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DH cheated and we're in a right mess, could use some advice(65 Posts)
I've been lurking a while but this is the first time I've decided to post. DH had an affair that lasted about 6 months. It's really a 'classic' thing with a much younger woman that works with him. I had suspicions that something was going on, I noticed that he was acting somewhat distant. I trusted him and told him that if he ever wanted to talk about what was bothering him, I'd always be there. Well, he didn't talk to me or confess. Instead, I found out accidentally one day when she sent him photos of herself by text. This was several weeks ago and things have been getting more and more complicated. We've talked about it endlessly, he told me the whole story (or rather his side of it). Again, it's the classic story - she meant nothing, she came onto him and he was weak, etc etc. I honestly don't know what to believe. I've always trusted him, perhaps too much. Anyway, we have 2 young daughters and have decided to try and work things out, but it isn't going well at all.
The first huge problem is that the OW still works with him! He has a very good, well paying job and it doesn't make sense for him to quit. Obviously, he can't make her leave the job, so we're stuck. I've lost trust in him and just can't feel comfortable knowing that he's around her everyday. I can't make him leave his job either and I really don't know what to do. If we could solve this, we'd have a much better chance of moving forward.
Then, I went and did something stupid, which complicated things even more. I have a male co-worker that I've known for a very long time. He used to be friends with my husband and myself when we were younger (I introduced them and invited him out with us). Well, DH didn't like him, felt that he was acting inappropriate towards me (I never noticed this). DH was never jealous before, so I took it seriously and made some distance with this man.
Anyway, after I find out about the affair, I confided in this man. It was incredibly stupid, especially since I haven't told anybody else (friends or family) about it. He drove me home from work one day and DH was suspicious, thought that something might have happened between us (it hasn't) but I told DH about how I confided in the man about his affair and he was obviously very angry.
I still see this man everyday at work, husband sees OW everyday too...we can't communicate with each other, I don't even know where to begin!
Can you go to your family for a little while - get some real distance???
That's actually a really good idea! I could go next month with the girls. Taking them to visit grandparents, cousins etc will be much better for them than asking him to leave. I was actually thinking of taking them there and coming back, because it's so hard for H and I to have these conversations (or really fights) with them around. They are quite young - 6 and 9, and I don't want them to suffer because of his mistakes.
I guess the first question is, are you 100% sure the affair has ended?
That is a really good question, I'm not sure. Judging by his behaviour, I do believe it's over. On the other hand, he was able to lie to me for over 6 months, so I don't know if I should believe anything he says anymore.
He claims that it was mainly a sexual relationship and that there wasn't any emotional involvement (is this supposed to make me feel better???). I've actually met her before and based on my impression of her from our brief encounter, I do believe him. He's also told me quite a lot about what happened, so there is some honesty.
Ever since I found out, he's made a lot of effort to be around, come home right after work, that type of thing. Although, it's just been a few weeks and is obviously making an effort right now, but who knows what could happen a few months from now. Also, I don't trust this woman. I don't want to describe her or compare myself to her. Like I said, I have met her and I'm not surprised that it's her and not somebody else.
*I wouldn't be happy if DH continued to work with someone he fucked.
I don't know how you can be - so I presume you can't, I presume therefore that this is eating away at you?*
Of course it is!!! I can't stand it!
The woman is not the problem here. He is the problem. Doesn't matter what type she is, a faithful man would have said 'no thanks'... and he didn't. Maintain your focus rather than allowing yourself to be distracted. Whether the relationship was just about sex or not, it went on for six months (that you know of) and would still be going on if you hadn't accidentally found out. So he's making a big showy effort now.... doesn't erase anything and doesn't actually mean it has finished either. They could be lying low until the dust settles ready to pick up again.
CogitoErgoSometimes This is exactly what I'm worried about!
I suppose that the really big problem is that I don't know anymore if I do want to stay with him. My feelings towards him and how I view him have completely changed. I thought that if we could work out this situation, I could love him again, but there are so many obstacles that we haven't even started working things out.
