The haunting aftermath of infidelity

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Yesterday I was cleaning up our bedroom and I found a piece of paper that was a rough draft of a letter my husband gave me for Mother’s Day last year (i.e. during his affair). Reading through the rough draft I was reminded of how I was brought to tears when I first read this letter from him last May. He wrote about moments in our lives where he realized how much he loved me… some were funny jokes I played on him and some were sincere moments that defined our marriage. At the end of the letter he wrote that he would spend the rest of his life living his love and respect for me.

Reading these words now is like a slap in the face.

When he got home I asked him: “How do you write those words when you were disrespecting me completely?” His response was that he kept his affair so separate in his mind from our marriage. He said a cheating spouse does not believe his affair is affecting his marriage or feelings at all. I guess, he justified his behavior by thinking that what he was doing had nothing to do with our marriage and he wasn’t hurting me.

My response? Then why am I here? If you can so easily separate yourself from our marriage and believe that your relationships with other people (sexual or not) have no impact on our marriage–then why the fuck am I here? I realized my response was without thought that he knows better now. Sometimes I forget that an explanation of his thought process during the affair is not the same as it is now. I let myself cool down before continuing the discussion.

It’s impossible for the betrayer to understand the pain the faithful spouse feels. I try to look forward… move forward and not dwell on the details that will cause me pain. But it is haunting to think that your best friend and husband could sleep with another woman and profess his love in numerous emails to her and then come home and look me in the eye. Sit down to dinner with our children. He went to my parent’s home and pretended like he was giving me infinite love and happiness while he was destroying our marriage almost daily. If not with sex, with an email, a text or phone call.

I ask him how the guilt affected him but I guess he repressed the guilt. He felt it but he didn’t focus on it. I asked him why he never came to me and said he was being tempted to cheat. The first time he slept with his AP was not unexpected. She told him what she wanted and he tried to dismiss it for a few weeks. There were a multitude of choices he could have made but heleft his, mine and our children’s fate in her hands.

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I saw the email she sent him saying she’d be working from home on a certain day if he wanted to stop by and see her. He told me when he drove there he knew they were going to have sex. He had been considering cheating on me for about a month with her… or considering having sex with her  because she was stipulating this was what she wanted (needed) for their friendship to continue. He says he told her that he didn’t want to have a sexual relationship with her but yet he ended up in her bed. So why couldn’t he tell me anything? Once he told me he considered telling me after she kissed him that it had happened but he was afraid I would freak out and think he was cheating and possibly kick him out. So he didn’t tell me about the kiss and instead had the affair. How does that make any sense?

Writing this post is making my eyes well up with tears. I fear living the rest of my life with this pain in the bottom of my heart. I am afraid that his actions will never not haunt my mind.

I told him last night that we’ve been married for twelve years now… I planned to be married to him for the rest of my life… fifty? sixty more years? This is 1/5 or less of our marriage and he was tempted and cheated. The pain of being betrayed is the most horrible destruction of a person that can happen in life.

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49 thoughts on “The haunting aftermath of infidelity

  1. I can identify completely with this post. My husband and I have also been together for 12 years, he spent 7 of it cheating on me. His affair was also with someone he worked with, they also kissed first, it was premeditated. She told him she wanted to have sex and then made his hotel reservation for him when they traveled out of town for business at the same location. Our therapist said that men especially can compartmentalize, they put the bad stuff they do in a box in the
    back of their mind and come home and act as if nothing wrong ever
    happened. It’s such a twisted way to live. My husband also said that he did not think that it would affect the marriage because he didn’t
    think he’d ever get caught. I don’t know how they do it. I guess I know why, they need their ego stroked by a whore, they seek excitement, something with no strings attached. It’s disgusting. I hate men.

