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Emotional affair, dp found out. Now what?

(139 Posts)
YesIveNameChanged Fri 01-Nov-13 21:23:29

That's basically it to be honest

I've been having an emotional affair for the past few months. So as not to drip feed the EA was with someone I have a history with, but who I'd been NC with for quite some years until recently.

Dp found the messages we had been sending one another and has basically said I'm dead to him and we're over. He's no interested in talking about it, has just said I'm an idiot and a mug. (He's now gone out for a drive)

I have 2 very young dcs with dp. I've lost my financial independence as I only work part time 3 evenings a week so I can be at home for the kids during the day. Dp says he's going to keep the kids, can he do this?

I know I need to see citizens advice to get some info about benefits I can claim, but is there anything I can do this weekend?

I don't think this is fixable between us. I've screwed up massively but I just want to make sure my dc's don't suffer from the fallout.

Lweji Tue 05-Nov-13 17:11:10

I used to have lengthy discussions about this with my ex-MIL.
According to her, she wouldn't have let her husband see the children. Odd, as she only had 4 sons! She was apparently happy for them to be punished by not seeing their own children.

ExH was worse than having cheated on me, and I still encourage DS to have contact with his dad.

fromparistoberlin Tue 05-Nov-13 17:02:50

I was not defending her!!! But I strongly agree that the "moral right and wrongs" of infidelity should not define parental rights thats all

I think its disgusting that many men only get "every other weekend", but I was really agreeing with sparkey and her message (and she was cheated on!)

please dont think I am defending cheaters. but in parallel being a cheat does not take away parental rights

and I dont like how the cheating men get treated on this issue either, I have read a few times "he fucked up the family, no he cant see his kids" its not on really

Lazyjaney Tue 05-Nov-13 16:12:39

"people are human and men and women fuck up and have affairs every day"

Too true.

However, the cheated-on party seldom takes it well, so it's wishful thinking to believe it would happen here.

I can't wait to re-quote quite a few posters' comments from here when next they opine on reverse threads to this. Of course, they will argue the situation is completely different grin

fromparistoberlin Tue 05-Nov-13 11:42:12

i agree with what spakley said, 1000%, sensible woman!

people are human and men and women fuck up and have affairs every day

also OP has not come back, so we are just chatting amongt ourselves now!! hope she sOK

PukingCat Mon 04-Nov-13 17:29:04

I wouldn't take what he is saying at the moment too seriously op. He's just found out that you are having an affair. He'll be devastated, of course he's going to lash out and say hurtful stuff.

Hopefully once the shock wears off a bit you'll be able to talk more reasonably.

I don't think anyone could be blamed for acting horribly in these circumstances. Im sure a lot of women on here who find out they've been cheated on react strongly and say stuff they wouldn't normally as well.

Spirulina Mon 04-Nov-13 17:03:21

Doesn't sound like this 'affair' is over..... Op has previous history with this man too.

And people referring to 'custody'..... It doesn't exist anymore, so makes me wonder if they know what they are actually talking about??

Dahlen Mon 04-Nov-13 16:57:38

There are lots of people out there who make enormous self sacrifices in the event of a split in order to make things as stable as possible for the children. It has nothing to do with self-respect and everything to do with love for the children and a sense of responsibility towards them. Being fair to the children is not always the same thing as fair to the other person in the STBX relationship.

There may be lots of men out there who refuse to pay the mortgage when forced to leave the family home, or who refuse to pay maintenance, etc., but there are also plenty who happily pay move out and pay maintenance because shock they love their children however much they hate their X and often in spite of an affair. shock I refuse to believe that the only men who do this are weak, indecisive losers with no self respect. I'd say they were real men in fact.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 04-Nov-13 16:55:08

Well said, sparkly. The fact that you can sound so fair and clear when you were the "injured" party says an awful lot about you, and all of it good

sparklysilversequins Mon 04-Nov-13 16:44:43

But WHY should the three year old be settled in with Dad as primary carer? Why? To punish the OP for daring to step out of the relationship. That's why.

I was cheated on, my marriage ended because of it. One of his affairs was when I was 8 months pregnant. Yes there was more than one. Numerous in fact.

Never once did I say to him I am keeping the dc, not one time. Because the parental relationship he has with them was irrelevant to the affair. Yes I told him that he'd been a shit for acting in such a way that it was untenable for us all to live together full time, but I didn't feel particularly overwhelmed by it and I didn't see it as the worst possible thing that could happen, because there is more than one way to be a family and I do not personally feel that my children are disadvantaged because we don't all live in the same house. He phones once usually twice a day. Skype is always open here and at his work so my dc speak to him whenever they want to and I am very relaxed about when he comes to see them. They probably speak to him more now than when he lived here.

I simply do not believe that a person behaving badly in a relationship bears any relevance to their role as a parent. It makes them a selfish arse but not a bad parent.

I also think anyone who uses children as a threat in the first instance and then continues to do so probably has abusive tendencies anyway.

I disagree wholeheartedly that a person having an affair has destroyed A Family, it's only the relationship. They cheated on you not your children.

I also think that the majority of the shock and horror of parents splitting is brought on by how the parents handle it, usually with the big dramatic sit down altogether so often demanded here on MN and supposedly the best thing so the dc Know Where They Stand. Bullshit it's so the cheated on partner can have their Poor Me moment. Does any child need to hear that Mummy/Daddy is leaving US for someone else? No they're leaving YOU, the other adult. Every person I know with divorced parents has said that conversation was the absolute worst thing about the split.