He didn't like you having your work colleague as a friend because he placed his moral standards on both him and you. He thought that given the opportunity you would shag your colleague because that is just what he did.
He can't understand your friendship because he is not capable of this (your friend may want more but you clearly don't have have boundaries you will not cross). All the time he is blaming the OW because she came onto him and he was weak he downplays his role in this. He doesn't accept his faults, he won't deal with them and change so he leaves himself open to being the poor little victim who some other predatory female will fall accidentally and land on his cock.
He is trying to deflect his shitty behaviour by being angry that you have confided in this person. Because it does exactly what he did and gives you a closeness with this other person.
He thinks you given the chance would be a dirty sleazy cheat just like him.
Call him on it. He has lost every right to control your friendships especially whit this man.
I think, if it hadn't been for his overreaction to your co-worker, you might feel more positive. However, him getting angry with you over nothing at all beyond telling someone the truth just shows him up as being monumentally selfish, unreasonable and having complete double standards. I hear what you're saying about him making a big effort to get home on time but it's only been a few weeks, nothing else about his life has changed & I think you saw a flash of the real him there.... and you didn't like it.
I think the space is a vital first step. He needs to come down off Planet Denial (of the galaxy Minimise), acknowledge the enormity of what he's done, stop trying to palm off blame on you by making bloody stupid equivalencies, and understand what he has to lose. And while he's doing that, you need to work out whether you still like this person or not.
My fat ARSE did the OW come on to him! Does he think you're a complete mug?? It's what ALL men say when they get caught!
I thought I could forgive and I tried.
But when it came down to it, I just knew I'd never trust him again.
He wasn't the man I married.
Wasn't the man that would always look after me and protect me. He turned into the man that would hurt me - REALLY REALLY hurt me.
No going back from that for me.
I always roll this one out as well!
Trust takes years to build, seconds to break, and forever to repair. If it's lost it's not easily found and if it is found it's never the same again
your friend may want more but you clearly don't have have boundaries you will not cross
You're right, I do, thank you! When he told me that he was bothered by my friendship with this man, I thought about his feelings and decided to keep my distance, even though I didn't see a problem with the friendship. Even if this man did want something more, I wouldn't have done it because I loved my husband! So I completely understand that he's to blame here. I said that I don't trust the woman, but I don't want him to place all the blame on her either, because it's him that I have to trust again and spend the rest of my life with
hellsbellsmelons - That is exactly how I feel!
Relate on your own asap. Ring them right now. You want to save your marriage, which is brilliant, but you need to be working this through with someone who can really help you, not a slightly dangerous co-worker or a bunch of strangers on the internet who know nothing about you or him.
I am sorry that you are going through this. I can suggest some reading that I have found helpful recently. The links are all to Amazon and you can "look inside".
This one is a simple book with simple steps, mainly for the “betrayed” but also the “betrayer”:
How Can I Ever Trust You Again?: Infidelity: From Discovery to Recovery in Seven Steps
This one is a bit more in-depth and useful for both:
NOT "Just Friends": Rebuilding Trust and Recovering Your Sanity After Infidelity
This book is more for the one who has been unfaithful:
How to Help Your Spouse Heal From Your Affair: A Compact Manual for the Unfaithful
This website has lots of useful things to read that can be downloaded for free:
I am going through something similar myself. Reading the books has helped me and DH to see things a bit more clearly.
We don't have a solution yet.
Really good advice on here and I would second what everyone else has said by telling him to move out while you decide what you want. It will give you the upper hand and him time to realise that he really could lose you.
I would take the 'she came onto me' with a pinch of salt personally. I have a great relationship with my old boss (married) and he always tries it on with me. Much as I like him I really love DH and wouldn't do anything to ruin our relationship. He just laughs now when I tell him to bog off!
Very best of luck, Op. I hope you manage to sort yourself out.
Bless you - it's horrible - I know.
I still feel sad 4+ years on when I think of what he put me through and how it made me feel.
Like you, I didn't tell anyone at first and I went through it all on my own.
