Will my marriage survive infidelity?

Often when you are diagnosed with a disease there are statistics that will tell you the survival rate. Those statistics can either give you hope or fill you with fear. Infidelity is not a diagnosable disease but recently I wondered:

Can you calculate the five-year survival rate for a couple after infidelity is discovered?

The first thing I discovered when I dove into my research is that there are no concrete statistics and information on infidelity. Infidelity is usually kept private. Many couples are just like my husband and I —anonymous. Infidelity is estimated to affect between 50—80% of marriages. Interesting enough, the statistics are almost even for men and women as the betrayer. I read a few different articles online and it’s very difficult to calculate how many marriages survive an affair. In most states, couples can have a no-fault divorce. In the state I live in, infidelity has no bearing on the divorce proceedings or child custody agreements. I only know that because I looked it up on my D-day. I wanted to know if I could take my children away from my husband if we decided to end our marriage. I look back now and realize how vindictive that thought is but I was hurt, lost and afraid. According to divorce records infidelity is stated as the cause of the end of marriage 17% of the time. Therapists surveyed have stated that infidelity is to blame for divorces as high as 80% of the time. The numbers are all over the place because infidelity is private. One also has to wonder if will couple site infidelity for their divorce if they try to make their marriage work and decide to end their marriage years later.

Native American Proverb-Healing after my husband's affairMany people go will never disclose infidelity occurred in their marriage. It is estimated that 2/3 of spouses will never find out their spouse cheated. I also read that most cheaters will never cheat again. I’m not sure if I believe that statement but it debunks the statement “once a cheater always a cheater.” I question that people only have one affair because I think most people would lie to cover an undetected affair to make themselves look better in the eyes of their spouse and/or anyone else. Although, I’ve also read that when an affair is discovered and the betrayer repents and atones for their mistake then another affair is highly unlikely.

All of these statistics are just numbers. When I started reading about infidelity survival rates it was because someone asked me if I believed my husband and I would make it five years. My reaction was immediate and spontaneous – I said yes, absolutely. Yet, a few weeks later I’m sitting here realizing that the survival of our relationship is not a guarantee.

Infidelity is like a disease in marriage. The instant I discovered my husband’s betrayal I was confused, angry and hurt. I married my husband because I loved him. I believed we were destined for each other and that he would never hurt me. His affair stole my sense of security in our relationship. The person I trusted the most in this world lied, deceived and betrayed me and I was completely unprepared. I look back on this “journey” now and realize that in the beginning I believed that my husband loved me and our marriage could kick infidelity’s ass. I want to silently prove to Bat Shit that she meant nothing. Sex every day of the week signified his commitment to me. I wanted to erase the affair from our life.

Two years later, I have a new view of my marriage and myself. I recognize that I chose my husband and there are likely no stars aligned that pre-destined our relationship.  Our relationship has never been perfect but the innocence of my love for my husband pre-affair allowed me to only see the good. Sometimes I wonder if my unflawed view of him clouded my judgment. Maybe that’s how love begins; we cannot see our lover’s weaknesses or our relationship’s flaws. Perfection is unrealistic and unattainable. Two people cannot be perfect in life or for each other. Two years after my D-day I can appreciate the imperfections of my marriage. We are together because we choose to be here, fighting for the survival of our marriage together. Just like being diagnosed with a disease, you can choose to fight for your life or you can accept defeat. Infidelity is not a death sentence.

Healing after affair

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86 thoughts on “Will my marriage survive infidelity?

  1. Perfection in a marriage or spouse may be unattainable but infidelity should never be an option and imperfection is never an excuse. I’m nearly five months from D-day. We are both in the same “imperfect” marriage yet only my husband chose to cheat. The problem isn’t imperfect marriages but selfish, imperfect people. I will fight for my marriage but I will never accept that my imperfect marriage is the reason for his infidelity.

  2. 21 months later, I see the affair as part of our marriage, and the marriage as an ongoing story. I never thought he was perfect, and we both aren’t. However, the affair person meant nothing real to him; they made each other up to suit their problems. She offered to prop him up, he accepted, “no strings” then her payment demands broke them up. He wanted out after a very long time of what amounted to a sad sex arrangement and confused intentions of mutual use.
    He couldn’t face me with the problems he had, mostly the fact he slipped into an offer that felt good at the time, then the guilt drove him away from the family in spirit. The secrecy prevented my helping. I feared the distance was the start of a nervous breakdown. Little did I know.
    It’s dissapointing to have such a weak, confused person as a mate. Someone who never had the self esteem to explain like an equal with love and a quest for understanding.
    The shock obscured healing for a long time, the jealousy, which I needed to protect me from the full brunt of too much pagin to handle at once, had to be turned into fact one: no matter how you look at it, nice people don’t do that to another human being no matter what anyone cares to say. And major fact two: they lived a selfish secret fantasy of no value. And yes, I blame her as well as him but have no interest in her.
    He blames his stupidity entirely.
    It’s taken two years to stop trying to fix it, to understand they are basically deeply confused souls. I have the freedom to be me again with or without him, I’m choosing with for now. I hope he proves he can be real again.
    I know I will be ok, I hope he will be too. She is irrelevant.
    And if the marriage continues, it will be because it is fun and deep and what we want. If not, well then, I haven’t lost anything.
    Love to all out there, this is a wonderful website full of light and darkness. Don’t underestimate your trauma, and don’t dispair of finding your strength and light. The more you lose your step, the better you learn how to dance. And what a beautiful creature you will be!

    • You’re so right. Nice people don’t do that to another human being. It takes a very selfish person to betray their spouse. My husband takes full blame for his selfish behavior. Yet knowing he has such a deep character flaw has been excruciatingly painful. He admits that he is able to justify anything. He’s willing to admit his flaws now that he’s caught in the act. But will he change? I hope so. I’m betting our future that he can.

    • The OW that selfish creature that has no regards for the wife or the children or even our husbands. I have concluded after much reading that There are classifications for the other women. The young perky ones, the old ones the most dangerous one is the snake/spider. She becomes our husband friend. He confides in her. And slowly she boost his ego and before we know it they destroy our marriage. I blame my husband but I talked to her, I read the emails, the notes she send him. I think that’s why I forgave him because each note she wrote him was more pathetic than the last. They lived a fantasy but I gotta tell u in my case she was needy as hell. The texting between them proved it. She texted him over 100 times a day. My husband texted her 45 times a day because she would say things like if you don’t text me back I’m telling your wife. I had an amazing client who I cried too in the middle of a business deal. After I shed tears I didn’t think I had she poured me a drink and gave me her thoughts. She said something that changed my perspective on the whole disgusting affair, my husband and her. She said listen I get it he is awful. But her. She knew about your daughters she knew that he was going through bad stuff. He confided in her. She took that Information, used it and boosted his ego, she emotionally took advantage and while he should be blamed. He committed the act. He made the choice to have the affair u need to realize this. She raped him. I laughed at my client. But the words he was rape stuck in my head, I reread everything. (I kept it all I plan to use it to get custody) as I look at the affair through my clients words of emotional rape. I realized that indeed my client was right. The minute I thought of it that way my marriage changed, we really started working side by side to fix it. Three years later. The bitch moved and we are so very happy. Try to think if the words emotional rape help you. It’s weird but it really did help.

