It’s time to discuss what’s going on, share your struggles, your successes and support each other.

open mic #45

By Linda & Doug

In case you didn’t know, or are new to our site, the Open Mic discussion is where you guys call the shots and discuss the topics that you want to discuss.

We know there must be some things that are going on that you can either ask questions about, share your experiences – or maybe just do a little venting.  

We appreciate it as it not only helps to share and get the input from others, but it also helps us with possible issues to address in future posts.  Thanks!

With that said, the floor is all yours!

Feel free to discuss anything…

  • What’s on your mind?
  • What are you struggling with?
  • Have any success stories to share? Big or small. (We especially want to hear some of these!)
  • Wanna share any lessons you’ve learned recently?
  • Got a question? Ask it.
  • Do you have any problems or situations that you’d like the community to offer their opinions on?
  • Any good books you’d like to discuss?
  • What are you and/or your spouse doing to further the healing and recovery in your relationship?
  • What’s working or not working?
  • Has your therapist given you any good advice or exercises that the rest of the readers might benefit from?
  • What has your spouse done lately that really pisses you off?
  • What has your spouse done lately to make you really happy?
  • Tell us a little about yourself.
  • Everything and anything is on the table for discussion!
See also  Discussion - Your Experiences with Couples Counseling

Please don’t be shy. If there is anything whatsoever on your mind, please leave a comment below.  And please reply to each other in the comments, as each person leaving a comment is not an isolated incident.

Thanks!

Linda & Doug

 

    26 replies to "Open “Mic” #47 – The Floor is All Yours!"

    • Angie

      I’ve seen this all over the web for the last week or so. Any thoughts on this? I believed my husband regrets his affair, but now I wonder! https://studyfinds.org/why-people-cheat-ashley-madison-study/

      • Nic

        There’s loads of articles/studies like this. One thing I have learnt is to trust my intuition.
        Irrelevant of the work the CS is doing. My opinion is simple. You cannot trust the CS again.
        They say they love you & there were no feelings for the OW. Hmm..
        Firstly.. What does love mean ?
        It means we put the ones we love before ourselves. You respect that person, you protect that person, you trust that person.
        They lied they endangered you, they betrayed you, they exposed you, they hurt you, they humiliated you, they deceived you, they stole time.
        They get caught .. remorse, guilt, begging, pleading, declaring their love.
        Come on.. there is no way someone can cheat & love you as the definition contradicts their actions/choices/decisions.
        Those that stay live in a trust less marriage/relationship. There will never be any loyalty as there never was to begin with. There is no respect, no happiness or true authentic love.
        You will always have doubt in the back of your mind. Who wants to live with someone who has caused so much damage.
        Happiness isn’t sacrificial.
        Why would you loose a part of yourself to stay as that is exactly what happens.
        9months post dday. I’m done , I’m worth more, I deserve more, my kids need to know that being abused (lies, deceit, gas lighting)is not acceptable. Someone who is capable of hurting you so bad is not worth it.
        He’s shown remorse, guilt, etc. But i will never allow myself to trust him again.

        • Jitsulady

          I agree to alot of the things you posted.
          I am struggling with this myself.
          How does someone who says they never stopped loving and wanting you have a 19 month , that I know of affair…..
          When I heard him tell her he loves her and called her “my love” in which he always said that to me on video camera recording.
          We had that installed , mom moved in , after my brother passed , she would be alone while we both worked .
          I am sick of him saying , he only told her that because she said it first. It didn’t feel right when he said it.
          Sony, you don’t treat someone who supposedly love ,with such disrespect
          He doesn’t remember exactly when it started where they met all the time , but it was like every 4 to 5 weeks. They had to drive halfway to screw. Half state.
          She paid for all hotel rooms always got there first , except 1 time where he did and paid for the room.
          She pushed for the Phone , the videoing, pushed for first meet at his work place. Went down a long back road to have sex. She was too fat to screw so she preformed oral.
          She got him hook line and sinker. He willing knew what would happen.
          She knew she had to do this to hook him.
          I despise women like her and husband’s who knowingly chose this path.
          She picked every meet with specail dates. Knowing she was screwing me.
          19 months of lies , deceit, meeting sexually using vacation time that was ours!
          Her telling him not to have sex with me , but she did with her husband. But my husband was stupid enough to listen to her..
          So yeah , I have a hard time believing when he says , I wasn’t thinking what I was doing bull ####
          Or that he never cared for her ,never meant anything he said to her.
          He wanted to stop multiple times he said, but she was manipulative talking him into staying in it
          She would say , no one will know or find out , why stop a good thing . Then she would perform oral sex on him, because he told her I didn’t do that. LOL Re writing martial History! 🤣
          Lies about us the spouse. All to justify their affair…. I Hate what their choices have done to me ,us my life ,the way I feel about myself ,I hate that he thought that little of me to ruin everything we built together and threw away my trust ,love & me all for a skank he met on line!!
          That’s how I feel!

