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AIBU?

I had an affair and I have no idea what to do now...

72 replies

WanderingLost167 · 11/12/2019 09:34

Not sure where to start with this, but my head is a mess and I have no idea what to do.

I have been married for over 10 years, two young children.

About 18 months ago I was unhappy in my marriage and found myself in an online affair, which made me realise how negative I felt about my DH, our lack of intimacy. I then embarked on a physical affair, and pulled away from my DH even more. The affair was never going to be a leaving for each other and starting again sort of thing, although I fell in love and maybe hoped we had a future of some sort.

It ended recently, his wife got suspicious and he decided to sort out once and for all whether they can work it out or leave. I respect that decision, but miss him hugely. The way we were together just highlighted everything I don't feel in my marriage. Desire, affection, loved.

Last week my husband hacked an old mumsnet account of mine, finding messages where I had talked about having an affair. I didnt deny it, didn't resort to the Cheaters script, just gave my reasons.

His response was as you would expect, furious, hurt, telling me how awful I was. Which I deserve. I took a cowards way out, having an affair rather than leaving when I felt it was over.

But at the same time I had made the decision to leave my marriage, with no one to go to, just knowing that if I stay I will cheat again.

DH initially told me he wanted to divorce, and I agreed, and making plans to make that happen.

He now says he wants to work at the marriage, give it 6 months. My reaction is to be overwhelmed with a feeling of trapped. I'm the bad person here, I know that, but I am not sexually or romantically attracted to him anymore. I can't make myself do it, I've tried. If I stay I will either live in a marriage where he keeps hoping I'll change my mind, and I'll long for what I know I could find with someone else. Or not. Maybe I won't, but it's easier than living with the weight of someone else's expectation for sex I can't bare to give.

Divorce is not going to be easy, but if I stay I think it will be worse for the kids.

He wants to do couples therapy, which I think will delay things but maybe will explain to him how I can't stay.

Its a mess. I don't want to break his heart, again.

OP posts:
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Am I being unreasonable?

194 votes. Final results.

POLL
You are being unreasonable
37%
You are NOT being unreasonable
63%
NarcolepticOuchMouse · 11/12/2019 10:52

Agree to the therapy, you both need it for the future. Then divorce.

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ScrimshawTheSecond · 11/12/2019 10:52

You are tied to this man for life because of your children, so you will need to find ways to get along as best you can, whether or not you are in a relationship.

That doesn't mean you have sex with him, pretend to be in love, or anything of the sort, it just means you can spend six months working out how to move forward. Therapy sounds like a good idea for all of you.

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QueSera · 11/12/2019 10:58

You need to do the couples therapy. It isnt always about mending the marriage. Sometimes its about coming to terms with divorce

This.
It will help you learn about the relationship, yourself, each other, what went wrong etc and, if there really is no fixing it, how best to accept that it's over and move on in the most amicable way possible. Good luck OP.

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Sametimenextyear · 11/12/2019 10:59

Wasn't blaming anyone. And yes, obviously it would have been been better to have have been honest from the beginning. Maybe I read it wrongHmm

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Lonecatwithkitten · 11/12/2019 11:04

Having been in your husbands position - only do the therapy if you actually think it could make a difference.
The affair hurt me, but the biggest hurt of all was him pretending that he wanted to save the marriage when he didn't want to.
If you don't think you can carry on say so and make the break now.
I can still see the counsellors face when my ExH stated that he had no intention of making any effort to work on the marriage, even though he was the one who had suggested counselling.

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Sannapaws · 11/12/2019 11:05

If you don't to be with him then end it now, he'll hold the affair over you starting with his timeline of 6 months where he gets to dictate if and when things end.
Get a good mediator, he's going to be hurt and possibly vindictive during the separation, it'll be hard for him to be impartial and practical when it comes to splitting marital assets and making decisions around the kids.

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Greggers2017 · 11/12/2019 11:06

Leave the poor bloke will get over it in the long run and he definitely deserves better than you.
I hope you feel bad and suffer with guilt for a long time. I also hope your children judge you when they are older and they realise why Mummy and Daddy seperated.

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Stuckinanutshell · 11/12/2019 11:06

You’re right - you’re a bad person. Leave and give your poor family some much needed space to heal from your utterly selfish actions.

