The Least Productive Things to Do After an AffairBelow you will find some statements that people have made when asked: What do you feel is the least productive thing you did after discovering the affair?

Hopefully, you will find these statements somewhat enlightening. Please add your own thoughts in the comment section below the post.

The least productive thing I did after the affair was…

  • Not being able to control my rage/anger. It kept me from learning to heal and be better for myself.
  • Obsessing about trying to find every little detail of what my wife was doing throughout each and very day after I discovered the affair.
  • Always being the one to instigate conversations and ask questions. I figured if he wanted this to work, it was time for him to step it up, so I stopped doing that.
  • Reading all their e-mails. Many of the messages they exchanged haunt me – and it’s an additional cause of suffering.
  • Believing their story and thinking that me, the wife, is the third party to their relationship.
  • Romanticizing their affair and obsessing about the details, and felt that perhaps they were more compatible to be together.
  • Trying to heal on my own. I tried single-handedly to rebuild trust and move on.
  • Confronting him in a rage the second that I found out that my suspicions were correct. Well, I stayed in that rage and that emotional roller coaster for 4 months and I think that things would’ve moved faster had I been calm.
  • Spending too many hours looking at phone logs and counting how many each sent and who initiated them. I also found myself comparing myself physically to her and thinking they were a better match.
  • Pouring energy into wondering about her and whether or not he has spoken to her today. I have to assign her a lot less importance; she really isn’t worth it.
  • Confronting my wife when all I had was a gut feeling that there was something going on. This lead to lies and more lies as she tried to blow it off and “get it under control” before anything bad happened.
  • Letting her know how weak I was and how much I want our marriage to work. This gave her a great deal of power to do and say what she pleased without fear of me leaving or her being kicked out.
  • Not controlling my emotions and not controlling our conversations so as to not let her turn them around on me.
  • The way I verbally berated her in that discovery period. Laying on guilt, calling her names, trying to ‘shock’ her back to reality.
  • Punished my husband by telling everyone I could about his affair.

Infidelity Recovery – Consequences of Punishing the Cheater

  • Confronting her affair partner.
  • Allowing myself to be a doormat. Putting up with both the affair and the crappy treatment for months after D-day while he pulled his head out if his ass.
  • Continuing to be my husband’s emotional support, even when what he needed support with was his tortured feelings for the OW.
  • Being too understanding.
  • Confronting my wife with my knowledge of the affair. It drove them closer together and as a result that could mean that the situation might have resolved sooner if I’d just gotten out of the way and allowed it to run its course.
  • Keeping too much inside and not telling family members or close friends what was going on with me. I retreated from all of them and closed myself off.
  • Feeling powerless, guilty and blaming myself for his EAs.
  • Trying to manage my husband’s recovery.
  • Blaming myself for my wife’s failure and trying to become someone I’m not.
  • Initially believing my husband, which caused me to minimize the extent of the problem.
  • Using rage and anger to transmit my pain.
  • Not getting help soon enough.
  • Not trusting my gut feelings.
  • Not taking care of myself.
  • Not contacting the OWs husband right away… I would’ve left… I would’ve kept my own dignity intact and let HIM do the work and figure HIS crap out.
  • Confronting him before I had all of my proof so that disclosure from him woould not have been in bits and pieces.
  • Not asking him to leave, and giving him the chance to miss me completely, and to feel as though I was lost and gone from him forever.
  • Yelling and arguing when trying to talk and get answers regarding the affair.
  • Focusing on what I did wrong in the marriage.
  • Not letting him know that his behavior was unacceptable and that I had a choice whether I wanted to continue in our marriage when trust was broken.
  • Not getting angry.  I should have let it out and released those emotions instead of carrying the blame for his emotional affair.
  • Believing everything he said was coming straight from his heart.
  • Being uneducated about what I was really up against and that an affair is not all about love.
  • Being personally drawn into the illusions of the affair.
  • Acting clingy, neurotic, jealous, insecure, and distrusting.

Obviously every situation is different when dealing with infidelity, and what’s not productive for some, can be very productive for others.

Remember to add your least productive actions or behaviors in the comment section below.  Thanks!

 

 

    54 replies to "The Least Productive Things to Do After an Affair"

    • Strengthrequired

      Not being more stronger, instead of standing my ground. Pleading and begging isn’t very attractive, and gives the cs more power.

      • Doug

        Thanks SR. If you wouldn’t mind…For the benefit of those who are just new to this…How do you feel that pleading and begging gives the CS more power?

        • Strengthrequired

          No worries Doug, it gives the cs more power of the situation, because they see you as weak, they see you as easy to walk over, and they see that you won’t leave.

          • Doug

            Exactly! Thanks for expanding on that for us.

    • Rachel

      I should have filed for divorce much earlier than I did. Should have kicked his sorry ass out the door immediately. This would have stopped his awful words to me as how I wasn’t like her and how in love they were. As now he denies all that was said. Yet he forgets, he said all of it in front of our two children. JERK!

      • Doug

        Yes Rachel, he put you through a lot of emotional abuse and pain didn’t he? Just curious…how do your kids react to him these days?

