During the Affair – I couldn’t do anything right

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When I reflect on the time my husband was having an affair, I remember distinctly how he treated me differently than he had before. The first thing I noticed was that there was more tension between us. For instance, when I asked him to help me with some house tasks up before he started the affair, he wouldn’t be thrilled (just like I wasn’t thrilled to be doing housework), but he’d help. While he was cheating, his response to my requests for help was “Why are you always complaining and nagging?” It completely surprised me. Where was this response coming from? I’d just asked him to help out; why was he reacting so sharply?

He was very short with me, very quick to get frustrated at something I would say or do. But what I was saying and doing were the exact same things I’d done and said in the past. His willingness to compromise was just not there anymore; it was like I irritated him now.

As a wife, I was so frustrated. I was pregnant and tired, and on top of that, now everything I did seemed to be a problem for him. After I found out about the affair, I tried to explain to my husband that he was treating me very differently during that time. Of course, he denied that he had.

When a person cheats, it changes the way they interact with their partner. Since they have someone else now to compare you to, you become more irritating in their eyes. Since they don’t live with the other woman, they don’t have to deal with the parts of a relationship with her that aren’t fun—like cleaning the house. I believe if the OW lived with my husband every day and cooked, cleaned, and took care of the kids, she might ask for a hand every once in a while too. But because my husband did have someone he could go to for sex, he didn’t feel as if he had to deal with the unpleasant day-to-day tasks that come with being married. Consequently, I felt like he was treating me as if I were a problem.

I felt like he was comparing me to her, everything he did not see in me, he saw in her, making me the less desirable one. But my ex-husband was ultimately comparing apples to oranges, a fantasy world to reality, a wife versus the other woman. The relationship he had with the OW and the one he had with me were not the same, at all.

It’s unfortunate that my husband did not think about what he was doing when he was cheated, because how he treated me during this time hurt. I knew something had changed, and I knew he was super frustrated with me, but I felt helpless. I didn’t know what that something was or what we could do to address it. Now, of course, I know why.

  • Anna C. March 8, 2012, 3:25 PM

    I think that to some extent, the hostility and anger you describe are a projection of a cheater’s guilt. Unless a cheater has no conscience, he or she probably feels guilty about betraying their spouse — especially when that spouse is a pregnant woman who’s carrying his child. In order to justify their cheating, they have to turn their spouse into a villain who persecutes them and deserves to be betrayed and hurt. It’s a dirty psychological trick. I don’t think this projection is deliberate; it’s a defense mechanism that allows them to live with themselves as they enjoy the thrills of cheating.

    And of course the other man or woman seems infinitely more fascinating, tolerant, compassionate and understanding . . . until the cheater moves in with them. Then the Other Woman or Other Man stops being a sex fantasy or a flawless angel and just becomes another human being who has frustrating personality traits and doesn’t wear Victoria’s Secret lingerie every day of her life.

    Here’s another twist on being treated differently: cheaters who act extra nice to compensate for their guilt. My cheater displayed anger and hostility towards me, alternating with periods of being very loving, giving me gifts, etc. In fact, he arranged a trip to see the OW on the pretext that he needed to go out of town to get me a surprise gift. He knew I’d want to go with him unless he made up some elaborate ruse. While it was true that he did buy me the gift, it didn’t take a genius to figure out that the whole thing was a set-up. What really makes me mad is that he dedicated so much time and energy to arranging this whole escapade and providing emotional support for his demanding, nut job girlfriend, when he could have been looking for a JOB!!!!

    Arggh!

    I’m sorry you had to go through that, Jewels. I understand your pain; I still feel hurt whenever I think of the way I was treated during the affair, or whenever I see that gift he bought me.

  • AJ March 10, 2012, 7:30 AM

    I found out 2 months ago that my H is a serial cheater…from the first day I met him until now there hasn’t been a year out of the 9 when there has been freedom from his sexting, texting, solicitations, etc…it wasnt always physical, but I don’t think that matters. It’s NOW that I know the truth that so much makes sense. Things I have felt guilt about, situations I thought were my fault…now I know that it was always HIM. He let me take the blame and feel those guilt emotions knowing that it was him the whole time…I see now how badly he treated me when something was suspect. He used my emotions to manipulate me into thinking I was the crazy wife with the crazy suspicions. It’s one of the things I am most angry about. I would have made very different choices in my life if he had been honest and treated me with the respect I deserved instead of making it my fault… Yes they treat you differently to tear you down…I think that makes it easier on them. My H has openly admitted he was jealous of my “youthful appearance”, my good job and my friends. He set out to sabotage all of them to make himself feel better…and yet still claims to love me? This makes no sense. I am so sad…and so hurt by these revelations that I would associate with an enemy…not someone who married me for love…

  • Gimlet March 10, 2012, 11:23 AM

    Funny but my husband and I were talking about this just last week I told him that he had been treating me differently for a while. Sometimes condescending often he would be very curt with his responses even though I hadn’t said or done anything to cause it. I’m not sure if it was guilt or just him not wanting to be there with me. My husband and I had a few really good days in the past week but I find myself unsure if I made a mistake letting myself feel for him again but the open and honest discussions really made me feel closer to him than I had in years. I’m almost ashamed that I made love to him and feel foolish. He did go to the doctor for a physical and requested he be screened for any STDs. The last couple of days Ive had doubts and have been wondering if he has started any new email accounts.He has promised not to and I have access to all the ones I know of except his work email. I can’t help but wonder if the OW is still contacting him I just really want the truth because this always being on the edge going back and forth is difficult for me. At the end of the month I’m going away to visit my brother and sisters alone for the first time in 20 years. I’m hoping being away will give me some insight. Anway I think when your significant other starts treating you differently it’s a real sign that something is up, I definitely noticed it but never had any proof until recently. He too made me feel like some crazy jealous wife with an overactive imagination. I have always trusted my instincts and they have NEVER been wrong but there is so much at stake here I just wanted to be wrong. Well thanks for listening and stay strong I’ll be thinking of all of you and wishing you well.

  • Sonia March 11, 2012, 2:37 PM

    Jewels,
    I totally agree with you.During my husband’s affair he was horrible to live with. I felt totally disconnected to him. I could not do anything right. If I talked to him about the bills he though I was nagging when I was concerned. He was aweful.He was ALWAYS angry. I felt I couldn’t talk to him about anything. Even our girls seemed to annoy him. He would never talk and would retreat to the office and the computer with the door locked. Yea, now I feel like an idiot! Many times I thought maybe we should get a divorce. I couldn’t figure out what was wrong. I knew something was not right but I could not figure it out. His affair was off and on according to him. He would tell her he wasn’t leaving me and she’d leave upset but always came back to him..Stupid! Well I imagine during the off times he was almost back to his regular self. I still loved him and I always told him I love you and when things were the worst I would swallow my pride and hug him to make him remember our love and to convince myself that I wanted to love him…does it make sense? Anyways he hugged me but barely sometimes. The worst was when he told me “I love you , but I am not in love with you” . That broke my heart and asked him what he meant- you either love me or don’t …well he always said he loved me but wished I’d stop nagging. I only “nagged” because he was not emotionally there! I ‘m sorry if I’m rambling. Even a year and and 4 months after D day it is sometimes hard. Not as bad as the initial first 8 months but hard. I believe it made me a stronger person and God forbid this happens again I know I will not take it anymore…and I believe he knows that! He is back to being his old self even better.. …

    • Jewels March 13, 2012, 10:02 PM

      Anna C. – You are so right. I love your perspective, it makes perfect sense, the physiological trick!! And I do not think it is deliberate either (that would require a level of intelligence, well, you get my point). I totally get the fantasy thing – the OW would not be able to be in our shoes because the fantasy would be over, and he would not feel the same way living with her day to day. No one wins in this, no one.

      AJ – Sorry to hear that this was going on your entire marriage. I think you are right, especially when you say you would not expect this from the person you love. Blaming you and making you feel less than sufficient is so common, it rips your self-esteem and it is hard to understand mentally that someone you love is doing this to you. But I am really happy that you realize it now and all of the things are making sense, because that means you are starting to realize no, you’re not crazy. No, everything is not your fault, and that is a very empowering feeling, keep it up. Things will get better for you.

      Gimlet – What you said is so true – “I have always trusted my instincts and they have NEVER been wrong but there is so much at stake here I just wanted to be wrong.” I wanted to be wrong as well, it was too overwhelming to be right, I couldn’t deal with it. Looking back it is a huge sign, I hope it helps someone else realize what is going on earlier than us finding out. Take Care!

      Sonia – That’s very interesting that now he is back to his old self. You can almost use it as a sign to know if something is up or not. Interesting how he stops saying you were nagging, etc. Yes, when you are constantly comparing, it is hard, very hard for the wife to do anything right. I wish you the best in your marriage!

  • Joan March 14, 2012, 2:25 AM

    Jules,

    I can’t begin to tell you how much this site had opened up my eyes as to who this person is that I’ve been married to for so many years. You know my story (my husband 58, the other woman 27, having sex in the back of her car after work.) Well I’ve come to the conclusion I must have been very naieve because my husband would start arguments with me over the years and give me the silent treatment for days and weeks at a time. I could never understand why he would not talk to me for days or weeks. I never thought there was another woman. I chalked it up to his post dramatic stress syndrome after coming home from Viet Nam and becoming a police offficer.
    But now I wonder what was really going on. It had to be other women that he was involved with. It’s been so many years ago now that It’s hardly worth questioning him. I know he would not tell me the truth if he remembers. He’d say he doesn’t remember. So I do believe that i am married to a sex maniac (which he did admit) AND if he was involved with girls it was to feed his needs, desires, selfishness, and greed. It is a little easier now looking at him this way than to think that he loved any one of the girls he may have had sex with over the years. I do think my husband resented me for doing all that I was supposed to be doing (the good little wife) and hated what he was doing to his family but it was too much fun to stop.

    But most of all I believe my husband did not love any of the girls. I told him if the last girl got to know him like I do she would have left him in no time. His answer was but I would have already gotten in her pants. I don’t believe my husband is capable of loving anyone other than himself. This is my charm of a husband that I am trying to rekindle whatever trust and love has been lost. We are now living our marriage on a whole other level. He can never ever fool me again…..I’ve learned too much about him. Thanks to all the women out there who have come by to tell their stories. You’ve taught me a lot and i’m probably much older than you. I want to say to a lot of you, it is quite possible that your husbands did not love the OW, it was the excitement and sex that he craved. A lot of men will never be able to love the way their wife loves. Very sad. Good luck to all of you. I’m feeling better.

  • Freebird March 14, 2012, 7:23 AM

    Seriously…….after reading soooo many stories that are basically identical, the real question is: Can wives EVER do anything right to prevent this from happening? Is it just an inevitable occurance that’s going to happen no matter what? I mean, really, what can we do to prevent it? Besides NOT have children, NOT take on the responsibilities of the home, NOT have jobs (that’s a lose/lose…..men believe that women HAVE to work now, right) , etc. I’m beginning to think that even if all we did was sit at home waiting in bed for them to return and give them what they want 24/7, they would STILL get bored and look outside the marriage for that “excitement”….am I wrong? That is certainly what everything that everyone has written seems to point to. I know that women cheat too, but I truly believe (for the most part) that it’s probably for a completely different reason. I suppose that when the husband has already checked-out of the marriage (cheating, I’m sure) and the woman is desperate for love/companionship/committment and she actually feels like it’s ‘still out there somewhere’ that’s what makes a woman ‘stray’…….I feel that most women think with their hearts and men think with their dicks! And now that Viagra and surgeries are now possible it allows the senior men to ‘act out’ when they didn’t used to be ABLE to! I know this because my dad (now 78) used Viagra AND gave my mom some lame story about ‘needing’ a penile implant because of some ‘condition’ he had (crooked penis) and she ‘bought it’ so he got it!!! And that was right at the time that he was trying to capture the affections of some old lady in his Bible Study class……ewww……that makes me sick!!!! I was the one that actually discovered his ‘secret’ online attempts with this woman! I am so angry about that and about what my ‘ex’ did to me……TRUST in men is a thing of the past for me!!!!

  • Pam March 15, 2012, 1:41 AM

    I have suspected my husband was having flings for years but somehow he always convinced me that I was imagining things. My father was a cheater so I was paranoid. But now the feeling is different. There is the smell of a perfume I don’t own, a stray hair clip in the bathroom, little things adding up to a mountain and this time I know who she is. Or I am pretty sure. I am torn to pieces because we have been married 30 years and I can’t imagine being with anyone else. I am thinking of confronting her. To make it stop. But what if I am wrong? How embarassing! I am afraid to confide in someone in case they tell others. There is the humiliation factor. But this is getting too hard to ignore. Advice please!!

  • Abby March 15, 2012, 1:28 PM

    I was in the same situation guys…my husband was very different to me during the affair he was having with a much much younger pretty woman. I just couldn’t do anything right, just like you all say. And just like Jewels pointed out, it’s funny how now I can see my husband acting differently. Heck he will even tell you that while he was seeing this girl, he was irritated with me and it wasn’t really anything I was doing. Like my counselor said, it’s their way of justifying the affair. If they paint you to themselves and the OW that you are a horrible wife who can’t do anything right, then it makes them feel better about committing adultry. These men know it’s wrong to do these things to their wives and even to the OW, any anger and resentment they can come up with against the wife makes it okay in their heads. They won’t have this same resentment towards the OW, remember this relationship is still new and exciting, like it once was for you and him.

