To still struggle with trust 7mths after DH's emotional affair(103 Posts)
7mths ago I found out about DH's emotional affair (+ kissing). He ended affair which had been going on for 1 mth and said he wanted our marriage to work. We have been married nearly 20 years and have 2 kids in primary school.
I have a sneaky suspicion he's just staying with me for the kids and out of duty. We are also christians and are v. involved in our church. We have been taught from birth by christian parents that divorce is only really an option in exceptional circumstances. It would also send big ripples through our church family (although I know people would try to help and support us).
Am still struggling to trust although I know affair is over. Still feel heartbroken and a few times a week I still have a cry. Should I be over it by now?
OP I'm very sorry that I don't currently have time to read all the responses so may just be repeating what's been said already, but I would suggest you think about counselling, either for yourself individually or as a couple, of a mixture of both. Don't be down on yourself for thinking you "should" be over something like this after a certain period of time - there are no hard and fast rules. Best of luck.
Hi, having been in the exact same situation as you, I would recommend 'How Can I Ever Trust You Again?' By Andrew G Marshall it was very helpful to us both. Me and my husband are over 3 years past his infidelity and still together. You are still in very early days, and still after all this time it still occasionally hits me like a tonne of bricks. I did share with our Paster and very close friends - people who loved us both - it only stayed amongst them and sensitive support was offered to us both. People do get divorced within our church and this is accepted and never judged.
Maybe I've missed it - was he caught out, or did he stop it and own up? That makes a big difference
Good point Cheryl l have just scanned through and l don't think OP has said how she found out but it does sound like he was caught out rather than confessed.
Hope you are ok considering today OP. Keep your chin up.
OP what do you think would have happened if he had not been caught out?
For me l always think an EA would be harder to forgive than doing the dirty deed itself. Take the emotion out of a relationship and what have you got - a shag basically - so the emotional part is by far the most important element and makes it a relationship(though l accept that sexual incompatability or lack of sex can be a deal breaker in even the strongest emotional relationships).
If my DH were ever working away for a long period and succumbed to physical temptation and had a one night stand which meant nothing to him and he immediately regretted, then l would be absolutely gutted and incandescent with rage and would struggle to forgive him, but l daresay we would have a chance of survival.
If OTOH he came home after six months and l found he had been having deep conversations and laughing into the wee small hours every night with an OW but had fought his feelings and kept it in his trousers out of 'loyalty' to me, but was now missing her, then l would say that he might aswell have taken it to the next level as that would be the end of us definitely.
My DH had an EA 7 years ago and at 7 months I felt exactly the same as you OP.
It took a long time and lots of talking to get to where we are now which is a calmer and more gentle marriage. I love my husband and now know that he loves me. He broke contact with the OW and now cannot believe he was so stupid, she never wanted him really and was only interested in money, as soon as that dried up she was off so perhaps that made it easier for me to deal with.
FWIW I'm very glad I stuck around.
yy to him still feeling safe as houses, safe enough to "pine"
OP, you say "the consequences have been huge" - no they haven't, not for him.
He needs to leave - that might be "consequences" enough for him. He might then actually feel some remorse
but I doubt it tbh
For me, I can see how someone could have an EA, even in a relatively healthy relationship. The real killer here is that he isn't bending over backwards to make it up to you.
But you have said that this wasn't a healthy relationship anyway and you have been in counseling for years. It shouldn't be this hard, really it shouldn't. You shouldn't be making ANY effort at this stage, he should be doing all he can to win you back.
And fuck that "pining" shit - who the actual jeff does he think he is??
I also think that if what you want is for him to demonstrate that he is sorry more strongly, with some form of gesture, you should tell him that. I completely understand how you feel and why you would feel that. He might not, but if that's what you need, that's what you need.
