Does the Other Woman Play A Role In an Affair or Does the Blame Land Solely on the Cheating Husbands? YOU Decide

By Sarah P.

the other woman

You have heard it many times: when a husband has an affair, he is 100% responsible for the affair. While this is absolutely true, it lets the other woman off the hook.  I want to look at it another way: the wayward husband is 100% responsible for his role in the affair, but the other woman is also 100% responsible for her role in the affair.

That does not necessarily make mathematical sense unless you look at them separately. (That is if it’s the wife versus the other woman, the other woman is 100% responsible. If it’s the wife versus her wayward husband, the wayward husband is 100% at fault.) 

This post looks specifically at mistresses and their role in the affair. Most of you won’t be surprised about the extent of other woman’s predatory behavior.

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I think it is time to call out the role of the other woman in the affair because there is a lot of focus on the wayward spouse. Some assume that married men are on the hunt and the mistress was just a nice, single girl who couldn’t help herself since another’s husband doggedly pursued her.

Most of the time, it does not happen like this. But, even if it does, the other woman is an adult and therefore fully responsible for her decisions. She is never the victim, even of men who doggedly pursue her.

It is time to call out the ‘other women’ in this world who contribute their half to the mess we call infidelity. So, in this article, I am not holding anything back and I am going to call these women out without apology.

Often, the other woman very intentionally pursues a married man knowing full well that he is married and has children. You see she does not care because she is not the wife who will be destroyed by the affair. Besides, the other woman rationalizes, if a wife is not good enough to keep her man then the wife is getting what she deserves. Sound far-fetched?

There are more single women out there than we would like to imagine who are perfectly fine dating married men. In fact, there are many women out there who only date married men. Think that such a woman will be hard to find? Nope. Plug a few keywords into a search engine and you can find quite a few of them proudly discussing their exploits.

Meet 36-year-old Jenny who is also a mother of two daughters. She exclusively dates married men and feels good about her ‘empowered’ decision. On her decision to exclusively date married men Jenny says this:

Sherry_OW

“Dating in today’s society has changed, it is so dishonest and I didn’t want to be part of it. I realised it is in the male nature to behave this way and firmly believe there’s no such thing as a faithful man. I’m not a man hater – I just don’t think men are made to be with one woman. So I don’t want to try and be in a relationship if it will end in cheating. It was so much better than dating single men as I had a satisfaction of knowing this man would not go behind my back. Being the other woman, not only do you know where you stand, it’s flattering that you have been chosen over his wife.”

There is so much flawed logic here, so where do I begin? The first piece of flawed logic is the belief that men cannot be faithful. To say this puts men in a position of not having to be responsible for their actions.

The second piece of flawed logic is where Jenny announces that she does not want to be in a marriage where it ends in cheating. Her ‘logical’ solution? To help married men cheat!

Jenny continues, “’I never feel guilty doing what I’m doing, it takes two to tango. I don’t set out to ruin someone’s relationship. I feel sad for their wives that their husband is doing this but if he wasn’t doing it with me, he would be off doing it with someone else. Why should I be criticised for dating a man who is married? I’m unattached, he’s the one having an affair, not me.”

Third piece of flawed logic—that is he were not doing it with her he would be doing it with someone else. Jenny is good at deferring blame to the wayward husbands of the world. The irony is that she admits it takes two to tango while at the same time taking any burden off of herself by reassuring herself that if it wasn’t for her, the wayward men of the world would be finding someone else with whom to cheat. Maybe and maybe not. As long as there are women who think and behave the way Jenny behaves, it is abundantly clear that women like this do share the burden of making an affair happen.

We might reassure ourselves by thinking that Jenny is a one-of-a-kind and in the minority.  Think again…

Meet Karen, who was happily married and who claims she did not set out to be a mistress, but somehow the ‘poor dear’ ended up being a mistress in the end.  Karen lost her own husband to infidelity and after the divorce has decided that she wants to be on the other side of the equation as a mistress.

Since then she claims to have ‘dated’ over 100 married men. She believes that this lifestyle allows her to keep her freedom as well as get the very best men have to offer. That is, when men are having an affair, their time with a mistress is all fun and games and she wants the fun without the day-to-day responsibilities.

Affairs are full of wining, dining, and gifts. But the best part about affairs is that they provide a suspension of reality where bills, dirty clothing, screaming kids, and mortgages don’t exist. For those who did not develop coping skills or maturity past that of a toddler, affairs are the perfect kind of relationship. 

Karen_OWKaren says, “I love being a mistress – married men make much better lovers than single men. I made a lifestyle decision eight years ago to date only men with wives, and I’ve never been happier. I know many people – especially married women – may be horrified, dismissing me as a selfish floozy, but I’m convinced the life I’ve chosen is far more satisfying than those of wives stuck in dead-end marriages. This way, I get the best things from a relationship – with none of the domestic drudgery. And the men in my life see me as their chance to escape their mundane lives.”

Well, Karen is right about the way that wives get the short end of the stick anytime there is an affair. But instead of calling ‘foul’ on the whole dynamic, she jumps right in and decides to contribute to it.

But, the most interesting thing about Karen is that though she claims to have ‘dated’ over 100 married men, she mentioned that if a boyfriend ever cheated on her, she would dump him swiftly. Did I ever say that infidelity is rational? No. And Karen just proves how irrational it all is.

But, the thing that bothers me the most is that Karen is using her body as a human trash receptacle and passing the trash that she collects on to any unknowing lives.

Even if there are no outward signs of STD’s, it is 100% guaranteed that she will pass along an STD to all of the innocent wives in the form of the human papilloma virus. You see, condoms don’t prevent HPV. HPV is passed along via genital skin to skin contact and the most dangerous forms don’t show up as visible genital warts.

So, a betrayed female spouse could be carrying the type of HPV that causes fast-growing cervical cancer. She may not find out about it until she has an abnormal pap smear and there is no telling in what phase the abnormal cells will be by the time they are discovered.

When there is infidelity, with genital contact, passing along HPV is pretty much guaranteed. Think of Karen and all of the men she has slept with. She is a carrier of who knows what and there are many innocent wives who are being infected against their will and without their knowledge.

This is very serious and the significance of it cannot be underestimated. When we get married we expect to be in a situation where we don’t catch new STDs. Catching a STD impacts a person’s entire being and health and to contract one when you thought you were safe and when you thought you could trust your partner is the biggest betrayal of them all.

Personally, this is the aspect of affairs that I find unforgivable because it is the biggest violation that a betrayed spouse could receive. But, people who cheat just don’t think about how their actions impact the sanity, the health, and the wellbeing of the one person to whom they have made a very serious vow: their spouse.

More from mistresses…

If you still aren’t convinced that the other woman is 100% responsible for her part in the affair, I wanted to point out some other comments I found online from self-described mistresses to married men. A mistress who calls herself Sedia said, “Personally I think it’s fun being the mistress. I don’t have to deal with you talking about your emotions, I’m probably doing it cause I don’t like your woman and I get to hear you trash talk her. You give me what I want as in physical and material.”

Another self-professed mistress added: “I have been seeing a married man for 10 months (he is a colleague). He has been honest with me about himself, he is happily married and is just looking for some fun. I am not his first affair. We both understand this is just for now with no future for us. When this started I was looking for a distraction. Since then, I have grown to have strong feelings for him. I am not jealous of his wife but lately, I have been suspicious of him and another colleague. They have known each other for a very long time, seems to have lots in common and are closer in age (I am much younger than him).”

Finally, a third self-professed (but married) other woman commented: “I am a mistress. Married myself. Every time we meet up I am very excited and happy. Love every moment beforehand when I am getting ready making myself look pretty for him, doing my makeup, choosing my outfit and pack my sex toys to meet in a hotel up in town.”

Uh… where are her kids and husband?

I have nothing to say about any of these women because I think their comments tell the whole story: they are eagerly and actively involved, making sure the affair continues. Some actually get off on the idea that they are harming another woman. Not a single one of these women has been coerced and each one continues on their merry, little path of destruction.

Hypocrites get offended by the truth.

Hypocrisy

If you look at polls of the general population, you will find that most Americans will tell you that they are adamantly against infidelity.  Yet, so many of them also participate in infidelity. It is the ultimate hypocrisy.

Liz Currin, PhD, says, “Americans are consistently among the most conservative people in the world when it comes to attitudes toward extramarital sex. For example, 80% of Americans versus 36% of Russians believe that extramarital sex is “always wrong”. Yet estimates of American men involved in extramarital affairs range from 22% to 75%; estimates for women range from 14% to 60%. Add to that the statistic that 74% of men and 68% of women say they would have an affair if they knew they would never be caught!” (3)

Ouch. What is most interesting to me is that so many people say they would engage in an affair if they would not get caught. These types of scenarios show the true nature of many people and these are scary people.

The poll goes to show that most Americans do not have integrity because integrity means actually doing the right thing even when someone is not looking or someone won’t ever find out.  A person with integrity would walk away from an affair even if there was a guarantee no one would find out.

But, if you think about it, there is no such thing as no one ever finding out because in the end God is always watching. If someone doesn’t believe in God, not believing does not let them off the hook either. A person’s conscience is always there standing as a witness to dirty deeds, even if done with no one else around.

I have come across the attitude where there are people who truly believe that they can have an affair without ever hurting their spouse. They believe this is possible not to hurt their spouse because they take great pains to hide their affair. But, here is the thing. Even if someone is a mastermind in hiding infidelity, it cannot truly be hidden.

Here is why: An affair, even if hidden, causes different behaviors in an individual. When an individual is carrying on an affair, he will not truly be present with his wife and children even if his physical body is present. His mind will be checked out and because of this his behaviors will also be checked out.

This brings its’ own kind of harm. At its worst, a person having an affair can become downright cruel to the betrayed spouse rather than being passively checked out emotionally. They can play cruel mind games, make a person feel like they are crazy, and turn into a monster around their kids. In the end, there is no such thing as an affair in a vacuum where no one finds out and no one gets hurt. All affairs do harm, no matter what the circumstances.

Finally, there has been a shift in infidelity that I believe is the most frightening shift of them all. Single Millennials have flooded the workplace and this means bad news for marriages. Young, single women are perpetuating infidelity in the workforce because they have a different set of values than previous generations. Currin explains the difference:

“While the workplace has historically been the arena in which men conducted affairs, an interesting trend is the conscious decision of young single women to date older married men with whom they work. This is due not only to the prestige, power, and financial means of this group of men, but to a desire on the part of these young women to focus on career. Involvement with a married man reduces the likelihood of the affair leading to marriage, and limits the amount of time and energy which he is able to devote to the extramarital relationship, thereby freeing her to concentrate on career advancement.” (3)

Considering studies have shown that the current generation entering the workforce is the most narcissistic of all generations to date, this does not surprise me.

For people with narcissistic traits, other people and the needs of other people do not exist, especially if their needs are in conflict with the needs of the narcissist. So an affair is really the perfect situation for someone with narcissistic traits because their needs are being met and they are not required to meet the needs of another in terms of buying homes, emotional involvement, or any other need that might tax the non-existent reserves of the narcissist.

Still not convinced that the other woman shares the blame?

Here is a comment from a former mistress that explains why a single woman might want a married man. She said:

“What is it about a married or committed man that makes us women flip the lid and have an affair? The way I see it, it’s probably the fact that he’s already taken. I mean, if he’s already taken, that means he has to be good, right? Otherwise, why would a woman pick him? And if his woman is a pretty looker in the first place, I’d be flattered if the guy leaves her to come to me. That would just show how good looking I am myself, wouldn’t it?” (4)

Wow, the utter vanity of this way of thinking just boggles my mind. There exists a significant subset of women who actively desire to steal other women’s husbands. Not all women are this way, but the ones who are this way are enemies to all wives.

Feminists preaching about the sisterhood and singing Kumbaya are chanting ideals that may not exist. There are many women out there who don’t consider themselves part of the sisterhood at all, unless it’s a sisterhood of one.

Women who have affairs with married men don’t want to ‘lean in’ unless they are leaning in to another woman’s husband. Ideals of women working together for a common good are great, except when it comes to men, there are many women who behave as if it is every woman for herself.

I hold these women accountable because let’s face it: if all women said “NO” to married men, infidelity would not exist. It takes two to tango and if single women simply did not participate in infidelity, there would be no such thing as ‘the other woman.’

Grass is greener

A Case Study: Christian Love Triangle & Making Amends

I have been reading The Myth of the Greener Grass by J. Allen Petersen. This book has been referred to as the first infidelity recovery book for Christians. I love this book because it is so thoughtful and insightful. But, the best part about the book is that it contains interviews with husbands and wives who have recovered from infidelity.

In each of the interviews, it is made abundantly clear that the other women involved were unashamedly predatory. I found this particularly surprising because in my mind, “good Christian women” just don’t have affairs with married men.

I wanted to take a closer look at the story of Reverend Douglas Nelson and his wife Sally Nelson because their story demonstrates how incredibly easy it is to fall into an affair when the other woman is predatory in her advances. In their case, each other woman aggressively made the first move. While this does not excuse the Reverend in his behavior, it is a dynamic that causes me to take pause because it happens in real life, even among women who would consider themselves to be good Christians.

Reverend Douglas and Sally initially met at a church youth group in high school. Both had come from hard-working and very non-affectionate, stoic homes. They quickly became intimate and that continued through college. They married a week after graduation and Douglas enrolled in seminary school.

While Sally’s dream had been to marry Douglas all along, he married Sally out of a sense of honor. She had always been all into the relationship, mind, soul, and body, while he only had a strong infatuation and the feeling that it was his duty to marry her since he was her first sexual encounter.

Their marriage did not begin on the same page. (Regardless, this never makes an affair the right thing since it doesn’t matter the reason why someone married. Marriage is a sacred bond and that bond should never be broken, no matter how or why you took vows.)

Sally and her husband had two children almost immediately and her husband worked night shifts to support the family. The week he graduated seminary, the Reverend accepted an associate pastor job at a very large church. But, upon arrival, he found out the senior pastor had had a heart attack and he was immediately given the role of the head of the church.

He was young and this awakened a need for power and control inside of him that was unhealthy. But, he also felt growing discomfort and felt spiritually hollow inside even though life was going well on the outside.

Now the head of a large church, the Reverend was on the look out for something that he felt he wasn’t getting in daily life. Sally was busy raising three children and he was busy growing a church separate from his wife.

The Reverend explains how his first affair began:

“I remember vividly walking into a hospital room to visit the wife [Joanne] of a family who were our best friends. We lived just a few blocks apart had taken some vacations together, were active in the same church, and the wife was an especially close friend to Sally. They [Sally and Joanne] did many things together and thought highly of each other. As I was getting ready to leave, she reached out to hold my hand and she said, ‘you don’t know this, but I’ve had this inside of me for two years. I’m deeply in love with you. I love you with all my heart!’ Wow. Like the Fourth of July, everything started exploding inside and all around me. My heart began to pound, my palms began to sweat, my mouth began to get dry, and my eyes dilated. The rest of the afternoon was a blur and I was back at 7 o’clock to hear her say it again. At nine the next morning I returned to hear it again and to kiss and embrace. We both began to live for the day when she was to be released and we could ‘show our love for each other.’” (5)

The Reverend’s affair with his wife’s friend Joanne blazed wildly for two years. Sally knew something was wrong but could not put her finger on it. Still, something inside of her told her that he was going elsewhere to find satisfaction and for this reason Sally reported that she never withheld sex from her husband. She continued to believe it was her duty. Sally had her lingering doubts about his fidelity and her husband knew. So, he dealt with her by heaping deceit upon deceit. The Reverend even came to a point where he wished his wife dead so that he wouldn’t have to make a choice between her and the other woman.

“Of course any man who commits adultery also lies. They exist side-by-side.

He said, “Of course any man who commits adultery also lies. They exist side-by-side. In the lying the progression began very rapidly. I had to manipulate her, overpower her. To Sally’s accusations I would say, ‘you are imagining things, there’s something wrong with you, normal people are not jealous like this.’ I tried to convince her that she was emotionally unbalanced. That she was really insane…And there was this terrible conflict inside. I felt that I loved them both. If only my wife would die. Though I did not express it verbally, this death wish became so strong that it was spiritually transferred over to Sally. And then she began to want herself dead. I literally put it on her in the spirit. Intuitively. Sin always ends in death, either in actuality or in purpose. It starts out as a flirty little thing, but winds up with you really wanting your wife dead.” (5)

Indeed, things were getting serious and the Reverend’s behavior towards his wife had made her feel crazy and had instilled a death wish in her. Yet, the Reverend did not struggle. He had no issues going from the other woman’s bed on a Saturday night onto the pulpit on a Sunday morning. He did not have an internal struggle with his conscience and was on fire from all of the passion and power that he felt from being the head of the new church and having an affair.

This continued until Christmas of the second year. The Reverend sent his wife and children to another state to spend the holidays so that he could have time to think. Once he was alone, he realized that he had become spiritually dead. He could no longer pray, he could no longer hear God, and he realized everything inside of himself was falling to pieces. But, even though he was falling to pieces, it was not enough to break him or even cause insight on his part.

People at church were starting to whisper about his affair with Joanne. In addition to that, Joanne was starting to make demands upon him since she was no longer satisfied with being the sidepiece. Joanne became extremely jealous and was now acting like a second wife, according to the Reverend.

Still, he remained obsessed with Joanne and could not leave her because he believed she might be a soulmate. One might be led to believe that Joanne, the other woman, was really someone special. Indeed, he thought she was very special until a single event occurred. In an instant the Reverend was no longer obsessed with Joanne and lost all interest in her. His passion and ‘love’ for her evaporated immediately like dew disappears before the morning sun.

He said, “The next Sunday morning was church. I went over early, about 7:30, to go over my sermon and get ready for the services. As I stepped inside, I heard the organ and sat in the back row. Our organist, a single girl about 27, was practicing her music for the morning worship. There was no one else in the building. As I listened to the music, I began to weep uncontrollably. When I got up and walked down the aisle, she noticed that I was really distraught and she said to me, ‘what can I do? I know something is wrong.’ Suddenly I realized that she knew that I was falling apart and probably knew the reason…. She came back into my study with me and before I knew it, I kind of vomited out to her what I had not said to anyone else. I sobbed. ‘This thing with Joanne is killing me.’ ‘Yes, I know,’ she answered sympathetically. Suddenly I found myself in her arms and she was soothing and caressing me and saying, ‘I understand.’ And from that moment on, the affair with Joanne was over. That finished it. I never went back to her. I felt in my mind that I had been released from that and I transferred everything over to the organist. Just picked it up here and set it down right over there. Affair number two.” (5)

As you can see, it did not take anything at all to launch the Reverend into another affair and in so doing to demonstrate that the first other woman was not special at all. She was just a thing to be used to prop him up so that he didn’t have to deal with the gnawing spiritual deadness that had been growing inside of him for a while. And just like that, he transferred all of those feelings to another warm body.

the affair fog

Before I continue, I wanted to point out several psychological aspects of this story that deeply bother me. The first is that the Reverend did not take even one second to think about the breaking of a commandment or pros and cons of an affair before he dove right in. He was so weak and open to sin that all it took was for a woman besides his wife to say a few passionate words.

There is something profoundly wrong with this man because such behavior is NOT normal or excusable anyway you slice it. If everyone in this world was ready to ruin lives and do terrible things on a whim, our world would be in trouble indeed—and really, the world is in trouble these days because selfishness, deceit, and adultery are rampant.

The second is that the Reverend didn’t really struggle with guilt—he mainly struggled with his own emptiness, which is just another area of self-focus. But, the thing that takes the cake is that he wished his wife dead.

Any Christians out there will remember that in the Bible, adultery is a crime punishable by death. The Reverend should have been thinking about his own death, rather than the death of his wife. The fact that he projected this on to his wife and attempted to make her think she was crazy is extreme emotional abuse. That part, at least in my mind at least, cannot ever be forgiven.

Now let’s continue with this couple’s story. It would take a while and many different adverse events for the Reverend to hit rock bottom, all the while being able to continue on with the young organist without conscience or a thought of his wife’s emotional wellbeing.

Meanwhile, the first other woman was not giving up so easily. She would place threatening calls to the Reverend’s wife and children at all hours of the day and night. Still, he denied anything went on and pretended like he did not know the source of the calls.

Meanwhile, the Reverend was carrying on as strongly as ever with the organist—that is until black and white proof of his affair came in a love letter that the Deacon intercepted. He was fired immediately and was such a coward that his wife had to come pick him up at the church because he was crying too hard to drive.

Still, his wife did not ask why he had been fired and the Reverend did not disclose the reason either. In an instant, the word of his affair traveled and they lost all of their mutual friends. The Reverend was able to lie his way into another job several states away and so he picked up his wife and five children and moved them to a new area.

Did this cause him to drop his affair partner? Of course not! Unfortunately for him, some of the leaders in the new church got wind of the scandal. They hired a private detective and the detective returned 47 pages of incriminating evidence which the elders distributed to the entire congregation. When he got up to preach, he was shown the evidence and fired again. Now he had lost a second job and had been humiliated by an entire congregation.

Did this cause him to have insight after the second job loss? No. Things had to get worse first. Without any job in sight and a family of six to feed, he was invited to a spiritual conference by a much older pastor. After sitting in sessions and hearing all of the messages from God, something inside of him broke and he felt destroyed.

He realized only then that he had to break off the affair, tell his wife everything, and live a life of honesty in his dealings with everyone, including himself. He confessed every aspect of the affair to his wife and even though she was deeply wounded, they were able to slowly rebuild their marriage.

After he became new in Spirit, he felt that he had also finally become one with his wife. Her insight from the situation is that she couldn’t just forgive, but instead she had to actually live from a standpoint of forgiveness in each moment. (Easier said than done…) The Reverend offered this wisdom of how he restored his marriage:

“Sally and I have deliberately worked at this concept of truth. The thing that will destroy marriage is the lie. Adultery alone does not necessarily destroy the marriage; it is the lie. We were able to handle adultery when we brought it into the light. Every man has flaws and sins. It is only when you keep it in the darkness that sin grows and multiplies. If it is brought into the light then there is help for it.”

He continues with a word about the concept of trust, “We’re really not called to trust one another. There is no one I can totally trust. Everybody is capable of letting me down or betraying me, and I am capable of betraying other people. If our relationship is based in trust then the moment trust is broken, the relationship is broken. So I trust God and love my wife. She trusts God and loves me. And if she lets me down, I’m going to continue to love her anyway because that is my commitment.”

Finally, he concludes with a word on forgiveness: “We tend to want instant forgiveness from each other. Only God can provide that. When I tell my wife it’s over, I want her never to bring it up again because I think like she should be like God—it is wiped forever from her memory. But, she is not like God… We have discovered that time and patience are required for forgiveness to mature in each of us so we often have to wait for each other while it develops…Finally, I know that failure is neither fatal nor final.”(5)

All’s well that ends well, or so they say. Even though this particular couple had a happy end (mainly due to the wife’s unconditional support) that was a whole lot of trouble for nothing, if you ask me. Sometimes all is not well, even if it ends well.

The thing that shocks me the most about this story is how utterly stupid this man is for having absolutely ZERO impulse control.

assertive

The Myth that the Other Woman is Secretly a Nice Person

This is the number one myth about the other woman that angers me to no end. I was discussing this with my husband the other day when I was ranting about something that happened in my circle of friends.

The ‘other woman’ in that case was a drug-free, professional who allegedly had her act together. Some were saying that maybe she was a “nice person” who fell in love at an inconvenient time and had to be with the (married) man that she loved with all her heart. (Uh, really?!) Comments like that ignite my temper.

I immediately thought back to my own single days when I desperately wanted to get married and have a family about 5 years prior to finding ‘the one.’ At 24, I entered a field that happened to have a male majority and was made up of a lot of moneyed, educated, professional married men older than myself.

The first day at work, I entered the building as everyone was standing around the espresso stand inside the office. I saw a guy standing there and he saw me too. We locked eyes and I was thinking…” Wow!” Immediately, I noticed he was not wearing a wedding ring either. If I could have assembled my dream man at the time, he would have been it.

I started asking around about him and found out he was a senior director in a different department than myself. No one knew a lot about him. The only thing that they knew was he kept to himself, did not have kids, and didn’t really make friendships at the office and kept it professional.

After we were assigned to the same team, I also found out how much we had in common. At that point, someone I knew on the team told me they found out he was married, but that he did not wear a ring because he was separated. I had a choice to make and so I talked to a friend. (I will also say that I never approached him or spoke to him about anything other than team business. I was always the type that hung back until I was 100% sure someone did not have a girlfriend, fiancé, or wife.) 

My friend said: You are powerless over the first thought that pops into your head, but you have power over every thought and every action after that. You have a choice.

First thoughts still came, without choice:

First thought: Well, he doesn’t have kids and they say he is separated, so would it be so bad to flirt?

Second thought: YES, it will be bad to flirt. It will open the door to possibly acting. A married man is a married man even if he is separated and even if he is allegedly unhappy.

So, what did I do?

I chose NOT to act.

I did not talk myself into thinking there might be some grey area that I could use to justify myself. I did not speak with him except to answer project questions. I did not smile. I did not flirt. I did not engage him in any way. I realized that a person cannot be a real soulmate if it involves breaking up someone’s or even getting in the middle of someone’s marriage. Period.

No matter what, I refused to take someone that belonged to someone else. Because separated still means married. Besides, I was smart enough to know that many truly married men liked to say they were separated in order to draw in a naïve, single woman for an affair.

You see this is how “nice people” think and act when they are challenged with a tough situation. Nice people get tempted. Nice people even get infatuated. But, nice people grab ahold of themselves, choose not to continue to think the thoughts that might lead to acting, and do whatever it takes NOT to act. This is what stable people with integrity do and there is really no excuse for taking another woman’s husband.

Now, some might argue that if someone is genuinely swept away that they could not help themselves. I highly disagree. People often use their emotions as a cop-out to follow through on hurtful behavior. How many times have you heard: “But I just couldn’t help myself!” That’s okay when it comes to a delicious slice of cake after you have been on a diet for 6 months, but it is not okay when it comes to any act that harms another outside of yourself.

As my friend said, you can’t choose the first thought (that is being swept away), but you can choose the second thought (that is choosing to avoid situations that could compromise you) and then you can choose your actions.

People might like to say they have integrity, but a person can only have integrity if they maintain integrity during challenges.  Nice people don’t steal other women’s husbands.*

-Don't make a permanent decision for your temporary emotion-

Impulse Control

The other thing I do not personally understand is when people have terrible impulse control. If I had a dollar for every married man who has come on to me, both before and after I got married, I would be able to retire early. All of you ladies can relate to it, I am sure, because every woman will experience this during her life.

Over the course of my life, I have even had a couple of men approach me to tell me they wanted an actual affair with me. They went as far as to spell out exactly what they wanted to do. Each time, I recoiled and cut all contact. Internally, I was actually disgusted by what was being proposed and I became viscerally sick to my stomach.

This is why the Reverend’s story gets under my skin so much. His impulse control is non-existent. A woman tells him she has undying love for him and he is like, “Oh okay, well I can’t possibly turn you down then! Let’s do it!”

When I have been in this situation, I say ‘no’ and end communication. When people have no impulse control, it just causes me to lose all respect for them. Two-year-olds have poor impulse control, but adults have been given many years to develop impulse control.

Is monogamy a natural state?

Just about everywhere you look, there will always be someone who says that monogamy is not a natural state. Generally, it is men who make this statement and they are usually referring to the idea that it’s in men’s DNA to stray but it’s not in women’s DNA to stray.

The tired, old argument follows and it’s just another version of “boys will be boys” and girls are pure and they like to keep their knees together. But, if you take another look, it’s easy to find that infidelity rates are the same between the genders.

The gap has closed and it no longer makes sense to pull out the stereotype that men are driven to find sex while women are not. Quite a few women enjoy sexuality and have higher libidos than their partners. A recent study showed that when it comes to women in long-term relationships, women are even more amorous than their male partners imagined!

Personally, I believe that both nice girls and nice guys enjoy (as a whole) their sexuality equally. But, the reason we don’t see as many women wanting to have one-night-stands is because it is a matter of context and not a matter of desire alone.

Contextually, men are mostly comfortable having one-night-stands while a woman’s sexuality tends to blossom in a long-term relationship. Men are not required to feel physically safe to have sex. But women (generally) do need to feel physically safe, trusting, and secure before engaging in sexual activity. I believe this requirement of safety helps account for the myth that women are monogamous while men are not.

Now that women have choices, family planning, and are no longer shamed by society for enjoying their bodies, infidelity is equal among the sexes.

So, I see one of two things: either monogamy is not a natural state for BOTH men and women, or monogamy is a natural state for men and women, but equal numbers of each gender give into temptation.

Science has found a couple things to be infidelity predictors: whether or not there was an affair by a parent as well as a gene that can literally be ‘turned on’ and therefore give someone a predisposition to infidelity. I do not believe infidelity is the natural state. I believe that monogamy is a natural state, but that many deviate from the norm when they are tempted.

Let’s pretend for a moment, shall we?

Let’s pretend that monogamy is not a natural state. So where does it leave monogamy? Monogamy still remains both a religious and a social construct.

Monogamy is part of the marriage contract in our culture and the marriage contract in this culture is a binding agreement into which two people enter willingly. Therefore, even if monogamy is not a natural state, people knowingly sign up for it when taking marriage vows. After that, it is up to them to choose whether they will honor said contract or not.

So, if you think about it, whether or not monogamy is a natural state is a moot point. When someone takes a marriage vow, they knowingly enter into a relationship where monogamy is an essential part of the contract and remaining in a monogamous state is part of the binding agreement.

Like all contracts, those who willingly enter into them must honor the terms or suffer the consequences. In this case, it does not matter if monogamy is a natural state or not. There is a binding agreement to maintain monogamy and there is equal performance expected by both people in terms of maintaining monogamy.

This situation does not include a gray area: two people sign up for a monogamous relationship and this is exactly what is expected of them. It doesn’t matter if one partner is attracted to someone else and acts on it. He is breaking the agreement and breaking it is a wrong act and a breach of the performance required, which is to maintain one’s half of the monogamy component in marriage.

Since almost everyone in today’s day and age seems to respect legality more than morality, infidelity is wrong even by purely legalistic standards. So, the next time someone tells you monogamy is not a natural state (as applies to marriage) give them the legalistic argument.

Summary

In summary, I believe that the other woman is 100% culpable for her part in the affair when we consider purely her role versus the role of the wife. The other woman is 100% in the wrong.

Some other women are downright aggressive when it comes to finding and maintaining affairs with married men. Other women are not simply poor, little ‘nice girls’ who happened to fall in love with the wrong person. There are no “oop-sie’s” followed by giggles to take the blame off the other woman.

Using the argument that monogamy is not a natural state cannot be used as the ‘get out of jail for free’ card. When morality is removed from this argument we find that the legalistic argument involving maintaining monogamy in a marriage holds up.

Whether someone wants to try to use an alleged evolutionary biology argument to excuse infidelity or whether someone wants to place infidelity in a gray area, these ideas don’t hold water when marriage is discussed in terms of the contractual obligations two people have made to one another. Just as if you hired a painter to paint a house and instead the painter stole your money, infidelity is also wrong and a violation of a contract.

I sincerely hope that this blog post provided you with a new way to think about both the other woman as well as about infidelity in general. Plainly, there is no excuse for infidelity, so don’t allow your wayward spouse to dupe you by setting up a gray area or by playing mind games. Wrong is wrong and thus ends my diatribe about the role of the other woman and infidelity in general.

How are you doing this week? Have you had any new insights into your situation?

 

Footnote:

*As always, I like to qualify absolutes because there is always some single woman, out of several million in the world, who can be fooled.

I remember reading a story where a woman started dating a man from work. He did not have a wedding ring, he told everyone he was single without children, and he even had an apartment. They stayed together two years and ended up getting engaged. He met her family and friends and she met his family and friends. They even spent holidays together.

But, this man was a sly dog and literally had a double life, double set of friends, more than one cell phone, and even another identity in which he kept apartments and credit cards! One day they were at dinner and the woman’s cell phone rang. It was the man’s wife. After the unwilling ‘other woman’ and girlfriend hung up the phone, her ‘lover’ told her that his wife was actually just a stalker and that he was not married. His was able to tell this story without flinching.

Soon after, it took the wife showing up at this girlfriend’s doorstep with children and family photos. That’s when the man’s girlfriend broke up with him, but he still tried to continue the charade!  This is a very extreme example, but it’s also supposedly a true story.

Women who get caught up with married men who live double lives are not to blame. However, it is the duty of these women to break up with the married man as well. It should also be said that married men who do this are more than likely sociopaths.

Good thing to remember: most of the prison population is NOT made up of sociopaths. No, sociopaths are too smart for that and can be found in all walks of life. Plus, sociopaths may not engage in actual criminal activity since their ‘crime’ of choice is destroying others psychologically. I like the book The Sociopath Next Door if you would like to read more about it. I also tend to wonder how many other women qualify as sociopaths.

 

Sources:

1. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-3530119/Why-date-married-men-Twice-divorced-serial-mistress-admits-finds-flattering-chosen-wives-says-NO-husband-trusted.html

2. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1178134/A-mistress-confesses-Why-I-want-sleep-husband–HE-wants-sleep-me.html

3. Currin, Liz, PhD. Affairs: Who Has Them and Why.  From https://www.atlantapsych.com/article/affairs

4. Anonymous. Falling in Love with a Married Man – Things to Know. From http://www.lovepanky.com/women/girl-talk/falling-in-love-with-a-married-man-affairs

5. Petersen, J. Allen. The Myth of the Greener Grass. Tyndale House Publishers, INC. First Edition: 1984. Pages 151-174.

 

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Typically at some point after their affair, the ex-unfaithful find themselves getting off track, feeling lost and not knowing what to do or what to say throughout the healing and recovery process.  It's normal.  

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257 Responses to Does the Other Woman Play A Role In an Affair or Does the Blame Land Solely on the Cheating Husbands? YOU Decide

  1. TheFirstWife July 19, 2016 at 9:07 am #

    Interesting article. I blame my H 100% as he made the whole affair happen. He orchestrated it all. He met her, hired her to work for him and then BOOM! 3 months later he asks her for a date under some crappy guise of “work related meeting”.

    She of course said yes and the rest is obvious. Affair.

    He falls in love and is trying to dump me. At first I resisted but then after a few weeks I said to go ahead – be with her. Move on. He was shocked I said it. But he ended it with her but the fog was torture to live with/through.

    Then she called again and he went running back. So they both are at fault.

    But he lied when he told me details. Like she pursued him and I believed it. Then I saw the email where he initiated the first “date”. I saw the email where he planned on leaving me. I saw the email where he begged her to hang on and wait for him.

    So I now see my H in a different light. I love him and I would never wish him any harm. But respect has gone out the window.

    And I no longer trust that some other woman won’t come along and he would not resist an affair. I think he is that weak. Or just needs other people to validate him in a way a wife cannot. I am not new to him. He doesn’t get that rush of adrenalin or emotion from me like he does an illicit affair. I get that rush of emotion when he comes home from a business trip.

    So sad to end up in this position in life. I just don’t get why it is so hard to do the right thing. I do not find it flattering when “men” make advances to other women. I immediately see their character flaws. It is so OBVIOUS.

    But men view it differently in many cases. They are flattered by the ego boost and rush of adrenaline they get. How stupid!! It won’t last. Once a real relationship develops with ex-wives and alimony and child support and his issues are revealed, the new mate/gf/wife will always wonder – will be cheat on me?

