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Contacting the OW? Do I?

(201 Posts)
3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 21:39:27

I am a regular - lurker more than poster - but the time has come for some MN wisdom of my own. In a nutshell, my H disclosed his affair with a work colleague to me nearly 10 weeks ago. His confession was due to having been discovered at work and both of them losing their jobs. He had to tell me to explain why he had lost his job. He knew this was coming for 3 days before telling me so had deleted all evidence (much of the affair had been conducted via work emails rather than text anyway. And he was careful through out). He also told me that he met with her after discovery at work to get their stories straight for the possible investigation. But that they didn't discuss their stories to other halves.

Since D-day he has tried to give me 'full disclosure', gone complete no contact with OW, respected my need for space and then been around when I needed to shout at him, been very hands on with the DC, is apologetic and remorseful etc etc.

However I am struggling with the lack of evidence to back-up his story. I can't access his old work emails, the texts have gone (mostly immediately upon receiving/sending them as he's never hidden his phone) and most of their lunches/drinks were paid in cash so no card or bank records. Obviously he is a very proficient liar as I had no real suspicions of the affair - I had other concerns but did not believe he was cheating.

Basically the only source of info/evidence I have is her. And thats not likely to be 'accurate'. Do I call or text??? She is also married but no DC. Her DH doesn't know. Given that there has been no contact (well that I know about!) is it better to let sleeping dogs lie?? I'm tying myself in knots - have called her number several times but either she hasn't answered or I've hung up.

Any views on what to do for the best? I know I need to get 'closure' on the details of the affair before I can move on. hmmconfused

cjel Sun 07-Jul-13 21:59:26

I wouldn't give her the satisfaction of showing you cared tbh. I'd say work out what you want from your marriage and work on that. distrust your dh but work through that between the two of you.
Been through that awful discovery period and hope you remember to look after yourself.

KnittedWaffle Sun 07-Jul-13 22:04:01

No. Don't do it.
Work out what's best for you within your relationship - whether you move forward with him or without him; whether you can learn to trust him again.
There are so many reasons you shouldn't contact her: she might want him to leave you; she might lie; she might be nasty to you.
It all boils down to whether you can trust your DH and believe what he says.
If not, then you have your answer.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:12:24

It's so difficult! I guess lots of affairs are 'discovered' so the betrayed spouse has the horror of the evidence. At least I have been spared that. But at the same time I am aware he has probably minimised the extent of the affair (timing, says they only had sex once, mainly just emails, lunches and drinks after work). Some of the details he has told me there's no way I could have found out myself so there's some honesty there. He wants it to work between us - he's having individual counselling and we're seeing a counsellor together - so I'm torn on whether he's still hiding stuff out of the fear I'll say we're over.

I don't trust him and its a horrible horrible feeling. I'd like some proof he's told me the truth so I can start to rebuild some trust. But there isn't any. hmm

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 07-Jul-13 22:17:41

Don't do it. You'll only look like the 'wife that doesn't understand me' that he probably portrayed you as. The person you have to tackle is the one that made you promises of fidelity and broke them. If he isn't prepared to tell you the truth, you have to deal with that. If you don't feel you can trust him ever again, you have to deal with that as well. It's not the OW that breaks up the relationship, it's the loss of trust.

Fairenuff Sun 07-Jul-13 22:17:51

Have I got this right - you are looking to her to find out what your dh isn't telling you?

Do you realise that that means you trust her more than you trust him?

Hassled Sun 07-Jul-13 22:18:00

"I'd like some proof he's told me the truth so I can start to rebuild some trust." - well then tell him that. I absolutely understand why you need it - and tbh it's probably the only chance you have of salvaging your own happiness/marriage, of regaining that trust. If you need to meet her, then meet her (although yes, she might well lie) - but don't tiptoe around it. If you want evidence, he needs to provide it.

StingingNettle Sun 07-Jul-13 22:25:43

Why do you think that a women who lied and cheated on her H is going to tell you anymore than your H who lied and cheated on you?

I wish I could go back in time and tell myself not to contact the OW. It led to nothing, I didn't trust her words anymore than I trusted my H's. Plus it left me feeling like the "unhinged wife".

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:26:43

Well I can't trust her any less than I trust him!! Bloody sorry state of affairs (pun intended wink).

I have told him I need some evidence. He changed his phone number and got a new phone after D-day but is still with the same network provider. He has got in touch with them about retrieving deleted texts to/from his old number but got told it wasn't possible. He showed me the online chat thingy he had with O2.

Not sure what other evidence there is to ask for?

Going forward he is being completely transparent. There isn't much time when I don't know where he is anyway - not got another job yet. I totally agree the lack of trust is the most damaging thing.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 07-Jul-13 22:28:53

I mean this kindly but no amount of evidence is going to restore your trust. If you don't get it, you suspect there's something he's not telling you. If he gives you evidence, you suspect there's something he's not telling you. If he's being completely transparent, you'll suspect there's something he's not telling you.

Trust is a law-court where evidence and a good argument wins the day. It's a visceral emotion and if you don't feel it, you don't feel it.... Has he left the family home yet?

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:29:14

I feel my leverage with her is that her DH doesn't know. I can say that if she won't answer my questions or her answers don't match up with the story I've been told that I will tell her husband. Although in reality I wouldn't do that.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 07-Jul-13 22:29:25

Trust is 'not' a law-court... I meant to say.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 07-Jul-13 22:30:28

Threatening the woman doesn't make your DH more trustworthy.

Ragwort Sun 07-Jul-13 22:36:00

What 'evidence' do you want? And what will you do with it?

Retain your dignity, there is nothing to be gained from contacting the OW apart from making a fool of yourself. She is nothing special, if it hadn't been her it would have been some other woman. The person who cheated is your husband, if you want to retain your marriage concentrate on the counselling and your relationship with your DH. Yes, I have been in your shoes, yes it hurts but I strongly maintain that there was nothing to have been gained by my contacting the OW.

Crikey OP I feel for you. I can imagine feeling like you have to know all the details before you can process all the emotions. But as Cogito says, you will never have 100% comfort that he has told you everything, even if you ask her.

Do you think the affair would still be going on if it weren't for the discovery at work? That I would find hard to deal with.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:37:48

Yes he spent the first 2 weeks staying at a b&b after I throw him out. But I saw him over that time as we had things on for the DC which he needed to attend (school plays etc). He also spent a further 5 days at his mother's after I said I needed him out - we were having awful rows. He came home 3 weeks ago as I had an accident which has incapacitated me for a couple of weeks (on the mend now) so he's been doing everything at home since then - looking after me, the DCs, doing all the cooking and laundry, DIY chores etc.

I get that whatever evidence I get I may never be satisfied. I just want 1 thing that matches up - then I might have some hope that he means what he says and is doing. It's so hard to doubt his intentions/motivations.

So he only told you about his affair once he lost his job. They both must have had some prior warning about their behaviour, yet they didn't change.

Why is he wasting money buying new phones, he could have got a cheap sim.

What he going to do about getting a new job with no reference/sacked.

Get a STI check for yourself.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 07-Jul-13 22:41:50

'He means what he says'... means you're trying to prove he's not a liar based on what he's telling you now, when everything you've discovered shows that he lied to you easy as breathing in the very recent past. If he hadn't lost his job, he'd still be lying.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:43:23

Hearts - I don't know. He says it was effectively over by the end of March - that there was no more 'sexy' communications. We went skiing at the beginning of April and they were contacting each other then - he says that she couldn't be 'just friends', he replied to say they would discuss it when he got back. So I maintain it was continuing. She was planning to leave their place of work anyway before discovery so he claims that was his get-out, that it would have gone away by itself. I think that's bollocks and have told him so.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:48:05

Wheredidiputit - he resigned prior to the investigation being conducted. Saved embarrassment all round so he'll have a reference. God knows what he'll do re job though.

The ease of lying is an issue - he knows I don't believe it was only once but says he can't 'prove a negative'. Also says they were careful that once so no need for a test.

Ahhhcrap Sun 07-Jul-13 22:50:00

I wouldn't IMO

What would it prove. You know he's had the affair, end of! You now need to decide if you want to give it another go it not.

She'll only give you what SHE wants you to know, I wouldn't even bother - they've both proved they can lie so why believe them. You'll never get the full truth and it'll only raise more questions

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:50:19

Oh, new phone was because his old one had corrupted a while before D-day. I know that's true as I'd seen the problems he was having with it. He was out of contract so got a new deal which was cheaper than his old one. Hence new phone rather than just a new sim.

Fairenuff Sun 07-Jul-13 22:50:20

So, if you found out absolutely everything, how would that make anything different than it is now. Would you trust him more, respect him more, love him more? Just because you knew he cheated on you more?

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 22:55:39

I'm hoping there is no more and that he's told me everything. It won't make me believe that he's always telling the truth in the future but it would give me some building blocks to start with. I feel stuck in limbo at the moment. Maybe 9 weeks is too soon??

Fairenuff Sun 07-Jul-13 22:58:54

So if the OW tells you the same as him, there is no more and he has told you everything, would you believe her?

Cravingdairy Sun 07-Jul-13 23:04:36

Please don't blackmail the OW. She could report you to the police. She could also report you for harassment if you keep ringing her and hanging up. Destroy her number, she can't give you what you want. Sorry you're going through this.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:05:08

I don't know! In my darker moments (of which there are lots!) I'd probably think that she is sticking to the story they put together 10 weeks ago. Or that they were still in contact - although I have complete visibility on his phone, tablet, home pc so I'm 99% sure they're not in contact.

Fairenuff Sun 07-Jul-13 23:08:22

Ok, so just from following the logic (which is probably eluding you at the moment) you would gain nothing from contacting her. At best, she will tell you the same as him, in which case you still won't believe either of them, and at worst she will tell you there was more which he hasn't told you about and you will feel even more betrayed.

Leave her out of it and concentrate on yourself. What do you want? Do you even like him any more?

justgivemeareason Sun 07-Jul-13 23:10:22

What more of the 'truth' do you need to know? If he says they had sex once, and they actually had sex twice, does it make any difference? If it went on longer than they said, does it matter? How would you know which one of them is actually telling the truth?

I think you are right to suspect you don't know half of it. However, I personally wouldn't want/need to know all the gory details. He was unfaithful, can you trust him any more? that's what you need to deal with.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:16:25

Rather annoyingly I do still love him. But no, I don't like aspects of his character at all. He has been in counselling for his issues since Feb and changed from completely useless counsellor to a much much better one within a week of D-day. Not wanting to 'blame the parents' he has had v poor modelling - serial adulterer dad, forgiving mum, H told to keep his father's dirty secrets. Also he has low self-esteem issues (history of redundancy, bullying at work) which I know is a cliche.

On the other hand - he's always been brilliant with all 3 DCs, turns up for school things, does lots round the house, gets home in time for me to go out etc. My only local RL friend who knows what's going on was shocked initially as she thinks 'he really loves me'.

imademarion Sun 07-Jul-13 23:17:43

Might you be able to use the old SIM card? But do you really really want to know what he said about your marriage in order to justify betraying you?

IME, there'll be a lot of incredibly thoughtless and downright untrue stuff there as he gets carried away portraying himself as the shiny new person he'd like to believe he is. Seeing your relationship being trashed so he can get into her pants won't be edifying.

I think a PP got it right asking if the affair would still be going if they hadn't been busted.

And, gory details and disclosure aside, what do you really want to happen?

Because if you stay together you need to work on shutting those questions out and looking forwards instead of back.

It can work, with broad shoulders and lots of understanding and willingness to forgive.

But raking up the details won't help.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:25:30

It's impossible isn't it! I don't really want to read all the gory details and I appreciate that I've been spared some of the horror that others go through. I also realise that the OW owes me nothing and is also a liar. This is not her first infidelity (according to my H) so she's got issues too. I just want some external verification - just having his word is not enough when his word is worth jack-shit!