    • Rachel

      My oldest son was begging him not not come to my fathers funeral and he came anyways.
      He told my oldest that I’m financially sitting pretty. Wanted to know the amount of my bills.
      The sperm donor told my oldest he owes him money after he said to put purchases on the charge. Again it’s about the money . They deal with him with frustration.
      I received a letter from a credit card company last week saying that I have an acct with spermy. I called and cancelled the card.
      Spermy emailed me and said that I owe him 1,500.00 because there were points on the card for a new/used card and I need to send him a check.
      Ya, sure I’ll get right on it ! The sperm makes 6 figures. As my dad said, he will harass you forever!!

      • Doug

        Spermy?? I like it. I was thinking he was just a dick!

        • betrayedchump

          Good one Doug!

    • Shifting Impressions

      I’ve been thinking about this blog post and feel my least productive time was right after d-day (11 months ago). I was in total shock the day I found the emails regarding my husband’s emotional affair. I have kicked myself several times for the things I did NOT do that day. I wished I would have examined the emails closer, before he had the chance to destroy all the “evidence”. I confronted him immediately before thinking things through……I know…..I was in shock.

      That “evidence” might have saved me countless hours of wondering how deep the affair really went…..something my partner is not all that willing to share. Perhaps that would have saved me asking the same questions over and over again. To this day I feel at such a disadvantage not having these “missing pieces of the puzzle.

      Another thing I did was or rather did NOT do was…..be present when he made the phone call to end the affair. I needed to hear that call.

      Looking back, I know I was beside myself with shock as I’m sure most of you were…..we should not be to hard on ourselves

      Besides that, I’m actually proud of the way I’m handling everything. Nothing in my life has ever hurt me to the degree that this has…..I’m still standing and have no regrets about my behavior.

    • Tabs

      SI,

      I messed up on the same thing you did. I wish I had the brains to get copies of the emails, voicemails, etc. because my H isn’t willing to share, either. He was so willing in the beginning but is now so determined to forget. So one of those least productive things I did after the affair (about two years later) was to find out more about the CS by spending lots of time online.

      I’m not proud of my conduct, at all. I did a lot of crying, screaming, and raging hissy fits. Mix into confusion the death of my mother and I was pretty messed up. My biggest regret was not taking divorce more seriously. I just couldn’t deal with divorce while my mother was fighting cancer. My H is trying to make amends, but I still have so many questions.

      • Strengthrequired

        Si tabs, I too wish I had of had the strength to not spill to my h that I knew about his texts and what was in them, maybe then he would not have kept in changing his oasswords, I could have had information that he was not willing to share. I’m no very good at keeping things to myself, I always would get excited when I bought my h something, I just couldn’t wait to give it to him, even now.
        Yet you know something else, the things I do know now about the affair, I wish I didnt, at times, because it haunts me, and disgusts me. Not good when you are trying to keep your family together. When you keep fighting the urge to not just walk away.

        • Shifting Impressions

          Strength
          I thought about that as well…..knowing more than I can mange to deal with. The things I do know still haunt me.

      • Shifting Impressions

        Tabs,
        I did plenty of crying as well….I still do, almost daily. But I think it’s important to go through the pain…it has to come out somehow. My mother passed away suddenly about 5 months after D-day so I know what you mean about being confused. Somedays I wasn’t sure if I was crying about Mom’s death or the affair.

        My husband is trying to make amends as well and we are working hard at not causing more damage as we work through this. Last week I was still trying to figure out that there must be someway to retrieve that email account until I realized the info about what the affair really meant will be much more valuable if it comes from him, rather than if I manage to find out things with my detective work.

        Something that has been helpful is that we put time aside every two weeks to talk about the affair….once a week was too often. Up until now I have been the one to lead the conversation and ask the questions etc. He is resisting going to counseling, so I told him I needed him to be more proactive in these conversations that since I’m not a counselor I didn’t think the burden should fall on me. Well there was such a difference with our conversation with him taking the lead. We put a time limit on these sessions and find it helps if we go for a walk while talking….seems to help us open up.

        I must say again….this site has been a lifeline.

    • Tabs

      SI

      You’re idea of setting aside time to talk about the affairs is brilliant. My H will not go to counseling. He was a psych major (30 years ago) and believes that he’s above seeing a therapist. And, a time limit probably will help both of us. Talking for more that hour about the ordeal would probably cause neurosis.

      Strength,
      What I did read of the correspondence was “much” more than I could comprehend. How do you handle the anxiety?

    • Broken2

      I wish I had stayed calm and gathered more information before confrontation. It is what I could have known but because I confronted him immediately, I will now never know that haunts me. Unless you strap the cheater to a polygraph test no one will ever know the whole truth. Cheaters never tell it all, there is always the little tidbits that they think don’t matter what really do. Cheating is the gift that keeps on giving…..

    • Tiredofitall

      I, too, confronted my husband too quickly after discovering phone calls & texts. That was two years ago this week. Needless to say, this has been a difficult week–lots of triggers that’s for sure!

      I wish I would have just observed him and gathered information, but I truly don’t know how a bs would EVER know to do that. When you make a discovery like that, it is so overwhelmingly hurtful that you instantly go into survival mode.

