Monday, October 26, 2009

Surviving Infidelity: The best advice you never heard

Mention cheating and you'll inspire some strong reactions, often along the lines of "castrate him!" and "homewrecking whore". While self-righteous fury is occasionally cathartic, it rarely serves the cheatee very well, who may well still love the potentially castrated man (though she's likely less fond of the homewrecker).
The result is that few of us are offered particularly healthy advice from our friends and family, even -- sometimes especially -- if they've gone through it themselves. My friend Annie, with whom I confided because she'd had a similar situation and, I thought, could support me, responded to my comment that I didn't want to lose my marriage with a dismissive, "well, I wouldn't stay". End of conversation.
Sadly, this leaves so many of us feeling doubly injured. We've suffered this grievous injustice, we think, and yet talking about it leaves us open to poorly thought out opinions, self-serving advice or gossip. I learned very quickly to confide in very few people and only those whom I felt sure would simply support me.
Fortunately, I did come across a wonderful Web site – Surviving Infidelity – that allowed me to discuss my situation anonymously and candidly, without fear or judgement. If I did receive unwarranted advice, I simply dismissed what didn't work for me and took what did. Because it was from strangers, it was so much easier to do.
It also inspired me to create this site -- to create a sense of community around the issue of infidelity and to invite other women to join the conversation. Betrayal changes who you are. Never again will you look at the world through the same eyes. It helps to share this new you with others as you figure out where you go from here.
What are some of the Web sites that have helped you? Please post them here for others to try.


61 comments:

  1. The best chat-open to all sides of the triangle, but you better be to the point of accepting responsibility for your own actions. We don't pull our punches or coddle people in the midst of affairs. www.infidelity-help.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wouldnt use the above site...while they dont coddle they also have no problem attacking you if you question any aspect of their western centric secular individualistic model of attaining 'freedom'. They say they are eyes wide open but what they are are bullies who often employ the same manipulation tactics as abusers to shame and humiliate those coming there looking for help.

      I am shocked at the lack of empathetic honest critical sources for help in this arena. It seems it is either Christian or western secular and no in between and each approach comes with tons of baggage that does little to empower those who really need help.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous,
      I just found your comment this morning in my spam folder. I'm sorry it got waylaid.
      I hope you have found some sources. The last thing any of us need, regardless of how we respond to betrayal, is to be shamed or ridiculed for our response. This is tough enough. We need to support each other, offer guidance when asked and lift each other up.

      Delete
  2. I am 4 weeks into learning of my husbands infidelity. We have 4 children and have been married for 21 years. He cheated with a woman from his high school past. It started with finding each other on facebook, hate facebook now. I found texts and emails that spelled out the affair and the fact that they spent 2 nights together out of town. I confronted him and than kicked him out of the house for 10 days. We finally talked, he apologized and said, :it had nothing to do with me" it was his problem and he wanted to work on our marriage. So here we are, going to counseling and trying to work through this web of deceit and lies.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am going through the same betrayal and the situation is close to yours too. I also decided to stay and I am so glad to finally find a site in which others are trying to work it out rather then run.

      Delete
    2. I am going through a similar situation. About 5 months in. Married for 16 years, two school aged children. I am still feeling completely devastated - our marriage had problems, but this takes it to a new level. Attending marriage counseling, doing the best I can to move forward and reconcile - incredibly difficult. I feel your pain. I wish you well.

      Delete
  3. izzie4,
    I'm so sorry you're going through this...but glad that you found us. I cringe every time someone mentions Facebook -- though I know that it doesn't make someone cheat, but simply makes it easier.
    Brace yourself. I don't know what he's told you, but often the spouse who cheats minimizes what happened to keep you from leaving. Are you sure he's broken off all contact?
    I don't want to upset you...but want you to understand and be prepared.
    Hang in there. We're here to offer up advice, support and compassion. You CAN get through this. And you WILL come out the other side. Our best advice? Take care of yourself...treat yourself well.

    ReplyDelete
  4. A month ago I found out my husband hooked up with a woman from his childhood through Facebook.....yes, I hate Facebook, too!! I just found out 2 days ago that he hooked up with another lady through a dating site. Then I found his profile on some other sites, including sex dating sites! I'm really hating the internet right now........

    ReplyDelete
  5. I'm so sorry you're dealing with this.
    Like you, my situation just seemed to get worse the more I learned. More sites, more chat rooms, more hookups...
    Quick word of advice? Get yourself checked out for STDs even if he says there was no sex. Is he admitting everything? Is he denying? You can install a keylogger on his computer to monitor his activity.
    And please keep on posting. I, and certainly others who visit this site, can be a wealth of support. Survivinginfidelity.com is another awesome site -- with a huge user base.
    Re. your comment: Like most things, the Internet can work both ways. I hate the ease the Internet has introduced into affairs. If you're gonna cheat, I figure you should have to work harder to get away with it!! (Kidding...sorta.)
    But I appreciate that the Internet worked for me in that it opened up a world of other betrayed wives that understood my feelings and could commiserate without judgement (though not always without judgement!).

    ReplyDelete
  6. it doesn't really matter. my husband cheated with his secretary. he claims to think facebook is silly. whatever. he's silly.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Secretary! How cliche. He loses even more points for lack of originality. :) (My husband took up with his "associate" -- fancy name for secretary!)

    ReplyDelete
  8. I took my unfaithful husband back, and heard as much unhelpful and unwanted advice as you got. I read on the main infidelity sites: SI, MB, and DB. More recently I have been looking at marriageadvocates.com. There are so many excellent resources on the WWW for betrayed spouses, I am 'almost' glad it hapened when we had access to them, rather than in the pre WWW days.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Not sure what MB and DB are. I assume SI is Surviving Infidelity?? Can you provide URLs for the other two?

    Thanks! And thanks for posting.