      • Soccermom, for your amusement, my husband’s AP screamed that it was all wrong for me to have him back, wrong for him, wrong for our children and he had betrayed her to salvage his crumbling life. How do you like them strings, hoho. ( she said she could handle his being married and it was no strings sex to get them both through a rough patch in their individual lives.) my husband was flumexed as it was the guilt causing his life to crumble and he had never mentioned love or future with her.
        She still does not think I exist, I suppose. Though it sounds she was planning on annexing my boys as well.

      • My bat shit wrote me and was trying to give me advice on how to make my husband happy. Lol what a ding bat. He would be happy if you stay out of our life. She was planning on living in my house with him and thought our children would accept her.
        For the life of me I don’t get why these women would want to have an affair with a married man. And then they are so hurt when he stays with his family. Of course he stays….you weren’t real!!!

    • Robin thank you for this! The very day I learned about my husband’s affair (which I had suspected for months but had no proof), my father went into hospital and passed away a week later. I couldn’t tell most days in the last 4 months if I was distraught with grief of the loss of my father or if I was reeling from the hurt of betrayl. I am still here; too confused to make a decision, too aware that another loss for me and my children would be too much at this time. My husband is saying and doing all the right things, taking the opportunity to put things right in the wake of the loss of my dad. How you described your husband’s affair : “the affair person meant nothing real to him; they made each other up to suit their problems. She offered to prop him up, he accepted, “no strings” then her payment demands broke them up. He wanted out after a very long time of what amounted to a sad sex arrangement and confused intentions of mutual use. He couldn’t face me with the problems he had, mostly the fact he slipped into an offer that felt good at the time, then the guilt drove him away from the family in spirit. The secrecy prevented my helping.” is exactly how I percieve what happened between my husband and the AP. But unlike you, I am obssessed with the other woman. I think about her, have images of her, creeped her on every social media she is on…I can’t let go of my hatred toward her. I know he is equally, if not more to blame…don’t get me wrong I feel contempt for him too; except that I love him, had children with him and built a life with him and know him. We have been married 21 years and knowing him as I do I understand how this happened. My husband self destructs and had been depressed and drinking and I knew it was only a matter of time before this would happen…I begged him to let me help him and he would not let me in. In fact, he took a job working out of town only coming home for 10 days out of a month for an entire year and I watched as he disinegrated right in front of me. I became distant lacking the energy to fight which only gave him more reason to drink, cheat and lie. She was there on the other side of that life making him feel like he was a KING and they blamed me for how miserable he was. She even told him that my lack of attention for him only meant that I was having an affair and he was stupid if he didn’t know that. I know so much…probably too much detail. It haunts me now. She is nothing like me! She is uneducated, has nothing to call her own. Very overweight and unattractive (I am not a person who judges other’s for any of that, but when it comes to her, I have said the meanest, most horrible things and I dislike how it makes me sound and feel; I can’t stand the amount of hate I have in my heart it is so NOT who I am). Yet he took solace in her company…the sex he claims was the least appealing of their relationship (he was not physically attracted to her in the least) it was the companionship. She listened to him and he could confide in her and he loved the attention she gave him. He got fired from his job for drinking and driving, forcing him to come back home. At the same time our son got really sick so he made the decision to find another job in our home city and not go back working out of town (I am convinced all of it was divine intervention). He continued his affair with her via text and email while he looked for work and our son was undergoing medical investigations. The day I found their text messages he ended it with her immediately…he called her in front of me telling her it was over. She was relentless at first calling, texting and emailing, frantic to get in touch with him; all of which he did not respond to (I saw them us unanswered calls or unopened email/text msgs). As far as I know there has been no contact. He of his own volition gave me the passwords to his phone, lap top, tablet, email and then changed his phone number and email address. He is certainly doing and saying all the right things now. I am not trusting of any of it. I search and check and recheck ALL OF THE TIME…its exhausting. People can fake say things and pretend all they want. What is noticeably different is his demenour. He is less critical, impatient, and his stress level is way down. I use to hear him complain about everything…he doesn’t complain at all now. And I hear him laugh which I hadn’t heard genuinely in years. It feels different to be in his presence…lighter is the best way I can describe it. He says it is like he has awakened to seeing that I was right in front of him the whole time and he only concentrated on what he thought he was lacking and felt that I did not love him enough. He says for the first time in our married life he has let go to allow himself to love me with every fiber of his being and regrets how much time he wasted playing the “vicitm” and so very sorry for the affair and how much hurt he has caused. He has quit drinking (as far as I know). We have this amazing opportunity now to be everything we need to be in eachother and I think how wonderful that could be. It’s ironic really that he loves me so much now when I am at my ablsoute worst! I can’t stop hating and ruminating…I can’t let the thought of her go. We have started dating again, every couple of weeks he sends me a msg asking me “out” and every single time I have sabatoged his efforts insisting on talking about her and the affair, wanting to know every intimate detail. I don’t think I’m the only one who has been through this and been obssesed with the other woman…am I? Robin how did you get passed that? How did you decide she was of no consequence and have no interest in her? How did any of you get passed the AP? I have to find forgiveness. I have to let her go and move on. What if I can’t do that?

      • Dee, wonderful to hear your husband is regaining himself and then some! I’ve read that the affair and near loss is something they may have had to do to reach a break through.
        The obsession with the other woman is horrendous, I don’t think anyone could be more obsessed and filled with hatred more than I. I learned a huge amount over the last two years about that emotion and will try to write it down after the holidays. But for a start, don’t worry and don’t rush. The hatred teaches you things about all three parties, has a use, and will stop. It is based on several needs and once served will change from hatred to something less emotional. I’m not trying to be cryptic but need to think it through to pass on what I learned. I just want you to know it will get better and I will get back to this interesting subject. I believe when one is advised that “you have to forgive” they omitt telling you that when you understand all three parties, the forgiveness will be natural and better than forgiveness, the ilrevelance of the AP will be what lets you let go and dismiss them. Compassion optional. In fact, don’t bother. But first you have many trials, the annoyance that the AP was there at the right time for a weak or delusional fantasy based “fun ” time (that never is actually or he wouldn’t chose you); every one of your insecurities being the AP’s opposite strength, in your imagination (so what and nice people don’t offer themselves for an affair) and every personal wish list you ever had being imagined as being the devastatingly alluring qualities of the AP; (and he still chose you) tells you more about your wants than their attributes. What you can eventually learn is how they made him feel and if you want to have a go, you can probably also benefit from the affair by using it as a catalyst to becoming the fuller person more in control of your relationship -that you might enjoy being. In fact you may find yourself thinking, jeez he’s a jerk, ( you’ll get over that if he keeps trying) though that may depress you; simultaneously you will get to understand Thiswillnotdefineus’s reason for naming the AP Batshit…
        But at first the violent hatred actually protects him from your blast of anger, and that is not entirely without merit. You can only take so much, and if that so and so hadn’t thrown themselves self destructively and outrageously in his path, he mightn’t have fallen. But as he has problems to have fallen, if he hadn’t had this disastrous abberation , he mightn’t have improved, and you would have missed out learning what you really want, what your life needs to offer you, what support and true relating you need and deserve.
        The obsessing is so hard to deal with. I drew pictures, photoshopped collages even, who me? Crazy?! Yes, but made me laugh. Eventually. I also used the obsessions like a menu to think of things I would like. I took the advice to obsess at a given time but really, it’s hard to control. The obsession has changed enormously from hot anger to cold contempt to the relief of pitty/indifference. It was his problem, she was no solution. Truly, the obsessions eventually fade like an old photo. It takes time and self cherishing and growth.
        “Nice people don’t have affairs” as a mantra helped my jealousy. Funny, being jealous of someone so callous to the pain they cause others. Or stupid. I was jealous of that. I wish I could command what I wanted and dam the torpedoes. Or do I really want to also be that pathetic and needy that I feed on the thrill of fantasy and hope as she did , or actually manipulate and conive ? No…a lot of the hatred is knowing she probably thinks she is the victim and that he may feel sorry for her. Shiver. So not the case. That comes from thinking they are thinking clearly; which they have proven that they can’t. This reply is getting long and muddled! I will try to be clearer and more succinct next week. Just know you are not alone, normal, and on a well worn path. Be careful, know it can get better, don’t do anything like hiding prawns in her curtain rods to rot; sending black roses; don’t send emails that make you squirm when you look back on them at how needy you were. Do let her know you exist and intend to be strong and happy if she won’t back off, or it makes you feel better. It usually backfires and makes you feel rotten to get in touch, though I still get satisfaction when I recall my email ” What we’re you thinking you vain, stupid, silly woman”. I sent it the minute I found her emails hot off the press and so it had a nice immediacy.
        You have so much to deal with.
        You will get over the obsession, if it gets worse do get help. I think it is an area that really can be delt with but you may need support and objective guidance. We are all amateurs here, and while community support and insight may help, don’t underestimate what you are dealing with. It’s a powerful trauma.
        Love and best wishes, Robin.