      I also obsessed over the phone logs and searched emails for months and months. I tried to compare phone logs to my planner and our family’s calendar. I had such a need to know if all the times I was happy could have been real. I carried the paper stack of phone calls with me back and forth to work and would take them out any chance I had and pour over them. I totaled minutes talked a day and wrote it all into my planner. All I can say now is that none of that changes anything. It confirmed that I had been duped by the person I loved and trusted most. And more often than I could ever have imagined. Getting over that is a process. 2 years later I am doing more things right but at times I feel unworthy and unloveable. I hate that I have given my h the power to make me feel that way.

    • sadwife

      I should have left the minute he started the verbal abuse instead of staying and letting it get into physical when I continued to ask questions about the affairs…..I recently found out the “emotional” affairs (18 years apart…supposedly) were physical with all the “trimmings” such as expensive gifts, trips, etc. He got physically abusive when I kept asking him to clarify points he made — raised fists, calling names, etc. He spit in my face and told me to “get my big ugly face out of the bedroom” at one point. I should have left then. I separated from him for 10 months while he continued the affair, for safety, all the while thinking it was just emotional. It wasn’t until I felt safe and moved back home that I discovered through an anonymous package sent to me in the mail, that it was deeply emotional and physical. He finally spilled the beans on most everything, but it has been slow trickling of info. Now he appears to be out of the “fog”, but I am not sure that I want to stay because I”m not sure if anything is truth or fiction. I can say for the first time , that I see true remorse from him, after almost 20 months of lies. I have currently given him the 6 months he asked for to allow him to show me he has changed. He has not been abusive and has been seeing an anger management therapist and a counselor. I do see a change. But I still want a polygraph to prove what he is saying is true and he is balking at that. Hmmmm….still considering leaving after the 6 months are up unless he changes his mind and gets one. Is that bad of me to want that? We’ve been married 36 years…I hate to give up after such a long time.

      • Frozen

        Sad wife our stories are so similar it sounds like we have the same husband. It has been 4 yrs I wonder if your still together.

    • lost

      Pleading and begging. Constantly lifting him up while I was so low. Doing everything I could to be better and falling for all the things he said I dis that made him unhappy. Forgiving, forgiving, and forgiving until I was so worn out. And then realizing I was getting nothing in return. Our marriage is coming to an end divorce hearing coming up and probably going to a custody battle. I can’t help but think if I could have been as strong as I am now, or as strong as I really was if I didn’t buy into all his negative views on me if maybe we could have beat the statistic. He never has changed and by me getting stronger and less tolerant made him even more unhappy with me. He never has moved on and looked within himself after 3 years……if only I could have been this way 3 years ago maybe I wouldn’t have given him even more ammo. He doesn’t look at how my actions and emotions were text book, he never realized that or cared or we could be still together. Life lesson, I am worth more, I deserve more, and I am perfect flaws in all no matter how unhappy that apparently made him. Lesson learned. If only I could have been stronger. My advice to newly discovered affairs, to the.betrayed stand strong, don’t listen to them, and take.care of yourself. To the cheater…..look in the mirror, although you may have marital issues this problem is all you….and its not anyone else’s problem but your own

    • betrayedchump

      Yes hindsight is 20/20 for all of us who unfortunately have lived this cheaters nightmare.
      I was not strong enough on DDay to drive to where my EA CS was, get her phone from her, smash it on the ground in front of her, her girlfriend & girlfriend’s husband, say nothing to her, drive back home, put her clothes in trashbags on the porch, change the locks to our house & go file for divorce the next day! However some of this is what she wanted me to do (file for divorce then I was the bad partner) because it was an Emotional Exit Affair to end our marriage.

    • Lost33years

      I cried an ocean. Then I got so pissed off I went to Facebook and put on my husbands wall back when you couldn’t remove posts so it is still there 3years in the past but it is still there then I went to his prostitutes walls . I put on my husbands wall that for all who believed my husband was such a great man great husband that he had conned everyone that sharing hookers and prostitutes and their diseases with me his wife was being a lying serial cheating lowlife son of a bastard . On his hookers walls I blasted each one publicly for being the whore for a married man wow the crap all of them posted hmm his last whore deleted her whole FB account by the way her 15 year old daughter (who by the way hated my husband and her whore mom ) made her FB and was somehow getting FB notifications talk about the KARMA bus and it feels wonderful to be the driver . I have been used and abused and you will NEVER see me lay down to be a whoremat( like a door mat just one for whores ) I did everything right I did not swim with parasitic sewer rats I did not have sex with sewer rats other than my husband he is the one who lost the man I love to be less than the man I loved.

