Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Suspicious behaviour - not sure what to do, feeling sick(616 Posts)
Have come here to reach out as I really don't think I can tell anyone my suspicions in real life. Have been with dh for 13 years - 6 married - and have 3 ds's age 4, 3 and 7 mths - so life is pretty mad as u can guess! For a while now dh's behaviour has been really strange and at first I thought it was just stress from work combined with the mentalness of home life, but alarm bells rang when we were at a friends party about 3 weeks ago and he got really shit-faced and was great fun with everyone else but really confrontational with me - accusing me of eyeing up 'that guy' over there and how I'm not interested in him any more. It really blindsided me - we've never rowed or broken up, always been a good team, it was just so out of character. So I started noticing everything at that point - how disengaged he was with the kids, and my daily chatter about them, his over- zealous personal grooming and my god the diet he's on is just insane - it's working he's lost loads of weight - but he's starving himself, and mainly how he never NEVER let's his mobile out of his sight.
Recently I got him a new contract under my account as we can get a discount - his old phone smashed and we did all this quickly before he really had time to think about it - which allows me to look at the itemised bills online (I don't think he knows I can do this) and there were hundreds of texts and short calls to this one number - sometimes at odd hours - which I knew to be his female colleague. When he was in the shower one morning (he'd brought the phone into the bathroom) I checked his messages to see what on earth he's been chatting to her about and he'd deleted them all. Which is very suspicious I think. Honestly I don't know what to do with all this - I don't even know if its really an affair so if I start accusing him it could be a disaster and I don't want to tell any family or friends in case they hate him and it will never be the same again. I feel nervous all the time like my ears are ringing and I'm drowning , but I've got to try and be as normal as poss for the sake of the kids. Admittedly I've been distant and putting him way down the priority list for years, so maybe this was inevitable, I just never thought he was the type of guy capable of doing this. I hate feeling like my world is on shakey foundations, I work so bloody hard to give our kids a good life, which means putting my needs absolute last, I don't get why he can't do the same - maybe men just can't, selfish creatures that they are.
Sorry for sounding off in an essay basically! I just don't know what my next move should be - this past week I've been really positive and kind to him in the hopes he can see he has all he needs at home, but I don't feel connected to him at all anymore - like maybe he's got one foot out the door. So depressing. I always thought we were solid
Do you think he's actually having an affair with this colleague?
Sounds like an emotional affair at the very least.
Do you want to confront him.
Personally I would set a vibrate alarm under my pillow for 3am and get a hold of his phone to get some solid proof, then confront. Otherwise he will definitely deny.
Get another look at that phone when he won't be expecting it. Can you get into his email? Facebook?
I do need proof before I do anything. If it is the worst case scenario I can't act unless I know for sure. I was thinking I might suggest I join his colleagues for a drink one night if my mum can babysit, and see what his reaction is.
Sorry but my friend found similar amounts of texts and calls to a female work collegue on his itemized bill - he was cheating.
What other reason would there be for that many calls and texts to a work collegue, especially one of the opposite sex at odd times of night?
Id confront him with the evidence.
I know this sounds pathetic but I can't help feeling like this is my fault - like I drove him to seek love elsewhere because I've been so unloving. He has said to me that he wishes he had his girlfriend (i.e pre-kids me) back. He's a musician and he says I'm never interested in his songs and stuff anymore, but the truth is I honestly don't care about his 'art', it doesn't do anything for me, as I'm so taken up with everything else. Does that mean I essentially don't love 'him' anymore? Really feel like I don't know my arse from my elbow right now.
It does sound like you have issues aside from the possible cheating, abneysporridge.
Life changes abney. You have adapted 100% to a life as a parent in a family. He hasn't by the sounds of it. Its not necessary (or perhaps healthy??) to be solely focused on motherhood but it's pretty darn difficult with 3 under 4 not to be!
I suspect he's opted out of committed fatherhood and a committed marriage so he's just enjoying a lazy way to remain on the periphery whilst fantasising about being young free and single.
It sounds extremely like an emotional affair. This (to me) is as damaging and significant as a physical affair. Sorry
I think you've hit the nail on the head tiredog - we are not on the same page at all it seems, and he is living in the past. And it was a great past so I don't blame him - we got together at 19 and wonderful reckless times, shared loads of laughs, and now it's all work work work. And it doesn't help that he hates his job too - 'she' must be the only thing keeping him buoyant there. She's a musician too so I bet they just love dreaming and playing guitars together in their lunch break. Eurgh
Be careful that you don't end up feeling responsible for making this work. If he cannot man up to being a father, it's not up to you to make it work. This is not your fault. Be clear on that.
You do need to consider where you want this to go and what your deal breakers are. Please don't let fear of being a single mum make you compromise on life. Being a single mum is v v tough. Being a mum coping alone in a marriage is far harder
Aww abneys I agree with tireddog too.
While I was pregnant I found texts on my fiancé's phone to a girl at work telling her how beautiful she was, I was heartbroken. I said there and then that if he wanted to be young and free then go do it, don't drag me along. We got over it and are now happy again with our little baby, but I won't forget it.
I do think you need to try and find out as much as you can before you confront him though. I took photo's of the texts using my phone so that I KNEW what they said when I said something, that they didn't get less worse as I thought about it.
it is typical for a woman to start blaming herself when a husband is behaving badly.
you both chose to be a family but where you decide to commit yourself to that he decides(if he is)to behave like an arse and you somehow think its your fault??!!
its not your fault op and don't ever think that.
Don't blame yourself.
Sounds like you have adapted appropriately to life changes [children] and he hasn't.
It does look suspicious, but it is him not you.
Thanks. It's been good to air this. It's been in my head eating me up for ages. I think my strategy should be to carry on as per, not alert him to my suspicions, then try to get some proof when he lets his guard down - taking pics of texts is a good idea, thanks for that. That's if he leaves his phone unattended for 3 seconds!
I honestly don't think he realises he's doing anything wrong - if he's not sleeping with her and it is an emotional affair he prob thinks its justified as I clearly 'don't love him anymore'. Hate this feeling. I can feel my blood pressures up without even using a machine.
By the way, doeshe show interest in you and how you feel ( as opposed to what the DCs have been up to) or does he just expect you to be interested in his music - one way traffic?
It's hard to tell - I find it to distinguish what 'me' is. But if I'm chatting about something unrelated to the kids he doesn't seem all that bothered tbh. He used to absolutely adore me but now I think I just bore him.
Also, I got a sneaky look at his phone earlier and saw a text from her late last night saying she was feeling guilty and had had to hear some home truths from her friend. No response from him yet. It's so ambiguous I can hardly confront him with just that.
Maybe just say 'can I look through your phone please as you've been acting really odd' see what he does
What I did was give my ex fiance my phone and ask for his . He soon relented although I think he was hoping that I wouldn't know how to use it. I found months of messages including I love yous, youre sexy , im having naughty thoughts and that he had a hard on. Killed me. But I made him email the lot to me although he clearly doctored them and when confronted he admitted this.
Do you have the same handset ? You might be able to swap SIMS , or even phones for an or maybe a day. Do you know his phone code ? Is it a smart phone , some keep the first line of deleted items , also check the sent items as they might still be there .
Cant you get a friend he doesnt know to see what hes up to on his works drinks ( if the even exist , and he attends )
Does sound a little like he has checked out of your relationship though. Does he come up with any suggestions for things to do at weekends or perhaps a holiday?
Plus I bet he sleeps with his phone either under his pillow or next to him on his bedside table
If you want evidence, don't ask to look at his phone, that will alert hi and he will be more protective and delete things. Although I don't condone invasion of privacy, I find cheating spouses abhorrent, so think you are completely justified to look at his phone.
He sounds like an ass.
It's not THAT ambiguous, OP. Look at it from the outside; persistent texts and calls to a female colleague, distancing himself at home and being bored by you. The she says she's feeling guilty about it all and a friend told her off.
It's an affair. the details we don't know but I think you're leaning towards wishful thinking if you're expecting anything else.
It's also sad and unfair that you are marginalising yourself and blaming yourself even in your imagining about it. You are entitled to be angry, and to demand answers. I understand you may not want to confront yet but the very fact you need to have indisputable evidence suggests you are either afraid of him or convinced he will lie his way out of it, both kind of sad positions to be in.
Best sneaky tip is to swap her number for yours in his phone book. See what he texts you.
Does he have an iPhone? You can swipe left and type search words which bring up parts of deleted text messages.
Best sneaky tip is to swap her number for yours in his phone book. See what he texts you.
That is absolute genius!
Yes I would be tempted to swap the number definitely
Agree with tessa. Sorry op.
What if she texts him first? Then he will know
Swapping the number that's a good one. I feel very sad if he has 'checked out' of our relationship , don't know how we could recover from that.
I've been thinking alot about the psyche of men and their egos, and how they just completely lack the patience to wait for better, easier days, which are in their future if they could just hold on. My godfather had an affair just after his wife had their third baby - thankfully he came to his senses and their still together 20 odd years later. And my uncle nearly left my aunt when their kids were young coz he said he felt pushed out of her life. Maybe men are just rubbish at not putting themselves first??
that's the risk. Though you can save two different numbers under the same name.
This isn't a male/female thing, abneys, as much as I know it's tempting to see it that way. I know stacks of women who've had affairs (been one too) for very similar reasons to the ones you're describing and loads of others too. The horrible truth is that the vast, vast majority of infidelity is never uncovered at all, and of that which is, almost all of it is downplayed or minimised or lied about by the perpetrator, meaning that the small minority of infidelity which is uncovered is never admitted to in its full extent.
So can you see how unlikely it is, given that, that the stuff you're encountering is innocent? It takes a lot of emotional warning signs for a normal person to get suspicious in the first place and it takes a lot of entitlement for another person to get relaxed or stupid enough not to completely cover their tracks. it's a horrible warning I know, and I don't think it should mean writing off cheaters as evil people, but all visible infidelity is likely to be the tip of the iceberg.
Please stop making this about gender. It is about your relationship and his personality. saying it's a man thing is a way to protect your subconscious from knowing you have to do something about it. It is not 'just how it is', blokes is blokes. You have to act.
Block her number, delete all your old texts, then save your number under her name. So, if she texts he won't get it, then he'll text her, you text back... sneaky, but I believe that if a person is in a committed relationship and is suspicious, there is nothing wrong with a bit of covert behaviour.
Oh sweetheart it's so obvious he's having an affair. I can just hear him now droning on to some twitty woman that he's a poor neglected little bubba who has needs dontcha know.
The very reason you're feeling responsible for this is also the very reason some other woman has allowed herself to be this twitty. Women feel responsible all the darned time for making men feel good about themselves. If she stopped and thought about this (but maybe she's childless and hasn't a clue) it might occur to her that you're the one with the rough deal, trying to keep a family going with a manchild who thinks all the attention ought to be on him.
Maybe her more sisterly friend said as much and told her to stop being such a twit?
You don't actually need any more evidence than you've got and the swiftest way of bringing this to a head is to say as calmly as you can that you have reason to believe he's having an affair and so you'd like him to leave. You don't have to say how you know, just that you do.
And you do know. It just couldn't be more obvious.
Oh and while I agree that women have just as many affairs as men, I don't think we should under-estimate how much men are socialised to think of themselves as first in the pecking order and that family life, childcare and housework are women's work. But some selfish men think that the women in their lives should do all that virtually single-handedly and be the benign, adoring sex-kitten wife as well.
The poster who asked you how adoring he was to you had it bang-on.
My XH walked out with no prior warning, came back for 6 weeks, then left again. I then discovered thousands of texts to his best mates wife. They both denied that anything was going on. her H denies that there is anything going on. i got a divorce as XH was adamant that he no longer loved me.
The point is, that while he was texting OW all day long, from 8am til midnight, that he wasn't thinking about me or his then 3yo DD. All of his waking thoughts were took up with OW, first thing he did in the morning was text her. he emailed her right through the family holiday.
all the time I was treading on eggshells so that he wouldn't leave again, because of course it was all my fault that he had to go, all that time that I was in turmoil and feeling upset, he was emotionally engaged with that woman.
he is taking you for a fool and you have a chance to do something about it.
Bear in mind what I said about nearly EVERYONE minimising an affair or outright lying when confronted. The OP sounds like someone who fears holding her ground in this situation, hence her needing solid evidence. But what would be good enough? Actually catching them at it?
I think it's worth just saying that almost everyone outright denies out of shock, and some people actually get angry, forcing the adrenaline they feel at being caught out towards something else they can hide behind, like righteousness and aggression.
It's actually VERY unusual for innocent people to get angry when confronted. The normal response is bemusement, confusion, or even laughter and immediate reassurance.
So I'm just trying to make sure the OP doesn't allow herself to be made to feel crazy. This is clear as day, even if we don't know the length and breadth of the thing.
Yes of course he'd deny it if confronted.
But what the OP needs to do is to tell herself that that's normal and typical and it doesn't matter.
She knows. Him not being able to admit it is besides the point and irrelevant really.
Although I do get that for some women, they need to know if it's a sexual affair, because for some that would be the ultimate deal-breaker. It's hard to know why. The man's treatment of her as a discrete entity should be the deal-breaker, not what he's done with someone else.
Don't bother with all the cloak and dagger just ask him outright.
Thanks all posters. I don't think this has become a sexual affair as I don't think they would have had opportunity - I don't think. But I can't see why he would delete her texts if there was nothing incriminating.
You're right whoever said I'm afraid to confront him - I'm not a confrontational person and I'm afraid for the future tbh. I mean what kind of male role model will my 3 sons have if they know what their dad did.
Oh there's always the opportunity. If he spends more than 45 minutes out of the house or from your side, there's opportunity. They might both take days off work, or meet afterwards and pretend they are 'working late' or use other leisure activities as a cover for it.
Have a think about the female role model you're giving your boys. It's understandable you're afraid because that's human, but a lot of men treat women badly because women are often useless at confrontation. Better to give your boys a role model of a woman who won't be treated this badly and who shows cheats the door. If anything is likely to deter them from being cheats themselves in the future, it would be that.
That's very sweet of you, abneys, but really that's his problem. 1. You don't necessarily need to tell them, either now or in the future. 2. It is his actions that would affect them and he who should manage and remedy that. 3. Your sons need a strong female role model just as much and with just as much importance and abneys, with all the respect in the world, being afraid to confront their father over something HE is doing wrong is really really not that, and troubling to hear.
Francesca- don't forget the job- many cheaters expect you to work too, whilst they are about it.
OP, they always find time. I've lost count of the threads in here where a woman started with " he is always here at night and doesn't have the time/opportunity", and then discovered otherwise .
Ooh yes I agree about picking and choosing the bits of 1950s life that suit their agenda. But if a woman is working and finds herself in this situation, I always celebrate that. It means she's got her independence.
I just bet he's written some horribly cheesy, vomit-inducing song for her of late too.
I think if you feigned a sudden interest in his latest dire offerings, he'd be suddenly reluctant to share this hobby he thinks you've got no interest in.
They work together, right? You sound really sweet, abneys, and I have no idea what the truth of it is but if they work together they have opportunity all the time, I'm afraid.
There's a lot of language in all your posts which is very very masochistic. About putting yourself absolute last and all your worries being for your children, or about everyone hating him, never for you. Are you aware of this? Can you see that you might be responding to this turn of events in this way? Do you agree that this might lead you down a very dangerous, weakening and resentful path? Does it ring any bells regarding your family or models you were exposed to growing up? I wonder if you might need help to start seeing yourself as an autonomous, breathing individual with rights and feelings and demands not a fearful, frustrated welcome home mat for the posse of men in your house.
If his phone is on your account you may be able to retrieve his deleted messages from your provider.
I am going to go against the grain here, but I think there are cases where both partners have to take some responsibility for an affair. And this acknowledgement of responsibility on both sides is the healthiest way for a marriage to survive an affair.
OP, you say "Admittedly I've been distant and putting him way down the priority list for years" and " I honestly don't care about his 'art'".
So of course he is to blame for cheating (and it sounds to me like he is cheating) but also, surely not taking an interest in him for years has a part to play in all this as well?
Sorry just been feeding my posse of men
I don't mean to be a martyr , I've just found that I should expect my needs to be last, so that I'm pleasantly surprised if I do get a break! But yeah I have definitely lost track of 'myself' - I do work part time (on maternity at the mo), so if I had any other interests I just don't know when I would fit them in.
With regards to my own role models, my parents were very happily married, a great team, no real bumps in the road at all. Sadly my dad died last year very suddenly, otherwise they would have been married 35 years last month. This has been hard on all of us, as dh and my dad were good mates. Thinking about it, his own role models are a bit pants as his dad left when dh was 4, and his step-dad was never what you'd call fatherly.
Has anyone got any experience of couples counselling? I wonder if that might help us both with our marriage issues and the bereavement.
There is always opportunity for it to have become sexual. I once had an affair with a man i worked with. We waited until everyone had left and then had a quicky on the premise. It made us both only a tiny bit late so no suspicions aroused. Or we would meet up the road and do stuff in the car. Very easily done.
Also why would she say she was guilty if nothing has happened?
Majestic - I'm glad u offered another take, it's all food for thought. One thing this has made me realise is how I am guilty of taking him for granted and not really showing much interest in him personally. And obviously that includes the bedroom dept - I just can't be bothered with all that business after a mad day! So yeah, I would take some responsibility for this situation...some.
You did not force him to go and put his penis into another woman.
He chose to do that. He has free will.
His affair is not your fault.
Does he take you for granted as well? Its not just a one way street. You already said he's not interested in what you have to say.
Has he ever tried to do anything about it? Arrange babysitters and romantic things for you both to do? Has he talked about it?
Tbh op, whilst having an affair is never justifiable it seems that you have checked out of the relationship emotionally too. No interest in him or his music (which seems important to him) and infrequent sex (although understandable with young children) is probably making him feel you have detached from him also.
He is an idiot if he is having an affair, but there is something that has got you both to this point and you need to really look at how you both feel about each other.
By all means try and gather more evidence of his infidelity if that makes you feel better, but what you should both be doing is sitting down and having a big heart to heart about how you both feel about each other and your relationship.
Do you remember what attracted you to him originally? Do you still find him attractive? Are there things you can both do to improve the marriage. I think couples counselling would be very helpful and insightful for you.
As I said, I don't condone cheating in any way, but I believe that honest communication is the only way to even start to sort out your problems. I wish you luck in whatever you decide to do.
No you mustn't take responsibility for anyone lying to you and cheating on you.
Even if this man was desperately unhappy (it doesn't sound like it) what he decided to do about that was his choice and his choice alone.
In a case like that, the responsible thing would be to discuss it, look at his own behaviour and how that might be contributing to the unhappiness, identify ways in the relationship that could improve his happiness, offer solutions, suggest counselling. The most irresponsible thing is having a secret affair.
I have seen it said time and time again on here that the people most likely to cheat are the ones who give less to the relationship and family life. And the ones most likely to be the victim of cheating are people who take on too much responsibility for everything, which sounds so much like you.
So if you're going to look at your own behaviour, look at how much you might have been putting up with all this time, how little you've been accepting from him and how much has fallen on your shoulders. But whatever you do, do not blame yourself for his choice to have an affair.
I was saying upthread that some people think women are responsible for men's happiness and their actions if they aren't- and you can see that now in print. It's a massive crock of shit, but you really can see how that mindset allows some women to have affairs with men and blame their wives for it happening. Please don't buy into that victim-blaming crap.
Tessaall visible infidelity is likely to be the tip of the iceberg.
This horrifys me. Im recovering from infidelity and im constantly haunted by the thought that it wasnt a one off . I dont know whether he was so stupid he didnt hide it very well or just very entitled .
How can a person tell ?
Don't worry, ownbrand, I don't necessarily mean within the relationship. I just mean across society. It's very rare in my experience from my social circle to find a long term relationship where one of them hasn't crossed a line, even if it's just a cheeky but hurtful snog.
You can't tell. Unless you drive yourself mad. You just have to look at now and whether you have the sort of relationship/partner you want and deserve. If so, and you have reason to think your partner feels the same, it's unlikely there's cheating going on.
abneys - yes, you may also have not put as much into your relationship as you could have, BUT (as in my case) if he wasn't happy, he should have talked to you about it, and not run off to someone else to have his ego stroked. HE made the choice.
Musicians eh? IME they have the most fragile egos. Plus there is a 'what happens on tour stays on tour' mentality.
I don't mean to be a martyr , I've just found that I should expect my needs to be last, so that I'm pleasantly surprised if I do get a break! But yeah I have definitely lost track of 'myself' - I do work part time (on maternity at the mo), so if I had any other interests I just don't know when I would fit them in
This is very insightful following just after a post telling you you possibly have neglected him.