I did raise the 'I don't believe him' issue in our MC session a few weeks ago but didn't mention contacting the OW. Our counsellor said I'd never get the whole truth and that I needed to find other building blocks to start to rebuild our relationship with. Basically that I need to work towards letting go of the 'investigation' stage to move along the process.

laeiou Sun 07-Jul-13 23:35:09

Ok I have to say, transparent, really? He only told anything because he was forced to. He didn't have an attack of guilt while enjoying a family day. He didn't own up when discovered at work. He waited until the last minute and deleted evidence. Why delete it?

I am not surprised that you don't trust what you've been told. Why would you? If he hadn't lost his job, if he'd just had a warning then you still wouldn't know. But the ow can't help with any of that.

Have you both been tested for STIs?

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:41:54

Laeiou - you're right about telling me. I've said all of that him. If he'd just had the warning he accepts that he probably wouldn't have told me. She was supposed to be leaving anyway, he claims they were 'de-coupling' already from end of March and that he was hoping it would have all gone away. I said that's nonsense and that once she'd got a new job they would have met for lunch, it would have rekindled and so on. His response is to deny that and says I can't worry about 'what if', we can only deal with what actually happened. He is sorry though - and says so when we have these conversations.

LemonPeculiarJones Sun 07-Jul-13 23:42:34

He's a liar. He betrayed you. Don't be forced to minimise this by a Marriage guidance counsellor.

You don't need to work towards anything right now, he should be the one doing the work.

It may not be his first infidelity either.

He has covered his tracks so thoroughly and now he can sell you the most minimal version of the truth.

Your desire for information from the OW simply highlights that you cannot believe him. You don't believe him. Your instincts are telling you he is continuing to lie about the details.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:51:18

Lemon - part if the Pandora's box that has been opened with this crisis is having to deal with an EA he had 5 ish year ago. He was 'unrequited'. I tackled him about it 4 years ago when pg with our 3rd DC. I don't think either of us dealt with it properly.

I don't want to drip-feed but one of the reasons I'm struggling with him telling the truth is that he lied to me a week or so ago about whether he had watched porn whilst at his mother's. He said not, I checked the history on his tablet which proved otherwise. hmmhmm He said he denied it because he was 'embarrassed'. Bloody idiot - both of us, him for lying and me for believing Him. My radar must be well broken. But I don't want to get led into a 'porn thread' though as that's not my real issue.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:54:41

Didn't mean to capitalise "Him" in my last post. He's not God, ha bloody ha. wink

3HotCrossBuns Sun 07-Jul-13 23:57:01

How do those that have been betrayed get over/past/through the lack of trust then?? I know there are stories of people who manage to rebuild their relationships after infidelity. How do they do it??!?

Zynnia Mon 08-Jul-13 00:01:57

why does the counsellor presume you 'have to' rebuild the trust? that sounds so laboured, and so fake, and so impossible really, given that even when you're both at counselling he's lying.

counsellor should dedicate a session to what happens if (quite justifiably) you can't trust him again.

I think "you must find ways to rebuild trust..." that makes it sound like your shortcoming.

ImperialBlether Mon 08-Jul-13 00:04:43

I'm so sorry, OP; I've been in your position and it's a really horrible place to be.

I wouldn't believe that they only slept together once, for a number of reasons.

One is that she'd had an affair previously and hadn't died of the guilt, so it's extremely unlikely that having had sex with him once she wouldn't do it again. He's also had an emotional affair which suggests he again wasn't stricken by guilt.

Please don't confuse the guilt he feels when he looks at your distraught face with the guilt felt at doing something but not being found out.

Also, how likely is it really that they did sleep together once? Statistically, what are the chances of them both losing their jobs over a one night stand?

You know he can lie to you. I do believe you when you say he's decent in other ways, but the fact is that throughout your relationship he has looked you in the eyes and lied to you about something that he knew would break your heart.

Don't bother asking the OW, although I can understand why you feel the need to. She didn't want the relationship to end back in April. There's a chance of her husband finding out now. Your husband will be her plan B - she won't say anything to make him turn against her.

I don't think people change. I wish they would, but I don't believe they do. He will do this again, you realise that? Whatever validation he's been getting from these women has made him happy enough to take enormous risks. Would you gamble on him never doing it again?

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:09:36

I'm not sure exactly what she said - but it was that basically I wouldn't ever get the 'whole truth' and that I should ask myself why I'm asking him certain Qs (ie would the answers be helpful/unhelpful) as, at that time, I was interrogating him a lot. And he was getting angry and defensive so we were going round in circles. I took it to mean that I would have to find alternative solutions for my reliance on verifying his story being my way of starting to rebuild our marriage.

Yes he does need to do a lot of work. Recently he's been getting quite fed up though - I have said to him that i accept that our relationship wasn't perfect before but nothing justifies his cheating. He agrees but, I guess, is a stage ahead of me and wants to move forward.

Sorry if my posts are confused. I never seem to finish one thought before the next one jumps out of my head!

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:17:18

Imperial - cross post. Your message was hard to read but reflects my darkest thoughts. He has admitted he felt almost no guilt during the affair in our latest MC session. Awful to hear but he didn't need to say that, at least that was a truthful response. He says that he's not been physically unfaithful before, that his behaviour has shocked and sickened him and that the upset he's caused and repercussions are so catastrophic that there's no way he'd do this again. Hmmmmm

And no I just don't believe it was only the once. That's what I want to ask the OW. Perhaps I could just text her that one question.....

How can someone who's so attentive and loving and invested do this?? I don't understand.

LittleFrieda Mon 08-Jul-13 00:17:59

Why have they lost their jobs?

Zynnia Mon 08-Jul-13 00:19:08

yeh losing their jobs is fairly extreme. not a warning, verbal or written but straight to dismissal! were they shagging on the premises?

Zynnia Mon 08-Jul-13 00:22:29

was the counsellor not saying to him that he has to tell the whole truth now or all of the counselling is just going to be meaningless and pointless???

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:26:22

Those were my questions at the start of all of this. Apparently another employee had made bullying claims against the OW who had made counter-claims. In amongst it was allegations of 'inappropriate behaviour' by her with my H so he got dragged into it. His boss said it was 'unfortunate' it had come to light via an official complaint. H told me they had 'kissed' in the office on 2 separate occasions after work drinks. They will have used their passes to get into the building hence not being able to deny that behaviour. I think they shagged then as well as the occasion he has confessed to but he strongly denies this. i cant work out why he'd lie about that if he's said he'd shagged her in a different occasion. Also lots and lots of inappropriate emailing.

ImperialBlether Mon 08-Jul-13 00:26:50

I think they find it easier to switch off, so that when he's at home he's your husband, when he was with her he was her boyfriend. It's only when the two worlds collide that he gets confused and unhappy.

Having an affair is a huge adrenaline rush, which makes it worse as he could obviously hide that excitement from you.

I don't think joint counselling is a good idea. I know when I was in your position (more than once) I felt as though I'd been bereaved. I was also in a state of shock - I hadn't actually realised what that meant until I was there myself. So I would stop the joint counselling and go yourself. If he wants to go, he'll have to sort that out himself.

I think what's happened is that he sees the consequences of his behaviour as you being mad at him. He's like a child, trying to stop you from yelling at him. The consequences should be a complete removal of yourself - either physically (ie kick him out and say barely a word to him when he comes to pick up the children) or mentally and emotionally if you have to stay in the home. So you don't sit and watch tv with him. You don't tell him about that phone call you've had with your mum. You don't chat. You don't ask how he is. You don't sleep in the same bed. You go up to bed when the kids go to bed and you stay there.

It's up to you, but at the moment what you are subliminally saying is, "I hate the fact you did this to me and I want to talk about it again and again." Your message should be, "I hate the fact you did this to me and I don't want to speak to you ever again. You are no longer my friend, my husband or my lover. You are a person I cannot trust and do not love."

ImperialBlether Mon 08-Jul-13 00:28:07

He is minimising. They all do it.

I'm so sorry. I don't want you to think I'm putting the boot in. I'm really not.

ImperialBlether Mon 08-Jul-13 00:29:49

But hang on a second.

The OW is bullying another woman. The woman being bullied makes a formal complaint and says "And not only that, she's been kissing X"?

So the boss says, "OK, sadly the OW and X now have to leave the company."

Really? Really?

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:36:31

Really Imperial? That's tough! It's been such a rollercoaster I think I've done everything every day!! I threw him out of the house initially which seemed to do the trick of huge remorse from him. Then we had half term and one of my kids' birthdays so we presented a united front for their sake. Cue a few weeks at home with awful, unbelievably bad arguments. I was beyond rage with him and he felt under constant attack. He did detach emotionally at that stage which was hard. I then said he had to go for all our sakes. He took that as the first stage of actually separating. It was awful, the most miserable week ever. Then I had my accident and he's been home ever since. He's doing all the loving, supportive husband and father stuff and I was beginning to feel better - although we still have bad times and I have been blaming myself for the whole thing. I just can't get past this 'need' to verify his affair story and having ever stronger desires to contact the OW. He's in my bed and we've been together lots. Not sure I could detach myself now hmmhmmhmm

clam Mon 08-Jul-13 00:38:10

I'm not sure whether knowing how long it went on for, how many times they did it, when it ended or why, makes it easier or harder to deal with. I've read on here people who'd argue both ways.

That he's a lying disloyal cheating shit is a given. But I'd be really struggling with the calculated way he's acted since being found out. That's why it's out there in the public domain. And they've colluded in "getting their story straight" and deleting evidence. And he's clearly not told you everything, even now. Like most cheating shits, he'll only admit to what you can prove. And, of course, you can't prove anything now, as he's deleted the evidence.

How can you move on from this? Helping out around the house or not, he's shown you exactly what sort of character he is. Do you really want to be married to him anymore?

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:42:38

Re work - HR were going to do a formal investigation. I think the emails (which are probably full of incriminating stuff and v inappropriate) and being on work premises after hours were enough to be misconduct at best and probably gross-misconduct. H didn't want to take the risk of instant dismissal and his immediate boss suggested resignation might be the best solution all round. I've seen the compromise agreement - not that it says very much at all.

clam Mon 08-Jul-13 00:46:59

Why would they go back to the office after drinks out, and "just" kiss?

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 00:53:03

Exactly Clam. The first time was after the Xmas do (the start of the affair) and he went back to the office to get his bag. But they were the last 2 people in the pub so it's a given they were going back to 'get off' with each other (Christ I sound like a teenager!). As it was the 'first time' they didn't shag. I don't believe him. The other occasion was early-ish March after another work function. He claims they didn't 'do it' as he was so drunk he couldn't get it up even after much encouragement. Why would he lie about that - surely that's too embarrassing to admit to?? Anyway as I don't have access to his work premises key card data he didn't have to tell me those gory details??

clam Mon 08-Jul-13 01:01:18

Unless they were seen by a work colleague, in which case he had to admit it as it would come out in a tribunal (or whatever formal sanctions that were going to take place).

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 01:05:17

I guess. I also think he was telling me the same story he had told work the day before - they would have known his key card dates and he thinks this is the worst they had on him (other than the content of the emails). He didn't confess to shagging her (to me) on a different occasion until the following day when I had thrown him out the house.

Mimishimi Mon 08-Jul-13 05:33:40

Sorry, I wouldn't trust him if he deleted everything to avoid you finding out the extent of it. I wouldn't trust her either but I can see why you might want to ask her for her copies of the emails.

Fragglewump Mon 08-Jul-13 06:26:24

Op I feel for you. What a shitty situation to be in. As I was reading your thread I was thinking about how I would handle your situation. I was thinking through the pain that you will have to deal with as you try to trust this toerag lying man again. I was imagining all the women who have walked in your shoes only to deal with the same shitty situation again a few years down the line. And then I read your post about the fact that this is not the first time for you either......he has done this before..... He will do it again. Each time eroding whats left of your dignity, self esteem and love for him. Your deserve more. Your children deserve more. Get angry, get strong and get him out of your life!

countingto10 Mon 08-Jul-13 06:46:51

This article is very useful (I found the whole site useful after discovery of my DH's affair).

In my opinion, you will not get the whole truth until your H feels safe and secure within your relationship again and then when he imparts some nugget it will be like discovery day all over again.