    • Matt

      It’s been 14 mos since I discovered my wife’s interracial affair. I’m a recovering alcoholic and out my wife thru years of suffering. She compared my love for drinking to an “affair” they are similar in many ways. In 2009 my mom died inexpectedly and my wife went back to get her masters degree in nursing. I was making my way back into the work place after losing 3 great jobs in a 7 yr period.
      I took care of our 3 young boys while she went back to school. She planned a trip
      For the two of us for 2012 once she had her degree, new job and a few cosmetic changes- Life was looking up. We have still never been on that trip together. She stuffed her feelings from my drinking. We went to counseling and she told the councilor she was over my drinking she thought that I just needed to quit acting like a jealous HS boyfriend. She began saying things like, I love you but I’m not I love with you. The longer I was sober the more independent she became. In 2015 our lives started changing before our very eyes. Our 11 yr old son made an amazing run with his all star team. We were intertwined with several parents, coaches and players. Last April I check her phone records and found out my friend and one of the coaches has been texting and talking regularly to my wife for 9 Mos. I confronted them without all of my facts at the time and they had me believing that she was friends with him and he was an ordained deacon of the church. She had sought him for counseling and advice on our past history, resentment and my false accusations of her cheating. I actually apologized to me friend and he and I spoke everyday. He told me his wife was involved in helping with the situation as well. This went on for 6 weeks. My wife denied and was very hateful towards me from 2015 to 2018. This was before during and after the affair. 6 weeks after checking her phone records i was able to retrieve 9 mos of deleted text messages regarding sexual encounters, discussions, daily meeting places and negative comments about me.
      I tried to win my wife back as she has answers specific questions with limited and non-believable answers but has never come to me one time on her own to apologize and or ask for forgiveness, tell me the entire story and she has not brought any ideas or taken any action to show she is serious about repairing the marriage. She want to forget it happened, wabtsme to keep my mouth shut, say nothing and toughen up and get on with my life. This man was my friend and my son’s baseball coach. I’m still uncovering derails. I regret not being firm with her, she blames me to this day and now all of her anger from my dinking has reared it’s ugly head again. I didn’t go to his wife bc he has 3 children like I do and they are friends. I’m not healing and she gives great lip service and backs it up with no action. I don’t think they talk anymore but she says he treated her great, they had a connection and he was the opposite of me. She says she can’t trust me so she is carrying a huge resentment from my drinking day. she has no respect for me but bc of the nature, person and situation as a whole she would rather be miserably married instead of divorcing, getting honest and telling people of her mistake.
      It’s just a matter of time before she will cheat again. I wish I had stood up to her and not been so emotional,needy and jealous. I am hyper sensitive- I am obsessed with details, the stories you hear about these kind of relationships, fear of not adding up or measuring up intimately. She checked out and is not giving me the support I need. She lets me check her email, phone etc.if she is going to continue to cheat then there is nothing I can do.

      I just want this pain and knot in my stomach to leave for good

    • Jessica

      The least productive thing I did was trust him to end it. That’s why it took three D-days. I trusted him to end it, then he went underground instead. I trusted again, and he began to frantically try and plot how he could have both of us. By the third time I gave him an ultimatum, and had read enough on these boards to know I needed all access to his phone, email, laptop, everything. I couldn’t trust him to do it himself.
      The first time around I would have feared that doing all that would mark me as a crazy, controlling wife. But it wasn’t productive to worry about how I might be perceived! To be serious about saving my marriage I needed to know everything he was doing. So then he ended it for real, and is much happier now, a full year past. He doesn’t care that I still check his stuff from time to time, he has nothing to hide and that makes him feel free. He knows he can check all my stuff too. It’s a good feeling, being able to be completely open to each other.

      • Sue

        My CS also took 3 D-days to finally get it, approx 8 months apart. During that time, we were rebuilding, things didn’t always add up. I was so trustworthy…and dumb. Finally after D-day #3, he gets it. I threatened to throw him out and he saw me crumble. That woke him up! We have rebuilt a much better marriage. He is happier and we share all passwords and access. I still have trust issues, but it’s getting better. Almost 2 years post D-day #3, I learned new facts, that were originally lies. He couldn’t even keep the lies straight. We talked about it, but I don’t know if he will ever be wholly truthful and transparent. That is the most frustrating part of our marriage. I wish the doubt would go away!

    • Kittypone

      Things that I did……when the lies wouldn’t stop, I decided to record him in his car and tape his conversation with the OW, and boy, did I get an earful!! Because it started as a Facebook affair and there are 2,200 miles in between them, they never got to physically consummate the relationship, but they more than made up for it with phone sex and all the voice messages I taped him sending her. They made videos for each other which I found on his phone and sent to myself (and to this day still keep as evidence), he would snap selfies EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. to her as his “good morning kiss” to the whore; they sent naked pics of each other (which I didn’t find, but to which he made reference to in the tapes) sooooo….what I DID do that may have been the least productive but the most satisfying was to sleuth around until I found out the info about the OW husband, I called him up, spilled the beans to him and sent him all the evidence I had found….that didn’t end the affair right away, but he outed her to her family, and exposed her for the whore she is…..oh, and I also put her info out in a cheaters’ site, which I didn’t know shared info to other similar places, so instead of the original site I posted in, she’s now “featured” in several others as well…..Karma IS a byotch, I guess…..

    • Deanna

      Well I tried to make him “get it” and kept doing the emotional heavy lifting in the relationship and the recovery. It took me a year to realize that if he wasn’t going to do the work on his own, and back out of every promise he made to restore trust, that he wasn’t really committed to the relationship and repairing the marriage, he was just trying to manage down my expectations and avoid a divorce. I’m standing my ground now and he’s finally stepping up his game and taking steps to be an active participant in the relationship, but now I have more hurt about his behavior over the last year of false reconciliation. I think that actually hurts more than the 13 years of affairs ( physical and emotional with both howorkers). We might make it he’s seeming to finally get it I just hate that it had to come to me being fine with leaving and moving on with my life for him to finally value our relationship.

