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Getting over an EA - sorry for long post.

(119 Posts)
KtemaL Mon 07-Oct-13 16:16:21

Hi, I'm new on here and have read a few other threads on this subject but am really struggling to move forward from my dh's EA.

Back in April I found emails between him and a woman who works for him arranging a lunchtime 'date'. At the time he swore it was just a drink, that he had felt uncomfortable with it and only stayed for one drink. However, I then found out that they'd been chatting online a lot. I'd been suspicious as he'd started playing a word game online and seemed obsessed with it - now I know why!

We decided to move forward and I thought things were going OK. However, in June I then found out, by looking at his texts, that he'd met up with her again (they still work together) and that during a boys day out at the races he'd spent most of the day texting her. When I asked him to restore his iphone messages (as he'd deleted all but the last one) he refused and admitted that they'd talked about taking things further i.e having sex but, again, swore that nothing had happened.

We went to one session of Relate but he didn't want to go back as he felt that it didn't do anything and that we were already doing everything suggested i.e date nights, checking in with regular texts etc and giving access to his emails and texts.

Again, I tried to move on and thought things were looking up. In August we went on holiday with our best friends and their children (we also have two). On the first day there I picked up his phone, totally innocently and saw an email he'd sent to her that morning from a Hotmail account I didn't know existed. It said that he'd had a great time on their 'day out' which turns out was the day before we flew on holiday. He said that she was beautiful and that he'd tried to kiss her but she'd rejected him!

I'm not proud of this but I ended up emailing her and telling her that unless she left the company I would tell her bf as I couldn't see any other way forward. After one text she threated me with a solicitors letter (via email and turns out it's a friend of hers) with a court injunction if I contacted her or her bf! She then went on to tell me that MY actions had left her so stressed she had to take time off sick and was on antidepressants.

I was devastated and obviously it totally ruined our holiday (and that of our friends). Since then, I've found out that they went out 5 or so times and that they did kiss (twice) at a work event where they were both drunk but he insists nothing else happened and that he regrets it and wants to be with me and to move on.

She also reported this to my dh's boss and insinuated he'd been sexually harassing her, apparently also on the advice of her solicitor friend!! When the boss suggested they retrieve all emails between them to establish the facts etc she retracted the letter and said she would look for another job.

Basically, I don't know if I'm coming or going. It's been about 8-9 weeks since I found out but I still cry a lot and feel sick whenever I think about it. I just can't trust him and question everything. She still works there and on his first day back in the office she tried to contact him via their office IM and asked how he was etc. He didn't respond and told her verbally he didn't want any communication with her expect for work emails but it's certainly not ideal as he sees her every day, she reports to him and I see constant emails from her (albeit work related).

He won't go to counselling and although he is making an effort I just don't know if it's enough. I know it wasn't sexual (or at least I'm pretty sure it wasn't) but to me it feels as though he kept choosing her over me (and our family) even though he knew how much it would hurt me.

How do I move forward? Will I ever trust him again? Any suggestions??

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 10-Oct-13 22:16:30

"It was totally clear it was a mutual thing, doesn't make it acceptable though!"

Well it doesn't make it acceptable in terms of your marriage and his betrayal of you.

But it does make it less unpalatable and more straightforward.

Him cheating on you is something that you can (possibly) forgive, him being a sexual pest to other women is something you could at best overlook and then only by compromising your own integrity in a pretty fundamental way.

Fairenuff Thu 10-Oct-13 21:51:07

he said he will do whatever it takes to prove he's sorry and won't do this again

I guess the million dollar question is, do you believe him?

He has said this before, after all.

What is different this time?

I think you should ask him to do two things - to show, by his actions, rather that trite words, that he will do 'whatever it takes to prove he's sorry'

1) Tell him to get an sti check and to show you the paperwork to prove he's clear

and

2) Tell him to move out to give you some space and time to think about what you want and whether you even want to try again with him.