My DH didn't admit to something that I knew most probably took place until 6 months later because it was an incredible betrayal and the ultimate in shitty behaviour and in a way he couldn't admit it to himself if that makes sense.

It's early days so put yourself first and foremost, build your self esteem up, concentrate on making you feel good and don't worry about him - what thought did he give you?

Take care

MadAboutHotChoc Mon 08-Jul-13 07:11:44

Good article Counting.

Did you get Shirley Glass's Not Just Friends? In it there is a section about putting together a timeline - we used diaries and calendars to put ours together and it was revealing.

I think he needs to go to individual counselling - that way he gets to talk about what really happened and address personality traits (e.g lying) and coping mechanisms that led to him choosing to have affairs.

Has he been tested for STIs?

MmmmmmmmmMARMITE Mon 08-Jul-13 07:17:24

I just wouldn't contact her tbh. You don't know her and you could give her the opportunity to embellish the truth - especially if she is hurting too.

Someone on here gave me good advice - the best revenge being be healthy, to live well and be happy. 10 weeks is far too soon - you are still raw. Give yourself time to consider what you want to do - be it a week, a month, a year.

He loves his dc so much yet he has lost his job and means to support them.
He is soo lying about it only being once and you know that. So this is his 2nd dalliance that you know about.
He is a liar and can't be trusted.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 07:34:05

Thank you for the link - I've spent a lot of time on the Internet since D-day but not come across that particular article. I'll read it once DC at school.

He is having individual counselling - twice a week at the start, weekly now. Think he finds it tough as he's exploring lots of his past and his parents' behaviour re lying and infidelity. His father is pathological. But he's sticking with the counselling - altho has admitted he's 'distracting' himself with stuff at home and trying not to 'think about it too much' confusedconfused I've said he HAS to if he's going to change his behaviour.

I have read Shirley Glass's book, v enlightening. I intend to read it again.

H did a timeline for me 2 days after D-day. I've been through my diary and emails what feels like a million times. It's a v hurtful process but only covers about 4 months so its not that complicated to piece together.

Overall I'm struggling. And I think H is struggling too - says he knew it wouldn't be easy but didn't expect it to be this hard! He's frustrated that I don't believe him but does understand why. I'm worried he won't stick this out hmmhmm But then I guess I have my answer hmmhmmhmm

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 07:42:36

Countingto10 - I think you are one of the 'success stories' of reconciliation after infidelity? How did you manage it after the loss of your trust, relationship etc? I get that the cheater has to take responsibility ( H is), make amends if possible (H is trying) and start to behave better in the future (can't say yet). I have a huge fear of him going back to work eventually as this was all conducted through work - he was almost never late home and was 'normal' with his phone.

"As it was the 'first time' they didn't shag. I don't believe him. The other occasion was early-ish March after another work function. He claims they didn't 'do it' as he was so drunk he couldn't get it up even after much encouragement. Why would he lie about that - surely that's too embarrassing to admit to??"

I remember reading on here ages ago, that the lies people tell often make them appear even worse - and since then I've noticed that again and again. He is lying about both of these occasions, I would bet good money on it. It started at Xmas, only finished recently, and he got the sack for it? They have had a lot of sex and his failure to admit it to you is really doing damage.

onefewernow Mon 08-Jul-13 08:11:06

Oh I've been here. H was unfaithful for five years, albeit online- he says.

He too only told me when he had no choice- other than divorce- and also deleted any evidence first.

He uses the same words- I can't prove a negative. For us it is 20 months on, and we returned to counselling in February, after an initial short stint at the time.

You can never, ever be sure you got the truth. Ever. I do sympathise, as I was troubled by the same thing, and still am, albeit occasionally.

I do think it is early days. Also , that your H's background re philandering father is something he really needs to concentrate on (my H too).

I advise you to check over your own life, make sure you gave a decent social life and activities of your own, and also do some work with your counsellor, and through reading , on your boundaries .

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 08:22:06

I'm sorry op, I read the whole thread and all I get from it is that if you really want to stay with this man then you better toughen up and get ready for the next affair ( assuming you'll find out about that one)

Ok he is bending over backwards, but I'd wager thats because he was under threat of losing his lovely old 'safe' life.

There are a couple of reasons I say this.

He has admitted that if he didn't get caught out then you still would be none the wiser.

He is startinh to get annoyed that you aren't 'at the same stage as him yet' which basically translates as 'God woman we all know you will forgive me, so stop making my life hard, forget about it and then I can carry on as normal'

He felt no guilt over the last affair and has done it before

I think there are cases where people may work through infidelity. Namely ones where the oh has admitted to it under their own steam. Have been truly transparent (e.g. Not running around hiding evidence, matching up stories with ow hmm

He felt no guilt during his affair and has

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 08:24:44

Hmm don't know why there is a stray repeat of a line there...bloody phone.

ShinyBlackShoes Mon 08-Jul-13 08:52:43

There must be something more to the sacking thing.

Officially you need warnings verbally, then written, and unless he works somewhere with special regs, I can't see him being sacked on the grounds you mention (called in as OW said they kissed and they used the office out of regular hours).

Only you can decide over trusting him again. My ExH married his OW (his best friends wife) an they have been married for many years and appear very happy, and a guy I dated took his ex-wife back (she had had an affair with a work colleague) and they too are still together and indeed have just emigrated (we didn't keep in touch, I heard this through the grapevine). I say this to give balance to the 'don't trust him again' - it is possible to accept mistakes and move on (possibly even accept that ones partner is a serial adulterer but know that they have chosen you over the others i guess).

Be kind to yourself

MadAboutHotChoc Mon 08-Jul-13 09:06:31

Is there any paperwork relating to the loss of his job that he could show you?

I wonder about how things were ended with OW? How do you know for sure its finished? Ideally, he should have spoken to her on speaker phone in your presence to tell her.

I second Onefewer's advice to focus on yourself and rebuilding your own life (work, hobbies, friends etc) and on your boundaries - I wouldn't be surprised that if you look back you will see how much he has got away with lying, selfishness etc.

Bogeyface Mon 08-Jul-13 09:07:13

I am sorry but I agree with PP's who said that you dont get instant dismissal for a quick snog after an office party. I rather suspect that they have been using the office for their sessions all the way along.

The fact that he is lying now and minimising says that he still thinks more about himself than he does about you, so what you need to do now is work out if you can live with someone like that.

What he wants, feels and does will always be more important to him than you. I couldnt live like that.

laeiou Mon 08-Jul-13 09:09:48

I really think there's more to the work resignation than you've been told. I can't see how an affair conducted on work premises after hours or misusing company email could be gross misconduct or result in a compromise agreement. Where I've worked (small, medium and multinationals in various industries) the only sexual activity considered gross misconduct would be dome sort of assault. People who've been embarrassed through being caught having affairs (I.e. shagging on the premises) just resigned. Why would HR spend money getting a legal agreement drawn up? I can only imagine this happening if it's not a private sector job. Is he James Bond?

Anyway, ho hum. You know he's a serial liar and that he has no respect for you. He's got you thinking that you should stay with him. You seem to be defending him on here. He's got you well trained.

AnAirOfHope Mon 08-Jul-13 09:31:37

why do you want to stay with him?

AnAirOfHope Mon 08-Jul-13 09:33:38

What do you think and feel about him getting a new job? Going out for drinks after work? If he works with the OW again?

AnAirOfHope Mon 08-Jul-13 09:36:34

can you forgive him for getting sacked cos he had sex with another women and it affecting your family finance and family stubility?

The only thing he has left to lose is you. He will always be your childrens father.

LemonPeculiarJones Mon 08-Jul-13 09:40:04

He is 'a stage ahead' of you?!

No, he just doesn't want you to harangue him about it anymore. In his head you're being a pain for going on about it.

He sounds like an arsehole. He's behaved with the utmost selfishness, has betrayed you, lied again and again and again, and wants the fallout to be as comfortable for him as possible.

Why are you making this so easy for him?

I don't think you can ever trust him (EA, affair, lies about porn use). If you stay with him you are accepting that you don't deserve anything better. You will be sacrificing your self-respect.

It's up to you.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 10:25:13

Thank you for all your posts - very very hard reading. Contacting the OW to get some verification is probably not going to help is it. Everything is a huge great mess hmmhmm. I have hesitated over posting on here as I wasn't sure I was strong enough to read the replies.

He is (other than his infidelity!) a good man - always there for me and the DC, very hands on dad and helpful husband around the home. I find it hard to believe he's actually a total bastard. Acting skills worthy of an actor hmmhmm

I don't know what to think or what to do. I desperately want to believe his 'affair story'.

LemonPeculiarJones Mon 08-Jul-13 10:32:47

He's not always there for you OP. Sometimes he chooses to be there for other women - have sex with them, tell them he loves them etc.

It must be so hard for you and you must so want everything to be ok. I really understand that.

But not only has he betrayed you on numerous occasions - easily and comfortably - jeopardising the future of his children (ie he didn't care enough about the potential of losing his job not to fuck her) - he is now getting a bit huffy about you continuing to find his lies and sexual infidelity difficult.

As for the acting skills - people can compartmentalise. Sometimes fucking another woman makes it easier for the betrayer to go home cheerful and helpful.

The foundations of your relationship are a mudslide of lies.

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 10:34:36

One thing life has taught me.

A man can be an amazing father, a brilliant friend and an (on the surface) attentive husband and lover.

And still screw everything that isn't nailed down.

Unfortunately that is true of alot of men.

Bogeyface Mon 08-Jul-13 10:52:41

Looking is right.

STBX was and is a far better father than my exH who was utterly faithful (probably because cheating took a bit of effort.....hmm). He was also caring and loving towards me in a way my ex never was. Didnt stop him shagging several exes during our marriage.

Upnotdown Mon 08-Jul-13 11:24:02

Be prepared to be even more confused if you do because she'll probably tell you a load of lies. That depends on whether she wanted to make a new life with your husband or if she was just having a bit of escapism too. Personally, I wouldn't bother.

If you do speak to her though, make sure she knows that there are no chains on him, you aren't suicidal and you can live without him. Just so he can't make you responsible (to her) for his actions.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 12:40:17

I really appreciate you all taking the time to respond to this thread - after all I'm an Internet stranger and there's no need to be a 'friend' as it were.

Onefewernow - wow, 20 months on! You must be very strong to have stuck through this shitty shitty process. I'm just over 2 months in and feel overwhelmed by it all.

Hotchoc - no paperwork other than the compromise agreement. A good friend of mine who's an employment lawyer did it for H so I trusted his advisor.

Bogeyface - yes his ego does seem rather important to him!! He's clearly got a lot of issues going back a long time. I've had 1 session with an IC who said I've been the solid wife in the between of all his fucked-upness. I clearly can't carry on like that though - H says that this affair was the ' worst' of his behaviour (ie it's the only proper affair) and that he has shocked himself. He never wants to be like that again.

AirofHope - I'm terrified of him getting a new job! He won't work with the OW again (she was 'just' a secretary so no need for their paths to cross again) but he had a secret world that I wasn't privy to at work and I will not be able to 'police' him there in the future. Without giving too much away he won't have been too worried about financial stability as my family are well off and I have an independent source of income. This is part of his issues as he's never felt 'good enough' for me or a 'real' father who provides for his kids. All nonsense in his head, not our reality. Not helped by his father calling him a gold digger shortly before our wedding shockhmm

Lemon - it's been a horrific rollercoaster here and I've been vile so I'm not sure I've made it that easy for him. He could have walked so far but he's stuck with it.

I too am doubting the foundations of our relationship and querying why he married me in the first place. Horrible feeling. Our marriage wasn't perfect before this (which marriage is??!) and I do feel that I've enabled him to behave badly and not given him enough support or attention over the stressful times in our marriage.

Anyway I'm realising that I'm not going to get the answers I want from the OW and that that's not the way to make the distrust go away. Feeling stuck really. Thank you all again for taking the time to post.

countingto10 Mon 08-Jul-13 13:37:46

You are still in a state of shock, way too early to be getting over it. Two years is the bench mark that most people give and I am over 4 years down the line and small things can take me right back to that time unfortunately (my DCs did a show at the weekend and sang a song that was on the radio all the time when I made the discovery - my DH was very concerned about me but it was just a slight wince).

