I discovered the truth on Septemer 22, 2012. I guess the truth had been haunting me despite a happy marriage and three amazing children… there was something wrong. Funny thing is, I thought I was unhappy with my job or something. No idea that the root of my unhappiness, discontent and insecurity was stemming from my seemingly perfect marriage.
But there I was at 2 a.m. going through his emails trying to find something. And then I saw the email to her that read:
I miss you……
Why would he tell another woman he missed her? And why did he email her a photo of my children? And why was her comment that it wasn’t like the other photos they had been sharing? And why was there no other photos in his email to or from her? My heart was pounding and my body was shaking. And then I found it. A sexual photo downloaded from Tumblr and emailed to another account. An account I didn’t recognize. It took less than two minutes to hack into the account and as my computer screen refreshed I prayed that all I would find was a collection of erotic photos. But it wasn’t. I found 73 pages of emails from her to my husband detailing a year long affair. I wanted to scream but it was the middle of the night. My husband was away for the weekend with one of our kids. I couldn’t even scream at him.
I sobbed in my bed alone wondering how and why we got to this point.
I knew I shouldn’t torture myself with the emails but I began to read through them. Her messages to him were mostly sexual, describing their encounters detail by detail. I skipped through the emails picking dates that had meaning to me–did he write her on my birthday? our anniversary? valentine’s day? Was he responding to her or initiating the emails? How did this begin without me noticing? Was I blind? Was I that far removed from my husband’s life?
The questions flooded my brain. The pain of what he had done was overwhelming. I physically got sick. I couldn’t sleep. I kept going back to the emails.
Did he want our marriage to end? Did he ever love me? I’d never felt pain like this. Ever. It was straight to my core.
I loved this man. I gave him everything. I loved him dearly and we discussed our love as though it were unique, something everyone wants but not everyone receives. So how could a man that looked me in the eyes and say he would never risk losing me enter into a year long affair?
I knew who she was too. She was removed from me but I met her once and didn’t care for her. The first time he ever told me about her I didn’t like the way he seemed to idolize her–saying that she was amazing at her job when I couldn’t hear anything remarkable in his comments. I told him too. It’s only now that I know that when I told him I didn’t like the way he seemed to talk about her that he decided not to talk about her to me from then on. Funny thing, she was barely his friend at that point. But once he decided to continue that relationship purposefully behind my back, it became an affair. He still denies that was the turning point in the relationship. Trying to believe he was just being a friend to her as she ended her marriage. He says he wasn’t attracted to her. Claims he didn’t find her sexually appealing. Yet when she started making passes at him through email, that was when he suggested opening private email accounts. About a month after the private email accounts were opened he had sex with her.
I struggle with how many details I want to know. Once you know something, you can’t un-know it. He says she invited him over to her house to help with some “work” stuff. She didn’t work at his office but she kept inserting herself into his business. He says she kissed him that day. He kissed her back. Then two weeks later he drove back to her house in the middle of his work day and they had sex. This continued almost on a weekly basis until the day I found the emails.
So here I am 35 days later. We are still married, living in the same house, sleeping in the same bed and we are still in love. When I confronted him, he acknowledged everything. At first, he tried to defend himself by saying our sex life had dwindled. Then he tried to say that I am the love of his life but he doesn’t think he is the love of my life. Then he tried to say that I never initiate sex or go down on him. All of this was displacing the blame and he has since realized that this was HIS choice and it wasn’t about me.
It took him a full day to break down. I think he realized that he risked our marriage, his relationship with his children, his job and everything that is meaningful in his life for a woman that he doesn’t even care to see again. When I told him that if she wasn’t 100% out of his life then I was going to be–he didn’t bat an eye. He said he was relieved. He said he tried to end it twice. I don’t know if that is supposed to make me feel better or not? He says he slept with her for her needs, not because he wanted to. He was trying to be a friend to her as she went through a bad time in her life. Wow. Not to lighten the mood–but have I been a bad friend because I haven’t been sleeping with all my friends going through tough times?
He begged me to forgive him and said he would do anything. I believe him. I’m not saying that I trust him again. But I believed him when he said he loved me.
We’ve spent every night for the past 35 days talking. Talking through the pain, tears, anger and fears. He takes responsibility for his decisions and actions but he struggles with how he even let himself sink that low. He was self-destructing and he failed to recognize that the real devastation was to me, his wife. He may live with the guilt, but I live with the pain, the endless images in my mind, the triggers that catch you off-guard and the sadness that fills my heart. I can’t sit on the toilet without thinking: my husband cheated on me.
I guess I am writing this blog because I want to know why he did it. Honestly, we had (have) not just a good marriage–a great marriage. We are that couple that our family and friends try to emulate. We have amazing children–because we invest time and love into them together. We talked. We made love. We got along with each other’s families. We went on vacations. We supported each other through really tough times. Yes, we had our moments but we were thankful for each other. When we heard of people divorcing we acknowledged how lucky we were to be married to our soul mate. So why did he doubt my love? Because he wasn’t getting bj’s or laid enough? Because I went back to work? What makes a person risk a life they built with their true love for someone that is meaningless? How did he allow it to continue for a year? How did he live with the guilt? How did he look me or his kids in the eye? How did he tell our kids to surround themselves with honest and good-intentioned people if he was not doing the same? Why was his need to make her feel better more important than our marriage vows?
I am hoping these questions will be answered here.
In the end, I love him. That’s all I know right now.