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More upset by 'The Script' than the infidelity. Anyone else?

(64 Posts)
muddyboots Sun 17-Feb-13 00:50:22

This has the makings of a very long post so I'll try and be as brief as possible and avoid giving too much away about my RL self.

We have been together 12 years, married for 8 and have 3 DCs under 5.

Found out a couple of months ago that my DH had had a 13 month long affair. It ended 'physically' in the summer but they have stayed in very regular touch through daiily texts, favours etc.

At the same time, I discovered that a week after our DC3 was born he had joined a website and had been sexting other women and meeting a couple of them for sex.

All bad enough....but the thing that I am most pissed off about is the utter load of crap he has spun me since their affair ended!

We were getting along well and had just come back from a nice holiday, I was 6 months pregnant with a planned for baby when suddenly overnight he appeared to have some sort of breakdown....couldn't sleep or relax and then started with the old "Wasn't sure if he loved me, he wasn't happy, I was obsessed with the children, showed him no love or care, I didn't make any effort for him, he hated our house, the village where we live, wanted me to give up work as it was my shift work making him so unhappy (I am the main breadwinner)."

We had counselling which just didn't seem to help with any of our apparent problems(!) I just couldn't recognise the marriage that he was talking about, but I tried really hard to take on board what he was saying and we had regular date nights, let the children sleep over at relatives a bit more, stopped doing anything 'housework' related after DCs in bed (like folding laundry, washing up) as apparently I was obsessed with housework.

Meanwhile, his drinking escalated to 2 bottles of wine per night + and he would either get so drunk that he would pass-out on the sofa or he would pick an argument. Thankfully it was usually the former.

One night, I saw him drunkenly put his password into his phone and I discovered everything. I threw him out a couple of days later (once I'd collected the evidence) but he has pulled the "It's my house too, you can't throw me out" line so now we are living together as 'co-parents' with seperate bedrooms.

Since then he has changed. Suddenly, he is really attentive, adores our new baby, does his share of household tasks, massively interested in everything I have to say, is having psychotherapy, is open with his phone and laptop...

Although I am incredibly hurt by the affairs and the physical relations, I feel that I could possibly forgive him. I had a 6 week long affair 6 years ago (no sex) so I can appreciate how a friendship can turn into something inappropriate that is difficult to end. But I am really struggling to get over the 'script' that he has spun to me over the summer/autumn especially as it has coincided with the birth of our lovely baby.

So, (and thanks for sticking with me this far, I have left a lot out) anyone ever had any similar feelings? I feel really daft for considering forgiving the infidelity but not the emotional abuse. Most of my friends and family seem caught up on his actions rather than his words but this is what is hurting me the most.

Selba Sun 17-Feb-13 01:20:26

you sound as if you have rationalised everything in your head. You understand why he was unfaithful. You are not daft for considering forgiving him. It's very gracious of you.

4 things concern me
1) what is he doing while you are the main breadwinner?
2) what is he doing while you are doing the housework after you come home at night from working?
3) DO you love him and does he love you?
4) has he stopped the drinking excessively?

izzyizin Sun 17-Feb-13 02:39:26

'The Script' is an insult to your intelligence, isn't it? And made worse by the fact that you fell for it and turned yourself inside out to put right all the faults he claimed were inherent in your marriage - but which he'd only voiced since he'd become intent on getting his leg over with ow.

Forgiving him for having it off with ow who were foolish or desperate enough to believe his lies is one thing. Forgiving him for having lied to you and, more especially, coming out with his bullshit before, during, and after the time you gave birth to his planned 3rd dc, is another ballgame entirely.

I very much doubt I'd be able to forgive such colossal disrespect and I wish you well in any attempts you make to reach some accomodation with his betrayal whereby you can continue to stay married to him.

tallwivglasses Sun 17-Feb-13 03:05:17

Daily texts and favours? Is that still going on? Are you okay with that? He sounds a bit of a nob to me.

izzyizin Sun 17-Feb-13 03:22:04

I somehow missed the 13month long affair confused

Aw jeez, what would be the point of trying to get over either his infidelity or his lies when he's going to do it again? And he will, honey.

muddyboots Sun 17-Feb-13 07:18:02

Thanks for all your overnight replies

Selba to be fair to him, (hollow laugh) I have a significantly higher salary but we both work full time. (although I'm currently on Mat. leave) I work long shifts so have more daytime time at home so that is when most of the housework gets done. His job is 9-5. He's only on a temporary contract.

