACT….AND THEIR BUTT OUT OF THE SLING…OR KICKED OUT HOMELESS.

    • Kaya

      I just divorced my husband of 20 plus years after i caught him in an affair with a young co worker in her 20’s. He is 45. They are both sheriffs deputies. He lied and lied, cheated and in the end blamed me for it. He tried to say I am mentally ill, he said I was crazy. All the while he was lying to me and his only teenage son. He left and changed all bank accounts and stopped paying my sons college tuition. He acted like a total idiot. I finally had enough. I hired an aggressive male attorney , cut of all contact with the ex , shut of all my emotions and took him to court. The divorce was a nightmare. I came out the winner. I was awarded permanent alimony and half of his army retirement. I am so over him. I don’t need a person who is capable to just walk away from his family. In the end he lost it all. His home, his family, his money, his child, his past. For what ? Some hot sex with this young girl who called him so hot. Please , she can have him. Divorcibg him was the best decision I ever made. Nobody disrespects me like this. I cost me a fortune in legal feed but I fought and prevailed. After all he is the loser , the coward, the idiot , who gave it all up.
      This article is very well written. Do I care if he regrets cheating ? Absolutely not Cheating is a choice. If you chose evil you will face the consequences. on the other hand I am free now, I am at peace and most importantly nobody lies to me anymore. His son wants nothing to do with him I hope the little whore was worth giving up his life. But that’s his problem. For ever I owe her. He cheated with her , he will cheat on her.

      • Rachel

        Kaya, good for you!!!!
        I too came out a winner as well.
        Divorce is hard, but I had no other choice and don’t regret a minute of it.
        My ex blames me now and tells my boys that he wanted me back on divorce day with his big tears and attorney rubbing his back.
        He forgets my boys heard the same words I did. I don’t want you or our marriage.
        Good luck kaya!

    • Kaya

      Why in the world would you want to keep a husband who cheated on you? Where is your respect , your morales , your integrity. Once a cheater always a cheater. I do not have any sympathy god women who complain about their cheating husband. Divorce him. You might lose material assets but you will keep your self respect. As far as the OW. nobody cares about you. You are just trash to start an affair with a married man with a family. And you can keep him . Starting a relationship with a cheater is a “great” foundation for a lasting and trusting relationship. 🙂

      • Strengthrequired

        Kaya, I’m so happy that you have been able to move on with your life with a positive outlook. It seems to have been the best thing for you. You have chosen your path, to leave and divorce your h. Please however do not judge those of us who have stayed with our cs. Most of our cs, were actually good people who lost there way, through depression or midlife crisis. Some of us also have young children that needed to be thought of too, and most of our cs have been remorseful.
        Yet we who believe our cs deserved the chance to redeem themselves for the sake of our families and life together, did so because we felt it was right for us, just as you felt it right for you to divorce your h.
        So please be happy for those of us who have a cs that wants to keep their marriage in tact, just like we are happy for you with the choice you made.
        I do wish you well and hope you have a wonderful future and meet someone that is truly deserving of you. No one deserves this type of pain thrust upon them, we all deserve to be happy no matter whether we choose to stay or go.
        Hugs to you

        • forcryin'outloud

          Well said SR!!!

    • Laura

      I’ve found these comments very interesting but I’m personally still lost in my ongoing predicament.

      My fiancé ended our engagement some months ago after months of him going away, asking me not to contact him, and rejecting my advances towards him. Obviously I had suspicions but when I asked him if there was anyone else after he dumped me and kicked me out of his flat he said no and I took that answer.

      Almost straight away after I moved out he said how he wanted me back, he was in a bad place mentally and he was going to see a therapist and work on himself so he could then work on us and we could try again. Not until a mutual friend told me to ask him what he had really been up to while we were still together did it all come out. He denied it at first and got angry, but then admitted to joining a popular dating app and meeting another girl. He kept denying parts of the story for three weeks but the truth is he was dating her, stayed at her house, met her mother, had a secret relationship basically while I was left back at home waiting for him to come back, and all the guys at work knew about it, I was the butt of the joke. Not only that but he was still dating her when he told me he wanted me back and this was all a big mistake. She was in my home, my car, she had my life.

      He tried to make it look like my fault, like I needed to do more to make our relationship work. Even though a year and a half beforehand we almost broke up because he said he had feelings for someone at work.

      Now he says he’s not with her anymore and wants me, but hasn’t done anything to make things right with me.

      I’m at a loss as to what to do. I know I deserve better, but you can’t turn love off. Do I give him a second chance now he’s had therapy to be a better person? Or cut my losses? If he does this before we’re even married what would he do in 20 years time right?!