    Jewels, you are so right about being able to compare their actions now to when they were in the affair. My husband was totally different during the affair compared to now and before the affair. His relationship with this OW surely allowed him to find ALL my faults and use them against me. Although I have changed many things about myself there is a lot that is still the same and yet he says that I am the perfect wife now. Funny how that is!

    • Jewels March 18, 2012, 11:14 PM

      Joan, I am so glad the site has helped! That is very interesting that he would give you the silent treatment as maybe an attempt to cheat and ‘justify’ his actions as Abby pointed out. And yes, I was a little shocked by the comment you wrote when you said ” I told him if the last girl got to know him like I do she would have left him in no time. His answer was but I would have already gotten in her pants.” The only thing I can say is at least he is being honest at this point and just telling it like it is, not sure what else to say about that . Hugs to you!

      Freebird
      – I am not sure how to answer. I think that the conversation needs to change within marriage. I think that men are so much more sexual than we think, and we need to be able to talk to our husbands about it. Right now most men do not feel comfortable being very open with their sexual desires with their wives because we are the ‘wives’. And that is when problems start. There are men that have not cheated on their wife’s. But I think that if the institution of marriage is going to stay alive, we have to embark on a new conversation during marriage, one that exposes that a man is going to have desires outside of marriage, one that talks about pornography, talks about online sex, and talks about feeling for other women before it gets to cheating, in an open fashion, because doing so behind the wife’s back is too devastation and causing so much tension within the marriage. And yes, these get up pills are a hot mess – I am going to write a post about it, men all over the world are using these pills to cheat – who knew!!

      Pam – Be careful in confronting the OW first before your husband, she has nothing to lose by lying, but your husband does. Your husband is the one that has committed to you, and if you know that he is going to deny unless there is proof, do not worry or rush it, proof will always come up eventually. Of course it is up to you if you decide to talk to the potential OW, she could be sleeping with him and you confront and she totally deny it, it just depends on how she wants to play it, typically the OW tells when they get mad at the husband, just an fyi. Don’t worry, if he is really cheating, you are going to find out.

      Abby – I love what your counselor said about husbands justify their actions by treating us this way, it makes perfect sense! They need to feed the fantasy, and if nothing is wrong, they can’t feed it so they look for something wrong….wow that is pretty deep, thanks for sharing!!

  • downnluck April 9, 2012, 7:59 PM

    I also asked for help being pregnant and sick everyday with a 2 yr old and a 7 yr old. He also said i was nagging. They do treat you differently. HE cheated on me twice and i noticed both times. Better the second.

  • Tina/PA April 11, 2012, 9:27 PM

    My husband acted differrently during the affair. It seemed like he was looking for things to criticize me about. He grew distant from our family, even his family. They took notice of it as well. Strangely though, we started having sex more often…but again, he seemed distant during that as well. Now I think he was probably thinking about her. I definately did notice though that I did feel like I couldn’t do anything right during that time as well. Jewels, I agree with what you said about the fantasy life vs. the real life. When my husband left to go live with his girlfriend…the affair became a “relationship” and the expectations changed. He was living in her house now. I could see how stressed he became and he realized that what they had wasn’t reality. It’s amazing how people can get so swept up in infatuation and fantasy and just throw everything away.

  • sheryl April 13, 2012, 4:49 PM

    Jewels

    Hi. I know what I need to do, but why can’t I do it? Why do I stay? He’s cheating on me with the same woman for almost two years and I think he has a child with her. Im so tied up with bills that I couldn’t manage finances if he left or if I left. I can’t concentrate still. Im always over cooking my food, I can’t hardly clean. I mess up with everything. I can’t push this aside in order to function. I’ve TRIED…I HAVE!

    • Jewels April 15, 2012, 12:27 AM

      Sheryl,

      The first thing that comes to mind is be easy on yourself, you have been through years of abuse, it’s not like you can just get up and everything is fine. You stay because even though it’s miserable, it’s better than facing your fear, which would be leaving. I know you want to leave, but fear of the unknown is a powerful tool that can keep you in situations (we all experience this, even myself).

      You have been mentally beat down for years, it is not going to change overnight. It is going to take small repeated steps of putting yourself first on a consistent basis. Once that happens you are going to have enough strength to really decide if you want to stay or not. Once you decide, then the planning process starts (and again, if I recall he has been abusive before, be very careful if you decide to leave). Then after you plan, then it’s execution. It’s a long and slow process for most and it starts with letting go of control. Letting go of trying to get your husband to do anything, it is what it is – let him go (when I say let him go, I mean from a mental sense). You have too many thoughts going through your head (I went through this as well, even had insomnia, I could not rest my mind). So you literally have to clear your mind of certain thoughts so you can function. Anything that has to do with controlling him or his behavior has to go, because all it will do is stress you.

      And you have to work on your words – “I couldn’t manage finances if he left or I left”. I know you feel that way, I felt the SAME exact way. But in saying those words, you are going to feel trapped and overwhelmed, and those words do not even allow the possibility of leaving to enter your life – there could be an opportunity to leave in front of you right now, but because you’re convinced that you can’t leave because of money, you might now even see it. Instead say, my lifestyle would be different if I left. Be open to the possibility of leaving and just having a different lifestyle vs saying you can’t manage finances if he left. I left and yes I took a hit on credit and some other things, but gosh it was a small price to pay for my sanity. You are progressing Sheryl, you just do not know it yet :).

      downnluck – Interesting, you actually noticed it the second time more than the first, he was just telling on himself and didn’t even know it!

      Tina PA – Even your family noticed. I wonder if part of the distant is just pure shame, shame at the life that he is living. Wow! So now that he is living with her, he is stressed at his current reality, no more fantasy. You are right, it is such a cycle that end is so much hurt and pain, losing everything not even for love, but lust.

  • GG April 17, 2012, 2:05 PM

    I knew something was wrong when my husband became distant towards me & the kids. I asked immediately what was wrong & so did his mum. He refused to answer & then became really rude to me. Since he earns more money, we both agreed that I’d stay home with the kids. Now when I needed any money (for the house), it was you always want to spend my money. My sons 5th birthday was ruined because he shouted at me infront of the kids accusing me of being negative & always picking holes in people. Then he forced me to go away for a few days so he could relax & have a break. In these months I became ill

    • Jewels April 19, 2012, 12:11 AM

      GG,

      Yes becoming distant is not a good sign, he was probably ashamed of his own skin. It seems that now that you are not working, he is using it to control you a little. I know this is tough for you to go through because you are becoming ill, out mental state does impact out physical bodies, so I am not surprised you are becoming ill from all of this. With everything going on, try to carve out some time for you, to restore yourself. And make sure you eat, sometimes it is hard to remember to do those things when you are in such pain. He forced you to leave so he could have a break, um…that is not cool. Take Care…

  • Melville May 6, 2012, 9:11 AM

    I just read more than 300 texts between my husband and his girlfriend which he swore he was not cheating on me. They love each other – she is his “baby doll”. I am sick to my stomach. Less than 3 weeks ago he started treating me differently – any comment I made was nagging, he never wanted to be around me and always seemed angry. After reading these posts, it explains his behavior. I don’t know what to do. Do I confront him or wait and hope it ends. The last text last night seems like she ended their affair but then this morning she sent him several more texts saying she hopes he will be happy and she will always love him. He got drunk last night and left his secret cell in his pocket.

  • Longjourney May 6, 2012, 10:21 PM

    @Melville so sorry to hear that. I went through the same thing nearly 2 years ago. I remember it as if it was 2 months ago. That sick to your stomach feeling. 25 years and 4 kids I didn’t confront him right away i kept looking at his phone to see if it was really happening. After 3 weeks I finally did he said I was making too much of it, nothing happened. I cried myself to sleep every night. As the months wore on and he swore he was done I kept looking (theres no getting around it you just are compelled to) and he was still texting/seeing her. He obviously didnt hide it well or thought i was too stupid but he would get pissed at me for snooping on his phone. Over time with me trying everything to get him away from her and seeing he had no intention my love for him diminished. Had he been caught and simply stopped, we could have mended our marriage. But the continuous lying and decieving so he can live “in two worlds” (his words) put the nail in the matrimonial coffin. I went to a lawyer 3 times (as I was unsure) the 3rd time was to file the paperwork and give him the retainer. I. Was. DONE! I don’t know who this person is anymore and quite frankly now I can’t stand him. We are 8 months into the divorce. He won’t leave and doesnt want the marriage to end but says he doesnt think he’d be able to stop. He’s a sick F&^K. The hell he put me through and our kids I will never forgive him. I can’t wait til this marriage officially ends but the damage is done. I’m worried about how to move forward but having loving friends and family and faith in God has helped me very much. Something I know he doesn’t have. I hope that yours isnt the same as mine and your husband isn’t a narcissitic asshole like mine. Good luck to you but be strong and DONT BE ANYONE”S FOOL!

  • Shirley November 23, 2012, 11:34 PM

    OMG! I am so shocked and amazed at some of these stories from you ladies but i must say i am the biggest fool of all of you because i am seriously ill and i am not able to do the things that i used to do with my husband he is having an affair on me and i know it because he leaves me for days at a time…sometimes while i am sick and sometimes not. He starts fights with me just so he can go and be with her and he doesn’t care how i feel. When he comes home he looks guilty but then sometimes he has a smirk on his face. I hate myself right now for being so helpless. I know what i need to do but i just dont have the strength to do it because i still love him. Anyway i have started back praying again and i am getting stronger and stronger…physically and emotionally so i know what i need to do it’s just a matter of doing it. I am gonna suggest that he leaves the house for awhile because i need some space from him to think about me. He is one reason why i sometimes get sick and have to be hospitalized…i mean who wouldn’t get sick behind a man who cheats on his sick wife. Already i feel better in just typing this bc it makes this nightmare that i am in seem real to me.

  • Maddie January 2, 2013, 8:12 AM

    Im 43 yrs old…and for the last 4 yrs…what I can only describe as me being totally disconnected. About 4 years ago my husband changed totally towards me and the family. Kept going away every month said he had to due to stress at work. Over this period I also was very poorly…various tumors removed and lumps taken from my breasts too. He wasn’t there for me was scared lonely and he was abroad having an affair. This affair went on for 3 years. He treated myself and daughter as we were a burden unwanted. It makes me hate myself that I didn’t leave him…my poor health…no job…
    . I found about the affair and apparently it was already over. But for over a year he maintained contact with her….emails….texts….Skype….he promised they were just friends and he wouldn’t contact her and that he wanted his family back. I am totally disconnected…stopped caring….feel like I’m on a train wreck out of control. He bullies me to do stuff for him…run his other business the accounts side….but Ive fallen apart cant even function. I need help. Am lost feel drained ….wake up with out any purpose but some hold it together in front of parents …friends they don’t know. He says he sees I’m in pain over what happened…I just keep remembering his emails calling her his soul-mate. And me after 25 years looking after him when he was sick too….am nothing to him. I feel totally lost :'( And cant pull through…living with him still…its killing me.

    • Jewels January 6, 2013, 12:42 AM

      Shirley – Just now seeing your story, please post an update if you get email updates!

      Maddie Hi Maddie, I know you are having a hard time with this, and understandably so after finding out about a 3 year affair. But you must know what he did is not a reflection of you, it is a reflection on him. Do not lay now because of what he did, he should be living with the shame, not him. Feel proud that you never did that sort of thing. I know the reminders of the affair can be difficult, have you considered therapy? That would help you to process what has went on. I just don’t want you to be in stress, especially since you are recovering from illness. Stay strong!

  • Emma January 10, 2013, 2:46 AM

    Its comforting to see so many similar stories. My husband just came up to me one day and offloaded all this information – you dont love me enough, i dont know if i love you, i dont know if we can be together. It was such a shock to the system as up until that day i truly felt happy, i felt we had never been stronger and we had recently started discussing starting a family. For the next month and a half he worked late and complained about everything i did. I couldnt open my mouth without him jumping down my throat. He started going out on weekends and coming home drunk as a skunk in the early hours of the morning which was completly out of character. I let him act out as i felt it was making him happy and i jumped through any hoop he presented just in the hopes that he would say “i love you” again.
    Eventually, one week before Christmas he confessed that he had been sleeping with a client. I have never felt so many emotions at once, my world just ended. He apologiesed once and then immediatly started to blame me, if i had loved him more, if i had shown more affection then it wouldnt have happened.
    He kicked me out, changed the locks and removed all the money from our joint account. He has stopped putting money towards our credit card and is now trying to get the dog from me. Its just so hard to get my head around what he is doing to me after all that he has done to me!
    Last week he started to contact me saying he misses me, loves me and wants this to work but i will never be able to trust him again. I am thankful that i am still young (24) and there are no children involved. I feel good having the self control to be able to flat out tell him its never going to happen and that i want a divorce, am i a bad person for just giving up so easily? I just know that it would probably last 6 months and i would destroy it by hovering over him every second of the day, checking his phone and emails and freaking out every time he got another female client.
    The more i sit back and watch him destroy himself the easier it is for me to want to settle this and move on. Its such a twisted emotion to hate someone so much but to love them at the same time. I just want this all to be over so i can move on.