    • I guess it’s comforting to hear other women say their husbands say the same thing… I know my husband is not taking anything up but it’s so crazy. I guess as a woman and a mother I can’t imagine ever not considering my husband or kids in EVERYTHING I do.
      My husband told me last night that he never felt a rush of excitement being with his AP–he said there was a bit of forbidden/new excitement–but nothing that gave him butterflies or compelled him to go back. He even said that the longer they were together the less he wanted anything to do with her… I realized in my husband’s life he’s never broken up with any girlfriends. We were talking and discovered that he always knew when the relationships needed to end but wouldn’t say the words. Out of fear of hurthing them? So he would wait until his girlfriend realized it was over. Then he could walk away. I feel like he was waiting for her to walk away too. Does that make sense? Ugh. Too much thinking.

      • Yes that makes complete sense. My husband has said similar things, that his AP acted desperate. The second to the last time she was with him she had approached him early in the evening at a work event, he told her NO it’s not going to happen. She told him she knew he would get drunk enough and do it later. She was right, he got black out drunk and his friends dumped him in his room. Not sure how they hooked up but he has no memory of it at all, she says they were together and the phone records show they were. He’s said he was not attracted to her and did not like her. He never took her to dinner, or got her a gift, or a card or anything. No matter how many times he told her it was over she kept after him. It did not end until she told her husband under pressure. Crazy…

      • My husband too–he never gave her a gift, a card, or even a love note or anything. She gave him gifts (she spent $300 on one gift-why???). Why?
        When my husband and I returned from a long weekend away together (alone w/o the kids) she asked him if we had sex. He said he was so irritated by the question and he looked at her like she was a dumbass and said: “Yes, a lot.” It was that vacation that made him realize he was fucking up (I found out soon after because he began to unravel). But I saw her emails to him after our vacation saying: “It’s none of my business and I know your relationship with your wife is off-limits. I know how much you love her and I never meant to pressure you.” After our vacation together he slept with her three more times…. three times too many but since it was over a span of two months…. I guess better than his track record.
        Her entire presence in his life was so stupid. She was going through a divorce (10 years of marriage) and the first thing she did after kicking her husband out of their house was tell my husband she wanted to have sex with him. What a fucked up whore.

    • My husband of 13 years has been cheating on me in one form or another. First I discovered porn on the computer. Money was scarce. I worked full-time & thought the same of him. His income was very inconsistent. He led me to believe that the money her earned was paying for product/repairs in his business. During a week-long work training, I felt something wasn’t right. I assumed he was looking at porn while I was gone. Approximately a week after I returned home, I found a brochure with pictures of 1/2 naked women and their phone numbers. I confronted my husband,& he denied knowing anything about it. A male coworker called the main line, etc., & gave me the news I was expecting. A few years later I learned that he had applied for credit cards, and was in debt for approx. $20,000.00. He made excuses, stating, “I used the money to pay bills, etc.” Yea, right you did, another lie. Long story short-he visited “sexually oriented business for massages with “happy endings!” I found perverted messages on his cell phone. I even caught him taking pics of his genitals with his cell phone. He lied about everything. He never came clean until I hounded him to death. The next disturbing information I found, was someone asking him for illicit drugs for “the best blow jobs of his life, & all the business she could muster. There is more, but I won’t give anymore information
      I was duped by a narcissist, a psychopath. I loved this man! I talked to him until I was blue in the face. He showed no remorse, made excuses, & literally turned my life upside down. It’s been a year and he hasn’t attempted to contact me. Prior to divorcing I gave him an ultimatum-get professional help for sex-addiction. He told me I was blowing all of it out of proportion. Strip clubs, prostitution? I begged him to get help; he said, “l’ll go to counseling for you & me, but not for that other. I believe if a person has a problem, he can change it himself without other people knowing about it.” It was that line that “drove” me to get the divorce. I lived a complete lie for 13 years with the man I hoped to be with now, & through eternity. I have never felt emotional pain, sorrow, sadness, & depression, that if not for the Grace of God, I would still be in shock, robotic-like, hiding behind a boulder away from everyone. Who do you trust when the man you love betrayed & deceived all of us, family and friends. The multiple triggers I face daily, along with constant intrusive thoughts that cloud my mind. I cry multiple times a day. I pray that he will have a change of heart, and come home with a repentant heart, a willingness to work hard to be a family again. The reality of that happening is lessening. I want so badly to contact him, to hold him, & tell him that I love him, despite it all. What’s wrong with me? I could use a “kind” pep-talk. Could he change? I guess no one knows that, but God.