      • Dee, I wish I could tell you there was a magic pill to help you stop thinking about her. I finally had to just stop stalking her, go cold turkey, because the stalking kept her too alive in my marriage. My husband was a lot (almost mirrored yours) as far as his choice of whores and reasons behind it. I finally started thinking of it as an addiction or sickness, and it helped me cope. Letting her go will help with the anger and hate. It took me two years to finally heal enough to find a version of peace and happy again.

        Hugs to you, it can get better but it is a really hard path on this road to repairing ourselves and our marriage.

      • Hi Dee, I wrote a long thing that hasn’t been put up; but I can say you will get over her when you understand there is no excuse for an affai for your husband or her.; someone offering themselves is wrong.the harm has been done; but not really TO you. Concentrate on that. and then you will realise you are dealing with other emotions. Jealousy: use that to value yourself as you are in counterbalance to that you can not be; hone the good parts of what your jealousy shows you you wish you were.
        Justice is a problem too, but being a cheat has its own karma starting with not being a nice person and delusional.
        Best of luck. It is really hard, you will be proud of yourself though.x

      • Robin thank you for your reply. I feel validated knowing that you went through the same torment as I have after your dday obsessing over the AP. When I read your post the first time I marveled at how strong you were to put her our of your mind as being of no consequence. I am encouraged now knowing I will get there…and since my first posting there have been dramatic shifts in how much hatred I still feel. I am grateful for thiswillnotdefineus and the sharing of her story. Everything else on the internet I found suggested I needed to leave and there was no hope for my marriage after the affair. This site and those who post on it have given me hope and have anchored me to the feeling that it can be conquered. When I found the texts between them I sent her one immediately too that read “this is so and so’s wife and you are busted.” But I spelled busted wrong…bustef…then went back and corrected the mistake busted*…I can laugh at that now. Then I called her from my husband’s and she would not talk to me said she was at work and would not have this conversation with me while she was at work. I said “Oh so you have integrity when it comes to your job but not when sleeping with a married man.” She hung up on me and at the time my husband defended her and said “well you were yelling at her of course she hung up on you.” That was not a good day! I have made no attempts to get in contact with her again. Christmas was enjoyable. In fact, it was the first Christmas Eve in years where there were no drunken embarrassing blunders. It amazes me what your norm becomes after awhile. I went to church on the Sunday after Christmas day by myself. My father’s funeral was right inside our church so it has been very difficult for me to go back there, especially with how much hate I had in my heart. After the service was finished I just sat in the pew and cried. Our father came over to sit with me and I found myself telling him everything. When I asked about how do I stop obessessing and creeping her on social media and being triggered everytime I turn around. He gave me the simplest advice…some I have heard but maybe wasn’t quite ready to accept before…he said Dee, you just stop. It was instant in how much relief I got from those words. I am worlds better. When I have moment’s of weakness where I am tempted to ruminate or google her name I remind myself how toxic the behaviour is and it does nothing but keep me functioning as a victim. When I CHOOSE to get stuck in the story I can spin right out of control. I can only move forward from here. Take what every moment has to offer. If those moments are good going forward I will stay. If I ever find myself back in this dark place of betrayl again I will know there will be no other choice for me but to leave. I promised myself I was worth more than that.

      • Hi Dee, I’m glad you know it was so hard for me to get to the point of strength you admired. You will too. It is genuine strength and understanding. And she really is irrelevant now. This is not spite or wishful thinking. just the truth. It took a long time., and reading everything I could find on the web and here, sifting it for what made sense to me and I could work with. This blog is terrific for finding strength.
        I think someone here said ‘ I have learned so much I never wanted to know…”
        You are very wise to say just stop obsessing. I’m a plodder and had to keep searching for what was really bothering me.
        You are dealing with two major shocks and life blows. The loss of a father is profound, the betrayal of a husband compounds the pain.
        You are doing really well. You are not a victim. You have enormous integrity which will sustain you. And the church to help too. How wonderful to have a place to cry and unburden yourself even for a short time.
        You won’t find anyone in our position that didn’t have trouble with the hatred they never knew they could feel, and the resentment at being made feel it., I never wanted to feel malice towards anyone. Maybe that’s why I fought so hard to find a kind of forgiveness for my sake. I traded malice for a businesslike distaste for how badly she behaved. What a victim she reveled in being. How much damage was caused to both families by the stupid blind selfishness. How can you take a person like that seriously? She chose to be a home wrecker , eventually a victim, I won’t.
        You will deal with the turmoil , no sense pretending the anguish isn’t there. Was it this blog or somewhere else that said, about anger, pain, you will let go when you learn from it…it was an elegant quote I can’t remember! ( I learned a lot about myself and my husband, our relationship……umm, and typos too, haha. I misspelled deceit ..i before blah blah.. the one time in my life I did that!! But decided to relish her fury at being left for someone that can’t spell…. )
        And, ok, maybe sometimes you have to just say no to yourself, “don’t go there.” If only for a rest.
        As for the relationship, take your time. You can always leave if you eventually feel it is what you want to do. I felt they had been frighteningly selfish towards me and one thing I didn’t owe them was to rush any decisions.
        Too long a post again, but I really feel for you. All of us, but when experiences and circumstances are similar one should pitch in; and it’s great to have someone to talk it through with. Cheers, x

    • livingwithlou thank you for your encouragement. You ladies will laugh, I went to see a therapist in those first few weeks after d-day. The first appt I spent an hour recalling what had happened “to me” (my dad, my son’s diagnosis, my husband being fired from his job, the affair…and so so much more). We rebooked an appt for the next week. She spent 38 minutes with me in that follow up session and said I was incredibly resilient, had amazing support, suggested I journal and told me that I didn’t need her services anymore. She fired me as a client. I don’t even remember what I did after leaving there I was completely dumbfounded. This site and the responses I have received from my posts have given me more insight than a so called “professional” in the business of helping people. I am thankful for all of you.