    Good luck to that relationship. Real healthy way to start a relationship with doubts and suspicions. That is what they deserve I guess.

    • Sarah P. July 20, 2016 at 10:39 pm #

      Hi FirstWife,

      I know what you mean by wondering why it’s hard to do the right thing and I know what you mean by them wanting that new form of validation. I feel like the majority of men eat up validation from other women and it can be addictive to them. It’s almost like they never grow up. It’s normal for teenage boys or teenage girls to get a jolt off of the idea that they are attractive to others. It’s normal for teens to get carried away when these feelings hit. But, after someone graduates from college they should have enough confidence and maturity to realize that their life is not driven by external validation. I think that need for external validation can lead to affairs and that need for validation definitely indicates a low self-esteem. Of course everyone is reassured if others think they are handsome or pretty. But, needing this reassurance to feel good is not healthy. It opens the door wide open to affairs and allows external circumstances to be in control rather than a person being ion control of themselves. Very unhealthy. I am not surprised that the other woman is trashy. The trashier the OW the more superior a man can feel. Plus, it allows him to ‘rescue’ her. I think that is the thing that burns me the most is when men focus on rescuing someone other than their wives. If they want to meet someone’s needs then they need to meet their wive’s needs!

      • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 11:14 pm #

        You hit the nail on the head.

        My H had only 1 girlfriend before me so this validation was so addicting to him.

        The second lure for his affsir was to rescue and save this poor girl from her sad and sorry life.

        Obvious to me the reasons he had an affair. These two factors plus a classic midlife crisis equals affair.

        So typical and cliche. How pathetic.

  2. Hopeful July 19, 2016 at 12:44 pm #

    My hauband’s affairs are totally his fault in the end based on he is the one that made the promise and vow with me. However based on what he told me both women were predatory. They both knew he was married and had children. He claims he never spoke about me or complained about our marriage. He says he never had his ring off. They were both single and he has told me the one never wants to get married again and the other one had never been married and was younger. I agree with so many of your points. These women are not nice women. Unless they were lied to or drugged and raped they are not good innocent women. The one woman pushed my husband for 3-4 years for his phone number. He finally gave in and she got dropped off without a ride home where she knew he would be. These are not actions of a nice person.

    From what my husband has told me is they were not special and it could have been anyone else. He was not looking to have an affair. In the end he could have stopped at any point and he has to live with that. These women think so little or so much of themselves I am not sure which since I do not know them. They make what I would consider horrible life decisions and who knows if they care or even think about what they did. The sad thing is my husband said there is no shortage of these women. I struggle with the fact of I live my best life doing what is right and thinking of others yet I still feel taken advantage of and walked all over.

    The only thing I would say is I am not so sure about the comments if being Christian and how a Christian would act. I am not religious at all and have no real leanings in that way but I would never violate and act in such an immoral way. To me it is just basic morals that I do not need to be Christian to know it is the right and wrong thing to do.

    • TheFirstWife July 21, 2016 at 7:57 am #

      My H at first tried to make it seem like the OW pursued him.

      After I saw the email exchange between it took me 6 months but I finally got him to admit he pursued her. He asked for the first date disguised as a “work meeting”.

      My point is, as we all know, while the sharks are out there – the CS is not forced into the affair. They are a willing partner.

      I have had “friends” my whole life try and steal my boyfriends. In high school and after, in college and as an adult. I have also watched women flirt with my H and try to have an affair with him. Even one if my college roommates openly flirted with my H in front of me.

      No class. Moved on.

  3. Sam July 19, 2016 at 5:15 pm #

    This Jenny and Karen women sound incredibly insecure (especially Karen). She thinks it is okay to sleep and date married men, but if she had a boyfriend and he cheated on her through a SA and/or EA she’d dump him streight away? She is just a hypocrite. Women who chase after married men are mentally ill in the head in my opinion or have very low self-esteem and/or confidence.

    My mother said something to me today about my father’s OW: “any woman who can take someone else’s husband is a disgrace to womankind”.

    UPDATE:
    One of our neighbours saw (him and her) in a discount store last week and she [the neighbour] said that he appeared completely ashamed and embaressed. Surely the OW must pick up on this that he is ashamed to be seen out and about with her by other members of the coummunity that known him well… surely that will create problems in their relationship? (if you can even call it that?!

    She has become very insecure aparently. She has banned him from having any friends and from contacting anyone outside of her family and social-circle (she sounds like a sociopath – and he is a full-blown narcissist who loves having his massive ego stroked by her) so good luck for that relationship when the infactuation eventually dies… #sarcasm.

    We were out with one of his friends and he says that it will NOT last with her as she is from a differant genaration (she’s 8 years younger and from a lower class of family), he is very judgemental to others (even her behind her back: two-faced), and he’ll realise eventually what a mistake he’s made and that she’s just a moneygrabbing loser.

    • TheFirstWife July 21, 2016 at 7:59 am #

      Hi Sam.

      Karma!!

      How is your mom doing with all of this? Would she take him back?

      • Sam July 22, 2016 at 4:33 pm #

        I don’t know! Probably yeah! Though I’d feel insecure that he’d do the same again – The funny thing is that our neighbour actually thought that the OW was a man in drag; hahaha, lol.

        I was watching TV, the pannel show Loose Women (basically the UK version of The View/The Talk)… and they started talking about being a mistress, and shockingly over 60% of women said they’d prefer to be the OW in a poll….
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FD75YtVDOI

        • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 11:53 pm #

          Hi Sam,
          So there is no progress with your dad? How about your mum? How is she doing?

          • Sam July 24, 2016 at 5:11 pm #

            He says he doesn’t want to divorce… (wether the OW knows this I have no idea)… and when he agrees he says he still wants his name on our house (…is he crazy or something).

            He’s a typical Narsassist (NPD possibly), he can never be alone, always has to be the centre of attention, could never ever live on his own. He said he left because he was bored and she gave him some attention (oh, boohoo). So what happens when she doesn’t show him attention and stops stroking his ego?! Will he cheat again? find his next victim?

            Everyone in our family think that their relationship will NOT last, that they are just on borrowed time.
            – Personally I think she will have an affair with another man and leave him – which is what more-or-less happened with his own father! She has failed every relationship so far and I’ve heard that she has a different father for all three of her kids… and heard from one of my dad’s old friends that she was the local town slut, would go to the police station as a teenager and would have sex with men there, which he refuses to believe. He can’t see that she and her family are just using him for his money and we all think when THEY’VE spent it all they will dump him… which I can garentee will happen!

            I mean when it gets into a routine… is she not going to think that he’s fooling around with other women, in the past he flirts with other women and talks about how sexy they are infront of others… and I think she’s the jealous type too.

            I don’t know how she can trust him at all?:
            Either she’s dumb, just after his money or doesn’t care about their relationship at all… I mean she must be insecure, surely; I mean I hear that she’s stopped him from having friends outside of her family and social circle, and refuses to let him go out on his own or have anything to do with me and my brother… #ControlFreak

  4. Josie July 20, 2016 at 12:18 am #

    The last few days I’ve had a renewed fury at my Hs OW. He’s been back and committed to me for about a month (after 3 months of flip-flopping between us – I can’t believe now that I let it go on for that long!). He’s putting in so much effort that I was feeling more focused on us and th OW was more starting to fade into the background.
    I know it’s more his fault, but I also know that she’s a single woman, no kids and nothing to lose. She knew from the first time they met (at work) that he was married with young kids, and she’s openly admitted that she pursued him anyway.
    He’s cut off from her in every way he can, but I definitely don’t trust that he would tell me if she tried to contact him, and I definitely do not trust that she’ll stay away. I actually talked to her (with Hs blessing) when he ended it with her for good and he then had 20 missed calls from her in the space of 30 mins. I finally answered his phone and was scarily calm with her when I told her what I thought of her and that she was never to contact him again. She said she would respect that, but honestly she’s never shown any respect before so why would I believe her now, or anything she says!
    I’m still angry and sickened by my Hs behaviour. Ultimately he is the one to blame, he’s the one who lied repeatedly and deceived me. And she owed me nothing. But I also know that I have never ever had to worry about this before with him in 16 years of being together. And had she not pursued him, I highly doubt he would have gone there.
    I wish I could just forget about her, but it makes me so angry that she thought she had a right to interfere with our marriage. And I hate that she’s more or less gotten off with no real consequences to her life – it’s just so unfair.

    • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 10:17 am #

      I am sorry you are suffering through this.

      The OW is predatory and a stalker to say the least.

      Stand your ground. Do whatever necessary. If they work together threaten legal action or report her to HR if you can.

      My H did end it with OW but 2 months later when she called he went running back (unbeknownst to me).

      So if your H is being upfront and honest then the two of you need to stick together.

      When my H did not speak to the OW for a month (despite repeated calls) she finally got the message. She emailed him again (which he showed me immediately) and he ignored her. She sent one last revengeful hateful email calling him every name in the book. And we never heard from her again.

      Maybe ignoring her and blocking her calls and emails could do the trick.

      She sounds desperate and a bit inglued.

      And you have every right to be mad with both of them. But you need to be the strong one here. Trust me on this.

      You will set the tone and your behavior will be important. If you are acting crazy and hysterical, this will become worse.

      But if you can set a tone that is calm but firm then it will be better for all parties. I wish you and your family the best.

      Sorry you are in this spot.

      • Josie July 20, 2016 at 6:26 pm #

        FW – you are really right about staying calm. Mostly I have been but still having days (like yesterday) when the emotion starts to overwhelm me again. I know when I am acting the crazy wife my H doesn’t deal with it well. Im much more effective when I’m being steely and calm.
        H actually moved out to be with her (I told him to leave) and it took less than 48hrs for the fog to well and truly lift. Her behaviour was so crazy (she was infuriated with him even speaking to me, even though we have young children she couldn’t seem to understand that we will always be in each other’s lives) that it was really her undoing.
        When he went to leave her she was hysterical, smashing things, physically trying to stop him from leaving. Safe to say his eyes have really been opened to what she’s really like.
        So yes, I’d say she’s a little unhinged!

        I know that the best thing for me is to get on with my life, and focus on my girls. I feel like my life’s been paused for months now and I need to get back to it.
        Also realise that I cannot control what H does. He knows he does not have any more chances with me, and no one is making him stay. It’s hard to stop the obsessive thoughts, but for my own sanity I need and want to!

        • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 6:52 pm #

          Hi Josie

          I see some very positive things here. Your H was gone a short time and came back. The OW is crazy and unhinged and sure got himself into a bad situation. Probably scared him more than anything.

          He has cut all contact. And he is probably scared of her and will stick to it.

          He may have missed his family and realized immediately what he did. So he got out of the nightmare with the OW to focus on his love for his family. Amen!!

          Here are a few suggestions.

          Take your power back and keep it. Make him earn the right to be in YOUR life. Not being mean like you treat him like a trained seal but he needs to continue to prove his commitment. We just passed 3 years from DDay1 and my H planned a very romantic weekend. On his own. Not expensive but very thoughtful and sweet.

          Second get some $ in your own name to protect you and your children. If this ever happens again you need to be financially prepared. My H was about to walk out the door and I had no idea if he was going to give me $ or pay bills or what. I will never be in that position again and I was STUPID for being in that position in the first place.

          My H knows he has no more chances with me because I won’t tolerate it. If he wants to stay fine but the rules have changed.

          I hope you can get past this challenging time. Your H should be willing to sit down and discuss everything with you. Why it happened, how it affected him, what he is willing to do to change, what he will do in the future to make sure it doesn’t happen again.

          If he can communicate those things to you, over time, you will start to see a better relationship develop.

          • Josie July 20, 2016 at 9:33 pm #

            Thank you for your advice!
            When H first called to come back, I said NO!
            But he actually begged and pleaded and made lots of promises about how he was going to show me how committed he is. And I believed him, or wanted to.

            Fast forward 4 weeks…he’s making a lot of effort but there’s a lot of time where I don’t feel that he’s here because of me. Maybe it’s the kids, his home, the fact that he knows even his best friend was about to turn his back on him bc H went to the OW.
            I know he loves me but often I don’t feel loved by him, if that makes sense.
            It doesn’t help that I know that he would be feeling some withdrawals of the affair.

            It’s difficult because he asks me what he can do, but it’s not like there’s a check-list of actions for him to take.

            We have a great therapist who is helping us but it’s been a bit long since the last session (3 weeks) and I really feel we need to see her to keep us on track. And to help us with communicating properly.

            • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 10:59 pm #

              Trust your instincts. Don’t be afraid to ask questions.

              My H made a TON of mistakes after the fact.

              He wrongfully assumed b/c I didn’t throw his butt out that it was going to be “back to normal” quickly. Well he was wrong. I expected some changes and his showing he was willing to make changes. He thought after 2-3 months we were ok.

              I almost walked out on him in the first 2 years after DDay. He kept making crucial mistakes. Communication was one, his thinking life would resume as it was for him, not being transparent enough, continuing to lie about facts and details of the affair and not sticking to things we agreed on.

              Example. First months after DDay we agreed no bars. Not for any reason. Leaving work one day and stops for beer with his boss. Um that is in a bar. We agreed no bars. He didn’t see why I was upset. I refused to back down b/c in the past I would back down to avoid a fight.

              If I say no bars I mean no bars. No exception.

              Just last month he assumed I would be ok with him attending his high school reunion. He said he would attend w/out talking to me first. Big mistake. We agreed to discuss all social plans with each other first before committing. Often he forgets to go that.

              That wa ok in the past. Not anymore. Hard yo teach an old dog new tricks but to me, if you agree to something you abide by your word.

              He used to sit in the driveway in his car on his cell phone talking to the OW. That no longer is acceptable. He used to come to bed with his laptop to catch up on work b/c he spent work time with her. No longer acceptable.

              Now is the time to carve out the relationship you want and expect. He is either in or out.

              • Hopeful July 22, 2016 at 5:21 pm #

                I agree it takes time. I think for me there had to be no contact. If any contact was made I needed to be told. We established set boundaries that made me feel safe and established realistic expectations. But in the end he needed to change. He is a mental health professional which has its own issues but he says he tells people in therapy all the time it takes 6 months to create new habits. That can be for anything. But honestly he had been living his life a certain way for 10 years and also thinking of himself a certain way. So it took time. He admits on dday he did not know what he wanted since he did not know if he could actually be the kind of husband I deserved. It was slow and we went through a lot including dday 2 and lots of trickle truth. But it has been worth it. We both still have moments that are hard. We both have triggers. I for some reason thought well he must be past this since he ended the affairs before dday by a lot and since he chose to start these affairs. But i was so wrong. He had and still needs to face a lot in my opinion. But I guess what i am saying is it can take time. It evolved for him and us. But I needed to see changes along the way and we have had a lot of discussions. It is great to focus on yourself since you are the only one you can control. Hang in there!

                • Josie July 23, 2016 at 8:45 pm #

                  Thank you, your posts help a lot.
                  Update: since I posted last I was struggling bc I could feel him pulling away again. While I’m pretty certain H doesn’t want to be with OW again, it still triggered the same feeling in me as when he use to pull away bc he was in contact with her again.
                  We had some intense and draining conversations where he has admitted he doesn’t feel he loves me ” like that” but wants to keep up the therapy in the hope that we will reconnect. He also wonders why I’d even want him now and thinks I’m too good for him. He can’t see a way forward, and to be honest, sometimes I feel like that too – like we’re too damaged.
                  I just feel like crap, i told him he is free to go but he doesn’t really want to. I’m not sure what I’m supposed to do here..hang in there in the hope he’ll come around? Is he just taking advantage – being able to stay in our home with our kids but not working on “us”?
                  I’ve told him I don’t want to live like this and need to move on, either way.
                  I think he has so many issues he needs to deal with within himself, that maybe he’s incapable of working on anything else until he sorts himself out.
                  I think he’s depressed, filled with guilt, shame and regret.
                  I guess we’ll see what our therapist says next week.

                  • Sarah P. July 24, 2016 at 7:21 pm #

                    Hi Josie,
                    It sounds like his affair was an outgrowth of his own deep, personal issues. Trauma always finds a voice and if whatever trauma a person experiences is not dealt with in counseling, that trauma will leak out in behaviors that are self-destructive. Affairs are very self-destructive and in a way the wayward spouse is punishing himself by having an affair. He knows that he is a “bad person” for having the affair and can beat himself up on the inside due to guilt. Was there any emotional abuse in his family? Or is this more like a mid-life crisis thing?

                    As for what to do, my only advice is that you work on yourself and figure out what you want your future to look like. Then start taking steps to one day achieve what you desire. This can be done while staying in the marriage. Ultimately the only thing any of us can do is to make sure we are living our fullest life and become good at self-care. Is there a degree or a happy you have always wanted to pursue? Is there a career that you have always wanted to pursue?

                    What do you know about your marriage right now? I mean are you sure he completely cut contact with the other person? If so, is he going through withdrawal?

                    It sounds like he is still in the fog and it’s hard to make a clear decision when in the fog. He cannot have good judgement in this phase. And you won’t know what you are dealing with until he comes out of the fog completely. So I think right now you can work on yourself while waiting until he comes out of the fog. But, only if you have the patience to do this and want to salvage the marriage.

                • Sarah P. July 24, 2016 at 7:26 pm #

                  Hi Hopeful,
                  It’s always interesting to me when people in the mental heath profession have affairs. People in the field should know better. Was his affair with a friend or another person in the field? I would assume he did not have an affair with a client/patient because he could lose his license over such a thing.

                  • Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 10:52 am #

                    No his affairs were not with anyone work related, patient or peer or subordinate. He says he would never do that. I questioned this a lot since he is highly successful in his career which draws women in and being a man in a female dominated field draws more attention. But he claims never, he had a secretary who he had always told me she was interested in him but he says nothing ever happened. I think he gave her the wrong impression at times but as far as I can tell nothing happened. His two affairs were with people he met through one friend. This friend is someone that he was embarrassed to be friends with lower educated and unsuccessful. He knew both of these women. The one planned girls trips around their boys trips. So they just always happened to be on the same trip. What is interested I never knew this friend was ever on their trips. Or that he went out with him or had regular contact with him, he would talk him down to me. I assume he spent time with him to make himself feel better. The other affair partner was good friends with this friend and was the one that came around for 3-4 years pushing for my husband’s phone number and always wanting to know when and where they hung out. The time the affair started she planned and got dropped off at a bar so she had no car or way home. Of course my husband could have said no or continued but he already started the first affair and thought he had done permanent damage. This friend of his passed away so in a way that made closure easier for him and us. For the affairs the one he ended over a year before dday. I have gotten different reasons maybe they are all true. The other affair he had only emailed and gotten random calls from her supposedly for 5 years or so. She contacted him once after dday and he said leave me alone and supposedly nothing else has happened.

                    I think it is odd in many ways for his profession. However I think there are many that go into this field as wounded ducks. They need to heal themselves. He was more practical at least on the surface and what he said. He knew this was what he wanted to do but more to have the lifestyle he wanted with no boss and running his own practice. I think he is good at what he does and part of that is he is excellent at compartamentalizing. That transferred over to his regular life. I also think he hears the worst of the worst, and not that it gives him any right to do this stuff but I think through all of it that he then thought there are a lot of guys that are a lot worse than me. Kind of to justify and make himself feel better. Also in his training he never had any classes or practicums or internships that focused on these topics. It was not his specialty. Granted they covered general relationship and things but nothing in depth. Through this process I have been frustrated that I feel like I had more knowledge than he did from what I read. He knows general stuff and then he is clouded since it is him. On the other hand he always seems to know what to say and at times I even feel like I am talking to an attorney. He will say I did not say I was going to never do x but I said if I did I would tell you even though he did not tell me without asking.

                    I have a great therapist and he is confused at times by this and my husband. It is unfortunate that my husband would not go to therapy with me. I have a great therapist who has a lot of experience and has helped me a lot. I have not gotten to go all summer which has been hard. It is just so hard. I feel like I make progress and then slide backwards.

    • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 10:21 am #

      Also my H’s OW was much younger, single, no kids but drama queen, bad history with men and relationships, covered in tattoos, not thin or pretty.

      Complete opposite of me. He was drawn to her drama but he pursued her.

      But I don’t dwell on her anymore. Not worth it. But for too long it really bothered me as did she.

  5. Em July 20, 2016 at 1:17 am #

    I don’t really agree with this article. The women predators are there but few and far between. I still blame the spouses. After my divorce I was friendly with another couple and got along with the husband really well. We had lots in common and would chat when we were all together. Then one day he texted me as a follow up to a conversation we had had at a party (his wife was included in that initial conversation) asking my additional thoughts on some stuff so we started chatting back and forth. I thought nothing of it but before I knew it we were better friends than anyone knew. Particularly his wife. I didn’t feel uncomfortable until his messages started to take on a flirtier tone and I realized things had gone a direction I didn’t intend.
    Point is I got swept up in the friendship. When his messages got flirty I got uncomfortable and just cooled off communication. It was bittersweet though because I really enjoyed what I thought was our friendship. It was disheartening to realize that a friendship was never his true intention. It was just his way in.
    With my background and having been cheated on I can’t tolerate the behavior but I can see how a woman who is lonely or looking for something could get swept up with a man she did not intend to get swept up with. People romanticize things. I just don’t think there are many women like the ones referenced above…or I don’t think those are the norm. I think the emotional connection starts it and by the time the parties realize it’s wrong it’s too far gone.

    • TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 9:59 am #

      Hi Em. Sorry you had to experience that situation with your friend’s H. Hard to understand but you were on point – he had other intentions.

      I disagree with your theory about predators. My H had a 4 year EA with a girl in grad school. We were married. From the moment I met her I told him to watch his back b/c she liked him and would do anything to be with him.

      He ignored me and thought I was kidding. Until the day she called me to ask if he could be her “date” at a wedding. I looked at my H and he was mortified b/c he realized she crossed the line.

      So they are out there some obviously aggressive and some not so obvious.

      Not everyone is honest and would do the right thing like you ?

    • Sarah P. July 20, 2016 at 10:25 pm #

      Hi Em,
      Thanks for sharing your story. I am glad that you had the integrity to cut contact when that husband got flirty. That must have been hard though since he was someone within whom you had developed a friendship. It always interesting when a man “befriend” a woman other than his wife. Men in this case are always fishing for something because men cannot simply be friends with a woman unless that woman is a sister, mother, grandmother, or aunt. Some have learned the hard way that men cannot even be friends with female cousins.

      I guess the way I see it is that a man is 100% responsible for his behavior just as the OW is 100% responsible for hers. Affairs are an all of nothing proposition in that if one person says NO, then there will be no affair. If one person says no, there is not a 50% affair, there is no affair. That’s my strange logic anyway.

      I lost my ex to a predatory woman. The reason I know she was predatory is because after he dumped me, mutual friends came out of the wood work and told me that she had done a lot of plotting and would not take no for an answer. I wish they would have told me before it came to what it came to, but then again, it wouldn’t have changed who he was so good riddance. I was in a situation where we owned a home together (both names on the title), we were engaged, and close enough to the wedding. One night he came home and told me we were not getting married and that I needed to move out. He would not tell me why and he would not discuss it. When I asked him to move out, he became violent and so I left without looking back. Selling the house was a nightmare since he chose a realtor friend of his to try to schmooze with her husband. Her husband was an exec at a start-up. When it sold, I lost money as well as the significant down payment I had put in. He never told me to my face why he broke up and shut me out. What was worse was that he and I worked in the same department. Anyhow, a married couple who knew the other woman did come forward and tell me after the fact. Here is the couple’s account of the other woman’s behavior: They were at a work/networking gathering with others in the info-technology field. He had gone without me because I was responsible for delivering the company’s largest product and worked constantly. The OW was a manager at a consulting firm. She saw my fiance and approach this couple and asked if they knew him. They said that they did know him and that he was happily engaged to and owned a house with me. The other woman took the wife (my friend) aside and said that competition from a fiance/wife just sweetened the deal. She told my friend that she would do whatever it took to get him. From that point on, she heavily pursued him and no one told me because they just couldn’t believe that she could get him. (Gee thanks everyone!) They had been sleeping together a good 6 months before he broke up and I found out that he broke up because she told him that she would be moving into out home and that I needed to leave. And so that is when he broke up with me without an explanation. She moved in just a few days later but I didn’t find that out until after the house was sold. No one wanted to tell me. What was worse was that he still wanted me to pay my half of the mortgage. I told him that I would not do that and I didn’t. I also offered to take the place back 100% and to find renters. He wouldn’t let me do that because she wanted to move there because it was near her work. Sometime during that year, he figured out that she was psycho. He tried to come back but I wouldn’t speak to him. He was naive enough to think no one told me and he was pretending like it was just a little tiff. I had an attorney contact him and tell him that he could not longer contact me and that if it was concerning the house, he would talk to the attorney, not me. That actually shocked him. But I stood my ground. I didn’t want him back and the OW had her claws in and wouldn’t move out. Anyhow, I had met my (now) husband by that time and refused to take my ex’s bullshit. My ex ended up marrying the other woman. But, there is a back story there too. He had tried to break up with her a couple of times when he figured out that she was/is a sociopath. Well, she threw such a fit and lobbied all kinds of threats and he went back. Eventually they got married. After that, he got fired from his job because he started under-performing. She went ballistic because he was no longer a source of money. The last time a mutual friend of mine saw him, she was at a networking event. She said that his wife physically had her finger nails in his arm the whole night and would not let him out of her sight or literally out of her claws. His wife is smart enough to know that if she could take him away from me, someone like her could come along again and try to take him away from her. So, she has the shortest leash in the world on him. My friend said that he looked very depressed and was no longer the outgoing, confident, charming man that I was engaged to. She said everything had changed and he was a shell of a person. That was my experience with a predatory other woman.

      I know that some affairs are like the proverbial frog in the pot and people are cooked before they realize what happened. I know that was what it was like from my ex’s perspective. But, the OW knew she had the frog in the pot and knew how to gradually turn up the heat. When he figured it out, it was too late. I do not regret not going back to him. He showed me that he could cave under pressure and that is a very UNattractive quality. Since I had no kids, I could cut ties.

      Thanks again for your comment and sorry that you had that experience with the married guy. It must have been very disappointing to find out he had an ulterior motive.

      • Em July 21, 2016 at 3:47 pm #

        God! That’s awful!!! I guess I just want to believe people are good and don’t intend to hurt others. That story makes me so mad! My experience was something I sort of just fell into.
        The good news is that hideous OW from your story gets exactly what she deserves – a man she can’t trust. I know that karma will be good to her and serve ger some of her very own dish!!

        • Sarah P. July 22, 2016 at 10:25 pm #

          Unfortunately I have had to learn through the school of hard knocks that some people are not nice and they are indeed very selfish. I had to learn it the hard way because it was something I could not fathom. From my perspective I had always assumed everyone was as giving, loyal, and moral as I was. As I got older I have found that there are enough people not like me that I no longer assume everyone is nice and has the best intentions. I wish I would have known this prior to my mid-40’s. It would have made life easier. I see how you could have fallen into that situation because doing the wrong thing was NOT on your mind. You assume you had simply found a new friend. I learned my lesson with that about 7 years ago but before then I believed married men and women could be friends. I was friends with a guy and his wife and he was like a big brother. One day he told me he was cheating on her (dummy) but that he had also wanted to be with me all along. I told him what I thought of his cheating and that he needed to make a moral choice fast. And I was dumbfounded that he was attracted to me. I never talked to him again after that even though we were good friends over a number of years. He told me in no uncertain terms what kind of relationship he wanted (a sexual one) and that he had always wanted one. YIKES. I was dumbfounded but learned my lesson about having a close friend of the opposite sex. While I saw him as a brother and NEVER entertained any thoughts about him, he was feeling just the opposite. He did divorce his wife and she was so shocked that he could throw 25 years away just like that. (She talked to my mom about it.) I have not spoken to either of them for a long time. I ran into him at a local restaurant the other day and he was with a female friend. He told me in front of her that he has dated many women since he has been single and is so happy. I ended up walking away. His ex-wife is a really smart, kind, thoughtful, and interesting woman. I have always respected her and felt it had always reflected well on him since he married such a gem. Well, he did not appreciate her and I don;t think anyone ever told her he was cheating and it was not my role to do so. I stayed out of it. Anyhow, I can certainly appreciate how you fell into such a situation and how disheartening it must have been. 🙁
          Live and learn.

          • Em July 25, 2016 at 1:41 am #

            It’s just disgusting what people do to each other. I’m wondering – was there particular red flags about the predatory OW you mentioned that you noticed but didn’t pay enough attention to before? We’re some red flags missed or are they that good at being snakes??

            • TheFirstWife July 25, 2016 at 4:51 am #

              My H had a 4 year EA while in grad school. From the FIRST moment I met this girl I told my H to watch himself. She liked him more than a friend and she would do almost anything to be his girlfriend.

              He completely dismissed me. He carried on this EA even though the last year I was very vocal about where I stood and did not like it.

              This was in the 90s before EAs were defined. She was just a friend. Or that was his rationalization.

              When she called me one day to seek my permission to allow my H to be her “date” at a wedding – well that was her “move”. If course he said no to her idea b/c he knew it was inappropriate and crossed the line.

              When she was having a party a month later and he said he was going I exploded. I did not speak to him for 3 days b/c he just did not get it. Their friendship ended right then with no more contact.

              So I knew the deal the whole time.

              His last EA/PA I had no idea b/c they worked together and I would have no way of knowing her. But he pursued a relationship with her. I saw the emails. She was not predatory in the beginning but became aggressive after he ended it the 1st time.

              I have had boyfriend stealing go on my entire life. I have to say it worked in many cases. I made a decision if the guy cheated we were done – no second chances. Many came back after a few months looking for a second chance. Stupid excuses and the old “I’m sorry” routine. Day late and a dollar short babe. Move on.

              Some “women” are obvious in their pursuit. Others not as much. Just no respect or boundaries.

            • Doug July 25, 2016 at 9:04 am #

              This comment came to our email by mistake. It’s from TDP:

              “I had no way of having red flags about her, I didn’t know this women until I started doing the digging when I found the week of morning, noon, and night calls. My CS was a salesmen and sold her a car. A few weeks after she contacted him about buying a van for her families business. The red flags were the calls and texts. I also noticed some comments on her Facebook page. It wasn’t until she responded to my call that I truly knew it was what my gut was telling me it was. All the red flags came from him, calls and text, more late nights at work, physical disconnection, excessive phone use, I even walked into the bathroom on him once and he hide his phone. I actually found out the into about her from the boyfriend I called, who I became friends with, her ex husband, and a friend who was a relative of her ex husband.”

      • TheFirstWife July 21, 2016 at 3:59 pm #

        What is laughable is that he decided he wanted you back and expected you to come running.

        What a jerk!

        • Sarah P. July 22, 2016 at 10:31 pm #

          Yes, it is laughable. It shows how entitled he felt he was. After all, when he was with both of us he had two different lovers. (Only I didn’t willingly go along with this obviously since I had no clue.) He probably felt bad for telling me because he probably could have gone along in that state for a long time. The only reason he broke up was because she demanded to move into our house. It was close to her work just as it was close to my work and at that time finding such a place was difficult. Most had to commute an hour each way but my commute was 7 minutes. That is a big deal for high tech employees because of the hours we kept. She wanted the same benefit I had and didn’t care what it took. I will also say that she was in no way better looking or more accomplished than I was. When some of the guys at work found out they just laughed at him and told him he gave up the girl who was BETTER than anything he could normally get. But this is usually how it works it seems. Almost all of the time the wife is better than the mistress in all ways. In a survey by M. Gary Neumann he found that only 10% of the men who cheated were willing to say that their mistress was better than their wife in terms of appearance and accomplishments. But, I am guessing the actual number is even lower because I believe men in that 10% are too ashamed to admit they made a mistake and so they make themselves believe such things.

  6. Hopeful July 20, 2016 at 2:45 pm #

    I agree that circumstances at work or through friendships can develop over time and lead to more if one person does not stop it. For us according to my husband it would have never gotten physical unless these women pursued him. One grabbed his phone and took it from him and put her number in and called her phone so she could have his number. The other one pursued him for 3-4 years working through friends to find out where he was or if he was out. He refused to give her his number for all those years. These women were both single and seemed to not get a lot out of this relationship. Nothing was bought for them besides maybe a drink or two, no trips, nothing. They just secretly met to have sex on and off. He said they would go 6 months without any contact at times. The one he only saw 3 times in 10 years. He said he made it clear he was married with kids and always wore his ring. And yes he did say yes and was an active participant. I can see where his boundaries shifted for him to think it was okay for him. Those are all issues he has to work through and deal with me. And there are plenty of women who flirt and it goes no where. But these women targeted him. He said they never discussed any future or him leaving me. The one said over and over she would never be married again. They were both adults and I often think I am sure these are the type of women who would flip and go crazy if their boyfriend cheated on them much less their husband. For my husband I think alcohol did play a roll in this, I think he felt entitled, he has always gotten a lot of attention from women, his friends put him on a pedestal, he is very successful and a lot of other reasons. In the end I believe if my husband was the predator i would be in trouble since he works with all women and I really would not feel our marriage has a shot. Our discussions have been around what led to this, how it happened and what needs to happen in the future to ensure it does not happen. And we have had a lot of honest discussions about different situations that might present themselves. The biggest difference is he is transparent and authentic now. Unless he is a pathological liar he is being honest. He never gets nervous and he brings up things from the past that haunt him. Those all assure me so far we are moving in the right direction. One thing is i will never be naive again that these women do not exist out there.

    • Sarah P. July 20, 2016 at 10:28 pm #

      Hi Hopeful,
      I have seen women getting aggressive like you have described. I don’t understand why they do it, but I have witnessed it. There are no winners in such situations and I think aggressive women are particularly dangerous because of the allure of the ego boost. Whereas many women are frightened by overly aggressive men, men are flattered by overly aggressive women. Sometimes that ego feed is addictive and it certainly doesn’t sound like your husband is a predator. Best of luck continuing the healing process.

      • Hopeful July 22, 2016 at 5:31 pm #

        These women are just so different than me or all of us. I mean who chases after a married man targeting where he will be watching games with friends for 3-4 years. And no interest in marriage. I cannot see the benefit. I do not see any records of money given or spent on them. It is messed up. It is a horrible place to be in but I am glad I am on this side of the affairs. I just will never really understand. i like your explanation of if one person says no then nothing happens there is no 50% of an affair. So true.

        • Sarah P. July 22, 2016 at 10:32 pm #

          Sounds like such a woman is a sociopath. She wants to feel powerful but she is also stalking someone. Once again, other women are generally real pieces of work.

          • Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 11:01 am #

            I think it is so hard coming to the realization that our hauband’s chose to spend any time with these women over us our kids or whoever. And for me my husband says the #1 repulses him now but #2 he seems more soft about. Single mom… Feels bad for her, one time he said he wanted to be fair to her and her kids so that is why he broke up with her. But he has since told me he felt he was doing damage control and wanted to cut it off for good without any back lash from her. But they kept texting for a few months, but I have not records since this was 12-15 months before dday. I cannot see any good in these women. I think he feels like a hypocrite since he was an active participant so if he thinks bad of them what does it make him. It is so complicated. Some days it is hard to feel like it is worth it. I just wonder will this always hang over me.

            • TheFirstWife July 25, 2016 at 12:06 pm #

              Hopeful that is interesting your H felt bad for his OW.

              My H had his OWN convinced he was leaving me to be with her (I saw the emails). He honestly thought he could break it off by email and she would go away quietly.

              How crazy is that? When she started calling him or emailing him incessantly to talk with him he became scared and angry. His plan was to end it and sweep it under the rug.