A) Your needs are last
B) Pleasantly surprised to get a break
C) Doesn't know when she'd fit 'self' into life
Picture of a busy mum anyone? Who's just been told to not neglect her husband because that's why he has gone off with another women??
The energy he puts into texting another woman and finding time for his music could be put into wooing his wife and giving her 'me' time.
Fucking ridiculous to blame a new mum with 3 under 4 for her husband straying.
Thanks tiredog - I feel you've got my back! It's just so depressing to think we've got to this point. I've always said we need to keep the communication channels open, and til now I thought we were, but he's obviously being secretive about stuff - I also discovered he 's been secretly using those 'adios' tablets for weight loss by putting them in his tub of saw palmetto, so I would think he's just taking his herbs like normal. Why why why.
Sorry abneys :-( I think the weight loss thing is par for the course too as is the hiding virtually everything (new clothes etc etc) My x fiance messaged ow to say how much weight he had lost when he was trying to hook her . Im mostly pissed off that he never admitted that hehad gone out of his way to arouse her sexual interest but put it down to his sense of humour and my overreaction.
Have you thought about confronting him at all?
Abneys, I wholeheartedly agree with TiredDog.
How about doing that setting the alarm for 3am and checking his phone when he's dead to the world.
IME of musicians, they are no different to other men, who are no different to other people. They either are trustworthy and faithful or they are not. I have spent my entire life with professional musicians, and can assure you (and everyone else) that as a profession they are as capable as any other profession of loving and cherishing their partner and children, being responsible and kind and patient and honest. You don't have to be an accountant, for instance, to be a decent human being. Sorry, the sort of generalisations on this thread have made me a bit cross!
abney - you need to sit down with partner at some point. I understand your need for evidence but set yourself a date by which you have the conversation, evidence or not. A date soon. This is going to cause you huge stress until it's out in the open.
I think you need to establish if he has 1) checked out altogether, 2)made a mistake and can recognise that mistake and come back (if you want that) or the worse case scenario where he is 3) guilty but hides it and pretends you're mad to think otherwise (hence need for evidence)
You also need to think about what you want to go forwards.
Plastering over the cracks is NOT an option. So regardless of his confession or not, you need to face this full on.
For me a lack of confession would decide the future. I can't live with lies. It would be over.
If he confesses you need to establish if he is willing to work on whatever weakness is inherent in HIM (not you as a couple) that allowed him to think this was acceptable.
Regardless of evidence of actual physical intimacy he has undoubtably been emotionally attached to her and also spent time and energy on her and not his family. What is he going to do to rectify that and what do you need and want?
I imagine you can't think straight and also have the demands of 3 young children. Is there someone you can trust to help you
all visible infidelity is likely to be the tip of the iceberg
Yep, absolutely agree with this. Loads of text messages, taking care with appearance, phone glued to side. This is an affair. No doubt about it.
Who is responsible? Well him, of course. He is 100% responsible for his own choices.
The poster suggesting that you share some blame should be ashamed of themselves.
Sorry, agreeing a little here with Majestic. You want to know if he is walking out on this relationship, but there are a few phrases you use that suggest you have also walked out of the part of your relationship that is the two of you together. If you honestly can't be bothered with something that he holds dear, and don't consider your relationship important compared to raising your children, I can see why the two of you might not be as solid as you first assumed.
Before you get the wrong idea, I am not suggesting this is your fault at all. He is a grown man, and it takes two to let a relationship die a slow death, and it has also apparently been his choice to look elsewhere rather than do what a mature, loving person would have done and address his issues with you directly.
Agreeing also with posters above, you need to work out what you want out of all this - if he is having an affair, emotional or physical, do you want to try to work it out? Would you rather let it go and separate? Is there anything in the relationship that is worth trying to save? What would "proof" of his guilt or innocence actually help you decide?
* I work so bloody hard to give our kids a good life, which means putting my needs absolute last, I don't get why he can't do the same - maybe men just can't, selfish creatures that they are.*
You need to talk to him.
Walked out on a relationship that is 'the two of you together'?
This woman gave birth 7 months ago and she's got 3 children of four and under.
Most parents in those circumstances wouldn't have the time nor the energy to be a frustrated rock star, or to have any really time-consuming hobby.
It's beyond self-indulgent for a parent with so many young kids to be wailing "what about meeee!" and criticising the person who, you know actually gets that young kids need the lion's share of attention in these infant years.
OP let me ask you a couple of questions.
Exactly when did he start complaining about you 'never being interested in his songs and stuff'? Pound to a penny it was after he started seeing this woman, like his nasty outburst at the function the other weekend was after he started seeing this woman.
When did he last come to you and say "We really need to get our personal relationship back and put our marriage first for a change. I've organised a babysitter and we're going to treat ourselves to a night/day out?"
Or "You keep putting your own needs last, love. Take a day out to do what you want while I look after our kids."
Yes, those questions are rhetorical, but my word those actions would achieve a closer relationship with a partner than having an affair, bawling her out at a party and blaming her for not being interested in his 'art'.
Francesca I think u best sum up what I've been feeling - really really frustrated that after everything I do for him and the boys he still wants more. I don't have the energy or the brainpower frankly to remember to bolster his self-esteem, maybe if he showed some gratitude now and then for all the daily drudgery I go through I might feel more inclined. And your right, his relationship with this woman, whatever it is, has spurred this behaviour on in him. I'd forgotten that the night he got all confrontational at the party he'd seen her during the day.
But I really really can't confront him without solid proof or I won't be able to hold my ground.
I'd like to think I am a strong woman - I certainly used to be - but I can't risk rocking the boat unless I really can convince him that what he's doing is wrong.
but I can't risk rocking the boat unless I really can convince him that what he's doing is wrong.
This is such a sad sentence. Why should you have to 'convince' him? Even SHE is saying she feels guilty about it for god's sake. What do YOU think?
Who is at fault is a pointless game (clue though, it's him)
Just out of interest, why won't you be able to hold your ground? What's the dynamic you fear would play out?
I can't risk rocking the boat unless I really can convince him that what he's doing is wrong
It doesn't actually matter if you convince him tbh. It's about YOU and what you feel.
Any remorse has to start from him in response to what he's done to you.
I agree about not saying anything until you feel you've got what you need. Keep your powder dry for the time being.
If you confront him and he can deny, and does ( he may not ), then all that will do is drive it more under ground and he'll be more careful.
That said, his behaviour of late has been shitty and there's nothing wrong with calling him on that. Don't be a door mat.
I hate to say it but IMO men don't invest that amount if time and effort, and hide it, without there being something untoward going on
I think it will be fairly easy for you to find the proof you're looking for. He is not being that careful, he thinks you're an idiot. Sorry.
Yes what we need to do for you as respondents to your thread is to convince you and support you in coming to the conclusion that you don't need any more proof and you don't need to convince him he's in the wrong.
This isn't a court of law where you have to prove something beyond all reasonable doubt.
It really is enough to say 'I'm very unhappy about the way you're treating me. I'm unhappy in this relationship. I have reason to believe you're having an affair and I want out of this relationship.'
But before you get to this point, you maybe need to think about your own lines in the sand.
You know he's having an affair, so what would you do if he admitted it/confessed before you confront/you found incontrovertible proof? Would you follow the most sensible advice and ask him to leave, so that you can think things through? Or would you instantly forgive if he promised to end it?
How will you cope if this relationship ends? Practically, it sounds like you do everything anyway, but have you looked into what your finances would be as a lone parent? They might not be as bad as you think.
Information is power, as they say. It might help if you try to get a solicitor's free half hour/visit the CAB/check your entitlements and align this to getting as much information you can about his activities, if it's going to strengthen your resolve.
You don't need to convince him. He knows what he's been doing is wrong - whether it's got to the physical stage or not - or why would he be secretly taking weightloss pills, hiding his phone, bawling you out, and all the thngs you've picked up on?
He knows very well he should be spending his time, efforts and energy on his family and he kows that he isn't doing that.
He sounds like if you were to confront him he's the type who will duck and dive and twist it so that it's your fault. Am I right? Is this why you don't feel you can just ask him about it?
Oh yes, deleting the messages and keeping his phone close is a dead giveaway that he knows he has crossed a line. When phones come with waterproof cases, cheaters will be taking them in the shower with them.
Until them, take every chance you get to check that phone. It won't be long before you find something more.
I always smile at the deleting messages and keeping phone close= cheating because my phone is mostly within reach and I delete all messages daily. I'm not a cheater. I'm just tidy and want to know if I get a tex
I think some people always do that TiredDog but it's the changes in behaviour that the OP is noticing.
My dh has gone to bed and his phone is here in the living room. Half the time he's asking, 'have you seen my wallet, phone, keys', etc. so if he started being glued to his phone, I would wonder why for sure.
Can't rock the boat unless you can convince him?
I had solid proof after 5 years of this sort of cloak and dagger shit, and I can tell you convincing isn't the issue.
He knows he is wrong but he thinks wrong doesn't matter - he thinks being caught out matters.
He- and you- agree that proof is the key currency. It's just that you havnt verbalised it to each other. I've been there too- but is is not a solid viewpoint if you think about it.
If I were you now, with benefit of hindsight, I would give yourself a week at most to find it and then tell him you know anyway. Then keep saying it, plus what the consequences will be.
'I've been thinking alot about the psyche of men and their egos, and how they just completely lack the patience to wait for better, easier days' - I think you may be doing down men then - I don't think it applies to all.
Your posts are very sad as you seem to have really low expectations of him. I agree, if you want proof try and swap the numbers. Otherwise just ask for his phone and judge his reaction.
I managed to sneak a look at his phone last night and once again he'd deleted all her texts - it is a smartphone so he can choose 'delete conversation' and it deletes all his sent ones too. I just feel I need to see one of these 'conversations' before I act - perhaps to help me believe this is really happening more than anything. Still part of me thinks 'no he couldn't possibly have an affair he loves me too much.' Denial, I know, but I can't help cling to it because I fear for the future.
Understandable abney. I do think you need to pick a date when even without proof you will sit down and discuss. What Francesca said about It really is enough... just to say I think... The evidence is for you not him and I get you need to get your head around that.
However if he's so careful there is no evidence where does that leave you. Try and analyse if you can stay as things are forever. No? Well then a serious conversation ensues.
You poor thing. I agree with others you do not need proof- you just need the strength to front this out.
He is behaving appallingly.
While you are in this waiting stage, are you able to plan what you want to do when it comes out - and it will do...
Does he delete all his messages, or just the ones from her?
If you really want that proof just do as suggested, put your number under her name. Sit back and wait for the messages to come flooding in.
Done and dusted.
Then confront him.
She said "delete the conversation," so that means both sets of messages, hers and his.
I guess I get complacent about DH because after years together and raising a family and having one another's back when things get tough, you trust each other.
We happen to be chalk and cheese about lots of things but in a relationship you think you know pretty much how your partner ticks.
So now this has come out of left field it's a horrible wake up call but keep in mind, he has always had you by his side to air any perceived slights or neglect. No need for furtive texting, no sneaky communication, no delete option required. He may bluster about you being there in body but not in spirit. Not listening, not inviting comment cor dedicating time. Well, now he's quits. Preoccupied by her. Slimmer, for her. Tuned into whatever she sends.
Btw he may think she 'gets' him, really understands or appreciates him. Oh grow up. What stopped him noticing all the effort you make that he takes for granted? Responsibility, little children, a degree of self sacrifice, major bereavement, they're not untypical life events. It's what people sign up for in a long partnership.
Did you have a favourite song played at your wedding, do you share a private song? I'd stick that on once the DCs are tucked up in bed then tell him you have a fair idea what's been happening, now what's going on in his head? Because you're entitled to know.
Did you manage to change the number abney.
I thought that my XH was the last person in the world to have an affair. When he walked out, I still didn't think that there might be another woman, although I did ask him and he said no. I had this horrible feeling in my gut because I had seen just 1 email to OW, which he was making flattering comments to her, but as she was married to his mate, I still couldnt believe it.
When I checked his mobile bills and found thousands of texts to OW, I managed to sneak a look at his phone, but every single one was deleted.
It then came to mind, how for the past 6 weeks, since he came back, he was:
taking his phone everywhere, to the bathroom, to the utility room, to the car to get something
staying up later than me, whereas he had always gone to bed earlier or at the same time
keeping the phone in his door pocket instead of the middle of the car
keeping it on silent all the time
sleeping with it by his side, charging it by his side instead of overnight in the kitchen
He also set up a secret email address to contact her on. He suggested songs for her to listen to.
Because I trusted him implicitly and because he used the phone a lot for work, I hadn't picked up on any of these things, until he left. There is none so blind as those who cannot see......
I know how hard it is to believe that your partner/husband could do this to you and it took MN to make me see that XH and OW were not just friends, that it was out of order to invest your time and energy in somebody that is not your partner and meanwhile transferring all the loving feelings to that person too.
You need to think about what the outcome will be here, what you want to do once you confront him and he either admits or denies it. Being prepared is the best form of defence.......
I was the same as you OP, I had to see at least one msg from my DH incriminating himself before I believed it as I couldn't believe he do it less than 6 months after we'd got married. It took me a week of constant snooping to find it. I saw a few from her, but he could have bluffed his way out with a 'just friends' comment. He was unbelievably good at covering his tracks. But he did forget to delete one he'd sent just before he went to bed which incriminated himself and left no wiggle room. I saw it because I checked his phone, when he got up for the loo at 5am and his phone was left by the bed.
I too would never have believed he was capable of such deceit and how clever he was.
Don't dismiss his behaviour and trust your gut OP
I would keep getting hold of his phone and checking it. He'll slip up eventually.
You could try slipping it out of his bag or pocket just before he goes out the door to work. See if he gets a text. Of course deny all knowledge and say he must have left it.
Xollob - I had a snoop yesterday while he was in the shower and his phone was charging (he had turned it off), I can't change the numbers I don't think because he has deleted all previous conversations with her so would therefore hit 'compose new message' which in turn displays her name and the number, and I'm sure he would recognise mine. If I get desperate, ill just do it and hope he doesn't notice the different number.
Been thinking about how this would affect the extended family if it all came out, I don't think any of my family would forgive him - it would certainly ruin his relationship with my mum and sisters (and we are all really close) , which is especially sad as he was in a band with my dad and sisters, obviously that ended when my dad died.
I've asked my mum if she could poss babysit one night so that I can go out with dh and his colleagues - obviously I haven't told her of my suspicions - and she said of course she would. So now to float the idea with dh and gauge his reaction ...
I don't know much about smartphones because I prefer the old kind, but whenever I've spoken to people about their affairs, there are sadly a few 'tricks of the trade' and habits that they all seemed to adopt. I've seen the same stories told on MNet.
They saved photos in their gallery or in a separate folder. You can imagine the sort of photos saved, but they usually had at least one of a face.
They saved the number of their squeeze under another name. Usually a common man's name if it was a woman, or vice versa.
They saved particularly memorable texts or conversations, in a separate folder; usually something innocuous like 'templates' or somesuch.
Most cleared their logs, but one woman got caught out when she forgot to do that, having religiously deleted texts.
Obviously as you can see his bills you know he's deleting texts or calls already made so to my mind you've got more than enough proof and it seems significant to me that you think he'd lie and force you to back down even in the face of that overwhelming evidence.
But if you're determined you need concrete proof that no-one can wriggle out of, you probably need a good half hour with that phone to search for all the hiding places. Can you get it and then lock yourself in the loo, on a day when he's able to watch the kids because you've got an upset tummy and need to be on the loo for a long time?
By the way, don't go thinking that having an affair necessarily means he doesn't love you, or that he 'loves you too much' to have one.
It probably means he doesn't love you how you deserve to be loved, but having an affair doesn't necessarily point to a true loss of feeling for or commitment to a partner. Many affairs are mindnumbingly banal in terms of motive. It's often just a combination of opportunity and low risk of being caught.
When you say it would ruin his relationship with family, it suggests that it wouldn't ruin his relationship with you...
Are you hoping you'll stick together through this? If so, I would still recommend the typical mumsnet line of dealing with a partner having an affair - make him leave. As is always said: only when he experiences the possible loss of you, will he wake up to what he is doing...
Sorry if that's a bit premature...
What FrancescaBell said. you are not looking for proof anymore. you are now probably looking for why and this is more about you than a need to prove he is cheating.
There is no why - "opportunity and low risk" - because he can.
This is the hardest bit I'm afraid OP.
the lying phase, the stage where you don't know if anything that has happened before was true, whether his feelings were true, whether that smile, that happy moment - basically all of it was true.
This is the feeling of betrayal. next comes gaslighting, minimising, and smugness and croc tires - its too soon for him to really feel it.
I think the effort now needs to go into what you do for yourself to recover, how you move on in your own development. You now have a leg you can't put any weight on - so now time to develop the skills to stand on your own (with or without him).
and if it turns out to be nothing, then you will only have gained a stronger more independent you.
I think it's sad and telling that we're all, including the OP, predicting actions and reactions far down the line, and almost making decisions about the relationship before she's even confronted him.
It may be that the marriage isn't even salvageable. It may be that he is desperately in love with this OW and will leave of his own accord. It may be he lies and lies and lies and gaslights and attacks the OP. The more you fantasise about the future, positively or negatively, OP, the more it crystallises as the only path in your mind. It feels like without even knowing the extent of the affair, the extent of his feelings, or the way in which he reacts to being confronted, the feelings of extended family etc can kind of wait and not determine what you feel and do, OP.
I agree in part but I do think the OP needs to think through what she will do when she's got proof.
If the relationship ends, either because he wants it to or the OP knows she can't forgive infidelity (and there's no reason why she should) then the OP needs to get herself to a position of strength where she knows she can cope as a lone parent.
There are some terrible potential outcomes here if the OP doesn't do that sort of preparation. She could put her head in the sand and live a miserable life, she could believe lies, she could forgive prematurely and set herself up for a lifetime of further cheating and selfishness. She could wait until he leaves her suddenly when she has no safety net in place.
I agree the family stuff is irrelevant. The important work is on her own boundaries and practical stuff like finances and housing.
Absolutely, I agree, I just worry that OP is, understandably already putting reasons and justifications in place to stay in the relationship whatever. And although I can see how scary it is to imagine other scenarios, it feels like she is doing this with an assumption about what the affair is, her relationship is and what the consequences will be. In truth, OP, think about what you will do if he lies to you on confrontation, or if he gets aggressive with you, or if he says he doesn't love you anymore. Where is your boundary for what is and is not acceptable? Are you going to stay with someone who is in love with someone else and who refuses to stop seeing her, for example? All because you don't want your family to dislike him? Of course not.
I understand how scary it is to genuinely consider things like separation or even divorce. But, OP, if you go into any of this assured that there is only one outcome you will really countenance, then you may as well not go into it at all, and STFU and resolve to stay your whole life as one of those tragic women who knows their husband is on the cheat but always has hands over ears apart from when she's pouring herself drink.
The only other thing I could suggest, OP, is that if he should leave his phone on the side, even for a minute or two, just swipe it and hide it. Put it somewhere he will never think of looking such as inside an old cereal box (or tampon box!)
Whilst he is going mad looking for it, just play dumb. Obviously you can't take it if he put on charge, but if he just put it down on the table to carry shopping in, or something.
Then, when he gives up looking and goes out, you can wait and see if she texts him. Also, you would have more time to fiddle with it and see if you can retrieve deleted messages.
I was going to say that would be too difficult - but with three small children around its quite plausible. Plus you would get to witness his panic
I still think you could tell him you have absolute evidence and that he needs to come clean.
Or you could 'nip to the shop' with his phone in your pocket...
I'd 'turn all ringers/ vibrate off and ' hide' his phone and make it go missing ( in your handbag) and watch as he goes mental looking for it and once you've received and nosied at all texts , return it somewhere it could have been lost.
How are you today op, it's such a shit feeling, isn't it?
I wouldn't take his phone. I would make a note of her number and tell him to tell me everything at a time when you can talk uninterrupted. Immediately after that, depending on what he said, I'd ring her. Sexual or emotional, it does sound like an affair.
Just say "I know, so start talking or you're out on your ear"
Then let him fill the silence.
When you have some answers (rxpect the bare minimum at this stage) then ask him to leave whilst you decide what to do.
I know it's terrifying, but the shaky, adrenaline fuelled limbo you are in now will destroy you if you delay bringing this to a head.
I've been there, unfortunately.
He is having an affair! Sorry but every box is ticked and why delete all those messages?
I can understand why you feel you need concrete proof.
He might have a code on his phone now anyway.
My thinking is you know deep down what is going on so even if you could, would you want to fill your head with the pain of what the messages contain?