    • Jewels January 17, 2013, 2:34 AM

      Emma,

      Sorry I missed your update. I will tell you one thing, you are 24 years old – RUN!!! RUN far lol! You have too much going to you to put up with him. The way he treated you changing the locks and pulling money out of the account is wrong, no real man would do such a thing, and if you go back, that same behavior will present itself again. Of course, it is your decision but just know that you can find someone that is going to treat you much better. Trust me.

  • TishaR January 16, 2013, 4:16 PM

    If a man truly loves you he will never be unfaithful. Analyzing the problem over and over is a waiste of time. You can’t make a man love you no matter what the dynamics are. Your relationship was over as soon as he thought about being unfaithful. Men who cheat are weak minded, weak spirited and have no respect for themselves. They have no honor. Their manhood is shriveled. You can’t expect a weak man to communicate about his failures. He doesn’t want them exposed. Assuming and accusing will only waiste your time and energy. Once you have gathered enough evidence of his failure, your next step is to present it and expose him fully. Embarass him. Make sure you have enough money to support yourself because the outcome might be bad. He might lose his mind and try to sabatoge you. At this point he is your enemy and he is not to be trusted. You need to approach the situation with zero tolerance. Don’t start doubting yourself or have some misplaced commpassion, this is something a woman never forgets and staying with a man that is unfaithful is a dead end life. You will always be looking over your shoulder and will never be content if you think you can forgive him and keep the relationship going. Shut down all emotion. Only forgive him to set yourself free of the stress and pain, because if you let the hate build up it will make you sick. Show him that you are smarter than he is. And guess what, that woman he is using to boost his manhood will be in your shoes soon enough. All women are the same, we get jealous, competitive, and suspicious…..so if you have a gut feeling that your husband or boyfriend is cheating, just remember, gather evidence first. Check cell phones, check pockets, get a rental car and spy on him, check bank accounts, check credit card accounts…..men are dumb they’ll take the other woman to the same places he takes you, check his car, look in the glove compartment, under the seats. Hire a private investigator, if you have the money. It’s all worth it to know the truth. Why live life with a man who doesn’t love you. There are so many good men that deserve to have good women in their lives. Go find him and don’t look back.

    • Jewels January 17, 2013, 1:27 AM

      TishaR,

      Thanks for the comment, I understand your point of closing the door and not looking back. I am also very mindful that it is easier said than done. It all depends on where you are with your life as far as self-worth, finances, and other support factors. Some people have the circumstances and the mindset to do what you state, but others are just not there. I was not there for a long time, it took time, but eventually I understood what was going on and left, that was the best decision for my personal story, it may be different for the next person. You are correct, so many good men that deserve to have good women in their lives. Take care.

  • kammy January 17, 2013, 1:43 AM

    Hello all, I am so sorry to see so many loving women hurting including myself because we love Men that react instead of communicate.
    I am not married but I was engaged to be & I have a 5yr old daughter from a previous relationship. I just found out on Tuesday that my fiance (ex now) was in text conversation in his phone with a co- worker. She was asking him if he was going to take her out or was he going to keep talking about sex with his one track mind. My hands were shaking as I read the text because he had cheated on me in 2011, and I took him back and now this.
    He had also became very distant and most times treated my daughter & I like we were an inconvience. He was mean and never wanted to help out around

    What hurts the most is that he was unemployed with no form of income (he did not go & collect unemployment). The length of his unemployment was from April 2011-Sept 2012. I paid all the bills, helped his family financially when they needed because he had no money, took care of everything etc, and after barely 4 months on his job he’s planning to have sex with a co-worker all the while treating me like shit.

    His response was that he is always in the house with me, as if that matters now. I packed all his belongings and put him out. I feel so hurt, so betrayed, so numb so empty. These men don’t seem to understand the magnitude of pain they cause with their infidelity not to mention how it destroys a family. Yesterday my baby girl cried saying that she missed him & that she’ll be sad if she never sees him again. I hate him for this & it breaks my heart that she is hurting as well. I just told her he has to grow up and we can’t help him.

    When he started back working he treated me horribly, wouldn’t take me out, threw money on the dresser as my x-mas present 2 weeks late & told me that I had an attitude problem. I gave him his money back and told him I don’t need anything from him. He basically treated me like he was getting attention from elsewhere so now he doesnt care how he treats me. He was really being a jerk in every sense of the word. He called twice an hour after I put him out. I sent the calls to voicemail & turned my phone off. I was beyond good to him even after he cheated the first time. But obviously me standing by him mattred none once he was back on his feet. I am hurt beyond words but I’m sure the turmoil that he has caused & left behind is the last thing on his mind.
    I don’t understand some of these men & their selfishness. How can you throw away years & ruin lives for someone who you honestly don’t even know? Like I told him they don’t know you like I do, you don’t really know certain things about a person until you live with them. That’s why we All picked up on the fact that our men were acting “different”, not to mention a womans intuition is something serious. I hope he never contacts me again, at this moment I’m so hurt I wouldn’t even know what to say.

    • Jewels January 17, 2013, 2:25 AM

      Hi Kammy,

      First I commend your courage for walking away. To take him back, help him in his time of need, and to be treated like crap because their is a new girl is town is devastating, especially when a 5 year old is involved.Your kind nature and willingness to help is visible, and one day you will find a man that will treat you like you deserve. Do not lose faith. Your 5 year old will go through withdraw, and it broke my heart reading her pain, BUT at the same time, this little 5 year old is going to learn such a valuable lesson early in life, that people come and go, and that you have to choose to be happy no matter who is around. She is going to follow your lead, if you show through action that you are moving on and still smiling, she will follow and when she gets older and goes through a break-up, she is subconsciously going to remember how you acted and she will be that much stronger for it. You will get through this and come out better in the process.

  • kammy January 17, 2013, 2:11 AM

    Also I really don’ t think people should get on other people on here for their reasons for still staying after a man has cheated. We all process things differently & we don’t live eachother’s lives. Everyones family dynamics are different & every woman is not going to throw away years of marriage because their husband cheated. There is a woman at my job who has been married for 25 yrs, shortly after her anniversary she told me that anyone who has been married that long & says they never had any problems “Is a damn lie”(her words). With that being said I believe her. It doesn’t necessarily have to be infidelity but none of us are perfect not all men are serial cheaters & no one can really say a man that cheated doesn’ t love his wife. I am not condoning cheating because I just put my ex-fiance out because of it what I am saying is that everyones situation is different. You dont know a persons life until you walk in their shoes. This seems to be forum that women can come to, to vent without being judged, to gain support from other that can
    relate to the pain. The fact that we are here talking displays that we all know
    there is a problem and I learned along time ago that sometimes we think we

    know how we are going to react to a particular situation until we are actually faced with that particular situation. It just irks me when other women try to tell women what men think & how they feel we are not men and we are obviously not wired the same. Women we feel, we love, we think with our emotions, men not so much in my experience. Lets uplift one another & show support regardless of the womans decision. Whether she stays or leaves she has the right to choose. So ladies please keep your head up & know your not alone. The amount of forums there are for men cheating shows there is a serious problem that the men themselves will have to address at some point in their lives. I know its hard because I certainly have shed my tears but we have to stay strong & do what we will feel is best for us as individuals.

    • Jewels January 17, 2013, 2:38 AM

      Kammy, I just read your second comment – well said!!

  • kammy January 17, 2013, 2:20 AM
  • TishaR January 17, 2013, 9:24 AM

    A man who cheats DOES NOT love his wife. Period. He doesn’t care about your feelings and the pain he is causing when he’s in the act of having meaningless sex with another woman! He DOESN’T care. He wants what he wants and what makes him feel good. He’s too weak to leave his relationship because it will cost him. Men think differently. They think about how to cut corners to get what they want. You have to protect yourself! He would be just as upset if you cheated on him! I feel so bad for these woman , if you’re invested 25 years in a relationship and your husband cheats on you, and you actually find out, the truth is, that’s probably not the first time he’s done it within the marriage, it’s just the first time you’ve caught him. Once a person cheats either a man or a woman the relationship is over!! There is no foundation for anything to grow and flourish. It’s dead. I love reading how some women got rid of these losers, the sooner the better. It’s a tragedy when 2 people invest so much of their life together and it just withers away like nothing ever happened. My situation was horrid!! I had 3 children with a man who was always going on business trips, always at the bar for happy hour after work! I found strange notes in his suitcase from other women that where inappropriate. His best friend was a well known cheater! I witnessed him cheating many times and business functions that we would attend together. It was disgusting! He was like a wild chimpanzee in heat. I would hear them talking on the phone about his affairs!! He would look at porn and all the while I’m busting my ass taking care of 3 small children, a house, and trying to maintain my appearance so he would notice me. He would always say, I don’t want to tell you you are beautiful because I don’t want you to get a big head! Are you kidding me??? Who says that? He was verbally abusive, degrading, insulting to the point where it was mind numbing. So one day I decided to give him a taste of his own poison. I had recently come into contact with my long lost love of my life and we decided we wanted to be together and live the rest of our lives together. I am now in the most loving, affectionate, most wonderful relationship I could ever dream! We were married on December 1st and it was one of the happiest moments in my life. I sacrificed alot to get out of that diseased relationship that I felt trapped in…I sacrificed my house, my car, my furniture….but it was all worth it, because when I lay down and night in our bed and my husband pulls me close and wrapps his body around mine and kisses me and tells me he loves me so much and tells me I’m beautiful…it’s all worth it because I know what I have and I am thankful for such a magnificent gift! We’re not together for money, or materialistic things….we’re together because we love one other so much we can’t live without seeing, kissing, touching or speaking to each other. We need each other, the passion and romance is always on fire because love is the binding force that is constant. You can find it. Sometimes you’ll make mistakes, but you’ll find it.

  • Katie February 15, 2013, 7:49 AM

    Men knowingly treat you like shit and cause arguments so they can storm out of the house and spend time with their ow! They do it on purpose they know you won’t call if you have just had a fight. They do it to create the time to see the ow! I was cheated on after 14 years of being faithfull, loyal,trusting, loving. It means squat to a man when hes on top of another women! He is weak because when the going gets tuff he runs for the cover of anothers bed sheets! Honestly it hurts like hell every dam day I caught them out 9 months ago after a 2 year affair and it’s as raw and fresh as the day I found them. I want to know if it goes away or if this is how I will feel for the rest of my life? TRUST ME if you feel somethings odd it is!!! Men LIE!

  • vanessa May 20, 2013, 9:25 PM

    Its amazing to hear all this stories i live in a same situation i found out about my husbands affair well it will be 2 years about now, this girl he is having an affair used to be an old girlfriend of his n found her again she knows he has a family and didn’t care. She lives a distance from were we live n he visits her every 2 months maybe 1’s a month everytime he leaves its a big fight. iI’ve been with him for 15 years we have a 13 year old daughter. He tells me he loves me n wants to be with me but that girl is just real nice to him n feels bad for her to live her but i dont eat that s… ! It just kills me inside that everyday his texting her i just cant live this way anymore but i dont have the guts to live with out him.

    • Jewels May 21, 2013, 7:21 PM

      Vanessa,

      Him telling you the girl is really nice and feels bad for her, is just saying that to make him feel better, don’t believe it. Do you go visit your old boyfriend because he is really nice and you feel bad that he doesn’t have family around? You get my point, he is seeing her because he wants to and he needs to own that himself. You do have the guts to be in a different situation than you are in now, it start with believing you have the guts, it is mental action first, then physical. What you have to think about is what is your true fear (fears)? You know he is mistreating you, disrespecting you, but what are you afraid of in leaving? For me it was financial, it was embarrassment, it was thinking will anyone want me now with two small kids? Once you know what those fears are, you tackle them, one at a time, with knowledge. If you feel embarrassed, read the stories on this site and realize you are not alone. If it’s financial, look up how to live on your own, save money, ect. You do not have to take any physical action now, I would stop focusing on him, and focus on you, get your fears in order so that you can make a clear decision. I wish you the best in your journey!