      • Kathy, I’m so sorry for everything you’ve been through. I know it’s like living in a slow hell.

        Can he change? The answer is, only after he’s able to admit he has a problem and only when he’s ready too. They “the addict” usually have to hit rock bottom before their willing to change, that rock bottom is different for everyone. For my husband it was being extorted and the possibility of losing his job and marriage. Sex addiction brings with it a boat load of shame, it’s not like drug addiction which we hear about on the news everyday or alcoholism which we see glorified in movies and on TV. Sex addiction is much darker, in my opinion, than some of the other addictions. I can recommend the book, Out of the shadows, but beware it’s hard to read.

        Right now you need to focus on yourself, go to therapy on your own, join a support group. Most Nar-anon and Al-anon groups welcome all, celebrate recovery is another really good option.

        Living with an addict is not a picnic, there are times when I still wonder if I did the right thing by staying and my husband has over 2 years sober. Just because they get clean doesn’t mean you don’t have to live with what they’ve done. The emotional baggage is forever.

        Also if you haven’t yet, get tested for everything. You can’t be too sure about your own health and well being.

        Remember take care of yourself first. Things will work out the way there’re supposed to. If that means he gets clean and comes back, great. If he doesn’t it means there’s something better out there for you.

        Keep your chin up. You can do this.

    • my husbamd of 33 years had an affair with a older woman for 3.5 years.
      hours of daily calls, texts, and dinner and sex once a week. He told her all alongone day it would end, if i found out there would never be any contact again.her son lived at home and met my husband, she introduced both her kids and made them part of this filthy sinful act.Her house was a whore house, once her son would leave for the night they would have sex. she woks at childrens hospital, and knew we had a daughter with down syndrome. when i had to go out of town she planned her evenings as my daughter was home alone. i never new there were such evil devils in the world. my husband had no problem dropping her, he describes her as a toy, no feeling no love. once she tool him down the path she held it over his head. He is doing everything possible to keep me. i know she could not touch his soul, she told me that he loved me, and new there was no future. yet this was her second affair, we call her the black widow, shes back to leading her lonely life cause she cant find a man of her own.

    • It’s sick right? There you are at home taking care of HIS children and he’s off planning his next rendez-vous. My husband told me she would call him on Fridays and see what his work schedule was and then “pencil” him into her fucking calendar for a day the next week for sex. He says he tried to ignore her phone call but if he didn’t answer she would go to his business to plan. Fucking whores.

  2. Ditto to all..Haunting is the perfect description. Will I ever really get over it?. Don’t think so…Can I live with it…not sure….it’s only been 6 (of the longest) months in my life. Time will tell if he’s truly worthy of me, if he continues to make amends, make progress.
    Otherwise, I’ll cut my losses and join a female commune. Maybe Mom’s right, they’re only good for lays, anything else is bullshit and we’re deluding ourselves. Time for a new relationship paradigm.

  3. Ladies, don’t forget the bitter 2012 divorce of Melissa Etheridge & Tammy Lynn Michaels b/c of Melissa’s alleged affair!

  4. My husband and I have been married 23 years. He had an affair in our fifth year of marriage after our first child was born. I stayed with him but never felt the same love or respect for him ever again. We are divorcing now. I honestly wish I would have left back then. Nobody talks about the long lasting effects of an affair. For me, it changed me as a person. I was so in love and trusting…now I feel I was stupid and naive. I wish you luck with your marriage, but wanted to give you the perspective of how deep and lasting the effects really are.