      • Dan

        Angie – There are two natural biases in the way the study was conducted, which affect the results. First, most affairs start as friendships that escalate into something more. This study only gathered data from active users of Ashley Madison. These are people who joined a website for the specific purpose of finding a partner willing to engage in sex outside of their marriage. The results of the study would likely be different if they surveyed people who let a friendship cross the line vs people who are consciously looking for an affair partner. Second, none of people surveyed had been caught by their spouse, so their feelings about their spouse, their marriage and their level of regret about having affairs must be discounted. The vast majority of people who engage in an affair never intend to hurt their spouse. They become adept at compartmentalizing their feelings and rationalizing their actions to protect themselves from internalizing the reality of their actions. Once the affair is exposed, they must deal with the raw emotion of the decisions they’ve made and the pain they’ve caused. This study completely ignores how attitudes change after an affair is discovered.

        You haven’t shared anything about your situation, so unless your husband had an active account on Ashley Madison, I wouldn’t put much stock in this study. I also wouldn’t use this study to assess whether your husband truly regrets his affair, because the study never gathered input from any spouse who had been caught.

    • Angela3

      4 months post D day here. Working it out with my husband and things are going pretty well. I just found out that his affair partner’s husband does not know about the affair. I know that I deserved to know does he? My sense of right and wrong says I should tell him. Looking for advice.

      • Dan

        Angela – My advice is to hold off on telling the affair partners husband for now and keep focusing on working things out in your relationship. 4 months post D-day is still pretty fresh, so you and your husband have a lot of ups and downs ahead. Not knowing how the affair partner’s husband will react could add needless stress to your situation. My wife had an affair, and the affair partner’s wife doesn’t know. I’d love nothing more than to rock his world by telling his wife about his sleezy past but trying to take the high road and keep the focus on trying to restore my marriage. I keep hearing advice my grandfather once gave me, “If it feels good to say it, don’t say it”. Hang in there. It’s a tough road ahead, but reconciliation and restoring the marriage is possible.

    • Doug

      Hi Angela, Thanks for your question. There has been some debate on what a person should do in this situation. We had a discussion about this a few years back. Here’s the link to that page and the comments, which might provide you with a variety of reader perspectives: https://www.emotionalaffair.org/discussion-should-you-tell-the-ops-spouse-about-the-affair/ I think that many folks might say that it’s pretty much a cut and dry situation where yes, you should tell the AP’s husband. But I don’t think it’s that cut and dry myself. For instance, if you have no idea who these people are and what they’re like, you don’t have any clue how the husband might react. He could get so mad that he shows up at your door and beats that crap out of your husband, or worse. Many things can happen and there can be some serious fallout, so all I’m saying is think it through carefully and consider the possible consequences.

    • Cold Husband

      Husband of 8 years marriage (with 1 stepson).

      Post D-Day, 9 months (the affair was 1 year, already, before that). The affair is ongoing. I try to hang in here, keep the marriage & works things out, but so far, just, manage to, from her asking to divorce, to now, she is talking about to be alone, for her future self but, yeah, we at least, now sort of husband & wife, back.

      There is struggled must to be deal with, especially, as per mention, the affair, is ongoing, but from too blatant, to, little by little, keep it more minimum or they slow it down. Especially, after, our son, know, the extend of the affair.But, I know, the feeling between them, still strong. (With real & beyond reasonable doubt evidence to support with).

      Again, just hang in here. & as I don’t talk about this, to anyone, (just several times, with our son), I could say, it’s tough. But honestly, it’s more better, than, she ask for to end the marriage. Slowly, we reconnected, but at the same time, with the conscious, she is longing for the AP.

