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Husband re-contacting OW - so hurt - very long, sorry(180 Posts)
Hello, I've NC for this but am a long-time lurker and occasional poster, including about my DH's affair which took place four years ago while I was working temporarily overseas with my company. The support I received at the time was fantastic and assisted me in regaining my emotional sanity after truly despicable behaviour at the hands of H and OW.
The OW used every option to try and destroy me professionally and personally, including making malicious and unfounded complaints to my employer and the police (the latter resulted in her receiving a formal caution) and did the same to my H, after we made the decision to try and rebuild our marriage.
Because of my H's behaviour in the six months after I discovered their affair and before he properly ended it with her, the process of reconciliation has been very challenging and painful as I battled to get over the absolutely dreadful things he said to me about me and my numerous shortcomings in relation to the 'perfect' OW - these ranged across the whole gamut of my looks, my weight, my hair (she has glorious hair - mine is thin and has been a cause of much self-consciousness from a very early age), my lack of sportiness, my poor culinary ability (she has cooked professionally), plus my age - I am 12 years older than her. He now bitterly regrets his cruelty but is has left me with profound emotional scars and my self-confidence about my appearance which was never high anyway, has been decimated.
The situation was complicated by the fact that they worked in the same team as her and it was not until he sought a move of location to a different depot that he seemed able to put the relationship with her behind him and properly focus on us, although her making the numerous allegations she did repeatedly set us back. But he did everything to try and demonstrate his remorse and make clear his determination to seek my forgiveness - NC and blocking her, individual counselling for him and relationship counselling for us, changing the car in which she had given him a regular blow job before he dropped her back home after work, and getting rid of the furniture they had had sex on in our family home during my absence, the job move - which also involved a family house move right across the country (I was fine with this), plus repeatedly and unprompted, expressing his guilt and sorrow. On occasions he has cried about how much he hurt me and our 3 DC.
I have struggled to get over it all and was on antiDs for two years before weening myself off them. I have lived with the niggling fear that he has been going through the motions but reasoned that he could have left if he had really wanted to as she had told her DH she wanted to marry my H and her DH, although devastated, had made it clear to her - and me - that he had no wish to be the consolation prize and would agree to a divorce if my DH did leave me for her. However my H was adamant that it was me he wanted, not her, and said that he knew he had been in the grip of limerence during the affair and for some months after and that the cold turkey approach had been the only solution.
Things have been slowly improving between us but I admit that on occasion my hurt and humiliation can bubble up but I always apologise if I lose it and he responds by apologising too for having given me cause to react that way
- I can honestly say that she was no longer of any great interest to me and I could even view the entire thing in a fairly objective, almost neutral, manner most (not all!) of the time.
However 4 weeks ago I was woken by a Skype call in the middle of the night. I thought it might be one of my colleagues currently working overseas but was horrified to see it was a missed call from the OW. I immediately woke my H with a 'why the fuck is xxxxxx skypeing me?' - to my devastation he immediately told me everything - showing me the emails between them and the whatsapp conversation. He had re-contacted her at the beginning of the year after we had a difficult Christmas following the sudden and totally unexpected death of his DM, and after being told by his company that the promotion he had long expected was now never going to happen. He said he felt I had been 'fairly supportive' about both events (very unfair particularly about his DM as I arranged the funeral from start to finish, sorted out the money, her small estate etc etc because he was in pieces and his 2 sisters were estranged from their mum) - but he knew that he would get 'more sympathy' from her as she has long made it clear via third parties that she still wants him. There was no resumption of their sexual relationship although in her messages she begged to have sex with him (he refuses in his replies, saying that he could not betray me or the children again in that way), but there is very much an emotional reconnection.
