The Story of the Affair

Preface

My husband cheated on me.

My husband had an affair.

My husband left me for another woman.

This was been written eight weeks after D-Day (and continuously edited after that!). I first wrote it some time ago with the things I knew and understood at the time. There has been one trickle truth, but most of the edits come from details uncovered, or figured out after hours and hours, and hours of talking.

My advice to anyone going through this process is to keep talking. Repeat every question you have time and time again until it makes sense to you. My husband and I have been over every element of the affair from start to finish a few times. We’ve also gone over certain specific things time and time again in addition to this.

In my opinion, constructing a ‘story of the affair’ like the one you’ll read below, is a valuable tool for dealing with what has happened. Be honest about how your partner was feeling and behaving – don’t play it down to make yourself feel better because it won’t work. The angle I have taken is to stick to the facts, but I wrote it in a way that helps me, personally, to accept the things he did for the reasons he did them, and see the affair realistically with no glamorising. It will help you to identify holes in the story, and to recognise the parts you don’t understand, or things that don’t make sense. Doing so gives you things to focus on.. and in writing the story to completion, hopefully you’ll feel like you have all the answers. That said, recovery, even with all the answers, will take time, and even with my story written to completion, questions I hadn’t thought of inevitably crop up now and again. C’est la vie!

The story of the affair

Our marriage was wholesome and true, pure and perfect. I knew this because of the tonnes of bad boyfriends and relationships that preceded it. But although my Husband had never doubted he loved me and was happy with me, he always wondered if it was as good as he presumed it to be. He’d never had a relationship before to know if what we had was ‘happy’, ‘normal’ or indeed not as good as it should be.

My Husband had never fancied anyone before. He’d found girls attractive, but he’d never had a friendship with any other woman but me, and never got to know any woman he thought was good looking. In short, both the opportunity had never arisen, and he’d never looked for it.

When my Husband first saw her, performing on stage… he fancied her. He found her sexy – liked her voice and thought there was something ‘intriguing’ about her. He chose not to share this with me – despite my concerns over him working with a woman… because he was very excited about the new workopportunity and never thought anything would happen between him and her anyway. He didn’t think he was capable of being unfaithful.

She, from what I can gather, fancied my Husband straight away – she looked from his face to his wedding ring, and was ‘gutted’ that he was married. She made out later that that bothered her, but evidently not enough. I don’t consider her fancying my Husband to be anything special or unusual because she had tried it on with the others at work.

For a month, my Husband and her went from being work acquaintances, to being friends. He was relaxed with her, they had a laugh. He probably flirted, but not intentionally. She listened to him and was interested in him. He felt that when he spoke to me about music things, I was bored… where she was all ears, and they had music and work in common. She would text him about mundane everyday things and he enjoyed it. Despite this, it felt no different to having a friendship with a man and he did not want anything to happen between them.

The night of February 28th on the way home from work, she asked if she could sleep on his shoulder and upon hearing that she ‘always did it with the others’, my Husband naively agreed. While she ‘slept’ she touched his leg… he assumed she was asleep and left her to it. He felt slightly awkward.

The next morning, March 1st, she began texting my Husband at work, firstly about everyday things as usual, but then started talking about sex and what she liked. My Husband was shocked – I’d never spoken to him in quite such a vulgar way – but he did not tell her to stop. He assumed she was like this with everyone because of the way he had heard her talk openly about sex to the other workmates, and he knew she texted them, too. By the afternoon, her phrasing had changed from wanting things, to wanting him, and wanting to do things to him. My Husband was extremely flattered, turned on and intrigued. He went along with her, but did not actively encourage her – though it may have not been taken that way because he did not ask her to stop or give her any impression he was not interested.

By the following day the texting was getting more vulgar and more serious and my Husband was more flattered and more intrigued. He began to feel curious about sex with someone other than me and he fancied her, a lot. He found her sexy and sexual and the things she said to him turned him on. Around this time he realised he had sent a lot of texts to her and he wasn’t sure what his text allowance was, so he gave her his email address instead. At this point, although he knew I would be angry if I found out what had been happening, he didn’t feel like he’d betrayed me.

The Wednesday morning brought from her a straight forward proposal. She told him she had an open marriage, and that she wanted no-strings sex with my husband. She told him nobody need know, no harm would be done and he believed her. She made it sound easy and my Husband agreed to it. In one respect he wanted it, and wanted her… but he also felt things had gone too far already and he worried about the consequences in their friendship – and at work, if he turned her down. He was convinced it would be a one-off and would satisfy his curiosity and lust for her. He did not spend much time thinking it through, but dived in feet first. On the way to her house he wanted to turn around and not go through with it, but he thought she’d hate him. He went ahead with it.