  • Linny May 21, 2013, 10:33 AM

    I read all the stories above and my heart hurts for all of you. I don’t know how you handle the situation your husbands put you into. I would like to share my story it seems unique, although most of you will think to yourselves “Yeah Right! You see my husband had a “sextexting emotional” affair with a co-worker of MINE! For about a year, he says, she says. They both are adamant the relationship had not reached the intimacy stage. Maybe I found out in time, maybe they are lying? My gut tells me I can believe it didn’t get to intercourse. Who knows but them how close it got, right? Anyways I was a totally 100% trusting wife of 30 years at the time when I started to notice something wasn’t quite right. My husband had depression issues when he lost his father years ago. This time, I contributed it to change of life (MANopause) associated depression. This woman is a co-worker of mine. We have worked together for 25 years (I have worked for this Company 37 years). We work VERY close. I HAVE to speak to her every day. She had a chain of horrible events in her life for which I sympathized with her on each event. The last event was her husband committed suicide. She had one 18 year old daughter and one 16 year son all at home, at the time. My husband and I knew her and her family quite well. The company I work for is a very small company in a very small town. She lost her “new built” home to the bank and moved into her recently deceased fathers’ farm house. I, like an idiot, offer my retired husbands construction services to help her restore the home in a livable condition for her and her children. My husband had been retired for about 2 years and was antsy to keep busy. He loved to remodel and this was his chance to “spend someone else’s money” and keep busy. I had started my change about 6 month prior and our nightly cuddles had to stop because of the night sweats. The Hot Flashes were crazy, day and night, and my weight was starting to increase no matter how much I went to the gym. At that time I needed the most support from my husband, he was starting to fade from me and my changes, to enjoy HER family. I even asked the doctor about my feelings and she thought it was my Change making me insecure and tried different meds to help me. I was trying to FIX me when I wasn’t BROKEN! Our grown daughters (ages 20 and 24, had moved back in with us for a while) noticed first how much he was gone, and how SHE would increase the list of things that needed to be done. Now mind you, I am still working full time, but still found time to help her move and organize her home and I would stop by and help my husband when I could. I had 100% trust in both of these people. He would be gone all day, until lunch,(he made sure he would have lunch with me as I go home every day for lunch) then when I left, he would leave (family members told me later). He would get back home just before I would, eat dinner then say he needed to get back to that project and he would be home by 8pm. Finally I put my foot down and said that he needed to finish up because people are starting to talk! (I felt something could be starting with the both of them but I TRUSTED them.) That 3 month project, turned into about an 8 month project, at this time. He did stop,,, I found out later they were “talking/sextexting” on a secret cell phone. He found excuses to spend quite a bit of time in his work shed when I was home. He would be out there until 8pm or 9pm every night. We never went anywhere together, he seemed to always find a reason to “make a run to Home Depot or Lowes” alone. I should have requested I go with him but he seemed to leave when I was involved with dinner or dishes or some other housework. When I tried to talk to him about my suspicions he would say, it’s him not me. He is going through something and he has to work it out – nothing I can do to help. That last statement I just wrote, well, let’s just say he was “trying to work it out” for about a year when our youngest daughter was released early from work and “SEEN” the secret cell phone he left lying in sight (not knowing she was coming home early.) She told me when I got home from work she seen a phone that looked like Grandpa’s not her dad’s. He wasn’t home at the time but I knew where he was. I took the extra set of car keys to his car and found the phone on the seat. I hit redial. I knew the phone number (i have it in my cell phone too, remember I helped out quite a bit the past couple years), and she answered. Hi Honey. I called her everything in the book and asked how she could do this, and she asked me, Well, do you love him? How dare her ask me. I asked her, do you love him and she said, well yes I do he makes me feel like I am someone. I told her my daughter had found the phone and she said “it don’t surprise me”. I located my H inside the building and seen him from the distance and waved the cell phone at him and left the building. He followed me outside and admitted to talking to her for about a year at that time (trust me I read every text(sex) message and it made me gag). I accused him of sleeping with her. He said then and to this day, it didn’t get to that point. We started marriage counseling about a week later. Unknown to him, I sent the secret cell phone to someone that would “hold it for me” out of town in case I needed it for a divorce. One month into the counseling I gained access to our cell phone bill (under his name so it took me that long to get him to agree to access have it released to me). I know why, I found out they were STILL communicating. More counseling and promises from both of them that it would stop, led to me finding out they no longer used the phones to communicate but secretly met in a grocery store parking lot (she leaves work one hour before me) to “talk”. They both are/were messed up. I know my H’s history and there is some valid reason for his depression for years prior… I won’t go into, but I have stood by him the whole time! Her issue, finding her husband shot to death. During all this, her daughter married and moved out, and her son began a drinking and drug problem that my husband felt he could help (her and him) through. She has no friends outside of work and my husband “filled the shoes” for someone for her to talk to. She wanted it to be more and it was exciting for him right!? I flipped out, and I quit counseling (I was funding it too!). He told me that she makes him happier and I said “goodbye” and take your stuff and leave. That night he comes back to our house and says his home is with me not her. He broke it off with her, I heard him tell her. We went together while she was working and picked up the “FEW THINGS” he had there, “work tools, and work clothes”. He promises me that he is done with her. Although I was at the “I will believe when I see it” frame of mind,, He really seems to be honest this time. The last communication that I know of about between them was almost 3 months ago. I do see a good change in him and I do believe he is done with her. My issue is, I am beginning to hate myself for the continued feelings of anger, and the feeling of being paranoid. I don’t feel like this every day, but one silly thing will set it off like, he being gone too long, or a memory of the past events after I found out from December to March. I sometimes feel like I am trying to jeopardize our relationship further with my actions, because I know I am bitchy when I feel this way. He tries to reassure me it is okay, and don’t worry. I have to go to work every day and see her which I think is a major part of the problem. My question to you all is; will I ever feel like myself again? Will I get my self-esteem back? Please share with me your recovery tips. Thank you.

    • Jewels May 22, 2013, 10:33 PM

      Hi Linny,

      My first thought after reading it is that they spent how much time together? And they said they never slept together. Hmm? Did they make out? It just doesn’t sound right that they were engaged for a year with no sex. Having that feeling of thinking there was something more but not really knowing will cause you alot of conflicting pain until it is addressed.

      The second thing is more of a lesson – never give your husband an opportunity to spend a great deal of time with another women – no matter what the situation. I have had people tell me their husband’s slept with family members that were staying temporarily with them, nanny’s. I know your intentions were so pure, helping out a fellow co-worker that you have known for years, thinking ‘she would never do that’, well….unfortunately she did. Not something to beat yourself up over, just lesson learned for you.

      You mentioned that during counseling he was still seeing her,after he came back and said he want’s to be with you, did you continue counseling? It seems like more should be done.

      Triggers are normal – let them be, don’t fight them or else it will be worse. Having to see someone everyday that was sexting your husband behind your back is TOUGH – oh my gosh, i don’t know if I could do that and hold it together. You are in a very difficult situation, so if you have a trigger, it is so ok, and it seems like your husband is supportive, which is good.

      Trust has to be rebuilt, and your husband can help that everyday by his actions. By not coming home late or answering his phone, it will be an issue. It takes a LONG time to rebuild trust, the average is 2 years, so please be easy on yourself.

      Last but not least, do not forget about you. Take care of yourself, you want to treat yourself so well that if you ever find out something is still going on, you can be knowledgeable enough to confidently make a decision and stand by it. Take Care on yourself Linny!

  • Linny May 30, 2013, 2:18 PM

    Jewels:
    A bit of a twist since your reply(which I just read)! I want to thank you for answering me. I didn’t know 2 years is the normal time to regain trust. Well I am starting that Trust thing over once again! :*(

    I understand all you have written.

    Here goes: yes, I wonder about the engaging in “making out” or worse,, he still denies anything beyond the playful sex-texting and friendship. Hummm is right.
    And, I will NEVER offer my spouse to anyone, ever!

    Yes, after the 3rd incident that happened (2nd and 3rd was during counseling). I called our counselor and I quit.

    Most of April was good… so I am told and I “felt”, until he slipped again the first of May and purchased another secret phone and I caught him talking to her AGAIN. He said he was “clean for about a Month” before starting in again. And, claims he hadn’t seen her in person only casual phone talk. I know what you are thinking,, hummm again, yeah me too.

    He said that he had planned to sit me down with my parents who just arrived for a month’s visit from out of town and “come clean” again and explain. With them arriving the house was in disarray and he couldn’t set us down like he wanted to before being caught – Well we sat down together very soon afterwards.

    That was Memorial Day, May 27th 2013 .

    On May 28th I made an appointment with a Therapist and was able to see her last night, just me. Our first session was mainly me telling my story, but, she is most definitely very pessimistic my husband and I will make it. And, that he is an addict, as she is with him.

    Yes – I took him back. 5th time a charm? This is the wrong time to break up with company in the house – they are too old to witness this. My goal – end of summer – do or die. If he cheats, he will be found out, that I am not worried about, it’s the “when”. Hoping the Therapist can help me get my on head straight if nothing else. His,, maybe it never will be.

    My further is dark right now. A week ago – I was actually happy again. Sick— Sick people with no morals,, they are driving me crazy. 
    I will keep you all informed. Hugz

    • Jewels June 1, 2013, 7:34 PM

      Hi Linny,

      I understand that your parents are in town and it’s not a good idea to leave. But YOU KNOW what I am thinking…hmmm, if you took him back the 5th time, what is his incentive not to do it again? He has to feel it, and while you don’t want to get the parents involved and do anything drastic, he should feel some time of different response from you. You can mentally leave the marriage without leaving. He should know things are no ok, and not just by the you saying ‘get it together by the end of the summer’, your actions can send a strong message as well. Take care and I know it’s hard, but enjoy the time with family in town!

      **And your future is not dark – it’s all a matter of perspective, hugs!

  • TTTS June 28, 2013, 2:15 PM

    Wow – I have read all these posts and feel like I could have written excerpts from each and every one. My story started at the end of 2006 I started getting suspicious of my husband’s behavior and his attitude towards me. Him being very technologically unsavvy made it easy for me to do a little checking only to find some hotel rooms charged on his business card and he has a local business, so it’s not like he’s a road warrior, a plane ticket for someone to fly back here to the states from France whilst I was out of town on business, some jewelry expenditures, flowers, etc. And, then checking his voice mail, found some very sexually oriented messages about meeting later for sex acts, one person signing off saying “love you”, another one talking about how she was his favorite. I was flabergasted! Over the years (married 30+years now, but at the time about 26 years) I would occassionally be jealous of his attention to other females. He’d tell them they looked nice, great outfit, you look pretty, etc., but never would I get comments like these. My BF said, “oh the green monster is coming out in you – he loves you more than anything – you’re beautiful and you have no worries. He doesn’t know how good looking he is – he’s just being nice.”
    I confronted him about the hotel bills and what I found out when I called the hotels, they actually gave me names! I was leaving him the night I confronted and he said he’d come clean. At that time he admitted to having two relationships – one with our neighbor!!! She was actually a friend! WAS. Over time, I uncovered more and more names and numbers and very explicit emails. And, each time I confronted him, he called me crazy, imagination running wild, a schitzophrenic (sp), paranoid – even when I had the proof! All in all, there were ten women with whom he was more than friendly. Eventually he admitted to four that he actually had sex with. But I translate that to at least eight. And the ten is probably more like 20 over a 30 year period. One is even a friend he had sex with on a spring break in collegeand still remains in contact with her today!!! Anther one is a religious singer/song writer. I am still waiting for the day to expose her to her fans that she’s been sleeping with a married man! Revenge best served up cold. I also went to the doctor frequently to get tested – nice eh? So, stupid me – right?
    Anyway – I went through hell. No sleep, crying constantly, pathetic attempts at trying to get him to notice me. The verbal abuse, the negativity, the distancing, the constant demeaning was horrible. My friends and family all saw it, but no one really said anything to me. The turning point was when he called me a f—ing spaz (sp) infront of his brother – so I had yet another witness of his abuse. I went to counseling, but he wouldn’t go. Said all they try to do is blame the man and break up marriages! I uncovered even a few more emails even after he said he’d stop and finally, finally on February 11, 2010, I filed for divorce. I told him I was going to do it prior. He came into my office (worked from home at the time) and sat down and said “i’ve been on a slow burn ever since you said you were contacting a lawyer” I said “really – well let me tell you something pal, I’ve been on a slow burn ever since you’ve been f—ing everything east of the Mississippi! Get out of my life once and for all.” A week went by and he came crying, sniveling back to me said he’d been to see a counselor. I said “good – you’re one twisted f—.” He said I want to make this right, I need to make this right, I’ll do anything, I’ll talk to your mom, family, etc. So, I kept the divorce papers coming – told him we’d have to wait until May and see where we stand. Ended up stopping the divorce proceedings because I believed him.

    So, Fast forward – we had a pretty good three years. Couple of setbacks, some suspicions, a phone call/text or two from some of the lovelies and low and behold here we are 2013, and the distant feeling, uncommunicative nature, absolutely no sex or affection whatsoever, snide remarks bordering on mean (not quite to the old level but see next sentence) are back in full swing. Leaving for a “boys” trip, had to take his Viagra with him even though he made a point of telling me he wasn’t going to take it, but found out he snuck it into his luggage later. I confronted him on why did he sneak his viagra into his luggage? HMMM? He said “F— you a thousand times – you create things in your head your paranoid little c—. Yep he’s back…. So, now here I am, three years older and could have started a new life with someone who would respect and love me and at 58, that just gets a little harder and harder to do. Finances are an issue from the standpoint of lots of complicated things. Three years ago I was mentally ready and willing to do whatever it took to be on my own. Now, I’ve got an even more complicated situation. Of course he spews the charm and people have stars in their eyes when they look at him. Did I mention he was extremely handsome and he does in fact know it. So, once again, I’m confused and I’m sad and I’ve got that sick pit in my stomach and can’t eat. I know I have to stay strong and healthy to get through whatever it is I’m going to do. You probably all read this and must think I’m crazy but I’m at yet another crossroads. HELP!

    • Jewels July 3, 2013, 11:13 PM

      Hi TTTS,
      I don’t think you are crazy at all. I do think your husband is playing games. Have you seen a divorce lawyer, most give free consultations. There is something that is causing him to be nervous about your filing. If you are in the US, talk to a lawyer, he can’t leave you out cold with no money after all these years, he just can’t. Just go for yourself so you know what your rights are, you might be surprised. You have put up with so much over the years, cheating over and over, verbal abuse, geez, it is time to be free. I know it can be scary the thought of being alone, but you have to weigh that against how you feel with all the drama constantly, that is no way to live. Go see a lawyer so you know what your rights are, I bet you will get somewhat of an appetite after that meeting. Be empowered, and I hope you start to get your appetite back.

