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DHa Affair revealed

232 replies

RaeraeH · 18/03/2023 16:12

I am in shock and trying to get my head round the discovery (or revealing) of my husbands affair. The OWs DH found an email discussion between OW and my H which makes clear the two of them are in love and it seems to have been going on for around 18 months, possibly longer. They have had sex before but not within the past year, which the emails state however it seems it has continued emotionally on and off.
A week ago OWs DH found me on Instagram and contacted to inform me of what he had discovered and subsequently has shared said email discussion with me which was heartbreaking to read.
Things like he's only with me for our 3 kids and he wishes to be on her arms, will always be there for her etc :(
I'm reeling. We've been together for 20 years and he's been an incredible husband overall.
H is begging me not to divorce him and wants to work through it.
From what I gather though, OW put the brakes on the physical side of things because he wouldn't leave me.
My head is a mess. Where do I begin.

OP posts:

rainbowstardrops · 19/03/2023 08:13

What a shit he is!
For me, it would be the level of emotional connection between them. He's not 'just' in it for the shags, he's connected to her.
Any cheating is a no in my book, 100% but a drunken one off shag at the office party would be less difficult to understand (they'd still be out on their ear), than an 18 month sexual and emotional affair.
That's just way too deep to get past in my opinion.


Epidote · 19/03/2023 08:15

I can't tell you what to do but as PP have said take your time to decide what is best for you. Not for him, he already knows how to take care of himself.


perfectcolourfound · 19/03/2023 08:23

What your DH wants now is utterly irrelevant. Why would you prioritise what the lying, cheat wants? Why would you care?

Your head is reeling, understandably. You don't have to rush to any decisions. You've had some really good advice here.

  • Get some legal advice on where things stand. You don't have to do anything with it, right away or ever, but you'll feel better and more in control just starting that conversation.
  • Confide in people close to you. You've nothing to be ashamed of and he doesn't deserve you covering for him. It will help if you can talk to people IRL as well as on here.
  • Don't do the 'pick me' dance. It never ends well. It usually ends with you feeling worse about yourself. If you might want to make a go of it with him (I can't think why you would, but you might) it will put you in better stead if you show you've got self respect and you know you deserve better than him. Don't let him assume you're sat at home waiting for him, begging him to choose you.

PurpleFlower1983 · 19/03/2023 08:25

I would consult a solicitor to be clear if my financial position and then, with all the facts, take some time to think. This is not something I could forgive but with 20 years behind you and 3 children it’s an awful decision. What a terrible thing he has done to you all! Twat!


PurpleFlower1983 · 19/03/2023 08:31

RaeraeH · 18/03/2023 20:19

What I'm struggling with so much @PyongyangKipperbang is, if he didn't love her, and she hasn't has sex with him for a year, why was he investing so much emotion and time into her?
He is very handsome and charismatic so if it's just a shag he was after he could easily have done this with anyone while away with work etc. Which he may have as well, but I really don't think so.
These two have shared a lot about their childhoods, chatted for hours, were physical for a period of time which they refer to as 'mind-blowing' but emotionally he appears smitten in the emails.

If he really loved me, surely he wouldn't do this with someone else?
If he feels so strong why does he want to be with me? Is it to maintain his family man image ? I dont expect anyone to have clear answers. But these are the questions I ask myself over and over.

I think you’re right OP, it’s worse than a shag as he has actively pursued the emotional side.

What contact will they have if he calls it a day? Do they work together? Sorry if you’ve already said this.

I was cheated on in a previous relationship (only 9 years and no kids) and I did try and forgive but the suspicion ate away at me and I become someone I wasn’t, checking social media, obsessed over his laptop, phone etc. It was very unhealthy.


massifcentral · 19/03/2023 08:36

I'm so sorry OP. No one deserves this shit.

But, a slightly different perspective perhaps. You've mentioned a couple of times that your husband is very handsome and charming, and I hardly imagine at the moment that you're blinded by affection...

It doesn't excuse the affair, but most middle-aged men aren't handsome or charming. The small number that I've known who've been genuinely like this (not Brad Pitt gorgeous, but the good looking guy in the room, at the work party etc., the one who has always found flirting easy etc) have all had affairs. One of my friends (divorced) left her husband after an affair of six months. It began (corroborated by others!) when a junior colleague climbed through the handsome man's hotel room window on a work trip away. Most men never get to see how they would behave in this reverse-Rapunzel set-up. A lot more men (by no means most or all, but a lot) would cheat if it was easy for them to do so.