So my one solid, experienced piece of advice is to make sure you get some good RL support.
Once I started telling people (once I'd decided it couldn't work) it felt like a weight was lifted.
My family and friends were my saviours.
Don't suffer this in silence. I spent hours and hours and days and weeks just curled up in a ball crying all on my own.
Don't let that be you!
A visit home next month with your DDs might help you have time away to reflect on all that's happened. He seems to be coasting on as though everything is back to normal.
Poor you, he shits all over you and then has the audacity to one, assume you have no morals like him and two, you would act on them. Sorry but he has no say in who you talk to, where you go and what you do - he lost all rights when he got into bed with another woman.
The only way back from this is a massive effort from him, not you - he has to do all the work, it doesn't even sound as though there has been any consequences for his actions, not good, gives the green light whatever the circumstances.
The fact it was purely sexual would worry me, what I mean is, he acted purely on lust, nothing else.
Tell your friends, get lots of support, you shouldn't have to keep his dirty secret, it needs to come out, esp if he's to face any kind of consequence.
Thank you so much for all your adivce, I've read and thought about all the things posted here and I think I made a little progress this weekend with 'D'H (it's hard even thinking of him as "dear" at this point).
I made a few things very clear to him. I explained that, even though we agreed to try to move past this, I'm not sure anymore if I can and that I need some space to figure it out. I also told him that he absolutely cannot work with her anymore, that is really the first thing he has to do if we have any chance. I can't stand the idea of him seeing her everyday and I don't think that's unreasonable at all. He agreed to do whatever he can to transfer to a different position, but I really don't think I'll be okay until it actually happens.
I'm also going back home to see my family with DDs right after Christmas, so we'll see what happens...
We also got onto the topic of my coworker. I still can't believe that he's trying to make me feel guilty about this! You know I explained how he can't shift his guilt onto me because I didn't do anything. He's just mad that, out of all the people I could have talked to, I chose this man that he dislikes so much. I didn't really seek him out to confide in him, it was just out of circumstance. Then DH is mad because this coworker also happens to be divorced and he thinks he has ulterior motives, etc. It's such nonsense really but I do feel bad about getting close to this man and it's really not right!!
For six months, he was fucking And emotionally connecting with another woman.
For one or two hours you confided about this to another man.
And he thinks you've done something wrong? He is a complete twat, sorry.
You're completely right. The worst thing is that I've now started feeling guilty and questioning myself about why I ended up confiding in this particular man. But I should not be the one feeling guilty! Although, maybe it's just so that I don't spend time thinking about all the other things bothering me
Oh I'm sorry sima, but how dare he?
I can kind of get why he is making a big deal - he knows he looks like a prick to this colleague- he probably does fear that you will go off with him out of revenge - it makes him feel better if you are cheating like he was.
However, he is so far out of order it is awful. Don't stand for it.
I wouldn't have him anywhere near me especially while he still spends everyday with her.
Honestly, I really can't stand being near him anymore. I'm worried that when I do leave in a few weeks, I won't want to come back to him again.
This is so confusing, I've been through so many emotions in the past few weeks, starting with complete shock, anger, and now just sadness. Maybe I should have seen this coming, but he really was the love of my life and I trusted him so now to think about what he's done and how our lives could change is surreal.
I am trying very hard not to think this way, but I can't help it. I keep wondering if I did something wrong or if our relationship was lacking something that made him do this.
I remember it took me over 3 months to confide in anyone.
I wish I was able to do it sooner....
Try to talk to someone in person. Talking about it is going to make you feel better and move on.
Whether you want to stay with him or not - you have to decide and it may take quite some time! I think the sooner you won't see his face day in day out the easier it will be on you.
"He's just mad that, out of all the people I could have talked to, I chose this man that he dislikes so much."
Sorry sunshine, you don't get a say in whom I confide in about the fucking outrageously shitty way you have treated me.
There's your response.
Seriously, he should be BEGGING you to fucking take him back, not telling you what to do and with whom.
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