When he arrived at the house, it was unromantic – like a business arrangement. They went into the bedroom, undressed and had sex. He felt uncomfortable, but must have enjoyed it as he managed to go all the way with no problem. When he left he felt his first pang of guilt and did not want to do it again. That night he woke in the night and couldn’t sleep. He felt terrible. The next night he had sex with me and it felt better than it had with her.

The emails again took on a more everyday feeling for a day or so, but before the weekend came she had started to talk about doing it again, and the guilt my Husband felt had faded away. He knew it was what she wanted – almost what she expected. He was flattered by her wanting him, but he also felt she was relying on him. He felt he could not say no. The following Monday night, my Husband went to her house after work, before training and had sex with her again.

His feelings for her at this point, was mainly a close friendship, but with a sexual attraction. The sex in itself was not the best, but he found it exciting. He loved how she wanted him.

Over the following 2 weeks he continued to sleep with her, but once or twice he could not perform through the guilt he felt. He hoped, above all, that things would fizzle out. He was starting to get stressed about what he was doing, and our relationship had started to suffer. But as time passed, he looked forward to time with her, and he missed her when she was unable to email. They started to spend alone together at work, groping and kissing etc – though it was always initiated by her. She confided in him – telling him about a troubled childhood and painful things that had happened to her. She said she was trapped in an unhappy marriage. He felt sorry for her, and liked that he was making her feel better.

The arrangement she had with her husband was for her to have sex with my Husband – the arrangement was that her Husband would be in the house. He got a thrill from it. Emails exchanged between her and my Husband were monitored closely by her Husband, so they were kept platonic or sexual.

Despite this arrangement, both she and my Husband began to develop feelings, but while she was primarily interested in sex, he enjoyed her company most. He had something new with her – a friendship and ‘connection’ that felt wonderful…. she was into him and he felt like he had something of his own that he was in control of.  As they worked together 3 nights a week, it was those times that the affair became emotional, and intense. It was there that things took a different turn.

Approximately 12 days before D-Day, she told my Husband she had fallen for him and he said he had for her too. At the time, he felt he had to say it back, although he wasn’t really sure how he felt. He knew his feelings for her were growing and that he loved her company. He also knew he loved me and could not imagine a life without me. He was confused. He began to question his feelings for me because of the way he was feeling about her. My Husband did not believe a person could love two people at the same time.

A week on – 5 days prior to D-Day the affair changed in its intensity and she began saying things like “I want us to be together”and “I can’t wait to be with you”, but also things like “I can’t wait until I can show you off as my boyfriend and be able to say See him? He’s my boyfriend” and “I think we’ll be together within the year, but I hope much sooner”. She was talking as if he was going to leave me. She told him if she left her Husband she would leave him in the house they shared, but my Husband had no intentions of ending his marriage. He didn’t know what to say – not having the courage to tell her it wasn’t going to happen. He lied to her, telling her he hoped they’d be together ‘one day’. Suddenly things were getting serious, and he started to worry about how everything was going to play out.

On the Monday night – 2 days Pre-D-Day, they had training for work and she was very ill. He felt powerless and frustrated by not being able to comfort her and take care of her, as well as being very worried about her wellbeing. She left rehearsal early and he rang her on his way home to see how she was. She told him she was worse. He was worried sick.

On the Tuesday morning, my Husband found out she’d been taken into hospital. He rang her and she said they were running tests. He felt helpless. Later that afternoon she used a new email account to talk to him without her Husband knowing. Until that point, she hadn’t cared enough to set up a method of contacting my Husband privately. But now, she went out of her way to sneak behind her Husband’s back, simply so she could email my Husband to tell him she missed him and loved him. My Husband was overwhelmed with emotion for her and said the same back. He meant it this time. Things had changed. Now… he wanted her, more than he wanted me.. and was convinced his feelings for her meant his feelings for me had never been real.

D-Day arrived, and my Husband left for work like any other normal day. I woke after a dream where my Husband’s friend told me my Husband was seeing her. I was upset and rang him to tell him, and then I started checking his phone bill and asking questions. It wasn’t the first time I’d been suspicious – he’d been different with me for weeks, but I was getting closer to finding out. He knew it was crunch time and he had to make a choice. He wanted all the lies and deceit to stop, and all he could think was that he needed to be with her. In hindsight, he looked at everything one-sided. He thought of her, someone vulnerable who needed him. He could not bear to let her down. He thought of the way he felt when he was with her, and also the work he loved. He could not see a good outcome if he left her and work, and in addition, he saw the chance of a new life with more freedom – with someone he thought totally understood him. He did not think about life without me – he simply chose what felt more attractive at the time. It was a snap decision he decided to run with, simply because he needed to end the lies.

