My husband cheated on me. Now what?

Last week, a new betrayed wife posted a comment on my blog. She discovered her husband’s affair the night before and her Googling brought her to my blog. I remember so clearly lying in my bed typing the words: my husband cheated on me into the Google search bar of my iPad only hours after my discovery. I wanted someone to tell me what to do. I was completely unprepared for an affair. I always assumed if he cheated our marriage would be over. Maybe it’s what I was taught or maybe I just haven’t known any happily married people that have dealt with infidelity. The fact is I didn’t know what to do. I felt broken and defeated. I felt alone and scared. I wanted someone to tell me how to navigate this mess because this wasn’t supposed to happen to me.

What I discovered in the 72 hours after my D-Day was there was no one out there that agreed on what to do. Every betrayed woman had a different path, a different story or a marriage unlike my own. I joined web groups and read countless articles and blogs. And still, no one could tell me succinctly what to do. Honestly, I wanted someone to tell me if my marriage was over. Like I said, before I found out my husband cheated I didn’t think I would ever stay or have the capacity to forgive him. But after I discovered his affair, I realized that our love was not a casualty of his affair. I told myself I would allow myself time to decide if I could remain in the marriage or not. I told myself I could leave at any time but I would allow myself two years to heal. My decision may be not right for anyone else but me—but I could live with it.

I remember reading this article about four or five months ago. The questions asked in the article are:

  1. How do you define love?
  2. Is your definition of love large enough to encompass profound failure?

We each define love independently in our own lives. We place our own limitations and expectations of love on our definition. On my D-Day, I don’t know if I could have known if my definition of love was large enough to include my husband’s failures/infidelity. As much as I have grown in the past ten months, there are still moments when the affair hits me like a ton of bricks and I question whether I can forgive him completely. It’s how I overcome those moments that keeps me going. It’s about being open and honest with my husband about those moments so we can have complete transparency. I am not expected to just get over his affair and move on. We have an agreement that if something bothers me in five, ten or twenty years about this affair that I can bring it up and he can never say: I thought you were over that already. I promise to not hold grudges or throw it in his face but I am not expected keep silent either.

I made mistakes in those first days after discovering his affair too. We spent hours talking but I couldn’t hear much of what he said. I heard the words but I couldn’t understand them because I made assumptions that were completely wrong about his relationship with his AP. I had always thought if a man has an affair the sex must be amazing, the relationship is worth walking away from your marriage for and the man is a liar. While those things could be true—they weren’t the truth for us. Try not to base your healing on anything said in the wake of the discovery of the affair.

Sex is also a strange thing after an affair. Many women report they begin the hysterical bonding immediately. That was not the case for me. My husband was not home for 36 hours after I discovered his affair. I had time to read and read online about infidelity. I read that it took two years minimum to heal and I told myself we might now have sex for two year (boy, was I wrong). I also told my husband this. I told him that I couldn’t be physical with him and was he willing to work on a marriage with no sexual intimacy. He agreed he would stay no matter what happened. We made love the night after we were both tested for STDs. We went out to dinner and we began talking—not about the affair—about us. We were on a date and we didn’t even plan it or know it. We left the restaurant and began kissing in the parking lot. He pushed me up against the car and I never wanted him more in my life. We barely made it inside our home before I began ripping his clothes off. That was September 28, 2012. We made love seven times over the next twenty-four hours. Both of us full of desire and passion. What I realized about hysterical bonding is that it has to be both ways—both spouses have to need that connection to be reestablished with the other person. My husband and I must be still hysterical or bonding because we haven’t missed a day. The sex is the best it’s ever been and we had a passionate and playful sex life before the affair.

The truth is you may not know what to do after you discover your spouse cheated on you, but you will be okay. You will survive. Take care of yourself. Eat. Sleep. Don’t spend every moment thinking about the affair.

I wonder what advice you wish you heard on your D-Day or just after? Write it below and hopefully it can help someone. Finish this thought: My husband cheated on me, now what?

582 thoughts on “My husband cheated on me. Now what?

  1. i am so blessed to have known michaelstealth you are god sent.i really
    appreciate working with you after you helped me discover my husband was
    cheating on me and all he asked for was his email and phone number, that
    way I was able to access all the information I needed .i am not ashamed to
    tell because i know alot of people need this too.
    Michaelderck78@gmail.com
    is the best and
    assured person to run to for anything you need to fish out and any bone you
    wanna pick.i guaranty you.god bless you sir

  2. I have just discovered my husband has been chearing on me. I found out accidentally through his new email address that he created so I won’t know(well that’s what he thinks). I had a strong gut feel that I should log in to that new email and just guessed the password. Oh my god, you won’t believe that I guessed the password right! And there I find his email conversations with the other women. What’s worse is that he is overseas as he is starting our new business. I feel so betrayed, feeling alone and abandoned with our 2 kids. I sent him an email right away when I found out which was 4 days ago. I tried to viber message him a day after to ask him that we should talk but have not heard back from him since. It’s been 4 days and I am lost. I don’t know where to go from here. I don’t know what’s on his mind. What shall I do? I don’t want to bombard him emails and messages or calls but I’m feeling angry because despite of what he’s done to me, he still does not communicate with me. Please help. I don’t know where to go from here.

