Couple having an argumentOver a year ago Linda wrote a post that talked about the fear that many of you have of another affair happening again.  That fear applies to whether the affair could pick up again with the same affair partner or that a new affair might start with someone else.

There were quite a few comments to her post but not very many of you stated what you  would do if another affair did happen.

From past comments one would assume that if it did, most of you would kick your spouse to the curb and quickly call your attorney.  But is that really the case?

Our discussion this week…

If your spouse would ever have another affair, would you definitely end the marriage?

If you are the cheater, if you ever strayed again, would you expect that your spouse would want a separation and/or divorce?

Why or why not?

What sort of things have you (and/or your spouse) worked on, changed or done to better ensure that another affair will never happen?

Some might think that the answer is a pretty cut and dry, “Hell yes!”  But you never know.

When we posted this question in a previous discussion, one reader responded this way:

There would be hell to pay! Not like this time with a broken heart and broken dreams, tears and screaming, therapy and bonding, forgiveness and effort. There would be a for sale sign in our front lawn, moving truck in the driveway and a check in my hand.

I sacrificed so much for him and our family and he treated me and our family with utter disrespect. This trauma has been the most exhausting all consuming ordeal I have ever gone through. And there is no way in hell I’m doing it again!!!!

We’re curious to read your comments!

See also  Discussion – What Have You Learned?

Please be sure to respond to one another in the comment section below.

Thank you!

Linda & Doug


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    109 replies to "Discussion – What if Your Spouse Cheated Again?"

    • Gizfield

      I believe the comment from the reader above says it all for me. But it’s my house, so the moving van would be for his stuff only. I am done with the. If he ebes a whore, the whore can have him.

    • Gizfield

      Oops, spellcheck please. I am done with it. if he wants a whore, the whore can have him.

    • Strengthrequired

      Right now, I would say, I would be done with my h and my marriage if he cheated again. Whether it be with the same ap or someone else. The pain, trauma and sheer utter exhaustion, watching my children suffer , and trying my hardest to help my cs, has just taken it’s toll. I know I would always love my h, but for him to be so disrespectful to me and our family, would most definately be a deal breaker if it happened again. Yet tbh, I say yes now, but I really don’t know, what I would do.

      • Scott

        I would have to say the exact same thing.

    • forcryin'outloud

      That was my comment and I will stand by it still – 4 yrs post d-day. My lack of ambivalence comes from the long lasting issues that can be attributed to the fallout from the affair. The entire process has been exhausting on every level sometimes debilitating. Even now a certain circumstance can send me into anxiety mode in a split second. For example my H was having some issues at work this weekend (his industry is 24/7/365). About 8:30 on Sat. night he said he needed to go to work. He went upstairs took a shower got dressed in some nice clothes and left. My first thought was should I follow him? Then I get really angry that I’ve been put in the position to think that way. I just don’t have the mental energy to go through it again. Plus, for me, I would lose all respect for myself. It’s been hard enough on my self esteem this time around!

      • Ava

        I absolutely & completely know what you’re talking about. I’ve always considered myself a confident person & I resent what has become of me – the situation you described as an example. That’s resentment that will not go away.

      • unsure

        Every word is true, I’m out about three years. The raging after every detail has stopped, but I still think he feels the need to chase bar bunnies.

      • Virginia

        I have just recently found out my husband cheated repeatedly throughout our marriage. One to two affairs every decade of our 40-year marriage. One affair was two years in length with a coworker. I was stunned and crushed beyond belief. At 69 years of age he confided in me so he could quit carrying around his secrets and to finally give his whole heart to me. Had I known of any of his 5 affairs, I would have divorced him. He was addicted to pornography from age 18 to 61. It drove him to do the things he did. He quit finally when he became a grandfather. I now have PTSD rages. The marriage I thought I had was a lie. I’m in the midst of grieving all those years knowing he had close to 200 liaisons during our marriage. Movies run in my head of him and his mistresses. I’m in counseling and healing slowly from the worst experience of my life.

        • Mosaic

          I am dealing with almost the exact thing. My husband of now 37 years confessed about 1 1/2 years ago to 4 affairs over a 20 year span. I feel like almost our entire marriage has been a lie. My heart is broken. My love for him that is left is forever changed. My trust is broken. Every memory is tainted. I can’t stand to look at pictures of us or talk about any of our vacations or holidays. For a long time I couldn’t stand to look in the mirror. I can’t stand to wish anyone “happy anniversary” or to think about ours. It doesn’t mean anything anymore. I am ashamed that I believed him and believed in him. I am ashamed for still being with him. Yet I still love him, just not like before.
          I am so sorry that you are having to deal with this too. I hate it for anyone who has been betrayed/deceived/humiliated/devastated/etc.

          • AMS

            Mosaic, you have the EXACT feelings and issues as I do! Everything you said is my story and all the feelings about life and people in general. I hate looking at pics, hate to see happy couples, hate anniversaries…etc, we just had our 31st anniversary, Dday was 1/4/21. Was not over til 7/25/21. (Supposedly) I will never trust again, and the resentment is bad. I have triggers all the time, no self confidence, no or low self esteem. It’s bad when you feel like you was not valued enough. It hurts so bad. We talk about separating a lot, he doesn’t want to leave. I’ve worked hard to repair damage, he has some, but not enough for me. Still don’t know if we can overcome this. Just wanted to say, your thoughts are exactly mine.

    • Gizfield

      Tell it like it is, FCOL!! I honestly believe that to have true clarity about the cheating, you hsve to be several years, at a minimum, from it. you finally see it for exactly what it is. Creepy, disgusting behavior from two slimy abouts, and you want NO PART of it at all. I know I dont.

    • Gizfield

      Again, dang! Should be two slimy sneak abouts…

    • Deejay

      I have been through it several times with my husband…younger woman 19 years ago, some time apart, then got back together at which time I decided to leave the previous issue alone, then 10 years in I discover all his online and on the phone affairs which he refused to discuss and then the final blow when he again decided to take up with a much younger woman. I have been devastated so many times and have finally asked myself why do I still love this man. What is about me that will keep on caring in spite of everything. We are now into divorce and I feel just like some of the rest of you…exhausted, debilitated, as if my soul has been ripped out of me.

      • exercisegrace

        Deejay, wow. It sounds like you have been put through the wringer. I am hoping you get some closure and some peace when the divorce is final. I hope you have some plans to do some things for yourself, as you get ready to enter the next chapter. This is all so very hard, no matter which way we turn.

    • tryinghard

      Let’s just say I’d be buying copious amounts of Anti Freeze!!!!

    • Saw the Light (formerly Roller Coaster Rider)

      When I first discovered my husband’s affair, we separated for several weeks and I decided to take him back. At that time, I said (famous last words) “I will do this once.” Throughout the next several months, we lived together and I tried to be as honest and forthright as I could be about my feelings of distrust, and especially the triggers. There were a few times when my gut just screamed at me, and I battled the “waiting for the other shoe to drop” fear. On the very day I had confirmation that the affair was still going on, I left my home and most of my stuff and within weeks had filed for divorce. Fast forward another several months, and having had contact at a mediator’s office and then being asked by him to see a counselor one more time, which I agreed to do, I was surprised by my feelings. Yes, I was still angry but there was also so much sorrow and heartbreak, and genuine love. We continued to live in separate residences but began talking on the phone, and given everything, among them being together for over 40 years, having four kids and grandchildren now being born, I relished the idea that perhaps we really could somehow get past this affair and all its damage and have an intact family with a great story of redemption. We decided to finalize the divorce as we wanted a brand new relationship…and remarried after having been apart for just over a year. When we went on our honeymoon trip, I caught him texting a second OW at midnight…and thus began another long ten months of back and forth, incredible hoop-jumping, wtf are we doing here after all this time…?? until finally last summer, it all hit the fan again and the lies and unbelievable deception all came out on a single day, and I got to be finally done done done. I apologize for telling my story yet again, but I guess the reason I am doing so today is the idea that we may think or even say we will do or not do something if we are cheated on again, but for me I am not sorry I took him back and did what I could because now I never have to wonder if maybe it could have worked had I just given it a little more time, or done one more thing. I know I did what I could. At one point, I remember thinking that my great love for this man would bring him the healing he needed, because I realized that these affairs were about his brokenness and nothing else. But that was more faulty thinking; he has to get healthy by himself, for himself, and my being in his life for so long probably delayed his having to deal with his own choices and who he is. And I am overjoyed to be able to have the freedom to date. Right now, I’m going through boxes and boxes of decades-long history, so that’s hard. When it’s complete, I’m going to have a party to celebrate! And I’m glad I survived. Didn’t think I would at times. Divorce is not the worst thing in the world, as I often imagined in the past. Being in a marriage with someone you cannot trust is.