So, he sat at work writing a letter. It was a long letter – a whole A4 sheet. He wrote that he had fallen for someone else and had to be with her. He said he didn’t look for it, but that it just happened. And he said, repeatedly, that he needed me in his life, as a friend. Once the letter was written, he rang her. No plans had been made to leave their respective spouses… no promises, no nothing. My husband was in his own private hell, and whilst she wanted him to leave me, she had no idea it was coming. He rang her and said “I am going home to tell my wife everything”. She said “Don’t – I’ll ring you back”. Shortly afterwards, she rang him back and told him that she had come clean to her husband about everything. He said he was leaving there and then to tell me and it was left at that.

I was sitting in my bed with my laptop. I had satisfied my little niggle that my Husband was cheating easily, because I would have put my life on betting he wasn’t capable of such a thing. I had decided I was imagining things.

The following paragraphs, are reiterated in my first blog post – Day 1 – D-Day. This describes what was going on for my husband, and in the affair. The blog post – here, describes the day from my point of view as the ‘betrayed spouse’.

Then he walked in, gave me the letter and dropped to his knees in floods of tears, saying “You were right”. My reaction was wholly unexpected to him. He has assumed I would be hurt and angry – angry mainly… but my reaction was total devastation. He realised at that point – seeing the horror and pain on my face, that he loved me, but felt he would look fickle if he ‘changed his mind’ after everything he had done. He felt he had taken things too far with her. She had told her husband everything in order to start a life with him – he felt he had no choice but to stick to his decision and he left. He expected to run to her and be relieved the deception was over, but although he still loved and wanted her, he suddenly could not walk away from me. Instead of going to her, my Husband went to his family and friends, where he sobbed and pleaded with them to help him because he didn’t know what to do.

That night they met, and things felt awkward. They kissed briefly, but not passionately, and talked about finding somewhere to live, but my husband suddenly felt it wasn’t right. He knew in his heart it would never work between them, but valued her friendship and didn’t want to lose it. He could not see how he could to let her down. The consequences of ending it with her – upsetting her, possibly leaving her marriage in a mess, and also work in a mess, was too much. He had no idea where to turn.

He came back home that night and asked if he could stay. I sent him to the spare room in a fit of rage, but then in the night I went to him and he held me. We both cried and we made love. I wanted to believe he wanted me back. He said he was sorry but he did not say he was staying with me.

He avoided her calls for most of the following day because he did not know what he wanted to say to her. Everything was telling him to come home to me, but he could not shake the feelings he had for her. He met her after work for coffee in McDonalds and they talked for around half an hour. He held her hands, but did not kiss her.

Shortly after leaving her, I called him and told him our marriage was over. I could not stand to be someone who was waiting in the wings for him to leave the other woman. He pleaded with me and cried on the phone, but I told him I had nothing more to say. Around an hour later he came  to our house to talk and said everything was going to OK> He promised me the world, but a text from her saying “have you found somewhere for us to live?” sent his head into a spin again. He knew he had to end it if he wanted me – but he didn’t want to let her down, and part of him still felt he could not let her go.  He wished she would take the decision away from him, so when he rang her, he asked her if they were doing the right thing, but gave her the impression he thought they weren’t and she agreed. The affair was over.

In the week that followed, my Husband realised that he loved me more than he thought he did. He said he always knew he loved me, but he’d lost sight of how much. He said he’d taken our relationship for granted – not realising how good it was.

His feelings for her changed within a couple of days. With the benefit of distance, he saw his feelings for her for what they were – infatuation. And when he heard she’d started calling him names and bitching about him, he saw a different side to her – one not quite so attractive.

When everyone else found out, they told him she was a manipulative, sex hungry home wrecker. He realised what they had, had not been special at all. The connection he felt with her is what every man cheating on their wives feels with the other woman. It’s text book.

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23 responses to “The Story of the Affair

  1. Very powerfully written.

  2. What you wrote is something I can really emphatise with. What a shame that he threw it all away.

  3. Anony

    Wow 😥
    I read this and after a year of hurting it has made a picture I had in my mind a lot clearer.
    Thank you for writing this.

    The saying ‘they don’t realise what they have until they have lost it’ comes to mind.

    My husband had an affair, three years into our marriage and during the birth of our second baby. Instead of being by my side as I delivered, he was in another country meeting a woman he had met online. I found out the night before I went into labour. It was infatuation, it became a game, a need to know more, a need to meet, it was complete deceit and completely wrong and he didn’t realise
    Until it was too late. I forgave him and he is trying really hard but it still hurts, it burrrrns actually. One year on and it still kills me. Every time we make love, I imagine his hands touching her body and it makes me want to vomit…. I stumbled across your site because I typed ‘my husband cheated a year ago- when will this pain end’… I don’t know if it will ever end, I guess it just gets easier to deal with. 😦

  4. Carol

    I’m six months after D day myself. I hurts so much, just like the first day I found out. I don’t think this ever gets better. Everything is different and changed forever.