    • Thank you for sharing your experience and life story with me. I think that’s my fear (or every betrayed spouse’s fear) that we’ll go through all this healing to look back years later realizing we gave up too much of ourselves. Being aware of your story is helpful to me. It tells me the recovery work is not going to end.

      • Just to explain a little more…since we are divorcing (not related to infidelity), I have been doing a lot of reflection about my entire marriage. My husband had a good job, we owned our first home, and had a six month old baby boy. My husband was having an affair with one of his married employees. Her
        husband called me and told me all the details. I didn’t even suspect it at all. Because he was her manager, he was fired from his job due to the affair and inappropriate conduct at work. My husband risked everything for this affair. He
        was very sorry, and never strayed again. He said the reason for the affair was all thepressure of a new baby, new house etc… I personally believe there is never a reason good enough to betray someone like that. I didn’t realize when I stayed that although as time went on I did get over the affair. I just could not get that same feeling of love or respect preaffair. It was not a conscious decision on my part. I changed as a person. You can get past the pain and you will one day. It is hard, but possible. I just wish I would have realized that the pain back then that although the pain is gone, my perception of him would never return. Feeling this way is unfair to me, but also unfair to my spouse who never lied or strayed again. Affairs are devastating to families. I wish more men would realize the long term implications.

      • Yes… all the things I read now about affairs that I wish I had known beforehand. No one ever thinks it will happen to them. And it’s rare for a wayward ever thinks to look for reasons not to cheat before the affair.

        I hope you find the love and happiness that you deserve.

    • I feel the same way, we have been marraird for 26 years and 16 years he has been with another woman the same woman, he claims to hate with a passion, neer bought her anything neer took her out, i dont know what they had, but it makes me sick it has been 17 months sence I found out on his birthday, but sex is really hard for me, because i seem to put my head in a plae where it doesnt belong and I end up felling pissed off and angry with him over and over, it does have a long lasting affect, I hear about all these marraiges making it and even better, but im trying to figure out if it is still woth it. I cant stand the pain.

      DT

  5. my husband had an affair 14 months ago with a woman 12 years older than me (52) im 40. i stayed with him but will never ever trust or love him like i did, and why would i, he betrayed me and he became someone i would never have chosen to be with. he says he loves me but im afraid that it will all end. my days and nights are filled with the images of him and her, of the times he spent with her, of the constant texts he sent her, i would even go as far to say i hate him as much as i hate her right now. some of that is because i never got to have it out with his whore, some of it is because i just dont believe what he says anymore, and some of it is because i really want out now just to keep my sanity, he is a bastard whom i cant forgive, affairs do cause hurt and pain and anguish and for me mental problems, my life will never be the same again, i have been forced to become someone i am not and i hate my life but im trapped

    • My heart goes out to you because I can hear so much pain and anger in your post. I hope you can find a way to let go of this hate so that you can be stronger and happier. You shouldn’t suffer in misery for his actions. There is so much pain, anger and hatred as a result of infidelity and it’s toxic. You can be happy again. Pursue your dreams, what you want and need. You can move forward, with or without your husband. Do what you need to move forward…

    • I feel your pain, i am also feeling this way though we are still together and i keep telling myself i am going to try i am still very angry! I have had it out with the whore and i still don’t feel better. I have called and told my husband every name in the book and i still don’t feel better. I stay for my 11yr old, she does not deserve all this and he says he doesn’t want to lose me but it is not the same anymore. I don’t have the same respect and love for him. I don’t know if i will ever get the happiness back i once had but i am going to try and at least for now i want things calm for m daughet.I understand you completely how you feel and i am so sorry because it is awful being stuck.