      • *better days ahead*

        These comments are from so long ago, that I doubt you’ll see this. Your story actually gives me hope, because right now, I worry that I’ll never have the strength to leave him. Meanwhile, the stress, anxiety, and depression is stunning. I have a therapist and psychiatrist, but the necessary actions need to come from me, no matter how much support I have. Thanks for sharing your experience. It helps me to have faith in myself and my life beyond this trauma.

      • Can’t Remember!

        Thank you for this post!!! Wishing you much happiness in your new life!

    • Strengthrequired

      Stl, I can understand why you stayed once your cs cheated again. That is why I am hesitant on saying I won’t try again if my cs did it again. I would like to think I would just throw in the towel if he did, but the love I have for him, makes me unsure.
      I sit here still having chest pains, tightness from the anxiety, everyday, somedays it isn’t that noticeable, some days it’s is worse. I wonder even now, should I just leave or stay, I feel torn. My cs bought me a beautiful ring on the weekend, it was so sweet of him to do that, yet all I could think of since is , I hope he doesn’t think this is what shows me how much he loves me, because all I want is to feel and know from my heart that I am important enough to him, that he can truly keep his ow and her family out of his life, for the rest of his life for the sake of me and our children. That is how I know he truly loves me, willing to give up his ow and her family in all aspects of his life.
      Is it bad for me to want him to hate her and her family? We are moving back down to our home in the next 8 weeks, and my anxiety levels have risen. At times I’m not sure I can go back, for my children or me. I hate that he has done this to our family. I have had our home phone unplugged for the past 3 weeks, just can’t bring myself to plug it back in.
      I am so confused, I want my marriage to work, I want to be with my h every night like we used to be,I want my children to have their dad, like they used to, but in a strange way I feel like I am giving up my safety. I feel like I have given up so much over the past two years, and that I have just had to accept all of it and now go back to normal.
      How do we do that, nothing is the way it was, it actually feels like I have been separated from my cs for two years, not together, as we only see each other on the weekends.
      Maybe I’m just over thinking.

      • Saw the Light (formerly Roller Coaster Rider)

        Anxiety does produce overthinking, Strength Required, but what has happened to you has produced a new normal where there is no security, and the questions are hard to answer. As for the OW, your H needs to view her as Doug finally was able to see Tanya, really nothing special there. The true question is whether or not your H can own the problems his cheating shows he has within himself and get the help, do the work, to refashion his marriage to you. If he can’t or won’t do that, I’m sorry, but all the tea in China won’t fix it. Unfortunately, my former spouse was very good at manipulating and did so many things to look good. I wanted to believe him, but ultimately he just couldn’t change.

        • Strengthrequired

          Stl, he is doing all the right things. I am overthinking, as I mentioned I will be moving back to our home after moving close to two years ago. My nerves are playing up on me. The ow is down near where we are moving back to, I’m not sure whereabouts anymore. I haven’t seen many people since my move, and I’m expecting my next door neighbour to be knocking at my door the moment I move back, as well as others, I’m not sure I will be able to handle it. I guess I underestimate my own strength. Yet I keep thinking of all the humiliation,,so I hoe I just don’t want to continue to hide.
          I guess until I see how much things change between my h and I when we have moved back so we can be together all the time, instead of apart. I won’t know how much I can start trusting him again.

          • exercisegrace

            Stay strong. Take time for yourself. Give yourself time and grace and understanding. Dip back into your life there slowly. Review with him your expectations. Talk about what you will do if you see her and what you expect him to do in the same situation. Not in a dwelling way, but in an empowering way. Visualize yourself handling it with dignity and strength.

            I can understand the feeling of wanting him to hate her. How does he describe his feelings towards her at this time? At the very least I would expect him to hate what she did to you and your family. How she treated you and disrespected you.

            • Strengthrequired

              Eg, thanks, the feelings of anxiety I’m getting, makes me not want to go, at times I think I trying to find a reason not to go, if that makes sense.
              My cs, he tells me he has no feelings whatsoever for her. He doesn’t want to think of her at all. I think he actually feels disgusted with himself, with what he did. Hopefully more disgusted than I am.
              We are changing the house a bit, so things seem more newer and not as a huge reminder.
              I do wonder he many I know, ask themselves, wtf did she do, for her husband to cheat. All those judging eyes, yet then I think too, how judging these people would be of my h too. Yet we wil be there to show everyone that yes we had a rough patch, and we are still together. Even if it is, me who is second guessing our relationship, in fear of being hurt again.
              It will be nice though just having my h home all the time again.
              He wants me to stop thinking, because he knows we will be ok and happy.

            • exercisegrace

              SR, there is no winning in affairs. Most of the people in our world do not know what we have been through. I thought this would make it easier in the long run, as I decided early on to stay. In truth, it makes me feel very alone and isolated. I only have one friend that I can talk to about this mess. I have wondered a number of times if it would have been easier to have just “outed” him and his stupidity to everyone. Sounds like the answer to that is NO! Just a different set of issues.

            • Strengthrequired

              Eg you are right, definately no winners. Whether we stayed or not, there would have been different issues to face, on both sides. If we outed our cs to the world, then everyone knows, then new issues arise, that could be more damaging. It doesn’t matter how things are handled, they still have a similar effect to both cs and bs.
              Do you think it is harder for the cs, to hold their head up high in front of those who know?
              I really think people would be a bit more inclined to watch the cs around their spouses.
              What do you think?

            • Strengthrequired

              Doug and Linda, may I ask how you handled the judging eyes of others that knew of the affair?
              Doug, did you feel like it was uncomfortable at first facing those that knew?
              What about you Linda, was it just as uncomfortable for you as a bs?

            • Doug

              SR, To be honest, we haven’t really had to deal with that issue. In our situation, as far as I know, there are only two of Linda’s friends that know for sure about the affair. She approached them for support and even went away to Florida with them for a few days just afterwards. At first I was embarrassed when around them but that quickly went away. We remain good friends with the two women and their husbands, and in fact were just out with them last night. I don’t doubt that some of my former co-workers may have suspected, but who knows and at this point, I certainly don’t care, as I never see any of them.

            • Tryinghard


              Did your embarrassment in front of your friends help you get over the feelings you had for Tanya? The AP always seems so wonderful and all that until the affair hits the light of day and then suddenly it seems they are not quite so wonderful and the fantasy bubble has burst

            • Doug

              TH, Yes, it sure took much of the luster off of the fantasy of the affair. It also makes one realize that there is an incredible amount of fallout as a result of the affair. It can not only ruin marriages and families, but friendships, work relationships, etc. My BIL for instance, has basically had to start a new life. He no longer communicates with some family members and certainly not people who were friends of both he and his ex-wife.

            • exercisegrace

              My husband is deeply ashamed of what he did, and yes it is very hard for him to be around the two of our friends (two couples) that know. It has eased over time, but it is always there.

              Sadly I don’t think most people “guard” their spouses around anyone in particular. Because they think THEIR spouses would NEVER. I know I did!! I knew his work “friend” was interested in him. I knew she pushed the relationship a bit, but I had absolute trust in MY husband. I would have bet my life that he wouldn’t have done what he did. NO. MORE.
              People just don’t understand that every one of us, every marriage has some level of vulnerability, and that level changes with the different seasons in our life. the wild cards are coping skills, ability to set boundaries, and our past histories.

            • Strengthrequired

              Doug, Thankyou for that. There are some on both my h and my side that know, due to us being apart for a month. For me I feel very embarrassd to be around any of them.
              Especially those that know my h ow.
              My h has even told someone who wanted to socialise when we move back to our home, that we didn’t want to socialise with anyone, yet then added, my w doesn’t want to mix with our kind.
              I didn’t want to socialise with this person, but had nothing to do with their kind, so wonder if using me as part of the excuse made it easier for my h.
              That comment however made it even more embarrassing to me, when I do see them. They live a five minute walk away.

              Eg, at times I believe my h is ashamed of what he did, of course who wouldn’t be if genuinely a good descent person, then there are times I think, if he was so ashamed then how did he let the affair go on for so long and even let it get to a pa?
              Maybe the husbands just look like heroes to their mates, because they scored, and the ow just look like s”””s, while the wives just look like a fool, and easy taken advantage of.

      • tdleea

        I totally get that! You separate and get yourself in another mode of thought and living….going back you just wonder if you’re tearing down everything you just built up for yourself and your kids! Things for you all to live more healthy and hopefully more happily. I, too, wondered this when deciding if I should try to reconcile. My husband and I hadn’t talked for 4 months when, for whatever reason, I agreed to talk to him one night. I could tell things had changed-for the better. However, I thought about all the frustration, tears, heartache and pure pain I had been through and about how things were really going well for me and just wondered….do I throw everything I am today away?
        Then, I thought about how below all that was the love for my husband and the want of our marriage. I figured I needed to give it another try, but told him that if he ever did this to me and our family again, I would cut off his penis and testicles and strangle him with them-very slowly!
        However, I always said if any guy cheated on me they would be out the door. And, I think a lot of people say that, but, as I found out first hand, you can’t know until you are in that position. The only one that can decide to stay or go is YOU because you are the only one that knows all of the circumstances of your marriage. Many people gave me quite the disapproving look/attitude when I decided to reconcile. I knew I needed to be true to myself and do what was best for me and my family. 3 years later, many of those people are saying it was a good thing to do and look at what I would have missed out on if I didn’t. It only reinforces why I don’t judge people!