  3. Better to be able to take the children away than to have two cheaters raising them! If only the courts really did *think of the children*.

    Paul realises that now, along with the fact that the reason I stayed in the first year was to make sure she never ever got within a mile of my children again. One cheat is bad enough without adding a sociopath to the (step)parenting. Now my children are safe because she’s gone bunny boiler I get to choose what to do.. hmmm

    The thing is, you can fight cancer but sometimes it still wins. There are fewer choices on this side of the conscience wall.

  4. 4 and a half months from D-day and life is going on. It is my new life, the life of a heart broken wife of 33 years. He has changed too, for the better. He is sorry and shows me how much he loves me better than he ever has. Is this what it takes to wake up a marriage? I hope it isn’t. I am living for today and looking forward to a new life with him. I pray that it never happens again, I don’t think it will but I never thought it would the first time.
    Keep your hope up and pray for your spouse. It works.

    • Mine did a 180!!! Three years later he is still different. It’s them realizing they screwed up and almost lost everything. And yes affairs as horrible as they are do wake up the marriage. I was terrified he would do it again but three years listed and nothing we are just very happy

  5. I look at infidelity as a symptom rather then a disease. The disease is among all of us – it is the blindness to life, the blindness of love, wait , better yet, blindness of infatuation. We begin a relationship caught up in a whirlwind of emotions, and the world is painted in rose coloured glasses. Our “buckets” are full of happiness, joy, sex, lots of sex, which makes us much more tolerable to anything life throws at us. Honestly, step back, throw away the word infidelity for a moment. If you are in a great mood, how well can you tolerate the guy at the office you find annoying or the kids fighting. We are invincible. Love is the same way — but eventually life changes, kids, work, careers, house, bills, our needs, our desire, us as people. We get busy — we forget about the great parts of life and our friendship with our spouse that keep our bucket full. We live cooperatively — we are partners right?

    What about living? What about that piece we are missing, what about those schedules that don’t mix, or being too tired after work. We forget to talk, after all we don’t need to, we know each other like the back of our hand. But where is the desire, the spark, the feeling that we are the only two people on earth – 100% attention seeking, and fulfilled 110%? we are running life on autopilot.

    Wait — did that person just smile at me, they want to talk to me, spend real time with me — our buckets begin to fill. We get butterflies —

    It is interesting being on my side of the fence — the scorned husband, the victim. I have spent far to many years playing that role, but at the same time have spent countless hours going over every facade of life.

    So how do we survive adultery? I have to agree with you it comes down to recognizing that you are not the same people you were we you met. People change, and successful relationships need to change with them. We need to grow, to learn, to support — adapt is probably the best word. As victims – we need to take responsibility for not the affair, after all that is s choice to act — but for not providing our spouse what they needed to fill their bucket — and No not sex — the root of life, friendship, support — ok and sex. Finally — our spouse needs to commit, commit to us, to our relationship. No texts, no phone calls, no just coffee or a drink — that is over, for anything to survive, that is as critical as the rest.

    • Hey Mark, enjoyed your post a lot till the end! Just would like to say that in my case there was no clue of discontent. ‘A bat shit’ former minor work colleague came to my husband’s office after being divorced, then months later gang raped. She cried about not having work. Said she could only work after hours. She cried that she didn’t know how to date again. He gave her work. He gave her a shoulder to cry on ( instead of the name of a counsellor) then the grateful hugs then an offer that ” might do him a world of good, no strings” then two years of occasional more offers, his creating our early marriage working together. Then she demanded he leave me, he said no, I found the goodbye emails. What a vain sap he was. Mid life crisis, lack of self control, stupid not seeing the shark in the water. Insulting leaving me out of his troubles.
      I agree with your post about growing and adapting whole heartedly.
      But some people are foolish, weak, determined to ignore what they have and resentful; refusing to state their discontent and blaming others for it.
      Now here is my point, we are each in charge of our own contentment and happiness. No one can provide it for another. You do not complete someone or validate their self esteem. What you do do is enjoy, listen, share, complement, facilitate but most of all confide in the one you love when you are confused, lost or discontent.
      I look forward to your response as your post was beautiful until the mea culpa part. Cheers.

      • Hi Robin –thank you for the compliment. I can understand your hesitation, and I defiantly would not agree with the idea that is my fault my spouse cheated, however, I do not agree with the fact that we are blameless. Before I jump into that point, I have to agree with you that many people refuse to take responsibility for their actions and play the victim card, although I do hold firm to say that resposibility sits on both sides of the relationship. We all need to take charge of our lives, and more importantly communicate with what we need to feel complete. As you noted, a relationship includes many pieces, support, trust, reliance, security, companionship. However, stop for a second and ask yourself, what makes you the happiest?

        The way I look at life is that everyone has needs, it does not matter how your frame those needs. To really simplify my argument, I look at my two boys. What makes them happy, and I mean that deep in your tummy happy, is completely different — for my eldest, he really enjoys that one on one time, that personal interaction. He needs you to stop, to listen, to give him 100% of your attention, to really have a positive reaction from the attention. My youngest — he is happiest, when he knows he is making someone else happy. Even as a small child of two or three, he wanted to help, sweep, run across the room to grab something, or his all time favourite emptying the dishwasher. None of these tasks were fun or entertaining, but what made him happiest was doing stuff for others. My wife, an entirely different need — complement her, say thank you for making dinner, for folding the laundry. It does not matter if the grattitude is inferred, she needs to hear it, if not, she does not see the gratitude, the lack of gratitude over time, builds to what, resentment?

        So back to taking responsibility for our relationships — I am not arguing that we should be “kissing up” to have a happy relationship, however, we do need to facilitate those fundamental levels of need.

      • Ah ha, Dear Mark, there in lies the rub! We need to supply the answer to our own needs and share our life, not patch each other’s life. It is not about apportioning blame. It is not about analysing our lack of input to the marriage but lack of input in ourselves to own our marriage.

      • To Robin and Mark,

        I have to agree with Robin on this one, we are the key to our own happiness. I gave my husband all that I have in my heart. My love, my devotion, my fidelity etc.. I made a promise to him before God to love, honor and cherish. Through good times and bad. We all have good times and bad, how we react to them is where our accountability lies.
        Did I become cold when he was having his affair, you bet I did. I was treated like an outsider, less than a partner. Did I try to bring him back? many times over and I was met with a cold shoulder. I remember when his touch changed, I knew something was wrong but he blamed me over and over. He made me feel as though I wasn’t enough for him. It was horrible. I will not accept any responsibility for that, he made a choice and that was where the fault lies. Was I perfect? No, nobody is.