He says he loves me, but when I read through his phone I read a lengthy conversation between himself and a friend about how the thought of spending the rest of his life with me was unbearable. He now says he was an alcoholic and in a 'bad place' and he just loves me.

I think I still love him although I'm not really sure who he is anymore.

The excessive drinking has stopped and now he leaps out of the chair whenever I need a drink or we've finished a meal.

Thanks izzyizin, that is how I feel 'insult to my intelligence' . I am so angry and disappointed with myself for believing it.

As far as I know tall all contact has stopped. The OW is in a new relationship which is one of the reasons it ended although I'm pretty certain that her now fiance was not aware that for the first 4 months of their relationship she was still texting her ex lover every day!

At the moment we are not 'working' on our marriage, just living together in a state of limbo whilst he has his psychotherapy and tries to work out why he has done this. I do say to him "It's nothing to do with me now, you do what you like as long as you don't involve me or the kids" so he could be contacting anyone. He says he isn't.

When we argue he doesn't seem to realise that its his words that have hurt me the most.

BesameBesame Sun 17-Feb-13 08:55:46

IMO words ARE actions.

Is it possible for you to talk with someone in RL so you can work out whether you want to stay married to him? I wonder if the dynamic hasn't actually changed OP - it's still all about HIM even though the Script is designed to make you think it's all about you.

So whilst he's on this journey of psychotherapy to work HIMSELF out, I would suggest you do the same. Who knows what might come of it, but something will.

EllieCook Sun 17-Feb-13 09:04:23

I don't think there are any easy answers to this, it's a tough situation. This is his "script" but it doesn't have to be yours. I agree with BesameBesame, it might be good to find someone to help you work out for yourself what you want.

You have the right to live with dignity and respect.

AThingInYourLife Sun 17-Feb-13 09:07:41

He had a girlfriend for well over a year and also had casual sex hook ups?

And some of this happened while you were pregnant?

He put your health at risk as well as the baby you were carrying.

It's not just feelings for a friend turned into an affair, is it?

He treated you like a piece of shit on his shoe for a good third if your marriage.

Now his girlfriend has dumped him he's realised which side his bread is buttered.

It's very much in his interests to get you back on side.

I don't this his affected contrition is worth a lot.

If he were genuinely as appalled and remorseful as he should be he would not have moved back into your home.

He's trying to browbeat you into taking him back.

This is not what sorry looks like.

Xales Sun 17-Feb-13 09:12:51

If he was an alcoholic he needs to bottle his ability to give it up with a snap of his fingers and sell it. He will make a fortune.

He is either still an alcoholic or never really was.

What he means is he was drinking as he had been dumped and was sad.

Nothing to do with you and how you treated him at all.

Have you faced that if she hadn't dumped his arse for another the affair may still be on going and it is easier to stay with you, the kids, your house wife skills and your money than to live in a bed sit alone?

Xales Sun 17-Feb-13 09:14:03

Oh and please think about a trip to an STI clinic to make sure you didn't CD catch anything.

Chavvytastic Sun 17-Feb-13 09:45:48

Hi I am so sorry you are going through this.

I have been through similarish back in 2008. H had an affair and met up with, chatted and had sex with various women he had met on the internet through meet for sex/casual liason websites. It had gone on for a few years.

The hardest thing for me was the amount of time it had gone on the hourly, daily, weekly realisation in my mind that whilst I was doing xyz as a mum and a wife he was out upto to no good. With those realisations comes the realisation of the lies and crap he had spun me.

My H did not make out he was having a breakdown but there were plenty of lies etc. He used to get me rushing around and changing the evening/tea time routine because he had to go back out to work in the evening, when in reality he was in a rush to drive an hour or so away to meet up with his lover or sex liason. It hurts and its humiliating.