    • Gizfield

      I’ve been entertaining myself the last couple of days reading “true adultery” stories and it’s making me feel much better. Most of these do not turn out well for the cheater s. remember lisa Nowak and William Oefelein? They are the NASA Diaper Scandal Cheaters . both married to others. NASA instituted some new code of conduct because of these two, lol. they and the other lady involved lost their jobs due to that mess. They must be really proud.

    • Gizfield

      Can you imagine being Lisa? “I used to be an astronaut, but I flipped out over my married boyfriend dating another woman. I put on some diapers and drove 900 miles to confront his other girlfriend. I’m not employed by NASA any more. ” I bet William didnt see that one coming, lol.

      • exercisegrace

        OMG that seriously made me laugh. It is a perfect example of crazy people are when they are caught up in affairs. You don’t get to be an astronaut by being a slouch. Those people are checked out backwards and upside down. I sure would love to read how they are all thinking and feeling about their mess today. I am certain they view it as the biggest mistake of their lives, and much like our own spouses wonder how on earth they could have risked so much, thrown away so much, for NOTHING.

        • Strengthrequired

          It’s crazy indeed, what a downward spiral to go from astronaut to nothing, just because you couldn’t keep the boundaries. Affairs truly make people go astro nuts……

          • Gizfield

            Lol, Strength.

        • Gizfield

          You are so right, EG. And the one thing that is the same for just about all cheaters is that at one point they were probably happy with their marriage and their life. No matter how large or small the fall they took was, it all started the same way. With one inappropriate thought, or comment, or email, or text. All the people in the astronaut story were probably cream of the crop, high achievers, respected, etc. Now they are just a laughing stock. We took the Girl Scouts to the Space and Rocket Center recently. There aren’t that many women who made it to space. It’s sad these two ladies made the wrong decisions, an instead of being role models they are just the opposite. All cheaters sacrifice something, whether their marriage, family, career,self respect, reputation, even if only one other person knows. And like you say, it is for NOTHING.

    • 2redhorses

      I’d be out. I’ve already told him. If there was another affair or even contact with her my daughter and I would be out without a discussion.
      I just don’t have the energy to go through it again. I would view the issue as him not putting the marriage first, and obviously the marriage will never contuine to work.
      His actions would be enough to tell me to walk.
      I pray that will not happen.

    • exercisegrace

      I’ve learned to never say never, but I am pretty sure I would be out. I told him after d-day that while I hate it, I can see where he put one foot after another on the slippery slope and before he knew what was really happening, he was neck deep in whore. Hundreds of little decisions that didn’t seem like that much individually, added up to a one year plus EA/PA.

      He is on notice. A second affair will be viewed as a choice. A thought out, well-considered choice. I owe it to myself and to the children he hurt so tremendously to never, ever put any of us through that again. I told him if he ever cheats again, he is going into it with his eyes wide open. He knows the danger areas. He has had counseling. He knows where the boundaries are. He knows to skirt emotional and relational quicksand in opposite sex work and/or friend relationships.

      Just to be clear? I apply all of the above to myself as well. I know what cheating does (destroys everything and everyone in it’s path). I know who really gets hurt (kids). I will never make that choice and I fully expect to be held to the same standards.

    • Strengthrequired

      Exactly eg, they know the devastation caused through their ea/pa, so for them to have another one, they are not going into it blinded, their eyes are wide open and their choices are made knowingly. I too expect to have my h hold our family with great respect, just as I do.

    • JennyN

      I am not grateful for the affair, but I am grateful for the lessons I have learned from it.

      One of them was that I am worth better behavior from a loved one (and a friend) than to have sneaking, lying and cheating occurring.

      I hope that I never have to go through another affair experience, not because I think one would not happen but because I would have enough strength, love and guts for myself to get out, not at problems in the relationship, but unwillingness to work on those problems with a loved one. I hope I have started to see that what someone “says” and what someone “does” tells me different information….and I need to believe what is done on a consistant basis. I need to believe the reality in front of me, not the potential of another person.

      I hope I have learned what it looks like, and what it feels like for me when someone else is not wililng or able to work on their own stuff….

      I hope I am willing to realize when I am trying to “fix” things that are not mine to fix because the other person does not choose to fix them is a big red flag for me in a relationship.

      An affair to me is only one way that broken behavior comes out. Addiction, secrets, disrespect, abuse etc. For me any of the above in conjunction with not willing to work on the root problem for my own wellbeing I need to extricate myself from.

      These yucky behaviors can be insiduous and look pretty different then others at times….but I hope that when faced with them in a love relationship (or any relationship) that I will choose to get out again before the bottom of the relationship falls out from underneath me.

      I have started to realize recently (fours years out), that it is not other people I don’t trust, it is my own ability to get out of a situation that is not okay for me to be in that I don’t trust. I think when that comes on board a lot of pieces in my life will line up. When I know I can stand (and stay) in my own two feet it won’t matter when another’s dysfunction comes my way….because I won’t try to make it my own.

      • exercisegrace

        JennyN, very powerful words. You are so right. I am a nurturing person, and I can see now that I have always tried to fix things for my husband. I have been his emotional sherpa, so to speak. He must now learn to manage his own emotions, feelings and relationships. He has to set his own boundaries. He chose to shut me out of his friendship with his work whore, and when she began pushing boundaries, he didn’t have the tools to deal with it in a healthy way.

        I too am learning to trust MYSELF. I will no longer put myself at someone else’s mercy. Our cheating spouses bleat like screaming goats about their “unmet needs” when in truth, we have just as many or more unmet needs. We just made different choices.

        • Strengthrequired

          Eg, jenny, we were the ones with the unmet needs, more so than our cs, we put our cs first even during their affairs, while they kept placing us behind everything else, especially their ow.
          We can’t make a cs do the right thing , they have to be strong, able and willing to better themselves and give themselves their own self esteem and dignity back, by doing the right things, not stoop low and continuously do the wrong thing, because it seems easier than to face reality.

          Let’s hope they can, and that there will be no next time.

          • JennyN

            There was a second time for my hubby (same person, four months out).

            I started divorce proceedings that day, cancelled all counseling appointments etc and we have been divorced three years.

            I had a backbone around the affair in a way I did not have with other concerning behavior in my relationship (thank goodness).

            I am just working on coming to terms with all of it. Sure I had unmet needs, but I consistantly expected them to be met by someone who said he could, but was unable in that time frame to take care of himself (never mind me).

            I also was less than clear about what those needs were (to myself, and to my ex).

            I hope to not do that to myself again.

    • Strengthrequired

      Ok everyone, I know you love your cs, but do you respect them as a lover now?
      For me, I’m not sure I do anymore. I respect my h as a father, as a good person, as a good business man, worker and provider, and I love him dearly, Yet I think I have lost respect for him as a husband/lover. I believe that that respect I had for him as a lover and husband went out the window, when he admitted to have slept with the ow. Honestly I don’t care that it was once or not, I struggle to respect him due to his weakness, his stupidity, his carelessness, and the utter disrespect he showed me and our marriage.
      Do any of you feel that way? Do you think you will be able to respect your cs again in that capacity, or do you think it’s lost never to return?

      • exercisegrace

        Do I respect him? For me that’s not a yes or no answer. I certainly don’t respect him the way I once did. We have been married 27 years and together five before that (high school sweethearts!). We were each others’ first and only. That was sacred to both of us. He threw something away that can never be gotten back. So the respect I held for him in that regard is gone. That he could waste something so precious and long-standing for some whore he really didn’t know if unfathomable.

        I do have respect for him for ending the affair on his own, rather than being caught. In the end he did the right thing. I have respect for how hard he has worked in therapy to understand the crap from his past, and all the things within himself that enabled him to make the devastating choices he made. I respect how hard he has worked to rebuild his relationship not only with ME, but with our four children. I respect the fact that in truth, it would have been easier for him to just leave and be on his own, but instead he has chosen to stay and do the hard work to rebuild our marriage. However, once you are a cheater you take that reputation with you into any future relationship. Even if he found someone else, I am sure she would wonder……if he could cheat on his wife of over twenty years and the mother of his four kids? He could CERTAINLY cheat on ME.

        Sadly I have lost many of the feelings SR mentioned above. I do, to some extent, see him through the lens of what he was capable of doing to me, us and our family. I do sometimes wonder if he would be capable of doing that again.

      • Tryinghard

        That’s a good question SR. I have lost a lot of respect for my husband but in many areas I’ve gained respect for him. But overall I probably respect him more than before the affair. He’s done so much growing and has truly become the husband ive always wanted and knew he could be. He’s really been very kind and respectful to me since our reconciliation. I am the one constantly looking over my head waiting for the next shoe to drop. I also think his respect for me has grown and maybe we are just showing each other the respect we each deserve that makes that happen.