  3. I have just discovered my husband has been cheating on me. I found out accidentally through his new email address that he created so I won’t know(well that’s what he thinks). I had a strong gut feel that I should log in to that new email and just guessed the password. Oh my god, you won’t believe that I guessed the password right! And there I find his email conversations with the other woman. What’s worse is that he is overseas as he is starting our new business. I feel so betrayed, feeling alone and abandoned with our 2 kids. I sent him an email right away when I found out which was 4 days ago. I tried to viber message him a day after to ask him that we should talk but have not heard back from him since. It’s been 4 days and I am lost. I don’t know where to go from here. I don’t know what’s on his mind. What shall I do? I don’t want to bombard him with emails and messages or calls but I’m feeling angry because despite of what he’s done to me, he still does not communicate with me. Please help. I don’t know where to go from here.

  4. I found out my husband has been cheating on me with a girl from next door, after going through his phone messages. For some time this girl and her mom used to visit a lot and I used to wonder why. My husband would just say they are neighbours and in this neighbourhood everyone does it. I felt soo betrayed to think the affair was happening under my roof and in front of me. I forgive him and thought the affair had ended only to realize 6months later he is still speaking to her and he even has photos of them in a hotel. We have two kids and I don’t know what to do now my self esteem is down, I can’t even go out of the gate without worrying how many people know and what they are saying. Please advice

  5. Just found out my husband was cheating on me for the last year. What hurts I suspected the start of the affair 9 months ago and confronted him about it then and I thought we worked through it and was working on our marriage. Come to find out he was with the same women all along up until last month. When I confronted him today with the pictures and videos I found in his email he finally came clean and said he ended it and choose me and wants a future with me. I don’t know if I should believe him as we were in this same place a year ago, I have no idea if he really ended it or would have ever come clean. I’m so lost right now what do it do!?

  6. I found out my husband had an affair in September. He had been working late every night one night even came home at 3:30 am. When I questioned him he lied and denied where her had been. Boys nights out. Even working on holidays. The woman called me and told me my husband has been dishonest with me and had been seeing/sleeping with her for a few weeks. He had just got home afrer spending the whole day with her. He told me he ended it and she was mad. She told me she didnt even know i exsisted and when she found out thats why she called. Its been 3 months of us trying to work out our marriage. We went to a couples counselor for 2 months before we could not afford it anymore. I also found out last year he had slept with another woman one weekend when we had a fight. I wake up some days and cry for hours on end. I want our relationship to survive but I dont know if im strong enough to trust him. He has a GPS on his phone, calls me eveyday 3 times from work. He does eveything I ask of him. I just dont know if anything will ever be good enough to move past this. Some days I just want to sleep with someone else to get even and than I just feel horrible for thinking thay way. I just want to know why he did it… but he said he doesnt know. Is our marraige over?

    • I’m wondering how everyone is doing now? I find so much comfort in reading these messages but curious as to what happens next. I’m 3 months in from when I found out and my emotions are still running wild. Its been 3 months but with the drips and drabs on how I found out it actually feels like its been a week. That being said I moved back in mostly to not to put an additional strain on my parents and because our 1.5 year old needed his own space. So here I am having a mix of good and bad days and wondering why I’m still here as some days I don’t think I can get past the affair.

      • This is Ange. I am still with my husband although I have good days and bad days. It’s been 2 years since I found out. My husband hasn’t changed much but I don’t think he is cheating on me right now. Or since. I think if I was in a different situation I would have left him. I tried leaving but he really wanted me to stay and I’m still here.
        I don’t think the bad days will ever go away. I see a movie or a show, hear a word or visit a place that brings it all back.
        My husband is pretty understanding of this and doesn’t blame me for having a bad day. How could he blame me anyway right???
        Anyway I just wanted to let you know. I’m still here and my kids are happy. Hope your situation gets better deer! No one should have to go through this ever!

  7. Hi Ange,

    Thanks for your response. No one should ever have to go thru this….so true. I sometimes think it really didn’t happen and I imagined it and then it hits me that its all true and I fall apart. Having a bad day today. Like you said the littlest or sometimes not so little things set me off. I’m living in the same place in the same town where “she” lived and although she is now many states away I cant shake the feeling that she’s still here at least in spirit. I obviously had no idea what was going on; thought he was stressed, tired and that the pressure of a baby were just too much for him never in my wildest dreams did I ever think affair. So now i walk thru the streets of a semi still new neighborhood (we moved here for his job) knowing that they walked the same streets together while I was away working, eating at the same restaurants or new ones he hadn’t yet brought me to….its just so painful. So now what?
    I put on a dress tomorrow and go out for new years like nothing is wrong? Like we are this happy couple and I’m trying to pretend that we can survive this and prove that I can be fun again? For the record I was only not fun temporarily as I had a baby this past year but guess he couldn’t take the lack of attention at home or that I was a new mom trying to manage life, work and keeping a baby alive. Breaks my heart.

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