      That’s, the brief, of my story.

      I don’t know, how long, the reasonable period of the timeline to be set or what are the last straw (yes, she give him, money, too).

      I know, I already set the bad precedent, by trying to keep this marriage, while, I could not stop the affair and/or even set any boundaries. Only thing improved some boundaries was set, unintentionally, after, some talk, involved with our son.

      P/S :- Thank you, Doug.

    • Jitsulady

      Sorry, I believe the betrayed spouse has every right to know!
      There are STDS to worry about . They lost any rights to privacy, when they decided to have an affair.
      I told my husbands A/P spouse.
      I facebooked messaged him , sent a certified letter , texted him when I found out names of her and him
      Why should my life, be turned upside down while she goes on happily in her life , when she wanted my husband to leave me for her.
      No , she deserves anything she is getting..

      • Dan

        Jitsulady – You bring up excellent points. I hate it that I know so much about affair recovery. This was never a topic I thought I would have to research. The challenge with material on how to work through an affair, is that everyone’s situation is different so there’s no universal advice that applies to every situation.

    • Jitsulady

      I would like to know how the C/S says during their affair , that they wasn’t thinking.
      How is that even possible.
      You were thinking when you chose to start the affair on line chat rooms then phone , videoing then the move to hotels
      You had to drive hours just to meet half way to have sex at the hotel. Which means GOOGLE the map!
      Each and every text, call , meet was a deliberately set. So I don’t believe you “”know what you were doing”!!
      You Knew!
      It was deliberately planned!!!!
      So don’t say you weren’t thinking!

    • Dan

      Coming up on 2 years since D-Day. 2 years ago, my wife got home from work, went upstairs to change, and left her phone on the kitchen counter. I had been suspecting for weeks that something was going on with her boss. I picked up her phone and looked at the encrypted messaging app she used for work. There’s where I saw the texts…the pictures….the discussion about an upcoming business trip.

      What a roller coaster 2 years it’s been. I am so grateful for this site and other online resources that have helped me through this challenging time. The affair was inexcusable. However, the affair needed to be put in context. We were going through very challenging and stressful times with our oldest son. My wife returned to the workforce after staying home to raise our children. Money was tight. Careers were hectic. Add in the complexities of Covid. It was the perfect storm of factors. The affair was inexcusable, but there were enough contributing factors for us to recognize recovery was a viable option.

      It was a long process for my wife’s defenses to break down so she could fully understand the pain caused by the affair. It was a long process for both of us to assess the factors that led to the affair. It was a long process for my wife to take full responsibility for her actions and fully apologize for the pain she caused. I thought that would finally put this dreadful chapter in our life behind us, but I’ve learned there is a still a long period of healing. Affair recovery is an emotional beat down on both parties. Those wounds take time to heal.

      I look forward to the day when we can have this period of our life behind us. I don’t know when that will happen and what that looks like. This will sound strange, but at times I wish there was a fundamental flaw in our marriage that would have allowed me to just walk away. It’s been a tough 2 years. Don’t know if anyone else can relate to this….I’m guessing I’m not alone being fully dedicated to restoring my marriage, but resentful for the amount of energy and emotion I have to invest to fix a marriage that will likely never return to what it once was.

      • Cold Husband

        Hi Dan. I could say, we are about the same. 2 years already the affair & stii ongoing (9 months since the D-Day), though as per recent development, I could keep her, at the minimum, & slowly we are reconnect. (Previously, she was very cold, harsh & bla bla bla, this & that, & then, divorce). But it’s hard for her, to stop yet. & I don’t want to push her, to stop, because it’s will make situation more worsen. (Not that we don’t have a tough talk & friction, along the way)

        You could email to me, if you want too.

        I do try to reach out to the AP before & unleash several of my wrath. He did evades all my call, nevertheless. As for now, I am sit tight & try to maintain the peace & the progress between me & my wife, how tough it’s as the images & whatever happened, yes, still bother & hurt me.

        Yes, the COVID-19 factor also included, too, in my case. I am drifted away, at that time, waiting for things to get better & occupied with, the vaccine & anything related with the COVID 19, while she was becoming more colder & hostile.