        • Strengthrequired

          Th, that gives me hope, that I can rebuild the respect I have for him. Especially if he shows me. Yet like you I keep looking over my shoulder, watching my back, waiting for the next disappointment. So in a way, I think it is me, holding me back from living a happy life with my h.

      • Patti

        Respect? That’s all gone.

    • Gizfield

      Do I respect him ? In a word, no. I doubt I ever will. If I’d known he was a slimy, lying cheater I would not have even dated him, much less married him. As to whether he is a”good person” he is ok now, not the role model he seems to think he is or anything. As to when he was sneaking around with his whore, HE WAS NOT A GOOD PERSON.

    • Gizfield

      Theres an old saying. “when a person shows you what they are, believe them.” He showed me what he is, and I believe him.

    • Gizfield

      It works both ways too. I showed my husband exactly who and what I was too, and he chose not to believe it. after several times of catching him in connect with his slut, I told him it it happened again I would lose all true love and respect for him. He did, I did. I’m not really sure why he was surprised. He begged and cried to come back so I let him but I really wish he was gone. I wont cheat or anything but I’m really checked out of this.

    • Gizfield

      In case anyone thinks my feelings are “unfair” to my husband he is the one who wants to be here. Not me. Hes getting more than he deserves.

      • Strengthrequired

        Thanks giz, th, I’m glad in a way I’m not the only one. It is sad that respect has dropped towards my h, I do hope I can recover it, maybe with time. It’s strange because I actually respected him quite a bit even during his ea, that’s one of the reasons I kept fighting for our marriage. Yet I could see he had no respect for me, so how I feel only now since knowing for certain it turned pa, knowing I had moved away from my home, my family and friends, in the hopes of finding me again, having him away from his ow, only for it to turn pa, having him leave us for 5 days a week for a year and a half, just leaves a really sour taste in my mouth.
        I’m really struggling, in a way I think I am in the marriage more for the children now, they don’t deserve to be apart from their dad. Of course I love him so much, but I wonder if it us enough now.
        He broke my heart when he used her as an escape from reality, but as soon as he slept with her, he broke my spirit. All I have done is pray since seeing that baby photo, is please don’t let it be his.

        • Exercisegrace

          Baby photo?? Clearly I missed something.

          • Strengthrequired

            Eg, I found a PCI of a baby on her fb. I showed my h and asked him if it was his, he was shocked about even a baby pic being there, because he knew nothing about there being a baby. It was then that he admitted having done the deed with her while drunk one night. So he was then worried after that, yet he still knows nothing, and no one has come to him and told him. We both decided to not contact her or mention it to anyone, and carry in with our life with our family.
            Yet it hasn’t stopped me praying that this prayer of this baby not being his, or her not having a baby to him at all. Hopefully that is one prayer that gets answered.

    • Patsy50

      Yes, I would definitely end my marriage if my husband had another affair be it EA or PA. Once is enough for me. Could not go through all the hurt and pain again. I am fully prepared financially and mentally to leave my marriage if I had to with no regrets. We have and still do work on ourselves and our relationship. In my case, we worked on our communication skills, which were not very good before the affair so that has improved. We have a better appreciation for one another. Boundaries were put in place and we know not to cross those lines. And last but not least, more intimacy which in turn leads to caring, fun and enjoying each other. Trust has come back to a level that’s comfortable to me. It will never be 100 percent. I do love him, do I respect him, yes. He has gained back respect again to a level that’s comfortable to me. He is a cheater and it’s become part of who he is,mixed in with many good traits also.

      • Doug

        Patsy, one thing you said there raised a question for me…You say you are prepared financially to leave if you had to…I wonder if you (and other BS) tend to make plans – exit plans, if you will – just in case things don’t work out or if your spouse has another affair, etc. Did you at some point, start socking money away in a private account or did you make plans for where you would live or move to, etc?

        • CBb

          Hi Doug

          This an interesting question. As you know I have been going thru the devastation of an EA for one year. Last July my CH came home and told me of the EA. I respected him for being honest.

          Then the SH&@ hit the fan. Jerold me after almost 25 yrs of marriage he was not sure if he wanted to stay married. He was confused. Big time mid-life crisis. I was watching him spiral out of control. He then to,d me in July he would let me know what he wanted at the end of the summer.

          I had no money to my name and two children. If he left I had no confidence he would pay child support let alone alimony. I was up a creek.

          So I started a massive savings plan. Whatever I could get my hands on. In an account in my name.

          He ended it with the OW in July but I could tell he missed her. He treated me badly at times. In August he again stated he did not want to be married. In September he went running back to his “girlfriend” and the affair picked up and intensified.

          In November he ended our marriage twice. I was less frantic about the $ as I had continued to save and had enough to live on for at least a year if he paid me nothing.

          In December we reconciled but I was adamant that if he wanted me to stay (b/c I threw him out and to,d him we were over) he needed to sign a post nup agreement. Any $ I have in certain accounts in my name he cannot claim in a divorce proceeding. I now have six figures saved in less than a year.

          So I am prepared financially and emotionally for a repeat. Hope it does not happen and hope he learned his lesson and I hope he realizes I am not playing this game again. I think my asking him teo leave opened his eyes up to my strength.

          He has done everything possible these past 6 months to help us get past this and his efforts are genuine. We are in a good place now and I have confidence in our marriage.

          I no longer have any triggers that send me over the edge. My H has helped me move past this by being honest, remorseful, loving, etc.

          He thanks me often for giving him a second or third chance. He finally gets it.

          But one false move and he knows we are done. As someone else posted, For Sale sign in front of the house, his stuff thrown out the door waiting for him and my children and I move on. DONE!

          In December

    • tryinghard

      Yes Doug I do have my own account that I never had before all this. He knows about the account and I don’t keep it secret. I have also made sure my name is legally on all business paperwork so there is no doubt as to my stake in our businesses.

      I have mentally put an exit strategy together so I could better handle a split emotionally, but I doubt that one could ever be truly prepared especially those of us in very long term relationships.

      I also know there are many boundaries in place for me that will not be crossed. It’s not ultimatums that I have given him but standards of how I want to be treated in our new relationship.

      So it is a financial safeguard as well as a mental safeguard and for me this is only good thinking given his history.

      • Doug

        Thanks for the reply guys. It sounds as though you both have got your ducks in a row – just in case. We get emails from lots of folks who couldn’t exit the marriage if they wanted to – mainly due to financial situations – no savings, health insurance, etc.

        • Strengthrequired

          My exit strategy, is definately thought of. I will need to find myself work first, but I worry on how employers will be knowing I will take a bit of time off work due to my younger two sick quite often. A lot of the time I feel trapped, in trying to make decisions.
          I gave my career up for my family, and had nothing to lean on when my h decided to ditch me and the kids for his ow, just so he could be her hero.
          He would say to me, I will still look after you and the kids, you don’t have to worry. Well to me that just made me feel worse, he didn’t want me but he wanted me to be kept and looked after by him. He felt it was his duty. His duty was to not have a mistress in the first place. Yet I made up my mind from the moment he wanted his ow, that I would not be kept if he did not want me. If he really wanted her, then he had to let me go, I was independant once, I can do it again, and raise and rake care of my kids while doing it.
          I truly don’t want to be faced with that feeling again, that feeling of how do I take care of my kids, when I have nothing, no work no money saved. My h turned into the breadwinner, and I turned into his dependant.

          • Tryinghard


            You do have your hands full raising six children and a husband who works a lot. Of course they need you but there are plenty women who do both. Maybe a part time job would be better until the children are more independent but I have to say I’m happy to hear you are at least thinking about going back to work for your own financial security. You know there are other ways women and children are left financially in trouble other than divorce? I mean what if the bread winner dropped dead tomorrow, how you you be financially then? I think every person needs to be able to take care of themselves and not depend on one person in the household to do it.

            • Strengthrequired

              Th, my youngest is 3 the second youngest is 5 both are sick so much, always paediatrician and dr appointments, and thankfully I have been able to be at home for them. I help with the business, but now that my h did what he did, I feel very insecure. We were pretty covered incase of something happening to my h, but raising young ones that are unwell most of the year, than they are well, really put a blow in placing more effort in looking for work, as well child care fees will suck up most of the pay. If they are sick, then I have no one that will look after them, so stuck every way I turn.
              I still browse the jobs, waiting for the right one, but now that we are moving again, I just have to keep browsing, but hope that something comes my way that I can work from home around my kids, while still regaining my independence. I want to feel as though I can financially look after myself and my children.
              I am hoping that once my youngest goes to school, she will start being better a lot more, and my second youngest will improve heaps buy then too.