    • Mark, have you been spying on my marriage?! You are so right. After more than two decades of marriage our relationship had become stable but boring. The spark was gone and we both had allowed it to go out. After my D-day just over five months ago I went through the same emotions every other betrayed spouse does. Then someone told me that the betrayed spouse never wants to accept any responsibility for the state of the marriage pre-affair. At first I was so mad. I was in the same marriage as my husband and did not cheat. But after doing some deep reflection I realized that we both ignored, avoided and chose not to confront how stale our marriage had become. There is never an excuse for infidelity. But if we don’t recognize how and why we became roommates instead of lovers pre-affair we’ll go down the same, worn path and our marriage doesn’t have a chance.

      • Hi Leah, Spying, no, but goes to show how common our situation can be – including the hurt. Could have easily lit my wives vehicle on fire to help cleans my life, everything seemed so dirty, tainted. Was I happy, absolutely not, would the idea of being unfaithful cross my mind, never. I was trusting, accepting, and in turn, my trust was used and taken advantage of.

        Even before I found out about the affair, I saw that my wife seemed to have a stronger connection with people outside of our life, why will she talk to someone down the road for an hour and I cannot find out how her day went, why is she off the phone with me in 20 seconds, yet, her mobile phone bill, tens of hours of chatting. However, it did not matter what I saw, or what tried to repair — the motivation only went one way. Why was that? What was I doing wrong?

        I am sure the issues were multi facaded, and the excitement of the affair is a strong battle to compete against, but at the same time, what had changed aside from me realizing we were on a path that I knew was not healthy. Did my change in attitude have the right mix, was life at home different enough for her to recognize that we were different, to meet, whatever was missing. I am rambling — and writing more then I should (probably better suited as a reply post) — all I am really recognizing is that life does need to change in many levels for us to have any chance of conquering the disease of growing apart in our relationships.

  6. I’m not sure that cheating itself is an incurable situation. However, I do think it is a symptom of deeper issues with the spouse. If they are so consumed with themselves and their needs, enough to disregard yours, than it seems silly to think that will change any time soon. People need to want to change and if they don’t, there’s nothing you can do to change them.

    • This is a reply to ramblingman. Do you think that if a person says they want to change that they can? Or do you think they just learn to support their delusions better? ( I’m trying to be compassionate and not say “lie” better)? How can a person learn empathy instead of wallowing in guilt? Any thoughts? Thanks for your perspective.

      • I think saying they want to change and actually wanting to change are two very, very different things. Actions speak louder than words, if the actions and words don’t match up then there’s a problem. One of the issues after being caught cheating would be fear for the marriage, of losing that relationship, kids, stability, respect, etc., but sometimes that fear makes them say what they think their spouse wants to hear. “It was a minor thing”, “I never loved her”, “it was only once”, “It’ll never happen again”, “I can change”, etc.

        Now, that’s not to say that people can’t change or that those actually are lies 100% of the time. Obviously, every situation is different. The only way to be sure what’s actually going on in the spouse’s head is if the words and actions match up. And continue to match up over time.

      • Rumblingman, thank you. That’s my fear. Just better lying. I read ‘ make amends’ as a sign of change. I think, in my case, I would have to see a concerted effort to sort his life that he decided needed propping. In actual fact, I also think he is trying to put a romantic twist on a lack of basic integrity that he thought he simply wouldnt get caught and exposed with. You have helped think it through further.

      • I think that people can change and actually that change could be who they were before the affair. I know that for a long time I couldn’t decide if my whole life was a lie, a constructed world of my husbands lies. I didn’t trust my being. When he told me that he loved me and he was committed to changing and to me, I felt that this may be a new constructed act. But as time goes on my heart is softening and he is proving to me that he is changing. I have never felt so alive. Somebody told me the other day that I have a “glow”. WTF
        Time does tell.

      • Nancy, very encouraging!x
        It’s true my husband changed after the big mistake more than before. He was always a little fast and lose with consequences and reality. Charming until it spins out of control and causes so much hurt. Thanks.

  7. The first thing that I decided when I read the card the OW had written and my beautiful innocent 10 year old daughter found, was custody. I wanted full. But when we sat down to tell the children well thats when I realized I was in a war and one look at my daughters faces made me want to survive our marriage. It’s been three years. It’s rough we have talked a lot and I have my conditions. His only condition was that I didn’t throw the affair in his face. It’s a very difficult situation. A lot of things have helped and slowly we started healing.

  8. I wish it was a more main stream subject. Hiding it in the dark gives infidelity a mysterious and almost dreamy quality (made worse by Hollywoods version of it). I have found when drug out into the light and real world people see how ugly and horrible it really is.

    Bat shit crazy is the name of my husbands whores mom…well not her official name but I’m still trying to convince her it should be 😉

    Coming up on two years myself, after two years of this crap my marriage better make it or I’m going to be really pissed

    • Boosmom4ever2, I feel the same way. I feel our marriage should survive especially after all of us wives went through. I know I went thru living HELL for a year. My pregnancy was the hardest ever, very emotional.i couldn’t take anything for the anxiety or depression and my hormones was all over the place. Most.of.the time.i felt sad and dying inside. No one cared.Now I am afraid of take anything cause I don’t want to fall asleep. I’m afraid if I fall deep asleep he will bring her in this hour as he has done before. I struggle daily do I stay or do I go. I want to be happy again and trust again. I feel it’s so far away.

  9. I have been following this blog for 18 months and it helps to know my feelings of sadness and hope are shared by others. My husband had an affair for a year and fell in love with his AP. When I asked him to leave and we separated for 3 months, he no longer wanted his AP and missed his family terribly. He spent 7 months in individual therapy working through his issues and we spent 6 in couples. Although it’s been 20 months since my Dday, I still feel a deep sense of sadness. Like I too never saw him for who he was and now that I have witnessed the selfish, cowardly and weak side of him, I am angry with myself for missing it and questioning if this is the kind of man I want. I know we are imperfect people, but to destroy another’s heart like my husband did to mine, is just wrong and quite honestly there is no excuse for it. I have chosen to stay because I do love him. We have been married for 19 years and have two beautiful girls. I committed to making our marriage work but as several of you have mentioned, this is like a disease. I know I will overcome the disease but I just wish to have one day where the affair does not pass through or occupy any space on my mind. Thank you ladies for all of your words of encouragement and inspiration.

    • It is a disease that affects your whole being. He cheats and you suffer, some days are better than others. If I don’t cry, it is a good day. I found that the nights are the hardest because he used to sneak and talk to her on the computer while I was in bed thinking that I wish he cared enough about me to hold me when I went to sleep. I knew our life was different but never thought he was having an affair. I just thought that he wasn’t attracted to me any more 😦 the longer it went on. the more accepting I became of the new norm. The, I could be happy I guess to just pretend that our life was ok. He lied to me every day for 3 years, how do they look in the mirror?

      • Nancy, my husband lied to me for a year. He also stayed up late at night on Facebook, texting, & going to his car to talking to her.i have anxiety at night now thinking that’s what he is doing. One night or maybe even more he brought her into this house when our children and I was upstairs sleeping. Even though the affair might be done. It’s still not fair! They can go on their different ways like nothing happen.While it still haunts and affects me daily. Will I ever be the same again? When will I feel whole again? No matter how much information I may get or want I still feel empty inside. Not secure at all where I am in my life. I cry inside all the time wanting someone to be loyal and love me. That will put me first and make it known to others they have a good woman.