I'm going to advise you to have therapy of your own with someone completely unconnected with the church. It is an absolute breach of ethics that you are seeing the same counsellor on your own as you are seeing for couples therapy. A more professional counsellor who abides by the Code of Practice has no agenda to save relationships at all costs; they are trained to be neutral and objective with no specific outcome other than to increase emotional wellbeing in the client.
What you are describing in your husband is ambivalence, probably brought on by the affair's (in his view) premature ending. Many emotional affairs lead to physical affairs and as there was some physical contact between them, it is likely that it would have progressed accordingly had you not found out.
The very best remedy for ambivalence is loss, whereas the worst is feeling safe. Right now, your husband feels safe and complacent and he hasn't yet felt any losses. This is a mirage of course because he has lost your trust but at the moment, he hasn't appreciated the ramifications of that and even if he had, losing your trust doesn't pain him as it should.
So in addition to more neutral and professional therapy, I would be inclined to ask him to leave for a while so that you can think about what you want from life.
No other woman is not from our church or any church. Yes this is the first time this has happened in our marriage. No I don't think he's a total shit. He made a big mistake though (which he admits too) and the consequences have been huge. I don't think it necessarily must mean the end of our marriage. We'll see.
Clowns - thanks for your view. Its good to hear other side too.
Will def mention situation to people I trust in the church.
It's a cliche, but he's not sorry about what he did- he's sorry that he got found out, he's sorry that he doesn't get to live out his little fantasy life , he's sorry that he doesn't have the excitement of his sordid affair- he's sorry for himself.
He's not sorry about how he hurt you. He's not sorry that he's wrecked your marriage. And, given that he's supposed to be a Christian and involved in the church, he doesn't appear to be sorry that he's violated his own religious belief system.
He won't give you a sign that he's sorry, because he has absolutely no need to be sorry. He's cosily ensconced in his own house with plenty of home comforts; he knows that his wife doesn't believe in divorce so he doesn't stand to lose anything; his social circle and faith community don't know what he did, so he isn't getting any objective opinions about exactly what he's done wrong. He has free rein to duck out of his emotional commitment to his marriage so that he can mope around the house doing the lovesick puppy act.
You have your faith , but that doesn't mean you have no choices about your own life. I'm so sorry that you are having to put up with this horrible situation.
OP, the reason he doesn't seem sorry enough to you is because he is not sorry.
If he truly were sorry he would not need counselling to deal with his emotions over this woman.
TBH I would be astounded if this was really only an emotional affair.
This might be harsh but you either need to kick him out or accept it and move on. Allowing him to continue with his appalling behaviour and enabling his selfish moping is only prolonging your agony.
and so do I when I read threads like this. OP you deserve so much better than this. Does the OW belong to your church too?
OP, your DH is still wallowing in the affair by going to see a therapist about it. This is totally unfair to you - it's cruel. Either he is committed to building your relationship up again or he is not. The only way your relationship can recover is if he takes full responsibility for the affair and works on fulfilling your emotional needs from this point on. It sounds like he is not doing this.
If you want to rebuild a new Christian marriage then I feel the support of your church will be vital, and I think you need to talk to someone there as LadyPeter says. Don't feel embarrassed - this is his shame not yours. Not telling anyone in your church community is cutting you off from emotional and spiritual support that you both badly need.
I also think the advice that he should move out is sound.
I don't know the full story - all I'm saying is that I would hope that they would be honest with each other, keep at the couple therapy. They've been together 20 years, and in that time, as far as we know, this is the first time something like this has happened - as hard as it is, being honest with each other probably is the key - but I repeat - I only know part of the story.
Well, that would be a misinterpretation
This is madness.
What do you suggest the OP do then?
She's struggling to trust him, still cries often, feels heartbroken.
He is still pining for the OW.
your throwaway comment "well she could just leave" followed by lots of man-pleasing reasons why that would be tremendously unfair to him says very much otherwise
He is sorry but not sorry enough for my liking.
what do you want him to do to satisfy your need ?
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