              Too bad I called her to get answers.

              So I fear one day he will end our marriage in the same cold hearted way.

              • Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 2:31 pm #

                According to my husband neither ow wanted anything more. The one was single but was the one he only saw three times over 10 years and i think it was a power trip or fling for her even. Who knows. The other one was more frequent since it was in town but still sporadic. From what he told me she never wanted to get married. I am not sure if she wanted more. His first excuse to me was he broke up with her since she was pressuring him to take her on a vacation which he refused to do. It is hard to know what really happened. I think even my husband’s perspectives were probably different when they broke up, to dday to now and throughout the entire process. I would say and he agrees he sees the good in people. But I think it is to an extreme. Whether it is to give them a pass or make him feel better or both who knows. I am a really positive person and see the good in things but friends who lie etc I distance myself from them and do not walk around thinking and saying they are good people with morals like he does. He dose admit these women are not good people for what they did but I am not sure he would hate them. He takes more responsibility than them for sure since they were both single and he could have said no.

  7. TheFirstWife July 20, 2016 at 11:21 pm #

    I honestly think when life gets difficult that done spouses choose an affair.

    Aging parents, illness, financial problems, job loss, young kids, teens, job stress – can contribute to an affair.

    Low self esteem, depression, lack of attention from your spouse (perceived or real) are all contributing factors.

    An affair is like another way to self medicate.

    How childish snd selfish. Instead of facing a problem or issue, many choose to cheat. And there are many willing partners out there who don’t care of their mate is married.

  8. TryingHard July 21, 2016 at 8:37 am #

    FW
    I also believe one of the biggest contributing factors to being susceptible to an affair is the males deep seated fear of losing their youth and all that goes with it.

    I think women hate the aging process as well but we don’t fear it. And we do things to give a youthful appearance. No one wants to look old. But I firmly believe men hate and are so fearful of aging. Things are a little stale in the marriage, sex is less frequent or God forbid boring, someone new and different comes along and BOOM next thing you know there’s new lead in the pencil!!!

    I believe men are not even remotely aware of this fear. They may know it but they don’t do anything about it. They don’t talk to their wives or discuss this fear because well then it might be their responsibility to do something about it. And admitting this fear of impotency just makes it more real.

    And buy how stupid is the OW not to know that MM do this??? No because they are special. I think it’s truly the saddest commentary about relationships and the differences between the sexes.

    • TheFirstWife July 21, 2016 at 9:41 am #

      So true! 100% on point.

      All applies to my H and why he cheated. Turning 50 really bothered him. I like when people say I don’t look my age.

      Classic Mid life crisis. It is a head rush that someone else desires them. Will stroke their ego. Tell them they are wonderful and how they deserve better.

      Feeds the ego. How sad.

  9. TryingHard July 21, 2016 at 10:03 am #

    FW–there’s definitely a mid-life crisis resulting in the fear of aging and impotency. But I believe the fear is there before they get to that mid life crisis age. Even before the desperation of mid life crisis, some men at younger ages still have to prove they still “got it” and will never be old and lose it. I think men see older men as pathetically impotent and it scares the shit out of them because they know someday it will be them.

    • TheFirstWife July 21, 2016 at 10:39 am #

      Good point. I think for many people (both men & women) they need the ego boost. They need to avoid aging. They want to be young looking and attractive.

      What I find hilarious is that in so many cases these “older” guys go after much younger women. They look stupid b/c many times the girl is in it for the $. The perks. Not for true love. Everyone can see it but the poor jerk. He things he is a stud. In reality you are being bled dry.

      Same for Cougars. These guys often don’t love you but love the perks. It is not a real relationship and you look ridiculous.

      I’m not saying May/December romances don’t work. They can and often it is a true loving relationship. But I am referring to the mid life crisis affair relationship. Not real.

      And once the $ situation changes and the guy has alimony and child support and two households to fund, well being poor and broke loses its appeal real fast.

      • Sam July 25, 2016 at 6:59 am #

        Agree… this my dad 100%… he’s actually said outloud that he’s scared of getting old. He has even started dressing like a teenager now (before he left he would steal my clothes). He said he left because he was bored and the OW (8 years younger that we know of), showed him some attention. She is just after his £££ (here in the UK), she comes from a poor area and has never owned her own house before; so she’s just seeing my dad who is self employed (but illegally) as her free meal ticket.

        You may find this intresting:-
        I was reading the story of Shane Richie’s six year affair with a 22 year old, in 1996, cheating on Coleen Nolan (a famous singer from the 70’s British girlgroup ‘The Nolans’).
        Shane Richie is a famous soap TV star here in the UK known for his role on Eastenders: their son is the singer of the band ‘Rixton’, who you may know:
        His mistress moved in with him, his then soon-to-be-ex-wife and their kids… While living with them he became mentally abusive to his 22 year old mistress; resulting in her attempted suicide from a drug overdose:
        http://www.thefreelibrary.com/A+LIAR,+A+CHEAT%3B+THE+REAL+SHANE+RICHIE+BY+HIS+LOVER+OF+SIX+YEARS+His…-a0109011584

        He didn’t learn his lesson when he moved onto his second wife. He has another six year affair with someone from his fanclub (this shocked her he even had a fanclub), with a 13 year old girl who he befriended, eventually starting a relationship with her when she was 20 years old – sick if you ask me! But his wife agreed to stay with him for their children.
        http://www.mirror.co.uk/3am/celebrity-news/shane-richie-affair-eastenders-stars-146302

        He didn’t learn his lesson from that hicup either – when in 2014 he was photographed kissing a young blonde:
        http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-2764000/Married-Shane-Richie-seen-passionately-kissing-woman.html

        *Sighs*… some people just never ever learn!

        • TheFirstWife July 25, 2016 at 12:39 pm #

          I find it funny that the new wife or relationship bieves they are different and the past patterns of behavior won’t happen to them.

          These guys are losers. It will always occur as there is some character flaw or defect in them.

          No one can stop that behavior. Not the most gorgeous successful funny happy woman.

          And why would anyone want to be married to that?? (Unless for $). Look at Rod Stewart. Same behavior in every marriage.

          Look at Donald Trump – cheated on his first two wives. And now he is running for President.

          Look at Bill Cosby. He had fame and fortune and a good family – turns out he is a predator. He is a sick person yet presented himself as a family man. Man of morals and honor. What a joke.

          Remember when Tammy Faye Baker stood by her cheating minister of a husband?? probably for $.

          And why did Hillary Clinton not divorce Pres Clinton after his cheating scandal? Power, $ and presidential aspirations.

          I am not saying you cannot heal and recover from an affair. But when the CH has a legacy of continuous cheating I wonder why the BS stays with him. It has to be humiliating and degrading to live with a person like that.

          • Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 2:37 pm #

            I think that is a million dollar question. Can this person change or is it in the fiber of who they are and their character. Personally I know no matter who I am in a relationship whether it is my husband or if we were to part ways someone else I will never think this cannot happen to me. In a way I think my husband is right that he ruined me a ways. And beyond not being naive anymore. I will never just have complete comfort. For him it is nice if I ever go out he might worry about me since he cares and if I am late or he might just have general concern. But he has said he never will or has ever had the thought I would do anything at all to push boundaries. He knows I have the highest morals and I never deviate. I just do not think after all of this I will ever feel that way again.

            One thing which I feel dumb for even typing is I have a slight fear if I were to leave my husband he would end up eventually with someone else and he would treat her amazing and they would have this amazing marriage. He would have learned so much for this marriage. I feel so dumb for thinking that but I do. He has had an amazing transformation but there are still issues and challenges we are facing. I have hang ups and I question his work and honesty with himself. But am I questioning it because he has not done what I would have done to recover from this?

            • Sam July 25, 2016 at 3:17 pm #

              @TheFirstWife –
              Funny you should say Rod Stewart since his current wife Penny Lancaster is a pannelist on Loose Women (the UK’s version of The Veiw/The Talk), which Coleen Nolan also appears on daily, and both are good friends apparently…

              I also agree the behaviour is repeated (especially those with an ego problem). I mean look at Jude Law, for example… he had an affair with Sienna Miller in 2003 on his then current wife Sadie Frost, then he cheated on Miller with his kids nanny, (why do celebs always have affairs with nannies? and why do they need nannies? can’t they care for their kids themselves?), then Miller had a revenge affair with Daniel Craig.

              Sharon and Ozzy Osbounre too; Sharon had an affair with him back in the early 80’s when he was married to a wife. So it shouldn’t be a suprise to her now that he’s strayed again with this supposed hairdresser (and he’s cheated on her twice before with his kids nannies; yes, nannies again).

              Also, (not a celeb, more imfamous then anything) the serial-killer Fred West cheated on his first wife with Rose West, then throughout his marriage to Rose he cheated on her with hitchhikers when he had a job as a truck driver; eventually having an affair with an 18 year old lodger in their house called Shirley Robinson, who was a lesbian that he made pregnant eventually murdering her… He was so narcissistic that he made Rose prostitute herself for money – but then again they both had strange and dysfuntional childhoods… so that could be to blame for their horrific crimes of sexual-murders of girls: (anyway going a bit offtopic there).

  10. TryingHard July 21, 2016 at 10:02 pm #

    Hopeful
    Amen to the naïveté being gone forever

  11. Bor July 22, 2016 at 1:12 pm #

    I would love to hear your take on women who have affair with younger single men. I can imagine a scenario where getting the milk for free would not appeal to a man. When I finally confronted my wife about this she still said how “yes he was in love with me he just didn’t say it.”
    What does that say about predator? Still it was my wife who stepped outside the vows. She did most of the pursuing, not him they always met at his apartment and didn’t go out. She made the mistake of telling him she was attracted to him. I bet he responded just like the reverend. Form that point he just couldn’t resist he knew she would eventually cave when he initiated.

    • TheFirstWife July 22, 2016 at 1:46 pm #

      Bor. I don’t want to say anything mean about your wife. She made a terrible choice. Enough said.

      But she had her “justification” for doing what she did. Still it was wrong. No matter what lie she told herself.

      The guy? Loser. Plain & simple. She made it clear she wanted him. He took advantage of her. No dates no romance or doesn’t appear to be any. Just an affair.

      It doesn’t appear he loved her. Or had an interest in a relationship. But again I sm only dealing with a few facts. Maybe your wife felt loved by him. who knows?? But it was still wrong, wrong, wrong.

      Selfish all the way.

      • bor July 22, 2016 at 3:17 pm #

        TFW, She, Definitely wrong, In June we went to the Marriage helper 911 seminar. I asked her to go as part of our reconciliation. It has tough as hell on me so far. At the seminar she said she was in love with him. She also said she was in limerence still and he cut it off, not her. Even though, I have pointed out why a guy would think ideal situation, no gifts, dinners, having to worry about how he looked or how dirty his apartment was. I did ask if the apartment was ever clean when she was there and she said not really. So all he had to do is wait for her to show up to have sex. For sure better than being in any relationship. All he had to do was tell her how great she was and in a hour or so go to sleep or work. What he got out of it was pretty simple with no down side other than losing the respect of several of his friends.

    • Sarah P. July 22, 2016 at 4:40 pm #

      Hello Bor,
      Some women are so insecure that this kind of attention piques their interest. I think this is a personality flaw that is present in both men and women. It sounds like your wife was trying to prove something to herself about her desirability. I don’t think it has a lot to do with the other guy as much as it has to do with what he represents. His interest represents that she still has it. His interest also provides some kind of “feed” for her self-esteem. I bet that this younger guy was laughing all the way home because he was NOT sincere. He was probably checking off an item on a sexual bucket list. She was a symbol of something to him as well. I am sorry that you are going through this and I hope that your wife shows remorse. When she says things like the other man loved her but did not say it, she is delusional and trying to avoid the realization that she was really just being used. Bor, how do you feel about working it out with your wife in the longterm?

      • Bor July 23, 2016 at 3:08 pm #

        Sarah, It has been a struggle for me. After she wanted to separate after Easter due to her inability to endure my recovery. Anger and grief from me on top of her own guilt sapped her energy. So back to the AP. Even our counselor fucked up by asking her to write an apology letter to me. after three weeks and the letter looming she felt to much pressure and resentment for having to do a better job the second time. It is the second relapse that destroyed all my reserves and optimism that if i could get her to stop contact she would come around. Now I see nothing different. In fact our coach from the Marriage seminar has asked her to give me access to passwords and such. NO DEAL.he asked her to apologize for the things she did and ask forgiveness for them and for me to give it. She did not apologized or asked for forgiveness after his advice. So I have no way to verify when I want. She will do it if i ask but she will not let me look where I want to see if she has deleted files or texts I have no access to the phone records other than paper copies. She can and did use non traceable apps on her phone and mostly used her work computer which she said she would be fired for giving me access to carry on affair. I wonder how thrilled her employer would have been if they would have know she was carrying on an affair with her work computer. I would love to work it out with her. Many things that were lacking in our marriage that would have made me feel more connected to her I have asked for (his needs , her needs) notes of gratitude and appreciation. She says its just not her. One thing that has dawned on me through our affair is how little influence she takes from me. It is usually her idea or plan that I end up going along with just to not upset the balance. It was her desire for connection she said that drove her into this affair. But as i see it, it was her lack of giving to the marriage, our marriage looks like her parents where they keep secrets from each other and do their own thing. No affection or gratitude for each others strengths. They are very quick to point out the others faults and blame and defensiveness rule. I can’t seem to get her to be open or honest with her feelings with me. Even though she is the one that claims she needs intimacy. If I ever bring up her affair in any context, iam supposedly punishing her in her opinion. We never really have ever sat down and had full disclosure of the affair. I know most of the dirty details since I discovered the texts and emails. But the questions that require introspection and thought on her part were never answered. So the foundation of getting the affair into the open to breakdown the walls of that affair relationship have never come down. Even her IC she has not discussed the affair with. She just tells her of the present situation of the marriage and what I am doing and how it makes her feel. So still very much into her own self pity of what has happened and doesn’t offer much in terms of compassion or empathy towards me. The coach from the seminar has said she is still in limerence and grieving the loss of her AP. It may take time to get her to feel the full weight of her actions and remorse. One of the exercises in the Marriage seminar was on forgiveness and it was twelve questions all which answered on a 7 point scale as 7 was completely forgiven. & of the the 12 were 7 for me she had 2 sevens. I asked her about why she didn’t have more 7s? So it seems she is really holding on to my perceived and real offenses either during or after affair. But i think this lack of forgiveness is really putting ablock to her moving closer. Just my two cents. She is not into Whatever it takes. She claims she needs to be able to give to me and still be herself. Which I am interpreting as I am not doing anything other than what got our marriage into the mess in the first place, Because I am still being selfish and not giving. No amount of me sending her small articles on relationships from John Gottman seem to be able to sway her. If I tell her I am controlling. I have pointed out to her I have rarely said do this. But i say “I wish” and “can I ask you to” I am giving her the choice. she said she doesn’t see it as her free choice. She knows I will be disappointing if she doesn’t do them. Which, is not true I don’t ask them to be done everyday but sometime would be nice. It would show me she is at least trying to change her interaction and improve her ability to connect with what is important to me. Right now it is our 4 kids, one our autistic 12 yr old that is making me hold on and hope for a better outcome than what we had. I am not sure that will be possible. our marriage other than revolving around the kids was not bad. yes I did have my anger out bursts and that was not helpful, had she actually stood up and let me know that had to change I would have worked on it. But she didn’t she didn’t bring up so many of her grievances, as I have read, arguing builds intimacy and i didn’t bring mine up as i should have also. But as I also have read so many of these are present in all marriages as disagreements but not reasons for an affairs.

        • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 10:07 pm #

          Hi Bor,
          You guys have a lot going on. It seems your wife’s model of what a marriage looks like is based on her parents marriage. It sounds like their marriage was about secrecy and not having healthy coping mechanisms. All of us have to come face to face with influences from our parents. I have fought hard to have the marriage I have. Both my parents and his parents are terrible role models in terms of marriage with his parents being far worse than mine. Mine and nice to each other but have no intimate life and neither one wants to bridge that gap. His parents hate each other, do not have emotional intimacy and it’s doubtful they have physical intimacy. I don’t see how any man could be physically intimate with my mother in law. She is physically attractive but the opposite of emotionally attractive. She constantly berates my FIL both to his face and behind his back. Not healthy. I have told my husband we both need to overcome our parents marriages and we work hard at it. What was your parents marriage like?

          • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 10:15 pm #

            PS-
            Bor, that is hard to have 4 kids and one who is autistic. My younger one is on the spectrum but with the intervention he has gotten he keeps getting better and better. Still, it is a strain on a marriage. It sounds like your wife literally has no coping mechanisms and doesn’t want to develop them either. What she says to you about the other man is very hurtful I am sure. I understand why you want to work it out since children are involved. I wonder what it is about your wife that makes her feel entitled in terms of what she did. I don’t sense remorse coming from her and that’s too bad.

            • bor July 24, 2016 at 11:50 pm #

              Emotional stability was her answer. My autistic son was very sick. It’s possible she had a large role to play in it. Not deliberately but our doctor went along with her insistence to try a parasite protocol. Which may have caused him to catch? Express? A infection that caused him to eventually cramp so badly he broke 7 of his own ribs. Yes I can see how this was incrediblely hard for her to handle. On top of that the weeks before he had emergency surgery to repair a torn retina. We are not out of the woods on that either still .This was about 5 months into the EA. it truly was a perfect storm of shit things. I also had rotator cuff surgery. She did not take me to it or even stay home that night. She went out to be with her group of friends that included him. Our au pair was speechless about her behavior. I was just incredibly resentful. Not initially, so her excuse is that she needed him to calm her down. So she could be there for our other kids. Just today I had that confession. Coping mechanism are non existent I feel. She has never faced a close loss in her life. I discussed this with my IC saying I think she just has no resiliency skills that she had to develop. She said her affair did not impact the kids, why would it? Then accused me of planting discontent in the kids. I just said no you did that I didn’t have to do any thing. I said you have been very good at compartmentalizing your affair. The reality is that by having the affair you could have caused the kids their reality of a mother and father 100% of the time. You opened up a hole in their reality of family and what honesty and committment look like. They now live that truth. If you don’t think that divorce has negative impact on kids find me that article I would love to read it. No response. Remorse is not in the cards at this point in time. She is very selfish in her own pity party. And denile Seems to be at the forefront of much of the consequences

  12. Hopeful July 22, 2016 at 5:39 pm #

    One thing I struggle with is the reasons/excuses I have gotten from my husband have changed and evolved regarding his betrayal. And anything besides the actual affairs he has minimized and called nonsensical behavior. It just minimizes it all. He says it does not matter but I feel like it all matters. He made decisions to do all of it. But I assume he is ashamed and embarrassed but how is that dealing with it. I suppose that is natural but it is hard for me to process. I am trying to be empathetic and understand that his perspective has changed so his reasons have evolved also. It has to be part of his personality. I mean I have never changed. I am the same person he met in college. Sure I have grown up but I am the same person still. Anyone who knew me then would not be surprised by who I am now. For him why is he always changing. Maybe it is the insecurity and entitled nature of his life. And maybe it is true maybe he did not know who he was and he is figuring it out now.

  13. Sarah P. July 22, 2016 at 10:40 pm #

    Well, it sounds like your H is easily influenced and doesn’t have a stable sense of self in addition to being insecure and entitled. It sounds like you are a reliable, loyal, stable partner with integrity. I always ask myself if men don’t take good women for granted. They know their wife is a good person and will always do the right thing. It makes them feel too comfortable. I have never run across a situation where a woman is unstable and cheats and then the man cheats too. Usually these men are too busy monitoring their wives and obsessing over her loyalty and so they themselves don’t cheat. In fact, as backward as it sounds I think these women take on higher value in the man’s mind because these women cannot be controlled and provide constant drama and adrenaline rushes.

    Note: This is not to downplay what male readers are going through. My heart aches for ALL of you. I don’t believe any of our male readers are like this. It is something I have simply observed in my own circle of co-workers, friends, and acquaintances over the years.

  14. Mary July 23, 2016 at 12:11 am #

    My husband & his OW are both to blame. She was my “best” friend, my brother’s girlfriend, my children’s aunt. She would come over & console me & then offer to “talk” to my husband to help our marriage all while she was screwing him on the side. She’s just as much to blame in my eyes. She manipulated me for weeks & is now in a relationship with him. Talk about a slap in the face.

    • TheFirstWife July 23, 2016 at 3:36 am #

      Hi Mary. Wow!!! How awful to have your entire world up-ended like that. Your H & best friend.

      I am not sure I could recover from that with either one if them.

      I hope you can find a good therapist to help you navigate this. You have been sent a double blow here.

      It just goes to show you how so very few people can be trusted.

      • Mary July 23, 2016 at 10:05 am #

        I believe some day I can forgive them both, but not until they stop seeing each other. Can’t forgive someone when they are still doing it.

        I will NEVER be friends with her, ever again. Period. She’s a shady person & has done worse things to other people.

        I still love my husband & want to be with him, but I don’t know how I’d ever get through this. It’d take a lot of work & some miracles. This is in God’s hands now & I trust he’ll get me through it.

        My story gets even better…. I was also pregnant. Yeah, my best friend has been screwing my husband since I was 25 weeks pregnant. Really nice, hey?

        I was seeing a counselor, but I don’t feel like she was all that helpful & I haven’t seen her since April. I honestly feel like I need someone who specializes in affairs, but I doubt we have anyone like that in our tiny little town.

  15. TheFirstWife July 23, 2016 at 3:50 am #

    My personal opinion is that some of the CS think they can get away with cheating.

    It will only happen “once”. Or in their mind it is not sexual so it is not wrong.

    So that is why they do it. Temptation. Illicit affair. A thrill. Satisfies a need or desire.

    But they all believe they can pull it off. No getting caught. No one will know.

    I thought my H was having a breakdown or on drugs he was acting so crazy. That is what drove me to call the OW and ask HER if she knew what was going on. When she said they were still seeing each other it all made sense.

    My H thought he could dump the OW via email and that eoukd be it. Sweep it under the rug. I would be none the wiser.

    Except I did find out. I then confronted him with the facts. He never thought I would find out.

    So I think that is a factor for many affairs. The spouse won’t find out.

    Except they usually do. How sad.

    • Mary July 23, 2016 at 10:08 am #

      I honestly think my husband thought it could just happen once & they’d never get caught. I would have never known after the first time, but then they got real sloppy, really quick. We figured it out in a matter of weeks, they were horrible at cheating.

      I can guarantee he’d take this all back if he could tho, he just won’t admit it. He claims he’s so much happier with her, but he sure doesn’t look like it & I’ve heard that from other people too.

      • TheFirstWife July 23, 2016 at 2:38 pm #

        Hi Mary,

        I am so sorry. What should be a happy time in your life is being torn apart.

        It could be your H is reacting to becoming a father. It is not uncommon for this to happen. It is immature and a really jerky thing for him to do. But he is being a coward.

        As for your marriage you need to have some insight. As long as he is with your “friend” he is not thinking clearly. He has a gnat in his ear that keeps buzzing around filling his mind with all kinds of nonsense.

        Your H is in a fog. He doesn’t know what he wants and isn’t thinking clearly right now. please have patience to allow the fog to clear.

        However I was in your shoes 3 years ago. I would not have believed I would survive my H’s affair. He was walking out the door. I had no hope. He blamed me for his unhappiness and mid life crisis. I was devastated.

        So I started disengaging from him. Planning my future without him. There was nothing I could do to make him love me anymore vi hit the old “love you but not in love with you” kiss of death speech. She was a younger single OW and she was in and I was out.

        There is nothing you can say or do at this time to get your H to change his mind or see what he is doing is wrong. He isn’t thinking clearly. It could be a shock to his system about impending fatherhood. Not an excuse to do what he is doing. But if you can understand him it can help you.

        I am sorry your counselor is not helping. My suggestion is to take your power back and gain control of your life. Move forward as if he is not going to be involved. If he comes around great! If not you have adjusted a bit. Your role will change as a mom and you need to put the new baby first not him.

        Once I started disengaging my H was shocked. He didn’t know what to do b/c he want with the OW and I was moving forward. I never said anything to him I just started acting differently. I was planning to become a single mom as he clearly didn’t want me.

        When my H started up eith the OW a few months later I had no idea. He was very good at hiding thevaffair but I knew things were not right with us. I could tell he was “off”.

        Just know the affair IS NOT ABOUT YOU! He is blaming you or claiming it is you but it is him. Whatever he doesn’t want to face right niw he is using an affair to medicate himself. Same as drinking, drugs, food, etc. some men use affairs to hide their pain or problems.

        So I would try to regroup and get some support. Don’t look to him for anything b/c right now he is useless to you. He cannot make a rational decision and will change his mind several times on everything.

        Don’t feel bad taking a stand with him. Don’t feel like you are required to be a doormat. It is ok to say to him in a calm rational way for him to call you when he decides what he wants. And then don’t engage. Don’t continue to try and reason w/him.

        It will not make a difference. Trust me.

        When I finally put myself first and disengaged from his drama I started healing and found some peace. Not from him but from and for me.

        We have weathered the affair and my H finally woke up at the last possible second
        But we are together and happy.

        I hope your H can see what he is doing and soon. My H’s affair was typical mid life crisis.

        Good luck to you.

        • Mary July 30, 2016 at 4:01 pm #

          TFW — I know he is in a bit of a fog, especially because she knows me so well, she can use everything against me. He thinks I’m the devil, when it’s really her.

          As of now, I have pretty much disengaged. I only contact him when it concerns the kids & I rarely say anything else to him.

          I have started to really be myself again. I have been going out with friends & making the best of a bad situation. He took the baby last night & I got to go out & hang around adults lol.

          He will be out of town for a couple weeks next month, so I’m really hoping the time away gives him time to reflect. Even if he weren’t to try to work things out with me, I’d be happy if they just weren’t together anymore. It’s so sad for my kids.

          As of right now, I’m looking at life as if it will be without him. I have a lot of plans for my future & I don’t need to be with him to accomplish those things. If he wants to be gone, then leave. I truly believe he will deeply regret this one day tho.

          Everyone thinks I’m absolutely crazy for even wanting him back, before this, I thought other people who took back their cheating spouses we’re crazy too, but now I understand. I don’t know what the future holds for me, but I know God will take care of us, no matter what that is.

      • Sarah P. July 23, 2016 at 6:19 pm #

        Hi Mary,
        I agree with TFW that this sounds like a classic reaction to becoming a dad, even if it is not his first time being a dad. A lot of affairs begin during a wife’s pregnancy. But, it still is NOT right or excusable. I think the other woman sounds like a psychopath. Normal people have emotional and physical boundaries where they could not live with themselves if they took away their best friend’s husband, especially while she was pregnant, all the while lying to her friend about the situation. These are the things psychopaths and/or extremely troubled people do. There is a book called The Sociopath Next Door:

        https://www.amazon.com/Sociopath-Next-Door-Martha-Stout/dp/0767915828

        What most don’t realize is that sociopaths know how to NOT look like sociopaths and they are hard to spot until you get burned by one. They are world class charmers, manipulators, charismatic, and they are able to look like the victim of situations that they perpetrated against another. So I am sure the way your former best friend thinks about it, you were to blame for being a “bad wife” and she being the “caring person” that she is was only trying to make a poor neglected husband feel less neglected. I don’t know if your friend has said that out loud yet, or will say it, but it is an illustration of how a sociopath can think about a situation they have perpetrated. Sociopaths take situations that they perpetrated and figure out how to come out looking like either a victim, innocent bystander, or a helper. (But never the perpetrator.)

        Also, Dr. James Dobson has a great book called Love Must Be Tough that talks about how to break the affair fog and get a cheating husband back.

        https://www.amazon.com/Love-Must-Be-Tough-Marriages/dp/141431745X/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1469311856&sr=1-1&keywords=love+must+be+tough

        Best of luck and keep your wits about you. There are no excuses to be made for your husband or ex-friend if they try o make excuses. You ex-friend has shown her true colors and she needs to be out of your life as swiftly as possible. Your husband needs to snap out of the fog and Dr. Dobson’s book can show you how to help him snap out of the fog.

        Also, your husband might claim he is happy but he is saying that because he is ashamed of his mistake. He has to fool himself into believing he made the right decision even though it’s clear to everyone he did not. Men experience a real reckoning when they are no longer able to fool themselves and are stuck with the OW.

        I am sorry to hear that there is no a helpful therapist around. Hopefully this site can give you some insight into affairs and provide healing.

        • Mary July 30, 2016 at 4:26 pm #

          Sarah — This is actually our third child, our first son. He’s always wanted a boy, so I was so shocked that he’d do this to us. He had the a smile from ear to ear in December when we found out he was a boy & roughly a month later, he was engaged in an affair. We had so many plans for the future, so that’s where I just can’t believe him when he says he has wanted a divorce for a long time & he hasn’t loved me for a while either. All justifications.

          Just for fun the other day, I Googled “how do you know if someone is a psychopath?” & I’m not kidding you, she fits nearly every description to a T! She also fits a lot of the sociopath characteristics. I believe she is one. I would have never guessed, but like you said, they have a way of fooling people.

          She actually has these people posting on her facebook feeling sorry for her because people are calling her a homewrecker & a whore. One of her friends said she’d support her in any decision she makes in life & she’s happy that she finally found a man who makes her soul happy. I bet she’d be this supportive & happy if it was her husband. People are unbelievable.

          She is out of my life, will never be a part of it ever again, other than being my nephew’s mother & the person who slept with my husband. She’s nothing to me & I could honestly care less if I ever see her ever again. I can’t imagine that my husband would want to live his life with her, but if so, more power to him. If he thought I made him miserable, he has a whole other thing coming. Haha.

          I actually just got “Love Must Be Tough” in the mail this week & I’m about half way through reading it. Hopefully I will be able to implement some of the stuff into my marriage.

          I’ve found this site to be extremely supportive. I actually feel like all these articles & blogs that I read are more helpful than the counselor I had been seeing.

          • TheFirstWife July 30, 2016 at 5:43 pm #

            Dear Mary. I am so sad for you going through this. I want to give you a bit of perspective on where you are right now with your H.

            He is saying every mean thing to justify his choice and affair. I annoy sure how you can recover from who he chose to cheat with. Your entire family must be in an uproar.

            My H did the same thing – told me every bottled up emotion and frustration over 25 years of marriage. He actually told me I never really loved him and I only married him to spite my parents. Yes my parents did not initially like him but now they love him. Best son in law ever!!

            So you can imagine how I felt hearing that comment. But I knew it was just a lie. More self justification.

            After 3 months of part 2 of his affair when he saw I was planning on moving on AND he would not be a part of our everyday life and she started pressuring him to leave me and he saw her for what she really was, he woke up and ended it. About one second before I threw him out. I was out of patience.

            That may happen with your H too. He may one day wake up and see the reality of it all. And the shame and guilt will set in.

            As for the social media – I would not read others posts as it would make me nuts!!! Her friends are classless idiots if you condone cheating and wrecking a family and marriage.

            Instead of calling the OW on her crappy behavior let’s all be on some idiotic talk show and “support” each other – even if it is wrong. no morals on today’s society – that’s for sure.

            Please get some legal advice and a plan B for your children’s sake. Protect yourself and them from the OW. Even if a restraining order is necessary- I would not want her within 1 inch of me or my children.

            I feel badly for your nephew as he is now distanced from his cousins. And of course his mother will ble everyone else. Yep it’s your fault she cheated on you with your H!! She now has a “good” man. Until he dumps her and then wait to see what happens.

            She will be in revenge mode so you need to be prepared for that. The drama queen low class a mentally unstable side will come out. It always does.

            When my H ended it with OW (and it was an EA) she took revenge on me via social media. I never responded to her. When she tried to start up again a third time I politely asked her to please leave us alone. Revenge took over.

            And then my H saw who she really was. And he did not like it and was a bit scared.

            • Hopeful July 30, 2016 at 7:18 pm #

              Mary,

              I agree with so much that has been said already. I think keeping away from social media is a good idea. Not much good comes from it. And for me I set up immediate expectations like no contact. If there was any contact I had to be told and we would discuss how to deal with it. If he is unwilling to do that i think that is where you start. Then set up boundaries to make you safe.

              My husband said all sorts of things that did not make sense. He lied and did not tell me the truth from the beginning. He thought he was doing what was right and I am sure he did. He was scared and confused. He had lived his life a certain way and kept secrets from the person he pretended to be closest to for 10 years. And he knew by telling me it would crush me. He did not know what would happen to him, me, our marriage, our kids. He is pretty aware since he is in the mental health field but it was hard for him. I would say in general he is in touch with his feelings and deals with this stuff daily at work. This is not to say he did handle things well. He still protected himself and in a way thought he was protecting me.

              Several websites helped me a lot and I really liked the Not Just Friends book and all the Gottman books were the best for me. I drove an 1 1/2 to see a therapist. Partially due to my husband and his career in our town but also I was able to find someone that specializes in affairs, marital therapy. And he has been excellent. He sees this stuff everyday and has for 30+ years. He has been a great support for me. My husband would not go but it has been good for me to have a person and outlet just for me since I have told no one. I googled and found someone who was liscenced, who had been in practice for a long time, focuses on marital therapy and specifically affairs and betrayal, and he is pro marriage if it is a safe marriage and moving in a positive direction. There are a lot of therapists who are not pro marriage and encourage wives to leave their husbands. In the beginning he would see me for a double appointment to help me in the beginning and safe me time driving. Now I go once a month and it was been really positive and helpful. I would encourage you to maybe think outside the box and expand how far you can go. It has been a great support for me.

            • Mary August 4, 2016 at 6:58 pm #

              So we went to Friend of the court on Tuesday to set up a holiday schedule for our kids & because my husband wanted to be able to take our baby overnights. I wouldn’t agree to it, but I asked that the whore not be able to be around the kids at all during his parenting time & he agreed if I would give him overnights, which I agreed to only 1 per week since I’m breastfeeding. He agreed to that. Then yesterday I get a text from the slut saying,

              “I seriously can’t even believe you. All this over him wanting time with his son? You and your brother have seriously gone nuts and need help. You two will end up hurting the kids way worse than we ever did by filling their heads with shit. By not just being happy and moving the fuck on. Yeah they have split homes but better than being in the middle of a toxic marriage neither one of you truly wanted to be in. Put the bullshit aside and the girls love me. Believe it or not they ASK for me. They want me to be around when he has them. I would never do anything to harm them or anything inappropriate in front of them just like I do my own. All plunger wants is to be a good dad. Yes without you in his picture but so be it. You think what you want but he is actually
              happy & in love. He was crying yesterday because he knows this bullshit is close to putting me over the edge. I’m sure that what’s you want but just know if we ever find him dead it was all because of you then maybe you’ll have some peace. That came straight from him. I know its messed up and was never supposed to get this far but we have something no one could ever understand. I hope all these people you have supporting you while acting behind a screen that they hate me and nice to my face… Make you feel better. But I know you don’t even like most of them. You have done nothing but talk shit and judge 95% of them. You can’t claim yourself to be a good mom when you’re miserable and are just out to take down their dad. That is NOT in their best interest. I can only hope that one day you find happiness so you can leave ours alone. Take a step back and realize the best thing you can
              give them is a happy, strong mom. None of this has shown that. I have heard a lot of people say they feel sorry for the kids. And not because of what we did.. Because of you two using them like this.”

              Do any of you think he is honestly in love with her? He’s seriously THAT upset over not seeing her for 2 days per week when he never cries, not even when he left me & our daughter for his deployments. I’m going to make him kill himself??? Seriously, wtf. Why is this happening? Our kids is NOT any of her business. It’s not a healthy environment for our kids to be in. I don’t know what I did so bad in my past that I deserve this. I never answered her because she’s not worth my time.