      • Isn’t it strange how many of us have the same story? I have read that women cheat as often as men but I don’t believe it.
        My heart has been crushed into a million pieces and some times I just want to scream YOU FUCKING DESTROYED ME!!!! But I don’t because I love him and my family. I want to heal and believe in love and puppies and all that bull shit again. I am so mad that he took my naive trusting innocence away from me.
        I will survive and go on because that is what you do when you are a good loving person. And I think we will acquire some much deserved Grace from it.

      • It is strange that we all have such similar stories yet I feel like I was completely unprepared for what happened to me. I feel like it’s shocking that we all come here… looking for someone to connect with so we are not alone. If this is so common why don’t people prepare you? Why don’t we learn how to protect our marriages?

      • I too asked myself the same question, how could he look me in the eyes and sleep next to me everyday for a year? I have good days where I feel closer to him than I have in years and days when I wonder if I will ever be whole again. I have more good days now and time has helped but I am not fully healed.

      • Lisa, I can connect with what your saying. My husband’s affair lasted for a year and two months. I lost my job cause of it, my self worth was gone& I have anxiety that I never had before.The blessing out of it was my daughter was born. Since our fair came into the world his affair ended. I guess im glad it did, angry still at the fact my husband and the other woman can go on with their lives like nothing happened. I struggle with trusting trusting him, controlling things I know I can’t control. At the end of the day I love my husband. I have the empty void now, I desperately wish it can be filled. With prayers and faith I take one day at a time. I think the hardest thing I’ve ever done.

      • I can’t thank all of you enough. I hope you realize that by reading these posts I’m able to get through the day. I’m 3 months in and looking for anything to ease the pain. My husband went on the Ashley Madison website where he then met someone for a three month affair before I read text messages between them. I want to shout this website from the mountain tops so every woman knows about it. I was sooooo stupid and foolish to not even know this was out there. The stats are over 2 million members. Sick!!!!!

      • I’ve heard of the site but I have no idea how common and popular it is. It’s sick that someone would profit off betrayal and hurting other people. It’s truly sad.
        I am glad that you were able to find a place to help you tonight. I know as I went through it–some days were better than others.

    • In time you will have better days that are filled with good thoughts. I can’t say that I’ve gone more than a day or two without thoughts of the affair but I’ve had a few in there.
      There is no excuse for an affair. An affair is a mask for our insecurities.

    • Lisa, I feel the same way you do. I love my husband but can’t stand the thought of him being such a weak selfish and as he says stupid person. I too wish for a day when I don’t think about the affair in some way. I just want to be happy again with no reservations. When he says I am beautiful or he loves me I wish I could just believe it without reservations … without that little voice ( okay BIG voice) in my head saying well you said that to her . It is destroying me and destroying what we have now which could be so good if I could just forget about what he did. But 2 years in an affair is a long time. The affair was over a long time ago and I found out about it 20 months ago. I keep reading 2 years to get over it but I sometimes think I never will. I don’t want to be a bitter twisted old lady. Any advice out there ladies? LB

      • LB, I am 2 years out and no longer feel the anger towards him I once felt. That part has healed. What has lingered is a deep sadness inside of me and even though I know he loves me, there are times I still question how much. I have found that time has healed my broken heart (I no longer cry every day), diminished the anger, my days are not spent thinking about his affair constantly and I no longer fear each time he is not with me that he is contacting her. But it has not taken away my sadness or disappointment in him. The things I’ve read, know and have seen are things a wife should never know. After he told me about his affair I was obsessed with knowing everything. Probably because I was trying to find the answers as to why. There are times I wish I had not seen email exchanges between them, read his texts to her, saw pictures of her or even spoke with her but at the time nothing would have stopped me. There are permanent scares which I do not know time will ever heal. As of now, I have chosen to continue working on my marriage but have told myself if I am unable to make peace and heal my saddness this year, I will not stay. I cannot spend the rest of my life feeling like this. Life is too short and we all deserve to be happy, even my husband. I will not allow his affair turn me into a bitter woman or ruin my belief in love.

  10. I found this blog weeks after I found out my husband was having an affair. May 2013, but little did I know it started shortly after they first hung out~Mar. 2013..During the.next year I lived a world of hurt, uncertainty, brokeness. I serve a God who restores and blesses thru storms. Even though the next year the affair continue and many lies to follow. God blessed us with another baby in the mist.The world thinks are ya crazy bringing a baby into this mess. We weren’t trying, we used birth control. God had other plans.During the year my husband continued to lie and hurt me.in the meantime we were preparing for our baby…toughest and hardest pregnancy ever, no doubt. May 2014 came around and our daughter was born. Since the birth of our daughter my husband has finally let go and doesn’t speak to the other woman. He has apologized and said sorry, ask me to . forgive him. It’s a daily process, renewing of the mind. Daily prayers over our marriage and family. How I see it now, God knew what storms we won go thru in our marriage.HE knows who and why HE puts two people together to become husband and wife . That’s His prefect plan. Finally this past week, on the day of our 6 year anniversary something happened to help me close the door and really focus on the future. The other woman and I exchanged texts and one of them was why was I still with him. I said our marriage is covered with God’s love and protection. God gives my husband mercy and grace, and has shown me how to extend it to my husband. I love my husband. Out of a horrible storm our daughter was our blessing. Today and the rest of our marriage will become stronger and what Satan tried to destroy. GOD IS WORKING And Restoring..I know this blog/we site has helped me so much in not being alone. For woman who are just starting this journey of shock and hurt, and for the woman who is going thru the storm, and the ones who are trying to heal. I will pray over yourself marriage and hope it can be restored.

    • Perfect trying2heal !!
      I turned to God too and He has led “us” together through this. My Lord has showed me that with prayer all things are possible. I bought the book The Power of a Praying Wife and it has been my standby help. When I get mad, weepy, sad etc…I get it and pray for my husband. I pray for him and the Lord changes me. Double whammy!! It works and heals.

      • Nancy, I have that book as well..I also have the power of prayers over marriages by the same other and the power of a praying woman. The other woman asked me why u stay, well simply put…The God I serve has God’s love and protection over our marriage.God has shown grace my husband grace and mercy which HE also.has.shown me to give my husband. My husband knew who he married and what my marriage vows mean to me. Bottom line, is at the end of.the.day I am his wife who prays for her husband. I believe we as wives pray for our husbands than we all have won! The world sees we have every right to walk away, the Bible even says we can..God still hates divorces and sees what it does to children and generations to follow. The more I love my God and listen to what HE says, the more I love my husband again and again. .I have to stay prayed up and in God’s word to fight for what Satan wants to steal and destroy..I told the other woman I pray for her to find someone good and that I have forgiven her. I am sorry? GOD don’t send you my husband.

      • Trying to heal, You don’t know how badly I needed that today. It has been a terrible week. I found out my husband has been talking with the Evil one all along. D day was about 5 months ago and he said he wouldn’t talk with her again, It all came back to haunt me and more. He still swears by all the work we have done recently. Always a cheater? sure seems it to me right now. I would be gone if it wasn’t for my faith. Some times I think I am just plain stupid. How could I love somebody who does this to me?
        I felt ashamed to get on here again. I feel like I don’t have any judgement on what is going on and was is real in my life any more. I just recently wrote that everything was so much better and it was but I got knocked down again.
        Will it ever stop?