For some reason (lots really) I chose to forgive and we have tried to move on. We have had some good times but the damage is done. The bottom line is I dont trust him. Tbh, things are pretty damn shite at the moment and there is now a lot of resent and that resentment has been building over the last few years.

Others may be able to work through a mess like this. We have tried but I have realised just this week (yes years later) that its never going back to how it was and that actually he must have really resented and hated me to be able to lie and do what he did - again and again and again over such a loing period of time.

If I could turn the clock back to the day I discovered this sham in 2008 I would do things differently. I would leave because there has been more angst and downs than ups in the past 5 years. If I had left him then the kids would have been younger and probably dealt with it better than if I do now they are teens. I, 5 years on would have moved on from all this crap instead of things still randomly springing into my head( I still get lightbulb moments of OMG so the day we were at Xs birthday picnic, he very probably lied about the "job" he had been called out to). I would be over the trauma of splitting up and setting up a new life and could even be happy whether that be single or with someone. Instead, I am still here mulling over the same crap. The lies more than the sex still get to me.

Sorry to be so down on this for you, others may be able to tell you they have come through the other side, but for me I live with regret.

fiventhree Sun 17-Feb-13 10:07:09

OP I feel a bit like you too and sometimes think I should have chucked him out. It's taken me a long time to realise that those MNers who tell you to get them to leave so you can think straight are right .

Mine was cyber sexing for 5 and a half years at least. He had to be practically thrown out in the end for him to admit it, and that was after a month at Relate. I have always had a feeling that I don't have the full story, but he insists I have.

That's 15 months ago now, and although he has made some efforts to change, he really has , there is still a fair amount of the old selfishness and lack of consideration there, coupled with his very problematic defensiveness if I raise an issue.

I don't think we are as happy as we should be, and I am over 50 with teens.

If I were younger and so were the kids I think I would make the break.

fiventhree Sun 17-Feb-13 10:11:26

And sadly because it went on so long I also have the lightbulb moments. Although because of the timeframe involved I just have to remind myself that there must have been so many lies, false info and blaming of me that the individual ones hardly matter.

badinage Sun 17-Feb-13 12:05:58

What's actually happening now? Are you separated but living in the same house?

If so, the only advice I can give you is to bring that to an end as quickly as possible. He can then go and 'find himself' in his own time and use his own money.

For this to have ever merited forgiveness, he should have moved out when you asked. All you are seeing now is someone who got dumped but who had nowhere else to go and nobody to go to.

In your shoes, I would be beyond furious that I'd been gaslighted this badly for so long and conned into spending time and money on counselling that was doomed to fail. But I genuinely wouldn't feel angry with myself at falling for any of it, because that would involve me being angry at a positive - the trust that's the bedrock of any successful marriage. Plus, your husband is obviously a convincing liar if he managed to fool a counsellor who must be used to seeing people in affairs and lying to their partners.

Thank fuck you didn't give up work.

Abitwobblynow Sun 17-Feb-13 14:46:38

Yes, this is normal.

The thing about the script is that it is about dishonesty, secretiveness and lies.

It is THIS that that ruptures the most fundamental aspect of a relationship, because a relationship is about trust and the assumption of 'knowing'.

This is why lies, secrets and the Script are so upsetting.

Abitwobblynow Sun 17-Feb-13 14:50:53

I am with you 5.

Sometimes, all the options are shit aren't they. I got sent a lovely thing on FB:
If someone treats you like crap, there is something wrong with them, not you.
Normal human beings don't go around destroying people!

Abitwobblynow Sun 17-Feb-13 14:52:29


normal people don't go around destroying other human beings!

garlicbreeze Sun 17-Feb-13 15:28:32

Me, too, and it's why I'm so much more hard-line nowadays. IME most women (not sure if there is a genuine difference here for men?) who've been through it will agree it's the lies that do the real damage. Clearly it wouldn't be easy to deal with an immediate confession, but you would know what was happening. When you find your partner's been cheating on you systematically, you have searing evidence that he was prepared to ignore any thoughts or feelings of yours while keeping you on the back burner. That's not what we go into relationships for.