      Any suggestions?

      • becky716

        Laura, you’re so young. PLEASE get out now. You deserve more!!!

    • Nancy

      The exOW I was involved with had regrets as the minute I contacted his wife, not to hurt her, but to understand the situation as I was so in love with him after four years of being with him every single day and he immediately ended things with me and said he never wanted a future with me and was going to do everything to save his marriage. He told me he loved me every day yet the minute he thought he might lose his wife, he stopped loving me instantly. I realize now it was all just a game for him. I actually loved him completely and would have gone through hell and high waters for him, loved his kids from through his eyes and wanted a future with him. Lesson learned that just because you love someone it doesn’t mean they love you in the same capacity.

    • Loyalty

      I learned one thing that is truth – “trust a person by their actions and you will never be deceived by their words.” My husband has made some good headway to showing me he has changed since his infidelity last year with a woman 14 years younger than himself. But like everyone here that speaks on what he told her and what he told me, I believe he lied to us both. And from what I learned, that is the common pattern amongst cheaters – make things sound worse than what they are at home to give the AP hope, which will in the end feed the CS his selfish desires.

      He told me that he never told her that he would leave me. However, they discussed it through text messages. I put a 3rd party software on the computer to recover deleted text messages, plugged in his phone, scanned it and discovered that what he actually told her is “In 5 years, you will be 36, I would be 50, broke and with a crazy ex-wife.” Not exactly words of wanting to stay married because he still loves me, more like he was staying out of necessity. He spoke down about me – how I liked to get my hair done every four months like a movie star and so on. Keep in mind, I work full time and pay for my own upkeep (I am 5 years younger than my husband, but look significantly younger because I take care of myself). But seeing those deleted text messages really opened my eyes to potentially how he felt about me behind my back. And that hurts because he spewed such angry and bitter words about me to a woman he barely knew. That’s right, he barely knew her. Texting, a couple Starbuck dates, one lunch date, and a couple hours at her apartment talking and banging her doesn’t mean you know someone. I mean it was obvious she didn’t highlight or cut her hair, but making me sound superficial really hurt. And what he felt with her wasn’t love, but it was limerence – the high feeling you have at the beginning of a relationship. And from what I have read, it is highly addictive – when comparing a brain that is in an affair with one on drugs, both look the same.

      Once I found out about the affair and confronted him, I didn’t do what a normal woman would do – like throw things, show anger or demand separation. I was oblivious that our marriage was in any trouble at all, so to learn that our marriage was apparently in so much trouble that he actually slept with and carried on an emotional affair, that all I could do was cry like he died. I was that shocked. And somehow him seeing me cry that night made him end his affair of 9 or so months immediately. All it took was a phone call and a text message when she didn’t answer. Just for informational purpose – he supposedly only slept with her once in the beginning but had an emotional affair with her the rest of the time, even though she started dating other men once her husband found out about the affair with my husband, and filed for divorce two months after. Apparently my husband couldn’t stand to see me cry over what he did with her. Guilt overwhelmed him.

      A thing called life got in the way of how we connected. I went from being the “Dream Girl” he liked and lusted for 7 years to suddenly being the “Real Girl.” I wasn’t the woman that would ride on the back of his motorcycle anymore, I was the one that he went to Costco with on Sundays. I read that something like 70% of men who cheat do so because they are bored. While my husband is 45 yrs old, I believe it to be a midlife crisis with a big helping of his father having terminal cancer that lead to his affair. These stressful situations made him want an escape, and he chose her to escape to. I mean what else would you want if you already had everything? He already bought the truck of his dreams, a second Motorcycle, a camping trailer, an expensive home, he had a beautiful little girl and a doting wife? A young, immature and needy side chick would do the trick to make you feel wanted and desired in such a mundane life.

      In the end, I am trying to work it out with him. I am gutted, broken and bruised from this betrayal, especially since it has only been 6 months since D day, and the complete trust and unconditional love I had going into this marriage is gone. I would like to mention he is my first marriage, and I am his third, if that should mean anything. We are going to counseling separately, and we have lots of arguments now because of his affair. Funny thing is he says he loves me more now than he did before the affair – lucky me, right? He said he feels like he temporarily died during surgery and was brought back to life and appreciates me so much more now because of it. While something like this affair solidified his feelings for me, making him realize how much he actually loves me – his affair has done the exact opposite for me. I am more on the fence because such damage has been made. I am a good woman with morals, integrity and values. I didn’t deserve this. I would never knowingly have an affair, let alone choose to hurt him in this way. I can say that with absolute certainty. I technically have a free pass now, but the thought of a revenge affair stands for everything I am against. Therefore, being in a position where I have questioned my confidence, my looks, my age, and questioned my relationship with my husband, wondering if our marriage was really that bad to justify an affair, I have become jaded, bitter, and vengeful. And some days, I don’t want to work on us anymore because I don’t deserve the pain from having to face this reality each day.

