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How to move forward

(18 Posts)
Pandora85 Sun 27-Nov-16 10:27:16

I need some advice about what the best next steps are to help bring my marriage back from the brink.
History is.....
Just over a year ago dh slept in the same bed with another woman. No sex but I expect spooning and possibly inappropriate touching. We are slowly moving past it but it's been hard.
To top it off dh then lost his job (no fault of his) but it has taken a year for him to get something else. He was not as proactive as he should have been and didn't do as much at home as he could have considering he was not working.
Most people have told me they would have kicked him out long ago just to get him off his backside and working and let him home once he had put some effort in. That's just not me and in hindsight I should have been tougher and not let him get away with what happened.
The past few months have been hard. It's pushed me to the limit and it's also had an impact on dh and dd (who is almost 3) not surprisingly.

He is now working which is good but I find I am increasingly frustrated with some of his behaviour. Because of the hours we work its all hands on deck for dd and chores and the dog. It just feels like I run around like an idiot and he doesn't.
DD is being difficult at the moment and we are approaching it in different ways. Several times dh has shouted at her and this morning he was quite forcefully pulling her t-shirt over her head (after shouting at her)
Yes she's a pickle at the moment but it's her age. I don't think it ever warrants shouting and we need to stay calm around her and save the stress until we are away from her so it doesn't impact on her. He just seems incapable of that at the moment and it's annoying me.
He loves dd and I can see she loves him but day in day out I am never sure if our marriage can survive and I want it to.

I feel the past year or so has tested us and I am proud we are still standing but only just. We need to find ways to move forward and most past what has happened and I am struggling what to do to achieve this.

Any ideas?

BumDNC Sun 27-Nov-16 10:51:43

What is DH doing to move things forward with you? This sounds like you are doing all the work and he's just letting you pick up the slack. How sorry is he for his indiscretion? Only a year ago he should be putting everything he has into the family he nearly lost, and it doesn't sound like he is. Are you sure that he's still invested in this marriage - if it wasn't for your hard work trying to keep it all together? He doesn't sound like someone who really is, as for DD, his poor parenting of her (shouting) is something you need to address quite quickly because it will have an impact on her - if he's feeling stressed out he needs to address that away from her

stumblymonkey Sun 27-Nov-16 10:59:01

Can you go to Relate for some counselling?

People think of this as something couples do before they break up but that's not the case. I know couples who've been to work through issues with no intent of separating and they're still together several years later.

Have you spoken to your DH honestly about how you feel and, if so, how did he react?

Pandora85 Sun 27-Nov-16 12:27:25

I'd like to go to counselling as we have some underlying issues that I feel we have ignored. Problem is the money (after a year of 1 salary) we need to recoop any loses financially.
Another thing is he really isn't keen on speaking to a counsellor and I don't know how to show him its the right step.
I wonder if it's because he knows deep down that I am unlikely to leave him as thats just not me. I proved that when I didn't punish him or anything after his indiscretion last year.

BumDNC Sun 27-Nov-16 15:31:46

I think you seem to be answering your own question that there doesn't seem to be much incentive for him to make things better as there is no consequence even to bad behaviour. It isn't about punishing him but he can't just carry on like it didn't happen and not make the effort in your marriage. Have you told him how you feel?

Pandora85 Sun 27-Nov-16 22:13:07

I think I've told him hundreds of times. I've spoken to him, written things down. I think I've done it all. I honestly worry that I've made him this way. I'm quite critical of myself and I fear of him too. Maybe I criticise so much that he's stopped bothering.
I do wish that after the indiscretion he had gone "all out" to save us.
I worry that a lot of it is my own doing but I want to talk professionally to fix it I think. I feel that we talk and resolve nothing and need someone to provide perspective.
I am very aware that it is not one sided and I am at fault too (I am sure of it) but I feel like I have taken all the weight of our relationship sometimes. Maybe my view is skewed and he is no different to any other partner.

BumDNC Sun 27-Nov-16 22:17:38

So you have taken all the blame?
This is so sad to read, you don't value yourself. I think you need to learn to value you, because he doesn't either. Go to counselling alone for sure. You don't need him to work on you, for you. I think your perception of this is all messed up. I can't see how what he did would be your fault at all - he chose to then he is choosing not to make an effort.

There is always blame on both sides but no one deserves being treated like crap for trying to keep their family together, although by being the blame sponge he is getting away with being a crappy husband.

What do you fear?

Pandora85 Sun 27-Nov-16 22:48:34

I fear hurting him. I don't like making people upset or feeling bad.
I also fear this marriage ending because we can't solve the issues we have.
There are times when i feel lucky and realise that I should focus on all the positives and other times when I wonder what I did to deserve the past year and I can't see anything but negatives.