              • TheFirstWife August 4, 2016 at 9:27 pm #

                Mary

                Please save that text or email. Take it to your social worker or court counselor or attorney and get an order of protection against her for you & kids.

                You need to keep your children away from her by any legal means necessary.

                So what if he cried? He chose to leave. End of story. Made his bed now lie in it. Take his lumps like a man.

                He has visitation – and it may get better in time. BUT she should not be around your children under any circumstances.

                Her correspondence with you proves it. Do not respond to her ever.

                Get a lawyer (free if you need to) to enforce your custodial rights and her non-rights.

                She sounds unbalanced to me and is inserting herself where she has no legal standing.

                • Mary August 4, 2016 at 11:10 pm #

                  That’s exactly what I said. He chose to leave. I gave him tons of chances to come back & he chose to not see his children every day because he is selfish & only cares about his happiness & thinks the grass will be greener on the other side. I don’t give two shits what they do on the other 5 days of the week, but she does not need to be around my children. He was seriously crying because I asked for her not to be present until the divorce was final? Boohoo. In my opinion, it should be longer than that. She is nothing to them & they would hate her if they were old enough to understand (they are 5, 2 & 2 months), so of course they like her & want her around. They know her as auntie.

                  I feel like telling the friend of the court that I think he’s too mentally unstable to be around our children until he gets some help from wanting to commit suicide. I seriously think it’s a mind game to make me feel bad about trying to ruin their perfect little life. No, these are the consequences of his actions. I gave him way more time with his son than he even deserves or has right now, so I’m not sure why they are complaining.

                  I’m seriously contemplating taking out a restraining order on this psychopath. She’s obviously not stable & I’m not really sure he is either with the way he’s acting & the things he’s said in the last several months.

                  • TheFirstWife August 5, 2016 at 7:54 am #

                    How long has he been w/ the OW and how long has he known her?

                    If not for very long then you should definitely get the restraining order.

                    And did he leave you when you were pregnant? That is a whole other issue in my book. Not good.

                  • TheFirstWife August 5, 2016 at 9:06 am #

                    Mary. As a follow up to Hopeful’s post:

                    If you successfully obtain the RO (restraining order) you can imagine the conversation between the two of them. It will be ugly and he will start resenting her.

                    If she then contacts you she is vision of the RO. She will then have a whole other set of issues to face.

                    And if he cannot control her he may be forced to distance himself if he still wants to see his children.

                    You can imagine how that relationship will be. One big unhappy resentful mud slinging time – maybe then they will realize what HAPPY means.

                    Because she cannot harass you. Period.

                    And they both need to start realizing it. She needs to disappear. And if he marries her then it will be harder for him with a restraining order in place.

                    I am sorry for you and your family. Young children need to be FIRST and sorry your H didn’t get the memo on being a man and doing the right thing.

                    IF he was unhappy address it. Get help. Go to counseling. Work on the marriage. If it still cannot be salvaged then do the right thing for all involved. Act responsibly. Do not cheat. Do not run to another woman.

                    Be a man. Stand up and be morally faithful and unselfish.

                    But in today’s society it is all about ME. MY happiness, MY life, MY goals. Well here’s an eye opener – your children come first!

                    Stand up and do what is right by them. No child under 18 should be spending time with their Dad’s GF or wife unless agreed by both parents. DUH!!!

                    The fact that your H is trying to introduce another woman into your Children’s life shows his stupidity and lack of sense.

                    And she is even more ridiculous by stating your kids love her. Sorry but IMO your kids should not even know her. Or about her.

                    • TheFirstWife August 5, 2016 at 9:07 am #

                      Sorry in violation of RO. Autocorrect!!!

                    • Mary August 5, 2016 at 9:53 am #

                      TFW–

                      He has known her for several years. Her & my brother started dating in 2008 & I started getting closer to her in 2009, so she was pretty involved in our lives over the last several years. The girl even attended our wedding even tho I didn’t know her at the time. She has been “auntie’ to our kids & I feel like that’s why he thinks this is okay. He never even really cared for her tho, I think he only really talked to her because I liked her.

                      Yes, he left me when I was 31 weeks pregnant with our son. In December he was over the moon happy to find out we were having a boy (we had 2 girls already) & in January when he went away for 4 weeks to a school for the military, that’s when they started innocently texting & it quickly turned into an affair.

                      They will just blame ME if I get a restraining order. It’ll be “poor us, she’s trying to ruin our relationship” blah blah blah. No, I want you out of my life, you crazy woman.

                      Our marriage wasn’t even that miserable. We were obviously still having sex if I was pregnant (tho it slowed down because I was sick & taking care of 2 small children) & we would fight & bicker, but it was definitely NOT toxic. What is happening now is way worse for our children. She only knows what he has told her & she’s listened to me complain about him too, but that’s what girlfriends do & they aren’t supposed to run back to the husband & use that as ammunition against the wife. I pretty much loaded my own gun to shoot myself. If anything I would say I was more unhappy than him & I wasn’t out seeking to find someone else, I figured it’d just pass once we were less stressed.

                      I had been struggling in the last couple years. First I was pregnant, then I suffered from PPD, then I got these terrible headaches that wouldn’t go away for months (I ended up needing physical therapy), then I got pregnant while I had those headaches & then they pull this BS. I actually feel like I’m handling it all pretty good, I just wish they’d end their relationship. It’s not healthy & he should be more concerned about his relationship with his children’s mother than some floozy that helped ruin his family.

                      I’ve tried telling my husband he should have been a man & done the right thing. He still could have his chance to make things right. Although this situation is so screwed up, I know deep down, he is still there & the man I fell in love with & married. He has given up on everyone & everything close to him for her. He basically gave up on moving foward with his career, he doesn’t talk to his mother, most of his family/friends are disgusted with his actions so he doesn’t talk to them, & he pretty much hates me from what I can tell. I have stood by his side for over a decade & then I just get thrown to the side for her. It’s all so very sad.

                    • Mary August 5, 2016 at 10:29 am #

                      Ooh & he’s been with her for over 6 months (the start of the affair) & we discovered it nearly 5 months ago & he left the day I found out.

                    • TheFirstWife August 7, 2016 at 9:33 am #

                      Mary. I read your posts from the last few days.

                      PPD is tough on everyone. So are physical ailments + 2 kids +H in military + his suspected depression. These are all paths that can lead to an affair.

                      And he just happened to find a willing OW.

                      He is “masking” his pain by avoidance. If he has issues at work or home or whatever just know that men will avoid them with drugs. Alcohol, sex & affairs or extreme sports or fitness. Whatever they can to avoid facing it.

                      My therapist says men don’t talk they avoid.

                      Turning 50 and it scares you? Have an affair. Have 3 small children and life is stressful? Have an affair.

                      I think you get my drift.

                      You are in the fight of your life for this marriage. the OW can manipulate and lie her way into his heart. He is believing her b/c he doesn’t have the ability to be objective.

                      You are the evil person here b/c it is easier to blame others than admit he has become a liar & cheater.

                      Very sad.

                    • Mary August 7, 2016 at 7:00 pm #

                      TFW —

                      It’s funny you say that about him avoiding things. I have asked him in the past if he thought we were doing okay, because I felt like we could be happier. He would say things like life isn’t like the movies, so I shouldn’t expect it to be some fairytale. He’d also come home & tell me things that his coworkers wives did & tell me how we were just like them, so I didn’t think we were doing so bad.

                      Now he tells everyone that I made him miserable & he hated being with me. He told his mom he was so miserable with me that he would have killed himself if he would have stayed with me any longer. He always came home right away every day after work, hung out with me & the kids, etc, so I don’t get it? I could see if we were in a sexless marriage where we didn’t do anything together & hated each other, but it wasn’t that way.

                      We didn’t go out & make time for the two of us often enough & that was an issue I brought up while he was gone to his school & he said we’d work on it when he got home, but got involved in an affair before he got home even.

                      She drove 5 hours to where he was at school. This was no accident. It was premeditated & she had plenty of time to think about it. Funny how she met up with him & told us she was going to visit a friend, which she did, but he tagged along too. Neither of them mentioned they were going to see each other, so it’s obvious they knew what was going to happen that night.

                      I do believe he is depressed, but I’m sure that’s my fault too. Everything is. I never once blamed him for any of my anxiety or PPD. But admitting HE has a problem, would be admitting that I didn’t have as much to do with it as he is saying now, so I doubt he’ll ever admit it.

                    • TheFirstWife August 7, 2016 at 8:22 pm #

                      Right now you can’t rely on anything he says.

                      My H did the same thing. My H actually told me when the EA first came to light that the only reason I married him was to spite my parents.

                      I looked at him and thought “you mean I have been with you for 30 years to spite my parents and you don’t believe I loved you?”

                      Hell no!!!

                      That was the most ridiculous thing I ever heard. You are going back to something that has been dead & buried 30 years? Total load of crap.

                      Soooo in your case he is pulling out every excuse to justify himself and his cheating. His killing himself comes up often.

                      He is taking the easy way out. Avoid all my issues and problems. Run off with someone else. Like that will resolve anything.

                      His issues will resurface and then he will have to run from her and find someone else.

                      Can’t keep running forever.

                      BTW my H now admits all he told me was a bunch of crap. I was not making him unhappy. I was not doing anything. He was not doing anything to address his issues. He was just easing his guilty conscience.

                      Eventually he had to face it.

                  • Mary August 7, 2016 at 9:01 pm #

                    TFW —

                    The day after I found out, he actually told me this was not my fault, it was all his fault & I was always good to him & I don’t deserve someone like him. Now, he says he should have never married me & I made him miserable etc etc. The pendulum swings daily it seems.

                    I believe you’re right, he is running from his problems & I’m not his problems. He will have issues with every relationship unless he works in himself. I have learned a lot about myself over the last several months & I realize I had a lot to change about myself. I will come out a better person after all of this. I already am on my way.

                    His justifications really suck because I have been second guessing me, him, us for months now. Was it really that bad? Did I really make him that miserable? Does he really not want to be with me ever again? Those questions can drive a person crazy. I know one day it won’t matter anymore & I can’t wait until the day that I can have peace.

                    It really annoys me that his “girlfriend” just expects me to get over it & move on like this happened years ago. This kind of betrayal will take years for me to get over, that doesn’t mean I will still want him forever. At this point I’m looking at life without him anyway, so I’m trying my best to imagine how that’s going to be. Only time will tell how this all works out.

                    • TheFirstWife August 8, 2016 at 3:48 am #

                      Mary

                      Of course I cannot predict the future. Every situation is fiffetrnt.

                      But I spent months in your situation. Now my H never physically left but he had one foot out the door. He asked for a divorce numerous times. I agreed to it in November & December.

                      It looked hopeless. He was moving on. The second time he asked for divorce I had no idea OW was still around.

                      We are still together b/c my H came to his senses at the last possible second.

                      Unfortunately I could not change his mind. He had to get there on his own. His mid life crisis almost led to our divorce.

                      And my H was one of those guys people would have bet $ on he epuld never cheat. He now deeply regrets all of it.

                      But I saw the extent of his lies and ugliness and self centered behavior. It will never be erased from my memory.

                      But I trusted him completely. I thought I knew him. And an affair is like having the rug pulled out from under you.

                      But while it looked hopeless for me I prayed every day. I asked God for help. I prayed for amother chance.

                      I won’t kid you that the aftermath is just as hard. But we are together and happy.

                      There is hope he will come to his senses. Please don’t stop believing it can work out. He sounds like he was a good person who is caught up in a tidal wave of things going on that he just cannot face.

                      Now we know the longer it goes on with the OW the harder it gets to have him see reality and truth. But if you can understand some of his motivation it can help you.

                      It can help save your sanity when the World around you is in chaos.

                    • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 6:04 am #

                      Mary, I was the blame for everything bad in my ch life, and it was the ow putting those thoughts into my ch mind. I blamed myself for everything, figured it must have been my fault. The ow wanted me to just leave them alone so they could live happily ever after, we’ll look where that left her.
                      The ow had that many problems, like just separating from her h, and was worried about how she was going to support herself and her children. So she figured it was easier to attach herself to my ch. Eventually their true colours come shining through, and I used to say that to my ch, and when it does, I would say, I hoe for your sake I am still available, because I won’t be around forever.
                      show your ch that you are strong, show him, that although you love him, you will be fine without him if he chooses the ow. Let him see what he is missing.
                      I know you are hurting so much, and I know when you look at your beautiful babies, that your heart breaks for them, I have been there, and it all seems so overwhelming. Yet you need to remember,, your ch has affaired down, no decent woman would enter into a relationship with a married man, breaking a family.
                      i do hope your ch gets the help he needs, before she drags him down further.

                    • Mary August 8, 2016 at 8:10 am #

                      TFW & SR —

                      I know I’m probably being way too hopefully here, but he’s gone for 2 weeks about 300 miles away & I’m hoping the distance will help him break free from this trance she’s got him in lol. She does no wrong. They were texting each other none stop when I could see the cell phone bill (he made me get my own once we were separated & I got child support). He was averaging 225 texts/day & in December before all this started he had sent received 800 all MONTH! She’s obviously got a strong hold on him & from what I remember, cell phone service sucks where he’s been & he is probably pretty busy. I hope it’s enough to break him free from her being around normal people lol.

                      I will try my best to not engage in any fights with him. Sometimes I think that they try to fight with us in order to avoid fighting with each other

                      My husband has cheated in the past on other people, but he was also a teenager. We got together when he was 20 & his last relationship was at 18 or 19 I think. I would have NEVER guessed he’d cheat or leave me. We’ve been together for 11 years & I thought I was his one & only until we were parted by death.

                      He really was a great guy, no one ever expected this of him. He was a war hero and a family man now he is the guy who left his pregnant wife . They are all shocked to know he’d do this to me, especially with her & while I was pregnant.

                      I’m sure she wants me to just step out of the picture because then they could live happily ever after. I’m sure once things don’t pan out as she expects she will be knocking on my brother’s door for a second chance. I don’t think he is as willing to give second chances as I am. I just hope if my husband does come back that my brother can forgive him because I don’t want to have to choose between my family and my family.

                      I actually wrote him a letter about a week ago and told him that I will always care for him and I will always be there for him if he ever needs me. I’ll let him know that I’ll always love him and I’m thankful for all the years we had together and for our children, but I don’t need him in my life. He never even said one word about it. I’m sure he showed it to her and they laughed at it.

                      I think being here the other day and laughing with the kids and all of us together as a family kind of made him think again. I’m just worried that he will think that the damage is too much and never try to come back. I get sick of people telling me I should never take him back. They say they would never take back they’re cheating spouse but I also said the same thing before it happened to me. You never know how you will react to a situation until you are faced with it.

                    • TheFirstWife August 8, 2016 at 9:26 am #

                      Your H is a lucky guy. Too bad he just doesn’t see it.

                      Be patient. You just don’t know. Like I said my H realized it at the last possible second.

                      And I too said I would not stay if cheating occurred. But that is BEFORE you can appreciate why it happens.

                      For some relationships or marriages the cheating never stops. For others there are circumstances that you can see led to the decision to cheat. It is what happens after that event that can make or break a marriage.

                    • Mary August 8, 2016 at 11:13 am #

                      I was going to say, he probably wouldn’t say he’s lucky to have me. He’s convinced I’m the devil, when he’s actually dating her haha. I will be patient. We’ll see how things go, by the time he comes around, I may have a complete change of heart because he took too long. I can only take so much BS for so long!

                    • TheFirstWife August 8, 2016 at 11:30 am #

                      I was there in the same place. I agree you should not wait forever.

                      You should not be a doormat.

                      However as I stated previously when I started creating more of my independent social life separate from him, he wasn’t happy and took notice. That was the first baby step.

                    • Mary August 8, 2016 at 1:52 pm #

                      TFW —

                      I have been getting out, or trying to anyway when I don’t have the kids. It’s been nice actually. I never went out when we were together. I was almost always home with the kids. So there’s one silver lining since he left & has the kids on the weekends is that I get time away from my kids to be me! I love them dearly, but it’s nice to have me time too!

  16. TryingHard July 23, 2016 at 10:30 am #

    I don’t believe Em is a typical OW. I don’t think she’s an OW at all. I think she was just naive and trusting just like the rest of we BEtrayed Women are here. The best example of how men, and sadly married men, and women cannot be friends is the movie When Harry Met Sally. Maybe you can be friends on a very light level but certainly NOT on a level where you are texting back and forth without the spouses involvement. People who have no agenda include the spouse on the text message. PERIOD. So Em don’t take personally the slams we give to OW. You are not in that category dear girl. I do hope you’ve learned from this experience and never become involved with married men in the future because it WILL lead to him having different intentions than yours.

    Sarah P–count yourself as very lucky and smart that you figured the true nature of people in your Fortas. Looks like most we women here it’s taken until we were in our 50’s to figure this crap out. TRYST NO ONE–EVER.

    For the first time in my life I have no BFFs and I’m so much better. I have NO girlfriends to do anything with anymore. None that I chat with on the phone or text. None to go to lunch with. And you know what? I’m good, better even. Sometimes I miss the bond you have and the laughs but I don’t miss the drama.

    I trust no one but myself. I’m trying to give out a little trust but when I do I get bitten and disappointed and go back within my walls. People always disappoint. I’m learning not to expect anything even from my family.

    LOL it’s a good thing I consider myself my own best friend. I’m very happy by myself. And I have my h with whom I do most everything. And I like my time alone when he’s off playing golf. At my age it’s very hard to make friends. Most women my age have been burned or disappointed by friendship as have I so many of us don’t even try anymore. It’s a very sirs stage of life. I think the trick is to stay peripherally engaged. Be kind and make short interactions just to have some kind of connection with people but nothing too deep.

    It’s easy when you’re younger and have children. You have that in common with other Moms. But once the kids have left it’s not as easy as there’s no commonality holding you together anymore. And as I said most of us have hardened our hearts and are afraid of being hurt.

    Like Mary the woman my husband had his first affair, well LOL the first one I know of, was someone I thought was a good friend. We went out with her and her husband weekly. We travelled together. When they divorced he hired her and I stupidly encouraged it!!! Jeez I am such a chump!!! He didn’t admit to the affair until this last affair. So that one was over 37 years ago!! What a bitch. She actually had the nerve to stop by our office a few months ago. I had to act decent so as not to let anyone on to what she had been. A duplicitous, opportunistic bitch. So I took the high road and acted as if she were nothing but a former employee. BUT she better not do it again or she will get an earful whispered to her.

    So yeah, friendship is overrated as far as I’m concerned.

    • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 10:35 pm #

      Hi TryingHard,
      Unfortunately I know what you mean by being burned by some women. I have always had and will always have issues with the ones who still act like they are in high school. There are a lot of grown up “mean girls.” I have not given up though and try to follow my intuition. There are some real gems out there, so don’t give up. They do exist but they require a lot of effort to find. I have met cool women through volunteer organizations that I help with. Usually, I have found that women who are willing to volunteer at the food bank or Habitat for Humanity are pretty cool. On the other hand, you are lucky to be your own best friend. I miss having a big group of female friends like in college but it just gets harder when life kicks in. I will probably always try to make new friends but I rely on my intuition. I can get a read on someone after spending about 15 minutes face to face. Sometimes I can get a vibe off of someone instantly. I have noticed that a lot of adult women want to have male friends though. And it’s always hard when someone at my husband’s work tries to friend him. When I say friend I mean someone who wants to spend all day telling my husband her deepest, most secret problems and wanting him tone emotionally invested in her. That’s how emotional affairs start. He is super chatty with everyone at work and this has always been his personality. So he has a surface comraderie with everyone and that’s fine. It’s when women mis-read it and think he will be their new BFF who is at their beck and call for emotional problems and issues that have nothing to do with work. I am not jealous as much as I am cursed with being able to read motives very quickly. I can read in 10 minutes something about a person that would take another person years to discover. It’s a curse because it comes off as judgemental. But now my husband has seen that I am never wrong when I read motives and he thinks it’s a spooky gift that he doesn’t understand. At least these days he trusts me when I tell him about the motives of both male and female coworkers and who to trust and why. Hey Trying, if you ever wanted to tell me the story you had with your mom I have a new email address. Anyone can email me privately if they wish to ask a question that they want kept confidential. Here is the address:

      sarah.emotionalaffair.org@gmail.com

      Thanks! ??

      • TryingHard July 25, 2016 at 8:38 am #

        Sarah
        I know there are plenty of good people out there and I would love to do volunteer work. Ian’s I would live to do volunteer work at The Childrens hospital. But I work very full time, I do things with my grandchildren , my husband and I travel and well I’m just tired. I’m ok not having friends. Friends are a lot of work and I just don’t have it in me anymore to work that hard. Also I have developed a lot of anxiety almost an agoraphobia. After I’m with people I go over everything I said or did and wonder if I said or did anything wrong. It’s crazy I know but it’s still there. A lot of people know what happened with my h having an affair and leaving me. I feel people judge me and it’s just too much. Even though it’s been years since OW worked at our business there are still employees that were there when she was there and they love telling all the new employees about her. It never goes away even years later. So I’m pretty guarded when it comes to personal interactions.

        So pretty much seeking out new friendships is just too exhausting a proposition right now for me.

        Thanks for the email. I will send you the story sometime today

        • Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 12:30 pm #

          I struggle with friendships now. I have chosen not to share anything related to the betrayals with my friends. But now I feel that a huge part of my life is a secret. I mean this has been a huge part of every day for me now for 15 months. My friends have noticed I am more distanced, text less, lost weight, less connected. My friends share my morals and personality. My friends would be a huge support, I am not sure though that I feel they could really help since as far as I know they have not been through this. I worry that it would negatively impact our couples time together. I worry that the more people that know my kids might find out. In some ways I am okay with it. I really am a very content person and enjoy time alone but it is hard having any quality relationships. I also think part of it is the fear of others letting me down too.

        • Sarah P. July 27, 2016 at 12:20 am #

          Hi Trying,
          I totally get where you are coming from 100%. Too bad that this has to effect you, your business, and your family to this day. Infidelity is just the “gift that keeps on giving.” I am being sarcastic of course. I am pretty sure that I would be very guarded with people too if I had gone through what you went through. Affairs can cause chronic anxiety and when there are often triggers that just makes anxiety worse. I would assume the employees telling new employees about her would be a trigger. It kind of keeps it alive in a way when they do that and that really stinks.

        • Strengthrequired July 27, 2016 at 8:23 am #

          Th, like you I prefer my own company as well. No longer to I keep close girl friends, I very rarely like visiting people either. I don’t trust anyone like I used to. So I guess it is more of a way at protecting myself.
          I do not mind talking to people, ones I know or don’t know, but I will not let myself get close.
          Somehow I thought I was the only one that felt this way, that was until I read your post. I love being with my children, but when they aren’t around I prefer to be by myself, I don’t like talking on the phone, I just like the peacefulness of having no dramas.
          We are actually going out on the weekend with a couple my ch knows and their family, and all I can think of is, how much they know about what we went through. The husband came racing over to my ch one day at the beginning of his affair and asked him if he was alright. That was because I had just walked into our factory. When he did that all I thought was my ch told you something and made me out to be the villain. I still feel he knows, although my ch insists he doesn’t. Yet even if he didn’t know, he would have seen my ch with his ow, so he definitely knows.
          So now I have to spend the whole day with these people. Ohh the sheer joy I’m feeling, not….

          • TheFirstWife July 27, 2016 at 11:50 am #

            SR. I am sorry you feel this way and do not trust people. I certainly understand. After the ordeal you went through it would be hard to know who to trust anymore.

            My therapist would have a whole different take on your feelings of shame and hiding because of the OW and affair. He would tell me that the BS has NOTHING to be ashamed of. The CS should be ashamed.

            I was someone who could not understand a spouse who remained with a CS. Now that I am in this situation I see things differently.

            But you should not feel ashamed. Your CH should. My therapist would say it should not matter what others think but what you think.

            It took me a long time to get on board with that notion.

            So I do still trust people to a certain extent. Until they give me reason not to. I have chosen not to let his affair impact my life to the point I am unhappy or miserable every day. Or to the point I am a jealous and controlling wife.

            If he wants to cheat he will. If I find out good-bye. But I don’t believe I can stop him from cheating on me. He has to make that choice.

            I have many friends and if they know, they know my H was a CS. If they listen to gossip and rumours then let them. I really don’t cate b/c at the end of the day it is my choice to make.

            I think you can trust. You just need to have trust on your terms. Don’t build a wall around yourself because there are good people out there. It is unfortunate the rotten apples affect the good ones.

            • Strengthrequired July 27, 2016 at 4:07 pm #

              Tfw, it’s not like I don’t trust anyone because I can’t, I just choose not to. I think now it is more like, let them show me they can be trusted first. I go out and meet people, have a laugh etc, but that’s as far as it goes. I will not get close, I just don’t feel like it.
              I have lost so many friends, and even the closeness I had with my side of the family, since my ch affair. His affair changed so many things for me, that in the end I liked being on my own, and away from drama.
              I definately know that I have nothing to be ashamed of, I’m not ashamed, I just don’t like being around people that have been told things about me that were not true. Iykwim. Especially when you don’t know what they have been told, but as we all know here, is the Cs will make themselves look really victimised by their terrible bs, just to make themselves look better, when caught in their affair, by friends or family. These people don’t know me, as my ch is good friends with them, knows them well.
              i know it’s more, why did my ch stay with me, the terrible wife that made him so miserable that he had to cheat.
              Honestly, I don’t really care if anyone wonders why I stayed with my ch, I saw what he went through, yet he found his way back after the ow dragged him down to rock bottom. I look at it this way, someone had to show him the right way and help him, so who better than someone that actually loves him, me.. I just don’t know if I could have forgiven myself if I didn’t at least try.
              I guess I won’t ever understand why these Cs fall so deep and so hard, especially when they know it isn’t good for them, so they fall deeper and harder, as they try and cover up how they feel. It’s also hard watching someone you love and care about continually falling until they finally hit rock bottom. I think my ch needed to hit rock bottom, before he realised for himself enough was enough, it’s time to get up.

          • TryingHard July 27, 2016 at 12:28 pm #

            SR–I feel your pain having to spend time with these people. And TFW is correct, you hold your beautiful head high. You did nothing wrong. But yes I know the feeling that the other people may be judging you as well for continuing your relationship with a known cheater. UGH it’s paralyzing, you don’t know what to do or say. So yes we choose to build walls and stay to ourselves. It’s safer that way. Some may say lonelier but I don’t feel lonely at all. I happen to think friendship is WAYYYY over rated.

            People say “surround yourself with good people and those that love you.” Well I thought that’s what I WAS doing. It’s hard to even trust your OWN judgement after one continues to be betrayed time and time again let alone trust anyone else. After all we’ve been so wrong about others we’ve trusted in the past!

            LOL, you should know by now that none of us are alone in these thoughts we have, be them irrational or not, after betrayal. We may be only “cyber friends” but I think you are a beautifully wonderful woman whom ANY man should consider himself lucky enough to call you his wife!

            • Strengthrequired July 27, 2016 at 4:38 pm #

              Th, you know if we were closer in proximity, I would hang out with you, that’s for sure. You are a beautiful cyber friend. Thankyou for your kind words.
              No doubt I will have a bit of anxiety come that day, probably worse than the anxiety I get when I go places that I know the ow went with my ch, or where she could be. I try to avoid these areas as much as possible.
              It’s true, it’s hard to trust your own judgement, I have questioned myself a lot over the years, even kicked myself a few times, lol.
              Yet I truly like the time I have to myself, granted a lot of it, yet it gives me time to think about improving my mind in a more positive way. Where as for a long time, if I was on my own, I would always think of my ch his ow and their affair. I have distanced myself a lot over the years from those thoughts.
              Nowadays, I don’t think much about the ow or the affair anymore, which has been a huge relief, because as you know it gets tiring.
              I just soak up the love I have for my kids and they have for me.
              You know th, it’s more for me of being judged by others not for staying with my ch, but more of what’s wrong with her, that made her husband cheat. How I must have been a terrible person. You see, these people only get one version, and that is normally by the person they are closet too, in the relationship. In this case my ch.
              so like you, we had given many chances for our Cs to leave, but they wouldn’t, so we must not have been as bad as what we were made out to be, yet these people don’t know that do they?
              They can judge me as much as they want, i just don’t like the anxiety that goes along with it.
              At least my kids will be there with us, they will make me laugh.
              Just so you know, any man would be proud to call you his wife too. Thanks lovely. I am relieved I am not alone in my feelings, that’s for sure. I should have known after all we have been through, I wouldn’t be the only one lol.

              • TheFirstWife July 27, 2016 at 10:45 pm #

                Strength I think your moniker says it all. It takes strength and courage and more to try and rebuild after infidelity.

                But you should not let other people’s opinions allow you to feel bad. I had difficulty dealing with the “what will people think” mentality.

                But as my thetapist stated over & over you shoukd not allow others to judge you and make decisions based on other’s opinions.

                Your H should be ashamed and hiding himself. Not you. any idiot who believes what your H said about you is just not worth focusing on. He is a liar. All fingers point to his character flaws, not yours.

                If someone started running down their spouse to me, I would quickly think that there is something wrong with them for talking like that about their spouse. Half the time I think guys go and say stuff just to see if the other party may be interested in starting something. I always thought they were jerks.

                I think all of us here would be loyal and trustworthy friends to each other, after all we have been through. ❤️

                • Strengthrequired July 28, 2016 at 9:04 pm #

                  Tfw,Thankyou, after all we have been through, at least we know that through all the turmoil and despair there are like minded people out there that have the same values and morals that we share.
                  im sure we would all be great friends.

          • theresa August 5, 2016 at 2:00 pm #

            trust your gut not the liar.
            I have always wondered what motivates the CS when he parades the BS in front of people that “know”? What planet orbit (friend, work, family, recreation, …..etc).with him as the sun, does this performance inhabit

  17. TDP July 23, 2016 at 10:58 am #

    I blame both, because both my CS and the OW knew he was married! In my situation the OW made initial contact, they discussed the fact that he was married, but that didn’t stop them. I agree that men will tell the OW what they want to justify what they are doing, as I read many email exchanges that were found after the affair, that were like that. But I also think the OW said derogatory things about me to plant those seeds of doubt, ie when I confronted him about morning, noon and night calls with texts in between to her number, her comment was what business was it of mine who he talks to, why did he let me control him. She even ramped up the pursuit by sending him nude photo’s to let him know what he would be missing out on. I think the more of a challenge it is to these types of women, the more they thrive on it. They have to make themselves feel better some how. But, in the end it was my CS who allowed it to happen. After I found all the emails and photos and confronted them separately, the blame game and lies were overwhelming. This was a women who made him out to be a predator, but what I didn’t tell her was I had the emails and photos, until I listen to her “side” of the story. She informed me that she couldn’t go out into public without being constantly hit on, even when she had no make up on. That he wouldn’t stop pursuing her, even though she let him know she wasn’t interested and finally she had to break their friendship off and did it for me and my kids. That’s when I quoted a few of the emails and mentioned if it was just a friendship and he was pursuing her against her will why was she telling him that she loved him and why was she sending him nude photos of herself and how was all of this for the kids and I. It was amazing how defensive she got. She also asked what he said about them, when I told her he had said she actively pursued him and that it was all a huge mistake that she meant nothing to him, it got even uglier. I could tell the comment hurt her feelings, and I took great pleasure in knowing that. I know that is mean to say, but she deserved it. At this point contact had ended between the two of them, but it didn’t matter how it ended or who walked away, it happened and forever changing a 24 year relationship. Just to be clear, I confronted him about the calls and texts which of course were work related. I did my research on her, called the person she listed on Facebook as her boyfriend, under a different name and blocked my number, I told him she was a homewrecker. She messaged me the very next day, telling me how dare I accuse her. Well my question to her was if someone was contacting her about being a homewrecker why was she messaging me was she having an affair with my husband? Her response was, I’m not going to throw him under the bus, you need to talk to your spouse and keep me out of it. Then of course he just denied it saying it was just work related, that I needed to stop being insecure and accusing him and ruin an innocent persons life. This was two days after Valentine’s day when I didn’t get gifts I found on a receipt in his truck. After that they only made contact through his work phone and emails. Which I was able to read a few months later when he left his laptop open and on his work account. I knew I would have proof at some point and I would just have to be patient in my pursuit of it. More power to people who can rebuild after this, I just don’t see how that can happen, when the person you are supposed to trust lies to your face on a constant basis for months, puts you down to justify their actions and doesn’t defend you when you are being put down, and tells you that you are imagining things and are insecure. How do you rebuild all that’s been lost? And the women who do this are obviously in need of some serious counseling! This OW moved on to her next victim and destroyed yet another relationship. They can justify it however they want, but they are just plain crazy!

    • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 11:38 pm #

      Hi TDP,
      That sounds like the OW was very predatory. She knew exactly what she was doing and what she needed to do to break him. Sure he went along with it but she has paved the way and rolled out the proverbial red carpet leading to her naked body. Some women know sex is a weapon against men. It is the weakness of most men. She knew that and upped the anti until he gave in. May I ask if this was in an office setting? If it was, I can tell you that I have personally seen women go after taken men. There was a woman I worked with who did this. But she was also married. A lot of men found her attractive and she went out of her way to make herself look attractive. Her husband who was a sweet and shy man worked at the company as well. I watch her go after a director who was 30 years received after she announced to me and another woman that she would be our supervisor within a year. She was a new hire and did not even have the degree to work in the field but she used her sexuality to get the job as well. She pretty much told a couple of us women upfront what she was going to do and almost dared us to start talking because she knew that we would not be believed. She was able to play the “nice, naïve girl” on a dime. Anyhow, she slept with him, got her job, and then said he raped her so he was fired. He lost his wife and 6 kids too. I got to experience her going after my boyfriend at the time as well. She was doing not just because she loved to mess with other women on the team. She got high from harming others. Anyhow, she was not my boyfriend’s type and he told me everything that was going down and everything that she was trying. He did not fall under her control, she upped the ante in terms of playing with him. One day he was leading a business meeting and she sat next to him. He scooted away. So, she literally grabbed his balls under the table. So he scooted further. For that she grabbed his balls so hard that he almost jumped out of his seat. He never told anyone except for me what had occurred because this was before the affair with the director came out and so no one would have believed him at the time. He did not cheat with her but did cheat with an equally aggressive woman after we were engaged and close to the wedding. I told that story to Em further up in the comments. The point is, you would not believe how some women act unless you witness the craziness. I absolutely do believe this coworker was a sociopath and sex was her weapon. A lot of seemingly good men fell under her spell before her fall from grace. Her husband worked on the very same floor as our team and she carried on the affair with the married director as well as two other guys at the same time. Her husband was very trusting and he didn’t see her true colors until the thing with the director came out. I have seen predatory women do things that you normally only see in bad movies. Sure, men have to take the bait and some women will go to great measures to wear a man down.

      • Sarah P July 23, 2016 at 11:49 pm #

        PS-
        TDP, I think many choose to stay in their marriages for several reasons:

        1) In the long run, most men don’t want to leave for the affair partner

        2) cheaters often still love their spouse

        3) the betrayed spouse has a long history with the wayward spouse. Often an affair provides a couple with the opportunity to really communicate. Sometimes affairs are like SOS messages even though one would never dream that could be the case.

        4) often an affair does not kill the love the betrayed spouse has for the wayward spouse. The BS may have lost trust, but not love.

        5) if both partners want to work in the marriage after an affair there really is no reason to leave for many people.