  5. ginette

    11 month after D day.. Everything still feels raw, and the mood swings send my head into a spin. Also, going through a frightening mid-life crisis. Our three children are growing up, 6, 11 and 13, lost our family dog, and our marriage fell apart. His affair is over but he is silent over things, and I am hurt all the time. It could be a good day that would turn totally upside down by a song on the radio, a feeling or an image in my head, and send me spinning. Everything is different.. Also, he cut off ties with his family bc they were trying to talk sense into him, and telling stuff about her that he did not want to hear. The kids’ birthdays, Christmas and all holidays are lonely and confusing bc I need to chose between him or the rest of the family. It is isolating and so sad.. very lonely and confusing. Nice to know other wives have gone through this and survived. THank you for writing your story.

  6. Pam

    Its been 11 months since Dday, i came across this site while googling, and trying to find ways to deal with what happened even after 11 months. I was with my husband for 4 years when my world came crumbling down, even tho it was only 4 years we had been highschool sweethearts and not being ready to settle down we grew apart and years later came back together and started a wonderful life together. In those 4 years we welcomed a beautiful baby girl into the world. The affair happened with a very good friend whom i had been friends with since i was a very little kid. We started having problems and every single fight and argument she was the one i confided in, not knowing she was using it to make him feel better. When i had found out his world instantly came crashing down and he realized how much he wanted his family so because of my daughter i did stay and try to fight for everything we had built together. i found out around the same time as the affair that i was expecting another baby and just welcomed another baby girl 🙂 Reading your stories are helping me so much, as i struggle with the affair even after almost a year. The worst part now is trying to deal with the 1 year anniversay of D day. Going back to that horrible day, gives me all the same feelings and pain that iv been through. How did other women get through this day?? I hope other women going through this find this site!

  7. PhantomLogic

    So basically, if you and your husband don’t share the same values, goals and interests in life, cheating is likely to occur.

    • I think you need to be both heading in the same direction in life… being married is being a team afterall… I think you need to have common interests, or at least be supportive of each others interests. One of the reasons cheating occurs is if common ground is found with someone else, and not at home with the wife/husband. It is easy to be flattered and become taken with someone who seems to see things like you, like the things you do etc. I made the mistake of thinking my husband’s interest in playing and producing music was his own and that I had no part to play in that. The affair showed us both that he appreciates me listening to him talk about it, and that he needs me to be interested in what he is doing because it is his passion. She did that because it was her passion too… but ultimately he is here with me. It’s not everything, but it matters. We all need support in life 🙂

  8. brokenbutrepairing

    My story is very similar. I was married for 14 years. I had a career but helped my husband set up his dream by working for free on days off and investing our money into his project initially. My husband met a woman who would become a business advisor for his new shop and the moment i saw her sat there i knew I was in trouble (or my marriage was), I just got a bad feeling in my stomach. She had a partner of several years and they lived together. They both became friends to me and my husband. My husband and her, had a stronger friendship though. After a year into the friendship I started to feel excluded, especially as my husband lied about spending a weekend with her when he said other friends would be there and they never turned up (they where holed up in a cottage with mutual children whilst i was working). After this my suspicions rose and i was never easy, often telling him so but he would say they where just friends and they had business ideas in common. I made sure he was not alone with her, or so I thought. I think my husband arranged to met her a lot of times for coffee and walks as a friend that I was not aware of. I went part time in my job so I could free up more time to be with my husband, and work in his shop and devote more time to the things he was interested in, and do things together, but he always wanted to do things with this other couple. He rejected coming on holiday with our son using work commitments as an excuse and once i was away he went on holiday with them. We went to a music festival and a brave friend told me to be aware that their friendship seemed to intense and she thought it was on the verge of an affair, she had seen it (she worked in the shop). I confronted my husband and asked him to stop contact or our marriage was over. He obliged and said there was nothing going on though, but then a month later she sent him a text and it ignited the whole thing again but with much more intensity. From what I figure he told her his feelings where changing a month after this and he was falling in love, she never walked away. By new year i was so miserable in the relationship due to him shouting at me, ignoring me, constantly drinking and looking at his downturned mouth that I wrote him a letter to say we had to either fix this properly or split. He stated he did not love me anymore and left. A month after he left i prompted him to tell me the truth as i felt men don’t just leave good wives, he told me he was in love with this friend. So he never come back, there was no chance of reconciliation. It is eight months on now and only now has he stated (after me begging him for confirmation) that he is with her in a romantic way. I am very much angry at him for his betrayal and lack of love, and her because she pretended to be a friend to me and was after my husband. I think she saw that he was giving, caring and supportive and wanted that too. Her partner also left his wife to be with her. So she leaves a stream of broken families to get what she wants. Also the fact that they have delayed telling people they are together, is like someone has died but without the funeral, its just darn selfish. I cant wait for the two years to be up so I don’t feel this burning simmering anger and to be honest hatred, which I hate feeling. I have spent in total three years fighting for my marriage. now in all other aspects I feel good in my life, I feel free of this triangle and as a person of faith I rely on this to help me through.