BumDNC Sun 27-Nov-16 22:53:18

Your fear of hurting him is hurting you though. He's not more important than you. You are important. It's good to look at the good things as well but it really sounds like you have disconnected. If he isn't willing to go to counselling then you certainly should go alone

EmNetta Sun 27-Nov-16 23:03:42

Another one here believing that counselling can help a great deal for one person - and if you make a start, it's likely he'll decide to go later. You must be exhausted; do get help.

Pandora85 Mon 28-Nov-16 13:21:37

I will start saving for some sessions. After a year with one salary money is beyond tight so I can't afford anything right now but I'll start saving as it's important that we find a resolution to everything.
I also spoke to him last night and told him that I was unhappy with his behaviour towards dd and he took it on board and hopefully he will improve in that sense.

category12 Mon 28-Nov-16 13:43:30


How does someone end up in bed with someone and it is just an 'indiscretion'? There must have been a lead up to this event, she didn't just materialise in his arms. And you have swallowed down this sleeping with someone else and inappropriate touching, all without "punishing" him? And you don't feel he has gone all out to save the marriage. Honestly I think you need to revisit this and actually deal with it properly.

Happybunny19 Mon 28-Nov-16 14:11:37

I think category12 is spot on. How on earth did he just happen to spend the night with this ow, claim no sex took place and end up making you do all the hard work? He sounds like he's done a complete number on your self esteem op. You seem to be taking far too much blame for his cheating, which it is/ was. I assume it's his idea to term this affair an indiscretion, so much less tacky than fucking another woman behind his wife's back. If he can't be added to make an effort i really think you're wasting your time, sorry.

Pandora85 Mon 28-Nov-16 22:37:03

You are not the first people to give the idea that I've been a bit of a doormat. Although I've only told 3 people in RL.
I honestly don't think they had sex. I think had they met another time things will have likely gone further.
I've seen the messages between them and feel confident that certain things didn't happen but yes it was more than an indiscretion but I feel uncomfortable to say it as such sometimes.
I guess it makes me feel sad as a cheated wife. I also look back and wish I had acted differently at the time.
Instead of being the scared and lonely wife desperate to keep the family together I wish I'd got mad and stood up for myself.
However I need to now be grown up about it and try and do the best thing for us and see where it leads us.
I want to say I've done everything to save us and while there is still hope I'm not prepared to give up but I need a way for him to understand what I've been through and what we've been through and that we are lucky to have survived so far and that it takes both of us to work hard to get through the storm.

category12 Tue 29-Nov-16 07:36:11

You can still be mad. It isn't a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Look, you're both desperate to gloss over it - you because of the shock of it - and him to just sweep you past it. It's OK to say that you have tried to do that and actually you need to deal with it properly instead, because it's not going away. It's utterly normal to do that btw, but it does mean that you're left doing all the emotional work. And that itself may slowly kill the relationship.

Basically he cut the guts out of the relationship by cheating, and in your mutual desire to get over it quickly and not deal with his uncomfortable feelings, you have slapped a big old plaster on, when it needed stitches.

Whether they had sex isn't really relevant - they were emotionally intimate, they slept together, touched (kissed? made out? naked together?) and got to that point by a series of choices he made.

Happybunny19 Tue 29-Nov-16 09:52:14

Category has done it again, spot on. You shouldn't be made to feel like you missed out on the only opportunity to go mad, be distraught etc. From the way you've described, your husband needs to show enough remorse to sit down and enter into a proper conversion about what happened. No one in your position could just put on a happy face and get back to normal after the betrayal caused by the intimacy he shared with another woman. You're both struggling with this and most likely need help from a counsellor.
Have you considered asking him to move out for a while to give you the space you needed when it first happened? I think he takes it for granted that you will tolerate anything after carrying on as normal. He needs a kick up the backside to make him appreciate what he nearly lost.

SandyY2K Tue 29-Nov-16 12:41:19


I can recommend low cost (or free) marriage counselling. If you're interested PM me.

This organisation focuses on marriage and relationship recovery. Not money.

SandyY2K Tue 29-Nov-16 12:53:19

If you find out they had sex, would you still want to save your marriage?

I'd want to know the truth about it and I'd struggle with him saying they didn't sleep together.

Do you have a dealbreaker?
If they did oral would you accept that?

You've let him off lightly. You shouldn't fear hurting him. How happy would he be about you laying in bed with another man?

Would he just get over it? I doubt it.

You need to know what you're forgiving, before you forgive.

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