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Husband contacting other women(23 Posts)
Any experience of this? I've been on a bit of an emotional rollercoaster this year after discovering texts between my husband and a female work colleague (whom he had known for 2-3 years but had never mentioned!). They were texting almost daily - some work related, but lots of flirting/sexual comments/personal chat. They were meeting up regularly for lunches. He initially denied anything more than "meetings essential for work" and insisted there was no attraction. But he has since admitted there was attraction/feelings involved and no the meetings weren't all for work. I still feel I haven't had the full story. It really felt like discovering he was having an affair, but he insists nothing physical happened. Is this an "emotional affair"?
That's an emotional affair and be prepared that you are probably not getting the full truth
Every single man caught out like that seems to follow the exact same pattern:
1) There’s nothing going on at all
2) Well, OK, a bit of flirting, nothing more
3) Well, OK, we kissed once but that’s all
4) Well, OK, I tried to have sex with her once but I couldn’t get it up as I felt so guilty
5j Well, OK, I could get it up but it only happened once...
7) ....three times at the most. But it meant nothing. I love you.
8) Actually, she’s the love of my life. All of this is your fault.
9) I am leaving you
10) Can we try again. I made a mistake. It was you I love all along.
Your DH seems only to have got as far as 2) so far. If you feel there’s more there probably is. Trust your instincts.
I'd be very surprised if it was purely an emotional affair, OP, I'm afraid. It's been going on too long. They've had so many lunches and other opportunities to meet up. You didn't even know she existed.
I'd be prepared for more. In my experience you're never told everything at the start. And look out for him crying - harden your heart there. They always cry. They always blame something or other. Don't be surprised if your weight or your 'nagging' or the fact 'you're boring' come into play. Be prepared.
Remember if you hadn't found the texts, you wouldn't know about this and they would still be meeting up.
I would call that an emotional affair and I doubt very much you are even now hearing the full truth from him. He has and is likely continuing to minimise his actions. Its not your fault that this has happened, the fault here lies with him.
Have you as yet asked him to leave?. Is he still working in the same place as she?
My instincts are definitely telling me not to trust him. I actually found messages with a different female colleague about 3 years ago, which were jokey but flirty. I made it clear then it was completely inappropriate and I believed he had made a stupid mistake and wouldn't do it again. So life went on, and with two young children (one a small baby at the time) I didn't think to keep checking his phone. I was probably too exhausted to even think about it!
I'd just ask her to tell you the truth, you've got her number I'd just ring her and ask.
Hes probably been spinning her some right bull like he doesnt sleep with you anymore/my wife doesnt understand me etc.
Personally I wouldnt believe a word he says to you.
This was a year ago I found out about this women. It took months for him to even admit to the attraction being there and having feelings. They don't work together any longer, as far as I know anyway. He did leave for a couple of months at the time. But we decided to try and work it out, because we have the children. It's just that all the lies are infuriating. To be told you're overreacting for months, when you know you're not, is really horrible.
He has taken your trust and marriage and has shat all over both. There may well be other women he has flirted with over a long period of time too, he likely continues to minimise his actions here with these women you already know of. He could and is likely to cheat on you again; he's done it twice already and without serious long term consequences to him. There is nothing to stop him doing that and his actions say far more about him than they ever would about you.
Do not stay in such a marriage simply for the sake of the children; it will simply teach them damaging lessons on relationships and that is no legacy to leave them as parents. I presume you never attended any counselling sessions and just tried to work through his cheating behaviours without any outside support.
Do you at all trust this man now; after all if there is no trust there is really no relationship. Trust is nigh on impossible to rebuild once it has gone.
We did try counselling, but because he wasn't honest there either, it didn't help too much. I don't have any trust for him at all. In fact, I'm left wondering when all these lies began - I thought we were happy but he lied so convincingly it's worrying, I had no idea. He has said some flaws he felt we had in our relationship, which are directed at me (e.g., he didn't get enough attention), but he obviously didn't choose to bring these up at the time. I do completely agree about the children not being around the negativity, etc, but I've been battling with myself over what is best this entire year. Never thought I would be bringing my children up with split time, etc. So I've been trying to get my head round it all.