  9. Susie

    I am glad you are healing but it seems as though you are not giving him the blame he deserves. He CHOSE to have the affair. He CHOSE to betray you. Every time he went to her or was with her, he made a CHOICE of his own freewill.

    My husband had an affair (it’s so difficult to see that in print…) with another predator. D-Day was just after midnight on May 17, 2012. Although her motives were pure evil, HE made the CHOICE every single time he met with her. He made the CHOICE not to tell me about the first contact they had. In the end, it was HIS choice to have an affair and it was HIS CHOICE to destroy me and to destroy our marriage.

    We are in therapy and are reading books together and working hard to climb the mountain of marriage restoration together. I think that in some ways, it is easier to divorce than it is to work at repairing a marriage after this type of destruction. We are trying, though. It’s a hard road and there is back-sliding at times, but we keep trying…

    • brokenbutrepairing

      Hi Suzie,
      Divorce is so final and in a way at least he loves you enough to try and work things out. Mine didn’t even grant me that, there was no choice for me to have any kind of reconciliation. I do blame my ex-husband for the betrayal. I found out yesterday that he stayed at a friends house (three years ago) and told this lady friend then that he had feelings for her. So he made a choice three years ago to destroy our marriage, and she made a choice to stick around to feel good knowing he liked her, and I think once the words are out there is no going back. To be honest I feel ridiculed by these two, laughed at and made to be a very insignificant person in the whole scheme of things yet his infidelity has split my life apart. Every time I think of him a rise of boiling hot anger rages up. To be honest I don’t even love him anymore, he has destroyed that, I could never backtrack to him in any way now. I just wish I knew how to not feel anything for him, even hatred or to the situation. Hate is such a destroying emotion. the wrongdoer will never have any perception of how much hurt infidelity, lies and betrayal can cause to a persons emotional health.I hope it works out for you Susie with all my heart x

      • Susie

        Repairing,

        I am so very sorry that we have this in common. Divorce does seem so final along with the stigma that is still out there coupled with the feelings of “what could I have done?” When he wasn’t living here, I had a lot of support from friends and found one comment interesting. They were talking about some neighbors and said, ‘She’s on her second, he’s on her third…’ The speaker was referring to marriages. I know that I would be viewed as such were I to dissolve my marriage. It seems to harsh to judge these two people when no one knows the circumstances…

        I also thought that my husband and his who^e would sit and laugh at me, saying how stupid I was that I didn’t figure this whole thing out. He said that that wasn’t the case but I’m not sure I believe that. I found some of their chat logs and I was the topic of a few of them.

        Let them laugh- they are filth. I am not sure where you are but see if you prosecute them for adultery. It is still a law on the books in some places. It is rarely enforced but if it is a law, they must prosecute it if you press charges. Nail her for ‘alienation of affection’ if you can. These things may make you feel a bit better.

        Are you in therapy? If not, find someone good (good is hard to find!) and find a guide in the darkness of healing. You will still cry, you will still feel as though someone callously tore out your soul, but scar tissue will build up. If you haven’t read it, look into the book, “More Than Just Friends” by Shirley Glasser, Ph.D. Write in the margins. Write in a notebook. Put a dry erase board on the wall in your bedroom and don’t go to bed any day without writing something good about YOU on it EVERY DAY! Pity your ex-husband. He threw away the best thing he ever had for something he picked up in the gutter.

        I know we’ll both heal but will have a lot of scar tissue. This is one of the biggest betrayals one can experience. The pain will always rear its’ ugly head on occasion, and it will be very hard to trust. We have to try to trust ourselves and put ourselves and our needs FIRST (which is not my nature and I doubt it’s yours, either.) Do nice things for other people but do nice things for you, too. You and I have to know we’re worth being treated well before anyone else will believe it.