Affairs don't happen in a vacuum, I am sure your H displayed many dubious behaviours that you have excused for a quiet life. One of the hardest things for my DH to acknowledge was that he wasn't merely a liar to me, he was also deceiving and manipulating others too. If you don't acknowledge it, you cannot change it.

One of the things that therapy did for me was to make me understand where my boundaries were lacking and just how bad behaviour I was prepared to put up with (due to my childhood and the example set to me by my mother hmm). DH also had a very dysfunctional childhood with a very domineering grandmother and taught himself to lie at a very young age so as not to upset said grandmother (who lived with them). His default position was to lie and manipulate (grandmother was a master of manipulation). These are reasons, not excuses - we were both co-dependent.

My DH stayed with his parents for about 4 months after discovery and in this time, we "dated", we did therapy etc.

You really do need to focus on you, you have to change the way you react to him, put yourself first, take up a long forgotten hobby (I took up horse riding again, to get me away from the house, DCs and DH, now the proud owner of a grey mare who costs DH a fortune but he understands how important it is to me).

Our therapist really worked on me to change me and my boundaries, for me to understand myself and why I allowed him to treat me as I did. I think change does start with you, whether he will change with you remains to be seen but if not, you will have changed enough not to want to put up with him and his behaviours and do what is necessary for you and your DCs.

Good luck.

LemonPeculiarJones Mon 08-Jul-13 13:47:17

Oh OP. you 'enabled him to behave badly'?

Rather like Nigella enabled Saatchi, by having a neck?

It sounds like you are very stuck, because you don't want to be open to the idea of admitting he's not a viable partner. Stuck because you don't want to leave him and want to twist yourself in any direction to avoid facing the possibility that he may never change.

You'd rather believe that it might have been your fault for not giving him enough 'support and attention'. You just seem so desperate.

Is this what you want to hear?:

It'll all be ok if you just stop neglecting the poor, lovely man, who is such a good dad. Stop giving him a hard time and, instead, work harder in your marriage to fulfil him. Then he wouldn't have to look elsewhere for sex and excitement.

Because if its all your fault then you can control this, right? And make it all ok?

You will never hear the truth from him. And it will very probably happen again and again, judging from what you've said.

Of course it's your business if you choose to stay with him. You just sound so powerless right now. I hope you take some power back.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 13:59:11

CountingTo10 - your post is very thought provoking. So far it's all been about him and whether he can change, take responsibility, behave better. I've not considered whether I need to change what behaviour I will accept. I have recently taken up a new hobby (about a month or so before discovery) which is giving me much needed space away from the family home and the DCs. I'm almost fully recovered now and desperate to get back to it!

Lemon - I haven't been in the 'blaming myself' stage the whole time, just more recently and is the feeling that prompted me to start my own IC. I have felt like a stupid, blind fool though ever since D-day for not guessing about the affair. My concerns were related to his heavy drinking (I was trying to think of ways to get him to AA!) and his stress at work (he has a history in this area). Hindsight is a precious gift and I wish so much I had recognised some of his red flags over the last 5 years. hmmhmm

countingto10 Mon 08-Jul-13 14:31:09

Look up co-dependency. Reading that your H is a heavy drinker (heavy enough that you want him to go to AA hmm) co-dependency and enabling springs to mind and you trying to fix and control everything.

This book is brilliant and was recommended by my therapist. My first H was an alcoholic and my DH had a gambling problem (more bad behaviour to be acknowledged), can't think why our therapist concentrated on fixing me hmm.

Woodenpeg Mon 08-Jul-13 14:43:11

Hey OP, I wonder if you could contact his previous place of work... I would be tempted. Speak to his ex-boss?

Find out what really happened. His story sounds way off. I would suspect it's a lot more lurid than he is letting on. From a HR point, this inter-office fiddling is RIFE, but an investigation? Thats a whole different ball game.

Good luck OP.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 14:53:53

Hi Woodenpeg. I have thought about contacting his ex-boss but I suspect he will politely tell me to go away. I doubt v much he would disclose what's in the emails from a reputation point of view for the business. My H saw him briefly when collecting his belongings from the office and there was very little said then. My H says he doesn't know how much of the detail his boss knows anyway.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 15:01:12

Counting - I wanted him to go to AA as drinking makes him unpleasant (understatement) and I've been on the receiving end of some nasty behaviour - only verbal, he's never been physically abusive. As his stress was increasing (he was truthfully having difficulties at work in January) so was the frequency and amount of his drinking. I wanted him to stop although I'm not sure whether he's an alcoholic.
H says (and has said historically) that I have 'control' issues - i.e. I'm always trying to control what he's doing - which is true, I do like him to be nearby etc and never been great about him disappearing for the day to do his hobbies or spend time with his friends.
I've never thought about codependency etc with regards to me. I only ever thought I was trying to support him through some difficult times in the past. hmm

Fairenuff Mon 08-Jul-13 18:22:36

OP reading through your thread, there are a few things that stand out to me (apart from the excellent advice you've already been given).

He claims they didn't 'do it' as he was so drunk he couldn't get it up even after much encouragement. Why would he lie about that - surely that's too embarrassing to admit to??

Firstly, this shows that he intended to have sex, the fact that he couldn't penetrate makes no difference does it? If he could, he would have. The fact that he thinks this makes it sound better just shows what little regard he has for your intellect. He is calling you a fool.

I get that the cheater has to take responsibility ( H is), make amends if possible (H is trying) and start to behave better in the future (can't say yet)

He is not taking responsibility. He is still lying to you. Even your counsellor told you you would never get the truth out of him.

He is not trying to make amends. Making amends would involve being completely truthful and not showing impatience or annoyance at your feelings.

Behaving better in future? Well we are now in what was the future and how is he behaving towards you. It seems that he is still trying to lay blame on you. He is getting fed up with you, after just 2 months, going on about it. He doesn't seem to really accept that he has to change.

He is (other than his infidelity!) a good man - always there for me and the DC, very hands on dad and helpful husband around the home

Actually, he is behaving the same way his father did. And you are behaving like his mother. So the two of you are doing exactly the same thing that caused him to need therapy. That is what kind of a dad he is.

it's been a horrific rollercoaster here and I've been vile so I'm not sure I've made it that easy for him. He could have walked so far but he's stuck with it

No, no, no, no, no!!! You have got this all the wrong way round. He has been vile to you. Did you cheat on him? Did you lie and shag around? Oh no, wait, that was him. All you did OP was express your hurt and anger, which you have every right to do.

You do not have to make anything easy for him. That is not your responsibility. He should be doing absolutely everything within his power to make life more bearable for you right now and continuing to support you over however many years it takes - forever probably.

He could have walked? He is lucky that you haven't walked yet. As soon as you are able to manage on your own, you should ask him to leave so that you can have some time and space to think about what you want.

He's not really taking you seriously.

Oh yes, and insist he goes for an sti check, and make sure he shows you the paperwork. I know he said he was careful but he's a liar and it's not worth risking your health over this. It would also send him a clear message that he should take responsibility and do what's right.

In fact, it would be a good test. Tell him it would put your mind at rest and see what he does. I bet you he doesn't go to the clinic. He won't even do that for you.

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 19:20:11


Exactly what Fair said

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 19:28:49

I know it shows he intended to have sex with her, he has never denied that. It's his response to me when I questioned why they didn't have sex on that occasion, esp as it was after the time he has confessed he had sex with her.

He is not blaming me for his infidelity, rather he's saying there were reasons he was unhappy in our marriage - some (but not all) of which he now recognises as being his issue rather than anything in our relationship. He says that nothing excuses his choice to be unfaithful. It's more me that is blaming myself. I feel like the wife of an alcoholic who constantly makes excuses for her husband's addiction and therefore enables the pattern of destructive behaviour to continue - that's what I see as my fault. Plus in my 'low' moments I can see that 3 small DC have distracted me from our marriage and him. That's not uncommon and from reading Shirley Glass seems to be a time at which marriages can be at risk of an affair.

He is feeling the effects of my anger, distress, anxiety etc and is on anti-d pills himself for his own mental issues. He's also had some tough counselling sessions himself. He wouldn't be human if he didn't get a little upset himself surely? He does consistently and regularly says sorry for causing this crisis and that he loves me. I think that he is trying to support me but that he has days when he finds life hard too.

I am terrified if becoming my MiL in all of this!! We have discussed how responsible we feel towards our DC and how to 'protect' them from this. I do not want them taking the message that infidelity is ok - they are young and our oldest is really the only one (so far) affected by what's happening. We don't have any answers though.

I'm not sure whether he's still lying to me about his 'affair story' or not. He's been consistent on what he says happened. Given he's a proficient liar I don't believe or trust him - not surprising and I doubt any betrayed spouse feels otherwise. Hence my temptation of contacting the OW for some 'back up' facts. I hear the advice on here that to do so would not be helpful (at best) and potentially more damaging.

Fairenuff Mon 08-Jul-13 19:38:33

Sadly, he does not need to make excuses for his behaviour, you are doing that for him OP.

How to protect your children from the message that infidelity is ok? Show them. Show them that it is not ok.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 19:38:54

That post got long - was interrupted by saying goodnight to the DC! Sorry.

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 19:44:49

Op I think you may be defending and minimising his actions far better than he ever could himself.

I hope things don't end up the way I sadly suspect that they will for you.

Wishing you the best op, take care of yourself and your dc.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 19:47:51

Fairenuff - then the DC have to know he's been unfaithful which they don't at the moment. They are young and I doubt they'd understand. Also is it possible to give DC the message that infidelity is wrong without ending the marriage?
All they know at the moment is that daddy has been very naughty and has upset mummy a lot (this is what H told them).

At the beginning of all this I was in shock and very very angry. I absolutely did not accept any 'blame' whatsoever and H didn't even suggest it. It's been more recently since my accident when I felt useless and depressed I guess. Even doubting my parenting abilities and generally being very low so the doubts have crept in. I'm feeling very anxious, insecure and have had a couple of panic attacks. I'm hoping the IC will help the spiral of thoughts crowding my head.

laeiou Mon 08-Jul-13 19:55:26

OP have you spoken to any friends about this? You don't seem to be getting much support in real life. I realise you're affected by physical issues at the moment, and hope you recover soon, but you sound quite defeated and resigned to this being all you can expect, and wondering how to make the best of it. It's quite sad to read.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 08-Jul-13 19:55:31

I am sorry OP, what a hateful shocking 10 weeks it must have been for you.

He says I can't worry about 'what if', we can only deal with what actually happened. Rather neat. Except what he does choose to disclose doesn't quite ring true. He didn't feel guilt during the affair and he doesn't sound very remorseful now, the therapy sessions will involve him talking about his favourite subject, himself.

I think that, coupled with you can't prove a negative when questioned about veracity of stated involvement, would be the signal to be very wary. If by being vile you mean you have been upset, suspicious, raging, sounds like a fair response to me.

Instant dismissal for kissing on the premises? Were they in Vatican City?

You look back to when you had care of your 3 small DCs and in retrospect, worry you had no time for him. Otoh he used your unlucky accident as the golden opportunity to step right back, be a model dad and husband, back in your bed too.

Going back to your original question, is it better to let sleeping dogs lie?? then no, I wouldn't contact OW, but I certainly wouldn't let this pivot round his needs, his role in your life - see where you stand, see what you want.

Fairenuff Mon 08-Jul-13 19:56:39

You have already given him second chances. If you accept this latest affair then there will almost certainly be more. Each time you agree to 'work on the relationship' you are accepting infidelity.

The dc will become aware of this as they get older, just as your dh did with his family.

Now, if you make a stand and ask him to leave he will have to face up to his consequences. He has to really and truly believe that you will not accept infidelity.

Even if you intend to stay with him, he doesn't need to know that right now. You need time to think about what you want. For yourself, regardless of him. You need space away from him to decide if you are worth more than he is offering - dodgy excuses, keeping secrets until he is exposed by someone else, lying, drinking excessively, looking at porn...