  • Linny July 8, 2013, 1:17 PM

    Hi Jewels: I hope you don’t mind that I post this to TTTS.
    TTTS, we are very close to the same age. I didn’t know people our age could have marriage problems like this – I thought it was only for younger folks,, that is how naive I am! :( My marriage issues began about 3 or 4 years ago too. I think he started a MANapause about then. I just found out he had an “other woman” this past November (2012). I just want you to know – I understand! and I hope you are able continue on with good choices. I am still “working on the relationship”. I understand the magnet that draws us to our husbands even when they are cheaters, and verbal abusers. My husband also calls(called) me paranoid and a schizophrenic only to be found out I wasn’t and there were REAL reasons for that “funky horrible feeling in the pit of my stomach” thing. Today, 8 months and 7 additional lies later (all because of the SAME “other woman”) , we are both in counseling. I started the end of May, and he finally had his first appointment about 10 days ago. (His doctor is out on vacation and has to wait another 2 weeks for the 2nd appointment)! I am hoping his therapy will help him decide one way or the other,,,either commit to me, or not, and quit trying to have it both ways. I am at my final stage. I feel the therapy will help us both, one way or another! I am optimistic, but very guarded, just the same. Oh BTW, TTTS, the OW is my co-worker of 25 years, (I have worked at this facility for 37 years, she has the last 25 years ) and we still work together in a very, very small business! I hate the job I once loved. My boss is begging me to stay and not quit, he knows everything but what can he do? really? What I do depends on the next few months. I am going to take one day at a time,, minute by minute. Good luck TTTS….
    Linny

  • TTTS July 8, 2013, 4:23 PM

    Thanks Linny and Jewels for your comments and support. I hope the counseling will help you Linny and as you say help you one way or another. For me, I’ve been through the counseling the first go-around and it did help and I think it helped him too. It took about a year of counseling with an occassional tune-up, so it can be a very long process.

    I know what you mean about being optimistic but guarded. I felt the same way. I also used to use the phrase, Trust but verify. I think when you have someone in your life that you don’t trust, it creates a huge energy drain because your mind never stops wondering. Your brain is always second guessing.

    Anyway, I will call the attorney I used before. I liked him and trusted him. He was formerly a counselor himself, so he’s got some other perspectives as well.
    Good luck to you Linny as well.

  • Honey Bee July 21, 2013, 10:10 AM

    If you all who have been hurt are not familiar with the 180, get familiar with it. All of these posts are “poor me” posts. Don’t get Me wrong ladies, I know you are in a tough spot but right now some of you have nothing to lose, right? It is time to put your bitch boots on & do the 180 on his ass! The websites survivingInfidelity.com and love shack.org are great sites to learn from. And SI has a lot of people on there who whip their man into shape by doing the 180. Nothing is going to change for any of you until you put your foot down & leave. He knows you will keep forgiving him, and that you will be sitting there waiting for him, so why does he have to change? He won’t! He won’t until you do. Choice is yours.

  • char July 27, 2013, 12:58 PM

    I have just come across this post! Reading all the stories has made me believe it’s not in my head – like my partner thinks. We have a 15month old. Lately he has made me feel very lousy. Everything I say is wrong, I’m lazy because I’m a stay at home mum, and I’m a child because I’m a veggie. This never bothered him before. He says I annoy him, and picks silly arguments – then storms out until 12am! He has stopped helping with baby too! All this in the past couple of weeks, I just wish I knew why. When I ask if he’s met someone he says “why you accusing me, you prob are” when all I do is stay at home 24/7 with baby! Reading this blog has made me see that it’s not me!!

    • Jewels July 30, 2013, 12:51 PM

      Hi Char,
      It is not you. As you can see, I drove myself crazy wondering why I couldn’t do anything right. I honestly think it’s some psychological form of manipulation – let me make you feel bad, because it would be so hard to cheat on a good wife, so what I will do is try to make you look bad so I can justify cheating. It’s sick and honestly I do not think the cheaters doing it have enough thought to really process it this way, but that is what they are doing. And unfortunately, he is playing into that role. He is also playing into the role of accusing you, he is telling on himself by doing this. Be careful, everything will come out in due time. You have a little one that needs you, and unfortunately, without any evidence, he is going to continue to make you look like you are crazy BUT you are not. Take care of yourself, big hug to you!

  • Shirley July 30, 2013, 8:59 PM

    Hi Jewels I am writing to update you that nothing has changed. As a matter of fact they have gotten worst. He is still disrespectful to the point he is just plain old mean to me and my son. I have found out that his family knows about her and she gas been to their homes as well but I am good because I know what needs to be done and I have been putting some things in order to leave. Our youngest child is graduating this year and so my planning to leave will be around this time. My health is much better because I realize why im sick now. I have started TTY o do some things that excite me and im even doing some things to beautify me at his expense lol so when I get back out there I will be fine and sexy lol. See some days are better than others as far as my emotions goes but I don’t blame me for the demise of this marriage. I don’t look for things to argue about, I don’t give him the satisfaction of starting fights to leave, I do everything in my power to look good so that I can have the satisfaction of seeing him sweat. I don’t talk to his family about us because clearly they already know and help him to be unfaithful….I now smile inside because little does he know that he is giving me the power, the will and the drive to beat him at his own little game and I will win. Thanks for this forum and you ladies giving me the strength to make it.

  • Ella August 1, 2013, 11:40 PM

    My H has been having an online affair with his 3rd cousin. He’s turning 63 this year and she’s turning 30. This started 5.5 years ago – what drives me absolutely crazy is the constant denial. “She’s just a friend” or “I don’t care about her” or “She’s no longer on my friends, she’s gone for good (only to be there again in a week or month later).”

    This man has figured out what it takes to keep a young woman interested in him, he has taken at least 3 personal loans behind my back – in order to keep her interested in him. He’s basically buying her attention/affection (so what does that make her? a cyber whore?). She’s in Europe and he of course is in the USA; he has been to see her twice – the first time I went with him on a normal visit to his fatherland. She was married at the time, with a baby only a year old. He and I stopped for a visit with her husband and her (my H had asked me to befriend her and he befriended her H). Cute ha? It didn’t take long for the red flags to go up; he was so proud of his little beauty queen (and she was from her county) – he couldn’t help flaunting it in my face. “Who would have thought that a beauty queen from ___ would be interested in me?” We were working opposite shifts at the time. I’d be leaving for work and he’d get on the computer right away with her. I asked him one time, what do you find to talk about for so many hours every day? He said “we’re just getting to know each other.” I said to him “that’s how people fall in love.” Of course, he’d start saying things like F__ you, or get a life, or “can’t I have any friends?” It just goes on and on. 2.5 years into the relationship, she’s in the middle of a divorce – partially financed by my H – and he gets the urge to visit his fatherland again. I said I’m going you, I requested the time off and was granted the time requested and he makes his flight reservation and drags his heels with mine. I kept asking him, and it was after the third time that I asked him – that I finally said to him “you don’t want me to go, do you?” He said “I don’t want you to go.”

  • Ella August 2, 2013, 12:15 AM

    He went on vacation and left me home, I was miserable by myself at home – time off and no where to go. He spent a couple days with her at the beginning of his trip, then went to visit her mother (who he was also trying to enamour) and I guess the girl found out and she got upset. He was beside himself with apologizing to her, for putting her mother up to lying to her when she called her house – and she told the girl that he wasn’t there. He tells me that the girl’s phone call actually interrupted things from going to the next step with the mother (44 at the time) and him.

    Regarding the mother, he said “I’ve never seen a woman so hot; she was all over me – she was like a puppy.” I interrupted him at about this point in his story and I said “you do realize that you’re telling all these things to your wife, don’t you?” I said this is not something that a man comes home to tell his wife; it’s something he might brag to his friends about.

    He is the most insensitive man, at least where I’m concerned. You’re wondering why I’m still with him right? I feel like it’s too late for me to start over; I was counting on this security to old age. Now, I know that the fact that I don’t leave, doesn’t mean that he won’t eventually leave. Some days, I wish he would just hurry up and leave.

    I have not mentioned that he’s an alcoholic and even though I would like to blame some of this stupid behavior of his to the alcohol – during his sober times (which can be a week, week and a half) he still treats me like crap. He has this look on his face like I’ve done something to offend him. He’s totally clammed up; doesn’t have anything to share with me.

    I have seen some of his emails to her; he tells her how he’s only for her – everything he does is for her – his thoughts and dreams. He tells her that he will always be for her, she has only to ask and she can have whatever she wants or needs. He’s constantly writing her how much he loves her and how beautiful she is. He recently said to me “I love you E.” I said thank you, I said the problem is that you love too many women. “I don’t love anyone else” he says. I said I’ve seen what you write her; how you’re always telling her how beautiful she is. You make it sounds as though, if she wasn’t so beautiful, you wouldn’t love her the way you.

    I said it’s funny how she never says she loves you back. She write him about how she or the little daughter are sick, or how she needs so much money for some dental work that she needs, or she needs a laptop. Needless to say, I don’t believe him anymore when he utters the words “I love you” to me. I actually feel angered because I feel that he is trying to con me again. Often times, during his drunken state, he starts talking about how he’s going to take another trip and that I’m not going with him. Or he’ll say, that I can go, but he has to have a day with her by himself. I tell you, I’ve learned to numb myself for the most part – but there are times when it just gets to me and I let him have a piece of my mind. “When are you going to let this go?” he’ll say. I say back to him, when are you going to let it go? I feel as though, even though we for the most part have stopped communicating, I feel as though this is reaching the end of our union. Where can something like this go from here? He refuses to admit that what he’s done and continues to do is wrong. He actually says that he’s done nothing wrong – simply because he did not get to consummate the relationship. It wasn’t for his lack of trying, that’s for sure. She’s the one that’s calling the shots where that’s concerned.

    Oh, by the way, with me he can’t have normal sex with me anymore – he says the only way he can do it is if I tell him stories of my sexual past (before we met). There was a time, when I was really stupid, and fell in with that – but I’m tired of it and refuse to indulge him anymore. I remind him that he knows everything that there is to know about me already and that he’s heard everything that I had to say at least a dozen times. I like to hear you tell me he says. I think he just likes to control me, manipulate me. What would you all do in a crazy situation like this?

    • Jewels August 3, 2013, 10:56 PM

      Shirley – SO happy to read your update, you are quietly winning girlfriend!! I so remember being in that state, just going along, planning my next steps, and quietly saying ‘screw everyone else’ because once a women makes a mental commitment to leave, no other talking is needed. Keep on moving forward, and keep doing things for YOU!

      Ella - You are giving up alot for the potential security. He is clearly cheating, disrespects you sober or not, and no sex. I know you mentioned you don’t want to start over, but never should you give up your mental health and sanity for potential security. Ironically it’s seems like staying is risky. What’s security if you are miserable? Just take some time to really think the situation through and educate yourself on your options, you never know, you mind have more options than you think overall.

  • Ella August 4, 2013, 11:06 PM

    Hi Jewels – thank you for your thoughts about my situation; I appreciate you taking the time. You’re right, the security I talked about is only “a potential security.” Nothing in our lives is guaranteed; I guess that’s why there are so many divorces. I was trying to hold on to “til death do us part.” I talked to a lawyer 4.5 years ago and she put me off with the $2000 that she needed right away to start working for me. She saw my hesitation and said “it doesn’t seem like you’re sure you want to do this.” I said, I’m hoping that he’ll stop doing what he’s doing and realize how crazy this all is. I was hoping at the time that we’d fix what was wrong with our marriage and that he’d vow to never hurt me again and that’d we’d have our lives back. But he’s refused to give her up, all these years. She lives with her new boyfriend and my stupid H is still totally hung up on her. He has spent so much on her, her mother, and the child – my own mother has never cost him – even 1/12th of what these 3 have cost him in 5.5 years. Nothing is too much for these women. He never sends less than $500 at a shot. It’s all so freaking weird. When a woman finds out about her H buying perfume for another woman; expensive jewelery, electronics. Early in the relationship, I found a picture that he’d taken and sent to her – he’d written on freshly fallen snow – the words “I love you J___.” I was so devastated when I saw that. I was really falling apart when all this was first unraveling.