      • I am so sorry to hear that. It’s all too familiar though with my situation too. After I caught them together fir the 1st time he told me he was done too.. than those lies continued for an entire year. Even though we found out we were pregnant Sept 2013.He continued to contact her and see her up to the very day we had our baby girl. Out of that storm my daughter was born. My blessing,my love bug. God still blessed us (me)even though I was an emotional wreck. Even though I had faith,it was hard to stay on the path I knew God wanted. And especially when I knew I had every right to walk away. At the end of the day,I loved my husband and I knew I didn’t have peace to walk away. I could of left and there are still days I think I should of especially when I have triggers about certain things. I keep remembering that God gives me mercy everyday when I fail at being HIS daughter. HE still loves me unconditionally. HE loves my husband too. Right now I believe we are good and he has been I guess truthful since our daughter was born. There’s days I wonder if our baby girl wasn’t here would he have stopped. I’ve realized my husband had the issue. Not me,it wasn’t but me.it was his choices and his decisions. I know I am with him because I love him and bottom line is because of my faith and love for God.God’s perfect plan is marriage. I am my husband’s wife, not the other person. I also remind myself God knew the storms our marriage would have b4 I knew. I know my faith in God and HIS promises. There may be that day that I have peace to walk away and live the life God may have for me. Right now it’s here with my husband and our family we have made. I pray for my husband daily and for our marriage. I will pray for yours and the many woman on here. Also I know it may be hard to do, pray for the other woman too. I do from time to time. It’s hard but I do cause God loves her too.

    • Tryingheal, you words sound like i could be writing them myself. I too am counting on God to take this feeling of lonliess away, feeling of wanted to feel loved again like I have been missing for the last year. I encourage you to buy the book” Love and Respect “by Dr Emerson Eggerichs. There is a part for wives and also a seperate section for husbands also. You will not regret buying this, it has helped me in a big way. I know Satan is laughing at me sending me triggers to not forget, but I keep praying to God to block them out.
      Keep trusting in God.

  11. Thank you for all of your honesty. It helps so much to hear that I’m not alone and other women are struggling along side me and surviving. I feel like a fool that I’m here, trying to keep the thoughts out of my head. The other night my head was pounding with pain. I was fighting not to think about it anymore. Unfortunately the xaniex was my only saving grace. I don’t like to take it but I felt scared that I was going to completely unravel.

    • I don’t think you are a fool. I don’t think you should be scared or ashamed to take a Xanax to get some solace. We all know what it feels like to unravel or be on the cusp of a breakdown…. none of us need or want that. Take care of yourself first.

  12. I never asked many questions. I know they were meeting and having sex. I know they were talking on a made up facebook page to each other for 3 years. I know they were talking about me being a controlling wife. ( funny ) I guess I didn’t have much control. I read these comments when I came across the Facebook page accidentally left open. They were planning their new life together.
    Shocked, hurt to the core of my being.
    He says he didn’t realize what he had until he thought he was going to lose it. I soul searched. I didn’t know how to function without the man I loved. He was my best friend for 34 years. I didn’t want the details. I knew that I was better than bat shit because I was trustworthy, loving,loyal and all’around a better person. How could you be a good person if you are sleeping and having an affair with a married man? I didn’t need any details because I didn’t want to be haunted by the images in my mind.
    I want her to have the same thing happen to her that she did to me. That would be justice.

    • @soccermom- the husband being emotionally raped by their AP is a surprising way to look at it. They are too happy to have been raped. Manipulated yes. We on the other hand are the ones that have been emotionally raped. Again and again. That is why we all suffer from PTSD and/or Inter Relational Trauma while our husbands sleep like babies.
      Nancy, I am with you! I don’t want details. Except I am not sure I am better than “batshit” whom I believe is about 20 yrs younger than me. My husband is doing everything he can for me except admitting he did anything. I never caught him. Just a gut feeling over suspicious behavior. Took another four month to find anything concrete and now I don’t have the guts to bring it all up again. After five months of moving forward how do I bring anything out in the open and risk trauma? Or worse- him running off? Cause he is that type. Can’t face the shame. But I do, I face it and live with it everyday. And I face my vulnerabilities, insecurities, and glaring flaws. I will never be the same. Sometimes I wonder if we will make it. It’s slowly killing me. Going on 33yrs married.

      • I have to agree willow. The betrayers soul-raped and traumatized us. They are far from victims. But they sure like to appear to be the victim so we don’t hold them responsible for their selfish decisions and feel sorry for them. uh-uh-don’t buy it. But I find many betrayeds engage in some sort of delusion in order to justify staying. I get it. In the end you need to do what you think will help you heal.
        Take care of yourself.

    • Nancy, well, she will be hyper-aware that there are people like herself out there, that’s very scary! She’ll be one paranoid, controlling, untrusting freak in any relationship she manages to finally legitimately have.
      So don’t waste any black thoughts on her anymore and let yourself relax. ( so much easier said than done, I know)
      I’ll take being naively trusting and proved wrong over being a sneaky second fiddle any day. X

      • I’ll take being naively trusting and proved wrong over being a sneaky second fiddle any day. X Robin, I love this. Just what I needed to read today.

  13. It has been 7 1/2 months since D-day. I have prayed, cried, screamed alone in the car, cleaned house for hours and ran a couple of miles a day. Nothing gives me relief from this. I have good days then bad days. But he is two different people. He says he wants to work things out but he still talks to her at night when they work together. Now he has another woman he is talking to at work. And the porn…..oh the porn….secret chat sites and casual sex sites….I cannot lay in wait until the next one comes along. He was my best friend for 17 years. I filed for legal separation Friday. I cannot fight this devil inside of him anymore. I have given it all that I have. I am tired, spiritually, emotionally and physically…..just exhausted. I hope that one day he will change…if not for me then for someone else. I pray that he will not hurt someone else like this. I just pray he can find himself and find who he really is. It is nice to read that it works for some people. That their spouse is very remorseful and apologetic. That the years together mean a great deal and they are working it out and doing it successfully…this gave me hope at one time. But I do believe I have lost the fight. There comes a time when you have to step back and realize that you need to love yourself first. Love yourself because years ago you just forgot how, because he became your sole focus. I need to love what I see in the mirror…..now its just hard to look at her. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of you in hopes that your marriage can be repaired and the love will come back stronger and better than before and that when you look in the mirror ….. you can love that beautiful woman that you see……..

    • Thank you for your kind words and sharing your story. I hope that you are finding peace with your life. I agree with you completely–we all need to learn to love ourselves first before we give our love away to others.

    • So eloquently put. Yes, I understand that I need to look in the mirror and love the person I see. I do need to love myself first. Thank you for reminding us of that. Pam, our situations sound similar re secret chat sites and casual sex sites and hooker pick up sites. That is what I have found. Although I think he developed a favorite that became the AP (just conjecture) cause who takes a whore on week long
      vacation trips?

    • Pam, I’m so sorry for what you are going through. Your words comforted me tonight. I too lost myself because he became my sole focus. It’s so hard to look in the mirror and feel this badly about myself. It’s interesting how we can lose that self-love so easily.
      My thoughts go out to you too…I hope that you can love the beautiful woman you see in the mirror and I hope you can find peace, relief and healing from this terrible ordeal.