You do not have to have all these things in your life if you don't want them. Equally you can accept that this is going to be your lot. Either way he should move out and leave you alone to make some decisions about what is best for you.

Have you asked him about the sti check yet?

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 19:58:16

Op sorry was going to make that the last post but just had to pop in to say one last thing.

Infidelity was a part of my parents marriage. As much as you think they won't pick up on it they do.

Something you said struck a chord with me. When I heard that 'Daddy had been naghty and upset mummy' for the fourth time I knew damn well what it meant. And I was ten.

My mum didn't teach me that infidelity was wrong. No matter what he did she would end up defending him. Watching her destroyed every couple of years and then limping on was sad and made me rage.

For years I had major relationship issues with trust and men because of their marriage, dad was and is still a brilliant dad and nice man. But I kind of hate him a bit anyway.

Whoa sorry didn't mean to hijack your thread, that phrase you used just dragged up some very vivid memories.

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 20:02:26

Not that my mum was a saint...she had her a little fun too...but Id left home by then.

Theres something about the forced cheerful atmosphere in an unhappy house that makes you want to escape

Overcooked Mon 08-Jul-13 20:06:20

He can instruct his solicitor ( the one that drew up the compromise agreement) to releasehisfileof papers to you, that should verify his story at least from the work point of view.

3HotCrossBuns Mon 08-Jul-13 20:19:04

I have one friend locally in RL that knows (plus a couple of others an hour or so away). The nearby friend has been v supportive - listened not told me what to do but offered opinions. She rightly thinks I'm in a shitty place stuck between 2 crap choices. I also have my employment lawyer friend who I'm seeing tomorrow.

LookingForward - I'm sorry that my comment hit a raw nerve for you. It sounds like your upbringing was v similar to my H's. His mother had revenge affairs, which his father used to justify his infidelity my H discovered. I am so aware of the message our DC are getting but don't want to destroy their innocence either - they are just 8, just 6 and nearly 4.

I am planning to spend most of August with the DCs at my mother's holiday place. I wasn't sure about H bring there too. I think it might be for the best for him to stay at home. But I know I'd worry about what he was doing hmmhmm

We (and definitely me) didn't deal with his EA properly at the time. I didn't take it anywhere near seriously enough as 'nothing happened'. So I feel like this is the first time we have really dealt with these issues rather than giving him yet another chance. Perhaps that is all part of the pattern I've found myself in. I think I seriously need to examine my boundaries as suggested by Countingto10.

LookingForwardToMarch Mon 08-Jul-13 20:26:12

Thats ok op, I have so many issues that its almost impossible not to touch on them grin

Do what you think best for your family. Children can lose their innocence in many ways.

I would make sure you know absolutely what your cut off point is.

I've seen what happens when you keep the peace once too often and it is ugly.

All the best smile

Zynnia Mon 08-Jul-13 20:33:31

Leave the kids with him.

If you talk about splitting up, let him know he'll have the kids half the week.

So many fathers think that walking away from the drudgery and chaos looks quite attractive, especially this type of character. I'd let him know that you'd be happy with co-parenting. That'll take the wind out of his sails.

debtherat Tue 09-Jul-13 05:36:57

So true about drudgery and chaos. My OH said he didnt want the life he had now which included domestic stuff and our beautiful DS. He thought his life would be so much better floating around in emotional and spiritual bliss with his beautiful inspirational friend listening to alt j and admiring her etchings. This is the point at which I often feel like contacting her to say "grow up, we all have our artistic and spiritual outlets and listening to songs about emotional pain is a poor substitute for experiencing it"- shall I send her a few words or ask my DS to describe rejection or paint a picture. Their little tryst created so much pain for other people - seen at first hand by OH but all she can do is imagine...why shouldn't she know and have the chance to feel shit about it? I didn't get that choice, neither did my DS?

MumnGran Tue 09-Jul-13 06:09:50

OP, I am so sorry you are going through this. Sadly, nothing makes it easier and there are no safe waters to chart through under these circumstances. The children are going to be affected, and your marriage is permanently altered. sad

To answer your original question .....I think it would be an absolute mistake to speak with OW, on several counts. Firstly, whatever she tells you, your head will always suspect she is lying. So its a no-win ...if she is lying you have gained nothing, and if she isn't then you still won't trust that its the truth.
Secondly, the one crucial thing that should come from the whole mess is that you emerge with self respect intact. Trust me, its something that tends to go out of the window once you start asking the OW for her spin on anything!!

Stay strong.

ageofgrandillusion Tue 09-Jul-13 08:14:01

OP your husband sounds like a self indulgent, pathetic fuck-wit. Have some self respect and LTB.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Tue 09-Jul-13 10:34:20

Spend the first week on your own recuperating, OP. I am sorry you feel you have had the stuffing knocked out of you. A break and rest is essential if it can be arranged.

Fairenuff Tue 09-Jul-13 17:20:54

How are you doing OP. You've had a lot to take in since you started this thread. Probably a bit more than you were expecting. Take it at your own pace. It's ok.

Keeping posting for support.

onefewernow Tue 09-Jul-13 22:59:03

OP you can make decisions based on how trustworthy he is in your absence . If he wants to, there is always a way.

Don't let his character or poor choices limit yours. Because that is ineffective, and more importantly it will limit you.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 10-Jul-13 08:08:23

Thank you for asking after me. I had a busy couple of days as its the end of term with coffee mornings etc which is keeping me occupied. I saw my lawyer friend last night which was helpful. I am trying to take in lots of what has been said on this thread. It's hard. I don't trust H at all (unsurprisingly) and feel anxious nearly all the time. Physically I have more or less recovered from the accident I had but I still feel v vulnerable. I've had a couple of panic attacks this week hmmhmm. H thinks I should see a doctor as I'm not coping very well.

Fairenuff Wed 10-Jul-13 08:28:33

You are coping well. You are having a normal and natural reaction to being betrayed. Your world has fallen apart and the one person you should be able to rely on and lean on is the one who is hurting you.

You need to be apart from him for at least a while. Tell him you want him out. All you need is some space and time. Tell him that and see if he gives it to you.

He has said he would do anything so it shouldn't be a problem for him. Tell him to leave so that you can think.

springytata Wed 10-Jul-13 09:30:50

Panic attacks are usually caused by poor breathing eg breathing too shallow (panting), or holding your breath. The science is that this sends a message to the adrenals that there's a theat on, so they swing into action. Switch them off by being aware of your breathing, keeping it slow and deep (this isn't easy when you're going through a stressful time but it's good to be aware of it and, when you remember, take some deep breaths to steady your system).

I'm sorry you're going through a crap time xx

cjel Wed 10-Jul-13 09:38:46

Breathe in for 7 and out for 11, or whatever number is comfortable for you. the idea is to breathe out more than in as its the fact you have too much oxygen in you body that can start feelings of panic.
I was cross at his assertion you need medicaton for not coping. how does he think you are supposed to cope? medication isn't always the answer.
As Fairenuff said your response is perfectly normal for the situation you are in.
I know it is really hard to think about this but i too would say that having him not staying in the house for a while would be really benficial to you and although in a perfect world you just want all the horror to go away, it isn't and it really is true that your mind needs its own space without him in it so you can process what is going on.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 10-Jul-13 09:46:52

He has said he would do anything so it shouldn't be a problem for him. Tell him to leave so that you can think.

Hear, hear. That break at your mother's place will be great but August is too far off. Your happiness and well-being should be non-negotiable.

monicalewinski Wed 10-Jul-13 11:09:32

Hi 3HotCrossBuns, I am about a year and half on from my D-day - my husband had been having affair for 6 years (first year proper full on, next 5 were long distance EA with snatched weekends etc where they could), it's been fucking hard.

My husband was a good dad and a good partner in parenting to me, he was basically good in every way (apart from him utterly betraying me). We did basically what you are doing, he cut contact with OW completely and he moved out of our home that night. I had a lot of stuff I had to get through over the first few months (going away on courses, moving house etc) which was already planned and I had to plough on with life before I could face up properly to what had happened.

I told my husband that I would not make any decisions until I was ready, but I did know that whatever happened I wanted to make sure that everything was as grown up and pragmatic as possible so as not to affect the kids any more than necessary. We started relate about 6 months after D-day, when I was ready to start it, because I had already worked through so much in my head by then, I was ready for the counselling at that point.

We have stayed together and things have been much better so far, although I will never be complacent about our marriage as I was before - who knows what the future holds?? I can just carry on being the best I can be, I can't control anything else. I had a breakdown in the end last year as it was all too much in the end (lots of other stuff going on too with work etc), but am still here and life is good now.

With regards to the OW, don't contact her - she is not a part of your life now (whether your life is with your husband or not), you have to leave her behind if you can. She's influenced a large part of your life in recent months without your knowledge, don't let her be a part of YOUR life now - she is not worth it. It is so easy to say, I have been close many times to contacting the OW in my marriage but I managed (so far) to stay strong on that and with hindsight I'm proud that I never let her see/hear how devastated I was - she is not important to me and my life.

Like I said, it's fucking hard but you will get through things whether it's together or not - stay strong and stay practical. Hope things start to get easier soon xx

mamaslatts Wed 10-Jul-13 11:52:53

Hi op

Your husband lies, has emotional affairs, physical affairs, a drink problem (and gets verbally abusive towards you), gets himself sacked from work and grows tired of the 'work' needing to be done on your marriage after 2 months. I think someone else had a very good suggestion of investing time in yourself and your new hobby, giving some time and space so that you can decide if you really want to stay together.

You have spoken a lot about HIS parents and their marriage but not much about your own. Do you think there's anything in your background that has encouraged you to put up with this behaviour? Does it also seem worse if the marriage fails because of opposition in the first place? (you said his dad called him a gold-digger and you are wondering why he married you?)

As an aside, can I just say I get pissed off that men (including my own DH) rather seem to get brownie points and adulation for the things they are supposed to do anyway??? e.g. being a good father, helping round the house (they are also his children and he lives in the bloody house!!), helping a sick wife etc. Women rarely get praised for doing the myriad things we do - this is just taken for granted. (Although boots are put in soon enough should we forget anything).

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 10-Jul-13 12:18:06

Going back to an earlier comment you made, regarding what your DCs have been told:
daddy has been very naughty and has upset mummy a lot (this is what H told them).

Maybe that is how he thinks of it himself, "naughty", pushing boundaries, and he may complain about you having control issues but that stops him being accountable for his own actions doesn't it - look what happened on your watch! He has all the virtuous relief of having confessed, now you are dragging this around with you.

I am going to be unpopular now as I wonder if H has a sort of point about seeing your doctor, perhaps not for the same fix-it-quick reason. Have you spoken to your GP since this turn of events? You may be struggling with the after-effect of your accident and now this on top. First a physical blow, then an emotional wound.

OrmirianResurgam Wed 10-Jul-13 13:16:19

Hi OP,

you ar a braver woman than me. To have got over an affair already once and be facing it again sad And I am sorry I don't care if it was an EA or if they were shagging like bunnies, both are AFFAIRS and involve broken promises and lack of respect. H had an affair last year - I am 12 m on from dday and there are times when I am still struggling. I could never never NEVER go through this again. If there is a next time he is gone.

Don't contact OW. If she didn't want to end up as 'just friends' then I guess she's pretty sore about it all. You won't get 'the truth', you will get some of HER truth and probably and shedload of bitterness thrown in.

onefewernow Wed 10-Jul-13 13:32:41

Donkey my H stated control issues as part of the relationship issues we had. It took a whole to get him to accept that control issues were no reason to have an affair.

Control issues means a lot of things and is worth unpicking. Many women ask and then remind and then complain about issues relating to share of responsibility. A few are controlling about how others run their lives.

What I now say is that I was controlling in part, but that I should have left him for his disrespect and selfishness in the first place, and before the affair.

Needless to say I don't control now, but he knows that if he doesn't contribute fairly then I am out.

Why do you want to contact OW? What would you say to her? What would you gain from it?