He ended it immediately that day - telephoned her husband to apologise - they had decided to reconcile for the sake of their young DC after my H made it clear after their first affair that he wanted to remain in our marriage. He also sent her an email apologising for getting her hopes up again for purely selfish and egocentric reasons. He swears that he had 'finally' grown up and truly realised how dreadful both the original affair and now this revisiting their emotional affair has been and what a 'complete fool' he has been. He said he had been self-pitying, pathetic and wanted the assurance that he could still have a beautiful woman risk everything in order to be with him. I have no doubt that the OW skyped me in order to provoke a reaction in both him and me but frankly I don't care about her motives.
But despite all that he has now done I feel dead inside. I can not comprehend that he resumed an affair with a woman who had done so much very real damage to both of us! Nor that he wilfully set aside all the shit and hard work we have endured individually and as a couple to really start to rebuild our marriage. I have told him that if he truly loves her I will not stand in their way but he has begged for forgiveness and is adamant that it was a lapse driven by external factors. But when I ask him how long it would have continued had the OW not contacted me, he just says that it would have 'fizzled out' because he had realised that he had 're-opened Pandora's Box' and was 'desperate' to close it again but feared that if he did so too abruptly then based on her past actions, she would wreak havoc again. Certainly the exchanges I have seen between them are unbalanced in the sense that she repeatedly begs for more, to plan for a future together, for sex, while his are very non-committal and almost like an exchange with a close friend rather than a lover. And he does mostly talk about his distress over the death of his DM and how frustrated he is professionally. Unlike their last relationship he writes nothing derogatory about me but does talk about his pride in my professional achievements. But even the latter disgusts me as how DARE he discuss me in any way with her!
I still love him but at the moment I despise him. He did what he knew I feared most in terms of our relationship. He has changed since this latest revelation and seems genuinely committed to gaining my forgiveness. But where will I ever find peace of mind now? Will the next life crisis see him running back to her?? He says not and that he has finally 'woken up'.
I am so very sorry for the length of this but if there is anyone out there who has experienced a similar scenario I would love to hear what the outcome was. Please don't flame me wise mumsnetters for having believed him when he said it was over for good the first time around..
You will never be free of this. He loves the attention too much to give it up. His default mode when times are hard is to go seeking that attention that makes him feel better. It's not about how supportive you are, it's an ego trip for him. Now she has begged him to go back to her he is happy and can close that door again. For now.
Sorry op it truly sounds awful what you're going through honestly the cruel way he carried out the affair, you should have dumped him and walked away right then. Someone who loves you and is committed to you wouldn't hurt you this way. Someone who results in you ending up on AD does not deserve you as he clearly proved now.
The horrific hurt that he caused you and your kids the first time around was obviously not enough for him because it didn't stop him this time. You are worth so much more than this.
Oh goodness your pain is palpable. You know exactly what you will have to do to restore some peace to your life, I'm so sorry he has forced the decision on you.
There will be loads of posters coming along with excellent advice soon, but your anguish just leapt out at me.
What an absolutely miserable apology for a man he has turned out to be.
I didn't want to read and run but I don't have any wise words for you apart from take your time to deal with how you feel before you consider his feelings and make your own decisions about how you cope with it. Many more MN's will be along with advise and coping strategies soon.
The saying that comes to mind is "Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice...." :'(
I'm afraid you can never trust him again now Dancing and if you stay with him, it might be a year or two or ten down the road, but when the going gets rough - as it inevitably does in life, he will contact her again and your life will be in turmoil once again. I am sorry to say this, as divorce should always be the last option, but in your case, for the above reasons, realise that it is possible to love someone and still recognise and act on the fact that they are toxic to your life. He may be contrite, but he is a stupid stupid man and you deserve better.
Love yourself enough to kiss this one goodbye. Otherwise, you WILL be back here again in time, retelling the same tale of NC, him dealing with stress, and back at it, breaking your heart all over again. He has no self-control.
And in answer to your question "Where will I ever find peace of mind again" - the answer is you will, - either on your own or eventually with someone else, but you never will with him. It is gone and it ain't coming back. Not this time. Sorry. xx
How awful, I'm so so sorry.
What do you want to do?