      I have plowed into reading books, forums, blogs, and articles trying to understand this pain, the AP reasons for agreeing to such a toxic relationship with my husband in the first place and why it would happened at all. All I can say is the CS will grasp onto anything they can that was negative in the marriage to deflect some of the pain onto you, to help them feel they are justified in their actions which alleviates some of the guilt. It is a coping mechanism. But regardless, a wrong decision never creates a right result. In the end, the BS has all the power to decide if they want to work it out or move forward. It depends on the circumstances, and if your relationship has something to salvage.

      One way to think about it is by calculating how much of the relationship where the CS lied to you about the affair. For me, this happened during our 12th year of being together, it equated to 7% of my marriage. Do I want to end what was originally good for 93% of the time for 7% of bad? I believe everyone deserves a second chance, if they are truly remorseful. My husband has cried more this last year than I have ever seen him cry in the whole 14 years I have been with him. I used to think it was displaced tears – thinking about what he could loose and crying for it. But I believe he truly is remorseful and regrets her whole heartedly. At least, that is what my gut tells me.

      I am angry now, and I will be for a long time. But I will keep trying because I believe there is something to hold on to. It won’t be easy, but if it doesn’t work, I won’t have regrets for trying. I will be able to move forward knowing I gave it my all.

    • HurtWife

      QUESTION: My husband cheated on me – long term affair. The OW’s husband has no idea. “Everyone” knows except him. He’s a decent person. I struggle with not telling him. Are there any resources on this site or does anyone have any comments to share about: telling/not telling the other affected spouse?