    • SlowLearner

      Doing the ‘pick me!’ dance, which meant I thought I had to not only survive a terrible series of D days, but that I believed him, (naively), when he promised he wanted to stay in our then 25 year marriage. Had more sex, more intimate conversations, bought lingerie….sad for the me that was so devastated that I did this… He continued his affair, (one of many over the course of our entire marriage), and I was trusting that because he was still there with me that he was honest. In retrospect, after the second D day I should have asked for a post nup and given him a crystal clear understanding of what I would no longer tolerate. I wonder where I’d be now. That would be the big one; don’t make yourself small, don’t be afraid of the distinct possibility that your marriage is over. I wish I could have been less shell shocked and more my own champion, instead of worrying about him and what he was going to do….AND, I wouldn’t have written to the OW, thinking she’d get my heartfelt, ( and really pretty frickin gracious, truth be told), wish for her to change her cheating ways!
      Who knew you could grow up so much so fast in middle age ????

    • Lydia

      His was his ex fiancé who he had stern for 49 years but contacted her website
      They exchanged # and talked he told me he was still in love with her and she with him
      Shocked and upset I left
      We saw a counselor one time he says that let him realize that the fantasy was just that but they continued to talk and text he has stopped the affair or she did I’m still angry and hurt and he is remorseful
      I just can’t get over the betrayal after 35 yrs of marriage and 1 son who’s autistic and around that time my other son had cancer my world fell out of reality he says he’s sorry and he loves me but then why go to the person who is not in my league and who he told me she was the only person I should be afraid of and how goos she was in bed 40 years ago
      I am still lost even though it’s over he wants to forget it but it haunts me and I still have a part of me that can’t let it go

    • Andy

      My greatest waste of time in our recovery was to release occasional snide comments to vent my frustration with her lack of communication around the affair. I would say things like, “ I hope the sheets only smell like the dog when I return from my business trip.”, when I would be helping her change fresh sheets on our bed. Or to refer to ‘her side of town’ when I’d drive by the 3 hotels I knew they met at. She was remorseful and guilty and this made the guilt compound, but also made her bitter and angry at how cruel my comments were to her. She still doesn’t realize completely, how cruel and hurtful her actions were to me. I’m hopeful we can communicate better about all this together someday. There are just triggers that will push me to need more of her understanding, without it turning into a pity party for HER hurt feelings.

    • Cc

      I went thru the article several times. It’s full of conflicting advice. I have gone thru the comments. The thing that surprised me the most is just when I think that I have heard it all. I read something worse. I have to admit that I have been on both sides of the affair thing. I had an affair years ago that I justified by saying my marriage was ending. I could do what I wanted. Somewhere I woke up after my divorce and realized he would never leave his wife. I left him tho. Years later I guess from karma or my own internal conflict my long time partner had an affair and thru me out. Now 10 years later my long term partner has had two affairs. I’m rocked to core wondering if my mistakes will haunt me for the rest of my life. There are no therapist, no friends, no family that understands the pain or hurt affairs cause. They may pat you on the back and offer encouragement but it’s pure unadulterated pain that no one wants to share. No one wants to stand up and fight for the promises that we make to other people. You have to do that on your own or with your partner. It sucks. But it’s your burden to bear.

      • Jmsix66

        CC… damn. Your story is almost exactly mine. Your post is on point for me. I’ve been doing this since last November with my cheating husband and no one knows I have had similar moments such as yours, but not.
        My marriage has always been challenging due to addiction and dishonesty. It is clinical that addicts lie. My husband did at every turn. But his ultimate deception was an EA with a 28 year old coworker. Hes 47. The toughest part for me was knowing my own sin and almost not blaming him for his affair. I blame him for not telling me and dragging it out as long as he did. The lies are what is unforgivable right now.
        I did not hide my indiscretion from him. I gave him the opportunity to know it and then did the counseling thing for a while that brought alcohol and porn addiction to the surface. I believe he was often depressed and those addictions started long before us. I just made them more relevant to his life when I chose to criticize, judge, blame, mother, take away his masculinity, and dictate his life for him, to him.
        This past year was “justifiable” for me as I had a few drunken makeout sessions because ‘my marriage was over’… what I didn’t know was he was finding comfort thru convo and texts with a gold digging, homewrecking, child… whom he later filed for divorce from me for. (It lasted 20 days.) At dday #1 &2 I resorted to The Empowered Wife series and changed who I was when I concluded I really did love my husband, I just never treated him like it. I don’t think I loved us. I always thought I married beneath me (alcohol/ porn/lies) and always had one foot out the door.
        How can I hold on to the months of pain and lies he inflicted when I did the same type of things, just not as involved/emotional?? His was long term, deep, one person, and he lied hard for months. Mine was moments of stupidity (not sex) that didn’t even evolve into a text message the next day… not that it makes it right. I know this.
        We both screwed up. Am I mad at him, or me?
        I am often jealous that he got to have what I was always “searching” for because I didn’t have it with him. The affair is almost understandable. The lies and deception is what I can’t forgive right now and its keeping me/us stuck.
        In the months since dday #3, he has changed jobs, quit drinking, went to counseling, started attending a new church, and is even reading self help and marriage books. He has been treating me like we’re dating and has been spoiling me like crazy. I feel he truly regrets hurting me. I know I regret what I contributed to the breakdown of the relationship that made him want to seek out an affair. Our divorce would be final this Friday. Weird to think about. Destructive to think of how he was then; arrogant, uncaring, blocking my calls, ignoring our children, confiding in her daily…hourly, filed, still lying about her even after filing. And the months leading up to getting caught; distant, withdrawn, secretive, denial at its finest. I knew something. I just didnt know to the extreme of what it was.
        Another challenge I have is significant dates and holidays. Anniversary to birthday, August to February. I feel I myself will be pretty unproductive during these times. If anyone can share their advice for how to handle Christmas for example, I’d appreciate it.
        CC, you’re right about the burdens we put on ourselves. Karma. And the fight within. It seriously sucks.