I am sorry.
Pp are right, you will never be free of this.
I was in a similar situation. Truly horrific. My (now) ex had a long affair with a young woman (he was younger than me) and they both behaved so badly towards me in various ways, callous ways, that I don't think I could ever even write it all down on this site.
The upshot was that I took him back. He did do a 'bit' of reparation, but broadly, after a long time, he thought I should 'get over it'.
More fool me, I tried to, and often succeeded, pushing the betrayal away and getting on with life etc.
However, the trust was gone. My feelings changed and became set in stone. We split up thank god, almost two years ago, but I had lingered on in the relationship for another NINE years after the affair had ended. More fool me.
I recognise what you say about despising him. He is a weak weak man, he will never change imo, and you will forever be looking over your shoulder.
Don't be me. Don't waste years of your life making do and taking one day at a time. Get rid of him and breathe the free air.
Am in floods of tears - you have been so kind. He blames his MH issues (he is seeing a counsellor for work-related stress) but said today that it has been all about my hurt over the last four years and that he felt like a criminal who could never be forgiven. This is such self-serving bollocks and I am distraught that he could rewrite history in this way. I feel beyond pain and do not know if I could keep going were it not for my DCs who need me.
Hi Dancing I'm so sorry your going through this again.
A couple of things jump out of your posts about your dh.
The ow and I am by no means backing her up, for all of her supposed accomplishments sounds vulnerable and he's using that. I reckon she has real issues, and he has kicked the hornets nest and then written to apologise to it. Her stalking of you and him
And her subsequent police warning, are not the products of a fully sound mind. Remember fatal attraction with Glenn Close?
For all your accomplishments you admit as well you have low self esteem going back years, and yet again this guy chose to play on those fears and bring you down to your lowest ebb. He insulted you as a human being a woman his wife and worse of all the mother to his kids. He has 3 people effectively dancing to his tune her you and her cuckhold dh.
Should you decide to try and work through this, you will be giving him your full permission to do as he chooses, in effect you're already doing that.
He's learnt no lessons had no consequences did she lose her job? Did he ? You moved across the country but took the problem with you, he's the problem
It's about time he learnt the hard way because you already have my lovely
Look, you bent over backwards to help him after his Mum died and it still wasn't enough.
When the chips are down, he doesn't want support, he wants worship. Thats very much his psychological issue.
But it means you'll always have the fear. Its no way to live. None.
Unless you want to spend the next few years living in a Jeremy Kyle bubble, I'd urge you to get rid of this scum, I'm afraid he has zero respect for you and your marriage, is it not about time you actually put yourself first and sought some peace and happiness, I've no doubt he has been stringing the two of you along from the start.
Time to go get financially clued up and make your plans to get rid of this crap.
Peppermint is right OP.
Now is the time to cut him loose.
He lost his mum and turned to her. If she's his go too person when things get tough, get tough with him and show him the door.
These two deserve each other...long flowing locks and, cordon blue cookery and all.
He's not worth one more of your tears or losing one more nights sleep over!
Dear Dancing, I really wish I had done something sooner. I know this might seem a bit premature to you in your fragile state, but please consider seeing a solicitor. Make it real to a third party-confide in a good friend, anything like that.
My ex used to go on about never being 'forgiven' properly by me, so that he could have a little pity party of his own. You are right, it's self serving, self absorbed shite. Don't tolerate it.
He got in touch with her again cos he was sick of feeling like the bad guy and knew she (and I agree she has a lot of emotional issues) would be looking at him all starry eyed and full of desperation. He wants to be adored.
Homestly, let her have him. He's too exhausting to be with for the rest of your life.
Oh, and history will be continually rewritten with this man, until you find that you are in the wrong, and he is the victim of your inability to forgive.
I wish I had a penny for every crocodile tear my exh cried.
Don't let him sucker you in Op like I let mine do.
Turn his volume down, view his actions with no sound turned on.
That's the only way to deal with him. He's trying to make you feel sorry for him.