          • JustThereForMyChildren

            Oh my gosh Hahahaha this sounds like how my husband set it up and what he said to me too. Yeah just makes you feel more like crap. My h always tells me how right I was when he told me he wanted to take time to think about it but he was still banging me, said he wanted to see what was out there, I told him he’s probably going to go see what’s out there and decide it’s not what he wants so he’s just keeping me on the back burner in case banging his stripper girlfriends didn’t workout. And yeah I was right, exactly what he did. He didn’t tell me the truth at first about them and I don’t even know if he even has. He went running around with a bunch of strippers with his boss and of course his boss used him to make himself feel better about his own affairs. I feel so disgusting. I’m pregnant and I hadn’t wanted to tell him and he blamed it on me at first and said he wouldn’t have done that if he’d known. We already have a child together and I have two others so I said don’t you dare try to blame it on me, you wanted to go running around with your boss before I found out that I’m pregnant. Now he’s had a work injury and looking at life differently and somewhat seeing his boss for what he is so that’s how the last stripper sexual affair came out that he confessed feeling guilty. But he says he can’t remember exactly when that one was so I don’t know if it was before or after I told him I was pregnant which I read him pretty well and it’s not the truth that he doesn’t remember. I honestly didn’t want to tell him at all that I’m prego, if he was going to step out on me at some point a baby won’t stop that in the future especially since we already had one together. He treated me so horrible during his couple month shenanigans and now for the most part it’s better cuz he says he wants to be with me and be happy but it’s like he knew I’d forgive him too if he just went and played around with his boss and then decided it was a bad choice and he wanted to stay. I try to be very respectful and I’ve never done the things on the lists they say don’t do if you’re a bs, I didn’t see what good it would do and I’ve been through a previous abusive cheating spouse and multiple boyfriends cheating before and just left them all. It’s not worth going through this garbage though. I’ve been very mature about this one since I decided to stay somewhat. It’s been almost a year since d-day and only a few months since he told me there was another one during the same time and I’m so drained that I feel like I’m just faking the smiles and affection to help him through his “working on himself stage”, he told me at one point he had a lot of suicidal thoughts during the affairs. At this point, I just don’t want my other two children to have to be split between us like my first two and worry about another abusive stepparent coming into the picture because who knows how they’ll treat my children and DCS is a waste of taxpayer money because they don’t do anything or listen to the kids. I’m just tired. I work so hard at doing anything for him as I did before and I’ve never treated him like garbage or said nasty things to him about this. I can see that he beats himself up enough. I’m just so tired and I literally feel disgusting I just want to vomit at any touch but I guess I’m a good actor with that and honestly I’ll be alright and then all the sudden have a meltdown but then reading these books and lessons I feel like it makes the bad feelings just worse. Does anyone else feel this way? When it comes down to it, I’m just staying for the kids to not be split between homes and have another stepparent around. So I guess if he did it again I’d probably still stay for them. I used to believe him when he’d say he’d never do that kind of thing and now I have zero trust or confidence that it wouldn’t happen again. You know what’s interesting is people say kids in a divorced home, they’re from a broken home, but you can be in a broken home without having divorced parents.

        • unsure

          While separated I put my 401 beneficiaries as my kids and took his name off. I have an investment account that is in daughters name. My ch and I went to the bank and took his name off my banking account, he went with me because he was in the throws of his affair and was ready to “keep” her. (I left his name on the CC – he does it again he gets a BIG CC dept). We still have assets that are shared, actually he moved one of his AP in our rental property, but when I found out she was gone. We are three years out from D day and I will not change any of my accounts into his name, just in case.. Do we ever get trust back again.

          We live in a small town and I know the frustration of “running” into the ow (in my case, more than one) and wondering if he still has feelings.

    • Gizfield

      My exit plan has been in place at least two years. House is totally mine. Bought with first husband. Signed quit claim deed when he died. I have a job, but no savings. Consulted an attorney. $750 for divorce with no grounds. $1500 for grounds of inappropriate marital conduct, which is what I would do. He wants joint custody, to avoid child support but I would get full custody.

    • Gizfield

      You’re welcome, Doug. My first husband was a selfish immature creep who just about bankrupted me, financially and otherwise so I wasn’t going down that road again. I already had a job, house, accounts, etc.and saw no reason to merge finances. I was already 45 years old.

      I must say my current husband had no relationship experience (red flag!!) and my formerly (I thought) sweet boyfriend turned into a controlling immature creep. I had a lot of health problems following my daughter’s birth. Migraines, blood pressure, joint pain, stomach pain. He claimed it was because I “couldn’t get my head right.” It actually was not my head and indeed my gall bladder and a few other things. He tried to act very domineering at first, but it didn’t work and he backed off. I dont remember a lot of the next four or five years but I was very busy, full time job and preschooler, lol. That’s when the cheating was revealed.

    • Gizfield

      Strength, don’t you dare get a job if you are a stay at home mom with young children at home who need you. especially after all your.husband has put them though through. They are his dependents not you, but they need the level of care they are used to. None of you have done anything wrong, he and cousin it, have. I work myself, but wouldn’t I only have one ten year old. The courts will make sure you and your children are taken care of FIRST, not cousin whore’s.

      • Strengthrequired

        Giz, Thankyou, my younger ones definately need me, they both get sick a lot. Always at the peadiatrician and the drs. Sometimes I would love just to be able to go out and get myself some work, so my h can see that I’m not needing him to support me or the kids. That i don’t need his support. He knows I can work and make good money, unlike his cousin it, she works part time, but needed a man to help her. I refuse to turn into that. Yet right now I feel like that is exactly what I am doing, letting a man keep me, even though he is my h, and he wasn’t hers, and she wasn’t his responsibility, but he made her his responsibility in his own mind.

    • Patsy50

      Doug—- Guess you could say I have always socked money away, I have always had my own money. You know that saying about money ” you should always have yours, mine and ours”. Lol. There was never an exit plan at anytime in my marriage it never crossed my mind that someday I would need one. Since the EA, I have not made plans as to where I would live if need be but I am of retirement age so I probably would live in a retirement community close to my children and grandchildren. So needless to say you should always have your ducks in a row, but never put all your eggs in one basket :-). I would like to wish you a Happy Fathers Day. And thank you and Linda for such a wonderful site. I look forward to reading your additions to the higher healing area.

      • Doug

        I agree with you Patsy. I guess one should always have a contingency plan no matter what the situation. Thanks for the Father’s Day wishes and for your kind words

    • Gizfield

      You missed A LOT, Eg. A few weeks ago. Strength’s husband admitted some stuff he did with Cousin It while intoxicated.

    • EyesOpened

      Hey TH – I know you asked Doug this question – but I’m going to chip in – hope that’s ok? You asked if friends opinions help the cs see the AP in a different light?

      My experience of people’s reactions is one of utter antipathy – truly no one but the people involved have voiced an opinion! I shared the details with quite a few friends – and most people at work knew in the end. I have imagined there has been a lot of gossip but a person I work with now (who was a great emotional support after the affair and detested my AP) reassured me that ‘ no one cares or gives it a second thought’ when I told her I was concerned about it.

      A quick update that I have not shared with you is that I’ve been rehired and work next to my old team (for those that don’t know, I left the job and my my AP was made redundant 6 months later ). The whole thing has been extremely difficult – churning up memories and shame which I wish I could leave behind.

      The point is though – no one outside those involved does care! It’s not their lives and it doesn’t affect them.

      I have to admit prior to all this – a married couple we knew went through an affair where the wife was the CS. We felt sorry for him but did not judge her as we didn’t know their story. No one we knew judged them either.

      Even my h feels the affair was a catalyst for positive change . I HAVE to come to this site to see and feel all the hurt I caused. Sometimes I want to visit his w so she can give me a good beating. I might actually be able to move forward then!!!

      So going back to your question TH – no friends or acquaintances have judged the AP or me (to my face) – apart from that one lady I mentioned earlier. Even when she is scathing about the AP now – it sounds wrong because she Blames him for the whole thing! And everyone here knows I can’t agree with that!!!

    • Tryinghard

      Thanks Eyes

      I believe there are certain people who get taken in by others sales pitch. Look at how many people were taken in by Bernie Madoff. Everybody gets taken in one way or another by strong sales pitches, flattery, appealing to our egos etc. I know my husband is one of those. So much so that I have to be the gate keeper at work screening the phone calls tat he gets. I mean he will fall for a lot of sakes pitches. I think it’s because he an excellent salesman. Seriously he could sell ice to Eskimos! I’m not a sales person because I’m too cynical. Someone try’s to sell me something and I back off fast even if I want the offering. There are just many people who are vulnerable to these types. I hate that you bear all the responsibility for the affair. I think your AP swept you off your feet for his own satisfaction. Yes you bought into it and you were wrong, but that egotistical SOB is no innocent and he didn’t give a fig about you. I feel sorry for his wife but I’m pretty sure she has him Sussex out by now and who knows why she stays with him. I’m sure she knows what a rat fink she’s married to and probably doesn’t blame you at all. I know what he told you but he’s a liar. Remember that. He probably lied to you more than he lied to her. He had to because he needed you to adore and worship him. That’s what these types need really. It’s not the sex or how he wants anything good for you, it’s about his needs and how the world views and adores him.