  14. This is so true: “Infidelity is like a disease in a marriage.” I’m still in the early stages, but I’m trying to determine if it is a chronic disease, or something that can be cured but has lasting “side effects”.
    I mentioned in another comment that my husband was diagnosed with aggressive cancer early in our marriage (which, unfortunately, ended up being one of the main reasons for his affair). While he was sick, I found myself clinging to statistics as a means to cope. I scoured the internet for numbers and odds, and questioned his doctor when she mentioned statistics too. Finally one day after me trying to calculate survival rates based on his age and health she said to me, “Don’t get so wrapped up in the numbers. Each person is different, each journey is different. The numbers don’t mean anything. There are so many different factors that effect outcomes, and it will either work or it won’t.”
    I’m finding myself clinging to statistics again to see if our marriage will work or not. I’m trying to remind myself of what his doctor said since it seems to apply here too and I think the numbers are distracting me from the healing.
    So instead of numbers, I’m taking comfort in his effort. He is trying so hard to make this “right”. I am still bouncing all over this roller coaster, but he is my constant right now- holding me while I cry and holding me while I’m happy. He is answering my questions and committing to counseling. I’m hopeful that like his cancer, infidelity is a disease that can be cured but with lasting side effects. When I read stories like yours, I am hopeful that this will work. That if we both put forth the effort and commit to our marriage, that infidelity isn’t a death sentence.

  15. Just a quick thought on the “once a cheater always a cheater”….. I think we as the betrayed take that to mean that our spouses will cheat again because they did once already. Of course this could very well happen…it already has once before. I think that “once a cheater always a cheater” is a warning for everyone. Who wants to walk in the shoes of those who destroyed their marriage, relationship with spouse, children and family? Not me!! It is soo painful to be the betrayed, but I wouldn’t want to be labeled a cheater for the rest of my life…” Once a cheater always a cheater” is a label the cheater “always” wears. I don’t take this line to mean that those who cheat will cheat again, but they WILL “always be a cheater” though. 😦

  16. I fear that I will feel the same way. It’s been 6months and he wants things to be normal again. Normal? I can’t imagine the day will ever come that I will forget what he did to me… Us. I seem to have way too many triggers and therefore it’s taking me longer to find that normal he’s looking for. I’ll never love him whole heartedly again because it was based on honestly and respect to start. He lost those from me. I be been sick for a long time with a heart problem and lupus plus lots of complications. His affAir started when I was finding out that I needed two major heart operations. He says he was afraid of losing me….. Afraid of being abandoned like he felt his parents did him when he was younger. He turned to an affair website and had a 5 month affair with someone at a motel. Even during the days between my surgeries when I thought he was by my side. I will always be sick. I am today. Fighting not to go to the hospital in fear it will trigger so thing in him again. So not only am I battling a physical illness but my mind goes to thinking of the affair instantly. Our oldest three know what happened… He’s doing not mine. The younger two are clueless. I wish I could say I’m staying for me but I fear it’s for the sake of the family. You have all been so wonderful these past six months. Your support has gotten me out of some very dark days. Please let me know your thoughts.

    • Amy, it’s just over seven months for me. What I know is this, my marriage will never be the same but in some ways that’s okay because I’m working towards better than the same. Maybe I now view my husband for what he really is and not who he pretended to be. I know how weak he can be and how strong I can be. Will I ever forget his betrayal? Hell no. But it will not define the rest of my life or our lives together. You cannot live in fear. Stay strong and if he’s worth giving another chance then you’ll have to decide what to do with the bad memories. I have made a choice to leave them in the past. Not that I don’t overload with intrusive thoughts at times. It’s a long, painful process.

      Good luck

    • Hi Amy,
      Six months after my husband had a coworker throw herself at him saying “it might be fun and do you a world of good,” he was diagnosed with skin cancer, 1-2 yrs. prognosis, same month I was diagnosed with a heart condition, 1-5 years. His reaction? Quit the affair and value the remaining time? No, he thought “he was being punished” and an eight year on and off sex arrangement to relieve his stress and coincidently build her a consultancy ensued.
      We have both a temporary health reprieve, at least he does from cancer, I am inevitably going to have a much shortend life.
      He says “but it was only a minor part of my (his) life; sex, I love you.”
      He couldn’t comprehend why it made a difference to me as it was “nothing.” “self medication (for feeling a failure with middle age spread and then economy crash.) self medication that went wrong.”
      Very hard to understand the compartmentalisation, selfishness and oblivion to destruction of our relationship due to his distance and guilt during the affair. Hard to see why he didn’t see it. He “just kept hoping she would get tired of it and walk away. He told her he would never leave me.” ” he “became addicted to the sex, didn’t even really like her.”
      It has taken one year of anguish/shock, plus one further year of soul searching to finally release both of them as irresponsible, unfeeling, deluded beings.
      I let my children (16 and 24 yrs. at the time)know so that they could reconcile the cold and cross nature he developed during that very long time of their lives, as they should know it had nothing to do with them.
      My husband is trying to make up for it and I hope he can. The youngest child was robbed of the same bond with him that the eldest, and I, had built in the good years. I am trying to help the youngest to not be angry.
      I will give my husband every opportunity to start over, stronger and I am finally at peace. It’s been dramatically hard, health eroding, exhausting. But I am feeling able to let go of the pain.Two years. Hard work.

  17. Morning everyone.

    It has been 6 month’s. It has not been a easy road but by the Grace of God we have made it. We are now more happy than ever. A lot has changed between us. Sometimes we feel like teenagers in love. I asked all my questions and he answered it truthfully. I have bagged and sealed it and now we are moving on. I don’t wish it for anybody but if you are willing to talk and have a change of mind-set you can do it. Communication is the essence and the most powerful tool.

    I have my off days and then I talk to myself and God, sometimes I talk to him too. He is very compassionate and understanding of my feelings and reassures me.

    The other one. (I don’t want to know her name) have tried to contact him and I phoned her back on his phone, in front of him and told her I know and she needs to move on because he is mine. She of course denied knowing him and it seemed he was dumb struck about that.

    Of course it also helps to have a great listener (message buddy). I find it easier to write than speak….

    I loved what Leah said: ” But it will not define the rest of my life or our lives together. You cannot live in fear. Stay strong and if he’s worth giving another chance then you’ll have to decide what to do with the bad memories. I have made a choice to leave them in the past. Not that I don’t overload with intrusive thoughts at times.”

    It is so true.

    To you all. If you think it is worth fighting for put your pride in your pocket and fight. I am glad I did not just give up. It is not easy but for me at this time it is worth it. 🙂

    • Brownyn,

      I am so glad you’re fighting the good fight. We are at eight months and just finishing up Emergency Marriage Seminar Online through affairrecovery.com. It’s been a marriage, and relationship, saver. I’m with you. It has not been easy but is definitely worth the struggle. Putting aside pride, anger, fear and yes, hate, has not been easy. But the reward is a better, more intimate, relationship where we actually communicate now instead of pretend normal.

      It’s a shame it took his affair to repair out marriage. I wish it could have been done differently. But it is what it is. Can’t change the past. Only the future. Good luck and thank you for your words of encouragement.

      Leah

  18. Pingback: Will my marriage survive infidelity? | CASTIMONIA

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