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Telling others about H's affair

(4 Posts)
Runlolarun Sat 03-Sep-11 06:49:53

I have just come off antidepressants, I feel great and one of the effects is that I am finally reaching out to people and creating a much needed life for myself! The history is that my H had an affair with a work colleague, then we all moved across the world, then I found out and my whole world fell apart! I am doing so well now, I am making friends, doing classes and have even found a part time job. The question I would like to ask is that how much do other affair 'survivors' reveal? I have always been a very open person and this stage in my life has unfortunately changed me and at the moment is at the forefront of what I feel defines me, (ie, a Survivor and a fighter) however it is a bad idea to tell new people isn't it? I don't want to be seen as a victim, or that 'come fly with me character' smile I just feel so proud of myself for coming through this terrible terrible time, intact and strong.

mathanxiety Sat 03-Sep-11 07:10:35

The only people I told were very close neighbours and one woman from the school community whom I have known for years and who knows 'everyone'. I told her because she is a very respected member of the school community and I figured if exH started spreading any mistruths about me she would hear about it and counter. My close neighbours -- it seemed natural to tell them. I was also thousands of miles from 'home' when it all happened and had no family close by at all for support. I don't launch in and tell people upon first acquaintance anything at all about my personal circumstances. I assume if I get to know them well they may want to know and will ask. I would really only tell people if we were to get friendly enough for them to feel comfortable asking. Otherwise it's a bit like going around wearing your heart on your sleeve.

I met a woman once or twice many years ago who was dumped a few months after emigrating and she poured out all her troubles to me, almost a blow by blow account of how it had all happened. It was all a bit much and I found it offputting tbh, but I am generally a bit on the reserved side.

No matter how open you are, I would really consider getting to know people a bit before telling them what happened. You never really know what people are going through themselves on any given day, or what their own background may be. You may find yourself disappointed that someone you confide in may seem nonplussed or unmoved, depending on whether that person is naturally empathetic or otherwise. Hate to say it, but don't assume people would be all that interested. It is horrible to say too, but some people shy away from a woman whose marriage has disintegrated, as if there's a contagion to it. Plus, do you want to go through life being thought of as a victim of someone else as opposed to a woman who is great at [name your skill or interest]? If the matter is occupying your mind a lot, best to find a counsellor.

Be proud. It is such a horrible, horrible thing to happen, and well done for getting through it so well.

Runlolarun Sat 03-Sep-11 07:28:36

Thank you so much, you basically said all I needed to hear. I do wear my heart on my sleeve, always have. I think the reason I had for telling people is that I have been an awful hermit since coming here ( for obvious reasons) and it is so good to finally be coming out and shaking off this debilitating depression. I sometimes think I should explain myself. People didn't give up on me and I am truly grateful to them for that. I also want to shout from the rooftops how bloody strong I am and have been, but think I will just be quietly confident with that one. smile

lazarusb Sat 03-Sep-11 11:33:41

Quiet confidence shines through every time. smile Don't give others the chance to (mis)define you by your horrible experience. You have come through strong and happy, all the best for your future.

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