  6. Reading this felt like reading my own thoughts. I live everyday with an ache in my heart. The worst part about it is I didnt dislose to his boss or family that he was sleeping with a girl twenty one years his junior who was his staff member for twelve months. During this time the more evidence I found the more he turned it around on me. He still thinks its ok to talk to her on the phone and lies about it and says that its nothing. Some days i just feel so low! I stayed to work it out but whilst i am making the effort and planned holidays ans weekends he just doesnt try….its like its my fault and i have to fix things.

    • Hi,
      I am sorry you feel like you are trying to move forward, forgive and rebuild the marriage but your husband has stopped making the effort. If he’s still contacting his AP then it is difficult for you to trust him. It’s not your fault–you never chose to cheat. You never chose to lie. He needs to listen to your needs and support you now if this will work. He’s got to break through whatever walls he’s built around himself to protect himself from seeing what he is doing. No one benefits from infidelity but the person who is destroyed the most is the wayward spouse. Yes, it hurts like hell to be the betrayed spouse–but you can keep your head held high that you did nothing wrong. Sometimes when men are involved they feel like their actions will have not have consequences for the people they love and they are only risking themselves. I hope you can find a way to work on this together….

    • Infidelity is so painful. The misconception about it is that it is a reflection of the betrayed spouses inadequacy. In reality it is a reflection of the cheaters inadequacy.
      I’ve come to realize through this healing process that the most painful part is that I am not married to whom I thought I was. I projected my own integrity and respect for that type of charector onto my spouse. What I’ve come to realize is that while I was hoping to have someone else be that person for me, I had that person all along – in myself.
      Take a look at
      http://www.healingafteraffairs-Bloomington.info
      It does a great job of explaining why betrayed spouses make themselves feel responsible for a spouses affair.
      Yes, I am profoundly changed forever, but the change also came with me learning to love myself. I thought I did before, but realize I didn’t unconditionally. I used to want a strong, reliable, man of integrity. I still want that in someone else, but I know I’ll always have it from myself if someone else doesn’t meet the mark.
      I do feel stronger and I appreciate myself. I no longer wish it could have been different, because I’ve learned so much about me in this process. I know regardless of what my spouse does, I’ll be okay.

      • “I projected my own integrity and respect for that type of character onto my spouse.”
        I love that line you wrote. I feel absolutely the same way. I always believed that and now I understand that I must rely on myself for strength and integrity too. Thanks for you comment and link above.

      • Great website. Thanks for posting. I agree infidelity is a reflection of the betrayers inadequacies. And I too have grown and re-discovered myself in this most painful process. While I have grown stronger, I am forever changed. But for me it wasn’t a matter of projecting my values, rather more crushing disappointment in his not having enough personal strength and integrity to uphold the values we had shared and discussed, especially when in distress. Isn’t that the test? When in crises the “real” you comes out? And the “real” him was so utterly disappointing. But he will spend the rest of his life regretting it and striving to be better and do better. Although our relationship has never been better, I know that should he not continue to treat me with the love and respect I deserve, I can walk and I will be fine.

  7. My Dday was May 2013, i found old emails and texts from 2012 and some from 2013. I had an affair 10yrs ago and we worked through things and he “forgave me” and our marriage was perfect. He was loving attentive and everything perfect like a prince charming. Ok so last year the guy i had an affair with contacted me by text and i replied and had a conversation with him but ultimately i told him i was very happy with my life and i had no need to go back to what i did with him and i wasn’t that person anymore. My husband saw texts on phone bill but i had deleted before he saw them so he thought i was seeing him again but i wasn’t i was very in love with my husband and my family was the most important thing to me. So we talked about htings and we agreed that nothing was going on and we moved on with our lifes as usual. Him being sweet and nice and everything perfect as always. Then this yr i find he started something with a girl from his work that was also married right after he found my texts last yr. He said it was for pay back and i read email to her telling her payback was a MF and i guess she was stupid enough to let him use her for payback. I found her husband and showed him emails from her to my husband and from my husband to her. So now its done between my husband and her and he tells me he never stopped loving me and he didn’t care about her and she was just a friend, i said that is not a friend if she tries to hurt your family by doing this with you! A friend would give good advice knowing you wanted payback. My thing is why lie to me and act like i am forgiven and be perfect with me while you want payback. He could have left instead of making me think everything was perfect! He didn’t want to tell me because things had been over between them for a while and he thought if i didn’t find out it was ok because he never planned on leaving me or anything. I don’t understand!! Im so hurt and everything else, i wish he would have done things differently and made sure he wanted to risk his family and my love before doing anything and he had the choice to do the right thing and he should had made damn sure i was having an affair before he did anything and if he felt that strong about me having another affair then he should have left and we could have worked things out differently because i wasn’t doing anything and now all this has caused our marriage to be on the rocks and how does 2 wrongs make it right!