  10. Leigh

    Reading through your story and it mirrors my own very closely. D-day was 35 days ago and my emotions are still very raw. I never thought he would or even could do this. We have three children (9.10.13) and he was always there for me and the kids. I gave him everything, just like you said. I gave up a lot–and I never regretted it, but I truly gave him the everything. I praised him, I loved him and I doted on him. Why did he get involved with her? Because she needed someone. Her marriage fell apart and she was needy. My husband echoes the feelings of your husband–he couldn’t let her down, she needed him. When will the hurt end? I want to recover. I want to start over with my husband. He doesn’t think we have to let go of our pre-affair marriage. Maybe he’s in denial of the wreckage his betrayal has caused? Maybe he wants to believe we can erase the events of the past year? I know we will heal. This will not define our marriage and who we are. But right now, my mind is haunted with images I can’t erase.
    I am hoping to find solace in your blog. That your healing story will inspire my own. I want to believe that the love I feel for him will last a lifetime.

    • Susie

      Leigh…I am sorry that your husband made such selfish shitty choices. She may have been needy but she is also a predator. She was/is married. She knows that she can find solace with someone who doesn’t belong to another person. As sorry as I am that HER marriage fell apart, she should know better than to actively try to destroy another. Your husband also actively tried to destroy it through his selfish choices. He’s not compassionate, he’s SELFISH!!! Sorry…it’s the truth that I’m living.

      We are working to repair our marriage but I am still hurting and still very angry. It has gotten and keeps getting better but it’s a slow and difficult process. It is easier to get a divorce but I sound like you in that I can’t turn love on and off like a switch.

      I have some recommendations to help you. My D-day was May 17 of this year and the affair didn’t end until June 5th with some minor fallout thereafter. Here is what is helping us:

      1. – Ask him to purchase and read the book, “How to Help Your Spouse Heal From Your Affair: A Compact Manual for the Unfaithful” by: Linda J. MacDonald. ISBN: 9781450553322
      ***Do NOT purchase it for him. If he wants to save your marriage, he needs to make this effort and follow through on his own. After you see him reading it, buy yourself a copy. Write in it, highlight in it, etc. I have nasty comments directed at my cheating spouse all over the inside of it. You can actually see a progression in my comments [they are there just for me] as I started the healing process.

      2. -FIND A THERAPIST. I would only go to a psychologist (NOT a Social Worker/LSCW) who is an LMFT (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist). There is actually a national group of therapists who have banded together and registered as “Married Friendly.” THIS IS RARE AND HARD TO FIND… Here’s a website with info: http://www.marriagefriendlytherapists.com/. We drive 2.5 hours each way to see a therapist who has a Master’s in Psychology, is an LMFT, and is a registered “Marriage Friendly Therapist.” Look at therapists’ CVs. Very few list that they offer help to heal couples from trauma such as adultery, the loss of a child, etc., although they offer five or six types of divorce therapy. It’s easier to get divorced. If you’re in the Midwest, LMK, and I can give you the name of someone who is amazing. Hopefully you’d be close.

      4. -A friend of our marriage gave us a book called “Night Light” by James Dobson. Some of the ideas are a bit too 1950’s gender roles in our opinion, but the book has been an amazing tool in getting us to communicate and answer some of the hard questions to each other. We’ve learned a lot, [I’ve] cried a lot, and we’ve made changes based on how the other person has answered the questions in this book. It’s a daily story based on a weekly theme that has a maximum of 4 questions you have to each answer to each other at the end of the one page per day. Boy, have I learned a lot of new things about someone I’ve been with for more than 20 years. Communication is funny that way…

      3. -Another book called, “Not Just Friends” by Dr. Shirley Glass has been very helpful for us both. We’ve been reading it slowly but are still sticking to it.

      4. -On the way to and from therapy, we listened to, “The Five Love Languages.” Interesting and helpful but nice to listen to in the car together. It didn’t make me cry (much) and gave us both some insight.

      5. -Know that you have the right to ask anything and ask it. He owes you answers (the ones he can understand and provide at this point no matter how embarassing or potentially hurtful to you. When you need to talk or ask questions, tell him you have some questions or need to talk . Ask if now is a good time. If he says it’s not, tell him that you need to schedule about “x number” of minutes with him before the end of the day. What time would be good for him? You are not being weak by doing this, you are being respectful (I found that [believe it or not] they have also hurt themselves in betraying you) and allowing him some time to prepare for your questions. That way, he is less likely to feel that you are “beating on him” or “cornering him” with questions. You will also probably get more honest answers and a better attitude from him this way.

      6. -You both should be 100% above-board, totally honest in your dealings with each other and with what you say to anyone else. At this point, ANY deception or even twisting of the truth is TOO MUCH. If you tell someone else something, you need to tell him and vice versa. He does not have to be privy to what others say, only to what you say. If you are trying to reestablish trust, there is no such thing as a “white” lie anymore. Lies are just that- lies. Be OVERLY honest and tell him that you expect the same. The priority is TRUTH and it overrides hurt feeling, the attempt to be “nice,” etc. For your marriage to recover, truth is a pinnacle right now.