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Sannapaws · 11/12/2019 11:06

as he'll be blaming you for the split. Don't be guilted into therapy for his sake.

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Sannapaws · 11/12/2019 11:07

People on here can be hard and judgy OP, personally I think until you've walked in someone else's shoes you really have no idea about why they did something.

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HumousWhereTheHeartIs · 11/12/2019 11:09

You are not responsible for the other man's wife.
I think you should explain to your husband that the marriage is over and that you are very sorry. But agree to attend therapy to sort out the future

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Chocolatemouse84 · 11/12/2019 11:11

You need to sit down and explain to your husband there is no way forward for you. Then spend time discussing how best to work the separation in terms of living arrangements and children and then leave. Don't give the poor bloke false hope when you clearly are not going to remain with him.

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Waitrosescheapestvodka · 11/12/2019 11:12

It sounds like you want to leave but feel you owe it to your DH to engage in therapy, because you have behaved badly?

You don't owe him this. You owe him fidelity, but not to try and save a relationship you feel certain is over. If it's done it's done, call it and make for as clean a break as you can.

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onemoresipofthehenny · 11/12/2019 11:15

I have a phobia of women like you.
You don't understand how much it hurts the other people involved when you cheat.

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sweeneytoddsrazor · 11/12/2019 11:18

Of course people are going to judge and rightly to. The OP is a cheat simple. If she was posting about her DH being a cheat, she would be advised to dig about and find out all his finances, make sure she had her escape fund, kick him out, take him to the cleaners. Why should it be any different if the wife is the cheat. Why should her DH make life easy for her? Why should he leave the marital home and only see his kids eow. She was the one who dropped her knickers for another man.

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Jumpi · 11/12/2019 11:24

Leave.

He will find someone far better for him and have a chance of happiness instead of spending the rest of his life suspicious of you and wondering why he wasn’t good enough.

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bloodywhitecat · 11/12/2019 11:40

Another saying "Go to couples counselling", it will help you whichever way you decide to go as it is about breaking up as well as about staying together.

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AtomicRabbit · 11/12/2019 11:40

This reply has been withdrawn

The OP has privacy concerns and so we've agreed to take this down.

MorganKitten · 11/12/2019 12:03

Leave, let him find someone else and build something.

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WanderingLost167 · 11/12/2019 12:26

Thank you for your comments and feedback.

I agree that he will never trust me if we stay together, and i don't blame him.

OP posts:
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Drabarni · 11/12/2019 13:12

You need to leave, you don't love your husband.
You didn't just find yourself in an affair you made a conscious decision to be a skanky cheat.
What do you plan to tell your kids? That should be a good conversation.

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Mollychristmas · 11/12/2019 13:17

Why are you prolonging this for him?

Don’t be cruel, end it now and stop dragging it out.

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CatInTheDaytime · 11/12/2019 13:17

I don't think you were being dramatic OP. You know you messed up, you want to leave, but you're asking what to do about the fact that he wants you to stay.

I think when you know it's over, it is fairest to end it and not drag it out. But I agree the counselling could help you both cope with that and get through it.

I had couples counselling with my ex when I knew I was going to end it. I didn't say so during the counselling (it would have been better if I had, but I was scared of his reaction and still building up the courage) but even so the counselling really helped me to see what had gone wrong and why I couldn't fix it.

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Lovemusic33 · 11/12/2019 13:24

Anyone that admits to having an affair on mumsnet are instantly going to be told how awful they are and how they deserve everything they get.

OP, I was in a similar situation to you, I didn’t actually cheat but someone made me realise that I didn’t love dh anymore, they made me feel special and sexy when dh was telling me how out of shape and I attractive I was. I realised I no longer loved dh, things had been rubbish for years but I had been plodding along thinking I was worthless and couldn’t cope on my own. I had it out with DH and her persuaded me to give him another chance and he would put more effort in, I agreed but it soon became clear that I no longer felt anything for him and I asked him to leave. We toured with the idea of therapy but I knew it would not change the way I felt about him. Splitting was hard but it was totally the right thing to do. He now has a new partner and I’m still single but I’m much happier.

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raisinseverywhere · 11/12/2019 13:28

Atomicrabbit - thanks for recommending the TED talk, it really spoke to me ....

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