    • I knew what i wanted in life and that was my husband and my family and then this happened, im so confussed and hurt and now i don’t feel the same and i don’t trust him, i don’t feel close to him like i used to. We are together but i am not happy. I know it has only been 6 months and i am giving it time to see if i feel better about things. It is just crazy how you can be so in love with someone and trust them completely and be crazy about them and be so happy and then all of a sudden all that is gone….. :(

      • I know most of you have probably not been through a situation like mine, and might be saying i deserve it for cheating also but it had been 10yrs and i tried so hard to show my husband that all i wanted to do is spend the rest of my life with him and that i loved him so much and i would do anything for him he was my best friend, and for him to say its ok i forgive you and i love you and work things out and then for him to turn around and backstabb me like that and not care that i was trying so hard and he knows i was because he admits to me he saw everything i was trying to do and he knew i wasn’t doing anything but he still lwent ahead and did what he did, how couldn i ever trust or be in love with taht again.

    • I don’t want to assume anything about your husband but I don’t think that he was pretending that he had forgiven you and loved you before his affair. I think he truly did/does love you. The pain from an affair is like a scab healing and every so often something happens to rip the scab open and it starts bleeding again. Even though ten years had passed, it’s possible the fear of those text messages ripped off his scab. I wouldn’t know what to do if my husband’s AP resurfaced–but I would hope that I would be able to confront him. Why didn’t you tell your husband about the texts either? It seems like you both were so afraid of how the other person would react you suppressed the truth. I can relate because when my husband was involved with his AP I suppressed my fears and suspicions for months before I started trying to find answers and snooping through his stuff. I look back at that time and I regret not just approaching my husband with how I felt–even if it was disappointment or fear.
      I am sorry you guys are going through this again in your marriage…. Take care.

      • Thank you for your response. I was afraid to tell him about the texts because i knew he would get upset and think something of it and also because i knew i had done the right thing by not accepting that other person back in my life and i cut him off and told him i wanted nothing to do with him and that was that so i didn’t want to hurt my husband by making feel in any way that i was doing something wrong or make him think anything because to me it was nothing. I think he should have confronted me as well and we could have talked about it or done something different instead of him doing this to me and our relationship going in circles. He is sorry and i beleive he is but the aftermath is the hardest thing to deal with. I now want him ot leave his job because she is there and i know he loves his job and it sustains our family and we live well but i am not happy if he is there and she is there, that peels the scar off of my emotions daily. I wish he would have thought of the consequences before, it is even affecting his job opportunities now. He is willing to leave but now i am broken because i don’t want to cause his unhapiness leaving a job he loves and going somewhere he might not be happy. We are still together after seven months and it is really hard but here we are. I beleive in keeping my family together and our 11yr old does not deserve any of this, it was both of us who did what we did and now it is time to focus on our family and our happiness. Wish me luck i hope we can move forward and be happy again. Thank you!