You may not think he needs an sti check, or you may not want to separate but, even so, this would be a way to test his commitment to you. Right now, he's got it all a bit cushy and he should be made to feel more uncomfortable than this.

If he refuses to do either of these things, then you know he is all talk and does not really mean what he says, again.

KtemaL Thu 10-Oct-13 21:31:37

Ilovebreakfast and FrancescaBell - sorry just refreshed and saw your posts. Thank you. Will see how things go and have a feeling that whatever happens, I will come out of this stronger.

TBH LessMissAbs posts have at least made me laugh out loud so at least that's a plus!! wink

KtemaL Thu 10-Oct-13 21:28:16

Again, putting words into people's mouths and making ridiculous assumptions. For someone who seems to want to prove their superior intelligence over everyone else you really are being quite dense.

I don't recall once saying my dh was "virtually innocent" at any stage, let alone now. I think in fact, if you actually bothered to read my posts you'd find I have said the exact opposite of that throughout i.e she owed me nothing, it was him that broke our vows, her being complicit in the affair doesn't make it acceptable etc etc.

I have also never said I wanted everyone to "agree with me". Again, you clearly haven't read my posts. I originally came on here looking for some info/advice/support as to how other people may have coped in a similar situation and any suggestions for ways to try and move forward.

Be very clear on this - you have not helped me once, in any way and I have no idea how you think you would possibly have helped when all you have done is to berate me for my thoughts and made out I'm some pathetic victim who doesn't have a brain. You have tried to use this thread as a forum for your own self promotion. Get over yourself, not everything is about you and your views.

And finally, I don't think I have made particularly rude remarks about "other women". You maybe, but that's only in reply and people in glass houses shouldn't throw stones because if we're talking about rudeness - have another read of your posts, you haven't just been unhelpful and to me but rude to other posters who challenge you in any way - case in point is your posts above to FrancescaBell (or should that be case on point, or point of law...you should know, after all you are "dual qualified" wink

Helpful? I think not...

FrancescaBell Thu 10-Oct-13 21:23:53

The OP isn't saying her husband is 'virtually innocent'. Goodness me, where the hell are you getting some of these extrapolations and misquotes from what other people post LessMiss? It's as though you're re-writing others' posts in your head and it is very odd.

I'm glad you've seen the texts OP, but this is where you came in really. You thought it was a mutual thing and it was.

I hope you reach some resolution for your own self now.

Oh, and please don't tar Feminism with this brush. No feminist I know would treat a hurt woman like that. That's got nothing to do with feminism- nothing at all.

Ilovebreakfast Thu 10-Oct-13 21:21:48

Oh do shut up *less. Leave the op alone, are you stupid? No way has she said her dh us blameless. She is going through an awful time and needs support.

Op enjoy your shopping trip and bellinis. Do things that make you feel good at the moment.

LessMissAbs Thu 10-Oct-13 21:10:00

OP - if you want everyone to agree with you, perhaps you should consider whether or not to post on internet forums.

I am so sorry I have offended you. I was only trying to help. I hope you reach the position you are looking for in your marriage. I don't think making rude remarks about other women is the way forward, and its surprising to learn your DH is virtually innocent at this late stage, but nonetheless I wish you luck.

KtemaL Thu 10-Oct-13 20:35:59

JoinYourPlayFellows - I wouldn't say it's made me feel better. Never easy seeing texts like that, especially the ones from my dh to her. However, I do feel a bit of relief now that I have seen them in the sense that I know a bit more of the truth and I do believe that he hasn't been sexually harassing her. It was totally clear it was a mutual thing, doesn't make it acceptable though!

My dh is home tomorrow night and he has contacted a counsellor whilst away and arranged an appointment for us both next week as he said he will do whatever it takes to prove he's sorry and won't do this again.

I still don't know what I'll do long term but actually feel much stronger already having had a few days break from him so will go to the joint counselling, continue with my solo counselling separately and see what happens over the next few weeks. Day off work tomorrow and off out for retail therapy and bellini's at Jamie's Italian with best girlfriend smile.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 10-Oct-13 20:16:26

Has seeing the texts helped? Do you feel better for seeing them?