      It’s hard to admit when we’ve been played. I know my husband cringes at the thought that he allowed himself to be taken in by such a sociopath. I think sometimes it’s easier for people to see themselves as immoral than as a dupe.

      I know my husband is very uncomfortable in social situations thinking that people are judging him. Who knows if they are or aren’t and I certainly don’t care if they are. I’ve never been one to care what others think of me. That’s the difference between him and me and probably why he had an affair. He fell for someone’s false adulation because she was playing him as a means to her own financial gain. That really has to hurt him knowing that. But so be it. Maybe he will learn to not trust the sales pitches someday. You won’t get a tongue lading from me but I’d sure like to have a chance to give your AP my two cents worth. I’d have that egotistical shit running with his overinflated tail between his legs.

      Ok so you’re back at the job? Please tell me he’s gone!!!!

    • EyesOpened

      Yes TH – he went in December!!!! Please know I wouldn’t be there if he was – and I wouldn’t be there at all if I could land a gig elsewhere or we won the lottery!! The reminders I experience every day are drowning me and I hate it.

      Yes I was an idiot TH. I am still coming to terms with the devastating reality of it nearly 2 years later. I’m slowly admitting to myself what a numbskull I was!

      I SO wished I lived near you – I’m pretty sure if I had a few counselling sessions with you – you’d sort my life out once and for all!!!

      I am particularly interested to find out why people feel they can’t leave – I still can’t work out if my h feels he can’t leave me – or if he just loves me so much he can’t let me go. He probably wonders the same about me…

      Thanks for your response as always and to everyone else on this great site.

    • tryinghard


      Thank God he’s gone and it sounds like a good job opportunity. I’m sure there’s triggers but that was the old Eyes not the new eyes. I’m sure when you have to pass where his stinky ass sat you are majorly triggered. So try this, just keep walking past it over and over until finally it’s just a space. It’s not “his” office anymore where you placed all your ill conceived fantasies! I’m working in our office where the OW worked and her shit is everywhere. I’ve just about expunged all of it though. LOL I asked my H if they ever had sex in the office and mercifully he said no. I know they did though but this time it’s ok he lied cause I swear to God I will have a bonfire to whatever they had sex on!!!

      Hey guess what, we all make knucklehead decisions! And we also have to forgive ourselves and move on from them and sing that famous song by The Who….”..we won’t be fooled again…” You know you won’t because you have really grown and matured through all this.

      To your last question. I don’t think it’s a matter that we feel we can’t leave. Trust me sometimes I really hold my self back from doing just that. But leaving is also somewhat of a fantasy. What would I have to gain by leaving. First of all it will take a whole lot of work and a nightmare of legal proceedings, and costly. Mostly though, I love my husband, more now than ever. I like my life. Sure it’s a fantasy that I will move to Normandy France and have a great life rehabbing an old farm house but in reality…not so much. People are afraid of the unknown as well.

      I am certain your husband sees you for the wonderful person you are and adores and appreciates you. He may have his own personal problems, most men do (and why can’t me be more like women???) and probably didn’t know how to show you his appreciation for you. But maybe now that he has seen he almost lost you he is trying harder to show you. He fucked up and he knows it by not noticing that he was isolating you so much. Now that was no reason to cheat but it happened and unfortunately that is what it’s taken to wake him up, sounds like to me anyway.

      Listen it is very hard for a man to reconcile the fact that his wife slept with another man. It really is a blow to their sense of masculinity. Most men cannot recover from it and move on to new relationships. The fact that your husband is still there, despite your cheating, speaks volumes about him. You must be a very wonderful person, mother, wife, friend etc. that he is not willing to let you or his relationship with you go just because you made a reallllly boneheaded decision! Your job is to dig the good out of him. Make him show you how much he appreciates and loves you. Hell, ask him if he loves and appreciates you. Ask him how. No, “you know I love you darling”. No we need to hear the words, over and over. Make him talk! But you need to express your gratitude for him as well. You know the whole you get what you give.

      I wish we all lived closer too, but if I ever buy that farmhouse in Normandy I would be just a chunnel ride away!!! LOL you never know!

      Congrats on the new job. And yes until we win that damn lotto it’s off to work we go!!

    • Gizfield

      Trying hard, you are so right about the triggers. The more you see a place the less it bothers you. I live on the house I bought with my first husband. Negative shit happened to me in every room in this house. When he was alive, I remember thinking “if I ever get out of this, I’m going to have to burn this place”. Now it’s fifteen years later and I’m happy as a clam there. Those memories are all gone. Unless I really concentrate on them, which I dont.

      I live about five miles from where I grew up. I pass my affair partner’s high school house every day. Ugh. And the trailer where he lived with his parents and also the one where he lived with his girlfriend. I never think about it, except once in a while to laugh at my stupidity.

      I have a much harder time with places I dont go often.husband’s gf lives about 30 miles away, right by interstate. And where she worked, til it was closed down for insurance fraud, lol is within sight of the interstate that goes the other way. I am very seldom on that side of town. It doesn’t help that I am always with him at those times. Ugh. I .always think about that crap when I am out there. Always. Maybe I just need to take a day and drive past there repeatedly, lol.

    • Gizfield

      Ok, I just had kind of a strange experience. after I wrote my last comment I was thinking about places I go that once were triggers of my affair, like my ex’s house. Not long ago, I noticed that our high school parking spot is on the way to my church. It is a cul de sac, that had some woods at the end in the 70s. I think they have put a road through there and built some houses now I think.

      Anyway, one night in the early 90s when we were cheating, my ex and I were driving around the old neighborhood and we stopped there, for old times sake of course we got out and walked around a bit. He was drinking a coke or something and threw the bottle into the bushes. Somebody threw it back, lol. It scared us to death and we took off.

      My mind drifted to some stuff we had done there in high school, nothing major, just silly school stuff. I realized that I felt like I was doing something wrong for even thinking about this without being disgusted. And let me clarify, this was stuff from when I was 16 and in a legitimate relationship with this guy. Not cheating at all. I just thought it was odd.

    • Gizfield

      I just saw a good quotation on facebook. Not my circus. Not my monkeys.

      I honestly believe my MIL is one of the strangest people I’ve ever met. She and H just had a thirty minute conversation that she thinks her neighbor is staring at her. This is the same woman who took her doorbell out because she always thinks people are ringing it. if you go there, even if she is expecting you, you have to stand in the dark and call cause she wont turn on the frigging porch light.

      I think my husband has White Knight Syndrome, seriously. He spends his day yapping on the phone to a pack of various losers on their loser problems. His girlfriend really shouldn’t feel so flattered that he took the time to talk to her about her shitty life. He lives for that crap. Or eating out, cause he lives for that too. Huge sacrifice, right. His advice to mommy about the neighbor. Stare back, and hit him with her cane. Nobody will hold it against an old lady. I told him if the police keep getting called there they will eventually realize she is incompetent to live alone. She is crazy and has passed it to her kids.

    • EyesOpened

      TH – reading that brought tears to my eyes . I know you are absolutely spot on about the above. I know my husband and I are going to be together forever and now I just need to let go of my anxiety and suspicions that he will return to his old ways. I know he can’t because I won’t let him but just like all the BSs on here, even though I’m a cs I have one eye looking out for signs of the old him masked under the new sweet and almost perfect new him!!

      I have said something similar to what I’m about to say, before on – and it scares me to say this out loud (I haven’t said this to my h or my Cousellor and barely dare to think it)… But I have this uneasy feeling within myself :

      When my AP and I were caught – I was mid-fantasy. I had to find a way to put a stop to those wrong feelings instantly – which is the easiest thing in the world to write, and the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. There is a box inside me which has a very tight screwed down, airtight lid on it – which I sit on to make sure those feelings never ever resurface . The problem for me in ‘letting go properly’ to love my husband with everything I have – means trusting myself enough to open that lid – pour out the rotting green slime that was my fantasy – be brave enough to let it leave me, without trying to hold on to bits on the way, that explain or justify why I did what I did .

      I don’t know if I’m making any sense here – but I know you are very close to helping me see the reality with everything you’re saying TH . So I just want you to know all your words are helping me immensely right now.

      I feel like I need to get on paper all the things I want to say – all the feelings I felt, any residual stuff ( this forum is not the place and crazily I have no computer or place that my h does not have access to where I can just let it all go – then screw up the paper and burn the demons)!

      When I had my IC – I didn’t know I needed to do this. Then we went to MC – so it wasn’t the right place either.

      I should have handwritten stuff whilst my h was away but just didn’t get the time.

      It truly is like poison inside and is mixed up with forgiving myself , my h and my AP . The mere fact I am writing all this lets me know I am so close to ‘moving forward ‘ now.

      Apologies if this post hurts anyone at all – and thank you for the opportunity to ‘talk’. Thank you again TH for your words and support – you have no idea how much you’re helping me right now … I cannot believe I’m 20 months out and still have not sorted myself out. It’s unforgivable.