You need to think about the actual relationship you've had, and your own genuine beliefs about fidelity. But I'd also be on your guard for being played by this other woman. How did her husband find out? I can't find the statistics but the chance of a wife finding out about a husband's affair is apparently much higher than vice versa. He's also left her, which she could probably have predicted. Was it an engineered discovery? Or, put it another way, after the first plan of withholding sex for a year hadn't worked (in enticing your husband to leave you), did she consciously or unconsciously go nuclear because this was the only chance of getting him to herself?? Not that this is the remotest consolation to you, but, if he is indeed very handsome and charming, she's probably head over heels in love with him and not thinking rationally about nuking her own life too.

He didn't want to leave you and he didn't want to move in with her. People never like what they don't want any more when it's forced on them. I would kick him out and see what he does. I suspect he will end it with her next week, if he sees the possibility of losing his family life. (Better to have the taste of being deprived of the children, wondering what they think is going on, what they will think of him as adults etc, than to have him knocking about the house.) Also it suggests a degree of aloofness on your part that will unnerve him.

Note that I'm not saying that you ought to have him back or want him back. But I think it's perfectly reasonable if you do. Lots of marriages survive affairs, and sometimes improve.

(If you do work this out, you'll need to have sex more than once a month. If you really don't want to do that, with him, or at all, I would end it now, because this is a story that will happen again.)


ArseMenagerie · 19/03/2023 08:49

He sounds like a fragile baby who only wants what he can’t have as a way to soothe his ego and myth make that he is an irresistible charmer. So entitled.
You know he has made a mistake and sounds like he does too. Too late. He has to sort this. He sounds so immature that I would bet that if you ask him to leave he will go to her for an easy ego soothe. That should tell you all you need to know.
Grown up people think about the children. He hasn’t. You must. Because he is a pathetic piece of shit that has just put a bomb in their lives.
Best outcome for them? Stability with a happy mother. So ask him to give you space and see what kind of fathering he does.
He’s not the prize. They are. You can find another handsome bloke- the kids are yours forever x


MadeForThis · 19/03/2023 08:55

Ask him to move out.

The easy option would be for him to run to her. If he does that it's over. If he ends things with her and fights for you then you can decide what you want. Take back control.


Toebeans1 · 19/03/2023 08:56

Big hugs OP. I am so sorry you are going through this ❤️


Sundaycoffeeisthebest · 19/03/2023 09:01

I've seen this situation from all sides. Human beings are rarely as black and white as some posters make them out to be.

I suspect that the reality is that you husband and the OW do think that they have a connection and are in love. He is probably generally happy with his current set up, if bored (because family life is not exactly thrilling). He knows that leaving will unsettle everything, and upset everyone. But, he is addicted to her, hence it continues.

Posters are right in that, people who do this and don't leave are cowards tbh. He probably knows this.

But none of this is actually relevant to you. All that matters is that you work through this, putting yourself at the centre of it, disregard his feelings.

A counsellor would help, and tell trusted friends.

I suspect that, once the shock wears off, you will realise that you have no choice. Is there actually any point in trying to win him back?

I've done that. Realised later that it actually wasn't a real marriage. I had a hollow feeling inside until I left, years later.

Get support, you will be fine.


Summysoom · 19/03/2023 09:01

TheCatterall · 18/03/2023 16:28

For starters - you’re in shock. So no rushed or knee jerk reactions. No decisions you can’t come back from.

also - massive squishes @RaeraeH

I would probably be numb for a few days and operate on auto pilot

DH may be telling you some things but it’s often the case they minimise or restrict what they tell us so we never get the full story.

there’s ‘the script’ that may follow once affair is discovered.

apology/ humble begging
then the anger and rewriting of history.

I personally couldn’t come back from such infidelity. Even if they are no longer physical as she’s given him the ultimatum of leaving you - they are still having a romantic relationship and had no intention of telling their partners were they not found out.

if you are wondering if your relationship could recover then I would discuss couples counselling.

I would also be taking stock of my financial and legal situation quietly away in case this is the end of your relationship path together.

This is absolutely spot on advice - especially ‘the script’. Remember this when the rewriting and anger starts. What’s important is you and your DC.


BessieSurtees · 19/03/2023 09:06

Can you leave him with the DC’s while you get some breathing space?

My niece did this when her DH cheated, totally ruined his plans to run off with OW. She went back once they agreed shared care and he moved out. It didn’t take long, her DS’s were fine.

So many men have affairs and then walk away without any responsibility and not many OW are expecting him to pitch up with the kids in tow.