My H was suddenly very secretive with his phone, there was no way I would have been able to see what was on there as he'd added a password. I did however find a diary where he wrote down what was going on, he'd bought one for his OW too and probably saw it as an old fashioned, romantic thing to do. What I read is still haunting me and it hurts so much.
Confront him, he'll probably deny it and I bet turn it round to you and your insecurities but we know our husbands and are very rarely wrong with our suspicions.
It does sound like he is definitely having an affair. How heart wrenching for you.
I think you definitely need to see some texts. You need that irrefutable proof or he will deny and mess with your head forever.
Is it an iphone? You should be able to retrieve old texts on those.
Hope you are OK op, didn't want to just read and run. When it was me I texted her number with a message saying ""this is xxs new mobile number and I waited to see what came back. You have to be really sure that you really want to know. Sending you hugs. X
Yes, abneysporridge you could always text her saying it's your husband from his new number. Hope you are ok.
Or abneys, you can call her if you like. I wouldn't leave a message if I were you but if you actually talk to her and sound reasonable she might tell you quite a lot. It varies hugely but some OWs are tormented by guilt or unhappy in their situation and would welcome an excuse to lay things bare with the wife.
"really really frustrated that after everything I do for him and the boys he still wants more. I don't have the energy or the brainpower frankly to remember to bolster his self-esteem, maybe if he showed some gratitude now and then for all the daily drudgery I go through I might feel more inclined"
yes, yes fucking YES!!!!!!! I totally agree with you. How about appreciating the effing hard work you put in with kids and house etc before expecting you to worship at the feet of the Rock God. Grrrr...... FWIW I spent a while abasing myself after I found out about H's affair ..'Oh I didn't love him enough, I didn't tell him how amazing he was, I didn't want to have sex every night after working all day, cleaning the house,walking the dog, cooking a meal, preparing lunchboxes....mea culpa. I deserved all this pain. I am worthless!' Until I slapped myself (I wanted to slap him but I refrained) and realised that it takes too to damage a marriage and the one who always takes up the slack and puts everyone first is NOT the main culprit. Remember that.
If you want my advice, and you don't want to divorce immediately, sit him down and say 'OK, so you are having an affair (he is whether they have had sex or not is totally irrelevant). You appear to have checked out of any real relationship with me and our children. Where do we go from here? No lies, no minimising, assume I know everything.'
That jump ahead uber honesty and practicality orm suggests is pretty impressive and useful, OP. And she knows what she's talking about.
It's a truism often bandied about in these parts that affairs are most often had by those giving the LEAST to the relationship (because you value something less the less you invest in it and are more likely to be a taker anyway). It is RARELY true that the person you has been cheated on should be giving MORE that they were before, in fact they should pull back to make things more equal and expect the cheater to step up. This sometimes fails because the cheater feels they have another option available to them so why should they return to a staler relationship where they are required to put in more effort?
The worst thing is for the betrayed to try and make the cheater stay by upping their contribution, it worsens all the problems that were there already. The horrible truth is that if the cheater can't or won't come back with more investment, they should go, because they will quickly discover that they are a taker in every other relationship too. And the same thing will happen or OW will leave once she realises.
Thanks all for continuing to lend your support
I've been acting as nonchalant and non-suspicious as poss and trying to steal a look at the all-powerful mobile phone when I get a chance, but I mean he is just GLUED to it, and I think he deletes everything from her before he goes to sleep as I have snuck a look when he's snoring away (phone is right next to his face like that 3-headed guard dog in Harry potter), to no avail. I know some people have advised me to just confront him without seeing the proof, but I really need it or he will deny til he's blue in the face and I can't leave him any plausible deniability if I'm going to blow this wide open - the logistical and emotional ramifications are too huge.
Have been picturing myself as a single mum and it makes me feel shakey and sad, but as someone said earlier is that any worse than living with one-way street marriage?? I just don't know what to think any more.
You poor thing, well done for holding it together. If he is so thorough then I guess you conclude two things. 1. He has something he is very worried about you discovering and 2. He is less likely to make a slip up which will reveal things for you.
No one is that glued to their phone who is not hiding something. We are all a bit addicted but not deleting and all that stuff.
Faced with this, you either carry on living in this horrible world of surveillance and suspicion, confront him with just what you know so far and try and stay strong (what do you fear will happen here, out of interest?) or you do something much more extreme like swap the numbers, install a key logger on his computer, or employ a private investigator.
What do you think?
Let me get this straight, when you talk about ramifications of confronting him without evidence, what exactly are you afraid of? What is 'too huge?'
Pick up a cheap payg sim from the supermarket. Shove it in your phone and send her a text "disaster! Had to get new sim" or something. Then see what comes back. Then no one will recognise your number.
I suspect anyone engaged in an affair will be suspicious of strange numbers from the off.
The other thing to consider is that there's little chance she will miraculously find a text that tells her EVERYTHING about what's going on anyway. It mught be sexual but then he will say it is just sexting, not physical. It might be loving but then he will just say she is obsessed with him but he has never felt the same. What exactly could you find anyway, OP that is indisputable and how likely do you think it is that you would?
What about going swimming? He can't have his phone in the pool.
Tessa the ramifications are purely that he is so ingrained in my family i need to be really sure of the grounds on which I essentially cut his ties with them - I mentioned he was in a band with my dad and sisters, they are performing together at a memorial concert for my dad next month, dh is also running the technical side of it, my sister is getting married next year - dh is a groomsman, and of course, my children would be suddenly faced with a massive and upsetting change. I just feel I have so much to lose I need everyone to know I'm not going mad and paranoid! Also need to know that for myself. I can cope with limbo - it's not the most healthy scenario sure - but at least were all still alive.
If you do need proof, can you ask your sisters to look at his phone when he's with them? He'd be less likely to be so guarded with it around others. Do you know if he's got a code on it?
My only worry is that you will hurt even more if/when you do get proof. I cannot get the diary entries my H made about his OW out of my head.
These things come out in the end, it took me 2 months to find out and that was 2 months of turmoil so I understand how you're feeling.
Has he changed the way he is with you at all?
Okay, abney, a few things.
You're getting ahead of the curve here.
You're making a slightly odd assumption. That confronting him about your valid suspicions without indisputable evidence will result in ties being cut between him and your family. Walk me through that. Also, that it would result in your children being faced with a massive and upsetting change. There is no logic to this. We are talking at the moment about a conversation. You are assuming that the outcome of that conversation would be your DH having ties cut with your whole family and your children being damaged. Why?
Maybe you think you can cope with limbo. This isn't limbo. This is suspicion and denial and an affair. Limbo would be if you confronted him and asked what was going on and he lied about it and then carried on having the affair anyway, with you suspecting that, him suspecting you knew, but choosing not to do anything and both waiting for the other to make a move. (see Update on EA thread). At the moment he doesn't know what you know and you don't know what he knows. This is denial and a secret. You can choose to support the keeping of that secret or not but that's not limbo. Limbo is incredibly damaging, probably the most damaging phase of all, and is what everyone warns about which is why people are suggesting you think ahead.
Either you fear that he will outright deny everything and lie to you and make you feel crazy but carry on ostensibly as normal (which is what you seem to fear in your earlier post) OR you fear that somehow the conversation will trigger the end of your relationship, through a route I'm not sure of yet, either caused by you leaving or him saying he's leaving. Which is it? And why?
Aw abney, relationships are so difficult. It's very easy to post online a clear rational response. Throw in all the little twists, subtle details, family vulnerabilities and entwined lives and its nowhere near as easy as it sounds
Take your time but don't brush aside and don't forget the stress this is causing you
I normally post a non compromising LTB but I'm sensing that there might be a chance he has made a whopping great mistake and you could come back from it. But he does need to know you know about it and what hurt he has caused
I'm not trying to get you to confront him necessarily but I'm not sure you've got clear in your head what the step by step reality of this is. If you are so afraid of the family events you've got coming up being ruined, why isn't he?
What, for example, could you find that would mean you would feel okay confronting him? (I really understand by the way. I say my BF kissing someone else once and he STILL tried to insist I hadn't.)
What, for example, could you find that would mean you would not want to stay in the relationship? If the answer to either of these is 'nothing' then ask yourself why you are even bothering to look. Also ask yourself why living in an environment where he is having an affair and thinks you don't know is better than one where he is having an affair but knows you know. If the answer is just 'he will cover his tracks better' think hard about what that means about him and how he treats you.
I understand you just want to get through the family stuff, especially the concert. At the risk of sounding cold, there is never a good time. There is always a child starting school, or finishing school, or someone getting married or a new house or a new job or a bereavement. There is always life. But he is the one sabotaging that, not you. And I feel so sad that you are the one feeling guilty and anxious and desperate to hold things together when you have done nothing wrong and he gets to swan into work with his young, adoring lover, then come home to a family and quietly eroding wife.
So sorry you're having a rubbish time OP.
I think you will drive yourself crazy until you find out what's going on. I wouldn't be good at the sneaky part tbh.
If he is that close to your family maybe you need to explain your suspicions to him and tell him that, even if they're just suspicions, he is behaving in a way that encourages them. Tell him that, if he has any respect for his family (you and DC) and yours he will explain the things that are making you suspicious. It's not a courtroom, it's a marriage you don't need absolute proof... You need to try to re-open communication channels.
If you don't like this approach though, just swap numbers as suggested above and find out once and for all... Good luck.
Urgh just lost a whole massive post in response, can't remember it all and don't have the energy to try frankly but in a nutshell, tessa, I love u, I feel u are the part of my brain I should be listening to, because I know what I have to do, I'm just terribly afraid to do it. I feel like the very foundations of my life are coming apart and that maybe I never really knew the man I swore to be with til death parts us, and I just hope he is feeling even the smallest part the same way or we really are doomed.
a "quietly eroding wife", can there be a sadder phrase on MN this evening ?
don't be that woman, love
no man is worth that, not ever
Aww don't worry, abneys, I get it. It's horrible.
My one tip would be, find a bottom line. It probably won't happen bit sit down and honestly think to yourself what is your bottom line, what can't you cope with or put up with. Sex? Them being in love? Him saying he doesn't think he's in love with you anymore? Think very hard and write it down for yourself. Because you need something to believe in.
You do know the man. He was never just defined by his love for you.
There's a version of him who is relieved to be able to talk to you again. But there's also a much bigger, more frightened part that is going to freak out and lie and deny. It's okay. It doesn't mean you're mad.
Try and not let your brain go to all the romantic, mushy memories and wedding and vow stuff. I know it's hard but this is a very practical, present tense thing. Try to not let fear drag you towards sentimentality. He HAS to see you as an adult to be reckoned with. The stronger and more impressive you are (and calm if you can manage it) the more he is going to be floored and impressed with you. You are the one in control here. You already have a great deal of information, much of it requiring explanation. You are not the one on trial. This cannot just be swept under the carpet. Don't you yearn to have an honest conversation with him? Even just down the line rather than living this fearful lie? You'll be okay, abbey. Think about how you would advice a friend who came to you with all this. think about what yourself as a younger woman would have said to you.
Lovely post tessa6
Knowing you are living a life that is below your bottom line just for what it should feel like is very depressing.
I know that
a "quietly eroding wife"
An accurate description
I stayed (DD1 was 5yrs old) because:
DD had just started school
We might be able to fix it
He was depressed when it happened
Perhaps I'd neglected him because I was busy being a full time employee and mum
My sister was dying
My parents were ill
He was ill
He'd lost his job
I was pregnant
The baby was young
Because of the children
Another child's GCSES...
By this time same daughter was 19 and I was very eroded.
We split during A levels and first year of uni for eldest. The most unscathed was the 7 yr old. There really is never a good time to do it. (But I'm having a good time now.) I can't say that divorce is great but those 14 years were awful. I grieve for my lost 14 yrs of living.
Don't be like me
Great posts as ever, tessa, and tireddog - how sad.
Abney - you have a right to know what the hell is going on in your marriage. Sit down and talk - forget finding 'evidence' . Ask him. He may shout and accuse you; he may whimper and whine. Eventually it will come out.
I feel for you having gone through exactly the same scenario. I needed to discover everything before I could come to terms with his betrayal. Like you, I blamed myself for letting it happen. I blamed myself for becoming a 'boring' mum, always too busy to spend time on my own grooming. Then I realised that I was doing the most important job of my life in turning out decent, happy, well-fed children whilst holding down a full-time job. I wasn't to blame for his disinterest in the life we had chosen. He was and still is a selfish, superficial sociopath and I'm doing brilliantly by myself. Sometimes we hang on to broken fragments of the life we hoped for. To fix something, you both have to try. Talk to your husband or call the person you think is spending too much time texting him. The third part of the triangle seems to love the drama. Not knowing is consuming, it takes over. The truth will out, I hope you find some answers and ultimately some peace soon x
I was watching one of those trashy late-night tv programmes the other day - it was all about people who suspected their other halves were cheating. A detective agency went out and carried out covert filming, then when the cheating was proved took the innocent partner for a confrontation with the cheating couple.
It's incredible - the cheaters caught red-handed out on a date and they're shouting 'You're stupid - you've got it all wrong - nothing's happening!'
Gosh forty that sounds horrible - I hate airing dirty laundry in public at the best of times!
Tiredog - that was so illustrative and so sad, I'm glad your in a better zone now.
Brokenpicker - I love your line that it wasn't your fault he's lost interest in the life u both chose - that's exactly how I feel. Yes it's boring and filled with duty and hard graft but its also so rewarding, and its our chance to create really wonderful humans we can be proud of...I just cant believe he would jeopardise all that for a bloody ego boost.
And I just know he will deny everything and make me feel like I'm going crazy unless I can say I've seen proof with my own eyes. I don't want him to be able to continue this while being even more careful because then ill be even more trapped in an impossible situation.
Can you wait till he's halfway through an evening of being glued to his phone, and then suddenly say calmly and quietly,
'I need you to give me your phone right now, without deleting anything please' and hold out your hand?
I agree with you that you do need the proof. I think you should take his phone at night and hide it (with ringer switched off). He'll go nuts looking for it but just be concerned, help him look down the back of the bed etc. Do it on a Saturday so he can't get to this colleague to warn her. Wait to see if she makes contact.
Also, can you get into his e-mails? Give it a go.
Check bank statements.
I totally understand that you need evidence - or he really will deny it for ever, get better at hiding it and totally ruin your life.
This is all too familiar. But you know there is a wider problem than what he us or is not doing, and that is the levels of secrecy that have become normalised in your relationship.
You know he is making calls and texts, and deleting then, for sure. After you find out who she is- and you will, the dam will burst- you will come to realise that this cat and mouse way of living is worse than what he is up to.
Also, really not on that you already know he will lie, deny and minimise . Because if so, that's WHO he is.
It seems likely that he is friendly and taking lots of support from you and your family, whilst shitting on the lot if you.
I never got firm proof before I very finally confronted, but what helped was that the last time I did, I REALLY stuck with it. Believe me, when they see you won't back down and that the lack of transparency alone is no longer good enough, it all comes out. But you have to be incredibly strong and determined, for weeks if necessary. It took me 6.
You mentioned earlier asking your DM to be on standby to babysit if you manage to suggest a night out with his colleagues. So are you going to raise this with him?
It seems very calculating to be attempting to get this woman's attention and yet agree to play next month in your dad's memory and be an usher next year at the wedding of DSis. You said before you get the impression now that he's bored by you, he is so busy detaching he can compartmentalise. Like he's saying Yeah yeah whatever to you and the boys and normal life, whilst texting OW however many times a day.
I don't know how you live like this, baby under 1 and two small DCs, with this hanging over you. It might feel like goading him by challenging him when your instinct is to hold the plot together but while you're trying your hardest, he is off on another planet.
Donkeys - when u put it in black and white like that it makes me realise I won't be able to cope like this for too long, but the fact is until he slips up I simply have to. I just can't let him have his cake and eat it - when I confront him I need him to a) admit he has strayed, b) tell me if he loves her and wants to keep things going with her , and c) formulate a plan with me for our future as a family. With counselling I reckon. If i confront him with only suspicions he will deny it as that's the easier path - none of the above will happen. And I do already know who she is as I checked the frequently occurring number on the phone bill with his contacts on his mobile. She's his colleague - they're in a tiny cupboard of an office together for most of the day. They all go out as a group once a fortnight or once a month so when he next mentions the dates been set for their next outing ill tell him I'm joining them.
It shouldn't be like this should it.
I dont know if I could wait abney. :-(
My fiance was trying to get sexual interest from a friend of his on fb. I just gave him my phone and asked for his. He couldn't wriggle out of it although he continued to lie.
"And I just know he will deny everything and make me feel like I'm going crazy unless I can say I've seen proof with my own eyes. I don't want him to be able to continue this while being even more careful because then ill be even more trapped in an impossible situation."
Eventually, after a long time, ab, you will see that this in itself is enough reason to take action. If you just know that that's kind of sad.
Do you want to be in a relationship with someone who will gaslight you like this, make you feel crazy, attack you and then carry on being unfaithful? I'm not saying you have to leave the relationship, I'm saying you need to CHANGE it. IF you really believe that is what will happen, and that you will just accept that, feeling thwarted, then why the hell carry on looking for evidence? You assume that you won't leave a man who lies, denies and bullies you about his own wrongdoing and then carries on doing it anyway, so where is your line?
I get it's hard.
And you are never trapped in an impossible situation. There is always action YOU can take. It's crazy that everything is framed from his perspective, you are obsessed with how much evidence you can amass that will prove TO HIM that he is having an affair. Think about this. This is insane. He KNOWS HE IS HAVING AN AFFAIR. HE SEES ALL THE TEXTS. It is YOU who must think about what you could see or read that will be enough for you, not him. It's almost as if you are waiting to find proof so that he can make the decision about what you should do. This weird focus on the cheater not being made to feel uncomfortable is bizarre. And it shows how deeply passive we can become in relationships where we fear loss.
You are so used to being bottom of this order and him being central that I don't think you can even see at the moment that there is a totally different way of seeing things. A way that is from your POV, not his, not a family member's or outsider's. Or on the other hand, there's a way where you are on the same side of this thing, being honest about the affair and then deciding what you both want to do, maturely, instead of indulging in stealth manoeuvres against each other. (seriously, he is deleting his texts, you are sneaking round checking them at night, you may as well be spies at war with each other.) It's amazing how many of us end up in relationships where we are essentially enemies with our partner (read the novel Gone Girl).
You're caught in the evidence trap, which is okay, you might find something that clarifies things for you. But I ask you to keep reminding yourself of these things.
1. Your DH is very thorough. This implies he is good at covering tracks, possibly even practised at it. So the worse the evidence is, the more likely it is he will successfully hide it. You may never find it unless you step up your surveillance to another level. If you never do, what will you do? How long? A month? A year? I'm not being facetious. Decide. Write it down.
2. If you step up your surveillance to another level, AND you discover something, then he might be so shocked at the lengths you went to that he tries to make it about you being crazy "You hired a private investigator!? You're crazy! I'm out of here" (or the classic, "You've now done just as much wrong as me, you've broken my trust!") What will you do then, think about it. Write it down.
3. Most evidence will be explained away in the most minimised way possible by a clever cheater, as I said before. "Sex talk? It was just talk." "She fell in love with me, I was just trying to not be rude." "I knew you would react like this, so I deleted them."
4. The situation may change as time goes on. Even if the affair stops somehow, in my experience, a large number of affairs are actually ended by the OW who gets sick of the lies and guilt. Then, if discovered, the DH pretends that they ended it to the DW, and 'chose' them, which emotionally suddenly they miraculously feel like they did, having been rejected by someone else. If you don't address this whilst it's happening you will never know any truth and spend your life not knowing what went on in your own marriage and not feeling able to ever ask.
Phew! That's it. Just plugging away to keep you from the tempting slow death that is denial.
Also please bear in mind that he is carrying on this affair despite having every opportunity to end it or tell you about it or confess to having checked out of the marriage.
I'm impressed that you know what you would need him to say on confrontation for you to consider staying, but bear in mind that he is, every day, choosing not to say those things. He is choosing to betray you every day and carry on cheating instead of addressing it and recommitting to you. Every day he does that should land with you about what sort of man he is and what his wants are. At the moment it seems that he is already having his cake and eating it. It's weird to me you only use that phrase to describe AFTER he knows you know. As if only his perspective is important. what about yours?
If only being confronted by you and being caught red handed at that with indisputable bloody evidence will force him to say those things you need to hear, then please think about how much he really wants those things himself, when and if he eventually says them. There's another poster her (on Update on EA, I think) whose OP said to her angrily 'you've got me trapped' after discovery. As if she was his mum cutting off his fun. Ugh.
ill be even more trapped in an impossible situation. - what situation? You are not imprisoned by him - you have choices.