        6) who wants to see the other woman win? When she causes a bitter divorce she has won at destroying a family. No it’s not rational but truly “nice people” would never want to steal someone else’s husband. Always remember that what makes a nice person are the behaviors in which they engage. Nice or not nice is a choice each of us makes each day.

        Anyhow, those are some of the reasons many couples choose to stay together.

        I can see your side as well. When my fiancé did what he did there was no second chance. His actions due to the affair were so heinous that there was nothing left to rebuild. I washed my hands of it when he tried to come back. In fact, when he tried to come back he was still seeing her. I think he missed having some kind of sick love triangle. That just added insult to all the injury!!

      • Doug July 25, 2016 at 9:02 am #

        This came to our email account by mistake. It’s from TDP:

        Sarah P, this was not an office setting. My CS was a salesman who sold her a car. A few weeks after she purchases her car, she began contacting him about buying a van for her families business. This is why he told me it was work related. Maybe this was all part of getting a good deal who knows, but she absolutely used her body to get what she wanted. In the emails I read, when he told her he wouldn’t go on a trip with her, that is when she broke it off. I think she thought he would just pack up and go with her, and when he wouldn’t she broke it off threatening him if he didn’t go she wouldn’t continue with him. He didn’t go, because of course how was he going to hide that?”

        • Sarah P. July 27, 2016 at 12:05 am #

          Hi TDP,

          Well, I guess she was one of women who was delusional enough to think the guy could come with the car. Or she was the type who was using her body to get a discount. Pathetic, either way you slice it. I am glad she dumped your husband. She needs a warning sign on her head though.

          • Doug July 27, 2016 at 8:36 am #

            This came to our email account by mistake. It’s from TDP:

            Sarah, she needs a big warning sign stamped to her forehead. And I do think she tried to work a good deal and was doing a little gold digging along the way. But are women like that so stupid that they don’t realize the men will have nothing left when the BS is done with then. I do take some pleasure in knowing that a tree feel on the car she purchased from him. I also find it a bit ironic that my CS is the one claiming to be the victim, because she used him to get what she wanted then walked away, like that’s supposed to make me feel sorry for him. He doesn’t see that not cheating would have been a better option. He also has never come clean with anything, only what I found and can prove. He said he had not interest in discussing what happened between them. Hard to rebuild without disclosure or truths.

            • Sarah P. July 27, 2016 at 9:10 pm #

              Hi TDP,
              That is a funny story about the car. Instant Karma!

              I understand your frustration. Personally, I would be really angry if my husband did that and he would only admit to things that I could prove. That is INFURIATING. Does he seem to have any remorse?

              When he frames himself as a victim, you need to remind him that he was victimizing YOU by having an affair with another woman. He is not the victim but simply angry that she got one over on him. The trickster was tricked and he is not happy about it. He was beat at his own game and it didn’t feel good. So, never, ever let him frame himself as a victim. He was the victimizer who got a taste of his own medicine from an unexpected source and it just didn’t feel good to be used. Now did it?

              Are you thinking of rebuilding? Honestly, I would hire a private detective and see if you have a serial cheater on your hands. I would want to know that before deciding to rebuild. My theory is that if a man is a serial cheater it’s better to run, not walk, the other way. It feels terrible that he was able to fool you, but it will feel worse if you stay and he continues to fool you for the next 20 years. If I were you I would be livid.

              • Doug July 29, 2016 at 1:42 pm #

                This came to our email. It’s from TSD:

                Sarah P, I love that karma gave her a pice of what she deserved! I might have even song a tune from the wizard of oz when I heard about it. Lol.
                The only remorse he has is getting caught. He blamed it on everyone else and everything else, but has never once said that it was his fault. I think the hit to his ego is why he feels like a victim and as you said, the trickster got tricked and it didn’t feel good.
                I know that we can’t rebuild, I also know that I don’t need to hire a private detective to see if he is a serial cheater, because I put spyware on his laptop and know his passwords and have caught him via Facebook messaging 3 other women since the first EA. Just caught him again in the November messaging his cousins wife, and even though I know he would have never actually done anything with her, he said things, in his words, “joking around” that have left our marriage an existence of shared space. He refuses to get help for what I feel is a habitual as well as mental issues, and I can’t ever trust him again. I am working with a counselor to help me work though all of this so I can move on. It’s interesting to read others posts about distancing yourself from others. The only people I currently enjoy spending time with is my kids. I know many people know about some of the cheating incidents and like others have said it’s embarrassing, degrading and extremely humiliating. I also know what others mean when they talk about having triggers. When I hear others say phrases that the OW said or hear the tune that he listened to every day when he was having his affair, or i see things in the paper from her families business, it sets me off. I hate that I’m several years out and each time I have one of these triggers it feels like it just happened. And each time I’ve found him telling someone else how sexy they are it opens that wound all over again. I know this relationship is not salvageable, but I just need to find my own strength to make that first step and move on.

                • Sarah P. July 30, 2016 at 11:01 pm #

                  Hi TSD,

                  It sounds like the relationship is NOT salvageable. My best friend dated someone like this, but the guy she dated was probably worse. He did such a mind trip on her that is changed her. She is recovering, but still has triggers. It took me talking to her for an hour each day over the phone trying to tell her that the guy was mind-screwing her again. His manipulations knew no limits. The one thing I do know about him was that he was so damaged due to his childhood that it was impossible to have a relationship with him (unless a woman wanted to be emotionally destroyed.) Some men are that harmful and it’s best to get away from them. I don’t know if your H is there are not– you know best.

  18. TryingHard July 23, 2016 at 10:42 pm #

    Hey Josie–the best advice I can give you is one day at a time. You are not going to “fix” your relationship is a certain amount of days, if ever. Give yourself some time. If today was good, let it be good. Maybe tomorrow will be even better and then the day after is shit. That’s how recovery goes.

    Make sure your husband us doing everything he can to help you recover and that means no contact, complete transparency , and comple honesty. And even if he dies all this you still may not want to move forward with your relationship and that’s ok.

    While you don’t give yourself a timetable you need to set one for your h and his progress. People can change but it takes a whole lot of effort and time.

  19. TryingHard July 25, 2016 at 8:46 am #

    Em
    I don’t know if your question was to me about red flags but here goes.

    The OW from 30+ years ago. Yes I had red flags but dismissed them to my own paranoia. My false sense of “devoted friendship” over ride those red flags. The most recent OW? YES. Many red flags. First time I met her before my husband hired her I got a creepy feeling about her and a very clear thought that she was the type of person who would go after my husband. After she came to work for him there were MANY red flags. Again I called them up to paranoia and dismissed them. And my h is very good at gaslighting. I even found an earring in the back seat one day when we were cleaning his car. He denied denied denied and I thought I was crazy thinking it was an OWs earring. He even continued to carry the earring in his car for months after I found it in case we found the woman to whom it belonged. Yes they are very good at being snakes. Both my husband and the OWs

  20. TryingHard July 25, 2016 at 12:58 pm #

    Hi First Wife– I hear what you are saying but I have a problem with you judging why betrayed wives stay with their husbands. I guess I am just sensitive. But I’m certainly not in this marriage for any kind of power, prestige or $$ and I doubt you are either nor any of the other BS’s here.

    I think it’s wrong to cast judgement on BW that are in the media without casting judgement on all of us.

    And yes, we are stupid for staying in a marriage where we KNOW what the risk is. All of us.

    • TheFirstWife July 25, 2016 at 2:25 pm #

      TH. My point was not to judge why women stay. I was pointing out public figures or famous spouses whose Hs are SERIAL cheaters.

      They jump from wife to wife and I suspect each wife believes it won’t happen to them. They will be the one to make the cheating stop.

      For public people who have no problem with $ I do wonder why they stay married. As for Hillary Clinton she is not stupid. It is known that her H has continued to cheat on her. I know she stays married in part for her career aspirations. But it must be a living nightmare living in that kind of marriage – where you as the spouse are not valued or loved.

      I am not in judgement. I am in a marriage with a H who has cheated more than once. I question myself every day. I walk around not knowing what the future holds. But my H is trying to make amends and he is remorseful.

      I am aware of how some people view spouses who stay in a marriage after being cheated on. I was one of those people. Judgemental and I thought I knew what I would do if my spouse cheated. Out the door fast was what I thought. And then I made a different decision however there are rules with my staying married. And if I suspect anything then I will leave.

      What I was trying to say was that if my H was a serial cheater I would not stay. If he was the kind of guy who had no remorse or guilt and plainly just did not care how his actions affected his spouse, why stay married. It is not a good situation and I believe I would rather be alone.

      I could never be Mrs. Cosby. I could not live with a man like that. I could not be married to someone so twisted.

      So in certain cases I guess I sm a bit judgemental. But not b/c the spouse cheated. There is much more to it than that.

      I hope this clarifies my position.

  21. Hopeful July 25, 2016 at 1:35 pm #

    One thing I will not do is blame myself. My husband was an expert at gaslighting and telling me what my issues were. I continually would bring up our relationship and marriage over the 10 affair years and what we could do if I felt distance or an issue. And he always told me basically it was my fault or issue and he had work excuse etc that really could not be argued with. Also his affairs were sporadic so it was not like he was with these women a lot. The one he only saw three times over 10 years. And they would go 6-12 months at a time without communication. I still struggle and with hindsight am frustrated I did not realize more but again when someone is covert and lying to you all the time when directly asked about women I have to not blame myself. Still not easy all the time.

  22. TryingHard July 25, 2016 at 3:14 pm #

    I don’t know what is in Hillary’s mind or whether or not she has an agenda to staying married to her husband. I’ve never had that conversation with her. I also don’t know if Bill is still having affairs. Could be, but I sure as hell don’t believe what the media says. I have no idea how Mrs Cosby lives her life nor do I care. I do think her husband is a sick predator but that is no reflection on her as a person.

    I never thought I would stay if my h had another affair. Yep, even confidently said how that jerk would be thrown to the curb and yet……

    All I know is I am happy as hell for Hillary. Here is a woman who is brilliant in her own right and is set to become the first female leader of the free world. One’s own politics not withstanding, it’s going to happen.

    And I will tell you when she won the final primary and came out on that stage smiling and waving I felt proud of her. Here is a woman who could have let, not only her husband’s shame put her away and defeat her, but she didn’t and she persevered despite the humiliation of his cheating. I even had tears in my eyes. Take that unemployed Monica Lewinsky you miserable cockroach!!!!

    So you could say I admire her from a personal point of view, not her politics. I can’t guess what goes on in their house or anyone else’s for that matter. Maybe just maybe she truly loves and needs him on a personal level. No one knows, certainly not me and it is a waste of time to guess and assume. But you are certainly free to believe whatever you hear or read about the Clintons.

    But it seems as accomplished and educated as she is she could have done all this on her own even if she had tossed that cheating asshole to the curb. Look at Madelaine Albright. She did just fine after she and her husband divorced. Yes he was cheating on her while married. So I don’t believe Hillary needed Bill at all to fulfill her political aspirations or anything else she needed to do in her life. She’s a different breed of woman. I cannot even imagine being in her shoes.

    Just my opinion.

  23. TryingHard July 25, 2016 at 3:17 pm #

    Hopeful
    That is what sociopaths say to set up their victims. They don’t want to get married. They are creating a false sense of safety for the MM. LOL the last thing a MM wants to hear from his affair partner, especially early on is, “ooooo let’s get married”. Of course she said she didn’t want to marry him. It’s all part of the script she puts out there thinking she’s playing cool.

    • Hopeful July 27, 2016 at 2:42 pm #

      I find it so odd thought they never really got close. He does not know very much about these women and their lives. He has no idea if their parents are alive or dead, if they grew up in a divorced family, about their friends etc. I mean i figured if you cheat with someone there is something there or you have a connection with someone. And I did ask if our kids ever met these women or were at the same location. He looked at me like i was psychotic and said he would never want them to be anywhere near our kids he thinks that little of them. He really had separate lives. I mean I just read so many stories where the cheating couple are friends first and then it evolves. From everything I can tell not for them. He said he worked hard to not learn or get involved in their lives. I understand that then where is the fun. He already has real life with us. He was just escaping and wanted fun.

      • TheFirstWife July 27, 2016 at 3:00 pm #

        Hopeful. It may be his fun was in the escape It was a relationship on his terms. No deep conversation or real feelings.

        Just a very superficial situation.

  24. exercisegrace July 25, 2016 at 7:08 pm #

    For those who think the affair partner has no responsibility because they aren’t married to the betrayed spouse, think again. You are essentially saying that you do not believe in ANYONE living by a moral code. I am not an employee of Target and therefore I have “responsibility” to protect the assets of that company. But if I see someone shoplifting, I will report it to the manager. And I am certainly NOT going to help them carry their stolen goods to their car, LOL. Need a non-legal example? What if your friend Bob was going to buy some property from another friend Joe, at a very reasonable price. Bob laughs when he tells you what he is doing, and that he is going to make a KILLING on this because he knows the state is going to soon buy up the same property (at a premium price) to put a new highway through. You know Joe and his wife are hardworking people, and they could use that extra money to put their kids through college and get their retirement on track. Being cheated out of that money will have some very negative long-term consequences for them.

    My husband and his whore are both 100% responsible for their own choices. My husband broke his marriage vows. He exposed me to disease. He betrayed his children and family. He risked our financial future by bringing his whore into our business. He squandered tens of thousands of dollars on this undeserving skank, and worse, he squandered TIME that he will never be able to get back with his children. Our oldest is off to university and I doubt THAT relationship will ever fully be rebuilt, simply because she hasn’t lived at home for several years and hasn’t seen his remorse and hard work. The whore is responsible for HER choices. She admitted she pursued him aggressively. That she took advantage of their years-long friendship and his depression. She has a history of chasing after older married men for financial gain, and the sick pleasure of destroying marriages. She was around our family enough to KNOW our children were struggling and hurting when their father was absent so much. She actively encouraged him to believe they were ungrateful brats and undeserving of him. The list could go on and on and on. We ALL have a moral responsibility in this world. To believe otherwise is the first step towards insanity and a very slippery slope to destruction.

    • Sam July 26, 2016 at 4:25 pm #

      Is your husband still with (said: whore)?

      • Exercisegeace July 26, 2016 at 8:35 pm #

        No, he ended the affair without getting caught. Although I had strong suspicions. She outed the affair by lawyering up and trying to sue us a year later. He foolishly involved her in his business and paid her a six figure salary she didn’t come close to earning. She was determined that he reignite the affair or pay dearly when she left the company. When she realized she had well and truly been thrown to the curb where she belonged, it got ugly. She stalked and harassed me and my older two kids online. She is a true bunny boiler.

  25. Exercisegrace July 26, 2016 at 8:36 pm #

    Oops! Mistyped my username above!

  26. Patsy50 July 28, 2016 at 7:33 am #

    I believe both the OW and my husband are 100% to blame in their EA. They both knew it was wrong period.

  27. TryingHard July 28, 2016 at 6:27 pm #

    SR
    AWWW you’re so sweet 🙂 You know we’d be friends. I can’t tell you how happy to hear you aren’t focused on the OW who shall NOT be named. I know you like myself have struggled with that. Time can be amazing right? And besides she isn’t worth the real estate in your head.

    I agree it’s also the people who judge, and yes the DO judge even if the profess up and down they don’t, and wonder what we the BS did to force the poor cheaterpants to have to go look outside the marriage. Well you know what people who think that are ignorant and I wish nothing but the same as what we have experienced to teach them not to be so judgmental. But people do that in order to protect themselves. They really believe well “if I always do this or don’t do that or make sure I look like this or that, he won’t cheat” Little do they know the betrayed have NO control over it EVER.

    So as I said you hold your pretty head high and just know deep inside if these people are thinking these thoughts they are just ignorant and too bad for them.

    • Strengthrequired July 31, 2016 at 8:13 pm #

      Th, do you want to hear something funny.? My husbands friends whom we were supposed to go out with, and who nagged him to go out that day, slept in and weren’t even sure if they were going to go anywhere. My husband told them to stay home, not to worry. We ended up having a lovely day out with our kids. What a good day it turned out to be, lol….
      Your right, these people don’t know what it is like until it happens to them, so as much, as they judge the people that go through it, they have no clue.
      Time certainly does help with recovering, I remember thinking in the early stages, that I just wanted to be years away from the affair, so it would nolonger hurt as much. Well it took a while, but now it is years away, and it truly doesn’t hurt as much any more, just scar tissue.
      time certainly does bring healing along with it.

  28. TryingHard August 1, 2016 at 10:27 am #

    SR

    LOL I can’t believe they didn’t show. UGH jerks.

    But here you worried all week about possibly having to meet with them and it didn’t come to pass. All that worrying for nothing right?? This is why it’s so important to focus on YOU and no one and nothing else. Well in your case you have babies so there is them to consider too 🙂 And still even when you are focused on your darling children you seem to be very happy so they are a positive part of your focusing on you and what makes you happy.

    It’s so important that we truly believe the meme, “what other people think of us is NONE of our business>” And it’s true. But in many cases we need to choose carefully those with whom we choose to share our time. Time is the only thing you can’t get back in life and why waste it on those that don’t matter??

    Happy week dear one.

    • Strengthrequired August 5, 2016 at 8:44 pm #

      Hey th, Thankyou again, how’s that another week done and dusted. Going pretty fast lately. Yes, you are right, what other people think of us is none of our business. Now let’s try and practice it. Lol.
      I love it when my little one sits next to me, and snuggles into me and says “I love you mummy”. She melts my heart every time.
      I think we all need to remember time can’t be taken back, so why waste it on those that don’t matter, is spot on.
      I hope your week was a happy one.

  29. TryingHard August 5, 2016 at 8:41 am #

    Mary

    You did the right thing. DO NOT ENGAGE HER. Do not respond to her and yes get a restraining order. She is harassing you. Log EVERYTHING and take it to your lawyer. You are breastfeeding their is NO judge that will allow overnights. Or maybe let them have overnights where mayhem will ensue because the baby won’t eat. Let’s see how the little love nest goes then

    Look her text is nothing original. It’s truly cliche. Haha happiness?? Yes that’s all that matters is ones happiness. And your h is NOT going to kill himself because of you or anyone else. Saying that is manipulation. You really need to find counseling during this time. For yours and your children’s sake. And whatever you do DO NOT ENGAGE HER in any kind of conversation. I doubt this is how the conversation went down and I truly believe she is feeling their relationship is threatened. I’m sure he’s expressed remorse to her and they are probably fighting. Just a guess but I’ve seen it happen before. Happy people don’t act like this.

    • Mary August 5, 2016 at 9:32 am #

      TryingHard —

      Good I hope so hahaha. She acts like I’ve been trying to break them up. I don’t even talk to her. I haven’t responded to a text or anything in months. I have tried telling him that she’s not worth it, but he obviously is not smart enough to figure that out. I want to march up to the friend of the court with this text & show them what kind of psychopath my husband is dating. My friend told me that he sees a lot of guilt in that text & that they are just trying to put all the blame on someone other than themselves.

      I thought the same thing about their “happiness” & how they have something that no one can understand. It sounds like something straight out of every article I’ve seen about what affair partners say. If they were so haply, they wouldn’t care about me or what I’m doing. I’m not trying to ruin their happiness, I don’t care, but what I do care about is who my husband has around when my kids are with him & she is a lying, manipulative crazy person & my kids don’t need that. I’m going to have my brother in law talk to my husband & ask him to talk to him about being suicidal. If he actually is, he needs to get help or I will be talking to a judge to get the children out of his care.

      I was in counseling, but I haven’t gone since before the baby was born, so I should probably go again. Thanks for your input. You all make me feel so much better about the situation.

  30. TryingHard August 5, 2016 at 11:42 am #

    Mary
    One thing I’d like to advise you on is real self care during this time. You have 3 little ones that need you and you cannot take care of them unless you take care of you first. Just like they say on airplanes “put your oxygen mask on first.”

    When I went through what you are going through I didn’t have children at home and wasn’t working. I was a mess, A MESS, so I know what you are feeling and thinking. I don’t know what I would have done had I had to be a responsible person with children and a job.

    Reaching out to us here that have experienced the same as you is a good start. There are many brilliant, empathic people here and just hearing their story helps immensely for you psyche. Praying and knowing God is there for you during times like this is comforting too but God helps those who help themselves. God will lead you and it’s imperative to listen. You must empower yourself and the way you do that is lawyering up and finding a counselor that has experience in infidelity. Watch out there are LOTS of charlatans out there. Surround yourself with people who have your back and let go of those that don’t. I hope you have family that are there for you to help with the children when you have cried your eyeballs out, haven’t eaten in days and LOL look like something the cat has dragged in.

    When you lawyer up go No Contact with your husband. He’s chosen his bed. Make sure ALL communication is done through lawyers and make sure you get a bad ass one. He will suggest sharing lawyers DO NOT DO THIS, DO NOT DO THIS. It is NOT in your best interest to share lawyers. Get that restraining order against her ASAP. She is a dangerous person. Who knows what instigated that text but I have a feeling she is feeling threatened. Seems to me your husband would have sent that text if he’s so damn happy happy, not her. She means nothing to you and has no place in your or your children’s lives especially as the girlfriend of a married man. The courts have seen this crap before and it will weigh in their decision regardless if you are in a no fault state.

    Try to find some gratitude in the small things. The wonder of your beautiful children, the stars outside at night, a walk on beautiful summer day seriously, anything. I promise it will lift your mood. Eat what you like or don’t eat at all if you don’t want but you must keep up your energy and clear head. If there was EVER a time you needed a clear head it is now. When the children are with him go out with a friend to a movie or dinner or shopping or coffee but make sure they are supportive friends and not just curiosity seekers. Many of those will come around, trust me!

    There’s also tons of books out there and LOTS of blogs with lots of good advice. Also if you haven’t read Sarah P’s last post about the OW do. It’s full of good advice.

    Hugs to you and I am praying for strength and empowerment for you.

    • Strengthrequired August 5, 2016 at 8:31 pm #

      Mary, get that restraining order, don’t lett that ow near your children. What good can come of her being around your children? None. Who cares if they blame you, that is their problem, not yours. You are protecting your children from their shit show. Your ch chose his bed, now let him lie in it.
      Do you think your ch may have been going through a depression of some sort, which could have made him an easy target for the ow? Many ch here went through midlife, depression, which resulted into their affairs, my ch was one of them. My ch became worse in his depression the longer he was with the ow, and the longer he was with her, he even started drinking and smoking to help make himself feel better when around her.
      She is threatened by you, that is why she texted you, she is trying to manipulate you into playing by her rules, which is exactly what they do, when threatened.
      My ch ow was always threatened, every time, she saw my ch and I get closer, and he moving away from her, she caused some type of drama, to try and get between us. All she tried would not work, and there were many things she tried.
      Listen to tfw, and th, about getting that restraining order, do not make it easy for them. Their happiness is not your concern, your happiness and that of your children is your concern.
      if your ch wants to see his children then, he has to man up and know that the ow, is not going to be by his side when he does, that seeing his children is worth not having her there. They are more important.

      • Strengthrequired August 5, 2016 at 8:50 pm #

        Mary, I also wanted to say, if you can talk to your husbands brother or his family, about your concerns of him being suicidal, do it. Show them the message his ow sent you, and let them know that is why you are concerned. See if they can help him get some help.
        Still show the solicitor that message, keep everything.

    • Mary August 6, 2016 at 10:08 am #

      TryingHard —

      I have already consulted with a lawyer, but I haven’t retained one yet. It’s happening soon though. I wont be sharing a lawyer. I dont even think he’ll get one. He’s done such horrific things, that I dont think any judge will feel bad for him. It’d be like taking money & burning it in my opinion.

      I have been good about letting people help me. My dad comes over a lot & will help with the kids & dishes. My MIL likes to take the older 2 a lot & offers to take the baby even. I’ve been making an attempt to go do things with people, even when I dont feel like it. I’m feeling like I’m finally starting to be myself after being a mom & wife for so many years.

      I definitely see many silver linings throughout this whole ordeal. My kids are great, people are so kind, I get more alone time, my son is the easiest baby & I am actually enjoying the newborn stage this time around. I’ve become closer with God & I feel like I’ll be a better person when this is all said & done. I will never want to make people feel how I feel right now, not even close, so I am choosing to be kind.

      I’m hoping to find a good counselor, maybe just my Pastor. At least he’s got religion on his side & can help guide me thru this.

      I definitely agree that the OW is NOTHING to my children. Since she was my brother’s girlfriend / my friend, she knows the lifestyle we lived & she wants to literally take me out of the equation & put herself in my life. She’s been jealous for years of our trips, our nice cars, etc. She’s always wanted girls & I had 2. She’s a psychopath who is trying to get rid of me, but it’s not happening.

      • TheFirstWife August 6, 2016 at 11:12 am #

        Mary. How is your brother dealing with this???

        Also my H had not technically left our H and I did not know about OW still being in the picture when he asked for divorce. We were calm and it was difficult but after 6 months of his crappy behavior I realized he did not love me anymore. Time to move on.

        Next day changed his mind. Begged me for second chance. I said ok. 5 days later walks on door and demands a divorce.

        That was almost 3 years ago. We are still together and in some ways things are better. He finally realized at the last possible second he made a bad choice. His mid life crisis almost led to a divorce.

        I bet if you continue to have those good moments w/ your H and kids and you hold your head up and rise above the trashy OW and his crappy behavior, that you could possibly get past it.

        But you need to make him feel there is hope.

        That can be done just by being nice to him. Not being emotional or clingy but by being kind. It is ok to ask “Have fun with the kids today?” “Want to join us for an hour in the park?” “Want to have a family dinner for pizza for an hour”

        It is subtle. It is kind. Just a family. No personal talk (yet). Strictly light and kids.

        Now the OW will be highly upset. Too bad.

        If you ask and he says “no” you should say “ok but I think the kids will be disappointed”.

        Best of luck.

        • Mary August 6, 2016 at 7:03 pm #

          TFW —

          I think my brother is handling this a lot better than I am. She wasn’t very good to him & I think a lot of the reason they were still together was because of their son. They have broken up numerous times over the last several years, one time she even moved out for a couple months. That was my fault too, according to her. I didn’t even want to be friends with her again really, but my family really encouraged it because we didn’t want to have division in the family. I wish he would have never gotten back together with her now because this may have never happened if they hadn’t.

          My husband asked for a divorce before I even found out. I didn’t understand since I was pregnant. I figured he’d change his mind & he did like a month later, but then soon became distant & mean. Then I found out like a week later that he was cheating. He hasn’t even asked me once to take him back since then.

          I had actually thought about asking if he wanted to be with when I go school shopping for our oldest daughter (she starts kindergarten this year). I’m sure he’ll say no, but whatever, at least the offer was there.

    • Mary August 6, 2016 at 10:26 am #

      StrengthRequired —

      I know that I shouldn’t worry about them & what they think. I know this is NOT my fault, but I’m worried that by getting a restraining order, it will just push him closer to her, which is the last thing I want. I think he realizes that this is all his fault, but he’s looking to blame someone else & who is the easiest person to blame? Me! Same for her, she either blames me or my brother for her unhappiness. They act like we should just move on & not care what they’ve done to our families. She acts like I should be over this by now. I just found out about 5 months ago!

      I do believe my husband is suffering from some sort of depression. He’s been deployed 3 times & has seen some stuff. He has been diagnosed with neurosis (the VA labels it as ptsd) & he’s been a hard person to live with since his last deployment (the last 2 were literally back to back & both a year long) & I think that’s where a lot of our issues were stemming from. I’m not saying the issues weren’t my fault either, but I don’t believe our marriage would have been on the rocks had he not done that second deployment. He’s been drinking more since the affair started & his acting very childish. Even his boss sees a difference in his work performance.

      I know she’s threatened by me, because I believe he still loves me & is very confused about which way he wants to go even tho he doesn’t admit it. He came over to drop off the kids the other night (he took them for a couple hours to visit since he is going out of town for 2 weeks for the military) & it really seemed like he didn’t want to leave. We were all in OUR kitchen, laughing with the kids & it felt like it was supposed to be that way & I feel like he felt it too. I don’t believe he is worth all of this trouble to him, but he feels like he can’t go back, it’d be too hard to man up & say he was wrong. I’m hoping that this time away will help him be able to think without that witch in his head.

      I will definitely be talking to my MIL & BIL & asking my BIL to talk to him. He isn’t talking to his mom right now because she’s not on “his side” & doesn’t love his new gf. His brother just wants him to be happy, but he’s not. EVERYONE says he looks miserable, but they will blame that on me too because if I weren’t in the picture, they would be happy. I’m hoping my BIL will see thru her BS & will help us talk to him & get him some help. She wants him to be a better dad, then she should be encouraging him to go seek help, but she won’t because she knows he’d probably realize what disaster this all is & he’d leave her.

      • TheFirstWife August 6, 2016 at 11:54 am #

        Mary. I completely understand your position on the testraining order (RO).

        However that is to protect your children. And you should not hesitate to explain that to your H. It is too confusing for them right now to be introduced to any new GF or woman in HIS life. Any therapist or attorney or child psychologist or attorney or judge will tell you that.

        Try to get him to understand that. Have a professional put it in writing for him.

        While it may have a negative affect if he has already agreed to visitation without her then this should be a non-event. You are just legally enforcing HIS verbal commitment that she cannot contact you or your children.

        It does not affect his visitation or their relationship. It may anger her BUT she has no legal standing in this situation.

        If you can rationally explain it to him in a calm manner, he may get it. Underscore you want him to see his kids as much as possible. You are not preventing that. This is just to make it a legal point it has to be without her.

        Also if he dumps her, she may take revenge on you. You NEED to have the RO in place so if she makes any contact or threats at sny time, you are protected.

        It may have negative ramifications. I see that. But you need to put the kids first. You are very kind in net standing your H’s issues and all.

        Continue to be positive with him for your kids sake. Your family will be better for it. And there may come a time where you can gently say to him “I would love to sit and talk with you about us”. No confrontation. No crazy drama. No yelling.

        And you may be surprised by his reaction. If he sees you as a friend he may relax and open up. And that could take awhile.

        Just be better to him than he is to you. You will look back and be proud of yourself and thank God you rose above it.

        I acted that way through an entire year of on the edge of divorce. My therapist used to say I was the calmest about to be divorced person he ever met.

        But I maintained control for the sake of my children and in case we were able to reconcile.

        At least my H knew I did not hate him.

        • Mary August 6, 2016 at 7:24 pm #

          TFW —

          I am going to talk to a lawyer soon. I don’t know if I even have enough to get a restraining order. I hope she says more stuff & then I can definitely get one.

          I have no doubt that she will try to get revenge on me when they break up. I’m sure it’ll be my fault. Everything is. I’m sure she’ll publicly be posting on Facebook about me & being crazy for a change.

          I am for the most part pretty nice to him. We occasionally fight, but it’s usually me just reminding him that he created this situation after he tries to blame me for something. I also remind him that I have given him plenty of chances to make it right, so he can’t complain about any of the consequences of his actions.

          Most people tell me I am handling this well. Some days I don’t feel like it. Most of them don’t see the ugly side lol.

      • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 5:40 am #

        Mary, I thought he may be going through depression, before his affair started. It amazes me at how many of the affairs have started due to depression. My ch went through it, and it led to have affair. I could not understand what happened, like you, it was all of a sudden. One day he loved me, a week later I was the worst person on earth. It was so quick.
        Let me just say this, when your ch is going through an affair, all logical thinking goes out the window. The ow found him an easy target, and let me just say, it wouldn’t have been as easy, if he was in his right frame of mind.
        So these ow, know what they are doing, and they will not make it easy for you. I fought for my marriage for over a year,before I finally got rid of her from our lives. I had a one year old at the time of my husband affair, and Li too was made out to be the villain. No matter what I did, or didn’t do, it was not good enough, and the ow was so much better in his eyes. The ow only has to say something against you, and they will start believing it.
        I made sure that my ch knew that I loved him, I made sure he knew that I would be there for him, whether he wanted me or not. If you don’t do that, the ow uses it against you, “see, she doesn’t love you, blah blah blah”.
        So if you want your marriage, then try your hardest not to fight with your ch, it will just be feeding him right into her hands.
        There was something that I did, that made a difference in breaking through to my ch at the beginning, and it was getting photos out of our life together, our children, and having him sit down with me, while we went through them. I reminded him of the life we have together, and that it was worth fighting for.
        Believe it or not, it helped break through, just a bit to have him thinking.about what he is going to give up.
        Of course the ow knew, she was losing her grip, so she just tried harder. So expect that to happen. Remember you have more to lose than what she does, and so does your ch.
        Have a look at the 180, a many people have found it helpful. Before I even knew of the 180′, I gave my ch space, I figured he needed to miss me and the kids, I also hoped he would see life with her, wouldn’t be so crash hot, once reality hit. Yet of course every time he was ready to leave her, she would blame him for her misery, and he just was not in the right frame of mind, being in a depressed state, to be blamed for her being depressed, so was worried she would hurt herself. So he continued to being her knight in shining armour, like so many other ch’s. Feeling they need to save or rescue the ow from her life.
        i think you do need to remind your ch, that you do love him, don’t let the ow make him think otherwise.
        I do hope all works out for you and your beautiful young family, they need their daddy, this ow has no right getting in between your family. Unfortunately there are very selfish people out there, that just don’t care who gets hurt.
        Hugs to you and your children.

        • Mary August 8, 2016 at 2:58 pm #

          SR — I knew things weren’t perfect at home, but I seriously didn’t think they were this bad. He did admit that he is messed up from PTSD & that he was finally able to break out of his shell after wanting to hide for a long time. Only thing is, that shell that he broke out of also led to an affair. I’m sorry I can’t go out & be super fun all the time, we have children & now she is only a part time mom, so she is able to go do all this fun stuff.

          The OW told my MIL that she doesnt believe there’s anything wrong with him & he deserves to be happy since he’s been thru so much (deployments). Okay, just throw away your wife & family to go be “happy”. Such BS. It makes me so mad. He didn’t even offer to stay with us the night we brought our son home from the hospital, he went to be with her instead.

          I know this will be a fight. I just wish I knew the exact things to do to help him figure out that his family, assets, friends, family, etc isn’t worth giving up for her. He’s not just losing ME.

          His mom talked to his brother since he’s the only one still on both “sides” & we think he is starting to realize that she’s not good for him. He is convinced that he was absolutely miserable with me & he just wanted his brother to be able to have fun & be happy. At everyone else’s expense I guess. They portray me to be the villain who she saved him from & people actually believe this shit. If he was soooooo unhappy before, he would have left.

          • TheFirstWife August 8, 2016 at 5:37 pm #

            Mary.

            I hope you can see the pattern of behavior that most cheating spouses take. It is almost like the playbook for cheaters. We ALL experience many of the same things.

            The OW may THINK she knows how to play the game. But she will do or say something that will cause the CH to have their “AHA” moment.

            You just don’t know what it will be or when.

            I think when my H realized the pressure she was putting him under was causing many MORE problems is when he decided to end it with her. But she wouldn’t let go.

            So I hope these weeks he is away from her will open his eyes. Maybe that is the first step for him. I hope it works out for you and your children.

            Just know the OW is going to make a mistake that will make him see her on a whole new light. They always do. Eventually the “fun & games” end.

            The OW I was up against was single & no kids. However she wanted marriage & kids. Seriously I don’t see my H having kids in his 50s or being broke or financially struggling a real fun time. It would not have lasted.

            And one thing I did tell him when he asked for a divorce was that he needs to be prepared to pay alimony for a very long time b/c I would never marry again. And that payment makes people very resentful.

            Especially wife number 2.

            • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 7:10 pm #

              Exactly tfw.

            • Mary August 8, 2016 at 11:19 pm #

              TFW —

              I know she’ll eventually screw up. I know she can’t put on this act forever. I just worry tho, what if they ARE a good match? You know sometimes it happens. I highly doubt it given the situation & the fact that he thought she was annoying all these years, but what if he was wrong about her & really does love her? I mean, I know eventually it just won’t matter anymore & I will be happier without him, hopefully eventually with someone else, but I don’t know how I’ll ever coparent with him if he’s with her. I just can’t see me ever being friends with her again or even civil. I honestly never even want to look at her again in my life. What she put me thru was horrible. Lying to my face for weeks acting like a friend, when really she’s just a horrible human being. We actually went out on double dates & everything. One night we were at our house & she told my brother to scoot down so I could sit on the couch since I was pregnant. Instead of scooting closer to my brother, she moved closer to my husband. That was like the first huge sign we got. Then she got into a fighting with my brother that night (probably on purpose) & asked if she could come stay the night at our house because she didn’t want to wake up her friend or her mom. Hmm, yeah, lying sack of crap.

              I plan on asking for alimony too, I have been a SAHM for over 5 years now & wasn’t planning on going back to work until our son was getting ready for school. He’s only 2 months old & it’d cost me an arm & a leg to put them in daycare & his child support would go up if they went to daycare too.

              He called to talk to our oldest daughter tonight & he said he was really busy today, so hopefully that means he isn’t getting to talk to her as much. She’ll get a taste of what I went thru all these years being away from him time & time again.

  31. TryingHard August 8, 2016 at 11:43 am #

    Mary
    You are NOT the devil. He knows you’re not the devil. He know who the devil is.

    I think you are dealing with some problems with his PTSD that is far beyond his infidelity and current acting out. As a veterans dependent you have rights to counselling through the military and I suggest you seek them out. You may even have legal rights. I believe his acting out by cheating is a direct result of his PTSD and this is a problem that no ordinary counselor knows how to deal with and certainly NOT a minister. Nothing against ministers but most are NOT trained in this area. You need to go to the VA or some support group associated with the military and find out where there is help for you and your family.

    I also want to thank YOU and your children for being a military wife to someone who is working to keep me free. Everyone thanks the soldier but the families are also heroes in my book. I’m a military brat whose father fought in 3 wars. WWII, Korea, and Viet Nam so I know the problems these families endure and suffer. The families of our veterans are also heroes and deserve respect and thanks.

    I also want to add do not worry about what the OW says or does. She wants to post crap on FB so what. Seems everyone is doing that now. She is NOT your problem. She is HIS problem and no I do NOT think a restraining order against her will bring them closer together. Look she’s an easy piece. He knows he owes nothing to her. She’s a distraction to his deeper problems and he most def has deeper problems after serving 3 tours of duty.

    It is imperative you get legal and emotional support and I know it’s out there for you are a military dependent. I hope you will seek it out.

    Hugs to you and your children. And again Thank You from the bottom of my heart.

    • Mary August 8, 2016 at 11:57 pm #

      TryingHard & SR —

      The counselor I was seeing was actually through the military. I didn’t really feel like she benefited me all that much. She basically just listened to me bitch for an hour and a half & then I went home lol. I’ve never been to counseling, so I’m not really sure how I’m supposed to benefit from it, but I don’t think she really dealt with much infidelity, so she couldn’t really help me.

      He never opens up about his deployments, but about a year before his affair, he broke down crying one night when he was drunk saying he feels so bad for all the times that he’s left me & how unfair this all was to me, how he feels the need to take care of his soldiers & he’s sorry if they are put before me etc etc. Then he text me one day after this all happened saying he wished he wouldnt have put his career before his family, he just thought being successful was important. I never hated him for leaving. I knew what I signed up for when we started dating, but he obviously has some issues of guilt, ptsd, depression. Whatever it is.

      I just feel bad that I never pushes him getting help. He always said he was okay, so I just figured he was. There isn’t enough help out there for soldiers when they come home. They are just thrown back into society after being in a completely different world for months.

      I already gave him the letter, he didn’t say anything about it. I went into a lot of detail about how this will make me a better person & how I appreciate the little things now & how I can see so many silver linings thru it all. I didn’t expect some huge apology or anything, but I thought maybe he’d say something.

      I’m trying not to lose hope, but every day that passes, I feel like there’s less & less hope for this to work. I actually filed for divorce back in March, because I never thought there was any possible way we could make it thru this. Then I started googling, a lot. Once I realized it was actually something that can make you stronger as a couple I expressed that I’d be willing to work on us & he refuses. He hasn’t wanted to at all anyway. He told me he wanted a divorce before I even knew about the cheating. Then we decided to work on us & then he wanted a divorce again not long after & then I found out like 2 days later. He was basically telling me I had to file or he would & I’m glad I did because I’m in control & we’d be divorced next month if he filed. I set a date for January, so we’ll see how things go before then.

      I hope he realizes how much she’s like a leach in these next couple weeks. He’s always gone away & I’ve been so relaxed about it. I never worried about him, but I’m sure they are both wondering what the other person is doing. They obviously can’t trust each other. Honestly, there’d be no better revenge on her than to get my husband back & to live happily ever after. Or maybe I’ll find someone else way better while they live miserable lives lol. Ooh & you’re welcome, TH. I honestly have done nothing but wait around for him tho. He’s the one who has sacrificed it all. He’s the one who has suffered from his deployments. I only hope that he gets the help he needs to be the best he can be because this is not it.

  32. Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 5:14 pm #

    Mary, I agree with th, see what legal rights you have and use the military for both legal and counselling. Th said some beautiful words.
    Just a suggestion, If you send a letter to your ch, don’t just say that you don’t need him in your life, but you want him in your life, that you know you both can work everything out, and that it would be nice if both of us would fight for our marriage, not just one of us, but that it is his choice, in which direction he chooses to take. However you know either way, you will be fine.
    Everything your ch has said to you, we have heard it all before, the same words, the same look of hatred, the same behaviour, we experienced it too. Honestly if looks could kill, I would have been dead, by the looks my ch used to give me, and I had never experienced those looks before. I thought everything was useless, that maybe she had actually managed to destroy my family, and she almost did. She even managed to get engaged to my ch before I found out about their affair. She had the help of her family, with the destruction of mine.
    Honestly she wouldn’t let him out of her sight, and when he was, she called and msg constantly. While he was working she would keep him on the phone for and hour even two, at a time. We never lived in each other’s pockets like that. He put so much effort into keeping her happy, even to paying her rent and buying her a house full of furniture, while we almost lost everything.
    That is how well she manipulated him. She even started using our surname, to get me away from him. She truly thought she caught her man. She didn’t realise every time, I was ready to call it a day and end the fight for him, that he would hold me tighter. The more she pushed me away, the closer his grip became.
    Yet she would fight with him, like he never experienced before, blame him for not rescuing her from her husband, he told me later that she had two heads. We did seperate for a month, and he was with her every chance they got, yet he did not stay with her. She wanted him desperately to though.
    Dont lose hope, if you read here you will see, most ch don’t stay with their ow. Don’t make it easy for him to have a divorce, when you are ready, and you nolonger have that fight left in you, you will know. Don’t do anything you are not ready for. While you have that fight, use it to your advantage. One driving force for me, was to not let the ow put her hands on my children, especially my baby. No way was I willing to let her put even a finger on them.
    You will know when the time is right for you, it will be the time when you say, enough is enough, I’m done. I hope that this break away from the ow helps your ch open his eyes to what he is doing. Hopefully he gets that time to think. Maybe when he sees others missing their wives and children, it will sink in.
    Honestly they do need that time away from the ow, and I am sure she will be worried during that time. Yet he needs it, the ow cling to them that much they don’t get that chance very often.

    • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 5:18 pm #

      Mary, sorry wanted to add, in the letter, don’t just add fight for marriage, but fight for marriage and our family, ( maybe even put, our children deserve us to fight for their family).
      If writing a letter is really what you want to do.

      • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 5:47 pm #

        Weary, if you want your marriage, if you want your ch, and family, do not pay attention to those that try and change your mind. They are not in your shoes. I am sure we all felt the same way, when thinking if our spouses ever cheated on us we would leave. Hindsight is a beautiful thing, until it actually happened. It’s not as easy as just walking away, when you are actually faced with it yourself.
        I always thought of it this way, i will fight for my family, until I have no fight left in me, and I can say to myself, at least I tried, even if I didn’t succeed.

        • Strengthrequired August 8, 2016 at 7:05 pm #

          Mary, not weary, silly auto correct

    • Mary August 11, 2016 at 12:24 pm #

      SR —

      I already filed for divorce. I reacted hastily & filed immediately, he wanted it tho anyway so we would be in the process no matter what. At least now I have more control over it.

      I gave him the letter already & I mentioned a lot of the stuff you said.

      Honestly some days it doesn’t seem like they’ll ever be done. He honestly thinks she is like the most perfect person. It’s so ridiculous. He still has 10 more days away, so I guess things could still change. Not holding my breath tho.

      • TheFirstWife August 11, 2016 at 2:32 pm #

        Hi Mary.

        Whether you divorce or not is up to you.

        But I think you need to be prepared for your family’s sake when the OW dumps your H

        I am certain it will happen. She is only 23. What does that tell you? She will go from one relationship to the next. Chasing that next “great” guy. That next “soul mate”.

        Your H will be devastated and will need his family to SCRAPE him up off the floor. You will have to help manage that for the sake of your children. When the $ runs low she will bail.

        She is most likely around for the good times not the bad. Please be prepared for this chapter because it will happen.

        I’m not saying take him back or not. Only you can decide if that is right for you & kids. But just know when this affair ends, it will not be good for him.

        So often the cheaters believe this is true love. It is in their minds because no one expects the relationship to stand the true test – isdues, problems, families, money, etc.

        • Mary August 12, 2016 at 10:06 am #

          TFW —

          I understand that. I have told him no matter what I will always be there for him if he needs me just like I always have been.

          I have a hard time when I think that this could last a long time & the fact that he thinks he loves her. I don’t think it’s true love. What we had was true love. Yeah, it wasn’t a fairytale, but we were always there for each other & knew how to make each other laugh. We were really good together despite our hard times.

          I just don’t know if I could ever be with him again. I want to be so badly, but I just don’t know if I can ever get passed him being with someone else. It just eats me up inside.

          I was there with him for the good, the bad, the ugly times. No matter what, I was ALWAYS THERE. I know she doesn’t want to stick around when he’s running low on cash because he had to pay child support. I know she doesn’t want to stick around when he goes off to a school for a month or 2. That’s what pisses me off the most. He’s giving up someone who gave up so much for him & he doesn’t even feel bad.

          • Strengthrequired August 12, 2016 at 7:19 pm #

            Mary, your ch thinks he loves her, but think about it. They the Cs seem to lower their standards to suit the way they feel about themselves. He is with a ow who is young, but has two kids with different fathers, that’s at 23 years of age. I hope your ch thinks clearly soon, before she gets herself pregnant by him, and leaves him for more child support. Imagine child support from three different men. Sounds like a money making scheme.
            I think too, that she likes the idea of saying that she is with a military man. Some women like men in uniform and get jealous quickly of someone that has one. So I guess that is one of the holds, that is keeping her drawn in.
            I do worry that she is wanting another child, whether to hold onto your ch or not, either way she benefits.
            Your ch needs to wake up and smell the roses, because he is throwing away a wonderful woman and family, for this ow that is certainly in this relationship, for what she can get out of it, and when she doesn’t get it anymore, or she conquers, he will be left high and dry, with a path of destruction left behind him.
            we think of ourselves as being foolish, but we our only crime was to give all our love and trust to our Cs. Yet it’s our Cs that is truly the foolish one, throwing away everything, for someone that can destroy the world that they know. Your ch has no idea what a truly wonderful wife and mother he has in you. He is throwing his beautiful wife and family away, who waits for him to come home months and months on end, who remained faithful, loving and caring, for someone that jumps from one man to another. I’m just so sad for you and your children, I’m hoping and praying your marriage can be saved, and you and your ch can move past this time and not look back. Hang in there, be kind to yourself.

            • Mary August 13, 2016 at 1:01 am #

              SR —

              THANKFULLY he got a vasectomy shortly before our son was born. He had planned on getting one after our youngest daughter was born, but never did & then our son came along. This situation could only get worse if she got pregnant unless it wasn’t his lmao. I’m sure he’d get a paternity test if she did because they obviously can’t trust each other!

              As of right now, I see no hope for us. He tells everyone else that he wants nothing to do with me & from what others have told me, he was absolutely miserable. I’d be looking at a miracle to save us.

              I know I wasn’t the best wife, but I wasn’t that bad either or at least I didn’t think so. Obviously this is my karma for the way I’ve treated him in the past. And let me tell you, she’s a bitch. I’ve learned my lesson, always treat others as you want to be treated. I just wish he would have sat me down & expressed his unhappiness before tearing up our family. It’s not fair to our children & I feel as tho I’ve failed them. They will be another statistic.

              • Mary August 13, 2016 at 1:04 am #

                SR —

                Oh & I was going to add. I’m pretty sure he thinks he loves her because of the way she makes him feel. I believe he’s very depressed & that she gives him that rush of first being in love with someone & I’m sure she tells him everything he wants to hear & tells him how shitty of a wife I was. & he’s going to believe her because she knew me & listened to me as I’d complain about him in the past. She’s truly an evil person.

              • TheFirstWife August 13, 2016 at 3:05 am #

                Mary. Stop listening to HIS inner voice and words.

                We are all crabby and cranky and short tempered at times. We are all regretful when we snap or argue with our spouse.

                Especially with 3 children under 5 and being a solo parent at times.

                And BTW how nice if your H to speak unkind things about you to others without talking to you FIRST. Typical CS move.

                She is mean so that is my excuse to cheat. Um no It doesn’t work that way.

                Stop believing his lies. Stop allowing him to rewrite your marriage.

                It is only a bunch if excuses to ease his guilty conscience b

                • Strengthrequired August 13, 2016 at 5:47 am #

                  Mary, tfw is right. He is rewriting your marriage and making you the bad one, to justify his leaving and cheating. No one is perfect, of course the ow or Om is, because they know exactly what to say to our Cs to win them over. Yet eventually real life sets in, and it won’t be as fun. My h ow was apparently so perfect, he had found the one, and I was the bad one too. We all faced it hear, we all heard those words. Well guess what, the ow is not all that, if she was all that, then your ch would be so happy with life, yet as you say, he is miserable, and he just keeps trying to tell himself that he is where he wants to be and you are the bad one.
                  dont ever think that you are a bad person, your not, you have just had the rug pulled out from under you by someone you thought was a friend, who had other intentions. Your ch just wasn’t strong enough mentally to deny her advances. Like my h ow, your h ow has the ammunition to make you look bad and her the perfect prize.

                  • Mary August 13, 2016 at 7:47 am #

                    TFW & SR —

                    He doesn’t even tell people that he cheated. He tells them we just “couldn’t get along” & that’s why we’re getting a divorce. Such bullshit. I would have never filed if we just weren’t getting along & I don’t believe he would have either. Once he found someone “better”, he left. If he was SOOOO miserable before, he would have been gone a long time ago.

                    Everyone tells me he looks miserable. I truly think sue just makes him feel good, especially about the decisions they are making & that’s why he thinks she’s so perfect, but who knows maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they are meant to be.

                    I tell everyone what he did & even his friend that I talked to yesterday was like “is there something wrong with him?” Kinda seems like it to me, but you can’t tell him that.

      • Strengthrequired August 11, 2016 at 8:28 pm #

        Mary, from the moment I found out about my ch affair, I told him, if he thinks I am going to give him a divorce and make it easy for them to be together, he will have another thing coming. He looked at me and just smiled, as if he was relieved. When he was taking his things to leave home, he said, “is it ok, I leave most of my things here, I’m worried if I take everything, I won’t come back”. although I was so angry with him, as well as hurt and devastated, I said that it was fine.
        Apart from how depressed he was, and the fact that what he was doing was not him, I knew by those words, he really wasn’t sure on what he was doing, like he was being pressured.
        No doubt he must have thought that I would not want him anymore, yet he was shocked to find out that I did. That put a spanner in the works for the ow and her plans to take my life. She too had no remorse, she felt entitled, she would have some of her friends tell her to leave him alone, so he can be with his family, she would say, no, we love each other, he does not love his wife. One of the friends that know me and my husband, heard this and said to her, ” your wrong, he has always loved his wife, and for him to still be with her, shows that he still does, he will always love her”. These were words from a woman that tried to push her daughter onto my husband when my older two were very young. I have six kids, back then just two.
        Anyway, when the ow was told that, she just stormed off in a huff, cranky that the were not telling her to hold on tight. Lol
        Also if you can believe it or not, my ch didn’t like her side of the family, he didn’t like her friends, so when she would ask for him to go out with them, he would say no.
        He would tell her, he doesn’t want to see them, that he was not interested, and she could go on her own. Lol. However she still held on tight.
        she expected him to treat her children like he treats his own, so if it was Christmas, she would tell him to give her children money, or presents, like he does his own. He would tell her no. Lol. He would tell her they are hers, not his and he will never treat them like they are his. She still would hang on. She was only in it for what she could get.
        The ow hang on so tight, because they know, as soon as they let go, the ch will run back to his wife. They always do, whether they are too late to run back, that’s another story.

        • Strengthrequired August 11, 2016 at 10:41 pm #

          Mary, what I wanted to add, was we all handle the shock of our cs affair differently. We get so many overwhelming emotions, we don’t know which way to go, left, right, backwards, forwards. It is just all so daunting.
          I didn’t know if following my heart of not throwing my ch ask out and keeping him out, getting divorce papers ready, was right or wrong, I didn’t know if to follow my head or my heart was right or wrong, it was a complete nightmare, that I just didn’t know what to do.
          We do what is right for us at the time, what we think is the right thing to do. I could have fallen flat on my face, is some ways I probably did, truth is I was running blind, in unknown territory.
          Don’t be too hard on yourself, you asked for a divorce, your not divorced yet honey.
          juat know your children are lucky to have you as their mummy.

  33. TheFirstWife August 9, 2016 at 7:15 am #

    Mary. I am not sure if you have read one of the typical CS behaviors is to rewrite the marriage. Things you can expect to hear:

    I am no longer in love w/ you but I love you
    Not happy for (a long time) in this marriage
    The OW understands me completely
    We don’t communicate
    We are disconnected
    We took each other for granted (yes I expect you will come home after work every night duh!!!)

    It is all a justification. I heard them all. We all did. My H told me he was unhappy for 18 months. Well freakin’ news to me. He joked about turning 50 but never expressed unhappiness or any other feeling about himself.

    Do not get sucked into that drama. Accept what he is saying right now for what it is. Because in the next minute, day, week, month etc. you may hear the complete opposite.

    As I stated previously my H told me one day I never loved him and only married him to spite my parents (who did not like him when we first met but after a few years grew to love him). He now admits how stupid it was to say and even think b/c it is not true.

    Revisionist history. Accept the lies for what they are. Lies and justifications.

    • Mary August 9, 2016 at 8:01 am #

      TFW —

      Yes, I have read that. I’ve heard them all too.

      “I haven’t loved you in a long time” hmm then why were you STILL telling me you loved me while you were screwing her?
      “I should have never married her, I did it because it was the right thing to do” he said this to my MIL, like I was pregnant or something.
      “I’ve been miserable for a long time” news to me…
      “I should have divorced you a long time ago” then why didn’t you?? He did tell me he wanted a divorce once after we got into a pretty big fight, but he apologized & said he really didn’t later.

      I start second guessing our relationship tho. I knew we were going thru a rough patch, but I sit here & think were you that miserable & just never said anything. If anything, I felt like I was the more miserable one. I was so overwhelmed & felt like I had so much on my plate & not much help, but I would have never asked for a divorce or had an affair. I just felt like it would pass. Our marriage was not toxic as she claims, our children weren’t afraid every time daddy came home. We rarely really yelled & never hit one another. I can guarantee my oldest daughter would rather have us all together again than how it is now.

      I wish I could get into that head of his & know exactly what he’s really thinking. I suppose he probably doesn’t even know what he TRULY wants right now even. I feel like if he could rewind & not send that first text to her, he’d do it in a heartbeat. I doubt he’d want to live thru this all again. I don’t think she’s that special no matter what she thinks.

  34. TryingHard August 9, 2016 at 7:57 am #

    Mary
    No my dear you’ve done a lot. You’ve sacrificed way more than I have. You’ve spent years away from your husband who was in service to pure country. Your children have sacrificed too. They sacrificed time from their father. You sacrificed your own well being and your family’s well being while he furthered his career. You are a hero too in my eyes. your husband and his service and your love and support during his deployment is what makes me safe to enjoy my life here. No they don’t come back the same person and it does wreak havoc on families. Did you try talking to the base Champlain? That would be a better choice than a civilian minister.

    Sometimes couple can come back better than before but her it’s hard enough when both people want to work on a marriage. You cannot do this by yourself. He has to want to as well. I hope he’s getting help for his PTSD because it doesn’t just go away. You need help in understanding its impact on you and your children. He’s def damaged. You need help and support and the military owes you that. I hope you will look into it.

    • Mary August 9, 2016 at 8:20 am #

      TryingHard —

      We actually don’t live on base. He’s in the national guard, so we live in our hometown. I have talked to my pastor & he actually does help because he was military too.

      He doesn’t talk to anyone beside her & she thinks he’s “fine’, so I’m sure he thinks she’s right since she’s a psychologist & all. Oh I mean she’s a psychopath lol. He claims he’s talked to a counselor & it hasn’t helped but I don’t think he honestly has. Maybe a session or two at most.

      I appreciate all the kind words. I know we sacrificed a lot, but I did it because I love him & it sucks that it’s come to this. The last time he came home from a deployment, he was interviewed by a news station & they asked him what he wanted to do now that’s he’s home & he told them, “have more babies” haha. I told them to leave that out lol. Our kids deserve us to give it our all. I’ve told him that dozens of times. Right now, it just doesn’t matter. It just pisses me off because the OW was there thru all of his deployments. She watched me cry as he left. She helped me get thru those days & she was there to welcome him home. She saw what we went thru & now acts like she’s some hero saving him from an evil witch. People suck.

      • TheFirstWife August 9, 2016 at 11:11 am #

        Regarding men & counseling. Most men will not go!! They don’t think they need it.

        They will become addicts, abusers, liars, gamblers & cheaters but they don’t need counseling. Hahahaha

        My H went 2x to “save our marriage” and then quit. His solution was to resume affair with the OW. if his heart is not in it then his wasting time & $.

        My H NOW goes to counseling on his own. His idea not mine. It is 3 years later after the affair. It is making a difference.

        He even suggested we go together last week to resolve some minor things.

        When your H is ready the counseling will work and be helpful.

        One of the things my H said once was someone should have slapped me during the EA. And then he admitted that at that time it would not have done any good. He would not have listened. Not to anyone.

        • Mary August 9, 2016 at 4:09 pm #

          TFW —

          I have asked him to go to counseling in the past & he agreed once, but I never went because things started to get a little bit better. Now he says I should have tried harder & it was my fault that I didn’t take him up on that one time that he’d agreed to go. Makes sense. Everything is my fault.

          My friend’s husband did this to her while she was pregnant too. He left her & started dating someone else. She said he didn’t think he needed counseling either, but once he went, he actually enjoyed it.

          I hope one day he will go & maybe I’ll get to go with him no matter what happens with us. It’d be nice to get to know that side of him better. He never opened up to me about it. The OW told my MIL that he’s told her more about his deployments than he’s probably told me. If that’s true, that really hurts. I may not have gone thru a deployment, but I walked thru that experience with him & I have tried getting him to open up about it before. Apparently I’m not special enough for him to share that side of him. ?

  35. TryingHard August 9, 2016 at 4:02 pm #

    Mary
    LOL I agree people suck, well some people suck, but def ALL sociopaths suck and this OW really sucks 🙂

    • Mary August 9, 2016 at 4:04 pm #

      TryingHard —

      She definitely does ?

  36. TheFirstWife August 9, 2016 at 4:32 pm #

    Mary. I don’t know how you control yourself when it comes to the OW. There are NO WORDS available to describe her.

    Does she believe your MIL and family will accept her?

    Does your H not see one day he will be on the receiving end of her behavior? Once the relationship cools a bit she will be off funding her next victim.

    I guess she believes all the lies she tells herself. Her poor children – having a mother like that.

    What disgraceful behavior. Her life will continue to be a train wreck. I know her type. Seen it before.

    The kids always suffer.

    • Mary August 9, 2016 at 10:45 pm #

      TFW —

      It’s hard. I seriously have wanted to go bash her face in so many times lol, but it’s not worth it to do anything to her because she’s garbage & one day won’t mean a thing to me. I just want her out of my life completely & that means my kid’s lives too. I don’t know where God is taking me on this journey of life, but I hope one day soon this all makes sense.

      She obviously has no remorse whatsoever. She acts like I should feel bad that I got a court order for her dumb ass not to be around my kids. Oh, I’m making your life hard? I’m sorry, let me go tell the courts to take that out & you can be around my kids all you want. Don’t think so lol. I don’t care about her or her feelings at all. She has done nothing to make my life easier in 6 months so hell with her.

      • TheFirstWife August 9, 2016 at 11:14 pm #

        Did you actually get the restraining order?

        • Mary August 10, 2016 at 6:37 am #

          Not a restraining order. It’s in our custody agreement that she can’t be around them. That’s why she sent me that text last week. He agreed to it tho, so she should be more mad at him. She “loves” my kids & they always ask for her. So she thinks I shouldn’t want to take them away from her apparently. I can guarantee the reason my oldest daughter asks for her (if she even does) is because she wants to see my nephew. They’ve always known her as someone they can trust, so why would they think any different now, especially my 2 year old. I know my 5 yo knows stuff is up, but she obviously doesn’t know the extent of how screwed up it is. All of the kids would hate them if they knew exactly what happened. Or maybe not since she saved their dad from a “toxic” marriage.

      • Strengthrequired August 9, 2016 at 11:27 pm #

        Mary, I’m so happy you got the court order. Sucks to be her, that you are taking control of what she can’t. Have you heard from your ch lately or seen him?
        It is so sad that these women can manipulate a man when they are down, and in the same process break up families. I still shake my head in disbelief, the damage these ow cause, even the Om who do the same thing. They are simply shameless.
        The betrayed husbands here, have had a bad time too, it’s just sad.
        Just wondering, did you show your mil the txt, the ow sent you? I would like to know what she thought after she told your mil, that he was fine, yet in the txt tells you he is suicidal.
        Again, so glad she can’t go near your kids.

        • Mary August 10, 2016 at 6:46 am #

          SR —

          It’s just a court order in our custody agreement that she can’t be around them. I haven’t pursued a restraining order. According to my state website, there has to be two instances of threats via text or email, etc. She never really threatened other than that my husband would kill himself because of me.

          I don’t understand how people can do this to another person either. Especially someone so close to them. It really makes me sick to my stomach.

          I called my MIL & read her the text then sent it to her to show my BIL. She stated in a previous phone conversation in April that he was fine & now he’s apparently suicidal. They can’t even keep their stupid stories straight. You can’t believe a word that comes out of their mouths. She sent me a text telling me to wish my daughter a happy easter because she’s her “Godmother & all” & when my MIL asked her about that, she just said, “I didn’t tell her to tell her (my daughter) anything. I just said I’d like to wish her a happy easter”. Usually when you wish somebody a haply birthday, you’re telling them happy birthday lol.

          I haven’t really heard from him other than a text a couple nights ago asking if our oldest was still awake so he could talk to her. He’s gone for like 2 more weeks, so I won’t see him until after he gets back.

          • Sarah P. August 10, 2016 at 4:40 pm #

            Hi Mary,
            In the world of narcissism blogs, there is something called a “Skin Suit.” Just like you said, I believe this woman is a psychopath. Now, let me explain the concept of skin suit. Someone who is a skinsuit is never happy going out and getting what they want on their own. They want to go find someone who already has what they desire and then they do everything to step in to that person’s role. This is the most dangerous type of other woman in my opinion. They are so messed up that they only want what others have and/or never satisfied to go out and get what they want to fair and square. Honestly I don’t know how you keep your sanity and you are very admirable for keeping a clear head during this entire situation. What you’re going through is very hard and one of the things that makes me the most angry is how she has tried to move in on your kids. She is evil incarnate because of that.

            What does the other woman do for a living besides stealing the husbands and families of others?

            • Sam August 10, 2016 at 5:00 pm #

              This is exactly my dad’s OW. She wants everything that my mother has (minus her illness). My dad has even said she is mentally ill with an alcoholic problem. She stays up until 3.00am in the morning just staring into space, not saying a word at all; that she is lazy, doesn’t cook, clean and lives in a pigsty – NICE!

              @Mary –
              Your H’s OW sounds truely psychotic and sociopathic… already calling her godmother… I mean WTF? She sounds sick in the head and needs medical help ASAP…

              • TheFirstWife August 10, 2016 at 5:07 pm #

                You crack me up!!! ?

              • Mary August 11, 2016 at 10:51 am #

                Sam —

                She IS my daughter’s Godmother. She was my best friend & I thought her & my brother would be life long mates, so I picked her. I’m going to have my daughter re-baptized tho. She’s obviously not Godmother quality if she is that immoral. I will pick someone else who I know will live as a good example to my daughter. My pastor said I don’t have to, but I don’t want her to feel bad that she doesnt have someone as a Godmother who loves God & is a good Christian who loves marriage & family. Obviously none of that is important as she rescued our children from a “toxic” marriage in which neither of their parents truly wanted to be in. Hmm, I’m glad she can read minds & knows exactly what I’m thinking.

            • Sarah P August 10, 2016 at 9:59 pm #

              Mary,
              Wanted to say one more thing. Don’t give up fighting to keep The Enemy away from your children. It makes me absolutely sick that she has been able to come in and break up a family. If I were you, I would keep the mental boxing gloves on at all times and give her the fight of her life. Your in-laws need to wise up and see that she is not a nice person. It sounds to me like she is a classic psychopath. They can be very charming, but you know who they are based on their actions and based on the fact that they have no remorse for their actions. As always, I recommend a book called The Sociopath Next Door. The author is a Harvard PhD in Psychology. She knows what she is talking about:

              https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000FCJXTC/ref=dp-kindle-redirect?_encoding=UTF8&btkr=1#navbar

              Also, I would recommend readings articles about how to counter sociopaths so that you always know how to deal with her. For example,this is what a WikiHow article says about sociopaths:

              “Recognize the signs that someone is sociopathic. Sociopaths have a personality disorder that prevents them from feeling empathy for others. Although they often seem friendly and likable, they use their charm to get people to do things for them. The following traits are common among sociopaths:[1]

              Superficial charm; everyone seems to like them.

              Lack of remorse; they don’t feel guilty when they’ve done something wrong.

              Lack of empathy; they don’t seem to care when someone else is hurt.

              Propensity to lie; they do it casually, like it’s nothing.

              Incapacity for love; those closest to them realize something is missing.

              Egocentricity; they light up when they’re the center of attention.

              Delusions of grandeur; they often perceive themselves as superior to others”

              http://www.wikihow.com/Deal-With-a-Sociopath

              I have no doubt in my mind that a lot of mistresses fall into the psychopath category. Or rather the mistresses willing to go as far as breaking up families I would suspect are sociopaths. You see, most people have empathy. It is that empathy that makes us feel sick to our stomachs when an innocent is getting hurt. Empathy makes it so we definitely do NOT want to be the ones hurting an innocent. I can tell by the actions of the other woman that she is a sociopath. You see, if a mistress has strong empathy, she will ultimately give up the fight when she sees she is harming others. It may take her a long time to see it, but a part of her will feel sick and that part of her that feels sick (her conscience) will win out. When a woman like the other woman in your life is willing to do what she did and continues to do, she shows all of the characteristics of a sociopath. At any point she could have backed off but she keeps knowingly causing harm. Total sociopath. Most normal women would be too ashamed to show their face in the light of day after doing what she did. That fact that she goes on acting as if she is in the right is a huge red flag. I look forward to seeing karma bite her.

              • Mary August 11, 2016 at 11:47 am #

                Sarah P —

                There is definitely some issue there. She literally has no remorse. He doesn’t either. She just posted a status yesterday basically saying that my brother & I didn’t love her & my husband enough & that’s why they fell in love with each other. They connected emotionally & she finally found someone who understood her. I mean honestly, I don’t know how you can not feel any remorse for being with your pretty much BIL/best friends husband. I don’t care how “happy” it makes you, I would imagine it would make me feel a lot worse to actually follow thru. I don’t get it. I can’t even imagine doing this to my worst enemy (aka her lol).

                I totally believe she is a sociopath. There’s really no doubt it in my mind. She doesn’t feel sorry at all & fits most of those other characteristics too. It’s really sad. Obviously we were won over with the fake charm because I would have never expected this from her.

                At this point, I don’t even know if my marriage is worth fighting for. I don’t know how wed ever recover. I guess all things are possible & I should trust God to do what’s right, but I just don’t know if he’ll ever be who I thought he was again. I’ve started to wonder if the cheating has been going on longer. His behavior changed so much when all this happened, but maybe he was just really good at hiding it before or maybe he just had one night stands so it didn’t bother him as much. I don’t know honestly & I don’t know if I’ll ever know the truth. I wish he’d talk to me, but he wont.

                I’m just about done with Love Must Be Tough, so maybe I’ll look into that book next!

            • Mary August 11, 2016 at 10:44 am #

              Sarah P–

              Most dangerous??? How wonderful ??

              Seriously you don’t know how many people message me telling me that she’s been jealous for years & that she’s wanted my life — all the vacations, the nice cars, etc. He won’t be able to afford those things as much anymore tho.

              Funny part what you just said about the skin suit, I just read an article about a girl who knew one & the woman said the skin suit had even dyed her hair like her. Back in December I dyed my hair dark brown (I’m a blonde & she’s a brunette who usually puts blonde highlights in) & then I got my roots touched up in February & she came to my house with dark brown hair right after that. I thought it was strange, but now reading that, I guess I understand.

              And as for what she does for a living, she’s a waitress.

          • TheFirstWife August 10, 2016 at 5:05 pm #

            Mary. So just to recap she has victimized your brother, who she was with before your H.

            She victimized you.

            She will eventually victimize your H.

            I think that is enough decimation in one family from one person.

            I don’t know how she is still standing. Someone needs to knock her off her planet.

            She is nothing short of a train wreck. And now all the little cousins will suffer the rest of their lives b/c of her.

            • Mary August 11, 2016 at 11:50 am #

              TFW —

              Yes, you’re exactly right. I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before he’s not good enough for her. He’s older & he won’t have as much money & won’t be able to take the vacations like he used to. I just worry he’s going to get really hurt by this too. So many people have already been so hurt, I’m sure it’ll be his turn soon.

          • Strengthrequired August 10, 2016 at 6:03 pm #

            Mary, at least she has to stay away from the kids for now. This ow is as low as they come, and the best thing you can do for your kids is to keep her away from them. Doesn’t your brother get to see his children? That’s when your children can see them.
            God mother, pffft. So she has worked her way from being god mother, to trying to be step mother. Nice…. My ch ow wanted to go from cousin ( my ch side) to step mother /wife). So glad my ch ended up waking up, because like your ch ow, she didn’t believe just being a part of the family was enough). It’s sick, and all that the care for is themselves. Who cares who gets hurt as long as they get what they want.
            I wish I could shake your husband, so he can wake up.
            I’m so glad you found here, yet please don’t believe for one second that you are responsible for your ch cheating.