  • Samantha from USA August 23, 2013, 10:09 AM

    Hi Everyone, all of your stories truly make me feel better. Back in January I found out that my husband of 7 years was having an emotional affair at work. He said that by me finding out it made him feel closer to me since he realized what he was going to lose. So he claimed he was going to stop all communication (except for meetings) with her. People at his job were even talking about them and speculating that they were having an affair. He told her in one of his texts that he felt like a teenager again and it was exciting and couldnt wait to hear from her. I also saw a text that he said this is crazy and they should not be talking anymore and she said “so you are mad at me” and he said “no, you know how I feel about you”. They talked for several months from the minute they woke up until the time they went to sleep. During that time he would complain to me how busy and stressed he was at work. He also treated me exactly how everyone has stated. He would take a little issue such as what I made for dinner and turn it into a huge fight that would end in him saying I didnt understand him and he doesnt need this from me. At first I would get upset but after a while I decided to just ignore him and not talk back since it always ended in a pointless fight. I thought he was stressed at work and taking it out on me. Then when I found out he was talking to another woman, it made sense. I realized that he was stressed since his image at work was going to crap and he didnt know how to act with me at home since he had a connection with someone else. So the only way he was able to deal with his guilt was to make up reasons (such as dinner) that we were not good together. Then time went by and I thought he was going to do the right thing which was hard for me to believe since he worked with this woman. Now 8 months later he started his stressing out talk and fighting with me again. Right away I thought about him talking to that girl but I had no proof this time. So I just monitored his erratic behavior. Then we went out with another couple several weeks ago and he confided in his friend about this woman and told him how he felt like a teenager. So obviously its still on his mind and my instincts were right that he still holds feelings for her. I truly believe that it is hard for him since he is emotionally involved with someone else but yet does not want to give up this great lifestyle that we have built. We have a 3 and 1 year old as well as a very nice home that we worked hard for. I also found out that he is looking at porn every day and not wanting to be intimate with me. So during the past month I have been working out, eating healthy, staying clear of him and taking care of my kids. He never once noticed that I lost weight, dyed my hair or got my nails done. But yet he will point out to me some hot chick on tv. It is so frustrating and I have not been able to find the time to bring this up to him since every day there is something going on or someone coming over. I am hoping to say something this sunday or monday. I am truly sick to my stomach and just wish this would be out so I can move forward with myself and children.

  • MB August 28, 2013, 10:32 AM

    Yes, this is usually one of the “symptoms” of a possible affair. My ex started being verbally/emotionally abusive and I knew he was cheating on me.

    My current husband of 4 years may or may not be cheating, but I really have no way of being sure. All I can say is that his attitude has changed somewhat…he is more distant, sometimes gives me the silent treatment, and is critical about little things (like me leaving a napkin on the kitchen counter, for example). He doesn’t talk to me much anymore. He doesn’t show interest in me sexually except when he feels like it. And the other night, he made a very cryptic remark out of the blue, telling me: “you don’t have to fight”. I am puzzled by that comment, because we don’t fight very often and I’m not the type of wife who nags/complains constantly. It was so weird.

    It can be difficult to tell the reason for this behavior since I’m not around him all the time. I’ve wondered if there could be somebody else. If so, chances are it could be a person he knows very well. But who? If he is having an affair, he has been successful in hiding it from me.

  • Noelle August 30, 2013, 5:28 PM

    I’m 47 and have been married 19 years …I found out about my husbands first affair 5 years ago. It had gone on for two years. He actually confessed it to me ..I was shocked and hurt as I had no idea. He ended it and we got counselling. Never really got over it (don’t think you ever can) . I just found out a few weeks ago that he was having another affair. This time I found out and confronted him. I would have bet my life that he wouldn’t have done this too me again after he saw how much he hurt me the first time. I don’t know what to do. Can a marriage work after a second affair? He’s agreed to individual counselling and I am currently getting counselling. I’m so scared, sad and confused. Would like to know if anyone has had a similar experience.

    • Jewels August 31, 2013, 8:24 AM

      Samantha/MB/Noelle

      Hi Samantha,
      It’s so hard to look a man in the face that you love, knowing he has feelings for someone else, especially with two young kids, my heart goes out to you. I know you are sick to your stomach, because he sees this person everyday at work, so him going to work is a reminder of the affair. Plus he watches porn and isn’t intimate with you – geez!! I am getting mad/sad just typing this. I was late in reading this so let me know if you had the conversation. One thing I will tell you, I am glad you got in shape and look great, but the reason that is not working is because it’s not that your looks caused him to stray. He made a decision to stray, and that has nothing to do with you!! Read that again – he made a decision to stray and get into porn, that has nothing to do with you! So you can continue to look great, but that is not going to make him stop his behavior.
      I know and understand all too well when you have built up a life together and it’s a great one, but a relationship should not be this miserable. You should feel loved. And I don’t think you really addressed the cheating with the lady at work, too many open doors and questions. Either way, you will get through this, take care, and keep me posted.

      MB,
      It’s hard to tell sometimes. You just have to have conviction that if something is happening that you will find out exactly when you need to, the game of searching and investigating if he is cheating is exhausting. If something feels off, call him on it, ask him about it. If the sex is off, talk about it. If he gets upset, ask him about it. The answers he gives will give you more insight, but don’t stress over it, you will get the answer to the question without much effort.

      Noelle,
      My husband cheated and I was devastated, he knew it. He said it was over and months later I found out he was still cheating. I said the same thing, he knew how devastated I was, and he continued to cheat. It’s a hard pill to swallow. I know you asked about cheating the second time around and recovery, but you first have to ask. Do you want to continue being married? If so, why? I will be honest, recovering after the second affair is extremely hard. If you stay, the husband things you will never leave, so they might continue. That’s the big problem with staying after the second time. I would evaluate what steps were taken last time it happened. And put your husband on the spot? Tell him the second time is not acceptable, in your eyes it’s over. Tell him that if he wants to stay married, he can try to repair, but that would be all on him to do, and even if he does step up, you can not confirm that you will stay. Make him feel it, make him work and see what he does.

  • Shirley September 2, 2013, 4:55 PM

    Well my husband has finally left me for the other woman and I’m not as upset about it as I am hurt. He didn’t even have the balls to tell me was leaving either…I just woke up one day and his clothes and shoes has secretly slipped out of the house and his work nights went from coming home to just leaving me all together. He still pays the bills because he should until I can get on my feet. I ignore his phone calls and I make sure to find myself busy as not to get depressed. I’m not saying it’s all gravy over here and I’m sooo happy because I’m not! I’m just accepting whatever God allows. I have not slept with him bc sex confuses things for me. I’m nice to him even tho I have days when I wanna beat the hell out of him. I feel more in touch with myself now moreso than ever because I’m not so angry all the time. I still love my husband because 23 years with a person is not easy to get over but I had to just let him go in my heart. I’m gonna give her and him what they THINK THEY WANT and I’m gonna work some more on me! Here’s what I have now..peace of mind, joy, more laughter than tears, strength even tho I feel weak, triumph and not tragedy, more well days than sick days…I haven’t been sick in 6 months…anyhoo I don’t know today what is gonna happen with us but I DO KNOW ABOUT ME…i’m gonna keep praying and obeying God’s word for me and I think I’m getting to a point of whatever his will is for my life I have to accept it because I deserve to be happy too! Oh and I have learned how to cook some of the best food you can eat, My physical appearance is just unbelieveably hot, I smile all the time because my teeth are whitened lol, I had a breast reduction so now my new wardrobe is amazing and I have gotten off into wigs so the colors and styles vary…I always look hot when I know he’s coming to bring that cash and purposely post pictures on Facebook and Instagram so his behind can see what he is missing at home. Sorry this is sooo long I was updating that everything is gonna be okay!

    • Jewels September 5, 2013, 10:21 PM

      Hi Shirley,

      Well it seems like you feel like a weight has been lifted. You are doing things for you, and getting back to feeling good. I know everyday is not perfect but you keep on moving toward better, happier, everyday, what a great update, thanks!

  • Tamy2litle September 7, 2013, 12:32 AM

    I’m married to a man that has always been gruff and rude. One day this man turned into the equivalent of a 3 year old having a temper tantrum that just been handed a kitten or puppy. My point is that any change in the personality is a strong signal. Right before my eyes he turned into husband of the year, I knew something was up and sure enough he was cheating. So you ladies that have a naturally gruff man, look out for the creepy new kindness. Good luck to us all.

  • Rocky September 12, 2013, 2:23 AM

    Ok ladies – now for a man’s perspective. I have not yet cheated on my wife, but I am seriously moving closer. We have been married for over 13 years, during our dating and the first few years of our marriage other women could not even hold a candle to my wife. My wife would always stir the pot of passion. She would touch me when we were watching movies, or driving, or out to dinner, you get the idea. A lot.
    It didn’t always lead to sex because I’m kinda strange I guess. I just enjoyed her hands on me. Then she stopped. Yeah I know all about how life gets in the way. At first I didn’t give it much thought, that life thing. Then I realized I was the one always initiating intimacy. After a while I began to feel like she was just patronizing me because “it was her duty”.

    For the past few years I have mentioned to her how I felt – that I felt our marriage was heading down a dangerous path and I felt ignored. She would respond by immediately having sex, then the next day we would be right back to where we had been. Recently during one of our continuous discussions as to why I am unhappy, I told her I had made a pass at a woman we both know. Her response was “Oh”, like I had just told her we were out of milk, not the kind of “Oh” of surprise or shock.

    I give her hugs, kisses, massage her neck from time to time and still I’m left holding willy. Yes she will have sex any time I want, but I kind of want more than just flopping on your back, legs spread in a ‘come and get it’ mentality. I want to make love for an hour not 10 minutes.

    Oh yeah, the other woman didn’t actually shoot me down, but she didn’t encourage me either. So I agonize about what to do.

    Maybe there is nothing I can do and my wife knows this so she is not concerned. On one of our daily hikes I asked her why she didn’t seem upset with the news I had told her. She never responded. So here I sit – married, but alone.

    • Jewels September 15, 2013, 3:54 AM

      Hi Rocky,

      Your story is very, very common. Several men have contacted me with this dilemma, saying they don’t want to cheat, but the feeling of rejection or always initiating gets to a point of being unbearable. It happened in my own marriage, lack of sex was a factor in his infidelity.

      Here is the thing I did not understand at the time that I now know – Sex is really really really really important. Most women don’t really understand the magnitude of sex in marriage and/or how men process of lack of engagement in sex.

      If I would of known it was that serious, I would of handled the situation differently.

      At the same time, I wish my husband would of handled the situation differently. I wish he would of been brutally honest with me and said “I know we have discussed the issue of sex, and now it’s getting serious. I almost cheated on you. I don’t want to cheat, but as a man, I do not know how to handle and process your lack of interest in sex. I need you to help me with this.”

      That comment would of woke me up. I know it’s uncomfortable saying that, I know it’s brutally honest, but I would of rather my husband say that than cheat behind my back. Because cheating opens up another can of worms. When you cheat, you will never look at your wife the same way, you will always compare, which is not good.

      Be blunt, and if you tell her this and she say “oh’ or doesn’t react to it, something else is going on with her, because that would not be a normal response to such a statement. Hang in there, don’t cheat!

  • Leigh September 15, 2013, 9:44 AM

    Rocky,
    Amen to Jewels. Be blunt and get it out in the open!!! If my ex (divorced July 2013) of 18 years had been upfront with me about the “sex cliff” he was in, I would have at dropped everything and addressed the issue immediately, since I loved him with all my heart. I had been undergoing many emotional things (my mom ill in a nursing home, family problems, money issues on my back). Even with my own issues, my marriage and my husband meant everything to me. I sadly found out my ex’s “omitting” his sexcapades too late. I feel they stemmed from his selfishness, believing that “omitting the truth is not lying” because “I never asked, so he never lied.” What a way to justify cheating, right? Well, my ex is an ex-Marine who figured the marriage vows didn’t apply to the MAN–that was OK because he was the strong leader–the provider who didn’t believe in counseling for something that was “my fault” and the affairs that were “in my head” and called them “close friendships”! My two cents to every guy out there is–have enough respect for your spouse, whether it’s 18 years of marriage with kids like me, or 1 year of marriage, respect your spouse enough to tell the truth. No matter the outcome, you can both figure out the best path–the path each of you truly wants deep down. Another bit of advice–the truth ALWAYS comes out. My ex was so confident that I’d never find out that he became sloppy with his communication. If he had been honest about things, I wouldn’t be so angry and resentful to this day. I believe we would have handled he divorce and kids differently if I hadn’t been betrayed. I believe in “live and let live” so I would have found a way to let him go with great sadness, but not feeling so betrayed. I’m sorry that I got carried away writing about myself, but at least I hope you get the message that TRUTH above all! Don’t wait until AFTER you’ve cheated. Try to save your marriage before you break your vows. You may very well have the opportunity to make your marriage work. You may find a way to reconnect and keep the all important vows you made to someone you love. Don’t give up without a fight; keep the truth in the forefront. I hope your wife listens to you and that you both can regroup before you actually go outside of the marriage. If you truly love her, give her the gift of honesty for both your sakes. I wish you good luck and strength to do the right thing for both of you.
    Jewels,
    Your posts keep me sane. Thank you for helping so many of us–the lost souls.

  • Alexa September 16, 2013, 8:52 AM

    Hi, everyone. I’m Alexa. I am single, but I am not here for me, but for my sister. Just a while ago my sister found out through Facebook that her husband is cheating on her with a 16-year-old student. Her husband’s a high school teacher, and my sister said her husband took the girl to a motel. Before this incident my sister also saw a naked picture of his colleague on his phone. I am so heartbroken for my sister. They have a one-year-old child. Please tell what I can do for my sister :(

    • Jewels September 20, 2013, 6:57 AM

      Hi Alexa,

      You are so thoughtful and caring to think about your sister in this time. My sister was amazing during my journey and your question caused me to think about why she was so instrumental in that time in my life. So here are two suggestions. First, listen to her. Let her pour her heart out to you, without judgment. Let her know that you are there for her, no matter what. It’s such a taboo topic cheating and it’s hard for many to talk about because people are so judgmental. Let her know that you will be there and support her in whatever route she decides to take. It is already embarrassing to share this with family, so no matter what she tells you, try not to overreact. I stayed with my husband for over a year and my sister never judged me, she knew that she did not know everything and therefore did not judge. She was not happy with me staying, but she never pushed me to leave. BUT the moment I left, she was there helping to pack. Which is my next point. If you live close to her, help her with the 1 year old, it’s extremely hard to deal with cheating and also raise a small child. Your sister probably does not get much sleep these days. She is probably very unstable mentally and might have trouble with just basic tasks. Taking the baby while she gets a break will be so helpful to her at this time.