        But little did I know, she went to too far. Too far. In fact she got the COVID-19, after their maybe 1st or 2nd times, the intercourse. (So do the AP). But I could not prove beyond reasonable doubt, who contact who. But that the start of it. August 2021. (August 2022, the D Day). & I got the pics of them with the time & date.

        Btw, you are not alone. So do I, trying my best to restoring the marriage while at the same time, must be tolerant than ever, for their ongoing affair & so do, the resentful & hurting out of whatever happened the past 2 years. I do have almost all the hotel check-in records, it’s more than 20 times, so, how could I just ignore & forget, of that, what both was doing. Not to mention that guy is married man, too.

        My bet, if I fuck other women one time, it’s already all hell break lose & I am maybe now, at front page, in the social media, of the infidel & unfaithful husband, already. While I am still mum any words to anybody within our circle, just to keep this marriage. That’s how unfair it’s.

        I hope, both of us, will stay strong more stronger than ever & the sanity will restore. Just like you, I am longing the day, we finally put all of this, behind, how unlikely it seems. (The only improvement to me is, we reconnect back, slowly & slowly). & yes, it’s tiring me, too. How to fix, calm myself down, keep the resentful & anger in check & trying to avoid, from be the one that provokes the situation from become more worsen (while they keep continue to do, whatever, albeit, now, they slowing down, after several talk & my act).

        P/S :- To be honest, during my single & university day, any girl boyfriend will call & warn me, even I am just got too close to his girlfriend, but for a husband, there is too many consequences, to be consider, for any retaliation of this. Alas, that’s that. I will do my best, to try to make this, better.

        P/S/S :- Dan, you could email me, for any talks & details, but yes, promise to keep my emotions in check & no worries, I am getting better, but maybe sometime, & in my opinion, it’s more better to talk, too. As I keep this on my own, I am almost go insane, previously, till open the talk, here/ with Doug & after I shared this to my son. My email, [email protected]

    • Cold Heart

      Btw, in the end, we are at their discretion, be it, the underlying anguish,, distaste & dissatisfaction of our lacking & shortcomings, all this while, in the marriage, the harsh & prompt responses, over whatever, that is, annoy & displease, since they already have, their new perfect & full all o whatever their fantasies, even, gladly, to help & give whatever money, the AP asking, while at the same time, if their act, is blatant, we need, to be, as calm as ever, as empty as ever, the feeling..

      Any resentful & anguish over the AP, so do the cheating wife, we must be, at the highest level, in moral & conduct, for fearing, the ramifications, while the rewards to be a cheater, is, whatever, they could go promptly, crying & gain the satisfaction, by bad mouth, complaint & whatever, to their Mr Wonderful & Perfectful AP.

      That’s the state of play, just for the sake, to save the marriage.

      Btw, to Dan, I am very happy for you, if you, already get past through this. & at the very least, she do, at last, acknowledge your pain & whatever she did, is wrong. (Remorseful).

      As for myself, I don’t know, how long, how long till this is over, & how deeper, till the limits set, they can go, or my wife, to be prejudice of my mala fide over her in this marriage (take advantage & manipulate, her) & harsh over my lacking & shortcomings, in which, justified, for whatever justice, both of them, prosecuted, to me.

    • Cold Heart

      Btw, the remorseful part, is essential, not only, because, for acknowledgement, but also, it could lessen, the harsh & hostile, feel, towards, their imperfect & no matches at all, husband, as compare to their new found dreams & hopes, in their Mr Wonderful & Perfectful, AP.

    • Jitsulady

      My husband has a porn & Masturbation addiction that his therapist says by doing multiple testing
      Covid hits in 2020 which made work horrendous. No helpers.
      He started his on line affair that I know of in May of 2020.
      Which lead to phone talks sexual , texting ,videoing, Masturbating to each other
      Her pushing to meet Which lead to his work place on a long back road her she did oral because she was too fat to get on top in the car
      She knew she had to seal the deal to keep him coming back
      After their second meet at a hotel across state , he got covid then I did

