Impact of Finding Out Your Partner Cheated – Part III

Part I of this series explored the impact of cheating on your self-esteem. Part II talked about the impact an affair has on trust within the marriage. Today, I will discuss the final impact of finding out that your husband had sex outside the marriage. This impact can actually be positive or negative.

The impact is that you will never see life in the same manner again. Finding out your husband has cheated is a LIFE-CHANGING EVENT. You will go through a stage where you question your beliefs, your values, and your place in this world. For many women in several cultures around the world, being a wife means holding a place of value in society and is closely connected with a woman’s identity. Infidelity causes you to re-evaluate who you are.

This particular impact will serve as a moment of truth for you. There will come a time after you muddle through the pain and misery, a time where you will look at yourself in the mirror and say, “What now?”

I hope you will answer that question by saying, “It’s time to get myself together and focus on me, evaluate where I am in life and where I want to go. It’s time to look at my current state and make some changes. While some women do this, others will accept anger and sadness as acceptable emotions long-term, losing faith in the most important thing they have – themselves.

As women, we have to believe that our husbands’ affairs will not be the end of us. Yes, life will never be the same, but a part of you has to believe that you went through this horrible experience to become a stronger and wiser woman. Keep having faith in yourself.

13 thoughts on “Impact of Finding Out Your Partner Cheated – Part III”

  1. Hey there. I discovered your blog on Google and wanted to say that I really enjoyed a few of the articles I read. I really like reading and studying about all sorts of topics. I would like to model my web site within the exact same effective way you did to yours.

  2. Hey Jewels. I wish you all the best and thank you for a website which allows women to vent and share their feelings. 18 months ago, using spyphone software, I discovered my loving husband of 25 years had been carrying on a 4-month affair with an escort. I was completely devastated. I have always considered myself a strong woman, but the depths of my despair knew no bounds. After the initial shock and anger, I began to question everything about my life, my marriage, my values, my husband, etc. The affair changed how I look at EVERYTHING in life. Some for the better, some not so much. Looking back, although it was very painful, it became a wonderful period of growth in both of our lives. I came to know myself better than I ever had and I realized that his cheating had nothing to do with me and everything to do with his own low feelings of self-worth. I now stand up for myself, and I’m no longer a doormat which he can take for granted. He immediately ended his “relationship,” and after receiving very good counseling (on-going), our relationship has become the best its ever been. I think the most important indicator as to whether your relationship can work after an affair is how your husband responds to trying to make it work. My husband quit drinking & volunteered for counseling without me even having to ask. He wanted to make a statement that he was a different person. I still react to the triggers and still harbor some anger, but I’m dealing with it the best I can and he’s been wonderful and understanding through it all.

    1. Thanks Paula,

      That was such an inspiring comment. I am so glad it turned out to be a period of growth for you. I did the same thing, I questioned everything, my foundation of thought was rocked to the core, luckily, in me building myself back up, I was able to do it in a way where I am stronger than I was before. I think you are right as far as the indicator, he has to be understanding and willing to make changes, and it seems like your husband did that. In the marriages that survive, many wives say that they have become closer from the experience and understand each other more, which I think you stated when you said you are happier than you ever been!

      I am going to ask a small favor of you, if you are comfortable with it, I would love for you to post your story on our positive recovery story section. You can literally copy and paste this word for word or edit as you wish, but there is alot of wisdom in what you wrote and I know having your story in that section will help many many women. The link to add your story is below…..Thanks!!

  3. lonely&depressed

    The advice on this page is amazing. My husband cheated nearly 4 months ago but I just cant seem to even get to step 1 of dealing with it. It is on my mind every day and now I have literally become ill from it dealing with stomach and intestinal issues I know are stress realated. Everything I’ve read in the 3 phases is exactly how I’m feeling and I feel like I have no where to turn. No one to talk to and he just acts like I’m crazy and should get over it! I do feel like my self-esteem is my biggest obstacle but how do I even begin to fix it?