      As far as you actual sister, she is in for an emotional couple of months, and unfortunately, there is nothing that you can say or do to prevent her from going through what I call the devastation period. It’s during the first few months after you find out and it’s hell. You can’t eat, you can’t sleep. And the best thing for her is to know it’s a stage, it will have an end, and she will move to the next part of this emotional journey. The key is for her to know she will get through it. Her husband is doing (or did) something that is illegal, so it is a very sensitive topic and issue, especially being a teacher. I hope she has someone to talk to. If she can afford therapy that would be great. She can contact me from the site or send me a personal email anytime. Just be there for her. Take care!

  • Rocky September 18, 2013, 3:19 AM

    Jewels & Leigh, Thank you for your insight.
    Although I did not use those exact words earlier this year, I did say something similar. We had come back from a charity dinner and I said that I felt our marriage was in serious trouble as there was no passion between us. I asked for her to please help me relight the fire because I do not know how to do it on my own. Result – in short she suggested sex right then, but it felt too much like patronizing to me and I have been living with too much of that lately, so I said not now. Next day, it was like I had said nothing.
    The second talk we had was after I told her I had made a pass at our mutual friend X (well no longer my friend, X was rather angry with my approach and said she wanted nothing to do with me). My wife and I talked for a while. I told her things were getting so bad I had approached X. I also pointed out to my wife that we had this same discussion several times over the past four years and each time it seems to fall on deaf ears. I told her that she seems to want nothing more than your typical ‘sitcom’ marriage. Like I’m supposed to no longer want sex and only supposed to want to sit on the couch with a beer in one hand and the other hand tucked in my pants. I also told her that was not acceptable.
    Still nothing. She seems content just the way things are.
    Once, I even told my wife I was looking for a mistress. She told me to make sure it was someone she would approve of and who was free of disease.
    It’s like she has no concern over my actually succeeding.

    Thanks for listening – I suppose the wife is right and this is just the way it will be.

  • Leigh September 18, 2013, 6:21 AM

    Rocky,
    I am so sorry. You did the right thing by being truthful about your feelings. There has to be more than meets the eye with your wife. I can’t imagine any woman who truly loves and wants to stay married to a man telling him to get a mistress! The more I think about your situation, the more I see some similarities to my own marriage. My ex wanted sex all the time, and I was “unable to accommodate” many times for quite a long period. The birth of two kids, an ailing mother, work…all contributed to slowly developing a gap in intimacy. If I am honest, I know that I resented him for putting his efforts toward his work/outside activities and practically no effort to do the things that women need, such as holding hands, kissing, hugs. I resented him for wanting sex “between his activities” such as working on the computer at home (now I know his “computer work” was sex hook-up/porn sites), and between football/baseball games. He basically wanted “quickies” at convenience, without any foreplay or effort to connect on an emotional level. This made me feel more and more distance between us. I believe he should have been honest, like you were, instead of proceeding with his Internet hook-ups and maintaining the 12-yr affair with a “sympathetic” young co-worker he was supposedly “mentoring.”
    In your case, you have been doing all the right things, in my opinion, to be truthful about your feelings. If your wife’s emotions have changed to the point that she recommends a mistress, that is very serious. I can’t imagine her reasons, but there must be some. It would be helpful for her to explore her own feelings perhaps with a counselor who can help her sort out why she feels this way. Like I said before, giving up without seeking help is not good. Maybe she is too stressed, overwhelmed, resentful, distracted by everyday events. These are things that she should address. Your end your post with “I suppose the wife is right,” but not if it makes you miserable. The marriage is between two people who should agree on things like this and it sounds like you are “settling” in the situation. As a woman who lost her marriage, I don’t think it is right to just settle. It took me 2 long years to admit to myself that I couldn’t handle my ex’s “young friend” in the picture. It ate away at me, as I tried to live with him (he lived in the basement at that point) and the marriage eroded to the climax of divorce. I couldn’t stand the emotional toll, even for what I thought was “the sake of the children,” as he said. Don’t drag it forever without at least trying to get her help to figure out why she is acting this way. I hope my post doesn’t suggest that your wife is a bad person. Women have so many underlying issues sometimes that they can make a man’s head spin. We sometimes keep our “real” feelings inside for many reasons — sometimes the reasons are rational, sometimes they’re not.
    Well, I do wish you well. It sounds like you really care about your wife and would be happy staying with her, if only the situation improves. I hope you get the same benefit that I do from writing and reading these posts. For me, they make me think more honestly about my own feelings, instead of always trying to concentrate on someone else’s, like I did with my ex, which eventually brought pretty deep resentment. One spouse can’t carry all the burden of a problem. It takes two people, willing to work to fix it. At least you’ve taken your step. Take care.

    • Jewels September 19, 2013, 2:58 PM

      Rocky,

      I agree with all the comments Leigh has said. Seems like something else is going on. Although there are women that I have interacted with that are ok with their husband stepping outside of the marriage, as long as they do not know anything about it. It seems like your wife may be that way? Ask her again just to confirm. Talk about that comment she made. Tell her you want to explore that because you really need to understand what she is saying when she says ‘Just make sure she would approve and free of disease.’ That should not be a ‘ok, good night’ type of thing, that should be a full discussion. And if she gives you boundaries and you go within those boundaries, that is between you and her, and as a married couple that is your decision to make together. Secretly I am glad that friend turned down your advances, messing with friends is a dangerous game you do not want to play. It seems like both of you do not want divorce (correct?), and have worked hard at the relationship. There has to be a middle ground that is better than cheating. Be more blunt around your sexual needs because you have to get to the root of what is going on. She might not care or act like she doesn’t care because like Leigh said something else is going on. But if that is the case as the wife she should open up and share how she is feeling so that you do not interpret her actions as rejection. You are doing well with being open with her, at the same time I understand how over time no changes can be challenging. Try talking to her with a different angle. There are many solutions to this problem versus cheating. Ask her more questions around sex to get a feel for her appetite, the more you can unlock information from her, the better position you will be in. Take care!

  • Fedup September 30, 2013, 10:11 AM

    My situation is different it started two months after our marriage, where it seemed my husband starting revealing to me that he was bi-sexual and seeing another woman. Sounds crazy, well the whole thing was. He began seeming to get to close to guys, giving them gifts of his, sneaking and calling to meet them for drinks at night instead of having sex with me. These guys were straight guys but I don’t think they realized what was going on. There girlfriends started getting fed up with my husband hogging all the time of their men. When they were around he would completely ignore me, sometime just abandon me with no ride home. We went on dates and he’d look for men to talk to and again ignore me completely. Then suddenly he kept abandoning me at work while I was pregnant. Not giving me a ride. One day I guess he decided to come clean and drove me to her house. Well she admitted to having some kind of affair with him and he remains silent. She drugged me and I think he knew. So far two attempted he made to cheat on me would be stopped by me suddenly showing up. Actually catching him with women and his single friends on dates. Once at our house! He continued to flirt with men and go out of town with men and not tell me, be gone for days without notice. I got fed up raising out daughter while he treated me this way so I told him I wanted an open relationship and was going to see someone else if he kept doing it. He didn’t care, cause he wanted his lifestyle and time with the other woman. So I started seeing an x boyfriend just as friends only but I told him I would since he didnt want a committed relationship anymore. Well the girl he was seeing marrieds his boss. He spent a week sad and abandoned me as we lost our place at no fault to us, he left me to take care of our child by myself. I started a real relationship with my x then who took me in. Well once my husband got over the other woman marrying someone else he begged for me back. I broke it off with x, moved back in believing him. Well again I would catch him on a hook up with another woman, and a friend. I still didn’t see anyone. Then he started disappearing acts again and flirting with guys. Now that he has let himself go and is pushing fifty and all the guys want nothing to do with him he wants me to stay with him. All the time I was within he controlled everything to. I told him that now I do not know if I want a marriage with him now. He forced me to have an open relationship with him since he would not stop running around on me and absndong me for men all the time and women. He doesn’t consider emotional affairs with men, cheating and he won’t share what he did with the woman but won’t deny he was with them. He expect me to stay with him inspite of that and for me to apologize and feel bad for seeing someone after he made our relationship open with his cheating. I told him flat out that he kept running out on me and being with that woman I was going to see someone to, he said ” I don’t care, I want u to leave me alone, she needs me.” I begged for him and went looking for him and he still he didn’t care. So I saw someone else. He sees nothing wrong in what he did buy cursed me out for seeing someone after he did. Two wrong dont make a right but at least I told him what I was going to do and I’m no longer in a committed relationship with him since he is not in one with me.he wanted to see other people and didnt want me to once I found out. He thinks by not telling what they did, he is in the clear. He keeps their relationship history a secret from me. Now I do not know if I want to be with him anymore. Most likely I will not very soon.

    • Jewels October 2, 2013, 11:11 PM

      Hi Fedup,

      I am glad you are Fedup, this guy is not worth your time, too many games and lies and drama. Seems like he wants men and women, I am not sure why he wanted to get married if he wanted to play all these games. Not right to tell you he likes men as well after the marriage and child- geez. And an open relationship is based on trust. It doesn’t work if a person is cheating behind someone’s back because the trust is already gone.

      There are just way too many red flags. I know you have a child with him, but really think about how you can be at peace and get back to a normal lifestyle without the drama and lies.

  • Vicki October 14, 2013, 3:57 PM

    Hi, 20 years ago my husband cheated. It was a horrible ordeal. At the time we had three small children, 5-year-old twins and one 4, all girls. He had taken them on an outing and when they got back, one of the girls told me that Daddy kissed another lady. It was horrible. Even had the nerve to ask me who I believed, him or a little kid. He did the treating my like crap thing to justify his affair. Eventually, it ended and we moved on, but there is a lot of aftermath, to include the girls feeling horrible about what happened. He has never really apologized and even went so far as a few years ago to tell me that he thought it had helped our marriage!

    Fast forward…he works in another city and state than I work and live in so we IM every morning and talk every evening on the phone. Two weeks after our 25th wedding anniversary, I IM him from work to say good morning. He attacked me by IM but very cryptically so I could not at first figure out what he meant, saying he was dealing with “issues.” I asked, “What issues?” He said, “Well, I can see this is getting nowhere. We’ll talk later.” Huh?? I know we have some family issues that need taking care of, but we were okay yesterday and today we’re not? Later that evening on the phone, he ripped into me about how I didn’t do what he would have expected on our anniversary and how we don’t have sex, and I give him no attention, and I don’t visit him (that’s an economic issue). He was downright mean, just mean to the point I was speechless. He used my speechlessness to tell me that I get quiet when I know I’ve screwed up. He pretty much said he didn’t know about our relationship anymore. This a simplistic explanation of events, as writing about our family situation would take forever and a day here. He does have some legitimate concerns and I have baggage from the affair 20 years ago, but to me, nothing that can’t be worked on, but difficult because we are 2000 miles apart. This is solely and economic issue. So we come to some sort of an agreement that I would try harder (?) and the meanness seemed to calm for the next two or so days. I call him one evening and there it is again. The same hateful thoughts coming at me. He admitted he knew I didn’t call to hear all of that again and we hung up amicably.

    Fast forward….two more weeks. Wait for it…..he’s going on a trip with the guys from work (whom he has always told me he does not care for) on a trip to New Orleans for a few days. This is very uncharacteristic for him. He does not go on trips with the guys and he is not a sports minded type. As the day grew closer, he said he would call me before they left. He did, said they were leaving, all was okay, no meanness. Needless to say I stopped hearing from him at all, which is also very uncharacteristic. I told my grown daughter that I had not heard from her father for two days and that I was worried. She texted him. He then texted me not to worry, that he was doing some shopping and “dealing with issues.” I asked, “Our issues?” He said by text, “You know what they are.” He has not voluntarily contacted me at all, which is also very uncharacteristic for a guy who wants communication morning and evening — until now. He will not answer my phone calls. Said by text that he would be home Monday evening, late, and we would talk then.

    I have that familiar sick feeling, and I know I’m right, but no way to prove it. I”m too far away unless I hire someone I can’t afford. I have no clue if he is going to try to lie, ask for a divorce, is hoping that with this behavior I will initiate divorce, or what. I can’t go to where he is because I don’t have the money or I would be there now. When I get really stressed, especially with this type of thing, I cannot eat. It’s been four days and I’ve lost a couple of pounds.

    Maybe in his sick thinking that the previous affair helped our marriage, that he would try it again. To make things worse, he is a clinical psychologist. He is very adept at making one feel like it is their fault and not his so at first, it’s like you want to say you’re sorry for screwing up. It’s only after when you have time to think about it that there is the “aha” moment.

    Really, I think he created the argument BEFORE carrying out the affair to justify him even thinking about it in the first place and setting me up to be the bad guy. After all, if I’m the horrible person he says I am, then he SHOULD have an affair. It’s perfectly justifiable (in his mind).