If my experience is anything to go by she will be as obsessed with you as you with her, so keep yourself as the mythical being she can't get to and don't contact her. Right now she'll be feeling like sh*t as he's left her. How sad wink

3HotCrossBuns Sat 13-Jul-13 21:16:07

Apologies for not posting for a few days - end of term madness! I have been doing a lot of thinking though and reading of the other threads on here at the moment where there are similar issues (sorry for those OPs, this is such a shitty thing to go through). There are some very helpful posts on those threads with some great links. I did see the doctor re my anxiety/panic attacks who suggested individual counselling (had 1 session so far), relaxation techniques and some internet research re managing the physical symptoms. No prescription for pills. I've been slightly better but still v anxious and hyper sensitive.

I'm still struggling with quite how deceitful my H has been and its so difficult to see what he really is. The lack of trust I have in his 'affair story' was driving my desire to contact the OW but I do see that this would not be helpful to me. But I'm still very confused. I've not been terribly clear on this thread about the previous EA - I had my suspicions but no evidence or anything concrete, I raised my concerns with him and he appeared to take me seriously, listened to me and reassured me that nothing was going on and I had jumped to conclusions etc. Nonetheless he agreed to stop the behaviour that was upsetting me (flirty emails) and did follow through on that promise. Hence neither of us actually dealing with it at the time. It is one of the things that has come to light in opening the pandora's box of our relationship post D-day for the 'real' affair so I'm having to deal with it now for the first time properly. Actually it was more serious than he admitted to at the time although wasn't physical.

Also to clarify my timeline - disclosure of the affair was 10weeks ago, my accident 4 weeks ago. I'm moreorless fully recovered physically now and H has offered to move out so we can return to the status quo of where we were before the accident. I feel very anxious about that.

In terms of his 'remorse' I'm in 2 minds - some days I think he's really trying, others I think I'm a complete mug sad. He has said that its been pretty difficult for him as I've been consistently nasty, aggressive etc. He understands why I feel like that and seems to take responsibility got causing my distress but says that I've shown the worst side of myself in all of this sad sad And he wants to try to 'woo' me but is waiting for a green light from me as he feels the things he's done already just get thrown back in his face. He has given me transparency on his phone, tablet and the pc, dumped a 'friend' of 10 years who knew about the EA years ago, changed his number, downloaded a tracker app on his phone, been doing ALL the household chores whilst I've been incapable myself. But then all this is undone by an argument or row which is triggered usually by my hyper-sensitivity. I have found that over the last 2 days I am starting to detach from him emotionally (although I did cry alot last night). Maybe its just to soon to make a decision one way or the other and perhaps I still have a lot to process.

Anyway sorry for rambling post. Just wanted to 'check in'.

MysteriousHamster Sat 13-Jul-13 22:00:53

The accusations he's throwing at you are reminiscent of what a man says when he's justifying an affair, as if he's still justifying it.

You have to work through all this because of his actions, so if you're angry, he should deal with it, not expect you to roll over and forget.

You've shown the worst side of yourself???? What has he shown?

Sorry but I could not forgive that disrespect after an affair. Appalling sad

What mysterious said. Hyper sensitive? Worst side of you? Utter utter rubbish. Of course you are sensitive, he has destroyed your trust, and treated you appallingly. Of course you are angry, you have every right to be. What does he expect? A perfect stepford wife who pats him on the head and says, 'don't worry sweetheart, it's fine, you were a little bit naughty but it's all forgotten now hmm'

You can get past an affair, I have, and we're ok, but I sure as anything wouldn't be even slightly ok if my DH was talking to me like that.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 00:58:50

No I'm not ok either. The angry backlash from him started about 4 weeks post D-day and about a week or so later I asked him to leave for a couple of weeks as the atmosphere was so awful at home. A week later I had my accident, he came back and things were 'on hold'. Over the last couple of weeks things have deteriorated and now I'm a wreck sad.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 01:12:38

I think part of the reason why he dislikes me being angry with him is that he has never been 'told off' by his mother, he is her golden child. How very dare I be pissed off with his bad behaviour?!??!

Wibblypiglikesbananas Sun 14-Jul-13 02:04:21

I've just read the whole thread and just wanted to tell you that you are worth way more than this man!

In response to your question, I wouldn't contact the OW. I wouldn't have much to do with either of them again. Men who cheat, cheat again. Do you really want to be part of a marriage where you're constantly wondering what he might get up to?

You are luckier than many women in that you have your own source of income and presumably can afford to go it alone. In some sort of twisted way, this has probably made it easier for your H to resign... A good husband and father wouldn't have cheated in the first place, so he is neither of those things.

If it helps, imagine one of your DC was in your shoes. What would you tell them to do?

itwillgetbettersoon Sun 14-Jul-13 07:59:43

My STBXH did all of the above ie open about phones etc. I then found a secret phone in his jacket one day and that was it he was out. In hindsight I have realised that I would never have been able to trust him and it would have eaten away at me and made me ill. I'm one year on and at times it is still hard as my future has completely changed. But onwards and upwards.

Littlet932 Sun 14-Jul-13 08:32:49

I'm reading "stop thinking, start living" it's about trying not to over think thinks. He's sorry and realised what he's losing - that's enough. You can't change the past. He probably has minimised the details to save your feelings. There's nothing to gain by finding out sordid details. Give him a chance and work out what you want too.

He was so sorry last time, he did it again.

I think more thinking is required.

I would take him up on suggestion to leave. You will find your recovery much quicker.

He has 3 doc and he has been fucking at work and lost his job. That would be the bottom line for me.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 08:47:12

Oh op sad

The uttter disrespect for your feelings and almost contempt for you are shown in what he is saying to you.

AFTER the affair!

You have shown the worst of yourself?! Yeah, it's funny what total devastation and betrayal can do to you.

This bloke sounds more and more like my old dad the more you say about him.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 08:48:18

Polishing a few banisters and cooking a spag bol dies not negate that.

Yes, the worst of yourself doesn't really compare what he's done though, does it!!

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 14-Jul-13 09:16:33

Grrr!! How dare he throw the fact that you were angry back at you? what was he expecting?

As the cheater, he has to suck it up for as long as you need it.


If he does not like it, he knows where the door is.

He should be bending over BACKWARDS to help you. Not throwing a paddy cos you are angry FFS.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 09:23:28

I tried talking to him last night/this morning about how I'm feeling. Wasn't very successful - it's like trying to communicate with someone in a foreign language! I'm struggling now to remember much of what he said (no sleep again for me) but I don't think he feels like he has said anything 'wrong' as such in his responses to me - he said he's had a fairly thick skin with the abuse I've quite rightly (his words) hurled at him but that he feels that we can't repair our marriage until I'm able to deal with some of the reasons he was unhappy. He kept bringing up points about his feelings over the last few years and during the affair. I don't think he sees a difference between the 2. I am beginning to despair that he'll ever get it - I feel he thinks he is 'justified' and that is why I can't see the real remorse from him. He can't deal with a 'telling off' without getting defensive. The result is I feel unloved. I did ask him if he has raised this aspect of what's happening at home with his counsellor and he said no - they've been covering things like his low self worth, impact of his parents' bad marriage, his lying.

I've thought about him leaving again. I don't feel strong enough emotionally to manage the DCs. I'm wondering if I should leave?? He's taken all 3 DC to the eldest's cricket this morning - I need some rest but now I'm wondering if I need to pack and find somewhere to go...,,,

No. Don't leave. Your dc need you. He is the reason you are feeling so low and vulnerable.

You don't have to decide anything now. There's no hurry. Just get stronger, get realistic about what he is, (a twat) and how you want to live.

Buzzardbird Sun 14-Jul-13 10:14:58

Its all about him isn't it? Do you believe he would still be trying so hard if he hadn't list his job? He can't afford to lose you but is making a great job of making it look like all your fault.
really, think about yourself.
He is minimizing what he has done to see what he can get away with. Its unlikely he won't do it again.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 10:30:14

He will not feel true remorse because in his mind it's

'Poor little old me,
Yeah I fucked someone else but it was my parents fault.
Oh and my wifes fault for not worshipping my wonderful self.
I mean I didn't leave her for the ow and I said sorry when she found why is she still mad at me?! WAHHHWAHHH'

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 10:33:36

He wouldn't be trying at all if he hadn't lost his job - that is what caused his confession. Although he does believe (I don't) that the affair was 'over' by then. I guess he was hoping to sweep it all under the carpet and not face the consequences. Which cheater ever 'confesses' without being discovered one way or another unless its an exit affair and the cheater leaves to be with the AP?

As he's not working we are in each other's face all the time. In some ways that's good as we've had more available time to deal with this, in others it's bad as I think it's made everything more intense. H said that he feels we have condensed 4 months into 2 and that he hasn't had the time to reflect fully. I am exhausted. So is he. At least it's the school holidays now although the downside of that is the DC are around all the time so trickier to hide what's going on. Oh well, we can escape to my mother's holiday place soon. I've decided to spend most of that time without H. Think we will both benefit from that.

Ok so deep breath now, get up and showered and try to be 'together' for the sake of the DC when they get back. I want to get back to my usual capable self.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 10:35:21

I'm not sterotyping all men who have had affairs...

But there is definitely a certain type of man that will never see anything wrong with it because they always do such a good job of convincing themselves it was not really all their fault.

He will find an equally good excuse next time he fancies some excitement.

Actually he will probably use the excuse that you are always down, emotionally exhausted etc. Which after all the wondering what he's up to and suspicions you will be.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 10:40:34

LookingForward - xpost. Yes that's exactly what I think is in his mind. I've said as much to him which is what he really doesn't like. Obviously I guess. I don't think he sees it like that. He has repeatedly said that it was HIS choice to cheat and he wants to understand the reasons behind it as he really doesn't like his behaviour and wants to change. He says he's not using his parents or me as an excuse. I don't believe he really has appreciated or understood the difference between the 2. Which is bloody frustrating confusedhmm

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 10:44:34

X-post again, another v good point Looking. Do you think it's possible, through therapy I suppose, for H to realise this is what he is doing?? And therefore change that part of his rational? Thereby hopefully preventing the same bad behaviour patterns?

ProphetOfDoom Sun 14-Jul-13 11:04:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 11:10:11

Op in order for that to work he has to REALLY want it.

He needs to man up and stop acting like a spoilt brat. He is kind of treating you like a mother thats told him off for sticking his hand in the sweetie jar instead of a wife that he has betrayed.

He is defensive and just wants you to forget about it, because the sooner you do that, then the sooner he can stop putting himself out to make it better and can go back to exactly the same as before.

The way he is acting right now? No chance.

If he recieves a major personality transplant and doesn't keep trying to shut you up about it then maybe?

Fairenuff Sun 14-Jul-13 12:24:26

Oh dear. He hasn't even begun to make amends has he. He thinks he's done everything he can? Well it's time for a wake up call. He has done nothing.

Firstly, he is not even sorry. He says he's sorry, but he's not - his actions towards you show that.

Secondly, he does not take responsibility for what he's done. He says it was his choice but goes on to give endless reasons as to why you contributed to his choice.

He is minimising and blaming. He hasn't even begun to get anywhere near to sorting this out.

He is trying to confuse you and grind you down so that you accept what he's done, accept that you are partly to blame and accept that it's unreasonable of you to show your hurt and anger.

He has to leave. Do not have him with you at all on holiday. Tell him that when you come back he should have moved out.

Tell him that you want time away from him to think about what you want. Tell him that you don't want him to 'woo' you. You don't want anything from him except that he leave you alone to think.

Then he might start to take you seriously.

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 14-Jul-13 13:37:05

Blimey, so his unhappiness is your fault? People are only responsible for their own happiness.

You really need to focus on YOURSELF and your own life.