If these two get together and I hope they do for your sake I guarantee they won't last long.
Every cheater needs a bunny boiler and sounds like he's got his.
I too thought of fatal attraction.
Wow, your DH is a total pro at the contrition, isn't he? It's a shame that it's clearly just an act and that he doesn't really take on board any of it (otherwise why on earth would he have done this a second time, knowing what you've already been through)? Begging and crying and beating yourself up emotionally don't mean anything if there isn't a genuine sense of guilt and a genuine attempt at reform. (Saying 'no' to sex is not enough!)
I think, reading between the lines of your post (perhaps in a way that you yourself haven't yet done), you already know that you can't get beyond this. You've thrown everything at the reconciliation - you've tried your very hardest - and you've been dragged right back into the middle of the same dynamic. I don't underestimate for a second how tough life has been for you trying to rebuild, or what a blow this is. I suspect it feels even worse this time around in some ways because your hope is flatlining.
I think the fact that you have been so thoroughly undermined by his behaviour must make it very hard for you to see this, or to trust your own intuition though.
I wanted to say one thing: while separation might sound like a nightmare, and will hurt like hell at first, you will get through it and it will open for you a prospect on a future that is not dogged by the misery of his inconstancy and rejection. You WILL rebuild your confidence. You WILL meet new people. Life WILL go on and you WILL get happier with time. Staying might seem superficially more difficult, but it actually involves a world of pain and mistrust that will be more or less unending. You deserve better.
Mine was cruel as well. Before I even knew my piece of doo doo was seeing another woman he told me I was starting to go about around the eyes.
I'm ten years older than her.
Why do they have to turn so nasty. Why can't they just man up. Admit they have found somewhere else to put their willies and they want a divorce.
( my eyes can't be that wrinkly op because the new man I met 7 years ago and am marying later this year either likes them as they are or is too blind too notice!)
So much great advice here. I'm shocked at how despicably your H and OW have behaved towards you and recontacting her (and trying to blame it on you) just confirms that he is still putting himself first.
What jumps out at me is he is still trying to blame you, to make things your fault, to rewrite history. I don't think there will ever be enough support available from one person to make him happy. When my ex cheated (long affair, "in love" with the OW etc etc), I found it really helped to write a list of all the bad he had done, then a list of what he'd done to make things better. Just reading the list of bad stuff clarified for me 100% that I could never give a person who had done those things to me another go. And the things on the "good" list were just nothing in comparison. There was just no way I could go forward with him - I wouldn't treat my worst enemy how he treated me - it made the decision clear. And whenever I wavered, all I had to do was read the list and it confirmed I was making the right choice. You can get over him and be free to move on with your children and your life will be happier eventually - it takes a while but 2.5 years on I'm happier than I've ever been.
My DS was tiny when I left so I know that side will be different for you but your children will manage, what they need is for you to be stable and OK and I don't think the environment you're in with your H can ever provide that now.
Dancing I have no great advice but I'm so sorry this has happened to you again. I understand a little.
I made the decision to separate from my dh on Sunday 2 months on from finding out about an affair. I feel sad but overwhelmingly relieved that I can begin to move on and concentrate on myself and the children without the paranoia, self doubt and anger. The chance is there for you to do it too.
Jesus, what a shit he is. You sound utterly amazing op - you deserve so much more than he is clearly capable of.
It's time to end this, you can't trust him.
Oh OP, I'm so sorry you are suffering like this. There are far wiser posters here than myself but I can only add
This is not love!!!
When you love someone you do not treat them like this.
You deserve and are worthy of so much more.
but said today that it has been all about my hurt over the last four years and that he felt like a criminal who could never be forgiven
Bloody hell that made me angry to read. He has absolutely no right to play the victim in any way. Every step of his affair was all about him and his needs, so to resent you for your very justified hurt is utter bollocks.
Time for things to be all about you, OP. Time to put your happiness and peace of mind first.
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