You already don't trust him, you already have suspicions - and I can tell you that when you confront him (even with hard 'evidence') that he will deny it. Honestly you could catch him in bed and he will deny it (looking for bedbugs with her or something!) He will minimise what he does say. He will make it out to be your fault anyway. He will make you out to be crazy. So - if he will be doing those things anyway (and he will) then what's stopping you confronting him?
You can just say - Are you having an affair? Why are you glued to your phone? See what he does/says.
If he does go further underground - well., the trust is broken on both sides anyway.
You do not need his permission to be upset by his actions. As Tessa says, you have options. You do not need his permission to carry on with this marriage - if you still suspect him of EA or an actual affair, then get him to leave, and to realise what he is giving up.
Please don't fool yourself into thinking he doesn't have the time or opportunity to have an affair - they have plenty of both.
I understand about needing proof. I kind of hope you get it soon so that you can feel confident enough to get yourself out of this situation. It sounds though, that you would 'try to make it work' even if you found out he was definitely having an affair. You need to think about that. Do you really want to be with someone who should have your back, who very much became a part of your family (with your parents/sisters etc) and could do this to you, especially right after (or before and still) your Dad dying. There are some things in life which are just unforgiveable
You are doing very well holding it all together.
I think the OP wants him to admit it, say he didn't love her and is leaving her, and then will work to mend the marriage with the OP. if she can get this without telling her family and spoiling their image of him, all the better.
I think she wants this because the alternative is too scary to countenance right now.
I think a way to fail in life is to wilfully not see signposts along the road. I think there are big signposts here, but they are a shock and she would like her beloved husband to say they are not there, and are not real.
It would be easier all round if he did that.
I wonder if some time to get used to this may be the answer for the OP? I think us all banging the table to make her confront today may not work. It takes time for these things to sink in.
OP - I have said it before and I'll say it again - I think women need friends in life that they can run to with the awful truth, and they need money that they can draw to lift themselves out of trouble.
Sadly not all marriages last for life - but if you have good friends and money, you will always be alright.
While you ponder what to do with your husband, what's the situation with friends and money?
Also ask yourself this - why does it matter what your family think iof him and it doesn't matter what you suspect of him? Are you prepared to bury the truth to yourself and not tell your friends and family?
Your own heart will always be your best friend xxxx
I will hold your hand while you take your time to think it through.
I feel bad for you. Good luck.
That's lovely something2say , thank u. I do feel patience is my friend here. If my world is about to be ripped open then I need to have my head in gear.
I think one problem is, if he is careful, proof might be a long time coming.
I was fobbed off with lies for over five years. Mind you, I did confront early, so he was well warned and it made him even more careful.
Believe me, when you've made bargains with yourself that long about how you might just be wrong and you should stop being so suspicious, the truth when it comes our makes you angry and resentful as hell.
Don't do what I did. It was a terrible waste of my life. If you must have proof, and I can see why, then set all out to get it, and bring this phase to an end.
Proof is completely unnecessary if course. As I said below. But it does help with other people and it can help if you do divorce from a financial viewpoint. And i think some people forget how gaslighty and charming cheaters often are, with people other than their wives.
I think one problem is, if he is careful, proof might be a long time coming.
I was fobbed off with lies for over five years. Mind you, I did confront early, so he was well warned and it made him even more careful.
Believe me, when you've made bargains with yourself that long about how you might just be wrong and you should stop being so suspicious, the truth when it comes our makes you angry and resentful as hell.
Don't do what I did. It was a terrible waste of my life. If you must have proof, and I can see why, then set all out to get it, and bring this phase to an end.
Proof is completely unnecessary if course. As I said below. But it does help with other people and it can help if you do divorce from a financial viewpoint. And i think some people forget how gaslighty and charming cheaters often are, with people other than their wives.
Oh sweetheart, patience really isn't your friend here. You will become an absolute shell of a woman if this goes on for much longer.
Most women in healthy relationships with good men would have a default of expecting a partner to tell the truth if confronted. Whether they get the truth is irrelevant to this point. I agree that a scared person who doesn't want his lies uncovered will lie, but in this post I'm focusing on th mindset of the person seeking the truth, not the person asked for it.
You believe he will deny, lie, minimise and try to make you feel worse.
Doesn't that tell you so much about how you regard him as a person, let alone as a partner?
Would you keep a friendship going with someone who you thought would lie, deny, minimise and make you feel worse when you asked for the truth? Would you?
francesca - I totally agree with you. No matter my H's failings and idiocies it never occurred to me that he would lie when I found texts. In fact he minimised, gaslighted me and hinted that he wanted to leave for about 24 hours before he finally admitted what had been going on and we started from there. But that 24 hours knocked my feet from under me.
That's what she's scared of, orm.
Onefewr - and affair my not always help financially with a divorce - someone I know spent £15000 trying to 'prove' his wife's adultery. Once they'd decided to go with 'irreconcilable differences' she admitted it...
when I confront him I need him to a) admit he has strayed, b) tell me if he loves her and wants to keep things going with her , and c) formulate a plan with me for our future as a family
When you confront him he will most likely a) deny or minimise b) tell you more lies and c) expect you get over it because 'nothing happened'
I think your expectations of his honesty are skewed. This is a man who is already cheating, remember. Hiding it and deleting the evidence. Cold, calm, calculated.
He is not going to suddenly change. You will never be able to truly trust him again. How you want to live your life is up to you but don't rely on him to make you happy because he can't.
Hi all , just typed a massive essay which appears to have been lost - v annoying! Just wanted to update u on my situation as you've been kind enough to let me bend ur ears. I have found and photographed loads of chat between dh and ow, and I think he might actually love her ffs. He had been using whatsapp rather than texting. I also looked through his browser history and found searches like 'in love with another woman' and 'want to leave wife and 3 kids' so I think his mind is made up. I am heartbroken tbh, but did need to see it in black and white with my own eyes before I could believe it. He is completely not the man I thought he was. Re what happens next, I know some of u will think I'm mad but I'm going to wait until after my dads memorial concert to confront him - and I mean literally right after, we'll thrash it out all night if we have to. The concert literally can't happen without dh and it means so much to my mum , I can't let it be ruined on top of everything else. Im gonna book him a premier inn now for the following night, where he goes after that is up to him, but he needs to leave. The trust is completely broken, and its the lies that hurt the most - the bare faced lies to my face.
So for now I'm just going to keep gathering intel, play it cool and try to keep a lid on my emotions. This will be the hardest time ever and I want to be fully prepared for it.
Thanks so much again for all your virtual support, it has meant a lot xx
I am so sorry to hear you have had your suspicions confirmed. Its so painful isn't it?
I can also totally understand you waiting until after the concert as it means so much to your mum.
With my ex husband, I waited 6 weeks before I confronted him! I had my suspicions confirmed a couple of weeks before Christmas, and couldn't bear to split the family up over the festive period as we had two very excited little DD's.
Not sure why I waited so long into January (it was a long time ago!) but think it was because I just didn't want to lose the family unit.
More recently, I, like you, felt I had to have concrete proof of ExDP's infidelity
think I have the words 'Cheat on me' on my forehead! as he was very good at gas lighting.
Luckily, when I got the final bit of proof, the timing was all right and I asked him to leave there and then.
Sorry, back to you.
Use the time before you confront him to sort out finances, arrangements for work, kids etc.
Is there someone in real life you can confide in?
You really need to unburden on a trusted friend/relative.
Keep strong OP. You sound amazing.
You will go through a total emotional roller coaster now and whilst you might not believe it, you WILL survive.
Wishing you lots of luck
You must be reeling but if/when you feel cold hard anger, harness it and accomplish what you can. Do what you think best regards timing of confrontation. It might be as well to have an approach in mind in case he for whatever reason bails out sooner..
I am sorry OP. Vent here, confide in a trusted rl friend to relieve some of what you're carrying by your self.
So sorry to hear that. Though given how strong the evidence was before surely it's better on the long run to know.
How soon is the memorial concert?
So sorry you are going through this.
I think booking him into a hotel is a brilliant idea.
We will be here for you.
Hi abs, so sorry for the pain of what you've discovered. Yet also congratulations at having taken control of the situation and now knowing what the truth is. You are much stronger and better off now. You've dealt with this brilliantly. If you'll permit me a little advice, here it is.
As you have done, keep proof of everything. It will help you to refer to it and he is likely to delete or 'misremember' it.
Confront whenever you want. Bear in mind that he may have the family event in mind as well as a marker to be reached and he may even have told OW that: 'after that, we can be together' etc etc.
That feeling you are having? It's adrenaline. It's a very important physical response which is designed to protect you and keep you strong enough to say and do what you know to be right. The issue with waiting to confront is that you should be prepared that the adrenaline might subside. That doesn't mean anything. It can be good because when you finally discuss it you will be calmer and more rational. But it also means that you will be more susceptible to explanation, rationalisation and lies. When you fake an 'everything's normal' phase, the brain and body can't help but try and justify that on some level and you will find a weird split emerges between a version of you that has seen all this and is shocked, angry and decisive and another version of you that begins to notice all the good things, that begins to grieve for and romanticise the relationship whilst you are still in it. This is natural but complicated and you may find yourself far too reasonable and understanding come D-day. It might not feel like that now but Iw ould really advise you seriously to write down what you feel right now so you can refer to it later. Actually. As in do it now. If you wrote down your bottom line, like I suggested before, I suggest you look at it again now and draw comparison with what you have discovered. If you feel that you are are tempted to now write down another, different bottom line, by all means do so, but cross out the old one and make sure you can see how many of these you are prepared to crash through to keep hold of someone who is consulting google as to whether or not he should leave his wife and kids. He will frame this as panicky 'thought experiments' probably. But you have access to what he thinks are innermost, private thoughts. There is no agenda there. Anything he tells you will have a massive, biased agenda and be very very hard to trust.
Be strong. You're okay, and you will be okay. Everything from now on will be truer and eventually better, whatever happens, I promise. However painful. The hotel and so on is brilliant. Plan ahead. Take control.
The concert is one month away?
What a twat DH is. You however are brilliant. I am worried that coping with three small children, missing your dad and keeping this a secret will be too much of a burden for you. Can you confide in your sister or friends?
abneysporridge How stressful for you, please keep posting to offload. You are carrying a huge burden. I wonder if it wouldn't be better to let dh know you know, but will continue until the concert to put on a united front.
Then he'll share the burden and you hopefully will feel empowered.
How awful for you. Have you told anyone in real life yet? If not then please so so that when it all blows up you can have someone to talk to in person.
I wouldn't let on you know until after the memorial concert. I would stick to your plan. You need to keep your powder dry.
"I know some of u will think I'm mad but I'm going to wait until after my dads memorial concert to confront him - and I mean literally right after, we'll thrash it out all night if we have to. The concert literally can't happen without dh and it means so much to my mum , I can't let it be ruined on top of everything else. Im gonna book him a premier inn now for the following night, where he goes after that is up to him, but he needs to leave".
I would reconsider this re confronting him after such a highly charged emotional event. Its going to be a tough day for you and your mum. To do this to your H afterwards is just going to add to your own pain re your Dad's passing and could well further mar the memories of this memorial service. You could well collapse physically and mentally under the whole strain of it all.
Your H needs to leave now.
What part is H playing in this memorial concert; I presume he is providing the music. Is it really the case that this service for your Dad cannot happen without H?. There may well be someone else now who can step in. Your H has checked out completely from your family, why should he be a part of this service at all now given his actions?.
You sound like a very strong woman abney. I think you plan will empower you in having some control. Can you get friends on board to help you between now and then, mind DC so you can consult a solicitor (first 30 mins are free)
There is often an overwhelming exhaustion after such an emotional trauma and you will have to continue with life and 3 DC. ArsewipeH is going to be no use.
He will add to your stress by going through the thrownoutafteranaffairbehaviourcycle. This consists of denial, anger, attacks, anger, denial, pleading, lies, pleading, kindness, generous, sobbing, anger, offering to do anything he can..... emotional blackmail, anger, lies until you don't know what to expect or believe. You need RL support to get through this
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
I in some part agree with the concern about 'thrashing it out after the memorial concert'
I think, some how, find the ice cold fury you need to deal with this, and when you get back to the house, give him a bin bag and tell him to go.
Your immediate need for him is passed and now you need to focus on those who add to your life.
If you wait until HE decides to leave, you'll have little chance of recovery or working through this.
The only way you can bring him up short is by surprise, pulling the rug from under him and showing him what loss is all about.
Hold firm and show him every other weekend dad, and show him how much his dick will cost him.
You have a LOT more power than you think you do atm, so use it! If there's a chance your marriage can be saved, this is one of the tactics that can increase those chances succeeding.
Agree with the hotel too, and yes, we'll be here IN SPADES!
Don't think you won't have support, cos you will. Mumsnet is 24 hours, what the European dayshift can't do, the rest of world night shift (awesome bunch) will!
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
So sorry that you have had your suspicions confirmed. Maybe he does love ow - I guess it can happen - but that doesn't give him any excuse for deceiving you and his 3 children. He's pretty naive not to clear his browser history isn't he?
First take some legal advice and make sure that you are 100% certain of what you can and can't do. eg if he hasn't been aggressive or threatening then I doubt you can chuck him out of the house at this stage.
Print off the sheaves of evidence that you have gathered. Present him with it calmly and coldly. Practice this if necessary. Do it soon - don't wait a month!!
He will break down. Tell him you're only asking one thing of him - his role at your father's concert. I think this will prevent him kicking off at it's giving him a little control.
Then following the concert tell him you want him to leave - you haVe the room booked. But I don't think there's anything you can do to force him to go.
If there's any chance you want him to stay with you, any chance at all, you should confront him now.
Stuff like being exiled from his family and unwelcome at his old bandmate's memorial service will help in bringing home to him what he is giving up for this secret "love" affair.
So sorry you are going through this and your husband is such a dick. Please dont let him play at your dad's memorial. Would your dad have wanted the arse who cheated on his beautiful daughter and his 3 grandchildren playing there?
The other problem with waiting for that date is the dickhead could also be waiting for that date before he leaves if you kick him too touch before you have the best chance of blindsiding him.
Good luck whatever you decide look after yourself and never blame yourself. He is an idiot and you are fabulous. And keep repeating x
If you really have to wait until the concert is over, I would use the time till then to start seeing a lawyer. Knowledge is power.
Yes! Shitty b&b! Premier inns are way too comfortable! Preferably a room without onsuite and no options to have dinner. Maybe even room only. You really don't want to make it nice for him.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Ok, what I don't get here is why she needs further proof that he is cheating. He is and the fact that she knows about it is what counts.
He can deny things but denial or acceptance is not what would solve the problem.
I think OP that what you have here is a fantastic opportunity to evaluate your relationship, your life and what you want out of it. And the perfect opportunity to change course.
You say he doesn't seem interested in you, but you also say that you can't be bothered about his interests either. Neither of you seem to have taken much care in keeping the relationship alive as you both are more focused on other more pressing subjects. You both may have fallen out of love years ago, so don't try to sort this marriage out of pride or the idea of what marriages/parenthood should be.
I spent 7 years with a husband who was a nice person but I no longer loved. Looking back I cannot understand now why I didn't leave him earlier on, but I remember endless conversations over the years where I was begging for a divorce and he kept saying we were all right. It blows my mind nowadays why on Earth I thought I needed to have his approval to leave him.
You are afraid of being a single mother, well... Single parenthood is not for the faint hearted but you will find the strength to do it, when you need to cope you just do, and probably you are doing that already anyway. You say you work hard to provide for the family which sounds to me like you already have the tools to survive and make your family thrive. Don't forget that the children will continue to have a dad even if you don't live under the same roof.
I would like to say that one thing I have found interesting about being a divorced woman is that most of us agree that it was far more difficult to take the decision to leave than dealing with the consequences of that decision.
Best of luck!
Think through what you're going to do if he refuses to leave - you can't just chuck him out if he doesn't want to go and hasn't threatened you in any way.
Perhaps he'll go meekly - as he certainly should if he has a shred of decency in him - but if he doesn't what will you do? If you've 'rehearsed' this in your mind and not considered the possibility that he might refuse to go then you'll find it even more difficult to deal with.
Don't wait. Tell your mum and sisters now. They wouldn't want to put you through a month of waiting for the concert... there has to be other ways of making the concert work. Don't let him be the one to take charge.
I mean if he is googling stuff about how to leave you he may well drop the bombshell soon and wrong foot you.
Oops cross posted but I stand by what I said, decide what you want to do, forget about his needs when thinking about what decision to take.
But whatever you do, don't "save" this marriage out of pride.
Thanks again for your responses. My 'd-day' is nov 16th, the day of the concert. And no it couldn't go ahead without dh as he was in a band with my dad and sisters and they will be performing together, plus dh is running sound for the other performers. I'm stage managing the whole thing so will be kept busy, which is good I think. I feel if I told him now that I know and that I want him out I would lose some power if that makes sense - I would have shown my hand but still have him under my roof, and in my bed, giving him time to try and lie, minimise, blame me, blame the kids, bargain, plead etc.. And I don't want to be susceptible to that. I must hold firm or we will just continue living a lie.
Tessa - ur right about the adrenaline, I feel it everyday, my pulse is racing I'm twitchy and nervous - one night i snuck a look at his phone while he was snoring away and my heart was beating so fast I thought I was going to have a cardiac event right there. To that end, I think I will visit the gp and 'confide' what's going on in a broad way, maybe get a counselling referral or something, because I don't want my own health to suffer because of this. I am definitely stressed - sometimes i feel like a grenade has gone off inside my body and im trying to conceal it - so I think your right I need to confide in a real person and I think I have a person in mind - a mum at the school who I've gotten to know pretty well and has a lovely calm manner. And I will defo write things down, maybe in diary format, because ur right he will skew things when confronted and I need to remember the next 6 weeks in fine detail. I also feel like this is a sort of countdown - 6 weeks exactly and it will all be over (the cloak and dagger phase anyway), 6 weeks and then I can tell people, let them help me, let them pick up the slack while I openly mourn my marriage. Also it's 6 weeks of us being a unit, a nuclear family of five, in which I will try to get us doing fun stuff, spend some quality time, and will tell dh off if he neglects his time with the kids. Feels a bit like a death sentence but I know it needs to happen, he has hurt me so very deeply and I won't tolerate it beyond that date.
Hey babes, you sound like you have changed, you sound stronger and as tho you are making your own decisions about this. Like you know it is true and you are taking your own time to deal with it. Well done you xxx huge hugs and yes def tell your GP and that mum at school xx and us xx
Yes, get your support system round you tight and book a free session with a solicitor.
Abby, you seem very clear about what you want. it is a fantastic idea to seek some counselling, Relate is great (and quicker to access) and it could help you organise your thoughts and feelings so you can start with your new life with the right foot either if you decide to stay or leave.
I would warn you the next few weeks will be very very sad, as you already know you are leaving and you will start seeing things in a very different and painful way. But this time will also help you to prepare and sort things for whatever comes next.
However, as juvenile as it sounds, it is easier to put yourself together after a split if you try to avoid seeing yourself as a victim, so if he comes to tell you that he is leaving you. Just say "no, you are not leaving me, I know about it, I don't see in you the person I once loved and I was just putting some things in place before I asked you to leave" or something in the likes, keep your head high if you can.
Something2say - I feel I have changed since seeing the evidence for myself and being made to believe it. I feel empowered but I find I struggle to hold onto that feeling sometimes as I'm also really sad, and stressed obviously. My mum has been using a lovely lady solicitor for my dads affairs so I will try to see her I think. Tuesdays and Thursdays I have both ds's at school and pre-school so that's my window for getting stuff done with just the baby in tow.
If he tells you that he is leaving, just say 'Bye then'. He will be shocked that you don't care after building himself up for the big confrontation. Just tell him 'Fine, I don't want to be with someone who doesn't want to be with me. I'm worth more than that'.
I think you are using the memorial service as an excuse or put this off. And then you will decide that given how emotionally charged the service is, then that is not the right time either. There really is no right time.
You talk about putting your own needs last, and you are angry that your DH doesn't do that. Putting your own needs last is not healthy and it is exactly what you are doing here, putting your own needs behind your mothers. Six weeks is enough time to sort out something else for the service.
If your DH is a cheater and a liar why do you want to let him do the concert knowing that is what he is? I highly doubt your family members would want him to be part of something so memorable whilst doing what he is doing.
Chandra - I know I said earlier I've lost interest in his art, I didn't put that very well... I meant that while seeing him perform on stage used to be thrilling and impressive for me, these days I'm more thrilled and impressed by him when he, say, spontaneously takes the kids to the park so I can have a shower, or offers to do the shopping on the way home - and those things do happen, he's not a complete douche when it comes to pitching in, but those are the things that see me through. When he writes a song or a story and wants me to listen I'm like 'yeah I will, but can I sort this out first' and he takes that as a slight against him. He thinks 'Him' is his music and creativity, and I would argue that 'him' should now be husband, father, with artist coming a dead last.