KtemaL Thu 10-Oct-13 20:09:40

Popped back to update and, yet again, wish I hadn't! However, couldn't help but respond...

LessMissAbs - I am not in denial - please stop trying to speak on my behalf. You have no idea about me or my life and your half baked assumptions are absolutely no help whatsoever. I pity anyone else who's thread you decide to impose your views on. A lot of people, me included, are on here looking for support and information. We don't come on here to be judged by people like you who feel you have some god given right to judge everyone and their lives.

Just because you're a feminist it does not make you an expert on all things female and you are not speaking for everyone when you spout your ill-thought out views and opinions. And I wish you'd stop trying to impress with your legal jargon and grandiose speak, it doesn't impress it just makes you look like an arse.

I didn't go into that much detail so not sure what 'facts' you are basing your opinions on but as you judged me (and my dh) so instantly perhaps you'd now like to eat your words and apologise. I have tonight seen texts (restored via iTunes sync) and I can categorically confirm that this ow was sending my dh texts of an overtly sexual nature and by that I mean starting texts telling him in no uncertain terms what she would like to do to him etc etc.

I'm sure that, like all great feminists, you'll come up with yet another half baked theory as to why this is i.e she felt under pressure to do that in case she lost her job...blah blah blah. Total BS.

Perhaps instead of attacking people you should take a deep breath and think it through. Maybe, just maybe, she's a total f***ing bitch who was more than happy to flirt outrageously with a married man and send him explicit texts, meet him for drinks, kiss him, flirt with him etc all whilst living with her bf of 6 years and knowing full well he was a married man with two children? And maybe, just maybe, she's done it all before with another member of staff in the same company??? FACT!

Nothing excuses my dh's behaviour in this and I'm not blaming her, just asking you to stop passing judgement on my life when, in fact you know F all.

If you have something constructive to say regarding personal experience of moving on from an EA or working through issues such as this then please feel free but otherwise please just shut up.

LessMissAbs Thu 10-Oct-13 19:11:42

Do you really think this sort of self-aggrandisement is appropriate on a poster's support thread? Really? I couldn't agree more.

I think as posters we should deal with the actual facts and not projections based on our own (sometimes) limited experiences

I have dealt with a few sex discrimination cases, and the facts of the scenario the OP narrated are not dissimilar, however I suspect the OP is in denial. I have no idea why you object to this being pointed out, nor to basic legal terminology being used, but res ipsa locquiter - the facts speak for themselves.

FrancescaBell Thu 10-Oct-13 16:46:09

Do you really think this sort of self-aggrandisement is appropriate on a poster's support thread? Really?

I could make mincemeat of your claims, misquotes and accusations of an 'agenda', the latter point being especially bizarre seeing as I'm the only other poster on this thread who has tried to see this from the young colleague's point of view confused.

But it really isn't appropriate on a thread like this.

LessMissAbs Thu 10-Oct-13 13:08:13

Apologies FrancescaBell but I am dual qualified and I assumed everyone qualified in one jurisdiction would have a working knowledge of the terminology of the other.

LessMissAbs Thu 10-Oct-13 13:06:20

FrancescaBell I've read that post several times LessMiss and I just can't understand it. Really not being snarky because if something's a typo or it's more or less obvious what was meant, I'd never claim a loss of understanding

There was an additional "in", written in error, in the sentence to which you refer.

I am surprised you were unable to understand the entire sentence due to this, and are unfamiliar with the terms "in point", "point of law" and "point of fact".

Perhaps you would like to explain why cases decided under the SDA75 no longer stand, particularly those more "senior" judgments which are now part of mainstream case law. I am sure the courts would be delighted to discover that you can personally overrule judicial precedent. There are many cases of sexual harassment in similar circumstances as described in the OP's scenario. I assume you are aware of the burdens that face women bringing cases based on sexual harassment in the workplace? And that there are many instances of workplace sexual harassment which do not get reported because there employees are deterred from bringing them.