    • AnnaB

      If my H did it a second time our marriage would be over instantly. I really hope it doesn’t happen, because just thinking about the upheaval and being alone makes me feel desolate. He is doing and saying all the right things, but after three years since DDay I cannot relax and really allow myself to be loved and in love. I would give anything to turn the clock back or get amnesia to forget the devastation and despair of the last three years. If only I could wake up and discover it has all been a dream… knowing this will never happen upsets me. I thought I had uncovered everything, but now and again something else will come to light that he ‘forgot’ to mention, and I see him as a sleazy snake – someone who lied and sneaked about, and invented false events and meetings to trick me, while he was going all ga ga over an equally sneaky, lying piece of trash. She and I were acquaintances, so when I found out what she had been doing with my H I felt so betrayed that the anger still burns strong after all this time. I need counselling for this because I feel like it is eroding part of me away. I have only told a couple of people close to me about the affair, to protect his family as well as him. But if he does it again, it is going VERY PUBLIC! It sounds vindictive, but I’ve done so much for him and I can only take so much!!

      • allayfig222

        Anna, You and I are in exactly the same place, both temporally and emotionally. The only difference is that my H did not have a physical affair. The emotional affair with his ex-girlfriend and his pa during his first marriage (an acquaintance of mine). She facebooked him and it led to 1650 phone calls of 17,000 minutes, 600 texts and 100 emails over 18 months. Every time he got a text during that time, it was from “Bloomingdale’s” or “Harold”. I read three days of disgusting “love letters” from her on DDay and could not believe his loving answers!!! He was never that romantic to me! . I would love to forget it or be able to pretend it never happened, but that is impossible. I kick myself every day for not throwing him out that night (now that I know there were two more DDays filled with promises never to contact her again).
        He is trying his hardest to be the perfect husband, BUT he either cannot or will not answer my questions about why he did it or what they said, so YES, another such discovery would send my senior citizen husband to join the cardboard box under a bridge club.

    • Tryinghard


      Glad I’m helping you. Ok first, only concentrate on forgiving yourself. Quit blaming and giving yourself all the credit for making a really bad decision. You are the one that matters right now in the healing process. Only until you have healed yourself first can your marriage truly heal. This is true for the BS as well. I know I spent so much time beating myself up for not paying attention to the red flags that forgiving myself was standing in the way of accepting what happened. Taking full acceptance for your role and forgiving yourself first allows you the room to accept your husbands forgiveness. As I said before, you didn’t murder anyone you made a stupid choice but now it’s over and I’m pretty certain you’ve learned a lot from it so accept the wonderful, new Eyes and the old one is gone.

      Your husband? Sure he’s not perfect but he didn’t make you have an affair. That’s you, but it sounds like he’s making great strides and no way he would be doing those changes unless he was truly in love and vested in his relationship with you, warts and all. He may have been an asshole but all men are assholes and you trade in one for another eventually you’re going to see their asshole attributes as well. LOL, I’m pretty sure if you’d have ended up with your affair partner his asshole traits would have been pretty disgusting to you too. Probably worse than what you had before. And you would have always questioned if he was cheating on you! Because you know now there is no such thing as the perfect mate or soulmate.

      As to forgiving the OM, fuck him! He doesn’t deserve your forgiveness and never asked for it. Our MC talked about me forgiving the OW around 6 months in to discovery and I about came out of my chair. No way I was interested in forgiving someone that never asked for forgiveness and worse doesn’t even acknowledge she did anything wrong. My H even acknowledges that she was the aggressor and did it for her own financial gain. She lied and betrayed him many times during their relationship. So no there is no forgiveness for her from either one of us. She’s going to have to answer to a higher power than me and I’m fine with that.

      I understand you keeping stuff inside and not wanting to further hurt your husband with the details of your relationship. I doubt he wants to know anymore because what can he do to help you with that. You must feel terribly alone. If you like Doug could give you my email address privately and you can email me. I’ll listen. Maybe you could explain to you H that you are doing that because I am someone you don’t personally know but feel confident enough in laying it all out there and just listen and help where I can. Also tell him that I support both your efforts in rebuilding your marriage. Just an idea.

      I believe in getting it out. I’m sure there’s times when you think you’ve put away every aspect of the relationship and even think oh boy what a jerk I was…. AND then something he said or did and you’re right back to stage 1. And it’s all about well what about this when he said that, what did that mean, why did he do or say that if he didn’t really care for me??? I get it. I know.

      I’ve got some ideas that may help and only cause they’ve helped me. You may think you haven’t progressed 20 months out but I see a big change in your writings. I know you’re getting there. You may not have faith in you but I do:)

    • Tryinghard

      Oh no Giz, I get that prize Craziest MIL in the world. She’s still accusing me of going to her house and stealing her crap! She called my H last week to ask him if he and our grandson came over when she was gone and ransacked her house rifling through her drawers. First that house is such a pig sty I don’t know how she could tell the difference. She’s awful and getting worse. And she’s coming over for a BBQ today for Father’s Day so stay tuned I’m certain there will be more idiot drama!

    • Gizfield

      Lol, Trying Hard, I appreciate your effort but my FIL was the one who thought people were stealing stuff. They were divorced so we had double the fun visits. He actually gave my husband some money once with a note of deductions that he made for stuff my H had “embezzled”. Needless to say, thankfully no visits for a while. And we had to tour the yard every visit, and everyone had to go, I guess so we wouldn’t steal anything.

    • Tryinghard

      Well Giz maybe we could put them in one big box, shake it up and see how many bats fly out. Ugh, people suck. Wish me luck, they are due here in 15 minutes!!! I’ll update you on the latest drama. It ought to be good:)

    • Tryinghardnottokillemboth

      I just want to say Happy Holiday’s to the familie’s still surviving……… I was betrayed by my husband and his trifling ass coworker bitch slutt! Me and her were friends…..I think thats what hurt the most. Plus my brother died and he left me all alone…..that really sucked! It’s been a full year since he broke full contact “supposedly”, and three years since it started! Im not sure what I want right now, and I told him that too! I let him know Im not sure if one day “I might just pick up and leave” or whatever. But I did tell him “I won’t do to you what you did to me, because Im better than you”! “I know how to honour my vows…I dont have to seek comfort from the outside world to make me complete”! “If something is wrong within me I know its within me and “l” alone need to woman up and fix it”! “But I’ll be damned if I put you thru what you put me thru….and will never forget it either”! Forgiveness is very far away for me….only because of how long we were together….how much we have been thru in those years….. because he owes me more than that……and because I deserved better than that! The bitch had Herpes and god knows what other diseases……he aint sleep with her so he say….but the fact that they came so close toooooo many times, she was my friend…..he should have known better!

    • Gizfield

      Luck, TR ! I’m just surprised our spouses turned out as well as they did given these parents, lol. His sister did not turn out as well, she is certifiably insane. not even functional. Thinks the gov is trying to kill her, which will trigger Armageddon. I’m not making this up, seriously.

    • Tryinghardnottokillemboth

      At least you guy’s dont live with your MIL because you had to move…….and your MIL doesn’t borrow large large sums of money only to never pay it back like $1000. And everytime you try to move you can’t cause when she thinks we are about to….something bad comes up like rent issues, electric…..etc eventhough you’ve given her money already! Now we’re stuck in her house…! I told him in two weeks Im selling my half of my/our stuff and leaving wether he’s going to or not. Im going to my brothers to start over……or where ever I can go to get away…….anybody need a free nanny with no strings attatched…..I won’t bother your husbands…..PROMISE…..shoot right now I might even fuss at your undeserving…..ungrateful…….un socalled not happy men that have beautiful wives and wonderful children! I was and still am one of those wives just no children……whew at least I don’t have to explain why daddy’s a perv, a jerk, and why he wants to take care of a woman and her bastard child that aint even his!

      • Tryinghard

        I would live in a box, under a bridge before I lived with my MIL. Get the hell out of that toxic house with or without you husband.

    • Gizfield

      All joking aside, my inlaws are so toxic that I have actually worried about it being passed on to my child. Not to mention my own birth mother and her unidentified mental distorder. I thought my first inlaws were strange, but they were regular drunks and potheads. These people are just crazeeeee. And mean. And very weird.

      My FIL developed cancer a few years ago. One day my h went out to drive him to the doctor, but when he got there his dad had shot himself in the head. In the driveway. A neighbor drove by and saw him. Poor lady was extremely traumatized. And some other neighbors too. Mil had planned to ride along that day but didnt. I think the plan was for the two of them to find him. How sick is that?? I can’t condemn suicide in someone sick, but to expose innocent people like that is unpardonable. The neighbors thought he was just a sweet, lonely little old man but he was just about pure evil. He was lifeflighted and survived several more hours. of course husband was there. How horrible for him.

    • Tryinghard

      Oh my Giz they really do put the fun in dysfunctional.