    • DS

      The least productive thing is not coming clean from the start. Minimizing the affair, continuing to lie, telling me i must have already had HPV and BV, arguing with me that he should be able to continue a friendly relationship with her (AP was co-worker), blaming me for affair, blaming me for not be able to move on, getting defensive and angry, letting me find out his affair was sexual in every way possible not from him, causing me to have 3 DDays through trickle truth, not taking full responsibility for his choices. I am one year out of first DDay where he lead me to believe affair was emotional, even though i knew in my gut it wasn’t. I am currently in he depths of an abyss because i am having flash backs and PTSD due to fact that one year after first disclosure i know this was all a lie. Now, as I reflect back on past year and i think of all the pain and horrible ways he has hurt me, our family and our marriage, i am not sure i will ever trust, forgive or get over this, I think and this is so sad but i think i need to move on from this marriage. For the first five months after initial DDAy this bitch was still controlling the narrative because her husband didn’t know extent. She told my husband “ she wont divorce you, she doesnt want to be divorced”. Well surprise Divorce seems like the only way i can heal because right now after one year i am still filled with rage over not just the affair but how he handled the aftermath. The aftermath is just as disgusting as affair. I don’t believe a word out of his mouth. I cant live like this

      • Nyca

        I know it has been over a year since you posted but our stories are so similar I had to chime in. My CS also swore up and down his affair was “only” emotional and that she was ‘just’ a friend. A ‘friend’ who he took with on multiple week-long road trips and spent dozens of nights alone in hotels and condos when he claimed that he needed ‘alone’ time to disconnect as he eased in to retirement after 35 years of marriage. When I discovered their affair and confronted him, I had the same “aftermath” as you. He me compared us and told me all of the ways that I came up lacking, told me he had feelings for her, told me he didn’t want to be married any more, defended her, refused to stop seeing her, and continued to lie by omission. It was like peeling an onion, every day/week he would contradict something he said the week before, or mistakenly add a detail that changed everything. Through all of that I kept trying, almost 6 weeks now from DDay. He makes just enough of an attempt to string me along. But I can’t live like this either. I could forgive him for the state of our marriage, I could almost forgive him for the affair and the lying, but I will never forgive him for the aftermath. And that is why I am leaving him. I hope that you found peace in your process and that you are happy.

    • Ds

      I have a question for everyone? Do you feel like you have been raped because of husbands affair? I feel like i was raped, forced to have sex with her, her husband, her two other affair partners, their partners and the countless people she had sex with at sex clubs and swingers clubs. I didn’t have a say in who i had sex with with. I didn’t have a choice, it was thrust upon me but his decision to have sexual relationship with a whore and he found this info out, not all before sex started and then the rest later. He still continued because he was angry that she was having sex with his partner and didn’t want to lose to him. Well guess what, he lost that battle and he is almost certain to lose everything we have ever built.

      • Seenthelight

        Yes, I do feel like I was raped. Similar situation, she was a husband poacher for fun. She was responsible for several divorces, my ex believed her when she said she’d never cheated on her husband and all the other sweet innocent me statements. He believed it all.

    • Kittypone

      DS…..
      I haven’t commented in a while as I myself have been immersed in pain and rage…..DDAY will be 3 years this coming February, and the trickle truth was the most hurtful…..his affair didn’t get to be a full blown PA because it was online, she lives in another country and they never met face to face, but the intention was always there to keep lying until he could figure how to have his cake and eat it too…..they DID have phone sex, video chat sex and dirty pics exchange, so all that was missing was the flesh to flesh contact, so all of the above enraged me (still does) as I can never be sure that he isn’t thinking of her when he is intimate with me (HE didn’t break up with her, SHE broke it off with him as she figured that after both spouses knowing about it, the secrecy and exhilaration of being forbidden wasn’t so secret and exhilarating anymore); he claims he only sent her money ONCE (which I would only believe if he took a polygraph test) and claims the day she broke it off with him was the very last time he ever attempted to look her up or find out how she’s doing today (he gives me inconsistent info about that, so I KNOW he’s lying again) all this to say, I CAN TOTALLY RELATE to what you’re going through and my DDay was longer ago than yours…..this kind of pain doesn’t have an expiration date stamped on it, NO ONE can impose on you a “USE BY” date on your recovery or whatever choice you make……if you feel that a divorce is the only way you can move forward, I would only ask you if you’ve been to counseling or therapy to heal (I still am even after 3 years, I have a weekly session) and you might want to at least consider if the marriage is still worth saving or not. I don’t think anyone here will push you to do one thing or another as everyone’s journey differs from the others depending on their circumstances, but the pain and rage and anger are all too similar to everybody’s on this site……know that we are here for you and that we support you whatever your final decision is……