    Elle

    ReplyDelete
  10. A good beginning is half way to success. Unfortunately my reaction to finding out my husband of then ten years had a six week old child was not good. I didn't kick him out, I folded. I believed it was all me. I should have put less into my career, more into the marriage . . . Some of you know what I'm talking about. It's been almost 2 years since my D day (October 30, 2009). I'm still here, physically, however mentally is another story. My step son, I guess that's the proper term for your husband's illegitimate son, spends every other weekend at our home. I have become attached to this very adorable energetic little boy. After all it is not his fault that his parents have no moral compass.

    I've tried very hard not to become the martyr. After all we are all human and although I believe I would never have an affair, there are other forms of betrayal,

    ReplyDelete
  11. To continue...
    We don't talk about our marriage. We don't talk about his affair, which I believe is still continuing. My misguided philosophy is that if I don't want to be lied to, don't ask a question when I know the answer will be a lie.

    I think I've made the decision to leave my marriage. I just haven't found the courage to take the first step. Where do you find the strength to venture out on your own?

    ReplyDelete
  12. I think accepting a child shows incredible compassion on your part. While it's not the child's fault, the constant reminder can still be tough. And to be able to look at the child and see his value is a testament to your strength, I think, and your humanity.
    I hope you can get past this, especially now that you're attached to the child. Sounds like he could use someone with integrity in his life. :)
    Two years out is still pretty raw, I think. If your husband has learned and grown from this, I would think things will continue to get better. I hope so, for your sake.

    ReplyDelete
  13. it's been 10 days since d-day but the affair happened 2 years ago. he says he didn't know how to tell me. i found out via facebook. he wants to be with me, with our family, to work things out. i don't know what i want. no, wait, i know what i want. i want him to hold me, i want to pretend this never happened, i want my family. but i don't know if that's what is best for me. i like the advice of waiting 6 months, but do i let him live with me during that time? does that confuse things? he has somewhere else he can stay, but its more difficult with the day-to-day stuff. or maybe it's practice? i don't know.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I'm so sorry for what you're going through...but glad you found us. And give yourself a break: Of course you don't know what you want. You've just been handled a huge shock and it will take time for your rational brain to catch up with your emotions. Give yourself time to process the information, which is life-changing. In the meantime, tell him that he can begin the process of healing by giving you whatever it is you need: space if that feels right, closeness if that feels right, each at various times if that feels right... Your moods will alter from minute to minute and, if he truly wants to save his marriage and you're willing to let him try, he needs to ride this roller coaster with you.
    Regarding living arrangements, try and give yourself time to figure out what works for both of you. I didn't want my husband out of my sight until I figured out whether I wanted him gone for good, or here for good. But each woman has to walk the path that suits them.
    In other words, there is no right or wrong. There is only what you need right now. And only you can figure that out.
    Hang in there. It really, truly does get better...and easier. Time.

    Elle

    ReplyDelete
  15. Today is day 86 since I discovered his affair. Today is also the first that that I have tried to think through the pain rather then being lost in it. It still takes my breath away to think about it and the questions and mental images still haunt me, but I think I am finally ready to start sorting through the mess. I decided that time away from him was the only way I would be able to do this so I drove 350 miles to come stay with my mother for a week. Mental Health Vacation. I am finally seeing how horrile I have "dealt" with his betrayl. I managed to stay calm when I confronted him, but all the anger and words that I didnt say have been killing me slowly. At times I don't think I could have even explained how I felt or what I was thinking; let alone how to say it. Apparently I thought I was "dealing"; when in reality I have been on a vicious downward spiral. I now see that I never gave myself permission to be mad, sad, angry and even to mourn; so I have bottled it up. Time to get a shovel and dig in! I know this is just the start and that there will be many more days when it sneaks up on me, but next time I will be prepared. These last few months have been a living hell and by far the hardest thing I have ever been faced with, but if it wasnt for finding this site and some eye opening articles on Oprahs website it may have very well taken me another 86 days to even get out of bed. Thank you for sharing your stories and your pain. Although we can't possibly believe else anyone knows or could survive our pain; it is helpful to know that I am not alone and that there is somewhere I can turn for support. God knows all my "friends" disappeared about two weeks into my spiral. Thank You again.

    ~Working on Me, in Colorado

    ReplyDelete
  16. Dear "Me" in Colorado,
    I'm really glad you found this site and that you're finding other areas on the Web that are helpful. Sadly, this is one those things that friends often can't help us through...even if they've gone through it themselves. Some friends can be wonderful through this...but in others, it can trigger feelings that they don't want to or can't yet look too closely at.
    Which is sort of what likely happened to you in the days following D-Day. It's common to numb ourselves to such extreme emotional pain because we simply can't handle it all at once. Letting it trickle out in more manageable amounts is a survival tactic that can spare us in the early days. Of course, it's crucial that we do deal with the feelings at some point. We can't keep them buried forever or they'll come out in really unhealthy ways. But we can deal with them bit by bit.
    Like you, I thought I was handling the whole situation quite well. It wasn't until a few months later that I really fell apart. I even considered suicide, though I can now see that I just wanted some way out of the pain and couldn't imagine a day that I would feel okay.
    It's the one thing I wish I could really give to anyone reading this site -- the absolute belief that they will be okay. That the devastation will clear and life will make sense again.
    It will...but you're right. You're going to have to dig through all the feelings that this has created: sadness, anger, confusion, hurt, resentment, fear... Feel them and then, as best you can, let them go. They exist to prompt you to take action to keep yourself safe. And to remind you that, within yourself, is a haven. Might not feel like it right now, but it's the biggest lesson for me in all of this: I alone am responsible to taking care of myself and ensuring that my needs and wants are considered.
    Hang in there. If you want, share your experience and read others' comments about how they're healing from this.
    We've walked in your shoes.
    Elle

    ReplyDelete
  17. Lost my marital innocence about 4 months ago when, I asked my rarely seen anymore husband if we still had a marriage and he said I don't know. Sitting there looking down at the ground I just knew this was not just a I don't know if I love you anymore look.... I demanded is there someone else! Of course silence that screams yes while he musters the courage to say no to your face with every ounce of deceit he has left in him. It fills the space between my chest cavity where my heart has stopped beating and my lungs have refused to do their job anymore. I turned and grabbed my keys and drove down the street to scream at the top of my lungs in a secluded park parking lot. I drove back home after about 20 min. and asked the question again. this time the confession and the nightmare began.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So sorry for what you're going through. I hope you'll find strength and comfort in the words and women here. We've been there. We're moving through it.