  4. Hi Wisconsin!
    Oh I am right w/you! My husband of 30yrs cheated on me for 14yrs and just began telling me this fall as our youngest left for college. NICE?!! I can barely wake or should I say sleep? I too feel crazy as I don’t know how to function? I am seeing a therapist and even now going to a phsyc. to get some meds to help me w/panic attacks. This is the man I loved since I was 16, moved from my parents home to his. All my boys left this Jan. for school and so did he. I too am in a deep depression. I manage to work daily but find many times each day there (in a first grade classroom) crying and telling the kids it is a cold. I leave work and come home put my jammies on and sit on the coach. I wish I could help you but can’t help myself. My H is telling me if I would have been different he would never cheated? I honestly know it is not my fault but when you hear such from a man you have loved for 35plus years hard to now start not believing him since he has always been the one I turn to. Yep, self-esteem…gone, I guess we need to turn to other ladies and ask them where do we “get one”??! I know we hear do things for yourself ect. but really what does that mean?? Can anyone help us out there, we both are in the same place. 🙁

  5. lonely&depressed

    Carrie you are one step ahead of me! you had the courage to dump his cheating a?a*! For me it was barely past our 1st anniversary and now I wonder…did we make it to our 1st anniversary? Everything just feels like a lie! this is a 2nd marriage for me and I dont want to give up on it yet but then I feel like I can never get beyond it! and i too cry all the time for no apparent reason! I guess i feel a little better knowing that there are people who know just how I am feeling. when I read the ebook from this site I swore it had been me writing it cuz all the feelings and emotions and wanting revenge sounds just like me right now!

  6. Wisconsin, NO I am not ahead of you. I did not dump him he dumped me. He never stopped cheating I just found again the new purchased gifts for HER. He then flew to her state (umm for “work” sure). Then came home for a weekend to tell me he had to “decide” between me or her. He then traveled for his job another week and led me to believe he was coming home until HE PHONED me to tell me he didn’t love me. I have asked him to not to return (but I so much want him too but know he can’t for my pain). So guess where he went…YEP!!! I am a mess, I cry most of my day’s. I am making it to work but not holding up too well there either. I have been having panic attacks. I come home from work at 3:30 and put on my jammies and lay on the couch waiting until I can take a sleeping pill so I can sleep because if I do it won’t hurt. I then sleep for awhile but not for a whole night. Eat…barely! So you see not ahead at all. I am in counseling and even seeing a physiciatrist. I keep hearing do things for me….I don’t know what that means?? Yes, this sight is my new FB trying to find something someone say’s that can help me? I just don’t know how someone I loved for almost my whole life can do this to me?
    All I know I am not alone but I feel very alone.

  7. lonely&depressed

    Carrie…I am so sorry to wrongly think you dumped him! But I do think we are in the same stage of depression! Have you read the ebook? I have read it several times and in between the anger and the tears and the sadness It does help a little bit. While I beat myself up over why and all that the ebook helped me to realize it is not my fault and I could not have prevented it. If you havent read it you should! Keep your chin up! We will both make it through this eventually! I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Just can’t imagine what that reason is right now!

    1. Hello Carrie and Lonely&Depressed,

      Lonely&Depressed – I am happy that the ebook helped, especially with not feeling so alone.

      Both of you mentioned self-esteem and Carrie you mentioned ‘do things for yourself’ and what does that mean….I will try to explain.

      But before I do I want you to know that my self-esteem was extremely low after the affair, every low thought you could think I though. It took almost two years to get to where I am now, but I am confident and happy with life. I wrote an 100 page ebook of my entire journey on how I went from devastation to where I am now, I am crossing my fingers it will be finished in the next month, I think it will help both of you see exactly how I did it, each phase. With that said, it is way too much to write here, but I will let you know when it comes out.