    • Ds

      Hi Kitty,

      I have 2 therapists and a psychiatrist as i had a total nervous breakdown after finding out that my perfect husband had had a disgusting affair. They sexted, had phone sex, in my home. He took her out in PUBLIC WTF, bought her gifts wined and dined her as best he could. She is an Orthodox Jew, which is really quite funny that she would only eat Kosher (NOT). She is definitely a sociopathic narcissist as she did triangulate all her partners. I am obsessed with her. She is in my dreams, she haunts me. This bitch even came to my home for a party. She has a sic child that she uses to garner sympathy in exchange for attention and makes it perfectly clear sex is on the table. She tried to kiss him twice before my A hole husband just decided this is what he wanted and needed at the time. Yeah, thats what he said. She knew he was conflicted and in a happy marriage. They had sex in his office in a hospital. People always walking by. She would get butt naked. Who does that? I cant seem to get over this. His behavior during his affair was nothing short of abusive toward me and i took i because i thought he was depressed over his job. Every day i told him I love you, I want you, you are my king. I feel like such a dupe. It’s the lack of respect that kills me. Also, how can you say you never stopped loving me. You cant serve two masters. Even now, he speaks about her in a way that makes me think he is in love with her. I asked him to take a poly and he refused. I also think that when we have sex, he is thinking of her. In short, i am very messed up even though i have availed myself of all the appropriate help. I was almost committed against my will. I trashed her office when i found out the truth. My husband lied to our therapist, his therapist, me for those first five months . We all knew he had sex with her. I thought i married my soul mate, now not so sure. What do we get out of staying with lying, cheating pieces of Shit? Why should I stay. Kids are older. I have a few friends and my sisters know but other than that no one in our family knows. People think he is such a great guy and perfect husband. If only they knew

    • Kittypone

      DS
      Then if you have exhausted every possible avenue of recovery and you still don’t trust him, it doesn’t seem likely you ever will if he has repeatedly lied and still does. Whatever you decide, I offer you my support if you ever need it.

    • unsure

      I felt so betrayed and I also found out by seeing text messages. H had apparently deleted off his phone, but they stayed on his Apple Computer, wish I would have saved more of them. It was hard to read, but somewhat satisfying to “know”. H had two affair partners within a three year period, both sexual and emotional, all texts were about how he loved them and wanted to make a life with them. There are days I wish I would have let him go and it’s been almost two years since D day. The memories of all the crazy is getting less toxic and I don’t need to talk about it as much.

      • Tryingtogetover

        Same on many levels, Unsure. Awful to see that stuff and yet we need the truth in order to decide how to live with it. I am glad I stayed, because my H has changed so much for the better, but I do find myself, two and a half years out, still playing out fantasies in my head where I catch them earlier, humiliate them, leave him. It is me living too much in the past and inventing new scenarios in my head but that kind of thinking is hard to stop. I don’t know whether to just let that all die down over time or whether I should try and squelch all thoughts like that immediately. Am I dwelling, or am I processing? I don’t always trust myself to know the difference.

        • Regina

          I’m doing the same thing. I know some details but I’m SURE not the whole story. And the details I know are destroying and leading my life. If I knew some things for sure I would probably go crazy. I want to know but I don’t want to know. H told me that the times they met she was wearing very very low tops exposing a lot…. from that I’m creating so many scenarios. But I’m sure those scenarios are true. What man would pass up invitations like that. Bad week! I just need a shoulder to sob on.

        • unsure

          I also play scenarios in my head where I confront them and let the other women know he is married. I live in a small town and know these women and I so want to ask them if he told them he was married. When I ask H he said they never asked!!! WTH? Our relationship seems to be getting better after two years from D day. One thing I did tell him to help him understand my hurt about his secrets. Infidelity is the keeping of secrets – no matter what the secret, even flirting. Also when I ask questions about the affairs and he walks away or deflects; it makes me feel like the relationships he had with others is more valuable and important to him than our relationship.
          I still have days where I can’t get the AP out of my mind!! Still have bad dreams about him leaving me for them.

          • Regina

            Unsure, I feel the same. I feel like that WH… ( fill in the blanks) was more important then me that’s why he can’t stand when I talk about it. I’ll never know what exactly happened but then I really don’t want to know because what I already know is killing me. I just wish it never happened. The WH… he was with was an old F… that was totally in love with him and reached out to see how an old friend was doing…. He took the opportunity to make himself feel good since our relationship was not good for years ( a lot was my fault for shutting him out of my life) She is also married with kids and knows that he’s married. I wonder where her husband was when she spent 6-7 hours with my husband one day… ehmmmmm… I wish I wouldn’t have gotten married! I guess a bit too late after so many decades. He’s trying to make it up but the only thing I see is him being so loving and kind to her, laughing together, talking about their pass etc. etc. I’ll never believe him again. Sometimes I feel like it was a good thing that this happened otherwise we/I would still be acting the same way. Like he says this woke me up and he has me back but at what cost? But then I think he probably would have done it anyway even if we were good. I think it’s better to be an AP rather then a wife. Things get old and boring after being married so long. With an AP is always exciting and new.