Have you got Glass's Not Just Friends? It will help you process your thoughts and emotions - he needs to read it himself as well if he is really serious about making changes.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 14:50:25

I have spent an hour this morning writing and sending an email to him setting out how he is successfully convincing himself that his actions are not his fault. Will see what happens after he's read it. However, I fear that it is too much for me to expect that he will take much of it on board seriously. He thinks I'm constantly trying to locate 'blame', I said that's because I'm so frustrated by his lack of taking responsibility, he says he knows its his fault, has consistently said so etc and round in circles we go. Sigh. I've asked him to raise it with his counsellor - at least she might be able to make him aware that he's doing it and its not just me 'twisting' what he says. hmm

I have read the Glass book. I also ordered the Linda MacDonald book (How to help your Spouse Heal from your Affair) at the same time for him which he has read. I think he honestly believes his own rhetoric though - that he is sorry. Oh dear. I'm very heartbroken and disappointed that this is part of who he is - so like his sociopath father who he despises and has no respect for. hmmhmm And he can't see it. hmmconfusedhmm

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 14-Jul-13 14:59:02

So he has read both books and still thinks that way. I am sorry but if he still does not get it, there is very little hope for your marriage - if he really is a sociopath, the best advice is to detach and get away from him.

As I have already said, you need to start thinking about yourself and rebuilding your own life - friends, hobbies, work, training etc.

OliviaBenson Sun 14-Jul-13 16:03:44

I've just read the whole thread op. I think your original question is because your instincts are screaming at you that he isn't telling you the truth. You need to think if you can accept that in order to move on or not.

To be honest, in my opinion as a stranger on the Internet, you said that you had a lot of money in your family and that this has been an issue for him in the past. Do you think he is staying with you for this fact? Especially as he now has no job?

Also, you said that you didn't need an sti check as he said he had used protection. Regardless of this, you need to get checked for your own health and peace of mind- if he's not admitting how many times they have slept with each other, how can you believe him about this.

Finally, you keep saying that he is a good father and you don't wish to upset your children's innocence, etc. first off, heavy drinkers are not good fathers (my dad is an alcoholic and my mum didn't leave him for this reason- it has messed me up). Secondly, good fathers don't risk their job or family on an affair, they just don't. Don't make the mistake of trying to pretend its all ok for the same of your children- they want a happy mum as well, yet your own feelings don't seem to factor into this somehow.

I really wish you well op. I think the trip away will be a good opportunity for you. I would also give some serious thought to making him leave again now you are better. Best of luck x

Buzzardbird Sun 14-Jul-13 16:09:08

You need to get rid, find someone who deserves you.
I have heard his story, almost word for word before from friends. Its balls. End of.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 17:33:02

So we have managed half a conversation this afternoon whilst the kids were watching a movie. He truly believes that he is taking responsibility for his behaviour with regards to the affair - he likens our marriage to a body with broken limbs with the affair being the arm, the issues between us (no our marriage wasn't perfect before and I accept this) as another arm and his issues re upbringing, self esteem, drinking etc as a leg. He says the second arm and leg didn't cause the affair arm to break - that was him - but that all the limbs have to be repaired for our marriage to get better in the future. I kind of get what he is saying.

I tried to explain that the infidelity has made me feel unloved which he totally gets and is very sorry about. And I said that his defensiveness towards my anger just reinforces this feeling in me. And makes me feel that his remorse isn't real. We were just getting to this when were interrupted by the DCs so we've agreed to carry on from that point later this evening.

He has been basically dry from alcohol now since D-day. There has been the odd occasion (about 3) where he has had a glass of wine or 2 with me but that's been it. He appreciates that his drinking was part of his problems and has stopped. I think there have been plenty of times when the stress of this has made him feel like having a drink (it has me - lots of wine consumed!) but he has resisted.

The money issue is in the back of my mind. My family is not rich enough for him not to work but it gives us a 'cushion' for a few months. Which I am grateful for. I am wondering about asking him to sign a post-nup agreement which will penalise him if we split due to his infidelity but I understand they are incredibly difficult to enforce - esp as infidelity is v hard to prove. But I guess it will show some of his motivations by his response to such a request.

It's all just so incredibly difficult. I agree that our holiday will make a big difference - to me at least.

Fairenuff Sun 14-Jul-13 17:34:12

I knew he wouldn't go for an sti check. That shows how much disregard he has for you op.

Stop listening to his words and look at his actions. They are telling you all you need to know.

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 14-Jul-13 19:35:05

You both are jointly responsible for any issues and vulnerabilities in the marriage and only HE is responsible for his own issues and choices.

No marriage is perfect - all relationships have ups and downs so what is he going to do next time there is a dip? confused

However, addressing boundaries and vulnerabilities (read Not Just Friends if you want to know more about this) is a good idea but this should be done once he has proved that he really is committed to changing - through actions, not just words.

MadAboutHotChoc Sun 14-Jul-13 19:36:38

Also I think he is trying to distract you from the real issue...and that way he won't need to do much work hmm

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 23:20:09

So long chat tonight over dinner. It took a lot of effort but I finally got to a place where I got some enlightening answers. And God, it's all about him as so many of you wise posters have said! He's not motivated in 'tolerating' MY controls (I noted there not HIS controls) of his freedom by helping me heal and regain some trust. He's just putting up with it for the time being. My well being is not his primary driver hmm. He even uttered the cliche line at one stage if he does love me 'but is not in love with me'. hmm The really frustrating thing is that he doesn't realise that what he is doing isn't true remorse - he still defended his actions and thought processes as being entirely legitimate. He just doesn't get it. God knows what he is doing in therapy. Or maybe it hasn't been long enough. I don't know. All I know now is that I have to gather my strength and try to work out an exit strategy. I don't know where to start with that at the moment. I'm so so gutted - for me and my DC. At least I'm not confused anymore though. And I no longer have much desire to contact the OW for info!

Thank you all for taking the time to post and for making some tough points that I needed to hear.

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 23:27:03

OP this man is poison. If you had let him he would have dragged you and your dc's through hell everytime he felt like it.

I can't believe what selfish things he has said to you! He can't even be bothered to try to fake remorse convincingly can he?

But on a positive note I am so so glad that you have seen his true colours and know you are worth more! God I wish my mum had had the balls to do it!

It will be hard, and he will try to stick like a limpet I imagine, but you can do it OP!!!! grin

Bogeyface Sun 14-Jul-13 23:27:55

Are you 100% that he is actually going to therapy? And if you are, are you sure he is telling the truth?

I would bet a weeks wages that the answer to at least one of these questions is "no".

It is all about him, so now you need to make your future all about you. And I knowyou will smile

Bogeyface Sun 14-Jul-13 23:31:24
3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 23:31:41

No he's so deluded he truly believes that this is what real remorse looks like.
And I haven't actually done anything yet so don't congratulate me on my balls prematurely. I'm going to give myself a week or so to get myself together before starting anything. I am so so sad though. And the outcome will be that he tried everything to save our marriage but I was too angry and couldn't get over his affair. I just know it will always be my fault hmmhmmconfused

LookingForwardToMarch Sun 14-Jul-13 23:39:27

The balls are there op, I have every faith in them wink

From what info you have given us there really is no chance here. He can't break the cycle while he thinks like this, and it is too much effort for him to change. He will erode you away, and carry the cycle onto your dc's.

In all seriousness though it does not matter who he manages to convince, YOU will always know who was at fault.

It isn't your completely justified anger...

It's more to do with that selfish and deluded dead weight hanging on your shoulders.

3HotCrossBuns Sun 14-Jul-13 23:40:49

I'm sure he's going to therapy. I've seen the lady's website and his texts with her arranging the next session. Plus he tells me what they have discussed whilst there. There's no way he is able to come up with all that stuff by himself. However as it is just him presenting the issues he wants I doubt he's been entirely honest - either with the counsellor or with me. In any event he has got a lot of issues to work through but that's his problem not mine and I'm going to try to remove myself from the 'fixing him' mentality I was stuck in.

laeiou Sun 14-Jul-13 23:52:39

If I may, I'd suggest that you stop thinking about him and start thinking about yourself. I suspect you've not done that for a long time so it may not happen without trying.

I suggest you go on holiday without him. You're so close physically that time away from him can only help you concentrate on yourself.

Nothing that you've written suggests to me that your life is better with him in it. I imagine that's difficult to agree with at the moment, but there it is.

ProphetOfDoom Mon 15-Jul-13 00:31:03

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ProphetOfDoom Mon 15-Jul-13 01:00:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Mon 15-Jul-13 16:00:06

His perspective isn't accurate, his insights are distorted like trick mirrors at a funfair. He may believe he is telling it like it is but fgs he sits there talking glibly about your marriage being like a sick person and his guilt apparently accounts for only a small percentage? Was the head or brains of that sick ailing body a stuffed cabbage or did that have any control whatsoever over what that unfaithful dick did?

Sorry OP you sound so nice and you really deserve better. Glad you can see the flimflam for what it is.

OrmirianResurgam Tue 16-Jul-13 15:15:38

Stupid, vile man. So glad he's getting the bum's rush. Good luck xx

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 15:33:51

So far I've withdrawn from him - barely spoken since Sunday night over than small talk re the kids, not spent any length of time in the same room etc. He knows something's up as this is not like me and has bought me cups of tea, cold drinks etc. He's still doing lots of chores and childcare. I'm not terribly interested really - the 'physical' care just means he thinks he's doing the right sort of things, he's totally missed the point of 'emotional' care. He's not asked me once how I am after Sunday night's chat when he said that whilst he loved me, he was not in love with me. Which tells me all I need to know hmmhmm

I've been thinking lots and can't really begin my thought process of how to get out of this relationship. It's the summer holidays now for the children and I'll take them to my mother's place for August as planned. I know I don't want him there. However I don't want him in our house for 4weeks unsupervised and with access to all our (and mine) financial docs. I can't legally prevent him from being here either though. So I wondering whether I go down the 'I need space' route until Sept when I ask him to leave formally? I'm also worried I'll change my mind if I leave it too long. And I'm worried about the DCs - feels mean to take them away from him for 4weeks (for them, don't give a shit about his feelings). I appreciate that it's going to be very very difficult and never a good time. I'm not sure what the first step should be.

Phalenopsis Tue 16-Jul-13 15:51:03

On a practical level: I think you should make copies of all financial documentation regardless of what happens between you.

As for the children: whilst I don't agree with using them as pawns (not suggesting that you were going to), he didn't exactly think of them when he was having his affair did he? If making them happy involves taking them away for 4 weeks then do so. I'm aware that sounds harsh but you'd planned to take them to your mother's so...?

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 16:22:20

All financial documentation?? There is lots - obv bank accounts (my current, his current, joint, savings each), credit cards, mortgage, pensions for both of us but also share portfolios, ISAs, premium bonds etc. Is it enough to make a list of all of with relevant account numbers and current valuations?

The kids are very used to seeing him every day but are also used to not seeing him during the week, esp in the hols when I've taken them away to my mother's before. But he's always seen them at the weekend and they understood it was because he was at work. Which he now isn't. I'm sure I will be able to come up with a reason, they probably won't make a big deal of it if we don't.

MadAboutHotChoc Tue 16-Jul-13 16:28:32

I would go down the I need space route now - explain that its not the end but given his revelations, you need to think about what you want and you can't make a decision with him hanging around being so ambivalent. This is also your last chance of saving the marriage - loss is the ONLY thing that motivates cheater, it might be the thing to help him "get it".

As he is so ambivalent, I wonder if his contact with OW is more involved than he says it is?

MadAboutHotChoc Tue 16-Jul-13 16:33:02
3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 16:39:58

I understand what you are saying HotChoc, my IC said something similar this morning re being last chance to save my marriage and asking me to take the time to decide clearly whether I have reached the end. H was much more 'motivated' for the first 3-4 weeks whilst he was out of the home and thought I might not decide to 'try'. Since then he has been much more 'ambivalent'. I suspect he doesn't really think I will finish our relationship. Fear of loss really is the only thing that motivates, not love for the betrayed spouse hmmhmm

I have doubts re the 'contact' thing - he would need a secret phone or email account as I have visibility on his phone, tablet and home pc. Altho I had visibility before, just he was careful re deleting texts, his call log and his Internet history. Anyway I've told him I've deleted the app for his tracker today and am no longer checking his stuff - he is released from 'house arrest' as he put it. He has to want to help me with this process and I don't think he does at the moment, more he is tolerating my controls on him as he himself put it.