AcornGreen · 19/03/2023 09:18

Let him go to her.

Shame on her husband and is bruised ego telling you, when he already knew your husband wanted to stay with you.


Mumof3confused · 19/03/2023 09:21

He doesn’t want to take responsibility for his actions, and he wants to have his cake and eat it. He probably enjoys being a family man AND getting the attention elsewhere.

Some other questions to ask yourself:

What do you get out of this relationship?
Would you be able to live with the deceit?
Do you deserve more? More respect, more adoration, more connection…

Only you can answer these questions.

Is he willing to cut all contact with OW?


OddSockSeeker · 19/03/2023 09:22

I’m so sorry. Such disrespect. Let her have him. She’ll know she’s landed herself a cheat & will never fully trust him herself. Their excitement is over now. She’s done you a favour. I love that her husband has left. Good for him. You can do this! 💪


billy1966 · 19/03/2023 09:23

Great advice from so many.

So many on MN have written about wasting years trying to limp along but never getting back to where they were, with angry husbands who wanted them to STFU, forget and move on.

The relationships invariably end after 2-5 years and the posters feel relief but regret at the wasted years.

You really need to lean into who you are and do you really think you could love and trust a man who has being cooing wooing another woman for nearly two years all the while smiling at you?

Could you ever truly believe another smile of his after such duplicity?

He has also cheated on your children, remember that.

He is begging to stay because it doesn't suit him RIGHT NOW to leave.

But he will when the time is right for HIM.

Cheating is only difficult the FIRST time you do it.

He is a skilled liar, he WILL do it again.


DaveyJonesLocker · 19/03/2023 09:25

If you stay with him I absolutely think they will pick up where they left off. She's no single and if you take him back you've basically said you're OK with it and given them the green light.

They'll be shacked up together in minutes if you leave him aswell.


determinedtomakethiswork · 19/03/2023 09:26

The thing is that the OW will be on a mission now. She will want him to choose her. It'll be far better for her if she can tell people she and your husband were madly in love and had to be together rather than admit her husband has dumped her for being a cheat and her boyfriend didn't like her enough to leave home.


Mumof3confused · 19/03/2023 09:32

Also he has made out that it’s somehow your fault for not having enough sex with him. But instead of addressing this with you, he’s looked for it elsewhere.


gonnabeok · 19/03/2023 09:32

I was in this position 2 years. I found out by accident. Tell him to move out. Tell him you're not making any decision yet. He doesn't deserve any compassion. They're always sorry but it's not for the affair, it's for getting caught. If it wasn't for her husband you'd never know anything was going on. Expect tears, him saying he was having a mental health crisis, blah blah blah! I threw mine back in the pond. The OW did too as he's told her we had split up which was a lie.

Get some legal advice, take each day as it comes. Remember to stay hydrated and eat a little even if it's toast. Your only priority is you and the kids. If he won't move out get him in another room. It may be best if you get your own place eventually. You can say it wasn't just for sex. The emotional connection was there with her. He's cold and calculating. You don't need him... Gift him to are worth so much better than this creep....


Yellowdays · 19/03/2023 09:36

He's also lost control of the situation, and that partly explains his reaction. He won't see himself as used to that.


TaunterOfWomenInGeneralSaysSayonarastu · 19/03/2023 09:38

AcornGreen · 19/03/2023 09:18

Let him go to her.

Shame on her husband and is bruised ego telling you, when he already knew your husband wanted to stay with you.

No shame on the OW's husband at all.

Lovely of you to dismiss his pain as a bruised ego.
Men have feelings too.


quietnightmare · 19/03/2023 09:43

If I were you I would ask him to leave for a bit so you can think clearly and decide what you want to do because with him being there he will sway your decision

Ask yourself....
Can I forgive him?
Can I move past this?
If so what changes does he need to make...move jobs etc?
What sacrifices is he willing to do to make this work?
Will I be able to be happy in this relationship?
What is best for me in this situation?
What advice would I give my best friend if it was her?
Do I want to know all the details and timeline?
How can trust be rebuilt?


LeotardsandDaisies · 19/03/2023 09:43

Personally, I’d be meeting up with the OW’s DH to commiserate together…


DJhowzy · 19/03/2023 09:46

Firstly, I’m sorry about your situation OP, I feel for you. Remain strong and objective, and you will thrive through this whether you choose to save your marriage or choose to move on.

This message represents my opinion based on a lifetime of experience from my perspective. It doe not mean I am right/wrong. Just take from it what you feel resonates with you and ignore what you feel doesn’t. That also goes for anyone else who reads this.