I think after he leaves and reality kicks in, he will come to his senses and see what he's losing - especially when no-one is talking to him anymore - and he will beg to come back. I think however the trust is too broken to rebuild but we'll cross that bridge...
I have just read the whole thread and I'm so sorry this is happening. It's truly awful ( been there myself)
You are a strong woman, bringing up 3 young children and working and running a house and coping with so much emotional turmoil is no mean feat. Be kind to yourself x
Someone once told me to look at a picture of myself when I was little and ask what I would want in life for this innocent toddler. It helped me get my angry head on .
I would also look at your situation from your Dads point of view. I understand you not wanting to rock the boat until after the concert but how would your Dad have felt about your DH's behaviour towards his daughter (you)? Would he really want him to be paying tribute to him when he was behaving so despicably towards you?
I wish you nothing but strength. You will be ok xxxx
Wowserz - this is the question I have been wrangling with - I know my family wouldn't want me to be suffering as I am now, I know they will look after me when I tell them. But I also know I need time to bring this out into the open. I am at my mums now having stayed over, my sisters too, and I almost told them all everything, but I kept it in and do feel better for it. They will mourn my marriage almost as much as me and now is not the time for that. Maybe I am stalling...but I know now is not the time. And premier inn is only £25 which is why I thought of it! Dh can pay me back later
So sorry Abney, this sounds so horribly stressful. Is there any way you could confront and get rid of him now? To avoid carrying this around for the next six weeks.
He could still do the concert for your dad couldn't he? I understand he played with your dad and sisters, and that he is an integral part of the concert, but perhaps that could still go ahead, even after he'd had his marching orders. You don't necessarily need to be together for him to pay tribute to your father.
Just worrying about the stress of keeping this under your hat for the next six weeks while living under the same roof. The grief and preparation for the concert is more than enough strain, without having to carry this around with you
Whatever you decide, I wish you the strength you need to get through this dreadful and shocking time
I think you should tell your mum and sisters. And I really think that it's ok to cancel the band for the memorial. You can do something else instead. What if your dh broke his arm or something, you would have to cancel then and wouldn't think twice about it.
Why is your broken heart less important. Stop putting everyone else before you. Tell your mum and ask her to support you.
I would not bother with booking him a Premier Inn room and he won't pay you back either. Where he goes is not actually your problem.
Your children are likely sensing that something between you two is not right but cannot articulate their feelings of unease.
I would use the next few weeks to work out fully where you stand legally in terms of finances and residency re the children.
It may well be an idea to start talking to your mother as well, your body's stress responses are going into overdrive and too much adrenaline can make you ill.
I would call time on this now, if you continue with your part of this charade of your marriage till the memorial service I feel it is something you will deeply regret in the long run and will perhaps even affect how you feel about such a highly emotionally charged service in years to come. You need to put yourself first now for a change. Why should your H now be a part of this at all after all his actions towards you?.
have been lurking for a while, Abney, but now want to say how strong I think you are. You have made a decision that you believe is right for you. I think you are incredible and I wish you all the best for the future.
Please consider how tainted your future memories of the memorial will be by his presence.
That's a long time to have to live with him whilst knowing he is having an affair. That's hard op.
I agree that he could still do the memorial if you were split. At the moment you are going to be the one suffering for 6 weeks until this memorial and then all through it whilst everyone, including him, are oblivious. That doesn't seem fair or right.
Even if it all kicked off massively before then and say he refused to do the memorial would that really be so bad? I don't mean to sound insensitive, but would the memorial not going ahead at all or going ahead without him really be that bad? Or playing a recording of the band instead?
Memorials aren't essential after all and no one would blame you for it not happening because of what he has done.
I can't imagine that your family, including you dad, would want you to carry on suffering like this and put you through this just so a memorial could go ahead.
It seems so unfair that you are protecting everyone else at such great expense to yourself.
I would also imagine that this will completely ruin your experience of the memorial.
(and seriously, if you have to book him in somewhere don't make it premier inn as they have massive breakfasts! He shouldn't be waking up to that on his first night away.)
Most importantly, you won't be able to enjoy your Dad's memorial. To remember him, to savour your memories of him, to celebrate his life with all the people who loved him.
You will be a highly strung shell of yourself, watching your stbx being the big man, on stage, doing what he loves, soaking up the applause, taking the credit and being a big fat phoney.
Are you sure you can even do that? The event will be a disaster for you, why put yourself through it and taint all your memories of your Dad?
Talk to your mum, my lovely. People who love you will understand. I would be appalled if my dd felt that she had to do this to herself to keep me happy. Honestly, you really, really don't have to.
My mil found out her long term partner was cheating a fortnight before the wedding. She chose not to tell us and brought him along as she thought it would upset us.
We were more upset after that she felt she had to spend the day playing happy families with him! But hindsight is a wonderful thing.
You need to really consider if this will taint the memory of the memorial. Only you know your family well enough to know what the right decision is. Don't let him ruin this for you.
You are sounding very strong and I know you have a rollercoaster to face but you can do it and it sounds like you have a wonderful family to keep you strong.
I agree with those saying this is too long a wait and too much for you to bare. Why not share this with your sisters and have them help you decide re. Memorial. If you are waiting for their sakes, I don't think they will thank you for it.
I feel for you op. he is a shit.
What's your relationship like between you and your sisters?
6wks is a long time. Could you find someone else to take Dh's place?
Could your family help you exclude H from the event, getting others to help, re-writing the performance accordingly?
I get where you are, but I do wonder if having him there for the sake of others may cause more anguish in thé long term.
You know your family best, if they are supportive, loving and caring, then this IS what your father would have wanted, you banding together to help one in pain, and not suffering in silence because of his own memorial.
Please op tell your mum. She loves you and will want to help and support you.
Take you mum with you to see a lawyer and collect all the documents that you will need and plan for a future for yourself and your kids. Get your self sorted then ask him to leave.
Play a recodeing of the band.
He does not deserve to by at your Dad service.
You need the time to morne your relationship and your Dad. Its an end to an era and the start of a new one.
Looke after yourself xx
Think of everything he is stealing from you right now, emotionally speaking: peace of mind, trust, happiness, emotional security and mental health, etc.
Don't let him steal your Dad's memorial too. That should become a special, precious memory, not another casualty of this selfish, spineless man.
I'm so sorry for your pain at finding the truth.
But sweetheart, I'm not sorry that you know now.
I second (or 64th!) everyone else's advice about not waiting this out until your father's concert. I can't imagine your father would want that either. You run a real risk of creating a terrible memory and association between your husband's infidelity and your father.
Is there anything going on about hoping that in 6 weeks time, this affair will have burnt out, he will have seen sense and you can carry on together as if nothing had happened?
Because logically, your plan honestly doesn't make any sense, unless it's to buy this affair more time and therefore your marriage, more time.
You're not a deceitful person by the sounds of it and I think living a lie will actually damage you far more than you know.
You need to share this with others now too. As long as as your mother, friends and sisters aren't of the disposition that you should save your marriage at all costs and 'men will be men' - lean on them for support.
I think this is your decision, OP, and actually what's important is only that you understand that all options are available to you. As with disovering infidelity or even life generally we tend to have a gut reaction where we 'know' we couldn't leave or couldn't admit or confront or whatever, but actually everything is far more possible that we think.
Decide for you. IF I were you I would probably do the same as you're suggesting, actually. It's a good period of time to sort out finances, solicitors and somewhere for you/him to live. Just please bear in mind what I said about the adrenaline fading and, unfortunately when that happens, physical symptoms a lot like depression can emerge.
Delurking and echo the others that it is a long time to go bearing that secret. I realise how difficult this is but what would your dad think? Would he want him there if he knew what this man had done to you? People do want to know and want to help in these situations and you should maybe think about letting them. I learnt that the hard way.
Hmm, your all giving me pause for thought on whether ill last the 6 weeks. I can feel my adrenaline/blood pressure/racing pulse every time someone mentions dh and the future - we've been talking about extending my mums house and moving in with her as she's finding it hard on her own, so when that gets mentioned I just think 'it will just be me and the kids moving in not dh'.
Yes you've really made me think about this now - I almost feel like I'm facilitating this affair if I keep this secret. Just don't fucking know what to think anymore, he's really screwed with my head.
It is a very long time to be bearing the secret. I would worry about what the stress of keeping going until then will do. Also, on a practical note, you do have time to make alternative arrangements for the memorial. It will be tainted for you and your family if your DH has played an active part when it all emerges that it was D-Day. Do you really want a celebration of your father's life to be so closely linked to the end of your marriage.
Also I think there's a very real risk that he is also planning to leave after the memorial. If you wait you risk losing the initiative.
Six weeks is a long time to keep up a charade. You may be so emotionally exhausted by then that you don't have the energy to deal with it.
Right now you are strong - you have the facts and he doesn't know it - and you have the fight or flight reaction running through you. If it wasn't for the memorial event, what would you do? Ask yourself that, maybe it would help.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Take back control. He doesn't get to decide, you do.
Show him the evidence you've found, tell him you expect him to honour his commitments to your father's memorial, then you will talk.
Don't do this on your own while he's merrily shagging another woman. Get angry.
Another thing to think about - 6 weeks time means it'll be 6 weeks till Christmas and you may feel honour bound not to make waves for your dc until the new year. And it goes on and on...
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
I think it's very likely that he planning to leave or confess after the memorial too. Perhaps if you end up confronting him he might want to play the memorial anyway. He is going to feel so incredibly guilty that pulling out of that aswell will really hurt his self-image. Also, you need to start realising what are his problems, not yours. You are used to thinking of yourselves as a unit, I'm afraid that's just not the case anymore.
Think of it like in a film, you've discovered your husband is having an affair and is in love with someone else. You get to respond to that, you get to have your reaction, plot point. you don't have to wait for it to happen at a more opportune moment. What happens after that is his issue. He is the one who has had the affair. he is the one scheduled to play at this concert. I think you are too used to shouldering his concerns. Whether your family find out about it or not (and I think you should seek support) it is still HIS problem and decision what happens next regarding his responsibilities, choices and life. Not yours. You get to live your own life, and a right to react to your husband leaving you and your children to fuck someone else and lie to you is part of that. You will not be ruining anything. Only his response and prior actions will be.
tell him you expect him to honour his commitments to your father's memorial
I wouldn't do this. For one thing, he has lost the privilege of playing at the memorial and, secondly, this would give him a hold over you.
Don't give him the power. The aim is to pull the rug from under his feet, not give him something to bargain with.
Good point about the 'six weeks til Christmas' though. There is always something on the horizon.
He might not even be in love with this OW. People in the bubble of an affair often think they are in love, when actually all they are in love with is the nice feelings it gives them about themselves. So when the whole shebang gets brought out into the open, BANG! 'love' disappears as quickly as it came. The secrecy itself sometimes keeps the whole thing going, but it's hard for 'love' to survive the hassle of separation, pain and for the first time, others' more objective views about the two people and the affair they've been having. They are in a bubble now, with no-one condemning them aren't they?
Another thought OP, you will inevitably detach during the next six weeks and he will just take that as further permission/excuse for what he's doing. When confronted he'll tell you how dead the relationship has felt, especially in recent weeks etc.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
He absolutely might not really be in love with her. But he also might say that automatically to try and preserve his marriage, not hurt OP and not suffer consequences. And it will be impossible for the OP to tell the difference. It takes a long long time for full truth to emerge and in the meantime, abs, you should look at the evidence that you have and not try to make excuses for him and a best case scenario in your head in order to justify staying if that ultimately isn't what is best for you. You'll have to respond to what he says and what you know in tandem, when it happens.
Good point, ALittleStranger, that happens a lot, I think. The more one discovers, the more one detaches, the more the cheater takes it as an excuse. That's why the limbo stage is so so deadly.
Also, what if you put yourself through the agony of these next 6 weeks then, just a few days before, he can't stand the pressure of the pretence anymore and ups and leaves?
You would be in even more of a mess with it all blowing up just days before the event and will have lost the upper hand. It will completely wreck you, emotionally.
You're not thinking straight at the moment, understandably, but take the memorial out of the equation and ask yourself why you would want to stay quiet for another six weeks whilst he carries on his affair.
If the idea of you moving in with your mother is already in the pipeline I am afraid it's conceivable he could be anticipating a 'nice straightforward' process. He may be detaching to the point of viewing life as a sequence of tick boxes -
FIL's memorial concert = tick
Announce breakdown of marriage and move out with immediate effect = tick
Regrets and upset inevitable but necessary = tick
Installed with OW in time for Christmas etc etc.
He himself may not have any fixed plan beyond this week or this month. But you can't torture yourself thinking that until you challenge him, you're facilitating or condoning his tawdry antics.
Whatever you decide to do (or not do) today is not cast in stone, you can adapt. If he thinks you are in the dark you can plausibly put any jitters or nerviness down to concerns about 16th November.
I've been lurking on this thread & was hoping, as everyone was, that the OP's concerns would be unfounded. I'm really sorry OP, what a shit.
Another aspect to consider regarding the memorial service, forgive me if this has been mentioned, is that your family deserve to know, and to be given the choice as to whether they want him at the memorial service in the circumstances. It's not just your memories that may be sullied, but theirs too.
What may happen for the whole family is that in retrospect, the fact that he was there, you didn't tell them, you went through it on your own, will completely overshadow the day which should be about your father. And they might feel that you sort of tricked them into it, albeit with the best intentions.
Tbh if BIL cheated on my sister I don't know that I'd want him at my dad's memorial, I certainly would not want to play with him.
So I don't think you're being fair on your family or yourself, and your strong urge to protect them, while commendable, may not tally with what they feel to be their best interests in the long run.
Please don't wait, you are putting off the inevitable and the longer you leave it the more it becomes 'normal' to you.
I was "lucky" in that I was caught out completely unawares when I found out about my husbands affair and had no choice but to deal with the realisation and fall out immediately with no time to take on board what was happening. To be honest, I think that's what made me deal with it all so effectively as my back was to the wall and it was fight or flight mode I was in at the time; had it been the situation you are in, I too would have probably dragged out the inevitable and lived in a sort of denial.
Stay strong, it will be tough but it has to happen; you will come through the other end - whether together or apart - and you will have support here. xx
I agree - please don't wait 6 weeks. There is really no purpose to this - your dad wouldn't have wanted it, your family will be upset afterwards that they've played in the band with him and treated him as part of the family, and so on. Your kids do not need you having a stroke in the meantime either when your blood pressure is constantly battering your eyeballs.
Also - are you planning to not sleep with him for the next 6 weeks? I don't think you could/should be intimate with him under these circumstances, both for your mental health and your physical health (STDs). Get yourself checked out, by the way hun.
You know all you need to know and you have proof. Time to tell him to leave, calmly and with strength.
Besides having to live with him knowing what tou know, 6 weeks is a long time to go without real life support for what has happened to you and your kids OP. Youve suffered a massive shock, and probably feel like you've lost your life as you know it.
If something equally as life changing happened to you, road traffic accident etc crap analogy but you know what I mean , no one would expect you to carry on as per usual. Be kinder to yourself OP. speak to your mum and sisters.
Think of it from a parents point of view, look at your kids, would you want them to go through 6 weeks of mental torture just so their cheating spouse could sing at your memorial?
Use some time to get your affairs in order, most important financially, see what your entitled to tax credits etc gather together paperwork, see solicitor for free half hour etc etc. even if you don't spilt up its worth doing this to get back some control. Best of luck.
You will ruin the memory of your father's memorial for everyone you care about if you continue with your plan of having your cheating husband centrally involved.
6 weeks is plenty of time to rearrange things so that he won't be missed.
You must know other people who do sound and who are decent musicians, given the company you keep.
Get the support you need and stop this ridiculous charade.
If you let him play at your father's memorial, HE wins by that and you (and your family) lose.
There really is no bigger way you can force him to face what he has done than make him live with the consequences of his betrayal of you by being exiled from an event like this.
Please don't think that by delaying you are facilitating the affair.
What you could be said to be doing is however preventing yourself from accessing the support you so truly need right now.
If you strike on this now, starting with you gathering your family for a crisis meeting - keeping H completely out of it until you, as a family, have decided what you can do.
THEN, ideally united, you and your family will present HIM with the wake up call.
I guarantee that this man will either ruin the memory of your concert by delivering the blow immediately after the concert, or he'll fuck up christmas.
Worst case scenario, he does nothing and you bite your lip till the New Ffing year!
Gather your siblings. With any luck, by the time the concert comes around, the shock will have passed and everyone'll be constructive and strong.
Please listen to all this good advice and tell your mum and sisters as soon as possible. You will need them.
Agree completely that no one, especially not your mum, will thank you for delaying until after the concert.
My memories of a huge and otherwise happy family event are forever tainted by finding out shortly afterwards that my H was shagging elsewhere and was plotting his escape, and I hate him for that.
(For the record, once his secret was blown wide open and I'd thrown him out, the OW wasn't such an attractive option and he is now living alone)
It rankles that you suffer and put on a brave face while he walks around thinking he's so clever. Racing heart or sick feeling in the pit of your stomach "in sickness and in health" indeed.
By the time the memorial comes round, you could be in a much happier place and all this indecision could be behind you. You will have had the confrontation and be rebuilding your life, surrounded by loving family and friends.
I agree with everyone else. 6 weeks is a very long time, and your family wouldn't want him around if they knew the truth.
Best of luck OP
Fairenuff - u suit ur name, your absolutely right I could be better off by then. And I really feel ill at the moment like my jugular is about to burst open. Should I definitely tell fam before I confront dh? My sisters are coming down again next weekend so I could in theory tell them on sat night - dh is out, he claims he's recording a demo with his friend but I bet he's lying about that too. Then he's going to see his fam alone on sun for his step-dads bday, which would give us planning type time. I feel nervous just thinking about doing all this. I'm really not one for confrontation at all and am well used to internalising everything, but you're right, I'm going to go mental if I don't address this soon. Feels like control of my life has been snatched away from me.
OP - I think you really need some real life support - sisters, friends? Let someone listen to you, hold you, rage with you... You've had some really insightful help here but I do think you need to speak - hear yourself say it out loud, hear someone else's views who knows you and him.
What a horrible time for you but your inner strength which shines through WILL enable you to deal with this.
I think you should talk to your DH when he gets back tonight.
De lurking to say please tell your sisters next Saturday night, have Sunday to plan and then do it. Honestly, it'll make you ill to keep it to yourself for 6 weeks. The relief you feel when you tell your family will surprise you. So much better to surround yourself with people who love you and want the best for you. Done spend any more time than necessary with him. It sucks the life from you.
Good luck op. hugs. Keep strong xxx
I think you need to gain support from family first tbh. Knowledge is power.
Knowledge, a supportive family
and a baseball bat is absolute power!
If your family are supportive and won't urge you to Stand By Your Man or Turn a Blind Eye then ask to see them before next weekend, if you must. If they are proper family supporters, they'll come instantly to help.
Personally, I'd need supportive people after something like this, but I wouldn't need them before. I can't see at the moment what extra value they'll bring to the proposition of confronting your husband with all the evidence. I guess if you're not good at confrontation and they are, they could spur you on, but if that's the case, get their help now and don't wait till nest weekend.
I think the denouement needs to happen now or within the next couple of days. The more delays you build in, the more likely it is that you'll keep shelving it.
I'd tell them after I'd confronted him.
Do what you would have done if you hadn't had your father's concert to consider.
I think you probably need to have this out with your husband first. Keeping this to yourself is evidently doing you a lot of harm.
Then, once you know what is what, you turn to your family for support.
Then, you and your family can decide if any changes need to be made re the memorial concert.
I think your only purpose in telling them first is to put off the inevitable.
Agree with WhiteandGreen. Confront him now, get him to leave so you can have space and phone your family.
Be strong and remember, he is wrong for what he has done/is doing - there will be time to talk things over with him (about your relationship etc) at a later point, but right now your emotional, physical and mental health is what is most important.
You have to take control back, and the sooner the better (for you). Good luck. xx
It depends- you know that he and the ow have been 'a secret team' for some time now - if you feel it would make you stronger to have a team behind you now, then get their help. This is no way to live.
But what a scumbag he is to do this to you.
Gosh u ladies have flipped everything upside down and around! I thought I had a plan laid out this morning and now it's completely changed! You are right , I would feel almost as deceitful as him if I keep this charade up any longer. And my health is important, I have put it on the back-burner for so long but i need to look after myself now more than ever. I'm going to get my head together this week then talk to dh on fri night (once the kids are in bed so we can concentrate). Quite sad about this now.