For you to suggest that the OP's scenario may not constitute sexual harassment is just as much projection as for me to say that it possibly does. None of us have examined the evidence, taken affidavits, etc but to go around giving the opinion that cases of sexual harassment never arise out of such circumstances is rather bizarre. You appear to have a hidden agenda against the woman in this scenario which is possibly clouding your judgement - but again, this is speculation on my part. And quite deliberately so.

Admittedly I work in a mainly civil law jurisdiction, but I would have thought that some familiarity with the concepts of judicial precedent and stare decisis, as terms at least, would be a prerequisite for understanding the case law relating to sex discrimination.

OP - just kick him out, instead of running around after him, "trying to find out the truth". It will probably do your chances of restoring the marriage in the long term more good than if he thinks he can mislead you and get away with it without sanction.

AndYouCanDance Thu 10-Oct-13 05:58:39

Hi OP. Not sure if you are still reading, but I wanted to let you know that I have been in your position and we have moved on.

It was awful and messy, but we are now 7 years down the line and very happy.

Like you I confronted the OW (sheer rage). The only difference was I did it face to face and made a total twit of myself in front of many many people blush.

Strange to say, I hardly think about it any more. Can't believe I feel like that really. It was deeply traumatic at the time.

The difference is DH left his workplace. I could not have coped if they had continued to work together.

FrancescaBell Thu 10-Oct-13 00:29:57

I've read that post several times LessMiss and I just can't understand it. Really not being snarky because if something's a typo or it's more or less obvious what was meant, I'd never claim a loss of understanding.

Understood the first part though and on the contrary, I'm very familiar with the original Sex Discrimination Act 1975 and the law that superceded it (Equality Act 2010).

Anyway, my main reason for posting was to wish the OP well and to express my regret that the diversity of opinions and the harshness of some of the posts are deterring you from continuing with this thread.

I do sort of understand your decision though. I've never been through anything like this myself, but I can imagine if I had I might find some of this a bit overwhelming and in parts, unhelpful.

Can I suggest you reserve the option to update the thread or start a new one if you still feel you need some support? For now, good luck.

LessMissAbs Wed 09-Oct-13 22:23:45

FrancescaBell I think as posters we should deal with the actual facts and not projections based on our own (sometimes) limited experiences

You seem unfamiliar with the relevant case law under the SDA75, several examples of which are not only in in point on point of law but also on point of fact.

Fairenuff Wed 09-Oct-13 20:36:50

Each time you forgive him and he cheats again, a little bit of you dies.

The part of you that loves unconditionally, that has blind faith and trust, that has hope and resilience.

By the time he's finished you will be a shadow of your former self.

How many chances does one person need?

Is it possible to move on? Not in the same way, no. You have a new relationship with him now.

If you just met him recently, if you were going out on your first date with him and he said, look, I will probably cheat on you repeatedly but you'll learn to live with it right? - what would your answer be? Would there even be a second date? Probably not.

But because he's doing it little by little, bit by bit, you are accepting each stage and adjusting your perception of what is ok.

What he is doing to you is not ok.

Fairenuff Wed 09-Oct-13 20:33:36

Each time you forgive him and he cheats again, a little bit of you dies.

The part of you that loves unconditionally, that has blind faith and trust, that has hope and resilience.

By the time he's finished you will be a shadow of your former self.

How many chances does one person need?

Is it possible to move on? Not in the same way, no. You have a new relationship with him now.

If you just met him recently, if you were going out on your first date with him and he said, look, I will probably cheat on you repeatedly but you'll learn to live with it right? - what would your answer be? Would there even be a second date? Probably not.

But because he's doing it little by little, bit by bit, you are accepting each stage and adjusting your perception of what is ok.

What he is doing to you is not ok.

Xales Wed 09-Oct-13 18:04:30

The sad thing is you just give more and more chances.

You found out in April, it was over, you gave another chance.