Yes, your DH is all sorts of wrong for being selfish/brain dead for choosing sex over his DC and your marriage… if YOU decide to work on your marriage with him, he needs to make it up to you over a long period of time, demonstrating his devotion to the marriage and DC. However, you also need to work on this as the issue was created by both of you over a prolonged period of taking each other for granted.

The mistake many couples make is they do not put each other first once they settle down and DC tend to become absolute top priority, leaving the foundation of the relationship (the cornerstone, if you will) playing bottom fiddle, over time allowing it to crumble. Yes, it would be great if all partners could just remain happy no matter what, but we are emotional beings by nature and we cannot help how we feel. Putting partners 2nd in any way is what leads to affairs. DC can still be devoted to lovingly without any neglect, but it was your relationship with DH that created the family in the first place. You neglected each other over time and unfortunately the result is the situation you are currently in.

Only you, OP, will know what you truly want. If you choose to end the marriage it still is best to try and maintain an objective dialogue to minimise the mess it will leave behind. If there is little equity in your property, there is no need to ‘buy him out’ as he is equally responsible for a safe roof to be over his children’s heads. This does not mean taking as much equity as he can and setting up a new relationship elsewhere… He needs to take the financial responsibility/repercussions of his actions. If he is not taking DC with him he needs to stand on his own two feet with his salary, whilst supporting his DC financially too. The key thing here is a robust agreement to support DC amicably without any animosity and stress to the DC.

I sense you would prefer to save your marriage. If this is the case then you both must go back to basics and communicate more than you ever have, exploring how you both feel and leaving no stone unturned when discussing your feelings. Not just now, but forever. You may choose to seek professional counselling (which would hit home with your DH the mess that has been created). You can explain how your DH has made you feel and he can explain what led to him choosing to do what he did and how that made him feel. If you can achieve this level of honesty and save your marriage, it will also elevate your marriage to a new level and will possibly feel like a brand new and exciting relationship. I must stress though, that if a single detail is not explored and not discussed and is swept under the carpet, then you risk the cycle you are currently in beginning again. In these situations, it is the unspoken word that is the most damaging. BTW, sex is also significantly enhanced when a couple reaches a certain level of emotional connection with honesty at the foundation. Most of society has never experienced what I am talking about it. You will know if you have.

I personally would not get hung up or obsess over what word your DH said to the OW as it needs putting into context. At the time, he was trying to get laid and I have learned that most men would say anything to achieve it (I am a man, but not most men). The key point I see here is that he did not leave and he still remained with you, so that is a good sign and something you can build on if you choose to go down the path of complete honesty and transparency whilst rebuilding your marriage. The OW also felt the relationship was wrong, so she pulled back. This tells my that they both have at least some kind of moral compass but they were too weak to avoid crossing the line in the first place. Your DH is begging you not to divorce but at present he has no idea the level of work that needs to be put in to remedy your marriage and take it to the next level. He will need your guidance and be willing to work with you every step of the way no matter how much he is out of his comfort zone.

Finally, the deep emotional connection you feel they have/had. I fully appreciate this hurts, probably the most, but you will be surprised how easy it is for humans to “find their soulmate’ after just sharing one piece of personal information followed by sex. We can be pathetic at times, but in reality we extremely rarely do find a true soulmate and it is often a false reality we have created in our own fantasy. I’m not saying your DH/OW are soulmates by any means, just making a point. This affair would have begun with one of them simply telling the other they are not ‘getting any’ at home, the other says ‘me too!’ and all of a sudden the barriers are down and they empathise with each others situation, share more personal problems, an ‘emotional’ bond is created… and an affair starts - do you see that an affair also starts with honesty/communication between two people. Your DH just found this with the OW unfortunately. Honesty/communication really is that powerful, so use it to its full potential if you choose to work on your marriage. The truth is, if DH was with this OW with 3 children in the same house, this same pattern would likely repeat over time. This is why people who have affairs are often weak willed and emotionally immature. Saying that, you often need to experience a situation like the one that is happening now in order to improve yourself and enhance your state of being.

A different perspective that may help you feel better is that if you choose to work on your marriage, this next stage of your relationship could be better than the first - an exciting prospect! If you begin this route, start by showing DH this Mumsnet thread and every single post. He needs a reality check and to see how many posters said ‘dump his ass’ or have given their opinion on him. That may (or may not) hit him harder than the emails you discovered did to you. Either way, it is the beginning of communication and honesty.

Good luck OP, whatever YOU decide!

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