      Elle

      Delete
    2. 2 days ago my suspicions of my husband seeing somebody else were confirmed when I overheard a whispered argument between the two. I had asked him outright before if he was seeing someone (as far back as march), but he never admitted it. We have 3year old boy and 1 and a half year old girl who mean the world to us, but he has decided to leave us for her. I just cannot believe that he would give us up to follow this infatuation. He still wants to be part of the children's life and support us, but I just feel heart-broken and humiliated, especially that after the months of lying and stringing me along he has made this decision. I'm just so sad that we're not a family anymore.

      Delete
    3. I'm so sorry for what you're going through. This must be excruciating for you, especially with two young kids.
      On the up side, your kids are so young that you'll likely be spared the agony of watching their little hearts break because they won't really get what's happening beyond daddy not being around quite so much.
      As awful as it is, the best thing for your kids is to have a relationship with your husband. And of course, he should support all of you. Forget the humiliation. That's how HE should be feeling. And the woman who would get involved with a married man and father. THEY are the ones who should feel like total douchebags.
      A friend of mine cried every time her son would go to his father's house (because he ended up with the OW) but, to her credit, she never said or did anything to change her son's image of his "great" dad. The result is a really well-adjusted kid who's been allowed to love both his parents. And my friend, after licking her wounds for a couple of years, found a really great guy who she married and who is an incredible step-dad to her son. So life can still deliver happily-ever-afters.
      For now, just put one foot in front of the other and focus on getting through the next five minutes, half-hour, day, etc. It gets easier.
      Get yourself a lawyer and make sure you get every single thing you're entitled to.
      And then count yourself lucky that SHE got stuck with the guy who lies and cheats and leaves his family. Of course, as a liar and cheater herself, maybe she hasn't noticed his lack of moral fibre.

      Elle

      Delete
  18. I have been with my husband since I was 15. It was 3 years ago since I discovered my husband was cheating. After almost a year of counseling by a highly recommended therapist, I found my husband was still carrying on the affair even though he professed to love me and "he was only helping the girl as a father figure!". I believed my husband was ill and had a sexual addiction, as was diagnosed and continued to try to save a 40-year marriage. Unfortunately due to my trauma and fear, I did not listen to my new counselor who told me to stop seeing him for 6 months and work on myself. Then I needed to see true humbleness, transparency and sincerity. Not just in words, but in change of behavior and actions, with no time limit for my healing. I am now filing for divorce after finding an article on the Internet which proved that, once again my husband was still in contact with his mistress. I am baffled as he professes to want to be married to our kids. Why does a man do this. It is like half of my heart was ripped off when I found out and there is a permanent scar. I'll never be the same and my kids dont understand after a couple of years, why I still hurt. Can you explain this to me and to them? Will my husband ever be honest or the man I married again?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so sorry for the continued pain you're going through.
      Why does a man do this? Because he's broken. Hurt people hurt people, as the saying goes. He probably does love you the best he's able to love anyone at this point in time. Sadly, it isn't enough.
      You're right that you'll never be the same...but that doesn't have to be a bad thing. You'll be wiser. Stronger. You can grow from this and come to a place where you can offer your love to someone better able to offer you his.
      Your kids simply don't have the life experience to understand just how deeply betrayal cuts. I'm guessing that, on some level, they're hurt by their father's actions which might also feel like a rejection of them. But on the surface, they just want everything to be "okay" and to trust that their mom is going to get everyone through this.
      Whether or not your husband can ever be honest is up to him. If he's willing to seek help for his broken-ness, it's possible. But he'll never be the man you married. He perhaps never was the man you thought you married.
      In the meantime, you can't control him or his actions. Your counsellor is wise to encourage you to focus on your own healing. Become the most whole person you can, be a great mom to your kids and trust that, with time and healing, your life can be wonderful, with or without him.

      Elle

      Delete
  19. Betrayal is really hard to work through and you do see the world through different eyes. I haven't shared my story with very many people because it's still raw and a lot of people do respond poorly. I love my husband and want to make my marriage work. People view you and your marriage differently if you share a story like this. I didn't even consider that there would be sites out there where you can talk about it anonymously, so I'll have to check these out. http://beyondaffairs.com/category/surviving-infidelity-testimonials/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hollie,
      I hope you will take the time to share your story. It's so important to find a safe space where you feel validated and "normal" for what you're going through. It's hell...but it doesn't last forever.
      Welcome.

      Delete
    2. I'm on day 3 of knowing my husbands affair. I am a true believer in the Lord but its hard to go through this and encourage myself all at the same time. I feel so much anger, pain, broken, and confused. I trust God will heal us and I know this is a test to make me stronger as a woman, new mom, and wife. I love my husband and want to help him fight his "inner demons". I promised before God that I would work out anything and not quit but I am crying out for stength and help!