Not sure I can last until we go away though - he might have to go this weekend.

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 16:42:31

Thank you for link to the blog too.

laeiou Tue 16-Jul-13 16:45:08

I agree- ask him to leave your home now so you can have some time to yourself, and keep him away while you're on holiday. Let's face it, he's done everything to his timescale so far, so he should agree to any request while he claims to be trying to make amends.

I suspect he'll change his tune when he realises that him pulling his weight with housework etc isn't resulting in you seeing the light about how magnificent he is. So asking him to leave now may be your best chance at getting him out. As an aside, it's probably better for your own emotional health to do things alone now, whether you split or reconcile long term. It feels like he's stopping you from having the thinking time that he had during the affair. You didn't know his intimate thoughts for long enough, why share yours with him now? And once you get used to him being gone I suspect you'll find the household runs smoothly without him.

Anyway, like you said a few days ago, you need thinking time this week. Look after yourself and let him do the same. Don't let his problems (accommodation etc) become yours - he's already given you enough to deal with.

MadAboutHotChoc Tue 16-Jul-13 16:46:36

Re monitoring his phone /email etc, you need to stop this. Releasing him from house arrest is a good move as you cannot control his actions or thoughts - only he can and if he does contact OW, then so be it and you know where you stand.

(it doesn't mean he can't be transparent and that you can't snoop if you feel the need to).

onefewernow Tue 16-Jul-13 16:53:32

and I would photocopy or keep originals of statements too.

So, so many women are absolutely convinced that men will be fair about money, and more than not they are disappointed in that. I seem to remember he has more to lose than you, too.

In fact I would take originals.

onefewernow Tue 16-Jul-13 16:54:15

eg a bank account number isnt much help if you cant prove that he emptied an account.

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 17:01:24

No but you can order statements etc which will show the balances on certain dates so thereby showing he has emptied it?
As he is not working and I have more capital assets don't I stand to lose more? On the basis I will have to 'buy him out'?

The 'monitoring' of him was supposed to be making me feel better, less anxious etc. It wasn't because his motivation and emotional commitment wasn't there. I've realised it's a fool's gold.

MissStrawberry Tue 16-Jul-13 17:10:27

Could the bank freeze accounts?

Is it worth calling them for advice?

Definitely copy everything but there's no point having copies if he is able to take all the money and not have to give it back.

BTW you are amazing. He is a twat. Some men are so predictable I wonder if they have it in their DNA or go to classes or something. There is such a script even an idiot like me could guess their next move.

onefewernow Tue 16-Jul-13 17:16:10

Well i found it hard enough not to keep checking for months even when I was sure he had stopped. Even harder, in your case, I should think.

At the same time, it is obvious to us that it doesnt really and truly prevent deception, as deceivers always find a way if they want to, dont they?

The best clue you have to how likely he is to go back to that game is how is ids behaving now. Which in the case of your H, is not good, it seems to me.

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 17:21:30

He can't take the money from my accounts, only his and our joint account. Also he has no right to access my pension, my investments etc. Likewise I guess I can't take anything out of his bank accounts or pension. Like most people the bulk of our 'estate' is in the marital home anyway. I can't quite believe I'm thinking about these things. I don't want to get divorced hmmhmm

And I'm not amazing - I am exhausted and feel a bit of a mug for spending the last month desperately believing he cared for and loved me and that he wanted our marriage to work when the evidence all pointed to him being a very selfish cake eater!!!

losingmyself48 Tue 16-Jul-13 17:24:58

Hi 3 - I've been in those shoes and they are not the comfiest to wear.

I did go and speak to the OW but I kind of ended up feeling a bit sorry for her - she seemed to have been as manipulated by my OH as I have been for a number of years. I think she actually loved him - and to be honest, it didn't help me trust him any more that their stories were aligned.

She did tell me things that he hadn't - more detail - but then I think that's a woman thing to remember the dates, times, events etc.

Restoring trust is something that you and your OH need to do together - he broke it, he needs to fix it, not her. Let her deal with her own shit.

There is a temptation I think to see what she looks like, to hear what she sounds like - to know what the attraction was in the first place. It will only eat you alive from the inside. My advice for what its worth - rebuild your marriage with your husband and have nothing more to do with the woman who tried to destroy it.

Good luck honey. xx

Fairenuff Tue 16-Jul-13 17:30:57

I think it's a good idea to ask him to move out. Also, could you box up all the financial paperwork and ask a friend if you can store it at their house just while you are away.

See if you can see a solicitor before you go away just to find out where you stand, generally, with the joint ownership of the house. It might put your mind at rest just to have that information, even if you never actually need it.

MissStrawberry Tue 16-Jul-13 17:51:31

I think you are amazing for keeping the faith that someone is a decent person and that you can both do what needs to be done to rebuild. Not your fault the impression he gave you wasn't true.

3HotCrossBuns Tue 16-Jul-13 18:02:56

Thank you MissStrawberry.

itwillgetbettersoon Tue 16-Jul-13 19:17:10

It is very difficult as ultimately we all want to keep our marriages going. But in reality one person has chosen to break that trust and have sex with another woman. We then end up damping down this awful deceit to save our marriages.

My STBXH did the same, tried to come up with a list of my faults, told me I needed to trust him and that I shouldn't restrict his freedom etc. I tried so hard to help him ( ha ha) and then found the second phone and realised that all this time he was playing me. That was it for me otherwise I think I was going to end up on ADs as I knew something deep down just wasn't right.

I feel for you Op but I really think you will be better off without him. I'm one year further on than you and I look back at that time and think his treatment of me as his wife was appalling and disgusting and I didn't deserve any if it.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 22:24:53

Oh fuck this is so hard. Managed 2 days of being withdrawn then marriage counselling last night where I was honest. 2 days of me being detached has apparently given him the space to work out his own feelings and he realised he does love me. I nearly snorted out loud at that.

H has been v quiet himself since counselling and I was hoping he would be able to 'up his game' as it were. It's still almost impossible for me to believe he doesn't have proper loving feelings for me. Conversation over dinner tonight where I clarified further from marriage counselling session my feelings for him and our marriage - that I love him deeply but that I cant live a life where he only loves the nice bits of me. Sadly it is apparent that he can't manage anything else, talked about not knowing what love is. Also still lots of chat about my faults in the marriage etc. He thinks it 'will be easy not to have an affair' but not so easy for me to stop my controlling behaviours. Minimise, blame shift and deny. I am lost. And became a pitiful snivelling wreck hmmhmmhmm I said I might have got over the infidelity itself but the lack of reliable and consistent love from him has wrecked any chance we may have had. I'm utterly heartbroken.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 22:27:18

I am going to ask him to leave on Friday. I have an enormous fear that he won't try to save our marriage. Rationally I know that keeping him here won't change that but it's still a horrid feeling.

MissStrawberry Wed 17-Jul-13 22:32:29

Another part of the script. He realises that you are prepared to end things and thinks he has to say all the right stuff to get you back and keep you in line.

Don't be afraid he won't try to save your marriage. If he doesn't then you are better off without him. If he does then maybe you'll decide you don't want him.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 22:39:36

I don't get it - why go through all this aggro and upset if he's not really that bothered?!? At best I think he's an emotional child but he just doesn't see it. I also don't understand why it's only me who does? What is going on in his counselling sessions??!

Bogeyface Wed 17-Jul-13 22:52:55

He isnt bothered about you marriage, sorry but he clearly isnt.

What he is bothered about is not making life hard for himself. Moving out, getting a new place, doing his own shopping, cooking, washing etc are all things he doesnt want to do because he has it very nice right now.

Further proof that he is just a selfish bastard. His life will be harder, oh dear, what a pity, never mind. Yours will not, take heart, keep the faith and stay strong.


onefewernow Wed 17-Jul-13 23:02:44

He know he wil have it harder. I bet he takes little responsibility generally, you complain, he ignores you, and now has it that you are controlling.

Possibly you are.....because you have been trying to control outcomes which are fair to you too, which is impossible if he won't play. Been there, done that.

So you could let him stay and check his movements and phone- controlling.

Or kick him out on he basis you do not feel reassured, and let him decide how to proceed next. Accept the outcome, if you do. Not controlling!!

It is better not to control, for siure. But he won't like it!

onefewernow Wed 17-Jul-13 23:05:33

I think you will, though. If you can control the fear and not the outcome. Poor you, it's so hard. But the growth you will get from this via all this pain will be worth it's weight in gold. Im finding that, anyway .

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 23:07:16

Such a mad situation - no he won't like it, but he doesn't like me controlling him either! I don't like being controlling (I accept that I am and I do need to work on this) but not being controlling by asking him to leave drives me mad with anxiety! Aaarrrggghhhh.

I have stuck to my guns of not checking his phone, emails etc for 3 days now. Small battles. I have to literally sit on my hands though.

Bogeyface Wed 17-Jul-13 23:19:57

Think of it like this, whatever you do that is "controlling" (and not wanting your family ripped apart by selfishness and trying to prevent that is not controlling btw) he will find a work around.

You check his phone? He gets a cheap second phone and sim. You check his email? He gets a new hotmail account. You check his FB? He starts a new FB with his new hotmail account.

You will never know for sure that he is being honest, and when you question him he will accuse you of being controlling.

This is not about you and what you do, it is about him and what he is trying to hide. The question is, can you live like that? Can you spend the rest of your life going through the hundreds of pages of profiles on dating sites in case he is there? (I have done that and died a little with every click of the mouse).

If you cant, then forget him. Forget "control", think about you and the kids. Write off everything he says and do what is best for you and them, he will rewrite history to suit himself whatever you do, so you might as well be happy with your life.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 23:33:27

I understand what you are saying Bogeyface - he will do what he will do regardless of the 'controls'. I totally get that. Some of your examples aren't his MO but I get your point.

And he's already rewritten our history as part of justifying his behaviour to himself in having the affair (and the EA years ago) which he is not prepared AT ALL to accept. He says that I am denying my role in the poor state of our marriage pre-affair. I just don't see it that way, I see a selfish man who was not prepared to be patient whilst we had small children although I realise I was part of the mal-functioning of our marriage. God, there's no possible reconciliation is there whilst we're so far apart?? So unbelievably gutted hmmhmm

Bogeyface Wed 17-Jul-13 23:44:34

You were part of a malfunctioning marriage but you werent to blame for it!

Everyone knows that major life changes will affect a marriage. Children especially will change the dynamic. When you had children you did what any normal person would do and focus on them, he did what every selfish person would do and think "But what about MEEEE?!" and then had an affair.

You see the true measure of a person in the bad times, not the good. He has shown you that when things get a little difficult, he runs away and then blames you.

3HotCrossBuns Wed 17-Jul-13 23:51:13

That he has - babies, job stress and redundancies are triggers for his running away, drinking too much and looking for other women, then blaming me. How could have I have chosen a life partner so badly? I guess at 20 I was a poor judge of character. I so wish I could talk to my 20-something self and have gotten out of this whilst it was easier. And before 3 innocent children were dragged into it. hmmhmm

Bogeyface Thu 18-Jul-13 00:30:33

Re-read what you have written.

You are still blaming yourself! It isnt your fault that he made promises he didnt keep. It isnt your fault that you took him at his word and then he reneged.

If you learn anything from this, you should learn that you are not responsible for what other people do.

Fairenuff Thu 18-Jul-13 08:20:21

Your children will give you enormous comfort, strength and satisfaction. They will help you through it just by being there, needing you and giving unconditional love.

It's very hard to come to terms with the fact that you are poles apart in this but actually it does make separation that little bit easier. If he said that he loved you desperately, didn't want to live without you and promised you the earth, it would be much harder to tell him to leave.

There are many, many men who did that and then continue to cheat. It's part of the script. They swear undying love and then just get clever at hiding their affairs.

At least you know exactly what you are dealing with - a selfish man who just wants his own way and if he doesn't get it blames you and calls you controlling.

His behaviour is far more controlling.

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