    • Anne

      I’m reading through this thread in amazement of how bullheaded the “Other Woman” commenting here is. It makes me wonder if my own ex-husband’s POS sidepiece would be as bullheaded as her.
      Let me educate you, sidepieces who are reading here: None of you live in reality. You live in a bubble of lies. Lies he tells you about his life, himself, his wife, and his marriage that you lap up excitedly. Lies you tell yourself about yourself, about him, about his marriage and his poor wife. Lies you tell him about yourself though you probably don’t even realize it. There is nothing but lies, deception, fantasy, and selfishness at play here. Everyone else who is actually in his life sees reality. They see a completely different life than what he’s presenting to you.
      Let’s start with this. Isn’t it amazing how every single cheater’s marriage was “over for years” before he started cheating with his sidepiece(s) yet all of this is news to the spouse? Are you that stupid that you’d think these spouses are oblivious to something so big as that in their lives? IT IS PRETTY MUCH ALWAYS A LIE. Are there a slight few times it’s true? Sure. But I guarantee you, the marriage you’re destroying isn’t one of them no matter how badly you want to believe it. And think about this: if their marriage was so bad and miserable that they both wanted out why wouldn’t they make any move to leave until you came along? Isn’t that magical and completely amazing timing that surely has nothing to do with you? (/sarcasm)
      Try getting some life experience and maybe try to read a book on this. John Gottman’s book about lasting love talks about the phenomenon of people staying in bad marriages. He found that people who are in terrible marriages stay because they believe they love each other deeply despite the misery and they are very committed to each other – you know, like married people are supposed to do. They’re upholding their vows even if they don’t know how to work out their differences properly. That’s the point of marriages, honeys. You vow “in good times and bad till death do you part.” Staying when things get bad and trying to work through them is the baseline of expectations in a marriage. Surely, sidepieces, when you get married you wouldn’t want your spouses to cut and run at the first hint of a bumpy road. What’s the point of being married then? I have to conclude that people like you have no real concept of love or commitment. You must think marriage and love should be smooth, happy roads and any signs of “bad times” means the entire marriage is bad and must be trashed. I conclude this by your own rationalizations you have about the marriages you’re helping destroy. You’d be a terrible person to ever be in a relationship with due to your delusions. And so is the person whose marriage you’re helping to destroy. Like I said. you’re supposed to work on your problems. No one wants to be with someone who cuts and runs so easily. You should be questioning and running from someone who is telling you his marriage is terrible and he wants out instead of working on them not running to them. Those are bad signs. Too bad your selfishness is clouding your judgement or else you’d see that.
      If you had any life experience, you’d know ALL marriages go through rough patches because life is rough, we’re all humans with our own flaws and no marriage is going to be 100% fulfilling or perfect. Some bad patches can last years. You can’t fathom this when your only experience in life is a 1-5 year relationship. One famous marriage counselor and his wife talked about a period of 7 years in their otherwise happy marriage where they both hated each other and wanted to leave. It was really bad. But they worked through it and felt happier with each other in the end. It became just a blip on the radar of an otherwise happy 50+ year marriage.
      Here’s some more reality for you when you want to lie to yourself that he’d be soooo much happier with you: studies have shown that people who get divorced often regret it and even if they get remarried to someone else, they are often less happy with the new person than they were with their original spouse. If they would have worked harder in their original marriage, they’d be happier. It’s science!
      Even filing for divorce is not the death-knell of a marriage. People come back from the brink all the time. No marriage is over until a judge approves the divorce. When you have the life experience to see how many marriages have terrible times and then come out happier in the end, you’d know to completely stay away no matter what a person tells you. STAY AWAY FROM MARRIED PEOPLE PERIOD! Stay away no matter what they tell you or how badly you want to be with them. WALK AWAY.
      You don’t even really know these people to know if they’d be happier with you because the whole foundation of everything you have is built on lies. I’ve worked with people for 19 years and I would never be delusional enough to think I know them -especially what they’re like in relationships. You’re fantasizing. You don’t know what this man is like day in and day out, how he fights and resolves conflict after the honeymoon period is long over and he’s surely not going to tell you what he’s like. You’re helping destroy a marriage for a pursuit of fantasy. That’s sick. And you’re nothing but a fantasy to him. He doesn’t know what you’re going to be like and I’d be every thing I own on the fact that you wouldn’t be even 1/1000th of the partner to him that his wife already is. You’re not better than her in any way no matter what lies he tells you. And believe me, he’s going to tell you as much BS as he can about her. Some of them are flat out lies. Some will be based on a truth, but stretched and blown up so much it pretty much is a lie too. And of course, she has flaws because she’s human JUST LIKE YOU HAVE THEM so he can tell you those flaws as truth. That paints a picture of this horrible, mean person he’s married to so that you feel sorry for him and hate his poor, innocent wife. You lie about yourself “Oh, I’m not like her – I’m better than her! I don’t do that!” No, you’re worse. You’re already a homewrecker! You have no morals so right there, you’re worse than her. You have no sense of love or commitment…you’re worse than her there too. You’re an incredibly selfish person to do something like this so your selfishness by far takes the cake over any amount she has. You’re manipulative to sleep with a married man and try to lure him away from his wife and family and that’s terrible. No good, baseline decent person has an affair with a married man. No one who has integrity or self-respect has affair with married men or women.
      And here’s the thing, that man you’re screwing and thinking has a terrible marriage? He’s going home to his loving wife every night. In the beginning while he’s hiding this affair from her, he’s still holding her hand and telling her he loves her. They’re happily on the couch watching tv together and talking about their days. He’s still sleeping with her every night. You don’t know that though because you’re there in the bubble of lies believing their marriage is miserable and over. If she knows you’re somewhere in his life – guess what he’s saying about you to her? You’re horrible. You’re ugly. Etc. You’re being trashed to her and you don’t even know it. How does that feel knowing that bit of truth? My now ex husband used to come home from work every day trashing the bitch he was having an affair with She was “hideously ugly” and “gross” and a “bitch” and should be fired from their job. He trashed her to his family and our friends too. He never stopped trashing her even after he admitted to sleeping with her! The trashing just changed then: I got to hear about her vagina being loose. That she was terrible in bed and a bad kisser. I’m sure she wouldn’t believe that he’s trashed her though. But he did.

