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.