Once I know somebody is a liar with near-total contempt for me as a human and as their partner, I can't un-know it. Trying to live through it (I did, too often and for too long) makes you an accomplice in your own abuse. Either you see it all clearly, in which case your relationship is dead, or you join in with at least some of the scripted 'excuses'. This makes you degrade your own worth sad

If I could turn the clock back to the day I discovered this sham I would do things differently. I would leave.

Me, too. Nobody who abuses my trust and love has any further place in my life.

3mum Sun 17-Feb-13 19:08:48

garlic "trying to live through it makes you an accomplice in your own abuse".

God, so true! I struggled for months to reanimate my marriage after finding that STBXH was cheating until it dawned on me that I was the only one trying and that STBXH was still sneaking off to see the OW behind my back all the time. I remember the exact point at which I thought "This is the end, he is just abusing me".

I almost brought myself to a nervous breakdown trying to make something which was already broken work again. With hindsight I could have saved myself so much pain and so much recovery time by chucking him out when I first found out about it.

ImperialBlether Sun 17-Feb-13 20:20:04

Garlic, you are absolutely right. It's one of those light bulb moments, isn't it? I think most people accept that infidelity can happen. Through a long relationship there will be times when we feel unloved and tempted by someone new. We've seen it on tv, amongst our friends, in novels, even if we've never been tempted ourselves.

What I found the hardest was the fact that I realised I didn't know my own past. All those nights where I thought he was in one place and he was really in another. All those things he'd said that I thought were his ideas, that had been bounced off another. I truly felt like I was going mad. I didn't know myself. I didn't know him. I didn't know what was true and what was a lie.

And then you try to stay together, to get past it, but you can't. You just can't. I had huge chunks of my own life that were strange to me. Learning about them made me sick and yet I wanted to know.

Arrgh it doesn't do me any good to think of it now. I wish to fuck I'd had MN then. My life would be different now, I know that.

muddyboots Sun 17-Feb-13 20:50:22

Thanks so much for all your replies, especially those who have shared their own painful experiences. It's given me a lot to think about.

If he had ended the relationship, given himself a kick up the bum and then thrown everything into our relationship and our family then I would probably be working towards forgiving him by now.

Yes, badinage we are still in the same house and as long as we stick to safe subjects - the kids, the news etc. then we actually get along really well. I have quite low expectations of him now so he can't upset me anymore and I don't bother trying to please him or respond to his sulks.

I'm still on Mat leave and our baby is still fully breastfed so my DH moving out would make contact with our baby difficult.

He had apparently told the counsellor about the affair when he made the first appointment! But obviously hadn't mentioned that he was still in touch with his OW.

Don't worry xales a trip to the clinic was first on his 'to do list'! He wasn't using any contraception with her - resulting in a trip to the abortion clinic for her around the same time we decided to start ttc our 3rd last summer.

We've had a tough day today. I think as a result of reading your responses! I have made some bitchy and spiteful comments towards him. He has been sulking and has asked "What have I actually done to upset you this year? I am trying my best to be a good husband" and has accused me of trying to split up the family.

I wish I could get over this. I can't stand the thought of not seeing my DCs everyday (even when I work 12 hour shifts I get to see them asleep) but I don't want to be stuck with these same feelings in 5 years time either.

ImperialBlether Sun 17-Feb-13 21:03:57

Is he still in contact with her, do you know?

izzyizin Sun 17-Feb-13 21:09:11

What have I actually done to upset you this year?

Ffs!! The year's only weeks old and I would have thought that any epiphany moment he may have had would have been enough to tell him that simply having to look at his lying cheating face would be more than sufficient to upset you.


ImperialBlether Sun 17-Feb-13 21:11:02

He just doesn't get it, does he? He's living in his own world, probably feeling sorry for himself because he had to give up the OW "when it wasn't hurting anyone else."

A kind of "You think you're upset? What about me!"

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