      My ex husband admitted to me that he lied to people. He told people our marriage was miserable and over for years and he’d been wanting to divorce me for a long time. And believe me, it absolutely was a lie. We were fine. We were planning and preparing for our future. On our kitchen table to this day is a notebook where he wrote in January 2017 all his goals for the year including things about our future together. A man who is “seriously considering” divorcing his wife would not be planning to himself (I had no idea his goal list was in one of his notebooks) about his future life with someone he was thinking about leaving. That doesn’t even make sense to do that. He would write love note to put in my lunch. He would make the bed with the blankets in the shape of a heart. He would send me pictures of flowers he took throughout the day telling me they reminded him of me. If our marriage was miserable and he was seriously considering divorce, would he do that? Nope. And I’ve kept all these pictures of notes and the blankets and screenshots of texts as proof. If our marriage was over and miserable, why all the secrecy?
      Think about this; If our marriage was so miserable and over then I’d want out too, right? Why would I care if he moved on if things were so miserable? You sidepieces don’t use logic too much, do you?
      Telling yourself their marriage was/is shit and you’re this poor victim of his horrible wife because she is blaming you is BS. You’re clinging to this lie so that you don’t have to admit to yourself what you are and what you’ve done. So you can excuse your own actions and deflect the guilt. If a spouse is reacting as though you’re an affair partner then guess what – YOU’RE AN AFFAIR PARTNER and you know it! You know it! She’s not using you as an excuse not to face their “issues” YOU ARE THE ISSUE. HIS CHEATING WITH YOU IS THE ISSUE. You are villain not the victim. And that’s the truth.
      The fact that you can talk to so many cheated on partners and they will all tell you the same thing – that should tell you something. You’re jus sticking your cheating heads up your asses. Your lives would be so much happier and better if you’d live with some integrity. Maybe taking an honest look in the mirror would help you fix things about yourself and you’d be able to find a good partner for once instead of being coleslaw on the side. Fixing these glaring issues about yourself would help you have happier and better relationships over all. And you’d wouldn’t be hurting innocent people and destroying lives in the process. That’s a win-win for everyone.

      You’re welcome.

      • Sanders

        Anne – I’ve just come across your post. Wow, I couldn’t put it better myself. I LOVED reading what you’ve written, it sums it up so well for me. I know my husband was inflating the truth about me and our relationship to his ‘bit on the side’. She herself is a child really at 22, husband is 48!! We may have had a few issues that needed confronting in our marriage, but we never for one moment ever stopped communicating, laughing, having sex, so when this all came out about his affair it was shocking. My thoughts now are that for someone so young to think it’s acceptable to start a relationship with someone nearly 30 years older than her and a married man as well, her morale compass is completely off whack!! He may have been the first married man she’s screwed with but he won’t be the last, this is obvious as I think sh has probably enjoyed the sneaking around and the excitement of it all. I particularly love your sign off – ‘your welcome’ hahahahaha!! Thank you for making me feel better after I’ve had a somewhat emotional day, you truly are a legend.

    • Happily Married for 30 years

      Western culture accepts that the husband must love his wife unconditionally.
      But scoffs at the notion that wife’s must respect their husbands unconditionally

      Nooooooooooo . . . he must EARN my respect !!

      You have been culturally brainwashed by the media and society to accept that your husband needs respect in the same manner as you need love

      The Western woman is DOOMED unless they start accepting Biblical Truths (Ephesians 5:22-33)
      . . . rather than cultural conditioning – You are NOT entitled to a list of fairy-tale demands as Westernised popular culture would let you believe.
      Revert to ancient tried and tested methods and your husband will NOT stray, because he did not get the “attention” (RESPECT) that he missed at home

      Start practicing the advice of Dr. Emerson Eggerichs book “Love and Respect” and your husbands will automatically start treating you in the manner you crave . . . Still clueless? Read : The Respect Dare by Nina Roesner (Woman confront/nag DISRESPECTFULLY. . . and men WITHDRAW defensively in silence . .. UNLOVINGLY)

      My wife and I have been HAPPILY MARRIED for 30 years, because we believe the BIBLE KNOWS BETTER how to conduct our lives and marriage . . . my wife is my queen and I will do ANYTHING TO PLEASE HER

      She knows that all men have 3x basic needs that will keep them devoted forever
      1. RESPECT from his wife (my wife is NOT my doormat . . . she is my equal)
      2. SEX . . . I love my wife with my whole heart and make absolutely sure that her sexual needs are always met . . . she understands that I express my love to her by being intimate with her . . . and by refusing my sexual advances (because she’s not in the mood) She is depriving herself from deeply emotionally connecting with me and being showered with my love
      3. A NICE MEAL . . . now and again (Aghast at the idea of serving your husband in love? . . . I rest my case; you are brainwashed beyond redemption .. . join the ranks of the ever-increasing list of unhappy women, in the West)

      WAKE UP !! . . . cultural conditioning and propaganda is ruining your chance at happiness!!

      • Shifting Impressions

        Happily Married
        You seem to have all the answers….. Unfortunately there are men and women who despite being loved and respected at home went on and cheated!!!

        Betrayed spouses…men and women get enough blame heaped upon them for their partners poor choices. Your point of view seems somewhat self righteous!!!