      All year long I work around people Closely , never got sick. He sleeps with her and bam, we get sick.
      I got double pneumonia with it , very sick.
      Do you think that wouldn’t wake one up out of his stupidly , no!
      He took all his vacation time taking off to spend a day with her.
      Telling each other lies about their spouses to make them look better to each other & justify screwing around on their spouses
      She picked every meeting that was a specail time on the calendar to meet. Close to mothers , father day, birthdays , anniversary s , holidays. She knee what she was doing and he went right with it.
      I found out walking thru a basement door , because the top door was locked.
      My pups were outside playing , I threw Frisbees a few times & at the same time , my pups went thru the doggie door , I went thru the basement door. He never heard me. For yapping in his ear was the skank ,he was having a 19 mnts affair. If that’s the whole truth. It took 7 months to tell me it was a physical affair and they met.
      The last 10 months trickle truth of everything.
      They seems to think we are stupid and can’t put 2 and 2 together.
      I will never forget this. I am not sure I can forgive him
      I don’t won’t to hear you weren’t thinking , you were thinking every time you made the choice to text pick up the phone allow her to call you whenever pick the dates to meet and google every damn road way to see the skank.
      You knew what you were doing. You allowed that skank into our lives , told stories about me our marriage all to make you look better.
      So stop asking for forgiveness. It’s a long time coming

      I don’t think I can be with someone who has such little respect and threw me away like garbage to be with a skank he met on line……… that’s where I am at .

      • Cold Heart

        Hi there. My heart, my 100% sympathy is for you. Wish you will have, better life & better future, either with your husband/the marriage,or with the other guy.

        Yes, I know, how broken & shatter it’s. Not only, out of the affair, but also, the continuous lying, tweak, twist, clandestin, gaslighting & how trivia it is, they regards of what they did. Not only that, the uncertainty, the images of all the texting,sexting, erotic pics & videos, all the hotel records, is not easy, to be erase of.

        The only thing that make me regain the sanity & strength, apart from, coming here, is our son, love & affection to this marriage & whatever she did to me, before. & finally, the feel & thought of could care less, anymore & to be genuine & natural, without of the push, to top the AP, at last, I could live with the peace, of mind, not lamented, much, now.

        As for the marriage, I will act as usual, as nothing happened & still happen, behind my back, until, either she decided to proceed or the expiry date, lapses. In which I don’t know, how many months, to give her, but for sure, I will not extended for a year, from now. (After all, the affair is already 2 years & the D-Day also, almost a year).

        As for now, that’s that.

        Lastly, wish you all, the betrayed spouse, the bluest sky, with all the verses rhymes, with the best of the choruses, too.

    • Broken

      My husband had an emotional affair almost 15 years ago. Just a few months ago I discovered he googled the affair partners name. When I confronted him, he admitted to doing it more than once. I’m not sure how to feel about this. He claims it’s just out of curiosity. I’m feeling like it might be because he wanted to make contact so he was looking for information. He denies that it was for that purpose. Either ways, the fact that he googled her name confuses and angers me. I feel a loss of trust all over again. I’d be open to hearing anyone’s opinion please. Thank you.

    • Sandra

      I’m 6 mos into an emotional affair and am struggling to find my way. My husband(H) and I have been together 15 years, and have a young child together. 2 years ago, we lost a child and intense grief and guilt seems to have effected him even more thay myself, despite me being known as the more emtional one. Prior to that our marriage was doing ok, but not great. Maybe because of our time getting sucked up by the children and acting more like roommates than lovers.

      This EA came out of nowhere online, but we made an instant connection and have so much in common, and the willingness to open up and be vulnerable. It’s like a drug everytime I get a text or photo from the OM, but it has not turned physical. We have kept it to text, but it’s usually hundreds throughout the day, and every single day. About everything under the sun, including late night flirting, but not overtly sexual in nature. I’ve never had that sort of connection with my H, even before we lived together, and maybe never with anyone really. My H became increasingly suspicious of my “new friend” and I tried to be a little more transparent, and to rationalize it as being healthy to relate on personal things outside of our primary partner.
      A month ago my H found most of my texts and was very hurt, I spilled my guts, we cried it out, I told myself and the OM this needed to be reined in. My H has since tried to give me patience, and the OM and my H have even become friends to a degree, but the EA continues, as well as me being secretive above the more personal stuff, and trying to rationalize everything else.
      We all live in the same small town, the OM is in a struggling marriage that preceeded me. But all of our lives have now become entangled with kids, social gatherings, and even doing business together.
      I know my current feelings for the OM really can’t coexist with a healthy marriage. I’m hoping for a soft landing, but maybe that is unrealistic. I’ve thought several times the EA had run it’s course and we could just be normal friends, but the strong feelings keep coming back and I can spend hours just savoring that, even on my own. And it may be running its course anyways. Looks-wise the OM is out of my league, and his feelings towards me have become less mutual recently. He is an attention-junkie like me, and we seem to be going through a midlife crisis together. But lately his attention seems to be getting taken up more elsewhere. So on days where he isn’t as available I feel immediate withdrawal, but maybe it’s for the best. I do hope he finds someone that is truly available and doesn’t take him for granted like his wife does. Or maybe he doesn’t deserve it. Maybe he’ll never be happy with what he has, and I’ve just been a convenient outlet for his emotional needs at a difficult time in his life. He does seem to have a history of getting emotionally involved with other women. Which was easy for us to laugh about at first but it’s starting to feel like I’ll become the next one in that storyline.