I would be inclined to tell him first. Then you can go to family with the fait accompli - he's left, it's over, I've finished it, however you want to phrase it. They will all be supportive and help in whatever way you need.
If you tell them beforehand there is a danger that they might try to talk you out of it.
Whatever he says, the best advice is to tell him to leave. Even if he declares his undying love for you and you want to work on repairing the relationship, making him move out and face up to what he has done is the quickest and easiest way for him to fully realise the gravity of the affair and the hurt and harm he's caused.
Tell him sooner rather than later and you can let all those feelings out. Holding it in is doing you no good at all.
No love, you've done nothing wrong, it's not deceit. It's called managed response.
Please don't blame yourself for any of this.
Get your family support, know that you've got them behind you, and it'll all feel so much easier.
I'm worried that when I tell him all I know he'll down play it and make out I am completely overreacting - I'm going to have to dig deep to keep the momentum going. I just want this over, I want everything out in the open and no more secrets. It's horrible.
He will downplay it. Be prepared for that. It doesn't matter. You do not need his permission to end it.
Have you printed off the evidence you found?
You know what he's going to do - minimise, blame, deny etc.... You're prepared for this. There's some excellent advice upthread about dealing with this. it's going to be horrible but all the evidence you have is that he is involved with the OW.
De lurking to say I think you sound like such a lovely person and god knows he doesn't deserve you. Go for it Friday, you have all the evidence you need. Kick him out and get your family around you. He's got a lot of work to do to come anywhere close to gaining any respect from you. Hang in there
I've just read this entire thread and I'm so sorry to hear what you are going through x
I'm glad you have reconsidered waiting until after the concert to tell your family and confront him. Living with someone not saying anything when I knew what they were up to would be incredibly upsetting for me. Once your family know what he has been up to, they would possibly resent that he had been part of the concert for your dad.
Don't take any blame for what he's done, I bet he will try and transfer blame onto you! Don't accept it!
Stand firm, be strong,
and swap his adios tablets/ capsules for some laxatives, that will make things less amorous between him and ow!
He probably will downplay it and accuse you of overreacting, but I'm basing that purely on you believing he will presumably based on your knowledge of his character. Like I said, other people would expect the truth, especially with the amount of tangible evidence you've got.
Thing is, it doesn't matter if he minimises or accuses you of overreacting.
You know and your feelings based on that knowledge are all that count.
Why wait till Friday?
Oh and by the way, this isn't about your 'deceit' being as bad as his. Of course it's not. But for a truthful and honest person, any prolonged period of living a lie or keeping up a pretence is very self-damaging and causes terrible internal conflict. Most people find it very hard having to be inauthentic and based on how you've come across on this thread, I think you'll personally find that particularly hard and will suffer more because of it.
To explain this further with something really trivial as an example- sorry but this is why I personally hate surprise parties. I feel really uncomfortable pretending that nothing's been arranged or lying to friends about plans. Just hate it.
This is clearly a much more extreme example of the feelings involved, but maybe it will illustrate what I'm saying.
Fairenyff - I haven't printed anything as my printers broke but I have saved the photos in about 4 different places and emailed them to myself. I must say it feels kind of a relief to know I won't have to hold out for much longer. I was quite bonkers to think I could last another 6 weeks. Your all right my family would be so upset if they knew I had been quietly dying inside while keeping the truth from them. It's just all so sad. It didn't need to be this way, if only he could have been patient and waited for easier times, instead of thinking 'the grass is greener'. Now I don't know what will happen next. But I will find it near impossible to forgive him, as will everyone else. His own father walked out on them when dh was 4 so I guess he doesn't really have a good example to follow. God I hope my boys don't turn out the same.
I worry about that with my boys too abney. Fingers crossed they won't.
abney feeling for you so much, as are many of who have walked in your shoes. There's no right way to go, we're all so different. All I can say is that you are probably now in shock. That need for proof is so strong - and now you have it, maybe don't rush into any decisions, just take time to grieve, cope on your own and gather some strength. I think the anxiety and shock caused by this whole thing, especially the proof - makes it really hard to make decisions, so if possible, don't. If he's going to be out of the house that may give you space to gather your thoughts and emotions to think straight.
Thank u feckit - I am in shock I reckon, certainly got the shakes most of the time. Just sucks that everything I thought I knew has been turned on its head. A scary thought went thru my mind... what if when I confront him he decides to kill me to save his secret getting out..then he could get together with ow later and no-one would suspect... Nah, I know that's crazy, but i cant help having these thoughts when the man I thought I knew inside and out blindsided me so profoundly.
Also just to retort to Francesca I think re my family: they would in no way tell me to 'stand by my man', quite the opposite I think. I wouldn't be surprised if they never talk to him again.
I imagine that in a while, when it sinks in for him that he is not playing at the concert etc, he will start weeping like a baby.
Stay strong op, and get real life support too. Your family sound v loving.
Another thing I've forgotten is we're all due to go away together during half term as its my dads anniversary on 30th, so he won't be joining us for that, and I will gladly be in the bosom of family at that time.
I'm so pleased you have decided to deal with this sooner rather than later... you'd have been a total wreck by then.
Have you taken any legal advice yet Abney? It would be a good idea to collect together bank statements, etc. Do you have joint accounts?
Any evidence that is saved on a computer should be printed out. Take screen shots, print them and keep them in a safe place. Do this before you tell him because he could find and delete them otherwise.
Sorry, haven't read all of the replies, just OP's.
Is it possible he's waiting until after your Dad's memorial before telling YOU?
I think you should tell your family, show them the evidence, and have them in the house to support you when you confront him. The weekend sounds like the perfect time. You can pack a bag for him while he's out and tell him to fuck off when he comes back on Sunday.
Read the whole thread and I think you are doing the right thing to confront him before waiting longer. It gives you back control - you can tell him to leave and what arrangements your family will now put in place for the concert. Good luck.
abney if you have any fears regarding your own safety, then talk to him in a public place or with a friend there. But I think from what you've said, you don't realistically expect him to turn violent? Take care
I am sorry that you have found out more but at least you can start to make some sense of it all now.
I am glad that you are not going to wait the six weeks, it would slowly eat away at you to live like that.
Stay strong, save all the evidence and remain firm in your decision.
I also think you need to do this now and not wait till after your dads memorial
That's really good your family are like that. I hope you didn't think I was criticising them?
Why wait till Friday?
My DSis had similar thoughts she sent me all of the evidence and said... If anything happens to me you will need this! Of course nothing did but your not alone in thinking it. I'm a rash hot head who would've cut his clothes up by now but you are handling this like my DSis, with patience, planning and poise. You will only get this first impact of confronting him once, I second other posters advice to see a solicitor.. Just to be confident in your options, ie get a handle on your finances so that you are sure there aren't any other areas of your life he is lying about.
Your family sound amazing, I really do
Think you will come through this strong.. You're doing great. Stay strong
It's a worry that you think that. If course he won't, and you can point out your family know you are telling him too. Ie the secret will already be out.
I think you are right not to wait. Apart from anything else you need to be in charge of this- if you wait, I think the stress will boil over, and you will end up blurting it out in a temper over burnt toast or some other small thing. People snap under that kind of stress.
I think if you wait until after the concert, many years from now you'll look back on the memory of the concert with regret that he was part of it.
Just wishing you strength abney
So glad you're not going to prolong the torture for another 6 weeks. No one will want this man at your fathers service
About confronting him first - without anyone else but you in the world knowing before hand - is there a friend you could tell now? Before the confrontation. Someone who is going to be slightly less emotionally involved than your family?
It might help to have someone to call straight afterwards, for whom it isn't going to be a shock, who can go straight into support mode. You may feel weak and shaken after the event (even if it goes 'well') and need to lean hard on someone who's ready for the call.
I agree with fluffyraggies. Before I confronted my H, I spent the previous night talking it through with my close friends. They offered me excellent advice and helped me to plan what I was going to say and I knew then that after I wouldn't feel so alone because they all contacted me that day and gave me strength.
I am so sorry you are going through this and it would have been so hard to wait 6 weeks to confront him. I was going to wait a week to get more evidence myself but then was offered sound advice that why would I need to see more evidence as it would just hurt me more. If you waited, you might find out other things and that would just tear you up inside.
I wish you strength and am glad you have a close family, they will be there for you.
Thanks guys. Today has been hard a - I took ds2 to a bday party while H looked after the other two and I felt like a nervous wreck the whole time. I was chatting to people and all I could think was 'they have no idea the bombshell that's going off inside me'. Am defo going to the gp on tues - I'm sure my bp must be thru the roof. This is real cold hard stress mixed with a lot depression I think - never experienced this before, I so hope this feeling lifts once everything is out in the open. I almost confronted H tonight but he was going out so I knew I would calm down after he left. Friday is definitely the best option. I have a play date with a friend tomrw and I think I'm going to offload some of this - lucky her! I still can't believe it's come to this. I'm sure it's a cliche but I honestly never thought he would be capable of crossing that line.
abneysporridge of course you're still reeling from your discovery. But I'm sure your friend will be amazing. We've all supported friends through this sort of thing. You're definitely doing the right thing to get this out in the open rather than sit on it. Be prepared for your h to break down and cry. Yes he may minimise etc but I think it's more likely that he will have a sudden overwhelming realisation of what he's about to lose because of his actions. The joke is that his relationship with ow will more than likely break down in about 6 months - I've seen it happen so many times.
Oh me too fortyplus, me too. I've seen so many of these shiny new relationships come to grief when reality sets in- and also those that are given up as soon as the secret comes tumbling out.
If Friday's the best day to do it and that's a considered decision- and you can access some medical help to calm your nerves and manage your blood pressure, that's the best course of action for you of course.
I hope your friend comes good for you tomorrow. If possible on the run-up to Friday, try to carve out some de-stressing activities like a long hot bath when he's at home watching the kids for you and trite though this might seem, even a visit to the hairdresser's to boost your confidence a bit and remind yourself that you're a strong, wonderful woman who deserves to treat herself well.
Just harking back to something you raised yesterday. With regard to your safety when confronting him, two things occur to me. You won't be telling him anything he doesn't know, and he has been cheating on you long enough to have overcome any moral scruples or crisis of conscience. So you'll either take the wind out of his sails or he'll be relieved at you knowing. Any bluster or denial will be a knee jerk reaction.
You can wait for him to run out of steam or storm out or whatever, you're not obliged to fill a silence or equally, listen passively to self-serving justification or bargaining. He may even become Mr Reasonable himself, genial and helpful.
And when it comes to it you may surprise yourself.
Tell him you know but don't tell him how you know. Don't tell him that you have proof. Let him deny it. He will just dig himself a bigger hole.
Just say 'I know the truth and now I want to hear it from you'. See if what he says matches up. You will never get the full truth out of him but you will at least be able to watch him squirm.
Don't wait too long, your family will support you... They wouldn't want you putting yourself through this for them.
I sat on my knowledge for a week and it almost broke me. I ended up on tablets as I started having panic attacks, I was so relieved when it was out in the open.
I agree - get it over with honey.
There's no point in offloading on your friend - plus any knowledge that is 'out there' before you confront him could get back to him and give him time to delete e-mails, get his story straight etc.
Just talk to him. You need to do this now.
My Dsis did as posters advised didnt tell him what she knew... Just that she knew... Watched him dig hole after hole for himself. I agree, let him fill the silence, when you say nothing people can't help themselves but to speak. It will help you to feel in control of the situation.
Good idea about the haircut! I feel so much better with new hair and a new top. Go in confident and feeling good about yourself.
Sorry overtaken , only just read your post and have just got back from my friends having spilled my guts! I was completely normal at first , chatting about the usual stuff, I even thought maybe ill just get thru it and not bother telling her. Then she asked me how my weekend was and I just burst into tears - I mean up til that point my heart was pounding so hard I thought I was going to have a coronary so something had to give. We went into the kitchen and I explained everything I found out and what I intend to do on Friday - she was completely shocked, she's met him and wouldn't have thought it of him in a million years. She echoed what you've all said, that I need to get this done no matter what and not hang about, and defo should tell my mum and sisters. She understood tho my reasons for waiting til Friday - my family can't be there for me til then, geographically more than anything else, and I know I will need them. She's going to be there for me this week - at the drop of a hat she said just come round, give the kids dinner, whatever. Very glad I told her. And I've booked a dr appt for tomrw morn at 9.45 where I will, again, spill my guts I'm sure. I would hate to be medicated at this stage but I am so so stressed I can feel it.
Snuck another look at his phone this morn, and of course, he'd deleted all messages/chat from her. I'm really worried now I don't have 'enough' proof to get him to admit it. I think he'd be happy to just carry on living a lie, and by me confronting him he'll go with the knee jerk reaction of deny deny deny and I won't have the strength to stick to what I know. But neither do I want to get really worked up and cross, I just want to know where I stand so that I can stop feeling like this.
I'm glad you've told someone in rl so will have support. It's good that you've booked to see your g.p. too, they may be able to refer you to counselling.
With regards to his texts being deleted, you've got the screen grabs on your phone and I would agree with others who've said don't tell him what you know, just tell him you know.
Fingers crossed that Friday sees your family supporting you. It will be hard, but you can't bear this stress indefinitely.
You DO have enough proof. The key to this is to try and bring it up as calmly and maturely as you can. Doesn't matter if you fail, but he's much much more likely to spill and be honest if he doesn't think you are going to scream at him or leave him in that moment. Of course you can and should scream at him/leave him anyway(!) But that first encounter can begin in suspicion and guilt and furtive anger or a relaxed, adult, breaking of the dam of secrecy.
Don't forget he may already have a sense you know something. Atmospheres are very pervasive and he'll be keeping his powder dry too.
You will stop feeling like this when it is out in the open - you are in shock and are trying to process everything whilst he is unaware.
It will be hard and awful and there will be tough times emotionally ahead for you, but it will never be as bad as it is right now. The sooner it is out there, the sooner you can access support and use your family and friends as a sounding board/shoulder to cry on/emotional support - you will not go through it alone as you have up until now.
I'm glad you told your friend as you are now not completely alone in real life, but don't delay the necessary any longer. Good luck with the docs tomorrow. xx
I've been following this thread and I'm so glad you've got some rl support now.
I agree with the others - you DO have enough proof. Don't let that add to your stress. Just concentrate on getting to the end of the week, take up your brilliant friend's offer of help and see your GP.
I don't know how you've kept this to yourself for this long, you must be so strong.
tessa6 is right. Try to be as calm as possible, don't let his bluster deflect you from your aims. Don't let him divert you from the issue and just tell him you know - not HOW you know.
Good luck and take care. X
You'll be fine. You will.
You took pics didn't you? And you saw stuff before it was deleted?
You know what . . . you don't need to convince HIM that he is having an affair. YOU know he is and that is enough. YOU don't need to PROVE it to HIM.
Exactly. He is the defendant, not you. Anger is a sign of guilt, aggression is a sign of guilt, trying to make out you are crazy is a sign of guilt. Trying to leave the room indicates trying to buy time to contact OW or think of a believable story. As does crying, self-pity at being caught and time buying.
The worst response is accusation you are mad, storming out angey, then coming back in tears.
I think I'm just panicking because even if he admits there's something between them, he could say they've never acted on it so I'm making a mountain out of a molehill...whether they have acted on it I don't know for sure. To that end I think your idea of saying as little as possible is a great one - he can fill the silence, and hopefully ill learn more what's been going on. In fact once we have the kids in bed, I might just open with 'I know everything', then leave the room while that sinks in, get a glass of wine or something. Fuck knows ill need it!
he will definitely say that, abs. He will minimize, so remember that, even is he admits something very bad it's going to be the least of it. NO man in the history of the world (!) has ever seriously considered leaving his wife and kids for a woman he hasn't slept with.
When you do speak, don't get into using the language of 'I don't know if I can believe you'. Don't apologise. Don't try and prove your argument. Stay strong in it. Say 'That's not true, is it." Or better just the statement, 'that's not true'. Say it over and over again if you have to so he can see there is a brick wall when he lies, rather than something he can wind his way round. Then he will back up and try again with something closer to the truth. It depends what sort of a liar he is.
Don't panic. You're in a good place. You just need that adrenaline back.
If he says "what do you know?", just reply "you don't need me to tell you".
Try not to get tricked into letting out the limits of what you do know.
But, all this isn't even necessary. In a way you don't even need to have a conversation about it in depth. (unless you want to of course) You know enough. He has betrayed you. That's enough.
You don't have to convince him that he has betrayed you, your feelings are enough.
You don't have to have this all out until you are ready.
This is the perfect strategy. I agree 100% that no man leaves before having sex (of some sort at least) and you know he was googling leaving. He will be frantically wondering what you know and how, but keep all that to yourself and deflect questions about it. You are bound to get counter accusations of snooping, for example, but you don't need to respond to them. In those frantic few minutes, he'll also be wondering whether someone's seen them, if the OW has contacted you, if an anonymous informant has been in touch, if someone he's confided in has spilt the beans. A whole range of things.
Might be useful to practise saying: "It's not important how I know, please tell me the truth about what's been going on" and keep saying that, like a scratched record.
I still think you've got some way to go before convincing yourself that your objective is not to prove this, your objective is to decide what you will do in response.
BTW, one practical tip gleaned from many a cheater, if you give him long enough after the convo, he will forensically cleanse his phone of any evidence. Might be a good idea to ask for some time with it on your own before he gets that chance. A person with nothing to hide hides nothing, as they say. While he might be deleting conversations and texts, I bet there are a few trophies stored on that phone that he won't want you to see.
Be clear about what you want to achieve.
1) You want him to know that you know he has cheated
2) You want him to know that you will not tolerate this
3) You want a separation
There will be lots of other things you want, like a full confession, an explanation, more details, etc. but I wouldn't expect all that on the first discussion.
All you need to achieve at first is those 3. He may say he hasn't cheated because it wasn't physical, blah, blah, blah. But what you mean by cheating is inappropriate contact with another woman, secretly, deliberately hiding it and lying about it. That is enough. That is cheating.
It's important to show that you won't tolerate it by not accepting any excuses, denial or minimising. By not telling him exactly what you know, you keep the upper hand. Just keep repeating, 'I know what you have done, I want you leave'.
The separation is the most important. He should leave the house right away, that same night. If he refuses you should tell him that you need time and space away from him to think and if he won't respect your wishes, you will go straight for divorce.
If he wants to save the relationship, he will leave. If he still refuses to leave, then just go to your mum's for the night and leave him at home with the children.
Of course, he may just walk out anyway, he may say he wants to be with OW and that will be hard but, remember, you don't want to be with someone who would treat you like this anyway.
Thanks everyone. I have just been to the park after school with the ds's and it was a real good head clearer. I was incredibly tense before pick-up but feel a bit more clarity now. Bring it on dh! Thanks again for your continued support x
abney I'm glad you feel better. I agree with Fairenuff, be clear about what you want from the discussion.
I agree about the trophies, he will have kept something on his phone. My DH was really really good at deleting everything and never being on his phone in the evening, it took me a week to find a message he'd forgotten to delete.
But he did keep a photo if her on his phone - he just couldn't help himself, I found it in a stored folder.
As others have said, when he asks how you know it found out. Just say 'that's not important, what's important is you tell me the truth now, if you lie then it's over' then just stay very quiet.
His reaction will tell you everything you need to know. My DH went Into full on panic mode as he didn't know 'how' I'd found out so spilled his guts. He finished with the ow straight away, even after telling her he loved her less than 8 hours earlier. A cheater doesn't realise what they have done or lost until the reality of what they are losing hits them.
Good luck OP
I can't add anything to the fantastic advice you have had already here but I know it is hard (been there myself) and you WILL be okay without him.
Just agreeing totally with everything Francesca has posted.
Oh i'm so glad you've confided in your friend OP.
Yes, remember you don't have to prove to him he's having an affair. He knows he is
Your job on Friday is to convince him that you know about it and wont stand for it.
I agree you don't have to tell him how you know. Just stay right up there on that moral high ground where the air is clean my lovely
I'm following too Abney. Sending love and hugs for tonight, can you watch a film or something or have a long bath tonight, to keep yourself out of his / harms way? X
OP, I hate to read your story I don't know why men think they have a monopoly on being bored by having a young family - I hope you can do what you need to hold on till friday, I must admit that I couldn't hold on like you and had to bring it all out as soon as I saw him. I just rented and moved out, didn't give him chance to waffle or lie.
Hang in there my lovely.
Loving the 'I know everything' and leaving him to sit alone and let it sink in.
Just in case you dont know what will happen next its pretty much always the same.
Denial, Minimise , Deflect.
Hope your Gp helps and your family are there for you .