    • Carlton

      I am submitting this on behalf of a good friend of mine. His name is Carlton. He got involved in an affair and left his wife Charlotte for another woman.This news has been hard on the few people that know of the affair and him leaving. Carlton and Charlotte were so well suited for each other. Charlotte adored Carlton and I thought Carlton loved Charlotte as well. Several of us have spoken about this. Carlton has moved in with his girlfriend. We feel Carlton got wrapped up in the affair and did not truly want to leave Charlotte. Carlton’s best friend is the sister to the woman he left Charlotte for. Can these two wonderful people, Carlton and Charlotte be helped? This breaks my heart. Carlton will face such embarrassment for what he has done. Can their marriage be saved? Please help them. I have included Carlton’s email for him to receive help. Thsnk you. I love this couple

    • Lisa

      I am so much sadder after reading these posts. I have known how divorce and separations affects families through my children’s friends over the years and I would tell my husband how sad it made me feel that people don’t seem to try harder to save their marriages. I had never dreamed I would be affected by an affair in my own marriage. My husband was a wonderful man and a wonderful father. I never thought in a million years he would be capable of an affair! Now that my husband has left me for his former girlfriend from high school, I am devastated and so very hurt and lost. I am an emotional and physical wreck. 31 years of marriage, 5 grown children, and 4 grandchildren! How could he? We were planning to move to Idaho with all of our children. We had even put an offer down on a house there. Then I caught him texting her, he was very remorseful at first. We really talked and he said he had been that happy in a long time. He loved me and he promised! He said this over and over for a month. I then started looking through his cellphone and discovered so many deceitful things he had been doing the last couple of years. Before I caught him he had become so mean and distant. I knew there was something wrong, but I just thought he was depressed, unhappy with the way his life turned out (we have had a lot of trauma done to us), and tired. I thought our move would change all of that. He was not a good communicator and held everything in. We were so busy with children, grandchildren, his business, my recent job after 19 years of being at home. I thought he would always love me. When I started questioning him about the email information I discovered he became angry again, violent, and psychotic. I had never seen him act this way! I was terrified for him and shocked. He started staying at far away jobs all week insisting he was not with her, but he was. I had to hire a P.I. To verify he was with her. He left me with both our personal finances, business finances, our home, and an empty rental that needed remodeling. He left scott free with no responsibilities except the truck he took and he was months behind on that. He lies to everyone, blames me for his affair and leaving. Our children have learned how much he lies and all he has done, an do not talk to him. He doesn’t seem to care. Our youngest son lost his job because of him. (He worked for his dad and has a wife and 2 children of his own) They are posting pictures and comments on facebook (my children show me) I am sick and beside myself! I found out this exgirlfriend (who has tried to contact him many times during the last 30 yrs) is married to her 4th husband! And from what I have discovered she called my husband looking for him. She is so proud of herself. She posted “finally, 35 years in the making.” She had told me after I text her to leave my family alone, “I not only love him, I have been in love with him for 35 years.” If that is not psychotic I don’t know what is. He left her when he was 20 and told me she was controlling and manipulative and glad to be away from her. I am not perfect, but neither was he. I thought we had something special. I even told him that and he said “we did.” They have had police report written against me and lied, always lying. Our beautiful family is destroyed! We had so much to look forward to. Now I empty and alone at 51 years old. I am tired of fighting them and I know I cannot control what they say about me or what they do. I am just so sad he would rather go to her for happiness and leave the people who truly love him behind. He should have worked things out with me, his wife instead of going somewhere else and blaming me for his unhappiness. It is a two way street. I love him and always have and I thought he loved me. I thought he believed in his marriage vows. This slut deserves severe punishment because she has been planning this for a long time. I don’t understand how people can do such things and destroy families. God forgive them. They have a world of hurt coming their way. I pray for them daily.

      • BDC

        Hi Lisa, thank you for writing. I am sorry you are going through what you are going through, but I am here to tell you that you are not alone and that this will pass. Much of what you wrote is what happened to me as well as it’s more common than you might think.
        One thing I highly recommend you do is find a therapist or counselor, especially one that’s trained in personality disorders and mental illnesses; in particular, those called Cluster B. If you happen to talk to a counselor, inquire on that specific term to see if they have experience in it. From there, I recommend you tell your story, as much detail as you can about the interaction between the two of you pre and post affair/separation, and listen to everything he or she says. Their professional input will give you the intellectual basis you need to be able to have something to stand on that’s solid, and that solid ground will give you the understanding you need to be allayed from the confusion you’re currently drowning in. You will get answers about things to help make sense of what’s messing with your mind right now. It’s the first step to recovery. One thing I will tell you – This had nothing to do with you and it was not your fault. At all. One of the things you’re no doubt tempted to do is dive into the rabbit hole of self-flagellation. It’s false and it leads nowhere. Just as you said you cannot control what they (your H and AP) do, it holds true here as well. So, if you’re inclined to blame yourself, or consider that you could’ve said or done something different here or there, especially before all of this happened, do NOT give it any credence because it’s not true and all it will lead you to do is romanticize the past and him more. That’s one thing I can tell you to steer clear of.
        As I said at the beginning here, this will pass, and you will come out of this considerably stronger and wiser; even to the point of possibly even being thankful that it happened, as odd as that might sound right now.