    • tony

      That’s why I left after giving her many chances due to our 3 year old son. No matter what anyone says, the trust has been broken and can never be totally restored. You are just insecure or in denial if you think that their betrayal won’t always be in the back of your head…especially in bed. Tough way to live…

    • Vivienne

      I hate the person I have become. Before D day I was a happy, go lucky, loving woman who cared about life and everything. Right after D day I became both verbally and physically abusive to my Husband, I was a complete mental case. Now 7 months on, I feel sad, unhappy and in so much pain. I long for the day when I can have normal, happy thoughts. I feel robbed of the last 7 months of my life and the lovely woman I used to be. I wish she would come back.

      • Regina

        Vivienne I feel just like you. It’s been a bit over two years that I found out H one month affair with an old F… whore. We were having problems for some years, she reached out to him and he took the opportunity to feel wanted and important ti someone. She always loved him. He always used her but had to have something for her. She was his to go F… when there was no one else around ( this was before we got married) He said he didn’t sleep with her this time. 😂 I REALLY think he did. He met her 2-3 times and spoke on the phone about 10 times.
        He said it was over the day I found out 🤷🏼‍♀️
        He’s been trying his best to make me comfortable now but just like you I’m a different person now (that I hate).I was always very sweet now I’m a volcano inside. I don’t know if I even love him anymore. I stay because of our adult kids. I don’t want to hurt them, I know they would be devastated. And also I have not worked in 25+ years. I have no family or any where to go. He gives me what ever I want, I guess deep down I’m using him. I’m too old to start a new life, and too I don’t want him to get with her. I’m sure she would get a divorce ASAP. I don’t know where the old me went! I don’t like this new woman! I never thought I would think like this. THANK YOU for reading! I been having a ruff weak with this.

    • ABetter2021

      For me (still in the middle of it), clinging to my wife’s facacde and image instead of realizing that this is new person who I have to decide if I even like before I can build with her. We have good past to build on, but I can’t figure out who she is these days.

      • Naan

        She is changing and changes are scary. Everyone are scared something they dont know. You now dont know that new person in front of you and still that person has that face that you know from that long and you thought you know that well. I suggest you to give it a try and go on a first date with her. Try to meet her for the very first time and know something about her. It can be very building to do so. And remember to be honest (both of you). Let her meet you once again as the first time. Take from the past what was good, all the wrong treat as a lesson for the future.
        Take care and all the best for you two.

    • Donna

      Two years later filing for divorce. It sucks. Now he is contrite and sorry. Bull shit or reality. Who knows and who cares

    • Brenda

      Mine was not taking care of myself and only focusing on repairing marriage. For that I ended up with 2 hospitalizations and 1 11 hour surgery! It’s been a year since I caught him. Some days I’m okay unless triggered. He definitely has changed. I realize now he was a sick individual all 31 years of marriage. He only waited till he was 66 to have the need to feel like a stud on Facebook. He’d had ED for years and thought this would work for him. NOT…yet he still hasn’t seen proper doctor. Sick he is.

    • John

      Hoping the best for everyone – I did almost everything on the list. Almost had a breakdown. They still work together is the hardest part . I waited 11 months before going to a therapist. My argument – she did it – she needs to go. Wish I would have gone sooner- cbt really helps me. I have learned a few things on my journey. Some couples recover and some don’t. I can’t control what she does, I can only control how I respond,,,,,, this was really important fir me. I have gotten comfortable in knowing we could get divorced and again, only time will tell. I don’t trust her but of giving her the benefit of doubt- up to her what does next. I also have learned about negative cope mechanisms – things that we all do that initially make us feel better but long term hurt us. Example driving by the bar where they use to drink. I convinced myself that if we went by and didn’t see them I would feel better. But in reality, I would drive over and in my mind plan out what I would do if I caught them., then they wouldn’t be there – 2 minutes of relief and then started wondering if they were somewhere else and the rage would continue. My daily security blanket was toxic. It was so unproductive. Not judging anyone – just sharing my story. Good luck

    • Seenthelight

      The least productive thing I Did after finding out about the affair was to continue believing my ex had any integrity at all. Believing he could and would be honest. He could not or just would not.

    • unsure

      It’s been almost three years since the last D-day and I find myself wondering if he said the same things to her that he said/says to me, especially post sex and cuddling. I did find a text message to one of his AP where he told her that he had the best sex with her that he had ever had.. WTH… I wish I had given myself more time to decide to reconcile, especially because after we reconciled I found about more AP and texts where he had actually asked women out, he said they didn’t go (liar, liar). I don’t think I would have reconciled, my life would be so much better without all the images, crazy thoughts, anger and hurt. I am a strong, confident women and I have lost some of that with all that I’ve been through. He tries to make me feel better and tries to understand… but I don’t know that he does, it’s like his little secrets all over again, he got good at convincing me he was someone he is not. I always thought integrity was one of his good traits, now I know it’s a façade.

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