      7. -Take care of yourself. Get a massage. Get your nails done. Get a facial. Take a class to do something that interests you- calligraphy, jewelry making, photography, etc. Even if money is tight, find a beauty school, art association, community college, etc. and do something solely for YOU once per week at the minimum for awhile. You are starting to recover from a huge trauma. This is your medicine and physical therapy. This is NOT negoitable!

      8. -Your kids know that something isn’t “right,” so make sure they get some therapy time like a craft class (Jo-Ann Fabrics and places like that offer them), a movie with a “cool” and trustworthy adult friend, a manicure, etc. every other week for the first month. They will need some emotional down-time as well even if they aren’t privy to the details. If they need therapy, ask the counselor you find how to help them and how to best answer questions (or not) as the case may be.

      9. -Finally, cry. BE angry. Be hurt. Get it out (it keeps coming even at times your don’t expect it.) Most of all, be forgiving. Forgive yourself first- you had NOTHING to do with his crappy choices. Lastly, give yourself permission to try. If you need to, look into a Post Nuptial Agreement- protect yourself and your children financially. Get checked for all STDs. HPV and Herpes have a minimum incubation period of about six months but you can get checked for the others right away. Do this- HPV is VERY common and is the leading cause of cervical cancer. You can’t protect your heart if you are truly going to try to reconcile your marriage and establish trust again but you can protect your body (if and when you have sexual contact again, it’s condoms for 6 months!) and your can protect yourself & your children financially with something like a Post Nuptial Agreement if this doesn’t work out or if he were to [God forbid] stray in the future.

      I am sorry this is so long, but I have learned a lot in the journey I’ve been on in the past five months. I think it will take a long time but I will heal, as will you. I will never forget but I am hoping that I can grow to forgive and that he will continue to be worthy of my forgiveness.

  11. I find the comments interesting. My husband had 3 going on at once. I stumbled across the first when I found the hotel reservation. He said he didn’t meet her but she was a “friend” and needed money. He went and gave her money and also that money paid for her services. This continued for awhile. This was the 2nd one. The first one’s husband came home from being in jail for ironically domestic abuse. this ended that affair. The 3rd was the one that hurt the most. He took her to a motel for her birthday and made it very special. My birthday was 6 days late and I recievd nothing. I worked 2 jobs for this man to put his kids thru school. He had everything he wanted and ever needed. His first affair was with “Maddie kay” and he fell madly and deeply in love with her and nothing has compared to this relationship that broke up his first marriage. he had a succession of one night stands with several woman and then I met him. He said that he had a past and wasn’t to very verbal about it other than he had issues with his marriage and that Maddie Kay “saved him”. He lied and said there was only one. I found out about the other 2 and saw all of the messaging in explicit detail. EVERYTHING we did intimately he did with them down to what he said intimately to me verbation. He told me he fell out of love for me and that he didn’t have any feelings for me for 2 years that this was going on and it started in 2010 after he lost weight from weight loss surgery. If I hadn’t stumbled everything in Sept of this year he would still be doing it and he admits this. He admits that the intimacy was good with all 3 and he did enjoy it and well as having me. He is a very sexual person and has no problem requesting what he wants. At times he had all of us within the same week which disgusts me. Now he has decided that he made a mistake (X 3 on maybe more) and wants to save the marriage. He had problems with alcohol and also had a “friendship” with all 3. He trolled Craigs List and most of the dating sites for his conquests. He has a “silver tongue” talking to woman on-line and has been chatting on-line since we have been together for 10 years and the 7 years we have been married. We are in counseling and he continues to lie and drink. To be honest I don’t want to “save” my marriage. I have no love or feelings inside for him anymore. I don’t want to have to get over something “he did’ to us or our marriage. I have nothing to offer this man that I am “married” to anymore. The topper to the story is that I just found out I am in the beginning stages of Multiple Myolma. He found out on 08/05/2012 and went to be with one of his ladies on 08/07/2012. He pointed me to this page so I could get over this “bump” in his road. I wish all of you well during these hard times.

  12. Suise

    Cindy,

    I am so sorry. The man you are married to (I can’t call him your “husband”) is an addict. He needs help and unfortunately, you aren’t the one who can give it to him. You are not required to sacrifice yourself any more for this “person.” I hate to say it, but from what you’ve explained, he’s never understood what it means to have a wife and a family.

    Take care of yourself. Get away from this person and invest in counselling for yourself. You are worth your concern, not him. He has never been with you and from the sound of it, never will be. Please save yourself! There is no point in staying or subjecting yourself to some pointless therapy with this person. Get a good attorney, get yourself taken care of financially (don’t tell him anything while you make the arrangements for this) and get the hell out of there. You are important and it sounds like you’re not giving yourself the love and respect you deserve. Please save yourself get out of there!!