      Delete
  20. Where do I begin. In march of 2014 I found all these dating sites that my husband had signed up for. He also signed up kik messenger and was having sexting conversations with people. He promised to get help and said that the urge was stemming from a horrible abusive situation from when he was a pre teen. The sexual abuse he encountered was pretty horrific and I justified his actions of the date site and all prior things like drinking amd drugs with this excuse. Then in november of 2014 I found an ad he had placed on craigslist to meet up physically with a man or women. Again he said the urge stemmed from the abuse. But this time I was done. U derstand our ten years of marriage hasnt been the greatest. He is a very verbally abusive and head game kind of person. I didnt even realize the damage he was doing to me. Always given a lose lose situation. For exame if I am stay at mom then I am lazy and need to get a job. So I get a job amd its why isnt the house spotless what do you do all day if your gonna work you need to be able to do both. Of course making sure my job didnt take me out of the home when the kids were there. So anyway in nov I said no more and through his boss found this sober house to live in and help deal with his issues. He begged me even made the statement let me prove I deserve to be your husband. He comes to visit friday night a d stays through sunday untill he has his dinner meeting. Well due to superbowl the guys lastnight meeting off so he stayed the night. Sometimes insomnia gets the best of me and I decided to snoop through his phone. (This is not a norm for me. Last time I found the info it was an alert that popped up on his thag he had a msg from kik and the parital msg that showed up on screen was pretty sexual). Praying I wouldnt find anything I notice his email was shut off. I turned it on and sure enough there was two new emails lookifng to confirm new accounts for hookup sites. Its basically a date for sex. He says they came across his screen and he signed up but never confirmed or even checked out the site. Now I dont know what to do he lives about 70 miles away in the sober house were you are required to attend meetings but otherwise its faith thag you are getting better not babysitters. How do I continue to be able to heal when he keeps doing this. Is thjs repeated behavior even while seeking help somethig I will always have to deal with. And not to mention we made a location change a few years ago to a different state to be by his parents to help them out. He went ahead of by six months and he confessed to me that he had cheated with twi different women while he was up there alone.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm so sorry for everything you've gone through...and are continuing to go through.
      Your first priority absolutely must be you and your children. You need to ensure that you are in a safe, stable and predictable environment. He has repeatedly lied to you, repeatedly betrayed your trust, and from the sounds of it, been verbally abusive over the years. That has not only deeply wounded you but also your children.
      I strongly urge you to seek counselling for yourself. You can't live in that sort of volatile situation without it taking a huge toll on you...and eroding your own self-esteem.
      Put aside his recovery for now. He's in the right place and can either learn from it or continue to ignore it. That's HIS choice. Yours is to get yourself emotionally healthier so that you can model self-respect and boundaries to your children.
      It sounds as if he's been emotionally unhealthy for many, many years. Sexual abuse has likely created all sorts of issues in him. But to continue to use it as an excuse to mistreat you is simply unacceptable. That said, you need to make it clear that you will no longer put up with it.
      So...make yourself and your healing Goal #1. And I would tell him he's not welcome home until you figure things out for yourself.

      Delete
  21. Recently discovered my husband of 15 years is having an affair with a co- worker. Apart from being devastated I am trying to determine how and what to tell our 14 year old daughter. He has been completely checked out as a parent and husband for the last six months. I have known for a while and kept quiet and have been covering for him telling my daughter daddy is out working hard. He is preparing to leave and I am not sure what to say. I have asked him to re connect with her as he has been ignoring her I imagine from guilt and shame. I wish I could tell her dad has no time for you because he is out with his girlfriend and spending our family money on her but I know it's not fair to put that on her but is it fair to lie to her. I fear she will find out on her own. I have been so worried about my daughter I haven't really processed myself what is happening. I fear my anger will get the best of me one if these days.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Your daughter is really lucky to have you...and she's going to need you more than ever.
      I would be inclined to call her school and see if there's a guidance counsellor or school psychologist available who might have some ideas. Sadly I suspect this happens more than most of us realize.
      I think it's really important to ensure she understands that this isn't a rejection of her, even if it feels like one. I think it's fair to acknowledge that your husband's inability to face his feelings means that those around him get hurt. But that it really has nothing to do with those around him (ie. you and her). You two are collateral damage -- the result of someone running from their own emotions instead of being a grown-up and owning them. You don't need to get into too much with her. Ideally your husband will sit down with you and tell her. She certainly doesn't need the nitty-gritty details (the fact that she's pubescent and dealing with her own emerging sexuality can simply amp up the whole extra-marital sex part).
      And I applaud you loudly for putting her emotional needs before your own desire to reveal your husband for the idiot he is. It can be sooooo tempting to hurt our spouse by turning the kids against him but in the end, it's the kids who pay the highest price. She deserves to be able to love her flawed idiot of a dad as who he is. She's learning at a young age, unfortunately, that people we love can make horrible life choices. But it's THEIR life choices to make. We get to choose to life our lives differently.
      I would also urge you to get her at least a few visits to a psychologist to help her through this. Somebody who can make sure she isn't blaming herself, someone who can help her with the anger she'll likely feel (she might turn the anger inward and become depressed).
      This is all worse-case scenario, of course, but I think it's important to be prepared. She might be glad to finally have her niggling suspicions confirmed. It's crazy-making when someone tells you things that don't line up with what you believe to be true. By coming clean and telling her that you wanted to protect her, you're giving her permission to be honest with you too.
      And I hope you'll also get yourself counselling so that you're able to stay strong for her...and yourself.
      You sound like an incredible mom who doesn't deserve any of this pain. I'm sorry. But I have a feeling you two are going to be just fine.