Just ensure you get copies of bank statements , pension plans etc . Save them to a memory stick or SD card if your pc or laptop has a slot for one.
Keep strong , your doing great.
I've just read this whole thread. Abney, you can't keep this to yourself until your Dad's Memorial Concert. It is too long a time to wait. You have seen evidence on his phone and so you need to speak up. Please listen to the other posters about what to reveal and getting important documents together. But holding onto this secret is hurting your health and is enabling him to carry on. Good luck
Abney, I think actually you are in a much better position for your patience . Most if us have been in your shoes in this thread, I think. Most of us are probably telling you how we think it ought to be done, rather than how we did it.
Certainly i wish it had had the patience to create and implement a strategy for the "reveal". Believe me, it will make you feel much better and more in control afterwards than if you had been taken for a sucker, and put up with it, etc.
Also, don't forget that he thinks he is in charge of this, and in charge of what happens next in your marriage. He thinks he can wait, or choose to leave, if and when he wants. He is in for a big shock.
For that reason alone, and because you have every right to be angry, I think you will handle that conversation fine.
If he denies, just laugh. You know it is bollocks as you have proof otherwise .
Your doing so well to hang in there, it's great that you have someone in RL to speak to, good luck with the GP tomorrow, I hope they can help too. Loads of good advice on here from people, don't give him any wiggle room, you need to have the upper hand and hold onto it.
So just blubbed my way thru a doctors appt - confided everything in, what can only be described as, the most good looking young male gp I've ever seen in my life! Poor guy was a little overwhelmed but very reassuring. He took my bp and it was insane but he said he would expect it to be so given all I'm going thru - he made a follow up appt for next Monday and said he suspects it'll go down once I'm less stressed, which hopefully I will be by then with this all out in the open. In the meantime he suggested I call relate and poss bereavement line as well as he thinks all my stress has compounded over the last year. Again, feel better having shared this with a human.
I'm glad you feel a bit better - a good looking gp never hurts either
I agree, Relate and Cruse counselling would really help you.
Stay strong, you're being amazing!
You're sounding better already <tries to keep straight face> .
Seriously though, am glad you went to the doctor and with practice, the telling of your predicament will come more easily. It is nothing for you to be ashamed or embarrassed about. Part of voicing it is seeing the response of right thinking people. H has been underhand and devious and you're definitely not overreacting.
For goodness sake, get this all out in the open. Why are you putting your health at risk to get to Friday?
Sharing it with someone else is a big deal. Well done.
I totally agree, this is silly now if you health is being affected to the extent of your BP being off the scale.
I think you need to grasp the nettle, only then will you be able to start the recovery process.
Wishing you well
Glad you're getting help in RL, Abney. It can be a lonely journey when the pain is in your head and your heart with no release. You're doing so well.
I think you are doing well too.
well done, it will b e less horrid the more it isn't a secret. Have you talked to H yet?
I'm on your team too, Abney. I know what it is like to know your DH is having an affair but deciding to hold back the denouement until the children have had Christmas. It was torture.
Best of luck.
Abney Nothing to say but wanted to show you some support
Morning all. Feeling a strange sense of empowerment today, with destinys child "I'm a surviver" going round in my head. Tonight dh is going out with his crew (which is true, but ow is part of said crew) and staying over at his friend michaels house (i suspect not true). So the next time I see him will be Friday evening, ill drop baby to my mums while he gets the other 2 in bed, then ill come back and frankly, he won't know what hit him. I might even demand he hands me over his phone at the start of the discussion. Yesterday I was mourning my marriage a bit, as I knew it would be the last time we would share a bed (with this secret between us at least), and nothing will be the same. I feel really like I've achieved something by holding on til now - it has been very tempting every time he's commented about where they're all going out tonight, or what we should do as a family this wkend, to just blurt it out and go nuts at him. But I have restrained and 'kept my powder dry', which is a brilliant phrase btw! Was with my friend a lot of yesterday and talking to her about it I feel really prepared me for not being a blubbering mess when I confront dh. And again, thank u ladies on here for getting me started. It was hard getting to 'almost' Friday but I'm so glad I did because now I will have his full attention and my family are all around this wknd to look after me. X
Be prepared for him trying to turn this around to be about something else. It's a deflection technique, to gain more thinking time.
For example, he might say, is this about last night? If he does things like that just say - you tell me. I know what I know, now I want to see if you can be honest with me - or something like that.
Oh, and don't get him to swear on the childrens' lives because he will do that and that is soul destroying.
I feel really like I've achieved something by holding on til now
You really have! Must've been so hard but on the plus side, you've had a week to plan what to say, to anticipate his denials, minimising, deflecting and to generate the strength to treat them with the contempt they deserve.
I'll be thinking of you tomorrow. Good luck.
I've lurked on your thread and just wanted to say that I am sorry for what you're going through, and think that you're doing exactly the right thing.
Without a doubt, the best strategy is silence. He will be flustered, panicking, desperately trying to think on his feet and come up with excuses, how to minimise? How to make it sound as ok as it can be? Every point at which you talk gives him a breather during which he can think and come up with something to parry the accusations. So don't talk - tell him you know, ask him to tell you everything and then very patiently sit and listen. Listen hard and don't jump in with questions or start to argue or discuss when you know he's starting to lie. Just keep your eyes on his face and listen. When he stops, pleasantly ask whether that is everything you need to know. Don't let him goad you. If he asks you questions, just say that you know what you know and you'd rather hear what he has to say to you in it's entirety first. If he explodes and stomps off, tell him you will be with your family and will be ready to listen when he is ready to talk.
Quiet listening will achieve several things:
- you will have a clear idea of what he has said. Rather than you half thinking of what to say next as he's speaking, you will really be listening...giving him a fair chance, if you will. Later, you can remind him of that.
- what he says will be less open to later denial. Conversations are more complex- if he's speaking as you are angrily saying 'no, actually blah... -then two days down the line it's far easier for him to say, no, I didn't say x, you said this and then blah and I never actually said y...' He will have far less wriggle room.
- As said, it will put him on the spot and give him no 'rest time' to frantically come up with stuff while you rant.
- Silence will panic him. He will want to fill the horrid silence. He will therefore say much much more than he would otherwise. And he will probably start to trip himself up. You will get ten times more information out of him if you simply look impassively at him and let him talk.
Finally- you know that no matter what he says, what excuses and promises and manipulation he uses, there will be nothing he can say in reply to you simply saying, this is enough for me. I don't so much care about what you haven't done- you haven't slept with her, fine, ok. The point is what you have done - you've destroyed what we had, things won't be the same for me again, and no you can't make that right. So I'm out, because I don't want to live with it never being the same again.
TJ, I think you are right. The only thing is, if he is a manipulative type, he may try silence back eg deny and sit there looking right back, in silence.
Abs you have done well, and he certainly is in for a shock, the smug lying B. All this talk about the weekend plans, he is pretty good at the Jekyll and Hyde stuff, isn't he?
Good luck, hope it goes as well as it can. This is probably good timing as having spent the night with her he will (presumably) be feeling guilty.
abney the tone of your posts have changed and it's so good to see
You're using words like 'empowerment' and 'achievement' and you haven't even confronted him yet! It's all good. I know Friday night is going to be an emotional storm for you - but it's going to be so good for your soul to have this out in the open, have him know his dirty secret is about to be laid bare for friends and family to see, and for you to no longer be treated like a mushroom - kept in the dark and fed bullsh*t!
We'll all be sending you strength on Friday
well done for getting this far. stay strong and don't take any bullshit from him
abney I will be with you in spirit on Friday night as I am intending to have precisely the same conversation with my DP. So not only are you not alone on this board, but you're not alone in life either
I will start by asking for his phone, followed by getting him to log into his email. Then I will take it from there. TalkativeJim has some excellent advice. What I've already discovered is enough to end things, but I want to know if there is any more.
Be strong and try and stay in touch with your fury. Anger is what will get you through this. It is what I am telling myself! You sound brilliant and I wish you were my friend IRL and we could commiserate about our bastard lying partners together over a cuppa!
Abney and Leaving, In a way having mn friends is better because you can talk 24hrs a day and none of us get fed up listening. A lot of us are at different places to you two but clearly remember the pain that follows such betrayal.
I will be thinking of you both tomorrow and abney your RL friend sounds like she is doing wonders for your self esteem,
Stay strong (and quiet)
TJ that advice was really tops.
Abney I'm in awe of the grace with which you've handled this. Your NSDH may not have learnt it,but it sounds as though your boys will definitely Know how a woman deserves to be treated.
I'll be thinking of you both abney and leaving too!
We're here if you need us!
You are both so strong! Really!
I'll be thinking of you all tomorrow night too. Well done xxx
Onefewer, yes he might do that...and I guess that OP's reply to that approach would be to say, 'fine- your response of no response still tells me everything I need to know. Goodbye.'
See, the thing that's really giving OP power here is that she's made her decision already based on what she already knows. While it would be much better if he had the guts and the respect for his wife to at least be honest with her, it isn't going to change things now anyway. She isn't exactly a going to be a tearful mess hanging on his every word hoping for an explanation. So, I guess if he were to completely stonewall, it would do nothing save to underline just how little respect he has for their life together and just how much she is making the right decision to end the marriage.
Leaving - I am with u in spirit! When are u planning on confronting your dp?
I've been finding my nerves have crept in again this afternoon and I'm doubting what I know...what if I've jumped to conclusions? What if he thinks I'm paranoid and laughs it off? I just hate that I have to face this and be stressed out by it in the mean time. It's not fair is it.
Good luck tomorrow you are going to smash this, forearmed is forewarned and you are both. I really admire your patience and grace, I mentioned before my Dsis had the same approach and boy did it work. Shock for him didnt even cover it! You have cried and felt sad and now are ready for action. Ill be thinking of you tomorrow night
No it's not fair abney. But you are doing so well x
Talk us thro it again Abney.
What have you found? Lets get it straight xxx
"What if he thinks I'm paranoid and laughs it off?"
He told her he LOVES her.
If he tries to laugh that off you just tell him to cop the fuck on.
He will try and make out that you're being paranoid & he will try to bluff.
Stick to your guns & keep repeating "I have concrete evidence you are having an affair, please leave."
He'll ask you what proof you have: you do not need to tell him.
Don't be drawn into splitting hairs over exactly what you know & how far they've gone. Even it's an EA that hasn't got physical yet, he's still been unfaithful, so it's not relevant.
But also be aware there is a possibility he might say, yes, that he wants out.
Expect the unexpected- you cant anticipate his reaction but you can prepare your own. You've been v strong.
Be prepared for any or perhaps all of the following reactions:
- The gaslighting He will bluster, laugh and act like you're a crazy neurotic. (He'll say it's all in your mind.)
- The aggression. He'll get angry with you. How dare you check his phone? How can he live with someone who spies on him?
- The blaming You drove him to it because you're such a nag/ so mean/ so boring/ so busy/ so overweight. (Delete his excuse as appropriate.)
- The rewriting of history - In fact, he'll say, he's been miserabable for years.He's never been happy.
- The stone walling - This is the cold, cruel refusal to respond to you at all. You'll see a side of him you don't recognise while he packs his bags.
- The rubbing it in your face - He may enjoy flaunting his 'love for the OW in front of you. (He'll say she's his true love, his soul mate, she makes him happy unlike you etc.)
- The begging - He may resort to apologies, pleading, pathetic snotty,appeals to you to give him a chance.
The advice to listen and stay quiet is good. Say your piece and watch his reactions.
check them off the list above Don't make any decisions straight away, let it sink in and respond when you have had time to calm down.
Good luck. You sound strong.
He might counteract with accusations you are losing the plot, overreacting or unreasonably jealous or possessive. He could become spiteful and unleash a list of hitherto unspoken complaints and criticisms. If he is going to try and turn it around he will twist any discomfort and distress and make you feel responsible.
Stick to the facts of what he has said and done. You may find that you have to repeat yourself if he tries to laugh it off or evade giving any answers. In spite of all, he may try and brazen things out from habit or because he can't grasp you have caught him out.
Don't empathise or make excuses for him, don't backtrack and fgs don't apologise. Breathe and sit down if your legs feel they'll give way. Stay sitting if you are sitting, or if standing up physically step back to keep emotional space. If you stay calm and he erupts or starts shouting, step away.
He may react badly then suddenly do a 180 degree turn and apologise. If he cries or reels off self justification it doesn't exonerate him. If he blames her for ensnaring him remember his ardent texting and contrived get-togethers, the time at work they've had to cook up deceit and all the time you were sitting at home, oblivious.
Good luck abney.
Betty's list is brilliant.
Abney, please believe in yourself. Some of us have been in your shoes, and thoroughly regret being taken in by gaslighting and bullshit. We understand that the backing off is due to the fear of being wrong, and a bad person for inventing it.
It isn't that you are wrong. You saw what you saw. It means only one thing: he is unfaithful.
But being in this situation can mess with your head. I swear that i was just like you, but looking back now I CANT BELIEVE I WAS EVER THAT GULLIBLE.
Don't let that happen to you. Stick to your guns, whoever he is and whatever he says, and regardless of what he was like before.
If he cries, it's damn certain he will be crying for himself.
I wish I had Bettys list before confronting my DH. He did everything on that list apart from plead with me and has never actually apologised. He cried - but for himself.
I'll be thinking of you. You have a whole lot of people here thinking of you.
YY to wishing I had Bettys list. Mine cried for hours but I think it was relief that yet again I'd saved him from having to do anything!!!
He did every single one of the others as well over time.
If you keep the list in mind Abney and Leaving, you could even smile as you tick them off ready to tell us later?x
It might be a good idea to pack an overnight bag for yourself so that if he won't leave, you can. All you need to do is pick up your bag and go to your mum's for the night. Hopefully that will shock him into taking you seriously. Especially if you have it packed and ready.
Good luck. You sound very clam. Keep it together.
Can you find out in any way whether he really is at 'Mike's' tonight? Subtly, without raising the alarm? Would be a nice bit of information to have before tomorrow.
Of course, if he was really at Mike's don't let that throw you either, as you know that the rest of the lies and deceit still exist.
Good luck. We're all here for you.
I agree with cosy. If you do have way to find out if he is sleeping at mike's then it would be handy to know. Good luck tomorrow.
I'm not sure that where he is tonight isn't a red herring. It doesn't matter where he is tonight, you know what you know.
Another lurker here Abney. Just wanted to wish you good luck and to let you know I'll be thinking of you. You sound like an incredibly strong, fantastic person. You will get over this, and you will be fine.
I've been lurking since you posted but you had such great advice I haven't said anything. I just want to say that I hope you're ok after this evenings chat <3 xx
I'd also like to add how accurate Betty's list is, I wish I'd read that several years ago! My h did everything on the list, bar the pleading. He did eventually suggest we go to relate but it was a few weeks down the line. We went once and he didn't do a great deal of talking about things apart from still trying to lay the blame on me.
I probably made the biggest mistake of my life and stayed with him after everything he'd put me through. There's not been any OW since but there are other issues in our relationship which I've wanted to post about on here but haven't. The trust has now gone, please don't live my life, life really is to short xx
I just want to add how strong I think you are, you are a much much stronger person than I. How you have managed to keep a lid on this is beyond my comprehension. I was a total wreck when I found out what h had been doing, I hit the roof sideways, cried and blubbed like a child. I was devastated at what he'd done, not just to me but to our DC's. I wanted to hurt him and the OW. I couldn't eat or sleep properly for weeks, it was a living nightmare. My heart goes out to anyone going through a situation like this xx
In all honesty from what you said... It looks like he is......However it is very likely it's an attention and sex thing. It might be worth having a frank conversation with him and then seek some counselling to save your marriage... If that is what you both want?
This must be a totally crap time for you ....
Good luck today, thinking of you.
Quick update: last night my mum sent me a text asking if she could use h on Saturday to do some bits in a flat she's doing up for rental (a project my dad started and sadly couldn't finish), and I thought 'uh-oh, Saturday, I might have chucked him out'. So I asked her to swing by and see me and she did and I told her everything, and showed her everything I 'd found, to say she was shocked is an understatement. She says she thinks its almost like he's had a personality change, into an irresponsible manchild and was so angry, but supportive. She couldn't believe I'd kept this to myself, but glad I'd told my friend and the gp. She laid things out from a purely practical perspective, and we concluded that I would be absolutely fine, supported and ok financially. Whereas he stands to lose everything, starting with a bloody place to live. It felt really good to get it off my chest and to explain my weird behaviour of late, but I felt like I was giving her another bereavement .
Thank u Betty for that list - I have no doubt he'll go thru all of them!x
So glad you've been able to telk your mum, and that she has been really supportive. Thinking of you today.
You didn't give her a bereavement. He did and none of you could control that. Your mum will want the best for you.
Good luck tonight abneys.
I know exactly how you are feeling today (having confronted a cheating exDH and exDP )
You sound very well prepared and amazingly strong.
Oh how I wish I had found Mumsnet back then! The advice on here is brilliant!
I can remember feeling nauseous, sweaty and my heart was racing. All quite normal as you body enters a 'fight or flight' situation. So be prepared for that.
Tomorrow, when that adrenaline rush has passed you will probably feel pretty low. Am I right in thinking you will be around family tomorrow? I do hope so.
Will be thinking of you today
Just read your update.
Your mum sounds wonderful!
I am glad you have so much RL support
Sounds like a great mum you've got there. You haven't done anything - he has. I'm sure your mum would rather know the truth and be able to support you, rather than be excluded but know something is up. Grief can be very wearing and having another thing to think about may not be so bad for your mum, even though it is a loss and a horrid thing, she can support you through this as I'm sure you've supported each other with the loss of your DF.
for you both
I've been following your thread for days and wanted to wish you good luck!
I had several confrontations with my husband and he never really spoke until I had hard evidence he had slept with the woman in question. I sat on that info for a month to plan my moment as he would lie deny and couldn't get him to talk. When my dday came I was very calm I spoke about what I knew (bluffed a little) but stayed very calm and I knew it was working he started talking but still admimant he didn't sleep with her. So I calmly said my final statement to him as were going round in circles. I've had enough of being lied too and I want to know if you slept with her, if you tell me know we can get through this and move on. If I find out down the line you have lied to me again I will be filing for divorse for adultery, so I'm going to ask you again.... Did you sleep with her?? ..... He stared crying and said yes! BINGO months of trying to get the truth.
Don't let him know how you got your info as they try to find out what you know and will lie and. If you need to bluff do it,
I got very sneaky and said I know something and kept repeting it and new info came out.
Stay calm don't scream don't shout
And never reveal your sources of info or what you have be vaige as it drives them mad not knowing what you know!
I'm so glad your mother knows. You have proper support in place now and you're in a really strong place.
Personally, I'd consider printing off Betty's list and having it on my person when I confront him. Then, when he's been through a few I'd ostentatiously produce the list and tick the 'phases' off. That'd take the wind out of his bloody sails.
Good luck tonight.
Good luck tonight love. Hope it goes well and you get the answers you need.
abney - well done on telling your mum. It is so nice when family are behind you. I haven't told my family everything, but they have still been really supportive and it has helped immeasurably.
I had a pre-emptive strike on DP last night. When I got home late, I walked in on him in bed and he acted all suspicious - immediately clicking some stuff on his phone and putting it down on the bedside table. I went over and picked it up to look through it, and the panic on his face was a sight to behold! I could actually feel him quaking in the bed. I said "what's wrong? Why can't I look at your phone?" And he said it was just uncomfortable and he hated that I didn't trust him (lol!). He was fidgeting and sweating. He then tried to snatch a look at it but I pulled away. Really his reaction told me everything.
As it happens I did find some things on there (the "Tinder" app hidden in a secret folder for example) but I played it cool and pretended like I didn't see anything, cleared the history and handed it back. He was in a huff with me for the next hour which again tells me all I need to know about what a manchild he is. He swore he hadn't done anything wrong since the last time I caught him out and that it was awful how I didn't trust him. He also gaslighted ruthlessly by saying it wasn't true that he always had his phone on him (it is literally glued to him) and that he was baffled I would say such a thing.
I'm glad I got in this little pre-match warm-up in order to see how far he is prepared to lie and manipulate me. If anything it has just made me more determined to make mincemeat of him tonight.
abney I'm sure your DH would have done the same had you innocently asked to have a look at his phone. And TalkativeJim still has the best advice - ask him if there's anything he needs to tell you and then be quiet. Let him hoist himself with his own lying bastard petard.
I'm going to let him make me dinner tonight and confront afterwards. It feels apt
Popped in to say good luck later.
SO glad you've confided in your mum
It's not another bereavement for her. You are her daughter and she will feel sad for you and worried of course, but happy that you have been able to confide in her rather than feel you couldn't talk to her.