  13. Trying2Forgive

    I can relate to most of what has been said here so far. My husband and I have been married for 6 years this past May and together for almost 7. Last October, I began to suspect that my husband was having an affair of some sort (I wasn’t sure if it was emotional, sexual., both or what) with a female coworker. He worked offshore in another country at that time. I discovered that they had been having phone conversations by Skype while he was home. I called him at work and gave him an ultimatum – stay at work with her in the country he was in or request a transfer back into the GOM and stay married. He made several excuses about why he couldn’t request a transfer, but called me back about 3 hours after we got off the phone and said that he had just forwarded me the email that he had sent to corporate telling them that he would not be returning to the country he was in and that he would like a transfer.
    He ended up having to return to that country for one more 35 day hitch before he was transferred back into the GOM. Upon his leaving for this last hitch which was from the last week of Nov 2012 through the first week of January 2013, a postcard that was addressed to him was received at our house followed by a “Christmas” package a couple of weeks later. Both were from her. I called him at work to let him know that I thought these were directed at me. I said he was sorry. He has not up to this point admitted to anything.
    After he arrived back home in January, his attitude toward me and our marriage was better than it had been in the previous 6-8 months. On Easter Sunday (March 31, 2013), I checked his email that morning and there was an email in his spam folder from her. The subject line was “Just a reminder”. There was only an attachment to this email from her and it was a photo of a handwritten letter to her from my husband. I lost it! My husband was again at work (in the GOM, not the country the other woman is in) and I sent him a message. He called angry about me “bringing this up again” and I hung up on him. He immediately called back with a different attitude. To sum things up, he admitted to a physical affair (in addition to the emotional affair that was illustrated by the words in his letter to her). It has been an ongoing struggle for me because I know that he hasn’t not been 100% truthful or forthcoming with answers when I have questions.
    We are currently in counseling – individually and as a couple – and he has demonstrated in various ways that he really wants us to work through this. I struggle daily with thoughts and comparisons and wanting them to hurt like I hurt and so many things that most of you can relate to. My question for all of you is this….. what would you do if the other woman is still trying to contact your husband? I’m 99.5% certain that he isn’t taking her calls at all (I’ve checked phone records and his phone when he’s at home) & he’s agreed to changing his # when he comes home this next time so that she won’t have it – she’s called each time she’s been off hitch for several days in a row and sometimes weeks in a row; we’ve deleted the email account that she has for him; she has called our house a few times, but never says anything; she has our address but hasn’t sent anything to him since Nov/Dec; her newest tactic is sending email to MY email address that is directed to my husband (I’ve since blocked her) reminding him of the plans that they had to start a life together. It has been 7 months since he’s seen or spoken to this woman and he obviously chose his marriage over her, WHY can’t she take a hint and move on? I think she saw my husband as her “way into the states”, but I also think that she believes he really loved her and maybe he did, but he chose to come home and work on our marriage. I’m fairly sure that he didn’t tell her this when he left to come back here, but I DID tell her when I contacted her the first week in April to find out what she had to say about their affair. She didn’t give up any information at that time and to me that would’ve been the time for her to spill everything to make me push him away.
    I’m rambling…… sorry about the long post. I’m just trying to find the best way to deal with our circumstances. It doesn’t help that my husband is away as much as he’s home and he does NOT like to talk about problems.

  14. Kathy

    As I read all of these comments, it just breaks my heart. My D day was May 10, 2013. My husband of 18 years had an affair with a coworker. He would not have told me but I found condoms in his bag with one missing. He proceeded with several lies until about a week later he finally confessed to having sex with this girl. For a few weeks I just stopped living. I stopped eating, cried most of the time, stopped sleeping and could not function enough to even take care of our kids ages 16 &11. He swore it was because he was drunk and it only happened the one time. He is a fantastic liar and I hardly ever know if he is telling the truth. How do you recover from this ?? He is back at work in another state where he stays in motels. He only comes home on weekends. He does not respect me as his wife. This whole situation was way too easy for him. He lied to me for a week and swore he had not been with anyone. I was with him many times to try to salvage our marriage. The whore he was with told him “if you are ever divorced-I would like to see where this relationship goes- we are really attracted to each other”. How do you heal from this- knowing he is in another state and knowing she left the door open… ?

  15. Kara

    I totally agree with Larisa. Why is it as women we prefer to believe our husbands were victims of scheming hussies and they almost against their wills succumbed to them for almost altruistic reasons such as fear for their jobs, feeling sorry for the poor wretches who they mostly were not that attracted to and the sex was not that great or better with us. That probably explains why they had it again and again. Not! We are the wronged and deserved better. Is it with them?

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