      Delete
    2. Elle, Thank you for your reply. My husband is now gone and for whatever reason chose valentines day which devastated our daughter. He chose to leave without telling her first and I had to explain it to her. Snuck out like a thief in the night. Her father was the first to break her heart. I am truly amazed by his selfish and insensitive behavior. He is a coward. He has been texting our daughter and yes she is now angry and chooses not to reply to his messages. She refuses to see him for now and I am not going to force her. He knows where we live and could come if he truly wanted to. I explained to her that texting is not a relationship. He is acting like nothing has changed and wants to take her for lunch and shopping. He is also texting to make plans with her directly and not contacting me. He thinks I have turned her against him but I covered for him for months. She feels how she feels I have listened and watched her cry while he sees none of his destruction. I know it is time for legal advice I am just shocked by his ability to not comprehend what he has done to our family. Myself I am all over the map balling one day and in a rage the next. Hoping legal help will help me to get through yet next while And knowing my rights so I can prepare for my future with my daughter. I am so proud of her she has handled this so well and her father Chose the worst possible way to leave his family. It could have been handled so different and that is probably where my anger comes from. Hopefully time really does heal all wounds. I did recently learn that the co worker he is involved with was laid off so maybe that was karma for her disgusting behavior with my husband.

      Delete
    3. Your husband is an ass. I'm so sorry for you and for your daughter. I'm glad she has you to remind her of her value -- that his behaviour is about HIM and not about HER or you. That people we love can disappoint us but that doesn't have to make us bitter. It can just make us wiser.
      Absolutely get yourself lawyered up and ensure that your rights are protected. It wouldn't hurt for your daughter to see a counsellor to help her sort through this. Fourteen is such a tough age at the best of times. She needs someone who can help her see that not all men are bad, not all sex is wrong and hurtful and that she's got all the resources she needs to survive pain and get back on her feet.
      Good luck. I hope you'll continue to keep us posted on how things are going. We're all rooting for you and your incredible daughter.

      Delete
  22. I found out a little over a year ago my husband was having numerous affairs with prostitutes. My whole life felt like it caved in. I had known for some time before caught him stopping for them. Regardless of what has
    happened I still love him very much. It is so very difficult to keep moving forward when my head feels one thing and my heart tells me another. Never a truer word spoken that betrayal changes your whole life that it will never be the same again. We want to make it work we have been to counseling but there are so many triggers in every day life that are constant reminders.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Those triggers will lessen with time. If they don't, you're likely suffering for PTSD, which is surprisingly common among those of us who've dealt with betrayal.
      Hang in there. Continue to read and post. Sometimes offering advice or sharing support with others helps us get clearer on our own situation. You're among friends...

      Delete
  23. I found out about 3 weeks ago that my husband of 6 years has been having a year long affair with a coworker. I had suspicion before the actual confirmation but had always been reassured I was being jealous and never would he do that. We had stopped sleeping in the same bed for almost 8 months. He claimed he knew it "kept me awake" with his sleep disturbance at night. Actually I think he probably felt too guilty to share a bed with me. I forced him to tell me every detail the night i found her text messages. He did ( im fairly certain with the horrible details i cant imagine him leaving anything out. Its about as bad as it gets) and cried for the first time in our relationship and basically told me that he only fell to her bc he felt he no longer had me. He says he felt I had checked out. I feel he gave up when things got strained. Things weren't great but I didnt screw anyone else. Although I really wish now I had. Our 4 children are stuck in the crossfire here and I have decided to try to make it work. I do love him but sometimes I look at him and I really just want to smack the hell.out of him. Why do I feel like the inadequate one? Why do I feel like I have to walk on eggshells to keep him from straying? Has anyone else had these feelings? Does it get any better or am I wasting my time thinking we can get back what we had?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous,
      Has anyone else had these feelings? Yep. I would venture ALL of us have had these feelings.
      A few things I want you to think about right now. Number one and the MOST important: His cheating is not about you. It has never been about you. Forget what he's telling you. He cheated because he didn't want to face uncomfortable feelings. He cheated because it was easier than feeling scared or lonely or anxious. That's one of the hardest things for we betrayed wives to understand but it had nothing to do with us. We're just collateral damage.
      Another thing: You do not need to know right now how this is going to turn out. All you need to know is where you want to be right now...and where it's safe to be right now.
      And finally, do you very best -- and I know it's hard -- to protect your kids from the crossfire. This is terrifying for them. And it has NOTHING to do with them. Assure them that they are safe. That they are loved. And that the adults will do their best to handle the adult stuff.
      One more thing: A good therapist is worth his/her weight in gold to support you through this. Find one for yourself. And one for your husband. You'll be glad you did.
      Don't forget there's tons of info on this site, as well as support and compassion from those of us who've been there. You'll get through this. I promise.

      Delete
  24. I think my husband's cheating, I've caught him.deleting text messages, messaging women on fb, the list goes on and on, but if I confront him he turns the tables. Why am I going through his phone blah blah blah, we have 2 kids, I recently lost my job and I feel like if I leave him I have no where.to go, no financial means. Idk wat to do. I love him.no doubt about that. and I thought he loved me. I'm heart broken. there's no other way to describe it

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Heartbroken pretty much sums it up.
      If your husband is deleting messages, talking to women on FB, etc. it certainly sounds as if he's doing something he shouldn't be.
      Can you talk with him openly? Can you tell him your fears? Brace yourself to hear the worst. And brace yourself to be told you're crazy, imagining things, jealous, etc. If your gut says there's something going on, however, I generally think there probably is. It's possible to snoop on social media, install a key logger, etc. though I'm not good at that stuff. Perhaps Google some tricks.
      In any case...keep us posted. Let's hope you're wrong.