You found out in June he was still at it, it was over, you gave another chance.

Clearly all the stuff you were doing date nights etc were not working as again in August you found out he was at it again.

The only thing that may have made a difference because he would have had to face others about what he had done was the counselling. Funny that was the only thing he decided was a waste of time and is refusing to do.

This has now been going on over half a year. All he does every few months when he thinks you have forgiven and forgotten is carry on regardless of any hurt it causes you.

How many chances does he deserve.

Can you forgive and move on? How many times do you want to have to?

Ilovebreakfast Wed 09-Oct-13 17:36:37

You have a lot if history with your dh and I assume many happy times and lovely dc. Of course you are going to explore every option before reaching a decision. It is no surprise you want to consider saving your marriage.
It sounds as if he had an emotional affair, maybe physical. But not all men or women sleep with each during affairs. Follow your gut instinct re whether you think it turned physical.
His behaviour has been poor. Getting his head turned by a younger colleague is very very hurtful. That will probably never go away and you may have to learn strategies to cope with it. Do you genuinely feel your dh is remorseful. Is he doing everything he can to try to make you feel secure. He has to accept that you will be throwing anger and upset at him for a long time yet.

KtemaL Wed 09-Oct-13 15:17:50

Hi thanks for everyone's comments. I am trying to see where you all come from and I know that between you, you all have lots of experience (some of which has I'm sure come from going through similar hideous times).

However, it is really hard to see the wood from the trees when one post has one opinion and the next says the total opposite and, yes, I know that's what you get when you ask lots of different people for their opinions but I think this is making it even harder.

My OP was asking if others have gone through this type of crap, rebuilt trust and moved on and, if so, how they'd done that. I wasn't asking for an opinion on whether my dh is a sleazebag or I should throw him out of our family home. Those may well be decisions I come to on my own but they aren't anyone else's to make and I'm not sure that anyone should ever say simply 'kick him out'. That's a massive decision with massive repercussions on everyone, not just me and him, and not something anyone can tell another person to do when in reality only bits and pieces of a story are told.

FrancescaBell - I think what I'm trying to say is that I whole heartedly agree with your post i.e base on the facts not opinion. smile

I know my dh is an idiot, I know he's an arse, I know he's treated me appallingly.. Not sure I need everyone to keep telling me that if there's no constructive advice that goes with it!

Many of these posts have been constructive and I thank everyone for those but I think I need to move forward on my own now. I have just returned from my first solo session with a counsellor and feel positive about focusing on me for a change. In her words 'what happens with your relationship will happen' What I need to focus on is myself to ensure that whatever happens I come out of this a stronger, happier person so that I have the strength to cope with whatever lies ahead.

Maybe in 12 months I'll post again to say we made it, maybe the post will say we didn't but either way, thanks for your thoughts, comments and suggestions and I hope that everyone on here struggling with the same, or similar, issues finds their own happy ending thanks

FrancescaBell Wed 09-Oct-13 14:15:33

Yes I have never said there weren't. Blimey, I've sacked 2 men for just that!

There are lots of different scenarios in a workplace. If you read my posts on this thread, I was in fact querying the boss's behaviour (which leaves a lot to be desired in my view) and AFAIK was the first person to query why this young woman was the one facing all the consequences.

So I know what it takes to prove a sexual harassment case and it's not this, as described.

I think as posters we should deal with the actual facts and not projections based on our own (sometimes) limited experiences.

LessMissAbs Wed 09-Oct-13 14:06:34

And equally FrancescaBell there are plenty of women who are sexually harassed in the workplace and plenty of women who down sleazy older married men. I mean, seriously, why would anyone want one of those?

FrancescaBell Wed 09-Oct-13 13:48:04

Oh what nonsense...

As if no-one's ever heard of a younger woman having an affair with a much older married man in the workplace hmm

Or an older married man leaving his wife for a colleague half his age.

It happens. So what?

But just because I've seen both of those things with my own eyes doesn't mean that's what's happened here.

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