      • Loyalty

        Lisa – be happy to know that most likely this relationship that he decided to abandon his marriage for will fail. The odds are stacked against them. I believe statistically only 5% of married men will leave their spouse for their AP and it was something like 75% of those don’t last. And the fact this woman has been married four times speaks volumes. The issues that were there before when he left her will most likely still be there. I hope he sees the light with this woman and comes crawling back to you . To walk away from a 30 year marriage is significant. He obviously wasn’t thinking. We all experience boredom in our marriage, but if you water your grass, you won’t covet the grass on the other side. Keep your head up and use this time for yourself to do all the things you never got to. You might even fall in love with someone new. Don’t see this as the end, but view it as the beginning of something better.

    • Lisa

      Thank you both for your replies. I do blame myself for many things, but I know I did the best I knew how as a wife and mother. I stood by him during a time that others told me to walk away, but I couldn’t because I believed in him. I desperately want him to come home. I begged him to at the beginning. There are times I feel good about all that I have accomplished without him. (Like selling our home and finishing the remodel on the rental I had to move into) but it never seems to be enough. I miss him and I miss the love we shared together with our children and grandchildren. Our lives will never be the same and it kills me to hear my children say they hate their father. People (including our children) admired our commitment to each other after all we had been through. I feel like it was all a lie, especially the more I learn about the crazy things he was doing and remembering things I questioned him about that did not make sense. I know this is a process, but I don’t see an end to the torture. He has told me over and over he wants a divorce, but nothing yet. I know if that day comes I will fall apart again and the thought is terrifying. I just wish he would come to his senses and realize what he has done. I saw the old him for a while after I caught him. I know that man loves me and I will just continue to pray for him. I know God is faithful. The OW (though I would like to call her something else) has given him her evil black heart and she did not give up till she got him back) I pray God is faithful dealing with her also. I thought I could manage this without counseling, but the depression is winning and I will try to seek counseling and ask about the Cluster B. Thank you again.