Affairs are selfish and shit for the Adults concerned but children below a certain age, certainly in this case don't need to know about it or suffer for it.

I am not coming back to this thread because the OP isn't so its not like its supportive anymore and it's just going round in circles.

fifi669 Mon 04-Nov-13 16:42:16

Anything is going to be a change for the DCs at this point, moving out, not living with their mum, not living with their dad.... It may not be nice to think (esp as mothers we think ourselves invaluable) but children adapt far easier than we give them credit. Give it a couple of weeks and the 3 year old will be settled with its dad as the primary care giver.

Personally I think if you are the wrong doer you leave. You tell DP you'll sort out somewhere to live and when you have, share residency 50:50. You can even have it written as part of a separation agreement. They are his children as much as yours.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 04-Nov-13 16:12:33

Surely completely changing what is actually the norm for the dc just to make a point is wrong ?

The woman here, in this situation, is the main carer. In other situations it may be different. But we are talking about this one

I don't understand why people deliberately go off on tangents and start talking about scenarios that don't even apply to the OP. It's less than helpful, really. Why not use your considerable power of thought and reasoning to help the op work out what is best in this precise situation ?

sparklysilversequins Mon 04-Nov-13 16:06:37

"Just to spite her and keep the children"

Well yes obviously because punishing and shaming her for her EA is by far the most important thing here.

I am reminded of Victorian times when women would lose their children if they left a marriage. Not quite so severe obviously but certainly in the same ball park.

Lweji Mon 04-Nov-13 15:52:40

The proposal that he could have the children during the evenings and she would care for them during most days did make sense.
However, that would mean CSA-wise that she would have to pay maintenance, when she would be doing free childcare. Not fair at all.

Lweji Mon 04-Nov-13 15:50:08

But why should he begin to be the main carer if he's been happy for her to until now? To the point that she works evenings to work around his schedule?

Just to spite her and keep the children?

ItsOkayItsJustMyDeathFucker Mon 04-Nov-13 14:52:09

I completely agree Lazyjaney.

The family dynamics are going to change if they decide to separate and who's to say the father shouldn't be the main carer? Why would that be damaging to the children? The OP hasn't made claims of him being a bad father at all and she hasn't mentioned abuse.

He is their father and is just as capable of raising his children as she is.

HotDog your posts have brought tears to my eyes, how dare you assume that an EA is a "minor indiscresion" (sic) and that "He is being fucking ridiculous actually, and extremely selfish."

I hope you manage to be a bit more sympathetic in RL.

Lazyjaney Mon 04-Nov-13 14:22:49

"I would say exactly the same to a woman!"

Interesting how everyone claims that, and yet reverse threads are always totally different in tone.

JessicaBeatriceFletcher Mon 04-Nov-13 14:14:02

HotDog - Different people react differently. For some people, a one night stand could be forgiven but not something that was emotional. Personally, if I had an OH and I found loads of messages they'd been sending to someone they had history with (presumably ex-lover, ex-partner), I'm afraid either they'd be out on their ear or I'd walk away. Because I believe in trust and once that's gone, I can't get it back.

Yes, that would break up the family unit, but I wouldn't be happy and that's not good for the children.

Branleuse Mon 04-Nov-13 14:08:15

you reckon??

Id be much more upset over an emotional affair than i would over physical sex.

I also dont see why moving out with children is supposedly so damaging to children.

Ive moved with my children several times.

HotDogSlaughter Mon 04-Nov-13 13:58:42

I would say exactly the same to a woman!

An emotional affair with no physicality involved is no cause to leave children and proclaim your partner metaphorically dead.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Mon 04-Nov-13 10:57:18

No matter what fuck ups the grown ups have visited upon themselves the priority in any split is the welfare of the children.

Anything else is punishment of the wrongdoer. How does that help the kids ?

sparklysilversequins Mon 04-Nov-13 10:09:58

So should the main carer leave then and leave the dc as has been said on here?

Lazyjaney Mon 04-Nov-13 10:05:18

"If a couple with children split the children should always stay in the family home and their main carer should always stay with them (unless there's a safety issue)"

IMO no one in the DPs position with an ounce of self respect and love for their kids is going to put up with that outcome without a hell of a fight.

Also IMO, a lot of people on here need to put themselves into the DPs position (and maybe think hes a woman, to see it without bias), think about what they would do, and then re think their advice.

OrmirianResurgam Mon 04-Nov-13 09:44:53

What greensleeves said.

He will calm down. I hope you will be able to talk sensibly. I told my H I was so angry I could kill him. I am guessing he didn't take me seriously. I don't think you should either. But please be sympathetic to his pain.

Greensleeves Mon 04-Nov-13 09:41:25

No he won't get custody of the children just because you were the one who cheated, it doesn't work like that. The children's welfare is paramount and you're their mother, they're very young so the obvious scenario is that you and they stay in the family home. The court won't take your dp's angry hurt feelings into account.

I can understand why he has threatened it though. Because you couldn't control yourself, he stands to lose his home and his children. That sucks. But it's better for the children (probably, I don't know you) so he'll have to lump it.

Tip for the future - finish the relationship you are in before embarking on another one. You're an adult and a parent, you can't just please yourself.

QuintesKabooom Mon 04-Nov-13 09:28:20

He wants to hurt you op, as much as you have hurt him.

His reactions are knee jerk. Yours have been deliberate, and over time.

Give him a break.

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