    I have stood by him in some pretty awful times when I probably should not have and have babied his neediness. (Example: If I forget to bring him a fork at dinnertime, he would take it personally, telling me I don’t care about him.) He’s like that with everything. Very needy emotionally. It’s not like everything I do is meant to hurt him. It’s like that.

    He will not go to counseling. (Why should I? I’m a psychologist myself.)

    I think I have been depressed since the first affair and have never really come to terms with it and my behavior has probably showed it over the years. I have changed lots of things about myself, but it never seems to be enough. Sigh….

    • Jewels October 17, 2013, 3:58 AM

      Hi Vicki,
      Marriages are already tough. Long distant marriages are really difficult. Long distance marriage with a history of cheating is extremely difficult.
      Very, very common for a man to start nit-picking at you and making you feel like the worst wife so that he can be easy in his mind about cheating. Like I said in the post, it’s hard to cheat on a good wife, but one who is bad, easy to justify. And he literally will make up things and pick fights to make his mind easier. It is a very selfish posture to have.
      The way you describe the ‘trip’ one would think he would be cheating. His change in behavior was too obvious.
      Vicki, do you want to be with your husband? It’s been twenty years, your kids are grown. Are you still there because it’s comfortable or you really want to be in the marriage? These are questions you have to ask yourself. If he is not willing to go to counseling, lives far away…how is this relationship serving you?
      That may be why you may of felt that you never really got over it the first time. You put your needs on the back burner accepting a situation that does not serve you, but serves others. Our bodies do not respond well to that type of situation. It’s time for you to really explore Vicki. At the end of the day, you can not control him nor are you responsible for his actions, he is a grown man and no matter what little mind games he plays, the fact is he has to live with his actions, not you. He has to live with the consequences of what he has/is doing, not you. It’s not your job. Your job is to respond in a way that best serves you. And once you start responding to this situation in a way that best serves you, your appetite will return and everything will get back in alignment. I don’t eat either when I am extremely stressed so I know exactly how you feel. What I realized is that I lose my appetite when I try to control the actions of others, and they are not doing what I expect. My body is not equipped to handle trying to worry about or force actions with others. There was a time I wanted my husband to feel bad for cheating, I wanted him to fight for the marriage, I wanted him to tell me how sorry he was. Lost my appetite because I was trying to force something that was not in my power to control. Once I let go of those emotions, never had appetite problems since. Hang in there!

  • bridgette November 23, 2013, 11:27 PM

    Hello alll…..these posts have hit me in the gut. I guess the guilty one loves pointing the finger… I have been with my husband since I was 12 years old. On and off of course. I am 40 and he is 43. We married in 2007… I believe his erratic behavior started up in 2012…he leaves me and our 3 children for 3-4 days and not call or answer my calls… it hurts and is very hurtful… I filed for divorce in june but backed out cuz I dont believe in divorce… but when is enough .. enough… since march of 2013… he goes away 2-3 days in row about 4 times out of the month.. Im fed up and I hate the the kids sees this… im so hurt and keep asking God what to do… I dont have any money to move out…. i wanna leave his house soooo badly because the atmosphere thereis unhealty for me n children. I dont undrtstand, how. can a man treat his wife so badly knowing i car for our children, I work, i take kids to school, i pick them up, i feed them, i do everything…. how can this be… that he treats me like TRASh and the bottom of his shoe…… please pray for me and my family.. especially the kids caught up in this…

    • Jewels November 24, 2013, 8:20 PM

      Hi Bridgette,

      You mention a concept that many of us women fall into. We can be amazing moms, great lovers and sacrifice out entire lives for our men. We falsely think that because we do so much that our men will not cheat, and that is incorrect. You can be the best women in the world, if a person decides to cheat, they will cheat. I think for you it’s time to self-assess where you are and what your options are. And most importantly if you really want to leave or not, you might not be in the place to leave and that is ok. But it is important to figure out what your next steps will be, so that you would not be stuck in the ‘limbo’ stage. Take care!

  • tired December 4, 2013, 1:08 AM

    hello bridgette,
    it is so true what jewels has said. We could be the best woman and wife and we do everything for them. But that does not stop them. For years I have turned the other years until a year and a half ago when decided to find out about his affairs. The satisfaction that i have is that my daughter are independent and know that i have everything for them.

  • allalone December 18, 2013, 6:46 PM

    I just caught my husband a few weeks ago at another women’s house. The night I caught him he was so cold towards me. The next day he said he’s sorry that he loves me and wants to be with me. I’m having a very hard time getting through all this and trying to figure out how something like this could happen. He keeps telling me how sorry he is and that he loves me. We’re trying to work on us. My issue is that now he is very insecure always calling me constantly throughout the day. I can’t stop thinking about him being with her. I love him so much it hurts so bad that he could do something to hurt me this bad. I have been having a hard time getting the thought of him being with someone else out of my mind. I’m not ready to give up on us. He has been way overly compassionate and caring. Is it possible to move on together after he’s caused all this pain.

    • Jewels December 23, 2013, 8:48 AM

      Allalone,

      Yes it is possible to get through this, but many factors are involved, the most important one being your husband. I understand that he is compassionate and calling you often, but that is not going to save the marriage. Hard work on his part will be helpful. He cheated, now he needs to take charge and fix things. He needs to set up therapy, rebuild trust, be open and honest. It takes a huge effort. And that is just on the saving the marriage part. You will go through your own journey of healing as well as you learn to deal with this level of pain and betrayal. Hang in there.

  • Michelle48 January 8, 2014, 8:13 PM

    I was in the same situation as many people who posted on this website. About 10 months ago my husband left after being caught in an affair with a 20 something co worker. Married almost 20 years and we have one son. We had an average marriage but I truly lived this man, moved around the world for him. Waited patiently while he was deployed often with the Military. I was devastated when he left and discarded us, his loving family. I went through many stages of betrayal, anger, grief and sadness. Now I am at a point if acceptance and I am recovering and doing great. I filed for divorce in July of last year. It was the best decision I ever made. I will not let someone disrespect me in this way and also I will not show my son that it is ok to chest and betray and get away with it. I might lose all material assets but money in the world is worth staying with a cheater. And yes, the minute they think about bring unfaithful, your marriage and relationship is over. If someone truly lived you and respects you, they put you ahead of their desires. Only weak cowards blame others. My soon to be ex claimed all kinds of excuses to justify his selfish actions. One time I was “mentally ill” or “crazy” in order for him to feel better. I used to hate the other woman/co worker. I now owe her so much. I am do thankful for her to take my place. I don’t have to worry about bring lied to, cheated on and then being discarded anymore. It’s all done and over with. He can do it to her now. A man who cheats will always cheat. A narcissist who chests will manipulate you do you think it’s your fault. It feels great to have my freedom, my sanity and my peace back. Good luck to everyone and my advise is “stay strong, leave the cheater and the future Lois bright”. I know because I have been there.

  • Trisha May 15, 2014, 6:53 PM

    I have heard this before. And parts are, fantasy vs reality.But what of those affairs with a woman with children, who cooks cleans and lives a modest life with him as well but differently. What of those affairs when he chooses the similar life with the OW who has a greater ability for patience, who still looks like she did before she had her children (not meaning weight but appearence)

    A lot of men chose different because women do change, men by nature do not. If he was lazy before he remains so. As we get the ring we decide to switch to what is acceptable and not. We decide he isnt cute when he does that anymore and that he should be something he wasnt to begin with. The OW makes it easy because she isnt comparing him to what she wants. And typically now a day these women are of an entirely different breed. They have no desire to ‘mold a man’. She finds what she likes, and doesn’t hold on to the dislikes because they dont matter.

    It is never okay to cheat. I am just wondering what of the women who are not fantasies? Recognizing that women are not taking your men, men are choosing other women is the first step to determining the moment you have grown so far apart, that he is a stranger to you, and you to him and when is that moment to let go. I would never stay with a cheater. They don’t stop, and a woman I know husband cheated. She spoke a tale of woe and how she claimed her marriage back. He still cheats on her to this day!

    • Jewels May 20, 2014, 12:51 AM

      Trisha,
      Very interesting perspective, thanks for sharing. Let me clarify what I mean when I say ‘fantasy’. If I could only engage my ex-husband, once or twice a week, when the kids are not with me, have time to put on make up and look amazing when he is around, which would be once or twice a week – we would probably still be married. That is so easy to do. And yes, mother with kids is even better because you are busy as well, this is why there is a growing trend of married women cheating with married men, they both get it. But this is where I say ‘fantasy’. You can never compare the other woman with a married woman. The married woman has to clean, cook, and work on real issues with the husband concerning kids and finances. The other woman gets to be patient and kind for 4 hours out the week, have sex, and then go back and do all those difficult things without the husband around. So all the husband see’s is the best of you. It’s ‘only seeing the best of you’ type relationship. I think many women and men would find that type of set up very easy. But try to live with someone, anyone long term. It is tough. I am not sure if I agree that women get married and then change. I can tell you with me, I got married and became extremely overwhelmed as a wife with all the responsibilities and expectations. That turns into and comes out as frustration. But with the OW, they have time to decompress so when you both engage with each other for an hour, it’s all smiles. The fantasy part is to assume that is how the OW is all the time, which is rarely the case. .

  • Peach June 24, 2014, 9:14 AM

    It is a bit comforting to read others’ testimonies of a relationship soured by cheating. Here is my story:
    I have been with my boyfriend for 3 and a half years now, and we have a 2 year old son together (I’m almost 30, boyfriend is 33). Boyfriend also has 3 other children from a previous relationship (ages 11, 10, and 8). We met at work and fell in love HARD…mutual friends told me that he always claimed he’d NEVER get married in years past, only to change his tune once we got together. It was truly wonderful. Fast forward a little bit…our son was born with serious medical complications, and we spent the first 2 months of his life living hundreds of miles away from home to be with him in the hospital. His care routine involves having to get up every 4 hours at night to feed him through a feeding tube, and during the day I do it every 3 hours (I only work part-time since no one else can really care for our son). Point being, we’ve been doing this for 2 years and we are very tired people. Boyfriend works a LOT, and has to travel for work, usually staying overnight out of town twice per week. I started to get suspicious that something may be going on with him about a year and a half ago. Things between us had just been slowly changing for the worst, we were barely ever having sex anymore (which I’ll admit, was my fault…combination of not enough sleep, plus post-birth body changes and hormones left me very unlike my old, very sexual self). Last year, a week after our son’s first birthday, I followed my gut and looked at his cell phone while he was sleeping…and I found it. Text messages between him and a co-worker of his (at the time, she was just turning 21), with him saying things like, “I thought you were gonna come see me tonight after work” and such. No evidence that cheating had ACTUALLY taken place, but very inappropriate nonetheless. I waited 6 weeks before I found the strength to confront him about it. At first he tried to deny, but after being faced with my knowledge of the text messages, he admitted that he’d been talking to her like that for a total of about 5 months. Said they both talked about cheating (she has a boyfriend), but decided it wouldn’t be a good idea. Claims they’ve never hung out outside of work. The problem is, am I really supposed to believe that they were having conversations like that solely through text messages and phone calls, without ever actually spending real time together? My boyfriend is a shy, non-flirtatious person, so I find this VERY hard to believe. I told him I was leaving and that I didn’t love him anymore, and he BEGGED me to stay, although it may have been more because he didn’t want me to take our son away with me. The worst part of it all is that he KNEW I had been feeling depressed, alone, etc. while he was working all the time and I was left with a medically needy toddler, no friends or family within hundreds of miles (we live near HIS hometown, over 1000 miles away from mine), and a withering relationship. To his credit, he has never treated me badly at home or anything, and in fact is wonderful around the house. He is the type of man who will come home after a 16 hour day and start doing the dishes if he sees I haven’t gotten around to them yet, and never complains. He helps with our son when he can. He pays most of the bills and never makes me feel guilty about not bringing in much money. And the OW no longer works for him, and is actually pregnant with her boyfriend’s child. As far as I know, he has not been in contact with her, but I haven’t snooped on him since the incident, either. I just can NOT get this out of my head though. He really is a good guy, but our sex life is back to the same old non-existent state and I hate to admit it, but the passion just isn’t there for me anymore. It’s gotta be the hormones, because it’s not like I spend my time fantasizing about other guys or anything. I don’t know what to do. I think I believe him when he says he loves me, because he really does act like it. His other 3 children beg for us to be married so that I can be their stepmom. I want that ideal life, and the sex part is really holding me back. I NEVER used to have this problem…I’m just wondering if it’s gone for good…and if it is, I suspect so will be his fidelity. :(

    • Jewels July 20, 2014, 7:42 PM

      Hi Peach,

      Two things, whew first my hats off to you, I can not imagine how much effort it would take to care for a toddler with a condition, but I know that is your son so for you it automatic, but you still deserve a big hug and pat on the back for the sacrifice. I really would like to say that I think you should do some research on your body/hormones/depression. I am not a doctor so this isn’t medical advice but with all of the stress that impacts you and your body. You may be deficient in some areas which may cause you to just not feel good. Check that out first, yes, the cheating can definitely cause a damper in the sex life as well, but for some reason I am sensing something is off balance with your body. Your doctor may be able to help with this. I did my own research and some basic vitamins have made a world of difference for me.

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