      • I understand the entire job thing. My husband’s AP does not work with him but she lives about 1/2 a mile from his business and I don’t trust her. When I go to see him at work I get anxiety. When I don’t hear from him right after I send a text–I worry. I told him this week he really needs to find something else and for the first time, I also feel he should take his career in another direction (meaning giving up his business… and passion). I need stability. We’ll see what happens….
        I feel like you have an advantage to healing–because you can understand how unrational the decision is to cheat. I know that probably doesn’t help because pain is pain. I wish you guys the best of luck–you’ll be okay. :)

  8. It’s the hardest thing to deal with what we are going through and, like me, I’m sure we all have good days and bad days (or weeks). My husband had an affair for 3 years with a coworker which ended 4 years ago and we agreed to work through it and try again, we have 5 children together. Recently I found that it never really stopped -after a few months they were seeing each other again, although he claims they never had sex. Understandably, I’m not sure i believe him.

    That is my biggest problem now. How do I believe anything he ever says when he went back. He says he was under a lot of stress and talking with her was the only time he could completely switch off. He says he wants to be with me. We have been married for more than 20 years but 7 of them, a third, he was with her. I am so sad and finding moving forward so difficult.

    • Hi Sam,
      Trust is such a difficult thing to earn back once it’s lost. Sometimes I think I am okay trusting my husband and then i am triggered by him working late or something and I realize I am not quite there yet.
      Keep talking to your husband… keep asking him questions. Hopefully, he can understand that she is not easing his stress if she is asking/wanting him to lie to his wife and children. Those things are adding to his stress levels. My husband’s affair began by talking to his AP about her stress, problems, etc and he didn’ think there was any risk for an affair. But she started making sexual comments that made him uncomfortable but he wasn’t willing to make her stop because it fed his ego. But eventually she put him in a situation where he felt like in order to keep her friendship he had to sleep with her. He still doesn’t know why he even wanted her friendship to continue but it filled some deficit he felt within himself. Hopefully, your husband has that same understanding now–that a friend doesn’t ask you to cheat on your spouse. Keep talking… Get the truth you need to move forward.

  9. I keep this post permanently on my computer saved tab. Its so similar to my situation only more than double the marriage span, memories and belief that our marriage and love was pure and genuine.
    The paragraph you wrote asking him why he is here and how he could do that and his explanation that he kept it separate and felt it had no impact on your marriage is true for my husband as well. I have no idea and cannot comprehend this thinking from a non cheating spouse point of view, but realise other cheaters tick he same way.
    I too welled up with tears and feel the same destruction and pain many times a day and bewilderment of the ease that he undertook this affair and kept it going for more than 2 years, yet came home every night to me and his family like nothing was happening in his life that was destroying our marriage and my eternal faith and trust in him.
    My trust, faith and love for him will never be the same. Our marriage is not the same. I feel the first 24 years was one marriage and then a gap, then I am on my second marriage with the same man, but its different, some parts better, but my eyes are wide open this time.

    • It’s hard to let go of the man I thought my husband was and realize what he was capable of doing. He was capable of destroying everything in his and our lives for nothing. Nothing. I remind myself he was no okay in the head to act this way–this is not him, this was a shell of my husband. He couldn’t even see the truth anymore because he was broken. It doesn’t excuse or forgive what he did but it’s an explanation that somedays doesn’t seem like it’s enough. When I feel that way I try to take a step back and see what is real right now in our lives. His damage/affair came from not being able to focus on the the good, what he valued and loved. During the affair he could only see what was wrong in his life. So I try not to make the same mistake. Eyes wide open is right.

  10. Reading this crying. Do you ever forget enough to make it ok, I don’t want to be the one destroying my marriage because I can’t forget. Been back together just over 2 years nearly 3 since d day. Problem is how do you forget when she won’t fuck off and he won’t make sure she does. Every few months she gets in touch and he responds, nothing in it content wise but it’s the bigger picture for me. She got in touch December, went to a lot of trouble get his work email though part of me still wonders did he give it to her. He realised I know and it just stops. I’m destroying myself now because after the lies and broken promises of it will stop for 2 years it doesn’t make sense that shes just stopped like that. I can’t find contact anywhere else but I know it hasn’t just stopped like that.
    Is the pain of not forgetting easier to bear than that of splitting, sharing my kids the guilt I will always feel for them. This makes it sound bad other than the contact snd what that does to me it isn’t. All this doubt and driving myself crazy trying find this contact cause I can’t believe its just stopped like that.

    • Hi,
      For me, I needed everything to end completely. I needed to know if he saw her walking down the street or if she tried to contact him through email/text/whatever. Honestly, if my husband’s AP was still contacting him intermittently I would probably confront her. I’ve avoided contacting his AP despite my desire to beat the crap out of her. In the end I know she’s just not worth it but in your case I might say I needed to talk to her or the three of you face-to-face.
      Sometimes I think that my fears are what play in my mind the most causing me pain. I have to let go of those fears when I can pragmatically dispel them. I know that deciding to stay together or separate when there are kids involved is probably the most difficult decision you could make. For me, I promised myself if I wasn’t happy and my needs were not being met that I would leave. My kids deserve a mother that is happy and not burdened by the pain of an affair. Children are more resilient than we think. Many children are at first saddened by their parents divorce but recover quickly especially if they understand in a respectful/appropriate way what happened.

  11. Ive been looking for a site like this for a while now. Very insightful coments and stories. I feel yourbpain and maybe soon ill tell my story.
    Regards
    Leah

  12. Here I am again. How do I even try? I said and keep saying I am going to try and I can’t, Dday was May 2013 and its almost a year now and i still can’t. Yea i have my good days but mostly bad, there isn’t a day i don’t think about it. I don’t think i can do this much longer. I think I am forcing myself to be there for my daughter. I feel empty, It might sound crazy but I think i would be happier without him. Starting over and falling in love again with someone else. I’m not saying cheat, I am talking about doing it the right way and getting a divorce and starting over. I do miss a life full of happines and love but not necessarily with my husband. I don’t know if it will ever be the same, it doesn’t seem like it ever will. I can’t seem to get over it. I don’t feel the same anymore, the love, respect and just the drive to work it out isn’t a very strong feeling for me right now. No matter what he does or say i don’t feel any better. The affair stopped, he apologizes all the time he does nice things for me, he says he would never of left me for that idiot, or never will for anyone. I don’t think he even knows what to do or tell me to make me see he is there for me. I don’t know but this really sucks. Why put yourself in that situation in the first place if you aren’t sure about losing everything you have if your happy with your life, now he thinks I should feel better about it since time has gone by but in reality I don’t. I question myself now if i reallly love him because it is strange that i don’t feel much better than Dday so do I love him enought to even be around and what about the happy 18yrs we have been together and 14yrs married? Does that not count any for me, all the good things we have? Wow its so crazy how all that can be destroyed in a few seconds and might not be repaired ever! I’ts so hard…………

    • I don’t think it sounds crazy to believe you may be happier without him in your life. Have you considered a trial separation to see how you feel? I really feel frusrated when I read about wayward spouses expecting their wives to just get over the affair and move on. I cannot understand that mentality or lack of understanding/empathy. If I feel upset about the affair in fifteen years my husband better be willing to sit there and listen and try to understand. I told him that too because I don’t ever want to feel like I have to disguise my pain because I think that’s part of the reason our marriage allowed an affair to begin with. I wasn’t willing to say–“I am upset about XYZ.”
      I hope you can figure out what you need to be happy. You deserve to be happy everyday.

  13. Reading is eerie. It is as though I wrote it but switched gender roles. Thank you so much! I was able to show this to my wife to make her understand what I am going through and why six months later I am still struggling so much.

  14. No, he actually was relieved that he was caught. He had been dropping hints for months to me. He needed me to know what had happened because he couldn’t end the affair and heal from it alone.

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