      I need to at least keep it together for another month or 2 until I can get disentangled financially from the OM. After that I think I can confess it all to my H and see what happens. I do think he is capable of just being friends, but I’m not sure I can.

      What to do, what to do?

    • In Pain

      It is hard to write this, because the more I think about things the pain increases…

      Married to my wife for 13 years, she is not having an emotional affair or at least I don’t think she is now. She did though the first years of our marriage. Nothing supposedly went physical but I sure felt the betrayal effects of her connecting with the other person.

      Eventually in the past years we discussed and she admitted to it, it took some time but I decided to forgive her, thinking that during that time I was not that good of a husband, we were both immature and it was just mistakes of a young couple. It felt like I could move forward from it because it seemed like she realized her mistakes and truly was able to not repeat them again.

      Recently she confessed she is talking to him again, I tried to communicate my feelings on how she’s opening past wounds, I forgave her once and I wanted to leave all of it behind and that’s impossible to do if she’s doing that. She claims that he is just a friend, he is in a different stage in his life and that there is no chance of the emotional affair happening again. The past few days of our discussions about this have basically been her trying to convince me that he is just a friend, she will not repeat her mistakes while gaslighting me and trying to paint me as a controlling person and that my trying to control her is the real issue.

      So besides the pain of this happening, it is further increased by her insistence that he is just a friend, when we talk about it that insistence is like a knife going deeper and deeper in my heart because I can see how much she wants him in her life as “just a friend”. At this point I don’t know if it’s the pain clouding my mind but I don’t feel any love for her, I feel like her wanting to do this and ignore my pain is something I can’t come back from, how do I even find the strength to forgive her for this one, even if we work it out?. This time I can’t blame immaturity or anything else that we grow out from, this is truly her wanting him in her life.

      This also hurts because the first time she emotionally cheated, I could admit I wasn’t paying enough attention to our relationship, but this time I really let myself be vulnerable and give her all my love without holding back, just to find that it’s not and maybe it never was enough. So at this point I might be fighting against the current and we just don’t belong together.

      • Jitsulady

        So sorry you’re going thru this again.
        Beware , when the say ” they’re just a friend”! That means they’re not.
        I for one would not tolerate that behavior. If you give her a ultimatum , you or him
        Be prepared for the results,..
        You have every right to demand this
        Stick to you guns.
        This is just how I would….

        I also contact the O/P let him know you don’t appreciate him interfering in your marriage.
        I know others , will say differently.
        But I am very frank. I would want them to know your a real person and you love your spouse.
        Again I am sorry you’re going thru this
        Prayers!

      • Jet

        I think it’s possible in theory, but highly dangerous. I would ask myself… how did this come back about? Was it by chance or did someone seek the other out? Are their feelings mutual? Is the other person going through a relationship crisis? Is she transparent with you? Do they say things that undermine your marriage or support your marriage? If they are truly just friends then I expect you are involved in some of their interactions as you might be with any of her female friends, and would have some insight into the other person’s character and intentions. For some it can be hard to meet good friends so I wouldn’t automatically discount this relationship…. But if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck, it’s probably a duck.

    • Kendra

      New reader here. Almost 9 months since my husband of 18 years admitted to his affair. We have 5 children and I was absolutely shook and never thought he was capable of cheating….largely, because he consistently offered up his description of how perfect he was and how he’d never “harm the marriage” like I did any time he got mad at me. I could’ve forgiven the physical act of his affair, seeing as I myself was the betrayer 6 years ago, but I just cannot get past the years he watched me suffer and try to come to terms with my own mistakes, while the whole time he was guilty of the same. I don’t feel like I could sit and watch someone I love torture themselves over a mistake that I was also guilty of, and not even mention it to them or even hint about it.

      There specifically was an occasion during our process of rebuilding after my affair when I BEGGED him to admit to an affair that I suspected between him and a coworker and I promised I would only forgive….and he adamantly denied ever stepping out of the marriage. I begged for him to join me in my misery as a betrayer in an attempt to not feel as terrible as I did, and not only did he deny any wrongdoing, he tore me apart about my affair in front of our parents, kids, therapists, and friends for years about it.

      On the surface, he was the perfect husband. We were the perfect couple. I suspected an affair between him and his coworker, but honestly, I didn’t truly think he was capable of hurting me like that. I thought I was just overreacting. However, I understand that mistakes happen in marriages as I am guilty of making those mistakes myself, but I feel like I can’t move past all the torture he put me through and the guilt trips he gave me after he was hiding the same secret for so many years before I ever stepped out of the marriage.

      I’m at the point now where I don’t believe anything he says, even when he’s answering an innocent question like “why are you washing your hands?” I find myself questioning what other motives he could have for washing his hands, as ridiculous as that seems. I can’t bear to try marriage therapy again, after our experience with it following my affair. I spent months in our therapist’s office listening to him talk about how terrible I was and how much my actions were harming him and our family that we had built. I just can’t do that again.

      I still don’t know any details of his affair although I gave him complete transparency 6 years ago. He won’t answer any of my questions and has began to go back on even admitting to the initial affair now by minimizing that it was only sexual in certain ways and not others. I’m an extreme emotional roller coaster right now, constantly switching between hatred and compassion throughout the day. It consumes me. I think about it when a female actress appears on the tv, when a song comes on the radio, when I see past family photos hanging on the walls…there’s nothing that doesn’t trigger me right now and I can’t seem to control the anger and disgust that overwhelms me when I’m triggered.

      I’m so lost.

      • Shifting Impressions

        Kendra
        My heart goes out to you. That is some seriously manipulative and destructive behavior. I can understand you not wanting marriage counseling again. My suggestion to you is to take care of yourself. Please consider getting some individual counseling just for you. Get some help just for you.

        A Book that might be helpful is THE GASLIGHT EFFECT by ROBIN STERN.

      • Dan

        Kendra – I completely agree with Shifting Impressions, my heart goes out to you.

        My wife had an affair, which wrecked me on so many levels and caused unimaginable pain. While all that is true, she attended therapy sessions for 9 months where the focus was always on her and her mistake. She had the affair, and she caused the pain, however, it wasn’t a perfect marriage, and I wasn’t a perfect husband. I have tremendous respect for what she endured during those 9 months, which was to have all our marital issues evaluated through the lens of the affair.

        For your husband to allow you to endure that process and carry that guilt and shame, while knowing he did the same thing is beyond comprehension. I wish you the best in however you chose to proceed. Please know you have the moral high ground in this situation. You made a mistake, and you paid the price. It’s now time for your husband to sit in the other chair and answer all the questions and face the same scrutiny for the pain he has caused.

        I couldn’t imagine going through couples therapy a 2nd time. If you chose to walk away from the marriage, you don’t have to accept any part of the blame. This 100% on your husband.

        Hang in there. Wish you all the best.

      • Jet

        You may never know the truth for sure. But if his behavior about it is still coy then he’s hiding something. I’d assume he is anyways.

        From his perspective, he might think that because it’s over and you’re basically aware of it, and already hurt, there’s no sense revealing even more about it, for fear it might be too much.

        Or worse, the affair might not be over.

        You can’t control his behavior, nor should you. It will take time to rebuild trust in your relationship, and you have to give him the space to develop it. I know it sounds crazy to have a bit of blind faith in the very person that hurt you. But spying on him for example prevents that, and will likely just cause you more anguish and paranoia. I would instead recommend just being open and vulnerable about your feelings when you are hurting, whether they’re justified or not. Give him the chance to support you if you want to give your marriage another chance. Don’t go it alone.

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