            • Mary August 11, 2016 at 12:06 pm #

              SR–

              I wish I could shake him too & wake him up, but he’s going to have to figure this out on his own. I don’t think it’s going to turn out as he imagined & he will be very disappointed in the long run.

              Yes, my brother sees their son (she has 2 sons, but only one is biologically my brother’s). He has 50/50 custody & occasionally sees her other son since he has been a father figure to him since he was like 6 months old.

              • Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 4:42 pm #

                Mary-
                Wow, the other woman sounds like such a “winner.” Yeah. That is the sarcastic overstatement of the year. So, what’s her name? Is her name Loser?

                I get really angry when I hear these stories. Personally, I believe that a stable marriage and family is the foundation of a civil society. Good marriages are required for society to work, IMHO.

                The people who suffer the most are all of the beautiful children who are involved by no fault of their own. And yet– children internalize divorce, no matter what the cause. Not only has The Loser victimized you, she has victimized several innocent children. She is leaving a high body count behind her. While your husband goes to war torn areas to protect families, she goes into peaceful areas to kill the family unit. Her actions are not forgivable.

                Unfortunately, I have heard that a lot of infidelity happens in the military. I have a good friend in her late 50’s. She has a gorgeous daughter in her early 30’s. I swear that her daughter could do catalog modeling work. Like like her mom, she has the most stunning features, no make up required. And she is as sweet as pie. And she is very successful. Her husband is in the military and they have a Teen daughter who will also grow up to be a beauty. My friend’s daughter has been loyal even though she is hit on wherever she goes. She found out several years ago her husband had been cheating during their whole marriage. So they saw a therapist and went through counseling. She thought they were over it. Then recently she overheard a conversation of her husband’s. He was bragging to a friend that he no longer cheats in the city where they live. He has figured out to disguise that. His wife didn’t confront him but is making plans quietly. Anyhow I was just stunned because I thought they were ok too.

                There is something about the military and infidelity. It seems to be a huge problem. So, here is a question: can you have your husband disciplined?

                • Mary August 13, 2016 at 12:50 am #

                  Sarah P —

                  Yes he can he disciplined, but like I told TryingHard, him being kicked out only hurts me & the kids. No job means no income, no GI Bill for the kids, etc.

                  The saddest part of all of this is that I know it’s going to hurt the children the most. They will live with divorce & knowing their father is capable of doing horrible things to their mother. It really is sad. I hope he eventually shapes up because they deserve a father to show them how a woman deserves to be treated & how a man should treat his wife. I know heads would be rolling if this were our daughter’s going thru this, so I don’t get why it’s okay to do this to me.

                  If we can’t save the marriage, then I hope I eventually meet another man who will show my daughter’s exactly what it’s like to be loved by your husband. I don’t get how he didn’t think of them thru all of this. I just don’t understand. I think the thought of them & what this could do to them would have stopped me dead in my tracks.

                  I ran into a friend of my husband’s today & he told me he ran into a couple months ago. My husband told him that he was “sick of living in hell” with me. I mean, I know I’m not the easiest to live with & I can be bitchy but cmon??? Of course there was no mention of his cheating or who it was with. He’s obviously not very proud of his actions. I know I can’t take everything he says to heart, but those words hurt. I questioned him about it & he said, “I don’t remember saying that. I just wasn’t happy with you”. I just don’t get it. I wish I could stop trying to figure him out & I wish I could just stop caring.

  37. Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 4:57 pm #

    Mary-
    PS, I think Ms. Taylor says it best:

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=QcIy9NiNbmo

    • TheFirstWife August 11, 2016 at 7:36 pm #

      Regarding the song I can identify with I think the Meghan Trainor song from 2 years ago – Lips are Movin

      Best line – if your lips are Movin’ then you lie lie lie

      So true!!

      • Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 7:55 pm #

        That’s a good one too! Meagan T. tells it like it is.

    • Mary August 13, 2016 at 12:40 am #

      I love that song!

  38. TryingHard August 11, 2016 at 5:22 pm #

    Yes she can Sarah P. Infidelity is against military regulations. He can be expelled from the Natl Guard dishonorably. Infidelity is rampant especially with back to back deployments. Talk about compartmentalizing!!! It’s so easy for these soldiers to do. I would put money that Wanda the Waitress is not the only mistress. Plus he has PTSD. It’s a formula for disaster for families and marriage. I hear these middle eastern deployments are literal fuckfests among soldiers since now there are so many female soldiers. Don’t even start on the LGBT community in the military that’s over there.

    • Mary August 13, 2016 at 12:39 am #

      TryingHard —

      Only thing is, loss of job means loss of income for me & my children. He has to remain in the guard to keep his civilian job. I’d rather not risk that lol.

      Ps… Wanda the waitress ???? I actually do think she is the only one. He seems pretty infatuated with her & from what I hear, they are together all the time. Probably because they have no one else that will feel sorry for them.

  39. TryingHard August 11, 2016 at 5:32 pm #

    Mr Mary should be very happy he is not my husband. When I found out my h was cheating with an employee the very next week I made phone calls to all his key employees and told them. My next call was to his customers whom I know and his bank.

    I would run to his commanding officer and inform him and the Chaplin and the base Commander. It is there job to help their soldiers and this guy obviously needs help.

    Problem is as with must abuse victims they won’t go to these lengths which is too bad. Most quietly divorce leaving the Cheater to move from base bimbo to base bimbo. Nice right. This is why I said Mary and all the military wives and their children are MY heroes. I’ve been there. I sacrificed my father for the military. My father leaving for deployments is what started my separation anxiety as a child. I remember it like it was yesterday when he would have to leave. And somehow my foreign mother held her family together. My father was an honorable and Christian man and somehow through all his deployments and separations he came back to his family more resolute than ever. He was grateful for what he had and what was waiting for him back home. There were no female soldiers but there were plenty of base bimbos, he only had eyes for his beautiful wife.

    Sure the military has problems and they are a segregated microcosm of the bigger problem with our society. Pretty sure this happens in other areas such as police forces etc anywhere there is a strong “brotherhood” I believe there is a strong concentration of infidelity.

    • Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 6:28 pm #

      Hi Trying,
      Where was your mom from? That must have been hard for her.

      You were right to do everything that you did when your H cheated. It is my belief that a wife must be a bigger beast than the OW. Women who are willing to steal husbands are beasts so the wife need to be more ferocious. After my own D Day with my ex, I laid down and took whatever he and the OW dished out. Even though there was mutual property and bank accounts, there were no children. I have so much residual anger over that situation and being powerless that I have overcompensated. Now if a woman is like an annoying gnat swarming around my husband, that gnat had better be prepared to face a nuclear bomb. Now I have kids. Now we have even more assets. And now when a woman tries to step into my marriage she had better be prepared to get through me. Many have tried and many have failed. My next post is about what to do with spouse poachers. Married women need to be prepared to make everyone’s lives so miserable that the would-be spouse poacher steps off and runs away with her tail between her legs.

      • TheFirstWife August 11, 2016 at 9:07 pm #

        I cannot wait to read that post!!!

        I have experienced that often.

        • Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 11:55 pm #

          First Wife,
          That post turned out to be 9,000 words and it will be run on Tuesday. Yeah. I had a LOT to say.

          Anyone who has what society would consider to be a high-value husband is going to have a lot of run ins with spouse poachers. Heck, all married women will have run ins with spouse poachers because study after study has demonstrated single women would prefer a married man to a single man. Sick, isn’t it? It makes me go nuclear.

          There should be a joke that goes like this:

          Guy 1: What is the secret to getting the best date in the room?

          Guy 2: Get married.

          Yes, it really is that bad. So it is up to us women to be the guardians of our own galaxies and to prevent enemy infiltration.

          There are too many women out there with a disregard for others and who think a wedding ring = fair game.

          We need to fight them like Banshees !

    • Mary August 13, 2016 at 12:36 am #

      TryingHard —

      I actually served my husband divorce papers at work lmao & told one of his coworkers that he was a cheating asshole, all while I was like 32 weeks pregnant.

      I have actually thought about calling his commander or at least his boss at work & talking to them, but then I feel like they’ll just think I’m some psycho jealous ex.

      He’s actually in the national guard, so we don’t live on a base. We live in our hometown. But I’m sure if he doesn’t resolve some of the issues he has, once he’s done with this one, it’ll be on to the next or he’ll just have one night stands to fill the void. I guess if they end up happy together, good for them, but I just don’t see it. His family will never accept her & neither will most of his friends & I think it’ll be very hard to not be able to be around his family or her for holidays etc. & he’ll probably never find someone of quality around here knowing what he did to his wife. It’ll be a bunch of bar sluts.

  40. TryingHard August 11, 2016 at 9:26 pm #

    Sarah
    My mother was French. My parents married during WWII. I’ll tell you the story when I private email you my death story about my parents. It’s a great story.

    Lol. Yes the OW had a force to deal with once I found out about her. I’ve learned so much about her and yes she’s a died in the wool sociopath. I read the book Sociopath Next Door. Even my therapist said she’s a sociopath. Thank God I’m a fast learner. I read everything I could get my hands on. I was outrageous on so many levels. Everyone was scared. Family, employees, friends. I was crazed. Well maybe it worked. I’m 5 years out and I’m still here. Lol. That may or may not be a good thing!!

    So I agree. The BS HAS to be a bad mother fucker. I don’t care if you stay or divorce. It’s war. Don’t be stupid. Lawyer up. Insist on restraint orders, squirrel money away, take care of you and your children. Be your badest ass you can be, then make your decision if you want to stay and fight for your marriage. Quit dancing and begging. Start sticking up for yourself and your children and their heritage.

    Sorry for the rant. I feel very strongly about NOT being Freaking doormat. Pull every conceivable trick you have and use it!!!

    • Sarah P. August 11, 2016 at 11:48 pm #

      You go, girl! I think you do have to act like a lunatic to some extent. If nothing else, make the Tramp very afraid.

      Forgot your mom was from France. Maybe that’s why you have the attitude to fight. I lived in France and it’s my 2nd language. I also have French heritage on both sides, in addition to Scottish, Italian, Swedish, and Jewish heritage. The thing that I learned from women in France is that no one pretends that spouse poachers don’t exist. French women know all about them and know that they have to be formidable opponents. They don’t pretend that it’s a safe world out there and they know that when it comes to a man, even a friend could throw them under the bus. Many French women have the attitude that it’s always a competition and may the Best Woman win. Did your mom give you that impression or was she more laid back? I would love to hear that story about your parents and the death experience.

      • Doug August 12, 2016 at 10:56 am #

        Trying Hard, you sent this comment to our email by mistake:

        Sarah–LOL lunatic is a good word to use for that time. And yes I’ve heard from many others that I scared the crap out of her. Par elle, tant pit!!!

        No, laid back would never be a word I would use to describe my French mother. She came to this country without a word of English. She was at my father’s mercy and loving kindness. They were always very close. My mother learned English very quickly and passed her citizenship test within 6 months of her arrival to America (take that Melania Trump!!!) My mother was a French wife/woman in every sense of the word but it was also very important for her to assimilate into American culture. Simply for my father’s sake, not hers. She never worked and stayed home taking care of the home and her children. My father wanted it that way. LOL he like himself and his home and children well taken care of. My mother worked her butt off taking care of everything at home and when he was deployed she was formidable.

        Of course my Latin blood is more prominent than my English/American blood. I don’t wait around for things to happen, I make them happen right or wrong. So when DDay and discovery came along boy did my Latin blood give me the backbone I needed.

        I’m not like most women I know. I abhor ladies only Happy Hours. They are always so loud and talk about nothing. I DO NOT prefer the company of men. I do not like conversations with men and I always keep any kind of discourse with them very superficial. I enjoy one on one time and conversations with women. I find this much more interesting. And yes French women do not mix their friendships with their female friends with their husbands. They do NOT trust other women so I’m sure not many French women have what American women consider BFF’s.

        Funny thing is most Americans think cheating and infidelity is an accepted way of life in France. It is not. The French love and appreciate all the loveliness that life has to offer and sometimes it includes infidelity just like in America. But French women do not just lay back and take it. Unfortunately some French women take on lovers of their own in retribution. But most will confront the OW and the husband but some will “wait” the affair out just like American women. France is a Catholic country and divorce is still taboo. So yes French women believe in more preventative measures. This is a true fact for many things in their lives. Just as they avoid eating too much and getting fat, they also do not “expose” their husbands to unnecessary female attention.

        • Sarah P August 12, 2016 at 4:21 pm #

          Hi Trying,

          Your mom sounds like such a neat lady. I have noticed all of the same things that you noticed about France.

          I think that French women are smart in so many ways and we could learn from them. I lived there in my early/mid-twenties and I took a mental note of all of the middle-aged women. I was in Lyon and noticed that a lot of women in their 60’s still wore high heels and short skirts. They did not look offensive when they did so because they often paired them with a black turtle neck, colorful scarf, and black hosiery. They ate what they wanted and loved food, but it was all about portion control. I also noticed that French women didn’t have BFF’s just like you said. Their husband and family was their focus. I had a French boyfriend for about 3 years and since he lived with his family, I did too. At the time, I remember rolling my eyes at his parent’s relationship. They both worked in the same company on the same floor. They did not have friends and did not hang out with other couples. They did everything together, but not in a way where either looked unhappy. They liked each other’s company and were best friends. He helped her cook and clean too– they did it together. Neither of them were necessarily attractive, but they knew the culture they lived in and stuck together. At the time I thought it was lame. Now, looking back, I understand that they had the right idea. Neither of them were unhappy with the arrangement, they loved each other, and they got along well. On Sundays all the extended family came over and we had extended Sunday lunches and dinners. Their extended family were their ‘friends.’

          With over 20 years of perspective, I do see that they had it right. They were very much equals to each other and neither felt smothered or constrained. They lived in a way that prevented infidelity. One time I asked the mom if she ever felt smothered. And she looked at me like I was speaking Chinese. The concept of being smothered was foreign to them because it was natural to be with her spouse and it was a given that her spouse would be her best friend. The French culture is very family oriented and the concept of individualism is written off as selfish. I agree. It’s impossible to be both individualistic and family-oriented. The first mindset is “all about me” and the second mindset is “all about us.” As I matured, I developed the “all about us” mindset and I become more and more inclined to that mindset each year. If a family is to survive, individualism needs to be set aside. i believe rugged individualism contributes to a culture of infidelity.
          It’s impossible to be “all about me” while being “all about us.” I note that at the core of infidelity, the wayward spouse is all about themselves and their happiness. They don’t take the happiness of their family or the damage to their family into account.

  41. TryingHard August 12, 2016 at 7:43 am #

    SR–you are so right. One day you’re resolved to throw the cheating bum out, then you think how do I do that? You try to understand, try to fix things, need to talk. Then you spend days curled up in a ball crying your eyes out. Then he comes around and gives you hope and boy do you grab onto that. Only to be followed up with days of not hearing from them. You’re all over the place and playing CIA spy. Yes you and your emotions are all over the place. You find yourself acting and saying things you never imagined you would do. I’m sure I did many things wrong and fell flat. But one thing I’ve learned is you can’t be stupid. You must be smart and if you can’t do that on your own you find people that will help you be smart.

    At first I was not focused on the OW. I was focused on my husband. Oh I wanted to make sure she knew I could and WOULD make her life a living hell, his life too. I wasn’t going to take anything lying down. LOL he was even stupid enough to ask we share a lawyer and that I should trust him to not cheat me out of anything. HA I still can’t believe he could sell me that crap. I literally laughed in his face. So in the end we all do what we do and learn a lot from it. Yep We Won’t Be Fooled Again!!!

    • Strengthrequired August 12, 2016 at 6:32 pm #

      Th, definately. Strange, I focused a lot my ch too. Once he was home and we had turned a corner, the focus turned more onto her. Lol
      We definately learn a lot after this experience, I’m sure we would do things differently if there was to be a next time. Let’s hope our ch have learned a thing or two, so we don’t have too.

  42. TryingHard August 12, 2016 at 4:40 pm #

    She was Sarah P and I am so lucky I had great parents. Not perfect, but I have nothing but great memories as a child. My sisters may have a different take. Isn’t that funny how it works in families?

    You are right on about the family and extended family being their friends. My parents never went out with other couples. Being in the military it was compulsory that my father attend the happy hour at the officers club every Friday. They hated it. And once he retired they never did any kind of socializing like that again.

    LOL you should know I still wear skirts and dresses and heels. Matter of fact I have just that on today!

  43. TryingHard August 13, 2016 at 4:54 am #

    Mary–you are completely correct NOT to go to his commander and YOUR income, his job. I’m happy to hear you realize this. I wasn’t suggesting you do it but you could make his life horribly miserable. I’m glad I stopped at my hs employees. I had to tell them, they would have known any way and I needed it to come from me.

    Maybe Wanda the Waitress IS the only one you’ll never really know for sure. Trust me he won’t tell you. Pretty sure he’s “forgotten” if there were others. Cheaters tend to “forget” a lot. Their forgetting is amazing. And funny from what I read they all have this poor memory, if you catch my drift.

    But really your concern isn’t if he’s going to be happy or is happy right now or in the future. It may or may not be with Wanda the Waitress because with people like Wanda there’s always another. I always say he can kick the trash can of life and women like her come running out like cockroaches. If this is his life there’s always a willing participant.

    I hope some of the little things he does that’s good to you doesn’t give you too much hope. It sounds like he’s pretty much checked out of his marriage. Trying to figure his crazy isn’t your job but I get your obsession. Trust me I get it!!! Because maybe if we “figure” it out it will change the outcome. It won’t. I know you know this. Just try to keep your own head above water. And pray to God that if Gods plan is not for him to be in your life that He take the love and compassion you have for your husband out of your heart. I know this hurts like a bitch. Hugs to you and your children my dear.

    • Strengthrequired August 13, 2016 at 5:59 am #

      Th, how funny is it, they all have such forgetful memories, lol. It amazes me, when my ch tells me he forgets, then tells me I have a bad memory. Lol

    • Mary August 13, 2016 at 8:03 am #

      TryingHard —

      Yeah, I know I could make his life WAY more miserable than it already is. He thought I made him miserable before, well I am just getting started lol. Why stop now that he left me?

      I know what you mean, I know it won’t change the outcome, I guess I just feel like if I had some answers, I might get some closure someday. I keep wondering why he was still telling me he loved me if he was so miserable, why he told me 2 weeks before I found out that he didn’t want a divorce anymore, why he told me he liked me the way I was, why he told me none of this was my fault & that I was good to him but then tells me the opposite. I just wish I understood. Why did he give me hope if he was so unhappy?

      I have been praying to God to please just give me the strength to stop caring about him & move on. Or at least give me a glimpse of my future so I know whether it’s with or without him. I keep praying to just put someone in my path that will keep me occupied & make my heart happy. It just sucks that he has someone to get him thru this & here I am doing it all on my own, including parenting. He really sucks.

      • TheFirstWife August 13, 2016 at 11:14 am #

        Mary. You are dealing with someone in the middle of a crisis. Nothing they say or do makes any sense, even to them.

        It is sad that his actions are so confusing. Not only are they confusing to you but they are equally confusing to him. Which is why you will see him behave one way one minute and do the complete opposite in the next minute.

        I am hoping to give you some insight so that you can stop banging your head against the wall in trying to understand and get answers. I spent three years torturing myself trying to understand when there was never going to be a satisfactory answer.

        So please try to move past this stage and learn to accept reality. It is sooo hard to do so without knowin “why”.

        In your husband’s current state of mind you will never get the real answer as to why – he is never going to admit that he is a liar and a cheater and a failure as a husband and man.

        You should focus and concentrate on being the best mom and protecting your children and being there for them. That is all you can do right now. Unfortunately your husband is not going to do anything to help you in this situation.

        take it from those of us who have been in this position. Please do not count on him to help you in your recovery. It will only cause you setbacks and more emotional pain.

      • Sarah P August 13, 2016 at 5:55 pm #

        Mary,
        The reason he is telling you conflicting things is because his emotions are able to change with the winds. The other reason he is telling you conflicting things is because of the influence of Wanda the Waitress. Anytime he has a positive thought about you, Wanda will be there to protest it and to feed him with bullshit about you. Wanda, after all, cannot have him realize that you were The One all along.

        I am going to tell everyone a fantasy I have had about my ex. The woman who took him from me was really vicious about everything and made sure that when he was leaving he did the nastiest things possible. So, I have this fantasy that I show up somewhere in his path during his lunch break. I will be looking fabulous. I will tell him I miss him and want no strings attached sex. I am pretty sure he would go for that. I would take him to a hotel room and tell him to undress. Then I would take photos of him naked. Then, I would promptly LEAVE and text her the photos with the caption: “Long ago he cheated on me with you, now he is cheating on you with ME. I bet you weren’t smart enough to figure out that would happen, were you?”

        Now, would I ever do that? NO, NO, NO. In reality, I do NOT miss him and would never have sex with him if I were single. The idea repulses me. Obviously I would never cheat on my husband– ever. But, thinking about doing this to my ex and the ho-bag that he married is really funny. It makes me laugh every time I think about it.

        Maybe it’s time to start thinking about funny revenge fantasies that you would never carry out. It allows you to laugh at the situation. Laughing is better than crying. As for revenge, it is NEVER worth it. I have never gotten revenge on anyone because living well is the best revenge. I focus on living well.

        As for wishing another man would come across your path, well, I am not strictly opposed to it. I think it would serve the cause of justice if you found a man who wanted you and who treated you better. Men change their tune the minute their ex has found another man. It will make him miserable. Since you are single, he is able to think that he still has two women on a string and he is the master puppeteer. If you found another guy, he would realize he lost you for good and that would be a good thing for him to realize. This realization would cause him to see Wanda the Waitress for what she is pretty quickly. She is no more than a cockroach scuttling across the floor of life. Right now he still lives in a fantasy land where none of this is real. In his mind, he still probably has you as the back up plan. But he should not be able to think that way. He deserves to receive everything he has dished out, PTSD or not. Having a mental condition does not excuse his behavior or warrant bad behavior. Everyone is responsible for his or her choices.

        • Mary August 13, 2016 at 8:13 pm #

          Sarah P — I actually have that same fantasy hahaha. I don’t think I’d actually go thru with it either. I wouldn’t sleep with him until he was tested lol. Who knows how much nastiness is going on down there.

          I know she has filled his head with bullshit about how bad I was, I’m sure that’s why he is so convinced he was so miserable especially since she knows me. I’m sure she’s afraid he might come back. I’m sure she fears that every day even tho she tells me how happy & in love he is. When we were still together, but he had already started cheating, she was messaging me asking how our vacation was going — he told me to plan a trip a couple weeks before he started cheating & I planned a trip to Disney & we decided to still go even tho he wanted a divorce since we already told our daughter (another reason I don’t believe he was that miserable, why would you go on a trip with someone you couldnt stand to be around). I told her things were going so good & that we were having a great time & he was saying things like “next time we bring the kids” so that meant we had a future & of course since I told her all of that, I’m sure that just made her try even harder. Ugh, just makes me so furious.

          I hope he is devastated when I move on. Eight now I know he knows I’m on the back burner. I think he believes I will always be there if he wants to come back. He’s the only person I’ve ever been with, so I almost feel like that would make it worse on him knowing the wife who only ever gave herself to him was with someone else. He obviously has no interest in saving the marriage, so if someone worthy comes along, I probably would date. But I don’t need anything serious & I’d definitely not just sleep with random people. I’m not like Wanda lmao.

          • Sarah P August 13, 2016 at 9:09 pm #

            Mary,

            I will tell you that the first man I was “with” in all ways was someone that I intended on marrying. He was about 4 years older, had a great job lined up, and graduating from college. I was a freshman in college but it didn’t matter. I intended to marry him and finish college anyhow. For about a stretch of a week, he didn’t kiss me or hug me. Then, one day he told me he needed to have “a talk.” He had been cheating with FIVE other women and the reason he was telling me was because he got a yeast infection in his mouth and was having a hard time hiding it.

            You guessed it, he got said yeast infection from putting his face where the sun doesn’t shine. And he choose a skanky woman who had an active yeast infection to perform the act on. (Have I ruined your dinner?)

            When I told him how upset I was that he cheated, his retort was: “Oral sex doesn’t count as cheating!!”

            Did I buy that?

            NOPE!!

            We were not engaged or too far along the path to marriage. So, I dumped him and never looked back. Of course, after I dumped him, he almost immediately got engaged to a a naive elementary education major. He cheated on her with the same FIVE women. No joke!!

            Soon after I dumped him, I met a really handsome junior in college. He took me to a classy Italian restaurant on the first date and was a perfect gentleman. We ended up staying together for almost the rest of college. It didn’t work out because we wanted two very different lifestyles and the divide was so large that neither of us could cross it. Even though he was gorgeous, he never cheated on me and I never cheated on him (or anyone else.)

            I understand your concerns as a parent and not wanting to bring a pedophile into your life. But, not all men are pedophiles. There was a young woman who lost her young husband to cancer. The guy she ended up with was the son of my neighbor. He was a friend of her deceased husband. In fact, he had kind of had a talk with her husband right before the husband died. The husband asked if he would take care of her and the young kids. And he had taken care of her and the kids ever since. In essence, he is their dad because their own dad died when they were both under the age of 3 years old. He has kept his promise and they have been together for a long time. Once again, a REAL man.

            I think that you need a REAL MAN in your life and I don’t think it’s a bad thing if you are open to the possibility one day in the future. Your H may never grow up (at least in this lifetime.) He sounds like a young soul and so why waste your time? There are good men out there and most men are not pedophiles. But, it should always be on your radar as a possibility. At least you are not naive about the fact that they exist and can crawl out of the trash when they see a vulnerable woman with small kids.

            Most of all, keep your head held high and emotionally torture Wanda the Waitress as much as you can. Make her wonder if he could come back to you at any moment. Make her wonder whether or not she is woman enough to keep him. Because she obviously is NOT. Cheap hussies are a dime and dozen and he is probably in the affair fog right now. When a man is in the affair fog, cheap hussies tend to look like gold. But, in the end, cheap hussies are just fool’s gold and one day he will realize he has traded in a fortune for what amounts to as being WORTHLESS. Woe to him if he finds this out after it is too late. He will be the biggest fool of them all!

            • Mary August 14, 2016 at 12:08 am #

              I can’t stop laughing about Wanda the Waitress lmao. I fully intend on making her life miserable, even tho I’m sure it’s not so happy right now. We live in a very small community & I’m sure she gets nasty looks almost everywhere she goes & she will always be known as the woman who weaseled her way into her friends marriage & took her husband while her friend was pregnant. Not a reputation I’d want.

              I know not all men are pedophiles, but I just worry about my kids. They had such a “normal” life & then everything changed. Now there will be new people introduced & it just makes me sick to my stomach to think about. I plan on being very picky in my next boyfriend, but obviously my husband won’t be. It’ll probably be whatever is left at 2 am.

              • TheFirstWife August 14, 2016 at 1:38 pm #

                Hi Mary

                I hope that you are being very selective in what you tell your children right now. They are very young and could never understand all that has transpired between you and your husband.

                I hope that your husband starts to understand the damage he has caused his family. However since he doesn’t seem to be thinking of anyone but himself, it is up to youto protect your children.

                Any expert who deals with children will tell you that having multiple partners in and out of their lives is confusing. Your husband right now is in the midst ofand affair and crisis and selfishness, and lacks the ability to make the right decisions.

                As you move forward it is your first job as a mother to protect and preserve their world.

                I would agree that this will not be your husband’s first or last affair. I do not think this relationship he currently has is going to last. It is unfortunate that he has made so many mistakes. However removing his ability to do what is right for his children makes you the only other person in a positionof such importance.

                While you may have an agreement with him not to have wanda the waitress exposed to your children, in the future they may be some unknown flavor of the month you may have to watch out for.

                I hope that you can come to some understanding with him when it comes to this issue. Unfortunately his track record shows otherwise.

                It may be wise to enlist his family’s help in this matter

                • Sarah P. August 14, 2016 at 5:31 pm #

                  I agree with TFW and everyone else. Even though I am making some jokes about Wanda and cheaters, this is a serious situation and one where you must put your children’s needs first.

                  I wonder if a scenario exists where you could get a court order stating that your kids are not allowed to meet any of these women that the dog drags in for the night. (The dog being your ex. Right now he is acting no better than an un-neutered dog following the scent of ‘bitches’ in heat, but hopefully that will change.)

                  You do need to put your children first.

                  I do believe karma will come a callin’ for both of them. People cannot do such egregious things and expect a good result. I think the fact that she had been branded with a proverbial scarlet letter around town is a start. She has gotten the reputation she deserves. But I have a feeling this is just the beginning.

                • Strengthrequired August 14, 2016 at 7:54 pm #

                  Tfw, I think Mary has to understand that if her ch returns to her does not mean he is going to cheat on her again. Just because he has cheated on her now, does not mean he will cheat on her again. Not all ch will. In saying that, if he stays on the path of self destruction, then there would be a high chance if he stays with the ow, that he will leave her and onto the next conquest.
                  I have seen so many men, and heard of so many that have gone through and divorced their wives for what ever reason, not due to them having affairs, that I know of anyway, and have started acting like teenagers and gone from one woman to the next. It’s sad, and they all have eventually felt more alone than ever.
                  So they may feel as though they have made the right decision to divorce at the time, but some have come to miss their wives, their family. They missed the chance to see their children grow up, and to come home of an evening to have their wife and children waiting for them.

                  • Mary August 15, 2016 at 12:06 am #

                    I have been putting the kids first. They are with me over 75% of the time & we are always doing stuff together & they are always my top priority. One reason I want to make things work with their dad is because I know being a family is important for children as long as it’s a healthy family. We had our issues, but they weren’t divorce worthy or at least I didn’t think.

                    I know I could run to the next guy & probably already have a boyfriend right now, but it’s not important. Making life good for my kids is important. Today, they played with their cousin, we picked wild blackberries, we played on the swingset. They were genuinely happy with simple things. My husband goes & buys them toys all the time now (something we rarely did unless it was a holiday or special occasion or occasionally a small toy, etc). He’s trying to make up to them with things.

                    He is just so out of character right now. I feel bad for them. My oldest would rather be with me & she doesn’t even want to talk to him sometimes. She never asks to call him ever, yet calls me on the weekends when she’s gone for 2 nights (& it’s usually the first night). I know she loves him, but I think she’s angry. She started sucking her thumb again, she’s 5 years old. I have no doubt that it’s because of this situation.

                    I really believe he’ll regret this if we don’t work out because he can’t get his head out of his ass in time. I read that 80% of people who divorce because of infidelity regret their decision. I don’t want it, but I can’t make someone want to be with me, so if he wants to leave, don’t let the door hit you on the way out. I’ll just make sure Wanda never gets the marriage that she wants (she told my brother she doesn’t want to get married anymore but I’m sure once the divorce is final, she’ll be pressuring him for a ring), because I’m pretty sure he’ll never get married again once I’m done with him. She probably thinks she’s so special & she’s his soul mate so he’ll change his mind, but I have no problem making his life miserable during this divorce so he never wants to marry again & ruining her happily ever after. She had no problem ruining ours. He says I made him so miserable while we were together, so why stop now, right? Haha.

                  • TheFirstWife August 15, 2016 at 1:10 am #

                    I’m not saying that Msry’s H will cheat on her again. What I meant to say was that given his current state of mind and his unwillingness to reconcile with Mary I predict that:

                    He & the waitress will end up in a bad situation. Once the honeymoon period is over she will cast him aside for someone new. He will be devastated.

                    If he is divorced he will then replace the waitress with someone else.

                    If he doesn’t get some help his self destructive cycle will continue. He will continue with these affairs and bad choices as a way of self medicating. He will look to ease his guilty conscience by way of one affair after the next.
                    And that is what Mary needs to protect the children from.

                    If he happens to reconcile and get his life back on track with Mary, then I hope he can return to the great guy he once was.
                    But for now he has become someone different.

                    Given all that Mary has shared it appears as though this affair won’t last. But the longer he stays with Wanda the Waitress the more he is getting sucked in and the more he believes he is making the right choice.

                    If he could only see what everyone else can see. A reality check.

                    • Mary August 15, 2016 at 9:52 am #

                      I’m pretty sure he had a pretty long conversation (argument) with his mom the other day & from what I understand he told her this is what he wants. He was not happy & cannot be happy with me. I know he is still in his affair fantasy & thinks everything will be rainbows & unicorns once we’re divorced. I don’t plan on making it that easy. He needs to see the consequences of his actions.

                      He definitely needs help or he will continue on as he is. I was actually thinking about telling him that he needs to go to counseling or I’m going to bring the text from Wanda into the friend of the court & tell them he’s suicidal. Is that a horrible idea? There is more that he has said that I can use against him & I could most likely get custody taken away from him if I went in that direction. That’s not what I want, but I do want him to get help.

                      Wanda is an idiot if she believes she’s so special & he won’t do this to her. He has no obligation to her. He did to me & he still left. A marriage & kids weren’t enough to keep him around, I’m sure her waitressing job wont. He can find good vaginal anywhere lol.

                      I wish he would realize all that he’s giving up. About 99% of the people who know what’s going on think he’s an idiot. They don’t believe I could he that horrible to live with. I don’t believe I was either. Even tho I was bitchy, I still took very good care of him. He always had home cooked meal waiting & the kids, house & errands were always done. I doubt Wanda will ever take care of him like I did.

                    • TheFirstWife August 15, 2016 at 10:57 am #

                      Mary. You are not bad or horrible or crazy or anything your CH has said recently.

                      In fact he should be ashamed of himself for talking that way about you.

                      I would not begin to advise you on next steps. Can this be turned around? It could. Is it possible? Who knows. Right now it appears hopeless. But that doesn’t mean things cannot change.

                      But for now you need to protect your children. You need to be “perfect” in the eyes of the court. No bars, no inappropriate social media or FaceBook, etc. nothing that he or (she the OW) can use against you.

                      How sad he would tell you to go be with another guy. How disrespectful can he be? Too bad the person you divorce is nothing like the person you marry.

                      I believe visitation should be changed. He should come to your house. These are extremely young children and you have no way of knowing if the OW is not secretly sabotaging the arrangements. The fact that your children know her is even more disturbing.

                      I wish you all the best in this nightmare and hope emerge a stronger person.

                    • Strengthrequired August 15, 2016 at 8:02 pm #

                      Tfw, we just hope and pray that Mary’s ch gets his life back on track and sees his wife and children as the best thing that has ever happened to him.

                    • Mary August 16, 2016 at 12:03 am #

                      TFW —

                      I haven’t been saying much of anything on facebook. I pretty much keep to myself. Most people probably wouldn’t even know if those idiots hid their relationship a little better. Apparently people are under the impression that he left before they started doing anything tho. Why would you even leave your pregnant wife unless someone else was in the picture?

                      I have gone out once, but I didnt even drink. I have been way better behaved than him. My friend saw him & Wanda at the beach one day with all 5 kids (ours & hers) & they were drinking & smoking around the baby & it was also 95 degrees. The baby came home drenched in sweat. My friend wrote into friend of the court. She said she isn’t taking sides, she’s write in if she saw me doing that too.

                      I feel like I’m actually doing pretty good thru all of this. I have my moments behind closed doors, but for the most part, I keep myself together. I can look myself in the mirror & say I’m proud of how I’ve acted these last several months. I have taken the high road many times when I could have stooped very low. I just allow myself time to think before I make any decisions or say anything stupid. He’s made a complete ass out of himself. She has too. I just don’t understand how they thought this would ever work.

                    • Mary August 16, 2016 at 12:05 am #

                      SR —

                      I hope so too, but it just doesn’t seem possible. He loves his kids a lot, but he’s still not putting their best interest before himself. He will regret it one day because they will know the truth. I have a lot of evidence that I plan on keeping for many years to come so they can see exactly what happened & those two can’t turn it around & make us look like the bad guys.

  44. TryingHard August 13, 2016 at 10:37 am #

    Mary–OMG the last thing you need right now is a distraction in the form of another man. So thank God for unanswered prayers. You have way too much to do.

    My dear we have all wanted to understand. We all want the answer. And there’s really only one. Because he wanted to and because he could. Plain and simple. There is NO magic answer to infidelity. You deserve the answers to who, when and where but the why and how could you answers are elusive and the Gi to answers for the cheaters is textbook Cheating 101. They were unhappy, bored etc till you shake your head listening to all the junk mail that spews from their mouths. None of it is true and simply excuses for very poor character on their part. So quit asking and don’t read the junk mail they are serving up to you.

    You know he probably does love you. So what. He probably “loves” his car, his golf clubs, his favorite baseball glove. No love is a verb when it comes to families and relationships. And cheating, lying, being unremorsefu, continuing the relationship with another person when he knows he’s hurting you and his family is NOT acting lovingly. It’s acting selfishly. The fact that he SAYS he loves you and then jumps back in bed with Wanda the Waitress, is a moot point. He’s just spewing bullshit to you. Also pretty sure he’s getting a big ego boost having two women who want his sorry ass. He is effed up. And he did it all on his own. He had lots of options other than to have an affair and he chose the affair over and over and over. He chose his behavior. It didn’t just happen. The “universe” didn’t bring them together and no two people were “meant to be”. Relationships are choices of free will nothing else. Any other notion is fairy book bullshit so stop it. He’s made this mess, not you.

    So again I hope you are taking care of you and NO BOYFRIENDS yet 🙂

    • Strengthrequired August 13, 2016 at 7:15 pm #

      Mary, again I happen to agree with th. Don’t get another man, I know how hard it is, to just want to feel loved and appreciated, feel protected against all what’s happening. Yet don’t do it, don’t drag another person into this mess, it’s not the right time.
      I remember wanting to make my ch feel bad, and boy did I feel like calling one of “his” single friends. I just wanted him to feel like he was losing me, and someone else could take his place just as easily. Yet deep in my heart I knew, I didn’t want anyone else, I didn’t want to sleep with anyone else but my ch, I also couldn’t just switch my love feelings off for my ch, like he could for me. Also my children needed me, after all, daddy wasn’t around, they had to have one stable person, putting their best interests first. Then I also looked at it like this, what happens if the person I brought into my life turned out to be some type of pedofile, and hurt my kids. I just couldn’t take that chance with such young children.
      So for me, I knew I wouldn’t do anything, yet one day my ch was getting ready to move out, so I believed, so I told him, that he could be happy with his scragitty. Then I mentioned to him, that I was not going to wait for him, and that I wa looking at calling his friend, so I could have some company. ( he got upset, lol) he didn’t want his friend to take advantage of me, and was shocked that I thought of his friend to give me comfort. Lol). Of course I had no intention on calling his friend, but I definately implanted it into his head.
      He ended up coming back that evening, after weeks of trying to get him to spend time with me, so we could try and work on us, and the following week he was home.
      His head was still into her, so he may as well have not come home, yet he still didn’t want me to find anyone else either.
      Believe it or not, but his same friend, would tell him to stay with me, leave the ow, he even planted in his head, that I would eventually find someone else, and he hopes when I do, that he isn’t a bad person, that could hurt me or our children. It certainly had my ch think.
      Little did my ch realise was that I would never have actually called his friend or anyone else for that matter, yet I just wanted to have him realise, that I wasn’t going to wait around forever, if he chose his ow, then eventually someone will take his place in my heart, he needed to know whether he could live with that decision.
      I truly don’t believe that they think of someone else taking their place, that we will always wait for them, until reality hits them.

      • Mary August 13, 2016 at 8:22 pm #

        I agree with you both. I don’t need a boyfriend. I’d even be happy with a friend who is going thru the same thing. A friend of mine & my husband’s aunt both went thru their husband’s cheating while they were pregnant & they have both helped a lot, but I doubt they want to sit & rehash this with me on a daily basis, you know?

        I know my kids need me & that’s why I’m focusing on them. I’ve actually thought about that whole pedophile thing before. Like what if I meet the man of my dreams & his dad or uncle turns out to be some creep who preys on little kids. How doesn’t he thinks about these things???

        He has told me to go & be with someone else, that he won’t care. He wants me to so I leave him alone. He wouldn’t even care if it was a close friend or relative like he did to me. He wouldn’t care if I brought them around our children either. I bet he’ll be doing background searches on the first guy I bring around our kids.

        Funny how the tables turn, hey?

  45. TryingHard August 13, 2016 at 11:24 am #

    TFW—AMEN sister Amen. The BEST revenge, antidote is living well with or without a cheater

  46. TryingHard August 15, 2016 at 10:15 am #

    Mary–IMHO YES you should take Wanda the Waitress’s text to your lawyer/friend of court whoever. YES if you are truly concerned about the welfare of your children, and I believe you are and should be as Daddy is NOT stable, you need to take everything you have to court as evidence to get you custody of the children. You think raising children now is hard, HA just wait until you are divorced. It’s worse!!! You two have to agree on EVERYTHING. It’s impossible and contentious to say the least. Not to even mention the weekly shuffling back and forth from Daddy’s house to Mommy’s house. Trust me I see it. My grandson is in the middle of this mess and anyone that tells you children are resilient don’t know what they are talking about. My grandson is literally pulling his own hair out of his head. AND you have an infant. No way there should be joint custody with such young children with a father in the service gone all the time.

    I told you this is war. It is. You need to pull every conceivable weapon out of your pocket to protect you and your children. He want’s out, he’s not HAPPY??? HA he’s about to find out just how unhappy he’s going to be. Take a lesson, in instances like this it’s better to be feared than liked. He’s leaving you dear, and he may or may not be in a “fog”. The only way to clear that “fog” is with a cold dose of bad ass reality. Being nice and understanding and patient will never do it and YOU will remain in the same situation doing the “pick me dance” for him. He’s no damn prize Mary. He’s treated you like crap and continues to do so.

    You turn your back on Captain Cheaterpants and become a mama grizzly protecting her children and herself and I guarantee you he will remember just how yummy those homemade meals were you made him!!!! You have NOTHING to lose at this point.

    • Strengthrequired August 15, 2016 at 8:20 pm #

      Th, you make me laugh. I love reading your comments. If there was anyone to go through this with, I’m glad it was you. Lol

    • Mary August 15, 2016 at 11:36 pm #

      TryingHard —

      I don’t know what to think. I sit & think about her text saying that if he ever kills himself, it’ll be because of me & what if by bringing this stuff in, it pushes him to the limit & he does?? I’m just really scared for his wellbeing. Last year, I would have never worried about him killing himself, but now I just don’t know. I know it wouldn’t truly be my fault, but she’d blame me for the rest of my life. Not that her opinion matters.

      I just really want him healthy & in being healthy, he needs to get some help. I feel like if I threaten him that I’ll bring that stuff in if he doesn’t go, it might help. But then I get scared that he’ll just snap on me & go nuts. I’ve never worried about my safety around him before, but his behavior is just so unpredictable that I don’t know what he’s capable of. I’ve actually even been afraid that he’d take the kids & just leave & never come back. I know it’s probably farfetched, but I still have those thoughts.

      I just don’t know what step to take next. I wish I knew what the best things to do were so that I could help him get thru this. Funny how he doesn’t care how I’m doing, but I want to make sure he’s okay after all that he’s done to me & the kids.

      • Strengthrequired August 16, 2016 at 2:11 am #

        Mary, I have had those thoughts too before, about my ch taking my kids and leaving. I don’t envy you being in this position, because I have been there too. I also worried about my ch wellbeing, worried if I didn’t stand by him, even while he was a sob, that he would go into more of a depression, and then who knows what he would do.
        You feel damned if you do and damned if you don’t. So what I will say, is talk to your pastor, and ask him what he thinks. If you want that support. Yet you will need to do what feels right by you. That is all anyone can ask of you, you ATM are the sane one in the relationship right now, you are the sole carer of the children, you need to decide what is best for you and your children, your family.
        I know it’s hard, but I am sure it will come to you, and when it does, you will probably question yourself, on whether you made the right decision, but remember the decision you make is what you decided was best for you and for your family.

        • Mary August 16, 2016 at 11:30 am #

          SR —

          Yeah, this all sucks. I hate not knowing which way to turn. If he’s serious about suicide then I don’t want to do anything that will upset him, but I also don’t think someone who is threatening to commit suicide is fit to be a parent. I just don’t know.

          I will be talking to some people. I was going to have my BIL talk to him when he got home. But now he left to go fight fires out west, so he will he gone for like 3 months. I think I might talk to my FIL instead & see what he says.

          Hopefully he will eventually get himself into counseling.

  47. Strengthrequired August 15, 2016 at 8:19 pm #

    Mary, doesn’t it make you sick, how the Cs believes that these ap’s are so damn special. How they believe they (the ap) is so wonderful, honourable, and how they know exactly how to treat them, and they do it better than what we ever did.
    I believe my ch ow had the sun shine out of her ass, that was until my ch got his head stuck so far up her ass, all he could do was smell her sh?T. The sun didn’t shine after that. Lol
    Nolonger could he smell the bed of roses.
    It’s funny how the Cs forget so quickly the type of people we are, that the ap knows us so much better, as if they have lived with us and the Cs hasn’t. How quickly the Cs goes from loving us to thinking we are the scum of the earth and looking at us with hate in their eyes. Yet it is the reflection of the ap that we are having bounced off of us, and they are carrying around our reflection. Everything is distorted, nothing is at it seems.
    Makes you feel like you are in a bad movie, in a bad dream.
    Pretty clever the ow, when you think about it. My ch ow acted stupid, pretended not to know anything, lol, yet she wasn’t as stupid to pull the wool over his eyes and almost destroy a family.
    She just didn’t expect anyone to fight back.

    • TDP August 15, 2016 at 9:19 pm #

      Strengthrequired, this made me laugh. I think you sumed it up very nicely. My CS was the same way, he actually told me she was a really nice person and that I would like her. Seriously, I’m gonna like the woman you’re having sex with and lying to me about, yeah ok! That all changed when she dumped him, because he wouldn’t take a week and go on vacation with her. Then he wanted me to believe that he was the victim, because she chased after and took advantage of him. I guess she also forced his eyes to look at all of her nude photos and emails as well as have sex with her. It really is kind of ironic that these women are able to manipulate our cs’s into believing everything they say and that they are so wonderful, well until they really aren’t.

      • Strengthrequired August 16, 2016 at 2:22 am #

        Tdp, I kept trying to figure out why my ch thought she was so special, well he chose what he wanted to see, and it was the Sun, lol. Well day always turns into night, unless of course we are in the Arctic. So she could have had painted a sign on her head that said, I’m not to be trusted, and my husband would have read, I can be trusted, wink wink.
        She was the perfect chameleon, she wore her disguise well, just like all the other ap here.

        • TDP August 16, 2016 at 6:38 am #

          Strengthrequired, you are coreect, they do choose to see what they want to see, but when the OW is inconstantly bashing us, of course they look better. When they are painting us as the monsters, and them as the person saving our poor CH from the monsters, why wouldn’t our CH choose the person saving them. I read all these stories and wonder how so many people can be fooled, the CH and BS. Why don’t people see through all the smoke and mirrors, or affair fog, it would save so much pain.

      • TheFirstWife August 16, 2016 at 10:17 am #

        TDP. Same here. My H (I suspect) was dumped by OW near DDay1. He was sad and mad. Supposedly he ended it with her.

        Convinced me she chased him. Lied about every aspect of his affair. He wasn’t leaving me. LIE! She pursued him. LIE! He never sent her photos of our children. LIE!

        He begged her to hang on and wait for him. He planned his great escape. I saw all the emails. He never thought the OW would send me some of the hundreds of emails between them.

        When I told him it was all his fault and he made this happen, he had no defense. Up until that moment he had me believing it was her and all innocent.

        I believe they will say and do anything to escape responsibility and accountability.

        • TDP August 17, 2016 at 7:49 am #

          TheFirstWife, I think all these guys were cut from the same mold. My CH has never confessed to anything other then what I’ve found. He lies, lies, lies. I confronted him about things and he would tell me that I was crazy or being insecure, then I would show him proof of what I found and he would not respond, he would just sit there and not say a word. Honestly, when he sat there like a five year old being scolded, I would get so angry I just want to punch him in his face. I’m pretty sure I pictured that in my head more then once. Lol When I confronted him about missing his children’s games, “because he had to work late,” and I found out he was going to see her, he lied lied lied, then I would show him the proof. Like your CS he told me he ended it, because he didn’t want to lose his family, but I found the emails indicating she ended it and of course he would deny. I never once believed anything he was saying, my intuition told me otherwise, glad I listen to my gut. How do they think we can repair a relationship of lies and deceptions. He refuses to come clean about anything, he doesn’t get that omission is a form of lying. And not talking about it isn’t protecting my feelings, it’s protecting him and her and his lies and deceptions. I honestly will never trust a word he says, how can they expect us to?

          • TheFirstWife August 17, 2016 at 8:42 am #

            Hi TDP

            I was in the same exact position that you wore now. Unfortunately it almost caused me to walk away from him because of the continued lies, deception, stonewalling and gaslighting.

            They just don’t seem to understand the impact and damage they continue to do when they lie. Even with black & white proof they lie, lie,lie. I don’t understand why they act like spoiled children.paragraph

            One of the things that I spent a tremendous amount of time talking to my therapist about was the continued lying. That almost caused our divorce where I was ready to leave.

            This went on for years. While I could see he was trying to make amends the continued lying undid any progress we were making.

            I finally got to a point where I was so angry and frustrated I didn’t think I could take another minute of this continued pattern of behavior.

            I then realized he was a coward. A grown man who inside was a coward. And acted like one. And behaved like one of my children instead of a grown man.

            I think for me I finally stopped taking it personally. I realized he had an inability to figure out how to manage and repair the damage that was done. I know he is tryingand continues to try very hard, but unfortunately sometimes will fall short.

            What I want to suggest to you is maybe take a step back and look at him with a critical eye.if you lower your expectations you cannot be disappointed at every turn. What I mean by that is if you ask him a question specifically about an event that happened, expect he’s going to lie. Expect he will not be able to tell you the truth. I think sometimes they honestly believe telling the truth is worse than telling a lie.

            Like you, I only was able to get answers on things where I had solid proof. I decided last year that I was no longer going to try and get a reasonable explanation for any of it. I know I never will and I just have to accept the fact that what occurred was his own mistake and has nothing to do with me.

            I live each day thinking that unfortunately this is now part of our lives that I work very hard to put behind us. However I also live each day for me and my children to make sure we are happy. He can come along for the ride however they will never be a guarantee that a seat is always available for him.

            I love him and treat him well and he is a very good father, however, there are just some things that can never be pasted back together. He broke my heart and my heart will mend. But it will never be 100% ever again.

            I will always have my Plan B in place just in case. They may choose to stay in this marriage but I will never be the trusting fool I was in the past.

            It took me three years to get to the point in my life where I have move past this. I am a good enough person to give him a third chance. However all it takes is one mistake and it would not be a conversation, and the action will be swift. I no longer have the ability to tolerate anymore missteps.

            His midlife crisis almost caused the end of a wonderful family and great life. I am not sure what he was thinking but I know that it really doesn’t matter how perfect I am or how wonderful I am,because when selfish behavior and lack of morals present themselves, the Cheater will find every excuse to justify their behavior.

            I try to be a good person with morals and Christian beliefs. I thought and or believed that by being a good person, a loving wife and showing respect and love that that was enough to sustain a good marriage.

            I could not have been further from the truth.

            After all I have read on this blog and elsewhere, I believe that there are so many victims of infidelity. It is unfortunate that people are tempted to behave in such a despicable manner. They just don’t realize the damage that is caused.

            Based on that, I suggest that you look on yourself. Exercise, read a book, go out with friends, travel, work or don’t work, go to the movie – enjoy yourself. Put your happiness first. Put your life and dreams first.

            once you start feeling fulfilled in your own life, his issues and his impact will lessen in it’s impact on you. I think it can be a tough road to recovery but I firmly believe that trying to understand and get answers in this type of situation is just futile. I also think if you continue to try and get answers, you are just beating your head against the wall.

            I say stop the madness, stop your pain, stop your frustration and start channeling your energy into more positive things.

            From my experience this is been successful for me and I have a completely different attitude.for the most part I am happy and confident and generally enjoy my life.

            My attitude is you’re either with me or be gone!

    • Mary August 15, 2016 at 11:48 pm #

      SR —

      Yes, it does. He doesn’t really talk to me about her, but I know he thinks she’s just the most amazing person. Thing is, he’s known her for years & has always made fun of her & thought she was immature & annoying. I always used to think they had a love/haye relationship with each other. Apparently I was wrong lol.

      From what I can tell, he thinks she does no wrong. I td him to tell her to stop texting me & he said, “you tell her”,… umm okay?

      Even tho this situation sucks, it’s kind of funny too. I see all the things she says “no one can understand”, “we’re in love”, “the love was addicting”, “we were just with 2 people who didn’t know how to love us right” & he does the classic rewriting the history of our marriage. It’s like there’s a Cheaters 101 class & all of our spouses & AP attended.

      I’m sure my husband thinks that since she knows me, everything that she tells him about me is true & I’m sure she has me looking like the enemy, when it’s actually her who is helping him ruin his life. It really is truly sickening.

      I don’t intend on making things easy for them to be together tho. She’ll have to deal with me & all of his family members who hate her for a very long time if she sticks around. Funny thing is tho, he told my brother that they’ll be friends no matter what. I doubt his next girlfriend will want you as his friend & he’s not even friends with his own wife/mother of his children, I doubt you’ll be his friend. I don’t imagine this breakup would go smooth. Also, if they are so in love, why even talk about if they break up. So stupid.

      • Strengthrequired August 16, 2016 at 1:47 am #

        Mary, lol, no one said they were rational thinking people. Everything they say doesn’t make sense. While they think everything they. Say sounds perfectly wonderful, everyone else listens to their dribble and are just dumbfounded, while they think are you truly that stupid. You will throw away a rose for a thorn, smart move. Lol.
        Funny thing is, everyone else sees right through the ap except for the Cs. They appear also to be the last to know, just like we were the last to know about our Cs affair.

        • Mary August 16, 2016 at 9:48 am #

          SR —

          Only problem now is that he hangs out with all of her friends & family who thinks what they are doing is okay, so in his eyes, they aren’t doing anything wrong. He has painted me as this horrible wife that he was sick of living in hell with, so there are people who believe him. Then there are people who think we separated during my pregnancy & they started dating after. Even so, that’s horrible. I’d NEVER date my friend’s ex, especially if there was a long history & children involved, but I guess that’s because I have morals.

      • TDP August 16, 2016 at 7:36 am #

        Mary, while he is still in that great ole affair fog, nothing you say is going to make him see the truth about the affair partner. The best thing you can do is work on you, find ways to enjoy your life, Get a sittier, go out with some girlfriends show him that you can be happy without him. I know how hard it is to not make them the focus of your every thought, I was there. When she sees you moving on the challenge of winning changes. When he sees you moving on, well at some point he will wake up and realize what he gave up. When I chose to work on me, to get counseling, to get fit, to be more confident, to be happy(the hardest part), not only did it make me feel good about me, but it made others notice and him notice that others were noticing. While my situation is a little different then yours, many things are very similar, aggressive OW, spouse with a mental issue mine bypolar, children to worry about, other women painting us as monsters, messaging or texting from OW playing her head games. Don’t let her get in your head that’s what she wants, she wins when your focus is on her. Foucus on you, get health, be happy, enjoy your life, they will notice without you ever saying a word to them.

        • TDP August 16, 2016 at 8:01 am #

          Mary, I also wanted to ask if you have sent your ch screen shots of the ap’s messages about him being suicidal? If not, you may want to because after all she is painting him as being unstable, and it clearly could affect a jugdes choice in granting him visitation with your kids. Just a thought.

          • Mary August 16, 2016 at 10:01 am #

            TDP —

            I made it pretty obvious the other day that I am not jealous of her & that I don’t want to be with the person he is. I think they think we’re mad because they are together, when really mad about how shady they were & how our kids are involved. He told his mom that the kids don’t need to know anything about the situation other than he still loves them & will always be there for him. Okay well you’re the one who brought your girlfriend into the picture & got them involved, so obviously we had questions to answer. They don’t understand why mom & auntie aren’t friends anymore & why daddy & auntie hang out now. My nephew told my dad that he hopes uncle goes home so that his mom will move back home too. They miss their families.

            I’ve been trying really hard to work on myself. I am trying to be more patient & enjoy my kids more. I want to lose my baby weight (I have about 10 lbs to go). I’ve been making time for myself & it’s nice. I miss him a lot, but I’m doing okay without him.

            I told him that she messaged me saying he was going to kill himself because of me & he didn’t even say anything back to me about it. Threatening suicide to manipulate (which I’m sure is what the plan is here because I got in the way of her being around the kids) is domestic violence. She’s a nut job & he’s learning from the craziest of them all.

            • TheFirstWife August 17, 2016 at 8:50 am #

              So Wanda the whore/waitress does not have custody of her children? Did I read that right?

              • Mary August 17, 2016 at 8:28 pm #

                No, she has custody of her kids, she just can’t be around mine. I asked for it to be court ordered & he agreed as long as I gave him more time with his son (the baby).

  48. TryingHard August 16, 2016 at 12:39 pm #

    Mary dear—you are allowing yourself to be paralyzed by fear that THEY are instilling in you.. NO you should not provoke, but presenting evidence to the courts in order to ensure you get custody of your children (because really who takes and infant to the beach when its 95???) is not provocation but rather being rational and intelligent.

    Your job is NOT to protect him. That is impossible. He is an adult and in charge of himself. If you truly believe and are not simply being manipulated by Wanda the Waitress crazy threats and rants then you need to make his mother aware and certainly his doctor. If he’s truly suicidal and not just talking idle threats you are not the one to stop him. He needs medical attention and professional that unless you are a Doctor you cannot provide. Besides you have three other people that need you if their father is going off the deep end. Personally I think it’s bullshit talk and it’s keeping you in their crazy orbit where THEY are in charge of everything and everyone, including you.

    • Mary August 16, 2016 at 4:19 pm #

      TryingHard —

      Yeah, I know. When my friend wrote into friend of the court & the lady questioned him about it, he just kept saying “well it isn’t illegal to drink & smoke around my kids” & “I had towels over him (the baby), he was fine”. I just don’t get why they even took him. I know if I was going to the beach, I’d be happy if someone else watched the baby so I could enjoy my older kids. Once again. Obviously not thinking with his head.

      I’m assuming they are just trying to manipulate me, but I don’t know. I sometimes wonder if he is suicidal. He’s been deployed 3 times & 22 veterans kill themselves every day. Maybe it’s a cry for help? I don’t know. He has mentioned suicide more than once. The other time he told his mom that he would have killed himself if he would have stayed with me any longer. Apparently I was that bad to be with. ?

      • TheFirstWife August 16, 2016 at 4:49 pm #

        Mary. I really feel for you. You actually have 4 kids including the H.

        I understand he is having problems. We all get it.

        But is anyone in his family addressing his suicide talk? Telling him to get help? Trying to arrange professional help?

        Or is everyone tiptoeing around him and allowing him to justify his making a complete mess of things and use his unhappiness as an excuse?

        You see you cannot be suicidal one second and soooo in love with Wanda the Waitress is another second and no longer depressed or suicidal. Itvdoesnt work like that and we all know it.

        His actions and choices clearly indicate depression or something is going on. He needs help. He needs to stop being protected and shielded by the OW and others.

        I am not sure how you can manage this but I wonder the longer he is away from you the bigger the crash will be when this all falls apart.

        He will not be able to sustain this relationship w/ Wanda. One of them will start to find fault with the other and BOOM! It will implode. She is not the sticking around thru good times & bad kind of person.

        I don’t know if you even have any recourse here. He shut you out and is not doing anything to help himself. What other options do you have?

        I feel for you having to deal with this. But when I was watching my H have an almost breakdown I felt like even if he left me I at least did the right thing and tried to help him. I know you are doing the same. So hard when they cannot help themselves.

        And we being the good person standing by them. Yeesh!!!

        • Mary August 17, 2016 at 8:43 pm #

          TFW —

          No one really says anything to him besides his mom & now he hates her & doesn’t want anything to do with her either. He actually told her to “f*ck off & die”. They have had issues in the past, she used to drink a lot & she wasn’t always very nice to him when he was a kid, but once she stopped drinking (7 years ago) their relationship has gotten a lot better. I think a lot of his issues stem back to his childhood (his mother’s drinking & the fact that his father left too) & his deployments. Wanda thinks he’s “fine”, so he thinks he’s fine too.

          I actually tried getting him into individual counseling by going to a counselor “for the kids”, but he told the guy he talks to who he needs to talk to & he has tried counseling & it didn’t help. This was 1 month after we split & he had never mentioned counseling, so I’m assuming he never actually went.

          He is convinced he’s making the right choice. He left because he wasn’t happy with me & because he found someone who understands him better & who is better for him. Oh well, I’m just to the point where I just don’t even care anymore. I mean, I do, but I just am about to stop trying to help anymore. I’m wrong about everything & he knows exactly what he wants out of life, so fine. Have fun with that I guess.

      • Sarah P August 16, 2016 at 9:47 pm #

        Hi Mary,

        I have read your last few comments and I wanted to provide my honest opinion.

        I think that this situation has the potential to be serious and I have always been of the mindset that it is better safe than sorry. Therefore, it is important to explore “what ifs” while maintaining psychological balance. I am in a unique position where I completed a year of law school in good standing before figuring out I wanted to be on the ‘helping’ side of things. That’s part of how I was lead to finish Master’s work in Clinical Psychology. (My second career.) Anyhow, my aunt has been doing divorce law as part of her practice for 30 years and I have stories and I have seen and I have heard of situations like this before. But, my advice in is NOT a substitute for legal advice. Legal statutes change from state to state.

        I was not clear on whether or not you have a good divorce attorney. If not, the first step is to run to get one.

        But, there another step that I would like for you to consider. If I were you, I would request a CASA to be assigned to your case. Normally, CASAs are used for abused or neglected children and they are essential. But, in my state, CASAs are sometimes used to figure out the best interests of the children in volatile situations like this. I cannot imagine that a CASA would evaluate this situation and say: “YUP, everything is normal here!”

        The most important thing you can do is to document. Even if you tell a judge a TRUE STORY, you must supply the burden of proof to show that you are telling the truth. Judges are used to people who mudsling and always assume neither party tells the truth. So, document, document, document.

        I think that you should gather proof of your husband’s suicidal ideation and bring it to your attorney. I also think that you need to watch your husband’s moves like a hawk and document EVERYTHING as it happens. Monitor Facebook, write down incidences that friends tell you, write your side of the story out in detail. Keep the journal is a safe place so you don’t lose it. I would recommend getting a small bank vault to store copies of important documents and a photocopy of the journal. Tell one trusted family member where it is. You must come forward with the suicidal ideations and well as documented proof of the ideations.

        I obviously have not heard your spouse’s side of the story, but I can tell you just based on facts you provide that he should not have ANY custody of your kids. You need to fight like all get out to ensure that you retain full custody. I believe that visitations should be in public places and a social worker should meet him there.

        I know that my viewpoint is usually on the extreme side and that sometimes I can be negative about these things. But, my negativity comes from all of my aunt’s ‘war stories’ about terrible divorces she has settled. It also comes from personal experience and the negative experiences of friends and family. Then, there’s the fact that I hear about or see some of the worst examples of humanity. Perfect recipe for negativity. 🙁

        Anyhow, the bottom line is, if I were you, I would give up trying to reconcile and bring your claws out. Now it is time to fight for the sake of your kids. I am just angry as heck knowing that you and your children are subject to this mess. Your H needs to be home being a husband and father. But, it is obvious he has gone off the mental deep end and he does not have the capacity to be that person. Therefore, you need to fight to keep your kids with you and away from all of the drama.

        Sorry this was such a downer opinion. Big HUGS to you.

  49. TryingHard August 17, 2016 at 8:18 am #

    Mary–Sarah P has given you great advice and guidance. Im hoping you pay attention and start putting her advice into action. I am so sorry for everything you are going through but you cannot play lose with your husband and his mental disorders. You MUST protect your children.

  50. Victoria August 30, 2016 at 2:11 am #

    My husbands ow is a complete predator. Some background. I’m English but moved to turkey 14 years ago to be with my now husband who is Turkish. He’s from a good family, educated, nothing like you read about in the daily mail. We got married 9 years ago and have got two sons aged 7 and 4 who are delightful although my eldest son has adhd which has its own problems and he tends to take out his anger on me whilst only really listening to my husband. I work here as an English teacher and actually throughout our marriage I’ve always earned more than my husband. He works for his brother who has a textiles company. We’ve always had a fairly happy marriage and I always felt loved by him, although he often felt rejected by me for not wanting to have sex more often. Often I was very tired or he would come home late and drunk or I felt resentment that he wasn’t helping me with the boys.

    In February this year he started going to Istanbul every Saturday and coming back Sunday. He said this was for his work, that there was a company up there from whom he had to collect materials and work on the the samples in his factory and take them there the following week. This continued up until 3 weeks ago. I had noticed him pulling away from me in this time and being on the phone a lot and messaging. At the beginning of July I took the boys to England to visit my mum who has cancer for two weeks. When I came back he was cold towards me and then after a week he started telling me very coldly that he didn’t love me. I took the boys with my mother in law to visit his uncle in bodrum to get away as I needed some space and he was just so cold. He said if he felt better he would come and join us. By this time I’d learned his phone passcode almost by accident from my son. At the end of the week he came and joined us and we went to a wedding of a friend of ours near where we were staying. That night he was polite but still pretty cold and was on the phone a lot even when playing with our boys at the party. After the party he went out with his cousins husband and came back to the hotel in the early hours of the morning. As soon as he went to sleep I checked his phone and sure enough there were millions of messages from a Turkish woman in Istanbul, photos of them together, and photos of them on a week long holiday together in my car doing a tour of the Aegean and Mediterranean coast when I was in England visiting my mum.

    I took photos of the photos and messages and spent the ow a messages showing photos of my ch and our sons asleep in the hotel room. When he woke up he had a flurry of messages from here and was sending messages back to her and seemed angry with me. I had also sent some photos of them to his brother and sister so they knew and his brother was trying to call him but he wouldn’t answer. In the early afternoon we sat down together and I said, “this is your mess, you need to sort it out”. He agreed. He said he would choose to do the right thing. Finish it and stay with me and the boys. I got a message from her that evening saying that she was very sorry and hadn’t known he was married and she wouldn’t contact him again. Which was a lie on both counts. This happened 8 August, my dday.

    Fast forward a week and he’s still telling me he doesn’t love me. He’s asking for a divrice. His family have been amazing, supporting me. His sister has been like a pitbull and messaged the ow telling her to stay away. His uncle called the ow and said that he knows her boss in Istanbul and will arrange a meeting with him to expose the affair if she ever contacts my ch again. I asked my ch to move in with his mum for a while after a massive argument where he said he wanted to be with her and I threw his phone in the swimming pool as a message beeped when we were having this conversation. During our time apart we agreed that no one would contact ow if he went to see a psychiatrist as I truly believe he has covert male depression. He cancelled or was too late for the appointment twice saying that his brother wouldn’t let him leave work. That week he asked for a divorce twice. Then on the Sunday, just last Sunday he took the boys out for the day. He’d been staying at his mums for a week by that point. He brought them back and I went out to do some grocery shopping. When I came back he was calm and wanted to talk. We had a few beers together at home and he said he wanted to be with me, that he’d never stopped loving me, how could he, we’d been together 14 years, and he was ready to move forward. I read him an entry from my journal saying how I wanted our marriage to look and he was heartbroken by the last point when is aid I wanted him to be proud of me, for me to be the wife he rushes home to. He said he’d always been proud of me. We kissed and kissed and agreed he could come home and we were going to make it work. The boys were overjoyed. We put hem to bed then had sex. He got up immediately and had a shower.

    The next day he was cold. I made a special effort to cook lovely dinners and sit outside with him listening to music and I booked a couple of nights away in a place we’ve always wanted to visit for out wedding anniversary this coming Friday. When I told him about his on the Wednesday he said he didn’t want to go but then called me the next morning to ask which days and we agreed how we’d go there. On Friday I had a party to go to just for women and children and he took us there but would barely look at me because I was looking great. On the Saturday there was a big party for our friends son’s circumcision, kind of like a massive wedding. I used to work for them in their textiles factory and he wanted to get some business from them. In the afternoon he messaged me to say that he was tired and didn’t want to go. When he got home, he went to the barbers, got a haircut and got dressed to go. He said he’d start using that barbers from now on and would take the boys there too. We went to the party, I looked pretty awesome (!) and we sat together all night, chatting. It felt nice. We got home. I took our sons off to bed and I heard his car leaving the garage. Mi ran outside and asked him where he was going. He said to be with her. And he left.

    Yesterday, my bother in law and sil ‘s husband met him at work. He quit his job, saying he only wants to be with her, gave his company car back to his brother, and left with only the bag of clothes I’d packed for him. He has gone. He has left behind his children, his wife, his home, his job, his sister brother and mum and has no credit cards or money. Just to be with the witch of Istanbul. I haven’t heard from him at all.

    Back to the point of ow. He said that she knew for the last two months that he was married and I expect after dday that she gave him an ultimatum of divorce her or I will never see you again. She is 30, he’s 39, she is divorced with no children and a total party girl, out in the coolest clubs in Istanbul with this weird group of pseudo intellectuals thinking they are all so cool. After a while she will realise that it’s not much fun living with a penniless alcoholic with serious anger issues.

    His family are devastated. They are of the opinion that she will get sick of supporting him, they will argue about money and he will realise how much he misses his children. She might think she’s modern but she is of the kind where not being married and being with someone who literally has nothing except for a suitcase of clothes will not be enough. She is evil. She knows that he has left everything for her and I bet she’s loving it. How romantic. I will not divorce him for two reasons. The first is obviously not to give him or her the satisfaction but the second reason is more important. Once the dust has settled and I am starting to figure out what to do, an option would be to move back to the uk. But if my surname is different to my kids due to divorce I would not be allowed to leave the country without my husbands permission. So it’s very important that we stay married. He can’t divorce me, it’s not possible in Turkish law (luckily my sister in law is a divrice lawyer). So he will be mightily frustrated.

  51. stashh December 4, 2016 at 12:55 pm #

    Oh my….yet another article where a woman writes with barely any mention of the fact that it takes two be infidels …as is stated: “infidelity is equal among the sexes.”. Almost all that applies to a man applies in reverse. Yes it states: “This post looks specifically at mistresses and their role in the affair ” but, rather than (all too often) female authors constantly choosing to write articles from one perspective only perhaps betrayed husbands / boyfriends could have more sympathy for betrayed wives / girlfriends if such authors could perhaps put away the one sided perspective and acknowledge that women cheating causes as much destruction as that of men…do not forget that there are such persons as betrayed husbands / boyfriends!! All too often, ladies, it is your husbands / partners who cause misery for other men.

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