I would always want my daughters to come to me with their problems, no matter what else was going on/had been going on. That's what family are for.
Hi Abney, I have'nt posted on your thread before but I have been following events as they have unfolded. Just wanted to lend you my support for today. You are doing the right thing. I'm sure it will be a difficult evening but you may feel a relief to get it all off your chest. Stay strong. Sounds like you have good support from your friends and family in RL and also MN is always here to listen and hold your hand too.
I've been following your thread and just wanted to wish you luck for later.
Really pleased you confided in your mum. She sounds lovely
Another one just popping on to give you my support and admiration. You are incredibly strong.
I just want to add my support ! You will come through this!
Hi abney have been following your thread and I'm so pleased you've told your mum, she sounds wonderful
Wishing you strength and good luck for later
Look at the list by Simon, under 'How manipulators control their victims.'
That's what they do, when confronted.
I hope your conversation goes as smoothly as it can tonight. I hope it's not too much of a battle and he spills his guts without being horrid and difficult, because you don't deserve that.
Remember you have the upper hand, the power here, you are forewarned and therefore forearmed. He has not had time to make a battle plan, (at least not for today, it may well be he was planning such a thing for after the concert?) your catching him off guard. So good luck
Another one de-lurking to wish you strength and support. You will be fine, my love, you really will. Well done for doing the right thing! both for you and your DSs.
I haven't posted on this thread prior but I have followed what has been going on.
I just want to offer you some support (having been in your situation myself) the best advice I can offer is to stick to your guns, don't settle for anything less than what you feel is the truth for you.
If when confrontation time comes and he refuses to be truthful or to confess you have to keep the cold, calm collected stance up. Don't let him break you down with niceties or begging and pleading that it was only a text/email/kiss, essentially you have to treat him like you would a toddler who says they didn't draw all over the walls when the crayon is still in their hand. If you don't believe what he is telling you then don't believe him....don't let him talk it all round into seeming reasonable or less than what it really is. The sooner he realizes that he can't talk you round the sooner he will tell the truth as that will be the only card he has left to play.
On my d-day I can't believe how far I had to go in the end to get the truth....he covered his backside, denied, lied, minimized, begged and pleaded, loved me etc etc then finally when there was nothing left that he could do and no where else to go I got the truth....though sadly it came from the OW before it came from him. That is how far it went, I had to bloody ring her (from his phone) in front of him!!! She was lovely and I thanked her for the truth, if only I'd had MN back then I doubt I would have had to resort to contacting her.
I am wishing you lots of strength and I hope you get the truth.
Good luck tonight abney. Be prepared for what you want out of the conversation, his response may surprise or shock you, but try and remain in control. Thinking of you.
Thanks everybody, lurkers and advisers alike, it's been so reassuring to know other women have lived thru this and survived - with or without their marriages intact.
My mum came to help me early this morn, then my friend who I confided in on mon came back for a cuppa after the school run , and we sort of had a brainstorming meeting type thing about it - it's so amazing to have it out there and not crammed in my head anymore. The whole situation is just so sad and we concluded that dh has massively lost his way and just isn't thinking about the consequences of his juvenile actions. I need to know from him tonight what he honestly thought was going to happen - would he have carried on indefinitely with this double life charade if I hadn't confronted him? Would he have just left abruptly one day? I want him to really think about it and vocalise it, because he has been my best friend for so many years and he needs to treat me like it, instead of the ball and chain he slinks home to reluctantly. Whatever happens tonight , he needs to start being honest with himself even if he can't stretch to doing that with me, for the sake of our boys who need to know and see what a real man is.
Good luck sweetie,
Everyone is rooting for you and no matter the outcome you are doing the right thing.
I went through this pre marriage. we managed to move on but the trust has never quite rebuilt itself 100%.
What's the Tinder app?
Great to have that support Abney.
Very best of luck to you.
Your DH is an idiot.
And yeah, my mum is frickin amazing - she has deep reserves of strength I can only aspire to achieve. She was on holiday with my dad pretty much this exact time last year and he all but dropped dead after going for a swim and his aorta ruptured. She was suddenly flung into chaos and has come thru it with her dignity and grace well intact, and as she says regarding my errant dh 'nothing surprises her anymore'. In a way I'm glad my dad didn't have to see how dh turned out as he would have been heartbroken - they were good buddies. Urgh, dh why did u have to go and be such a twatttttt??!!
The hardest thing for me was trying to get my head around how a man so involved in his family could just give it all up for an inferior model My dd was working with us so had to have contact but ds didn't have contact for months and months and H missed out(and still does) on the dgcs he used to see daily.
One thing I would say would be to not waste time thinking why he is an idiot/not thinking straight/having a breakdown. Those really don't matter, he has done something you don't like and its time to think about you and what you do like.
Just read your whole thread and you are just doing so amazingly well. MN can be such a great source of support and advice and I can see that you've taken on board all the wise words offered to you.
Be true to yourself tonight and your little ones and drop kick your scheming h out of your life.
Thinking of you.
Loop - it's a hook up phone app. You put in your photo and location and other people near you can IM you. Then you arrange to meet. It's all in real time - not like a dating site. So the intent is really just sex.
Best of luck. Remember the list. You'll be amazed at how he'll probably go right down the list and tick practically every box. (plus being prepared means he's less likely to sway you with his behaviour as well)
OP just read this - I could cry for you.... So sorry you are having to deal with this.... Good to read you have a plan and such great support.
Best of luck today.
Another here wishing you luck tonight.
Hope it goes as well as it can!
Will come back and check on how things went later.
Thinking of you!
All the best tonight abney and leaving. It is so unfair that you have to go through this. Wishing you both every bit of strength that you need.
Thinking of you tonight, Abney. Remember, when it is you speaking, less is more.
There will be a lot of people holding your hand tonight.
Absolutely less is more- although a well placed 'my dad would have been disgusted with you' might make him pause.
I'm so sorry he's put you through this - three very young children, a grieving wife. Whatever he comes out with, he is a shit.
Not excusing him at all - but could he be staying because he feels bad about your recent loss?
One thing about my Mum dying was the change in me and how I reacted to things and people. For at least a year I was a different person.
This isn't giving him an excuse at all because I think he has behaved like a dickhead - but be prepared that he may try to blame this on your father's death and how it has meant he couldn't be honest with you.
You might want to have an answer to this scenario prepared.
MN will be with you tonight Abney. Stay strong.
De-lurking to say good luck for tonight Abney (and Leaving!). Thinking of you and wishing you strength. You are doing thing - it's just so sad you are in this position
Sorry, doing the right thing.
De lurking abney to wish u all the best for tonight.
Remember he will try to minimise so don't take the first account or answer he gives u and also when you've asked a question there will be silence. Do. Not. Fill this. Silence.
Leave it for him. Really.
So sorry you're going through this x
Abney I do hope tonight you get some answers and that you are as unscathed as possible. to sip while you're waiting. X
De lurking to add my support for tonight. I really hope you get the answers you want and the resolution you deserve. I've been so impressed with your resolve and strength. You're a very courageous woman and I'm sorry you're going through this.
Thinking of you Abney.
Sorry that you are going through this shitty situation. Hope things get better soon.
Another de lurking to say thinking of you tonight x
Also de-lurking to wish you strength tonight - will be thinking of you.
Delurking to wish you luck and strength for tonight. I hope what he has lost hits him like a train.
Come out of lurking to wish you luck for tonight
Good luck tonight thinking of you stay strong you can do this
De-lurking, just wanted to echo all the above you are so much stronger than you think.
You deserve so much better x
I'm 4 years down the line and happier than I've ever been
Good luck honey
Oh my god I'm so overwhelmed by all the support, you're all amazing thank u
Meanwhile I'm absolutely filled with nerves because I know what's coming...he's casually saying 'do u want to watch a film tonight?' while making homemade lamb burgers, and I'm like 'yeah, ok' but inside going aaarrrghh!!!
My mums coming at 7 to pick up the baby as she's been delayed so we'll just crack on with bedtime and once they're asleep...it's aaaarrgh time.
I'm going to confiscate his phone before we even start and I've already hidden all the laptops/tablets etc so he has no way to raise the alarm with her.
Feeling relatively prepared but fuckin shit scared
Wishing you luck tonight. Reading this thread and the way you've gained so much strength and confidence. Has been amazing. You'll get through this.
This time just before is the worst, I felt an overwhelming sense of calm once the truth was out there .... Thinking of you
De lurking, to say the very best of courage tonight and lots of love.
ready for you! (Secretly hoping your mum will walk in & kick him where it hurts!).
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
You are going to be great. You are clearly much cleverer than him, and you have the advantage of surprise.
De-lurking to let you know I'm with you in spirit. Stay strong and don't fall for any bullshit. You sound such a lovely person and you deserve so much better. Will be thinking of you xx
will be thinking of you. you're an amazing woman!
Delurking to say thinking of you and hope you get some answers tonight. So proud of how strong you're being.
Should say, 'you should be proud of how strong you're being'.
Also de lurking. Thinking of you
Stay strong when talking to him. Thinking of you.
Bricking it bricking it bricking it. Going to down a quick g&t for courage. Mum still not here. He is having his dinner, I said I'm not hungry yet. Oh god oh god oh god.
Thinking of you....stay strong.
Don't drink too much - you need a clear head!
We're here for you.
Virtually holding your hand, be strong, you can do it - I did, and I felt much better after.
De lurking to say its amazing how strong you are. Tonight will be shitty but you're absolutely doing the right thing and then you won't have to hide it anymore. You're so much stronger than I could ever be. Good luck.
Oh abneys what a hideous nightmare for you. I'm holding your hand & telling you that you CAN do this & you will come out of it a lot stronger. I've been where you are & in 6mths time you'll be a new woman.
You are a Strong & Brave lady! We're ALL rooting for you.
I've just read this thread - deep breaths, it's got to be done. Good luck - I'm thinking of you.
Delurking to wish you luck and to say how amazingly strong I think you are! Thinking of you this evening
Sending you strength and a good luck!
Just read this tread and felt I needed to wish you luck! Stay strong!
Be strong, you can do this! We are all here for you. X
What a woman, you should be very proud of yourself.
Thinking if you this evening abs.
Good luck, i've been lurking for a while and you're coping brilliantly x
Just read the whole thread. Have to say you are amazing, as is your mum. Sounds like you have an amazing bunch there.
Tonight will be hard, but you are clearly strong enough to do it. Thinking of you.
Abney, I am in awe of you. Good luck.
Good luck Abney, you can do it
Thinking of you. I have been in a similar (though nowhere near as bad) place, and I am sending you lots of 'stay strong' vibes x
hav been following ur thread, think ur an amazingly strong women, I was in ur shoes almost 5 years ago, thinking of u and stay strong x
Also delurking to wish you well. Good luck abney x
We'll all be here when you need us to be. Courage.
I'm here too Abney xxxxxxxx. Sending love out thro the skies to you xxxxx
Another delurker. You are doing brilliant, he is a shit. Good luck tonight
Another one thinking of you. Hope you're ok xx
I have been lurking
You have been amazing and I would wish you luck for tonight, but it's not luck you need, it's dignity, courage and truth - and you already have all those on your side.
If it's any consolation, this thread will be the one I point people to in the future when their worst suspicions are realised, because it perfectly demonstrates exactly how to respond - from gathering of evidence, to confiding in family, to biding your time, to seeing the doctor - everything you have done is to be applauded. You are a grieving mother of three who has just learned of the most terrible betrayal, and you have not put a foot wrong. I am in awe of you, I really am.
You will be fine. I know it.
Another delurker- good luck!!! You are doing brilliantly.
Another lurker sending you strength and love xx
Good luck Abney. You have the solidarity of mumsnet behind you tonight.
Haven't posted before as I didn't feel I could post anything better than the advice you were already getting, but wanted to add my support now. Good luck, you will be ok and it sounds like you have wonderful friends and family around you.
Abney I hope you're ok and that you've managed to tell 'd'h how you feel and get some kind of explanation for his behaviour. Sending best wishes.
Sending lots of support, so in awe that you have handled this so amazingly. You'll be fine, just get through tonight xx
Another delurker showing my support xx
Hoping you're OK. Or as OK as it's possible to be under the circumstances.
Your mum and family will be with you tomorrow. Not long; hang in there.
Thinking of you abney - I guess you're probably in the midst of it right now. I hope he's crying for what he's lost - arsehole. xxx
still thinking of you (and leaving)xx
Good luck. Hope it all works out for you xx
Omg....you are fab!
Hope you are ok though.
I have read your thread and hope you get the answers you need. I take my hat off to you about how you have handled the last week or so.
Message withdrawn at poster's request.
Oh Abney here for you to hold your hand. You're such a brave, brave woman.
You brave, strong woman. Despite a horrid year and foul behaviour from your DH - you have faced this with grace and dignity.
I think eventually, after you are able to deal with your DH and grieve for your marriage, you should reflect on how strong and amazing you have been and will continue to be.
Sounds like you and your mum are built from the same good stock
I hope you get some answers tonight.
Just logged in when I got in from work at gone 11 - specifically to check on you. My own blood pressure feels a little raised and I don't even know you! I think you're amazing. I hope the talk has gone as well as can be expected.
hi abney, just popped my head in again... i was watching this up to when you were discussing changes of numbers.
just had a quick readthrough and my heart actually sank when i read what you found
you poor thing. im glad you have your mum on board and i think youre doing well to keep yourself together.
thinking of you tonight.
keep bettys list in mind too. n when he makes you feel shite, remember that half the reason he did so much to hide this (glued to the phone, deleting chats) is because he prob doesnt want to leave. he wanted his cake and to eat it. by kicking him to the kerb you are taking that control away from him and he wont feel like such a stud.
as for ow, where a bloke leaves for his mistress, he creates a vacancy. if he'll cheat with you, he'll cheat ON you. if it was me id record him pleading for a second chance and send it to her, just to show her how much he loves her
as for you, you will no longer be in limbo, no longer watching him tapping away at his phone wondering wats that hes writing... you can live in much more certainty than he can with nowhere to go no family and a woman who he knows has the definate potential to cheat. the latter will haunt him for years to come trust me
Honey, you're a genius about recording him. Bet you could do it on your phone if he's begging today? Anyway, hope you're okay and that you got the truth out of him. Stay strong.
Hope you're okay op,
You really have behaved amazingly so far, i hope you got what you needed from your talk.
My guess is that your dh will have fallen to pieces.
How are you this morning Abney?
Been thinking of you overnight Abney. Hope you're ok.
another de lurker here wishing you support.
Hope you are ok this morning Abney. Checked in overnight to see if you were ok. If you need any rl support and your local to me then I'm happy to help. Just pm me if you do.
Morning, sorry was absolutely shattered after last night I couldn't post anything. Well... my mum arrived about 8.15 and picked up baby ds3 (we'd already agreed during the day that dh wasn't to know that she knew - felt like a stronger position to withhold that), and by that point we'd already started the film. So when she left we sat back down and I waited til his phone was beside him on the sofa, then I got up snatched it and went over to get a chair, sat down and stared at him. He paused the film and said 'er what are u doing?', I said 'were not watching a film tonight, were talking. I know everything. If u love me and respect me at all anymore you'll tell me the truth in ur own words. And I'm confiscating your phone for the evening.' (My heart was in my mouth but I managed to hold it together). He babbled for a bit about 'what was I on about, I'm acting crazy.' So I got up, his phone in hand, went into the kitchen saying 'think it thru, this is ur opportunity to come clean, I'm getting a glass of wine.' He followed me into the kitchen while I was rifling thru his phone, saying 'if u tell me what ur looking for I can explain it to u.' I told him to go sit back down to give me time to look thru his phone, and gave him mine in return. He found that impossible to do. He carried this denial thing on practically all night - I thought we weren't going to get anywhere - but I managed to keep the silence thing going (thanks for that tip) which drove him mad! Then a message beeped in on his phone and he panicked - he said 'she' thought there was something going on and he was just being nice to her. So I messaged her back as if from him, saying 'if I can't get the truth from u ill get it from her'. This carried on for about an hour and really made him squirm - he even tried to snatch the phone off me at one point. She was very non-literal and ambiguous in her replies but I think I got the gist of what they were up to last night. About 3 hours after we started this discussion he finally caved and admitted they were in an emotional affair. She loves him and he 'thinks' he loves her. He said its no excuse but he hasn't felt love from me in years - I never initiate hugs from him, I never take an interest in what he writes...blah blah. And then he realised he was using very 'I me' language and that he's been a prick. He said they have only kissed and absolutely haven't had sex - think I believe him on that one - but that he has stayed at her house when he said he's been elsewhere.
It was so good to finally get the truth out of him. We wrapped things up (ish) about 1am and he slept on the sofa, and has got up with the kids this morn. I haven't gone downstairs yet. I said we are going to get marriage counselling and soon, he agreed. We acknowledged that the trust is broken though and there is a possible future where were not together. I gave him his phone back, said u can tell her that wasn't u if you want, he didn't want to. When I asked him what he thought was going to happen eventually, he said he thought this thing with ow would fizzle out because between them they'd already agreed nothing can happen coz he's married, and that this would be a chapter in his life no-one would know about. How he thought I wouldn't figure it out is beyond me.
But it's the secrecy and deception that has hurt me most - I find it oddly a relief that this was about feelings rather than sex. And I know I have neglected my marriage in favour of putting my energy into the kids. No excuse tho.
Ok I'm going to brave going downstairs. Sorry for the essay! And thanks for all your good wishes, it really kept me going
Well done, you were brilliant.
I don't want to hurt you, but I would prepare yourself for the fact that they have had sex to come out eventually.
He's stayed at her house but they didn't have sex - that's a little far-fetched to say the least.
But you've been amazing to hold it together so well.
Glad your ok and it sounds like you did amazingly but I would suspect she knew she was talking to you and I find it very difficult to believe that he has stayed over at her house and tey have not had sex. I am no expert but it seems to me that he has managed to blame you for it. You have three kids if course they come first, if were man enough he should know this. He hasn't put his kids first he has put himself first. I would definitely be prepared for more to come from this.
Sorry but l think they had sex--it would be almost impossible to stay over and not to do the deed. He is admitting only what he thinks he can get away with.
I do hope l am wrong but feels there is so much more to this than what he has told you.
Well done for biding your time in silence to get him to talk. Sounds like you were very brave. I can imagine the pain you are feeling (been there myself many years ago).
I have to agree with Celia though, if he stayed at her house I think they would've had sex. I'm sure that must be very difficult to hear, feel free to hate me for saying it.
My ultimate best wishes to you. I really hope the counselling works for you both,
it sounds like you handled it well last night. But I too think she will have realised it wasn't him and it is beyond unlikely they haven't had sex.
If they did have sex, which is likely if he says he loves her, he wouldn't admit it.
He thinks it will fizzle out??? He thinks?
Abney you are fab. You have done, in one evening, what often takes weeks and months to get out of a cheating man. I agree that there will be more to come but that is enough, for now.
He has cheated on you, left you at home to look after three children under 4 (a 7 month old baby ffs) whilst he spends the night with his lover. Even if they are not sleeping together (you know that's probably a lie, right?) they are talking, snuggling, giggling, gazing into each other's eyes, telling each other how wonderful they are.
She would have been stroking his ego - you're a wonderful husband and such a caring father - yeah, right, so why isn't he at home being a wonderful father to his children!
He will have been telling her how neglected he feels, how you don't show him affection or have time to listen to his dreams. She will lap it up.
I would find all that more hurtful than just sex tbh. Remember, he googled how to leave my wife and children. And when you first confronted him he lied to your face. This is not some passing fancy.
He will tell you it's over, but it's not. Not by a long chalk. He will cool off for a bit, he will be more careful, but emotionally he checked out a long time ago.
You are doing so well. Hope you get some love and support from your mum today, that's just what you need.
Ask him to get tested for STDs (sorry, but 99% of cheaters minimise and given the several opportunities they've had, they will have had sex).
Get Shirley Glass's Not Just Friends.
I would not make any long term decision - you will keep changing your mind and you still have not got the whole picture. Tell him that you need time and space to process your thoughts and feelings.
All marriages have ups and downs. Not everyone choose to cheat. He could have talked to you, suggested counselling, read books etc.
His choices which led to the affair has everything to do with himself, his own coping mechanisms, his character flaws and beliefs.
Didn't he google for advice on 'leaving wife and three kids'?
I'm sorry you are going through this but I think you need to kick him out for a week to make him really realise that ow isn't a realistic option when faced with leaving wife and kids.
I think they slept together, especially if they stayed in the same house together at night! Xx
He loves her and has stayed at hers but they haven't had sex?
He lied for hours that there wasn't anything going on. Then admitted an EA but no sex.
Nah, I don't believe him.