      Delete
  25. My husband has been cheating on me virtually with other girls for 5 years- since we have been together. He is a sex/love addict and he doesn't want to fully admit it and take responsibility of changing his situation. He has been an addict for 15 years, but the stupid he is, he believes that our marriage is what is causing him to be this way. I heard a lot only if he can have sex with someone things will be great between us. He wants to get rid of the curiosity that 15 years of porn has brought to him. I am sick of him. I am. I haven't been able to share this with anyone (well accept with his mom and my therapist). He does not even have sex with me because he spends most of his day time either working or sex chatting. I'm stuck in a relationship that I don't want anymore but I'm too scared of leaving as I don't know what the world will bring me. I don't feel I can trust any guy anymore. I don't know what a healthy committed relationship looks like since I haven't been in one. He was my first guy and first love and I am his first. We got married young. My parents make a wonderful role model to me, but they are way older and came before internet porn is available. It is 1am in my time now, and I don't know what to feel anymore, so I thought of writing things down. It makes me feel better when I see that I'm not the only one who's suffering, but at the same time, it makes me feel SAD that men are a**h*** and a lot of girls are suffering because of them. As you can see, I have completely lost my faith in men. The other day it was my graduation, and he didn't sleep with them and I wake up in the morning the graduation day and I was so mad. He was chatting with "friends" ALL FREAKING night and leaving me by myself. Then, after w came back, he got back to chatting again until 11pm at night before he crashed sleeping. I did a mistake of reading his messages, but I felt the urge to do so. He was telling a girl that he "friend" dragged him to a graduation party and there were a lot of hot girls there with sexy legs. That just made me so MAD. I felt like killing him asleep. I do not know what or how to feel now. I want to tell him I'm over with him but hope is what is keeping me in this relationship. I know it sounds like a simple equation and I should leave him especially I'm independent financially and still young. But I think many of you know how hard it is.

    Sorry for bothering you all, but I felt the need for someone to read my thoughts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Graduate,
      I will not mince words. You need to leave right now. You are seeing what the REST OF YOUR LIFE will look like. Please, unless you want to still be writing the same message to this Web site in ten, 20, 30 years...get out.
      He is showing you who he is. And, trust me, there are many MANY men out there who are wonderful and kind and trustworthy.
      Get yourself into therapy so that you can begin to understand the emotional price you're paying for staying in this relationship...and to learn what a healthy relationship looks like and what healthy boundaries look like. That way, when you do begin dating again, you've got some idea of what's healthy and what's not.
      Please, please, please don't put up with this any longer. This is emotional abuse. Don't fall into the trap of thinking that all guys are like this. They're absolutely not. Your husband has a serious problem but unless he's willing to see that -- and he shows no signs of that -- then nothing will change. You need to be the change...by getting out and getting yourself help.

      Delete
  26. My Husband cheated with his sick o ex...even on our wedding night!! We have 8 kids two are in elementary other four are in Jr high and two are at home. I've stuck it out but I'm finding myself more and note discussed by his actions...makes me want to puke!! I've stayed faithful! I just don't know what to do or where to turn!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. RCO,
      Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. Focus on your own healing right now. Take care of yourself. Get yourself a therapist if you don't already have one and begin to work through the pain. Don't force yourself to make any decisions right now.
      You'll get through this.

      Delete
  27. My betrayal came to light in 2006 in the drs office with the results of my and my husbands hiv tests im negative hes possitive.pretty much the bottom dropped out of my life that day ,come to find out my husband had been having homosexual affairs on the downlow for almost 19 yrs,i chose to try to understand all the dynamics of his struggle to hide his truth and why and forgave him and stayed its been 9 yrs later and it has just became a marriage of sorts no more sex anymore and really no physical affection at all anymore,not even companionship im always home alone and he does pretty much what he wants he has a gambling problem and gambles every cent he gets except i dont allow him to get ahld of household budget anymore or id end up homeless now for the past month and a half hes been taking my sons girlfriends mom everywhere with him and i sit at home alone i told him it bothers me and i dont like it and he still does this like i didnt say a word .i have no income of my own as im pending ssd and can,ot support myself now and i find myself thinking at age 56 its too late anyway so just biding my time i guess ive given up and i feel bad and very lonley ALOT...what would you do if you were me????

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unknown,
      I think 56 means that you still have a lot of years left to create a life that gives you joy. I think it's time to show this guy the door. But first, get to a lawyer and figure out what you're entitled to financially to ensure that you'll be able to support yourself. Create a plan. You need to get out of this marriage before it eats up the rest of your life. You've served your time. Now it's time to release yourself to happiness.

      Delete
  28. I just found out 2 months ago today that my husband of 19 years was having an affair We have 3 adult kids i always suspected something was up between the two of them i did ask a couple of times but he denied it. We got in a huge fight last August and he moved into another bedroom where he slept for 8 months. And i beleive that shortly after that is when the affair started it went on for a year. I do beleive i pushed him away by never wanting to do or go with him any where. We almost lost both our sons a couple of years ago to 2 separate accidents and thats when i became with drawn from him My fault I know not much of a marriage. The only reason he told me was because her husband found out about them And my husband didn't want me to hear it from anyone else. It was one of the darkest and saddest days of my life. I cried for days and 2 months later still can't seem to stop crying He answered all the questions i asked He told me he loved her and didn't want to end it with her. We talked all weekend Finally said he wanted to work it out with me and agreed to end it with her. You see they had made plans to leave their spouses and be together even talked marriage. But she wanted to wait till her 16 year old was out of high school. He has ended it with her (he shared some of the email conversion they had when he was ending it ) He tells me repeatedly how sorry he is for everything and that he loves and he's sorry for all the pain he has caused me ane hopes he can make it up to me. He has really been honest with me We are working on fixing whats been broken for a couple of years and getting along great I just can't get the image of them together out of my head Even though we slept apart we were not separated In may at our daughters wedding he told me he loved me and finally moved back in our room but the affair continued until her husband found out 2 months later How can I move on and stop making myself sick over it He told me a couple of weeks ago he misses her misses talking to her But he still says he's sorry about everything But has never said he regrets what he did or the affair and i think that's one of my problems. I don't have closure