      Well the BBQ went off great and everyone had a great time. WHOO HOO MIL didn’t come over. She wasn’t “feeling well enough”. So everyone was happy and laughing just like a normal family. Get this FIL actually came up and said thank you and gave me a hug!

      I get toxic. I love my SIL. She is sweet and kind but she’s a drunk and has serious relationship issues. But I would do anything for her. My MIL is the evil one and dementia is really setting in too. They keep saying she doesn’t have much longer to live but I think it’s wishful thinking on their part. Sadly she will not be missed by anyone when she leaves this world and that is the legacy she has created.

      I worked for a guy who’s father committed suicide in his barn to make sure his son would be the one to find him. He was an evil mean bastard of a man with no redeeming qualities and his son was a very sweet but emotionally damaged man. Yes I think they do that shit on purpose. I thought about suicide in the early days of discovery but I was planning on doing it where the police would find me not my family. I think when people do this it’s their way of saying their final fuck yous to their families that have been such disappointments in their sick eyes. I agree it is a wonder our H’s aren’t raving lunatics.

    • Tryinghard


      I just reread your post and something that occurred to me that hadn’t earlier. What can be more loving or heart wrenching or more downright sexy than a man who acknowledges his own shortcoming and responsibility to problems in your marriage and has seen and lived the worst that you have to offer and still see the wonderful ness in you and still wants to go forward in his life with you??? Damn girl your husbands a stud! Open that freaking fairy tale box of yours and acknowledge just what that shit show was, a fake a fantasy. You aren’t Cinderella and he is not Prince Charming. He used you for his own needs. You didn’t know him. You only knew what he wanted to show you. Sure he used pretty words and swept you off your feet. Well you are no longer that naive little girl. Your a real woman with the heartaches and disappointments to prove it and now it’s time to put all those little girl notion about pretend love in the trash where they belong.

      Write it all down get it out but do not burden your husband with any more nonsense. He doesn’t deserve it.

    • Gizfield

      amen, Trying ! My hag in law lived with us a couple of times for a few months following hospitalizations and that is when I found out what she is really like.

    • tryinghard

      We had to live in the in laws basement 25 years ago when we were finishing building our house. I was going to University at the time and my children were in elementary school and it was winter. I ended up wearing a neck brace. Enuf said!

    • Gizfield

      Lol, enuf said. When MIL was on hospital, SIL wanted to move in. had to say no because I would not be able to sleep if she were in my house, especially with my daughter. She hears shit thats not there. Telling her to do stuff. One day I think she will have a complete psychotic break.

    • EyesOpened

      You’re right TH. He’s been through enough. He’s just come home from a long day at work and said ‘what can I do to make you happy right now’? And I said ‘play football in the garden with our son’. So he is. It’s the most beautiful sight ever – the look on my little boy’s face .

      You’re right. The nonsense ends right here right now.

      Thank you TryingHard. Thank you x

    • tryinghard


      Makes me cry!! He’s a stud!! Lucky you. Hugs

    • Gizfield

      Strength, the cheaters did not LOSE anything. They only want to make you THINK they did to make it EASIER on, you guessed it, themselves. I know it is wrong to kill someone. But lets say I do it anyway then say I didn’t “know” it was wrong. Does that make it any less wrong? No.

      Under my husband’s “logic”, I could meet up with a guy, go to a hotel, get naked and roll around, but as long as his pe#@s wasn’t inserted, it wasn’t wrong. Sorry to be graphic, but this really is what it all boils down to. They know it’s wrong but choose to do it anyway.

    • Strengthrequired

      Giz, out of sight out of mind, nothing she doesn’t won’t won’t hurt her. That’s what I was…..

    • Strengthrequired

      Nothing she doesn’t know won’t hurt her.

    • Tryinghard


      First thing I need to say to you is YOURE NOT CRAZY. I hope every BS hears this. And you aren’t wrong for the feelings and emotions you’re experiencing.

      Of course you are doubtful of your decision to reconcile. That’s normal. You’d be crazy if you didn’t have those doubts.

      The other point is too of course you have feelings of revenge. I didn’t have them at first about the O w but as my H and I were rebuilding, still are, that obsession stayed with me a long time. I did plenty to get back at her. Turned her fraudulent unemployment claims in to the unemployment office, made her give back the car the dumbass took a loan out for her to buy and much more. Recently gave info to the IRS who is imposing a tax levy on her. But I would love to send her a fuck you bitch letter, put sugar in her gas tank, he’ll wait for her to cross the street and run her over!!! The thing about revenge I’m learning is there is never enough to justify her role in the betraya. I’m sure if I did another vengeful act like writing a letter I still wouldn’t be satisfied so I don’t. Maybe I will go to my grave someday regretting not having done more but I doubt it.

      You have to constantly work against that thought of revenge because all we are really doing is transferring the anger we have for our husbands onto them and that is not going to solve anything in the long term . You’ll get there. I’m getting there but it’s not easy. There’s still days when I have the urge but I just fantasize about it, laugh at myself and sometimes literally say out loud No You Are Not Going To Do That.

      Taking the high road truly is best especially if she’s out of the picture totally. Now if she isn’t I say go for it, don’t hold back, make her life a living hell every way you can!

    • JustBreathing

      If my husband cheats again I will be gone so fast that he will have blisters from the speed of my passing.!!!!
      I will never permit myself to go through this trauma again, listening to him justify, whine, try to blame me for his infidelity despite love and affection being freely available to him as he was having his affair.
      I have made this totally clear to him, AND I WILL walk away with a clear conscience and start a new life without him.

    • I can see clearly now

      I like to think I would definitely leave as now I have an exit plan and money set aside for that. Honestly, had I had all that in place at first we wouldn’t be married now. I don’t think the second chance thing is out of feelings but rather lack of options for many, so no choice but to try to work it out. I think he likely will cheat again but my reasons for staying are more financial than anything at this point. I don’t see myself ever feeling the same about him, and unfortunately I think many people end up in these type of marriages. If I leave, I won’t have enough working years left to build my retirement so it’s a choice of work forever, or stay in a marriage with someone that I recognize as staying for the convenience as well. Truthfully I think the only reason he stayed was because he didn’t want to face the financial consequences as well. Oh well, there are other things in life that can make for a fulfilling life, despite having a marriage of financial convenience.

    • Lover 13

      After the affair, my forgiveness (which was hard after 47 years of marriage and starting the affair started on our anniversary) as well as I/we did a lot of work to fix what she says I was doing wrong, including individual and couples counseling. My wife is now in treatment for end stage kidney failure and I/we have gone through medical training for at home hemodialysis so I am now the treatment specialist. After all we have gone through even though she is slowly dying and a transplant is not possible I would pack my stuff and leave her here in this house I bought for her to be closer to her Dr and hospitals I would move back to the dream retirement home in the country I built for her/us and never give her a second thought. If she wants the affair partner that much she can have him. I would divorce her and find someone that will appreciate my love and affection. Even though I am 69 years old I think I have a lot more years and a lot of love to give to the right person. My wife says she loves me and doesn’t know what she would do without me but after all the lying, selfishness and sneaking around to be with a high school boy friend I would be through with her. I didn’t mention that she had denied me intimacy for about 10 years before the affair and even after all the sexcapades with him she has still not been intimate with me for the 4 years after D day. If she is so selfish and just using me to keep herself alive for him then I can walk away with no regrets and find someone that will appreciate and love me. I never mistreated her physically or emotionally. I may have reacted badly to the way she was treating me but she was never mistreated, in fact most women would have loved being treated the way I treated and still treat her,

    • Jennet

      Hi I wouldn’t give him another chance. I’ve tried my best for 3 years since D-day and there have been relapses on his part not totally sure but going by what I know now I think it happened on a few occasions. We’re friends etc. No you are not friends!!
      But now I have given him the ultimatum which I never did before and he knows I mean it. It’s her or me that’s it.
      I won’t go through that hell again not for him or anyone else. I can hold my head up high,I’ve tried my best and if that’s not good enough for him then he can go .
      Take care jennet

    • Jennet

      Hi another year gone!! 4 years since DD and what a roller coaster it has been.
      We are still together content and happy enjoying life. I do have down days still they are less now. I think I have found peace within myself by accepting what has happened and why it happened and there is nothing I can do to change any of that it’s in the past. In the end I did have to give the ultimatum because they were still texting each other although as far as I know the affair had ended a long time ago but they stayed in touch because they were friends!!!! I found myself somewhere to live, sorted out my finances told him I was leaving because of the texts and his disrespect towards me by contacting her. Then I booked a holiday on my own for a week to give him the time to let reality kick in and it did and here we are still together was it the reality that I wouldn’t put up with it anymore that made the difference I don’t know I have to think that it was because up until then I had never given the ultimatum because In truth I didn’t know if I could go through with it but when I realised that I could and would then that changed everything. Have I made the right choice only time will tell. Hopefully we can now put this behind us and enjoy life without the elephant in the room. Take care Jennet

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