      Here is what I mean by do things for yourself. There are two main concepts. First is who are you living for? I lived to be a wife and mother – that’s it. I felt bad if I was to do something for myself. I enjoyed speaking and reading, and being a part of organizations – I stopped all of that when I became a wife and mother, those were my priorities, nothing else. Going out with the girls? Naw, I have kids now. I constantly deprived my own self when I got married. So doing things for you is the concept that no one is going to treat you better than you. Life is so much sweeter when you learn and know how to treat yourself well, it is empowering and it helps tremendously with your self esteem. So it’s all a matter of for a short period of time, not focusing on your family, your husband, the job, and all other responsibility, and zone in on what you like to do.

      The other part of doing things for yourself is to build up your self esteem. I wrapped everything around my husband, he was my source of self-esteem so when he cheated, I fell hard. Part of putting yourself first is creating your own foundation of self-esteem by doing things you like. It is like you are slowly building yourself up with your own sources outside of any factors (husband, kids, ect). This is where true confidence lies, and the easiest path to get there is to start valuing what you like, your interests, your gifts, and doing it. Once you build yourself up, then your husband serves as a compliment to your own self-esteem, not the source. It’s just my personal theory that as women we lose ourselves within a marriage, it defines us to our core, and all I am saying is that we are so much more than a wife and a mother, so let’s explore that. I hope it helps!

  8. lonely&depressed


    I wish all was as easy as it sounds! And I’m sure you felt the same at one time too… I so wish I had more ME time. I work long hours, sometimes as much as 70 hrs a week and at the end of the day my ME time is rest, relax, and sleep. Which of course does not get me out of a state of depression! I did however make my husband sit down and read your ebook. He didnt say a word to me about it but I could tell from his reactions affter that he at least ”gets it” a little bit now as to how I’m feeling! I so wanted to tell him he is lucky I didnt cut up all his cloths and key up his truck like one of the ladies on here! But I still feel he is not the real deal trying to work things out. He tells me all sorts of stuff but never really follows thru. Part of it I think is jjust who he is. He isnt a vocal person when it comes to talking about tough topics. So how do I get him to open up?

    1. lonely&depressed – not sure how to get him to open up, but I do know this – ‘trying’ to get him to do stuff is a heavy stress on you, I have been there. I tried so hard to get him to understand that it impacted my health for months. I had to let it go and come to the realization that I can’t control him and get him to ‘get it’. Either he was going to get out of his comfort zone and do what it takes or not. So you can try to get him to open up but unfortunately you can not make him.

      And yes, I was where you were as far as no ME time. It started off very small, which is why I am not going to accept NO ‘YOU’ time, you have to fit it in. It started out small with me. I love to read and stopped doing it, so my ME time was reading 10 minutes a night, then it escalated when I accepted to go out with friends, something I never do. And maybe I got my nails done. Very small things. But I fought hard to do those small things. I fought for me, and you should as well, fight for that YOU time. It makes a world of difference, if it didn’t, I wouldn’t be saying it so much :).

  9. This is happening to me, and because I trusted him w/my whole being I didn’t even suspect…why would I?….I love him! I thought he loved me? Instead he cheated for many, many years never telling me we had a serious problem. I am willing to to forgive him because I love him and I married for life…my HS sweetheart, father of my children. But he says he loves another women he has formed a emotional affair (yes sex too). I am a prisoner in his affair and not even the emotional abuse I have received make any difference to him. I have been given no chance to hold on to my marriage that means the fight of my life. He thinks because our kids are young adults they are not effected….how wrong is that?! Our families and friends are too effected because everyone loves Mike. How can he be so hurtful? How can he be so selfish? How can he be so careless? How can he be so disrespectful? I ask, I ask and I am paying the price for his mistake. Why is it he is not feeling this hurt? How can he do this and sleep at night (many times w/her). How fair is this? We finally reached a point in life to enjoy our life and my husband thought nothing of hurting me and becoming involved w/another women while I carried on life as usual now I am trying to just survive and find pieces to put my life together. How do I do that? He also committed to a marriage 30yrs ago, he gives that marriage so little regard? How can he not want to make us work if I do? Everyone say’s “infidelity takes on as a addiction” . He just can’t see that? How can both these parents see what they are doing to this family…selfish! Here I sit wanting to save my marriage…where is he?

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