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous,
      I'm so sorry for what you're going through. You've had some horrible experiences and it's not surprising that your marriage became less stable.
      Two months probably seems like an eternity but it's such a short time when dealing with infidelity. You've got a lot of pain to process and rebuilding trust takes years.
      I'm not sure we get "closure" so much as we simply stop dwelling on what happened and instead focus on what came of it. If we rebuild a marriage based on honesty and trust and integrity, then often that marriage is a more satisfying one than the "old" one. But, of course, that takes two. And in the meantime, you've got to work through all the devastation of your husband making a choice to be intimate with someone outside your marriage.
      I would urge you to get a therapist to help you through this. While you can't make your husband "regret" this, he might come to that conclusion himself when he recognizes just how much pain this has caused. As hard as it is for we betrayed wives to hear, the affair felt good to our spouses. It gave them something that was exciting. But remember, an affair is often about the fantasy not the reality. In other words, it's not the person who excited them, it's the novelty and the danger and the escape of the affair that they have a hard time regretting.
      That said, a key part of healing within the marriage is our partner's ability to show empathy -- that they truly understand the pain we're in and regret causing it.
      Start by finding yourself a good therapist who can help you deal with the pain of betrayal. And hang in there. You will get through this.

      Delete
  29. I just found out 2 days ago. Married 10 years. We have 2 boys age 7 and 8 who have autism. I live my life for them with therapies and classes. Hubby works nights as a correction captain. On Thursday I found a hotel receipt from Tuesday night. He was supposed to be working (midnight shift). He checked in 11:30 and out 7am. Then came home to me telling me he was going to sleep from his rough night at work. I confronted him when I found it and he admitted it was 3 times and with someone he contacted from an ad for a "fling with no strings" in a magazine. I am devasted and angry and not sure how to get past it. My world crashed. :(

    ReplyDelete
  30. Two years into my marriage while im seven months pregnant with twins my husband tells me that I don't stimulate him mentally physically emotionally or spiritually. I was devastated. After the birth of our twins I didnt know what do or who to turn to. Soon after the verbal and emotional abuse started. It was particularly bad and escilated into physical intimidation and agressive threats.through all this I wad non provocative and silent to afraid yo do anything else. In our third year of marriage he started seeing someone at work. I repeatedly caught him talking to her and heard her voice in the background while I talked him. But he insisted that I have mental problem. I was forced to see a psychiatrist and psychologist all of whom dont believe that he is cheating instead say I am the unstable. He is comes across as anything besides a cheating spouse. But he doesn't want anyone yo know that he has been cheating for thirteen years with the same person because it would destroy both of their public reputations. Everyday is a struggle because he lies to me all the time and I know it. But im stuck in the relationship because of my four children. I feel emtionally and mentally abused everyday. One minute he is telling how useless and pathetic I am and the next how much we need he cares about. I feel used like the two cheaters have have a real life and a real while my relationship is a lie and im just a pawn in their game.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh honey, I just saw this post. I'm so sorry. You are in an abusive relationship. Please find an agency in your community or a GOOD therapist who can help you build the strength to get out. You deserve so much more than this.

      Delete
  31. It's been almost 3 months since I found out my husband of 10 years was having an affair for 8 months. I never seen it...we were so happy. I have my good days and I have my bad days...my bad days I want to just pack my stuff and leave. we are in consoling and he has been great. He has given me all access to his text messages and emails and phone calls. But I can't stop thinking about him with her to see the future. He is working so hard to repair us. I guess I struggle with it because i don't understand it. He would text everyday just to tell me he loves me, or how much he wanted me. All the time seeing another woman telling her the same. I love him and hate him at the same time. I feel like my heart is battling right now...which one is going to win..the love or hate! The hate is so strong right now at times. He says he will never stop trying! He says he loves me and doesn't want to lose me. But all I can see is he wasn't worried when he was screwing her! He has been bending over backwards jumping at my every need. Begging me to not leave him. Give him a chance to show me how sorry he is and how much he truly does love me. Again all I can see is if he loved me that much how could he have done this to me. I cry a lot. I get angry a lot!! I feel like I'm drowning in my own emotions.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Feeling Lost,
      Three months is still pretty raw and your feelings are "normal" under the circumstances. People cheat for all sorts of stupid reasons, but mostly they fall in love with the reflection of themselves in the other person's eyes. They feel exciting and sexy...all the things they don't really believe about themselves. It's a fantasy and it usually has nothing to do with whether they love their spouse. It's only when they realize what they can lose that they realize the Other Woman doesn't matter at all.
      Let yourself cry. Find ways to express your anger that aren't going to land you in jail. And be kind and gentle with yourself while you heal.

      Delete
  32. Thank you, I told my husband about this site. How awesome it is to talk and read about woman that are going through the same things. He thinks it's great for me and has encouraged me to continue. The other woman contacted him yesterday through email...but I have to say the way he handled made me feel good. Without my help he responded very well. He allowed me to read it and make sure I was ok with it before sending it. I didn't want to change one word. He said it perfectly! Basically he told her he loves his wife he wants nothing more then to work it out and the biggest mistake of his life was getting involved with her and there isn't a day that goes by that he doesn't regret it. He told her it was all a lie and he got sucked in by the devil and got away from God but that will never happen again and he will spend the rest of his life loving, taking care of and making it up to me! Then he told her if she contacts him again he will personally contact her husband and inform him of everything. So far he hasn't heard anything back. Thank god!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Feeling Lost,
      I hope you won't hear from her again either. Though these people often don't go away easily. Sounds like your husband has learned a thing or two already about boundaries.
      Hang in there, honey. It gets better. I promise.