    • Angel

      My UH had an EA online with someone and kept trying to fool me for years that I had it all wrong. I told him I might have a few imaginary things wrong but what I saw and read between them were cold hard undeniable facts. 2 years later we were still going at it about this EA and I was practically having to beg him for recovery work, empathy, etc. You BSs know how this goes. I finally wrote a letter to myself from “him” and told him when he can read it back to me in his own words and actually feels what it says I would consider reconciling. I’m posting it here in the hopes it will enlighten some CS with their head up their *ss where they need to get to, to even begin healing the damage they caused. Here it is:
      Dear _______,
      I could not be more ashamed for creating a situation that made you feel like I was choosing another woman over you. I wasn’t considering you at all in my actions or attitude and you knew it and felt it.
      I never wanted you to feel you weren’t pretty enough or interesting enough or fun enough to deserve my love and attention.
      I can barely live with myself knowing the punishing pain I have caused you.
      The thought of hurting you is torture to me and if I could take this pain and feel it for you, I would.
      I could not feel worse knowing that you attacked yourself to make excuses for my bad behavior.
      You loved me so much you began to believe there must be something wrong with you for me to be treating you so horribly.
      I made you believe you weren’t good enough for me.
      You lost your self-esteem, your confidence, and your sense of even being attractive because of me.
      I caused you even more pain with my criticisms that were really just justifications.
      I sold your confidence for the price of my pride and you got ripped off.
      I chased the thrill of a game of cat and mouse for someone who can’t hold a candle to you.
      What the hell was I thinking?
      My lying and constantly indulging myself in what I wanted to do made you believe that I didn’t even want you in my life.
      My lying showed you that I would betray you to do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it.
      If you challenged me I would be cruel and critical and just make myself emotionally unavailable to you.
      That was a form of manipulation and abuse to silence you into leaving me alone so I could pursue something else.
      I see that continuing to deny I was wrong and continually defending myself for treating you that way
      was still just being emotionally unavailable to you for another two years.
      I have done it for so long it made you finally withdraw and retreat from me almost to where I can never reach you again.
      Being emotionally attached to me has become brutal for you.
      For you to emotionally unattach from me was equally brutal, but I left you no choice.
      When I hear you say these things, I accused you of exaggerating and continued to defend myself.
      But in the face of what you suffered, I cannot defend it.
      You didn’t think I was a monster but my behavior forced you to live with one.
      I showed you that when I wanted to do something, you weren’t important enough for me to check myself.
      I showed you that I would do as I pleased, regardless of your feelings, and your needs or wants were trivial in comparison.
      I felt entitled to do as I pleased and refused to even consider how you were being treated or what you could be feeling.
      I was arrogant enough to toss casual lies at you as if you were stupid and abused your trust in me.
      I thought you’d just buy whatever I said, being too arrogant to think you knew the truth.
      I stupidly kept going back to do it again and again every day and forced endless punishing pain on you.
      I let you live like that, even as I knew you were questioning my honesty about another woman and you had solid reasons to question it.
      I tried to deny that you had reason to, even as I gave you more reason every minute of every day.
      I relentlessly went to be where she was every day, and you were forced to watch me go there even as you knew I was lying about her.
      You asked for very little cooperation but I was not even willing to give that much, showing you I could not leave this woman alone
      and desired her company, her attention and just HER, more than you.
      Because I lied about her, this struggle for you has has not just been a general rejection of you for an online game, but has been
      haunted by the specter of another woman on my mind as all you saw was me continuously place myself where she was, and
      never place myself near you anymore. I was physically present, but emotionally and mentally engaged elsewhere at all times.
      I cannot imagine how you endured that pain for endless hours and endless days until you finally, painfully, gave up all hope that I was faithful to you.
      I made you believe I didn’t value you at all, as a person, and that it meant nothing special to be my wife.
      I made you feel that I completely severed my connection to you and I became not much more than a room mate to you.
      I met your attempts at re-connection with rejection and hostility when I’d say “Fine then! What do you want to do!” and get angry at your interruption of my “game.”
      My intense desire to do something else and my lack of participation in our marriage left you desperately looking for any sign that
      you still meant something to me and you are still looking for them today.
      Over the last 2 years, the loss of faith has been so complete that you mostly can’t see them and are afraid to trust them when you do.
      My treatment of you since then, even when we were not fighting, was still neglectful and disregarding enough that it has
      never made up for the shortage you suffered then.
      Refusing to acknowledge hurting you only multiplied the hurt and made it bigger than it had to be and
      has undone any positive signs you did see so you have felt you meant less and less and less to me since then, even after she was gone.
      Everything now is disappointing at best, in comparison to what you thought you had.
      You even wondered if you just imagined our great love because you couldn’t find it anymore.
      I was supposed to make sure you didn’t get hurt, above all other things in LIFE, not lie to you and inflict hurt, but that’s what I did.
      And after being such a nice guy, then treating you so horribly, you weren’t sure who you were really married to or what I was capable of.
      All you knew was that you were the most loved and cherished woman on Earth one day, only to have your heart stunningly and devastatingly
      destroyed the next, and just wished you’d never fell for it at all.
      The worst part is that I willfully seemed to check out of my marriage to pursue the company of complete strangers, and one woman in particular, and left my real wife to flounder and wonder what had happened to my love and care for her when she discovered I sneaked out to call this woman after she fell asleep at 4 in the morning.
      I took too much for granted and I left you feeling unwanted at the very least, and brutally betrayed for another woman at worst.

      I see that you are struggling to not let yourself retreat across that final line and stay here in the face of daily pain.
      You stayed, always hoping that I would somehow wake up to what you’ve endured.
      You just thought surely if I only knew how horrible and awful I was being toward you that I’d stop it and I would move
      Heaven and Earth to make it right, but I wouldn’t and you’ve grown endlessly frustrated trying to get me to see it and have nearly given up.
      If it’s not too late, I won’t let a moment go by that I’m not trying to keep you from retreating across that final line and out of my reach.
      Thank you for fighting to not let yourself out of my reach, even though you now wonder if you might be better off for it.
      Thank you for valuing me so much that you are unwilling to lose me.
      My lack of care for your feelings made me seem like a heinous, callous, cold-hearted person.
      Thank you for keeping sight of who I really am and not believing that about me.
      If I were you I wouldn’t trust me either.
      I felt you were fighting against me even as I tried to help you and blamed you further, when you weren’t fighting me at all,
      but fighting to trust me enough to place yourself in my care again.
      I realize that you were banished to a place where you could not feel my love for you, as you saw my affection for someone else plainly written in my own words in texts to her, and this is so painful to me I can’t stand it.
      I will spend every minute til my dying breath to make sure you feel my love for you again, and never ever suffer another moment
      that you don’t feel my love for you, if you will just let me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.