I'd just call that an affair, tbh
You are flogging a dead horse, love
He lied and lied and lied. And he lied about it "just" being an emotional affair. When the trust is gone, the marriage is over.
Thank you for the helpful replies. I just really wanted to see if anyone understood/has been through something similar. I have a good support system of friends and family, but none that have gone through this particular situation. No-one has even heard of an emotional affair!
That's because they're normally just called affairs lol. Bollocks did nothing happen.
He’s shagging her, nothing emotional about it. You deserve better.
Emotional or physical doesn't really make a difference, an affair is an affair. He wasn't being faithful in either sense.
In my experience these things never stop and just continue in other ways. You could literally offer him the moon on a stick, but if he's the kind of person to always need attention and flirtation from other women then it's always going to happen. There may be periods of abstinence but once the coast is clear the behaviour usually returns.
As I see it situations such as these leave you 3 options:
1. Turn a blind eye, ignore his behaviour and try to live in blissful ignorance (hard)
2. Drive yourself mad checking his phone, trying to catch him out, police his behaviour etc (soul destroying)
I too found messages between my DH and another woman. He has only admitted to what there was proof of in the messages - kissing. We have had counselling, which finished last Christmas. I though I was OK with it and we were moving forward but it still plays on my mind. He knows her through his job and although they don't work together there is the chance of meeting at joint meetings within their profession.
I agree it is the lies. I had no idea and yet he carried on convincingly. It is the trust! It is proving difficult to live with.
I think if he lied in counselling you need to accept (a) he is not committed to saving his marriage and (b) he is a flat-out liar. Neither are exactly attractive qualities in a life partner.
The fact that he sees the problem as being 'he didn't get enough attention' (classic) is typical. What about you? How much attention are you getting?
You decided to 'work it out' after you found out about this messages, so can I ask what he has been doing to make amends and regain your trust?
Well, OK, I tried to have sex with her once but I couldn’t get it up as I felt so guilty
I had that one. Shame I wasn't on MN then, the OW was already pregnant at that point.
I had that one too - there really is a script. Mine was She wanted to have sex so I did but I couldn't come because I felt so guilty.
My ex got only as far as 1) and stuck with that until I read his emails and discovered they'd been sleeping together for more than a year, had met in sex hotel, gone on holiday together, etc. I knew something was up but would never have thought he'd stoop to such depths. You simply do not know and cannot guess what is going on in someone's head. Someone you might think is "nice" can be just as accomplished a liar as any "bad sort".
Just catching up on the replies, thank you for sharing your stories too, it does help when people understand how this feels.
I agree it doesn't make a difference at this point if it was physical, it's the betrayal that hurts. I actually think a one off mistake that was physical, if admitted straight away, would be easier to move past than this.
Like cece said, my husband too only admitted to what was in the messages - the attraction, etc was obvious from what I saw in the messages but even then it still took him such a long time to admit that - so I've constantly questioned what else there might be that I don't know. There have definitely been a number of things that didn't add up.
I didn't want to have to keep checking his phone - he could easily be deleting messages or even have a second phone, now knowing I was checking his messages!
He hasn't tried much at all this year really, apart from physically being here in the house with us and going to counselling. I think he kept lying in a 'damage limitation' sort of way and thought if he didn't talk about it unless he had to then it would all go away. But I think to stay in the marriage, I would be waiting for the day he would do something like this again or even leave for someone else. After all, where was this heading if I hadn't found out?! Although the OW was newly married, if that even means anything - I mean I don't know what kind of person she is, she may happily have affairs all the time!!
Yes ravenmum, agree with you there - I always thought he was a 'nice guy' and so did everyone else! Big shock for everyone, most of all me!!
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