      Delete
  33. My husband cheated on me with someone 7 years older than me and she has 5 kids ( he is not a kid person) . Not that being attractive matters but she is not nearly as pretty as me. I feel like nothing and my self confidence is gone. I am crying at work all the time. He works at Boeing so the person he had an affair with works there which has added to my craziness knowing he sees her every day. I believe it is over though. The affair only lasted 3 weeks and was only physical (lunch 2 times and one day at a hotel where he was unable to perform so there was so actual sex) I caught him the day he went to the hotel. I have talked to the woman and she is terrified i will tell everyone at Boeing what kind of person she is. My husband and I are very religious and active in our church and I thought we were best friends so this is especially hard for me. She is my polar opposite. She smokes, swears, wants to give blow jobs in a car and has 5 kids with 4 different husbands. I looked on her facebook and she swears and is rude and crude. I always thought I was the type of wife he wanted.There is zero problems in the sex department. No shortage there ever. How do I feel better and get over this? We are going to Christian counseling as well as with our pastor. I just can't get over the fact he works with her. He has worked there for 30 years. I am thinking terrible thoughts of revenge. I do believe he is sorry but i can't stop punishing and berating him and going over and over in my head the things they said and text eachother in those 3 weeks :( Any ideas?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unknown,
      Boy oh boy, do I know those feelings of rage. I have never felt such anger in my life.
      Sometimes, when we're able to really express that rage, it burns itself out. Behind it is, usually, a whole lot of hurt and fear. And when we're able to express those feelings, to have them acknowledged and validated, we can work through them.
      Your husband continuing to work with this woman is problematic, to say the least. Can he find a way to have no contact with her? Is her fear of being outed enough to keep her far away from him? If they want to get together, of course, there's not much you can do. But if your husband is committed to rebuilding his marriage, it can certainly help to have her out of the picture as much as possible to ease your fear.
      I do want to make a few things clear, based on your comments. Your husband's choice to cheat with this woman has NOTHING to do with you. That's not the same as saying there aren't issues in your marriage that need addressing. It's to say that you could be the absolutely perfect wife...and it won't stop someone from cheating if they're unable or unwilling to deal with their own emotions in a healthy way. Cheating is a distraction from uncomfortable feelings. It's an escape from life. It's about the reflection seen in the other person's eyes, that makes a cheater feel special and interesting. It's about looking outside for something that can only come from inside.
      You didn't cause him to cheat. That's on him.

      Delete
  34. I found out about my husband's affair nearly 2 years ago by discovering the evidence on our family computer. The evidence was from nearly 3 year prior to the day I found out. I was and still am crushed. I was instantly irate, too. Kicked him out immediately and didn't speak to him or let him see our 2 small children for a week. Shortly thereafter, I found out I was actually 8 weeks pregnant with our 3 child. I was shocked and devastated. How was I to work full time, try going back to school, and take care of 3 children on my own?? He promised the affair was short lived but it was almost a double whammy because he was cheating on me with a girl who I considered a close friend and she was also a co-worker of mine. I didn't care how many time it happened- it was still cheating, and lying straight to my face day after day. I tried counseling briefly but I felt like the counselor was rushing my grieving and stopped going. I felt like she expected me to make a decision- stay or leave- and with 3 small children not to mention our monthly finances, it wasn't something I thought I could just decide overnight. So far, we are trying to keep things together. He has since switched jobs to try to be home and more present. I am still working and going to school and trying to keep our little ones happy and healthy. But it seems like even though we agreed to open and honestly communication, I just can't seem to let go of the bitterness and resentment I felt from day 1. It is literally killing me from the inside out. I can't stand feeling so negative all the time but it's as if I've dug myself a deep hole and I can't seem to find the light to find my way out. And at this point, I feel like I love what we had but I'm not in love with him anymore, yet I can't seem to find the strength to separate. I just feel lost and angry.

    ReplyDelete
  35. I found out July 30th of this year that my husband and partner of 17 years was having an affair with his sisters best friend and that his sister was encouraging it. His sister and I were so incredibly close. This hit me on so many levels of betrayal. The woman he had the affair with said when our first daughter was born that she should have been her daughter. 14 years ago and his sister told me that. I remember holding my newborn baby and wondered why and how anyone could possibly say or think that. I was at work when I received the phone call from her husband that they were having an affair. My husband denied it but later admitted everything to her husband and told him he could tell me. Another blow. Almost 17 years together and he couldn't even be man enough to tell me what he did. We have two daughters together and I was frantically trying to do everything to repair and restore our marriage. He told me I had not been a good wife for two years. Those two years I was going to school full time and working a full time job and a part time job. He always made me feel like what I was doing was not enough for our family. I was getting a lot of money in scholarships and grants and from my jobs, but I was always made to feel less than. No matter what I did, I was never good enough. And then the woman he has an affair with has never had a job and also has 2 children whom spend most of their time with her mother while she sits at home all day doing nothing. This made me feel even more sick. Here he made me feel like I was such a horrible person when I was sacrificing everything for our family, getting a college education so we wouldn't have to work meaningless jobs and he has an affair with someone who literally offers nothing to society. I took him back one month after D day and that was the biggest mistake. My oldest daughter was and is still angry with him and my younger daughter was happy to have her daddy home. I was trying everything possible to be the perfect wife and mother and his attitude did not change in the least. He showed no remorse or sympathy for what he has done to our family. So tonight, I sat him down and talked to him and he told me he wasn't happy and he wanted out. I just don't understand it. He has a wife who adores him and 2 daughters who worship him. How can we not be enough? I cannot live like this so I told him that he needs to go. That our girls and myself will find our way without him and he can go and search for his happiness while we pick up the pieces of our shattered lives. Why do the cheaters always get to leave while we are left reeling, dealign with the shattered lives and forced to be the strong ones when we were the ones who were betrayed? I just do not understand any of this. I never thought this would happen to us. I was caught so off guard that day her husband called me. I knew we had issues as do all marriages, but I never would have ever assumed he would do this to our family. I hate not having the answers for myself or for my daughters.

    ReplyDelete

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails